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Fox “Opinion” News' Franklin Graham Apologia

Reported by Priscilla - April 25, 2010 -

In its ongoing defense of evangelist Franklin Graham who, as Peter Johnson, Jr. said, wants to convert the world to Jesus, Fox “News” has cleary demonstrated that it is Jesus’ media BFF. From the time of initial reports, that indicated that Graham’s invitation to speak the Pentagon for National Prayer Day, to the rescinding of the report, Fox’s heavenly hosts bestowed their blessings upon Mr. Graham who was obviously defeated by the satanic forces of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and “evil” Islam – a descriptor actually used by Graham; but which was spun, by various Fox personalities, to mean something different and as such, not a big deal. Graham’s disinvite came on the heels of a court decision, by an obviously satanic Wisconsin judge, that the National Day of Prayer is unconstitutional – an issue that also prompted howls of Christian indignation from the Christian right and its mouthpiece Fox News. Thus, Fox’s “opinion” news provided affirmation for its guns&bible audience that Franklin Graham was getting a raw deal from those who support an “evil” religion. I guess all we can say is that God wills it – or is it “Inshallah!”

After last week’s “Culture Warriors” segment about plus sized lingerie models being discriminated against, the topic was Franklin Graham. Amazingly, Bill O’Reilly was even handed and played the “good cop” to “bad cops” Gretchen Carlson and Margaret Hoover who were incensed – I tell you – incensed!! Good Christian Carlson projected her own views when she said that Franklin told her, during his sermon on Fox & Friends, that it would be unfortunate that a complaint from one person could derail his invitation. She later said that it was so frustrating that one organization could do this. Margaret Hoover attacked CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) whom she said “pretend to be this moderate group.” When Bill, playing “the devil’s advocate,” said that an anti-Semitic preacher, like Farrakhan, shouldn’t be allowed to speak in a government format, Hoover said that Graham had the “courage” to “call out something that’s happening in the radicalized corners of Islam right now that it is inspiring violence.” Much as it pains me, I have to give kudos to O’Reilly who responded that Graham didn’t say radical. Hoover continued to say that Graham was calling out just the part of Islam that is violent. She wanted to know where the “morally courageous” people of Islam were. Carlson cited the comment from the MRFF that Graham’s presence at the Pentagon could endanger our troops by stirring up Islamic extremists. She added that they are “already stirred up.” This was great propaganda. Rather than address the issue of an Islam hating Christian preacher using a public venue which is funded (in part) by and which employs American Muslims, the salient take away was that Franklin Graham’s comments were directed at Islamic violence which isn’t being addressed by non violent Muslims. Not noted by Carlson were Weinstein’s (head of the MRFF) other point about the Pentagon hosting an event which is headed by a private organization “Focus on the Family” – a group who require their “Prayer Day” volunteers to subscribe to a “Statement of Belief” that excludes non Christians and some Christian belief systems. And nice to know that good Christian Gretchen doesn't have a problem with the potential of American military casualties. Way to support the troops, Gretch.

Mike Huckabee, appearing on Fox & Friends, provided his take on this flap. He, too, said that that Graham was talking about “radical Islam” and snarked that those Muslims who opposed Graham’s presence weren’t “tolerant.” He inferred that the disinvite was because of political correctness. When the weekend F & F hosts said that Graham used the words “evil” and “wicked,” Huck said that “when you start chopping people’s heads off, telling women they're second class people, and you believe it’s OK to murder 3,000 people in the Twin Towers…I can get may get where that might be evil…” So once again, we had a nice defense of Graham couched in references to a minority of those who practice an extreme form of Islam. I wonder how Huckabee would feel if a non Christian speaker, who had said that Christianity was evil because it’s adherents feel that murdering abortion providers in “justifiable homicide” and that clinic violence is acceptable, were invited to the Pentagon to speak.

In an interview with the rabidly anti-Islamic John Hagee fave, Brigitte Gabriel and Juan Williams, Sean Hannity claimed that Graham’s comments were taken out of context because he was speaking "specifically about radical Islamists that strap bombs to their children and kill innocent people."

Comment: As Fox fave Michelle Malkin would say, this is a “crap sandwich.” Graham did not distinguish between peaceful and non violent Muslims in his comments which he has never backed off from. Five years after 9-11 Graham told ABC News that he still held the belief that “Islam is a very evil and wicked religion.” Last year, he told CNN that Islam was “a very violent religion.” Only this week, he told Gretchen Carlson that if Muslims accepted Jesus they didn’t have to be killed in a car bomb and that they would no longer be enslaved by Islam. Graham has neither qualified nor apologized for his comments despite what Fox “opinion” News says. But I guess “it’s not a lie if you believe it.”

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