Faith at Altitude

Religion and spirituality in the shadow of Pikes Peak

Monday, January 23, 2006

Boycott? What Boycott?

Religion can be a strange beat.

Last Tuesday (that'd be Jan. 17), I ran across an Associated Press story that said the Rev. Ken Hutcherson, a conservative pastor of Antioch Bible Church in Redmond, Wash., would be launching a nationwide boycott against Microsoft, Boeing, Hewlett-Packard and others during Focus on the Family's Jan. 19 radio show. Why? Because the companies in question were supporting a gay rights bill being voted on in the Washington state legislature.

That's news, right? Well, I called up Focus, which told me that Hutcherson wasn't scheduled to appear on Focus' show May 19. Any additional information, representatives told me, would have to come from Hutcherson himself ... who was apparently presiding over a funeral when I called and didn't call me back.

Now, "The Stranger," an alternative weekly printed in the Seattle area, says that most of the initial information in the AP story was wrong, and now it's a he-said, it-said battle. Hutcherson said he was misunderstood in the story. AP stands by its reporting.

Hutcherson has been featured on Focus several times as a guest and is something of an up-and-comer in evangelical circles: A black conservative pastor preaching in one of the nation's most secular regions. Focus also has a history of supporting conservative boycotts. But Focus doesn't seem to be offering its support of this pseudo-boycott, at least for now, though Focus V.P. of Public Policy Tom Minnery apparently joined Hutcherson in denouncing the Washington gay rights bill.

I have a feeling we haven't heard the end of this yet.


Post a Comment

<< Home