Glenn Beck apologizes; was it enough?
02/24/2011 - 15:58
James Besser

Commentator Glenn Beck has apologized for yesterday's slur against Reform rabbis, in which he claimed they focus more on social justice than on religion, and used an analogy to radical Islam.

Read the whole statement on his radio program – and listen to it – on the Media Matters Website and decide for yourself if he went far enough.

The Jewish Funds for Justice, which is conducting a campaign to get Beck fired, says no; in a statement today the group said the apology is “welcome but incomplete,” arguing that he should have “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.”

No word yet from the ADL's Abe Foxman, who yesterday said Beck's comments reflected “bigoted ignorance.”

Beck agrees on the ignorance part; in his apology today he said “I'm not going to rehash it, but it was, it was ignorant.”

I understand JFSJ's broader concern about  Beck's campaign against social justice as a focus by religious groups. But it also seems to me the apology was pretty forthright for someone in Beck's business – which, after all, depends on controversy as its lifesblood.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the days ahead, and what the Reform leadership has to say.

Comments

The apology was NOT an apology....he couched it by saying something along the lines of not apologizing the way the NYTimes "buries it on page 2"...Yet, the 6+ minute video went 4+ minutes before Beck tentatively apologized for his ignorance....Spare me!

I don't know what clip you were listening to, Mr. Besser. Beck used every excuse he could to stretch what should have been a 30-second apology (I said something stupid, I apologize, it won't happen again) into 6 and a half minutes of rambling. First he claimed that a friend who "knows about these things" gave him some information (suggesting it was ok because his "Jewish friend" educated him about the Reform movement?), then he blamed his comment on the fact that his radio show is four hours long and it's hard to come up with material. Finally he suggested that the ADL had called and bugged him until he realized he had been "ignorant." Finally, it seems worth pointing out that all Beck apologized for was comparing Reform rabbis to Islamists-- not for delegitimizing them rather than take their complaints seriously, and nothing about the original issue, which was his use of the Holocaust to attack George Soros and others. He completely sidestepped the main point. Hats off to you, Glenn. What a guy.
If Israel was destroyed Glenn Beck would be upset. George Soros wouldn't. Neithe would half of these rabbis.

I agree.

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