I don't know much about Reverend Al Sharpton, and I never really knew his stand on certain issues, namely, gay marriage. So, I was pleasantly surprised to read about a speech he gave last Sunday at the Human Rights Ecumenical Service in Atlanta. Now if only he would have spoken out say back in October...nonetheless, here's a snippet of what he had to say (Story courtesy of Page One Q)
Rev. Al Sharpton slammed major faiths for using their resources and power to pass California's Proposition 8 while showing indifference to issues affecting Americans such as poverty, social inequality and economic sabotage. The Church, he said, was silent until California affirmed marriage rights for its same-sex couples.
"There is something immoral and sick about using all of that power to not end brutality and poverty, but to break into people's bedrooms and claim that God sent you," Sharpton told a full house on Sunday. "It amazes me," he said, "when I looked at California and saw churches that had nothing to say about police brutality, nothing to say when a young black boy was shot while he was wearing police handcuffs, nothing to say when they overturned affirmative action, nothing to say when people were being [relegated] into poverty, yet they were organizing and mobilizing to stop consenting adults from choosing their life partners."
"I am tired," he went on, "of seeing ministers who will preach homophobia by day, and then after they're preaching, when the lights are off they go cruising for trade...We know you're not preaching the Bible, because if you were preaching the Bible we would have heard from you. We would have heard from you when people were starving in California--when they deregulated the economy and crashed Wall Street you had nothing to say. When [accused Ponzi scammer] Madoff made off with the money, you had nothing to say. When Bush took us to war chasing weapons of mass destruction that weren't there you had nothing to say.
"But all of a sudden, when Proposition 8 came out, you had so much to say, but since you stepped in the rain, we're going to step in the rain with you."
"Adultery broke up more marriages than gays did," he added, revealing that a member of his family was gay and dismissing the notion that gays were a "threat" to marriage.
The Reverend also warned against playing politics with civil rights. "[Social conservatives] will start with the gays but they will end with everybody else," he said. "If you give the Pat Robertsons of the world the theological right to condemn some, then you give them the right to condemn others."