Newly hired CNN commentator Glenn Beck said a caller was "exactly right" in predicting that "the left" would make convicted September 11 terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui a "celebrity," because Moussaoui was sentenced to life in prison rather than to death. Later in the show, Beck declared: "[I]n 30 years, I think this guy [Moussaoui] could become the next [Stanley] 'Tookie' Williams."
On the May 4 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, newly hired CNN commentator Glenn Beck said a caller was "exactly right" in predicting that "the left" would make convicted September 11 terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui a "celebrity," because Moussaoui was sentenced to life in prison rather than to death. Later in the show, Beck declared: "[I]n 30 years, I think this guy [Moussaoui] could become the next [Stanley] 'Tookie' Williams." In the months leading to Williams's execution, his death sentence drew considerable opposition because Williams, the Crips gang co-founder who was convicted of murder in 1979, represented, in the words of the The New York Times, "an icon of jailhouse redemption and a powerful critic from his cell on death row and through his writings of the perils and misguided allure of the gang life on the nation's urban streets." Williams was executed on December 13, 2005.
Beck is set to host a one-hour talk show as part of CNN Headline News' prime-time programming beginning May 8. In anticipation of Beck's debut, Media Matters for America has compiled other controversial comments by Beck here.
From the May 4 broadcast of Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Program:
BECK: Lets go to [caller] in Minneapolis. Hello, [caller].
CALLER: Hello, sir.
BECK: How are ya?
CALLER: I want to advocate for a position on death penalty for you.
BECK: Ok. You're a lobbyist. Are you for or against the death penalty?
CALLER: I am for the fence-sitting position.
BECK: Well, I'm already there!
CALLER: Well, I'm going to make you stronger on that position.
CALLER: And this case is a perfect example. This guy deserves to die, but if you do it, then you don't know. You'll have unintended consequences, including maybe the salvation of your soul.
BECK: Yeah, yeah.
CALLER: On the other hand, if you let him live --
BECK: I mean I'm pretty sure of the salvation of my soul. You know? But, not in a good way, per se. I mean, you know, there's a lot of people we can have off him that were like, "You're pretty sure where you're going right?" And they say, "Uh-huh." "Yeah, go ahead. You can off him then." You know what I'm saying?
CALLER: I guess that'll be me. On the other hand, though, if you let him live, the left has such a short memory and such a soft heart that they will make him a celebrity.
BECK: Yeah. They will!
BECK: Exactly right. You're exactly right. [Caller], thank you so much -- a right-thinking American in Minneapolis. Say hi to St. Paul for me will you?
CALLER: No quarantine is ever 100 percent, and 10 years down the road, we'll have created this icon in jail much like Tookie Williams.
BECK: Yeah, I will give you that. I mean the Tookie Williams thing, just, I mean, in 30 years, I think this guy could become the next Tookie Williams and, also with that being said, I mean BTK [serial killer Dennis L Rader, also known as the BTK Strangler], he's already getting bennies [benefits], you know. "Hey, you know what, why don't you, maybe you should have a little -- would you like a dog? How about a little extra whipped cream on that sundae?"