Revisiting the Scene of O'Reilly's Most Despicable Moment

Back in January, in what was a ghastly display of revolting malice even by his standards, Bill O'Reilly said that he "hoped" 15-year-old Shawn Hornbeck, a boy who has just been found after being held captive by for four years by 41-year-old Michael Devlin, hadn't made "a conscious decision to accept his captivity because Devlin made things easy for him. No school, play all day long." O'Reilly also accused the boy of not escaping because he had "a lot more fun then when he had under his own parents. He didn't have to go to school; he could run around and do what he wanted," and bet that "when it all comes down, what's going to happen is, there was an element here that this kid liked about his circumstances."

Yesterday, Devlin pleaded guilty to the charges against him, and the court not only got to see a video of him torturing Hornbeck, but also heard some of the details of why the boy stayed with him for four years. You'll no doubt be shocked to hear it was not because there was "an element [he] liked about his circumstances."

[Trigger warning.]

Michael Devlin offered no apologies but shed light on why one of his victims stayed with him more than four years: The terrorized boy cut a deal just as Devlin was beginning to strangle him.

"This boy made this contract, this deal with the devil, only to survive," Washington County prosecutor John Rupp said.

…After the boy, then 11, was abducted at gunpoint while riding his bike in rural Washington County, Devlin took him to his apartment in suburban St. Louis and repeatedly sexually assaulted him. Days later, Devlin took Shawn back to Washington County in his pickup truck, apparently intent on killing the boy.

He said he pulled Shawn from his truck and began to strangle him. Shawn resisted.

"I attempted to kill (Shawn) and he talked me out of it," Devlin said Tuesday.
It's difficult on a normal day for me to accurately convey the profundity of my disgust for the loathesome creature O'Reilly; after reading about an 11-year-old child who had the presence of mind to strike a terrible, desperate bargain to save his own life, a child whom O'Reilly casually accused of enjoying his circumstances, I am left without the words to describe what I am feeling for that disgusting ghoul, who yet makes millions disgorging precisely this type of hateful swill night after night after night to be lapped up by people with no brains or souls.

Worse yet, he will probably never be taken to account for his nauseating comments about the brave and clever and admirable Shawn Hornbeck, now that the monstrous details of his detainment are emerging. And even if he were forced to revisit his heartless diarrheic bloviations, he would simply engage the excruciatingly familiar conservative trope that he couldn't have known. No one could possibly have known that it was not just inappropriate, but factually wrong to use this boy's devastating misfortune to launch another of his faux-macho-bravado, chest-beating, patriotic tirades about how "American children must be taught survival skills, must be prepared to face crisis situations. That is the lesson of the Shawn Hornbeck story."

Except, of course, that decent people did know. Decent people did say that it was complete, unmitigated horseshit to presume this child didn't use any survival skills: "I guess it would be far too much for [O'Reilly's] puny little brain to engage the thought that adaptability is not only one of humankind's greatest attributes, but also one of our strongest survival strategies—and kids especially manage to adapt to all kinds of grotesquery if they can be convinced their survival depends on it. If he had, he might realize that what appeared to him to be Hornbeck's preference for the kidnapped highlife might well have been in actuality his using 'survival skills' after all."

And of course that's exactly what happened. That little boy made a deal with the devil to be a sex slave if only the devil would let him live. That little boy saved his own life at 11 years old.

At 58 years old, Bill O'Reilly still hasn't figured out how to live a life worth saving.

[Via DBK.]

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