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My Take: Rush Limbaugh's 'apology' fails test for public confession
The author argues that Rush Limbaugh didn't really apologize for maligning a Georgetown Law student.
March 6th, 2012
01:05 PM ET

My Take: Rush Limbaugh's 'apology' fails test for public confession

Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.

By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN

Dear Rush, which part of “I’m sorry” don’t you understand?

The ritual of public confession is so formulaic in American culture that it’s hard to imagine that someone as media savvy as Rush Limbaugh doesn’t know how to do it. But his so-called apology for calling Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke a “slut” and a “prostitute” shows he doesn’t know the first thing about this rite, so here is how it goes.

First, admit that you have done wrong. Say this straight. Do not hedge. Do not confuse things by saying that others have wronged you. Do not say that others have committed similar sins.

Here the Book of Common Prayer of the Episcopal Church is a good model:

Most merciful God,

We confess that we have sinned against you

in thought, word, and deed,

by what we have done,

and by what we have left undone.

Second, show that you are truly sorry. Saying “I’m sorry” (which Limbaugh did not do) is a good start, but it isn’t enough. You have to make yourself believable. Here tears are not necessary, but they help. Others need to believe that you are confessing for the sake of your soul, and not merely for the sake of your career. Hint: the best way to make that happen is to actually be sorry.

Third, humble yourself. Admit that you are a human being like the rest of us. This can be difficult for people with a high opinion of themselves. So what. Suck it up.

Fourth, repent, turn around, promise that you will go and sin no more.

Look familiar? It should, if you’ve ever gone to Catholic Mass or observed Yom Kippur. But Limbaugh flubbed it big time.

First, he didn’t really apologize for turning a public policy question into a vicious personal attack. In fact, he said, “I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.”

Second, he tried to justify his unjustifiable behavior by claiming that he was trying to be “absurd” and “humorous.” He wasn’t trying to libel or slander Fluke, or to shut her up or humiliate her. He was just trying to have a little fun.

Third, Limbaugh stopped apologizing almost as soon as his apology had begun. Instead of detailing his many and manifold sins, he launched into a reprise of his argument against birth control coverage in U.S. health plans, and criticized President Obama along the way for coming to Fluke’s defense. In other words, he changed the subject, so the bulk of his ”apology” wasn’t an apology at all.

Finally, when he got to something approaching apologizing, Limbaugh did not apologize for what he really did. He did not apologize for launching a multi-day ad hominem attack against a private citizen. He did not apologize for dragging the American public through the muck and mire of his misogynistic fantasies. He did not apologize for inspiring a series of copycats in the right wing blogosphere.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Instead he apologized for “insulting word choices.” In other words, he apologized for using the word “slut” instead of some less insulting synonym.

Given this abysmal performance, we should not be surprised that Fluke did not find his remarks particularly apologetic, or that she and many others believe he issued it not out of genuine remorse but in an effort to stanch the hemmoraging of advertisers from his show. “I don’t think that a statement like this issued, saying that his choice of words was not the best, changes anything, and especially when that statement is issued when he’s under significant pressure from sponsors who have begun to pull their support,” said Fluke, a Georgetown Law student.

Neither should we find it surprising that advertisers, including AOL, are fleeing the show en masse, and that some radio stations are now refusing to air it.

Limbaugh could have stanched the bleeding by practicing what historian Susan Wise Bauer has described as “the art of the public grovel.” Instead he gave us the art of the public equivocation.

Why? So why couldn’t he say, "I'm sorry"?

In a word: ego.

Republicans and Democrats will doubtless disagree about vices and virtues of the man who would be a GOP kingmaker. But there is no doubting that Limbaugh admires himself. And he is not about to sacrifice that form of worship at the altar of Sandra Fluke or anyone else.

That is why he is now blaming not himself but the companies who have stopped advertising on his show for their decision to separate themselves from his hate speech. “They’ve decided they don’t want you or your business any more,” he told his radio audience on Monday.

This in my view is a foolish course. Americans are a forgiving people. Many of the public figures profiled in Bauer’s “The Art of the Public Grovel” have come back into the public eye, not least President Bill Clinton. But the American public will not forgive you unless and until you confess and repent. And so far at least Limbaugh has refused to do either.

At this point, what is dragging Limbaugh down is not so much his incendiary attack on Fluke but his refusal to admit that, like the rest of us, he is a sinner, too. Until he does that, he will continue to float around in a celebrity limbo of his own making, praised by his true believers but damned - and rightly so - by most of the rest of us.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.

- CNN Belief Blog contributor

Filed under: Celebrity • Church and state • Culture wars • Politics • Sex • Sexuality • United States

soundoff (1,250 Responses)
  1. Rush Limbaugh and Porky Pig - separated at birth?

    Limbaugh's zombie followers will love him all the more for having become a martyr. They are proof positive that there are a hell of a lot of people in this country who cannot think for themselves and will blindly follow the nearest bully and suck on his every idiotic word.

    It's very lucrative being a bully in this country.

    March 6, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • William Demuth

      It makes me wonder why the girls father didn't find Rush and give him an old fashioned stomping!

      March 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Steve S

      Right, William, because that's the mature and civil response. Isn't this controversy mainly about a lack of civility?

      Rush went way over the line in making his point. I'm not at all a fan of his. However, I basically agree with his point. Although I think the Catholic Church is wrong to oppose birth control, I believe it's even more wrong to coerce people into doing something that is contrary to their morals. Forcing a strong Catholic into giving somebody birth control is as bad as forcing an observant Jewish person into handing out pork, or a Mormon to pour alcoholic drinks.

      March 6, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      According to a judge and many believers in here, it was an acceptable response last week when it was a muslim (ok, alledgedly) beating on an atheist.

      March 6, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
  2. Ykcyc

    @TruthPrevails
    Thank you for your observation. These "trols" are just insignificant, pathetic, insecure, and misguided people that feed on fear or insecurity of others to make themselves feel significant. I am not afraid. They are the ones hiding behind their "make believe" roles, unable to face reality without making up "stories". I am not trying to dispell their "fantasy". I am not trying to convince anyone of anything, including myself.

    March 6, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      In short, I'm better than most of you.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      Whoever is using my handle – keep telling yourself that. It is like any opinion is just an opinion. You didn't even have the courage to use your own handle and have to use someone elses.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      U mad, bro?

      March 6, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Usually this sort of trolling picks up when school lets out.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Just Say'in

      Sorry, dude. I'm a jerk.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Just Say'in

      Whoops! I forgot to change handles in the name box. I hate it when I blow it and identify myself when I troll.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
    • HuleoGuave

      I believe that none are better than I, and that I am not better than anyone.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Usually this sort of trolling picks up when school lets out.

      MOM! MEATLOAF!

      March 6, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      That chick is a hoe and Rush should apologize for speaking the truth.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Give it a rest, herbie.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  3. Truth

    Why is this in the belief blog? His comments have nothing to do with religion. I agree that his comments were deplorable and I personally don't care for rush, but this author (who constanstly posts garbage) shouldn't have included this in the belief blog. Yes Rush was responding to a social issue in which there are religious implications, but article about his apology, or lack thereof, doesn't belong is this blog.

    March 6, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      Good point.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • TING

      Let's see. Rush is the biggest spokesperson for the Republican party. Every Republican candidate claims Jesus is on their side. How again is this not relevant?

      March 6, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • GodPot

      Is it not the supposed "morality" of the religious right that Rush is using to make the "s l u t" claim because of her use of contraceptives?

      March 6, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Jesus IS on our side and you dembos are going to answer for your sins!

      March 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Apparently, babies must play.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, Facepalm

      Belief doesn’t mean religion genius.

      March 7, 2012 at 8:10 am |
  4. Al

    I think the number of sponsors that have left is 24 and counting.

    March 6, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  5. JohnQuest

    What's sad about this whole affair is, what it says about us as Americans that his is the most listened to program on the air.

    March 6, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • bigdolla

      who even listens to the radio anymore? The non Rush folks use these things called Television and the Internet now! You should try it you might learn something. Perhaps the right way to apologize?

      March 6, 2012 at 7:31 pm |
  6. april c

    Flush Rush

    March 6, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  7. Guest

    This is an interesting quote from Lear Capital that was mentioned by the the Atlantic Wire: "At this time we are evaluating our advertising relationship with the Rush Limbaugh Show as well as having open and honest dialogue with Mr. Limbaugh and program executives. We are awaiting further information and response to this matter." I can imagine what that open and honest dialogue sounds like. Maybe money is Rush's master and they (and others) will bring him to heel.

    March 6, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Rbnlegnd101

      An open dialog? Someone will have to explain that to Rush. His show is a monolog and he doesn't entertain guests for a reason.

      March 6, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  8. William Demuth

    Rush's apology was comporable to the Pope's apology to all the little boys his priests buggered.

    Blood is in the water, Rush may be badly hurt by this.

    Its a shame we can't say the same about the Pope

    March 6, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      Didn't the pope later proclaim that he believed his possy of ped.o.philes were not wrong?

      March 6, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      I dunno about the Pope, but Rick Santorum blamed the Democrats!

      “Priests, like all of us, are affected by culture,” Santorum wrote. “When the culture is sick, every element in it becomes infected. While it is no excuse for this scandal, it is no surprise that Boston, a seat of academic, political and cultural liberalism in America, lies at the center of the storm.”

      It isn't the priests' fault – its the fault of all those ungodly Bostonians who voted Dem!

      March 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • pk

      What you say is worse than what Rush said. He called someone and a name where you are wishing harm to others.

      March 7, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  9. Guest

    Netflix is still with Rush. Call member services if you care.

    March 6, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • Hasa Diga Eebowai

      Thank you. will do.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
    • Nonimus

      FYI:
      "Update: As of Tuesday afternoon, more than two dozen companies had pulled their ads from Limbaugh's program, including NetFlix, Capitol One, and John Deere, The Atlantic Wire reports."
      http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/daily-ticker/rush-limbaugh-controversy-12-companies-counting-pull-ads-164335691.html

      Nice work!

      March 6, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Is Limbaugh still bellowing that it's not a big deal and that those sponsors will "be replaced"?

      March 6, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  10. steve c

    what a peice of crap this guy is people that listen to him are communists

    March 6, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • ??

      March 6, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
  11. Neo

    Rush is only sorry that his going to lose his sponsors and $$$$$$!. I hope gets sued for slander! His liar,idiot don't speak the facts!! Man, what a schumck! Please is about time he gets off the air!!!!!

    March 6, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • declineofwesterncivilization

      What he said is not slander, this girl is a law student and was aware of the backlash her testimony would cause.

      March 6, 2012 at 7:33 pm |
  12. Go Green

    There are no sluts and no male equivalent of sluts on planet earth today.
    We are clean!

    March 6, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Tom

      What is a male sl.ut called?

      March 6, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • Observer

      Tom-qui serait appelé un sale cochon!

      March 6, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Boy Toy? Himbo?

      Nah, not the same connotations.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • William

      @Tom-The male would be called a Limbaugh,Tiger Woods, Weiner ,Heffner except it would be a proper noun.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • James Oliver

      When I was young, we called them Lucky.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Heh, James.

      Q: What's a Scotsman got under his kilt?

      A: Lipstick, if he's lucky.

      Credit to that late-night guy, what's his name.

      March 6, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  13. J.W

    It might be nice for him to get down on his knees and confess his sins to God too after he pays the lovely Miss Fluke a cash settlement.

    March 6, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
  14. Cari Pittman Huson

    We strive, as a society, to move forward and have more progressive thinking and tolerance; only to be set back by a blithering neanderthal and comments that are out of era!

    March 6, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
  15. Brad

    I wouldn't go so far as to damn Rush Limbaugh, as Stephen Prothero would have it. I'd rather have him vanish into obscurity. I'd really like to never waste another thought on the man.

    March 6, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      For twenty years you guys have been trying to shut Rush down. For twenty years you’ve failed.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Monti

      Tom, Rush is like Nascar....it is easy to follow for simpletons....he will always have some following.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      herbie's in need of a circle-jerk again.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  16. TruthPrevails

    If this man was truly sorry he would quit his job and never publicly speak again.

    March 6, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • fred

      So, I hear you doing some nasty name calling (mostly against christians) on this site. What is the difference? Without God as our standard bearer we are on our own to define virtue and holyness however we choose.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      One wouldn't think beating slaves and stoning children would be virtuous, but to each his own, I guess.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • fred

      facepalm
      The church in its crusades forgot to notice Christ specifically said “if my kingdom was of this earth my followers would fight ”. Jesus said put away the sword the battle is not of this earth and this is why I question any that say religion is the cause. I think it is a worldview issue with survival instincts mixed in. We kill out of fear and Is that not like shooting the messenger? The Bible often just gives us a historical account of what happened. You certainly must know that God does not approve beating slaves and stoning children as that was the way of man not God. Now, God has the power to control events and allowed it. In this context you object to God because as a non believer you cannot grasp the greater purpose of God in all history from the beginning. Once again the problem is with man not God and in this case you are the problem and by your lack of understanding have made terrible accusations against God.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      @fred: You get what you give in this world! When christards act as bigots and racists they get called on it. When they threaten non-believers with stuff like hell, they get called on it. Come back with something that is not 2000 years old and has validity in this century, then you won't get called on it. You tend to be quite the hypocrite. I don't judge people based on who they love or what they do with their own bodies. This moron judged this lady because she spoke up on a subject that makes perfect sense for anyone who values freedom of their own body. If he had any clue he would know that when we speak of contraception we not only speak of it in the sense that it prevents pregnancy but it also is preventative in protecting a woman's health in general-irregular or absent menstrual periods, menstrual cramps, acne, PMS, endometriosis, and for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome to name a few. How is protecting a woman's health such a bad thing? Remember without a woman to carry that child dolts like you would not be here!

      March 6, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @fred,
      I could at least understand where you coming from until you said, "you certainly must know that God does not approve beating slaves and stoning children as that was the way of man not God." What are you basing that statement on?

      March 6, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • fred

      TruthPrevail
      “You get what you give in this world! When christards”
      =>There goes any Karma you had going into the next life. As to this life it is the dark cloud over your heart. What gives with that opening salvo ........ read your own words “you get what you give”.

      “bigots and racists they get called on it”
      =>of greater concern should be why you carry the club of correction. Is that who you are or who you have become after rejecting the love of God?

      “ When they threaten non-believers with stuff like hell”
      =>we are called to let people know there is a better way. Hell is not a threat it is an existence when you live apart from God or for those that do not believe in God then it is the existence they live apart from the principles of God. Gods principles apply whether you believe in God or not

      “Come back with something that is not 2000 years old and has validity in this century”
      =>aside from customs that are related to the times in question the truths of God are as valid today as 100,000 years ago.

      “You tend to be quite the hypocrite.”
      =>facts please

      “ I don't judge people based on who they love or what they do with their own bodies.”
      =>yes you do, I have given my life to Christ and you judge me a christard.

      “This moron judged this lady because she spoke up on a subject that makes perfect sense”
      =>and Jesus makes perfect sense yet you call me many things.

      “Remember without a woman to carry that child dolts like you would not be here!”
      Yes, when we become a dolts we must let go of childish ways

      March 6, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      " You certainly must know that God does not approve beating slaves and stoning children as that was the way of man not God."

      I suppose, then, that we both agree that the bible is most definitely NOT the word of god, then.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • fred

      Nonimus
      I assumed facepalm was referring to Old Testament Hebrew laws which reflected customs of the early nomatic tribes as to slaves. The stoning for adultry in the Old Testament was harsh but, I doubt you could have kept order with the mindset of those generations by use of a time out in the corner. Jesus could not have presented himself in truth 1,400 years earlier as the people and culture were not ready. God addresses his people where they are in development just as we address our children in age appropriate ways. Look to the way Jesus responded to stoning of the women in his day for clarity of Gods way as that culture was more like today.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Really?

      "look to the way Jesus responded to stoning of the women in his day for clarity of Gods way as that culture was more like today."

      Everyone knows the story about Jesus and the woman about to be stoned by the mob. This account is only found in John 7:53-8:12. The mob asked Jesus whether they should stone the woman (the punishment required by the Old Testament) or show her mercy. Jesus doesn’t fall for this trap. Jesus allegedly states, let the one who is without sin among you be the first to cast a stone at her. The crowd dissipates out of shame. That story was not originally in the Gospel of John or in any of the Gospels. It was added by later scribes. The story is not found in the oldest and best manuscripts of the Gospel of John. Nor does its writing style comport with the rest of John. Most serious textual critics state that this story should not be considered part of the Bible.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • fred

      facepalm
      There is some mighty stong stuff in the Bible that rings true thousands of years later. Purpose of Good and Evil and the purpose of our life is expressed in such a way it must be Divine as I cannot find a better explanation. There are only two choices we make in our life time that determines the core of our existence as individuals and the world. The choice is to accept God or reject God. How can you explain the fact every living being on this planet must answer that question? How can you explain the fact that everyone is presented with that question not just now but for all recorded history of man going back to Neanderthal?
      That in itself should strike the fear of God into your heart. I have never met an atheist that can explain to me why he or she faces that question and must answer it.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      "There are only two choices we make in our life time that determines the core of our existence as individuals and the world. The choice is to accept God or reject God. How can you explain the fact every living being on this planet must answer that question?"

      I'm not really sure where to begin. By this logic, every living being on this planet must answer the question to accept or reject Zeus. It's a pretty pointless argument.

      And sure, there's good stuff in the bible. There's also a lot of bad. Thanks for admitting that you completely cherry pick the bible to pick out the parts that you things are good.

      The rules about beating slaves and stoning children supposedly came from the almighty, at least according to your book. So how do you know which commandments are fake and which are real?

      March 6, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @fred

      Every living being need to choose whether to accept god or reject god? I didn't know that animals, plants, and cingle celled organisms had that kind of choice. Who knew?

      March 6, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • Really?

      "There is some mighty stong stuff in the Bible that rings true thousands of years later. Purpose of Good and Evil and the purpose of our life is expressed in such a way it must be Divine as I cannot find a better explanation"

      There are many books that have rung true thousands of years later, but no matter how hard you try there is no proof of a God.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      "The stoning for adultry in the Old Testament was harsh but, I doubt you could have kept order with the mindset of those generations by use of a time out in the corner."

      -

      Thanks for also admitting that your god is a moral relativist.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      @fred: First off, your god did not exist 100000 years ago. Other gods did but not your particular flavor of god.
      Second, I'm not the one telling people what they can and can't do with their bodies. You come here and judge people based on what they don't believe...does your buybull not say that is a sin? That is where the hypocrisy comes in!
      Third, You gave your life to something that has never been proven to exist...it's like saying you gave your life to the Easter Bunny.
      You haven't let go of childish ways. You still hold on to something that makes no sense in today's world.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • fred

      Really?
      So, some stuff in the Bible was put there while God was sleeping? You seem to have God in a box the size of man. God will present to each that is called the fullness of His plan for them and all that happens in that person’s life works together in making that person complete before God. The fullness of your life includes all the ramifications of your existence on others. This is the completed soul of” Really?” that even atheists cling onto as providing meaningfulness to their existence while denying soul itself.
      Do you actually think who snuck that verse into Johns writing changes the purpose of man and his relationship with God?

      March 6, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • God

      fred...you make the baby Jesus cry.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • Really?

      "Do you actually think who snuck that verse into Johns writing changes the purpose of man and his relationship with God?"

      It proves the crap you peddling for your cult is made up of lies by others over time. You wouldn't know the real truth if it bit you in the azz.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • Really?

      "God will present to each that is called the fullness of His plan for them and all that happens in that person’s life works together in making that person complete before God"

      You have to make up these excuses because you have no proof of your god.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • fred

      TruthPrevails
      “your god did not exist 100000 years ago.”
      =>In the beginning God created the heavens. The Bible does not give a timeline for creation which some place at 13.7 billion years (assuming certain properties of time measurement)

      “ Other gods did but not your particular flavor of god.”
      =>sorry but if you use the Bible to position the God of Abraham then you must use that same Bible to position the other gods. Neanderthal made provision for the afterlife, who was that God?

      “Second, I'm not the one telling people what they can and can't do with their bodies.”
      =>yes you are, you say no one should judge and everyone is free to explore at will

      “ You come here and judge people based on what they don't believe”
      =>example please

      “...does your buybull not say that is a sin?”
      =>is it a sin to tell your children to play nice, be kind etc?

      “You gave your life to something that has never been proven to exist...it's like saying you gave your life to the Easter Bunny.”
      =>so how does one reason with a person that cannot instinctively know there is a difference between the Easter Bunny and Christ?

      “You haven't let go of childish ways.”
      =>and Jesus asked why do you hinder the children I tell you anyone that causes the smallest of these to stumble it would be better that they had never been born.

      “ You still hold on to something that makes no sense in today's world.”
      =>NO, you have lost that which makes sense of this world today. Not one thing has changed from the finished work of Christ. Jesus was called a crazy anti religious rabble rouser in his day and the same would happen today. If I placed Jesus in the middle east he would be stoned and if I placed Jesus in New York he would be mocked and spit upon. Every day on this web site the most horrible things are said of Christ.
      Jesus is the answer today just as he was 2,000 years ago, his response to those that call upon his name is no different today. Those who reject Christ reject him for the same reason as always. As Solomon said there is nothing new under the sun.
      I have not heard of any better explanation for the purpose of life. The best alternative to Christ is atheism because if there is no Christ we have nothing which is the atheist position. The atheist cannot say what was in the beginning or what is after death. Without Christ none of us can say anything more than that. We both respond in faith but there is a big difference. I respond in faith to what I have seen and know yet you respond in faith to what you cannot see or know.
      Next time you watch someone die pay close attention. There is a moment when you feel the soul has left the body yet the lips are moist and eyes are clear something is no longer there. Everything in you knows and can almost touch the vacancy that was the soul. Sorry, but that is not nothingness it is something more and it has gone on.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And that's what you call a "soul"? That's simple consciousness, ferdy. The same thing happens when an animal dies.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And where do you get that it "has gone on"? You have no proof that there IS an "it" or that "it" goes anywhere.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • fred

      facepalm
      If there was no God you would not be faced with the choice about God. Plain and simple you cannot escape it, no one has and that question will be asked of every man.

      @HawaiiGuest every man known has responded to accept or reject God it is a given in life. Pinapples and sugar cane are sweet because they are kissed by the Son no questions asked

      March 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • fred

      TomTom
      Different vacancy sensed between a human dying and a dog named splat.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Nope; been around for both more than once. No difference. You're delusional as usual. There is no indication that anything except consciousness has "left".

      March 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Really?

      "so how does one reason with a person that cannot instinctively know there is a difference between the Easter Bunny and Christ?"

      How can you reason with someone who thinks it's real when it's not.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Different vacancy sensed"? By you, maybe. You're hardly an authority on anything much that I can sense, ferd.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      "If there was no God you would not be faced with the choice about God."

      That's such a failure in logic, I don't know where to begin. Well, I guess you've proved that god exists, since we have to decide whether to accept or reject him. I guess that means that Zeus exists, too. Do you think they're friends?

      March 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • fred

      facepalm
      You have not been asked about Zeus. You were asked about God

      March 6, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Really?

      "The atheist cannot say what was in the beginning or what is after death. "

      A Christians doesn't know how there was a begging or what is after death it's all made up crap by other human beings. The hypocrisy of people like you is just appalling. Keep making excuses for the lack of reason and logic in your myth.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • fred

      Really?
      What is the logic in your myth? Tell me where I am wrong. An atheist dies and has created a perfect afterlife where there is no pain, no suffering and above all no consequence for any actions in this lifetime. How can we best describe this atheist heaven………….ah slumber …..a peaceful slumber not a single care, no further concept of time or timelessness. Eternity with Hilter and mother Teressa it’s all good…..guess you could call it nirvana.
      In the beginning some chemicals organic matter came to a point where a child develops and like a fish or dog go through life simply being the animal they are doing what animals do best. Some dogs become alpha dogs and are great leaders of their pack. Other dogs are wimps and just carry on with their tails tucked between their legs. Wonderful parents showing their pups how it is all done then in time all return to the earth. Such is the meaningful existence of the animal we are.

      Wow, what an empty hallow myth you atheists have constructed. Do you have any proof that any of it is real. What would possibly cause anyone to fall for such a myth. It is more than delusional it is sad and pointless to even bother with such myth. No doubt that this myth is man made because it totally centers around self and removal of any constraint on carnal animal pursuits.

      March 6, 2012 at 8:14 pm |
  17. Robert Ingram

    Belief blog, I am always tired of seeing "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", "Just Saying", and "Heaven Sent" spamming these articles. I'm just saying :/

    March 6, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • momoya

      Me also.. Tom tom the pipers son is a little too callously caustic for my tastes, too, though he makes a fair point from time to time.. Such behavior is de rigeuer for an anarchistic message board, though.. Evidently no one is "minding the shop" at CNN.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oooh, so sorry, momo.

      By the way, Keithie asked you a question about your faith. Did you see it?

      March 6, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • momoya

      No big deal, Tom. No, I didn't see the question..

      March 6, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • Robert Ingram

      We need to bring the attention of spammers to Cnn Belief blog

      March 6, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • momoya

      I disagree, Robert; I think we should bring the spammers to the attention of CNN Belief Blog. 😉

      March 6, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      If some posters bother you, the solution is easy. Don't read their posts. You aren't required to pay attention.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
    • momoya

      Thanks, Captain Obvious!!

      March 6, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, I live to serve those in need.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  18. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    Anyone have a list of all the sponsors who've pulled out? Or of those who are standing by their tub of goo?

    March 6, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      The nine thus far are: Tax Resolutions Services Inc, AOL Inc, ProFlowers, Quicken Loans, Sleep Train, Sleep Number, Citrix Systems, Carbonite and Legal Zoom.

      The article for this is at http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-500395_162-57390960/nine-advertisers-have-pulled-out-of-limbaughs-show/

      March 6, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Thanks, Truth.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • Voter

      "At least a dozen companies, including AOL, Allstate and Sears, said Monday that they would no longer advertise on Limbaugh's show, which reaches an estimated 15 million listeners weekly. Tractor maker John Deere, solar panel maker Verengo Solar and postage website Stamps.com ran ads during Monday's broadcast, as aired on WABC radio in New York, the largest station carrying the show, but the three companies said Monday afternoon that they would no longer advertise.

      Stamps.com spokesman Eric Nash said in an e-mail that "Rush Limbaugh's recent comments do not align with our company values, and as such, Stamps.com has suspended advertising on the Rush Limbaugh radio program.""

      Full article:

      http://www.usatoday.com/news/politics/story/2012-03-05/rush-limbaugh-apology/53375858/1

      March 6, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Now I know who to boycott. They’ll be back… they always come back.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Babies continue to play...

      March 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • declineofwesterncivilization

      Lol, "pulled out" is one solution to the birth control issue. I'm sure all of us(guys) have done this at one time or another.

      March 6, 2012 at 7:27 pm |
  19. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    Hasn't helped Limbaugh much, has it, crack monkey?

    March 6, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • Observer

      Somehow I can't imagine Limbaugh on his knees in humble prayer. I like to imagine him on his knees for other reasons, but that may be unrealistic too.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Limbaugh" and "humble" just don't fit together well, do they?

      March 6, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  20. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    March 6, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Has it, crack monkey?

      Addiction can be overcome, you know. I know you know that. No shame in failing .... again.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      Does it? Really? Who told you that? Who do you pray to and for what? Can you provide specific examples, based on your personal experience, since you can make such a guarantee? Does it work for everybody or are you "special"? Are you just making stuff up? Is that a general statement that is completly baseless and meaningless? Feel free to elaborate.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
    • Liann

      So god is your errand boy.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      @Ykcyc: Oh no asking for personal experience only feeds this troll...they believe personal experience matters in this world. They can't see the fact that studies show them to be wrong b/c they have had these personal experiences (better known as delusions). Atheism is not healthy, captain america, and just sayin' are more than likely the same troll oops I mean person...feed one, you feed them all.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • Jesus

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs

      March 6, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Ykcyc

      @TruthPrevails
      Thank you for your observation.
      These "trols" are just insignificant, pathetic, insecure, and misguided people that feed on fear or insecurity of others to make themselves feel significant. I am not afraid. They are the ones hiding behind their "make believe" roles, unable to face reality without making up "stories". I am not trying to dispell their "fantasy". I am not trying to convince anyone of anything, including myself.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • HuleoGuave

      Innovation changes things.

      March 6, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      I doubt that they are all the same troll TruthPrevails. People thought the same thing about the megaman mafia, but I personally know 2 of them and indirectly know 3 others. I think that "atheism is not healthy" and "just sayin" might be the same person.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • Momof2

      Does it change diapers? If so I need to start praying right now.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.