Wednesday, April 02, 2008
Obama's Latest Spiritual Counselor,
Rev. James T. Meeks, Is A Homophobe
Ahhhhhh, how ironically rich...sweet, deliciously chocolaty, nougaty, creamy, caramel ironically rich!
The latest controversy surrounding
Just as the dust surrounding Sen. Barack Obama’s long-term association with controversial minister Rev. Jeremiah Wright has begun to settle comes new reports of the democratic presidential hopeful’s connection to another racially divisive public figure—the stridently homophobic Rev. James T. Meeks, an Illinois state senator who also serves as the pastor of Chicago’s 22,000 member strong Salem Baptist Church.
Described in a 2004 Chicago Sun Times article as someone Barack Obama regularly seeks out for “spiritual counsel”, James Meeks, who will serve as an Obama delegate at the 2008 Democratic convention in Denver, is a long-time political ally to the democratic frontrunner.
...Meeks himself served on Obama’s exploratory committee for the presidency and been listed on the Obama's campaign website as one of the senator’s ‘influential black supporters’, but his church choir was called on to raise their voices in praise at a rally the night Obama announced his run for the White House back in 2007.
Interestingly, the Chicago Sun Times has also reported that both Meeks and Obama share a history of substantial campaign contributions from indicted real estate magnate Tony Rezko.
In the course of July 5, 2006 attack, Rev. James Meeks ranted:
"We don't have slave masters. We got mayors. But they still the same white people who are presiding over systems where black people are not able, or to be educated."
"You got some preachers that are house niggers. You got some elected officials that are house niggers. And rather than them trying to break this up, they gonna fight you to protect this white man," Meeks said in a sermon tape[.]
Perhaps of even more concern than race-baiting diatribes like these is Rev. Meeks disturbing history of antagonism towards the LGBT community.
A spring 2007 newsletter from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) named Meeks one of the "10 leading black religious voices in the anti-gay movement". The newsletter cites him as both “a key member of Chicago's ‘Gatekeepers’ network, an interracial group of evangelical ministers who strive to erase the division between church and state” and “a stalwart anti-gay activist… [who]… has used his House of Hope mega-church to launch petition drives for the Illinois Family Institute (IFI), a major state-level ‘family values’ pressure group that lauded him last year for leading African Americans in ‘clearly understanding the threat of gay marriage.'”
The SPLC newsletter also noted that, "Meeks and the IFI are partnered with Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council and the Alliance Defense Fund, major anti-gay organizations of the Christian Right. They also are tightly allied with Americans for Truth, an Illinois group that said in a press release last year that ‘fighting AIDS without talking against homosexuality is like fighting lung cancer without talking against smoking.’"
On a more personal level, Meeks has reportedly blamed "Hollywood Jews for bringing us Brokeback Mountain" and actively campaigned to defeat SB3186, an Illinois LGBT non-discrimination bill, while serving in the Illinois state legislature alongside Obama.
But the question remains: At what point must a candidate for the highest office in the United States be held accountable for the small coterie of individuals who make up his or her inner circle and potentially bear influence on his interpretation of the constitution?
ACD News sums up the hypocrisy of Obama supporters:
It will be interesting to see how Obama's LGBT committee will attempt to diffuse the media blitz of this sad story. The Reverend Meeks' notorious homophobia is without question and Obama's buoyant pledge of allegiance to the anti-gay minister is unmistakable.
H/T: Leather Penguin
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