talking points

Is Obama Waiting Until The Family’s National Prayer Breakfast to Mention Uganda’s Gays?

So far painfully silent on Uganda’s Kill The Gays Bill, will President Obama address that very issue when he attends the National Prayer Breakfast? It’s the annual event where right-wing conservatives assert their power in Washington D.C., and it’s the perfect opportunity for Obama to play catch up with an African crisis he’s pretending doesn’t exist.

For decades, every sitting president has RSVP’d to The Family’s annual breakfast, but contrary to his predecessor, Obama has nixed the group’s “National Prayer Day” from its standing place in the White House that Bush II helped preserve. That doesn’t mean Obama is immune to the breakfast’s calling.

He doesn’t want to piss off this group of powerful, faith-hungry politicos and power brokers, so he’ll attend the closed-to-the-press event on Thursday. (But expect to hear what’s discussed, as Obama’s traveling press pool will attend.) And it’s there we’ll see whether Obama 1) cracks jokes about the Family (aka The Foundation) and its involvement in harboring a few sex scandal-plagued elected officials; and 2) addresses the group’s abhorrent ties to Uganda’s politicians and faith leaders pushing for legislation that would severely punish and possibly execute gays in Uganda.

It would end what’s been a lengthy period of ignoring the issue. Although Sec. of State Hillary Clinton has addressed the issue in public comments, the president has not — which only lends weight to the argument he doesn’t believe the state-sponsored execution of an entire class of people should be considered an issue of importance. And while The Family’s members have, in public and private, denied connections to Uganda’s Kill The Gays bill, the group will be forever associated with the ills taking place there. And there’s plenty of evidence, that more than “suggests” its involvement.

So while The Acronyms are calling for the president to skip the breakfast, if he makes good on his invite, his time would best be spent speaking out on a bill that’s condemning our brothers abroad. It would be the Christian thing to do.