In case you didn’t grow up in the church, that’s code for: I’m going to offend you, but I get a free pass to say whatever I want to with this disclaimer.

Tonight Jerry turned on Larry King Live, and we watched an interview with Christian singer Jennifer Knapp, who this week officially “outed” herself to the world as a lesbian.  Thankfully, more and more these days this kind of announcement is becoming less “news” — but in Knapp’s evangelical context, announcing you are a content lesbian in a committed relationship is pretty high up there on the list of SIN (usually mentioned in the context of bestiality and pedophilia).

I can remember listening to Knapp, back in my believer days.  In fact, I still have her CD and find myself still digging her song “Undo Me“.  I thought of her as part Alanis, part Melissa Etheridge (little did I know how right-on I was in my generalizing!).

Anyway, this week Knapp did an interview for Christianity Today, Reuters, and The Advocate — talk about three very different audiences!  I enjoyed listening to her chat with King, and he did a good job of asking some pretty interesting questions (I’m usually not a fan of his interviews).

The show took an interesting turn when King invited “Pastor Bob” Botsford on the show, to talk about his post, Straight to the Truth: A Response to Jennifer Knapp’s Coming Out.

If you’re ever curious about one of the (many) reasons why I left the church and haven’t looked back, watch this clip:

Needless to say, Knapp had way more composure than I would have had if we were to have traded spaces.  I find the patronizing, pious righteousness of people like Pastor Bob incredibly nauseating.  It was difficult to watch him sit there and say that he “loves” Jennifer, and then spew such religiously-motivated discrimination — let’s just say I was glad that he was so confident to be speaking the words of Jesus.  Anyone with a mind (or heart) can see how wrong and bad he looked in his judgement.

Anyway, of course I had to look up good ol’ Pastor Bob, and let him know how much I appreciated his representation of his side of the issue — after all, the more people like him speak out publicly, the more others will see how bankrupt this “moral” position really is.  Here’s the comment I left on Pastor Bob’s blog — one that finally showed up, after several attempts to have it get past the moderator:

(if this comment doesn’t get published, I’ll realize it’s because the moderator is only allowing supportive comments to be shown — which states a lot about the character of this “Pastor Bob.”)

Pastor Bob, your pious faux-compassion shown on Larry King Live tonight reminded me of why I left the church, and haven’t yet looked back. It’s “compassionate Christians” like you that give your faith system a bad name. (and this is coming from an evangelical pastor’s kid who grew up in the church)

I’m just glad your righteous homophobia will now be recorded on tape, for all posterity. It’s going to be hard to explain these discriminatory statements to your flock and grandkids, when as the world continues to change and leave this religiously-driven bigotry behind.

And all the people said? Amen.