by John Hawkins | September 13, 2012 8:16 am
Reverend William Owens from the Coalition Of African American Pastors has been in the news for criticizing Barack Obama and for the CAAP’s 100,000 Signatures for Marriage petition. Earlier this week, I had the privilege of interviewing the reverend. What follows is a slightly edited transcript of our conversation.
Not only has Barack Obama endorsed gay marriage, but support for gay marriage is now a plank of the Democratic Party platform and speaker after speaker talked about gay marriage from the stage of the convention. What do you think about that?
Well, they’re following his lead. He is the President of the United States and he’s the lead person of the Democratic Party. That’s the dangerous part about it and the day I heard him endorse same sex marriage, I knew that would happen. Some people will follow you blindly and the leader is supposed to set a good example, a high moral level — and he failed to do it. As far I’m concerned he just failed miserably.
In an interview just a few days ago you said, “As far as I’m concerned, the Democratic Party is not pro-African-American.” Is that just about gay marriage or is there more to it than that?
I think they have taken the black vote for granted. I don’t see what they have done to reach out to the real needs of the black community. The African-American community has great problems. When I finished high school, there were more black young men going to college — dreaming of college. Now more black young men go to prison. Something is wrong with that. …President Obama’s (indirect answer to this was) he’s not the president of black America, he’s the President of the United States. Well then, he’s not the president of homosexuals any more than he’s the President of the United States. He’s not the president of the Latinos or any other group he’s reaching out to and trying to patronize.
Now I don’t know if you paid attention to Chik-Fil-A day when they had those enormous crowds show up…
Of course I did.
Well, I thought you might have. They had enormous crowds show support for their opposition to gay marriage. What did you think about that?
I think it said how Americans truly feel. Again that’s the reason I took such a stand against President Obama. In every election, in every campaign where the marriage amendment has been on the ballot, blacks in large numbers have been against it and Americans have been against it. But he’s not interested in what the people want. He’s interested in what a few people who can give him big money want. And I don’t take back what I said about him being a Judas. He does not hope to win the election because more gays are going to vote for him. He endorsed homosexual marriage because of the large sums of money that it brought him.
Now related question to that: You criticized the NAACP for supporting gay marriage. Since their stance on gay marriage doesn’t reflect the feelings of most black Americans, why do you think they’re taking it?
Because of money. I had…and I will be very candid….I will not give information out because I agreed not to, (but) I had two members of the board of NAACP call me and tell me why the NAACP endorsed same sex marriage. It was money. It was absolute and they gave the name of the person who gave the money. And they had to do it on the…cloak of darkness. Had they done it the way they should have done it, they never would have been endorsed by the NAACP.
Now, let me ask you if you think there’s a conflict being a Christian and supporting gay marriage?
Why is that?
Absolutely, because it’s not scriptural — and see I don’t stand on an issue because of any party. Before he was put on the Supreme Court, I had a news conference in Washington, D.C. to ask that they give Judge Alito an up or down vote. My opening statement was I did not get my values from any political party; Democrats or Republicans. I got my values from my home and the Bible. So that’s where my values come from. My values are scriptural and homosexual marriage is not scriptural. Now homosexuality to me is a sin, but you cannot control people’s behavior. You can control what the society endorses.
Last question, sir. There are many people who make the argument that gay marriage is just like the Civil Rights struggle of the 60’s. What do you think of that comparison?
It turns my stomach. I was in the Civil Rights Movement and…to compare the homosexual dilemma to that of the Civil Rights Movement is a disgrace. The person must not have been living there, like Obama wasn’t a part of it, or they don’t know what happened to black people in the South that brought on the Civil Rights Movement.
Once again, you can hear more from Reverend William Owens at Coalition Of African American Pastors where they’re doing a 100,000 Signatures for Marriage petition.
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