Ironically, Robertson expressed public misgivings about the Bush Administration’s “faith-based initiatives” back in 2001. “I really don’t know what to do,” Robertson told viewers of his TV show, The 700 Club. “But this thing could be a real Pandora’s box. …What seems to be such a great initiative can rise up to bite the organizations as well as the federal government. And I’m a little concerned about it, frankly.”
Guess he had a change of heart.
Why should you be concerned that your tax dollars are helping to fund Robertson’s charity?
Consider that Operation Blessing has come under fire for questionable activities:
QUESTION MARK ONE: In the late 1990s, it was learned that Operation Blessing was diverting its medical missionary planes in Africa in order to pick up equipment for Pat Robertson’s gold mining operations in Zaire. Robertson refunded the charity out of his own pocket, supposedly to avoid prosecution.
QUESTION MARK TWO: Operation Blessing practices discriminatory hiring — it only hires Christians. (That’s not liberal speculation. It was confirmed last week by Deborah Bensen, the charity’s director of media and government relations.)
QUESTION MARK THREE: All grantees are required to follow guidelines that say federal money must not be used for “inherently religious activities.” But that’s a gray area. Operation Blessing provided money for a refrigerated trailer and computers for Lighthouse Mission on Long Island, New York, which proclaims on its Web site. “Through the love of God, the volunteers at the Mission help people in need on a daily basis through prayer and God’s Word.”
Doesn’t that mean federal money is being used for “inherently religious acitivities”? Operation Blessing says no. Others say yes.
The Bush Administration? It apparently has no plans to investigate, perhaps because it doesn’t want to upset its large conservative Christian base.