Pastor David Whitney: A Theocrat in Democrat’s Clothing

Michael Peroutka’s pastor, Rev. David Whitney of the Cornerstone Evangelical Church in Pasadena, Maryland, writes in a February 2014 op-ed that citizenship – including the rights to serve on a jury, run for office, serve in the Militia, or vote – should be restricted to Christians of the right sort.

He serves as chaplain of the Maryland chapter of the white nationalist League of the South. He is also lead instructor at the theocratic Institute on the Constitution, an "educational outreach" of the law firm of Peroutka & Peroutka.

Pastor Whitney preaches the "God-given right of secession" to build a theocratic Southern nation. He states that opponents of citizen militias are enemies of God.

Whitney also preaches the "Biblically justifiable homicide" doctrine that is understood as a rationale for killing abortion providers. This is the same doctrine once cited by convicted-and-executed murderer Paul Hill, after his 1994 shotgun killing of a Florida doctor and his escort outside a women’s clinic. Listen to an audio clip from Whitney’s June 2, 2013 sermon:

Whitney boasts that he is a theocrat. In his May 5, 2013 sermon, he states:

"When you talk to people about God’s Law being restored in America, they say, ‘Awww, you’re some ayatollah. Awww, you want a theocracy’. Well yes, I want obedience to God’s Law because that is where liberty comes from. Liberty comes from God’s Law. Tyranny comes when God’s law is rejected by a society as it has been rejected in our day. Indeed, any law made that contradicts God’s Law, what is it? It’s not law at all. You could call it unlaw or you could call it, as our founders did, pretended law. But it is not law if it violates God’s Law."

Listen to the audioclip from that sermon:

In February 2014, Whitney (who had previously run for office on Constitution Party and Republican Party tickets) became a Democrat to run for Anne Arundel County Council in District 5 (the same seat sought by his congregant, Peroutka), and to seek a seat on the Democratic Central Committee there.

However, his change of party does not seem to indicate a change in his values. Indeed, the Peroutka and Whitney campaigns jointly stumped for votes, and distributed each other’s campaign literature, along with Republican sheriff’s candidate Joe Delimater, in what amounts to a theocratic ticket which despises Republicans and Democrats alike.

Militant Advocacy

Frederick Clarkson of Political Research associates reports:

Whitney is a member of a national network called the Black Regiment of pastors, which declines to register their churches with the IRS for purposes of federal tax exemption, and his church is not registered as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. (The Black Regiment is one of several groups that derive their name from Revolutionary War-era pastors who were politically engaged, supported the revolution, and wore the black robes which were the clerical fashion of the day.)

The anti-government views of some of the several dozen members of the Black Regiment go far beyond the relatively minor matter of federal tax-exemption. For example, two Southern Baptist ministers have gone so far as to threaten the life of President Obama—staying just barely on the legal side of the law. Rev. Steven L. Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona in 2009 repeatedly called on God to smite his enemy, President Obama, who Anderson believes violates God’s Law by supporting reproductive autonomy and LGBTQ civil rights. (Anderson has also been active in the Constitution Party.) Similarly, Rev. Wiley Drake of First Southern Baptist Church in Buena Vista, California, has also engaged in imprecatory prayer—a prayer in which God is asked to strike down his enemies, including Rev. Barry Lynn and other leaders of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, as well as abortion provider Dr. George Tiller (who was murdered while ushering in church), and President Obama.

The organizer of the above-mentioned Black Regiment faction is Rev. Chuck Baldwin, the 2008 Constitution Party presidential candidate. (Baldwin was also Peroutka’s 2004 vice presidential running mate.) Baldwin leads a second, overlapping group called Second Amendment Pastors (of which Whitney is also member) that opposes registering firearms. Baldwin believesrevolution is preferable to gun control. "Firearms–especially semi-automatic rifles–in the hands of millions of American citizens," he wrote, "is truly the only thing that stands between freedom and tyranny for the people of the United States."