Here’s Media Matters take on my appearance on Hannity & Colmes and comments on the Gibson affair:
"Summary: Conservative media figures have jumped to the defense of Mel Gibson after he made a series of anti-Semitic remarks when he was arrested for driving under the influence.
"Since news broke that director, actor, and producer Mel Gibson made a series of anti-Semitic remarks when he was arrested on July 28 for driving under the influence in Malibu, CA, several conservative media figures have jumped to Gibson's defense. Right-wing activist David Horowitz even suggested that the anger over Gibson's comments is rooted in a "hatred of Christians," while other commentators suggested that criticism of Gibson was an extension of criticism of Gibson's role in producing and directing the February 2004 film The Passion of the Christ (New Market Films)."
Note the Media Matters claim: “David Horowitz even suggested that the anger over Gibson’s [anti-Semitic] comments is rooted in ‘hatred of Christians’.” In fact, what I actually said was that the anger at Gibson after he apologized for his anti-Semitic remarks refelected anti-Christian sentiment, which is entirely different. Unfortunately, many people, including the otherwise careful Andrew Sullivan, are regularly snookered by Media Matters' crass doctoring of conservative statements.
Here's the Hannity & Colmes text:
COLMES: Welcome back.
Mel Gibson has checked into an alcohol rehabilitation program just days after a drunk driving arrest in Malibu late Friday. "The Passion of the Christ" director hurled anti-Semitic slurs at arresting officers and said, quote, "Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world," unquote.
He has since admitted making the derogatory statements and has asked the Jewish community to forgive him.
We now continue with David Horowitz and Mark Levine.
David, is alcohol truth serum?
HOROWITZ: Hardly. You know, I was one of those who defended the "Passion of the Christ". And I would still defend it. It is a, you know, powerful religious film. It is not anti-Semitic.
Jesus is addressed as rabbi. His disciples, of course, are Jews. Simon the Pyrenean (ph), who carries the cross for him to Golgotha, is a Jew. Jesus in the film says no one is responsible for his death; it was fore ordained. By which he means in religious terms that we are all responsible, gentile, Jew and Muslim alike.
A man -- I am really against hanging a man for -- this is a man in deep trouble. Obviously, he has put himself into rehab. I think the judgment on Mel Gibson should be passed when he is recovered.
COLMES: I hope you are right. I want to forgive him, too. I just hope Mark Levine, that the people who forgive Mel Gibson because he was contrite will now also forgive Patrick Kennedy, who also drank too much, got himself in a strap. He was accused of special treatment.
The accusation is Mel Gibson got special treatment. If people are contrite and truly sincere they should be forgiven.
LEVINE: I think certainly people should be forgiven if they're contrite. But I think what's at play here is something much bigger. His idea that the Jews are behind all the wars in the world is -- you know, is just so ludicrous.
And what's more interesting is the way so many people are looking at Muslims in the Muslim world, make the same kind of ludicrous generalizations like Mr. Horowitz did because of the title of my book.
Let's look at it this way. You know, if you want to think that the only way, the best way to support the state of Israel is to support any war they do, no matter how egregious. Like saying the best way to support Mel Gibson is to give him a bottle of tequila, a copy of "Mein Kampf", Hitler's "Mein Kampf", and the keys to a fast car and say, "Have a nice evening." You know?
There is much more important things at stake here than this, and we need to look at what is the real baseline. For him, it is a serious drinking problem that needs to be addressed and also needs to be addressed in the context of anti-Semitism around the world.
HANNITY: David -- all right, let me go to David Horowitz. David -- hang on a second, Mark. David, he said this should be no excuse. He said -- David Horowitz. He said there's no tolerance for anyone who makes any kind of anti-Semitic remarks. He said, "I want to apologize to everyone in the Jewish community for my vitriolic and harmful words." And what he said that night when he was driving intoxicated.
He said, "I want to go a step further. I want to meet with members of the Jewish community. I want to have discussions."
It seems to me, you know, if somebody admits they have a problem and they were, you know, admitting it in that condition, it seems people want to believe it because they already had an agenda about "The Passion". Isn't that -- probably an obvious conclusion?
HOROWITZ: Exactly. People deserve compassion when they are in this kind of trouble. I think it would be very ungracious for people to deny it to him.
As a Jew, I feel much more threatened by people like Jimmy Carter when Israel is facing genocidal enemies who have worn to destroy it and kill the Jews, and Carter is out there, wagging his finger at the Israelis.
And all these people who want a cease-fire which will leave Hezbollah intact and in place, Hezbollah being a Nazi army in Lebanon whose rockets are aimed at Israel. That is how I feel.
LEVINE: If I could jump in there.
HANNITY: Hang on a second, please, Mark. Earlier the issue of Patrick Kennedy was brought up. Patrick Kennedy didn't -- didn't admit what his fault was. That was part of the problem. We weren't getting the truth out.
What seems to me, David Horowitz, is that in this day and age, when people really mess up and that they really take responsibility and they really, honestly, and truly apologize, we seem to be unforgiving in a lot of ways. Don't you agree, David Horowitz?
HOROWITZ: Well, I think this is all about politics. I think that a lot of the people who are jumping all over Mel Gibson see him as some kind of a conservative or as a Christian.
There's a lot of hatred of Christians in this country. And one of the reasons I defended the film is that Christians have a right to their gospel.
COLMES: All right, David, Mark. We have to run. We...
LEVINE: Finally, I agree with that, but let's remember we need to look and read what Israelis themselves are saying and not just assume that anyone who criticizes Israel is an anti-Semite.
COLMES: Thank you both very much for being with us.