, the leading proponent of discrimination against gay people
in Arkansas, has announced a rally of preachers at the Capitol tomorrow to stand up against same-sex marriage
. Fronting the assembly — not coincidentally because the racial element was forecast by a reader on this blog several days ago — will be a black Baptist preacher from North Little Rock, Derick Easter
Opponents of marriage equality have often used opposition to marriage equality among black religious figures to encourage normally liberal black voters (who understand invidious discrimination) into their political cause. This tactic was critical in the narrow passage of a discriminatory marriage law in California, since struck down by the court.
the leader of gay oppression for the Family Council, distributes a news release that says this session is about love and the Bible. If you believe that ask Jerry or the preachers if they'll support a law that ends legal employment discrimination against gay people. Then get them to explain how legal discrimination is love.
Don't be misled by suggestions that Easter is representative of all black clergy. Judge Wendell Griffen,
a black Baptist pastor, happily married several of the same-sex couples who obtained licenses during their brief period of legality in Arkansas.
Want more guidance? Take it from U.S. Rep. John Lewis
, the civil rights giant, who just this week opposed an Obama judicial nomination from his home state. Reported Time:
In a statement issued Monday, Lewis said he opposed the nomination to the federal bench of Michael Boggs, who as a state lawmaker voted to pass a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage and to keep the Confederate insignia on the Georgia state flag. His record, said Lewis, is “in direct opposition to everything I have stood for during my career.”
Lewis has also said:
"I've heard the reasons for opposing civil marriage for same-sex couples. Cut through the distractions, and they stink of the same fear, hatred and intolerance I have known in racism and in bigotry."
John Lewis or the "Ecumenical Coalition of Faith Leaders of Arkansas"? I'll take John Lewis over anyone standing on his shoulders but acting as if they achieved that height solely on their own.
The group is, of course, free to stand on their "biblical principles," as their news release states. Pastor Easter need not, when marriage equality finally reaches Arkansas, perform such a union nor marry a man himself. I just don't want them stomping on my Constitution.