Pat Robertson onceagain hailed Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who is barring her county office from issuing marriage licenses, as a hero for challenging the “criminalization of Christianity” in a country that “was founded as a Christian nation.” The “700 Club” host said today that a judge’s decision to temporarily put Davis in the custody of U.S. Marshals for repeatedly breaking the law proves that now anyone can be sent to prison just for their faith.
“Christianity, the founding principle of this nation, is criminalized,” he claimed. “You go to jail if you believe in God and stand fast for your beliefs against the onslaught of secular humanism and the flood that comes about with it.”
“Kim Davis is not exactly that champion we’d all want to stand up for our beliefs but nevertheless she did it and she’s the heroine of the piece, but there will be many, many others,” he said.
Somehow, Robertson himself has avoided a prison sentence, despite the alleged criminalization of Christianity in America.
Robertson invited Cahn onto his “The 700 Club” program today, where the two discussed Cahn’s claim that something bad will happen this month and when that bad thing happens, it will be a sign of God’s wrath.
Pointing to the birth last year of two cows that have facial marks that look like the number seven, Cahn and Robertson said that is all the proof they need that Americans should get ready for a cataclysmic event to occur in the coming weeks.
But Cahn saw more evidence that America is about to receive divine retribution, while cautioning that he doesn’t know what this bad thing might be and covering his bets by insisting that if a bad thing doesn’t happen this month, it is because “God is on the throne” and He chose to withhold His wrath.
Cahn told Robertson that the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality and the White House’s display of rainbow colors to celebrate LGBT pride month amounted to a “triple desecration” because it desecrated marriage, the U.S. government and the image of the rainbow.
“America crossed the line,” he said. Cahn then discussed the Kim Davis case, claiming that the Kentucky clerk who has refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples is just like biblical prophets who rebelled against tyrannical rulers to prove their loyalty to God.
“It’s like a perfect storm, all of these things coming together,” he said.
Religious Right activists claimed that they were shocked and stunned this week when a federal judge held Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in contempt of court after she repeatedly refused court orders to allow her office to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, even after losing her appeal to the Supreme Court.
While the Religious Right has been outraged, many legal observers have wondered how anyone could be surprised that a judge would actually hold Davis accountable for blatantly violating the law. Some have even questioned whether Davis' lawyers at the conservative legal group Liberty Counsel are giving her bad advice and urging her to break the law in order to turn her case into a fundraising bonanza. As one retired judge told Louisville's Courier Journal, “I think you have an ethical responsibility to tell your client she doesn’t have a legitimate cause of action.”
Of course, Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver has been urging public officials to defy the Supreme Court since even before the court issued its landmark marriage equality decision. The group acknowledged that the marriage equality ruling would “expose Davis to potential liability if she refuses to compromise her religious beliefs and violate her conscience.”
Davis, who identifies as a born-again Christian, doesn’t seem ignorant at all of the fact that she is breaking the law. In fact, she attempted to convince lawmakers to change Kentucky’s laws on marriage licenses in order to suit her demands. When that didn’t happen, Davis went ahead and ordered officials in her county not to issue any marriage licenses to any couples, citing “God’s authority.” According to Davis, “if I left, resigned or chose to retire” from the county clerk position, “I would have no voice for God’s word.”
Davis and her supporters are instead tried to use bizarre legal arguments to back up her case:
1)God’s law trumps U.S. law
Rena Lindevaldsen, a Liberty Counsel attorney, offered insights into the group’s legal thinking when she delivered a lecture to the Liberty University School of Law, which named Lindevaldsen its interim dean after Staver decided to dedicate more time to his work at Liberty Counsel.
Lindevaldsen told students in a speech titled “Do Government Officials Have Authority to Impose Their Morals on Others?” that any law that is not “consistent with Scripture” — or, more accurately, their interpretation of Scripture — is no law at all, and therefore, officials are obligated to break such laws since “civil government only has the authority that God has established.”
With this reasoning, Liberty Counsel thinks that officials can impose their morals on others as long as they are acting according to their understanding of the Bible, and therefore don’t need to respect the legalization of same-sex marriage because its unbiblical.
“Whether it’s zoning or taxes or marriage or abortion, in those issues, government doesn’t have authority to say that these things are appropriate because they’re contrary to Scripture,” Lindevaldsen said.
2) Davis was elected before Obergefell, so she’s exempt
In one positively bizarre defense of Davis, Religious Right activist Keith Fournier said that Davis’ oath to uphold the laws only requires her to uphold the laws that were in effect before January 2015, when she was sworn into office.
Some contend that that because Kim Davis works for “the government” she must comply by issuing the license with her name on it. In other words, she loses her right to religious liberty because she has a public position. This fails to consider the crucial fact that when she was elected to her post as the Rowan County Clerk, marriage under Kentucky law was solely between one man and one woman. That was the law she swore to uphold. Then the five oracles of the Supreme Court issued their edict in Obergefell v Hodges, with no basis in the Constitution, past precedent, common sense or the Natural Law.
If this was the case, then anyone who was elected to office before the Loving v. Virginia decision, which struck down state bans on interracial marriage, would then be able to refuse to issue marriage licenses to such couples. Likewise, officials who took office Brown v. Board of Education would be allowed to block the integration of schools.
The injunction operates not against Davis personally, but against the holder of her office of Rowan County Clerk. In light of the binding holding of Obergefell, it cannot be defensibly argued that the holder of the Rowan County Clerk’s office, apart from who personally occupies that office, may decline to act in conformity with the United States Constitution as interpreted by a dispositive holding of the United States Supreme Court.
3)Davis is the only clerk obeying the law
Mike Huckabee has been making the case that Davis is the only clerk upholding the law and that it is actually the vast majority of clerks who are issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples who are the ones breaking the law.
As Huckabee said on MSNBC yesterday, marriage equality can only be legal in Kentucky if the legislature passes a same-sex marriage bill that the governor signs into law, adding that the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision is invalid because the court “cannot overrule the laws of nature and the laws of nature’s God.”
When host Joe Scarborough said that Southern states still had to desegregate their schools after the Supreme Court ruled in Brown, despite the fact that the states still had segregationist laws on the books, Huckabee insisted that “you have to have enabling legislation.”
“The Supreme Court cannot and did not make a law,” the Republican presidential candidate said in a statement. “They only made a ruling on a law. Congress makes the laws. Because Congress has made no law allowing for same sex marriage, Kim does not have the constitutional authority to issue a marriage license to homosexual couples.”
Before Obergefell was decided, Staver insisted that a state “does not have to obey” a Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality because it would be “so far removed from the Constitution” that it would cause one to ask if the justices have “literally lost their mind.”
Pat Robertson made the same claim, saying that Davis and others are “not obligated” to follow Obergefell.
4)Gays can just drive to another county
Davis and her lawyers argue that all 20,000 Rowan County residents must accommodate Davis’ personal religious views — views that she ordered all deputy clerks to follow — by driving to another county if they want to access government services.
“You drive 30 minutes in any direction in Kentucky and get a marriage license,” Staver said. “You don’t have to force Kim Davis herself to issue the license.”
And what if officials in the neighboring counties join Davis and the other handful of clerks who are refusing to issue marriage licenses? Staver doesn’t seem to know, as he would likely to defend such clerks as well, insisting that it is more reasonable to let one official disregard the law than to allow taxpayers to receive access to taxpayer-funded services.
5)Anti-religious test for office
While Davis may have exhausted her appeals in the case where couples challenged her refusal to issue them licenses, Liberty Counsel has tried to throw a Hail Mary by filing a lawsuit against Kentukcy's governor, alleging that enforcing the Obergefell is actually unconstitutional since it would “impose a religious test as a qualification to hold the office of county clerk.” The group even argued, like Fournier, that issuing marriage licenses would violate Davis' oath and represent anti-Christian discrimination:
19. Before taking office as County Clerk in January 2015, Davis swore an oath to support the constitutions and laws of the United States and the Commonwealth of Kentucky “so help me God.” Davis understood (and understands) this oath to mean that, in upholding the federal and state constitutions and laws, she would not act in contradiction to the moral law of God, natural law, or her sincerely held religious beliefs and convictions. Davis also understood (and understands) the constitution and laws she swore to uphold to incorporate the constitutional and other legal protections of all individuals’ rights to live and work according to their consciences, as informed by their sincerely held religious beliefs and convictions, including without limitation such rights she holds in her own individual capacity.
20. Davis’s sincerely held religious belief regarding the definition of “marriage” was perfectly aligned with the prevailing marriage policy in Kentucky at the time she took office, as provided in the Kentucky Constitution, Kentucky statutes, and controlling court decisions, and as effected by the Commonwealth through Governor Beshear and Commissioner Onkst.
38. Governor Beshear’s targeted and discriminatory marriage policy pronouncements constitute government-imposed pressure on Davis to act contrary to her religious beliefs, and expose Davis to potential liability if she refuses to compromise her religious beliefs and violate her conscience.
But the Rowan County office is not Kim Davis’ church or her “business,” as she once referred to it. Davis does not have to offer her personal support or approval to same-sex marriage; in fact, she and her church can remain dutifully opposed to such unions, but she cannot stop the government, which has legalized gay marriage, and county clerk deputies from performing job functions just because she has a personal disagreement.
Pat Robertson has emerged as one of Kentucky clerk Kim Davis’ staunchest defenders, even warning that orders for Davis to do her job as a public official by respecting the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling may lead to divine retribution in the form of a massive financial collapse.
Today, the “700 Club” host continued to defend Davis, claiming that she has no responsibility to follow the court’s decision striking down bans on same-sex marriage.
The televangelist explained that the ultimate goal of “the gays” is to put Davis and other gay rights opponents in prison for their stance.
The Constitution says the supreme law of the land is the Constitution, duly ratified treaties and laws passed by the Congress and signed into law by the president. That’s the law. Judicial decisions do not constitute the law. You’re not obligated to do that.
So this whole thing is — putting her in jail and so forth — is nonsense. But it will happen and it’s just the beginning, it’s the warmup of this battle. And I want you to know right now, you’ve heard it here, the gays do not just want to be recognized, they do not want to be accepted, they do not want to have just freedom, they want everybody to agree with them and everybody who doesn’t agree with them and does not comport with their way of thinking, they want to be punished, put in jail, or fined. That’s the way they want it and you might as well get used to it.
“Isn’t it a shame, there was a time that homosexuality was considered an aberration, it was illegal, as a matter of fact, and the thought of two homosexuals marrying one another was just undreamed of, we couldn’t even conceive of it,” he said. “And now the Supreme Court of the United States has said that this is a constitutional right and, in the process, they are upending the traditions of thousands of years of the Judeo-Christian faith.”
Robertson said that the financial system may not survive gay marriage: “God Almighty is looking down on this nation and, folks, I want to tell you that our finances right now are hanging by a thread, the rupture of the entire financial framework of our world is so tenuous right now and if there is was ever a time that we need the grace of God, it is now. And unless something is done to change the courts and to change the way this country is going, it is just a question of time before the fabric ruptures and we’ll all suffer because of it.”
Today on “The 700 Club,” a viewer asked Pat Robertson if the world will end on September 23, a date that someevangelistsclaim will hold some sort of catastrophe. While he didn’t mention an exact date, Robertson responded that the end is indeed nigh.
“The clock is down to 11:59,” he said. “I think that things are getting ready to wrap up.”
After mentioning Jonathan Cahn’s End Times prophecy about the “Shemitah,” Robertson said “the earth is hurtling towards some final conclusion, we all feel that.”
Boasting that he and others warned people that the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling would undermine freedom, Robertson lamented that “there will be persecution time and time again against those people who disagree with the prevailing view that sodomy should be the law of the land and should be practiced openly and without any restraints whatsoever.”
Pray for Kim Davis! Late last night the Supreme Court denied our emergency appeal to keep Kim out of jail. Even though they can go to any of 137 other clerks, today the militant homosexuals who sued her will be on her front step FORCING her to choose between obeying Scripture or going to jail.
Liberty Counsel radio host Matt Barber praised Davis as a modern-day Rosa Parks:
The “700 Club” host has alleged that natural disasters and even terrorist attacks occur because God will no longer protect a country from harm or will actively seek to destroy it when it legalizes abortion, approves gay rights or, in Haiti’s case, makes a deal with the Devil.
Here are the five worst times Robertson claimed a disaster was punishment from God:
1) Liberals Caused The September 11 Attacks
Just two days after the September 11 attacks, Robertson invited Religious Right leader Jerry Falwell onto his program to discuss the attacks, which Falwell promptly blamed on “the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America.” These groups, Falwell claimed, caused God “to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.”
Days after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, Robertson explained that God was no longer protecting the U.S. from danger because of the legalization of abortion. “Have we found we are unable somehow to defend ourselves against some of the attacks that are coming against us, either by terrorists or now by natural disaster?” he asked.
“We’re going to have to pay a price one of these days for what we’re doing,” he said years later regarding legal abortion. “Let’s hope that … the tide will begin to turn and we can avert the wrath of the Lord, but it will come upon this nation unless we do something.”
One day after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti took hundreds of thousands of lives, Robertson concluded that the devastating quake was divine retribution for Haitians’ ancestors having “swore a pact to the Devil” when they were rebelling against French colonial rule.
4) Gay People Are Inviting A Meteor
Back in 1998, Robertson was furious about a “Gay Day” taking place at Disney World and delivered a warning to Orlando that the festival would “bring terrorist bombs, it’ll bring earthquakes, tornadoes and possibly a meteor.”
“Every time the United States gets involved in some kind of a pressure on Israel to split their land there’s some natural disaster that happens here in America,” Robertson has said, most recently warning Secretary of State John Kerry that he is “asking for the wrath of Almighty God to fall on this nation” for his treatment of Israel
“I think this is headed for disaster for the United States,” he said. “We should do everything we can to restrain our leaders from this course of folly and it is a course of folly and it will result in terrible suffering for people in the United States.”
Robertson fielded a question on today’s “The 700 Club” from a viewer who wanted to know why American society is “so sad and lost in the 21st century.” Robertson promptly blamed the Supreme Court for removing the influence of the Bible from society with its rulings on the separation of church and state, abortion rights, homosexuality and gay marriage.
“What have we done?” he asked. “The Supreme Court has ruled against prayer and Bible study in the schools, it has ruled against almost everything having to do with religion in our public life, it has ruled that abortion is a constitutional right, it has ruled that homosexuality is a constitutional right, it has now ruled that homosexual marriage is a constitutional right.”
Robertson continued: “It has done everything it can, and schools and educators throughout the society have done everything they can to turn us away from God. It is small wonder that our society is in chaos and it will be small wonder if God doesn’t judge us. It’s just a question of how soon judgment is going to fall on this nation.”
Today in the segment of his “The 700 Club” program in which he dispenses (often questionable) advice to viewers, televangelist Pat Robertson responded to a question about whether God can heal broken relationships by recalling the story of an acquaintance whose relationship he said God deliberately ended.
Robertson said he once knew a man who was deeply in love with a woman, but the woman didn’t think he was wealthy enough to support her lifestyle so broke things off.
“But guess what happened to the woman,” Robertson continued. “She had an incurable disease and became an invalid. In other words, he would’ve been committed to a lifetime of care for a sick wife and God in his love spared him of that torment.”
Televangelist Pat Robertson responded to the dramatic market sell-off today by suggesting that it was only a foretaste of God’s judgment for legal abortion and federal funding of Planned Parenthood.
Following a report on demonstrations against Planned Parenthood that took place this weekend, the “700 Club” host said that God is not pleased with the Obama administration’s position on Planned Parenthood and abortion rights, as made clear by today’s market slide.
“We will pay dearly as a nation for this thing going on,” he said. “And possibly if we were to stop all this slaughter the judgment of God might be lifted from us. But it’s coming, ladies and gentlemen. We just had a little taste of it in terms of the financial system, but it’s going to be shaken to its core in the next few months, years or however long it tastes and it will hurt every one of us.”
Earlier in the program, Robertson claimed that the market crash was prophesied by Jonathan Cahn, who believes that something bad will happen in late September as part of the biblical Shemittah cycle. Today’s market turmoil, according to Robertson, is a sign that conditions will only get worse next month.
“This thing is hitting with great force and if Cahn is right on that Shemittah we could be in for some really rough days in the markets,” he said, before urging his viewers to buy gold in preparation for greater market deterioration.
“It looks like the writing about the Shemittah was right on the money, it’s starting to happen and the height of it will be the middle of September so we’re a month away from trouble,” Robertson continued. “You don’t know where to go, there is no place to hide financially except for the Lord.”
RWW’s Paranoia-Rama takes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right. In honor of Ted Cruz’s religious persecution event today, this edition of Paranoia-Rama will be dedicated to all the many “victims” of gay marriage out there.
Today, Pat Robertson’s news program “The 700 Club” aired a story about one man’s “struggle with homosexuality,” which ended, supposedly, after the man joined a “support group for Christians caught in the gay and lesbian lifestyle,” became abstinent, and eventually married a woman and founded a church.
Following the report, Robertson lamented that “it used to be that psychologists would tell people how to come out of this, now they tell them how to stay in it and be happy.” “Well, you’ll never be happy unless you’re happy in Jesus,” he said.
Later, Robertson urged gay viewers to call his Christian Broadcasting Network to speak with someone who can tell them how to receive deliverance: “If you’re into the homosexual lifestyle and you want freedom, somebody is here to love you.”
Today on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson claimed that “left-wing so-called progressives” have “hijacked the Constitution and control the court system of America,” which has ushered in judicial “tyranny” with rulings such the recent Supreme Court decision on gay marriage. As a result, America’s Christian majority “are being made to bow down before the two percent who are homosexual.”
“We have surrendered the great freedom we have in this nation to an oligarchy of non-elected judges,” he said. “This is a free country.” The televangelist especially took issue with Justice Anthony Kennedy, the author of the Obergefell decision: “These five, and Justice Kennedy is off on this kick about the personhood and sanctity of personhood and being gay is your self-identity and all that baloney, it’s not in the Constitution but he’s come up with all of these rules.”
“Why am I upset about this? We better be upset,” Robertson added.
Robertson further alleged that “homosexuals, gays, lesbians, transgender, whatever you call them,” are not satisfied with “acceptance.”
LGBT people, he said, are not “content,” despite the fact that they have “job protection” (which isn’t actually the case) and “homosexual marriage is protected by the Constitution,” adding that “the founders would have been turning in their graves if they thought such a thing was being said.”
“They now are on a vendetta to destroy everyone who disagree with them,” he warned. “They are going to do everything to destroy everyone who disagrees with this point of view.”
Televangelist Pat Robertson regularlycites the Book of Leviticus as proof that homosexuality is a grave and evil offense, doing so as recent as Monday. But it seems that homosexuality may be the only area in which Robertson still thinks Old Testament admonitions still apply.
Unless you are gay, of course, in which he case you need to abide strictly by Leviticus.
(Hemant Mehta adds: "Leviticus 18:19 — just three verses before the infamous anti-gay passage — mentions menstruating women: 'Do not approach a woman to have sexual relations during the uncleanness of her monthly period.' I guess he skipped that line during his reading.")
In an online video congratulating the Religious Right magazine Charisma on its 40th anniversary last week, televangelist Pat Robertson delivered a rather dire warning for America, claiming that “we are confronting right now a tide of evil that is like nothing that any of us have seen before.”
“We have a government that is set about bringing upon iniquity, we have courts that have distorted the Constitution and have turned our moral values on their ear,” he said. “Who would’ve thought, 30 or 40 years ago when we began, that the Supreme Court would’ve said that homosexuality is a constitutional right? Who would’ve thought that the Supreme Court would’ve said marriage between homosexuals was a constitutional right? Who would’ve thought that the slaughter of babies, over 55 million of them, would’ve been declared a constitutional right by the Supreme Court?”
Robertson urged conservatives to raise their voices against the “tiny group of left-wing judges [who] have distorted our culture,” saying that publications like Charisma give him hope that America will not become “overwhelmed by the flood of evil.”
Today on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson railed against a church with a gay pastor, saying that gay Christians and Christians who support gay rights are defying the Bible.
“To have a church saying [homosexuality] is not a sin, it’s okay, they’re leading people down the road to perdition,” he told a viewer who had recently attended an inclusive church. “If I were you, I would stay far away from them.”
Pat Robertson, abigfanofex-gaypseudo-therapy, fielded a question from a “700 Club” viewer today who asked if God could “take away this same-sex attraction” and “change a homosexual to straight.”
Confusing sexual orientation with gender identity, Robertson said that his network once profiled the transformation of an “absolutely gorgeous” woman who “was a man” until “the Lord touched him, changed him and now he is marrying and has some children and has a very happy life.”
“It is a miracle but God can do it,” he said. “It is a tendency in your life.”
Robertson continued: “Somebody was asking me for counseling the other day and said, ‘I’ve got this son and he was effeminate from the time he was young and now he says he’s gay.’ And I said to her, ‘Does he want to be a girl?’ And she said ‘no,’ and I said, ‘Well, if he doesn’t want to be a girl, basically he wants to be a man, and if he wants to be a man, there’s no reason that he can’t start acting like one.’ God can take care of this.”
Robertson lamented that it “used to be considered psychologically” that homosexuality “was an aberration” but now “they come against you” if you engage in ex-gay counseling.
“The question is, can God do it?” he added. “The answer is, He not only can, He will.”
Pat Robertson, who once asked God to remove justices from the Supreme Court in order to give President Bush more opportunities to appoint conservatives to the bench, wondered on today’s edition of “The 700 Club” why God didn’t punish the justices behind the Roe v. Wade decision.
“You’ll have to ask God why he didn’t kill them,” Robertson said, somewhat facetiously, before noting that “it’s in God’s hands whether they live a long life” since he’s “not in charge of the death or life of the Supreme Court judges.”
Robertson’s remarks came in response to a viewer who asked the televangelist why the justices were able to “live to be such an old age, after committing such a despicable act that has brought a curse upon the land?”
He blamed the decision on the justices’ use of “stuff from Planned Parenthood,” before going into a rant about how Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger looked down on black people and Southern white Protestants. As we’ve noted in the past, Sanger’s views on race have been badly distorted by the Right.