Could politics be next for Chuck Norris, the former karate champion turned actor and most recently conservative Christian columnist?
A recent poll by ZOO Weekly, South Africa’s only men’s lifestyle magazine, said the star of more than 20 films and the long-running “Walker, Texas Ranger” TV series would win that nation’s presidency in a landslide, even though he lives in Texas.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office” />
Eighty-six percent of those who participated said they would vote for Norris for president of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />South Africa, followed by television broadcaster Riaan Cruywagen at 10 percent and politician Jacob Zuma at 4 percent.
Norris’ showing was undoubtedly bolstered by an estimated 50,000 one-liners dotting the Internet as “Chuck Norris Facts,” based on the tough-guy image of his many characters. Here are a few:
“Guns don’t kill people. Chuck Norris kills people.”
“When the Boogeyman goes to sleep at night, he checks his closet for Chuck Norris.”
“When Chuck Norris does a pushup, he isn’t lifting himself up, he’s pushing the Earth down.”
“Chuck Norris can lead a horse to water AND make him drink.”
“Chuck Norris doesn’t wear a watch. HE decides what time it is.”
“Superman wears Chuck Norris pajamas.”
“Contrary to popular belief, America is not a democracy. It is a Chucktatorship.”
Kidding aside, some are beginning to view Norris as a budding star in the Christian Right. In October he began writing a weekly column for WorldNetDaily.com, the conservative Web site that launched careers of syndicated columnists including David Limbaugh and Bill O’Reilly. WND also began new columns by “Ten Commandments Judge” Roy Moore, Home School Legal Defense Association founder Michael Farris and entertainer Pat Boone.
A born-again Christian, Norris is a staunch supporter of the Republican Party, donating more than $32,000 to GOP candidates. He is an NRA member, who actively supported President George W. Bush’s campaign to become the governor of Texas in 1994. He attended the president’s first inauguration in 2001, alongside fellow longtime Republican supporters Sylvester Stallone and Robert Duvall. Norris campaigned for Republican candidates in the 2006 mid-term elections.
While flattered by the Internet mania, Norris warned that not all the “facts” about him are fit for family consumption. In his first column, he used a couple of his favorites as a springboard for his own religious and political agenda.
“There is no theory of evolution. Just a list of creatures Chuck Norris has allowed to live,” says one alleged Chuck Norris fact. “It’s funny,” Norris commented. “It’s cute. But here’s what I really think about the theory of evolution: It’s not real. It is not the way we got here. In fact, the life you see on this planet is really just a list of creatures God has allowed to live. We are not creations of random chance. We are not accidents. There is a God, a Creator, a Creator, who made you and me. We were made in His image, which separates us from all other creatures.”
“Chuck Norris’ tears can cure cancer. Too bad he never cries. Ever.” Norris’ response: “There was a man whose tears could cure cancer or any other disease, including the real cause of all diseases–sin. His blood did. His name was Jesus, not Chuck Norris. If your soul needs healing, the prescription you need is not Chuck Norris’ tears, it’s Jesus’ blood.”
In subsequent columns Norris has opposed efforts to remove postings of the Ten Commandments from public buildings, supported the war in Iraq and weighed in on the “Merry Christmas” debate in stores.
His most recent column takes on the ACLU. “By definition, it’s the American Civil Liberties Union,” Norris wrote. “By action, it has become the Abolishing Christian Legacy Union.”
Norris and his wife, Gena, recently joined the board of directors of the National Council on Bible Curriculum In Public Schools, a group that advocates teaching the Bible as history and literature in public schools. The group says its interest is in educating students and not indoctrinating them, but critics view it as a stealth way of getting around the separation of church and state.
The Norrises appeared in a public service announcement encouraging citizens to return the Bible to public schools that aired on several national networks and available as a streaming video.
With news of the South African magazine poll, talk of a possible future for Norris in U.S. politics cannot be far behind.
A fellow columnist on WorldNetDaily, Maralyn Lois Polak, has already made her feelings clear.
“Chuck Norris for president! He knows his way around the White House,” she wrote recently. “He’s been there for dinner. He played golf with Nancy Reagan.”
Other credentials include: “He’s a God-fearing kind of guy…. He might be a millionaire, but he has simple, decent origins–Oklahoma, and a younger brother killed in Vietnam. Not exactly log cabin or trailer, but a sturdy Baptist mother who kept the family together while his father struggled with the dual demons of drink and underemployment.”
Norris told Polak he has no aspirations to become a politician, but she concluded her column nevertheless with, “Listen, we sure could do worse.”
Bob Allen is managing editor of EthicsDaily.com.
Visit Chuck Norris’ official Web site.