- He previously ordered COVID-19 to end by Easter ‘in the name of Jesus’.
Anti-LGBT+ televangelist Pat Robertson has said God won’t end the COVID-19 pandemic until the US repents of abortion and same-sex marriage.
Robertson is just the latest member of the religious right to blame the current health crisis on LGBT+ people.
He was speaking on his Christian Broadcasting Network show, The 700 Club. And co-host Terry Meeuwsen read a question from a viewer called John who asked Robertson:
‘Last week you were talking about COVID-19. How can God heal our land and forgive the sins when abortion and same-sex marriage are laws and many people are anti-Israel. Doesn’t this prevent his healing and forgiveness?’
Naturally Robertson instantly agreed. He replied:
‘You know, I think you put your finger on something very important.
‘We are not turning when we have done terrible things. We have broken the covenant that God made with mankind. We have violated his covenant.
‘We have taken the life of the innocent, slaughtered them by the tens of millions. Children made in the image of God.
‘And we have abused the poor. I mean, we’ve allowed this terrible plague to spread throughout our society.
‘And it’s a small wonder God would hold us guilty. But the answer is, you know, you confess your sins and forsake them. Then he heals the land. It’s not before. You are right.’
‘Jesus never said that being LGBTQ is a sin’
Robertson had previously called on the coronavirus to be gone ‘in the name of Jesus’ by Easter. It was a reminder of the time in 1976 when he predicted Doomsday would come in October or November 1982.
But Michael Vazquez, director of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s religion and faith program, said his comments were damaging:
‘Pat Robertson is once again using tragedy to advance anti-LGBTQ rhetoric that will continue to isolate and harm the LGBTQ community.
‘Jesus never said that being LGBTQ is a sin. In no way does the Bible correlate the LGBTQ community to natural disasters or other global events and pandemics, including COVID-19.
‘At the core of the Christian faith is an ethic of love and justice, and what Robertson is advocating for is an ethic of hate and violence.’
Haters and their pandemic responses
Of course, Robertson is not alone. Faith-based homophobia is often correlating with ludicrous and dangerous responses to this pandemic. It is both highly alarming and highly predictable.
Of course, they have now had to resort to a draconian crackdown on freedom of movement like everyone else. And notably, other Ugandans have abused the COVID-19 powers that lockdown granted to persecute homeless LGBT+ people.
Likewise, Hungary is also abusing its coronavirus powers to change the law against trans people’s right to change gender.
Similarly, in Poland the right-wing government is using the virus to try to bring in a law that equates LGBT+ people to pedophiles and could stop all sex education in schools.
Meanwhile in Iraq, Shia political leader and cleric Muqtada al-Sadr also linked same-sex marriage to the pandemic.
Al-Sadr said same-sex marriage equality has caused the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, his followers gathered in large numbers in a mosque to defy the virus – thus helping its spread.
And as a further demonstration that such stupidity transcends a particular faith, we can point to Ralph Drollinger.
Drollinger is a minister who leads the weekly Bible study group for Donald Trump’s cabinet. And he claims coronavirus is God’s judgment for same-sex marriage and for trying to save the environment.
Moreover, another of Trump’s favorite ministers has found another potentially dangerous way to put his homophobia above fighting the pandemic.
Franklin Graham, is a preacher who spoke at the president’s inauguration. But he is also the CEO of Samaritan’s Purse which erected the emergency field hospital in New York’s Central Park.
Meanwhile, a Christian evangelist in the US has even said that only those with fake faith bother to wash their hands to prevent the virus spreading.