At the same time Barack Obama is ushering a new conversation on gays and the black community and Govs. David Paterson and Deval Patrick are pioneers in equality ... the same old tired anti-gay black pastors continue to spew hate from the pews. The fight to enshrine discrimination in Florida's constitution gets another boost after a number of Tampa Bay's self-appointed black "leaders" announce their support for the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage ballot initiative in November. St. Petersburg Times:
The pastors had gathered at Beulah Baptist Institutional Church for a meeting with the High Impact Leadership Coalition, a national organization that seeks to organize churches and community leaders around moral issues. Wednesday's meeting was the first of five gatherings in Florida to mobilize minority pastors for Amendment 2.
The coalition also is holding similar forums for pastors in California and Arizona, where marriage amendments will appear on the ballot in November.
"We are not standing here against gays," Bishop Harry R. Jackson Jr. the coalition's leader and pastor of Hope Christian Center in Beltsville, Md., said at a news conference at the Tampa church. "We're standing simply to proclaim that marriage should be preserved."
Jackson is a well-known black anti-gay mega church pastor—Number 2 on Queerty's 20 Most Frightful Anti-Gay Activists—and his presence is almost mandatory in coalitions that organize black churches against gay rights. The St. Petersburg Times describes Jackson as a "black Democrat" but the headline-grabbing pastor was a major black Republican Bush supporter in '00 and '04. Jackson was one of the pinstriped patronage pastors who were major recipients of Bush's Faith-Baseed Initiatives. Maybe they never heard of Google.
A number of prominent Florida pastors and civil rights groups, such as the Florida NAACP, are opposed to Amendment 2. Let's hope they succeed.
Some Background ...
Jackson Named to "20 Most Frightful Anti-Gay Activists" [R20]
Anti-Gay Pastor Encourages Blacks to Oppose Federal Hate Crimes Law [R20]