The selection of New Hampshire Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson for Sunday's event follows weeks of criticism from gay-rights groups over Obama's decision to have the Rev. Rick Warren give the invocation at his Jan. 20 inauguration.
Warren backed the ban on same-sex marriage that passed in his home state of California on the November ballot.
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Bishop Robinson is quoted as saying that "he doesn't believe Obama invited him in response to the Warren criticism but said his inclusion won't go unnoticed by the gay and lesbian community."
I can't definitively assess this statement one way or the other, but it is instructive to see that after so much revulsion that was expressed by LGBT people and allies at the Rick Warren invitation to the inaugural event, that Obama then saw fit to add Bishop Robinson to be part of his inauguration.
The more that ignorant and/or hateful professing Christian homophobes are confronted for their distortions and downright lies about the lives of LGBT people, and their mean-spirited attempts to deprive Gay people of the same civil rights that they, themselves, enjoy; who seek to impose their warped understandings of "Christianity" onto others and the society at large, the more likely it will be that they will soon lose their undeserved credibility. Then, Christianity will once again be seen as, to use C.S. Lewis' phrase, "a reasonable faith" that won't be as likely to offend decent, intelligent, and sensitive human beings which, all too often, has not been the case.
No Christian, clergy or not, seeks to deprive others of civil rights; spreads misinformation and lies about others; in any way condemns others; in any way seeks to impose their own reactionary understandings of the Bible onto others; in any way seeks to identify and justify their own preconceived prejudices with the Gospel of grace and love.
And all Christians, and all other decent people, must expose these wolves in sheep's clothing for the ignorant and/or hateful people that they are, so that even a "liberal" like Obama never has any conceivable excuse to elevate any clergy to prominence who preach the false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion as he did with Rick Warren.