Mark Robinson has found his niche and he doesn’t seem to have any intention of switching things up.
The Republican Lt. Governor of North Carolina, who’s “95% sure” he’ll run for governor in 2024, has been leaning hard on his Christian Nationalist fantasies. This is a guy who has said in recent months that forced religion in public schools could prevent mass shootings, that “transgenderism” and “homosexuality” amount to “filth,” and that the trans movement is “demonic” and full of “Antichrist spirit.”
You would think a guy this desperate to win a GOP primary would also have the good sense of recognizing he might have to win over moderate voters, too, but nope. He’s pushing even harder on the bigotry hoping to win over his conservative Christian base and no one else.
During a recent sermon delivered at Berean Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, Robinson declared that straight couples were “superior” to gay ones:
[Robinson said] that he didn’t want to explain to his grandchildren why two men are kissing if they see that on television.
Robinson said he was once asked by a gay man: “So you think your wife and you, you think your heterosexual relationship is superior to my husband and my homosexual relationship?”
“Yes!” Robinson emphatically told the congregation.
“These people are superior because they can do something these people can’t do,” Robinson said, referencing having a child. “Because that’s the way God created it to be. And I’m tired of this society trying to tell me it’s not so.”
Robinson went on to say that there’s no superiority between Black and white people — they’re equal in the eyes of God — but apparently God’s love is conditional when it comes to LGBTQ people.
If you listen to other parts of the sermon, it’s clear Robison expects his comments to be shared, and he doesn’t care because he’s always going to play the role of a persecuted Christian instead of what he really is: A powerful bigot who uses Christianity to justify his hate.
He also denounced transgender people with a barrage of stereotypes:
“Ain’t but two genders — male and female. Two. There are two genders, male and female,” Robinson said to a standing ovation. “I don’t care how much you cut yourself up, drug yourself up and dress yourself up, you still either one of two things — you either a man or a woman. You might be a cut up, dressed up, drugged up ugly man or woman, but you still a man or a woman, and I don’t care who doesn’t like it.”
Oh, but that’s not all. He also compared gay people to maggots and cow shit.
In Winston-Salem, Robinson compared being gay to “what the cows leave behind” as well as maggots and flies, who he said all serve a purpose in God’s creation.
Don’t let the “purpose” line fool you. We all know what he’s actually saying.
It’s telling that the Christians in the audience applaud and cheer him on throughout all of this. That’s what happens when you belong to a church that worships and preaches hate. That’s not an exaggeration! It’s bad enough when evangelicals say, “Love the sinner, hate the sin,” but Robinson clearly doesn’t believe the first part of that copout phrase, and the people at this church appeared to agree.
As if all that weren’t enough, the entire service was more of a political rally, raising concerns about why this church is allowed to remain tax-exempt.
Ron Baity, the church’s pastor, introduced Robinson, calling him “a breath of fresh air here in North Carolina” and introducing him as “the next governor of the state of North Carolina.”
At the beginning of the service, Baity said it was not a political rally.
But Robinson’s speech touched on many political issues, including inflation, gas prices, Afghanistan, President Joe Biden’s abilities and recent news events.
“He got a program called Build Back Better. I think he ought to put it back like he found it and leave it alone,” Robinson said of Biden’s social spending plan.
Churches are allowed to promote and discuss issues. But this was clearly an endorsement of Robinson. Nothing will happen because the IRS doesn’t follow its own rules when it comes to investigating churches, but that doesn’t mean the Johnson Amendment wasn’t violated.
I feel like I need to reiterate: This isn’t a random pastor running for office. This is the current lieutenant governor of the state. He wants even more power. And every speech he gives confirms how untrustworthy he would be when it comes to protecting the civil rights of LGBTQ people.
How many Christians in North Carolina and beyond are going to let him get away with that? And what does it say about their faith that this sort of hate speech is thriving in their churches? No decent Christian should want to remain in any church whose pastor doesn’t actively denounce this kind of rhetoric and belief.
(Thanks to everyone for the link)