New Marco Rubio ad shows what his true agenda really is: a right wing Christian theocracy.Read more
Pope Francis is in Rome this week at a "traditional marriage" conference. In attendance are some of America's most active anti-gay activists.Read more
California megachurch pastor Rick Warren, too, posted on his Facebook page on Sunday (March 2) denying allegations that he ever supported the Uganda bill… Scott Lively, a Massachusetts pastor and head of Abiding Truth Ministries, said that he is not responsible for the bill. “It’s a very insulting argument, that somehow an American evangelical pastor is so powerful that I’ve overwhelmed the intelligence of an entire government and turned them out to do my will,” Lively said. “The Ugandans knew what they wanted to hear.” He said he does not support the bill in its final form.Never mind that Lively himself has admitted on several occasions that he had seen and reviewed the original “Kill the Gays Bill” before it had been released to the public. Despite the ample evidence of Lively and Warren’s involvement in Uganda, none of it is mentioned. There isn’t even a hint at what pro-human rights groups have found in their research. Step 4: Spread the Word Now that they’ve gotten their press release printed as if it were an accredited journalistic account, the right-wing PR campaign can push to get mainstream outlets to reprint. The whitewashed article has been republished not only on small sites like Spokane Faith & Values, but on major outlets like The Washington Post. As is typical with controversial and nuanced stories, the simple talking points are much easier to publish. Why bother researching what these right-wing evangelicals have said and done beyond U.S. borders, when they’re willing to tell American media a completely different—and significantly more palatable—story on camera? The Fatal Flaw This massive PR campaign has only made one mistake so far, but it’s a big one. Rick Warren has, by far, been the most successful at misleading the public into thinking he’s a moderate. He’s been at it for years. If the campaign had aimed to only wash Warren’s hands of Ugandan LGBTQ blood, it would probably succeed with flying colors. But the efforts have been ambitious than that. The inclusion of Scott Lively throws the door wide open for the public to see this PR stunt for what it is. While few people other than researchers on the ground have seen Warren at work in Africa—partnering with local anti-gay clergy and feeding them the funds necessary to push through the Anti-Homosexuality Bill—plenty of people have heard Scott Lively on air or in his writings comparing LGBTQ people to rapists and pedophiles. Plenty of people have seen the undercover videos from Rev. Dr. Kapya Kaoma of Scott Lively in Uganda explaining that if they don’t enact anti-gay legislation then gays from America will come and recruit their children. And plenty of people have seen the videos of Scott Lively on Ugandan TV with the vehemently anti-gay Pastor Martin Ssempa, saying that Uganda needed to enact the Anti-Homosexuality law and criminalize LGBTQ people in order to save children from being “recruited There’s no question of right-wing evangelical involvement in Uganda’s anti-gay legislation. The work has been verified and fact-checked by researchers around the globe, organizations like Amnesty International, and outlets such as the New York Times. There’s a reason a court refused to throw out the case against Scott Lively for crimes against humanity. It’s not just human rights advocates who are shocked by the turnabout from these conservatives. The anti-gay clergy in Uganda they’ve spent years training are shocked as well. Pastor Martin Ssempa was so surprised he published a letter addressed to Rick Warren, asking why he is now changing his story.
When you came to Uganda on Thursday, 27 March 2008, and expressed support to the Church of Uganda’s boycott of the pro-homosexual church of England, you stated; “The Church of England is wrong, and I support the Church of Uganda”. You are further remembered to say, “homosexuality is not a natural way of life and thus (its) not a human right. We shall not tolerate this apect at all”.Good PR work has a tendency to override facts. Tell people that something didn’t happen enough times, and eventually they’ll start to believe it. It’s up to us to tell the truth louder and more often. **This article is cross-posted from Political Research Associates. Republished with Permission Follow Eric Ethington on Twitter @EricEthington Eric Ethington has been specializing in political messaging, communications strategy, and public relations for more than a decade. Originally hailing from Salt Lake City, he now works in Boston for a social justice think tank. Eric’s writing, advocacy work, and research have been featured on MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, CNBC, the New York Times, The Telegraph, and The Public Eye magazine. He’s worked as a radio host, pundit, blogger, activist and electoral campaign strategist. He also writes at NuanceStillMatters.com
"I can remember hearing great sermons or in-depth Bible teaching and wondering how the teacher found all those great nuggets of truth in God’s Word. That’s why I wrote my first book 35 years ago: to help people like me. Rick Warren’s Bible Study Methodsshares 12 methods of Bible study, such as the chapter summary method, the topical method, and the verse-by-verse method."Sounds like a pitch to sell more books, but heck, I'm not a marketing genius like Pastor Doctor Rick Warren. Pastor Doctor Rick Warren is also marketing his The Daniel Plan to "Pastors and Leaders" -- people who have thousands of followers who will buy his book. And he's offering "free marking resource files [that] will help you promote and customize The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life for your church. Please take advantage of these resources as often as possible to educate and motivate your congregation and to encourage participation." Of course, there's also a Facebook page. USA Today notes that "Warren was inspired to create the plan after he baptized more than 800 people one day in November 2010. After lowering more than 145,000 pounds of weight into the water, Warren says he thought, 'Wow! Everybody's fat!'" One Gawker reader commented, "It should be noted that 145,000 divided by 800 people is only 181.25 lbs per person. If they were all adults and half of them were men, that's really pretty good. Me suspects that in reality Warren is also bad at basic math." (Gawker also points to a 2009 column where Pastor Doctor Rick Warren compares same-sex marriage to incest, pedophilia, and polygamy, and denies it.) It's amusing that the religious right has spent years mercilessly attacking First Lady Michelle Obama for trying to help Americans -- especially children -- live more healthy lives, without her making a dime from it, but they'll support this obvious money-making venture (the book alone lists for $24.99, and there are other versions, including a Daniel Plan cookbook that lists at $29.99) because it's from Pastor Doctor Rick Warren, and God. Given that the people in America who struggle most with obesity are the poor, thanks to things like McDonald's Dollar Menu, if Pastor Doctor Rick Warren really wanted to help Americans lose weight, maybe he could have cut some of the fat from the price of his weight-loss-through-Christ book?
We pray"Thy WILL be done on earth AS IT IS IN HEAVEN' since in heaven God's Will is done #always. On earth,it's done rarely — Rick Warren (@RickWarren) April 6, 2013"But only those closest knew that he struggled from birth with mental illness, dark holes of depression, and even suicidal thoughts. In spite of America's best doctors, meds, counselors, and prayers for healing, the torture of mental illness never subsided. Today, after a fun evening together with Kay and me, in a momentary wave of despair at his home, he took his life." “Despite the best healthcare available, this was an illness that was never fully controlled and the emotional pain resulted in his decision to take his life,” the statement said. “We ask everyone to join us in praying for the entire Warren family and that God’s comfort and peace will be with them as they deal with this difficult situation,” the statement continued.
WARREN: I never made a single statement on Prop 8 until the week before. In my own church, some members say, “Where do we stand on this?” I released a video to my own members. It was posted all over like it was an advertisement. [...] HILL: When your have a church of 20,000 people and you have a book that 32 million people have read and that 60 million people have accessed, to say, “I was just giving a message”— WARREN: You’re exactly right, Marc, and I learned a lesson from that. What I learned from that is that anything I say privately is now public. And I actually learned from that mistake… Everyone took that to mean I was pontificating to the whole world. HILL: If you could do it again, would you not have made that statement a week before Prop 8? WARREN: I would not have. I would not have made that statement. Because I wanted to talk to my own people. As a duty, as a shepherd, I’m responsible for those who put themselves under my care. I’m not responsible for everybody else.Zack Ford and Annie-Rose Strasser at Think Progress did their homework, noting that in 2008, Pastor Rick Warren "published his 'private' video on his 'News & Views' website for all of his followers to see."
His comments were unsurprisingly picked up by the American Family Association’s OneNewsNow. Warren seemed to back away from his endorsement in 2009, telling CNN’s Larry King that he “never once even gave an endorsement” of the proposition. Now that a majority of Americans consistently support marriage equality, he regrets that people actually paid attention to his anti-gay views.But if there's any question as to Warren's policy on homosexuality, last night he told Pier Morgan that having a same-sex relationship is like arsenic: it may be natural, but it's not good for you. Oh, and loving someone of the same-sex is also like wanting to punch a guy in the nose. I kid you not. Perhaps Warren wasn't aware the cable TV is really really public.
http://embed.live.huffingtonpost.com/HPLEmbedPlayer/?segmentId=50b3b0e678c90a5910000025Transcript via Think Progress
"The Bible clearly states that I am absolutely in control of my actions, Warren told Morgan, noting that, “It wouldn’t bother me if there was a ‘gay gene’ found.”
“Here’s what we know about life,” Warren claimed. “I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life and it doesn’t necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. Sometimes I get angry and feel like punching a guy in the nose. That doesn’t mean I act on it. Sometimes I feel attracted to women who are not my wife. I don’t act on it. Just because I have a feeling doesn’t make it right. Not everything natural is good for me. Arsenic is natural.”
http://www.youtube.com/embed/gAVHeRKQUAoHat tip: The Raw Story Related: Homophobe Pastor Rick Warren Tweets On Hitchens’ Death. Twitter Responds. “David Kato’s Death Result Of Hatred Planted By U.S. Evangelicals” Rick Warren (Finally) Speaks Against Uganda’s “Kill The Gays’ Bill