I noted as early as my November 5 diary on my thoughts re the Haggard scandal that there was a very real risk that the scandal would spread beyond Haggard to other leaders of the dominionist movement.
As it turns out, this is starting to happen. Reportedly James Dobson has bailed from the attempts to "de-gay" Haggard, and no less than Lou Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition has now admitted that he--and other dominionist leaders--knew about Haggard's affair with Mike Jones for months before it broke the mainstream news but kept it under the rug.
Edit: Quote re Coit Tower removed. This will teach me to write a post on four hours of sleep :P
The following article from The Jewish Week, as quoted in an an article on Talk to Action, notes:
Then, as if things could not get worse, there was the disgrace of Sheldon's own friend and colleague, Rev. Ted Haggard, the Colorado mega-church leader and president of the National Association of Evangelicals, an even bigger pillar of Republican support on the Christian right. Sheldon disclosed that he and "a lot" of others knew about Haggard's homosexuality "for awhile ... but we weren't sure just how to deal with it."
Months before a male prostitute publicly revealed Haggard's secret relationship with him, and the reverend's drug use as well, "Ted and I had a discussion," explained Sheldon, who said Haggard gave him a telltale signal then: "He said homosexuality is genetic. I said, no it isn't. But I just knew he was covering up. They need to say that."
This is a bombshell on multiple levels, folks:
a) This likely explains why Dobson--after agreeing to be on a "dream team" of "reparation therapists" who would try to de-gay Ted Haggard--rather dramatically bailed from the "dream team" recently claiming time constraints.
There has been speculation in the anti-dominionist community that Dobson may have been afraid that personal scandals of his own might be revealed; if Haggard is admitting that "homosexuality is genetic" (which is much closer to the mainstream view held by most scientists than the dominionist view which insists sexual orientation is a "choice"), it could well be that Dobson does not want to risk a very public failure with Haggard's "de-gaying" and having his name linked to it.
b) High level dominionists--very high level dominionists--have been apparently hiding what they knew would be an incredibly explosive scandal and have been desperately attempting damage control for several months now.
For those unfamiliar with the Rev. Louis Sheldon, he's head of the Traditional Values Coalition--an influential dominionist group which is one of the very few dominionist groups organised as a 501(c)4--and also so vociferously anti-gay that the Southern Poverty Law Center formally considers it a hate group on the same ranking as the Ku Klux Klan or neo-Nazi groups. The TVC actually got its start from an early California initiative that would ban gay teachers--as it is, the Traditional Values Coalition is one of the few "old guard" dominionist groups still standing. The TVC is also known as one of the most vociferously anti-gay dominionist groups in the United States--in some respects, even more so than the American Family Association. (It is of note that Frank Simon--a Kentucky dominionist leader who illegally endorsed Anne Northup and other Republican candidates in past--started his career as one of the most anti-gay dominionist leaders in the US as head of the state branch of the Traditional Values Coalition in the early 80's.)
Sheldon and crew have quite the quotable list of anti-gay speech. People for the American Way document some rather shocking quotes from Sheldon:
Quotes from Louis Sheldon:
"As Homosexuals continue to make inroads into public schools, more children will be molested and indoctrinated into the world of homosexuality. Many of them will die in that world." ("Homosexuals Recruit Public School Children," by Louis Sheldon, special report, Vol. 18, No. 11)
"Americans should understand that their attitudes about homosexuality have been deliberately and deceitfully changed by a masterful propaganda/marketing campaign that rivals that of Adolph Hitler. In fact, many of the strategies used by homosexuals to bring about cultural change in America are taken from Hitler's writings and propaganda welfare manuals." ("Homosexual Propaganda Campaign Based on Hitler's `Big Lie' Technique," by Louis Sheldon, special report, Vol. 18, No. 10)
"Give us a few more years under the belt and we will learn how to replace many of the school board members. Give us more time to understand how the system works, and we'll work the system even better than one could ever imagine." (CNN News, 9/2/90)
"There is a war waging in America. The battle is over values, beliefs and the cultural basis of western civilization.... the elitist avant-garde arts community uses the NEA to advertise and disseminate their political beliefs. The NEA then uses our scarce tax dollars to fund works which are intended to shock Americans into an acceptance of dysfunctional behavioral lifestyles and to destroy the family." (Hearing on the NEA, 4/91)
(Incidentially, that "Nazi" comment above--this is a reference to a very interesting blood-libel promoted in the dominionist community, and originally appearing in the book The Pink Swastika, claiming that not only were gay men not killed in the Holocaust but that gays were the primary architects of the Holocaust and that the majority of the Nazi Party were homosexual men. There is an annotated version of the book online; the book has surprisingly common currency in the dominionist community, including frank promotion by dominionist groups like AFA-KY. The "Homosexuals = Nazis" meme is a very common form of blood-libel against LGBT persons in the dominionist community in general.)
Hatecrime.org documents similar stuff from Sheldon, including an interesting new flavour of gay-bashing--literal comparison to the Nazi Party, whilst proposing literal concentration camps for LGBT individuals:
Gays are like Hitler and Gestapo
"The Rev. Lou Sheldon, president of the Traditional Values Coalition, said the 'hate crime' designation is increasingly going to be applied against those who believe homosexuality is wrong. 'What Hitler began to build against the Jews is now being built against people of faith who believe the Scriptures are valid for today and their injunctions against certain sexual behaviors is correct,' he said. Several years ago, homosexual activists disrupted a similar conference of his in Sacramento, he said, 'but I didn't have the finances to get a lawyer. For a long time we were the target of their wrath. Now other people are surfacing against them, thank God. If you don't agree with [homosexual activists], they use Gestapo tactics to stop you.' - Washington Times, Tuesday, October 27, 1998, Page A2
Sheldon for quarantining AIDS patients
"Reverend Louis Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition has come out in favor of quarantining AIDS patients in what he calls 'cities of refuge.' " - Mark E. Pietrzyk, News-Telegraph, March 10, 1995.
Gays are amoral extremists
"If the Ameircan people are shocked by all of the same-sex smooching that is on television, wait until they see an American president kissing up to the wealthiest extremists of the amoral left." Andrea Sheldon, quoted by People for the American Way, "Hostile Climate," 1988, p.9.
That's not all--far from it. Rainbow Alliance documents some of the other...shall we say...interesting quotables from Traditional Values Coalition. TVC also happens to be one of the major promoters of the work of discredited "researcher" Paul Cameron.
So, with that background, now you should know just how explosive this could be--the leader of one of the most vociferously anti-gay groups in the country, one which has literally advocated placing LGBT people in concentration camps and compared them to literal Nazis, actively aided, abbetted and protected a dominionist leader who came out as gay to them and even noted disagreement with the prevailing theory of sexual orientation in the dominionist community.
Needless to say, if this gets more exposure in the press, this could well be the end of Sheldon's career...and possibly the careers of other dominionists as well.