Saturday, February 18, 2006

A Radioactive Pat Robertson?

Considering that the religious right rarely, if ever, criticizes one of their own, it is refreshing to see them publicly backing away from Pat Robertson.

(sorry, it would be impossible for me to refer to this charlatan as 'reverend.)

An AP story today quotes fundamentalist leaders questioning whether or not Robertson is damaging the movement. In the interest of helping them out, the answer is yes, he is.

Still, not everybody is getting the message:

"Robertson started out as a Southern Baptist, but today he is a charismatic evangelical and believes that God is involved in guiding world events, said Barry Hankins, professor of history and church-state studies at Baylor University. He tries to interpret contemporary events as "being part of the drama of God's activity in the world."

"'He puts the most fantastic spin on things to have a gripping quality about them to keep the ground troops alert,' Hankins said.

"On the other hand, Brian Britt, director of the Religious Studies Program at Virginia Tech, said Robertson's remarks aren't just "off-the-wall, crazy uncle stuff" but part of a strategy that earns him headlines.

"When people attack Robertson, he wins sympathy for appearing to be an underdog, Britt said.

"'It reinforces an image of Christianity as a persecuted religion, a religion that is being hounded by the secularists out of the public square, rather than a dominant and hegemonic force,' Britt said."

Yeah, Robertson sure knows how to spin, but the fact that he cancelled an appearance at the NRB Convention, allegedly because he knew that they didn't really want him to speak there, is encouraging. It means that even with the control freaks that run the evangelical movement there are some limits.

No comments: