A 14-year-old American boy has drawn international ire for his conservative radio show, in which he said President Obama was encouraging children to turn gay.
Caiden Cowger, who has interviewed former hopeful for the Republican presidential nomination Herman Cain, launched an attack on homosexuality which has been removed from YouTube for violating its policy on hate speech.
Pentecostal Christian Cowger had told his audience homosexuality was a “belief” and a choice, “no matter what Lady Gaga says”, and that it was “getting worse” in his local area of West Virginia where about thirty of his contemporaries were starting to “turn into homosexuals” in a process which “sickened” him.
He claimed President Obama, who recently came out in support of marriage equality for gay couples, was “encouraging” homosexuality and that along with Vice President Joe Biden, he was “making kids gay”.
The precocious talk show host added: “I’m not for bullying homosexuals, I believe that it’s wrong. But when you’re trying to teach them the word of God and they consider that bullying, yeah, I find that a big problem with not being able to convert other people to my religion and telling them homosexuality is condemned by God and you will go to Hell unless you repent. It’s getting to the point where I can’t say that any more.”
Cowger’s Facebook and Youtube accounts appeared to have been hacked today.
Thenewcivilrightsmovement.com pointed out that 14-year-old Cowger wrote a 48-page book with supporting notes from Rudy Giuliani and Glenn Beck’s chief of staff in which he said: “In my years as a broadcaster, I have encountered a recurring statement. People discredit me because of my age, and say that I am not old enough to make my own decisions. This book is to tell them that they are wrong. All young people have the ability to make their own decisions, but must study the different types of belief in order to do so; which I explain in this book.”
Given his age, reaction to the boy’s radio programme has been mixed. One commenter said: “Someone this twisted needs support from everyone around him because he is the one with the issue and he needs help.”
This afternoon, another YouTube user suggested he was “on the verge of coming out and trying to scare himself straight. Why else would he think it is a choice?”
Responding to extremely critical comments on Cowger’s Facebook page, another user said: “That’s no way to treat a 14-year-old, even if he IS being pretty bigoted. He honestly doesn’t know any better (at least, this is what I hope). We should be encouraging him to realize the error of his ways, not hate-mongering.”
The commenter also quotes Martin Luther King: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”