News » Religion

The Netherlands Denies Entry to 'Kill Gays' Preacher

by Kilian Melloy
Friday May 3, 2019

Steven Anderson, the extremist founder of an Arizona church, has been barred from entering the Netherlands, reports DutchNews.

Anderson, 37, established Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona, in 2005. He had become notorious for fiery speeches in which he excoriates LGBTQ people and calls for them to be killed. Local news site azcentral notes that among Anderson's provocative rhetoric is a statement to the effect that God intends for gays to die as a means eradicating AIDS.

Anderson has also expressed skepticism about the historical verity of the Holocaust, DutchNews reported.

The hate purveyor went online in a video to announce that the Netherlands was denying him entry, and pointed to the fact that thirty other nations also bar him. Anderson had intended to speak in the Netherlands this month, but a number of lawmakers, as a well as a justice minister, requested that he be denied permission to enter the country, DutchNews said.

The ban is similar to that Australia slapped on gay right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos in March on "character" grounds. Yiannopoulos had visited Australia in 2017; his speaking tour there sparked violent clashes and resulted in Yiannopoulos being billed by the Australian police for $50,000 — a tab he reportedly has yet to pay. The initial ban on Yiannopoulos was protested by right-wing politicians, and reversed, but Australia later re-imposed the ban after Yiannopoulos posted about the murder of 50 Muslims at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. The mass shooting was carried out by a white nationalist. Yiannopoulos posted that "Attacks like this happen because the establishment panders to and mollycoddles extremist Leftism and barbaric, alien religious cultures."

Anderson is described at the Faithful Word website as holding "no college degree but has well over 140 chapters of the Bible memorized word-for-word, including approximately half of the New Testament." Text at the site goes on to claim that the Bible, in addition to supposedly condemning gays, also "makes it clear that the church is the pillar and ground of the truth, not a school."

Anderson praised the massacre at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, as having purged "pedophiles" from the world. His rhetoric proved too much even for notoriously anti-gay nations like Malawi and Jamaica, both of which refused to grant him entry. Botswana, too, bounced the hate-spouting preacher.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Assistant Arts Editor. He also reviews theater for WBUR. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.


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