Friday, February 29, 2008

Obama should reject Farrakhan, but...

I am no Louis Farrakhan supporter. Yes, I understand that he and his church have done much for the black community. But he is a hatemonger. He is the man who said:
"White people are potential humans - they haven't evolved yet."
Philadelphia Inquirer, March 2000
"It seems like being gay or whatever sin you wish to be a part of is okay ... but I have the duty to lift that gay person up to the standard to ask if they want to live the life that God wants them to or live the lifestyle that they want to live."
Boston speech, August 1997
"The Jews have been so bad at politics they lost half their population in the Holocaust. They thought they could trust in Hitler, and they helped him get the Third Reich on the road."
Saviours' Day speech, Chicago, February 1998
Yet, here's the thing, it is not just Muslim hatemongers who should be loudly denounced by presidential candidates and all of us. Where is the equal ire for the Christian hatemongers who are often embraced by the Republican Party and even treated by the media as if their ideas are worthy of consideration?
On Wednesday, Rev. John Hagee, the Evangelical pastor of a Texas mega-church endorsed John McCain. Some of Hagee's greatest hits? Try this golden nugget from an interview with Terry Gross of NPR:
TG: If you use the Bible as the basis for policy, is there any room for compromise? And if you use the bible as the basis for policy, should Muslims use the Koran as the basis for their policy, and then again, what possible basis is there for compromise at that point?

JH: There is really no room for compromise between radical Islam --

TG: I'm not talking about radical Islam. I'm just talking about Islam in general.

JH: Well Islam in general -- those who live by the Koran have a scriptural mandate to kill Christians and Jews.

Delightful, huh? What about this from the same interview?

JH: All hurricanes are acts of God, because God controls the heavens. I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God, and they were recipients of the judgment of God for that.

The newspaper carried the story in our local area, that was not carried nationally, that there was to be a homosexual parade there on the Monday that the Katrina came. And the promise of that parade was that it would was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other gay pride parades.

So I believe that the judgment of God is a very real thing. I know there are people who demur from that, but I believe that the Bible teaches that when you violate the law of God, that God brings punishment sometimes before the Day of Judgment, and I believe that the Hurricane Katrina was, in fact, the judgment of God against the city of New Orleans.

Did John McCain "reject" or "denounce" Hagee's endorsement? Not unless this is what you call rejection:

McCain said he was "very honored" to receive this endorsement and, when asked about some of Hagee's more twisted views, responded: "all I can tell you is that I am very proud to have Pastor John Hagee's support." SOURCE 
And what of America's favorite bigot Pat Robertson, the man whose low-rated "college," CBN University Law School, had placed more than 150 graduates in the Bush administration as of last April? Here are some of Robertson's gems"
 "(T)he feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians." –Pat Robertson
"I'd like to say to the good citizens of Dover: If there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God, you just rejected him from your city. And don't wonder why he hasn't helped you when problems begin, if they begin. I'm not saying they will, but if they do, just remember, you just voted God out of your city. And if that's the case, don't ask for his help because he might not be there." --Pat Robertson, after the city of Dover, Pennsylvania voted to boot the current school board, which instituted an intelligent design policy that led to a federal trial
"You know, I don't know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it. It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war ... We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability. We don't need another $200 billion war to get rid of one, you know, strong-arm dictator. It's a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with." –Pat Robertson, calling for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez
SOURCE for all

Can you imagine the fall out if Obama becomes president and begins hiring hundreds of staffers from the Louis Farrakhan School of Public Policy? (I know there is no such thing. I'm just sayin'.)
Louis Farrakhan. Hateful bigot. John Hagee. Hateful bigot. Pat Robertson. Hateful bigot.
So, why is Farrakhan seen by the media and mainstream as the devil incarnate while Hagee and Robertson are viewed more like batty uncles who say crazy things sometimes? And on the flip side, why do many black Americans embrace Farrakhan while denouncing Robertson (Hagee is likely not on the radar.)? I mean we should know the power of hate speech perhaps better than anyone.
Could it be that many of us are not as appalled by the pronouncements of these men as we pretend to be? I hope not.
Check out the always insightful Glenn Greenwald's post about the media double standard re: Farrakhan and white Evangelicals on Salon.





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