SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 BY BARRY DUKE
THE introduction of a cartoon Jesus poking at fun of VP Mike Pence’s faith in two episodes of Stephen Colbert’s Late Show on US channel CBS has led to fury – and a petition calling on CBS to stop ‘this mockery of Christ and anti-Christian bigotry.’
The petition is the brainchild of right-wing Christian website, LifeSiteNews, and was launched after Pence said something really, really stupid at last week’s Republican National Convention. These were his words:
Last week Joe Biden said no miracle is coming. What Joe doesn’t understand is that America is a nation of miracles.
This is how CBS treated the moment:
CBS’s YouTube page describes this as Jesus showing up to “set the record straight.”
CBS first introduced the cartoon Jesus back in June. On that occasion Christ tells Pence:
You’re making me look like a jerk.
And he orders to VP to to stop attributing policies to him.
The petition, directed at CBS’s CEO George Cheeks says in part:
We, the undersigned, are dismayed that your network allows Stephen Colbert to mock Christ in an attempt to score political points against Vice President Pence.
Stephen Colbert’s Late Show has twice depicted Jesus as being both silly and vindictive over the last three months.
The irreverent political cartoons aim to be political satire. And, of course, good political satire is fine.
But, this crosses the line from pointed and funny, to crass, distasteful and cowardly.
Mocking what other people hold dear is always in bad taste. But, mocking God, Himself, for the sake of a few laughs, is unacceptable.
Would Stephen Colbert’s Late Show mock Muhammed with cartoon depictions? The simple answer is ‘not on Stephen Colbert’s life.’
Given the racist tones of many LifeSiteNews‘s reports, I’m willing to bet that it was also outraged that cartoon Jesus is portrayed as a person of colour.
The petition coincides with a Facebook Post by Christian group Faithful America that alludes to Pence’s appearance at the convention:
Last week’s Republican convention was one of the most dangerous moments in American history: A never-ending stream of racist rhetoric, dangerous lies, and nonstop attacks on Donald Trump’s critics’ faith.
Mike Pence went further than anyone. The Vice President quoting the Bible – but substituted ‘Old Glory’ for Jesus, literally calling the flag ‘the author and perfecter of our faith and freedom.’