Thursday, January 10, 2013

Obama and the Louie Giglio Controversy


President Obama has tapped Louie Giglio, pastor of Atlanta's Passion City Church, to deliver the benediction at his inauguration. Think Progress has found, not terribly shockingly, that the 54-year-old Giglio delivered an anti-gay sermon in the 1990s. You can read all the ugly details here. I say not terribly shockingly because even today Passion City describes itself as "conservative and evangelical," and in the 1990s, this was certainly not unusual, and isn't even today. I'm not excusing it, I'm just saying this seems sort of inevitable if Obama is going to pick a conservative evangelical. The question is why he does.
Whether this will cause the same uproar that Obama's selection of Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at his first inauguration remains to be seen, but already one can sense some the outcry brewing. But unlike with Warren, whose anti-gay comments were recent and pertained to the still-fresh Proposition 8 fight in his home state of California, Giglio's comments were unearthed from an archive of old sermons, and there hasn't been any evidence, so far, of anything more recent. What's more, since the Warren pick, Obama has established his bona fides on marriage equality, and has tapped Richard Blanco as the first openly gay inaugural poet. Obama's selection of Myrlie Evers-Williams to deliver the invocation marks the first time a non-clergyperson, and a woman, has been tapped for that honor. Nonetheless, questions remain about why he picks a participant like Giglio for these sorts of events. 
Read the rest here

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