We’ve all watched as the network formerly known as unbiased CNN inched its way to teabagging country until it was running interviews with 3 teabaggers while rallies of hundreds of thousands took place in Wisconsin. But now one of their contributors has gone too far.
Today, CNN contributor Eric Erickson of Red State wrote that the President of the United States “perverted the word of God.”
Here is what he wrote, courtesy of Media Matters:
The President this week chose to pervert God’s Word to make the case for a tax increase, but he also chose to ignore God’s word on life and is ordering Christians, while he claims to be one, to violate their Christian conscience on abortion — requiring Christian organizations to provide health insurance that will cover the cost of drugs that induce abortions.
He is trying to have it both ways. He is trying to use God’s Word to defend a tax policy that dissuades individuals from giving gladly and charitably to the poor as God instructs and is ignoring God’s Word in order to force fellow Christians into violating their Christian conscience — something about which God cares a great deal.
This cannot end well for him, particularly doing this claiming to be a Christian. And it might not end well for the rest of us either. Barack Obama has gone to war with Christians’ consciences and he is perverting God’s word in the process to get his way on public policy.
I am not going to bother to debunk Erickson’s fetid brand of religion where they cherry pick the parts they like and toss the rest overboard. After all, if they’re so worried about life, why are they so pro-war? I will however offer you the video of Michele Bachmann quoting the exact same Bible verse as President Obama did to earn Erickson’s damning condemnation of “perverting the word of God.” (h/t to commenter phlcstgan on Media Matters.) This only goes to prove that the real issue isn’t about the word of God at all; hence, it is irrelevant.
Courtesy of Think Progress:
No, my concern today is the rhetoric of hate coming from someone who works for CNN. CNN hired Erickson in 2010 because he is allegedly in touch with small town America. Really? This is how small town America thinks? Sorry, but no. I will not stand for America to be tarnished thusly. I have friends who live in very small towns and they do not run around accusing people of perverting God’s word like a crazy carnival con artist.
At the time he was hired, Erickson stated, “CNN made an offer I couldn’t refuse,” and added, “This is the path God put me on and it was totally unexpected, but I go where the good Lord leads.” I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that the good Lord did not lead Erickson to CNN so that he could spread hate. Nope. Sorry, fella, think you got the wrong guy.
This is the guy who tweeted this upon Supreme Court Justice David Souter’s retirement: “The nation loses the only goat f***ing child molester to ever serve on the Supreme Court in David Souter’s retirement.”
Erickson is known for his inflammatory personal attacks and he once told Howard Kurtz that he would grow up for CNN. Seems he failed in that mission.
The fact that Erickson uses religion to pile on hate, cherry picks his positions and uses abortion as the flamethrower to stop all questions is par for the course for Fox News and certainly expected from someone who ranked as the 67% most influential conservative in 2007 (you see how conservative has come to mean hate-monger? They lumped him in there with Rush Limbaugh et al. So sad.). But it’s not okay for civilized people.
And far more concerning is the fact that Erickson says the President “perverted the word of God.”
I was unaware, first of all, that God spoke directly to Erickson yet somehow he alone knows how God feels. I was also unaware that it was cool to suggest that someone is not a Christian (is, in fact, the demon, as we know from reading plenty of right wing religious and conservative political commentary).
Apparently, Jesus told Erick Erickson “Judge all Democrats for you are anointed!” Erickson must now think he is equal to God, capable of judging others and condemning them.
Did Jesus also tell Erick that the poor should suffer and taxes on the wealthy are against Jesus’ ideas?
As a Christian myself, I am deeply offended. How dare Erick Erickson?
It is people like Erick Erickson who drove me from the Christian church. As a mainstream Christian at one time, I find this sort of behavior repugnant. It’s obvious to me that Erickson operates from a base of fear and that conservatives are terrified that Obama’s message about taxing the rich being the right thing to do will resonate with people, and so they attack with venom – throwing abortion into the mix and ending with damning condemnation of perverting the word of God.
But just because we know Erickson comes from a place of weakness and an argument that cannot be defended and therefor requires flame throwing doesn’t excuse his behavior. He is behaving like a bully on the playground. Is CNN in the habit of hiring hate-mongers and letting them use CNN as a platform to legitimize their message of hate?
How dare he use God’s name as a weapon of hate, how dare he elevate himself to God’s level and determine that he is worthy of judging another’s Christianity and how dare he use his alleged religious beliefs as political weapons of destruction? How dare he divide this country and sow hatred against the President. And how dare CNN pretend it doesn’t hear the dog whistle of faux Christian hate.
This is utterly shameful. If any religious leader uses words like this in their sermon, you should consider walking out, because a true faith leader would never resort to hatred in what appears to be a ploy to get more donations and justify a specious position so far from Jesus’ teachings it requires bomb throwing to distract from this reality.
This is no different in my book than if he had used a blatantly racist term. Erick Erickson is a religious bigot who accused the President of the United States of “perverting” the word of God, and if that’s not an unforgivably inflammatory statement, I don’t know what is.
CNN would suspend Erickson for this if they had any scruples. MSNBC suspended Keith Olbermann for less.
Update: A petition has been created for CNN to fire Erick Erickson that you can sign here.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.