Respectful Insolence

Pat Robertson on Jews

i-334198f0d6c76c5d8ba07b226302ffe4-robertson.jpgI’ve commented before on some of Pat Robertson’s loonier statements. Given the sheer fundie religious nuttery that he regularly spouts, it takes something related to my regular blogging interests for him to catch my attention.

I know it’s amazing, but somehow he managed to do just that. First, a little anti-Semitism:

When you think of Jewish people, you think of successful businessmen. You think of people that are very wise in finance and who are prosperous. And when you think of poor countries around the world, you’d never would consider the nation of Israel. But in parts of the Jewish nation, poverty is growing at an alarming rate. Watch this.

Or:

It shocks people to hear that there’s poverty in Israel. We assume Jewish people are very thrifty, extraordinarily good business people. There shouldn’t be poverty there. What’s the story?

Or:

You know, I’m again in stunned disbelief. How could it possibly be that a country as rich as Israel can have this problem? Is the government addressing that problem?

Yep, how could all those Jewish bankers and businessman be poor? After all, everybody knows that the Jews control world finance, banking, and the U.N., right?

But a little passing on of Jewish stereotypes is nothing compared to Pat’s view on Muslims:

But you know, the truth is, ladies and gentlemen, it’s been said years ago that Islam essentially is a Christian heresy. They picked up snippets of the Gospels, picked up snippets of the Ten Commandments, the Pentateuch, writings of Moses, Abraham. You go back, you find many, many references to Moses, many references to Abraham, many references to the true Christian message. And here you’ve got everything that Jesus said that is true being transported into this fictional Mahdi. But to think there’s a man now in charge of a government with nuclear weapons that is willing to bring about the chaos that is necessary to fulfill what he believes is important. And yet, is he having some perverse view of what actually is going to happen? Well, Jesus told us there will be wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes, diseases, famines, pestilence. We were told before he comes back that there’s going to be tidal waves and signs in the heavens. We know this is going to happen, but not for some Mahdi.

Nope. According to him it’ll be the second coming of Jesus that’ll lead to all those wars and destruction, apparently. I have to tell you, I’d be just as afraid of someone like Pat Robertson having control of nuclear weapons as the President of Iran.

Comments

  1. #1 Hinschelwood
    May 26, 2006

    I’d be just as afraid of someone like Pat Robertson having control of nuclear weapons as the President of Iran.

    So would I, but he’s talking about Bush, surely? What he said was, “But to think there’s a man now in charge of a government with nuclear weapons that is willing to bring about the chaos that is necessary to fulfill what he believes is important.” Since Iran doesn’t have any newkewler weapons (yet), it can’t refer to the President of Iran.

  2. #2 bigdumbchimp
    May 26, 2006

    Lets not forget this man can leg press 2000 lbs.

  3. #3 Mark Paris
    May 26, 2006

    I wonder if Pat knows that Christianity is a Jewish heresy?

    I wish SB would fix the commenting problems. I had to delete SB cookies. Again.

  4. #4 J-Dog
    May 26, 2006

    Mark Paris – I wonder if Pat knows he is a flaming a&*hole?

  5. #5 KeithB
    May 26, 2006

    “You know, I’m again in stunned disbelief. How could it possibly be that a country as rich as Israel can have this problem? Is the government addressing that problem?”

    What is Anti-Semitic about this quote? Of course, it applies to the US, too. I wonder if Robertson had become President he would have started another “War on Poverty”?

  6. #6 Mark Paris
    May 26, 2006

    It’s anti-semitic in the sense that it propagates centuries-old stereotypes of Jews as rich merchants and money-lenders.

  7. #7 JohnnieCanuck
    May 26, 2006

    As I understand it, Pope Benedict XIV determined that the Bible denied Christians the ability to charge interest on a loan. This made it difficult for princes, popes and others who had large projects to finance. Things like wars, palaces and cathedrals.

    They solved the problem by borrowing from Jews, who are only forbidden to charge interest to other Jews by the Bible. This of course still allowed them to spurn their benefactors as usurers.

    Conveniently, most Christian sects now ignore the many places in the bible which forbid charging interest.

    Islam on the other hand still requires its adherents to charge no interest. A complicated series of rationalisations are used by Islamic financial institutions to pretend that interest is not being charged.

    Adhering to economic theories that have been petrified in religious texts for millenia can be hazardous.

    Does Pat Robertson have any of his money invested in bonds?

  8. #8 Joseph Hertzlinger
    May 26, 2006

    He sounds like he’s praising us.

  9. #9 KeithB
    May 26, 2006

    “It’s anti-semitic in the sense that it propagates centuries-old stereotypes of Jews as rich merchants and money-lenders.”

    But he just said that Israel, *the country*, is rich, which is true by Mid-east standards. Given the context, it is clear that you are correct, but I don’t see anything bad about this isolated quote.

  10. #10 Ian B Gibson
    May 27, 2006

    Actually, as Pat Robertson quotes go, those are pretty innocuous.

  11. #11 Thomas
    May 31, 2006

    I see nothing in those quotes that couldn’t as well have been said by a Jew (try reading Haaretz). Sure, it’s stereotyping but not in any derogatory way. Many Jews are quite proud over how succesful their people tend to be, and why shouldn’t they? Jews have a tradition of investing in education and it pays off. On the other hand, Robertson claiming that “The Antichrist is probably a Jew alive in Israel today” is real antisemitism.

    I see a problem in that it is almost impossible to talk about Israel and Jews without being accused of antisemitism, at least unless you are a Jew yourself, and even then you will face the accusation by people who don’t know or who call you a self-hating Jew instead. If Robertson instead had talked about how rich oil producing Arab states had lots of poor people would he have been accused of racism? Would you get accused of racism for stating that while most people think of USA as a rich country it too has a shocking level of poverty?

  12. #12 Julia
    June 1, 2006

    I think “Jew” the primary stereotyping bit that goes on with me is “kosher” and “respects learning”, both of which I like. (Any group capable of manufacturing Hebrew National hot dogs gets a plus mark from me.)

    Now, Pat, on the other hand, makes me think of a stereotype “Christian = whacknoodle”, which I know is inaccurate, but which seems to sum up the most vocal of them these days.

    (And I’m a Christian, at least I’d claim to be if it didn’t bother me to be lumped in with Robertson.)

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