Monday, November 30, 2009

Saddle(broke)back Church & Homo "Lover" Rick Warren

     Pastor Rick Warren is at it again, that is talking out both sides of his scraggly (and oh-so-closeted-gay) goatee. Yesterday on Meet the Press host David Gregory asked Warren if he would work to fight the legalization of marriage for same sex couples were it to come up on the California ballot again.  Warren responded:
     Well, again, I'm not a politician. I didn't fight it in the last issue. What was misunderstood is people, people on both sides tried to make me the campaign leader. I only mentioned it one time, and I mentioned it to my own congregation when I was asked, "What is our position on this?" and I made a video for our congregation. Well, that was dumb, because it immediately went everywhere and then all the sudden it looked like I was the big campaigner.
     The video was dumb indeed, and Warren is a liar.  No one with Warren's level of media savy can honestly claim that they believe making a video and publishing it on a publicly accessible website during the internet/media age and during a campaign is an in-house, non-political event.  He knew exactly what he was doing when he released this video:

     Furthermore, Pastor Warren is a liar because he spoke out more than once.  Has he forgotten that he also told the press in an interview that he was against marriage rights for same sex couples, while comparing homosexuality to incest, pedophilia, and bestiality.  So, much for coming out against marriage equality as being a one time thing.  So yesterday on Meet the Press, Warren AGAIN lied to everyone.  Interesting that in his fondness for quoting scripture, he conveniently forgets to quote Exodus 20:16, "Thou shalt not bear false witness."  How easy it is for beloved holy men and women to overlook that one.  Didn't he memorize those Ten Commandments in kindergarten?  Here's a video that shows Warren's infamous statement that homosexuality is the same thing as incest, pedophilia, and bestiality:

      After claiming not to be a politician and that his job is "to love everybody"and not to be involved with political legislation, Warren went on to compare abortion to the holocaust.  That sounds like being quite involved in political legislation to me.

     But Warren's hypocrisy goes even further.  Like the Catholic church, the loving Rick Warren supports programs in Africa that are leading to the deaths of many people. Warren has strong ties to Ugandan Pastor Martin Ssempa, who is backing a legislative bill in Uganda that will make the death penalty the legal punishment for certain homosexual actions.  Ssempa has appeared at Warren's Saddleback Church and been embraced by Warren and his wife.

     The history of Warren and Ssempa is even more incidious (the following paragraph is paraphrased from The Daily Beast).   In the late 90s, Ugandan President Museveni had a successful HIV-prevention program called ABC, which emphasized abstinence, monogamous relationships, and  using condoms as the best ways to prevent the spread of HIV.  This resulted in a 10% drop in Uganda's HIV/AIDS rate.  After Museveni's wife Janet became a born-again Christian in 1999 and dedicated her life to the "lordship" of Jesus Christ, she went to Washington, D.C. and promised Republicans that abstinence was the reason that ABC was working so well.  Our Congress gave Uganda $200 million for AIDS-prevention for the "exclusive promotion of abstinence education."  Pastor Ssempa was given $40,000 of that money to be on the new task force, and he set to the streets and college campuses burning condoms "in the name of Jesus!"   By 2006, HIV-infection in Uganda had spiked, in thanks to the the "decreased credibility" of condoms by fundamentalist groups.

     But the crusade didn't stop there.  As reported by The Daily Beast:
     In August 2007, Ssempa led hundreds of his followers through the streets of Kampala to demand that the government mete out harsh punishments against gays. “Arrest all homos,” read placards. And: “A man cannot marry a man.” Ssempa continued his crusade online, publishing the names of Ugandan gay rights activists on a website he created, along with photos and home addresses. “Homosexual promoters,” he called them, suggesting they intended to seduce Uganda’s children into their lifestyle. Soon afterwards, two of President Yoweri Museveni’s top officials demanded the arrest of the gay activists named by Ssempa. Terrified, the activists immediately [went] into hiding...when Uganda’s Anglican bishops threatened to bolt from the Church of England because of its tolerant stance towards homosexuals, Warren parachuted into Kampala to confer international legitimacy on their protest. “The Church of England is wrong and I support the Church of Uganda on the boycott,” Warren proclaimed in March 2008. Declaring homosexuality an unnatural way of life, Warren flatly stated, “We shall not tolerate this aspect [homosexuality in the church] at all.” 
     After taking sides in that political argument, Warren now claims that he "never takes sides" and that it is "not his calling as a pastor in America to comment or interfere in the political process of other nations."  So, when the issue at hand is Uganda's proposed law legalizing the death penalty for certain homosexual acts (like having sex when HIV positive), Warren claims the pastoral fifth.