A virulently homophobic and anti-gay preacher on Sunday derided parents who don’t “squash like a cockroach” the gay out of their children. Pastor Sean Harris told parents they are “authorized,” and that he was “giving them a special dispensation” to attack their children. “Give them a good punch,” and “crack that wrist,” Harris told parents, if their four-year old boy, for example, “starts acting a little ‘girlish’.” Pastor Harris added that parents should tell their four-year olds to “man up, son, get that dress off you get outside and dig a ditch because that’s what boys do.”
Pastor Harris, of the Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina, was speaking in favor of North Carolina’s Amendment One, which would write anti-gay discrimination directly into the constitution, and would define as the only legal relationship a marriage between one man and one woman. Amendment One would immediately make domestic violence victims ineligible for protection orders and would even remove children from their unmarried parents’ health insurance.
“Can I make it any clearer? Dads, the second you see that son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give them a good punch. OK? You’re not going to act like that — you were made by God to be a male and you’re going to be a male,” Pastor Harris tells his parishioners in this audio, via Jeremy Hooper at Good As You.
“And when your daughter starts acting too ‘butch,’ you rein her in. And you say, ‘Oh no. Oh no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play ‘em, play ‘em to the glory of God, but sometimes you’re going to act like a girl and talk like a girl and talk like a girl, and smell like a girl, and that means you’re going to be beautiful, you’re going to be attractive, you’re going to dress yourself up’.”
Note: I’m not knowledgeable on North Carolina law, but I have to wonder if parents would be subject to arrest if they followed Pastor Harris’ directions.
Pastor Harris’ Berean Baptist Church website:
Sean Harris is the Senior Pastor of Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville, NC. He is Berean’s fourth pastor in its 40 plus years of existence. Berean called Sean to be the Senior Pastor in March of 2006.
His responsibilities include the preaching and teaching the Word of God, casting the vision for the ministry, the leadership of staff and faculty members, administration of Berean Baptist Academy, communication with church members, and personal discipleship.
Pastor preaches during the worship services on Sunday mornings and evenings and teaches the church’s pre-membership class. He also teaches at the Academy. Pastor also provides audio commentaries on news worthy items throughout the week for www.sermonaudio.com.
He said, "I do not apologize for the manner in which I emphasized the importance of one man and one woman getting married and staying married for the benefit of their children and society."
Claiming “we also cannot compromise on what we believe the Bible teaches on all sexual perversions and immorality,” Harris wrote yesterday:
"The opposition is revealing their complete lack of toleration toward those do not approve of the LGBT lifestyle or agenda. However, we must be tolerantly intolerant. Jesus our Savior provides the perfect example of grace and truth."
Apparently, the Pastor has yet to hear his own words.
In his “Important Clarification,” from yesterday, Pastor Harris claimed:
I would like to have been more careful with exactly what I said, but sometimes I say things without enough clarity. I trust you understood my intent in the context of my total preaching ministry. If you did not, I would be more than happy to meet with you privately to provide clarity.
Reverend Sue Clark, Interfaith Minister/Advocate for equality and human rights today attempted to contact Pastor Sean Harris, via Twitter, but received no response.
You state, @Pastor_Sean, u will meet w/ anyone in your congreg abt your comments. How about meeting with me? Clergy-to-Clergy.
Is anyone surprised?
What Pastor Harris said was perfectly acceptable to his parishioners. The problem is that there was audio and he got caught.
Conservative Christians are claiming outrage because Dan Savage used a few inappropriate words during a journalism lecture. A dozen conservative journalism students walked out when Savage supposedly assaulted their religious sensibilities. Here we have a pastor advocating the assault of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender infants and children. Did one parent walk out?
The hypocrisy from the so-called Religious Right is abominable.
Michelangelo Signorile this afternoon interviewed North Carolina Pastor Sean Harris about the Pastor’s anti-gay comments and his advocacy on Sunday of beating children as young as four-years old to stop them from being homosexual. Harris, on Signorile’s Sirius XM OutQ radio show, apologized for his “poor choice of words” advocating child abuse and physical attacks, but stridently claimed his comments were taken out of context, “chopped and then posted in the blogosphere,” but stood by his beliefs that homosexuality is an abomination and a sin. “The word of God does not condone such behavior.”
“Jesus conjures up violent images as well,” Harris told Signorile, as an excuse for what he classified as “hyperbole” in the “images” he discussed. Those “images” as The New Civil Rights Movement has repeatedly reported, included:
“Give them a good punch,” and “crack that wrist,” Harris told parents if their four-year old boy, for example, “starts acting a little ‘girlish’.” Pastor Harris added that parents should tell their four-year olds to “man up, son, get that dress off you get outside and dig a ditch because that’s what boys do.”
“I said something stupid,” Harris told Signorile, and politely apologized, but claimed his “congregation understood the manner” in which he was speaking and was certain no one in the audience misunderstood his violent rhetoric to be “special dispensation,” even though he told them it indeed was.
Harris also disavowed any responsibility he might have for those who don’t understand his years of ministering and hear his words and commit anti-gay hate crimes. Harris believes he wasn’t inciting violence or giving people permission to physically attack people who might be gay, even though he, a pastor, did. “No, they need to hear the entire message.”
Harris told Signorile that “a father should teach a child that God gave them the gender that they have and they should strive to model for their child the difference between genders.”
Signorile, a veteran journalist, pushed Harris on the issue of homosexuality and proper parenting. Harris insisted parent “should not permit that behavior,” of boys seemingly expressing effeminacy or girls seemingly expressing non-traditional gender behaviors.
If a young boy expresses effeminate behaviors, parents should “take steps to eliminate the dresses for example,” Harris said.
But things became more challenging when Signorile challenged Pastor Harris on the Bible, asking him why he doesn’t believe putting homosexuals to death, as the Bible advocates.
“That particular passage is directly oriented toward the nation of Israel 4000 years ago,” Harris replied. But homosexuality is still not acceptable Harris insisted. “The sin remains and the person is in need of the gospel of Jesus Christ” to cure them of being gay, he said.
Signorile asked Harris why he was elevating the “sin” of homosexuality over other sins, to which Harris strenuously denied. “Absolutely not” Harris stated when Signorile asked if he could “tempt” Harris to become gay. “You certainly could not make me gay,” he insisted, and insisted that homosexuality is a choice – for some.
Harris said he believes that everyone is tempted into sin. Which sins are dependent upon the individual. Which, is convenient when you’re peddling the false concept that homosexuality is sin and a choice, and kids should be punished for seeming to be gay.Read More