It’s interesting to note that the very arrogant preacher whom I saw in the Richard Dawkins video rightly call Prof. Dawkins on the carpet for arrogance is now caught up in allegations of having paid for gay sex. Apparently his accuser, the alleged prostitute, got mad when he saw his regular john taking a position advocating in favor of Colorado’s Amendment 43, which would enshrine Colorado’s Defense of Marriage Act in Colorado’s state constitution.
Reverend Haggard denies the allegations completely and he is entitled to the presumption of innocence. The timing of the revelation, coming so close as it does to election day, makes its veracity somewhat suspect. But it’s interesting that so many news sources are carrying it — I suppose the idea that someone so prominent as a minister who regularly preaches to the President being involved in salacious gay sex is just too juicy a story to pass up if it turns out to be true. The story of the giant being toppled is one we see again and again.
For myself, I could believe this sort of thing being true. But I’ll need more than an accusation to get behind it. For the time being, I’m going to assume the good Reverend is innocent and the victim of a very cruel accusation motivated by politics. His only mistake has been to take such a prominent and strident public position so as to attract this sort of attention.
UPDATE: Rev. Haggard has admitted “some guilt” but not the entire battery of accusations. That’s the additional evidence I needed to shift away from the presumption of innocence. This morning’s admission of “some guilt” when confronted with the allegation of a three-year affair with a call boy, seems fundamentally incompatible with Haggard’s statement last night of “I’ve never had a gay relationship with anybody. I’m steady with my wife. I’m faithful to my wife.” Look, when you make a mistake and get caught, the only thing to do is to buy it, all, immediately, in this case that being something like: “I’ve made mistakes in my life, and this was been one of them. I’m a sinner and I’ve asked for God’s forgiveness. I’m asking for my wife’s forgiveness, and for my congregation’s forgiveness. I know I’ll spend the rest of my life trying to make amends for what I’ve done.” But that wasn’t the reaction — first there was outright denial and now there’s “some” (but not “complete”) guilt. If even some of this is true, does it matter all that much what part isn’t? No, after this, I’m siding with Salsola’s earlier comment and I must admit feeling a certain degree of satisfaction in seeing a hypocrite exposed for what he really is. Stay tuned for more developments. (7:15 a.m. Friday, November 3, 2006)
(UPDATED UPDATE): “Some guilt” apparently means “I bought meth from the guy, but I didn’t use it; I paid for massages from the guy but didn’t have sex with him.” Yeah, right. Bill Clinton never inhaled, and he never had sexual relations with that woman. (1:33 p.m. Friday November 3, 2006)