Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Mel's newest apology fails

Mel Gibson has come out with a second apology this time more precise and exact regarding the anti Jewish tirade he released on a Sheriff’s deputy who was in fact Jewish. And the apology from top to bottom is rubbish.

First take the lie that Gibson is trying to sell that he “blurted out in a moment of insanity.” That bird won’t fly. You might be crazy Mel but you ain’t insane. Gibson will play himself as the victim of evil drink. But he wasn’t that drunk. He was intoxicated enough that he shouldn’t be driving but not so intoxicated that he had no idea what he was doing. Friends of his are even spreading the story that Mel was suicidal and has a death wish. The purpose of all this is to paint Gibson as a victim of things beyond his control.

And get this rubbish: “I am in the process of understanding where those words came from during that drunken display.” Look nor further than home Mel. You were raised on it. Those words were no different from the words of your own father, a professional anti-Semite who goes around lecturing on the evils of the Jewish plot to take over the world. Daddy Gibson utters those words in interviews all the time and Mel wants to pretend he is just now trying to understand where these sentiments originate. Bullshit Mel, bullshit.

Now Daddy Gibson says the Jews and Mason have taken over the Vatican and that the Pope is illegitimate. Mel buys into this theory. He is not distancing himself from that view at all. In fact he is putting millions of his own funds into that very message. Gibson is a member of a break away sect of Catholics who denounce the Vatican as being corrupted, says Daddy Gibson, by the Jews and Freemasons. Mel has put $14 million of his own money into a foundation he controls, named after his deceased mother. With those funds he has built a church for this sect near his home in Malibu and another near his father’s home in West Virginia. Why would be plow $14 million into this sect if he was not a believer in it’s message?

And look at this appeal for pity. “I am asking the Jewish community whom I have personally offended, to help me on my journey through recovery. Again, I am reaching out to the Jewish community for its help.” Has the man no shame at all? See, it wasn’t Mel saying what he believes. He was insane, he was drunk, he was “out of it”. And he’s trying to understand where the words came from because, of course, he doesn’t mean any of it despite pouring funds into his father’s sect. And now he needs the Jewish community to help him recover. He’s sick not immoral. He’s diseased not a bigot. And the Jewish community has to help him recover. How could anyone turn their back on a sick man?

All of this is a denial of responsibility. It is blaming his beliefs on booze. Of course you know how it is -- just one drink too many and people around the world just automatically go off spouting anti Jewish conspiracy theories in public. Of course Daddy Gibson does it stone sober but Mel pretends he has no idea where these sentiments came from.

Mel wants to meet with the Jewish community to discuss “the appropriate path for healing.” Considering his the views he expressed I would wager he wants to see if he can buy his way out of this. It fits his view of Jews I would think. Offer them some cash, make a big donation to some Holocaust project and everything will be fine. Meanwhile put a few more million into the foundation to help spread the message about the conspiracy that took over the Vatican.

Why is Gibson apologizing? Simple. He has no choice really. Consider the following true story.

Boksburg is a town outside Johannesburg, South Africa. During the dying days of apartheid racists in the country formed the Conservative Party to try and defend apartheid laws including the Group Areas Act which restricted where members of various races were allowed to live. The idea was to keep certain areas for whites only. Boksburg is a very Afrikaans area and the Afrikaners of the day were quite supportive of the Conservative Party. Several CP politicians were elected to the local council.

Two of those politicians, dedicated to preserving Boksburg for whites only were also in the process of selling their homes. Both received offers from black buyers. And both sold their homes to the black buyers. In other words two individuals dedicated to prejudice acted as if they were not prejudiced in public. Why?

The reason is not hard to fathom. If they turned down the black buyer they would have to sell, instead, to the second highest bidder. If there was a R20,000 difference between the black buyer and the second place bidder then the direct cost of prejudice to the council member was R20,000. The more prejudice costs the less someone is likely to indulge their bigotry. Apartheid was promoted because it spread the cost around on everyone.

These two council members were both against allowing blacks to buy in white areas and both sold to black buyers because to do otherwise would have hurt them in the pocketbook. Prejudice is like anything else. The cheaper it is the more of it people want.

Now Mel Gibson works in an industry with lots of people who are Jewish. He knows this very well. Without their co-operation he will have a hard time of selling his product. And he has earned hundreds of millions of dollars in this industry. The truck driver down the road who spouts conspiracy crap may get labelled a loony, and rightfully so, but it’s not likely to cost him much but the scorn of sane people around him. But for Mel to be associated with the beliefs his father so openly preaches could cost him millions, tens of millions, perhaps even hundreds of millions. The price for Gibson’s prejudice is very high.

And to date he has tried to tip toe around the issue carefully. He will claim that he is not anti Jewish. No surprise there. Some of the most anti Jewish people I’ve ever met will tell you they aren’t anti Jewish at all. They oppose the Jewish plot to control the world but they will say not all Jews are part of that plot and in fact, some have even been victims of it. So you may have a secret cabal of Jews plotting the wars, as Gibson said, but not all Jews are part of the cabal therefore, ipso facto, one is not anti Jewish. There have even been some Jews who have believed this line.

I remember reading something Hitler said. He complained that even the highest Nazis would come to him and want exceptions made regarding certain Jews who were their friends. He said if he made an exception in each case there would be nothing left of his anti Jewish policies. Yet Hitler himself made just such an exception for Eduard Bloch, the Jewish doctor who treated Hitler’s mother when she was dying of breast cancer. Bloch himself says that when the Nazis took over Austria the local officials were told by Hitler “Dr. Bloch is an Edaljude -- a noble Jew. If all Jews were like him, there would be no Jewish question.” The doctor regularly received cards from Hitler and was left unmolested by the Nazis until he left for the United States in 1940. Bloch said: “Favors were granted me which I feel sure were accorded no other Jew in all of Germany or Austria.”

The fact is that even someone like Hitler could say, in all honesty, “some of my best friends are Jewish.” Yet this exceptionalism does not necessarily change the view that there is still a Jewish conspiracy in the mind of the anti-Semite. But many bigots believe that by making such an exception, by having a friend who is a noble Jew, it is sufficient proof that they are not anti Jewish. Mel no doubts that one can believe in a Jewish world plot without being anti Jewish.

I really doubt that 24 hours in rehab is enough for Gibson to change his world view. He learned well at the feet of his father. There really is little he can say or do at this time that would indicate a true change of heart. If anything this has probably confirmed for him “the power of the Jews” since the outrage is so widespread. Of course it not the outrage of Jews he is feeling but the outrage of all decent people everywhere. His problems are his beliefs not his drinking. And the source for his beliefs did not originate on a bar stool but on his father's knee.