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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Following the Money, and Hutcherson, in Latvia

posted by on March 27 at 8:58 AM

On his blog, Postman is continuing to dig into the details of Pastor Ken Hutcherson’s recent visit to Latvia (and into Hutcherson’s claims that he had backing from the White House for his activities there).

Until now, it hasn’t been clear what, exactly, Hutcherson was referring to when he complained that the U.S. Embassy in Riga, the Latvian capital, was funding gay right groups. Postman seems to have found the answer:

The Latvian newspaper Ritdena reported last week that the Embassy gave Mozaika [a Latvian gay rights group] $956 in July 2006 to help organize events in Riga, and $7,179 in September to publish pamphlets and produce an amateur theater performance designed to fight discrimination against gays and lesbians.

He also notes:

By joining in an alliance with the New Generation church and conservative politicians in Latvia, Hutcherson is working against U.S. policy. The Embassy has helped organize events with Mozaika to promote tolerance of lesbians and gays as has the embassies of the UK and Sweden and the ambassador and Embassy staff have worked to protect gay rights activists when violent anti-gay protests broke out in Riga last year.

Those anti-gay protests grew out of a controversy over Riga’s gay pride parade, which was canceled last year after threats of violence. An alternative event was held, but that, too, drew threats of violence, particularly from a group called “No Pride.” It also led to some heated confrontations on the streets of Riga. Postman has details, including accounts of the U.S. Embassy getting involved to protect U.S. citizens, eggs and excrement being thrown at gay rights supporters, and “black jeeps, with tinted windows and No-Pride signs on them, patrolling the old city, driving slowly, as if looking for something.”

In this clash, Hutcherson, apparently, sided against the U.S. Embassy and with the anti-gay protesters. From Hutcherson’s account of his recent visit:

It went extermely well with American embassy… they aren’t very happy right now, because I had to lay it out, they are not representing American values well.

RSS icon Comments


You are giving this guy way more attention than he deserves.

Posted by wf | March 27, 2007 9:20 AM


Posted by monkey | March 27, 2007 9:22 AM


Posted by Dan Savage | March 27, 2007 9:27 AM

I totally disagree that he's getting too much attention. There's something fishy going on here, and I want to know what it is.

A few things I find interesting:

1.) Is the Antioch Church funding these junkets? If so, why? What is the status of their finances? Is this considered a missionary plan?

2.) Why Latvia?

There's money lurking here somewhere, and I want to know where it's coming from, and who's getting it.

Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay | March 27, 2007 9:32 AM

Clearly, Hutch is an egomaniac, and thrives on the attention, both positive and negative, but in this instance, keeping his activities under scrutiny is a very effective way to get others to see his hypocracy and mendacity.

Attention must be paid, as the saying goes.

Posted by COMTE | March 27, 2007 9:34 AM

Speaking of which - whatever happened with that promise of his to cough up the "definitive" video footage that was supposed to irrefutably confirm his appointment as "Super Envoy for blah, blah, blah"?

Haven't heard much from him on that lately, have we?

Posted by COMTE | March 27, 2007 9:36 AM

Hutcherson needs to be exposed to the world at this point.

This is exactly the type of attention he needs. He may enjoy it now, but -- if there's something out there that can be a windmill of karma -- he will ultimately pay for it big-time, which will be a boon to anyone with a sense of civil rights.

Posted by matthew fisher wilder | March 27, 2007 9:39 AM

@1 & 2, No, minor blowhards are sometimes best ignored.

But to me, Hutch is dangerous beyond the level of a minor blowhard. The kind of hatred he spawns can and will cause people to get hurt. Mostly gay people. If we ignore him, he will continue to foment his hatred against gays, apparently in Latvia (?!?). If he is successful in Latvia, or thinks he is, then he'll continue elsewhere, and gain more power and prestige here. We ignore him at our peril. The only way to counter his type of hatred is to expose it in all its ugly glory, not ignore it.

Posted by SDA in SEA | March 27, 2007 9:56 AM

I understand the need/want to expose him, I really do. I just can't help but think he's getting free advertising in the Christian Martyr Weekly.

Posted by monkey | March 27, 2007 10:00 AM

The story gets worse and worse, and must be exposed. This "Christian" from right here in River City is promoting actual violence. This is not just a dry discussion of legal rights like marriage and adoption: it's about the right to exist as human beings. The Embassy is not "promoting the gay lifestyle"; it's protecting the lives of people who are being physically assaulted by murderous gangs. Hutch is with the murderous gangs.

I want to see Hutch defend the thugs in black SUVs with tinted windows who are breaking the heads of suspected homosexuals. These thugs aren't exactly noted for their subtlety; I'm sure plenty of straight heads get broken by mistake as well. Why does Hutch support vigilantism and street violence? Come on, man, look at who your friends are.

There are also connections between this anti-gay violence and far-right fascist politics which are very worrying. The notion that these thugs are part of civilization and need to be protected against gay values -- i.e., civilized values -- is ludicrous and scary.

Keep hitting him. He needs to go down. I don't think his congregation knows the full story about the brownshirts he's running with in Latvia.

Posted by Fnarf | March 27, 2007 10:11 AM

so he is supporting a terrorist organization that is opposed to US policy? sounds like it is worth digging into.

Posted by nbp | March 27, 2007 10:20 AM


Keep hitting him. He needs to go down. I don't think his congregation knows the full story about the brownshirts he's running with in Latvia.
Sentence-by-sentence comments -- Yes. Yes. Are you sure about that?

What makes you think his congregation doesn't approve of Hutch buddying up with antigay thugs in far-away Latvia? They might wish he'd do it closer to home.

Isn't there a deeper question here? What is George W. Bush's maladministration doing supporting a gay rights organization in far-away Latvia? That seems completely antithetical to their usual approach.

Posted by N in Seattle | March 27, 2007 10:30 AM

I concur with Comte and with SDA. This guy is dangerous and needs to be kept in the bright lights. The Stranger is doing a huge service.

Posted by Sachi | March 27, 2007 10:48 AM

He should be prosecuted by the Feds for falsely claiming to have a commission from the federal government. Keep pressing the story until the US Attorney announces a decision one way or the other.

Posted by Brendan | March 27, 2007 10:49 AM

N in Seattle: there are violent thugs in Seattle, but they are not supported by churches. No real church in America supports violent gay-bashing, not even the most homophobic of them. No, Fred Phelps doesn't count.

Posted by Fnarf | March 27, 2007 11:39 AM

good work form eli and postman. who knows where this could lead...who knew a little break-in at the watergate would lead to the impeachment of a president, for instance.

Posted by ellarosa | March 27, 2007 12:20 PM

Idiots like Hutch are capable of doing real damage.

For example, central and eastern Europe have the most rapidly expanding HIV/AIDS epidemcs in the world (as a percent of population, not raw numbers). The first outbreaks were among gay men, but now the epidemic is fueled largely through injection drug use. Trying to make change in these countries is really difficult.

It is especially difficult when they keep finding wingnut Americans to come over and spread the gospel of gay hate to bolster inaction or outright persecution.

If only for the sake of folks in Latvia, Hutch needs to be thoroughly discredited.

Posted by gnossos | March 27, 2007 3:22 PM

This is really frightening shit.

Posted by laterite | March 27, 2007 5:30 PM

According to this website: Alexy Ledyaev is going to be speaking at the Transformation Center in Kent. Maybe he can answer some questions about what happended at the OFBCI in DC and in Riga.

Posted by re:spect | March 28, 2007 10:05 AM

yeah this is emmitt smith...I am sitting in my mansion reading this slog and I wanted to tell you why ken hutcherson hates gays so much. Back in the day, ken and I were in the same locker room together when he was still playing football. The guys used to laugh at him all of the time because he had the tiniest dick. we used to call him little willy, tiny schlong ken and a lot of other names. then one day we caught him sucking dennis rodmans dick in a hotel room. Ken is just a jealous bitter nigga who is angry cuz dennis rodman beat him up and left him. so he is taking his hatred out on the gays. so fuck that fat muthafucka ken hutcherson. He needs to take his ass to a treadmill and take that chicken out of his mouth

Posted by emmit smith | March 28, 2007 11:06 PM

I am yurislav from latvia and I am very angry. Ken hutcherson came to our country and ate ALL of our chicken. We have no more chicken to eat and are starving. That mutherfucker ate every one of them. Then...when we asked him why he ate them...he said that it was the gays who ate all of the chicken. typical ghetto asshole...he blames everybody else for his problems. can't blame whitey anymore....lets blame the gays now....great.

Posted by yurislav | March 28, 2007 11:19 PM

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