Thursday, December 18, 2008

Rick Warren and Inauguration Invocation

The news was a bit of a shock: Rick Warren to give the invocation at the inauguration. Rick Warren, who supported Prop. 8, who sees gay marriage as a sin (of some kind, read previous blog), is giving the invocation of a Democratic president, whose one core base was the LGBTQ community. Rick Warren!?

Two sides of the debate: Politically Marc Ambinder of Atlantic Monthly writes this:

From experience, one can presume that the decision to invite Rick Warren was made because (a) Obama likes the guy, and (b) he knows it would send a message to groups like the HRC, and to conservative Christians who might be wary of the new president. Not so much pandering as it is Obama's deft manipulation of the politics of symbolism. Obviously, Obama disagrees with Rick Warren on important issues. He has said so, many times, and publicly. And he agrees with him on other important issues. And ignoring something like Warren, a mainstream figure who commands the respect of million of Americans, would be foolish. Obama's message is: Rick Warren is a part of Obama's America, too.

Joe Solomese of HRC writes this:

Let me get right to the point. Your invitation to Reverend Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at your inauguration is a genuine blow to LGBT Americans. Our loss in California over the passage of Proposition 8 which stripped loving, committed same-sex couples of their given legal right to marry is the greatest loss our community has faced in 40 years. And by inviting Rick Warren to your inauguration, you have tarnished the view that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans have a place at your table.

Rick Warren has not sat on the sidelines in the fight for basic equality and fairness. In fact, Rev. Warren spoke out vocally in support of Prop 8 in California saying, "there is no need to change the universal, historical definition of marriage to appease 2 percent of our population ... This is not a political issue -- it is a moral issue that God has spoken clearly about." Furthermore, he continues to misrepresent marriage equality as silencing his religious views. This was a lie during the battle over Proposition 8, and it's a lie today.

Click here for more.

Response from my desk? Quick! Call Gene Robinson! According to Gene, he and Obama have already been talking.




manxxman said...

I don't know if you read Gore Vidal's book "Lincoln" but in it he expressed the belief that Lincoln invited his most dangerous allies to be members of his cabinet so that he would be aware at all times of what they were up to. In turn each of these men thought that they were controlling Lincoln's thought process.

Obama is taking over a Presidency that is probably in as much trouble as Lincoln's and FDR's were.

Brett Webb-Mitchell said...

There is Doris Kearns Godwin's book TEAM OF RIVALS, in which much has been made of pulling together rivals as a team to keep them close to you. What those who compare the two teams together forget is this: Lincoln's team didn't last together too long after it was assembled.

Will Obama's?

Also: isn't there a difference between the cabinet offices (Lincoln) and the symbols of inauguration? I mean, for inclusion sake, why not bring David Duke onto the platform to read a poem he wrote? Is that inclusion?

I am thinking that this was a bad move. What other commentary writers point out is that Obama has a habit of being too inclusive.


manxxman said...

Will I guess there are no rules when it comes to "leading".....

I am disappointed in the selection I hope I'm not continually disappointed in his leadership.