I don't like Sarah Palin's minister any more than I liked Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Some of his remarks are just hyperbole, but others are just wrong.
During the 2004 election season, he praised President Bush's performance during a debate with Sen. John Kerry, then offered a not-so-subtle message about his personal candidate preferences. "I'm not going tell you who to vote for, but if you vote for this particular person, I question your salvation. I'm sorry." Kalnins added: "If every Christian will vote righteously, it would be a landslide every time."
Months after hinting at possible damnation for Kerry supporters, Kalnins bristled at the treatment President Bush was receiving over the federal government's handling of Hurricane Katrina. "I hate criticisms towards the President," he said, "because it's like criticisms towards the pastor -- it's almost like, it's not going to get you anywhere, you know, except for hell. That's what it'll get you."
Much of his support for the current administration has come in the realm of foreign affairs. Kalnins has preached that the 9/11 attacks and the invasion of Iraq were part of a "world war" over the Christian faith, one in which Jesus Christ had called upon believers to be willing to sacrifice their lives.
I don't think any of this compares with saying God should damn America or calling our country the "U.S.KKK of A."
I went to my favorite site for religion coverage, Get Religion, but nothing has surfaced there yet.
I don't think it's possible to argue that critiquing Rev. Wright is permissible but Sarah Palin's pastor is off-limits. But at what point can Assembly of God parishioners call foul, just as the apologists for black liberation theology?