Korean-born businessman and religious leader then delivered a long speech saying he was "sentto Earth . . . to save the world's six billion people. . . . Emperors, kings and presidents . . . havedeclared to all Heaven and Earth that Reverend Sun Myung Moon is none other than humanity'sSavior, Messiah, Returning Lord and True Parent."
To many observers, this bizarre scene would have looked like the apocalypse as depicted in "LeftBehind" novels. Moon, now 87, the benefactor of conservative foundations like the AmericanFamily Coalition -- who served time in the 1980s for tax fraud and conspiracy to obstruct justice-- has views somewhere to the right of the Taliban's Mullah Omar. Moon preaches that gays are"dung-eating dogs," Jews brought on the Holocaust by betraying Jesus, and the U.S. Constitutionshould be scrapped in favor of a system he calls "Godism" -- with him in charge. The mancrowned "King of Peace" by Congressmen once said, according to sermons reprinted in hischurch's Unification News: "Suppose I were to hit you with the baseball bat to stop you,bloodying your ear and breaking a bone or two, yet still you insisted on doing more work forFather."
One of the organizers of the event,
, who had been Religion Liaison in the BushAdministration from 1989 to 1993, introduced what he called "seven of the top 10 televisionevangelists in America today." They included
, founder of the Trinity BroadcastingNetwork,
Rev. Jerry Falwell, Rev. Kenneth Copeland of Kenneth CopelandMinistries and "Hour of Power" host Rev. RobertSchuller.
"I believe God Almighty willlead
George W. Bush andDick Cheney
and all of theirteam into the nation’s finesthour," declared Copeland.Meanwhile, Falwell calledfor prayers for the Rev. JesseJackson, who had justacknowledged fathering a sonout of wedlock, and accusedDemocratic Senators of religious profiling for refusing to confirm John Ashcroft asAttorney General.
Rev. Jerry Falwell