Again, I give you all my sincerest apologies as my aforementioned bar-exam-related “brief hiatus” suddenly morphed into a new-baby-related break which ran into my new-job-related break and thus almost two months without a serious post.
I guess I was excited back in 2006 when I heard that an active Mormon was going to get his own prime-time news show on a major cable news network. I mean, since we lost Jane Clayson in the morning and Ken Jennings in primetime, major national television was relatively Mormon-free. Unfortunately, it only took a couple of episodes for the shine to wear off. I mean, I understand that bigotry and igorance is acceptable and practically de rigueur for talk radio these days, but on CNN HN. I mean, isn’t Lou Dobbs enough for the Ted Turner media empire?!
Of course, he is obviously attracting some viewers since his show is still on the air, and based on conversations I’ve had, I think that a number of Mormons find his really-conservative-but-not-Republican shtick to be attractive. Which brings me to what is the somewhat confusing irony of Beck’s notoriety: he is a terrible public example of a Mormon, and yet represents so many Mormons all too well. I think that his views on immigrants, Muslims, and climate change (among other issues) are perfectly appalling, but I fear that too many of my co-religionists hold similar sentiments. So do I lament Beck’s fame as an public Mormon figure because I do not want either myself or my church to be painted with his brush, or rather do I lament the fact that he is so shockingly typical?