Georgia Rep. Rick Allen (R) lead a prayer calling for the death of LGBT people on May 26 2016, when he opened the weekly GOP conference meeting by reciting a Bible verse that says LGBT people are “worthy of death.”
The timing for the prayer Congressman Rick Allen gave came just before a vote on a spending bill amendment that was aiming to secure LGBT anti-discrimination protections. At this little meeting, Allen expressed to dozens of his fellow Republicans that they’d all sinned for backing the anti-discrimination proposal to protect LGBT people, even going so far as to question the members’ religious principles. Allen told several lawmakers that they’re “going to hell” for supporting the protection of LGBT people, which really doesn’t sound like something Jesus would say.
Later that morning the uncontroversial energy and water spending measure failed after Democrats attached an amendment that would keep federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT people.
Several moderate Republicans were shocked by Rep. Rick Allen’s remarks and walked out of the meeting in protest, reported Politico.
According to The Hill, an annoyed Republican lawmaker said:
‘It was f**king ridiculous.’
Another Republican who wished to remain anonymous said:
‘A good number of members were furious. There was some Scripture that was read and the like. Nothing good was going to happen to those that supported the LGBT provision. A good number of members were furious.’
Still, while several Republicans were offended, there were many others at the meeting that had no objections or complaints to Allen’s clear inability to separate church and state when he said a prayer that advocated death for LGBT people. What’s most disappointing is the fact that Allen’s proselytizing in the name of conservative religious bigotry obviously worked. The spending bill that contained LGBT protection did fail.
Allen led the prayer by reading from Romans 1:18-32, and Revelations 22:18-19, in which there are passages that refer to homosexuality and suggest the death penalty for homosexual behavior.
According to Rep. Rick Allen’s office, he read Romans 1:27:
‘And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet.’
And also lines 28-32:
‘And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.’
Allen wasn’t done there and continued on, reading a passage from Revelations about the return of Jesus and the rapture, suggesting that lawmakers who supported protecting LGBT people in any way would be going to hell.
JoDee Winterhof, Human Rights Campaign Senior Vice President of Policy and Political Affairs, issued a statement in response to Congressman Rick Allen’s ridiculous remarks:
‘House Speaker Paul Ryan and the other members of the House Republican Leadership have a responsibility to immediately condemn Representative Allen’s vile and dangerous remarks this morning at an official meeting of the House Republican Conference, during which he said that LGBT people are ‘worthy of death.’ At a time when LGBT people face staggering rates of discrimination, harassment and violence, Representative Allen should apologize or be censured and Republican leaders must make clear that they will not tolerate lawmakers who sow hatred and violence against LGBT people.’
Featured Image via screen capture