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Alabama Gov’t Agency Opens Public Meeting with Anti-Gay Marriage Prayer

John D. Jordan, Tea Party leader and anti-gay preacher. (Photo: New Civil Rights Movement)

John D. Jordan, Tea Party leader and anti-gay preacher. (Photo: New Civil Rights Movement)

A state government agency in Alabama opened a meeting last week with a Christian prayer against abortion and gay marriage.

The Alabama Public Service Commission convened a public meeting on power rates at which PSC President Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh introduced John Delwin Jordan (that’s him wearing a ladies’ bra here), an anti-gay preacher and leader of the Prattville Tea Party, who asked members of the public in attendance if they believed in the “power of prayer.” This being Alabama, many did, emboldening Jordan to declare:

“I pray, Lord, once again as we take the pledge in a few moments, that we will render to when it comes to one nations, under God, may we put you first and seek you first in our lives and all these other so important what we call things will be added unto.”

If that part left many scratching their heads, there was no doubt whatsoever about the meaning of what Jordan said next:

“God, we’ve taken you out of our schools, we’ve taken you out of our prayers, we’ve murdered your children, we’ve said it’s okay to have same-sex marriage, God. We have sinned. And we ask once again that you’ll forgive us of our sins.”

John Archibald, a columnist for the Birmingham Newswarns readers not to “get distracted by the sideshow.” Alabama’s power rates, Archibald writes, are “high for residential customers and low for industry.” The state’s rate structure “allows the company to write off an $8 million salary for CEO Charles McCrary as ‘operations and maintenance,’ at a government-regulated monopoly.”

“It lets the company take a return on equity 30-40 percent higher than the national average, according to testimony today that was not disputed, and it allows it to take hundreds of millions in higher profits that could be saved by ratepayers and pumped back into the economy,” Archibald writes.

Alabama public officials have often said and done things that critics claim violate the constitutional principle of separation of church and state. In one of the more eyebrow-raising examples, then-governor-elect Robert Bentley gave a 2011 Martin Luther King Jr. Day speech in which he declared that “anybody here today who has not accepted Jesus Christ as their savior, I’m telling you, you’re not my brother and you’re not my sister.”

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