Nothing brings in the holidays like allowing the homophobic bigots some air time to attack the new pope right after Christmas -- but that's exactly what the viewers were treated to on this Sunday's Meet the Press.
It seems evangelist Franklin Graham is none too happy that Pope Francis decided to make nice with the gay community during his Christmas Eve midnight Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica, and was more than willing to let NBC's Harry Smith know about it when asked.
SMITH: Graham's call to serve the less fortunate is something he shares with Pope Francis. and he applauds the mew pope, but to a point. He was asked about gays in the church and he said, “Who am i to judge?” Would there ever be a shift for you on that issue?
GRAHAM: Well, god would have to shift, and god doesn't. God's word is the same yesterday, today and a million years from now, and it's a sin. But to wink at sin, and tell somebody it's okay, when I know the consequences of what will happen one day when they have to stand before god. So I want to warn people, and I think the pope is right when he says he is not the judge. He is not the judge. God is the judge.
As John Aravosis at Americablog pointed out, that's not exactly true when it comes to the teachings of the Southern Baptist Church:
American evangelist Billy Graham’s son Franklin is hopping mad about the homos this holiday season.
You see, Franklin is upset that the Pope might be giving the-gay too much of a pass, so Graham decided Christmas was the time to remind people that hate is a family value, at least in evangelical-land. [...]
Graham added that he’s upset with society, and the Pope, changing their views on the-gay. “God would have to shift — and God doesn’t,” Graham said. “God’s word is the same, yesterday and today and a million years from now.”
What a bunch of utter lies. God’s word is the same, always? Actually, God was for slavery up until the 1950s. Now he’s not. How does Graham reconcile that one away? Did God change his mind on whether blacks should be slaves, or was God simply wrong on the slavery thing from the beginning? And did NBC’s Meet the Press bother even asking Franklin Graham about this obvious contradiction? No.
Let’s continue on this track about God never changing his mind. Franklin’s dad, Billy, is a Southern Baptist minister. Let me remind you that it was only 1995 that the Southern Baptist church renounced slavery – 1995. In other words, Franky’s dad’s God changed his mind on slavery in 1995.
But putting aside the Baptists’ late-found embrace of desegregation, that means – if we’re being charitable here – that once upon a time Franklin Graham’s buddies in the Southern Baptist Convention spoke for God and got it wrong.
In other words, God’s words were not “the same , yesterday and today and a million years from now.” Either God changed his mind, or Franklin Graham’s buddies got it wrong.
Either way, there’s no reason to pay any heed to anything Franklin Graham has to say, lest the Southern Baptists change their mind yet again on the inviolable word of God.
It's too bad NBC "news" didn't get that same memo.