Ted Haggard, top-dog evangelist, has resigned his position as president of the National Association of Evangelicals after a gay prostitute accused him of paying for sex, with a topping of crystal meth.
So, has Rev. Haggard admitted to hooking up with his accuser, Mike Jones?
Well, sort of.
You see, according to Haggard, he bought the meth but didn't use it. Haggard also said, he hooked up with Jones, but just to get a massage.
Okay, we get it, he didn't inhale. And, of course, a man who made a career out of preaching discrimination against gays is going to make sure that the massage he receives is from a male prostitute. It all makes perfect sense.
Haggard Compares Himself To Kerry
While this story continues to develop, could it have a more bizarre beginning?
According to Raw Story, Haggard had this to say in a KABC interview, shortly after the accusations surfaced:
"We live in a crazy world. As you know, John Kerry said some things and we all know he didn't mean what they're saying he meant."I'm sure John Kerry will appreciate the defense.
No Moral Obligation To "Tell Everything You Know, Up Front"
From a piece at Editor & Publisher, there may be a reason that Haggard is providing details in drips and drabs:
In a January 31, 2004, article in the Times on emerging uses of the Internet, Haggard said: ''You have a moral obligation not to be deceitful. But you don't have a moral obligation to tell everything you know upfront.''I'm not sure how Haggard doesn't see himself as deceitful. But, 'massages' can mean different things to different people.
I suppose it all depends upon what's being massaged.
Defender Of Family?
What we are left with is a man who was a driving force behind putting an anti-gay marriage initiative on the Colorado ballot who, if these charges are true, had a 3-year extra-marital sexual relationship with a gay man that included drugs.
If true, a man who sought to make sure that gay people could not form legally-protected monogamous unions cheated on his wife to engage in a gay tryst of his own.
Could preventing gay marriage merely have been a petulant way of ensuring that he would have a larger pool of single gay men to choose from?
And, if these charges are true, what does that say about trotting out his wife and kids to be with him while he defends himself?
The Lies Have Already Begun
We already know that Haggard initially denied knowing Jones and now he says that not only did he get meth from him, but a massage as well. The lies have begun.
Haggard says he got referred to Jones by a hotel concierge.
Interestingly, today on Tucker Carlson's MSNBC program, Mr. Jones said he only advertised in gay publications and websites and a hotel would never give out his name to somebody seeking a massage.
It's fairly clear where this is going and the mega-church that Haggard heads is doing its best at damage control. After all, there is a vast amount of money at stake and, when it comes to the evangelical movement, it's really all about the Benjamins.
Or, in this case, the Mikes.