WashPost's Sally Quinn Attacks Ben Carson for Prayer Breakfast Speech... 48 Days After He Delivered It!

Maybe we should take to ironically nicknaming Sally Quinn as "Scoop" for this: On March 27, in a column headlined "Does Ben Carson Have a Prayer?"  the Washington Post On Faith editor attacked Dr. Ben Carson for his National Prayer Breakfast speech delivered on February 7. That's 48 days between the speech and Quinn's holding forth on why Carson, in her view, improperly politicized a characteristically apolitical prayer breakfast.

Of course, this is rich coming from Quinn because On Faith is chock full of columns by liberal Christians who contort Scripture to make political cases for more gun control, tax hikes, and same-sex marriage.

[Sally, there's something in your eye, I think it's a log]


For her part, Quinn, like virtually every other liberal Carson critic -- and some conservative ones like syndicated columnist Cal Thomas -- took issue with the legendary neurosurgeon's alleged disrespect for President Obama, although the chief executive was not derided by name nor did Carson trash the president's legislative accomplishments.

What Carson did do was offer relatively conservative, market-oriented policy prescriptions to improve American health care and education. Nevertheless, daring to offer such policy ideas before a liberal, government-growing president apparently is beyond the pale to Quinn (emphasis mine):

“He (Carson) was visited on at least two occasions and told not to get into anything political,” says conservative columnist Cal Thomas, one of the organizers of the breakfast and host of an annual pre-breakfast dinner. “He was told not to embarrass the president. The people who told him that were shocked and angry. This came out of nowhere. Now he’s all over TV doing a victory lap. There’s not a whole lot of humility there.”

The interesting thing about Dr. Carson’s nearly 30 minute speech was that he barely mentioned religion. Except for the opening texts and a confused reference to Jesus at the end, his speech was completely political at an event that has always been strictly bipartisan. The idea is to bring people together, not to push them apart. If you hadn’t known he was at the National Prayer Breakfast you would have thought he was the candidate at the Republican Convention.

“It’s not my intention to offend anyone,” he said. “I have discovered, however, in recent years that it’s very difficult to speak to a large group of people these days and not offend anyone.”

Then he proceeded to offend some, with an aside “The PC police are out in full force at all times.” Political correctness,” he believes “is a horrible thing. I’m very very compassionate and I’m not ever out to offend anyone. But PC is dangerous.”

Carson started off on education, in his rambling, sometimes impossible to follow speech. He decried our educational system saying it had been “dumbed down” but advised “If you really want to be impressed , take a look at the chapter on education in my latest book, ‘America The Beautiful’ which I wrote with my wife.”

The second text:

“Proverbs 11:12 A man who lacks judgment derides his neighbor, but through knowledge the righteous escapes.”

With that message, he took it upon himself to insult lawyers. “What do lawyers learn in law school,” he asked. “To win, by hook or by crook. You gotta win, so you got all of these Democrat lawyers, and you got all of these Republican lawyers and their sides want to win. We need to get rid of that. What we need to start thinking about is, how do we solve problems?”

“Now, before I get shot,” he continued, “let me finish.” He didn’t finish.

At this point it was still not clear what he was trying to say. There was no theme except to insult the president which he knew perfectly well he was doing. In fact, he admitted later on a TV show that Obama had thanked him after the speech and said the address was very good. Though the president may have been gracious, it was quite clear he was not happy with being ambushed by Carson at the National Prayer Breakfast. The White House had asked numerous times for a copy of the speech beforehand and Carson had refused, saying he didn’t have a text and never used a teleprompter. Of the president’s reaction, Carson said to The Blaze’s Billy Hallowell, “I was kind of surprised. Because I figured he would just be fuming. But he probably figured that’s what everyone figured and he knew people were watching.”

If Carson were a Democrat with big-government policy prescriptions and his prayer breakfast speech happened during the Bush years, it's hard to imagine that Quinn would take offense. It would, in fact be considered that the good doctor was "speaking truth to power" or being a "prophetic voice" for change.

As we've documented, plenty of liberal journalists took their pot shots at Carson, and he's been practically called an Uncle Tom by left-wing hack Toure over at MSNBC.

Quinn is just the latest to pile on, eager to bury someone the liberal media are obviously worried about catching on fire politically.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters