Stop the presses!
The Louisville Courier-Journal — a Gannett newspaper that all too often eschews quality journalism in favor of advocacy on same-sex issues — reports this "shocking" news:
The president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary says in a new book that Christians should not attend a same-sex wedding ceremony — even of their own child — because it “signals moral approval” of the union.
Writing in “We Cannot Be Silent,” R. Albert Mohler Jr. says that while it may be “excruciatingly difficult” to boycott gay weddings of friends and loved ones, “at some point attendance will involve congratulating the couple for their union. If you can’t congratulate the couple, how can you attend?”
Can you believe it? A leading Southern Baptist theologian who believes God ordained marriage as a sacred union between one man and one woman says Christians shouldn't — by their presence — endorse same-sex rites that they consider sinful.
Again, I say: Stop the presses!:
If the Courier-Journal holds to its usual, biased form, this story will proceed to quote lots of folks aghast and outraged at Mohler's comments while — surprise, surprise! — finding none who agree with him.
Sure enough, that's the case:
Gay-rights activists and some clergy denounced the book, to be published Oct. 27 by HarperCollins Christian Publishing, saying it will further divide gays and their families.
“Dr. Mohler's self-righteous intractability on this issue — even banning followers from simply attending the weddings of their LGBT loved ones — can cause nothing but strife, heartache and hardship,” said Chris Hartman, director of the Fairness Campaign.
The Rev. Joseph Phelps, pastor of independent Highland Baptist Church, praised Mohler’s intellect but called his words “harsh and offensive,” and said they will cause “damage and division” in “families and society.”
Just last week, while critiquing media coverage of an evangelical seminar on homosexuality and transgenderism in Louisville, I asked:
In this latest story, the Courier-Journal quotes — count 'em — five sources taking issue with Mohler and his point of view.
How many endorse Mohler's perspective? Zero:
The article suggests that "many evangelical leaders have sided with Mohler." But the Courier-Journal doesn't bother to name or quote any of those leaders. At least the newspaper gives Mohler a little space to explain his own thinking.
On the issue of traditional believers attending same-sex weddings, a Washington Post story that I reviewed earlier this year contained more nuance (even though I wasn't totally pleased with that piece).
To the casual observer, the Louisville story reads like a straightforward news report.
Pay a little closer attention, though, and this isn't impartial journalism at all. It's gay-rights advocacy, disguised as news.