IS HE ASKING FOR IT?
NewsCore - Fox News Channel host Glenn Beck announced on his radio show Friday that he would be taking a short leave of absence next week for health reasons...Without giving many details, Beck told his listeners that his announcement was "not bad news, it is just a transition period" and asked for their prayers.
praying for someone showing a form of compassion? Isn't it hypocritical
to ask for prayers after showing contempt for compassion? If you
answered yes to both questions, you might be wondering what Glenn Beck
is thinking right now.
get me wrong. If Glenn Beck is ill, we should still show compassion and
pray/hope that he gets well. Compassion for human illness and suffering
should negate all feelings of animosity. But the fact remains that his
own compassion for human suffering is sorely lacking: mocking a person
whose house has burned down, no matter what the circumstance, is
acutely unfeeling, especially after knowing that beloved pets were
killed in the fire.*
There is a thin, but still palpable, parallel in all of this: the cold-hearted
non-compassion displayed by the Christian Right during the onslaught of
the AIDS epidemic. Over 65,000 people died agonizingly before the first
faith-based AIDS agency was established outside of San Francisco (in
the Episcopal archdiocese of Los Angeles). Most of them died in the
arms of friends, compassionate strangers ...or alone. Southern Baptists
in particular showed their disdain for people with AIDS: they have yet
to establish a faith-based AIDS agence here in the U.S. (they have,
however, established ones in Africa in order toshow their "compassion").
O.K., I've beaten that sentiment to death. I won't mention it again.
At least not in this article.
has been particularly gauling to progressives is the outpuring of
support for Glenn Beck's mocking of Mr. Cranick's tragedy. Beck's view
of "compassion" has put it on the par with "social justice" - something
he claims we should all run away from. Even though he may have been
emulating the AFA's Bryan Fischer (letting the house burn was "the
Christian thing to do."), the mere fact that he considered taking a
mocking stance displayed a hard-heartedness which his ubiquitous tears
belie. Glenn Beck cries for the country, but not necessarily for the
people in it. His mockery was just as bad (if not worse) as Pat
help-Haiti-even-though-it-sold-its-soul-to-the-devil statement. As in
these cases, contempt will always overshadow compassion.
a very real sense, Beck and his supporters are showing contempt for
one virtue that has made America what it has been to the rest of the
world: the statement upon the Statue of Liberty attests to that. Both
Beck and Fischer now point out to us that this virtue has been a
detriment, a curse even, by making the country too soft on the tired,
poor, huddled masses yearning to be free.
the disdain doesn't stop with tardy subscription payments or illegal
immigration: moreover; it covers rights to equality: women's rights,
gay rights, even Muslim rights (to worship freely). The Right's disgust
of these rights is always a slap in the face to American ideals. What
is disturbing is that that particular rebuff is getting more frequent
as we get nearer to voting for it. Yes, there is evidence of
hard-heartedness on this year's November ballot: consider the uproar
over legislation effecting Missouri's "puppy mills." Perhaps
Dominionism is creeping up on us and the Republican Party is only too
happy to make way for it. And with Eric Cantor's joking statement, the
party is showing its disdain for"compassionate conservatism":
Mr. Cantor believes the American-Jewish
community is overwhelmingly Democratic because Jews "are prone to want
to help the underdog."
Again, with the Glenn Beck question: should we show compassion to him during his illness?
Of course. After all, it's the American thing to do.
But for how long?