Thursday, April 12, 2007

He can never be fired, only fired up

The ironies are pretty thick with the Rev. Al Sharpton demanding Don Imus be fired from his job. It must be nice not to have to worry about ever being fired if you don't have a job in the first place.

What exactly does Sharpton do to make a living? Has he spent all that money he raised running for president yet? Nice job that. You can declare your candidacy for president and start raising all this money, traveling about the country with a government-paid posse, living off the local bucks of your grassroots backers, bankrolling your lifestyle with greenbacks collected from even your poorest subscribers, and if you raise enough cash, you can live off of it until the day you disband your campaign organization, which doesn't have to be the day after you lose an election.

Is Sharpton a working, paid minister? If so, he's a pretty lousy one for forgetting one of the chief tenets of his profession. If a sinner confesses his sin, admits he did wrong and apologizes to all those he offended, isn't he deserving of forgiveness in God's eyes? Isn't any card-carrying minister who follows God's teachings supposed to turn the other cheek and forgive a true repentant?

Imus has repented so many times since his on-air racial insult that it's almost sickening to have to hear it over and over. He says he's sorry. He says he was wrong to say what he did. He fully and completely accepts guilt, blame and responsibility. And yet, neither the Rev. Sharpton nor the Rev. Jesse Jackson appear willing or able to forgive ... to say, "I forgive you, brother, for I, too, have sinned."

Didn't Jackson beg forgiveness for his "Hymietown" remark at the 1984 Democratic National Convention? Who even remembers that anymore?

I'm trying to recall the last time Sharpton begged forgiveness for something outrageous he either did or said, but I can't recall any instances, even though he's had plenty of opportunity to do so. From the lies he told about a young black girl being raped by white men (it never happened; the girl, it turned out, was lying), to the inflammatory exaggerations -- and, yes, slurs -- he made during the Crown Heights race riots, he has never admitted wrong, never apologized, never begged forgiveness, even though there's no question his behavior was beyond the pale.

As any real minister can tell you, it was Jesus who said: "Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone."

I guess Sharpton and Jackson cast their first stones so long ago, they've got no stones left to hold.

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