Thank you to my friend Chris Wilson for inspiring me to write this article. This was a very difficult article to compose, for it terrifies me and reminds me that people who have no sense of history are dangerous and scare me personally. Andy Gipson, Republican Mississippi State Representative posted on his Facebook page that gays should be put to death, as he quotes from the bible:
If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
In an email exchange over this post with UnityMS, he firms up his position:
To be clear, I want the world to know that I do not, cannot, and will not apologize for the inspired truth of God’s Word. It is one thing that will never “change.”
Ordinarily I try to leaven these awards with some wit, to point out hypocrisy (like cherry-picking your verses from Leviticus) and skewer idiocy and mendacity with sharp contrasts. This particular bigot filled me with such rage and sorrow that I had to walk away from my keyboard while contemplating what to say. This man, elected to serve all his constituents, wishes death on a whole population to satisfy his narrow faith. That’s the simple truth of it. That simple truth makes him a bigot and makes him an easy winner of this week’s award. How can I not take this personally? This bigot and pathetic man has said he wishes me and my husband dead just because we are gay. Who would Jesus hate?
Gipson would also win the Coward of the Week, clearly lacking the courage of his convictions. When the story broke nationally, he simply took down his Facebook page rather than stand behind his beliefs. When the Huffington Post rightly observed that he clearly advocated murder, he posted a weaselly non-retraction, trying to rationalize away the impact of his white-hot hate. Using that passage from Leviticus to call out perceived sin also identifies a punishment and implicitly approves of it. This kind of behavior is why the Family Research Council is labelled a hate group, whether they approve of the label or not. This kind of thinking put millions into death camps seventy years ago.
Gipson called for the execution of people based solely on an aspect of their humanity. This kind of declaration is unacceptable in a public servant and should be rewarded with the loss of office. So Mr. Gipson, who will be next on your target list of those you think should die? Who appointed you to a position of who gets to live and die? I only pray that you are not allowed any children and that your venom does not cause another teen suicide. May you deal with your internal demons and I will try to feel sorry for you, rather than be full of rage at your behavior.