….there’s usually some fiyah.  I’m sure many of you have heard about the sex scandal that has caught up the good Bishop Eddie Long of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta; that he “coerced” three young men into getting their swerves on with him, while publicly dissing the LGBT community in the name of God.

Yes, I do know about being innocent until proven guilty.  But, according to Color Lines, when the third man came forward with allegations, Long’s lawyers told him to STHU.

Long has denied the allegations, but once a third man came forward he declined to talk to the media on the advice of his attorneys.

Um, OKAY.  But, what bothers me is if these allegations are true, this means another “man of God” who, rather than walking his talk, is trying to “act like God” by doing whatever the hell he wants and hope his followers won’t notice.

These pictures don’t help.

I don’t predict a good outcome with all of this Bishop Eddie Long madness. I dunno if I’m mad at the fact that I have NO clue what these men are suing him for or these small ass, petite ass King Sweet & Petite limited edition shirts he keeps rocking. It’s way too late/early for this. (Pictures courtesy of MissJia.com)

I mean, Long has been on a few radars before this story broke; ask Jasmyne Cannick and Keith Boykin about that.  They wrote a blog about it a couple of years back:

It was a simple idea hatched in a casual conversation of Black gay activists while in Washington D.C.  Frustrated with the increasing number of attacks on same-gender loving people by Black pastors, we decided to take action.  The action in this case was calling out Black pastors on their hypocrisy as it relates to the gay community and their relationship to the current Bush Administration.

The outline of the campaign was straightforward.  Each day for one week Keith and I profiled a Black pastor highlighting his relationship with the Bush Administration, recent homophobic gay comments, and ending with the question, is this pastor gay?  Starting with mega church pastors Bishop Eddie Long and T.D. Jakes, we included profiles of other prominent pastors including Los Angeles’ Noel Jones and Bishop Charles Blake, D.C.’s Reverend Willie Wilson, Chicago’s Reverend Gregory Daniels, New Orleans’ Bishop Paul Morton, Georgia’s Creflo Dollar, and ended with a joint profile of ex-gay gospel singer Donnie Mclurkin.

Now, I must reinforce that these are allegations, and Bishop Long is entitled to, by law,  the opportunity to confront his accusers, so as much as I’d like to jump on the “I told ya so” bandwagon, I’m waiting to see how this plays out.  But when Coretta Scott King’s funeral was held at New Birth, one thing that pissed me off was the rescinded invitation to Harry Belafonte because he had the nerve to call out George Bush in public for his piss-poor response to Hurricane Katrina victims  and whatnot.

The fact that Belafonte was publicly dissed by Long and Bernice King was a lot to swallow – thank God the Good Reverend Joe Lowery got some payback for Belafonte at that funeral, when GeeShrubya had to sit there and TAKE IT.  But Long was trying to line up for a slice of that Faith-Based Money Pie that Bush was handing out to Black Pastors, which is the religious equivalent of a two-piece without the biscuit.

The first “State of the Black Union” (aka Tavis Smiley’s Negro Super Bowl) I attended was at New Birth Baptist Church and I covered the event for Black Commentator.  What I saw in the lobby of the 25,000 seat santuary was…

an ATM.  As in Automated Teller Machine.  It was the first time I’d seen an ATM in a CHURCH.  My first thought was, “Well, that’s convenient for collecting tithes…” and then, I stopped thinking about what it meant to have an ATM in your sanctuary.  The Nation of Islam group was clowning about it, too, while I tried to wrap my mind around what it meant to have an ATM in your church sanctuary.

What I also remember is that Tavis threatened to pull that event and hold it elsewhere unless Long toned down the anti-gay rhetoric, because some of his speakers were openly gay.  Keith Boykin, a former staffer to Bill Clinton, was one of the keynotes, and just before the event, Long and Bernice King, whos is also a Pastor at New Birth, held an anti-gay, defense of marriage march right down in Atlanta.  Because of the march and the rhetoric, Tavis called Long and said he’d pull his event if the rhetoric and sentiments didn’t cease and desist.

Y’all saw the event on C-SPAN.  And it was held at New Birth.  I was there to watch Farrakhan clown everybody.

And Bernice King was nowhere to be seen that weekend.  They must have had her on lockdown.  Draw your own conclusions from these events as I recorded them here.

Similarities of Long’s actions are discussed in a book, “Pimps in the Pulpit”, by Sharon Bellamy, and that’s getting some attention, too.  Not to mention the IRS is after his ass for that Mercedes Maybach his congregation presented him with.  The government said that a $200,000.00 vehicle is more than a gift; it is considered income that did not meet the tax-exemption requirements.  Peep this:

Problem is, Creflo and Taffi Dollar have refused to cooperate with Sen. Grassley’s investigation, and Eddie Long has provided incomplete information. Joyce Meyer has cooperated fully and Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland and the now-divorced Whites have responded adequately. Thus, it seems that the two African-American preachers have been the most defensive and least responsive to the Senate. (Emphasis mine)

There is a lot shady about the Bishop, but I don’t know what is worse; recruiting rent boys before the age of consent (the third man says Long got him when he was 14), and calling them “spiritual sons” or engaging in shysty dealings with money and calling it Ministry.

Take it away, JJP family.  BTW, I’m at the Facing Race Conference with Tim Wise and Melissa Harris-Lacewell in Chicago and will be featuring some on the ground coverages, and hopefully, an interview with these dignitaries.  Catch y’all later.

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