Dispatches from the Creation Wars

And Out of This Side of His Mouth…

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.


  1. #1 Ginger Yellow
    August 25, 2005

    “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.”

    So, if I’m following this, we should assassinate Chavez because he’s worried we might assassinate him. Right…

  2. #2 Uber
    August 25, 2005

    I get a little tired of reading Judeo-Christian as if the are one big unified group.

    They differences are as wide as the Sahara.

  3. #3 GeneralZod
    August 25, 2005


    Who Would Jesus Assassinate?

    Probably Chavez.

  4. #4 Some Guy
    August 25, 2005

    I also like how people on the right kept saying, almost in unison, that Robertson is a fading star, a has-been who is not relevant to conservatives these days. No? He has the better part of a million viewers a day, is given regular chances on other networks to spout his lunacy, and he is player in the hard-core Christian political structure. Dobson may be the dom right now, but Robertson is not irrelevant.

    Such statements, as one can read in the WaPo editorial today, are an effort to marginalize him because the comment is so harmful and stupid. But he is not irrelevant. I have to wonder, if such foolishness gives a political party a bad name, why keep courting those voters? Oh yeah, Repubs could not get elected in majority numbers without that substantial margin of unreasonable, victim-fantasy fundamentalists.

    John Danforth’s call to take back evangelism from fruitbats like Robertson is long overdo.

  5. #5 Matthew
    August 25, 2005

    My favorite part about his comments is the part no one is really talking about, where he claimed that Chavez is going to turn Venezuela into a “launching pad for communist influence and Muslim extremism.” How the heck are the two related, and what in god’s name does Venezuela have to do with muslim extremism? Is this like the opposite of where the X-Men and the Avengers team up to take down Dr Doom or something? A combining of two evil forces into one super-evil empire?

  6. #6 Ginger Yellow
    August 25, 2005

    Give it a few months. They’ll be saying Chavez gave Saddam the idea to get Osama to organise 9/11.

  7. #7 spyder
    August 25, 2005

    so what does he say today(sounds like calling for assassination to me):

    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.

    There are many who disagree with my comments, and I respect their opinions. There are others who think that stopping a dictator is the appropriate course of action.

  8. #8 Don
    August 29, 2005


    We could have a long debate about whether or not Chavez qualifies as a dictator, but it’s not really relevant.

    Robertson’s rationale for killing him was;
    a. He thinks the US might kill him.
    b. Venezuela is a hot-bed of moslem extemists.
    c. We can.

    The logic behind b. must be;
    Moslems have oil
    Venezuela has oil
    Venezuelans are moslems

    How many of Pat’s devoted fans now believe (and, being Pat’s people, believe deeply and passionatly)that Venezuela is an Islamic dictatorship?

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