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Obama defends choice of evangelical pastor

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WASHINGTON – President-elect Barack Obama on Thursday defended his choice of a popular evangelical minister to deliver the invocation at his inauguration, rejecting criticism that it slights gays.

The selection of Pastor Rick Warren brought objections from gay rights advocates, who strongly supported Obama during the election campaign. The advocates are angry over Warren's backing of a California ballot initiative banning gay marriage. That measure was approved by voters last month.

But Obama told reporters in Chicago that America needs to "come together," even when there's disagreement on social issues. "That dialogue is part of what my campaign is all about," he said.

Obama also said he's known to be a "fierce advocate for equality" for gays and lesbians, and will remain so.

Warren, a best-selling author and leader of a Southern California megachurch, is one of a new breed of evangelicals who stress the need for action on social issues such as reducing poverty and protecting the environment, alongside traditional theological themes.

The Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights organization, said Warren's opposition to gay marriage is a sign of intolerance.

"We feel a deep level of disrespect when one of the architects and promoters of an anti-gay agenda is given the prominence and the pulpit of your historic nomination," the group said in a letter to Obama, asking him to reconsider.

Obama's selection of Warren is seen as a signal to religious conservatives that the president-elect will listen to their views. During the campaign, Warren interviewed Obama and Republican John McCain in a widely watched television program that focused on religious concerns.

Gay rights advocates say they are troubled that Obama would give Warren such a visible role at his swearing-in. "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," the letter said.

Obama, however, pointed out that a couple of years ago, he was invited to speak at Warren's church, despite their disagreements on a number of issues.

The president-elect said a "wide range of viewpoints" will be presented during the inaugural ceremonies.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081218/ap_on_...ration_minister

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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Colombia
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Warren, a best-selling author and leader of a Southern California megachurch, is one of a new breed of evangelicals who stress the need for action on social issues such as reducing poverty and protecting the environment, alongside traditional theological themes.

There it is.

And in the process, learn to be more tolerant of others' beliefs.


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Morocco
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Yup, keep the lines of dialog open; it's the best way to change a mind.


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Well its no secret that Obama opposed gay marriage, so this isn't exactly a surprise.

Although given the furore over the Prop 28 result, you would think that it was at least a somewhat inappropriate choice.

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Well its no secret that Obama opposed gay marriage, so this isn't exactly a surprise.

Although given the furore over the Prop 28 result, you would think that it was at least a somewhat inappropriate choice.

I think there is a little more that is behind the choice than Prop 8 and the fallout it will generate across the USA. Frankly, I think the next time around Prop 8's opposition will have more support- but that is a separate issue from Obama looking to set up a government that doesn't serve only one segment of the population or one set of beliefs/behavior.


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

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Well its no secret that Obama opposed gay marriage, so this isn't exactly a surprise.

Although given the furore over the Prop 28 result, you would think that it was at least a somewhat inappropriate choice.

I think there is a little more that is behind the choice than Prop 8 and the fallout it will generate across the USA. Frankly, I think the next time around Prop 8's opposition will have more support- but that is a separate issue from Obama looking to set up a government that doesn't serve only one segment of the population or one set of beliefs/behavior.

There's no reason why that segment can't be represented by a less controversial figure.

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Well its no secret that Obama opposed gay marriage, so this isn't exactly a surprise.

Although given the furore over the Prop 28 result, you would think that it was at least a somewhat inappropriate choice.

I think there is a little more that is behind the choice than Prop 8 and the fallout it will generate across the USA. Frankly, I think the next time around Prop 8's opposition will have more support- but that is a separate issue from Obama looking to set up a government that doesn't serve only one segment of the population or one set of beliefs/behavior.

There's no reason why that segment can't be represented by a less controversial figure.

I guess so. IMO the 'drama' will go away soon enough as more people continue to learn the meaning of tolerance.


Wishing you ten-fold that which you wish upon all others.

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Rev. Wright's schedule is open on Jan. 20th.


"The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies."

Senator Barack Obama
Senate Floor Speech on Public Debt
March 16, 2006



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well both sides think the other is intolerant

thats whats so gay about this all

Of course they do, which is why selecting highly politicised figures for high-profile events is a somewhat dodgy thing to do, because of the perceptions it creates.

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