Church of Alabama apologizes for Tim James comments
Alabama gubernatorial candidate Tim James at a church in Rainsville on Sunday made derogatory comments about a trip he took to Richmond, Va., regarding tattoos and haircuts people, calling it a “monster show”.
The comments drew such criticism that the church, Life Chapel, removed a video of James’ speech from its Facebook page and released a lengthy statement about the remarks.
James told worshipers on Sunday that on a recent visit to Richmond he was sitting on a bench outside a cafe “and I started looking around and started noticing that everything the world around me looked like they were from Mars, they were tattooed from head to toe.
“A girl walked past me,” James said. “She was about six, four, plus her heels. She had this super big Mohawk and nothing on either side but a tattoo, and it was a freak show.
The church in a Facebook post on Sunday said the church took down the video of James’ speech and that the mission of the church is to bring God to everyone, regardless of nationality, background or race. appearance. The church did not name James in the message, but APR reviewed part of the video of his church address on Sunday, and in the video, which was streamed live, the Life Church logo can be seen in the lower left corner.
“Our heart is that Life Chapel is a place where everyone feels welcome. We have many tattooed faithful, with interesting choices of clothing or otherwise. This statement did not reflect us well. We recognize it. Please forgive us,” the church message reads in part.
James’ campaign in a statement to APR Monday said there would be no excuse for his comments in the church.
“The church has invited Tim to share his heart for the nation. The comment in question was an illustration that considered the times and seasons we live in and the revival of Azusa Street in the early 20th century,” the campaign said in the statement. Anyone with a discerning heart should not be offended but encouraged.
“We are not going to apologize for anything Tim said from a church pulpit,” the statement continued. “The campaign has contacted the church to collect a copy of the sermon, which, if received, will be posted on the campaign’s Facebook page for all to see.”
James’ comments about people’s choice of haircuts and body art follow his recent attention in ads and speeches criticizing the Magic City Acceptance Academy, an LGBTQ charter school in Homewood.
After James’ ads attacking the school, in which he describes the school as the ‘exploitation’ of children, there have been at least two cases of people showing up at the school to film the students and their shout insults. So the school hired extra security.
In a television advertisement, James included photos showing pupils and staff at the school, which alarmed those depicted in the advertisement.
“They’re angry,” charter school principal Michael Wilson told the news station. WIAT. “They are angry, and they have a right to be. What he does and what others do in the way they campaign pushes voters back instead of bringing them in. It’s absolutely disgusting the angry nature of almost all of the candidates’ commercials.