Friday, November 03, 2006

The Culture of the Evangelical Closet

Jeff Sharlet notices the same thing I was thinking about this:

[T]he story is bigger than Ted; statewide, he's one of the key forces behind two new anti-gay amendements. Nationwide, as president of the National Association of Evangelicals, he sets the political tone for the Christian conservative movement at an administrative level broader than the influence of better-known figures such as Jerry Falwell.

If the story is true, Ted's a hypocrite of the worst kind; then again, he's also another victim of the very closet over which he publicly stands guard, as are all the New Life church members he's led into it. That story may not make the mainstream media. Indeed, it seems unlikely that Ted's downfall will be reported with any more nuance than that of Mark Foley's political collapse. Sex, it seems, blinds the press to politics.
The rest of his post is also worth a look, particularly his repost of his Harper's article about Haggard from 2005. Note especially:
He moved the church to a strip mall. There was a bar, a liquor store, New Life Church, a massage parlor.
How . . . convenient.
His congregation spilled out and blocked the other businesses. He set up chairs in the alley. He strung up a banner: SIEGE THIS CITY FOR ME, signed JESUS.
OK, here I'm going to go all pedantic on you: "siege" is a noun. Use either "seize" or "besiege," not "siege." And these are the people who complain about education in this country?

Oh, yeah, and role models. Watch out for the role models.

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