Joy Behar has finally apologized.
It took a month, but she finally did it. And you know why?
Because viewers, up in arms about her anti-Christian comment, rallied and protested.
Conservatives and Christians have a voice. And they’re a force to be reckoned with — so long as they’re willing to show that voice.
Here’s the backstory: Behar, co-host of ABC’s “The View,” sparked a national outcry last month during a Feb. 13 televised discussion of comments about Mike Pence made by former White House staffer Omarosa Manigault-Newman.
“He’s extreme,” Manigault-Newman said to “Celebrity Big Brother” contestants about the vice president. “I’m Christian. I love Jesus. But [Pence] thinks Jesus tells him to say things.”
Behar, on live TV, then said this, of Pence: “It’s one thing to talk to Jesus. It’s another thing when Jesus talks to you. That’s called mental illness, if I’m not correct, hearing voices.”
Pence shot back in his own televised appearances that ABC ought not provide a stage for people to mock Christianity in such manner.
“It’s an insult not to me, but to the vast majority of the American people who like me cherish their faith,” Pence said, The Washington Post reported.
Conservatives, outraged, rallied against “The View” and Behar, pressing advertisers to quit the show and drop their dollars. The pressure began to work; Behar’s manager told The Post a few days back that she had actually apologized to Pence in a private phone call.
Pence confirmed and forgave — but the public pressure kept up. Why? Behar’s remarks had ticked off a horde of angry conservatives and Christians around the nation, and while her apology to Pence in private may have meant something, at least to him, it didn’t wipe out the fact that she had dinged the faith on national television — and therefore, dinged the faith of more Christians than just Pence.
She owed an apology to more Christians than just to Pence.
A simple 40,000 or so phone calls to ABC later, and Behar finally got the message.
“I think Vice President Pence is right,” Behar said on “The View” this week. “I was raised to respect everyone’s religious faith, and I fell short of that. I sincerely apologize for what I said.”
Good. She apologized — she did the right thing; let’s move on. Forgive, as the Christian faith teaches.
But the lesson here is large, and it goes like this: Conservatives, Christians, patriots and others who are fed up with mainstream media walking over traditional morals, virtues and values — you have a voice. You are a force.
And it’s one, as Behar’s forced public apology shows, that has to be reckoned with, when properly organized.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @ckchumley.
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