Earning their millstone necklaces

Matthew 18: 5-6 (KJV): “Whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.”

First stop, North Carolina, where the religious right is crusading to pass Amendment One. Anti-gay discrimination is already part of state law, but Amendment One will make it part of the state’s constitution.

For a sense of the kind of people supporting this, meet Pastor Sean Harris of Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville. Berean Baptist, the church’s website says, was founded in 1967 “in reaction to the liberal influence in the Southern Baptist Convention.”

Pastor Harris’ sermon on Sunday commanded parents in his congregation to beat their children at the first sign of anything gay-ish. Here’s a summary from David Badash, who also posted audio from the sermon:

Pastor Sean Harris told parents they are “authorized,” and that he was “giving them a special dispensation” to attack their children. “Give them a good punch,” and “crack that wrist,” Harris told parents, if their four-year old boy, for example, “starts acting a little ‘girlish’.” Pastor Harris added that parents should tell their four-year olds to “man up, son, get that dress off you get outside and dig a ditch because that’s what boys do.”

… “Can I make it any clearer? Dads, the second you see that son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give them a good punch. OK? You’re not going to act like that — you were made by God to be a male and you’re going to be a male,” Pastor Harris tells his parishioners. …

“And when your daughter starts acting too ‘butch,’ you rein her in. And you say, ‘Oh no. Oh no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play ‘em, play ‘em to the glory of God, but sometimes you’re going to act like a girl and talk like a girl and talk like a girl, and smell like a girl, and that means you’re going to be beautiful, you’re going to be attractive, you’re going to dress yourself up’.”

Our second stop is in Ireland, where “offending one of these little ones” won’t get you in trouble with the church hierarchy, but offending the church hierarchy will.

In the Irish Times (via Bilgrimage), Fintan O’Toole writes that the “Vatican is loud on liberals, but silent on abuse.” O’Toole is not impressed with the Vatican’s newly efficient discipline when it comes to “liberal” Irish priests. Where was this remarkable efficiency when other priests were abusing children?

This is the institution that told us that it was unable to control child rapists in its ranks because it couldn’t just issue orders. Remember Cardinal Cahal Daly writing to the parents of a victim of the hideous abuser Brendan Smyth: “There have been complaints about this priest before, and once I had to speak to the superior about him. It would seem that there has been no improvement. I shall speak with the superior again.” Remember the stuff about how bishops were lords in their own dioceses and religious orders were their own kingdoms?

When priests were raping children, the institutional hierarchy was wringing its hands and pleading “what can we do?” The Vatican was very busy and very far away. But when a priest makes some mild suggestions that women might be entitled to equality, the church is suddenly an efficient police state that can whip that priest into line. The Vatican, which apparently couldn’t read any of the published material pointing to horrific abuse in church-run institutions, can pore over the Sunday World with a magnifying glass, looking for the minutest speck of heresy.

Matthew 18: 5-7 (KJV): “Woe unto the world because of offences, for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!”

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  • Magic_Cracker

    …and smell like a girl…

    Which, oddly enough, means NOT smelling like a girl (i.e., a human). These people have some fucking creepy-ass issues.

    “There have been complaints about this priest before, and once I had to speak to the superior about him. It would seem that there has been no improvement. I shall speak with the superior again.” 

    “There have been complaints” — plural — but “once…” — singular — “I had to speak to the superior…”  — sheeeit … that’s not even half-assed; it’s like, 1/64th-assed.

  • Lori

    I can’t think of a thing to say about Sean Harris that isn’t violent and profanity-filled, so I’m going to allow someone else to respond for me—Ten Responses to Man Up
    http://noseriouslywhatabouttehmenz.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/ten-responses-to-man-up/

    As for Pastor Harris wanting to police how I smell, I wish he’d try it.

  • VMink

    Thank you for sharing that, Lori.  My own response was trending towards the flatly unacceptable, and that helped a lot.

    It needs to be nailed to “Pastor” Harris’s church door.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    Incidentally, I am not a fan of “man up” myself, but I am happy to turn that around on people who are inclined to use it, such as my comments about smacking Pastor Harris about being bothered by gay people. 

    If they are going to wear their balls on their sleave, then I am going to grab them and twist them around until they say “uncle”. 

    Figuratively speaking, of course. 

  • Raj1point618

    As for Pastor Harris wanting to police how I smell, I wish he’d try it

    Please let me know if he ever plans to come over; I’ll be there with popcorn.

  • veejayem

    I’ll bring the wine.

  • Tricksterson

    Is it okay if I hear those responses in Gil Scott Heron’s voice?

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    Which, oddly enough, means NOT smelling like a girl (i.e., a human).

    *nods*

    “You need to cut your hair, style it, moisturise, put on makeup – but not so much that it looks like you’re wearing makeup – use deodorant, then perfume, and put on a nice dress… and then you’ll look like girls really look. You know: natural.”

    The other day, my brother-in-law expressed delight at the possibility of my sister piercing her ears “because then your ears will look normal!” Which is a less extreme version of the same sentiment.

  • Lori

     

    The other day, my brother-in-law expressed delight at the possibility of
    my sister piercing her ears “because then your ears will look normal!”
    Which is a less extreme version of the same sentiment.  

    I just flashed on a conversation I once had with a woman who said that uncircumcised men freak her out because she “only likes normal penises”.

    Separating “natural” from “the norm in my particular culture” can be difficult. More so for some folks than for others.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Separating “natural” from “the norm in my particular culture” can be difficult.

    Also separating ‘natural’, ‘normal’, and ‘the norm in my particular culture’ from ‘good’.

  • Jenny Islander

    I have read anecdotes–secondhand, grain of salt, etc.–about women whose boyfriends thought something was wrong with their breasts.  The men had grown up looking exclusively at pornography in which the women all had hard, semispherical, artificially inflated breasts.  So breasts that naturally went to the sides when a woman was lying down were abnormal–not only abnormal, but gross.

    And as a recently former breastfeeding mom, I could tell you a lot about how abnormal the simple act of feeding a baby its specially made food has become in many parts of the U.S.  The normal usage of breasts is for titillation and/or product sales.  Nursing babies in public is now seen by an alarming number of people as an exhibitionist, perverse act!  Because, you know, breasts = sex.  Sometimes–I suppose because breasts = sex and sex = dirty–breastfeeding is characterized as a dirty act analogous to public urination.

  • Vermic

    Countdown to Pastor Harris getting caught soliciting sex from 15-year-old boys starts now.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    I dunno. All that violent imagery sounds like repressed BD/SM to me. I wouldn’t rule out a domme or leather daddy instead. 

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    No. BDSM is based on informed and constantly-checked for consent and mutual respect. No real dom would ever approve of beating children. Or of any kind of abuse whatsoever. As for trying to force people to conform to one particular idea of sexuality and gender roles, BDSM culture has known for a very, very long time that that’s utterly despicable — and that it never works anyway.

    Real doms could teach Harris a thing or three, and it wouldn’t be by beating him because he would not consent to that, and real doms never do anything to anyone who doesn’t very clearly consent to it.

  • http://stealingcommas.blogspot.com/ chris the cynic

    get that dress off you get outside and dig a ditch because that’s what boys do.

    I have questions.

    Is digging ditches really what 4 year old boys do?

    If you’re telling the child to take off zir clothes shouldn’t there be some putting on clothes stage between that and the going outside?

    What if ze goes outside and digs the ditch while in the dress?  Ze’s given in on two of three demands and is even risking the precious dress for you, can you stop being an asshole then or do you have to keep on being a jerk to your child?

    Where did ze get the dress?  Was it from zir sister?  If it was aren’t you violating the sacred rites of personal property by trying to control what is done with sister’s stuff without so much as checking if sister signed off on this?

    Do boys really go outside that much, or do they tend to play inside?  When I’ve encountered children outside they have a strong tendency to be female.

    How can that be what boys do if you’ve identified this bedressed child as a boy and said child isn’t doing it?  Shouldn’t this be your, “Oh, I’d never been to Australia before but now that I have I am forced to admit that not all swans are white,” moment?

    And so on.

  • WingedBeast

    There’s always this thing about people trying to enforce what they view as “natural.”  It’s natural that boys play sports and curse and spit and look tough and never show weakness… except that, if all of this was so natural, you wouldn’t have to enforce it.  It would happen naturally.

    Similarly with girls wearing frilly things and makeup and whatnot.

    Here’s what’s natural.  Your child is going to be interested in what your child is going to be interested in.  Sometimes your child is going to be interested in things that are healthy to be interested in, such as music, science, mathematics, sports, arts, crafts.  Sometimes your child is going to be interested in unhealthy things, such as drugs, violence, manipulations, the charm displayed in romantic comedies.  But, whatever your child is naturally interested in is what your child is *naturally* interested in.

    An atheist saying this may lack credibility, but maybe God wants your son to be gay.  Certainly punishing your son for being in some way effeminate won’t stop him from being gay.  It will make it more likely that your son will eventually find friends who will, as an act of healthy friendship, beat the ever living feces out of you.

  • LMM22

    Here’s what’s natural.  Your child is going to be interested in what your child is going to be interested in….  But, whatever your child is naturally interested in is what your child is *naturally* interested in.

    While I get what you’re saying, I’m more than a little uncomfortable with the way it’s coming across, particularly since what people are interested in varies significantly between cultures and subcultures. The “natural interest” argument is what’s been used to justify sex ratios in fields such as child care and science, as well as to justify gender roles in societies. While I’m sure interests are to some extent dependent upon nature, nurture also plays a pretty important role — as well as the range of activities that are simply *available* to them. (I doubt most peasant children in medieval Europe were going to develop strong interests in mathematics, whether or not they had inherit talent.)

  • WingedBeast

    We can argue nature versus nature.  But, if your son is getting into girly things like fashion and decorating cakes, that’s what he’s into, whether or not you think that’s what boys are *supposed* to be into.

    I’m for understanding the difference between healthy and unhealthy interests.  But, there’s this idea, among the religious right, that they have to enforce what is natural upon their children.

  • Tricksterson

    Or just walk away from you and cost you a child.

  • Lori

    And so on. 

    For example, there are gay ditch diggers. Outside homophobe fantasy land forcing your son to dig dirt isn’t going to force him not to dig other guys.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    A friend of mine pointed out this Pastor Sean Harris on Facebook, and I will echo the comment that I made there: 

    In an astonishing coincidence, I happen to think that little boys (even adult one) ought to be hit too, at the first sign they display homophobia, and told to “man up” and deal with it.  Just think, if Pastor Harris’ parents had slapped him when he first made an anti-gay comment, he would have learned some discipline and would not have turned into the bigot he is today, and he and his congregation would have been the better for it. 

    Hell, even at his age, I think that a few disciplinary smacks would do him some good…

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    Hell, even at his age, I think that a few disciplinary smacks would do
    him some good. If it helps, those smacks can be with a rolled up
    magazine. “No, bad pastor! Bad! No sermon for you!”

    I so want to do this.

  • ReverendRef

    The only thing I have to say regarding Pastor Harris and the Vatican enforcement division (don’t know what else to call them) is this:

    There’s a special place in hell.

    And, no, I don’t say that lightly or flippantly.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    There’s a special place in hell.

    Is it the same place where they send child molesters and people who talk in the theater? 

  • ReverendRef

     Yeah . . . except THAT was funny.  This, not so much.

  • P J Evans

    Is it the same place where they send child molesters and people who talk in the theater?

    No, I think the enforcement division and Harris will end up in the next level down from the people who talk in theaters.

  • Tricksterson

    A place where they’re forced to wear pink feather boas, thongs and glittery eye makeup?

  • ReverendRef

     Oh my . . . now I’ve got a very scary image of James Dobson in a thong.

    Ewwwwww

  • Tricksterson

    I’m sorry.  (Hands ReverendRef a bottle of brain bleach)

  • Raj1point618

    teh loldalek sez, “DO NOT WANT! DOOO NOT WANT! DOOOO NOT WAAAAANT!

  • pharoute

    If the Catholic church had been caught running numbers instead of abusing kids they’d be facing RICO charges in par with Gotti

  • Matri

    If the Catholic church had been caught running numbers instead of abusing kids they’d be facing RICO charges in par with Gotti

    Except in order to even run numbers they would have to be taxed.

    And we all know how fiercely they protect their tax-free status.

  • Mary Kaye

    I can’t help feeling that at some horrific gut level these two stories are the same story:  that if you teach men that their power comes from domination, you shouldn’t be surprised when they rape, and specifically when they rape the weak.

     Starhawk writes in a couple of places, perhaps best in _Truth or Dare_, about how the power-and-no-feelings view of male sexuality is horrendous for the men who embody it as well as for gay men, women, children, trans people, and other potential victims.  (And wow, that list makes it clear that everyone is a potential victim.)  It doesn’t feed the heart.  It doesn’t give stability or security–how does a power-based relationship deal with the man’s old age, illness, even being laid off?  He has nowhere to go for comfort and all his allies suddenly turn into enemies if he shows weakness.  It cuts off the amazing emotional and spiritual power of male friendship, something fully capable of equaling female friendship–my husband and my coven-mate are a great example–if only it isn’t stomped into the ground at every turn.  It rules out many of the great human satisfactions–poetry is just one example.  It runs the risk of cutting the man off from the career or avocation that his nature best suits him for.  So many ruined chances for male ballet dancers, social workers, nurses….

    Kyriarchy just sucks.  It sucks worse and more obviously for those at the bottom, but it sucks profoundly at all levels.  The price of success is conformity to a dehumanizing ideal, and even if you’re lucky enough (gender, sexuality, looks, money, talent) to be able to conform and rise to the top, it *still* stunts your soul.

    I just want to take a moment to sing the praises of my husband, who is straight but unabashedly effeminate in many regards and does not buy into this shit.  I am so lucky.  He’s been my equal partner in every trial 20 years of marriage has thrown at us, *and* he looks great in a dress.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    What really amazes me is that this priest dude:

    1. Sees nothing wrong with four-year-olds doing hard labor.
    2. Counsels hitting them with intent to injure, possibly even break bones.

    How does he not see that that’s dangerous to the child?

  • Tricksterson

    Plus, who digs ditches now?  That’s what steam shavels and backhoes are for.  Plainly this is a man has who never left the 19th century and has no intention of doing so.

  • P J Evans

     With luck one of those gay kids will grow up and run a company that does pipeline construction work: trenchers, backhoes, cranes….

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    The idea that there are “manly” and “girly” (note the language, as well, it implicitly devalues women by relegating them to “girl” status) things in the first place is a rather pernicious piece of gender-essentialism.

    Why can more parents not try to just be happy that their child has found a fun pursuit that will give them hours of enjoyment even though it may mean cleaning up all the toys for the umpteenth time later on?

    Sidebar re: gender-essentialism: fiction isn’t exempt, as the kinds of books written by Tim LaHaye and coauthors often make naked appeals to this view of the world as part and parcel of their aiming their books at a conservative Christian audience. Abigail and Deborah Jordan being two noted examples.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I always liked* the article I read some time ago by some prominent homophobe or other which at lenght explained how a father should make his young son shower with him, and make sure that the boy looks at dad’s junk so that he will compare it to his own smaller equipment and “make the appropriate connections”.  And this was to *prevent* your son from turning gay.

    Because everyone knows, there’s no surer way to ensure a boy’s heterosexuality than forcing him to look at penises. 

    (* by which I mean “did not like”)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I facepalmed so hard when I read that. O.o

    People like that fellow are better off just not saying anything lest they prove themselves a fool rather than merely be thought as such.

  • Lori

    That would be arch homophobe, beater of small dogs and all around jackass James Dobson. All his parenting advice is horrible. I feel sorry for his children and for the children of everyone who read and followed his books.

    When my niece was small she had quite the mind of her own, bless her. Some nightmare at my brother & SIL’s church recommended Dobson’s book The Strong-willed Child to “help with that attitude”. (Because that wasn’t a nasty dig, at all.) Thank goodness that at that time they still had enough of their faculties that when they realized Dobson’s advice was to break the child’s will they tossed that stupid thing and never looked back. (Sadly, if the same thing happened today I think the outcome might be different. J will never know what a lucky escape she made.)

  • Tricksterson

    Yeah but you gotta admit, even among the vast field of his wretched ideas, that one stands out.

  • guest
  • Keulan

    Wow. I’m amazed that the Southern Baptist Convention was somehow too liberal for that church. And I certainly hope Sean Harris never has any kids, since he’s advocating beating children for not behaving in stereotypically masculine and feminine gender roles. What a despicable man.

  • Greenygal

    Horrifyingly, according to the church website, Harris already has a son (currently 18).  It’s to be sincerely hoped Harris didn’t practice what he’s preaching.

  • Keulan

    I feel sorry for that son, growing up with a father like that.

  • Tricksterson

    Oh I’m sure he did and I’m sure the son hates him while telling himself that he really loves him.

  • http://twitter.com/Rhysdux Rhysdux


     And I certainly hope Sean Harris never has any kids, since he’s advocating beating children for not behaving in stereotypically masculine and feminine gender roles. What a despicable man.

    He has one child–a son born in 1994. The young man  is now at Berean Baptist Academy…where his father is the chief administrator.  I feel deeply sorry for this kid.

  • Mary Kaye

    I am not a violent person; my martial art of choice is aikido, which is supposed to offer ways to stop someone without harming them.

    I am really tempted to make an exception for this pastor and anyone else who would advocate hitting my son as a response to him expressing his interests.  I think I know how to break an arm, and if he laid a hand on my son I’d give it a try.  (Though my son would probably be first in line, and who could blame him?  It’s self-defense.)

  • WingedBeast

    I will admit that I have a fantasy of what I would do when presented with someone who believes that enough physical violence will make a child avoid incorrect behavior.  I imagine explaining to a crowd that we can test this hypothesis by gathering people together to apply enough physical violence to make the individual, in this case the pastor, never think of harming the child ever again.

    I can predict two things about such an experiment.  1.  The experiment would prove the violence method a success for reasons that make it completely inappropriate to use on children.  2.  Prediction #1 would not signifigantly dampen the enthusiam of parents to carry out this experiment.

  • Mary Kaye

    I saw an essay out of, I think, Belgium or the Netherlands.  Standards for soft-core porn in the country required the labia minora not to be shown.  Many porn creators airbrushed them out.  An unexpected and unintended consequence was a sharp rise in the rate of labioplastic surgery–because people picked up the idea that the labia minora *shouldn’t* be visible when the legs aren’t spread, whereas in a large proportion of women they naturally are.

  • Kirala

    On behalf of the state of North Carolina, I apologize for the asinine bigotry we have hosted. I offer the hope that my high school is currently plastered with student posters protesting Amendment One and that even most of my conservative FB friends are protesting this amendment for the sake of the families it puts at risk.

    You know, I recall Jesus making a millstone argument for leading children astray. I don’t recall a prescribed solution for the kind of outright abuse Harris seems to be advocating. I doubt even Shepherd Book could find a polite description for the special hell that behavior merits.

  • Lori

     

    On behalf of the state of North Carolina, I apologize for the asinine bigotry we have hosted.  

    Sadly, it looks like a couple more need to be added  to the list.

    Did you know that the Constitution is synonymous with the Caucasian race and therefore protecting the Constitution from “activist judges” = protecting the Caucasian race? Apparently the author of Amendment 1 does.

    http://yesweeklyblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/racialized-remark-about-marriage.html

    But there’s nothing racial about using the term Caucasian, so it’s totally OK. Nothing to see here either.

  • Danielle Custer

    Wow, more reason to be proud I voted No.

  • Lori

    Sean Harris says he was just funnin’ guys. Nothing to get all worked up over. Because what’s more hilarious than joking about punching children, right?

    http://www.fayobserver.com/articles/2012/05/02/1174936?sac=fo.home

  • Vermic

    Oh, I get the joke now.  Ha ha … ha?

    From within the church, Harris said, “the response was, ‘Pastor, we know you didn’t mean that.’ ”
    “We know when you’re saying something seriously and when were supposed to just understand the intent and not the application,’ ” Harris said.

    See?  Not to be taken literally at all!  It’s just like a parable!   You’re only supposed to beat your kids figuratively if you catch them lingering too long at My Little Pony while channel-surfing.  Yes, discipline your four-year-olds harshly and with a terrible swiftness, so that they learn to associate even the slightest deviation from gender norms with punishment.  But not in a physical sense, because that would be wrong.  Good parents don’t break wrists, only spirits.

  • Zozo

    I can’t decide which is more repulsive to me: people who advocate child abuse, or people who don’t even have the courage of their child-abusing convictions.

  • Raj1point618
  • lowtechcyclist

    As it happens, I have a four year old son who loves putting on dresses and pretending to be a girl.  Maybe it’s just a passing phase (though he’s been doing this for a couple of years now), or maybe it isn’t.  Either way, he’s my son, he is what he is, and I love him with all of my heart.

    I want him to grow up to be a loving, caring, capable, responsible human being.  That matters.  Whether he chooses to wear dresses doesn’t matter.

    And if I ever have the misfortune to be spending a few hours in Fayetteville, NC, I’ll be sure to stop by and have some words with Pastor Harris.

  • BC

    Lori – I took that the Caucasian race is peculiarly susceptible to gayness, so not having Amendment 1 in place meant that all the Caucasians in North Carolina would turn gay and not reproduce.  At least, that’s where my logic led me when I read the article.  Otherwise, it was just gibberish.

  • Tricksterson

    His logic is not like our Earth logic.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Jon Stewart puts it very succinctly.

  • VMink

    <3 John Stewart.  That's an excellent response.  I imagine Romney had no answer.

  • PonyFanDerp

    See, now, you are all getting too upset over this. As a pastor, Harris speaks for God, and Jesus, and Heaven, and knows whats best for all Anericans, in all situations, at all times. So, clearly, when he talks about beating and abusing your children in either a physical manner or emotional, to get the gay (gayness? gayocity?) he preaches the will of Jesus Christ. You know, the long-haired, unemployed guy? hung out with hookers and poor people and minoriteis and advocated loving one’s neighbor, turning the other cheek and genreally NOT BENG A COLLOSAL F***ING DOUCHE-NOZZLE? That one. He clearly advocated child abuse and obviously Harris speaks for him.

    Right?

  • Lunch Meat

    “We know when you’re saying something seriously and when were supposed to just understand the intent and not the application,’ ” Harris said.

    So…you’re just supposed to intend to beat kids? You’re just supposed to think of QUILTBAG-ness as a beating-worthy offence, but you’re not actually supposed to apply it?

  • http://thatbeerguy.blogspot.com Chris Doggett

    So…you’re just supposed to intend to beat kids? You’re just supposed to think of QUILTBAG-ness as a beating-worthy offence, but you’re not actually supposed to apply it?

    “Fear will keep the local systems in line..”

    You don’t need to actually beat kids; just force them to sit in the pews while the minister tells parents that God himself would approve of beating them in certain circumstances. Fear alone can be quite damaging.

    The not-pology is particularly impressive in its evolution.

    First, the pastor posted an “important clarification” to his sermon, saying in part:

    ….my words, from Sunday morning’s sermon, about effeminate behavior in children are being completely taken out of context…
    I do NOT believe physical force is capable of fixing effeminate behavior or homosexual behavior. Parents should not punch babies or children…I would never advocate for such discipline or actions on behalf of a father or mother.

    Someone must have pointed out that there’s actual recordings of him explicitly advocating for parents to punch their children, and it’s directly in the context of claiming that such physical force will modify effeminate behavior. Because then Mr. Harris issued his not-pology, which contains the following:

    The purpose of this document is to issue an official statement of retraction of any and all words that suggest that child abuse is appropriate… I should not have said what I said about “cracking,” “punching,” and particular bias toward outward attraction of girls. Nor should I have used the words “special dispensation.”

    So he’s retracted his remarks, but will not apologize for the mindset that birthed them. He’s sorry… that someone noticed what he said. He’s sorry… he got caught. And to my perspective, he’s just plain sorry.

  • Lori

    And the inevitiable non-apology has been issued.

    From Sean Harris’ personal blog (which I’m not linking to because, ew):

    I do not apologize for the manner in which the Word of God articulates sexual immorality, including homosexuality and effeminacy, as a behavior that is an abomination to God. Nothing in this official statement of retraction should be perceived as an apology for the overarching intent and message of the sermon and the need to define marriage as one man and one woman and to maintain the gender distinctions that God created from the beginning when He made them male and female (Genesis 1). I recognize that there are those in the LGBT community who believe that their sexual behavior is not sin. I do not agree with them and this official retraction should not be misunderstood as an apology for the gospel of Jesus Christ or the Word of God. I do not apologize for the manner in which I emphasized the importance of one man and one woman getting married and staying married for the benefit of their children and society.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    the LGBT community
    – in Harris’s non-apology.

    QUILTBAG people have already won.

    Why?

    Because even an extremely bigoted person like Harris has to use the appellation the non-straight community uses for itself (or a variant, anyway) rather than the one that he probably would like to use (cf. “queer” or other rude words), because to use the word “queer” or otherwise would mark him out too openly as an asshole and therefore not worth listening to.

    It’s only a matter of time. He’s on the wrong side of history.

  • Andrew Ridgway

    one of the strongest arguments against god’s existence is that so many of those who act in his name go about unsmitten.

  • everstar

    If my choices really are between breaking my kid’s wrist and burning next to him in hell, I’m with Mark Twain every time.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    Pastor Sean makes me think of the Soldier from Team Fortress 2, only not funny.

    The Soldier:
    This is the problem with the youth of today: too much time inventing
    nonsense words, not enough time taking a bullet in the lung defending a
    hill. I don’t have to know what the hell twitters and texting and body
    sprays are to understand that they’re not the sort of thing men should
    be engaged in. Like conversations, or painting things that aren’t a
    house.

    The following is a short list of things men should be engaged in, at all times:

    1. Getting a haircut

    2. Yelling

    3. Digesting ribs

    4. Hill defense

    On the bright side, this probably means Pastor Sean doesn’t own a bazooka.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    Argh, HTML formatting fail on that last post, sorry.
    and TW on the previous link:  Silly but bloody CGI violence.

    Here’s The Soldier, on masculinity:

    This is the problem with the youth of today: too much time inventing
    nonsense words, not enough time taking a bullet in the lung defending a
    hill. I don’t have to know what the hell twitters and texting and body
    sprays are to understand that they’re not the sort of thing men should
    be engaged in. Like conversations, or painting things that aren’t a
    house.

    The following is a short list of things men should be engaged in, at all times:

    1. Getting a haircut

    2. Yelling

    3. Digesting ribs

    4. Hill defense


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