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Rev. Jerry Falwell Found Unconscious, Condition Said to be "Grave"

(See updated link below)

The Rev. Jerry Falwell -- founder of the Moral Majority and the face of the religious right in the 1980s -- was in "gravely serious" condition Tuesday after being found unconscious in his office, a Liberty University executive said.

Ron Godwin, executive vice president of Falwell's university, said Falwell was found unconscious after missing an appointment Tuesday morning and was immediately taken to a hospital.

Very sad news no matter what you think of his politics...

Sad update: Rev. Falwell is dead

from MSNBC:

The Rev. Jerry Falwell -- founder of the Moral Majority and the face of the religious right in the 1980s -- died Tuesday after being found unconscious in his office, a Liberty University executive said.

Ron Godwin, Liberty's executive vice president, said Falwell, 73, had been found unresponsive around 10:45 a.m. and was taken to Lynchburg General Hospital.

Godwin said he was not sure what caused the collapse, but noted that Falwell had "a history of heart challenges."

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Comments (5)

Paul Hamilton:

Click below for some truly vile comments:

This is the sort of thing which our side is so willing to condemn from the right's attack dogs like BillO and Coulter, and yet we fall prey to the same despicable mindset. Sickness and death is NEVER a good thing, and while I'm a Christian, I also believe in Karma. If you celebrate someone else's troubles, you're calling them down on yourself...


Best wishes to Mr. Falwell. Good thing he had an appointment that he missed.

I agree with you, that the comments you linked to are vile, Paul, and I understand and respect your feelings on this, but I also understand that Rev. Falwell was an outspoken critic of liberal causes and liberal peoples - and he angered a lot of decent Americans in the process. His history suggests that he himself was often not reserved at monumental times such as this, and instead was outspoken and forceful at times others might hold back out of a deference for the feelings of others.

And I personally feel it's inappropriate to go into the specifics at this point in time, but maybe in the future we can talk more about Karma as it relates to the passing of Reverend Falwell. Recipients of Rev. Falwell's past criticisms might suggest that Karma is two-way street.

I offer my deepest condolences to Mr. Falwell's, family, friends, business associates and congregation. Whatever his politics, he lent his voice to the on-going forge of American democracy in a forceful way that provoked thought, encouraged debate, and lifted and touched a great many Americans. His passing marks a loss for us all, because whether you agreed or disagreed with him -- and no matter what you think of his politics -- there is no question that he played an important role in bringing America to where it is today.

Steve Crickmore:

Paul, your's is a difficult point on the 'America' blog. I didn't read all of the comments, but if another man, a homosexual had been in Fallwell's place, we know what his reaction would have been been: "homosexuals are] brute beasts...part of a vile and satanic system [that] will be utterly annihilated, and there will be a celebration in heaven."

I guess all we can say is 'two wrongs don't make a right'. My condolences to his family!

Paul Hamilton:

Lee: I personally didn't think much of Falwell's melding of politics and religion. While I have strong religious beliefs, I came to them on my own and certainly don't think it is the role of government to influence anybody's spirituality. Falwell, OTOH, believed that the United States was specially ordained by God and that our leaders should not only proselytize our own people, but the whole world. Much of what George Bush supports comes straight out of Falwell's playbook.

And nobody can deny how effective he was. He played a large part in getting Ronald Reagan nominated and elected at a time when he wasn't really taken seriously by a lot of political experts. And of course the Old Time Gospel Hour is the granddaddy of televangelism. He was the Aimee Semple McPherson of his generation and changed the very meaning of Christianity from the mold of "Jesus, meek and mild" to the Jesus who'll ride down out of heaven on Judgment Day day with the sound of thunder. The message he delivered might have not quite been biblically-legitimate, but it clearly resonated with millions of people. A real good book on this whole subject is "A History of the End of the World," which devotes several chapters to fundamentalism in America and it's obsession with the End Times.

Steve: You're exactly right. There was no issue that he wouldn't hammer. Unfortunately for him, by the end of his life, he was becoming sort of a self-satire, and the torch is in the process of passing to a new generation of charismatic Christians who tend to make their religion a little softer while maintaining the stiffness of their conservative politics.


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Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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