On Friday morning, while much of the country was still learning about the horrific events in Aurora, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) decided to weigh in with some thoughts of his own. As the right-wing Texan saw it, the deadly violence was the result of "ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs."
"We have been at war with the very pillars, the very foundation of this country," Gohmert said. "You know what really gets me, as a Christian, is to see the ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs, and then some senseless crazy act of a derelict takes place."
The implication was hardly subtle: a madman killed 12 people because Americans separate church and state. Over the weekend, however, Gohmert made an effort to walk back his offensive comments.
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) said Saturday that his controversial comments about the Aurora, Colo., shootings were "grossly taken out of context" and apologized to those whom he may have offended. [...]
"As a father, my heart goes out to those who lost loved ones in this heartless attack. The killings were a senseless, outrageous act," Gohmert said. "Our thoughts and prayers continue for all those so tragically affected, and I am very sorry if my comments caused heartache to anyone in Colorado."
As Gohmert explained it in a statement, he was supposed to be on the radio show to talk about a different subject, but the show switched gears in light of the morning's developments. Apparently, this was supposed to serve as some kind of excuse for the congressman connecting the massacre to "attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs" that exist only in his imagination. It's almost as if he's saying, "I can't be held responsible for the words that came out of my mouth; I'd been prepped to talk about a different subject."
As for the "context," perhaps Gohmert should go back and actually listen to what he said. On the air, the Republican not only whined about imaginary attacks on his faith, but expressing despair about our secular society, he also seemed to connect the mass murder of 12 people to the absence of state-sponsored prayers at high school graduation ceremonies.
I'm glad Gohmert is now willing to kinda sorta apologize ("if" others were bothered), but the fact remains that the context doesn't help.