(Note to Eddie Long: Sorry, Eddie. You weren't the first and most certainly won't be the last. Although you have topped Ted Haggard and George Rekers... BIG TIME!)
I'm having some fun with all of this. Sorry, can't help it. Chasing
down hypocrisy is hard work, so when a lulu of a story practically
lands in your lap, it's best to burn rubber and enjoy the ride.
"David and Goliath." That's the simile "Bishop" Eddie Long came up with to describe his plight. The audience (congregation) cheered. However, I perceive a seminal problem: just who the hell is Goliath? The media? The public? The plaintiffs? His sermon, in fact, left way too many questions unanswered and had a kind of senseless "win one for the Gipper" feel because he didn't base it on anything solid. I have a feeliing that he'll be repeating it over and over ad nauseum because (as he himself stated) his lawyers told him not to say anything else. Unfortunately in this case, caution will give sway to speculation.
Anyway, since Long's non-explanation opens up a whole plethora of theories, I'd like to save them for Part II of this saga.
The history of evangelical sex scandals goes way back and although I can't educate the reader with dates and names, I'm sure that more Scarlet Letters were sewn on both bodices and lapels than the America-is-a-Christian-Nation people would like us to think. And while most of the scandals were heterosexual in nature (e.g. the FBI closely monitored MLK and his infidelities), the ones involving homosexual relationships were probably swept under the rug too many times to count.
So here's a rundown of evangelical homosexual scandals in the last half decade:
Known as the first "Jesus Freak," Lonnie Frisbee was a self-styled Pentecostal "prophet." He actually some success as an evangelist, despite his appearance. He became THE key person of the Jesus Movement and was instrumental in establishing both Calvary Chapel and Vineyard Movement denominations.
Lonnie felt the righteous wrath of God, however, when both churches disowned him because of his homosexual behaviour. Lonnie continued to preach up to his death from AIDS in 1993.
An Emmy-nominated documentary about Frisbee titled "Frisbee the Life and Death of a Hippie Preacher" received numerous accolades and was released in 2007.