Bill O'Reilly wonders: Is climate change less believable than Jesus' virgin birth?

"It's easier to believe in a benevolent God and the baby Jesus than it is about ... global warming"

Published December 17, 2014 2:35PM (EST)

  (Frank Micelotta/invision/AP)
(Frank Micelotta/invision/AP)

On Tuesday's edition of "The O'Reilly Factor," Bill O'Reilly hosted a segment in which he discussed -- literally -- which concept was easier to believe: the story of the baby Jesus or man-made climate change. Guess which he chooses?

"Professor, people choose to believe," O'Reilly said, addressing his guest Julien Musolino, a psychology professor at Rutgers. "It's a choice, it's a conscious choice. And you say you're surprised that more people believe in the birth narrative of Jesus that comes from the Bible, the New Testament, than in global warming. But it's a little misleading. It's not that they don't believe the Earth is getting warmer -- anybody who can read a thermometer knows it is -- they don't believe that it has been proven conclusively that it's because man is doing certain things. That that's why the Earth -- there's a natural cycle in the Earth as everyone knows and so people want to see a little bit more. But it's easier to believe in a benevolent God and the baby Jesus than it is about some kind of theory about global warming. It's just easier!"

Musolino gamely responds, saying that while perhaps it is easier to believe in Jesus, scientists actually have long been in agreement that human activity is causing the planet to rapidly warm.

O'Reilly responds: "I've read a lot about it. I'd put it at 75 percent are committed to the theory that man is responsible, but even so, there's no demonstration in the sense that you can show it to the people. And again, it's a choice. People choose to believe."

O'Reilly has brought up the concept of belief before -- "The Factor does not believe in white privilege," he recently said. O'Reilly, the world's least reliable source, refusing to believe in a given (proven) concept is the cable equivalent of a child plugging his ears and humming.

By Joanna Rothkopf

MORE FROM Joanna Rothkopf

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