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Beck Tour: Restoring Homophobia?

Beck Tour: Restoring Homophobia?


Glenn Beck claims his tour of Israel is all about support for the Jewish state -- but some of those accompanying him aren't very supportive of LGBT people, in Israel or elsewhere.

Some virulently antigay U.S. Christian conservatives are joining the former Fox News host for events on his Restoring Courage tour of Israel, watchdog group Media Matters reports. They include Mike Evans, who organized the Jerusalem Prayer Team to lobby against gay pride events in the city, calling them "a moral outrage"; John Hagee, who considered Hurricane Katrina divine punishment for New Orleans's hosting of the Southern Decadence gay festival; and David Barton, who has called for regulation of homosexuality as a health risk and found "substantial merit for maintaining the ban on homosexuals in the military." (Israel, by the way, has allowed gay soldiers to serve openly for years.)

Beck's tour has been controversial for several reasons. The audience at a Beck rally Wednesday in Jerusalem, reports London's Guardian, "included representatives of Christian Zionism whose ardent support for Israel is derived from the belief that the Jewish people's return to the holy land is a prerequisite of the second coming of the Messiah. But the accompanying belief that Jews must then convert to Christianity in order to be saved has prompted widespread opposition to Christian Zionism -- and Beck's rally -- within Israel."

The Guardian also notes, "From the left, opposition stemmed from Beck's rejection of a Palestinian state on the basis that it would cut off the holy sites of Jerusalem 'from the rest of the world.'"

Read its full report here and the Media Matters report on Beck's antigay companions here.

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