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Media MonsterNFLSports & Politics

Oh Good, Another Controversy Over A Tim Tebow Speaking Engagement

Are you tired of backlash over Tim Tebow’s scheduled appearances at institutions with social views that alienate wide swaths of society? Are you more tired of that than you are of Tim Tebow scheduling appearances at institutions with social views that alienate wide swaths of society in the first place? Whether enough of people are suffering from Tebow Controversy Fatigue will determine whether Tebow will speak at Liberty University tomorrow or not.

He’s currently scheduled to, as part of the school’s Convocation, “North America’s largest weekly gathering of Christian students.” Sounds right up Tebow’s alley, right? What might the trouble be? Well, if you’ll remember, Tebow canceled on Dallas’ First Baptist Church after everyone started realizing that the pastor there, Robert Jeffress, says stuff like this a lot. Well, the chancellor of Liberty is Jerry Falwell Jr. Clips of Falwell Jr. saying polarizing things aren’t as easy to come by as they were with Jeffress – it’s more interviews like this, which belie a persecution complex more than anything else.

But Jerry Falwell Jr. wasn’t always the head honcho at Liberty. The position used to belong to his late father, Jerry Falwell Sr., who also founded the school. You know Jerry Falwell Sr. He was this guy:

And this guy:

And this guy. One might argue that you can’t hold the guy who used to be the head of the college against Tebow, but it’s a lot easier to hold it against him when the guy founded the school, and when his own family – a family that, based on the Jerry Jr. interview linked above, is carrying on Jerry Sr.’s politically charged legacy – still runs the place.

Maybe the college setting – though a fiercely religious college – is a big reason why there’s been less of an uproar. Maybe it’s that Tebow’s closed-to-the-public speech is a more under-the-radar affair. Maybe it’s that Tebow is only one of many speakers. Even so, though, n the list of Convocation speakers through the end of April, Tebow appears to be the only athlete – and there’s only one other sports-related personality. That personality: James Brown of The NFL Today on CBS. It’s almost certainly too late (despite this petition) for there to be enough of an uproar for Tebow to cancel this speech, too, but we have a strong feeling that if Jerry Falwell Sr. were still alive and in charge, this one never would have happened either.

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  • mfrantom

    Get off Tebow for a minute. Damn. Do people expect him to change his lifelong religious views because they aren’t as popular anymore? He’s not grabbing the ref’s mic on Sunday afternoons to preach to us. He’s going to private church functions. Give it a rest. The guy is actually a well-spoken, clean, and illegal incident-free athlete who is a role model to millions. And we are supposed to rage everytime he speaks at a religious function?

  • mike adams

    If you have ever heard Tim speak, he is a very funny and very effective speaker. There wil be nothing intolerant or hateful in anything he says, or does for that matter. The leadership skills he exhibits on the football field are immediatly apparent to anyone listening to him. So why don’t you have a little patience, let him speak, then write an article on what he actually says. Your readers might find that much more informative.

  • CasePDX

    Glenn, give it a rest. He’s an American, entitled to his own opinions and views (just like you). Many Americans disagree with his view, and many disagree with yours. Just shut up and keep to talking about sports (you’re a sports journalist, right?)

  • Anonymous

    No, Glenn Davis, what we are sick up to our eyeballs of are hack writers such as yourself using Tim Tebow’s good name to conjure up some sort of controversy where there shouldn’t be any. Tim Tebow is speaking at a religious gathering? Ohhhh The Horrors! GET OVER IT!!!! Tim Tebow does not judge, and to the best of my knowledge has never said a disparaging word towards anyone or any group — EVER! When he starts doing that (and I wouldn’t hold your breath), then by all means report on it. However, if you bother to even listen to the message Tim Tebow will likely deliver, and the one he consistently ALWAYS delivers, is one of love, compassion, and acceptance of all people. He does not pretend to be perfect, nor does he judge anyone. How about you write a story after he actually speaks, and praise him for his positive words. I doubt you’ll do that. Why? Because there is no controversy in that.

  • Anonymous

    You’re right: he delivers a positive message. And there are plenty of non-Jerry-Falwell-founded institutions at which he could deliver – and has delivered – it, that would provide far less risk of overwhelming his own message, if any risk at all.

  • Michael Loftus

    wish you tolerant liberals would just be “tolerant” or “liberal”. Tim Tebow has done nothing to harm you other than live a live he believes in as do millions of others. Why do you fear our God so much…guilt?

  • Anonymous

    Glenn, it’s liberal hacks like yourself that make it a risk. What good is Tim Tebow going to do to help change minds preaching to a more open-minded audience? Try to see “The Bigger Picture” here. Tim Tebow ALWAYS delivers a message of Love, Compassion, and Acceptance of ALL people. HE DOES NOT JUDGE. Sorry, but this is a message that actually could have done some good being heard at the Dallas church appearance where he was basically forced to cancel. Same holds true for this Liberty University appearance. Better Tim Tebow’s positive message be heard by those who may need to hear it than by people who already think his way.

  • Anonymous

    Michael, head meet nail…There is no one LESS tolerant than those SCREAMING for tolerance.

  • HD

    Wow have some in the gay community forgotten freedom of speech and right to assemble? Are they treading closely to the rubric Stasi?

  • Anonymous

    More importantly, could some in the gay community just wait to hear what Tim Tebow has to stay before they throw him under the bus. If they’d listen before they speak, they would hear a very compassionate Tim Tebow who DOES NOT JUDGE. He has never spoken from a “My Way Or The Highway” mentality, and I don’t think he ever would.

  • Michael Loftus

    Oh please! So it’s not the message but the venue that is offensive…Jerry Falwell had every right to believe as he chose to..if you disagree with him ignore him…those who believe in the Word of God do not need to debate their love for Him..merely pray others will find refuge in Him. Pastor Falwell in his life led by his example and by practicing his beliefs…he was in every sense of the word “a man of God”. What better place for Tim to speak but in front of people who believe as he did and as Tim does..leave people and their faith alone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Vaden-Chandler/1585113379 Vaden Chandler

    I’m currently completing my Master’s of Divinity with Liberty. I am racking my brain trying to figure out when even one of my professors told me that I should hate gays, lesbians, or transgendered folks. I’m thinking….well, nope, not one. Just because us evangelicals disagree with someone’s lifestyle, that doesn’t mean we hate them. Lay off of Tebow, and lay off of the Falwells.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002141648862 Lou Tompkins

    Glen if you mean Tebow speaks of things the nonreligious dislike such as Christian faith and works. You would be right as most of the world hates Jesus and therefore the one who speaks of Him. Persecution can be found in many forms but your attempt to stop Tim’s speach before it is made is bad enough that it violates the constitution. Prior restraint of possible speach violates the constitution. You may not be a government agent but the standard should be respected by all.

  • http://www.facebook.com/gilbert.shea Gilbert Shea

    No, we’re not tired of Tim Tebow’s speaking engagements, we’re tired of the homosexuals, the liberals, and the media crying about where and who he is speaking to. Tim Tebow is a free man, he can speak where he wants, to whoever he wants.

  • Laura Fritz

    I will pray God give you the courage to preach His Word whenever and wherever He directs you. Don’t give in to the Gay activists telling you where you can preach or before long they will also insist you preach from the “Queen James”. (Yes, the new Gay bible) God Bless you Tim!

  • Jackson Browne

    Are you kidding me? Liberty has welcomed in people from all backgrounds to speak at Convocation. Including…Ted Kennedy. Does that make Kennedy’s legacy suspect as well? God bless, man- give it a rest!

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