Who knows, maybe this is exactly what Fox News wanted all along. The brand is seemingly incapable of internalizing bad PR the way giraffes don’t feel any need to apologize for the economy in Greece. It just doesn’t register.
How else could you explain Fox News willfully arranging an interview between author, historian, academic, religious scholar and expert on Christianity Reza Aslan—who is also a practicing Muslim—and the network’s feckless “Spirited Debate” correspondent Lauren Green. It was a mismatch. Not like a plaid shirt and striped pants, but like Paula Deen and southern history.
Watch the video above. It’s self-explanatory. And it’s sad. Saying a Muslim could never be qualified to write about Christianity is like saying a Mexican chef couldn’t possibly cook Italian food. Perhaps Ms. Green should go out to dinner more and visit the kitchen. She and Paula Deen could go together; they’d probably love each other’s company.
Once again, the public voted its sentiment with its money. So it’s no surprise, at Fox News’ chagrin of course, that the very book the network tried to demonize is riding a wave of public support and enjoying rising sales. But that doesn’t mean the confrontation surrounding Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth is over. Its value is being debated in that most academic of theological platforms: the Amazon comment section.