Bradlee Dean (photo source) is the infamous Minnesota preacher who has called for the execution of gay and lesbian people. Today the Republican controlled Minnesota house planned to take up legislation that would call for a constitutional ban on gay marriage, and Bradlee Dean was called on to provide the opening prayer for the session.
Before going into any details, I’d like to propose that you, dear reader, consider writing a letter to your state representatives or equivalent (no matter where in the world you live, you have some sort of regional or local political representation) and tell them that you object to the reading of a prayer as part of the process of doing public business. Today’s outrageously offensive and shameful event in Minnesota is extreme but it is merely one end of a spectrum of sentiment that has no place in public governmental discourse. No place. So write your letter, especially if you happen to be in Minnesota.
Bradlee Dean is so over the top that the even Anne Rice is said to have quit Christianity (or at least some particular sect or cult of Christianity) because of him.
Dean did not call for the execution of homosexuals during this mornings prayer. He didn’t even mention GLBT issues. Nonetheless, he should never have been invited into that chamber and the fact that he was tells us what the Republicans in Minnesota are really all about. In any event, while he didn’t discuss the anti-gay marriage amendment, he did make outrageous over the top statements about religion and President Obama, making the inference that he was not a Christian (he’s spoken about this before, apparently) and mumbling something about saying the name of Jesus, or not saying it, or whatever, since 2008. He said:
I know this is a non-denominational prayer in this Chamber and it’s not about the Baptists and it’s not about the Catholics alone or the Lutherans or the Wesleyans. Or the Presbyterians the evangelicals or any other denomination but rather the head of the denomination and his name is Jesus. As every President up until 2008 has acknowledged. And we pray it. In Jesus’ name.
Here’s the video version of it.
Get this: Kurt Zellers, the Republican House leader, and the freshman representative who invited Dean, Rep. Ernie Leidiger, R-Mayer, have both denounced Dean’s prayer and said that he should not have been invited. However, Dean really does represent a significant portion of those also represented by the new Tea-Tainted Republican Party in Minnesota and elsewhere. I will assume, for now, that their indignation is either manufactured or indicative of an inexcusable ignorance. Either way, they really should not be in their present jobs. In fact, they should both resign from their positions or, at the very least, the chamber should issue a censure. Go look at the above video again. You see, and this will be recorded forever, Bradlee Dean standing and speaking freely in front of Kurt Zellers name plate. I’ve heard that there is a law in Minnesota that a person running in an election can not use images from the chambers in campaign ads. But citizens can certainly use them on, say, tee-shirts. And blogs. And so on.
Here’s Terry Morrow (DFL) commenting on the events of the morning.
Here’s the local news version of the story. OMG.