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Sharpton charges Bush with fueling homophobia

He may be nutty, but he calls this truth out. I do wish that he’d step back and shine the light on the black pastors that have fomented bigotry from the pulpit and bellied up for faith-based dollars. That’s where the real blame lies. Follow the money; no one is forcing those bigots to take the cash — those folks are selling out their gay brothers and sisters. (

The Rev. Al Sharpton told a conference of African American gay leaders Friday that the Bush administration is fostering homophobia in the Black community for his own political gain.

The New York Democrat said that Bush focused on same-sex marriage and traditional fears of gays among Blacks to get re-elected in 2004 when he should have been addressing education, health care and jobs.

Speaking in Atlanta at a national conference called by the National Black Justice Coalition, Sharpton said that gay African Americans must engage in dialogue with Black church leaders.

About 150 people from across the country are attending the three day conference aimed at combating homophobia within the Black community.

Sharpton began his speech by saying he grew up in a family that had a gay member. He did not identify that member, but he said that he saw firsthand the bigotry that gay people confront.

The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) is holding a summit, hosted by First Iconium Baptist Church in Atlanta today and tomorrow. For Sharpton, this is his first participation on a conference dealing directly with homophobia in the black community. This summit is long overdue, given the long list of black pastors that have been cozying up to the religious Right.

* Sharpton calls out black homophobia and addresses HIV
* Wilson bans NBJC’s Keith Boykin from the podium at the Millions More March

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding