Friday, February 5, 2010

NPR November 24, 2009, radio broadcast TRANSCRIPT (by link) on the tie between The Family, an evangelical-fundamentalist group and Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Bill

by Rev. Steve Parelli, Executive Director of Other Sheep, with thanks to attendees of the RMN 2009 Convocation who notified me of the broadcast.

In a radio broadcast entitled "The Secret Political Reach of 'The Family" as heard on NPR Fresh Air from WHYY on November 24, 2009, host Terry Gross interviewed Jeff Sharlet about The Family and its connection to the Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill.

You can find the full transcript by clicking here.  The second half of the transcript addresses the Uganda-Family "kill-the-gays" connection in detail.

I'm not surprised that such a group exists and that they could make their way into certain susceptible evangelical minds.  I'm from the evangelical-fundamentalist faith tradition and have heard it said personally, in the late 1980s, from the mouth of an evangelical-fundamentalist pastor who was ordained within a good-standing, well recognized conservative Baptist denomination that "they [gays in the USA] should all be taken out and hung." And he was saying it blatantly to my face, on Sunday morning just prior to entering the pulpit to preach, knowing full well I was dealing with same-sex attractions. My presence discussed him.  His response was to literally wipe out all homosexuals.  Such unbarred evangelical hatred of homosexuals is likely to find a religious, Bible-quoting country like Uganda where it can be unleashed.

So much for the myth of exporting homosexuality as a Western idea (as if homosexuality in Africa never existed before colonialism came to Africa); instead, what we actually have is the exportation of Western evangelical-fundamentalist extremism that says "kill the gays."  I'm thinking my evangelical fellow-pastor who said "they should all be taken out and hung" would be very much at home in The Family, at least in The Family in Uganda where evangelial extremism is sanctioned by the government as true religion.

I am indebted to friends I made at the Reconciling Ministries Network Convocation in September, 2009, who notified me by email on December 1, 2009, that they had heard this broadcast and were bringing it to my attention.

Other Sheep is a sponsor of The American Prayer Hour

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