Pat Robertson's outrageous call for the United States to reactivate the Doctrine of Assassination and murder a foreign head of state offended me on many levels. It offended my Roman Catholic upbringing, my sense of decency, my understanding of the American way of life and my understanding of civilized behavior. I should say, I do not pretend to have a firm grip on the state of Venezuelan politics but I understand Chavez is an avowed anti-globalist as are many people in Europe and the United States, that his country's government was awash in corruption before he came to power, that he has little time for organized religion and sees them as hypocrites, and that he enjoys the support of the majority of impoverished Venezuelans who happen to have brown skin but has little or no support among the ruling class who're descended from European ancestry. Moreover, I do find it quite odd that President Chavez has a penchant for wearing military uniforms in public, likes to associate with Fidel Castro and has a spotty record of success but, as the head of a foreign power, he is entitled to absolute respect regardless as to whether his rule and government is deemed repugnant by other westernised countries.
What is not okay is for a self-appointed man of God, the leader of a large Christian evangelical group to call for that country's leader's assassination. Under no circumstances can a Christian sanction killing and Mr. Robertson has overstepped his boundaries, widely. Nor is this the first time he has done so. And, as before, he has predictably issued a meaningless apology wrapped up in the skin of a further admonishment, an apology that is intended solely to restore his status-quo as a practicing Christian and prominent American. It seems to me the members of his religious community would be better served if they replaced this aging patriarch with someone less incendiary, with someone who would practice fully the edicts of Christianity. In calling for President Chavez's assassination, Mr. Robertson has in my view placed himself squarely in the barren terrain of fanatical Islamists, jihadists and others who will brook no vision of the world but theirs. By his redundant apology, he is not redeemed, but rather exacerbates a tendency toward wanton dangerousness.
[technorati: Pat Robertson, Hugo Chavez, Venezuela, The 700 Club]