I don't know Valerie Tarico, but if the quotes she relates from attending one of Reverend Ken Hutcherson's services on her blog are accurate, Hutcherson has proved himself a liar yet again:
While I was there, Mr. Hutcherson’s sermon was about gender roles, essentially sanctifying traditional stereotypes. At various points he acted out a woman cooing over a poopy diaper and a man calling his child to jump off a table, then pulling his arms away and kicking at the child to get up. The gist was, “What are you gonna do? God just made us that way.” He derided a biblical character for raising a weak soft son (who in the story died in her arms). At one point he said, “God hates soft men.” and at another, “God hates effeminate men.” But the quote of the day was this one: “If I was in a drug store and some guy opened the door for me, I’d rip his arm off and beat him with the wet end!”
One might argue that Hutch isn't referring to gay men here, and I certainly know a lot of gay men who are more masculine than many of their straight counterparts, but if he is talking about all men (gay or straight) when he claims to channel God's feelings of hate, then that makes his statements even more reprehensible.
Either God Hates Gay Men or God Hates Weak or Effeminate Men. Any way you slice it, God Hates someone and Hutch is totally down with that. Anthony B. Robinson spoke to Hutcherson about his comments in an illuminating opinion piece in the Seattle PI:
"That was a joke," Hutcherson said Friday, when I asked him about the comment. But it's not really funny, is it?
No, indeed. Let's review a sampling of Hutch talking about hate in this context and in his own words:
The Watchmen is a Christian movement that doesn't teach hate or seek out violent followers, says Mr. Hutcherson, who is a pastor in Washington State. "God's word does not allow us to hate. It tells us to stand up for righteousness and call a sin a sin," he says. He rejects, however, the idea of loving the sinner while hating the sin. "The Bible says when a sinner will not separate himself from a sin then he is condemned with it. The one thing I'm trying to do is get heterosexuals out of the closet. We are the majority," he says.
Ah, so God doesn't allow people to hate. Then there is this:
"I believe that God’s word is the final word. I believe that mine is not. And anything that God say is wrong, I say is wrong. And anything that God says is right, I say is right. I do not hate homosexuals. That’s the worst lie that’s ever been told about me. I hate homosexuality because the bible does."
Hutcherson doesn't hate homosexuals, just what he interprets as their sin. And this:
"If they keep coming back, we're gonna expect them to change," Pastor Hutcherson said in May about gays and lesbians coming to his church. "And if they don't change their lifestyle when they keep coming back to be a part of this church, we're gonna do like we do anyone else that's sinning and won't repent. We're gonna bring them before the church and we're gonna kick 'em out."
"Oh, they call me a bigot, Kathi," he sa(i)d when I sat down with him recently. "That's worse than discrimination. I'm supposed to hate them."
I asked if he is a bigot. He said, "Well, if it means believing in God's outstanding truth, you could probably say yeah. But if you're talking about hatred -- thinking I'm better than someone else -- no not at all"
Confused yet? Hutcherson certainly seems to be. And yet his followers don't seem to recognize hate when they hear it pouring into their own ears:
"He's not a pastor of hate," said Dan Kreft, 32, Adair's husband and a software engineer. "He preaches the word of God."
It may be that this is all as simple as telling people what they want to hear. That is one simple reason for Hutcherson saying one thing to the press and another to his congregation. That is behavior that must at best be called an evasion and at worst an outright lie.
It is always easier to feel good about behaving unjustly when a pastor tells you God is flying air-cover.
Moral of the story: If you were raised to be polite and open doors for people as everyone in my generation was, give it up if you want to live.