An anti-LGBT Arizona pastor who opposes equality for women and LGBT people asserted this week that singer George Michael died as punishment for being a gay man.
In a Facebook post on Monday, Pastor Steven Anderson of the Faithful Word Baptist Church suggested that Michael was sent to hell for living in sin.
“George Michael, an open Sodomite, just died at age 53,” Anderson wrote. “That makes sense because being a Sodomite shaves about 20 years off your life expectancy, and the life expectancy in the USA for males is 76 years old.”
The posted concluded with a passage from the book of Psalm: “But thou, O God, shalt bring them down into the pit of destruction: bloody and deceitful men shall not live out half their days; but I will trust in thee.”
Politifact rated the life expectancy claim as false when it was made by a Virginia lawmaker in 2012.
According to Gay Star News, Anderson wasn’t the only fringe Christian to direct hate speech at the singer after his death. Westboro Baptist Church also declared that Michael’s death was punishment from God.
“#GeorgeMichael lived a life of proud sin/paid price for it,” the church tweeted. “Last Christmas Before Hell #Wham.”
— Westboro Baptist (@WBCSaysRepent) December 27, 2016