Abusive Pastor Calls Out and Humiliates Members of His Flock During Sermon

“I’m important. I’m somebody… I’m the real deal.”

If that sounds like a rapper boast, you haven’t been to Pastor Jim Standridge‘s church in Skiatook, Oklahoma. That’s how he talks.

But when Standridge gets mad, he utters a whole lot more than expressions of comically inflated self-regard.

The YouTube video below is a five-minute snippet from a recent Standridge sermon. It’s painful and funny at the same time, so much so that even the local TV news team, no doubt more accustomed to pastoral excesses than yours truly, thought it worthy of a little hang-on-a-minute coverage.

Watch the footage: you’ll see the good reverend extensively badgering and bullying two church members as if they were naughty schoolboys rather than grown men.

And he still draws cries of “Amen” and “Jesus!”

First up is a church member with, apparently, a spotty attendance record:

“Where have you been, Mr. Underwood?… What makes you think I’d marry you? You’re one of the sorriest church members I have. You’re not worth 15 cents. And you want me to marry you to her?” [points at church member's fiancée]

Then, temporarily realizing he’s there to promote godlike things like love and forgiveness, he urges “Mr. Underwood” to stand — “Stand up, big boy!” and offers him one of the most awkward hugs you’ll ever witness. “You can’t get this in any other church in town,” Standridge mutters as he walks away, and I reckon he’s right about that. (The church member’s written response is here.)

Next, the Oklahoma shepherd directs his wrath to the church’s video operator:

“We’re having trouble in the video room. There’s no one finer than young Cox back there. And he comes down here and spends hours in that thing… Brother Cox, you listening? Because Brother Cox, I can fix your attitude… And that video room ain’t gonna be a youth hangout… If you don’t know what you’re doing wrong, son, you don’t care about what I want to do right. [begins yellingBecause if you loved me, and you submitted to me, you’d know what my heart is and my message is, and you wouldn’t go about establishing your own kingdom in the video room.”

I’m not saying “young brother Cox” leaked the video, but if he did, that’s one little “kingdom” I’d happily pay homage to.

The church has lost members because of Standridge’s public ad hominem attacks (Underwood, for one, has left, saying he was “shocked and hurt”), but the man in the pulpit doesn’t care.

“I’m not here to grow the church, I’m here to grow people,” Standridge told the Fox 23 news channel.

It’s beyond me what kind of mindfucked milquetoast would keep coming back for this type of treatment, which resembles nothing so much as the typical behavior of a wife batterer, beating his spouse while telling her how much he loves her.

Maybe masochism is a big thing in Oklahoma?

About Terry Firma

Terry Firma, though born and Journalism-school-educated in Europe, has lived in the U.S. for the past 20-odd years. Stateside, his feature articles have been published in the New York Times, Reason, Rolling Stone, Playboy, and Wired. Terry is the founder and Main Mischief Maker of Moral Compass, a site that pokes fun at the delusional claim by people of faith that a belief in God equips them with superior moral standards.

  • David Mock

    I would literally stand up and tell him to go fuck himself.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      If you were in a congregation in the first place, you’d be incredibly unlikely to do that.

      • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

        Exactly. Yes, I think I would tell him off too, but then I’d never have gone to such a church, even when I was rather fundie in my beliefs and if I ever did I certainly wouldn’t have gone back. The chances of someone like me being there long enough for him to know my name is zero. The kind of people who have been there that long are not going to confront him that way.

      • David Mock

        True.

      • Divan Roets

        Wish I was there just so I could have told him to sod off.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          It’d be nice, but people don’t really do that. The pastor counts on them feeling like vulnerable visitors to someone else’s “house” whose community status is dependent on him. They wouldn’t be there if they didn’t feel that way. If an “outsider” came in and told him to sod off on their behalf, they would defend the pastor.

          • Divan Roets

            I agree with you somewhat, but at least if you could crap him out in front of everybody people like Mr.Underwood would then be more likely to walk out with you instead of speaking out about how shocked and hurt he was only after the service.

  • Gregory Peterson

    You ever notice that it’s religious conservatives and the sexually kinky which are into submission and dominance?

    • cipher

      There is far more sordidness beneath the thin veneer of “respectable” Christianity than most people realize – or want to.

      Why do you think they lose their collective mind every time someone suggests outlawing spanking?

      • Hat Stealer

        Because they’re fucked up people?

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      There’s no need to link them to us to insult them. Their version lacks safety or even informed consent. But perhaps I say too much.

      Edit: I might just be taking it too personally. Not sure about that yet, going to give that one some though and try to un-muddle my perspective.

      • Nate Frein

        No, it rubbed me the wrong way too.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Mind you, I get the issue with the religious repression there. There’s just a fine line. Take the “closeted homosexual pastor” meme that sprang out of several back-to-back scandals and became a running gag. I don’t agree with mocking or pitying every gay-hating pastor as a closeted homosexual, because I think that goes in the direction of mocking them because they’re allegedly gay, but a few specific such preachers act so blatant that I consider it almost certain. Much the same way, most of them aren’t clearly of a D/S bent from the limited info we have… but some individual worshippers give off really strong vibes as being repressed that way and causing harm because of it.

          I guess my issue is that the generally applied insults can feel like insults towards the other group, while specifically applied insults come across more as calling out hypocrisy and a lack of self-awareness that is actually dangerous to others. I’d love to hear other takes, though.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            It’s called “splash damage”, and you’re right, it’s not cool.

      • Michael

        Given that the sexually kinky tend to be liberals, it seems more like the conservative ones are doing it badly because they’re deep in denial about their sexualities and if they’d just lighten up a bit and find someone into that stuff then the world would be fixed.

        Just a random guess, but that preacher does seem kinda repressed.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Oh definitely! But they’re so far gone that they can’t even choose to simply “lighten up”. There’s a worldview change they have to make before they can even get into that stuff without doing so negatively. It’s really horrible how many people have been twisted so badly by religion that even after they get out of it and find out what they want, they can’t give it to themselves without feeling sick with guilt. It turns out though that the Internet is great for that. -_^

        • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

          LOL. Do you have any data to back that up? I’ve always been amazed how many kinksters are right-wingers politically even if they are “liberal” in their sex lives.

          • C.L. Honeycutt

            I think what Michael was saying (and this is the premise I went with when responding) is that more liberal people overall are in touch with their kinks, because of the effects of religious repression. It doesn’t have to be a huge difference to be a very visible one, though.

            • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

              Yeah, I’m just not sure that it’s true, or at least as true as you seem to think.

              • C.L. Honeycutt

                Gotcha, I see the argument now.

      • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

        I’m pretty sure no one in that congregation has a safe word.

        • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

          you two got it right, between the both of you. right wing kinksters come in two kinds. trust me, i’ve slept with lots of them. lots. anyway, they are sloppy closet cases filled with self loathing and doubt, or they are utter hypocrites for whom being so enhances the kink. “i can get away with it because i’m special” sort of thing. they tend to know what they’re doing. but the right wing in this country, including and esp the religious, are seriously into what used to be called kinky. so much so the entire “normal” mark on the sexual practice scale among american adults and sexually active people has been yanked way off in one direction.

          today, the kinkiest thing you can be is a boring married couple who has no-twist sex. vanilla is the new black.

  • smrnda

    I’ve always been surprised how much shit you can get religious people to eat willingly, though I’m guessing if you start the conditioning early enough they think it’s normal to be berated, humiliated and patronized by authority figures.

    From my exposure to Christian churches, anybody seeking to get married gets vetted pretty heavily, including lots of intrusive questions and mandatory ‘counseling’ which is really just some arrogant blowhard from the church telling you how marriage is *supposed to work* your own preferences being irrelevant. The only thing surprising about this is saying it in front of everybody, instead of in front of a smaller group.

    I’m sure that when you leave after this type of treatment, you’re the used as an object lesson as someone with a bad attitude who is too arrogant to listen to wise, godly people.

    • cipher

      I’m sure that when you leave after this type of treatment, you’re the
      used as an object lesson as someone with a bad attitude who is too
      arrogant to listen to wise, godly people.

      Precisely.

  • Lynn

    It’s easy enough to get sucked into abusive relationships where it’s just one person telling you things that make you doubt yourself. This guy has a congregation of people following him backing up his message that you’re the one who’s wrong.

    Some people may never get into an abusive relationship. Count yourselves lucky, because but for the right circumstances, there go you.

    • Philbert

      Well said. Hopefully we all understand that victims of domestic violence are not “mindfucked milquetoast”.

      I don’t know the story of all the congregation there but I’d wager most have been taught to fear the wrath of Yahweh from an early age.

    • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

      He humiliated the guy then hugged him and told him he loved him. That’s textbook abusive spouse behavior. Sick.

      • Tainda

        I have first hand knowledge of that shit and you are so correct!

        Kicked in the head over and over, put a gun in my face and then the next day get a card and a flower saying how much he loved me.

        What a crock!

    • Hat Stealer

      This is one of the fundamental tenants of Christianity. You are wrong. You are bad. You are worthless. You deserve what you get. And I’m the only one who’s here for you; I’m the only one who will accept you; all you must do is submit to me.

      It’s sick.

      • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

        Yeup. I’ll just leave this here…

      • Divan Roets

        This wipe of a priest seems to be developing a god complex, is he in some way becoming what he fears? (Get it? Man fearing God…)

    • rustygh

      You say so much nicer then I. Thank you. :)

  • GKD

    OK. Strange. And? The point? Being? What? I’ve known atheists who make him seem kind and meek by comparison. I’m reminded of that leaked video of Dan Savage ripping some student a new one for arguing with him about homosexuality. And? I mean, this isn’t an argument. It’s not even a point. This is just trying to stack a deck in a giant ad hominem universe. This is only relevant if all liberals, all gay rights supporters, all atheists, and all anyone we identify with is always, beautiful, wonderful, perfect, kind, loving, and caring. The minute someone can produce someone on my side like this, then it all becomes irrelevant, or proves more than I’m prepared to concede. And it does so because we said it does by suggesting something like this means anything other than a strange rant by someone we otherwise have no connection to.

    • jdm8

      Did Dan Savage call that person worthless? American Christianity seems to be about making homosexuals feel as worthless as possible, while trying to force them into a second class citizen status. Frankly, such an attitude is as bad as what brought about Jim Crow.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      It’s very sad that you are so desperate for talking points that you blind yourself to the difference between one person or a very small group being aggressive, obnoxious or hateful, and many people doing it with a large social structure backing them up and providing peer pressure and even legislation against their target.

      Sad, but hardly surprising. The arguments your ilk come up with always turn out to be based in nothing more than your little persecution complexes.

    • Fred

      ” I’ve known atheists who make him seem kind and meek by comparison.”

      Really? You go to atheists for spiritual guidance? That’s weird or you’re making a crummy comparison.

      • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

        The difference of course is that I would go to hear an atheist speaker knowing that I was free to agree or disagree with whatever he said. That goes for all of them. Look at the emotional blackmail this guy holds over the people he’s publicly insulting. Yes, they can go somewhere else but he has them convinced that if they leave they’ll go to hell. Ridiculous to most of us, but truly frightening for them.

    • GKD

      What’s very sad is the pathetic responses to my observation. Basically what we have is three responses saying nothing at all, but just rambling some form of ‘they’re all that way, and this means everything that shows it, but we’re not that way, so that means nothing, and if our guy does it, it’s not the same if he doesn’t use those exact words anyway because it’s all different since we’re not that way.’ That’s not reasoned argument. It’s half-baked bigotry, hoping for stupidity, based on willful ignorance and self-righteous arrogance all rolled into one. How disappointing. How typical, sadly enough. But how disappointing.

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        How sad that you couldn’t actually rebut anyone and are once again reduced to vague pissiness to feed your persecution complex. You know, the complex that causes you to see a pastor being criticized and assume that somehow that means YOU are being criticized. Pathetic weasel.

      • Goape

        Your observation is a straw man. This post simply reports on some horrible situation. It makes no assertion that “we were right about, well, whatever”. Only you jumped to that conclusion. So your posts are baseless; they are also ridiculous as they seem to require that no one ever bring to light anything bad perpetrated by a christian, or else they are simply “trying to stack a deck in a giant ad hominem universe”. Also, saying ‘a giant universe’ is redundant.

      • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ Tanner B James

        GKD thanks for pointing out that we are making pathetic responses, we will try harder. Thanks to you, our ramblings will become more concise and clear. Thanks for pointing out that some of us might be half baked bigots, I’m certain those individuals will take a long look at what they wrote and in the future not make that same mistake. You say we are typical, I am assuming you mean typical Atheists, well I’m sure we are going to try harder to be atypical in the future. And once again… Many of us here will not disappoint you in the future because it is the nature of an atheist to be skeptical, even of his own assertions. I am absolutely thrilled that you have chosen to become our critic because your harsh but often implicit criticisms will drive our community to think harder, rationalize clearer and make sound arguments. We all look forward to reading your future commentaries, knowing that the service you so freely provide will make us better and more intelligent people.

    • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

      Re: “I’ve known atheists who make him seem kind and meek by comparison.”

      Aha. So, you’re saying that, because some other people have said worse things, that makes what Pastor Standridge said all right? Are you sure you want to go with that?

      I have to assume it’s news to you, but this kind of thinking is known as “two wrongs make a right” reasoning. As such, it’s fallacious. Nothing that anyone else ever says or does, can logically constitute permission for Standridge to be abusive to his own flock. His words and behavior stands or falls on its own. No one else has anything to do with it.

      • GKD

        No, I’m saying it’s a pointless post. Basically it’s “hey look, I found a rotten [fill in the blank with this or that we're against], which proves we were right about, well, whatever. It’s a pointless argument. It means nothing. Accomplishes nothing. Proves nothing. And does nothing. At least if the idea is to present sound arguments and reasoned points about a subject. If not, then it probably says all there is to say from those defending it.

        • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

          Re: “It’s a pointless argument. It means nothing. Accomplishes nothing.”

          So you’re saying that pointing out that Christians behave badly is “pointless”? I thought being Christian made people better than they would be without it.

          I quite agree with you that there are plenty of Christians who misbehave, it happens all the time, and as such, it’s not news. The average Christian is no better behaved than the average non-Christian. But that said … Christians themselves beg to differ. They claim that morality follows from Christianity. With it, one can be moral; without it, one never can be.

          If this premise were true, then, it ought to be difficult for Christians to misbehave. They’re changed into better people by God and by their faith in that God, you see. This ought especially to be the case for a pastor who ought to have a much-better-than-average understanding of Christianity and its morals. It shouldn’t be in their nature to abuse people.

          That stories like this are common and not news, then, demonstrates that the premise of Christianity and morality marching in lockstep, is invalid. How, then, is it “pointless” to show that being Christian doesn’t make Christians better people than they would be if they weren’t Christians?

          If you accept that’s the case, and I do, this means the religion itself is useless, since it does nothing to improve society. In turn this casts its divine nature into doubt (since one would think a religion with a divine origin would, in fact, have the power to make its followers better people).

          How is this not worth hearing about?

        • Terry Firma

          Ha. Don’t visit my site, Moral Compass, GKD. It is filled with daily examples (some quite hilarious) of how religious people who pride themselves on being moral thanks to their belief in whatever deity they’ve picked, go out and rape little kids, literally rob their congregations, and commit murder and arson and theft and mutilation. You’d find it pointless. I find it illuminating. Also, funny. I’m sorry you won’t get it!

        • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

          Well, I don’t think this asshat is typical of anything. This is pretty rare. You used to be able to get away with stuff like this (say back in the 19th century). I’ve seen church records that included reports of people having to apologize to their church for playing cards and things like that. But that was a long time ago. If this was typical it wouldn’t be so noteworthy. It is worth pointing out those because it demonstrates what some preachers are allowed to get away with by their congregations.

        • smrnda

          By these standards, almost all communication is pointless. If you’d like to restrict all communication only to novel statements that actually prove something, I’d recommend skipping blogs and going only to mathematics conferences, where rigorous proofs of new theorems is all they talk about.

        • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ Tanner B James

          Your comments here do nothing either so what is your point? I’ll take that back your comments here make people, who reply to your comments, think. Each and every time you troll this blog, as one of your many aliases, you might catch one person off guard but for the most you become the catalyst for critical reading and thought. In a way, a distorted one, but none the less you press people into thinking about what they say and that in turn stimulates their desire to become better at rational thinking. You have certainly helped me. Your often ludicrous and insulting comments have actually created a desire in me to become a better debater. Even though I think that your methods are inept and will produce no results, i.e. a conversion, and despite my better judgment I have to admit you do us a great service.

    • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

      How stupid. I’m a huge Dan Savage fan. Yes, he can be rude to bigots. They deserve it. They know his stance and if they are going to take him on then they are going to get skewered. they came to hear him speak and knew he was gay and thought they’d best him? That’s like me challenging a tennis pro to a match. I’d get humiliated and ought to know that going in.

      • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

        this is so true. every athlete, debater, or student learns this pretty early on or gets whupped in an ugly public way. don’t even talk to me bout how Dan was “rude” to a heckler or winger. i would fully expect the same treatment if i were to go ask a liberally minded question at a right wing talk.

        • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

          The only example I can think of is when he told the little Bible Thumperettes that the Bible was full of a lot of shit that we all ignore. They walked out and then acted all butthurt. He confronted them with the reality of their own hypocrisy as “biblical literalists” and they didn’t liked it. I for one am glad he said it. Someone needed to.

    • Goape

      You’re saying it doesn’t matter that someone in a position of authority used his power over others to socially attack and alienate them. This seems an untenable assertion. It is always relevant when someone abuses authority. Just because christians don’t have a monopoly on this doesn’t make it irrelevant—hypocrisy (especially when generated from a false equivalence) cannot invalidate an argument. Don’t forget that Standridge is abusing an audience held captive by fear of devine retribution (something an atheist would find much more difficult).

    • tsara

      As far as I’m aware, Dan Savage is often rude and/or a bigoted asshat (esp. wrt. trans* and asexual people), but I don’t think he’s abusively manipulative the way the above pastor is.
      And the idea is that religion facilitates abuse, not that it’s the only vehicle for it.

      • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

        Oy. Dan has had trans and asexual people on his podcast to add to the knowledge and understanding of the listeners. I think his anti-trans reputation is undeserved and I’ve never heard him be rude about asexuals. he’s even had some callers and gave them what I thought was reasonable advice.

        • tsara

          Maybe he’s gotten better in the couple years since I last updated my opinion of him, or maybe I should have said ‘occasionally’ instead of ‘often’. I do know that he made me feel shitty about myself when I was first starting to identify as asexual, but I definitely haven’t seen a representative sample of his stuff.
          Also, fwiw, I meant for ‘rude’ to be at least a partially separate thing from ‘bigoted asshat’; generic rudeness isn’t something I consider to be much of a big deal.
          (also, I tend to think that everybody says bigoted shit now and then. No condemnation here, especially if he’s gotten better.)
          (I got really tired suddenly. I hope I’m making sense.)

          • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

            I think he’s gotten better, mostly because a few people contacted him and educated him. This is something that most people don’t understand so education is very important.

            • tsara

              Oh, that’s good news. :)

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              Has he gotten any better about hating on women? I know his focus is gay men, which makes sense given that he is a gay man, but he’s said some truly horrific things about women that I don’t know if he’s ever apologized for or learned better.

              • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                Could you give me an example? I’d say he’s far nicer to straight women than most straight people are to gays, but I can see how some women might find his “ewww icky” routine offensive.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  http://www2.orlandoweekly.com/columns/story.asp?id=11647 the second one is extremely insensitive and very much part of the rape-culture narrative.

                  http://www.womanist-musings.com/2010/11/dan-savage-attacks-rape-survivor-while.html A blog post tearing apart Dan Savage for, once again, being a fucktard to a rape survivor.

                  http://jezebel.com/5527151/-dan-savage Women are icky and gross and icky.

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  For the first two: I don’t fully agree with Dan, but you have to admit that there’s some room for disagreement. Not all sexual issues exist in either black or white. As for the last one. i thought it was funny and a play on the “ick” response gay people get from straight people all the time. Gay men don’t have much interest in that area. It doesn’t mean we hate women. We just don’t like y’all “that way”.

                  What you ignore is the many times Dan urges women to get out of bad relationships with men who are treating them badly. I’m not claiming he’s perfect or even that I always agree with him, but I don’t think the quotes quite live up to your descriptions of them.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  I do agree that the last one suffers mightily from a lack of context, and could very well be a crude joke. It’s still not cool. It’s still saying people are gross because of their genitalia. It’s still very hurtful to women who have been told, by their society and religion, that the presence of their vagina makes them icky and less-than and sinful. It’s still setting women up as less-good-than men because penis! Literally. Of course gay men don’t like women “that way”; that’s kind of the definition of gay man, after all. That doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to denigrate women or their sexual organs, though. I don’t like it when lesbians talk about penises as gross either, for what it’s worth, and for much the same reasons.

                  The first two I disagree with you on. A sleeping person cannot give consent. Presumed consent in a long-term relationship exists, but a “no” or inability to give a no should still stop sex, and sex without consent is still rape-y at the very best. That’s actually happened to me, by my husband. I was very upset, I told him why, and we didn’t break up over it (obviously), but that’s because he understood why I was upset and why he was wrong. He still likes to have sex with me when I’m asleep sometimes, so when I’m interested I tell him the night before that he can do that in the morning if he wants. If it kept happening, though, when I didn’t want to? I’d be gone. Respect for my self and my body is a requirement for the men in my life.

                  As for the center example- there is nothing, absolutely nothing, that excuses making fun of a rape survivor for her PTSD and sexual dysfunction. Nothing. There is no room for disagreement on that.

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  I’m not going to defend something someone else wrote when it wasn’t something I would have said myself. As for Lesbians, I’m find with them not respecting my junk. The feeling is mutual and personally I’d think it was funny so long as they were clever about it. Otherwise I don’t care.

                  I realize that women take a lot of crap that men don’t. I worked as a an admin in between singing work and I saw that women had to take a lot of crap that no one would dare put on me. (I’m 6’0 tall and rather beefy.) At the same time, you can’t walk around in a state where your self esteem is dependent on what strangers think about you. I know it’s hard to get to the point where you are selective about whose opinion matters to you, but it is something that we can all do. So what if some guy who you’re never going to sleep with anyway thinks your private parts are icky. What matters is if YOU do and maybe someone you are going to be intimate with. Everyone else? Doesn’t matter. Don’t give other people that power. It is your power. Don’t give it away.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  I don’t give a shit what Dan Savage thinks about me. I’ve never met him, he’s never met me, and honestly we probably never will meet. I give a shit that he called all women, everywhere, gross and icky. My self-esteem isn’t hurt one bit. I am, instead, angry. I am furious. I am shocked that someone who “gets it” on what it’s like to be marginalized and hurt for who you are would turn around and do it to another marginalized group. I expect that crap from a lot of people, but it actually is more infuriating coming from someone who ought to know better.

                  So no, don’t tell me “don’t give other people power over you”. Really? Let’s turn that around. Why does it bother you when the American Family Association calls you perverted and gross and messed up in the head? Why are you giving them that power over you? So what if some guy you’re never going to sleep with thinks you’re gross? What matters is if YOU do and maybe someone you are going to be intimate with. Everyone else? Doesn’t matter. Don’t give other people that power. It is your power. Don’t give it away.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  “Why are you giving them that power over you? So what if some guy you’re never going to sleep with thinks you’re gross? What matters is if YOU do and maybe someone you are going to be intimate with. Everyone else? Doesn’t matter. Don’t give other people that power. It is your power. Don’t give it away.”

                  Said every adult, EVER, to the kid who’s being tortured…

                  Yeah, I’m so sure I’m “letting it bother me” when my tires are deliberately deflated. I’m “giving them power” every time something went missing from my backpack.

                  Fuck that — where’s the accountability for the assholes doing those things to me?!

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  Precisely.

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  Torture and theft are both criminal offenses. Saying something is icky is not. There’s a huge difference. It does no one any good to run to the most ridiculous strawman argument.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  You really don’t get it.

                  I was told to “stop letting them get to me” when my shit was fucked with on a daily basis.

                  This happened in REAL LIFE.

                  NOTHING WAS DONE to hold these assholes accountable for their actions!

                  How is that a fucking strawman?

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  That’s terrible, but not at all relevant to what we are discussing. Dan Savage writes a column that appears in weekly free newspapers and has a podcast. He’s not harrassing anyone. One can avoid his media appearances as easily as I avoid watching the 700 Club.

                  I’m sorry that no one held people who harassed you accountable. That’s not at all what I was talking about and I think you know that. Hence, the strawman.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Whatever, dude — you just keep thinking that.

                • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

                  I don’t care what AFA thinks about me. Or any of the other Teavangelical bigots. If I got butthurt every time I read something awful one of those asshats said about gay people I’d be a basket case. I DO care when they interfere with my rights. That’s my problem with them. Otherwise it’s none of my business what they believe or what they think they imaginary deity tells them.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  They only interfere in your rights because they believe those things. They live(d) in an environment where your rights were worth less because theirs was the dominant view for a long time.

                  Well, Dan Savage’s views are still the dominant ones in many ways, and women’s rights are still worth less than men’s because of it. That’s why what he says matters; he’s a spokesperson (and a damned good one) for gay men. If even he is convinced women are worth less and buys into the rape culture narrative, he’ll be seen as a more credible spokesperson against feminism and true equality for not having any skin in the game, so to speak. He makes things worse than people like the AFA precisely because he fights against them on so many things.

                  Basically, inalienable rights my ass. They’re only inalienable after you fight to get them. Dan Savage, by any rational measure, should be an ally, and the fact that he’s not is both confusing and harmful to the project of actually extending those rights to everyone.

    • rustygh

      GKD, You are full of it. You say things that don’t compare.
      You’re just brainwashing yourself.

    • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ Tanner B James

      What you want to hear or read is one of us getting pissed off enough by your irrelevant trolling tactics to make a threat of violence towards you. Because everybody here doesn’t want Atheism to be seen as hurtful or hateful nobody is going to justify your cause. You sit there at your keyboard protected by the Internet, you can say what you want without the fear of consequence. Yet there is one consequence you haven’t considered. One by, what and who you represent, will always elude you. One that, as long as you hold your assertion, will never illuminate your mind and will forever stifle your freedom. You will never make this consideration because you lack depth. Your feeble little uneducated mind can never even begin to comprehend Atheism. And that is a good thing for Atheism has little patience for willful ignorance.

      How is that for making an ad hominem?

  • cipher

    It’s beyond me what kind of mindfucked milquetoast would keep coming
    back for this type of treatment, which resembles nothing so much as the
    typical behavior of a wife batterer, beating his spouse while telling
    her how much he loves her.

    Yep.

    Maybe masochism is a big thing in Oklahoma?

    And yep.

  • Rain

    He might lighten up on the suits a little. It’s gotta be a million degrees in that thing. No wonder he’s so cranky.

  • blackwolf

    The man is not as sane as he could be.

  • suzeb1964

    He’s a “real deal” alright. A real asshole.

  • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

    Okay, I laughed during that. Does that make me a bad person?

    Yes, he’s awful. I can’t imagine why anyone attends a church like that. Except that some people have been taught from birth that constant guilt and shame is a good way to live your life. Even if you haven’t done anything wrong. They’ve been manipulated by crapweasels like this for as long as they can remember and they can’t imagine leaving.

    I will share something I learned in the theater, though. You do not f*** with the crew. From what I can see here, whoever was working in the video room was doing a pretty good job. Good tech people are hard to find, especially for nonprofits and anyone who treats them like this is a narcissistic moron. Yes, I’ve met them. But the first rule of the theater (at least as I was taught in my first union show) was to respect the crew. Of course for this guy it’s all about him. I hope everyone in that crew up and quit. I kind of doubt it but maybe not everyone there is emotionally abused enough to keep living in what is basically battered spouse syndrome.

  • A3Kr0n

    I bet he’s just mad because he doesn’t have a helicopter.

  • doctor_robot

    someone needs a bj.

    • aaa

      I do!

  • JJJJJ

    And people voluntarily and willing subject themselves to such lunatic nonsense. Sad, so very sad.

    My response to pretty much everything he said would be a resounding “FUCK YOU, you little pompous ass!”

  • rustygh

    What’s sad is the amount of low life non educated people we have that follow clowns like this!

  • Christina

    When I was a teen, we had a pastor like this. He would pick people out of the congregation and badger them, saying things like “I was going to preach about so-and-so today, but God’s been pressing me to talk about this instead. Someone in the audience today needs to hear this!”. I often suspected some of his daughters were reporting church gossip to him because he always seemed to know who was doing what. He would berate his grown kids if they missed church. Once, one of his daughters and her husband walked out during a sermon because of it.

  • DoctorDJ

    “Maybe masochism is a big thing in Oklahoma?”
    That would explain a lot. They elected this “person” to public office 9 times…
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/publiccatholic/

    I don’t blame Pastor Big Jim here. He’s just being a dick like many gawd-annoited know-it-alls. I blame the idiots sitting in the pews, taking that abuse.

    • baal

      “”Maybe masochism is a big thing in Oklahoma?”"
      I would have used, “culturally broken” myself.

  • Sue Blue

    I think it would be hilarious to infiltrate his congregation, wait until he’s well into his harangue, then as a group stand up and tell him, “Go fuck yourself, you narcissistic douchenozzle! And your little God, too!”

    Then laugh uproariously as he gets all apoplectic.

  • sbagg88

    I’ll bet it is a joy to be married to this guy.

  • closetatheist

    Napoleon complex? not based on his outer appearance but on the fact that he’s a small-minded self-centered dick who feels he doesn’t get the amount of attention or praise he deserves? The whole time he shamelessly referred to things that HE did for everyone there – he didn’t even pretend to attribute the “positive” changes to the sky fairy. He’s no different than a cranky, delusional old man who sits on his front porch and berates passersby for their imagined offenses.

    • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

      It’s the behavior of a cult leader.

      I’ve been involved with a wide number of Christian and Jewish congregations over the years and I’ve never seen anything like this. I have heard of such things, but never witnessed it myself.

      I’m serious about the cult leader behavior. I’m sure there are some skeletons in that closet. That type is always up to no good.

  • Runt

    They say rape is about power. I guess preaching is about power, too.

  • Kristen

    I would love to show up in his congregation rocking some passive aggressive cleavage.

  • Trickster Goddess

    Reminds of back when I was doing community theatre. One night during an improv show, one of the actors on the stage threw a fit and started criticizing and abusing the lighting operator. The lighting technician’s response was to kill all the lights in the theatre and leave the actor in pitch darkness on the stage until he publicly apologized.

  • Tainda

    “mindfucked milquetoast”

    Terry, you are quickly becoming one of my favorite writers lol

  • Crazy Russian

    I am an organist at a church that used to have a bit of an asshole for a pastor. That guy did many things, including browbeating the congregation, excommunicating people he personally disliked, demanding overall obedience short of outright worship, pushing politics, and so on. Cross him, and he would make your life hell. One thing he never did, though, is insult the organist. Smart man, he would have to put some effort towards finding a replacement in a small town like that. This guy, however, is an idiot. Growing church or people – it’s a business, like it or not, and if you don’t have staff to make it happen, you will go down. I wish him to learn his lesson as quickly as possible.

  • Scout

    I noticed that the members of the congregation basically sat there with their heads down, like kids in a classroom trying not to catch the eye of an irate teacher. I imagine after the service, the lucky ones just scattered, glad that they didn’t catch this dick-wad’s eye. I bet they can’t wait to come back every Sunday!

  • Mario Strada

    Does anyone suspect that he may have been a bit drunk during the sermon?

  • Daniel Brown

    “There’s no one finer than young Cox back there.”

    Really? Young Cox? Back there? Are we sure this isn’t Tobias Fünke talking?

  • kk

    You would be surprised by what “turns people on”. It would not shock me at all if he had more faithful attendees next week. Sad, but true.

  • Robster

    Hmmm, Bit of a worry a priest/rabbi/minister/mulla/pope/cardinal/bishop etc. talkng about cox.

  • spartyman

    I think the word asshole fits quite well.

  • Rusty Wimberly

    Here is the Facebook page of this pastor’s church. Might want to go over there and say hello! https://www.facebook.com/pages/IBC-Skiatook/274144142703861

  • victim advocate

    Go to Mt Ararat in Pittsburgh and you will experience the same thing. William H Curtis


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