Recently, a friend shared an article that quoted part-time pastor and full-time shill for Israel John Hagee as saying that women should be put in jail for calling out, “Oh god” when they’re knocking boots. I have to say I was ecstatic at this gift from comedy heaven; maybe not as thrilled as Jon Stewart was when the Donald announced he was running for president, but pretty damn happy. That ecstasy was short-lived, however; a friend pointed out that the post was on Newslo. You see, Newslo is a “hybrid News/Satire platform” that presents a “unique brand of entertainment and information.” That’s a nice way of saying they take an actual story and embellish it for comic effect. But, here’s the thing: you don’t have to do that. There are plenty of Christians out there saying things that are at least as crazy as the words Newslo put in Hagee’s mouth. Here are a few of the more…, let’s say, “interesting” ones:
- We’ll kick this list off with an oldie, but goodie: Pat Robertson. Pat, founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network and host of The 700 Club, is known for making outrageous comments. A quick rundown of his greatest hits includes such gems as “…those who are homosexual will die out because they don’t reproduce” and that people are gay because they were “attacked [or] molested by some authority figure, or else a magazine or something has confused them.” His latest, however, may just trump every other boneheaded statement he’s ever made: God let a 3-year-old child die because he/she could’ve grown up to be the next Hitler. Or, Stalin. Or, a serial killer. Well, that theology isn’t fucked up at all.
- Next up is Franklin Graham, who may be to me what Donald Trump is Jon Stewart, i.e. the gift that keeps on giving. On June 5th, we were treated to an anti-LGBTQ rant that called on Christians to boycott companies that are friendly to “the gays” and it appeared on Facebook. Then, just few days later, he told Washington Watch guest-host Craig James that full inclusion of LGBTQ people will “destroy our church in this country if (it) continues.” Hmm, I’d have to say straight Christians are doing a fine job destroying the church on their own.
- I don’t want to limit this list to preachers because there’s some really good stuff out there coming from lay people. Take the Jensens, from Canberra, Australia for instance. Nick and Sarah Jensen have announced that if same-sex marriage becomes legal in their country, they’re getting divorced. They’re rationale for this move? According to Nick, “The truth is, ‘marriage’ is simply too important. It is a sacred institution, ordained by God … Any attempt to change the definition of marriage by law is not something in which we are able to partake.” So, it sounds like they’re getting divorced to save marriage. That doesn’t even make as much sense as having sex to save the friendship.
- No list of crazy Christian statements could be considered complete without something from Michele Bachmann. Like Robertson, Bachmann has an impressive catalog of hits, but my personal favorite was when she claimed the nuclear treaty being hammered out with Iran would bring about the Rapture. On Jan Markell’s “End Times” radio show, she said, “We in our lifetimes potentially could see Jesus Christ returning to earth and the rapture of the church. We see the destruction, but this was a destruction that was foretold” and that, “We need to realize how close this clock is getting to the midnight hour.” Basically, Obama is the anti-Christ and he’s doing his damnedest to take over the world. Bachmann takes bat-shit crazy to a whole other level; if only she were more prolific. Oh well, a boy can dream, can’t he?
- Then, there’s the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer. Like Bachmann and Robertson, Fischer is no stranger to crazy-ass remarks. We are, after all, talking about the man who said you could “make a geographical connection between the flooding and the practice of the occult and witchcraft and the embrace of homosexuality“. So far, we haven’t had a comment about that favorite evangelical bugaboo, abortion, so let’s rectify that situation right now. Earlier this month, Fischer warned that we’re going to face “the destruction of this land through the shedding of blood in our streets” unless we outlaw abortion. Like, right now. I’m going to go out on a limb and say America is probably safe from divine retribution on this account as abortion has been legal for over 40 years and nothing has happened.
- Any sarcastic/satirical article worth its salt must have a good closer and, with that in mind, I saved the best for last. It seems that Arizona pastor Steven Anderson took time off from screaming about the “gay menace” to weigh in on the Holocaust and did something I never thought possible: he made his anti-LGBTQ statements seem almost sane. Now, you would think that the real controversy here would be his contention that Holocaust survivors are liars. And, yeah, it is. But, that’s not all; you see, in addition to denying that the Holocaust even happened, he said “Remember, Holocaust means whole burnt offering. You know what the real Holocaust is? The real burnt offering is going to be when all these Jews that don’t believe in Jesus Christ go to Hell for eternity. That’s the oven they ought to be worried about.” But, the most telling line in the whole ugly mess is this: “Now first of all let me just start out by saying this, no, I’m not a racist.” Guess what, Steve? If you have to tell us, “I’m not a racist” before saying whatever is on your mind, we all think there’s a pretty good possibility that you’re a racist.
Like I said back in the first paragraph of this article, who needs to make stuff up when all this is floating around the internet?