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Evangelist Billy Graham defends Chick-fil-A
July 26th, 2012
02:18 PM ET

Evangelist Billy Graham defends Chick-fil-A

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN)– Billy Graham, the dean of American evangelists, has once again broken his usual silence on hot-button issues, defending the president of the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain for his opposition to same-sex marriage days after issuing a letter decrying what he sees as the nation's moral decay.

Earlier this year, the ailing preacher publicly endorsed a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay unions in North Carolina, raising eyebrows among many who'd watched Graham studiously avoid thorny social issues for years.

On Thursday, he issued a statement of support for the popular fast-food chain. Many people have slammed Chick-fil-A President Don Cathy for saying his company backs the traditional family unit and is opposed to same-sex marriage.

Graham praised restaurant founder S. Truett Cathy and son Don Cathy, the company's president, "for their strong stand for the Christian faith."

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"I've known their family for many years and have watched them grow Chick-fil-A into one of the best businesses in America while never compromising their values," Graham said.

The Chick-fil-A controversy reflects what many see as America's deep cultural and religious divide. The company's position on same-sex marriage doesn't sit well with Jim Henson Co., whose Jim Henson's Creature Shop toys have been served in Chick-fil-A's meals for children.

Jim Henson Co. is named for the creator of The Muppets. However, the company transferred The Muppets' rights and ownership to the Walt Disney Co. in 2003, according to Jim Henson Co.

"The Jim Henson Company has celebrated and embraced diversity and inclusiveness for over 50 years and we have notified Chick-fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future endeavors," the company said in a posting on its Facebook page.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a 2008 GOP presidential candidate, is backing Chick-fil-A. He urged people to turn out to Chick-fil-A restaurants on Wednesday to show their support for what Cathy had to say about marriage.

Graham says he appreciated Huckabee's leadership and plans to visit a Chick-fil-A on that day, August 1.

"Each generation faces different issues and challenges, but our standard must always be measured by God's word. I appreciate the Cathy family's public support for God's definition of marriage."

On Tuesday, Graham leveled deep criticism at the United States. He compared the country to Sodom and Gomorrah, the Biblical cities synonymous with sin.

"Self-centered indulgence, pride, and a lack of shame over sin are now emblems of the American lifestyle," Graham writes in the open letter released by his organization this week.

He blasts what he sees as efforts to keep references to Jesus out of the public sphere.

"Our society strives to avoid any possibility of offending anyone - except God. Yet the farther we get from God, the more the world spirals out of control," he writes in the letter released Tuesday.

Graham, 93, has preached to untold millions over six decades, and provided counsel to generations of U.S. presidents.

His open letter also contains a fund-raising appeal and a notice that Graham's son Franklin, himself a major evangelical figure, is launching a new effort to "bring the Gospel into neighborhoods and homes in every corner of America next year."

Randall Balmer, the chair of the religion department at Dartmouth College, suspects the motivation for the letter is at least partly political.

"It's hard for me to believe that this letter does not have political intent," he said.

Its move to decry what he would see as moral decay "would be tied to the Obama administration," he argued, asking rhetorically why Graham would not have issued the statement in response to an event like the Abu Ghraib torture scandal.

In response to the controversy, Larry Ross, Graham’s spokesperson, said that “the letter does not address timely issues.”

“‘My Heart Aches for America,’ was written 6-8 weeks ago – long before recent current events, such as the tragic shooting in an Aurora, Colo movie theater, or the ongoing Chik-fil-A controversy,” Ross said in an email to CNN. “He is responding to general struggles in our culture and a moral decline that has existed through his public ministry.”

At the same time, Ross said that Graham is keen on the idea of eating Chick-fil-A next Wednesday.

“Considering Mr. Graham's age and limited mobility, his statement today was more an expression of sentiment and solidarity with the Cathy family and their cause than actually a commitment to go to a Chik-fil-A himself,” Ross said. “But he does plan to ‘Eat Mor Chikin’ on Aug. 1, which I expect someone will be able to get for him to enjoy at home.”

Balmer said that evangelicals would take note of the letter, though Graham has largely retired from the public eye in recent years.

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"There is certainly admiration for Billy Graham, as there should be," Balmer said. "There is lingering respect for Billy Graham and I think that people will take notice."

But he said the comparison to Sodom and Gomorrah - which Graham attributes to his late wife Ruth in the letter - was startling.

"When Billy Graham came to Madison Square Garden in 1957, he made comments comparing New York City to Sodom and Gomorrah and was roundly criticized for it," Balmer said. Since that time, Balmer said, Graham has largely avoided making the comparison to the Biblical cities.

CNN's Joe Sterling contributed to this report.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Belief • Billy Graham • Christianity • Church and state • Food

soundoff (2,864 Responses)
  1. OdiesMom

    ec

    @EC: "..... They actively donated company profits to groups whose sole mission is to prevent gay marriage. If these groups were truly "pro-marriage", they'd also be trying to prevent hetero divorce...no, they're only concerns is keeping gays from marrying...."
    RESPONSE: No, this family/organization DOES try to prevent divorce. Haven't you heard of "First things First" Organization?

    July 27, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      You do realize, right, that there's a huge gaping difference between an organization that promotes healthy marriages and legally trying to eliminate divorce? Apples and Oranges.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  2. James

    Despite the fact that I do not believe in god, I have always respected Mr. Graham. I am very sad to hear that he is speaking out in support of a company that promotes hate and discrimination. What a dissapointment.

    July 27, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Jeff

      Promoting? How?

      July 27, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      Jeff, would you also make the argument that the KKK does not promote racist or hatred? They're just trying to promote good old fashion white values, right?

      July 27, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • Jeff

      Comparing the KKK and Chik-fil-a....really????

      No, the KKK obviously supports and has participated in racism and hate crime. There have been convictions throughout history cementing that.

      I fail to see how that has anything to do with Dan Cathy saying he doesn't support gay marriage. Your goofy lawsuit links below are attention grabbers now that Chik-fil-a is in the news. Scrubs trying to cash in now that the liberal media has thrust this company into the spotlight. It's a freakin' Christian company! Did you expect the response to be different? Blows me away...

      This bears repeating though...since Truett Cathy "didn't build that" as the president would suggest, it must be the country that has helped this Christian organization see record profits, right? I wonder what that means? I suspect it has a little more to do with values than making a good sandwich...

      July 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Bigots Unite!

      Yes, intolerance and ignorance are such wonderful values, as are selling unhealthy foods at cheap prices. Great value system.

      KKK and Chik Fil A, while an extreme comparison, is still valid. One just partices a more social acceptable form a bigotry. That shouldn't be the case for too much longer. You're a dying breed Mr. Jeff.

      July 27, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
  3. pienoceros

    Billy Graham defending bigotry? Shocking!
    /sarcasm

    July 27, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  4. correctlycenter

    Looks like "who invited me?" may just possibly be the devil's parrot? he hee...

    July 27, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • ArthurP

      Devil – God two sides of eh same coin.

      July 27, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  5. angela

    AMEN Bill....AMEN....

    I will be eating at chick Fli A on Wednesday as well.........

    July 27, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Bigots Unite!

      Can we invite the KKK, too?

      July 27, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • SlayFalseGod

      Q: Why is it that people who say they love God need some group to hate in order to prove their love for said God ?
      A: Because they are Southern Bigots.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • correctlycenter

      I'll be spending more $$$ @ chick-fil-a now....

      July 27, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      angela: Woohoo, nothing like telling the world you're a bigot and ignorant!! Hope you can live with yourself knowing you are supporting people who think it is okay to deny others equal rights based off of something that SCIENCE states is purely natural. Outside of your book of fairy tales (the buybull), please explain why you dislike gays???? I'm guessing you can't come up with a personal reason because there isn't one to be had!!

      July 27, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • Dodney Rangerfield

      Did you hear the one about the Canadian that minded its own F'n business?

      July 27, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • Dodney Rangerfield

      You won't. The ass hole qu eer bait can't help itself from thinking someone somewhere will value its opinion. Reality check – no one gives a sh it.

      July 27, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Did you ever hear the one about Dodney who was a stupid trolling fuckstick?

      July 27, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Oh nuts I gave away the punchline.

      July 27, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
  6. Gwad

    And the Lord spake unto St Billy,Thou shalt smite the Gay Dog until thou shalt get free Chick-fil-A and it will be good

    July 27, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  7. Bible just a theory

    NOBODY, including Cathy and Graham, obeys what the BIBLE actually says about marriage, because to do so, they would have to obey these HOLY SCRIPTURES! 1) DEUT 22:28 "If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and R#P#S HER and they are discovered, he shall pay her father fifty shekels of silver. He must MARRY THE YOUNG WOMAN, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives. 2) DEUT. 25:5 If brothers are living together and one of them dies without a son, his widow must not marry outside the family. Her husband’s brother shall take her and marry her and fulfill the duty of a brother-in-law to her.
    3) 1 CORINTHIANS 7:10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife. 4) MARK 10:11 Jesus answered, “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her. And if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery.” So all this NONSENSE about the BIBLE being a guide for marriage is just the refuge of IGNORANT BIGOTS.

    July 27, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • tim young

      reprobate mind

      July 27, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Jeff

      You're the one being an ignorant, intolerant bigot. You don't even know the difference between the books of the law, the priesthood, and the prophets from the Old Testament. You don't even understand the significance of the New Testament. People like you just like to willie-nillie grasp at any scripture you think would convey your hateful point and you don't even understand what it is you're reading.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      Ah, the typical fundie argument. When faced with a passage that you typically choose to ignore, simply state that the poster is taking the quoted text out of context ... without actually discussing in what context it should be taken. *yawn*

      July 27, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • The Rev

      Deuteronomy was written for the Israelites for that specific point of time in their history. It was applicable to them. While those laws seem odd to us today, they were not to the audience the book was written to.

      As for the references in Mark and 1Corinthians, yes, divorce and remarrying is considered adultery and is sin. Divorce should not be swept under the rug as it is in our country. It is a very big deal and should not be entered into flippantly.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      @The Rev, so your god is a moral relativist. Got it.

      BTW, if your god is a moral relativist, his morality necessarily is not perfect.

      Though, really, you'd think it wouldn't have been very hard for him to state 'you know what, beating slaves is a bad thing. Especially if you beat them to death. Better you'd just not beat your slaves. In fact, don't beat your slaves at all'

      But that would actually be loving and moral.

      July 27, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • whaaa?

      The REv – can you provide a reference stating that deuteronomy no longer applies? My bible says that the OT laws will apply until the end of the earth, but I might be using an out-dated copy.

      July 27, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  8. correctlycenter

    Those who are followers of Jesus Christ do not need to appease the PC police, but ONLY to God! The bible, God's word, instructs us how to live a Christian life. Many will not agree but too bad! Those who oppose God usually have lifestyle issues that goes against His word. Pray for these folks, God bless...

    July 27, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      Those who are followers of Santa Claus do not need to appease the PC police, but ONLY to Santa Claus ! The list, Santa Claus' word, instructs us how to live a Santa Clausian life. Many will not agree but too bad! Those who oppose Santa Claus usually have lifestyle issues that goes against His word. make a wish for these folks, Santa Claus bless...

      July 27, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • sam

      Lifestyle issues? LOL

      Better that than a knee jerk robotic belief that you never question, just parrot.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • sam stone

      get off you knees, b1tch

      July 27, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      "Those who are followers of Jesus Christ " this should read as such: Those who are followers of Jesus Christ...are gullible.

      July 27, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  9. PAUL

    MR GRAHAM STILL LOOKS GOOD FOR HIS AGE!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWkS7pf9hKE

    July 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
  10. The Rev

    I just don't understand the outrage from the hom.ose.xual community. Can someone please tell me how this organization has discriminated against anyone?

    July 27, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • sam

      You're beyond help already, man. Research Cathy's recent remarks (that go beyond this).

      July 27, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • The Rev

      Show me a link please...I do not see anything this company has done to discriminate. Mr. Cathy does have his views, but I do not see any situation where Chik-fil-a has discriminated against anyone.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      @The Rev, does google not work on your computer? Here is one of a number of links about anti-discrimination lawsuits filed against Chik-Fil-A:

      http://www.alan.com/2012/07/26/chick-fil-a-faced-12-employment-discrimination-suits-since-1988/

      July 27, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Jeff

      LOL...Liberaland...very reputable news source!

      July 27, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      Care to actually dispute the facts? Do you actually think a religous right website is going to advertise the disciminatory practices of a xtian business?

      Here's some more:
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/27/brenda-honeycutt-chick-fil-a-sues-gender-discrimination_n_1709645.html

      http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2012/07/the-line-chick-fil-a-must-not-cross.html

      http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2007/0723/080.html

      Darn pesky facts. Always getting in the way of what people wished the truth was.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Jeff

      Really? It's like talking to a child...

      The Huffington Post article refers to a lawsuit just filed. I'm sure the lawsuit has nothing to do with Chik-fil-a being thrust into the spotlight, right?

      The blog in The Chicago Tribune is nothing more than a re-post of your Forbes article. Whatever. The bottom line is that there are going to be people that sue for the sake of suing. Now that they're in the news, I'm sure the proverbial floodgates will open up. That's the default response for Americans today...there's somebody else to blame. Whatever.

      Here's the more important question...is this really shocking anyone? Chik-fil-a is a Christian company that is closed on Sundays. They have never hid from that. Now it's news? Whatever. If you don't like it, DON'T GO! I suspect you will though seeing that the company is seeing record profits. I know Mr. President...Truett Cathy didn't build that!

      July 27, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  11. tim young

    Saints of GOD its okay, the BIBLE has already told us that the world would one day think good is bad and bad is good. Just keep praying, fasting, and reading your BIBLE and i will see all the saints on WED @ chick fillet
    Romans chapter 1 verse 26 thru 28
    26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
    27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
    28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

    July 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things ,

    July 27, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!|

      July 27, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  13. New Gawker

    He needs to repent for creating the greedy scam called evangelicals.

    July 27, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
  14. Flip

    Im a gay employee at Chick-fil-A, and I mix up the special sauce.

    July 27, 2012 at 12:40 pm |
    • pervert alert

      In other words a qu eer with an agenda of killing as many innocents as possible with AIDS. Qu eers the folks who gave AIDS to the world.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Shut up, azzhole.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Sorry, I meant asshole.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • Bob

      Actually I like the Zs. Suggests serration which is kind of thrilling in conjunction with one's private orifices.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      pervert alert: Sure it's not you giving people aids?? Or are you the disgruntled lab employee who just injected numerous people with HEP C?

      July 27, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  15. Wanda

    Mr. Graham bravely spoken. I totally agree with your words!

    July 27, 2012 at 12:24 pm |
    • sam stone

      Good for you, Wanda. I am certain Bull Connor and Lester Maddox would agree, too.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
    • pervert alert

      As well as the other 99 % of the world who do not want to rot away with AIDS. Qu eers the folks that gave AIDS to the world.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Doodlebug2222

      No, I am sorry – he is incorrect in openly judging people that do not fit what he deems as 'unfit'.

      I thought he was supposed to read from the Bible, give us sermons to help us understand how the word of God fits into our lives, how to get past conflicts, issues and become better people.

      I thought his role was one of a supporter, where when a person felt as if all was lost – he would help them find hope – belonging and a reason to continue on.

      We all have our sins, our bads and we all have our good. God even said, do not judge. I did not ever read one sentence where Jesus pointed fingers saying 'YOU! Your going to hell and are not worthy!" and I have never read where once Jesus passed judgement or gossiped or stirred up conflict in anothers life.

      This.. is how a person of God should be. Supportive, caring, empathy and understand that we all have our roads to walk. Sometimes they end up in the same place, sometimes they veer – but it's our road to take. Not theirs. Ours.. and if we fall, if we fail – then it is us doing so .. our lives – our choices – our free will.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      So many bigots not enough lions!

      July 27, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  16. STAND FOR TRUTH!

    Billy Graham Senior God Bless Him and keep Him
    He is right in his statement. Every Saint and Sinner should be HEART BROKEN
    LOOK AROUND PEOPLE LISTEN TO THE CRYS OF THE HURTING,THE LONELY
    THE DESPARATE......THE PROBLEM IS IN OUR HEARTS OUT OF OUR MOUTHS COMES
    THE ISSUES OF OUR HEARTS WE ARE NOT A BROKEN PEOPLE WHOSE HEARTS FEEL
    FOR OTHERS WE ARE ALL ABOUT GET MINES,TAKECARE OF ME,LOOKOUT FOR ME
    WE MUST LEARN AGAIN AND REMEMBER LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF
    NOT ONLY THE PERSON WHO LIVES NEXT DOOR BUT THE GROCERY STORE CLERK,THE POLICEMAN YOU JUST
    WALKED PASSED THAT PERSON(S) WHO DOES NOT LOOK LIKE YOU AND WAS NOT BORN IN AMERICA
    MAY GOD HAVE MERCY ON EACH OF US AND CONVICT EACH OF OUR HEARTS.....

    July 27, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      "WE MUST LEARN AGAIN AND REMEMBER LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF
      NOT ONLY THE PERSON WHO LIVES NEXT DOOR BUT THE GROCERY STORE CLERK,THE POLICEMAN YOU JUST
      WALKED PASSED THAT PERSON(S) WHO DOES NOT LOOK LIKE YOU":

      or LOVE LIKE YOU?

      July 27, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • CAlin

      LinCA, the the at least 84% of the world's populace is terribly sorry for you, while the other 14% is just somewhat sorry for you.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • LinCA

      @CAlin

      You said, "LinCA, the the at least 84% of the world's populace is terribly sorry for you, while the other 14% is just somewhat sorry for you."
      Just because a lot of people are delusional doesn't mean their delusions carry any weight.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
  17. Find Wisdom

    I am shocked at such hateful language here in the comments. This is America, people are free to have their own opinions, aren't they? To each their own.

    July 27, 2012 at 12:16 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Find Wisdom

      You said, "I am shocked at such hateful language here in the comments."
      Yes, I agree. It is truly amazing that there are still people that advocate discrimination based on fairy tales. This is the 21st century, for crying out loud.

      You said, "This is America, people are free to have their own opinions, aren't they? To each their own."
      Correct. There is absolutely no reason to try to force an opinion on anyone else. The bigots at Chick-fil-A, and everyone else, are free to not enter into a same sex marriage, if they feel it's not their cup of tea. But to actively try to deny that to anyone else, just because they think their imaginary friend says so, is outright hateful.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • StatesvilleNC

      @LinCal: you will find one day you are at the mercy of the one you call imaginary. What will you say then? I am sorry. No. It is too late at that point. I feel sorry for you.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • LinCA

      @StatesvilleNC

      You said, "you will find one day you are at the mercy of the one you call imaginary."
      ROTFLMAO

      You said, "What will you say then? I am sorry."
      If it turns out that I was wrong and find myself before the monster you call your god, I will flip it the bird and gladly take hell for an eternity over a day with your god and its followers.

      But since you posed the question, let me ask you the same. What will you tell Thor when you find yourself in front of him? Or Bob the Magical Blue Sock? Are you prepared to spend eternity in the hamper with all the other unwashed socks?

      Unless you act now, it may be too late.

      You said, "I feel sorry for you."
      I'd say that the feeling is mutual, but "sorry" isn't really the right word. There really is no need to feel sorry for me as I'm not the adult still believing in the Tooth Fairy.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Jeff

      Apparently not.. If you do, you get called hateful names, intolerant, a bigot.. and can even have your 1st amendment rights violated.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Qu eers the folks that gave the world AIDS.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Jeff

      @LinCa - It doesn't matter what your or I think. There is a truth.. and I think the more likely situation is you will be trembling with fear as you lie in your death bed. If not, then that's your choice. In the meantime, as you continue to spout off at the mouth, realize, we have as much right to our beliefs as you do yours. Now, shake your fist towards the sky defiantly and tell God "You'll never take me" just as Beethoven did just before he died.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      The first amendment does not entitle you to violate anti-discrimination laws or to restrict the rights of others.

      And if your bias to an entire group of people based solely on what an ancient book tells you, then you're a bigot. Sorry. If you can come up with any other way to rationalize your decision to be intolerant of the genetics of others in any way other than 'my book, which also allows me to beat slaves and kill rape victims, says I should hate this group of people' I invite you to do so. I won't be holding my breath.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I just love it when some fundie makes up stories to support his agenda. There is disagreement about Beethoven's final words, Jeffy, and the ones you're quoting are based on a description of Beethoven's death, not a quote. Others have said that his final words were "Applaud, friends, the comedy is over" and "Pity, pity, too late" and "I shall hear in heaven."

      You weren't there and citing inaccurate information makes everything else you write less credible.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • Doodlebug2222

      People use fierce words and then smugly hit the -post- button...

      The words in the bible were not meant to be forced upon someone, or thrust in their face repeatedly. They were meant to be gentle, lasting and something people stop, read and reflected upon.

      But people hiss out the words, swearing they are right – and those that oppose them is wrong. So, if we are – does that make God love us any less? And then what does Got think about someone that twists the arm and force feeds his words – to others – in every condemning breath?

      When did God say – if they are not worthy, you decide, and of course make their life hell. Go.. do it... Uh no.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Jeff

      You said, "Apparently not.. If you do, you get called hateful names, intolerant, a bigot.."
      What you do with your life is entirely your choice. What others do with theirs is entirely their choice. You don't, or anyone else doesn't, get a vote in what others do with their lives. That includes who they love, or how they express that love. Not accepting the choices others make for their lives is intolerant.

      Denying anyone equal rights because of your beliefs is the textbook definition of bigotry. Those that advocate it are rightfully called "bigots".

      You said, "and can even have your 1st amendment rights violated."
      Who had their rights violated? Forcing your delusion on anyone else isn't a right guaranteed by the US Constitution.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Jeff

      You said, "There is a truth.."
      There probably is, but it is highly unlikely that any believer knows any.

      You said, "and I think the more likely situation is you will be trembling with fear as you lie in your death bed."
      For what? For what the Easter Bunny will do to me? Get a fucking grip.

      You said, "If not, then that's your choice. In the meantime, as you continue to spout off at the mouth, realize, we have as much right to our beliefs as you do yours."
      You have the absolute right to be as moronically stupid as you would like to be. You are free to believe whatever bullshit you feel like. Stupidity is not illegal in this country. What you don't have is the right to expect anybody else to be equally delusional. You have even less right to force any of your delusion on the sane part of society.

      Feel free to live your life as you feel your delusion tells you you should. You are free to worship as you see fit. You are free to deny yourself anything you feel your imaginary friend doesn't want you to enjoy. But don't even think (and I use that term loosely) that your delusion applies to anyone else.

      You said, "Now, shake your fist towards the sky defiantly and tell God "You'll never take me" just as Beethoven did just before he died."
      I don't shake my fist at imaginary beings.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  18. Pete

    There needs to be a federal law that any state banning gay marriage must also take away all of the rights afforded to straight married couples. It seems only fair.

    July 27, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Were you ever even in the eighth grade? That's where civics is usually taught. The federal government does not have authority to do what you describe and marriage as a states rights issue has been decided in 32 states thus far.

      July 27, 2012 at 12:27 pm |
    • sam stone

      Not if it violates the 14th amendment, billy boy

      July 27, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • Jeff

      Hmm, even straight people have limits on who they can marry. What we have here is desparaing beliefs. Yes, even your views are your beliefs.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
    • Jeff

      One more thing Pete, gay ppl's rights are not being violated.. they have the same rights as everyone else under the 14th Amendment. Social issues are States Rights and under such conditions, these types of things are put up for a vote. Any State that has this ban, the ban was put up for a vote and the people have spoken. If in a few years, when the tide changes, it can be put up for a vote again. As it stands right now, no one's rights are being violated. You can go be Gay if you want to.. and you will still be afforded the same individual rights as everyone else. Now, if you want to turn this in an emotional argument and resort to name calling, go right ahead.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And what will you do, Jeffy, if in a few years, the SCOTUS rules otherwise? People claimed the same sorts of things you are claiming about civil rights.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • Jeff

      What will I do? .. I will continue to hold on to my beliefs. I don't care if you want to be gay..its when you want to redefine marriage is when it becomes my business. Otherwise, I don't have a problem with civil unions. This isn't a civil rights issue. And to place it in that light shows your ignorance. Gay people are not being made to ride the back of the bus.. or eat at separate counters and so on.. They have the same individual rights as everyone else. The laws apply to everyone equally, not just some select group like the Jim Crow laws of old. And for that matter, SCOTUS would never rule on this unless it actually violated individual rights, which it does not. I cannot marry my sister or have 5 wives.. so there are limits and these limits were placed by the State. The State recognizes what they call marriage.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      Oh, little ignorant Jeffy – people made the exact same argument about interracial marriage just a few decades ago. We look upon those people now as ignorant, hateful, racist bigots. You're on the wrong side of history. Tough luck.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
  19. Paul

    Why if there was a CNN article and no one commented?

    July 27, 2012 at 12:11 pm |
  20. paul shelby

    I also blame CNN for reporting this news....this is not news....it's anything that can get people fighting each other...Surely there are more important things to report on......The problem is the news agencies.....desperate for a reaction....for a story they can claim......

    July 27, 2012 at 11:57 am |
    • MarkinFL

      Blaming the messenger?

      CNN has plenty of bandwidth to report this along with the larger news of the world.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Which God??

      Hey paul, this is the 'belief blog.' Blog, get it? It isn't the news section, but a blog.

      July 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.