Glenn Beck continues his attacks on people of faith

Something I’ve noticed about Glenn Beck is that most of his attacks are motivated not by ideology or patriotism, but by revenge and personal petulance. First, it was Van Jones, President Obama’s green jobs czar. Beck began his successful smear campaign against Jones about the same time a group co-founded by Jones called for advertisers to boycott Beck for calling the President racist. Then in March, Beck began his screeds against the Bible’s call for social justice, comparing the Catholic Church and others who call for justice to Nazis and Communists. When evangelical leader Jim Wallis politely disagreed with Beck on his blog and called for a public debate between the two, Beck turned his ire on Wallis.

Beck’s latest target is another liberal faith-based group, Faithful America. They are an ecumenical organization focused on such issues as violence in the public discourse, distortion of Scripture, torture, health care, and climate change. (I have often cited their Faith in Public Life news round-up here at MyDD.) However, Beck's anger seems to come not from his belief that only the right-wing is allowed to think about religion but from his recurring desire for revenge. The group recently launched a radio ad to counter Beck’s distortion of the Bible, quoting Scripture and encouraging “a spirit of love and truth” when disagreeing with one another. They also printed and offered free bumper stickers declaring “Driven by Faith, Not by Fear.” (Mine arrived last week.)

Beck, in typical fashion, was outraged that anyone would suggest the Bible is about love, and tore into Faithful America on his radio show last Friday. As usual, he tried to debunk the group mostly by mocking them, not by being serious. His only substantive critiques were that it partners with other people he dislikes, deletes vulgar comments from its webpage, and doesn’t include the word “Jesus” on its homepage and thus isn’t religious. Because of course, the only proof that someone is religious is their use of the word Jesus – we all know there’s not a single religious Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, or Hindu in the entire world. But seriously, as the name suggests, Faithful America is ecumenical, not Christian. And while Beck is right about their homepage's use of the word “Jesus,” they do in fact have over two dozen mentions of the word “faith” (not even counting their name), as well as seven mentions of “Christian” and numerous links to explicitly Christian organizations (among others).

Faithful America’s response? The same as Wallis’s: they’re asking Beck to participate in an open public debate. They’re not stooping to his level of distortion and dishonesty, but if his reaction to Wallis is any indication, he won’t rise to their level of equality and civil discourse either.

Immigration Nation and Racial Profiling is Pulling in the Station

Arguably Foreign Looking Individual: Walking nonchalantly down a street in Phoenix

Arizona Officer of the Law:  Approaches Arguably Foreign Looking Individual "Excuse me sir, can I see some proof that you are a United States citizen?"

Arguably Foreign Looking Individual: "What? Why?"

Arizona Officer of the Law: "Because I have reasonable suspicion that you are not a legal citizen."

Arguably Foreign Looking Individual: "Reasonable suspicion? That is horseradish! Explain yourself."

Arizona Officer of the Law:  "You look suspiciously latino to me, and according to the new law recently signed by Gov. Jan Brewer, you are required to show proof of your citizenship."

Arguably Foreign Looking Individual: "I carry no such thing."

Arizona Officer of the Law:  "Well then, I will now handcuff and escort you to the county jail."

(note:  I have nothing against Arizona police-officers or Arizona as a state, this is a satirically hypothetical take on the new immigration law passed)

Ahhh yes, Arizona.  Land of pungent and vibrantly green flora, cascading aquatic oases, and vibrant game that would make any modest hunter giggle with glee.  Err... wait, maybe thats one of the other states that allows concealed carry without a permit.



I realize by now that the Arizona Immigration Law recently passed has probably been beaten into your heads more than teetotalism is at BYU, but I think it needs a bit more attention.

I find it very sad that this new immigration law exists.  It hurts the civil rights of many individuals that will no doubt be profiled based on their appearance.  I challenge Jan Brewer and the other stunning prodigies who crafted this law to define what "reasonable suspicion" really is.


 On Fox News Sunday, Bill Kristol (self-proclaimed liberal on immigration issues..what?) claims that the newest addition to Arizona's repertoire of anti-immigration decrees doesn't violate civil rights


Now I don't typically make an attempt to pillage through the proverbially mine-field that is Bill Kristol's brain, but I shall attempt to deconstruct his claims and try to make sense of them

KRISTOL: I doubt that it violates the Constitution, if it does, it’s a matter of federal preemption against state law. I don’t think it violates anyone’s civil rights. … I have actually read this bill it is not draconian. It is not going to lead to major civil rights violations. Will a few people get stopped perhaps because some policeman has reasonable suspicion that a person is illegal? Will he be stopped perhaps on the street and asked to provide his driver’s license? Yes. That is the huge horrible civil rights violation that’s going to occur 5 times or 8 times or 13 times in Arizona.

I fail to see how basing reasonable suspicion solely on looks and a good hunch constitutes good legislation, but hey far be it from me to question the state government of Arizona.  Even Mike "the body (of Christ)" Huckabee denounced this bill, saying there's no such thing as "american-looking."  Pro-life Libertarian Judge Andrew Napolitano even threw his hat into the ring.

Napolitano also said the law is “so unconstitutional that I predict a federal judge will prevent Arizona from enforcing it.”

Of course not all notable conservatives share the views of Huckabee and Napolitano.  Sarah Palin added her opinion to the matter, because nobody knows what they would do without it.  With millions of adoring fans and Palin-junkies tuning their Palin radar to here the verdict that they will no doubt blindly support, Palin didn't quite give an official answer or endorsement but instead offered this insightful and astute remark:

So more power to Jan Brewer for deciding that she was taking on an issue

So Palin is essentially praising Brewer's ability to sign her name on a paper.  Palin groupies will have to continue waiting in hopes of a verdict.

I'm no Constitutional lawyer, so I cannot definitively condemn this as Un-Constitutional.  However, the arguments against the laws constitutionality keep piling up.  No doubt this has more chance of getting repealed due to violation of the supreme law of the land than the Healthcare law does. 

But Bill Kristol isn't the most reputable person to be commenting on profiling-sensitive issues.  Let me jog everyone's memory a bit.  Heading back down memory lane take exit 34 to Fox News Sunday circa Feb. 3rd 2008.

BILL KRISTOL: Look the only people for Hillary Clinton are the Democratic establishment and white women... it would be crazy for the Democratic party to follow the establishment that's led them to defeat year after year... White Women are a problem - but, you know... we all live with that...

Source:  Media Matters

Kristol, you are indeed a piece of work....


... and an idiot.

Prop. 8 Federal Lawsuit Begins, Cue Right-Wing Media Hysteria

This week in a San Francisco Federal District Court, a legal odd couple will be on display. Attorney David Boies, who represented Al Gore before the U.S. Supreme Court in the infamous 2000 case ofBush v. Gore, and conservative attorney Ted Olson, who represented George W. Bush, are joining forces to overturn California's Proposition 8. It will be their contention that the initiative passed by voters in 2008 banning same-sex marriage in the Golden State violates the Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the U.S. Constitution, singles out gays and lesbians for a disfavored legal status, and discriminates on the basis of gender and sexual orientation.

Regardless of which side prevails, experts agree the case is likely to be appealed all the way to the highest court in the land.

Cue right-wing media hysteria and homophobia.

There's more...

How about some New Year's resolutions for the right-wing media machine?

It's that time of year again. Some have vowed to hit the gym more often. Others are swearing off cigarettes. For some, coffee has been replaced with copious amounts of socialist green tea. Still others are signing up for community service projects to help improve the world around them.

Yes, many Americans have made their New Year's resolutions. Perhaps the conservative media establishment should do the same.

There's more...

Media Matters video calls out conservative pundits who mocked DHS report on right-wing extremists

This video is getting a lot of well-deserved buzz this morning. Like good writing, good video CAN crystallize a moment, and make a compelling argument. Then again, the argument that the modern conservative movement has come completely unhinged is a fairly easy one to make. Never mind. Just watch the video:

And if you're in Washington, DC today, please consider joining The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) of Greater Washington, the InterFairth Conference of Metropolitan Washington, various faith groups, friends, and me for a vigil for peace and solidarity in front of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

100 Raoul Wallenberg Place SW, Washington, DC 20024 (just off 14th and Independence SW - closest Metro stop: Smithsonian on the Orange and Blue lines)

2:00pm today (Thursday, June 11, 2009)

We'll be there to express our support, unity, love, respect and to reflect in the aftermath of yesterday's tragic shooting of Stephen T. Johns, who gave his life defending our commitment to fight injustice and hatred.

I'd also like to put in a quick pitch for The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and The Southern Poverty Law Center. Two organizations that do indispensable work and need our support.

Donate to The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:

Donate to The Southern Poverty Law Center:

There's more...


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