Other Reactions to Rick Warren

A couple notable responses to Barack Obama picking Rick Warren to deliver his Inauguration invocation:

The Secular Coalition for America has a problem with Obama claiming that his will be an inauguration (and administration) of inclusivity: “… the choice of two Protestants to open and close the ceremony suggests otherwise.”

They’ve sent this letter to Obama:

… Your spokesperson has said that yours will be “the most inclusive, open, accessible inauguration in American history.” How is opening the program with one Protestant Christian and closing it with another inclusive? You yourself said it would include a wide range of viewpoints. Who on your inaugural dais will express the viewpoints of not only the tens of millions of nontheistic Americans, but that majority of citizens who believe there is now too much religious influence in our politics and government?

By choosing an intolerant religious leader to open your presidency, you are not creating change, but rather following the dismal tradition of your predecessor.

Sincerely,
Lori Lipman Brown
Director

John Hodgman, author of More Information Than You Require and correspondent on The Daily Show, has this to say about Warren (one of the better pieces I’ve seen about the whole debacle):

I have spent many mournful hours turning over the Rick Warren conundrum in my brain, and it all adds up to this: what makes Rick Warren a “moderate?”

HIS “FRIENDS” goatee?

HIS HAWAIIAN shirt?

THE FACT that he spoke at TED?

SOME have argued that it is his commitment to good works: his anti-hunger and anti-poverty initiatives. His work with AIDS and HIV patients. (Though some may call this the basic requirement of being a “Christian” in the first place).

SOME have argued as well that it is his willingness to reach out to those who do not agree with him. (Also known as “conversion”)

WHAT’S MORE: this not solely a question of being inclusive of different viewpoints. If Warren were merely a pro-life creationist, I would not be so bothered. It’s the question that Obama and Warren agree on that really troubles me.

BOTH WARREN AND OBAMA believe in a fallacy: that one can support equal rights for “everybody” (Warren) and for gay folks specifically (Obama), and yet not support a gay person having the same access as a straight person to the governmental special status known as “marriage.”

I HAVE CONFIDENCE that, in no short order, Prop 8 will be repealed, and the gay marriage debate will look as absurd at the miscegenation debates of the 20th century do now. I have confidence this will happen not because it is merely right, or because the electorate will suddenly love gayness, but because opposition to gay marriage has no logical foundation in a civil society that is premised on equality.

(CHURCHES can go ahead and ban it all they like. They have their own charters, and no obligation to logic.)

THOSE OF US, however, who foolishly refused to take Obama at his word when he told us he didn’t support gay marriage OVER AND OVER AGAIN must now take him at his deed. He really, really doesn’t want gays to get married. SRSLY.

LOOK: my gut tells me that Obama likes and respects gay people and wants them to thrive in this country. I think he is tolerant by nature, as his patience with Wright and his embrace of Warren shows.

BUT AFTER MCCLURKIN and now Warren, it is hard not to conclude that Barack Obama is somewhat tone deaf when it comes to gay issues. And at this point, if he is interested in convincing us otherwise (and I’m not presuming he is), it will take more than a few words or a second pastor or some other symbolic gesture. It will take deeds.*


  • http://newref.blogspot.com/ James
  • Aj

    That reminds me of Dennett’s TED talk in response to Warren’s idiotic talk, in which he says “I don’t have enough faith to be an atheist”, I kid you not, he’s that retarded. Dennett quotes his book “A Purpose Driven Life” in which Warren states that you need God to have meaning, purpose in life and to be good. So not only is he anti-gay, anti-abortion, anti-evolution, but on top of that he also by implication thinks that atheists can’t be good. Well done, Obama. Check out Dennett’s talk. It’s hilarious, he quotes that Noah had never seen rain because the earth was irrigated up.

    OT, Terry Prachett writes about a continent like this in “The Last Continent”, read it, it’s hilarious.

  • Ex Partiot

    Warren reminds of a pompus gas bag who has not missed to many meals at he expense of the idiots who write him checks

  • http://religiouscomics.net Jeff

    The concept of rick Warren gicing the inauguration invocation prompted me to make the following prediction in cartoon form.

  • Pseudonym

    You know, I really have to wonder if Obama sincerely believes that “marriage is only between a man and a woman” or not.

    This could actually be a Kay Hagan issue: to express the “right” opinion would be to distract from the issues that Obama feels are more important. The last thing he wants to do is open up a debate on same-sex marriage when there are so many more fundamental issues to address.

  • Harmonika Savingsbonds

    I want to give Obama the benefit of the doubt, but I know Xtians to be pigheaded about what their bible once said, and feel that he has entered into a lion’s den of deceit that will be his undoing. Xtianists so badly want their fantasy to be real, they’d be willing to create an apocolytic situation just in hopes that their Jesus would drop by.

    In my opinion, it is the overly religious that need to go BACK into their closet and keep that immature trash to themselves.

    FINE, Barack, we get it. You used the gay community to get elected. Watch how we cooperate with you now.


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