This is kind of ridiculous.
Rick Warren may occasionally sound more open-minded than Jerry Falwell, another plump Evangelical who once played a prominent role in U.S. politics. But he’s not. Gays and lesbians are angry that Barack Obama has honored Warren, but they shouldn’t be surprised. Obama has proved himself repeatedly to be a very tolerant, very rational-sounding sort of bigot. He is far too careful and measured a man to say anything about body parts fitting together or marriage being reserved for the nonpedophilic, but all the same, he opposes equality for gay people when it comes to the basic recognition of their relationships. He did throughout his campaign, one that featured appearances by Donnie McClurkin, a Christian entertainer who preaches that homosexuals can become heterosexuals.
My message to those who want to make statements like this: don’t pretend that the rest of the world sees things the way you do. Obama, as a politician, must necessarily see the world through the lens of power among other lenses. Rick Warren may be important as a figure to the LGBT community because he’s a homophobic bigot, but so are most Americans.
He happens to be a homophobic bigot with a great big following and lots of political power. Likewise, Donnie McClurkin was a gospel singer that happened to be well liked by a group of people who were also probably willing to give money to the Obama campaign, which is why he was chosen.
If you are angry about Warren, I understand. If you were angry about McClurkin, I understand. If you have been frustrated every time a man, who among other things, promoted anti-gay hatred, is included in some political event. What I ask you is to realize that the “among other things” can actually be a significant part of that person’s career.
I realize that there’s a battle to be waged against forces of hatred, but realize that there’s also a battle to be waged against agents of disease and fuelers of climate change. That those same forces can choose to direct their effort in any number of areas and so long as the conversation is the rights of non-heterosexuals to live lives free of hatred, they will be forces of hatred.
I don’t know Obama’s true views on gay rights. I don’t know what he sees in Warren. I don’t know what his aims are. But neither do you, and this presumption that Obama is a bigot simply because he’s willing to associate with people with strange ideas (remember that election with Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, and Rashid Khalidi?) does not mean he endorses those views.
In fact, I find it absurd to call Obama’s tendency to be ideologically tolerant bigoted. Wait and see what he actually does with his signing pen and his administrative agenda before you judge him as a person.
You cheapen your justified anger when you engage in inaccurate name-calling.