10 hours ago, Pat Robertson claimed that his call for assassinating Hugo Chavez was taken out of context and misinterpreted:
Wait a minute, I didn’t say ‘assassination.’ I said our special forces should, quote, “take him out,” and “take him out” can be a number of things including kidnapping. There are a number of ways to take out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted by the AP, but that happens all the time.
Now it appears that Robertson himself misinterpreted that misinterpretation and, by golly, he did say that Chavez should be assassinated. Oh, and he’s really sorry:
In my frustration that the U.S. and the world community are ignoring this threat, I said the following:
“Thanks, Dale. If you look back just a few years, there was a popular coup that overthrew him; and what did the United States State Department do about it? Virtually nothing; and as a result, within about 48 hours, that coup was broken, Chavez was back in power. But we had a chance to move in. He has destroyed the Venezuelan economy, and he’s going to make that a launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism all over the continent. I don’t know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we’re trying to assassinate him, I think we really ought to go ahead and do it…
Is it right to call for assassination? No, and I apologize for that statement. I spoke in frustration that we should accommodate the man who thinks the U.S. is out to kill him.
You’ve heard of the 5 stages of grief? This is the 5 stages of covering one’s butt when one says something breathtakingly stupid:
1. Yeah, I said it. And I meant it too.
2. I didn’t say that, and it’s an outrage how the media always distorts everything I say to make me look bad.
3. Uh, okay I said it. But I didn’t meant it, and you should believe me despite the fact that I lied earlier to cover it up.
We haven’t seen the 4th and 5th steps yet, but if history is any guide, he’ll flip back to his original position soon. As I reported here, this is something of a pattern with ol’ Pat. In 1985 he declared on the 700 Club that only Christians and Jews are qualified to have government positions. His co-host, Ben Kinchlow, even tried to save him from it, saying, “Obviously you’re not saying that there are no other people qualified to be in government or whatever if they aren’t Christians or Jews.” Robertson replied, “Yeah, I’m saying that. I just said it….No one is fit to govern other people unless first of all something governs him. Adn there is only one governor I know of that is suitable to be judge of all the universe, that’s God Almighty. Yes, I did say that. You can quote me. I believe it.” Now that might be absurd enough, but it doesn’t stop there. In September of 1987, Time magazine asked him about his statement. His response: “I never said that in my life. I never said only Christians and Jews. I never said that.” When someone sent the reporters at Time a copy of the tape, Robertson had to eat his words.
But wait, it gets even better. In his later book, The New World Order, he went back to his original position, saying:
You don’t dare say America or Christianity is a better way of living. When I said during my presidential bid that I would only bring Christians and Jews into the government, I hit a firestorm. “What do you mean?” the media challenged me. “You’re not going to bring those atheists into the government? How dare you maintain that those who believe the Judeo-Christian values are better qualified to govern America than Hindus and Muslims?” My simple answer is, “Yes, they are.”
He said it, he didn’t say it, then he says he did say it. He really does seem to believe that reality is whatever he declares it to be at any given moment. And the scary part? Most of his followers will lap it all up without question. Yes, you can fool some of the people all of the time.