Scroll To Top

'Sodomite Semen' Pastor's Church Joins List of Hate Groups

'Sodomite Semen' Pastor's Church Joins List of Hate Groups


Pastor James David Manning's ATLAH World Missionary Church is one of four newcomers to the Southern Poverty Law Center's list of anti-LGBT hate groups.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, a national civil rights group, added four organizations to its list of active anti-LGBT hate groups last year -- including the church run by a minister who thinks Starbucks puts "the semen of sodomites" in its lattes.

ATLAH World Missionary Church in New York City's Harlem neighborhood was much in the news in 2014. Early in the year it displayed a sign reading "Jesus Would Stone Homos," leading LGBT protesters to challenge the rhetoric and show up for a stoning, and a tagger to spray-paint "God Is Gay" on the message board. Another sign said any church or congregant showing support for "homos" should be cursed with "cancer, HIV, syphilis, stroke, madness, itch, then hell."

Most infamous, however, were ATLAH Pastor James David Manning's video sermons on Starbucks. First he claimed that Starbucks coffee shops are "ground zero for spreading Ebola and other diseases" because of the "upscale sodomites" who "exchange a lot of body fluids" there. Then, taking a satirical story seriously, he reported that Starbucks lattes are flavored with semen, and he suspected that "they're getting their semen from sodomites."

Other newcomers to the SPLC list are the Stedfast Baptist Church of Fort Worth, Texas, whose pastor, Donnie Romero, gave a sermon saying God wants "sodomites" to be put to death; Probe Ministries of Plano, Texas, which has posited that gay people may be possessed by demons; and the Jewish Political Action Committee of Brooklyn, N.Y., which has put up signs saying AIDS is divine punishment, and that Judaism deems male homosexuality a greater sin than murder.

SPLC is selective about the organizations it lists as hate groups, Heidi Beirich, director of SPLC's Intelligence Project, told The Texas Observer. Simply opposing marriage equality or citing Bible verses against homosexuality doesn't qualify a group for the list, but "if an organization is knowingly putting out false propaganda to demonize a particular population -- in our view, that qualifies them as a hate group," she said.

"We don't want to just list everybody in the world," she added. "We want to point out what is particularly damaging." She noted that the SPLC relies heavily on media reports in compiling the list. The rhetoric of anti-LGBT groups, she said, "is becoming much harsher ... because they're losing on a lot of fronts."

While SPLC's list of specifically anti-LGBT hate groups grew from 40 to 44, the number of hate groups in general declined for the second consecutive year -- but the organization warned against complacency.

The article "The Year in Hate and Extremism," published in SPLC's spring 2015 Intelligence Report, relates that the number of designated hate groups fell 17 percent from 2013 to 2014, "from 939 to 784 groups, bringing that number to its lowest level since 2005. ... But those numbers may be somewhat deceiving. More than half of the decline in hate groups was of Ku Klux Klan chapters, and many of those have apparently gone underground, ending public communications, rather than disbanding."

Advocate Magazine - KehlaniAdvocate Channel Promotion

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Be sure to follow Advocate on your favorite social platforms!


Want more news, top stories, and videos? Check out the all NEW Advocate Channel!
Your 24/7 streaming source for equality news and lifestyle trends.
Click this link right now:

Latest Stories