Well, now. First the Catholics, now the Methodists.
The United States Catholic Conference of Bishops has informed us, as reported nearby, that they did not agree to sign onto a petition to the FCC calling for a notice of inquiry into “hate speech” by talk radio host Rush Limbaugh and others on talk radio and Fox News. The petition was sent out by the left-wing So We Might See interfaith group, which claimed support in their media package from the USCCB, the United Methodists, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Islamic Society of North American. And, of course, the United Church of Christ, my own denomination.
Now comes word that, as with the Catholic Bishops, the Methodists are saying they too never signed on to the FCC petition. Startlingly, the Methodists deny that they even signed up for the Coalition. Here’s the exact quote from Mary Lynn Holly of the United Methodist Information Service. A hat tip to an alert reader, Gloria White. Say the Methodists in a clear contradiction of So We Might See:
“United Methodist Communications is not a sponsor of this coalition at this point. Our name was inadvertently added to the sponsorship list in error. It has now been removed.”
This is exactly the opposite of what the So We Might See release on the petition says. Says the group: “The So We Might See Coalition is sending this letter to the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Commerce…” The full letter can be seen here.
The problem here is stark. The United Church of Christ, using funds provided by George Soros and others, informed the world that they had assembled an interfaith religious coalition on hate speech that was taking their case to the FCC.
They listed seven coalition members who had signed onto this, specifically listing the entire So We Might See Coalition as the signers of the petition. Two of the seven faiths have now come forward to say flatly they did not agree to this. Remarkably, the Methodists are not only disowning the FCC petition — they are even denying membership in the Coalition entirely!
At a minimum this is remarkable sloppiness. Or worse, it was the use of the names and reputations of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and the United Methodists to give an impression that simply is in fact not true — that the leaders of these two faiths are leading a legal assault on free speech as expressed by the people and institutions cited either in the petition itself — Rush Limbaugh – or in the text and accompanying links of the So We Might See media package — Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Michael Savage, and Fox News.
Either way an apology is owed to these two groups by Reverend J. Bennett Guess of the United Church of Christ Office of Communications, Inc. and — hopefully – by the UCC’s new president, the Reverend Geoffrey Black.
This is embarrassingly shameful. And the left-wing outside money that is trying to run the UCC bureaucratic agenda should be returned, with the entire project shuttered.
What a mess.