In August, Idaho’s Lordship Church landed on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s annual list of hate groups.
The label was decried by the church’s leaders, who denounced the SPLC as a “biased, liberal hate group” and said that their anti-Gay, Anti-Muslim, pro-gun, pro-homeschooling church was not that far outside mainstream Christianity. The subject was tackled by the local daily newspaper, The Statesman, which said the group seemed “less menacing” than other groups on the list and that while “most of Idaho’s hate groups proclaim racist or anti-Semitic views. Lordship Church is different.”
“How does a church like Lordship end up on the same list as groups like the KKK or Hammerskins, one of the biggest organizations of white supremacists in America?” asked reporter Sven Berg, discussing how it was “not unusual” for fundamentalists to criticize other faiths.
The group’s allies called the SPLC’s accounts on its activities “very inaccurate” “false information” and demanded a retraction from the Statesman for even suggesting they might have ties to extremists.
Well, another area paper, the Inlander, finally got around to reading the group’s sermons, and found positions traditionally associated with right-wing hate groups.
Pastor Warren Mark Campbell is virulently anti-gay, in way that seems similar to Fred Phelps. For example, as the Inlander reports, describing the book Heather has Two Mommies as “vomit into the mouths and the eyes of the American people.” Campbell also told stories of condemning gays on the streets and speaks of shutting down a gay pride parade in a nearby college town.
“We could shut down the homosexual-sodomite parade in Spokane, if the Christians would just simply turn out and stop that nonsense,” he said.
The church is also neo-Confederate, denouncing Lincoln as a Hitler-like figure who waged a “War of Northern Aggression” against Christians and repeated a common white supremacist falsehood that blacks fought for the south because, as Campbell said, “they loved their masters.”
Likewise, the pastor supports slavery.
“I don’t care if the entire world says slavery’s wrong,” he said. “If God says it’s right, and God allows for it, I’m going to allow for it.”
He is also a Holocaust denier.
“I’m not saying that Hitler didn’t kill Jews,” Campbell said in a sermon. “We’re saying the 6 million figure is absolute propaganda for the Zionists that try to control our thinking.”