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Comment: Gays should give Obama a break over inauguration preacher

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  1. i agree, like i said on the other topic, Tony Blair has an extremely obnoxious religious “mentor” in the pope, but his government still introduced the best pro-gay legislation in the UK for decades. Religion is so stupid though…why on earth do people bother with it when it just causes so much hurt and nonsense!

  2. Unhappyjohn 19 Dec 2008, 3:45pm

    If Obama wishes to appear inclusive to his gay and lesbian supporters, then he should also invite the Lord Grand High Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan to show his black supporters how “inclusive” he intends to be. The Rick Warren-ites are the KKK for those of us who have fought long and hard for inclusion.
    Bad advice, bad decision.

  3. Warren’s appalling ‘Purpose Driven’ books invite Americans to commit intellectual suicide.

    It should be noted that the anti-semite Billy Graham appeared at every president’s side since Eisenhower.

    LGBTs should indeed make their voices heard about this. Light only comes from heat.

  4. I still think that protest is valid. Regardless of what hopes you place in Obama, only by total opposition to ALL our detractors, as this preacher appears to be, can we shift these abhorrent attitudes away. Your stance to accept someone who supported proposition 8 reminds me of the line “The buggers are legal now, what more are they after?”.

    NO proposition 8, NO homophobia, NO inequality. I DEMAND equality EVERYWHERE. DO NOT relax the pressure; the fight is nowhwere near over.

  5. NO, NO, NO! Warren compares gays with pedophiles, he is disgusting. Even Sarah Palin is a progressive, compared to this idiot! Why reach out to these fanatics? Obama clearly should have chosen a moderate priest. Hillary would never have done this – she would be a far better choice for president!

  6. I completely disagree. As a Californian, I’m pretty aware of how instrumental Rick Warren was in taking away our civil rights. Obama knows this too, and this was a calculated move to get more center-right support. What’s the easiest way? Give the right-wing some red meat by throwing LGBT people under the bus. They’re a small group with really nowhere else to go, so who cares if you piss them off. The straight liberal/progressive community will only tut-tut-tut about this for a day or two. To Obama, our civil rights is just another issue that people can honestly disagree on. Well, to me, my civil rights is not just “another issue.” I don’t think I have to be “tolerant” by accepting the validity of an opinion that relegates me to second-class citizenship.

    Allowing this homophobic bigot to give the innaugural invocation is way, way different from including him in policy discussions. It’s conferring spiritual and moral authority on him.

    I voted for Obama twice, contributed to his campaign, and volunteered for him. And although I feel betrayed, I’m really not that terribly surprised. Obama gave the same kind of “inclusive” alibi after the McClurkin debacle.

    But if you don’t scream when you get stabbed in the back, it won’t take long before you’re stabbed again.

  7. Gene Touchet 19 Dec 2008, 5:32pm

    Put a picture of Warren and Falwell side by side and see how similar they are. They’re cut from the same cloth.

  8. Ingenuity is not a meal I am willing to eat.
    We, as LGBT people, have to be there to shout “foul game” whenever it is one. No matter if in the past others did it worse. No matter if this one is the moderate between the immoderate haters. No matter if he is the bridge between one extreme to one less extreme extremism.
    We have to say “present” and don’t let silent be our accomplice attitude. We are not throwing stones. We are not taking peoples rights away from their very hands. We have the right to speak our outrage, even more now that Prop 8 passed.
    We don’t want to divide. We just want to be part of. They are the ones who discriminate against us.
    We are not the needed lambs to sacrifice on the altar of congeniality. That’s a poisonous lie.

  9. Warren admits that he is just like James Dobson in his beliefs, and merely differs with regard to tone. Also, his church runs “ex-gay” meetings, like Sarah Palin’s church. People certainly criticised Palin for that.

    We shouldn’t “give Obama a break” when we have a chance, not to mention a right, to tell him (and all our other leaders) how we feel, how we want to be treated, and what’s important to us. Sitting down and meekly accepting people’s thinly disguised loathing of us queers isn’t going to make them loathe us any less. We need to match them with force to get anything done.

  10. In a large number of instances, Blair’s commitment to equality for gays and lesbians (and to a lesser extent transgendered people) only happened when the government lost or was about to lose a court case involving equality. The same is likely to be the case with Obama – which is one major reason for gay rights groups trying to get cases up to the Supreme Court to see what happens. Strategically, Obama and his advisers don’t believe that they need gay support for most policies, whereas the ‘christian’ fundamentalists have already proved that they can bulldoze policies into existence across the US. Obama might make the odd comment that recognises gays and lesbians in a positive light, but actions reflecting that positivity are likely to be more rare. Unless the gay ‘community’ in the US makes its views known loudly and with some force, Obama is likely to throw them under the bus should it ever be politically expedient. Warren at the inauguration is Obama and his team going with the status quo. Warren (and all that he represents) gets a high profile position in the spotlight. The gays get a marching band so lacking in significance that even the right wing demagogues haven’t bothered to get upset. Instead of just accepting that ‘Obama is a good guy and he’ll probably do the correct thing when it comes to equality and the Warren thing is just a glitch’, gay rights groups in the US are entirely right to make loud protests. If they don’t do it now, they’ll just be taken for granted. And that never ends well.

  11. Ironically, the choice of Warren for Obama’s inauguration may well alienate MORE people on either side of the divide than it pleases or appeases.

    Rick Warren has managed to offend Liberal/Progressive/LGBT people with his sickening rhetoric and “ex-gay” quackery.

    He is also much loathed and derided as a “heretic”, “apostate”, “pulpit pimp” and other similar epithets by no small number of conservative Evangelicals who regard him as prostituting the message of Evangelical Christianity for the sake of “church growth” ie bums-on-pews and, of course, the cold, hard cash they bring to Rick and his minions.


    As some observers said during the campaign:

    “the problem with Obama isn’t that he’s Black… it’s that he’s Green!”

    Team Obama need to wise up very quickly.

  12. Barry Naylor 19 Dec 2008, 8:57pm

    I was surprised to see this apologetic for Warren. His views are offensive, homophobic and unacceptable. Obama may wish to reach out to all but truth and justice are, surely, pre-requisties for harmony. How can he claim to stand in solidarity with us and then invite such a man to play such a high profile role? I think we already see the style of the Emperor-elect’s new clothes and I, for one, am not liking what I see.

  13. The quote below shows that Rick Warren equates gay marriage to polygamy, incest and paedophilia. No we should not give Obama a break over his choice and I’m afraid that he is starting to show a pattern of no change from the past.

    “I’m opposed to redefinition of a 5,000 year definition of marriage. I’m opposed to having a brother and sister being together and calling that marriage. I’m opposed to an older guy marrying a child and calling that marriage. I’m opposed to one guy having multiple wives and calling that marriage.” — Rick Warren, Pastor of Saddleback Church, December 15, 2008

  14. Mary Flying Eagle Ray 19 Dec 2008, 11:03pm

    Give obama a break? Some of us get the message, once again we are
    told, “Shut up, sit down and stay out of the way, or else the
    bible thumping jerks who hate you, may think ill of you and your
    desire for equal/freedom lives.”

    Great Spirit..Great Mystery..
    I am not lost to you…you are not lost to me

    F E

  15. The religious right, has never agreed with gays, so who cares. He says what every he says on Jan 20th and then we move on to something important. The economy! People need to focus on more important things. People are mad about prop 20, but they shouldn’t let that cloud their judgment. Also if Rick Warren was really as bad as people are trying to say, I might have actually heard of him before today.

  16. As a Gay American — I will not forgive the selection of Warren to give an invocation during President-Elect Obama’s inauguration.

    The comments made by Warren, which compare homosexuality with bestiality, incest and polygamy demonstrate a lack of compassion and are downright offensive – not to mention ignorant. America’s need to pander to religious fanatics who believe that America is a Xtian Nation and should be governed by Xtian doctrine obviously did not pay attention in History class nor do they comprehend the meaning of *separation between Church and State*. America’s Founding Father’s made it clear that Freedom of and From religious zealots is the foundation of the American system of governance. (This of course was based upon their experience in Europe where Organized State sanctioned religion was used as a political weapon and cost untold bloodshed all in the name of an invisible sky god).

    More importantly, it is a *LIE* to represent that American government is wholly dictated by majority rule – the fact is that our American system was designed to protect *the least among us* the minority from majority tyranny and how our Judicial system functions as additional Check and Balance against tyranny by a majority.

    I doubt President-Elect Obama would feel that it would be *ok* to have a known and well liked White Supremest participate in his inauguration — all in the name of unity and *reaching out*. It would unconscionable — as it should with Warren – whose public statements regarding Gay Americans are wholly offensive, backwards and driven by his fundamentalist religious beliefs — which should play no part in American governance.

    I do not believe for one minute that we would’ve been better off with McCain and that sad excuse of a governor (palin) — but com’on the Obama Team shouldn’t feel the need to throw Gay Americans under the bus — It is a sad, very disturbing move — that once again illustrates just how much power and control these religious fundies have over America.

  17. Har Davids 20 Dec 2008, 9:15pm

    Give Obama a break? There could have been an inauguration without any religious speaker!! That would have shown the world that separation of church and state is back in Washington after a very long absence.

  18. I’m inclined to agree with the notion that a real show of artful leadeership would not have put in place this pastor. He could have broken the mold and gone for a different approach avoiding dividing any group in America.
    This shows the one real flaw in Obama as president which is his relationship to religion.
    Ok It’s obvious what they are doing giving this pastor the opening speech and also he’s not being given any whitehouse position. It may be that there literally is no other pastor in America who is left wing enough without appearing threateningly radical. So he may be the best choice popularist liberal pastor going.

  19. As an antidote to this ludicrous apology for bigotry, take a look at Christopher Hitchens’ excellent article on this shabby appointment. He hits the nail firmly on the head – and read about his contempt for Jews, non believers, the wrong kind of christians, as well as gays. There could not have been a more divisive, sectarian choice:

  20. Simon Murphy 22 Dec 2008, 11:38am

    Warren is a creationist. His reasoning why Darwin’s theory of evolution is made up is that he thinks that if the ‘survival of the fittest’ theory was true then homosexuality would have died out. By inviting this religious facist to his inauguration Obama is stating clearly that he is willing to betray any of his supporters to suit his own agenda. Obama should be ashamed of himself.

  21. No, don’t give him a break! I always had doubts about the sincerity of the moronic “Change” and “Yes We Can” campaign. Now he’s in the White House he’s nothing more than yet another clever but deceitful pol! Don’t give any room to bigoted evangelicals such as Warren to propogate their evil (I say that as a devout Christian). His sort are evil, we need to fight all the way.

  22. isa kocher 22 Dec 2008, 4:03pm

    never: it is not about gay. it is about justice. Warren is no different than having a swastika, a burning cross or a dummy hanging from a tree. for the past 8 years, democrats have sucked up to the right. the more they sucked up, the more vicious, the more hateful, the more tyrannical the dick ‘n bush crew have gotten. it’s a game with no winners. only standing for principle will those who hate us ever respect us. Obama doesn’t need a break on this. WE do.

  23. isa kocher 22 Dec 2008, 4:07pm

    It’s the same old story: we are OK when the straight guy wants it. But when it’s the gay person who needs a place in from the cold, it’s get the f*** out.

  24. I agree with many of the comments above and, being as this is a UK based site, can only imagine that some of them will be expressed even more strongly in the US. Looks like Obama and the author of the piece are out of step with the typical LGBT on the street.

  25. Well, my own little private protest on January 20, the day of Obama’s inauguration, will be, with great pleasure, to tear up and start my fire with a copy of Warren’s book “A Purpose-Driven Life”, not a book I bought, I was misguidedly given it.

  26. Eddy Evans 23 Dec 2008, 2:40pm

    From the author.

    Thank you for all your comments. While I respectually disagree with most of you, I appreciate the time you have taken to contribute to this discussion.

    I have thought about these issues deeply and did not write this viewpoint lightly. I strongly believe in what I wrote and passionately hope that America, where I have lived, worked and travelled, has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to come together however painful that journey may be at times.

    I will sign off with the words of Melissa Etheridge who’s commitment to LGBT equality and same-sex marriage cannot be doubted by anyone. I read it today and it moved me far more than anything else I have read on this issue. Thank you.

    Brothers and sisters the choice is ours now. We have the world’s attention. We have the capability to create change, awesome change in this world, but before we change minds we must change hearts. Sure, there are plenty of hateful people who will always hold on to their bigotry like a child to a blanket. But there are also good people out there, Christian and otherwise that are beginning to listen. They don’t hate us, they fear change. Maybe in our anger, as we consider marches and boycotts, perhaps we can consider stretching out our hands. Maybe instead of marching on his church, we can show up en mass and volunteer for one of the many organizations affiliated with his church that work for HIV/AIDS causes all around the world.

    Maybe if they get to know us, they wont fear us.

    I know, call me a dreamer, but I feel a new era is upon us.

  27. Gordon Lately 24 Dec 2008, 10:03am

    This article is a tranny mess

  28. I agree with the article. I don’t think ‘othering’ and belittling Warren is going to help. And guess what? He’s actually taken down the homophobic language from his website. This is what happens when you show respect to people you disagree with – they might actually listen to you.

  29. Rick Warren – Reverend? No – Spiritual Terrorist!

  30. Simon Murphy 6 Jan 2009, 12:39pm

    Are there going to be protests condemning Obama for including this facist in his inauguration?

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