Joy Behar, a co-host of ABC’s “The View” program, finally has apologized to Christians for mocking their faith and describing it as a “mental illness.”
On the show Tuesday she said: “I think Vice President Pence is right. I was raised to respect everyone’s religious faith, and I fell short of that. I sincerely apologize for what I said.”
On the show last month, she ridiculed Pence for saying he talks to Jesus and listens to him through prayer.
“Like I said before, it’s one thing to talk to Jesus. It’s another thing when Jesus talks to you,” she said at the time. “That’s called mental illness, if I’m not correct. Hearing voices.”
A collective outrage followed, with tens of thousands of complaints flooding her network, especially when she took weeks before deciding to apologize.
Radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh said Tuesday that Behar was “forced” to apologize to save her job.
Actor James Woods tweeted: “Sincerity at the point of a bayonet. Nevertheless apology accepted.”
Pence told Fox News’ Sean Hannity Monday night that Behar called him to apologize personally, and he suggested she use her platform on the network to apologize to the many other Christians.
Pence told Hannity, in an interview that also discussed California’s defiance of federal immigration law, that he thought Behar was sincere when she called him.
“I said to Joy, ‘Of course I forgive you,'” he said, adding he encouraged her to also address the millions of other Christians.
Behar initially claimed it was all a joke.
Pence, however, previously described the comments as an attack on Christianity.
“To have ABC maintain a broadcast forum that compared Christianity to mental illness is just wrong. And it’s an insult not to me, but to the vast majority of the American people who, like me, cherish their faith,” he said.
WND reported late last month when the number of telephone calls to ABC over the insult surged past 25,000.
WND also reported Media Research Center President Brent Bozell released an open letter to ABC News President James Goldston warning him and two talk-show personalities that if they don’t apologize for bashing Christians, he would ask his group’s millions of grassroots activists to contact advertisers.
Another co-host, Sunny Hostin, characterized Pence’s practice of his Christian faith as “dangerous.”
See the comments by Behar and Hostin:
Behar and Hostin were reacting to an interview in which Omarosa Manigault-Newman criticized Pence as an “extreme Christian” who has conversations with Jesus.
Bozell said the panel “then took turns taking shots at the vice president’s faith.”
Hostin said: “When you have a Mike Pence who now puts this religious veneer on things and who calls people values voters, I think we’re in a dangerous situation. Look I’m Catholic. I’m a faithful person, but I don’t know that I want my vice president, um – speaking in tongues and having Jesus speak to him.”
Behar turned her attack directly on the vice president, stating: “Like I said before, it’s one thing to talk to Jesus. It’s another thing when Jesus talks to you. … That’s called mental illness, if I’m not correct. Hearing voices.”
Bozell cited other attacks by the network on Christians, including when “The View” panelists blamed Christians for taking away free contraceptives like the Taliban.
Another instance was the network’s citation of the domestic terror-linked and discredited Southern Poverty Law Center’s description of a group to which Attorney Jeff Sessions spoke as an “anti-LGBT hate group.” The group was the highly respected Alliance Defending Freedom, whose lawyers regularly argue civil and religious rights cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Another was the ABC show “Good Christian B——,” which depicts Christians as “superficial, carnal, shallow hypocrites.”