As Sharon points out, Jerry Falwell is an asshole. On September 13 (a short two days after the attacks in New York and Washington), Falwell told the equally offensive Pat Robertson of the 700 Club, “I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way — all of them who have tried to secularize America — I point the finger in their face and say, ‘You helped this happen.'”
Yes, Falwell has since called these comments “insensitive, uncalled for at the time, and unnecessary,” but he neglected to mention that he was wrong. In an unanswered e-mail to email@example.com (sent 9/14/01), I posed the following questions:
In which context would this not sound like you were casting blame on “the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and lesbians” for this Tuesday’s horrible events? Were you misquoted? And if hate-mongering isn’t your objective, what is? Please, if you’re going to use religion to masquerade your political opinions, at least learn when it’s inappropriate. And when you do apologize for your comments, accept the blame completely, rather than complain that you were misrepresented. Misrepresented? I think we all know what you are.
Want to know the context in which these comments could seem like anything less than misinformed hate-mongering? Michael Gerber and Jonathan Schwarz offers nine possibilities. Found through Alternet.