Hatred, in Jesus’ Name

Not a mythical centaur, but, rather, a determined preacher and his horse.  Pastor Edward James protests marriage equality in Mississippi, 12 December 2014, comparing homosexuals to non-human animals outside a federal courthouse in Jackson.  (Image: WAPT News)

A question for Pastor Edward James: Just how much do you think about marrying a horse?

Emily Le Coz tries to explain for Reuters:

A Mississippi pastor brought a horse in a wedding dress to stand with him outside a federal courthouse on Friday in Jackson to protest a federal judge’s ruling, currently on hold, to overturn the socially conservative state’s ban on gay marriage.

The horse, complete with white flowers tucked into its harness and a bouquet at its feet, munched grass as the pastor, Edward James of Bertha Chapel Missionary Baptist Church, spoke and waved signs at passersby.

“Do you take this horse to be your unnatural wedded spouse to have and to hold?” one sign read.

Pastor James is protesting a ruling from U.S. District Court invalidating Mississippi’s heterosupremacist marriage law. Pretending to comprehend that his demonstration was somewhat silly, he justified himself with the usual excuse: “Although it’s ridiculous,” he told a local newspaper, “so is the same-sex marriage status”.

In the first place, reconciling his lack of faith in God is something Pastor James should probably carry out in private communion with God. Showing it off is not, by conventional understandings of Biblical guidance, among the most productive of paths. To put it lightly. You know, because he’s a Christian pastor, and therefore requires kid gloves; even when he’s punching with vice, he expects everyone else to turn the other cheek.

It would, then, be incredibly unfair to remind Pastor James of what Huey Newton said forty-four years ago:

Whatever your personal opinions and your insecurities about homosexuality and the various liberation movements among homosexuals and women (and I speak of the homosexuals and women as oppressed groups), we should try to unite with them in a revolutionary fashion. I say ” whatever your insecurities are” because as we very well know, sometimes our first instinct is to want to hit a homosexual in the mouth, and want a woman to be quiet. We want to hit a homosexual in the mouth because we are afraid that we might be homosexual; and we want to hit the women or shut her up because we are afraid that she might castrate us, or take the nuts that we might not have to start with ....

.... I do not remember our ever constituting any value that said that a revolutionary must say offensive things towards homosexuals, or that a revolutionary should make sure that women do not speak out about their own particular kind of oppression. As a matter of fact, it is just the opposite: we say that we recognize the women’s right to be free. We have not said much about the homosexual at all, but we must relate to the homosexual movement because it is a real thing. And I know through reading, and through my life experience and observations that homosexuals are not given freedom and liberty by anyone in the society. They might be the most oppresed people in the society.

And what made them homosexual? Perhaps it’s a phenomenon that I don’t understand entirely. Some people say that it is the decadence of capitalism. I don’t know if that is the case; I rather doubt it. But whatever the case is, we know that homosexuality is a fact that exists, and we must understand it in its purest form: that is, a person should have the freedom to use his body in whatever way he wants ....

.... We should be willing to discuss the insecurities that many people have about homosexuality. When I say “insecurities,” I mean the fear that they are some kind of threat to our manhood. I can understand this fear. Because of the long conditioning process which builds insecurity in the American male, homosexuality might produce certain hang-ups in us. I have hang-ups myself about male homosexuality. But on the other hand, I have no hang-up about female homosexuality. And that is a phenomenon in itself. I think it is probably because male homosexuality is a threat to me and female homosexuality is not.
We should be careful about using those terms that might turn our friends off. The terms “faggot” and “punk” should be deleted from our vocabulary, and especially we should not attach names normally designed for homosexuals to men who are enemies of the people, such as Nixon or Mitchell. Homosexuals are not enemies of the people.

What a world, what a world. And who knows? Maybe Pastor James just envies white supremacism, and instead of fighting injustice hopes through homophobia to secure a little piece of that power for himself?

And maybe things will work out that he actually will have his day before God, and the Lord will ask: You do realize that if I’d wanted to make them horses instead of gay people, I would have made them horses instead of gay people?

Then again, it wasn’t so long ago a federal judge retired in disgrace after comparing black people to animals; you know, the idea of interracial marriage as bestialism.

Of course, it probably isn’t fair to remind Pastor James of that episode, either.

Denigration and dehumanization, in Jesus’ name, amen.

____________________

Le Coz, Emily. “Mississippi pastor trots out horse in wedding dress to protest gay marriage”. Reuters. 12 December 2014.

Newton, Huey P. “The Women’s Liberation and Gay Liberation Movements”. 15 August 1970.

Lee, M. J. “Judge Richard Cebull apologizes to Obama”. Politico. 2 March 2012.

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