Christian Love, Emergent/Progressive Movement, Learn to Discern, Narcissistic Pastors, Personal Stories, Spiritual Bullies

Bullies: Celebrity Leaders Who Act Different in Private Settings Reveal Their Heart


Watch out for any celebrity or Christian leader who treats you differently in private. They are bullies.


Britt McHenry celebrity bully


Have you seen this video of ESPN’s reporter Britt McHenry who berates an employee at a towing company as she pays to collect her impounded vehicle? It’s been making the rounds in social media and people are appropriately stunned at her behavior caught on video.

I was shocked at what I heard. I thought about how she used her celebrity position, her education, her good looks, to elevate herself above another human being. Not only that, she berated the female employee about her teeth, assumed she had no education, called her overweight, etc.  Take a look (you might want to stop the video at 1:45 to avoid an advertisement):




Here is a bit of the transcription thanks to Washington Post’s article: Who had the worst week in Washington? Britt McHenry:

“I’m on television, and you’re in a f—ing trailer, honey,” McHenry said in the tirade, released online Thursday. “That’s all you care about is just taking people’s money,” she added. “With no education, no skill set. Just wanted to clarify that.”

She went on to blast the woman’s alleged lack of teeth and advised her to “lose some weight, baby girl.”

Ms. McHenry’s behavior is completely inappropriate. Searching on social media, you can see the disgust people are expressing about her behavior. And there is talk about why she is only suspended for one week.

Please tell me that this is not true:

* * *

I recently read this excellent article by Pat Green: Night Moves: Diary of a Chicago Area Cabbie ex-Preacher Man.

This article describes an account of Pat, a Chicago cabbie, giving a ride to a popular preacher whose ministry he knew and followed. This preacher is a respected author and speaker.

The celebrity pastor behaved one way under the public spotlight, but donned a completely different persona when one-on-one with the cab driver. This well-known preacher showed a sense of entitlement as he treated the cabbie as a less-than. Here is an excerpt from the article. We jump in the story as the cabbie attempts to be gracious to this “hero” and gives his rude behavior the benefit of the doubt:

I decided to change the topic a little.

“I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t like the restaurants. So where are you flying to?”

“Look, I already know what you do. Pretending to care what I do is not going to change the tip. I had to wait for almost 20 minutes to start this ride. Just get me there on time. Do you even know where you are going? I don’t see your GPS on.”

“I only use it if I don’t know where I am going. I know where we are going.”

“Your parents must be so proud of your achievement.” He remarked. He then grabbed his smart phone and disappeared into it.

Did he just say that? He could not have just said that. This is not happening. Not him. Not the one who preaches a better gospel. Not a person who inspired me to change the way I approached not only church, but the manner in which I handled my faith at the time.

I just got on to driving while he typed away on his phone.

At one point he looked up from his phone and asked,”Can you move it a little bit?” I was doing 5 over the limit. I was with the flow of the beginning morning airport traffic.

Spiritual leaders who behave one way in public and treat you badly in private are spiritual bullies. Period. Don’t be deceived by their charm, celebrity status, privilege.

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.” John 10: 11-13


25 thoughts on “Bullies: Celebrity Leaders Who Act Different in Private Settings Reveal Their Heart”

  1. I don’t blame the cabby for not wanting to name the guy. Between that and the Tony Jones divorce deal, it seems there’s some ick going on in that community. 😦

    As for the TV girl, I guess there’s some poetic justice in her saying “I’m on TV” in this video where we, um, do not see her best side. Why yes. Yes. You are on TV. And now you’re on video. Look at that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I read both of these stories in the past day and am just so disappointed in my fellow human beings. I don’t care what religion someone is (or if they follow no religion), nor what they do for a living, nor anything else about them; having a cruel heart and a holier-than-thou attitude makes you scum.

    “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” -Dalai Lama

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Owning a few service companies I see this all the time and it’s NOT JUST clergy. Some of our worst customers, literally the kind that you hope call someone else next time , end up paying you with a check with Bible verses printed on it. They also have their crosses and pictures of Jesus hanging all over the place. Then they are a total witch with a capita B, or worse dishonest.

    That being said the dear, sweet and amazingly precious housewife that led me to the Lord was 1000% the exact opposite of this. When I see the offensive people shouting all about Jesus and boldly proclaiming how sanctified & Godly they are, I think about her. Coming out of an extremely abusive Christian school and being raised in a home fundamentally perverted by the teachings of a warped, utterly loveless and disgusting “church” I was about as unreachable as you can get. I hated church people with a passion. The minute someone told me they were Christian ” I thought yeah, prove it “.

    Then someone did and I met the real Jesus of the Bible not the “religious bully” Christian school taught me about. It was no longer about a bunch of rules enforced by a bunch of mean – spirited pious psychopaths, but the truth of the real Gospel. I remember her telling me, ” forget all those people Scott , they probably don’t even know Christ. My Lord came to save and heal NOT create a New religion that left people as dark and evil as they already are “.

    That was the first time a Christian acknowledged what was done to me and so many other young people was wrong, so very wrong. That was all it took to bust through the walls I built to protect myself from “those people” . My very hard heart wasn’t something I was born with or raised with, it was created. I was a very, happy go lucky kid and doing just fine until my parents become Christians and my life was ruined. That set off a horrible chain of events that culminated in a life of Bill Gothard legalism, a demented Christian school and a church that had profected the heart of distroying people for the cause.

    The only cure for that and the only path of healing is knowing The REAL Jesus and that takes the right kind of person telling you about him. For starters the kind of person that loves people like Christ did. The kind of person that understands that HE didn’t come to start a religion or a club with lots of rules, he came to save us, to heal and restore us. To repair the broken hearts that have been ravaged by the false brand of “Christianity”.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. What do you suppose the difference is between having a really bad moment versus one incident proving the value of your character? This reminds me of when my mother cussed out someone on the phone who said her window company couldn’t replace the glass in the window without both homeowners present. She said “My husband f***ing died!!!” and hung up. If that were somehow captured on social media, people would only be seeing one moment to judge all of who she is.
    Not that that in any way justifies the behavior of the reporter or the preacher, though. Just food for thought.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. It’s also takes a true believer that is willing to admit that your pain is REAL, what was done to you under the cover of Christanity was nothing of the sort and that needing to work through that to a place of Healing is normal, healthy and exactly what God wants for you. Somehow I have noticed that more often then not is is women saving the church from itself. For some reason the leadership of most churches would rather maintain that the people they have injured are “wallowing in victimization ” or being unforgiving. For that reason God has to raise up people that have been stomped on by the church , to reach others that have been stomped on by the church. Crazy, but lawsuits over Google reviews have to happen so people can be organized over the Internet by yet another housewife to speak out against these abuses in a unified voice. I can tell you if it wasn’t for this housewife with a true vision of what Christ in our lives can mean that I met through my business , I wouldn’t be on the path I now walk. It has taken a long, long time and I have a long way to go but when I get to heaven she is going to be the first person I hug after Jesus.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I read the article you linked to, written by the cabbie. So sad…

    And Beth raised an excellent question: “What do you suppose the difference is between having a really bad moment versus one incident proving the value of your character?” I’ve had some really bad moments and have taken them out on other people, much to my dismay. I’d like to think that God is improving my character, and that such incidents will happen less and less. I also know that one of the differences between a jerk and a person behaving jerkishly under pressure is the willingness to apologize.

    I remember once — long story I won’t go into — when I was in an extremely frustrating situation involving a cancelled flight, and I did not take the news of it well. But, even as I was being a not-nice-person, it suddenly dawned on me that I was taking out my frustration on someone who had done nothing to cause our problem and was only trying to help. So I apologized and made a joke about “shooting the messenger”, and then apologized again. I’d like to say that I always do that when in the wrong…but sometimes my anger/frustration gets in the way.

    At the same time, I don’t think I’ve stooped, in even the most frustrating of situations, to demeaning people for how they looked, or insulting them for their career choices, or treating them as if I was oh so very important and they were scum.


  7. What do you suppose the difference is between having a really bad moment versus one incident proving the value of your character?

    I think that answer is simple: a pattern of bad behavior over time.

    Another key issue would be a bully who fails to acknowledge wrongdoing or only apologizes after they got caught. Those who have experienced a spiritual bully who privately treats them badly, but publicly treats them well will know it. Sadly, often the charm and manipulative tactics will continue to woo the victim to remain, just like a battered wife often stays with her abuser.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. BTDT- Love this! Made me cry when I clicked on link! They raised the money.

    $101,327 of $95k
    Raised by 3,659 people in 4 days
    1111 people like this update
    We have reached our goal (including the fee for Go Fund Me), and thank everyone for the generous outpouring of support. As a result, we will be able to save Ken’s house for his daughter and grandchildren. Because we have achieved our goal, and there is such great need in all of our communities, we are declining further donations to allow other causes to be supported. We sincerely thank and appreciate everyone for their contributions. We ask that you keep Ken in your prayers, and we will keep you up-to-date!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What a shame that he won’t reveal the name, but I can understand why. His cab company probably would receive a nasty call. But for the rest of us suckers out there that might be dumb enough to buy his passenger’s book, we ought to know who it was.

    My money is on Brian McLaren. Even if he isn’t the guilty party, he has shown himself to be quite the feminine irrigation hygiene product.


  10. Loved the story of the cabbie who wouldn’t name the big-name. Who then is the nobler man? Kipling’s poem from long ago says it best I think, especially the last line:

    You Lazarushian-leather Gunga Din!
    Though I’ve belted you and flayed you,
    By the livin’ Gawd that made you,
    You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Britt McHenry’s video is a huge topic of discussion here in the Washington, DC area since she worked as a sports reporter at a local TV station before joining ESPN.

    I’m actually torn over this video. On the one hand I find McHenry’s behavior appalling, and in my line of work I’ve dealt with plenty of personal attacks and insults, along with foul language, from customers and sometimes employees as well. On the other hand, I too have engaged in my share of less than civil behavior toward service workers, and I’m hoping and praying the Lord is transforming my character. In addition, there are several local towing companies with a well-deserved reputation for engaging in unethical practices. Let’s also not forget that the video doesn’t show how the clerk treated McHenry prior to her tirade. How do we know she isn’t the only one who needs to change her behavior?

    I hope and pray everyone learns a lesson through this situation.


  12. “Idon’t know who the unnamed Emergent guy was, but he sounds bats**t obnoxious.”

    yes, it had a familiar ring to it. :o)

    As to the overall topic, it has been a pet peeve of mine for several years that the “stage” persona is rarely who these people really are. This is especially true with many pastors these days. Especially mega church pastors. When I was working in that world, I used to look over the multitudes gathering who were fixated on every word the celeb said and how they hoped they could run into him while at church for at least one minute of his precious time….and think: If they only knew what he is really like. It is a fraud that is perpetuated constantly. The question is why do we keep falling for it?

    This is the result of our media and cult of personality thinking. I liken it to people who used to identify with soap opera characters. To me, it is much the same thing. People will defend their cult of personality person to the death and not really even know them personally. They honestly believe their public persona and real life persona are the same. They do not understand that years of crafting that persona/image have gone into it. Reminds me of the Russians who would say, if only Stalin knew, he would do something!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Power turns so many people into a**holes. Never confuse a persona with a person, you will only be disappointed. Most of the truely compassionate people don’t need a public platform! Image what their families have to put up with!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. The towing company at the center of the dispute with Britt McHenry released a statement opposing her suspension or termination. I heard the story on one of the all-news radio stations while driving home tonight and wanted to pass that along. I apologize in advance for the annoying advertising accompanying this article.

    There are plenty of Christians who could learn a lesson or two about grace and forgiveness from this episode. For example, my salvation was recently questioned at another site because I disagree with Hillsong’s decision to interview Mark Driscoll at an upcoming conference. I’m sure Julie Anne and Hannah could say the same thing about their former pastor.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Can’t remember who it was, but someone wiser than I noted something like “character is what you do when you think no one is watching.” I can understand frustration with people at the impound lot–like another said, a lot of what those companies do is considered abusive by many–but the deliberate contempt, no.

    That said, I used to work down the hall from a company that did collections calls, and I noticed while walking on break that the halls reeked of stale cigarette smoke, much in the same way the even the “nonsmoking” rooms in Vegas have a hint of the same because smoking is so pervasive there.

    When I mentioned that to one of them, he noted that unfortunately the pattern among those who worked there is that they become addicted to either nicotine or alcohol, or both, within a few years. It’s that frustrating of an environment, and I reckon that impound lots are about the same. So have some compassion–some jobs really do suck.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. In American culture, nothing elicits wrath more than having one’s car towed. In high school I worked for a wrecking yard/tow company/impound yard, on the wrecking side. It was almost a daily occurrence for somebody to come in to get their car out of the impound yard (often towed due to a police decision), having to pay a fee to get their car, and cussing out anybody and everybody there in the most unbelievable fury that would make Britt McHenry look like Mother Teresa. This was in addition to any ticket issued by police.

    We had a gravel driveway as well as a section of the road we were on. We were located next to a steel mill. Their employees kept an open 55-gallon drum full of 1″ thick pieces of #8 steel rebar to throw at cars that sped out of our yard, kicking up gravel dust that they had to breathe. Of course, if you spun out down a gravel road, any damage to your car was likely “your own fault,” rebar chucking steel mill employees not withstanding.


  17. I’m sorry to say I was torqued and muttering yesterday at the local pharmacy (“Never coming back to *this* place again.”). I had waited an hour for my prescription. I waited patiently for the first 30 minutes, a little less patiently the next 15, and definitely grumbling the last 15. I’d had trouble filling the prescription 10 days earlier or so (something about it being wrong in the computer), and they only had half the amount I needed, so I had to come back for the rest. Guess what? It apparently was still entered wrong in the computer, only instead of the 30 minutes that it took the first time, it took twice that long.

    I could have been more understanding if it had been busy, but there were only two people who came after me, and one who came before I did. 60 minutes to fill four prescriptions? And then I had to go to a different pharmacy to pick up another prescription (long story). Less than five minutes.

    So yeah, I walked out of that store grumbling audibly that I would *never* fill a prescription there again. I was rude. I didn’t consider the feelings of the employees who may very well have been trying their best.

    Liked by 1 person

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