I've lived in Washington for 20 years, and I have to admit there are two people whose joint appearance on a dais I never contemplated: the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins, and current D.C. Council member (and former disgraced D.C. mayor) Marion "bitch set me up" Barry.

In a delicious coda, later in the day Perkins lauded the Supreme Court decision that upheld Federal Communications Commission "decency" rules, which permit the agency to fine broadcasters for even "fleeting expletives" on broadcast television.

But there was the decency duo, at the rally at Freedom Plaza yesterday in the District, protesting the D.C. Council's impending vote to legally recognize same-sex marriages from other states. Barry is the only councilman opposed to the same-sex marriage measure.

Bishop Harry Jackson, whose anti-gay crusades I wrote about two years ago on TAP, had predicted that 1,000 supporters would show up for the launch of his "Armageddon" battle for marriage. He had to have been disappointed by the crowd of about 100 people. But that seemed less important to Perkins than the presence of black and Latino clergy, as he called pastors "the last line of defense in America."

Barry lauded the pastors, too, saying that while we need "moral politicians" like himself (yes, he said that without a trace of irony), we also need moral pastors to defend against gay marriage.

For Jackson, the anti-gay-marriage battle is an epic one between the forces of light and darkness. "We have to turn back the tide of darkness," he shouted to his tiny crowd. "It's not about hating anybody, it's about loving Jesus. ... America is on the verge of the greatest prosperity she's ever known as she returns to Christ."

--Sarah Posner

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