Monday, October 31, 2011

Beck Unwittingly Admits Past Lie

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The following piece is republished here with permission of the author, Roger Fallihee who has extensively researched Glenn Beck's past. This was published October 27th under the title "Glenn Beck Reveals Past Lies on 'The Today Show.' "

Glenn Beck Reveals Past Lies on "The Today Show"

Lied about his mother's death

Glenn Beck, the former FOX TV host, appeared on the October 26, 2011 broadcast of NBC's Today Show to plug his new book titled "The Snow Angel."
During the emotional interview with Today host Kathy Lee Gifford, Beck, without realizing it, revealed that he lied about the circumstances of his mother's drowning, in a 2003 interview with the Fort Wayne (IN) Journal Gazette.
The Tacoma Police and the Coast Guard concluded at the time that her death was an accidental drowning.  On hundreds of occasions Beck has repeated his version of the story that Mary Beck was an alcoholic who took her own life when he was 13 years old.(1)
In the Journal Gazette interview reporter Rick Farrant wrote:

But the same year he started in radio, his alcoholic mother, Mary, left a suicide note by the family's crock pot and drowned herself in a bay near Tacoma.

When I contacted Farrant about his source on the suicide note he told me:

“Well, the interview was obviously some time ago, but I am 99.99999 percent sure he told me that information. I don't recall looking up any information regarding those events. Too bad I didn't say "he said." but I think you're safe to say he told me the information.”

“Had I acquired the information by some other means, I would have attributed it to the source, especially since it is so sensitive. Then I would have asked Glenn about it. Another piece of supporting evidence: Glenn told me he read the article and liked it. He did not dispute a single thing in the article.”
This was the first and possibly only time that Beck mentioned the presence of a suicide note. In future interviews, until today, Beck has insisted that Mary Beck’s death was a suicide even though he's only offered vague and convoluted details.
Flash forward to today on Today.
Beck: We never even talked about my mother’s suicide. She died when I was in my teens.

Gifford: She drowned. Was it a suicide?

Beck: I saw a big expose a couple of years ago on this… people actually almost dug my mother up. The jury’s still out. You don’t know—

Gifford: Still a mystery?

Beck: I think we all avoided it because when you live in an alcoholic family or an abusive family you tiptoe and you don’t want to step on any mines.
The jury’s still out? Glenn Beck is now not sure what happened to his mother?
What about the suicide note next to the Crock Pot? A handwritten suicide note is prima facie evidence and it’s also not an insignificant bit of information that would slip Glenn Beck's mind.
Beck didn’t forget to mention the suicide note. He forgot that he lied about the very existence of a suicide note.
After all these years of accusing his devout Catholic mother of committing the ultimate sin of taking her own life, Beck today tacitly admitted that it was maybe all a lie.
Better late than never.

For a summary about Glenn Beck, see "Becoming Paul Revere"

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1)  This is confirmed in a Salon piece by Alex Zaitchik, author of Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance.