Compassion and Criticism

03/04/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

I feel great sympathy for Ted Haggard, the minister who has now owned up to engaging in gay sex. This has resulted in his expulsion from his church, exile from Colorado, (although how church elders can force you from a United State mystifies me) and descent into shame and near poverty.

His wife must be shell shocked, and his kids must be overwhelmed. I know that Haggard opposed gay marriage, but I have no memory of him trashing gays, saying vicious things about gays, or hoping they perish, he was blindly following a biblical misconception.

From what I can gather, he is now coming to grips with his sexuality, and his shame is based on his religion and upbringing. He has said that being molested as a child led him to these deeds, but I don't think getting raped determines your preference, but he is so lost, so at sea, that he must, even now, try to justify his sexuality as a reaction to a sin.

One day Haggard may become a transcendent force. One day he may be the first gay evangelical minister. One day those of his faith may come forward and open the closet door and find peace. I wish all this for him.

Roseanne Barr wants Bruce Springsteen to condemn the US for bombing Afghanistan and Pakistan, and urge Israel to stop the bombing of Gaza. She wants him to do this during his Super Bowl performance. She thinks that making these positions public during a halftime show of a football game is the perfect arena for her opinions.
Yes, they are HER opinions, not his. She has no idea what he thinks, but since only a crazy person would let her sing again in front of an audience larger than can fill a taxicab, she is perfectly happy to let Bruce impose her will during his show.

One other thing. I am waiting for Roseanne to tell Gaza to stop bombing Israel. I am waiting for Roseanne to ask Hamas to remove their commitment to killing Isrealis from their charter. I am waiting for Roseanne to get an explanation for why Hamas destroyed all the hospitals and schools and government buildings left behind for their use by Israel.

Innocent people are being killed by Israeli bombs. A truce was declared. Hamas stated that they could not wait to start bombing Israel again. This evidently escaped Roseanne's attention.

The funny thing is, I am not a staunch defender of all things Israeli. I think the settlements should be pulled back and moved out. All this is beside the point. The point is that asking another entertainer to espouse your positions at the exact wrong time is pretty nervy and completely wrongheaded. Roseanne has deservedly made a lot of dough for her brilliant television show. Maybe she should take some of that moolah and buy a Super Bowl ad and let people know what she thinks without trying to shame a great man and musician into being her personal political human shield.