Monday, July 23, 2007

Gay marriage and the black church

We just heard from the Rev. Reggie Longcrier of Hickory, North Carolina, who is destined to be one of those momentary stars made by televised "town hall" candidate fora in presidential campaign years. The good reverend caused the audience to erupt in applause when he challenged John Edwards, the former North Carolina senator, to explain why the candidate's "Baptist upbringing" offers adequate justification for being against gay marriage. Rev. Longcrier reminded the smooth-talking trial lawyer that the Bible was used to justify slavery and deny women the vote. What made that such a big deal? Rev. Longcrier is African-American, and the rap on the black church is always about how homophobic it is.

Your blogstress, errant Catholic that she is, has never bought that rap. By that, she doesn't mean that black churches don't have their share of homophobic leaders and followers; it's just no different there than among the members any other Christian church. Except that theirs aren't led by a confirmed bachelor who favors red Prada shoes and a charming Easter bonnet.

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