Wolf Blitzer seems to have some egg on his face after interviewing a Moore, Okla.,woman who lost her home, but saved her son in the aftermath of the devastating tornado on Monday. Blitzer apparently assumed the woman (identified as Rebecca Vitsmun) was a Christian and asked her if she “thank[ed] the Lord.” Vitsmun, as it turns out, is an atheist, though she was extremely polite in her response.
Watch the full encounter between Blitzer and Vitsmun below.
“We’re happy you’re here. You guys did a great job. I guess, you gotta thank the Lord, right?” Blitzer asked Vitsmun in a post-tornado interview with CNN. “Do you thank the Lord for that split-second decision?”
“I — I’m actually an atheist,” she politely responded to Blitzer.
“Oh, you are? All right,” Blitzer replied.
Despite Blitzer’s awkward question, Vitsmun responded gracefully, stating that despite her personal beliefs, everyone has a right to thank or not thank the higher power of their choice.
“We are here, and I don’t blame anybody for thanking the Lord,” she told Blitzer.
The video has proven surprisingly popular online, with many sites praising Vitsmun for her calm, collected, and candid reaction. Many commenters on sites like Reddit’s atheism board have even proclaimed Vitsmun an “atheist hero” for her forthrightness. Reddit user HappyGiraffe even claims to know Vitsmun in person, and has assured users that her husband (not seen in the video) is safe as well.
“This woman is awesome; I know her, and she has been very active in issues of religious freedom (for EVERYONE) in her community,” HappyGiraffe posted. “Her home was completely leveled, but she, her husband and Anders (19-months) are safe.”
Earlier in the broadcast, CNN reporters stated that Vistmun escaped her home with her son just minutes before it was destroyed.