Texas GOP governor Greg Abbott has called a special session of the Texas legislature for July 18, and, though he put a number of things on the agenda that weren’t completed during the regular session, don’t be fooled: the main reason this session was called is to pass a bill discriminating against transgender students. GOP Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, the state senator who is obsessed with passing such a bill and is pulling all the strings, worked with colleagues to hold a must-pass Texas Medical Board bill hostage until they got the special session.
Among the close allies joining Patrick in the fight for the anti-trans bill ― one that would force all school districts statewide to restrict bathroom use, with no opting out ― is Steven Hotze, an evangelical Christian, Houston radio host and prominent Republican activist, who, while awaiting the governor’s decision, has posted a number of incendiary, grotesque columns on the website he publishes, Conservative Republicans of Texas News. There, Hotze, who last November compared gays to “termites,” posted an “imprecatory prayer,” which, as columnist Steven Herman at the Austin Statesman-American notes, is known in evangelical circles as a invocation of evil, or a curse, on one’s enemies.
First, Hotze noted that there are Texas legislators who back the “murder of unborn babies,” and “pervert God’s holy plan for marriage between a man and a woman” and “celebrate those who promote and choose to practice sodomy.” And he took on those who “allow perverted men and boys, who sexually fantasize that they are women, to enter women’s and girls’ bathrooms, showers and locker rooms.” Then he launched his curse, basically calling for God to kill all such legislators as well as their staffs:
In the Name of Jesus, I prophesy and declare: may all the individuals serving in the state legislature, and their staff, who support, promote and practice sodomy and other perverted, sexually deviant lifestyles, who support the killing of unborn babies, and who hate God’s Law and God’s Word, receive just retribution from God for their evil actions. May they receive what their unfaithful ways deserve. May they be consumed, collapse, rot and be blown away as dust from their current positions because of their wicked works, thoughts and deeds. May people scorn them and nations abhor them. May their punishment lead them to repentance and faith in Christ. May God’s will be done in their lives.
Hotze, who rails against the “homofascist political agenda,” wrote several columns attacking and shaming the legislative leadership for trying to compromise on the bathroom amendment toward the end of the session (allowing schools to have the choice of discriminating or not). Yesterday, Hotze published a column in which he patted the governor on the back for calling the special session, which could be dangerous to LGBTQ people, women and other minorities because once it is open, all manor of harmful amendments can be added to the must-pass bills.
And Hotze focused on the anti-trans legislation as, “one of the key issues” that will be focused on, warning his followers that they must call their legislators.
“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for you to do nothing,” he wrote.
I would actually agree with Hotze completely on that one. It’s evil to use religion to discriminate against anyone. And we must stop these theocratic hate mongers by getting organized, and shining a bright light on what will be happening in Texas this summer.
Follow Michelangelo Signorile on Twitter: www.twitter.com/msignorile