It’s been rerun, recorded, replayed, reproduced, restored and there’s no better time to re-hear famed broadcaster Paul Harvey’s notable “If I Were the Devil” soliloquy than on his birthday, Sept. 4.
He was born in 1918 and passed away in February several years ago, but his commentary continues to inspire and challenge with its message that if the devil was to try to corrupt and own America, he should just keep doing what he’s doing.
That, anyway, was Harvey’s conclusion circa 1965 when the commentary probably first was broadcast.
It’s available in several versions, but the conclusion remains the same.
Citing plans to teach the “Bible is a myth” that “man created God instead of the other way around” and seniors should pray “Our father, which art in Washington,” Harvey explained he – as the devil – would encourage dirtier and dirtier movies, encouraged families and churches to war with themselves, spread the use of narcotics and porn, get rid of references to God everywhere, substitute psychology for religion and make an egg the symbol of Easter and a bottle the symbol of Christmas.
“In other words, if I were the devil, I’d just keep right on doing what he’s doing,” Harvey said.
And Paul Batura, who wrote the biography, “Good Day! The Paul Harvey Story,” noted much of Harvey’s work provided more than the “news.”
Born Paul Aurandt in Tulsa, Okla., he was an “enterprising young boy” who became a broadcasting legend in his lifetime.
“Paul Harvey loved strong opinions, but he was no shock jock. He might have been shocking to some – articulating his love of God and Jesus Christ, embracing the American miracle and touting our nation’s exceptionalism, not to mention regularly displaying an unfailing devotion to his wife,” Batura wrote.
WND Founder and CEO Joseph Farah, at the time of Harvey’s death, wrote a tribute:
“He was a giant in journalism. He was a giant in the news business. … Yes, he could tell a great story, as in ‘the rest of the story.’ But what I loved most about him was his ability to find those great little gems of news – stories that escaped the attention of so many of his colleagues,” he wrote.