Monday, July 31, 2006

Media still can't get the story right.

The Mel Gibson hate outburst about Jews continues to be in the news. I say that with reservation. Some news outlets are still refusing to say what it is that Gibson said. They continue to sanitize his comments by refusing to report on them. The bizarre thing is that the have continued to do so even while reporting that he apologized for making them. So the apology is reported but not the offense. How strange.

Of course attention is still on how the Sheriff's Department tried to help cover up for Mel. As we reported Gibson has had a close relationship with the department and the sheriff. Remember that a spokesmn for the department got up in public and said that Gibson was arrested "without incident". This after Gibson tried to run away and was grabbed and handcuffed by the arresting officer. This after Gibson went into his tirade against Jews and after Gibson had threatened to ruin the arresting officer. Now the whole coverup is being investigated and the spokesman who made the "without incident" report is sticking by his words except he's doing a verbal shuffle by redining what the term means.

Steve Whitmore, who made the remark now defines it this way: "Without incident means without force, without a significant use of force." Now there is no "incident" until there is significant force. Apparently even a small amount of force doesn't even qualify.

Meanwhile the people who exposed the truth about the arrest are now reporting that Gibson had two previous incidents with the Sheriff's Department as well. They say" Mel Gibson has been stopped for reckless driving two other times in Malibu but he was allowed to leave without a ticket or arrest." In at least one of those incidents the deputy who pulled him over wondered whether Gibson was sober or not. No wonder Gibson went ballistic when he was arrested. He may well have expected to be able to walk away again.

TMZ, who broke this story confirm that the deputy who arrested Gibson was told to eliminate all references to Gibson's conduct from his report. "Sources tell TMZ that Lt. Crystl Mirand told the arresting deputy that Captain Tom Martin talked to Sheriff Lee Baca who expressed concern that the explosive report might leak to the media and that it needed to be re-written in a sanitized form."

They also mention something that is important and which others have observed. The alcohol content of Gibson's blood was not sufficiently high to cloud his ability to act rationally. He says he ws "out of it" but he had not consumed enough alcohol for that to be the case. And TMZ sys that, "Sources connected with the case tell TMZ that Gibson was drunk but was in control of his senses." In other words he knew what he doing even if his driving would have been impaired.

I would also like to clear up some false reports. Sandy Cohen, of Associated Press reported,, and newspapers around the world reported, that Gibson is a "devout" Roman Catholic. He is not. He helps fund a break away sect from Catholicism of which his father is a leader. His father has said that the Vatican was taken over by "a Masonic plot backed by Jews" with the intention of pushing one world government. The senior Gibson says the Jews "are after one world religion and one world government. That's why they've attacked the Catholic Church so strongly, to ultimately take control over it by their doctrine. Gibson has poured millions, at least $14 million, into the sect his father helps lead. He said: "My dad taught me my faith and I believe what he taught me."

But Gibson is not a Roman Catholic as reported. Nor is he a "fundamentalist Christian" as other media outlets have claimed. He has paid to build one of these breakaway churches near his home and another in West Virginia, where his father lives. The elder Hutton has said the Pope in Rome is not a Catholic. And neither of these churches is affiliated with, or recognized by, the Roman Catholic Church.

Gibson's has now entered a rehabilitation program for his drinking. The program may or may not help his problems there but it does nothing regarding his bigotry. Nor can it. The Anti-Defamation League has said that Gibson's apology was "not a proper apology because it does not go to the essence of his bigotry and his anti-Semitism." Of course not. What does the ADL expect? Gibson can be forced to apologize but he can't be forced to mean it. He may fear the results of his bigotry becoming public knowledge. He may even make a film about the Holocaust (though I doubt that will happen now). But the threat of sanctions don't change a man's mind only his public expressions. Rehab may keep Gibson from saying what he believes. The threat of retaliation from others may keep him silent. But neither will change the man's mind. Only Gibson can do that.

The Scotsmen reports that the ADL asked for an investigation in whether or not Gibson comitted a "hate crime". But I don't believe this is the case though I could be wrong. The paper also falsely reported that Gibson is a fundamentalist Christian so their ability to get the facts right is suspect. I think the report wrong because the only evidence they use to support this claim is a quote from the ADL saying there ought to consequences to bigotry. But the full quote, reported in other sources, indicated the consequences they spoke of was private sanctions with people in the film industry refusing to work with Gibson. That is not a hate crime investigation. In addition the paper forgets that in the US there is no hate crime for expressing an opinion alone. Gibson is free to engage in tirades against anyone he wishes without fear of the sanction of the law. At least for now speech, in the US, on this issue is free.

It would be absurd to call for an investigation into whether Gibson's remark were a hate crime when no legislation allowing such a measure exist -- nor should it exist. Gibson has done more harm to himself through his remarks than any court sanction could possibly do. Let's be honest here. When The Passion of the Christ came out the media missed the real story. They concentrated on whether the film was or wasn't anti Jewish -- I think it was. But they ignored Gibson's ties to his father. Even the few feeble attempts to ask about this issue were easily shrugged off by Gibson and no one dared press the matter. It too a bit of Tequila to loosen Gibson's tongue and his real opinions flowed. Now he will suffer the consequences.

But even now the media reported this badly. When we first discussed this story almost all the major media outlets reported the drunken arrest but said nothing about the anti Jewish rant. Even when Gibson apologized for the bigoted remarks media outlets reported on the apology but left their audience in the dark as to the actual remarks. Surely if a simple blogger, albeit one who has written for professional media, can find out the facts then full time journalists should be able to do so. I reiterate that no major media outlet to date has reported the full facts behind Gibson, the church he supports and Daddy Gibson's theology/political beliefs about Jews. I suspect if they do they will find plenty of evidence to verify that Mel Gibson is fully in tune with his father's beliefs. And while the threat of the loss of millions in revenue may force him to retract and apologize it can't force him to change his opinions. A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.

The photo is of Hutton Gibson, the self-proclaimed expert on the Jewish plot to control the world.