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Anderson Cooper 360 on the 'Big Tent' Theory and Rick Warren


Last night on Anderson Coop 360, Roland Martin, Hilary Rosen, and Robert Zimmerman debated the Congressional Committee for the Inauguration's choice to have anti-gay Pastor Rick Warren read the invocation at Obama's inauguration.

Said Rosen: "First the glibness, that, well it's just a bunch of gays being unhappy that people don't agree with them, is wrong. You know, (at) one time the Bible was used to justify slavery. If this was a preacher, out there, using more weapons against African-Americans we wouldn't even be having this conversation, so second of all, the fact that we're even having a conversation, means that this is a mistake in choice. This is a day when people are to be brought together. There are hundreds of preachers across the country with stature and thoughtfulness and other ways to bring this country together on an inauguration day for the new president. That's the choice he should have made."

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

Pastor Rick Warren to Give Invocation at Obama Inauguration [tr]

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  1. Kudos to CNN and Anderson Cooper for bringing this issue to prime time news.

    Posted by: Philbert | Dec 18, 2008 7:45:17 AM

  2. I'm disappointed. I feel betrayed.

    Posted by: David T | Dec 18, 2008 8:04:57 AM

  3. Hillary Rosen, thank you very much. You're my new hero.

    Posted by: David T | Dec 18, 2008 8:13:22 AM

  4. Seems to me the people who "follow" this Pastor wouldn't care if this guy was there or not. I don't get it - but I do: Obama is just starting his re-election campaign, on Inauguration Day. Some people are constantly running for election. If we limited terms to 4 years and you're out, a person might try to get elected and do as much as possible before being tossed.

    Posted by: Michael M | Dec 18, 2008 8:15:12 AM

  5. For the first time, I actually like Hilary Rosen. We all know she's a lesbian but it's like she "came out" on CNN.

    Sometimes being angry and upset can force a person out of their comfort zone. Good job Hilary!

    Now where is that other dyke, DONNA BRAZILE?

    Posted by: elg | Dec 18, 2008 8:23:23 AM

  6. I became a fan of Rosen after I saw this last night. I looked her up right away & she is an amazing woman. She is just the person we need to fight our causes.

    Posted by: scar2 | Dec 18, 2008 8:36:05 AM

  7. Heh. And the band plays on, doesn't it?

    Posted by: Darren | Dec 18, 2008 8:40:06 AM

  8. Now don't get me wrong - I dislike Warren as much as the next good homo. But really - what are the chances that Obama could have found a preacher who would have made everyone happy? Obama consistently makes the case for bringing people of differing opinions to the table. No matter the choice - and this topic is no exception, this applies practically everywhere in politics - someone is going to be pissed off.
    I like Hilary Rosen plenty, but her comment that there are "hundreds of preachers with stature in the country" that would have made better choices is a little delusional.
    Rick Warren may be a horse's ass when it comes to LGBT rights, but he has the power to make a lot of people care about important issues like the environment and global poverty - two issues that NO preacher in this country has given a fig about before. LGBT rights are an important issue for the next administration, but by no means the most critical. We need to repair the damage done by the Bush administration to how we are viewed around the world; we need to start caring about things like the Kyoto standards and poverty. Not just paying lip service to them, but really trying to do something. Let's face it, we've got some big fish to fry and bitching about what, in the long, run no one is going to remember in 2 years (does anyone remember who prays at inaugurations?) seems, well, a bit overwrought.

    Posted by: Mike R | Dec 18, 2008 8:47:51 AM

  9. Roland did a great job representing how black IS the new white.

    Posted by: Mike | Dec 18, 2008 8:47:55 AM

  10. CNN needs to pull Roland Martin off its staff. He has gone off his meds and needs a big, fat reality check.

    Posted by: michael | Dec 18, 2008 9:10:47 AM

  11. Yes, kudos to Hilary Rosen. She's out, isn't she? Unlike the closeted anchor of 360.

    Posted by: aly | Dec 18, 2008 9:16:45 AM

  12. Bad choice for Obama. While Warren's followers were swooning over Palin and Mcsame. The gays were sending Obama
    $ and support.

    Posted by: John NYC | Dec 18, 2008 9:18:14 AM

  13. Mike R - If Rick Warren had said blacks should not have equal rights and compared their relationships to incest and pedophilia, if he had successfully fought to have the rights of blacks taken away, would that be okay as long as he championed the environment?

    Posted by: Carmen | Dec 18, 2008 9:20:12 AM

  14. What is delusional Mike R. is that you think Obama's choice was harmless. Of all the pastors he could have chosen, regardless of their actions on global issues, he chose a preacher who uses evangelical rhetoric to insult, belittle and demean people.
    You are what's wrong with the LGBT movement these days, you lack moral outrage!

    Posted by: tooboot | Dec 18, 2008 9:33:30 AM

  15. I *hate* Roland Martin. Not only is he a Bible thumping bigot, he's also simply stupid. And yes, CNN should pull him off their staff.

    Hilary Rosen was fantastic!

    Posted by: peterparker | Dec 18, 2008 9:50:01 AM

  16. I completely agree w/ Darren above. You have to draw these people out of their narrow little world to educate them about gay issues. Inclusive means everybody whether you agree with them or not.

    Posted by: dk | Dec 18, 2008 9:52:54 AM

  17. When I hear people excusing hate groups because they've done good work in other areas I'm always reminded of college when the frat boys would go out on Saturday afternoon and do some charity work, then rape unconscious women at their party on Saturday night.

    Such nice boys.

    Posted by: Rick in Ohio | Dec 18, 2008 9:54:29 AM

  18. I never said that the choice was harmless. And I certainly don't think it was "okay." And I certainly didn't stoop to judging, or begrudging, anyone else their opinion. I have plenty of moral outrage, I just choose to direct it where I believe it will have the most beneficial effect for our community.
    Let's face it, every (or most, I won't generalize) evangelical preacher uses their pulpit to demean and belittle people. However, most of them stop there and do not use their role to do anything good. I was only trying to point out that Rick Warren's stance on gays is not the only thing that's important right now. It should not even be the only important issue for our community. Should we not also care about the environment and poverty? Health care affordability?

    Both Carmen and John NYC are twisting my words a bit here. The choice of Warren is not okay, or harmless. It's unacceptable for anyone to compare gay marriage to incest and would be equally unacceptable to oppose interracial marriage. But show me an evangelical preacher (or any preacher) with a large following, who people are willing to listen to on a broad range of issues, that you would support? Who could Obama have chosen for this ultimately unimportant activity that wouldn't have sparked moral outrage in some or all of us? Or in others? He's never going to be able to please everybody all the time, we just have to hope and believe that he'll get it right for our community more often than not.

    Posted by: Mike R | Dec 18, 2008 10:01:54 AM

  19. You got it, Rick!

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Dec 18, 2008 10:08:15 AM

  20. "Inclusive means everybody whether you agree with them or not."

    So we can expect the KKK, NAMBLA, and Holocaust deniers to be in attendance as well?

    Posted by: jmg | Dec 18, 2008 10:16:35 AM

  21. Fact is, that in a separation of church and state, religion should not be welcome at, or a facet of, the Inaugural... period.

    Otherwise, we need jewish, mormon, scientologist, buddhist, moslem, and satanist, and voodoo (to name but a few) representation under the umbrella of inclusiveness.
    Let Obama swear on the flag to a judge, and let Aretha belt out a non-gospel hit, perhaps a rousing rendition of "Respect".

    Posted by: Pbar | Dec 18, 2008 10:25:30 AM

  22. "So we can expect the KKK, NAMBLA, and Holocaust deniers to be in attendance as well?"

    If you can find a Holocaust denier or KKK member who voted for and supports Obama, I'm sure they would be more than welcome at the Inauguration. Chances are pretty slim, though.

    You want to be better than people like Rick Warren, then welcome them into the fold. Let's kill 'em with kindness instead of the vitriol they use.

    Posted by: Mike R | Dec 18, 2008 10:27:13 AM

  23. This situation has certainly given me pause to reconsider my support for Obama ( not only did I contribute money to his campaign, I, like many of you, donated time knocking on doors for him). I would have expected McCain to have selected Warren, but Obama? It is NOT shrewd politics to take a group of people who worked hard to support you and publicly humiliate them on the one day they should have a seat at the table. How many Warren supporters dontated time and money to Obama? There is definitely a sense of betrayal that Obama needs to recognize and correct.

    Posted by: Mark in New Mexico | Dec 18, 2008 10:28:53 AM

  24. "So we can expect the KKK, NAMBLA, and Holocaust deniers to be in attendance as well?"

    "But if we let gays redefine marriage, then don't we have welcome polygamy and people marrying their pets as well?"

    Arguing on baseless terms is counter-productive, no matter who you are.

    Posted by: blakely | Dec 18, 2008 10:33:23 AM

  25. They way I see it, Rick Warren is overall one of the more innocuous pastors of “stature” that people will recognize. This was the brilliance and stupidity w/ Obama’s whole marketing notion of “change”. “Change” is good because it is easily internalized, but bad because as an idea that means different things to all people. Obama winning the election doesn’t mean that everyone in the country is now lovin’ on the gays. Fact is, if “change is gonna come” that means that at some point, some shit needs to actually get done. To do that, one must make friends, make bargains, and work to compromise. I may not like Warren’s positions on LGBT rights, but to say he shouldn’t be allowed to participate on that basis alone is short-sighted and counter-productive to the “change” that we all bought in to.

    Posted by: Mike R | Dec 18, 2008 10:38:32 AM

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