What’s wrong with the world today? Bishop Eddie Long, along with so many other ministers/preachers/deacons/pastors…whatever they want to call themselves, really should be ashamed of the behavior they are exhibiting in their parishes. Then again, the staff members of these parishes should be ashamed as well. Do not call yourselves members of God when you, not take advantage of a situation, but do it namingly in the name of the Lord.
Bishop Long apparently separated or divorced from his wife some time ago. The people of Atlanta even know that Bishop Long has children. What’s so amazing is how long Bishop Long has gotten away with taking boys (of consensual age) under his wing. His staff members had to know the in-and-outs of what Bishop Long was doing. Everyone had to know the legal age of consent for Bishop Long to continue his charade. But even the members of the church saw what was going on with Bishop Long and his “children.” So what if Bishop Long had the young men call him, “Daddy?” Apparently, these young men had no “father figures” in their lives in the first place. Now, I don’t support either side of this issue. The problem I have is “Why now?” As Bishop Long has been taking care of some of these young men since they were aged 16 (now 20 plus), what was the urgent need to come forth now? Why couldn’t they come forth and explain what was happening to someone sooner? From what I could see, Bishop Long has an all male staff that travels with him. Were any of these other men involved in the so-called sex acts with the young men? And, with all the perks that were bestowed upon the young men, did Bishop Long suddenly call a halt to the gifts to his “children?” As Jamal Parris so eloquently stated in front of the camera, which all seemed so rehearsed, he can still “smell the cologne” of the man. What was actually taken from these young men? I have heard that Bishop Long blocked some of their efforts to secure a girlfriend. Oh really? For some reason, I find that hard to believe.
Everyone on camera has been in front of the camera many a time to tell their tale of what occurred with Bishop Long. As many of America’s Black leaders are being targeted for ethics violations, it only seems fair that it is Bishop Long’s time. But who got to these young men to have them turn on their bread and butter? Going back to Jamal Parris, when he finished giving his nighttime testimony, did he drive off in the car that Bishop Long purchased for him? The four young men who have “come out” with allegations against the Bishop seem to be thriving in the Atlanta area. As Antonio Flagg became the first member of Bishop Eddie Long’s entourage to out the Bishop, others have followed. What do these four young scoundrels have to benefit by outing this man?
I do believe something happened in this parish. However, Bishop Long is not the lone abuser. If his accusers, be it others who were abused, or members of the church who knew something was happening said nothing, they are all guilty. What I don’t hear from the accusers is that Bishop Long threatened them in any way to perform with him or on him. Being forced is not the same thing. Unless these young men are threatened in some way, verbally, they were not forced to perform acts with the Bishop. They may have been under the impression they were being forced because they were living such glamorous “kept boy” lives – but they could have yelled out at any time if they were being hurt. I am sure there are security tapes somewhere that display the behaviors of some of these young men before and after the alleged assaults on them. The text messages that attorney, B.J. Bernstein, has of the pastor standing in tight-fitting clothing in a bathroom are not defamatory in any way. He is not nude.
When I remember that Antonio Flagg and Maurice Robinson claim that the Bishop “violated his fiduciary duty as spiritual advisor,” I wonder who fed this statement to them. Something does not smell right here. And now, have the young men offered to return any of the gifts given to them by Bishop Eddie Long? Or, have the young men sold the gifts to promote their new livelihood? For the other members of this witch hunt against Bishop Long, I wish you luck. In order to continue with something like this, you have to not have a conscience. There are no morals involved because they all went out the window when they decided to contact an attorney who first worked for Black heterosexual justice. Now, if the young men will only admit to being gay, then probably B.J. Bernstein will be lauded by the ACLU for her efforts. Unless, that is, the ACLU is not looking for any black members. Just because you may be anti-gay, Bishop Long, doesn’t mean you can’t donate something to the cause. It is a tax deduction, for God’s sake.