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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, July 21, 2003

Robertson prayer 'offensive' is foolish

Let's take television evangelist Pat Robertson at his word when he says he "prays" for a significant shift in the makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court through the retirement of three liberal-leaning justices.

He has called on his followers to launch a "prayer offensive" designed to get at least three justices off the court. Robertson says he is morally offended by court rulings, including the recent ruling on the constitutional right to consensual sodomy.

But let's listen to his words directly:

"I am calling for a massive prayer offensive — Operation Supreme Court Freedom — to ask God to give us some relief," he recently wrote.

"One justice is 83 years old, another has cancer and another has a heart condition. Is it not possible for God to put it in the minds of these three judges that the time has come to retire?" he asked.

This language is frighteningly close to suggesting that Robertson hopes that if the three cannot be convinced by God to step down, they will be struck down. This is nonsense and an affront to those who take their religion seriously.

It's undoubtedly true that there are many who share Robertson's feelings and are equally anxious for a change. And if Robertson wishes to enlist them in a political war against the current court, in Congress or in the press, he is free to do so.

But by attempting to enlist his deity in this effort, Robertson accomplishes little other than making himself and his cause look foolish.