The latest flap seems to be over the Reverend Rick Warren.  Why?  He has been asked to give the Inaugural Invocation for President-Elect Barack Obama. 


So who all is flapping?  It seems like just about everyone if TV is to be believed.  The left is howling because they say that Reverend Warren is anti gay and is a speaker of hate.  The right is growling because they say the Reverend Warren is catering to the far left and should not be appearing with Barack Obama. 


Now I think I have the flap right.  I am not sure.  Supposedly lesbian pop singer Melissa Etheridge didn’t know Rick Warren, believed the rhetoric the gays were saying, and went on a rant about him.  She met with him, talked to him, understood him, and now they are buds. 


What does the readership know about all this?  This story seems to be carrying the week.  I know absolutely nothing about Rick Warren.  Good guy or bad guy and why?

41 Thoughts to “The Rick Warren controversy rages on”

  1. Marie

    I think Obama is doing exactly what he said he would do, bring both sides together. We cannot continue to have live with the wide chasms that separate us in this nation. Obama has said all along we need to find common ground and I expect he will continue to move in that direction.

    Rick Warren wrote “The Purpose Driven Life”.The book offers readers a 40-day personal spiritual journey, and presents what Warren says are God’s five purposes for human life on Earth. It is actually a very powerful book.

  2. Marie

    Sorry-to early. Meant to say “We cannot continue to live with the wide chasms……

  3. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    I haven’t heard of any conservatives griping about Obama having Rick Warren give the invocation. I have heard that gays are quite up-in-arms (spinning right off of Prop 8). Oddly enough, I haven’t heard of this controversy for over a week at all. We must read different news sources. You’d think folks would get tired of complaining about every little thing and take a little break for Christmas.

  4. Moon-howler

    Slow, I expect we do read different news sources. Actually, I kept hearing all the skuttle-butt on tv. The conservative spin from what I hear is that Obama is a liberal and Rick Warren shouldn’t be supporting liberals. Somehow I don’t think I am saying this right. Who am *I* to speak for conservatives?

    Maybe Melissa Etheridge will bridge the chasm on this one. Stranger things have happened.

    Marie, what are those 5 purposes for human life on earth? I have heard of the book, just not him before all this. I agree about Obama doing what he said he was going to do.

  5. Opinion

    It’s about dialog and a “big tent”. We have practiced “us” and “them” politics for too long. It’s time to start talking about “we”, focusing on where we agree, and compromising where we disagree.

    The days of polarization are (I hope) over. Rick Warren is very symbolic as he represents a huge constituancy that we want inside the tent. Americans are one big family. We may not always agree; however, we are always related.


    I didn’t realize Rick Warren was anti gay until I heard about all the flap…and then yesterday read an Opinion piece in the Post by one of their regular columnists about how his gay sister was canceling her inauguration party because of the choice. I have to tell you, the quotes he came up with took me by surprise. I’d be a bitter gay person too!

    I just ended a 3 year subscription to Ladies Home Journal. Rick Warren had regular pieces in there, and I have to say…I skipped through those articles like I used to scroll through Michael’s long posts! (Sorry, Michael, I read more of yours now that they are shorter!) His “spiritual” pieces…just not my thing. I agree that Obama said he was going to try to bring all types together and I think he is honestly trying to do that. He cannot possibly please all of us all of the time. I will get over this, but I do think he could have chosen someone that doesn’t put gays in the same category as a pedophile. Jeez.

  7. Elena

    This is a tough one. I do understand Obama’s intent, and I applaud putting his words into action by reaching out to Rick Warren. Having said that, I also abhor the generalized prejudice against gay people, it has led to many violent actions against homesexuals. I wonder if maybe this might be a great time for Rick Warren to share his conversation with Melissa Ethridge and put to rest some things he might have said that were inappropriate. Calling gay people pedophiles is what leads to mistrust and hate.

  8. Moon-howler

    I heard this morning as I was setting up this thread that he did not call gay people pedophiles and that it is an urban legend of sorts. Does anyone have a direct quote? I agree if he said that, I would have to diss him. He is perfectly welcome to think homosexuality is wrong, or not the desired orientation. His opinion is valid as the next guys.

    Back in my activist days, (and one reason I am not longer an activist about much of anything) Iused to watch the movers and shakers take a shred of truth and built an entire point of view, life of its own rumor to put out there to work everyone up, to drive them into a feeding frenzy. Did they lie? Well, not totally. Did they embellish? oh Hell yes! Go to the dark screen for further examples.

    Will someone provide quotes or something that give us a better understanding of what Rick Warren has said about gays. I cannot imagine Melissa Etheridge embracing him if he equated all gays to pedophiles!

  9. Moon-howler

    Opinion, I failed to mention that I found your comment to be very uplifting and validating of what Obama is doing. Thanks. It sure takes greater courage to reach out to someone who isn’t preaching to the choir than to reach for one of your own.

    I think it is especially a gesture of good will and inclusiveness after the Rev. Wright crap.

  10. Opinion

    actually thought that Rick Warren was against gay marriage, not necessarily anti-gay. Being against the former (gay marriage) doesn’t imply the latter (anti-gay) although it probably suits some group’s purpose to lump the two together. His church may not welcome gays as members; however, that doesn’t mean (as I understand his thinking) he is anti-gay (people are free to worship where they are welcome).

    I’m guessing not a lot of Republicans will be invited to any of Obama’s ten presidential balls. Does that mean he is “anti-Republican”, “anti-Conservative”, or does it mean he simply disagrees with them (there’s a subtle difference).

    I give Obama credit for knowing how to disagree in a civil manner. It’s a lost art.

    Perhaps this will help clarify Rick Warren’s view

  11. A PW County Resident

    I found his interview here

    He doesn’t, in my view, equate gays to pedophiles, he sounds to me like he is saying, I am opposed to certain marriages. He didn’t mention gay but when asked if he viewed gay marriage the same way, he said yes. That doesn’t mean to me that he was saying that it was the same as an old person with a child marriage, it was that it shared his opposition.

  12. Opinion

    Re your comment on my earlier post, Thank you, Moon-howler.

  13. Moon-howler

    I am not opposed to gay marriage. It doesn’t hurt me one way or the other. However, I don’t care much if other people don’t agree with me. Thanks Resident, for finding that.

    The is a schism of fairly large proportion going on in the Episcopalian/Anglican community over the ordination of gay priests. The conservative congregations oppose this action enough to split with the church.

  14. TWINAD

    Here is the opinion piece I was referencing, and, my bad, it does not say he equates being gay to being a pedophile…only on par with polygymy or incest!!!!

    Either way, not good!

  15. TWINAD

    Well, wait a minute. I would think incest = pedophilia, no? Aren’t uncles that rape their nieces (for example) aren’t the nieces under age (the vast majority), thus, pedophilia would be an accurate term?

  16. Elena

    Thanks Twinad and Opinion for adding your articles. I am hopeful that this new controversy will help Mr. Warren redefine what he is saying about gay marriage. It seems pretty clear to me that he is walking a Clintonism of what “is” is when it comes to equating gay marriage on the same level as a brother marrying a sister or old person marrying a child. Maybe both sides should use this as an opportunity to bring garner some common ground. It sounds like Melissa Ethridge did with Mr. Warren.

  17. DiversityGal

    I do not agree with Warren’s statements. I think the whole “I don’t agree with the redefinition of a 5000 year old view of marriage” line is complete crap. It is a spin that a lot of people are using recently. That is NOT what is happening. Prop 8 and other similar measures seek to put new wording in state constitutions to redefine what marriage can and cannot be…not the other way around, right? In any case, marriage has not been a simple, unchanged definition; it has continued to change through the years:

    I would argue that anyone seeking to keep a group of people from their civil rights could be considered “anti”. It’s like saying, “Well, I know some gay people, and I like some gay people, but I don’t think they get to have the same rights and protections as me.” Marriage, in every state in the US, is a legal matter; it requires a license. Those who wish to bring their religion into it may, but it is not a requirement in any state. Therefore, I do not think that we should bring our religious faith into legislating it.

    Warren drew a direct comparison between the LGBT community, polygamists, and those committing incest when he spoke of marriage. Polygamy is against the law. Incest is against the law. Since when is being gay against the law? His comments were revealing.

    Clinton opened the door for this whole mess in 1996(?) with the passage of the Defense of Marriage Act. Then lots of states ran with it. See the next link for Obama’s views on DOMA:

  18. Rick Warren has a right to his views but I think the LGBT community is justifiably upset. They put in a lot of work for Obama.

  19. TWINAD

    Well said, DG!

  20. /\/\3|)iç 64


    The only problem with your thought process is that this nation was founded with religion as a main part of it. Only in recent history, last 50-60 years, has there been a movement to remove religion from it. Because of this, we see more and more violence and lack of discipline in our youth. One can not discipline their child without fear of having DCFS called on them and the children know this. That is a problem.

    I have no quarrel allowing gays to have the same rights as a heterosexual marriage, but they should not have the same legal marriage; as it is stated in the Bible, between a man and woman. Once we go down this road, we are stepping on a slippery slope to other things just as perverse in some people’s minds. For that reason, there will always be a fight against gay marriage. Next thing you know, a$$less chaps will be allowed in public places outside of a gay parade.

    You allow one form of perversity into the fray and others will follow. We will become numb to it. For example, we use to look on in horror when an airliner crashed. Now, with the 24 hr news cycle, we just barely notice. The same is true with any other catastrophe.

  21. I considering buying a house in order to rent it. Is anybody else considering the same?

    My great fear is that the American economy will have a meltdown causing housing prices to collapse.

  22. /\/\3|)iç 64


    I would probably wait until things settle out just a bit more. I am looking at purchasing myself, but I am waiting to see what the new year brings with Obama in office. Prices are still headed down and you would hate to buy now and find that you could have saved an additional 10-20k.

  23. Rates are really low. It’s very tempting.

    I’m not wondering whether to buy now or buy later. I’m wondering whether to buy at all. Peter Schiff is one of the few experts who predicted the housing collapse. He is recommending to stay away from American real estate. The dollar is on the road to collapse. Obama will certainly accelerate this process with his 3million jobs building bridges to nowhere.

  24. DiversityGal

    /\/\3|)iç 64,

    There are aspects of religion in our country’s laws. However, that does not mean that religion has the right to rule the state. There is a great diversity of belief in this country, and for that, I am grateful. While your religious beliefs may tell you that homosexuality is “perverse” and equivalent to a plane crash, my religious beliefs do not.

    There is a great history of using religious texts to back up arguments for denying people their rights:

    For instance, if one wanted, they could pick and choose Bible passages that seem to support the inequality of women and the existence of slavery. The Bible is a wonderful religious text, but we cannot turn to it for all US law. Otherwise, the rights of some would be trampled upon. Different people interpret it in VASTLY different ways, no? And not every citizen is Christian, right?

    As a person of faith, I do believe that religion can play an important piece in our lives. However, I respect people that do not choose this path. I also respect people that have a different faith than I do. We should not seek to impose our religious beliefs on others, especially if said beliefs might deny others their civil rights and protections.

    The LGBT community is not seeking to commit criminal acts. They just want the right to commit to each other in loving relationships, like other people get to. I know a lesbian couple who have been in a civil union for many years. They are raising a family, and are pillars of their suburban community. They are active in PTA, and are excellent parents and friends…hardly the “a$$less chaps” picture you would present and seem to fear.

    Maybe you, too, know a gay couple in a civil union or very committed relationship. If not, my wish for you is that you get to know one. My other wish is that your heart will be opened to them and their quest for equal rights. Love is love, people.

  25. Red Dawn


    I found a house for you, LOL! Just kidding of course but how cute is this? I could have a tiny village on my property and rent them out so I can pay my upside down mortgage? The key to that dream would be to not piss anyone off 🙁

    MERRY CHRISTMAS to EVERYONE! Good to see you Medic 🙂

  26. Moon-howler

    Why in Clinton getting the blame for the defense of marriage act? What did he have to do with it and what is it?

    I think that the entire gay marriage issue will be decided as a civil rights issue in the very near future. The State needs to get out of the business of attempting to define marriage. They need to stick to civil unions and allow churches and other religious institutions define marriage according to their beliefs. Civil unions should handle anyone who wants to hook up in that way. As for the outliers…people too closely related, polygamists, keep things as they are now.

  27. Moon-howler

    Medic, I don’t know that I agree with you about religion was the main reason for founding of America. While Massachusetts Bay ended up being one of the most repressive religous areas in the colonies, Virginia was founded for financial gain and was fairly lax about what religions were practiced. Georgia was established by convicts. NY was pretty neutral also.

    I really want churches to do their work with THEIR parishoners and leave the rest of us alone.

    I forgot to mention, if a company has domestic partner benefits, the employee has to pay income tax on those said benefits. Little known fact until you try to use it.

  28. Red Dawn

    A question out of nowhere, more of a spontaneous unfinished thought…what about common law marriage? How does that factor into the debates as far as the sanctity of marriage and benefits?

  29. Red Dawn,

    That’s a fascinating story. That guy is a genius. We should have built a Tumbleweed Tiny House neighborhood in the county to alleviate the overcrowding.

    Have you heard of capsule hotels in Japan. Maybe that’s next:

    Have you been listening to Peter Schiff. This video of predictions he made 2 years ago is amazing. He was totally right about everything that’s happened to the economy. And all the other economic experts in the video keep calling him an idiot. Haha. It’s only because of Peter Schiff that I haven’t bought a house yet.

  30. Red Dawn


    I have seen the capsules on the Travel channel.I could not do that as I am claustrophobic!
    LOL, when you said:
    “We should have built a Tumbleweed Tiny House neighborhood in the county to alleviate the overcrowding.”

    That was my FIRST thought and the zoning issues 😉
    I am becoming more aware of Peter Schiff, especially after an interview with Glen Beck one night.
    Answer me this,(if you can, LOL) When does the truth become truth vs fear mongering? AFTER the fact?

  31. Opinion

    /\/\3|)iç, actually, I disagree with your observation that our Country was founded with religion as a main part of it. If you really look at what influenced the Constitution (what the founders were thinking), you will find that they were influenced by Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Natural Law theories. Thomas Jefferson, for example, was a Deist. Like many of his contemporaries, he didn’t believe that the “God” who created the world had any interest on our day to day affairs. The use of the word “God” in the context of what the framers of the Constitution intended has been lost in the evolution of philosophical thinking and revisionist history.

    For people really interested in learning about the philosophy and thinking that actually influenced the Constitution (you would be surprised), I suggest a visit to You will be surprised at what you find.

  32. RD,

    I suppose the truth is always the truth.

    And fear mongering is when you use a lie or a bit of truth to create excessive fear to get people to do something.

    It all depends upon your intent.

    Both Peter Schiff and Joe Biden say the economy is going to tank. Both are right. But Peter Schiff is trying to save us. His intent is to warn Americans that there will be rough times ahead but if we are smart and work hard, we can get through them to a brighter day.

    But that bastard Biden is exploiting the situation to call for another 700-800 billion dollar bailout. He sees a chance to further centralize and socialize the USA. His intent is to acquire more power for himself and the democrat party. He and Obama offer false hopes.

  33. Red Dawn


    “But that bastard Biden is exploiting the situation to call for another 700-800 billion dollar bailout.”

    LOL!!!!!!maybe that explains why he is girding his loins!??!!! Is it really going to take a good swift kick in the ass? to find out you are homeless? JUST KIDDING!!!! I thought I would practice my new pitch of home ownership in my dreamed ( if I can get past zoning) village 🙂

    ON a SERIOUS note, I do believe it is INTENT. Truth always comes out 🙂
    There is truth in everything, it is up to each of to be vigil.

  34. Moon-howler

    So Pat Robertson came on TV today in praise of Obama. What’s happening here? I was very surprised since he HATED Clinton.

  35. Red Dawn,

    I’m going to open an account with Peter Schiff’s investment firm, Euro Pacific Capital, so I can get a portion of my wealth out of American dollars. Every day it seems, the cracks in the foundation grow larger and larger. The whole structure is groaning and creaking above our heads.

    You can find Schiff’s weekly broadcasts here:

    Download and listen to the one from December 17th. It’s pretty terrifying.

  36. The Housing Collapse of 2009 Will Be Worse Than 2008

  37. This is beautiful.

    Peter Schiff- Bulls & Bears – 12/16/2006

  38. Elena

    Thanks for your commentary Opinion on the founding fathers religous foundations. I agree with your statement:

    “If you really look at what influenced the Constitution (what the founders were thinking), you will find that they were influenced by Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Natural Law theories. Thomas Jefferson, for example, was a Deist. Like many of his contemporaries, he didn’t believe that the “God” who created the world had any interest on our day to day affairs. The use of the word “God” in the context of what the framers of the Constitution intended has been lost in the evolution of philosophical thinking and revisionist history.”

  39. Moon-howler

    Bulls and Bears/ Great show. Anhd it reminds me that no one knows the answers and it is all a crap shoot. I watch it weekly.

  40. NotGregLeteicq

    I have not heard much about this because I have been out of the loop doing family stuff. I would have preferred that Obama invited an Evangelical who does not have such hateful statements on record. But, Obama gives a lot of leeway to his Rev. W’s.

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