In a fiery speech that addresses President Obama’s endorsement of same-sex marriage, Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan invoked both the Bible and the Koran in claiming that the president and other political and religious leaders are turning their backs on the word of God in order to avoid offending people.
“Now don’t you dare say, ‘Farrakhan was preaching hate, he’s homophobic,’ the 79-year-old minister said. “I am not afraid of my brothers and sisters or others who may be practicing what God condemned in the days of Lot. That is not our job, to be hateful of our people. Our job is to call us to sanity. Our job is to call the people to righteous conduct.”
Though his public declarations have waned a bit as he has gotten older and battled health issues, Farrakhan is still a compelling and influential leader with an extremely devout following. At the height of his popularity, Farrakhan was so powerful that he could draw legions of black men to Washington, D.C., for the Million Man March, and so polarizing that he could get Arsenio Hall fired for inviting him to appear on his late-night show in the 1990’s.
Farrakhan accused Newsweek of “mocking” Obama for calling him the “first gay president” on the cover of the magazine, which Farrakhan held aloft.
“Now you think they’re not mocking him, the first gay president,” Farrakhan said.
Then he smiled mischievously. “I’ve never heard from Michelle that our brother, you know, was absent from duty,” he said. “But he’s the first president that sanctioned what the Scriptures forbid. Now I want to ask a question. Why is it that all you politicians take your oath of office on the Bible? If the book is no good, what the hell are you using it for to take the oath of office to uphold not the Bible but the constitution?”
But Farrakhan said that though he may feel as if the president has turned his back on the Bible, people with sin shouldn’t be condemning gays.
“Well, Jesus said if you’re offending one thing you’re offending them all. So fornicators can’t look at the lesbian and homosexual and say I’m better than you. The liar, the thief, the gambler, the pimp, the prostitute, the lowlife, can’t look at this gay, lesbian, transgendered person and say I’m better than you. Sin is sin, according to the standard of God.”
But Farrakhan did have a question for religious leaders who support same sex marriage.
“Reverend, synagogue leader, Catholic priest—is this the book you say you believe in?” he asked. “Now you’re backing down from this aspect of it because people will get offended? You got Muslims now—and I don’t know how the hell they could call themselves Muslim—they’re involved too. I know damn well they’re not Muslim—they’re set up by the enemy to create confusion in the ranks of the righteous.”