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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Hillary Clintons's Anti-Gay Supporters

Chris Crain:

Hillary's Donnie McClurkins

Bushcaption One week after the gay blogosphere went ballistic over Barack Obama's ties to an "ex-gay" gospel minister,
the Washington Blade has an interesting story about two prominent anti-gay black ministers who Hillary Clinton has embraced as supporters.

[Clinton supporters] said they’re generally unconcerned that anti-gay ministers Bishop Eddie Long and Rev. Harold Mayberry are supporting the campaign.

Long’s New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in suburban Atlanta once marched against gay marriage and hosts an “ex-gay” ministry. Mayberry has preached against homosexuality to his First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Oakland, Calif.

In interviews this week, Wilson and others said they were not concerned that Clinton had accepted a $1,000 donation from Long or that she recently thanked Mayberry for “fighting for civil rights and equality,” because she has not allowed either minister to speak for the campaign.

The Clinton backers tried to draw a distinction between Clinton accepting support from Long and Mayberry and Obama "handing a microphone" to "ex-gay" singer Donnie McClurkin. Actually it was the Obama campaign that picked McClurkin and the candidate chose not to disinvite him, but whatever.

Go read the whole thing. It's notable that the Human Rights Campaign isn't making a point of putting out a press release condemning Hillary Clinton for this.

There's also more from the Blade piece about the Obama rally with the anti-gay McClurkin:

Obama’s campaign last week indicated it would do that, but declined to pull McClurkin, a Pentecostal minister, from the event. Campaign officials instead added to the event Rev. Andy Sidden, a gay United Church of Christ minister.

Sidden, who offered the campaign event’s opening prayer, said he did not cross paths with McClurkin.

“I have yet to actually meet him,” Sidden told the Blade. “We were kept apart — or at least we were apart. And I wouldn’t know him if I saw him.”

McClurkin claims to be “ex-gay.” According to HRC, McClurkin in 2003 accused gay Americans of “trying to kill our children” and in 2002 called homosexuality a “curse.”

When he took the stage Sunday, McClurkin said, “I’m going to say something that’s going to get me in trouble,” and in his ensuing comments noted that “God delivered me from homosexuality.”

The unsolicited comments were not well received. Jim Pickett, a longtime Obama supporter and advocacy director at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, said he was “annoyed” by McClurkin’s remarks.

“That sits pretty badly with me,” he said. “There was no dialogue.”

Crain discusses some important distinctions between the Clinton and Obama campaigns:

There is an even more important distinction. Obama issued a forceful statement and gave a half-dozen interviews drawing sharp disagreements with McClurkin on gay issues. Clinton, on the other hand, has made absolutely no effort to distance herself or "speak our truth" to these anti-gay leaders.

A Clinton spokesperson told the Blade the candidate “has been very clear” she supports gay rights, which is entirely different than making clear the views of Long and Mayberry on gay issues are not the same as her own.

“But in campaigns, you can never expect all your supporters to agree with you 100 percent of the time,” said Jin Chon. “Hillary Clinton is a leader who will bring together people with differing opinions and have an honest and open dialogue to find common ground.”

Where is that "honest and open dialogue"? We saw it with Obama, in a joint letter issued by anti-gay black religious leaders and gay activists. There is no hint of it from the well-oiled Clinton campaign machine.


Charlotte said...

Check out our trailer on Gay Marriage. Produced to educate & defuse the controversy it has a way of opening closed minds & creates an interesting spin on the situation:

Jb1125 said...

Darrell Jackson appears in a Clinton campaign video at 1:41 :