Words: Tim Heap
Religion-based homophobia has once again reared its ugly head – this time from a pastor who leads weekly Bible study groups for members of Donald Trump’s White House Cabinet.
In a blog post entitled ‘Is God Judging America Today?’, Reverend Ralph Drollinger suggested that the current coronavirus pandemic is partly caused by LGBTQ people – or as he puts it, those with “a proclivity towards lesbianism and homosexuality”.
Drollinger – who has a history of making offensive remarks about the queer community – also took aim at people with “depraved minds”, those who worship the "religion of environmentalism" and atheists.
He writes that America is “experiencing the consequential wrath of God”, with too many non-believers in positions of power in government, education, media and the entertainment industry.
A spokesperson for the White House condemned the implication that homosexuality has caused the pandemic, calling it “disgusting” and “certainly not something the President believes”.
The spokesperson, Judd Deere, said that the President himself does not attend Drollinger’s Bible class – but high-ranking government ministers such as Mike Pompeo, Betsy DeVos and Ben Carson do.
Human Rights Campaign president Alphonso David also condemned the article, calling Drollinger’s assertions “ludicrous” and saying that “his shameful views cannot be ignored”.
In a statement made to NBC News, he said: ““LGBTQ people around the country and around the world are struggling to cope with this global pandemic. They are worried about their health, their livelihoods, and their families.
“At a moment where we need to pull together by recognizing (sic) our shared humanity and mutual dependence, there are some of low moral character who see it as an opportunity to continue to try to divide us.”