On the road as frequently as I am, I have the opportunity to tune in to talk radio at various points throughout the day, and I must admit that my favorite talk radio personality (of those to whom I am exposed) is Glenn Beck. Out of the lot of them, he seems to me to be the one who gets the furthest away from partisan snipping and into values and principles. Now, I’m not saying that I completely agree with him — for reasons that most of you who know me would immediately recognize — but at least he speaks the right language for someone who is not only sincerely concerned about his country but also for someone who realizes that the solution involves more than voting for this guy or the other guy.
All that aside, I did have the chance to hear some of the horrible comments that Bill Maher and Keith Olbermann were saying about Mr. Beck. Now, I only heard clips, so maybe they were more truthful and accurate in the rest of their show. (All I have seen about Maher’s show has done nothing but convince me that it is a waste of air time — much like Mr. Maher is a waste of celebrity — so I don’t watch it.) But those portions I heard were incredible in that…
(1) They were so horribly inaccurate. Their comment about Mr. Beck spreading belief in FEMA concentration camps was actually the opposite of what I had heard him say many times on the air before. He actually doesn’t subscribe to a lot of the consipracy lunacy out there (cf. Isa. 8:12), and was planning on debunking that particular idea.
For their sake, I began to make excuses for them: “Well, maybe they didn’t actually hear him or see him, perhaps they simply heard someone refer inaccurately to what he had said.” Or: “Maybe they only caught a portion of his radio or TV show and misunderstood what his point was.” But I fear — rather, I sadly suspect, not fear (2 Tim. 1:7) — that, instead, they have heard him speak of the topic but their internal “fact filters” are so strong that their Jeremiah 17:9 hearts and minds reinterpret what they hear to whatever they want it to be.
As someone who speaks on TV and in public, it is this last possibility that concerns me at times (and on both accounts I have been the victim of that possibility, before). And while it is something that a speaker has to be aver vigilant about, at the same time there is really only so much one can do about it. On my part, I pray that those who listen truly hear what I am saying and not what they want me to say/fear that I will say/suspect I will say/etc. Anyone else who speaks in public and who takes the responsibility seriously will surely know what I am talking about.
(2) They were so hypocritical. Hearing them say that such talk could “make someone” act out in violence like Timothy McVeigh was truly incredible. Hearing them say that all this talk of socialism was silly and fear-mongering was equally so. Why hypocritical? Because they, themselves, have said such outrageous things in the past that make Glenn Beck’s talk look tame by comparison. Keith Olbermann (as Mr. Beck was able to play on his radio show) actually vehemently accused the previous administration of Fascism (and, frankly, for some lesser versions of the actions being taken by the current administration) — and it’s somehow less incendiary to speak of socialism today? Unbelievable. Anger at government corruption “making” another person act like Timothy McVeigh when some like Mr. Maher have built their entire less-than-worthy careers out of publicly spewing hate for some of those in power? Again, unbelievable.
I’m no partisan, and — as I have said numerous times on this site — I do not participate in politics, but it is easy to see the possibility of a time ahead when the information we give on the Tomorrow’s World program begins to be considered similarly. “You can’t say things like that!” Well, Isaiah 58:1 doesn’t give us a lot of room to not say the things we say in these prophetic times.
Anyway, I may not always agree with Mr. Beck, but if he has annoyed Bill Maher and Keith Olbermann, he must be doing something worthwhile.