Friday, August 26, 2005

Beating Up on Pat

On Monday's '700 Club,' Pat Robertson said of Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez, "We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability. We don't need another $200 billion war to get rid of one, you know, strong-arm dictator. It's a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with."

Whatever one thinks of Robertson, and he has done some good, let's admit from the get-go that the above remark was unwise, imprudent, and indecent coming from a purveyor of the Gospel.

However, who really cares what Pat Robertson says about foreign policy anyway? Is he dining on a regular basis with Condi Rice? And really, isn't Robertson simply making a "lesser of two evils" defense--the standard Christian conservative argument for putting on the elephant suit and heading to the ballot box every four years to pull a lever for the GOP?

In a blog on the subject, Al Mohler said, "Pat Robertson bears responsibility to retract, rethink, repent, and restate his position on this issue. Otherwise, what could have been a temporary lapse of judgment can become an enduring obstacle to the Gospel. Mr. Robertson, it's back in your court. Your Christian brothers and sisters must love you enough to tell you the truth -- and encourage you to set the record straight."

Mohler is an avid proponent of meddlesome American foreign policy in the Middle East and recently penned an essay defending the use of nukes in WWII. Defending the use of nukes, Mohler retreated to the lesser-of-two-evils argument and resorted to an essentially utilitarian line of reasoning when he said, "In the final analysis, there is good reason to believe that the deployment of the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki may well have saved more Japanese lives in the end, as well as the lives of unnumbered American soldiers and sailors."

All Robertson was saying is that it is more prudent to simply kill one man rather than spending several hundred billion dollars to gin up a war. What's wrong with that? If Mohler, Dobson, Colson, Kennedy, Bright, Neuhaus, Weigel, and all the rest can support an obviously unjust conflict, why can't Robertson support short-circuiting the war machine with a few well-place bullets?

If it were up to me, the Iraqi imbroglio would have been resolved inside a steel cage with no-holds barred tag-team Texas Death match with Bush and Cheney vs. Hussein and Aziz. Heck, we could have even had a global pay-per-view event. Wouldn't that have been better than what we have now?

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