First Baptist Dallas' Robert Jeffress' reaction to the Supreme Court legalizing same-sex marriage across the United States was bound to be homophobic. That was inevitable. And the smart money said he probably wouldn't offer up the most rational, thoughtful response. Why start now?
What he said Sunday, though? Hoo-boy.
Following a stirring call to think of the children from the intellectual leader of Texas' congressional caucus, Louie Gohmert, Jeffress took the stage and actually said that Friday's decision was "the greatest, most historic landmark blunder in the history of the United States Supreme Court."
Worse than Plessy v. Ferguson, which upheld racially separate public accommodations. Worse than Korematsu v. United States, which allowed the continued internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II. And yes, according to Jeffress, the Supreme Court's decision to legalize same-sex marriage is worse than its 1857 decision in Dred Scott v. Sandford, which established that black residents of the United States were not and were never intended to be citizens of the United States and, as such, lacked standing to file lawsuits in federal court. The decision affirmed the rights of slave holders to do as they pleased with their slaves, as the slaves were property, and directly contributed to the start of the Civil War.
First Baptist Dallas has more than 12,000 members, many of whom helped finance a recent $135 million renovation of the church's downtown campus.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.