My Congressman, John Shimkus, regularly posts Biblical verses on his official Facebook
and twitter page
. I was reading his Facebook page today when I noticed the unfortunate verse he posted on the morning Gabrielle Giffords and others were attacked
Romans 1:32 Who, knowing the judgment of God, they which commit such things are worthy of death, doing same, and having pleasure in them
It appears that the verse was posted earlier in the morning before the shooting.
I wondered what "they" the verse was referring to so I looked up the first chapter of Romans
. The preceding verses focus on those who "knew God" but turn from him. It names a long list of sins, but the chapter is more well known for being one of the few Biblical references to homosexuality.
26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
I emailed Shimkus' office asking if he feels posting that sort of language on his official site is appropriate after the attack and whether he believes the verse he quoted applies to homosexuals. I'll write again if I receive a response.
Shimkus sometimes responds that he's being attacked for his Christianity when questions like this
are raised. So, I want to be clear that I don't take issue with him being Christian.
Still, it's grossly offensive for a Congressman to post a Bible verse that says many of the people he was elected to represent, including non-Christians, gays and lesbians, are worthy of death. I'm amazed that no one removed the post after they learned of the attack on Congressman Giffords.
I hope Shimkus will apologize, and in the future not contribute to violent rhetoric by posting more death-to-the-infidels verses. Otherwise, I suggest he move to a country that approves of violent anti-gay rhetoric and elected officials who only represent the views of their own narrow religious sect. Perhaps he could run with Ahmadinejad in Iran