The Further Reaches of the Lunatic Fringe

Rev. Wiley Drake is the pastor of the First Southern Baptist Church in Buena Park, Calif. He has a history of, on occasion, urging his parishioners to offer “imprecatory prayers” (curses) against those who feels need to feel the wrath of God.

The well-known media hound, recently appeared on Fox (Faux) News Radio, specifically on Alan Colmes’ radio show taking credit for the slaying of Kansas Dr. George Tiller. Drake alleged that his imprecatory prayers for the death of Dr. Tiller had been answered.

But Drake announced on Faux News Radio something that even Colmes seemed to be shocked by. Apparently, in addition to Dr. Tiller, Drake has been praying for the death of President Barack Obama.

“So you’re praying for the death of the president of the United States?” host Colmes asked in disbelief.

“Yes,” Drake responded.

Drake said he didn’t fear that these statements would maybe place him on a Secret Service or FBI watch list.

“I think it’s appropriate to pray the Word of God,” Drake said. “I’m not saying anything. What I am doing is repeating what God is saying, and if that puts me on somebody’s list, then I’ll just have to be on their list.”

Later, still stunned, Colmes restated the question, “You would like the president of the United States to die?”

Answered Drake, “If he does not turn to God and does not turn his life around, I am asking God to enforce imprecatory prayers that are throughout the Scripture that would cause him death, that’s correct.”

It should come as no surprise, I suppose, that Drake would feel this way. First of all he’s a certifiable lunatic nut job. Secondly, Drake and his church are being investigated by the IRS for possible violation of campaign law for having used church resources to endorse Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee during the 2008 presidential primaries. His guy lost, so like any good sociopath who doesn’t get their way, Drake is calling on a higher power, as he sees it, to wreak havoc upon the one who did win.

But I feel that it’s a completely different story to wish for the death of the president of the United States. It’s just plain evil, and it serves as another example of the fanatical thinking of some members of the Religious Right.

“This whole concept that we’re always to pray little, nice, soft, fluffy prayers – that we’re not to pray imprecatory prayer – has been something that just, in all honesty, that Southern Baptists have lost, and we need to regain imprecatory prayer,” Drake went on to say.

Drake continued, “It is in the Bible and we are proud to say as Southern Baptists that we believe the Book. You’ve got to believe the whole Book, brother, or you don’t believe any of it.”

In the Fox interview, Drake, went on to call Obama “a usurper” and claimed he is “not an American-born citizen.” Challenged for referring to the president as “B. Hussein Obama,” Drake denied calling him that because it makes him sound like a Muslim. “I call him that because it’s his name,” Drake insisted.

Here’s a fun thing to do; read the following quote from Wiley’s appearance on the Colmes show, then lean your head back, close your eyes and picture in your mind that drunken, mentally ill, homeless guy you see on the streets of any big city and put these words in his mouth. It may make it more clear where Drake and his delusions fit into the grand scheme of modern society.

Asked if he claimed to know God’s will, Drake replied: “In some cases I do. Not in all cases. I know this, that if I do die right now, I’ll go to heaven when I die because I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. That’s why I’ll go to heaven and not to hell. And the reason George Tiller went to hell when he died was not because he killed babies, as terrible as that was. If he went to hell, and I think he did — that’s God’s judgment and not mine — but if he did go to hell it’s because he did not accept Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior.”

Drake said he did not believe Tiller’s accused killer is a pro-life Christian.

“I’m of the opinion — and now everybody’s going to say ‘There goes Wiley down the conspiracy-theory road,’ I’m of the opinion that somebody in the Obama camp had this guy killed.”

“Who benefits the most from this man killing a doctor?” Drake asked. “We certainly don’t. Pro-life people certainly don’t. It hurts us. It damages us, but Obama will indeed advance it. This will be one of those crises to take advantage of, and he’s already done that.”

Now there’s something I noticed in that statement, and you probably did too. Drake at one point in the show claimed that his imprecatory prayers for the death of Tiller had been answered by God. Now later on he claims that Tiller was killed because of President Obama’s camp wanting to create a situation to discredit the anti-abortion movement. Following this dichotomy to its logical conclusion, if God had Tiller killed because of the prayers of Wiley Drake, and the instrument of that murder was Barack Obama, then Obama was having God’s work done, so does that not put the president in the same camp as Wiley Drake? And if so, why is Drake praying for the death of the president? And if not, then how does Drake explain the dichotomy?

But it’s only fair to note that while Drake’s statements are scary and outrageous, not all Southern Baptists agree with him.
The Rev. Dwight McKissic, pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington, Texas, personally denounced Drake’s comments and called on Southern Baptist Convention President Johnny Hunt to do the same.

“They need to be repudiated by Southern Baptist leaders,” said McKissic, former president of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention pastors’ conference and speaker at the group’s evangelism conference. As of today I can find no press release or any other comment one way or the other from the Southern Baptist Convention. The silence seems to deafening.

McKissic said Drake’s views “are in the same ballpark” as Rush Limbaugh saying he hopes that President Obama’s administration will fail.

“Southern Baptists,” he said, “don’t need to line up with the Rush Limbaughs and Wiley Drakes in attacking Barack Obama.”

It’s good to know that there are some more reasonable minds and voices out there in religion land. It’s just too bad that there are so many delusional ones that are given media access to dispense their idiocies. Now if the Southern Baptist Convention, as an organization would just speak out and repudiate the words and actions of Drake the hate monger, they would gain a lot more credibility.