I had a dream related to the homosexual sex scandal, involving Bishop Eddie Long, pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church of Atlanta, Ga. This is normal for me, when one story garners so much of the headlines.
The breaking news started as two and now four, young men in four separate lawsuits by Atlanta Attorney B.J. Bernstein are suing this Atlanta “Mega church” bishop, claiming he coerced them into homosexual relations when they were teenage members of his congregation. Before this headline story, I like many others, had never heard of this well-known and well-respected pastor of a church that has over 25,000 members and a $50 million dollar church building that seats ten thousand.
What I find so disturbing in this still developing scandal is that reporters are being quite careless as usual, in their pursuit of a story. As both sides of these lawsuits try and use a courtroom to settle their dispute, journalists will replace their journalistic responsibilities for what I call jugular journalism. Hell hath no fury as a journalist scorned. Caught in the middle of pursuit for every detail of this story are young black men.
As with most stories of national interest, the reports began to take on a spin. One report came from a gay publication, reminding us that this is the same bishop that marched against gay marriage, insinuating that the bishop is a hypocrite. I wonder if this same bishop had been a supporter of gay marriage, would these journalists have even considered this scandal news worthy. This internet news service had an ax to grind in my opinion. Another report surfaced that the bishop’s ex-wife was revealing stories of abuse and fear, concerning this man of God. I first thought… oh he is like that. Then I determined that there is relevance to this part of the story but was it really just a hit piece because the bishop refused to grant the reporter an interview.
A reporter from an Atlanta TV station flew from Atlanta all the way to Denver where Jamal Parris, one of the plaintiffs now resides to interview him. The reporter must have been stalking the young man because he did not locate Parris at home but at a shopping center. The seasoned reporter persuaded a surprised and at first reluctant Jamal Parris into opening up. The result of which sounded to me like a familiar been there done that, scorned lover’s tail. Parris commented in the interview that the bishop did not want him anymore, adding, he is “Not a man but is a monster.” I got the sense that Parris still loved the bishop he called dad, even though he challenged the bishop to look him in the eye. I could tell he was hurting.
Not to be outdone, another reporter tracked down Spencer LeGrande another young man suing the bishop; he resides in North Carolina where the bishop has a satellite church. The woman reporter’s microphone might as well been a gun as she got a young man on camera to talk about different places he had sex with the bishop. LeGrande did admit feeling free now that he no longer was holding his secret and made a point that he did not hate the bishop.
In my dream, an excited woman, not the bishop’s wife, was claiming to have had a child by Bishop Eddie Long. Just before I awakened, I saw the face of the baby, and I remarked on how amazing the infant looked like the bishop, I also recalled the woman boast of naming the child Eddie Long. Now fully awake, I concluded that the dream meant nothing because I did not believe the bishop was having an affair with any women according to published reports.
All too often, we act like cannibals as we depend on our media for survival. I will never forget an ad I saw on TV where an unnamed network was advertising its news channel. They took great pride in being the first to the scene of many tragedies. A once great tool for information has turned into a sport of survival by mega rich investors.
Before the end of this big story, there will be another big story. In the meantime, there are as far as we know, four young men who need help way beyond financial compensation. I wonder if the media would be able to keep us in touch with these young men. My guess is no because the media at that time, would have already had them for lunch.
After publishing my piece, I found this quote in an Associated Press article dated October 2, 2010 in the San Francisco Chronicle. It is about an illegal immigrant caught in the middle of a big news story involving the race for governor in this November’s election.
“The real tragedy here is Nicky. After Nov. 2, no ones going to be watching out for Nicky Diaz,” Whitman said, referring to the former housekeeper, and turning to face Brown directly shortly after the start of their second debate. “And Jerry, you know you should be ashamed, you and your surrogates … put her deportation at risk. You put it out there and you should be ashamed for sacrificing Nicky Diaz on the altar of your political ambitions.”
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2010/10/02/politics/p114200D27.DTL#ixzz11F0raYWG