Thursday, February 24, 2011

Statements on Glenn Beck's Apology

Jewish Funds for Justice:
Glenn Beck’s apology for comparing Reform Judaism to “Radicalized Islam” is welcome but incomplete. While we are heartened to hear him recognize his ignorance, he still has not acknowledged that the letter signed by 400 rabbis and organized by Jewish Funds for Justice represented a cross-section of denominations, including Orthodox, Conservative, Reconstructionist, and Renewal rabbis.

Glenn Beck's characterization of Reform Judaism is in keeping with his longstanding hostility toward people who see their faith linked to pursuing the common good. This was made clear in March of 2010, when Mr. Beck advised people to leave their churches if their clergy spoke about social justice.

Mr. Beck's demonization of his political opponents is a regular feature of his radio and television shows. This problem is systemic. His remarks about Reform Jews are only the most recent example of the attacks that occur daily on Beck’s show.

We reiterate our call for Rupert Murdoch to end Mr. Beck's tenure at Fox News and for Salem Communications to commit not to add his syndicated radio show to their New York stations. Anything short of this reflects an unwillingness to take seriously the harm Mr. Beck causes to many in our community and beyond.
Take a look at what Peter Wehner writes in Commentary Magazine:
It looks to me like it’s only a matter of time — and I suspect not much time — until he blows apart professionally. If and when that happens, one can only hope that conservatism as a movement will have created enough distance from Beck to mitigate the damage.
ADL's initial statement:
Glenn Beck's comparison of Reform Judaism to radical Islam demonstrates his bigoted ignorance. Despite his feeble attempt to suggest that he was not equating Reform Judaism with Islamic extremist terrorism, the simple fact that he would mention them in the same breath is highly offensive and outrageous.

The truth is that every religious body has political points of view, whether one agrees with them or not. To compare Reform Judaism, which supports democratic institutions, to Islamic extremism, which supports anti-democratic movements and the repression of basic rights – including, for example, the denial of women's rights – is beyond the pale.

Glenn Beck has no business discounting the faith of any people, and he should think twice before commenting on something he doesn't know much about. He owes the Reform movement an apology.
The ADL reports that Glenn Beck has written a letter to apologize. Abraham Foxman's comments:
Mr. Foxman welcomed the apology saying, "Glenn Beck has shown that he understands how his remarks were offensive and out of line. We welcome his words of apology and consider the matter closed."
Somehow, I don't think it's enough. Here's the letter from Glenn Beck:
Mr. Foxman,
I just wanted to write to you personally and thank you for bringing to my attention the inaccurate comments I made on Tuesday. I was admittedly misinformed on Reform Rabbis and made a horrible analogy that I immediately attempted to clarify--quite honestly, I blew it on this one. When I believe I'm right, I am always willing to defend my ground. But, when I make a mistake, I hope you understand that I am willing to say so. It is why I led my show today with an admission that I was wrong and an apology to everyone I offended--within Reform Judaism and throughout the Jewish community.

Glenn Beck
Glenn Beck needs to just resign.

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