Skip to comments.Mel culpa: Gibson sorry after tirade [including "anti-Semitic remarks"]
Posted on 07/30/2006 5:13:24 PM PDT by familyop
MEL Gibson was speeding, drunk and absolutely certain of how this episode would end when he was pulled over and arrested by a police officer in Malibu.
Gibson, 50, told Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy James Mee he "owned" Malibu as he was driven, handcuffed, to the Los Hills sheriff's station early on Friday morning, and he would "get even" with him.
"I'm going to f--- you," Gibson reportedly said.
"You're going to regret you ever did this to me."
What followed will cast a shadow over the remainder of the American-born, Australian-raised Gibson's career as one of Hollywood's most admired and bankable actors, directors and producers.
Mee's official arrest report, partially released on the entertainment news website TMZ.com, and confirmed by an industry reporter and The Washington Post, described Gibson as "blurting out a barrage of anti-Semitic remarks".
These included references to "f------ Jews" and "The Jews are responsible for all the war in the world", before asking the deputy: "Are you a Jew?"
According to the TMZ site, the deputy made an audio recording of the incident from the time Gibson's 2006 Lexus was pulled over for driving at 139 km/h in a 70 km/h zone on the Pacific Coast Highway in the affluent Los Angeles beachside suburb at 2.36am.
The gravity of his situation quickly struck Gibson, according to Deputy Mee. "My life is f-----," he said, after being told he was being arrested.
Gibson subsequently returned a blood alcohol reading of .12. The legal limit in California is .08.
"I have battled with the disease of alcoholism for all my adult life and profoundly regret my horrific relapse," Gibson said yesterday.
In his statement of apology, Gibson said he regretted saying "things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable". However, the actor did not directly address the anti-Semitic remarks he was heard to have uttered.
Reaction to Gibson's arrest has been muted. The story did not break until Friday afternoon. TMZ posted its copy of the deputy's report on its website later that evening.
At risk is Gibson's ambivalent relationship with the Jewish lobby, quietly powerful in the film and television industry and in American politics.
Many in the Jewish community were outraged at the anti-Semitic message they claimed was implicit in Gibson's 2004 bloody blockbuster The Passion of the Christ, which he directed and funded with $US25 million from his personal fortune.
At a time the star's father, Hutton Gibson, denied the Holocaust in a radio interview, describing it as "maybe not all fiction, but most of it is".
The success of the film, with its international return of $US611 million, marked Gibson, a conservative Catholic, as a powerful political and cultural force.
In Australia, the executive director of the Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council, Colin Rubenstein, said Gibson had a history of anti-Semitic behaviour, citing as an example the The Passion of the Christ. "The episode, regrettably, is not a surprise," Dr Rubenstein said.
Gibson's success and influence hid what the actor yesterday acknowledged had become a losing battle with alcoholism. He had previously been arrested for driving under the influence while filming in Canada in 1984. At that point he returned to his farm near Yackandandah, in north-eastern Victoria, for two years to dry out, before resuming his film career in the US.
Deputy Mee said he found in the Lexus a bottle of Cazardores tequila in a brown paper bag "within easy reach" of Gibson while he had been driving. It was three-quarters full.
Thank you and same to you!
Once an alcoholic spends some time in recovery, his drinking is ruined forever. The disease, the "-ism," continues to progress whether he/she is drinking or not. Each time drinking thereafter will be worse until death or recovery.
It takes a total and complete surrender to a Higher Power before the beneficial effects of sobriety can take hold. Some people simply comply, others surrender. This may be his last bottoming out. If he's lucky, he'll come out the other side. Do-overs are hell.
Dear sinkspur & SJackson,
I wasn't a big fan of Mr. Gibson's heretofore, although I did kinda like the whole Mad Max persona. I didn't go see the Passion movie. I'm not a big movie-goer.
However, I find myself rising to a partial defense of Mr. Gibson. Whether you think he apologized sufficiently enough, here is what he said:
I acted like a person completely out of control when I was arrested, and said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable. I am deeply ashamed of everything I said, and I apologize to anyone I may have offended.
He tells us:
- he acted completely out of control;
- said things that he doesn't believe are true;
- said things that are despicable;
- is deeply ashamed of EVERYTHING he said (not some of the things he said, but EVERYTHING he said);
- and apologizes to ANYONE he may have offended.
This is what is known as a categorical statement. There's nothing held back, here. With a statement like this, he doesn't need to go into details of precisely which words of which he's ashamed, nor specifically to whom he is apologizing. He's ashamed of ALL OF IT, and apologizing to ANYONE OFFENDED.
As well, he says that the things he said are despicable and untrue.
Now, you may choose not to give him the benefit of the doubt, and thus you may choose to believe that his apology is insincere, and that he hasn't told the truth about his feelings and beliefs. There's little Mr. Gibson will likely be able to do to convince you otherwise, and so be it.
However, his words represent a complete repudiation of what he said, and an apology carte blanche for what he said.
As for me, I don't really think that Mr. Gibson quite believes what he said.
Cartman drinks tequila?
This was written for him by a PR flack. He mentioned the police specifically.
He did not mention the Jews specifically because he's not in the least sorry for his bigoted ranting.
Now, if he would come out publicly, apologize, and repudiate his father's anti-semitism, I would believe him and accept it because I know that is the last thing he wants to do.
I guess some of these Freepers get drunk and spew bigotry as a matter of course.
I know some drunks, mean drunks, and alcoholics. None of them ever did that.
Jeeez, I've heard of beer goggles, but beer bigotry?
"This was written for him by a PR flack."
I'm sure that his PR person had input, perhaps only secondary to his attorneys. However, I suspect the overall direction of the statement was the choice of Mr. Gibson, himself.
I'm actually kind of surprised at the categorical nature of his admission and apology. I don't think my lawyer would have permitted me to say something like this under similar circumstances. He has opened himself up to additional charges being made against him because of this statement.
My lawyer says, then, that statements like this are held to be more credible because they are what he calls "statements against interest."
I suppose that perhaps he mentioned the police specifically, because he did specifically verbally attack specific police officers. All his other spew was general, not directed toward any specific person.
In any event, a categorical statement is a categorical statment. He said he is ashamed of EVERYTHING he said, and that what he said was despicable, and that he doesn't believe it's true.
As to why he doesn't get more specific, I can only speculate.
"Now, if he would come out publicly, apologize, and repudiate his father's anti-semitism,..."
Yet, sinkspur, you seem to get very close to the heart of the matter, and yet, seem to miss the point.
I believe that he loves his father yet hates some parts of his father's beliefs. He admires and respects his father, and yet may find repulsive some of the things he father thinks and says.
I love my own father dearly, but there are things that he thinks and says that I find repugnant. I loved my own mother dearly, but frankly, there were things she believed and said that I abhorred. For many years, my own mother was adamantly pro-abort. You can imagine how that tore me up, sinkspur.
Yet, I would be hard pressed to repudiate either of my parents all too publicly.
Not because I actually believe(d) their cr@p, but because I try to obey the Commandment. Sometimes, sinkspur, I find the line between hating what is wrong in them and outright disrespect to blurry, and difficult to toe.
And I ain't NEAR as screwed up as Mel Gibson.
What Valpal1 said (better than me) in post #161.
In Judaism would encompass a specific acknowledgement of the wrongs, directed to those who were harmed, as well as a sincere effort to undo the damage done. I'd be surprised if Christianity views it much differently.
In Mel's context, yes, this would involve addressing the officers involved, by name, the arresting officer and "sugar tits", as well as addressing the Jewish community. No, Mel didn't do that.
As to whether Mel believes what he says, you have to look at that in the context of his past statements. Clearly his father is a confirmed Jew hater. In the past I've defended him on the basis of not blaming the son for his fathers transgressions. Mel has refused to address his father's beliefs as an issue. There's some legitimacy to that position. However Hutton claims to have been involved in the production and marketing of "The Passion". Unfortunately if that's true, as producer he needs to address these issues. Or deny Hutton's involvement. He did neither.
He's stated he learned his faith from his father, who has never lied to him. Central to his father's faith, not Catholicism, is the takeover of the Vatican by the Jews, through the masons. That raises doubts about Mel in the context of the former statement.
When queried specifically about his fathers Holocaust denial, the best Mel could come up with was that 10 million civilians died in WWII (actually far more), and some were Jews. In view of pops position that the Jews weren't killed, they moved to New York, LA and Sydney, that raises questions.
Personally, I think he meant it.
I also think he's a Hollywood personality, likely left wing on balance, as important politically, or as a moral spokesman, as Cindy Sheehan and the Dixie Chicks. But as he's got a platform, so his rants should be addressed
Well...Cartman has, on occasion, done much worst.. :)
"In Judaism would encompass a specific acknowledgement of the wrongs, directed to those who were harmed, as well as a sincere effort to undo the damage done. I'd be surprised if Christianity views it much differently."
Typically speaking, for Catholics, sacramental forgiveness and absolution are obtained through the use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Specificity of sin is only absolutely required in the Confessional. For a verbal insult, an apology to the specific individuals is nice, and may even be required as part of the penance imposed by a priest in the Confessional (although I'm not even sure that that could be required). It would be hard, in my own view, to wring from Catholic moral theology or pastoral practice that Mr. Gibson would have some absolute requirement to apologize generally and publicly to Jews for his anti-semitic statements.
Generally speaking, through the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the sinner reconciles with God, through the priest acting in the place and with the authority of Jesus Christ, and reconciles also with the community, through the agency of the priest acting as the pastor and leader of the community. Through ordination, the priest is made capable of being a channel of Divine forgiveness, and through the priest's position of authority in the Church hierarchy, the priest may act in the name of the community.
A perfectly acceptable and appropriate penance for a penitent who confesses sins like this may be to say some specific prayers, and make sure he gets to his AA meetings every night.
In that his comments weren't made publicly, but rather to a few individuals trying to arrest him, it seems harder to me to hold him accountable to a more specific public apoolgy. The details of his arrest and his statements were made public was beyond his control, and likely not in accord with his wishes.
As well, I don't know what personal apologies that Mr. Gibson has made in person, directly, to the arresting officers, but at this time, he may be prevented from doing so by legal issues. As it was, I was surprised that his attorneys let him say as much as he did.
As to whether or not Mr. Gibson is anti-semitic because his father is anti-semitic, I have my doubts. Frankly, the fact that when he got drunk this all came out suggests to me that part of what drove him to drink was the discrepancy between his love and admiration for his father and his inability to love and admire some of the bile that pours forth from his father.
Wine doesn't exactly give truth, but may point to repressed conflict. I think that's what we're seeing here.
I've experienced this a little bit in my own life, even if I'm not an alcoholic.
Maybe what Mel Gibson needs is a direct line to God, you know like what it says in the Book of Hebrews, like for healing from his drinking addiction.
If it interests here, here is a thread that reports the reaction of at least one Catholic priest:
He abhors his father's anti-semitism, yet exhibits the same anti-semitism himself? Odd, that.
I simply find it implausible that a person under the influence will, out of the blue, suddenly develop a bigoted streak.
Gibson has and will endure humiliation being the focus of discussion, derision, compassion, etc. He will never be viewed the same again, no matter what he says.
You seem to know little of the long term effects of chronic alcoholism. Gibson is a 50 year old chronic alcoholic by his own admission.
I laugh at your comment here. I once bartended for 3 years. One of my relatives is an alcoholic. I probably know a heck of a lot more than you do first-hand, by having dealt with alcoholics up front and personal when working years ago. Mel is indeed an alcoholic, and it indeed is a dreadful and ugly chronic problem that tends to ruin the lives of those around them most closely. Most alcoholics don't make anti-semitic outbursts when drunk. Mel did. By his history and upbringing, it appears drunk or sober, he is an anti-semite. That is separate from his alcoholism, and his drinking is no excuse for his anti-Jewish tirade. Try again to find a justification for what he did.
In an article I read today, they strongly implied that being away from his wife for six months on the shoot for his new movie ("Apocalypto") was what drove him to drink. It said that she keeps him on the straight and narrow. Perhaps they had a fight that night and he drove off and got a bit tanked.
Except that he's made a lot of movies and he's had a drinking problem for a lot of years.
"He abhors his father's anti-semitism, yet exhibits the same anti-semitism himself? Odd, that."
Not so odd to me. He abhors it when he's rational, but even then, wishes that he could identify more with his father by accepting his father's beliefs. When drunk, his inhibition against identifying with those beliefs is lowered, and he does so, not because he believes his father's garbage, but because he has a felt need to identify with his father.
Listen, having seen his sensitivity to the subject of his father's anti-semitism and other looneyism, I have no doubt in my own mind that this is a deep, sore, painful source of mental conflict and anguish for Mr. Gibson. Having seen a few of his films, I have no doubt that he's got lots and lots of unresolved issues with his father.
That some aspect of those conflicts would arise when he starts drinking makes perfect sense to me.
He's a sick and twisted soul.
"Gibson has and will endure humiliation being the focus of discussion, derision, compassion, etc. He will never be viewed the same again, no matter what he says."
Oh--don't get me wrong--I was not making excuses for him. I was just reporting on what is out there. Living out in the jungles of South America away from your family certainly can make one a bit daft. His apology did not directly deal with the Jews, though; that was bad.
BTW, this has nothing to do with his films.
Yeah, but it beats the *ell out of being away from your family for a year in Iraq or Afghanistan. It's his personal issue to deal with.
"I wasn't addressing the religious aspect of his transgression, which is his personal responsibility, rather the secular, his responsibility to those he harmed, which has become a public issue."
Hmm... Okay. I guess I misunderstood what you meant by this:
"In Judaism would encompass a specific acknowledgement of the wrongs, directed to those who were harmed, as well as a sincere effort to undo the damage done. I'd be surprised if Christianity views it much differently."
Consider theft, two issues. A trangression against God by violating a commandment. Also a transgression against the individual, which requires a both a sincere, secular apology and reimbursement. As a condition of addressing the religious issue. I recognize the role of Confession (should I have capitalized that?) for a Catholic, and wasn't addressing the religious component of the equasion, I'm not that interested in addressing the differences, rather the secular responsibility to the victim.
If you want to know more about that, BTW, I can dig some references here.
"My life is f**ked;only if I had said 'jews are responsible for all wars' could it be any worse ".
Many things can be twisted and spun by leaving out a word or two.
Don't get me wrong...I was not making an excuse for him...just reporting what I read.
The apology I read goes like this.
After drinking alcohol on Thursday night, I did a number of things that were very wrong and for which I am ashamed.
I drove a car when I should not have, and was stopped by the LA County Sheriffs.
The arresting officer was just doing his job and I feel fortunate that I was apprehended before I caused injury to any other person.
I acted like a person completely out of control when I was arrested, and said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable.
I am deeply ashamed of everything I said. Also, I take this opportunity to apologize to the deputies involved for my belligerent behavior.
They have always been there for me in my community and indeed probably saved me from myself.
I disgraced myself and my family with my behavior and for that I am truly sorry. I have battled with the disease of alcoholism for all of my adult life and profoundly regret my horrific relapse.
I apologize for any behavior unbecoming of me in my inebriated state and have already taken necessary steps to ensure my return to health.
There's a tad of specificity regarding the LEOs.
Personally I think he should have addressed them by name.
He acknowledged his alcoholism. A good thing, both at AA and publicly. But not an excuse.
Digracing his family, acknowledged specifically, a good thing.
The multiple *uck the Jews, the Jews cause all the wars (similar to the comment of a murderer 12 hours later, unfortunately) comments, addressed in the general things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable comment I suppose.
If the Father considers that an apology for his antisemitic views, that's fine.
Foxman and Donahue and Mel's supporters can fight it out.
I've defended him before, reluctantly, I think he's a Jewhater now.
My mind will be changed only by future actions.
And yes, "restitution" , the wrong word but what can we use, is very difficult, and very personal in a situation where damage isn't clear in the coin of the realm.
I know. My guess you or I would consider his stay in the "jungle" a vacation. Me, I'd bring my wife, though she doesn't like the jungle and would only come a week at a time.
I've posted a thread or two about tours to South America than concentrate on the hallucinogenic "healing" available there.
Maybe that's what's going on :>)
"If the Father considers that an apology for his antisemitic views, that's fine."
From a Catholic perspective, this part makes the priest's conclusions reasonable:
"I am deeply ashamed of everything I said."
It's a categorical. Everything includes, well, everything.
That's a great idea for Mel..."it was those magic mushrooms that made me hate the joos."
I am not talking about movies that in my opinion reflect jews in a crass and unbecoming way,movies that would certainly offend any believing,orthodox Jew,who abides by the Torah. Those movies are make to brainwash society and portray man as a nihilistic,hedonistic,libidinous animal that could be happy if only they free themselves from the constraints of religion and a moral,ethical code of behavior. Many of these movies are make by men who call themselves jews but may not be.
In my mind,there are Jews and there are jews. Maybe this will force a discussion on what or who is a Jew? I bet there are a large number of people who would be surprised at what or who others mean when talking about J/jews. We often forget to define our terms when we get into this type of discussion.
I think he's a jerk, you're forward looking which is fine.
I wish him the best in dealing with his demons.
As a media personality, there's no reason we should be discussing him on a political forum in the future, but I'm sure we we will.
Munich, anti-Israel, a complete fabrication, made by a couple of Jews, one of whom doesn't much like Israel.
Yeah, but I can't find the thread, which means I might never have posted the article. I have to go look. Psychedelic tours, a great business opportunity.
I'm never eating Mr. and Mrs. Tenorman chili again.
I believe it said that there was a case of mistaken identity but the movie made the victim into the type of person that would elicit audience sympathy that wasn't merited. Was there more?
I suppose Abe Foxman never forgave hillary either./sarc
I am amazed at the selected outrage here. Those who resent Mel Gibson making the Passion in the first place, are coming out with glee to now condemn him as if they really care.
The whole episode makes me sick. His remarks were awful, but I doubt no one more than he regrets them. This righteous indignation coming out, however is quite interesting to watch, especially when most of them support HRC without hesitation and she said the same damn thing.
"A consciously rejected belief system when sober may in fact percolate itself into an angry paranoid screed from a relapsing long time drunk."
I don't know where you got that information, but please post related links.
You said yourself that alcohol lowers inhibitions. That means you will say what you think, not what you don't believe or reject.
I'm not a chronic alcoholic, but have been around enough of them to know.
I believe anyone will reveal their innermost thoughts and feelings when drunk.
Why DO so many (non-muslims) hate Jews so much?
(It's worth noting that some of the strongest reactions are from FReepers who defended Gibson and attacked Foxman previously. Nobody likes to find out that they've been a sucker, especially if the suckerhood is public and undeniable.)
A large part of it is that various cultural factors (Jewish traditional reverence for education, and in earlier times restrictions against landowning by Jews) have tended to create a successful Jewish middle class. This naturally made them the targets of envy.
In particular, Christendom used to proscribe the lending of money at interest (as the Muslim world still does, though they come up with various work-arounds to achieve a similar result). This left the field open to Jews, which was a double-edged sword -- they made money, but in a way that aggrivated the envy of those who were in debt to them and created a temptation to stir up pogroms as a way of liquidating the debt by eliminating the creditor.