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Getting a Kick Out of Death--Chicago Sun-Times' religion writer tells Jerry Falwell good riddance ^ | May 21, 2007 | Robert Knight

Posted on 05/21/2007 6:55:38 AM PDT by SJackson

In many of his talks to Liberty University students, the Rev. Jerry Falwell emphasized the importance of "finishing well."

On Tuesday, May 18, he was at the top of his game when he unexpectedly died in the college office where he was planning more expansions of the fast-growing university that he founded in 1971.

The Rev. Falwell did a lot of things well, ticking off leftists right up to the end. How else would he have garnered the kind of tribute from a major newspaper's religion writer that was headlined, "Sigh of relief over Falwell death."

To make sure no one mistook her, Chicago Sun-Times Religion Writer Cathleen Falsani's May 18 column explains her reaction to the news about Dr. Falwell on May 15.

"...My very first thought upon hearing of the Rev. Falwell's passing was: Good. And I didn't mean 'good' in a oh-good-he's-gone-to-be-home-with-the-Lord kind of way. I mean 'good' as in 'Ding-dong, the witch is dead.'"

Falsani, who claims to be a Christian, learned of this apparent good news in the airport departure lounge in Key West, a place where Jerry is not held in great esteem.

She went on to compare the good reverend to the foul-mouthed TV mobster Tony Soprano, and accused Falwell of saying "insensitive, mean-spirited, sometimes downright hateful things the name of Christ." She did do a bit of backing up, saying that maybe, in his own way, God used Jerry so that "lives were changed for the better by his ministry, his college, and the flip side of the endeavors he made in Jesus' name."

Meanwhile, she informed readers of her own apparent spiritual superiority, noting that "not all of us are that self-righteous, judgmental and holier than thou."

I guess that openly enjoying the death of a fellow Christian and utterly distorting his Christian message into a caricature of hate is the mark of the nonjudgmental. I think it's somewhere in the Sermon on the Mount.

Of course, Falsani is not the only journalist to use Rev. Falwell's death as one more opportunity to cast fiery darts at him.

Virtually every major news outlet made sure that Falwell's controversial comment following 9/11 and his notorious "outing" of the "gay Teletubby" Tinky Winky got ink and airtime.

The New York Times noted that it was an article in the National Liberty Journal, which Falwell published, that touched off the Teletubbies ruckus. But the article failed to mention that the Liberty Journal piece quoted The Washington Post's outing of Tinky Winky, and that the gay press and several other mainstream outlets had cheered openly for a year that the boy in the purple suit, carrying a purse and bearing the homosexual symbol, an upside down triangle, on his head, was clearly the first openly "gay" character in a children's program.

I recall faxing The Washington Post article to the National Liberty Journal back in February 1999. I had also faxed an article from a gay newspaper in which one of Teletubbies' creators boasted openly that Tinky Winky's character, which combines a deep daddy's voice and mommy's handbag, was a deliberate attempt to make children think differently about gender. The Liberty Journal editors decided to stick with The Washington Post as the main source, which seems like a wise thing to do. But in the end, it didn't matter.

In the 10 years since, the press magnified and sustained the myth that Jerry Falwell "outed" Tinky Winky with no apparent evidence. He just did it for the heck of it, to be mean to gays. As smears go, it made him easy to ridicule. Try as they might, that was the best they could do, since they unearthed no hint of scandal involving his integrity. In March 1999, Liberty Journal Senior Editor J. M. Smith pointed out the media's distortions, but the myth continued to gain strength. Dr. Falwell himself took it in stride, even placing a stuffed Tinky Winky on top of his computer as a joke. Given his own generous spirit and lack of vitriol, he didn't seem to understand the damage that was done to his reputation.

Over the years, I've tried to set some of my media friends straight about the inception of the myth, but the response has been pretty much, "That's our story, and we're sticking with it." And why not? It's a very useful device. It's so good that even many conservative commentators have bought into it, pointing it out from time to time in order to polish their own images as more reasonable people than someone like Jerry Falwell.

There's a word for folks like that, but you wouldn't hear the Rev. Falwell using it. It's more along the lines of something Tony Soprano might say.

Or a religion writer from the Chicago Sun-Times.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: cathleenfalsani; chicagosuntimes; christophobia; falsani; jerryfalwell

1 posted on 05/21/2007 6:55:41 AM PDT by SJackson
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To: SJackson
Falsani, who claims to be a Christian, learned of this apparent good news in the airport departure lounge in Key West, a place where Jerry is not held in great esteem.

As Christian as Joseph Stalin, obviously........

2 posted on 05/21/2007 6:57:58 AM PDT by Red Badger (My gerund got caught in my diphthong, and now I have a dangling participle...............)
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To: Red Badger

Well he won’t be joining Jerry when he dies.

3 posted on 05/21/2007 6:58:25 AM PDT by SmoothTalker
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To: SJackson
Spew bile out of one side of your mouth and decry the incivility in our culture out the other, it's the Lefty way.
4 posted on 05/21/2007 7:06:10 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum ("All the measures of the law should protect property and punish plunder." --Frederic Bastiat)
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To: SJackson
The religion in the title should be in quotes as there is nothing religious about celebrating Falwell's death. Alternately, the title could be followed with "(barf alert)."
5 posted on 05/21/2007 7:07:31 AM PDT by 50mm (la prensa dos en traducir mi línea de etiqueta al inglés)
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To: SJackson
I live in Chicago and am pleased that both the Sun Times and Chicago Tribune are slowly killing themselves. Ms. Falsani is a dreadful creature.
The good news is the New York Posts National Edition has begun appearing on local newsstands, a tabloid to be sure, but at least a sane tabloid.
6 posted on 05/21/2007 7:19:32 AM PDT by Hans
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To: SJackson
Poor little insignificant Cathleen Falsani. She thinks her opinions on the life of Jerry Falwell are of interest. She is wrong. When little Cathleen dies, nobody will remember what she said, nobody will care what she thought, important people won't attend her services.

She's just another in a long line of bitter leftists parroting the same childish talking points about innovative people. She has nothing important to say and she is saying it to an unremarkable audience.

7 posted on 05/21/2007 7:22:06 AM PDT by Sgt_Schultze
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To: SJackson

Falwell was a leader not a writer with a glorified liberal arts degree. Leaders lead no matter how much people hurt them. Falwell taught the Christian right to stand tall and tall we all stand. I know in my heart God will send another, but there is an old saying we shall never see his like again. So it can be said of Jerry Falwell. Onward the march goes, we Christians will move ahead knowing somewhere Jerry is looking down and saying onward!

8 posted on 05/21/2007 7:26:54 AM PDT by betsyross1776 (i)
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To: betsyross1776

Amen.....Rev. Falwell will be praying for his enemies even in death.

9 posted on 05/21/2007 7:29:56 AM PDT by Suzy Quzy (Hillary '08...Her Phoniness is Genuine!!!)
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To: Suzy Quzy

It must be a living hell to be as shallow a Christian as Cathleen Falsani seems. To denigrate someone in death shows such a low class upbringing and total lack of compassion, is it any wonder this P.O.S. reporter works for a third class newspaper? Shame on her, and shame on her editors too!

10 posted on 05/21/2007 7:46:12 AM PDT by geezerwheezer (get up boys, we're burnin' daylight!!!)
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To: SJackson

Cathleen Falsani

11 posted on 05/21/2007 9:50:01 AM PDT by XR7
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To: XR7


12 posted on 05/21/2007 10:15:21 AM PDT by Frank_2001
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To: Frank_2001


13 posted on 05/21/2007 10:34:42 AM PDT by samadams2000 (Someone important make......The Call!)
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