Liberty University president Jerry Falwall Jr. has responded to one of the weirdest political “scandals” of the presidential campaign cycle.
Earlier this week, the outspoken head of America’s largest Christian university posted a picture of himself and his wife with GOP candidate Donald Trump. As astute Twitter users soon noticed though, among the many framed magazine covers hanging on the wall behind them, was an issue of Playboy that once featured Trump on the cover.
Critics of Trump—and Falwell Jr.’s endorsement of him—were quick to point out the irony of the conservative Christian college leader posing in front of a men’s pornographic magazine.
The image is especially ironic considering the fact that his father, Liberty founder Jerry Falwell, famously sued Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt for a satirical depiction of him in his porn magazine, in a case that landed in the Supreme Court. (Falwell lost the case.)
It’s not the first time Falwell Jr.’s alignment with Trump has created controversy. In May, a long-time board member at Liberty resigned over the endorsement. Not only did Falwell Jr. formerly endorse Trump, he even recorded campaign robo-calls for him during the Republican primaries.
Now, Falwell Jr. has responded to critics, but not with an apology for posing in front of the magazine. On Twitter, he compared the criticism to the kind Jesus received. So, yeah:
Honored for same hypocrites who accused Jesus of being a friend of publicans and sinners to be targeting me over a decades old mag cover! TY
Democrats in the House of Representatives are holding a sit-in to force a vote on increased gun control. Currently, they're in their fifth hour of the sit-in. Led by Congressman John Lewis—who is no stranger to organizing and civil disobedience from the Civil Rights Movement—about 40 Democrats gathered on the floor calling for a vote—one that Speaker of the House Paul Ryan would have to call.
In the moments leading up to the sit-in, Lewis spoke passionately about gun control.
There comes a time when you have to say something, when you have to make a little noise, when you have to move your feet. This is the time. Now is the time to get in the way. The time to act is now. We will be silent no more.
Sometimes you have to do something out of the ordinary, sometimes you have to make a way out of no way.
We have lost hundreds and thousands of innocent people to gun violence. Tiny little children. Babies. Students. And teachers. Mother and fathers. Sisters and brothers. Daughters and sons. Friends and neighbors. And what has this body done? Mr. Speaker, not one thing.
Democrats chanted "I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired!" and "No bill, no break!"
The disturbance caused Representative Ted Poe, a Republican from Texas, to send the session into recess. Ryan could decide to have the floor cleared or sanction the group participating in the sit-in, or he could continue to wait it out.
The demonstration isn't being televised by C-Span because the House is in recess, but the Periscope feed of California Representative Scott Peters is being streamed on C-Span's website.
This comes, of course, just one week after Senator Chris Murphy led a 15-hour filibuster for a vote on gun control. Discuss
From Friday afternoon to Monday morning of Father’s Day weekend, 59 people were shot in the city of Chicago. Of those, 13 were killed. The Chicago Tribune reports that one of the victims was a 3-year-old boy, strapped into his carseat when someone opened fire on the car. According to authorities, he is in critical condition.
Violence—particularly gun violence—is a major problem in the city and its surrounding neighborhoods. In 2016 alone, there have been more than 300 violent homicides. In that same time period nearly 1,800 have been shot. Discuss
Police in Las Vegas say that a 20-year-old man from the U.K. wanted to kill Donald Trump before he was arrested at a rally yesterday. Michael Steven Sandford reportedly waited in line for hours to get the GOP candidate’s autograph and then attempted to grab a police officer’s gun from a holster.
According to NBC, he said that “if he were on the street tomorrow, he would try this again.” Sandford has apparently been in the country for more than a year and is currently here illegally after overstaying his visa. Earlier this week he went to a shooting range to learn to fire a gun for the first time. The AP is reporting that his public defender told officials that her client has autism.
Authorities say that Sandford had been planning the attack for more than a year. Discuss
A line of “angels” blocked protestors from the controversial Westboro Baptist Church from interrupting the funerals of victims of the Orlando gay nightclub massacre. The line of people wearing large, homemade angel wings were part of a collection of nearly 200 people who turned out to form a human chain to prevent the protestors from disrupting the processions.
According to The Washington Post, “Throughout the demonstration, ‘Amazing Grace’ reverberated softly among the demonstrators who quietly sang in unison.”
The controversial “church” from Kansas, which is primarily made up of members of a single family, regularly protest high-profile funerals with signs that display anti-gay slurs and hateful slogans.
But instead of interrupting the funerals of several people killed in the terrorist attack on the Pulse nightclub, the protestors were blocked by the angels, a group of bikers, members of the LGBT community, priests and people from around the country.
According to The Washington Post, the Orlando Shakespeare theater came up with the idea of donning the large angel wings to prevent funeral-goers from having to see Westboro’s hate-filled messages.
49 people were killed last weekend when a gunman—who pledged his allegiance to ISIS—opened fire on a crowd at the local nightclub. Discuss