As the mouthpiece for real [Christian] America, Fox News never wastes an opportunity to pimp religion. The anniversary of 9/11 provided yet another opportunity for Foxpriest, Fr. Jonathan Morris and his Christian pals to preach the Fox gospel that America is a godly and prayerful [Christian] nation.
On this morning's Fox & Friends, Brian Kilmeade introduced Fr. Morris' homily by noting that 9/11 "changed our country forever." Ainsely Earhardt picked up the narrative: "For millions of Americans, the immediate response was to drop to their knees in prayer." She asked, "Is the spiritual impact still felt 15 years later."
After introducing Fox's one, true clergyman, Fr, Jonatham Morris, Steve Doocy promoted his Catholic bona-fides by informing us that when he returned to his home town, after the 9/11 attack, "the first thing we did was go to church and the church was full." That provided Fr. Morris with the perfect pulpit.
As the banner reinforced the message, "Faith on the Front Line, Can Prayer Bring People Together," Morris delivered a fairly anodyne sermon about dealing with tragedy. He asserted that when faced with the existence of evil (Donald Trump?), folks should take solace in knowing that there is eternal life in heaven - a very Christian perspective. As the banner framed the official Fox message: "When Tragedy Strikes, Morris: Americans Still Turn to God," Morris noted that there is hope even if "evil" terrorists want us to "give up on life."
Sweet, lil Southern Christian blonde, Ainsley Earhardt provided us with yet another example of her devout, Christian wisdom: "And we shouldn't give that evil that power. We should all be in church today praying for this country."
First, who the heck is Ainsely Earhardt to tell us what we should or shouldn't be doing today? Second, despite Fox's message that Americans are "still turning to God," the reality is that more and more Americans are turning away from "God." Those who claim no religious affiliation are almost a quarter of the population.
And btw, despite the fact that non-Christians died on 9/11, Earhardt referenced "churches" - not mosques or synagogues. But if Fox News says we live in a Christian nation, so it's all good....
And, all of us in this fine country are guaranteed the right to believe however we wish.
Full disclosure, while I haven’t gone to church in many years, I am a practicing Christian. I was specifically raised Episcopalian so no child molesting priest jokes please. Episcopalians tend to be relatively liberal and I attended services headed by women 40+ years ago as a kid and I believe the Episcopal Church is the first denomination to have a gay bishop.
That said, I’m a frequent and consistent critic of Fox News exploiting religion for political gain. I’m a firm believer in separating church and state. If you don’t get that, you’ve never read my comments.
However, there’s a clear line between mocking and criticizing Fox for politicizing faith versus having faith as is clearly occurring here.
There’s an additional hypocrisy I often see with liberals in that, for largely political reasons, they rush to defend Muslims as an oppressed minority as a natural reaction to partisan [Christian] conservatives attacking them. If, say, Fox News were to criticize Muslims for offering prayers on 9/11, I can’t imagine any liberal reaction except to rush to defend the Muslims.
Many liberals (and even conservatives) are atheists and contemptuous of religion. As a big fan of Bill Maher I hear those arguments all the time. However, if liberals are going to mock Fox News for having faith, be consistent and, like Maher, be consistent and go full bore against Muslims as well.