Ted Haggard officially removed as pastor for sexually immoral conduct: Since when is getting a massage sexually immoral? I mean, that’s all that happened, right? Hmmmm. I guess the church was no less convinced by that particular explanation than the rest of us. Personally I think the real issue here would have been not the fact that Haggard got serviced by a guy, but that he apparently cheated on his wife while doing so. Sure, common adultery is not as (heh) “sexy” as hot religious conservative/man whore m4m action, but it’s a lot more problematic for Haggard’s relationships. I suppose it’s possible that Haggard got clearance from the missus for this sort of thing, but all things considered I sort of doubt that.
While we’re on that subject, here’s a rather vile comment from another pastor about why Haggard may have been getting his pulpit polished by another man:
Most pastors I know do not have satisfying, free, sexual conversations and liberties with their wives. At the risk of being even more widely despised than I currently am, I will lean over the plate and take one for the team on this. It is not uncommon to meet pastors’ wives who really let themselves go; they sometimes feel that because their husband is a pastor, he is therefore trapped into fidelity, which gives them cause for laziness. A wife who lets herself go and is not sexually available to her husband in the ways that the Song of Songs is so frank about is not responsible for her husband’s sin, but she may not be helping him either.
If only Ms. Haggard had dressed up as a burly lumberjack or maybe a leather boy from time to time, ol’ Ted wouldn’t have felt the hunger for man flesh! Yes, I’m sure that’s it. I sure hope if Ms. Haggard ever meets this fellow, she gives him a healthy punch in the testicles.
Update, 1pm: Haggard comes clean, without much in the way of detail:
“The fact is I am guilty of sexual immorality. And I take responsibility for the entire problem. I am a deceiver and a liar. There’s a part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I have been warring against it for all of my adult life,” [Haggard} said.
The entire letter is here (pdf link).
I think the implication here is that the “dark and repulsive” part of Haggard’s life is his desire for men; I, on the other hand, would venture to say that the dark and repulsive part of his life was that his own fear of that part of who he is caused him to punish, in his words and his deeds, at the pulpit and beyond it, those who did not reject that same part of themselves. It’s sad; sad for him that he had this self-loathing, and sad for all the gays and lesbians who have their lives burdened, indirectly and directly, by Haggard’s self-loathing. Nor are they out of it, since the anti-same-sex marriage amendment Haggard helped get on the ballot in Colorado has yet to be voted on. If it passes, will gays and lesbians find it in their heart to forgive Haggard his role in its passing? It’s an interesting question.