John McCain’s Talibangelist buddy Rod Parsley of the Ohio-based Center for Moral Clarity, regularly regurgitates homo-hate from the pulpit and holds the belief that women’s wombs should be under state control. He recently lashed out at progressive Pastor Dan Schultz of Street Prophets for holding — gasp — a pro-choice position.
On this side of the Atlantic, Rev. Schultz would be an obscure United Church of Christ pastor of a tiny congregation in rural Wisconsin if it were not for the power of the Internet and his own passion for new-media publicity. Under his pen name, pastordan, he has become perhaps one of the premier liberal Christian voices in the public arena (how liberal? Consider that he is just as likely to verbally trash Sojourners president Jim Wallis as he is more doctrinally correct Christian leaders like former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum and American Values president Gary Bauer).
Just how “out there” is pastordan? Consider this: when a Beliefnet columnist posed some questions Rev. Rick Warren could ask presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain on the question of abortion when they meet Aug. 16 at Warren’s Saddleback Civil Forum, Schultz exploded at the suggestion that Warren seek “common ground, moving the conversation beyond the question of the legality of abortion and move towards (sic) actually reducing the need for abortion by investing in programs that will reduce both unintended pregnancies and abortions.”
Oh, it gets better. More below the fold. Parsley continues his screed:
Here is pastordan’s reply, quoted at some length to preserve the context:
“This all sounds very nice, and I’m sure it’s well-intentioned. But it uses right-wing frames to build the discussion, then appeals to a center ground that’s actually skewed pretty badly.
“The only reason to refer to abortion ‘on demand’ is to depict it as unnecessary, an elective procedure like plastic surgery. We don’t speak of ‘heart catheterizations on demand,’ after all. Children demand things, and that sort of infantilization is what this language is about. Because God knows that women are never faced with moral and existential crises like men. They’re not capable of them.
“And why, precisely, do we ‘have a moral obligation to find common ground’? I suppose to help women and families ‘make other choices.’
“But think this through with me. On the one hand, there are people who want to preserve the right to bodily self-determination given to them by the law. On the other hand, there are people who are determined to take that right away. . .They are philosophically and doctrinally and politically and every other way imaginable opposed to abortion. Along with preservation of the ‘traditional family’ (read: patriarchal authority), opposition to abortion forms the center of their moral and political self.
“They are, in short, extremists.
“And we have to split the difference with them why?
“ . . .(T)he only way to make sense of the argument as he’s framed it is to assume that abortion is a moral bad, and that women need to be guided away from them (sic). . .
“The strategic mistake here is to assume that the conservative interest is in reducing abortion. It’s not: that’s only a positive result of the real interest, which is in regulating women’s sexuality.”
We see overheated, knee-jerk, amoral “reasoning” like this all the time from the rabid abortion lobby and other enemies of faith and freedom. What’s especially discouraging to us is that this drivel comes from an ordained Christian minister – a man who is supposedly committed to the truth of the Word of God. Instead, he’s become a tool of the most hysterical fringe of the death industry. Disgusting.
If you wonder will happen when the Body of Christ fully abandons a biblical worldview and embraces postmodern thought, consider pastordan Exhibit A.
Dan — welcome to the club of being attacked by untethered-from-reality, bible-beating moralists who earn their living fleecing the faithful by using the pulpit to scare them with stories of wanton women aborting their fetuses for sh*ts and giggles, and gangs of Homosexualists indoctrinating TEH CHILDRENZ into their orgy-filled Agenda.
The sorry truth is that Parsley and his radical brethren now have all this time on their hands to surf around reading blogs of small town pastors. That’s because the days of the Patriot Pastors blowing radical right pols such as failed Ohio gubernatorial candidate Ken Blackwell while filling their coffers are coming to a close
Think about it, Dan — in 2004, Parsley was riding high, filling his coffers as he helped to pass the onerous marriage amendment in Ohio, and helped George Bush take that state (along with Blackwell, whose role in suppressing the vote in Democratic districts as Secretary of State is well-documented). His church-based electoral organizing was held up as a model and it all came crashing down in 2006 with the loss of faith-based candidate Blackwell and the rejection of the Republican agenda at the polls.
And now Parsley’s probably sitting in his basement in his skivvies, clicking his mouse away with a bag of Cheetos on his lap, worrying about what Dan Schultz is thinking over at Street Prophets.
This attack on Dan by the megachurch pastor says a lot about the state of affairs of the religious right. Just look at Parsley’s support of John McCain. Rod has nowhere else to turn. The prospective nominee clearly can’t speak with any kind of authority on moral values (having dumped his first wife, disfigured in a car accident, for Cindy “Moneybags” McCain). In supporting McCain, Parsley had to overlook his much-publicized position on adultery, spelled out in Feb 2007 when the televangelist had a boner after a Michigan court ruled that anyone involved in an extramarital fling can be prosecuted for first-degree criminal sexual conduct.
“Adultery is a violation of biblical instruction as well as an offense against the other partner in what should be a sacred relationship. Furthermore, the breach of faith is disastrous to children – as well as the broader society,” said Pastor Rod Parsley. “Too many men and women are willing to surrender to passion and desires of the flesh without considering the repercussions of those fleeting moments of pleasure.”
…Adulterous behavior is just as wrong – just as much a sin – as lying, cheating, stealing and murder. Yet in 21st century America, there seems to be few consequences for a “harmless” fling on the side….Perhaps court systems across the nation should treat adultery for what it truly is: lying, cheating and stealing.
Oops. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
Let’s reminisce with a look at Parsley’s golden age of wingnuttery, here in rare form with a roundup of sweaty, juicy, spittle-laden performances…
“This so-called hate crimes legislation would preferred status to people based on entirely on who they choose as a sexual partner. What if they change their mind the next night!”
“Why is marriage under attack?!…Why is the family coming under such brutal attack from the forces of darkness…”
“I will lift my voice against THE AGENDA of America’s tortured and angry homosexual population…”
“In essence the Supreme Court of the United States on June 26, 2003, legalized the perverted act of sodomy. And we said nothing…”
“This is not about homosexual rights or lesbian rights…this is about THE DESTRUCTION of the VERY COVENANT (organ music rises up in the background as he waves his finger desperately) They are seeking to “redefine” marriage. In other words, they are intending to PERVERT God’s original intention!”
A friend of Pastor Dan, Bob at The Rix Mix, said this.
Mostly via the internet, Dan is becoming a more prominent voice on the Christian political left. How many prominent voices are there on the “religious” left compared to the religious right? Dan has no organization, no books to sell; he hasn’t used a 501(c)(3) tax exemption to build himself a little ol’ parsonage to go with Parsley’s church in the valley by the wildwood.
Pastor Dan mostly doesn’t give a crap about Rod Parsley. He’s better educated than Parsley & could handle him in a debate, tossing around Bible passages. But if the furnace in his church breaks, he calls the repairman. He performs the weddings, baptisms, & funerals for his congregation, welcoming them individually when they arrive & praying over them individually when they go. He empties the garbage cans at the chicken barbecue & works the kitchen at the pancake breakfast. Because he does much of his pastoral duties at home or across the parking lot at the church office, that makes him enough of stay-at-home dad to get the kids a lot. His lovely wife married him knowing this was a life he was being called to; she has her professions, social services & teaching. Having a lifestyle like Parsley’s, insulated from common lives & community, & ambitious for grand political influence, would be a sin for them. They’re spending the next two weeks with friends at a beach town in Delaware. Must be a bargain if they’re driving all the way there with two kids.