Monday, July 31, 2006

Mel Did WHAT?

During his arrest for drunken driving, Mel Gibson was apparently less than cooperative. The report says Gibson then launched into a barrage of anti-Semitic statements: "F*****g Jews... The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world." Gibson then asked the deputy, "Are you a Jew?" (H/T: Michelle Malkin, who linked to this report on TMZ.)

Mr. Gibson has since apologized, though not specifically for his remark about the Jews.

I've always enjoyed Mr. Gibson's acting and his films. I admired his courage to be Catholic in Hollywood, and a Catholic of the most traditional kind. (I often describe myself as being to the left of Mel Gibson and to the right of Martin Sheen when describing my own practice of Catholicism.) I don't know what provoked his lapse into drinking, his anger, and his outburst of anti-Semitism. Several articles have suggested that this is how he truly feels. I'm wondering if there isn't something more. He has several sons, most of them young adults. Is he worried that the war between The West and Islam is going to put one of his boys in harm's way?

I know it's a worry I have.

Mr. Gibson didn't say in his apology. Frankly, I hope he never does, for it will sound like an excuse and his apology seemed, to me, like an adult male realizing he crossed a line and taking full responsibility for his actions. The kind of thing that we are called to do as Catholics.

But, still, I have a very uncharitable suspicion that much is being made of Mr. Gibson's outburst because of his being a practicing Catholic. Had Mr. Gibson said Israel is responsible for all the wars in the world instead of the Jews, well, his opinion would not be out of line at all with those of Code Pink, many of Muslims, and most of those who protest The War.