A video of a Washington state pastor saying parents of transgender children should be shot in the head has gone viral online.
Jason Graber, pastor of Sure Foundation Baptist Church in Spokane said he believed parents of transgender children deserved to be killed.
During a Sunday, April 23 sermon titled “In Defense of Children,” Graber said: “Any parents that would have their child have a transgender surgery done on them. Any parent that would do that should be shot in the back of the head.
“They need to be convicted in trial and immediately shot in the back of the head, and then we can string them up above a bridge so the public can see the consequences of that kind of wickedness.”
Graber also called on the federal government to “invade” Washington and arrest state senators and representatives and convict them in a Nuremberg-style trial over their support for transgender people. He then said they should be stoned to death by people in Washington state.
In the same sermon, Graber made disparaging comments about homosexual people and insisted there was no difference between them and pedophiles.
Graber also spoke out against women who have had multiple sexual partners and insisted fathers should protect young women while young men “need to go out and be independent” and “function by themselves.”
An edited clip of Graber’s sermon was shared by a number of accounts on Twitter this weekend and has been viewed more than 2 million times.
Transgender rights have become a key issue in the U.S. culture wars and have been regularly referenced by conservatives and Republicans across the country.
Republicans have pushed legislation targeting the transgender community via a series of bills.
In Texas, Senate Bill 1029 would make private health plans liable for the costs associated with lifetime care of the patient or malpractice suits that result as “consequences” of gender modification treatments or procedures covered by the plan, even if there are no medical complications associated with the initial surgery.
Should the bill pass, it would also forbid all public insurance plans from covering gender-affirming care, not just for children but people of all ages while making doctors liable for their surgeries.
Critics of the bill insisted it was little more than an attempt to price the transgender community out of existence.
Texas Equality previously told Newsweek: “So much of what we’re hearing from the lawmakers who are filing these bills is that they want to ‘protect kids,’ but this is because it’s not about our kids at all. It’s just about erasing trans people.”
Newsweek has contacted Sure Foundation Baptist Church and the American Civil Liberties Union for comment via email.