Nuke The State Dept.?

Robertson Drops A Bomb

TV preacher Pat Robertson is no fan of the U.S. State Department. Recently, he said the State Department, which is often informally called "Foggy Bottom" after the Washington neighborhood where it is located, deserves to have a nuclear bomb dropped on it.

Interviewing the author of a book critical of the department on his program, Robertson gushed, "When you get through [reading the book], you say, 'If I could just get a nuclear device inside Foggy Bottom, I think that's the answer.' I mean, you get through this, and you say, 'We've got to blow that thing up.'"

The vociferous nature of that comment surprised some people but not us here at Americans United. We're like permanent resident aliens of the Pat Robertson Bizarro Universe; we've heard him say many equally strange and offensive things over the years.

This is the man, after all, who once insisted that a hurricane, tornado or even a meteor would hit the city of Orlando, Fla., if it allowed gay groups to display rainbow flags on light poles. This is the man who said the goal of feminism is to persuade women to kill their husbands and children. This is the man who once wrote that Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Jimmy Carter and the first George Bush were duped into the service of Satan.

Robertson once called Hinduism a form of Satanism, said mainline Christians reflect the "spirit of the Antichrist" and wrote an entire book based on hoary, long-discredited anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

After the 9/11 attacks, he told his audience that the Supreme Court's church-state separation rulings have "insulted God" and that's why "God Almighty is lifting his protection from us."

The list goes on. Believe us, it goes on.

So, to Americans United, Robertson's recent outburst was just more of the same. Of course, that in no way excuses his behavior or makes it less offensive. In fact, in our view this "nuke the State Department" comment is one of the nastiest things Robertson has ever uttered.

Several commentators have pointed out that Robertson's rhetoric could just as easily have come out of the mouth of Osama bin Laden. They're right. Despite his claims to be a patriot, it became obvious a long time ago that Robertson doesn't think much of America, our judicial system, our government and the way most people choose to go about their lives without conforming to his mandates.

What's really astounding is that Robertson's constant "hate America" riff hasn't damaged his political standing. Some politicians continue to embrace Robertson, and his influence in the Bush administration and other political predcincts remains high.

This time he has gone too far. At a time like this when our nation still mourns the victims of the horrific terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001 to suggest that any government agency should be blown up, and that the people who work there merit mass destruction is beyond the pale.

Robertson is a dangerous zealot and a loose canon (pun intended). He deserves permanent exile from the political scene the sooner the better.