”Well, it’s fairly simple. We look at gay marriage as — not a civil rights issue, but a moral question. And the moral question is that, in our tradition two men together, or two women together, it makes no sense. It makes no biblical sense to us….”
”We love Coretta [Scott King], but she was absolutely, fundamentally, 100% wrong on this issue. And it was an issue that even her husband would have corrected her on…. Martin was very heterosexual! He would not have perceived this as a civil rights issue. Martin was not blind for gay marriage, simply because Bernard Rustin, who was one of his chief strategists, was gay. And he had every opportunity to, in the ’60s, to raise civil rights issues around the gay question, because Bernard Rustin was there….”
”I reject the notion that gay marriage, that fighting for gays is equal to the Civil Rights Movement. Simply because of the fact that they were not — they were. We don’t sick — we don’t sick dogs on them. We don’t beat them up. We don’t hose them with hoses. And we don’t burn down their houses because they’re black — er, they’re gay. We don’t do that in this country!”
Anthony Evans, a DC-based Baptist preacher, speaking with RT about gay marriage. In the video (below), Evans speaks as if he represents the entire African-American community to extoll his anti-gay beliefs about marriage equality. An early straw poll in 2008 indicated 70% of black voters in California voted for Proposition 8, that is, to ban lesbian and gay marriage rights. That ban was overturned by a Federal judge, Vaughn Walker, yesterday; and religious extremists like Evans are up in arms around the nation about it.
Here, apparently intending to refer to civil right leader Bayard Rustin, Evans seems to believe he can channel the thoughts of assassinated civil rights pioneer Martin Luther King, Jr.
Evans has a history of battling against the interests of the LGBT community in DC. He often pits the black community’s struggle and the free exercise of religious beliefs against the equal rights struggle of the LGBT community — as if no one exists who is both black and gay, or religious an gay.
In 2006, Evans filed a protest against the opening of Be Bar, a gay nightclub that was located on 9th Street in the Shaw neighborhood. He claimed it would “undermine the moral character” of the community and negatively influence children and families. The bar did open anyway. In April of 2009, he took part in an appalingly offensive public rally against gay marriage, declaring that ”the state has no business in the issue of marriage” and adding that marriage was “not two boys or two girls.” In September 2009, he teamed up with the Washington Archdiocese, NOM, the Family Research Council and other area preachers to introduce a failed “Marriage Initiative” that would have restricted marriage to only being between “a mand and a woman.” Later, in December, after a series of major losses, Evans declared that he and his comrades would circumvent DC’s home rule, and appeal directly to members of Congress to block gay marriage from becoming legal in Washington, DC. He lost, of course, as marriage equality was fully instituted in the District in March of 2010.
Christopher Chambers of Georgetown University also takes part in the RT discussion, saying he feels that gay rights may not be “Civil Rights” (meaning part of the African-American rights struggle), but indeed are a “civil rights” issue (meaning part of the overall definition of legally recogninzed rights of Americans). He suggests Evans should find and work on some of the more obvious challenges of DC’s communities in need.
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