Why CNBC's Donny Deutsch likes to bait Christians into answers he doesn't like, to only then berate them for his dislike of them is a wee bit unexplainable. Deutsch did it to my friend Stephen Baldwin as he attempted raise awareness about the dangerous impact of peep show/porn houses that operate near schools, and this past week he laid the same strategy on Ann Coulter. Both Coulter and Baldwin spoke to me shortly after their appearances (but prior to the airing of the taped segments) with a bit of bewilderment as to how the events had unfolded.
The problem was Ann would have none of it.
Deutsch invited Ann to describe what the world would look like if she had her say. One aspect of her answer was that the world would be more Christian:
DEUTSCH: Christian — so we should be Christian? It would be better if we were all Christian?
DEUTSCH: We should all be Christian?
COULTER: Yes. Would you like to come to church with me, Donny?
Deutsch was not amused:
DEUTSCH: So you don’t think that was offensive?
COULTER: No. I’m sorry. It is not intended to be. I don’t think you should take it that way, but that is what Christians consider themselves: perfected Jews. We believe the Old Testament. As you know from the Old Testament, God was constantly getting fed up with humans for not being able to, you know, live up to all the laws. What Christians believe — this is just a statement of what the New Testament is — is that that’s why Christ came and died for our sins. Christians believe the Old Testament. You don’t believe our testament.
Despite the rather precise, clear, and distinct explanations that Ann offered up, Deutsch continued to imply that Ann was anti-Semitic, religiously bigoted, and even educationally ignorant.
The problem was - he was describing himself.
Unfortunately many people will only scan headlines, hear the gossip, and assume Ann Coulter is a religious bigot. Sadly some goons are now responding in ways that have attempted to threaten Ann's physical safety.
As I replayed some of the more pithy soundbytes on my show - based in New York City - our phone lines flooded with response from both Christians and Jews. The first half dozen or so to get through in fact all seemed Jewish and most were stunned at the silliness with which Deutsch conducted himself. And note this please... not ONE of them were offended by what Ann Coulter had stated.
The fact that Jews and Christians share the Old Testament as a source of truth that guides their life is a bit of common ground unlike any two other faith systems in the world. The fact that they come to different conclusions - particularly as to how the prophecies of that text are fulfilled is not surprising though. Simply put Christians believe that Yeshua fulfilled the Old Testament prophecy and was in fact the promised Messiah. Thus we count his teaching and the remainder of the New Testament as sacred inspired text. We believe it to be as every bit much part of the scripture as the Old. Jews come to different conclusions.
Secular or only culturally observant Jews like Deutsch have sometimes attempted to read more into the label of Christianity than what is there. Examples of this include the ridiculous attempt to describe Adolph Hitler as a practicing Christian, when there is far more evidence in his life's actions and writings that he was perhaps entirely demon possessed. Also telling are the examples of the closeness Christians and Jews have shared throughout modern history - even Hitler-era examples such as Corrie Ten Boom and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
Serious Christians as well as serious Jews have a unique ability to sit across the table from one another, share a meal, talk - even about religion - without feeling the need to come to blows. Hence why Ben Shapiro, Dennis Prager, and Michael Medved - are not merely people I have great esteem for, but men I consider to be true friends.
Prager and Medved have both even consistently argued for the strengthening of what has traditionally been a strong alliance between the Jewish community and the Evangelical church. I've heard both of them remark on multiple occasions, that perhaps there has never been "a more true friend" to the Jewish people than today's Evangelical Christian.
Long story short - Ann Coulter's theological perspective was accurate if she were being asked to answer the questions from the distinctly Christian viewpoint. Feigning outrage, yet in reality probably thankful for the free publicity his show received because of it, Deutsch did not demonstrate any evidence anti-Semitism on Coulter's part.
What was demonstrated was that Ann has a knack for offending the ignorant.
Knowing that he could play the anti-Semite card without much scrutiny on his end was a cheap ploy to gain exposure at Ann's expense. Ann is not a perfect person, but on this issue she stood fast and true. Anyone who took offense only demonstrated that they either do not understand their own belief system well enough to feel confident in it, or that they are not very good listeners.
I believe with Deutsch one could argue the case for both!