We’re still on this Pastor Worley thing. Hopefully it will be over soon.
However, here are two clips that are interesting to watch back to back. In the first, Anderson Cooper interviews Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance, who strongly rebukes the hatred and genocidal words preached by Pastor Charles Worley of Maiden, North Carolina. It’s worth watching in its entirety, but this is an important quote:
In one fell swoop this angry minister managed to discredit from his pulpit both the Constitution of the United States and the compassion that we find in the bible, and additionally he did a very dangerous thing by planting seeds of hatred in sick minds that in the right circumstances can act on them and do the kind of violence that has no place in our world.
Now compare and contrast that with this local news footage where members of Worley’s Providence Road Baptist Church are interviewed, and remember the statement from Rev. Gaddy, involving “planting seeds of hatred in sick minds.”
Now, of course, we don’t know whether the people interviewed have “sick minds,” but that’s the point: we don’t know. We don’t know who is in earshot of this uninformed bigot, as he spews truly genocidal language against a minority group, from the pulpit. Regardless, here’s the end result, as David Badash explains:
Have no doubt: words like those from Pastor Worley, and his supporters, are contributing to the suicide deaths of our children.
Indeed. This is the cycle of spiritual bullying, perpetuated by those who hold the title of “reverend,” who command respect, and whose seeds of hatred grow in the hearts of their followers, and which eventually end up landing on vulnerable kids, thus becoming seeds of self-hatred. And all too often, those kids end up being news stories and statistics, all while the black hearts of the Religious Right maintain their insistence that they’re simply teaching the “good news” of “the Gospel.”
Who needs bad news when you’ve got “good news” like that?