Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Rick Warren: liar, bigot and overall dishonest idiot

I was certainly against Obama appointing a Christian evangelical preacher for his invocation at his inauguration as President; if religion is to be kept out of the government, it's harder to imagine a more contradictory scenario than a Christian evangelist like Rick Warren formally introducing Obama into his presidency. It's like inmates introducing lawyers into a courtroom – it really doesn't fit.

But it could've gone on well enough, if he hadn't chosen such a lamentably pathetic preacher like Rick Warren. Naturally he holds the "traditional" (ie. "retarded", "outdated", "bigoted", etc.) views on all things from stem-cell research to abortion, and he's also shown himself to be a gruesome-minded bigot on gay rights, particularly gay marriage, such as when he notoriously equated the marrying of gays to incestual and/or pedophilic marriages (and to a less atrocious extent, polygamy). The following is a brief excerpt from a recent Q&A with Warren, hosted by his longtime supporter, Steven Waldman.

"WARREN: The issue to me, I'm not opposed to that [some partnership rights] as much as 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.

BELIEFNET: Do you think those are equivalent to gays getting married?

Oh , I do. For 5,000 years, marriage has been defined by every single culture and every single religion - this is not a Christian issue. Buddhist, Muslims, Jews - historically, marriage is a man and a woman."

[See full transcript here]

As you can see from numerous sources (most of which you'll find with a few keystrokes, a click of a mouse, and Google), this is concrete: Rick Warren said those very answers to those very questions. But, oho! Now he's backpedaling, trying to blame Waldman for the shitstorm this statement understandably incurred.

After Rick Warren was selected by Barack Obama to give a prayer at the inauguration, attention turned to comments he made to me during an interview for Beliefnet and WSJ.com in which he appeared to equate homosexual relationships with relationships between siblings or pedophilia. A firestorm erupted.

Warren now claims that he got into hot water because of the way I phrased the question.

"I was asked a question that made it sound like I equated gay marriage with pedophilia or incest, which I absolutely do not believe," he told Larry King on April 6. (In a subsequent interview with Sarah Pulliam at Christianity Today he made clear he was referring to me).

So the loudmouthed bigot goes on-air, spreads his stupidity around a bit, and now is trying to avoid blame for his "faux-pas" by blaming it all on the interviewer. How boringly typical. Of course it's not him who screwed up by speaking his vile mind, it had to be the other's fault! I know, maybe Waldman was sending subliminal messages via top-secret hand gestures or his uncannily piercing stare or something, enticing Warren to speak the unforgivable words. As Waldman restrainedly surmises:

Had he wanted to clarify that he didn't equate gay marriage with those other relationships he might have slightly altered the wording from "oh, I do" to something like, I dunno, "oh, I don't." That might have been clearer.

One last note elucidating Warren's immense intellectual dishonesty and hypocrisy:

After the controversy exploded, he issued a video clarifying that he did not equate homosexual relationships with those other kinds. Here's his full statement. He suggested that the misunderstanding happened because the "media loves to create conflict" and bloggers "who really need to get a life" aspire to practice rudeness from the safety of their homes.

Yay, more blame to share for everyone else but Warren himself! Of course we can't have him shoulder the responsibility for his own words, or even admit that he spoke them when the freakin' interview is recorded, on tape, in transcripts, and etc. – he says he didn't say it and we're gullible fools, so that must be it, right?

I'm still slightly amused by him referring to bloggers "who really need to get a life". I see that dumb stereotype that those who share their thoughts and views on the Net don't actually have lives; perhaps they're just sentient programs inhabiting their machines, spewing random cognitive dysfunctions and spurts of random crapulence. It's similar to that other blogger stereotype I also enjoy, the one where bloggers only speak their minds on the Web because they're either too cowardly or restrained in the physical world to say such things as they do on the Web. Sure, that's certainly the case for many people, but definitely not all. Some really just use the Net to spread the same words around that they'd use in real life, in person, like I would. If someone pissed me off, don't expect me to hold my tongue only to later report it online – I'm gonna give them a piece of my mind, and I'll certainly enjoy them not enjoying it.

(via Dispatches from the Culture Wars)


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