“Our only weapons in this fight are the weapons of Rev. King: truth and love and courage,” said Rev. Williams Owens. A man who says this will never back down.
This stance by Rev. Owens, the president of the Coalition for African-American Pastors (CAAP) sums up the problem Barack Obama has with his African American base.
By any measure, Rev. Owens, who has called Barack Obama “Judas”, is preaching to his choir.
By their own description, African Americans (79%) are much more religious than the rest of America (56%). Fifty three percent say they attend church at least once a week, and 76% report praying daily. Fifty nine percent are members of the Churches represented in Rev. Owens’ black pastors association. Almost 9 of every 10 black Americans are “absolutely certain God exists”, and 55% believe the Bible is the literal word of God.
In general, African Americans express opposition to homosexuality at a rate of 46%, but among the more religious, that number climbs to 58%. Nevertheless, by a lopsided 64% to 27%, blacks are against gay marriage.
In May, when Obama decided to support gay marriage, among other black clergy, Rev. Owens was shocked and angered. He demanded a meeting with Obama, the man he and his congregation worked so hard to elect, and since then, he has been ignored.
The CAAP immediately went on the offensive. Regardless of how Obama and his people have tried to frame the issue, they have not been able to talk this problem away. When they tried to claim that gay marriage is a matter of civil rights, Owens responded, “I didn’t march one inch, one foot, one yard for a man to marry a man and a woman to marry a woman. We will not take it back, we will not back down, and we are going to take action across this country.”
On Tuesday he declared: “He [Obama] has not done a smart thing and it might cost him the election. There are more people that want marriage to be right than there are homosexuals.”
All of this brings to mind what Sir Arthur Harris said upon taking over the British Air Force in 1942, referring to who he had to defeat, he said, “They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.”
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