Barack Obama | Donnie McClurkin | Election 2008 | News | South Carolina

Obama Releases Letter from Gays and Blacks Supporting Gospel Tour


Stating that Barack Obama speaks "truth in love to both sides," a group of black supporters made up of religious leaders and a group of LGBT some of whom are activists and former leaders at the Human Rights Campaign, this afternoon released a letter in support of Obama's South Carolina gospel tour.

The letter is an attempt to quell outrage from the LGBT community at the inclusion of Reverend Donnie McClurkin, an "ex-gay" pastor and notorious homophobe who performed at the Republican National Convention in 2004, has vowed to battle "the curse of homosexuality," and believes that gays can be turned straight with religious intervention.

Yesterday, Obama added openly gay Reverend Andy Sidden to the tour to counter the furor over McClurkin.

The letter released today reads, in part:

"A few things are clear. First, Pastor McClurkin believes and has stated things about sexual orientation that are deeply hurtful and offensive to many Americans, most especially to gay Americans. This cannot and should not be denied. At the same time, a great many African Americans share Pastor McClurkin’s beliefs. This also cannot be ignored. Finally, we believe that the only way for these two sides to find common ground is to do so together. Not at arms length. Not in a war of words with press and pundits. Only together. It is clear that Barack Obama is the only candidate who has made bringing these two often disparate groups together a goal. In gatherings of LGBT Americans and African Americans of faith, Obama has stated that all individuals should be afforded full civil rights regardless of their sexual orientation, and that homophobia must be eradicated in every corner of our nation. If we are to end homophobia and secure full civil rights for gay Americans, then we need an advocate within the Black community like Barack Obama. At the same time, while Obama has said that he 'strongly disagrees' with Pastor McClurkin's comments, he will not exclude from his campaign the many Americans including many in the African American community who believe the same as Pastor McClurkin. We believe that Barack Obama is constructing a tent big enough for LGBT Americans who know that their sexual orientation is an innate and treasured part of their being, and for African American ministers and citizens who believe that their religion prevents them from fully embracing their gay brothers and sisters. And if we are to confront our shared challenges we have to join together, build on common ground, and engage in a civil dialogue even when we disagree."

Read the full letter here.

Joint Letter from the African American Religious and LGBT Leadership Teams [barack obama campaign]

Obama Adds Openly Gay Minister to Counter McClurkin Furor [tr]
"Ex-Gay" Reverend McClurkin Speaks Out on Obama Controversy [tr]
Barack Obama Releases Statement on Reverend McClurkin [tr]
Barack Obama to Tour with Anti-Gay Gospel Singer [tr]

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  1. I actually thought this thing would blow over soon (before Iowa), but I'll be damned if those idiots in the Obama campaign aren't making it worse. It's like festering, man.
    Hillary must be orgasmic by now.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Oct 25, 2007 4:54:20 PM

  2. What about black gays?

    Posted by: whaaat? | Oct 25, 2007 4:54:38 PM

  3. Why not invite the Ku Klux Klan while he's at it? Or any other hateful entity that he "strongly disagrees with". What a fuckin' waste.

    Posted by: John in Manhattan | Oct 25, 2007 4:55:26 PM

  4. 1st...the HRC is a useless organization - check out their press release on this issue at HRC's website. 2nd...Obama can release all the pro-letters he wants, a majority of the community is outraged. 3rd...I want Obama to have a KKK member introduce the next black civil rights leader he has speak at one of his events. Since he's trying to include all sides.

    Worthless git!

    Posted by: Mike | Oct 25, 2007 4:56:06 PM

  5. Hey, Barack. Invite Larry Craig. Maybe he could do a toe-tapping song and dance number with Donnie.

    Posted by: Marco | Oct 25, 2007 4:56:43 PM

  6. Give me just a second; Let me check.

    Nope, don't give a flyin' frack.

    Posted by: KJ | Oct 25, 2007 5:00:30 PM

  7. What a completely assinine statement!

    My grandmother believes that alll african americans are "niggers," one evolutionary step above monkeys and one below whites. Living in Georgia, I am well aware that many people share her views. That doesn't mean someone looking to be President should give her a platform to spew her bullshit.

    Thank God I already decided not to vote for Obama, he only proves how unfit he is for the job at every turn. He started out (on paper) and looked like a legitimate candidate, but as I suspected, the more I know about him, the less qualified he is (and not b/c he is black).

    Posted by: Dan B | Oct 25, 2007 5:02:19 PM

  8. You can judge a man by the company he keeps.

    Fuck Obama.

    Posted by: stevo | Oct 25, 2007 5:02:30 PM

  9. Didn't the buy that "big tent" used from the Republicans?

    I'm surprised Isaiah Washington didn't sign the letter. At least, then, I would have heard of one of the only 16 who did. As for their credentials; there are only about five people left on earth who haven't been on one of HRC's giant boards at one time or another. And why only "African American" signers? The homophobia within a specific race may affect the LGBT members of that race more, but they still affect all LGBTs of whatever race. The homohatred of one of the whitest white guys on earth, Fred Phelps, doesn't hurt Black gays any less than it hurts white gays.

    IF Obama had proposed an ACTUAL, sit down "dialogue" with McClurkin et al., as they posit, I would applaud him. But this was NEVER presented as that until the bullshit hit the fan. It was the Donnie and Barack Show; live on our stage, singin', shoutin', and trying to scoop up Black votes from people who like McClurkin's singing and either don't mind his professional demonization of gays or also agree with it.

    Sadder by the day. Everybody duck because I hear another blistering barrage from Black lesbian minister and Obama iconoclast incoming.

    Posted by: Leland Frances | Oct 25, 2007 5:06:37 PM

  10. *****At the same time, a great many African Americans share Pastor McClurkin’s beliefs. *****

    What bullsh!t is this? A great many Af-Ams think gays are killing their children? Seriously?

    And homos from HRC actually put their names on this thing? Ok there's little I can do about that since I stopped giving them money a while ago, but I can still call and bitch them out.

    Posted by: beergoggles | Oct 25, 2007 5:09:50 PM

  11. Oh and Pam's has the lowdown on the downlow of not-so-ex-gay McClurkin:

    Posted by: beergoggles | Oct 25, 2007 5:12:03 PM

  12. I just finished reading it!

    "He referred to his asshole as “pussy”. Stuff like that, "You want to fuck this pussy, don't you?" You know that type of thing."

    Why, Donnie, you sly puss!

    Posted by: John in Manhattan | Oct 25, 2007 5:15:34 PM

  13. The letter is total nonsense--nothing more than a wordy rationalization of black homophobia. Barack Obama no longer has my vote.

    Posted by: jmg | Oct 25, 2007 5:15:48 PM

  14. You know when you get caught in a lie, so you keep lying and lying, making your story more and more complicated and convoluted so that pretty soon nothing makes sense anymore and everyone is just standing there watching to see what you'll say next because you're making a complete ass out our yourself and maybe if you had just shut up and told the truth in the first place you wouldn't be knee deep in sh*t?

    Well, he just needs to stop. Desperate explanations do not a good leader make.

    Posted by: David | Oct 25, 2007 5:16:49 PM

  15. Ugh, it's such a total turnoff when men refer to their bunghole in the feminine. And I can't help but laugh uncontrollably whenever any of my girlfriends slang it and say they got their kitty punched.

    Posted by: beergoggles | Oct 25, 2007 5:26:38 PM

  16. Obama just lost my vote.

    Posted by: randall x | Oct 25, 2007 5:39:58 PM

  17. Glad people are seeing Obama's true colors.

    Posted by: queendru | Oct 25, 2007 5:52:05 PM

  18. this makes me very sad. i had so much respect for him. why, obama!? there are no heroes left -- only opportunists. so very sad....

    Posted by: nic | Oct 25, 2007 5:52:46 PM

  19. I agree... I had a delighted respect for Obama. But the "big tent" crap is the Republican way to include the brain damaged Log Cabin homosexuals in the Republican party.

    He's just making it worse and worse. He shoulda tossed McCrackedUp when he had the chance...

    David B.

    Posted by: David B. | Oct 25, 2007 6:11:44 PM

  20. Rev. Andy Sidden is a great leader in the United Church of Christ. I'm forunate to have him as a colleague in the ministry.

    Posted by: Rev. Chuck Currie | Oct 25, 2007 6:12:32 PM

  21. Did anyone watch the View this morning? Andy, you need to find the clip of Whoopie defending Rev. McClurkin's statement that being gay is a choice... Whoopie actually said that she agreed with him and didn't see anything wrong about his statements! I thought Whoopie was on our side. I will never watch the View again as long as Whoopie is on that show.

    Posted by: Rob | Oct 25, 2007 6:37:28 PM

  22. Whoppi may believe it's a choice but I doubt she's judgmental of that "choice." Besides, isn't she a lesbian?

    Posted by: Jason | Oct 25, 2007 6:51:47 PM

  23. Obama's adding gay preacher Andy Sidden to stand next to the pathologically homophobic Donnie McClurkin is like offering sugar as an antidote to poison. Obama has already lost it, and no amount of window dressing can disguise his original disastrous decision to welcome a monstrous bigot to his campaign. Go Hillary!

    Posted by: Paul Weidig | Oct 25, 2007 7:04:39 PM

  24. More than a few Obama signs vanished from the Castro today. I can understand why. If he's our friend then who is our enemy again?
    Scary fucker.

    Posted by: SFshawn | Oct 25, 2007 7:07:47 PM

  25. "We believe that Barack Obama is constructing a tent big enough...." Oh really? Well, I believe he is talking out both sides of his mouth. Weasel. A classic example of how appeasing all pleases none.

    Posted by: mrpeenee | Oct 25, 2007 7:18:48 PM

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