Controversial televangelist Pat Robertson continues to grate the nerves of many in the LGBT community. On Wednesday, the anti-gay “700 Club” host likened gay rights activists to “terrorists” in his rant against openly gay Houston Mayor Annise Parker.
Robertson spoke out against the mayor for issuing subpoenas to five prominent pastors who were vocally against a new anti-discrimination law in the city of Houston. As it isn’t the first time the Christian Broadcasting Network how host has said something outlandish about gays and lesbians, Robertson’s comparison was a bit extreme, especially by comparing people fighting for equality and equal protection to those who are out to instill terror.
“These people are terrorist, they’re radicals, and they’re extremists,” Robertson told viewers. “Now Christian in his right mind would ever try to enforce somebody against their belief or else suffer jail. Now they did that during the Inquisition. It was horrible. It was a black mark on our history, but it isn’t being done now. There’s no Christian group I know of anywhere in the world that would force somebody to do something contrary to their deep-held religious beliefs or else face criminal penalties.”
Last week, the American Civil Liberties Union stood up for the pastors in this particular case, stating that the subpoenas violated the pastor’s civil rights. Parker also admitted herself that the subpoenas were a bit much as once again the gray line between anti-discrimination and religious freedom has been explored politically. Although Robertson, for once, has a point, the extreme nature of his argument and anti-gay rant drowns out his message.
“If the gays want to go out and do their gay sex, that’s one thing,” Robertson continued. “But if they want to force you to accept it and solemnity it by marriage, then that’s a different matter and it’s an infringement on people’s religious belief. What’s being done in Houston is a gay – the woman they elected is a homosexual, she’s a lesbian, and she’s trying to force pastors to conform to her beliefs. It’s wrong.”
Referring to gay rights activists as “terrorist” follows his recent claims about AIDS-carrying towels. When asked about the heightened fear of contracting Ebola, Robertson concluded that there was nothing to worry about, but told viewers, “You might get AIDS in Kenya. The people have AIDS. You gotta be careful. I mean, the towels could have AIDS. There are things – there are diseases in Africa.”