Atlanta’s Killer Mike aka Mike Bigga sees several lessons on religion and spiritual hypocrisy that Hip-Hop fans can take away from the recent scandal involving New Birth’s megachurch leader Bishop Eddie Long.
The scandal surrounding Eddie Long’s alleged sexual misconduct with young men has subsided from national news, but the controversy is still a big topic of discussion in the city of Atlanta. Long is facing several lawsuits of sexual misconduct filed last month by four former members of his church. The young men, who all claim their relationships with Long happened while they were teenagers, allege the bishop abused his position and coerced them into sexual relationships by using Biblical scriptures and material gifts. To date, Long has steadfastly denied the accusations through his attorney and vowed to fight them in court.
Killer Mike, who is politically active in the city through community work and his I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind album series, views the sex scandal as an example of how individuals can become blinded when their faith is placed in religious systems over God.
“You already know me, mistrust religion but always trust God,” Killer Mike said. “Sheep get lead to slaughter and I’m a man. My grandfather raised a man.”
The scandal has caused many, including some members of Long’s 25,000 member New Birth church, to question the bishop’s credibility as a man of God. Killer Mike sees that concern as something that was in doubt even before the allegations. He points to the title of “bishop” Long received from an offshoot Baptist movement, and not the Catholic or Episcopal groups which originated the distinction.
“If you are a bishop, yet you are not Episcopal or Catholic, why are you a fucking bishop?” Killer Mike questioned. “That’s not an attack on him, that’s a credible question. How can I trust what you’re saying, yet you don’t belong to the organization your title holds?”
Mike also believes that vanity undermined Long’s claim of having a divine message. A guilty verdict, Mike argues, would simply be the final, damning revelation on a man he already sees as having a weak spiritual and moral foundation.
“How can I trust you if you have on a toupee? Because you are not accepting what God has yielded for you, [and that’s] for you to be balder than a motherfucker,” he explained. “Is keeping your hair not vanity? So I have fundamental questions. I don’t care that he allegedly likes boys. I care that he persecutes men that do. Because if God judges all sin the same, vanity is equal to being a homosexual. So your vanity is equal to sodomy in the eyes of God. So why should I respect you or anything you say?”
If the charges against Long turn out to be true, Killer Mike says the New Birth preacher would merit the ancient punishment that symbolizes his Christian faith.
“If you turn out to be a homosexual after persecuting your own, then you deserve to be crucified for that,” Mike concluded.