Monday, July 31, 2006

MEL GIBSON'S ENEMIES LACK FORGIVENESS

There has been a lot of media hype about Mel Gibson drinking while driving and then making some pretty despicable and bigoted remarks about Jews and behaving in a belligerent manner when arrested. Mel has been fighting alcoholism for a long time -- the temptation to drink is a problem alcoholics must overcome on a daily basis. While many Hollywood stars have recovered from charges of driving while intoxicated and then saying and doing some pretty stupid things , Mel's reported remarks have renewed the charges of anti-Semitism that swirled around his 2004 film "The Passion of the Christ."

However, he realizes that he made a mistake and has apologized for it. "After drinking alcohol on Thursday night, I did a number of things that were very wrong and for which I am ashamed."

The lengthy statement continued: "I apologize to anyone who I have offended. Also, I take this opportunity to apologize to the deputies involved for my belligerent behavior."


Most of us are willing to forgive someone who has injured us with hurtful words and behavior and would accept such an apology. We would ask that the person not to do it again and would want them to receive treatment for the alcoholism and the underlying problems, and we would definitely not want that person drinking and driving while behind the wheel. Mel is now taking measures to get his life back in control. He has checked himself into a recovery program for alcohol.

What I don't understand is why some people are not willingly to forgive him? Have they not made similar mistakes in their own lifetime? None of us are perfect. We all are weak and dependent on the grace of God to sustain us. If God can forgive Him, why can't his Hollywood cohorts? It wouldn't be because he's Catholic or that they are jealous of his success with The Passion of the Christ, would it?

Here is Catholic League President Bill Donahue's take on it:

“What Mel Gibson apparently said is indefensible. The remark attributed to him, ‘The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world,’ is anti-Semitic and irresponsible. Fortunately, he has apologized for his bigoted outburst. Unfortunately, his apology is being rejected by some who should know better. To wit: Abraham Foxman, head of the Anti-Defamation League, has branded Gibson’s apology ‘unremorseful and insufficient.’ Moreover, Foxman concludes that it shows what a ‘sham’ it is for Gibson to portray himself as the ‘tolerant, loving person’ who made ‘The Passion of the Christ.’

“We have quite a file on Ted Turner at the Catholic League. Unlike Foxman, I have accepted every apology Turner has ever made for his anti-Catholic outbursts, all of which were made while he was sober. Indeed, I even went so far as to say that ‘no one in his right mind’ would ever put Ted Turner ‘in the same camp with a Klansman or an inveterate bigot.’ More recently, when radio shock-jocks Opie and Anthony apologized for their orchestrated anti-Catholic stunt in St. Patrick’s Cathedral a few years back, I not only accepted their apology, I was the first guest on their new CBS radio show and welcomed their return.


“But Mel’s enemies will never cut him a break. Their real goal is to discredit ‘The Passion of the Christ,’ and that is why their propaganda machine is in full gear. Never mind that Mel has said that ‘Anti-Semitism is not only contrary to my personal beliefs, it is also contrary to the core message of my movie.’ How ironic it is to note that the core message of his film—forgiveness—is sorely lacking in his critics.


“In 2003, Roman Polanski, the convicted child rapist, received a standing ovation when he won an Oscar for ‘The Pianist.’ Nice to know what really offends Hollywood.”

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