Here we go again with Pastor Rick Warren making idiotic remarks about gay people. Rick Warren: Same sex marriage like punching a guy in the nose:
Megachurch pastor Rick Warren on Tuesday night said that same sex relationships would still be sinful even if they were natural.
“It wouldn’t bother me if there was a ‘gay gene’ found,” he told CNN host Piers Morgan.
“Here’s what we know about life,” Warren continued. “I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life and it doesn’t necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. Sometimes I get angry and feel like punching a guy in the nose. That doesn’t mean I act on it. Sometimes I feel attracted to women who are not my wife. I don’t act on it. Just because I have a feeling doesn’t make it right. Not everything natural is good for me. Arsenic is natural.”
Here's more from Think Progress:
On CBS This Morning this week, Warren similarly defended his anti-gay positions by claiming that he can be “tolerant” and “accepting” without being “approving.” Though he may not act on his attractions to women who are not his wife, he seems to gloss over the fact that he did have the opportunity to act on his attractions to her by marrying her. By advocating against same-sex marriage, he works to prevent gays and lesbians from having the same security of a lasting partnership.
Warren has a long history of opposing marriage equality. Four years ago, he defended his support of California’s Proposition 8 by claiming that same-sex marriage is “equivalent” to incest, pedophilia, and polygamy. He also claimed that gays are “evil” and have “Christ-o-phobia.” Warren tries to offset his anti-gay beliefs by boasting his anti-AIDS work in Africa, but he has ties to conservative anti-gay leaders in Uganda who oppose using condoms to prevent transmission of HIV. The results of his particular efforts are unclear, but studies have shown that abstinence-only efforts have failed to lower HIV rates in Africa, and anti-gay stigma also contributes to the epidemic.
Full transcript below the fold.
MORGAN: Pastor Rick Warren speaking out against same-sex marriage. And I'm back with him now.
So let's talk about gay marriage for a moment because clearly a number of states in America are moving to legalize this and it's becoming less and less of a kind of hot button issue and more of a sort of inevitable change in social times. Your position has remained pretty entrenched about this.
Here's my issue with it. Unless I'm wrong, and clarify this for me. You base your opposition to it on the literal interpretation of what the bible says about marriage. Am I right?
WARREN: Yes, that's true. Everybody has a source of authority for their lives. Some people, the source of authority is culture. Some people, their source of authority is philosophy. Everybody has a world view. My world view simply happens to be based on a literal and strict interpretation of scripture. Not everybody's interpretation but it is mine.
MORGAN: Right. Now here's my problem. Because I'm a catholic like you, and I respect the bible enormously, and I respect all --
MORGAN: Actually all religious beliefs from everybody. But here's my problem with taking the literal interpretation of the bible to the modern era and not allowing yourself to move with the times and it's this. There are so many things in the bible which are plainly ridiculous these days, right?
Children who curse their parents will be put to death. There would be no children left over the age of 8 in America, right? With the possible exception of yours.
MORGAN: And if you commit adultery, you will be put to death.
MORGAN: But you yourself in an interview with Ann Curry on NBC, which I remember watching, you admitted you have looked lustfully at women but you've never actually sealed the deal. Now if you look lustfully at women according to Matthew 5:28, it says, "I tell you anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart." You then go to Leviticus who says, "If you commit adultery, you should be put to death."
You're going to have to stone yourself, Rick Warren, if you take the bible literally.
WARREN: I know where you're going with this. This is a very common misunderstanding on the laws of scripture, Piers. There aren't -- there aren't just one set of laws in scripture. There are actually three sets of laws and they are not equally binding. Many people think every law in the bible is the exact same kind of law.
In the bible, there are three kinds of laws. There are civil laws, which by the way apply only to the nation of Israel. Those are called civil laws. There are ceremonial laws which are the laws that apply to cleanliness as kosher Jews would practice today, in the laws of Leviticus, the priestly laws that are ceremonial laws that involve worship, and then there are moral laws. As a Christian, I'm not bound by the civil laws given to the nation of Israel, and I'm not even bound by the ceremonial laws given to the priesthood of Israel. I am bound, I believe, to the moral laws. The "Ten Commandments" are neither civil laws nor ceremonial. Those are moral laws. They were the ones chiseled in stone.
And so when people make this -- it's a very common argument. Yes, but what about this law and what about this law. Well, granted, OK, that was that law for that point in time, and I'm under no obligation to do that. But when a law says, for instance, you will always tell the truth, you may not lie, sorry, that doesn't matter how times change. I am --
MORGAN: But here's my -- here's my -- here's my confusion about you.
MORGAN: Because you've been with your wife Kay, extremely generous in tackling things like AIDS.
MORGAN: You've given millions to helping fight AIDS.
MORGAN: Don't tell you don't have any --
WARREN: And worked with gay organizations all around the world.
MORGAN: Right. Right. So you clearly have no problem with gay people per se.
MORGAN: And yet you want to prevent them having the same rights to get married as straight people. That leads me to I suppose a more obvious supplementary question. Do you personally believe that gay people are born gay? Or do they become gay? Are they made gay?
WARREN: Yes. Yes. You know what, I think the jury's still out on that. It wouldn't -- it wouldn't bother me if there was, quote, "a gay gene" found, because here's what we know about life. I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life and it doesn't necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. Sometimes I get angry and I feel like punching a guy in the nose. It doesn't mean I act on it.
Sometimes I -- as you pointed out, sometimes I feel attracted to women who are not my wife. I don't act on it. Just because I have a feeling doesn't make it right. Not everything natural is good for me. Arsenic is natural --
MORGAN: Yes, but that's -- but that's why, Rick, that's why -- I have to jump in again.
MORGAN: That is why, though, this is such an interesting debate, because, you know, I just -- I just believe fundamentally and passionately that gay people are born gay. I don't think you become gay. And I think if you were able to convince yourself that they were born gay, you would see it differently. You would see it as a natural condition that people are gay, and then you may change your mind about their rights to have the same fundamental rights as straight people.
But if you still believe that they're not born gay but become or get turned gay, then I can see that you can hide behind that as the justification, if you like, for not endorsing same-sex marriage.
WARREN: Sure. Sure. I do not believe attraction is a sin, but I do believe that some actions are sin. I'm not responsible for all of my attractions. We know, for instance, that some people are born with natural predispositions toward certain things, either good or bad. Every one of us have those.
I may not -- I'm automatically attracted to certain kinds of art, certain kinds of music, certain kinds -- I don't think that's a matter of right or wrong. But the bible clearly states that I am absolutely in control of my actions, and since I have chosen as my authority for my life not the government, not common culture, like that. And by the way, I appreciate the way you're developing this right now, because this is the very kind of discussions that we need to be having that are saying, that treat everybody with dignity, that treat everybody with love, but could disagree on certain issues and still say, you know what, I don't agree with that guy but I think he has come to his position from his background and from his basis.
MORGAN: OK. Rick, we're going to take -- I want to take a short break.