The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Student Group at Harvard Sponsors Anti-Gay Religious Speakers

By Evelyn Schlatter on March 29, 2011 - 2:40 pm, Posted in Anti-LGBT

On April 1-2, an event called “The Social Transformation Conference: Social Transformation by the Power of God” is scheduled to take place at Harvard University, and it’s raising a few red — or perhaps crimson — flags. Sponsored by a student group, the Harvard Extension Service & Leadership Society, the conference is billed innocuously as a meeting of invited religious leaders to discuss how faith-based social transformation efforts can improve society.

But a harder look at the speakers tells another story, and the conference’s own agenda notes that it has specifically targeted Harvard in an effort to bring the famous educational institution back to its Christian roots. Many of the speakers are associated with the “Seven Mountains” movement, which is a type of Christian dominionist theology. Dominionism generally calls upon Christians to establish “dominion” over every aspect of our culture and government — that is, create a kind of theocracy — and use that to create God’s kingdom on Earth in order to ensure the return of Jesus Christ. Dominionism is a highly conservative and often radical-right theology whose leaders are often virulently anti-gay and anti-Muslim.Consider some of the scheduled speakers:

  • Lance Wallnau, a leader in the Seven Mountains movement, who believes that Islam is invading America and that homosexuality, abortion and financial collapse are “an apocalyptic confirmation that when you remove God from public discourse, when you don’t line up your thinking with kingdom principles, you inevitably hit an iceberg like the Titanic and you go down.”
  • Os Hillman, president and founder of a group called Marketplace Leaders Ministries, who is a close friend and financial backer of Julius Oyet, one of the most vocal religious leaders in Uganda in support of the so-called “kill the gays” bill in that African nation. Hillman has also accused the Harry Potter books of pushing a “gay agenda” because character Albus Dumbledore came out.
  • Bill Hamon of the Christian International Ministries Network, who says at the group’s website that God’s word for 2010 included strictly observing Leviticus 20:10, which prescribes death for adulterers.
  • Larry Bizette of the Antioch Family Church, who argues that same-sex couples will destroy the institution of marriage.

The conference seems tightly tied to the Seven Mountains movement, and its website highlights a video called “Transforming the Seven Mountains of Culture.” That refers to its adherents’ desire for Christians to gain control of key areas of America life — business, government, media, arts and entertainment, education, family and religion — and extinguish secularism. One of the things that Christians must do is “expel demons” who block the path to achieving this.

Bruce Wilson, an expert who researches the intersections of religion and politics, explained to Wayne Besen in the Bay Times that in the Seven Mountains movement, “Expelling demons is a concept viewed so literally that the movement uses a process called ‘spiritual mapping,’ in which ‘homosexual sites’ are designated on maps, sometimes marked with yellow pushpins.” The Harvard conference is part of a conscious strategy aimed at mainstreaming the movement, Wilson said.

Wallnau, the Seven Mountains leader, is on the board of the Oak Initiative, founded by Rick Joyner of Morningstar Ministries. The Oak Initiative’s mission is to “find and help develop principled and effective Christian leaders who can mobilize and organize a cohesive force of activated Christians.” Then, they’d like to place them “on every level where government is found, from the most local to state and national levels.” They’d also like to develop their own media empires and their own Christian “intelligence service” skilled at “discerning important events as they unfold” and at collecting information that is “accurate and trustworthy.”

Serving alongside Walnau on the Oak Initiative board are Lou Sheldon, chairman of the virulently anti-gay Traditional Values Coalition hate group; Janet Porter, the stridently anti-gay and anti-abortion founder of Faith2Action; and Cindy Jacobs, a  “prophet” who claimed in January that the recent mass bird die-offs in Arkansas were the result of support for gay marriage and the overturning of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the military’s recently abrogated policy toward gay and lesbian soldiers. More recently, Jacobs said that the reason a tsunami hit Japan was because the gospel hadn’t reached it, due to Japan’s “direct link with the Imperial family and a direct link with the sun goddess, Amaterasu.”

The Harvard Crimson, the university’s student-run paper, editorialized on March 24 against the “egregiously anti-pluralist views” of the conference speakers and said they “should not be allowed to take advantage of speaking under a Harvard banner and [allowed] the legitimacy that banner naturally affords them.” Instead, it suggested, the university “must do everything in its power to show its compassion for and extend its eternal welcome to the LGBT community.”

  • Anthony Fontana

    It,s funny how you call your selves Hate Watch? So if someone has a different view or opinion than you then you want them SILENCED? Where is the free speech in that? The Hate seems to be coming from your side!

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    A few more questions, Mr. Citizen, if I may. About this: “There is no true 100% white race in America, This is horrible and America’s downfall. ”

    You know there was pretty much 0% white race in China when that region was the most scientifically advanced in the world for several hundred years. How the hell did that happen without “white” people?

    And as for Christopher Columbus and his men “going hog wild” for Native Girls, I think the correct term you are looking for is “raped”. You see, Columbus himself reported that he could easily get volunteers from Spain with the promise of Native girls as personal sex slaves. And I do mean “girls” literally, because he reported that the most desired were around 9 or 10 years of age.

    You may be pleased however, to learn that I can help you understand the “left-wing” bias of academia. You see, facts tend to have a bias toward the “left-wing”, which has historically put science, inquiry, and criticism ahead of rigidly following old dogma, usually based on religious ideology. The fact is that conservative ideas are espoused all the time in mainstream universities across America(especially in business schools), but when conservative narratives are subjected to critical inquiry, when we look at the facts and not idealistic, faux-nostalgic clap-trap, lo’ and behold, the picture of a lovely Pleasantville America is rent to pieces. Should academics be blamed if facts lead them away from conservative narratives?

    “Yes Benji. I am prejudice and proud of it. I have standards. Apparently. You don’t. All I want is to see Americans given a chance to decide on interracial and interfaith marriages.
    I think I have a solution. Let the citizens of every decide to recognize or not to recognize these types of marriages, including denying benefits to these types of couples.”

    Well it’s really hard to respond to this, but a part of me appreciates the fact that you just come right out and admit your prejudice, as opposed to doing the typical, “NO Y’ALL LIBRULS ARE THE REAL RACISTS” and so forth.

    Here’s the problem with your little “solution” and your “standards”. You have standards? Fine. Don’t marry someone of another faith, don’t marry someone of the same sex, and don’t marry someone of another “race” as you define it. Nobody is forcing you to marry anyone from those three groups.

    But you have got to be seriously confused if you think you have the right to use the force of the US government to tell other people who they may marry and live with. What do you think would happen if we had a referendum tomorrow- voting on whether or not the US should make an exception to the 1st Amendment and ban publications by people who espouse your views? Don’t they have the “right” as you say? Nobody ever got a chance to vote on the 1st Amendment, so now according to your logic maybe there needs to be a referendum on whether freedom of speech should apply to folks like you.

    Somehow I don’t think you would find that to be just.

    And if you think America is such a screwed country, you have little to blame but yourself(a white male racist homophobe blaming HIMSELF? WHAT A CONCEPT!). People like you followed every demagogic scapegoating line of propaganda for decades, diligently searching for hidden conspiracies while you ignored your own material interests.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    So, Concerned Citizen, you want the right to decide if you want to restrict people’s marriage rights. Wow, at least you actually just come right out and say it. Could you do us a favor and explain why you wish to restrict interfaith,interracial, and gay marriage?

  • Maggie

    I was trying to make a point with my comment, which CC nicely deflected; this brings me around to my point again. These folks are different from your usual radical right wingers. If we get mad at them and point out that they are anti-gay, and anti-muslim, it does not bother them. In fact, it is advertising. They are operating as zealots attempting to bring about a prophecy that twists Christianity beyond recognition, and they have managed to wrap it up in a pretty (to some) package called “Let God Be Your Business Partner”. They talk about the “Islamization” of America while planning the “Christianization” of America. Pot, meet Kettle.

  • CM

    Patricia, thanks for the information about this weird (and long defunct) program. However, ConCit is writing in the present tense, so he or she is being non-factual with respect to reality in the here and now (big surprise).

  • Belle1231

    CC, you’re a few hundred years too late to vote on interfaith marriages, and about 45 years too late to have a vote on interracial marriages. It’s out of your hands and probably has been most or all of your life. You don’t get a vote on the issues now or ever. There are no consequences of their beliefs, except that those married get to live their lives with no thought to you or what you want. In the course of their lives, you don’t matter. Perhaps you would have lived a more content life back in the 1600s, when attitudes such as yours were tolerated. Human beings have matured in 400+ years. Sorry you missed it.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Maggie:

    All I want is the right to vote on the issue. If the people of Georgia are fine with it. Let them bear the consequences of thier beliefs. That’s all I’ve got to say on the subject.

  • majii

    Concerned Citizen,

    The legality of interracial marriage is a settled issue. In Loving vs. Virginia, the Supreme Court ruled that interracial marriage cannot be restricted. I also live in GA. to my knowledge, there is currently no law in GA that prohibits interfaith marriages. GA already has a law in place similar to DOMA, which prohibits gay marriage. Where have you been that you’re still advocating for social issues that have already been resolved or are trivial? Neither gay marriage, interfaith marriages, nor interracial marriage is a concern of mine. I would think that someone who is a member of a party that claims it believes in freedom would not believe in taking away the freedoms of others. If one does, that makes him/her a hypocrite because his/her actions son’t match his/her words.

  • Maggie

    I did some research on these Seven Mountains people and they are, quite literally, intent on taking over the country, and then the world, based upon a prophecy received by one Johnny Enlow. Their bizarre theology, inspired by this prophecy, requires them to conquer seven “mountains”, which sound more like Trivial Pursuit pieces, and would be ludicrous, if it weren’t so frightening. Each mountain, such as Arts & Entertainment, Religion, or Business (the one they are starting with, as they view it as the most important–once they control it, they will be able to control everything else) is guarded by a “Principality”, such as Lucifer, or Mammon (or, rather strangely, Jezebel) to be conquered by Apostles, Prophets, etc. I’m still trying to get over the fact that they make no secret of the fact that they plan on taking over and forcing everyone to submit to their views–’Dominion’, in other words, and people are only freaking out about the fact that they are right wing fanatics. They aren’t just right wing–they are right wing lunatics intent on world domination…..

  • Patricia

    CM said, to Concerned Citizen: ‘“Harvard is also know to be an institution were students are supposed to have their pictures taken in the nude for some unknown reasons.” Did you actually read this ludicrous lie somewhere, or is it just the voices in your head talking?’

    I don’t agree with Concerned Citizen on much, but the nude photo story is actually true, and happened at a number of Ivy League and Seven Sisters colleges between the 1930s and 1960s. It was still happening at Harvard and Radcliffe through 1961. The claim was that these were posture pictures, but later studies advance the view that it was done as anthropological research, possibly attempting to advance eugenics goals. There was a major article in the NYTimes magazine section by Ron Rosenbaum on Jan. 15, 1995, and I think a Google search on Harvard nude pictures will show Wikipedia and other sources. Just because something sounds horrifying and is stated by someone with whom you profoundly disagree, doesn’t mean, as in this terrible case, that it isn’t true. (If I remember correctly, the posture pictures at Radcliffe were taken with the subject behind a screen, which meant that only a silhouette was seen, but I think most places these really were direct frontal nude pictures.

  • Belle1231

    Concerned Citizen, it IS over. You and your kind trying to bring such to a vote would be like trying to reinstate slavery or repeal the right of women and blacks to vote. It won’t happen. You and yours don’t get a voice in my life because I am FREE. Freedom of religion is also one of the cornerstones of our Constitution, along with freedom of association. You can dislike whatever you want, that’s your right. I and everyone else have the right to ignore your opinion. It has no weight in anyone’s world other than yours. Interfaith and interracial or any other kind of marriage isn’t your call to make for anyone other than yourself. I cannot fathom where you get the idea you have any rights to dictate the conditions of anyone else’s life. Please read the Constitution of the United States. It may enlighten you as to the rights and responsibilities we all enjoy as citizens of this country.

  • benji

    Well, Concerned Citizen, it appears that your posts are not so popular here. In fact, they’ve stirred-up so much commotion that you completely forgot to answer my question, and I sincerely want to understand your view about it. So, here’s the question again, hopefully worded more clearly:

    I see that you are genuinely concerned that USA becoming a ‘mish mash’ society is a bad idea, but you haven’t stated any reasons for this concern (beyond the obvious fact that you don’t like it). Can you point to some REAL problems this has caused? For example, has living in a mish mash society injured you or anybody else?

  • Linnea

    You can try, Concerned Citizen, but with all due respect, you are way behind the times. The world is moving on, we are so over the question of whether interracial marriage should be legal, and it won’t be too long now before we are over the question of gay marriage as well. Take your ignorance and nastiness somewhere else. Please.

  • Jordan

    Concerned Citizen,
    So, the fact that Belle1231 has rights doesn’t mean that you don’t have the right to infringe Belle’s rights? Yeah, it does, that is how rights work, democracy has two parts: 1) majority rule 2) minority rights. The result of the revocation of the rights of the minority (which is you, racists, at the moment) would result in the elimination of the minority and a permanent, undefiable majority (any one who does not agree would be in the minority and hence would be eliminated), there is no democracy after that. To simplify, once you vote the opposition out of existence, there won’t be any more need for votes.
    Ian,
    ‘nay’

    And an interesting fact for Concerned Citizen to ignore:
    1) “77% of Americans say they approve of marriages between blacks and whites”
    -http://www.gallup.com/poll/28417/Most-Americans-Approve-Interracial-Marriages.aspx

    Of course according to concerned citizen the poll is fake and it’s all part of the secret liberal, Jewish, communist, black, hispanic, arab, (did I miss any one, Alpha Centaurians perhaps?) plot to discredit National Socialism and Facism. Any way, since you (the racists and segregationists) are in the minority, does that mean that we (the non-racists and anti-segregationists) have the right to vote that you can’t get married, ever. By your logic, I guess that it means we do.

  • Concerned Citizen

    You may have the right, but that doesn’t people like myself can try to have a referrandum on the state ballot in Georgia, in deciding to whether recognizing interracial and interfaith marriages. You can smoke it on your pipe. It’s not over, not by a long shot.

  • Ruth Sklar

    Right on, Belle1231! And thanks for the info, SPLC. In my next life, I want to work for you!

  • Belle1231

    Concerned Citizen – you don’t get a say in my life, or anyone else’s, on any subject, and particularly where marriage is concerned. Marriage is a personal, private concern and none of yours or the government’s. America is built on individual freedom, and that includes the freedom to live as I choose, with no interference from you or your ilk. You’re welcome to your opinions and beliefs, but here in the United States, I’m also entitled to mine without regard to yours.

  • R. Weber

    Nay. And I vote that he/she should also not be allowed to reproduce if it means instilling their children with such dangerous, antiquated and bigoted views. Time to move out of the Dark Ages.

  • Ian

    Since Concerned Citizen is all about voting on who can or cannot get married, let’s hold a little election over his/her right to get married.

    All those in favor say “aye”. All opposed, “nay”.

    I vote nay.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Okay. I meant to say America is a mixed up country

  • Concerned Citizen

    All I want is the right to vote whether interracial and intrafaith marriages should be legal, Apparently. That’s too much to ask from you do gooder liberals. So. We suppose to play your stupid little game? Get real! I am willing to bet that if a poll was taken. People might tolerate interfaith marriages, but the majority would reject interracial marriages. Unfotunately. Most people choose to remain silent on the issue, because fearing retribution from the likes of the NAACP, SPLC, ACLU and other liberal special interested groups. Conservatives has immensely profited from intergation, because it is cheaper to hire blacks and other minorities than it is to hire whites. It doesn’t matter because America is a f**cked up nation.

  • Jordan

    So, while right and far-right wing groups and individuals support laws banning Sharia law and warn of the “Muslim invation”, these same individuals have in their midst a group that is actually, publicly advocating the instatement of Biblical law and the transformation of the United States into a theocracy. They haven’t passed any laws to prevent the application of Biblical law (which is a far greater, yet still minute, threat compared to the threat of Sharia law being implimented since American fundamentalist Christians greatly outnumber American Muslims of any sect).
    Concerned Citizen,
    Congrats on coming out as an uneducated, segregationist KKK troll. I always knew you were.

  • CM

    Go ahead, Concerned Citizen, you’re doing an excellent job of demonstrating how bigotry and ignorance go hand-in-hand.

    For example, Skull and Bones is at Yale, not Harvard. The slave with whom Thomas Jefferson is alleged by some historians to have had an affair was Sally Hemings, not Henning, and no historian, not even the fact-impaired dominionist Dave Barton, claims he married her.

    “All I want is to see Americans given a chance to decide on interracial and interfaith marriages.” Well, look around and that’s exactly what you’ll see – each American does have a choice, not like the days when Jim Crow laws prohibited “miscegenation.” I’m guessing the reinstatement of that kind of state-sanctioned discrimination is what you really “want to see.”

    “Harvard is also know to be an institution were students are supposed to have thir pictures taken in the nude for some unknown reasons.” Did you actually read this ludicrous lie somewhere, or is it just the voices in your head talking?

    Keep up the good work.

  • A walkaway

    It is seriously doubtful that Concerned Citizen has been harmed by the “mish-mash society”, but people who talked like “Concerned Citizen” have harmed me and mine – repeatedly.

    We are mixed blood – Native American, African American, and white.

    People who talk liked “Concerned Citizen” forced us (personally) out of jobs, threw us out of a church (and drove us out of another), and created misery for us – just because we’re mixed blood and not white. I know the type well.

    I’m proud of my Native American and African American ancestors. The white ancestors? People like Concerned Citizen make me ashamed of my white ancestors. They also almost make me ashamed of Christ.

    I can say even more about the dominionists (the umbrella term under which the people in the “Conference” fall) – those who claim to be Christian but whose actions are decidedly deceptive, vicious, and EVIL. They’ve made our lives a living hell for decades.

    The non-Christians, on the other hand, acted far more like Jesus and CARED.

    BTW… as I understand it, the Freemasons were more about freedom of the individual and opposed to the abusive and domineering political and religious structures of the day. I’d rather be around a Freemason than a bigot any day.

  • Sam Molloy

    Can’t the FBI or somebody bust these clowns for trying to subvert the Constitution?

  • benji

    I appreciate your honest answer, Concerned Citizen.

    What exactly do you see as the problem with a ‘mish mash’ society? I see that you are genuinely concerned this is a bad idea somehow, but I don’t see any real reason for concern. How has that injured you or anybody else? Can you point to some REAL problems this has caused?

  • Concerned Citizen

    Yes Benji. I am prejudice and proud of it. I have standards. Apparently. You don’t. All I want is to see Americans given a chance to decide on interracial and interfaith marriages.
    I think I have a solution. Let the citizens of every decide to recognize or not to recognize these types of marriages, including denying benefits to these types of couples.

    Miguel. You can’t tell mee that this kind of stuff doesn’t goes on in places like Harvard, Yale and other Leftiversities.
    The left will never learn, because they believe the so.lution to a so call better world is live in a mish mash society.
    There are secret societies out there like the Freemasons, Skulls and Bones and others. Every ptresident from George Wadshington to Barack Obama has been oinvoled with the Freemasons, according to a documentary on the history Channel. Benjamin Franklin was a closeted Satanist.
    This is what we get living in a liberal live and let live attitude
    in this sorry country. Hollywood is filled with extremists from the left to the right. Hoolywood has got to be the most corrupt and evuil place in America. There are atheistsm, Scientologists, Buddhists, Kabbalas and a whole lot more types of weirdos.

  • Miguel

    To Concerned Citizen:

    “Harvard, a bastion of the the left and a pro secularist propoganda institute.”

    “Harvard is also an institution for groups like the Skulls and Bones.”

    “God has the final say in judging America.”

    Please provide evidence of these allegations.

    “The day will come that Americans have said enough to interracial and interfaith marriages. we have the right to say no to gay marriages, but oue corrupt leaders has never given us the opportunities to state our opinions on interracial and interfaith marriages. It was forced on us against our wills.”

    Sigh. Never mind. Cites aren’t part of your MO. Fear-mongering and outright hatred are.

  • benji

    “we have the right to say no to gay marriages, but oue corrupt leaders has never given us the opportunities to state our opinions on interracial and interfaith marriages. It was forced on us against our wills.”

    Of course you can say no to all of those things – for yourselves. What you are really saying, Concerned Citizen, is that YOUR fundamentalist religious beliefs should be the law of the land. Why? Please explain why you think it is YOUR right to tell other people who THEY can marry?

    In school, we were taught that one person’s rights end at the next person’s nose. Were you out that day? Here it is in a nutshell for you Citizen: When different constitutional rights conflict, as is not uncommon, the judicial system is tasked with resolving the conflict. It is the COURTS that decide the law of the land in those situations.

    The fact of the matter is, you don’t have the right to impose your religious and racist beliefs on everybody else. We are ALL citizens of this great land.

  • Miguel

    Shirley Johnson, must you try to convert us here? Do you honestly think we haven’t heard what you’re peddling? Please take it elsewhere.

  • Concerned Citizen

    It’s nice to that Harvard will open its doors to conservative views, lthought I don’t always agree with this viewpoint.
    Harvard, a bastion of the the left and a pro secularist propoganda institute. Things just may be change for the better, and guys like yourselves just can’t stomach the thought of losing Harvaard to the right. The day will come that Americans have said enough to interracial and interfaith marriages. we have the right to say no to gay marriages, but oue corrupt leaders has never given us the opportunities to state our opinions on interracial and interfaith marriages. It was forced on us against our wills.
    President Thomas jefferson have an affair and ended up marrying Sarah Henning., a black female slave. Pres. Washing got pneumonia from going into the cold weather and going into a slave quarter on his property, whereas he had an affair with a black female slave. Let’s me forget about Christopher Columbus and his merry men came over to America and got hog wild over some female Native Americans. The prigrims did the same thing. Unfortunately. There is no true 100% white race in America, This is horrible and America’s downfall. Harvard is also know to be an institution were students are supposed to have thir pictures taken in the nude for some unknown reasons.
    Harvard is also an institution for groups like the Skulls and Bones. God has the final say in judging America.

  • benji

    Regardless of what they seem to think, these people aren’t Christians. True Christians are radiant with God’s light. Words that are true, compassionate, and healing come from their beautiful mouths.

    But it’s plain to see that these self-deluded people only presume to know light, whereas in truth they are dark indeed, and they foolishly confuse a man-made fiction, not even a very good one, with God’s thoughts. Astonishingly, these self-righteous haters even believe that their angry bigotry is commanded by God. So they spit venomous lies, and vomit acidic hatred from their foul mouths, thereby imagining they do the work of God.

    Over time, society will increasingly recognize their ugly ideas for the garbage it is. The culture war lost, the remaining haters will gradually fade into irrelevance. It cannot be soon enough.

  • Shirley Johnson

    Let me remind you of a few things said by someone we all revere…For God so loved the WORLD, that he gave his only begotten Son. ALL the world.
    Love one another as I have loved you.
    Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength AND the neighbor as thyself.
    For God created the earth and ALL those in it and looked and said it was good.
    Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
    So, who are you to speak of God’s creation with scorn and hate? Not Christians…that’s a certainty.
    Let love into your heart. Ask forgiveness for the hatred of God’s creatures. I will pray for you…
    Lance Wallnau, Os Hillman, Julius Oyet, Bill Hamon, Larry Bizette, Rick Joyner, Lou Sheldon, Janet Porter and Cindy Jacobs.
    Nothing pleases God more than that sheep who have strayed from the way of love and reverence for his creation return to Him. Be the sheep who love instead of hate.