With the news that the notoriously homophobic and contentious US pastor Steven Anderson is due to visit Dublin on May 26, a petition has been launched to block him from coming.
The Faithful Word Baptist church, which is currently listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre, have advertised that the fundamentalist preacher’s upcoming European tour will also take in Amsterdam and Stockholm.
Anderson’s furious sermons, which have been shared on social media sites, have seen him compared to Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church. Among his countless despicable pronouncements, the petition provides links to how he proposed the extermination of LGBT+ people to “cure AIDS” and uploaded a video for his followers to explain why the 49 people murdered in the Pulse nightclub massacre “deserved to die in the shooting”.
He also believes that homosexual people are “sodomites who recruit through rape” and “recruit through molestation” and can never be “saved”. During one of his sermons, he preached, “The biggest hypocrite in the world is the person who believes in the death penalty for murderers but not for homosexuals.” When questioned, he later doubled down on his preachings, saying, “I do hate homosexuals and if hating homosexuals makes our church a hate group, then that’s what we are.”
There are news reports based on him telling his congregation that he prayed nightly for the death of then-president Barack Obama. The petition also lists how Anderson is a Holocaust-denier, Islamophobe, stands against abortion rights and tells his followers that “women are to remain in the home”. His church believe that any form of birth control is a sin and likens the birth control pill to murder.
With such a clear and undisguised racist, homophobic, misogynistic brand of preaching, it is quite clear that Anderson’s hate speech is dangerous and does not deserve a platform, especially in a country where we have fought long and hard to escape from under the shadow of evil doctrine. You can add your name to the petition here.
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