J.K. Rowling SLAMS UK Christianist Group For Trashing An Olympian (WITH TWEETS AND VIDEO)

J.K. Rowling with Malala in 2014 (image from Rowling's Facebook)
J.K. Rowling with Malala in 2014 (image from Rowling’s Facebook)

For the most part, born-again Christians in Europe aren’t as hidebound as their counterparts here in the States. I know from experience; for the last seven years I’ve attended a church planted and led by Brits whose slogan is “real, relational, religion free.” But there are a few who seem to take their cue from our religious right. Case in point–a Christianist group in the UK that saw fit to trash an Olympic swimmer on Twitter.

Back in 2013, British diver Tom Daley revealed that he was gay. Watch his announcement here.

He has been in a relationship with American director Dustin Lance Black since the spring of 2013; the two were engaged in 2015.

Daley started out well in Rio; he won a bronze medal in synchronized diving while teamed with Daniel Goodfellow. However, he came up well short of qualifying for the finals in the individual 10m platform. It was all the more shocking since at the previous day’s preliminaries, he ran up the highest score in Olympic history.

When Christian Voice, a small hyperfundamentalist outfit in the UK, found out about Daley’s pratfall in Rio, it couldn’t resist the urge to stick out its collective tongue.

It’s not the first time that Christian Voice–or more accurately, Christianist Voice–has slimed Daley. When Daley came out in 2013, Christian Voice national director Stephen Green suggested that Black had seduced him into the gay lifestyle. His evidence? Black is more than double Daley’s age. He is only two years younger than Daley’s father, who died in 2011 at the age of 40. This is a new gloss on an old Christianist shibboleth–“they don’t reproduce, they recruit.”

When J. K. Rowling saw this ugly tweet from Christianist Voice, she let them have it.

Apparently Rowling wasn’t the only one. Raw Story noticed that a number of Rowling’s fans around the world joined in and gave Christianist Voice an earful. Here’s a sample, culled from both Raw Story and the New Civil Rights Movement.

Apparently Christianist Voice didn’t get the hint. In another blog post, Green harrumphed that Daley brought this on himself by touting his relationship with Black. He also wagged his finger at Daley and Black for openly desiring to have a child, saying it would be “selfish” for Daley to “deprive a child of its mother.” Green also mused that if Daley walked away from the gay lifestyle, “his diving might improve as a result.”

Change the accent and the spelling, and Green would be a dead ringer for the likes of Bryan Fischer, Tony Perkins, Ben Carson, and Ted Cruz. I suspect this kind of bilge is what one of my longtime friends from my church, a Swede, had in mind when she released an EP four years ago. Several of the songs on it are unmistakably Christian, though she opted not to identify as a Christian singer because of the stigma attached to Christianity. Sadly, much of that stigma seems to have made its way across the Atlantic, if Christianist Voice is any indication.

Darrell is a 30-something graduate of the University of North Carolina who considers himself a journalist of the old school. An attempt to turn him into a member of the religious right in college only succeeded in turning him into the religious right's worst nightmare--a charismatic Christian who is an unapologetic liberal. His desire to stand up for those who have been scared into silence only increased when he survived an abusive three-year marriage. You may know him on Daily Kos as Christian Dem in NC. Follow him on Twitter @DarrellLucus or connect with him on Facebook. Click here to buy Darrell a Mello Yello.