Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Denial of reality, Robertson style.

In response to the uproar over his anti-Christian statement advocating the assasination of Hugo Chavez, Pat Robertson now says he was "misinterpreted." What he is on record as saying is: "You know, I don't know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it."

To be sure, upon hearing this latest permutation from Mr. Robertson regarding the call to assasinate Mr. Chavez, his wingnut audience rhythmically nodded their heads and pondered yet another baseless attack on their religious leader by the media.

Yet the reality based community only need look at the tape for confirmation of Mr. Robertsons original statement and the meaning of those words. It seems to me the only misinterpretation involved here is Robertsons reading of how Christian leaders ought to react to a person they don't agree with politically. Mr Robertson somehow thought the "assasination" of said person is justified through a horrible misinterpretation of any sane reading of the teachings and example of Jesus Christ. When the reaction to this self apparent anti-Christian call for assasination swept the nation, he must have re-interpreted this belief, and finding the statement to be untenable, denied making the statement in the 1st place. Rather than making amends and apologizing for his lunacy he chose to break the commandment "Thou shalt not lie" with the clearly hairbrained explanation that he was misinterpreted, when he clearly was not.

What is it with wingnut spokespeople denying what they are on the record as saying? Twice in the span of 8 days we have glaring examples of aggregious statments from rightwing freakazoids, quickly followed by vociferous denials of having uttered said statements. On Monday, August 15, Rush Limbaugh said "I mean, Cindy Sheehan is just Bill Burkett. Her story is nothing more than forged documents. There's nothing about it that's real, including the mainstream media's glomming onto it." On August 18 Rush denied saying what he was on tape as saying! These clearly are examples of simply denying reality by winguts in a wrongheaded attempt to justify themselves. Rush in fact said what he said, as Robertson in fact said what he said and no amount of denial of the truth can erase those facts. Unless you are drinking the koolaid that is...

UPDATE: The Reverend Pat Robertson has apologized. He deserves credit for that. Way to standup and take the heat Mr. Robertson... you did the right thing in the end.

UPDATE Part 2: Here is a link to the apology from Robertsons website. I take back my 1st updates credit to Robertson for apologizing. He wraps up the "apology" thusly:
"The brilliant Protestant theologian, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who lived under the hellish conditions of Nazi Germany, is reported to have said:
“If I see a madman driving a car into a group of innocent bystanders, then I can’t, as a Christian, simply wait for the catastrophe and then comfort the wounded and bury the dead. I must try to wrestle the steering wheel out of the hands of the driver.”
On the strength of this reasoning, Bonhoeffer decided to lend his support to those in Germany who had joined together in an attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler. Bonhoeffer was imprisoned and killed by the Nazis, but his example deserves our respect and consideration today."

Comparing a theologians sympathy with those attempting to kill Hitler with his own situation hardly denotes contrition by Mr. Robertson for his outrageous statement. This is some sort of non-apology actually and Mr. Robertson should recieve no credit for standing up and doing the right thing in the end.

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