Title: Editorial: Toxic preachings highlight seeds of bigotry Credit: Jay Bennie Features Wednesday 5th January 2005 - 12:00pm1104879600 Article: 559 Rights
Leave it to the pathologically uninhibited American 'Pastor' Fred Phelps to articulate the prejudice and hatred which seeds the extreme anti-gay religious voices finding their echoes here in New Zealand. Phelps, who believes as do most anti-gay religious organisations that homosexuality is a “sin is so insidious by its nature, and those who commit such things so abominable by their nature, that it serves as the litmus test for a society” has responded to the horrific Asian tsunami tragedy in our backyard with his usual Christian “perspective.” It's easy to dismiss Phelps as an unsophisticated lunatic single voice on the other side of the world until considering that his hate-filled utterances are merely an exaggeration of what less-extreme religious bigots have as their own core beliefs. Try thinking of the following excerpts and, if you have the stomach for it, the contents of his website, as a kind of electron microscope making more visible by exaggeration and inference something that can't quite be seen embedded deeply at the core of religious anti-gay fundamentalism. Beliefs and passions embedded deeply below the surface of hate-filled preachings which, though they originate overseas in places like the USA (particularly, it seems, the USA), quietly infuse the fears, goals and strategies that in turn find their way to New Zealand to influence the visible and invisible campaigning for discrimination and vilification against glbt folk here. Amongst Phelps' bile-filled utterances in the wake of the tsunami are the following (slightly edited): “Filthy Swedes went to Thailand... to rape and sodomize little Thai boys... We sincerely hope and pray that all [the] Swedes are dead, their bodies bloated on the ground or in mass graves or floating at sea feeding sharks and fishes or in the bellies of thousands of crocodiles washed ashore by tsunamis. These filthy, faggot Swedes have a satanic, draconian law criminalizing Gospel preaching...” “America is awash in diseased fag feces   
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