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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Obama's Inaugeration Team Chooses Anti-Gay Rick Warren to Give Invocation

More here.

In another Donny McClurkin moment, magnified by the context of this historic inauguration, the Joint Inaugural Committee has chosen Prop 8 homophobe and noted religious nutcase Rick Warren of the Saddleback Church and Store™ to deliver the Benediction at his Inauguration.

Aretha Franklin and Dr. Rick Warren, an author and leader of the Saddleback Church, are among the select group of people who will participate in Barack Obama’s inaugural swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 20.

Dr. Warren, of the Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Cal., will deliver the invocation, followed by musical selections by Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, who sang “Someday We’ll All Be Free” and “Respect” at a concert for Bill Clinton in 1993, but not at the inaugural ceremony.

This is a horrific insult to the thousands of LGBT Americans who worked to elect Barack Obama president and the millions of LGBT Americans who voted for him.

Warren sounds like another charlatan in the vane of Mac Hammond.

A commenter over at Americablog points out:

This isn't something that Obama should be entirely blamed for. Look at the program, after all. According to the program, "The program participants were invited by the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and chosen by the Chairman, the Presidential-elect and the Vice President-elect. In addition to Senator Feinstein, the members of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies include: Senator Bob Bennett, Ranking Member of the Senate Rules Committee; Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid; Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi; House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer; and House Republican Leader John Boehner." Thus, while Obama is culpable for not objecting to the choice of Rick Warren, he's not alone in his guilt: the whole Democratic leadership is, too!

coolcatdaddy 35 minutes ago 1 point

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I've just sent a message to with my thoughts about the Warren mess and about how the Democratic Party, more generally, gives LGBTs the short stick.

I plan on Inauguration Day to change my registration from Democratic to Independent and plan to only vote in local elections until the Democrats do more than just give lip-service to LGBTs.

I can't participate in a process that doesn't represent me at all.

MNPundit 37 minutes ago 1 point

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A couple of points.

1) Rick Warren is Obama's friend. It's not a totally political stunt.

2) Gays went stronger for McCain this year, but about 10 points compared to Bush/Kerry. I believe they were the only group with a statistically significant drop in support for Obama compared to Kerry.

scioto 53 minutes ago 1 point

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Boycott the event Joe and how many people are going to notice or care?

However turn this into the biggest Prop 8 event and lots of people will probably notice. As I've posted on DKos, it might be a good idea to start a campaign to have people turn their backs when Warren speaks. Maybe hold signs too. The inauguration is going to have the world's attention, if we can get progressives to work together we could make a point about Warren and Prop H8 at the same time.

scottinsf 1 hour ago 1 point

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Let me preface by saying that I still have a lot of hope and confindence that Obama will be the best president in my lifetime and I am forever glad he won the election. Now, having said that....I'm so fucking let down by this. What an absolute slap in the face. It's obviously intentional and meant to send a message to all GLBT people. I suppose it's good that we see Obama's true colors and what he thinks of us early on. I thought he might be different than most democrats but it's now glaringly obvious that is not the case.

Shame on Obama and shame on anyone that tries making excuses for him.

Screw Rick Warren but 1 hour ago 1 point

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weren't you the same guys who were bitching just a couple of months ago about the McCain campaign's guilt-by-association tactics. If you believed then that sitting in Rev. Wright's church for 20 years or serving on the same board with William Ayers didn't make Obama an America hating terrorist; why now do you believe that Rick Warren saying a prayer at his inauguration makes Barack an anti-abortion, torture loving, Iran-invading homophobe? Fanaticism is just as ugly on the left as it is on the right. All I see here is a lot of heat and not a single ray of light. I thought we were smarter than the Redstate mob.

Screw Rick Warren but 32 minutes ago 1 point

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Lucky, you obviously haven't read everything else written here. Apparently according to the logic here not only is Barack a homophobe he's not even a progressive; forget the fact that he includes "gay" in every speech he makes where he talks about all Americans "black, white, gay, straight..." or that he's proposing 1 trillion dollars in stimulus spending. Which other candidate - not even president - before now has ever done that. I don't see anyone implying that he's now anti-abortion because of this but somehow he's anti-gay, even a homophobe. If the price that the gay community demands of its allies is that they agree with them 100% of the time and only hang out with people who only agree with them 100% of the time then you're going to be left with precious few allies and absolutely none than can help bridge divides and advance the cause of equality. At the risk of being stoned I'll quote Reagan, "My 90% friend is not my 10% enemy." This you're either with us or you're against us attitude didn't exactly work so well for George Bush, did it? Seems the only problem we have with tyranny is that we don't get to be the tyrant.

Mark 1 hour ago 1 point

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I disagree with pdxprobert's first half of the post about the far right. I don't think Obama is pandering to them as Rick Warren is not as popular among the core evangelicals as you might think. I also disagree with Gridlock's comment because having a prayer by a religious wacko is no reason to declare that the sky is falling. It isn't. Adults keep their wits about them and keep their eye on the real issues and a prayer by a homophobe isn't one of them. Repealing "Dont ask Dont tell" is one of them and marriage equality is another but you can't from A to Z without going through the rest of the letters first. We are much further along in our quest for equal rights than we think and trashing our allies (YES Obama is an ally) is not the way to get to B, C, D etc.

I agree with this. I'm more concerned about the policy that will come out of the Obama administration.

At the same time, John Aravosis has more. I do have a problem with giving a guy a platform and legitimacy who states that gays can be equated with incest perpetrators. I think the way to make this backfire, is to do a creative demonstration that will make Obama look bad for choosing this guy. So it can't be violent. Creative signs (without getting vulgar) - can make the point.

So I'm going back and forth on this one. What do you think?

Another commenter notes:

Update: Are you looking for someone to email to express your outrage? Well, a well-placed source just provided these email addresses: (Parag Mehta is Obama’s LGBT liaison in the transition team.)
You can also contact Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s office. She chaired the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and made the announcement.

CCaitlyn 2 hours ago 1 point

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You guys remind me of the McCain campaign... all tactics and no strategy. If all you're ever doing is reacting then there's no way you're going to win. Protesting Rick Warren is about as dumb as a dumb move can be because you're playing right into their hands. The Religious Right want to make this a fight about religion. That's the only way they win, by arguing that gay rights is an infringement on their religious rights. The fact is the Bible categorically says homosexuality is a sin, and you arguing that people that believe that should somehow renounce those believes or not agitate in support of those beliefs, they will tell you, is no different than you complaining about them telling you to stop being gay. That argument gets either side nowhere but stasis suits the RR perfectly because they're already where they want to be. The Bible also clearly endorses slavery. The reason most churches even today are still either predominantly white or predominantly black is because MLK never asked white people who used the Bible to justify their bigotry to stop believing what they believed, he never protested a white racist church, he made his protest to the government because the rights he was seeking we're not religious rights based on the eye of the beholder but civil rights enshrined in the constitution. Once again, railing against the RR is exactly what they want because it obfuscates the line between the Bible and the Constitution. Dumb move. Step away from the window and get a strategy.


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Andrew Dancer said...

Warren should be eliminated at the inauguration ceremony! All of the attention to religion is destroying the world peace and will harm Obama's presidency. We voted for change. CHANGE THE PREACHER!!!