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Ann Curry to Rick Warren: ‘Are You Homophobic?’

Posted on Dec 18, 2008
Ann Curry

The news that Pastor Rick Warren, who opposes gay marriage, will give the invocation at President-elect Barack Obama’s inauguration caused many gay Americans to take offense. NBC’s Ann Curry point-blanked Warren about his politics in Friday’s edition of “Dateline NBC.”



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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, December 21, 2008 at 8:42 am Link to this comment

re: KDelphi

So it becomes apparent that organized religion has nothing to do with spirituality. President-elect Obama thinks he is being soulful by cozying up to mean-spirited cracker theology promoted by Rick Warren and that ilk. Now that is tragic but obviously hilariously funny! I guess the soul of a politician is that they must be a continuous expander of their political voter base. Good luck with that Barry!

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By KDelphi, December 21, 2008 at 3:27 am Link to this comment

beerdr—skol again! Your right to freedom is mine—they are intertwined—I am not trying to be “past it” (lol—whatever that is). I just know that we will reap what we sow. That is not a religious statement. It is a karmic statement. (I had to take catechism.)

Tony—What do you mean that you are “past it”? You are more highly evolved? Is everone’s view ok, then?The conservatives that Team Obama seems to be buddying up to, do not feel that way at all. They think that you SHOULD go to church. They think that we are a “christian nation”.

Are you born again? If not, according to Warren, you wil go to hell! If you are a true Catholic , you will go to hell if you use birth control. If you are mormon you caan have many wives.

Warren is also anti-choice…what is Obama thinking?

Yes, you are free to believe whatever you like. You are not free to use my govt funds to promote them. It is for the protection of religious and other beliefs also!
When any one religion tries to subvert the constituution , unless you want to amend it, you are treading on thin ice, my friend.

I do not care about religion! I just want it to stay in the house of religion—church, Temple, Mosque. Stay out of our govt instituions, our schools (unless private) and, most of all, our homes and bedrooms.

It is, quite simply, none of anyone;s business, except the people participating. If Obama believs ath, he should not have picked Warren. There is not much else to say. Alot of peope ar much more angry than I. I am not sure what some might do. But, Dems are sure as hell not winning over any “progressives”.

Neo-liberals and neo-conservativers. They all “love us” and “hate” what they may decide is “our” sin. Doesnt anyone remember the “big debate” when Obama and McCain were doing the “faith interview” with Warren at Saddleback? Well, it sure seems to be ok with them now! ANYTHING Obama does is ok! At the time, many said that McCain had been “prepped ” for the questions…

you guys are just unbelievable…

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By thebeerdoctor, December 21, 2008 at 2:22 am Link to this comment

re: KDelphi

So there are goof balls on this site who think that if you stand up for human rights you must be gay? Well, well, well… So if I listen to Duke Ellington playing a composition by Billy Strayhorn, does that mean I must be looking for a good man? It reminds me of people who get upset when it is revealed that one of their movie stars is not what they thought they were.
What’s that they say? Black Gay Geniuses not manly enough? No Strayhorn, no James Baldwin, or anybody else who has a different way of addressing their physical and psychic needs. Whatever a person’s orientation, sexuality is a personal condition. It’s nobody’s business but their own.

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By Tony Wicher, December 21, 2008 at 2:01 am Link to this comment

By KDelphi, December 20 at 4:33 pm #

Well, someday someone may come for YOU and your beliefs. Who will stand for you, people that your church wanted to exclude?
??? I don’t attend church. I’m past that sort of thing.

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By KDelphi, December 21, 2008 at 1:09 am Link to this comment

beerdoctor—skol!! thanks…

To all the people who are assuming I am gay because I care about the issue of LGBT rights—lol! It just goes to show how selfish you are—you find it impossible to understand why i would givbe a damn for gay rights, if I am not gay!

Just because you do not care about anyone else’s causes, besides your own, is no fault of mine.Out fortunes rise and fall together. You will figure that out, someday.

Ric W—You are unregistered here, so you would not know, but, I have said many times that I DO understand , that, to Af Ams, the “church” is something much more than a “church”. If you ask me, progessives have cut Af Ams plenty of slack on that one,(that they would not cut people who are not Af Ams, as in, progressives generally do not go along with evangelism) because some of us have tried to understand that it means alot more. It is a place of refuge, civil rights issues, it was burnt down by bigots.

That being said, Warren hardly fits such a profile! (a “black liberatioan theologist” in an Af Am Social Justice type church!) He is entitled to his beliefs and I am entitled to draw the conclusion that he is a bigot and a sexist loon.

Unlike the way you are talking about this, I think that this Pastor Warren crap is not about race at all! It is about hanging onto the religious evangelism that has tortured and caused so much division so many for more than eight years.

This strong black man stuff, the way you stateit, seems to be attempting to ‘explain” why some Af Am men seem to be antithetical top gays. I submit that just as many Af Am males feel that they should support the struggles of minorty communities, as others have tried to support them.. How about strong black female lesbians? There are plenty of them you know. When we have a gay president, get back to me.

I DID notice that, in the election—it was always that PE Obama was a black or Af Am MAN…with emphasis on MAN.

Enough!! Evangelism is not compatable with a democratic, secular form of govt…

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By Rajan, December 20, 2008 at 11:20 pm Link to this comment

KDelphi- Even if Obama donates millions of dollars to fund the cost of celebrating his own inauguration, unless the federal Government totally refrains from spending any tax dollars on the event, the inauguration of the President-elect becomes ipso facto a governmental affair.  Thr US Supreme Court, vide its judgements in 1962 and 1963, citing the 14th Amendment, banned prayers in public schools which are funded with tax dollars. Then, why is it okay to have religious invocation at the presidential inauguration ceremony but it is taboo to have prayers in public schools? What is sauce for the gander must be sauce for goose, too. The argument that all previous presidents did the same does not, under close scrutiny, hold any water.  Just because a wrong has been perpetrated in the past without being challenged   does not make it right and has become inviolable.  Women were accused of being witches and burnt at stake hardly a few of hundred years ago in the name of religion!

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By thebeerdoctor, December 20, 2008 at 10:42 pm Link to this comment

re: KDelphi

Fundamentalism got you down? Consider this: It is winter solstice. A true holiday because it is based upon an astronomical fact and is of course where so much ritual was stolen by Christianity; a reverence for trees, ivy, the yule log, etc.
The funny thing about even this blessed calender event, it is often co-opted by new age spiritualists who actually believe they are in touch with ancient Druids. Proof once again, that humans just keep stumbling along…
I say: Have a happy winter solstice! Knowing full well that dangerous rubes such as Pastor Warren, would think that such a greeting, is just another fine example of blasphemous “secular godless humanism”... as if that idiotic bastard knows anything about God.
“If the only prayer you say in your life is thank you, that would suffice.”

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By Sam W., December 20, 2008 at 6:00 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Rick Warren is speaking from his religious beliefs. Like them or not, he is entitled to his beliefs (as are Muslims, Atheists, and Catholics).

Most black families have some history with churches and religion. During slavery and immediately afterwards and leading up to the civil rights era blacks came together to fight racism and pray for better days. Although blacks endured many trials in this nation’s history, few Americans would say that blacks are “wholesale” bigots; even though blacks experience racism on a daily basis. Because of broken homes, kids being raised by grandparents, and a strong religous foundation, blacks who are church going typically follow religious instruction regarding homosexuality. This is not to say that blacks avoid, hate or discriminate in the church. Quite a few black churches have gay choir directors or members. Please don’t confuse the religious beliefs of blacks with the @#$%^& racism of whites in this country’s history. For decades, black men were subjugated to below animal treatment while black women were used as a free !@#$-night away from wifey. Black males had to be strong and vigilant (See H. Rapp, Huey, Bobby, et al) to keep the race from devolving back to slavery and white oppression. Being gay was (and is still) hard on black males because they not thought “tough enough” to satnd up to “The Man” if they were gay.

Homophobes. I want people to understand that just because I don’t agree with your choice of lifestyle (hell, you probably wouldn’t agree with mine, lol), that doesn’t mean I’m homophobic or that I hate you. To each his own and God will judge. We just have differring opinions.

God Bless You,


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By KDelphi, December 20, 2008 at 5:33 pm Link to this comment

Look, Tony,. here is how I see it—you know the old parable…“First they came for the Jews, and I wasnt a Jew, so I said nothing ...etc.”

How much are progressivs supposed to “tolerate” when we are not tolerated?

Well, someday someone may come for YOU and your beliefs. Who will stand for you, people that your church wanted to exclude?

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By KDelphi, December 20, 2008 at 5:27 pm Link to this comment

Tony—Yes! After 8 yrs of fundamentalist crap, I want nothing to do with religious fundamentalists of any kind. People like Warren want nothing to do with all kinds of people. We are supposed to be a secular state. The fact that we swear in on the Bible, open every Senate hearing with prayer, etc. is bad enough. Anyone who is not a christian fundamentalist knows that this is bull.

I am not a Democrat. But, if you guys want the evangelicals, have at it.(Then, WHAT is the difference?) What are those “economic issues”?What, a middle class tax stimulus pkg?More tax cuts? NOTHING for people who really need it) You will lose many other groups—and you should. Evangelicals,do not, in general, hate groups of gays, are not misogyinistic, etc.? If they do not—they should not have someone speak for them that does. What about OUR freedom from YOUR religion?

I thought Obama was NOT an Evangelical.

I am NOT a “single issue voter”—hell, I’m heterosexual!! I believe in rights for everyone—except those who impose their beliefs on others. Then, they lose the right to theirs , in my opinion.

The world has had quite enough of it. Look what we just did in the UN—for shame.

I do not want to live in a primitivistic theocracy. WHAT was it about Bush that we got rid of?

Once again I am NOT talking about “gay marriage”...“my” issues are not represented by anyone in this new team. Chu is not an environmentalist, Hillary comes from a family that that thinks that it is above the rule of law,(You wouldve agreed 2 mos ago) Summers is a misogynistic hedge fund manager, should I go on? The “war on terror” will continue. The tax cuts continue…what is it I am supposed to get behind the Dems on? They want market based health care, which will prevent universal, and,l just be a big gift to the insurance companies. (I read Baucus and Daschle’s proposed plans—I also see who is attending the meetings, and, who is complimenting Obamas’s appointmenst to health and human services—I know that PDA and PHNHP are attending—I can guarantee you that HR 676 is completley off the table) Lets not forget that his Education nominee is all for charter schools, probably more evangelical charter schools,. I am sick of paying for it. FOX News and Christian Broadcasting are pretty happy though.

You dont want us—we dont want you.

Just having meetings and opening websites to comments, and, then just going ahead and doing what you were planning , according to your pconrtributors, is not “open govt”. And, and evangelical preacher is NOT “change”.

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By Tony Wicher, December 20, 2008 at 3:11 pm Link to this comment

By KDelphi, December 20 at 12:54 am #

You cannot be “highly supportive of the gay comunity” and back this Pastor Warren. You cannot be even slightly “progessive” and suport Pastor Warren. If you claim that you are, you are changing the accepted definitions of both. Maybe you can start your own group"Progressive, broad coalition of people who want to dis-include gays, feminist women, true liberals, most blue collar class,and anyone else that Obama doesnt like”. There—that fits!

These groups will not accept” THIS crap! So, who is giog to join your “broad progressive coalition” Tony?

You are “excluding” fundamentalists just as much as they are excluding you? Obama wants to stop this kind of politics. The fact is that Evangelicals used to vote Democratic and still should be, but the Republicans have been using these stupid social issues for forty years to get them to vote against their own economic interests. Obama is trying to get them back on board with his economic program. He is doing this by setting aside the social differences while emphasizing the economic common interests. 

Take a wider look around. Don’t be a single-issue voter. After all, a different preacher with very different views is giving the benediction - Joseph Lawry, whose support for gay marriage is well-known.

Should Evangelicals get upset by Obama choosing Lowry to give the benediction? I hope not!

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By KDelphi, December 20, 2008 at 10:04 am Link to this comment

Rajan—yes, but, by that reasoning, any president in the US is guilty of breaching separation of church and state—I think that that is true. But, with so many religious people in the US, I think we have to accept that.(for now) We also “have to accept” that Obama can choose whomever he pleases, especially for his own inaugeration. He is, apparently, using donated money for it (I’ve heard huge sums, but nothing solid enough to quote)

We also have the right to decide whether the pastors he chooses to ask to represent him, reflect our own values. If they do not, we have a choice of letting the Dems know how we feel, and, then, letting them know again , at the ballot box. Unless there is a protest over Warren—-which could be very bloody, with the number of Natl Guard , and cops that are going to be there. I think they are still going to keep “bars in DC” open 24/7 while it is goin g on.

Sounds like a recipe for violence , to me. Probably not a good place to “make an opposing voice” be heard.

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By Rajan, December 20, 2008 at 5:09 am Link to this comment

I fully agree with Hulk2008’s thesis that only in governmental affairs the separation between the church and the state is really applicable.  If Obama is invoking his God’s blessings through any agent of his choice and takes his oath by keeping his hand over any tome of his choice at any ceremony organized entirely with his own money, no one will have any quarrel with what he does in this regard.  But, even if one cent of taxpayer’s money is spent in organizing a ceremony, it automatically becomes a governmental affair. But,  reports in this regard indicate that more than a cent of federal funds is being earmarked for the inaugural function on January 20, 2009. Hence, by Hulk2008’s own reasoning, the religious invocation is an anachronism with medieval connotations at the ceremony for inauguration of a new President and is a flagrant breach of separation between the church and the state enshrined in the Constitution.

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By thebeerdoctor, December 20, 2008 at 4:32 am Link to this comment

re: KDelpi

Anyone who calls for targeted assassination, I do not consider to be very spiritually evolved. You are correct, this inclusion nonsense is BS. If Barry or any of team Obama feel the need to play footsie with bigots, why not invite David Duke to a prayer breakfast? Why not have the KKK be in the parade too?
Last night’s Dateline appearance revealed the so-called pastor to be the slimy piece of business he truly is. Rachel Maddow has commented that this is Obama’s first huge political mistake. Some will dismiss her opinion because she is a lesbian. But you know something? The woman is correct.

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By KDelphi, December 20, 2008 at 1:54 am Link to this comment

Why does everyone keep saying that Warren “opposes gay marriage”? He does alot more than that, as the video shows!

“The magic of America..”. Gawd. I just cannot believe this bullshit…

You cannot be “highly supportive of the gay comunity” and back this Pastor Warren. You cannot be even slightly “progessive” and suport Pastor Warren. If you claim that you are, you are changing the accepted definitions of both. Maybe you can start your own group"Progressive, broad coalition of people who want to dis-include gays, feminist women, true liberals, most blue collar class,and anyone else that Obama doesnt like”. There—that fits!

These groups will not accept” THIS crap! So, who is giog to join your “broad progressive coalition” Tony?

desertdude—THIS IS NOT A CHRISTIAN country! If you oppose those other things (adultary, etc.) will you make those ilegal also? There wil be alot of so-called conservative christians in jail if you do!

I am quite certain that the GLBT community will NOT get over it. If they do, they are fools. Maybe that is what it will take to help them see that neo-liberals are, in no way, “progressive”.

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By Tony Wicher, December 19, 2008 at 10:37 pm Link to this comment

What’s the big deal about Warren not allowing gays in his church? So he and his flock are homophobic knuckle-draggers. So if you’re gay, don’t attend his church. I can’t imagine why you would want to. There are plenty of other churches where gay people can feel welcome.

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By Tony Wicher, December 19, 2008 at 9:01 pm Link to this comment

By Jack Chisholm, December 19 at 12:06 pm #

Well spoken, Jack! I myself am a stong advocate of gay rights and gay marriage, but guess what: I’m also tolerant of people who believe differently! I have no problem with Warren giving the invocation. There will be other ministers with different beliefs also involved. As Obama says, let us not allow disagreement on religious and social issue prevent us from coming together as Americans.

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By OzarkMichael, December 19, 2008 at 8:54 pm Link to this comment

I think Ann Curry did everyone a favor. The gays can cheer her and it gives them hope for the future. And the Evangelical Christians can see how the mainstream media really view us. We get a glimmer of how we will be treated in the future.

She has a fault though. She still toys with the old liberal pretense that she must communicate her motive as being concern for him and people who are in his church. The old liberal pretense: “we only want to help you” isnt quite gone from her interview style. That trace of pretense that she has at the beginning of the clip is awkward. She tries to smoothen it with her body language, which becomes artificial and pretzel like.

She reestablishes her integrity by showing some disdain, incredulity, and even anger.
“How can you expect them to be civil?” she asks him. As if to say, ‘if they burn your church down, well, Mr Warren, you were asking for it’

Oh, that reminds me… Sarah Palin’s church was damaged by arson. The AP writer couldnt help but end the story with a little comment much like Curry’s.

I for one appreciate the honesty.

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By thebeerdoctor, December 19, 2008 at 6:16 pm Link to this comment

desertdude, whenever you pray, do you ever notice that you are talking to yourself? Of the desert god religions, perhaps you chose the wrong door. “If I am intolerant so be it” makes you sound like some fiery old testament cleric, issuing a fatwa.

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By desertdude, December 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm Link to this comment

We wo voted for the ammendments to State Constitutions are people that oppose the lifestyle of the Homosexuals. What they want is for the Christians of the world to declare that there lifestyle is OK. First it is wrong, just as Adultery,incest,rape, pedophilia, child abuse,murder and domestic violence. We will not accept it because God says it is wrong and therefore it is wrong. If I
am intolerant so be it because God says we must take a stand.

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By Hulk2008, December 19, 2008 at 1:35 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

You are correct about the separation between religion and state in governmental affairs.  But it is the President-Elect who is doing the “invoking”.  In this case, like assigning various duties to specific expert Cabinet members, he’s assigning someone he respects as an “expert in invoking” to request divine assistance in the commission of his personal duties.  As a citizen, the President-Elect has the same religious freedoms as the governed - in other words, he, a Christian, can invoke whatever/Whomever he wishes. 
  The Bible is a physical entity that represents the source of the President-Elect’s sincere beliefs; IF (... notice I said “if”) he were Muslim he could choose the Q’Uran.  If he were Jewish he could use the Torah.  And this does not necessarily mean the invocation is for or by anyone else ... unless, of course, they/you choose to participate in that invocation.  No one is required to join in.   
    When YOU other citizens get elected you can invoke Madeline Murray Ohare or Homer Simpson if you wish - and put your hand on a stack of Pokemon cards - it’s a free country.

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By Jack Chisholm, December 19, 2008 at 1:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

America’s ills are partly because of the bleeding heart media inciting feelings.

This knee-jerk reaction from certain members of American’s minority is a travesty! Let the majority speak, for once. Too many special interest groups and lobbying is what has brought this country to the moral morass we are in.

Obama is doing a splendid job of including those who are not of his ilk - such as Republicans and Rick Warren. Get over it! Those who want to continue seeing America on a divisive path WILL fail. Make no mistake about it! Warren WILL deliver the invocation!

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By Taoseno, December 19, 2008 at 9:21 am Link to this comment

This was a very calculated political move to bring some of the right-wing fundies into the fold, but it is also a very divisive decision. It has alienated many more.
Rajan is right on… I’m waiting for the day when we don’t have to have “invocations”. Just what are we “invoking” and from whom?

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By Rajan, December 19, 2008 at 8:56 am Link to this comment

What is surprising is that no one is asking the most fundamental question: “Why should there be any religious invocation at all at the inauguration ceremony, if there is supposed to be an absolute separation between the church and the state and why should the Bible be used for taking the oath upon?”

And, Christianity is not the only religion in vogue among the citizens of this country.

Has anybody have an answer to explain the element of hypcrisy and double-talk in this matter?

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By pinko, December 19, 2008 at 8:28 am Link to this comment

Of course he’s homophobic.  So are 70% of the black people who voted on Prop 8.

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By Little Brother, December 19, 2008 at 7:37 am Link to this comment

I’m no fan of infotainwhores, whether they’re supposedly working for The Creator of the Universe or the corporate news media that’s the Creator of the Amerikan universe.

But asking someone, “Are you homophobic?” is not much different than asking a man, “Are you still beating your wife?”

Only a flaming lunatic like “Reverend” Fred Phelps would proudly answer “Yes, indeed!” to such a loaded question.

If the person answers, “Of course not!”, what’s the follow-up?  “So you’re admitting you’re a pathological liar, then?”

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By thebeerdoctor, December 19, 2008 at 6:25 am Link to this comment

Mainstream News is obsessed with the homophobic angle. But equally important is that this so-called pastor advocates assassination, like others of his holy roller brethren. Anyone who calls for murder is no more spiritual than an Iman issuing a fatwa.

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