Monday, August 15, 2005

Justice Sunday II: Talkin' Sodomy, Baby-Killing, & Supremacist Judges (Updated)

A number of Nashville NOW members and Tennessee Guerilla Women staged a protest outside the 'We-Own-the-Golden-Tablet-of-Truth event that billed itself as Justice Sunday II, here in Nashville. Other NOW members and TGW joined hundreds of Tennesseans and yet more out-of-staters at counter events held on the other side of town.

Approximately 35 women and 4 men stood outside the Injustice Sunday II event to demonstrate opposition to intolerance and hatred in the guise of Christianity. It was hotter than hell, but the stifling heat seemed preferable to the fiery condemnation of judges, gays, and women that went on inside the Church.

White people in luxurious cars and SUVs streamed by us and made their way into the magnificent opulence that is Two Rivers Baptist Church.

Postmodern Christianity at its bleakest: the well-heeled shall rule the earth.

I didn’t catch sight of Phylis Schlafly or Tom Delay, and I’ll probably sleep better for it. Media people were crawling all over the place, asking us why we were there and taking our pictures. The rightwing came by with camera in hand. We snapped their pictures too.

One young woman held an ‘Outlaw Viagra, Not Abortion’ (a.k.a. slice men’s reproductive rights for a change) sign. Conservative blogger Bill Hobbs didn't get it. He posted a picture of her and commented: "There's always a man-hating poster at a left wing protest." I sent her the link. Hobbs blogged live and shared his thoughts about killing babies, killing kids and man-hating women, among other things.

A parade of cars with signs taped to their windows reading: “Indict Delay” kept driving by and honking at us. The Rev. Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State in Washington, D.C, dropped by to show his support. He spoke earlier to a large gathering at a counter event held in an African-American Church on the other side of town. Harry Knox of the Human Rights Campaign was also in town to speak to a crowd at Vanderbilt.

Blogging live, conservative Blake Wylie at Nashville Files reported: “’Homosexual sodomy’ seems to be the buzzword of the night.”

When Phyllis Schlafly spoke, Brittney at Nashville Is Talking observed that it was, “Odd to see a woman behind the pulpit in a Southern Baptist church.” Brittney added the buzzwords of "partial-birth abortion," and "supremacist judges" to "homosexual sodomy.”

The Washington Post noted similar themes:

“The Supreme Court has sanctioned "the right to kill unborn children" and opened the door to legalized "homosexual sodomy," declared Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, which co-sponsored "Justice Sunday II." Rejected Supreme Court nominee Robert H. Bork warned that the high court has defined homosexuality as "a constitutional right . . . and once homosexuality is defined as a constitutional right, there is nothing the states can do about it, nothing the people can do about it."

House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) said "activist courts" are imposing "state-sanctioned same-sex marriage" and "partial-birth abortion" and are "ridding the public square of any mention of our nation's religious heritage" in what amounts to "judicial supremacy, judicial autocracy."

[Zell] Miller criticized the court because it "removed prayer from our public schools . . . legalized the barbaric killing of unborn babies, and it is ready to discard like an outdated hula hoop the universal institution of marriage between a man and a woman."

Blogger, Chuck Carrie reports that the pastor of Two Rivers Baptist Church wrapped-up the evening "by declaring 'liberalism is dead' and directly attacking the Democratic Party."

The blogger gets the last word:

“It was a highly partisan moment that should warrant an IRS investigation into the church’s political activities. [T]hey used the Gospel teachings to preach a message of hate and intolerance. This group of people has no shame.“

Note: Jackson Miller also live blogged the event, but unfortunately his blog isn’t coming up for me.

UPDATE: Jackson Miller has some interesting commentary:

There has been much talk about hopes for making partial-birth-abortion illegal through the SCOTUS. There has been much talk about making abortion illegal through the SCOTUS. There has been much talk about making gay marriage (and possibly even sodomy) illegal through the SCOTUS. So, uh, what was that about activist judges?

On the school yard mentality of the Right:

Well, the conservative blogger bloc is surrounding me (all nice people, just unfortunate political leanings). They are all talking and laughing about the protesters outside. They are making claims like "protests are made up of people who are not gainfully employed". . . The conservative Blogger Bloc that is surrounding me is mostly talking about a cross-dressing protester. They are making fun and speculating yet they don't have the balls to talk to her. Note: Not all the bloggers are participating in the ridicule. Good for them!

The liberal blogger also provides a link to some surprisingly reasonable observations by a conservative blogger:

Tony Perkins comes back on to promote the "Save The Court" kit. It includes “Ten Commandment book covers” for school textbooks. Seriously. I couldn’t make this stuff up. Can you imagine going to school with “Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery” covering your Algebra textbook? Better to let the kids put SpongeBob Squarepants on their books and put the Ten Commandments in their hearts.

After thirty years as an American evangelical you’d think I’d be used to seeing an American flag in the church. But while I respect the symbol of our country, I’ve never been comfortable with an object that inspires patriotism sharing the stage with the symbol of our Savior’s sacrifice. So I feel a bit uneasy seeing the two flags flanking a cross with a plaster statue of the Ten Commandments entered in front, being used as the backdrop for the speakers.