By William Reed
Due to Supreme Court rulings that were occurring in the United States, President Barack Obama’s advocacy for gay rights took place in Africa within 24 hours of arriving in Senegal. “I want the African people just to hear what I believe, and that is that every country, every group of people, every religion have different customs, different traditions,” Obama proffered during a joint press conference with Senegal’s president Macky Sall. In response, Sall sternly rebuffed Obama’s defense of America’s current laws. Senegal is a 95-percent Muslim, sexually conservative and patriarchal nation. Homosexual activity is illegal and punishable for up to five years in prison. Senegalese citizens consider homosexuality taboo.
When will Black Americans join the Senegalese president in telling Obama “where to take” his gay advocacy agenda? A 2009 USA Today/Gallup Poll found 48 percent of Americans felt “society would change for the worse” if same-sex marriage were legalized.
“Gay marriage” and its ethos have been fervently opposed by Blacks and their pastors over the years. Surely, we should look toward that type leadership again. Black religious conservatives are “outraged” over the high court’s ruling. Bishop Aubrey Shines, senior pastor of Glory to Glory Ministries in Tampa, Fla., and spokesperson for a number of African-American churches vocal on issues pertaining to biblical justice, poverty, and civil rights, said “the court’s decisions fly in the face of common sense; tradition and morality … The vast majority of Americans do not support the homosexual agenda.”
Shines urged Blacks to ignore “aggressive multi-billion dollar media campaigns promoting homosexuality.” In matters of marriage and family, Shines said: “the truth is a healthy union between one man and one woman is unique and special and the best way to raise a family.”
Black Americans should show some backbone. Black family life is now being defined primarily as “single female-headed households.” Seventy percent of Black children are raised by single parents. Black family life is part and parcel of politics based on welfare-state materialistic mentalities bestowed by elitist Whites. The court’s ruling is the latest in that population segments’ processes defying God’s authority.
God created marriage and defined its parameters for us. But, too many of us are allowing politics and politicians to lead us astray. The laws of the land are being swayed by politics. And politics are leading us down a path of destruction as illustrated by the biblical story of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. In Abrahamic traditions, including Senegalese President Sall’s Quran, Sodom and Gomorrah are synonymous with impenitent sin, and their fall with a proverbial manifestation of God’s wrath. Sodom and Gomorrah have been used as metaphors for homosexuality and vice viewed as a deviation. The story has therefore given rise to words in several languages, including the English word sodomy, used to describe a sexual “crime against nature.”
Isn’t it time men and women step forward to place a priority on God’s law over and above man’s law? It’s time Black church leadership step forward. Evil is all around us, from lying and stealing to pornography, drugs, illicit sex, and violence. God has given us Ten Commandments to order our steps. God calls us to be “not influenced by the world’s wicked culture.” Do Blacks living in America take sin and God’s wrath seriously, or plan to continue as wards of American paternal politics?
Bishop Harry Jackson of the International Communion of Evangelical Churches declared “Gay marriage is not of God,” and asked “Why would Blacks accept same-sex orientation?” Be it Bible or Quran, God is very clear: “If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination.”
Their numbers are growing. Directly counter to God’s teachings, more Americans are “coming out.” Polls show each generation less opposed to homosexual behaviors than the previous generation. But, to save ourselves, Blacks need to turn to people like Bishops Jackson and Shines to help us keep traditional families and values intact.
William Reed is head of the Business Exchange Network and available for speaking/seminar projects through the Bailey Group.org.