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Mike Huckabee: I’m Not Homophobic, I’m On The Side Of The Bible

Mike Huckabee

Former Arkansas Governor, and possible 2016 Presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee wants us to know that he’s not homophobic:

(CNN) - Mike Huckabee told an Iowa crowd on Tuesday that he’s “not homophobic,” but believing marriage should be between one man and one woman is being “on the right side of the Bible.”

Huckabee, who is also a pastor, told a conservative crowd, “I’m not against anybody. I’m really not. I’m not a hater. I’m not homophobic.”

“I honestly don’t care what people do personally in their individual lives,” Huckabee said in his keynote address to the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition.

“But…when people say, ‘Why don’t you just kind of get on the right side of history?’ I said, ‘You’ve got to understand, this for me is not about the right side or the wrong side of history, this is the right side of the Bible, and unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it, it’s not my book to change.’ Folks, that’s why I stand where I stand.”

The problem with Huckabee’s position, of course, as well as the position of every other opponent of marriage equality who bases their position on religion is that this isn’t an issue of whether they have to accept something or not, it’s a question of whether or not their fellow citizens should be denied equal rights. What Hucakbee is essentially saying is that he favors denying equal rights to people because of what’s written in a book. If that’s the case, then he needs to consult some other books.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. ptfe says:

    [T]his is the right side of the Bible, and unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it, it’s not my book to change.

    I must have missed the sex-obsessed Almighty Creator God’s signature on the original. What page was that on again? (You’d think it would be obvious, what with God’s Infinite Pen and God’s Infinitely Non-erasable Ink.)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 2

  2. Someone ought to ask Huckabee if he’s “on the right side” of Leviticus 20:13

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 1

  3. Moosebreath says:

    Well, he’s on the “right” side of that portion of the Bible anyway. Funny how no one argues for imposing bans on shrimp, or on multi-fabric clothing, or permitting polygamy, based upon being on the “right” side of the Bible.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 2

  4. Tillman says:

    The problem with Huckabee’s position, of course, as well as the position of every other opponent of marriage equality who bases their position on religion is that this isn’t an issue of whether they have to accept something or not, it’s a question of whether or not their fellow citizens should be denied equal rights.

    His religious position isn’t even defensible. How many wives did Solomon have again? The Bible’s statements on marriage that Huckabee and his ilk love to cite are in the context of a nomadic tribe that lived thousands of years ago in a desert. (And even the historicity of that is questionable.) Meanwhile, you’ve got a prophet — the term for a member of the religion he ended up founding literally means “follower of Christ” — who said nothing recorded about gay people.

    Great, I can’t believe I’ve turned into the religion guy here…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  5. Matt Bernius says:

    @ptfe:
    BINGO.

    Beyond that:

    What Hucakbee is essentially saying is that he favors denying equal rights to people because of what’s written in a book. If that’s the case, then he needs to consult some other books.

    He’s actually saying something even more damaging about Christantity — that there is only one *valid* interpretation of the text… his.

    We’ve had this discussion a number times here on OTB. Like much of the bible, the parts about Homosexuality are open to a lot of interpretation based on (a) other sections of the same book, (b) the text around those passages, (c) an examination of the context that those initial passage were written in, and (d) an examination of the context and process of their multiple translations.[*]

    There are numerous Christian scholars who would take Huck to task on his interpretation of the text.


    [*] – This is not just true for Christianity of course. The same is true of every religion and philosophical movement. Well, everyone except for the Objectivists I guess (or at least thats what they would claim).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  6. Mu says:

    The real danger is that once you allow one side to make law based on their scripture, democracy would mean once the other side gets into power they are allowed to use their own scripture as base. Soon we end up with “no working on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, holy days”, “no pigs, no lobster, no beef” (someone hopefully exempted chicken from the holy animal list, or we’re in deep trouble), no medical care (prayer only, so that saves tons on Medicare/Medicaid payments), and all the fun of marriage only with the approval of the parents (capital offense to elope).
    And that all because someone is on the side of the Bible, Koran, Torah, and probably a dozen other books seen as “scripture” by someone.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  7. Matt Bernius says:

    @Tillman:
    Correct. Of course the issue with the New Testament (if you’re trying to point to extending the prohibition on Homosexuality) is a couple lines in the writing of Paul. But, as has been discussed here in the past, a defensible argument is that his issues wasn’t so much with homosexuality as the orgies that were going on in a particular church.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  8. C. Clavin says:

    unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it

    Even if you believe in God…you ought to know that she didn’t write the Bible…and especially not the versions that exist today.

    Question: we spend gazillions searching for quarks and bosons and what-not. Why not just spend that money searching for God and ask her to explain it all to us???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

  9. Mu says:

    Why not just spend that money searching for God and ask her to explain it all to us?

    You’re calling for every priest’s worst nightmare. How can he stay in business if there’s “the one and only true explanation” and everybody can read it? Or worse, God wears long underwear for services?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  10. legion says:

    So he’s saying “Don’t blame me, blame my religion”?

    OK, I’ll do exactly that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  11. Jim R says:

    “I honestly don’t care what people do personally in their individual lives,” Huckabee said

    Right…except…clearly you do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1

  12. C. Clavin says:

    It gets worse…apparently at the same event he said:

    “…men like to go hunt/fish with other men. Women like to go to the restroom with other women…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  13. stonetools says:

    Huckabee’s mistake here is that you can’t justify calling for the enactment of secular law based purely on the Bible. I’m sure he would not be in favor of the Old Testament position on polygamy, eating shellfish, or wearing clothing made of two or more fibers.
    I’m also sure he would want no part of a Muslim calling for secular law based on the Qu’ran. As usual, conservatives don’t think through the consequences of their favorite applause lines.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  14. al-Ameda says:

    I said, ‘You’ve got to understand, this for me is not about the right side or the wrong side of history, this is the right side of the Bible, and unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it, it’s not my book to change.’ Folks, that’s why I stand where I stand.”

    God was preoccupied with ignoring the regular carnage that happens on his watch, and so was too busy to sign off on his book – so he had his Personal Assistant sign for him.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  15. James Pearce says:

    unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it, it’s not my book to change.’

    This has always interested me about religious folks.

    If God were to rewrite the Bible, how would they know?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  16. Tillman says:

    @al-Ameda: Reminds me of this SMBC strip.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  17. al-Ameda says:

    @James Pearce:

    If God were to rewrite the Bible, how would they know?

    Simple, he would tell Pat Robertson.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  18. al-Ameda says:

    @Tillman:
    that is a great comic strip.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  19. DrDaveT says:

    @James Pearce:

    If God were to rewrite the Bible…

    Again, you mean?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  20. Jimmy says:

    Where is seperation of church and state

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  21. C. Clavin says:

    @James Pearce:
    Or would they accept it? Imagine Sean Hannity confronting Jesus.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  22. @C. Clavin:

    Imagine Sean Hannity confronting Jesus.

    Was God a legal immigrant to Judea? Jesus was clearly an anchor baby.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  23. Grewgills says:

    What Hucakbee is essentially saying is that he favors denying equal rights to people because of what’s written in a book.

    and it isn’t even written in the book he says it is
    Catholic and following Christian prohibitions against polygamy were Roman in origin, not biblical.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  24. gVOR08 says:

    @Matt Bernius: Many years ago my mother read a magazine article about new theology and became concerned. She asked my brother, the Reverend Bruce, if he believed the Bible was literally true. Without hesitation he replied that he absolutely believed in the literal truth of the gospel. She was satisfied. She did not know, and I knew only because of an earlier chance conversation, that “gospel” is a term of art, meaning those parts of the Bible that are divinely inspired. And that his Lutheran theology didn’t claim to know which parts those are.

    My own observation is that a little bit of agnosticism is necessary for us all to live together. An acceptance that maybe what I believe isn’t 100% “gospel”, so maybe a little modesty and a little tolerance of others is in order.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  25. Grumpy Realist says:

    The same argument has been used throughout history:”we don’t hate you, but because you’re a heretic we’re turning you over to the secular authorities to be burned at the stake.” Or “the Bible says…” to justify any grab of land, power, or whatever.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  26. C. Clavin says:

    @gVOR08:
    For people like Huckabee and Hobby Lobby and the rest of the zealots “tolerance” means you tolerating me.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  27. Matt Bernius says:

    @gVOR08:

    And that his Lutheran theology didn’t claim to know which parts those are.

    Some — the more academic Lutherans — are pretty good about that.

    But without a doubt there are members of ever denomination who are vulgar literalists. I tend to find that there is a direct relationship between these individuals level of education and their tendency towards literalism. And to some degree the Calvinist influence doesn’t help here.

    I think your point about agnosticism makes sense. Or put another way, everyone needs to appreciate the hermeneutical traditions that exists in all religions and philosophical movements.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  28. Mu says:

    In college we used to have fun with the literalists by memorizing a half dozen of the obvious self contradictions in the bible (Josef’s ancestors, Judas’ death etc) and innocently asked for explanations.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  29. Tillman says:

    Just occurred to me that maybe Huckabee’s being literal. “I am not afraid of the gay, I simply assert that the gay shall burn forever in the flames of Hell upon death.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0