Jesus Freaks Bozos and Losers

Broadcast media mogul Ted Turner has become notorious for his anti-Christian comments. Although he is the founder of the CNN cable television network, Turner apparently feels no obligation to temper his derisive remarks. And despite the continual contempt he has shown for Christianity, we've not heard a word of protest from the tolerance police for his flagrant intolerance and insensitivity. In a speech at a United Nations peace summit on August 29, 2000, Turner openly denigrated his Christian upbringing. To a highly approving audience, he said he rejected Christianity when he discovered "it was intolerant because it taught we were the only ones going to Heaven. That confused the devil out of me, since that would have left Heaven a very empty place." Darren Logan, a foreign policy analyst with the Family Research Council, said the speech was "the most blasphemous thing I have ever heard in my life." Waxing eloquent, Turner continued:

Instead of all these different gods, maybe there's one God who manifests himself and reveals himself in different ways to different people. How about that?... Basically, the major religions which have survived today don't have blood sacrifice and they don't have hatred behind them. Those which have done the best are the ones that are built on love ... It's time to get rid of hatred. It's time to get rid of prejudice. It's time to have love and respect and tolerance for each other.

This was nothing new for Turner. At a retirement party for CNN anchor Bernard Shaw, Turner expressed his amazement that a number of his employees present had attended Ash Wednesday religious services-as signified by the ceremonial ashes they were wearing on their foreheads. "I was looking at this woman, and I was trying to figure out what was on her forehead. At first I thought you were in the [Seattle earthquake]. What are you, a bunch of Jesus freaks?" asked Turner. "You ought to be working for Fox." While Christians roundly criticized Turner for his remarks, the media, as usual, gave him a pass. Indeed, our culture rewards such behavior. Shortly after the incident, Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government bestowed on Turner the prestigious Goldsmith Career Award for Excellence in journalism. Just imagine what would have ensued had Turner instead maligned blacks, women, or homosexuals. Would Harvard have honored him then?

Turner has also shared his insights that Christianity is a "religion for losers," and pro-life advocates are "Bozos." And at a February 1999 meeting of the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association, he employed Polish ethnic humor to make fun of the Pope, telling him to get with the twentieth century. CNN "Moneyline News Hour" co-anchor Stuart Varney, a devout Christian, reportedly resigned because of Turner's repeated Christian-bashing. Turner's bitterness toward Christianity might be explained by his revelation that as a young man he accepted Jesus Christ at a Billy Graham Crusade, but later rejected Him following his sister's death and his father's suicide.

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