America’s Hate Preachers


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America’s Hate Preachers

Hannah Livingston spends six months tracking two of America’s most radical Christian hate groups, including a notorious pastor from Arizona, who has been banned from the UK.


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God is eternal. God is infinite.

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America is fighting for its soul.

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Your sin is the reason you're going to hell.

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Hey. What's up?

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The Obama era has alienated and angered

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a growing number of evangelical Christians.

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I didn't choose this fight! This fight has come to us.

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And you know what I say? Bring it on!

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I've spent nearly six months

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following two of the country's most radical Christian hate groups -

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a pastor banned from entering the UK...

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No homos will ever be allowed in this church

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as long as I am the pastor here.

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Never!

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..and a network who take their extreme and shocking views

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onto the streets.

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You might have an Muslim walking around here today

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that made bombs for Allah and will take you out.

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They're preaching intolerance and homophobia

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more and more aggressively.

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It's disgusting. There is no reason for them to be like that.

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They're gaining new followers

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as American politics becomes increasingly polarised.

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Donald J Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown

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of Muslims entering the United States.

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Get back, Muslim.

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Here's some bacon for you, swine.

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Pastor Anderson, here I am.

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Are any of you guys homos or just sympathisers?

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Welcome to the world of Christian hate preaching.

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No-one will ever shut me down.

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The only way to shut me down is to kill me.

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And even if they kill me,

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I'll just be that much more popular.

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Last November, Paris was hit by a wave of terror attacks.

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90 people were murdered at an Eagles of Death Metal concert.

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Around the world, there was an outpouring of grief.

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But one striking voice spoke out with the opposite message.

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You know, there is something about when you go to a concert

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of death metal...

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somebody might get killed!

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You know, you're worshipping death and then all of a sudden,

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people start dying, "Wait a minute, what is going on?"

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Well, you love death so much, you bought the ticket.

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You love worshipping Satan.

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Well, let's have some of Satan's religion come in and shoot you,

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I mean, that's what these people should think about

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before they go to such a wicked concert.

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Pastor Steven Anderson's sermon,

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The Sinful Nation of France, was widely condemned,

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but it still got nearly a quarter of a million hits on YouTube.

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He has become one of America's most notorious hate preachers,

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and has been banned from entering other countries, including the UK.

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I travelled to the US to find out

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why his extreme brand of Christianity is spreading

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and what impact this is having.

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As our country becomes more degenerate,

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and as our country goes down the drain morally,

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then people are more willing to listen to someone like me.

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Because, about five or ten years ago a lot of the stuff that I preached,

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people thought it was too radical,

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but now they're starting to see, "Oh, wow, he's right."

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I think what makes our church special is just...

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how the preaching is totally unfiltered, uncensored,

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just raw Bible preaching, and that's what people are looking for.

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Around 300 people attend Steven's church in Arizona,

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triple the size of an average American congregation.

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Let me ask you something,

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is our government for homosexuality or against homosexuality?

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-CONGREGATION:

-For.

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There is no question about it.

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I mean, in the month of June,

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our government celebrates for an entire month,

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a month of sodomy.

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June is LGBT month.

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Now, to me, LGBT stands for Let God Burn Them.

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Right.

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OK, but to them, it means lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender.

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But... Well, it's LGBTQ.

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Well, then you can say, Let God Burn Them Quickly.

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Let God Burn Them Queers or whatever.

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There is a difference between these people

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and the rest of the population.

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I couldn't believe what I'd just heard.

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Many Americans, including the majority of Christians,

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are also appalled by the extremity of Steven's views.

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But the constitutional right to free speech

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means that Steven can preach homophobic sermons

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without fear of being arrested.

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To normal people, homosexuality or paedophilia are disgusting, so...

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To a normal person.

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They are in the same group.

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Because any man who would have sex with another man

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would have sex with anything. Period.

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Like, any... I'll put it this way -

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any man who would have sex with another man

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would have sex with an animal.

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It is true.

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That's reality.

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Even if you do not think it's reality

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because you have seen it on TV portrayed differently

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or you have known people in your personal life

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that pulled the wool over your eyes about what their lifestyle is like.

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What do you think homosexuals should do, then?

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Kill themselves as far, as I'm concerned,

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because they're horrible, wicked people,

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they're just going to keep molesting and destroying people,

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so I don't have any advice for homosexuals,

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except to put a bullet in your own head

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so that you do not molest my kids or anyone else's kids.

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Research suggests that America is broadly becoming

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more tolerant of homosexuality.

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Steven argues that his extreme homophobia

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is a response to this trend.

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The same research found that a whole third of the population

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still believe their society should not accept homosexuality.

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And LGBT people are still more likely to be victims of hate crimes

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than any other minority group.

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-Hi.

-Come on in, you guys.

-How is it going?

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Steven exploits this polarised feeling within his own congregation.

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I was invited to have lunch with Jenny and Juan.

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They disowned Juan's gay brother

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after listening to one of Steven's sermons.

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At the time we were still speaking with Juan's brother,

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-who is, you know, a reprobate also.

-He's a queer.

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And... So when he came out with that sermon,

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it was, you know, definitely hard-hitting.

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No homos will ever be allowed on this church

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as long as I'm the pastor here.

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Never!

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That was it for me. I was like, "Right that's enough,

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"I do not even have to question it", pretty much.

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From thereon, we just never talked to my brother again.

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I think it was hard for my family to kind of see that.

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That seems like a pretty harsh position,

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it's your own brother, it's your own flesh and blood,

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you grew up together.

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Honestly, when you have the Holy Spirit in you and you're saved,

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it just doesn't matter what the world thinks,

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because they're going to hate you no matter what.

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He's not the brother that I knew, at all.

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He's not. He's not that same young kid that I grew up with,

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and it's unfortunate, but, you know...

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would it be any different if he went out and killed someone?

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Should I think differently just because he is my brother,

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he shouldn't get sentenced?

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He still killed someone, he's still a reprobate,

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God's laws are the same, you know,

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it's just the way that it is, you know?

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What do you think most people think about you

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and the way that you live now?

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My personal family, they think I'm in some kind of a cult.

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It's kind of, like...

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There is nothing cult...

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I mean, there isn't a cult-like atmosphere anywhere near the church.

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You know what?

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Isn't it amazing how all the homos hate Christians?

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-MEMBER OF CONGREGATION:

-Right.

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But they are not considered a hate group.

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Yep.

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Many of the growing number of evangelical Christians in the US

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disapprove of Steven's preaching.

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Even though they hate Christianity.

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But he claims to have influenced thousands in America

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and around the world.

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According to the spirit of holiness, by the Resurrection...

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His videos have nearly 30 million hits on YouTube.

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In the last 30 days,

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people in the UK spent 232 days and 21 hours watching my channel.

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People in the United States in the last 30 days

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-spent over eight years watching the channel.

-Wow!

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I've uploaded a ton of new content in French,

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including, right here, The Sinful Nation of France sermon in French.

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Do people ever ask you why you picked on France in particular?

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I've picked on a lot of countries.

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So with things that happen in America,

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like terrorist attacks in America, does America deserve that as well?

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Absolutely, yeah.

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Even as we spit in God's face,

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even as we murder 3,000 unborn babies a day,

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even as we promote homosexuality and adultery and promiscuity

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all over the world,

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and then we just assume nothing bad's going to happen?

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It doesn't make any sense,

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it doesn't jive with what the Bible teaches.

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The Bible says that the wicked shall be turned into hell

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and all the nations that forget God.

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So, that's the United States.

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# Jesus loves me This I know

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# For the Bible tells me so... #

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Steven says his extreme views were formed by his upbringing

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in an independent Baptist church.

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But his wife Susannah wasn't religious at all

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until their marriage.

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When you were younger, did you think this was how your life would be?

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No. No, I didn't.

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No.

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I first met her and her eight children

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when she was pregnant with baby number nine.

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She home-schools all her kids.

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Do you see Steven as your boss?

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It depends on what area, I mean... Yes, the short answer is yes.

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Steven has convinced her that women should stay at home

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and shouldn't vote or run for president, like Hillary Clinton.

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What do you think about a woman

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potentially being in the White House?

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I think it's awful.

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I think it's awful on many levels.

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Not because women are worthless

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or because they don't make good decisions,

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it's just not their realm of expertise.

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Not that Hillary is just the most feminine woman out there,

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so probably doesn't even affect her that much,

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but you know the Bible says it's a curse

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to have women and children rule over you.

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Steven's church has been labelled a hate group

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by civil rights campaigners.

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His state, Arizona, is one of the most conservative in America,

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but I was surprised to hear about another Christian hate group

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in a far more liberal part of the country.

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On Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, I met Ruben Israel.

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-Hi.

-Hey, how are you doing?

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-Good, how about you?

-Good, good.

-Nice to meet you.

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Likewise.

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God is noting what's going on.

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He says he's part of a network of several hundred preachers

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across America who take their extremist message

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directly onto the streets.

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Read the Bible, everybody.

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Don't forget about Jesus Christ in your life.

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I thought street preaching would be more toned down

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than in Steven's church,

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where he's literally preaching to the converted.

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You might have a Muslim walking around here today

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that may bomb for Allah and take you out.

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I was wrong.

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I saw first-hand how American law allows anyone

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to express racial and religious hatred in any public space

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in astonishingly provocative ways.

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What do you know about Muslims?

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I know that your religion is a religion of hate.

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Your religion is killing yourselves.

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I'm sorry that you're ignorant, that you're blind...

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Is this why Muslims keep their wives quiet?

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Keep their wives...?

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Is this why Muslims do this?

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First of all, you have no right to talk...

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This is America, this isn't Iraq, buddy, this is America.

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You can leave any time.

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You're killing people right now.

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You're not doing it in America because this is America.

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This is America.

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In Africa, you're killing people.

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In all over the Middle East, your religion is killing people.

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Let's be very honest.

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-VOICE BREAKING:

-Just shut up.

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Learn first, then talk, OK?!

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Know your history.

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I hope none of you have a pilot's license.

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I hope none of you Muslims have a pilot licence.

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Read the Bible, everybody, let's not get too concerned.

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We're not here to kill you, like most Muslims are.

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-Spread the word, brother.

-Appreciate that, thank you.

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Thank you, appreciate it.

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A lot of the stuff that you were saying about the Prophet and Islam

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was really inflammatory.

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You know, most Muslims, most people who follow Islam, are very peaceful.

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I wouldn't say so.

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In fact we just had a shooting here in San Bernardino

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with a husband and wife.

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They appeared to be very peaceful.

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They lived very peaceful.

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But when Allah whispered into their ears, they did what they did.

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Got to get serious about God, who offers you eternal life.

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It's not very glamorous today to be a Christian.

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You're going to be hated if you're a real Christian,

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and so my concept is I can care less if I offend the entire city,

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state or country that I live in.

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My main core is not offending God,

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and in the process of me not offending God,

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if I offend you, so what?

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I'm not going to lose any sleep.

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I'm not going to miss a meal,

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cos everything inside me is more concerned

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about what God has to say than you.

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Thank God you live in America and not Islam country, not Iraq.

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In California, reported anti-Muslim hate crimes

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have more than doubled in the past year.

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Ruben is exploiting this rise of Islamophobia

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to promote his own fringe brand of Christianity.

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I wanted to know more about the man behind the megaphone.

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-Hi there.

-Hey, come on in.

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So, this is the house.

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-This is my house.

-Yeah.

-This is where I live.

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How did this all start, Ruben?

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Often times people assume I'm a drug addict,

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I got saved in jail, I'm an ex-biker.

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Nothing is further from the truth.

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Don't do the drugs, never had the baggage of alcohol.

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At age 17... Actually October 22nd, 1979, that was the date,

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I cried out to God in my bedroom

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and read the Bible and then went out there and started to preach.

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How do you decide where to go?

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Well, if it's sin, you go.

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That's like asking a police officer,

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"How do you know there's going to be crime?" Well, you get a call.

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You know things.

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This is Ruben here, go ahead and replace what you need to do, my man.

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Just make it work like you did the others.

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Now when would that megaphone be ready?

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What a guy! Ken, you're the man.

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What was that about, Ruben?

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I have to get megaphones replaced quite often.

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Before we move on, what happened to that one specifically, though?

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Somebody grabbed it and threw it on the floor.

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Why did they smash it? What were you preaching about?

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I don't recall what it was, you know,

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I can't remember every conversation,

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but obviously we must have struck a nerve with somebody, so to speak.

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OK.

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Batman has Bat Cave, I'm going to show you Brother Reuben's Cave.

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OK, come on in.

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This is where I have all my stuff, my banners, poles, megaphones.

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You can see some of them are dented up by the bells.

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I have Bibles with me.

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These Bibles, they probably last about...

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I go through maybe two or three a year

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before the pages get ripped up or sometimes they catch on fire,

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somebody gets a lighter and tries to burn them.

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We have banners for all occasions.

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For example, here's one against Islam.

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Here's one...

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..for rebellious women.

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That's one you don't see very often.

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So I can make any banner, any size

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and have it sent to me instantly and have your name on it

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and your picture and stand out in front of your house if I need to.

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So that's my tool box there.

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Hope you enjoyed it.

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Back in Arizona, I was keen to talk to people

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who've been targeted by Christian hate groups.

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I caught up with Justin Owen, who runs Phoenix Gay Pride,

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as he made his final preparations for the festival.

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A lot of it's the challenges that we deal with with the discrimination.

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We have a very heavy transgender population here in Phoenix

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and that's where a lot of...

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We see our depression, we see our thoughts of people

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trying to hurt themselves or kill themselves

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with our youth and transgender community here,

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because everything is so conservative,

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because they're so oppressed.

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One of the things that makes the Phoenix Pride Festival phenomenal

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is it's always someone's first Pride.

0:19:470:19:49

There's always that kid coming through the gate

0:19:490:19:52

that it's the first time they've got to be their authentic self

0:19:520:19:55

in possibly their lifetime,

0:19:550:19:57

because they know when they come here...

0:19:570:20:00

there is no discrimination, there is no hatred,

0:20:000:20:02

once you're in the gates.

0:20:020:20:04

When the day of Pride Festival arrived,

0:20:110:20:14

so too did a familiar voice.

0:20:140:20:16

Testing, one, two, bad homo.

0:20:180:20:20

Just keep walking straight down.

0:20:220:20:24

Testing one, two, three, Sodom and Gomorrah.

0:20:250:20:28

50,000 people prepared to make their way to Pride.

0:20:290:20:33

Ruben and his tiny band of followers

0:20:340:20:37

set up stall outside the gates to preach at them.

0:20:370:20:41

Testing, one, two, three.

0:20:410:20:43

No homo sex.

0:20:440:20:46

Photographer. What are you going to do with that photograph?

0:20:500:20:53

I'm going to jerk off on it.

0:20:530:20:54

I knew you would. Sick homo.

0:20:540:20:56

Because of the American right to free speech,

0:20:580:21:01

the Pride organisers had to allow Ruben and his men to protest.

0:21:010:21:05

And it had to be somewhere they could be heard.

0:21:070:21:10

You should repent right now.

0:21:100:21:12

-OK.

-You're going to burn in a lake of fire.

0:21:120:21:14

-Do you lie?

-I don't sin.

0:21:140:21:16

I bet you do, sir.

0:21:160:21:18

-I used to.

-As a matter of fact.

0:21:180:21:19

I'm a saint. You can call me Saint Aidan, sister sinner.

0:21:190:21:24

SONG: Born This Way by Lady Gaga

0:21:240:21:26

We just got engaged.

0:21:360:21:37

Inside the gates, the party was taking off.

0:21:420:21:45

-RUBEN:

-Sodom and Gomorrah, pervert.

0:21:470:21:50

But outside, the street preachers ramped up the abuse

0:21:500:21:53

at everyone going in.

0:21:530:21:54

You're on your way to hell.

0:21:560:21:58

Disease, nasty, little freak, you are.

0:21:580:22:01

Nasty. Nasty cocksucker.

0:22:010:22:03

Filming it wasn't a pleasant experience.

0:22:030:22:06

You need to repent of your sins.

0:22:070:22:09

It's not OK to be gay, God hates homos.

0:22:090:22:13

The Bible says.

0:22:130:22:15

One of Reuben's followers brought his kids along, including a toddler.

0:22:150:22:19

You son of a bitch! Oh, my God!

0:22:220:22:26

People in the crowd noticed.

0:22:260:22:28

You guys are so, so, so disgusting.

0:22:280:22:33

Sodom and Gomorrah, people, does that ring a bell to you perverts?

0:22:330:22:38

They're just hateful, cruel people.

0:22:380:22:40

To bring kids into that and to teach another generation to be hateful,

0:22:400:22:44

I just don't understand it.

0:22:440:22:46

-It's sick.

-It's disgusting.

0:22:460:22:48

It breaks my heart.

0:22:480:22:50

There's no reason for them to be like that.

0:22:500:22:54

What they're doing right now is... It's full of hate.

0:22:540:22:58

It's not doing any good.

0:22:580:23:01

In fact, it's hurting the churches that actually are affirming

0:23:010:23:06

and love the homosexual community.

0:23:060:23:08

I've just never heard anything like that before.

0:23:080:23:11

I mean, and I'm kind of nasty.

0:23:110:23:13

It's pretty horrifying what they say to people.

0:23:130:23:15

It's truly unbelievable, but...

0:23:150:23:18

It's completely unrealistic.

0:23:180:23:20

You take it with a grain of salt.

0:23:200:23:21

Preaching hate can breed hate in return.

0:23:290:23:33

ANSWER MACHINE BEEPS

0:23:330:23:35

You sick, homophobic son of a bitch,

0:23:350:23:39

talking about God striking down,

0:23:390:23:41

he should strike down your church and burn it to a crisp.

0:23:410:23:46

For Pastor Steven Anderson, abusive messages come with the territory.

0:23:460:23:50

ANSWER MACHINE BEEPS

0:23:520:23:54

You call yourself a preacher, calling homosexuals paedophiles.

0:23:540:23:58

Paedophile is probably you, you sick freak.

0:23:580:24:00

How many voice mails do you get?

0:24:030:24:06

-Or hate mails?

-Well, it depends.

0:24:060:24:08

You know, there will be days where I get hundreds

0:24:080:24:13

and then other days, I might just get a handful.

0:24:130:24:15

There's a steady trickle of hate mail

0:24:150:24:20

and hateful voicemails,

0:24:200:24:22

but then whenever something is in the media or on TV or something,

0:24:220:24:25

then there will just be a flood of few hundred in one day.

0:24:250:24:29

So I can just play you voicemails just from one day.

0:24:290:24:34

You fuck face.

0:24:360:24:38

This one was a classic.

0:24:380:24:41

This was the AR15.

0:24:410:24:44

-I'm coming to get you.

-"I'm coming to get you."

0:24:440:24:46

..until we bring our AR15 in and kill you

0:24:460:24:50

and kill all the people that believe in killing the LGBT.

0:24:500:24:55

What would you say back to her, Steven?

0:24:550:24:58

Well, enjoy Aids, I guess, right?

0:24:580:25:01

I can't even count how many people have threatened

0:25:020:25:07

to come and kick my whatever

0:25:070:25:09

and beat me up and rape me and violently rape my children.

0:25:090:25:13

I mean we got an e-mail recently where they went into great detail,

0:25:130:25:16

how they're going to violently rape each child,

0:25:160:25:19

they named the child and then say exactly

0:25:190:25:21

what they're going to do to that child.

0:25:210:25:23

I mean, just disgusting, vile things.

0:25:230:25:26

Most people, if they were listening to messages like that,

0:25:260:25:30

where they're threatening to come and hurt their children,

0:25:300:25:32

it would make them think twice about what they were saying.

0:25:320:25:36

Yeah, but I've been doing this for 11 years and nobody has ever come.

0:25:360:25:40

But could you live with yourself if something did happen?

0:25:410:25:44

Well, I wouldn't blame myself

0:25:440:25:46

for what some other violent predator did, you know?

0:25:460:25:49

I'm preaching the Bible, I'm doing what's right.

0:25:490:25:51

If some violent predator came and did something to me or my family,

0:25:510:25:54

that wouldn't be my fault.

0:25:540:25:56

I'm willing to lose everything.

0:25:560:25:59

I'm willing to give up everything.

0:25:590:26:00

I will never stop.

0:26:000:26:02

I don't care what the cost is.

0:26:020:26:03

I will never stop preaching the Bible.

0:26:030:26:06

You guys can come inside, but you can't screech.

0:26:140:26:18

The next time I saw Steven's wife Susannah, she had baby number nine.

0:26:180:26:23

Do think you're going to have another baby, another kid?

0:26:230:26:25

I think so, I'm only 37.

0:26:250:26:28

We don't do anything to stop it,

0:26:280:26:30

so hopefully I've got a few more years in me, right?

0:26:300:26:33

I wondered if Steven's children

0:26:390:26:41

knew about the threats their dad received.

0:26:410:26:44

Do you guys ever get scared that something might happen,

0:26:480:26:50

you know, all these things that...?

0:26:500:26:52

Well, the Bible says that we have an army of angels surrounding us

0:26:520:26:56

and protecting us, so I'm not scared.

0:26:560:26:58

My dad gets all this, but I don't really care.

0:26:580:27:01

-What about you, Miriam?

-Um...

0:27:040:27:07

Sometimes I do, but not usually.

0:27:070:27:10

Usually I just think...

0:27:100:27:12

Hanging out with Steven,

0:27:210:27:22

it became clear that not all of his beliefs are from the Bible.

0:27:220:27:27

He's part of a small minority of Americans

0:27:270:27:30

who believe the Nazi atrocities against Jews during World War II

0:27:300:27:34

have been exaggerated.

0:27:340:27:36

He also has controversial beliefs

0:27:370:27:39

about who was behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

0:27:390:27:43

I don't even believe the official version on 9/11.

0:27:430:27:46

I believe that 9/11 was actually carried out by our own government.

0:27:460:27:49

But why would the American government

0:27:510:27:54

kill thousands of its own people?

0:27:540:27:55

I mean, it's so silly that you even have to ask that question,

0:27:550:28:00

because the whole point of 9/11 is that it's the justification

0:28:000:28:04

for the police state,

0:28:040:28:05

it's the justification for tripling the size of FBI spending

0:28:050:28:08

and the NSA.

0:28:080:28:10

It's the justification for invading two countries.

0:28:100:28:12

But think of what they've got to lose.

0:28:120:28:14

If it came out that 9/11 was, you know, done by the government,

0:28:140:28:20

that would bring down America,

0:28:200:28:21

and also the lie is so huge

0:28:210:28:23

there must have been so many people involved with it,

0:28:230:28:26

how could it possibly still be a secret?

0:28:260:28:28

It's not a secret. Everybody knows about it.

0:28:280:28:30

If you go to New York and do a poll

0:28:300:28:32

on how many people believe the official version on 9/11,

0:28:320:28:36

you'll find there are huge segments of the population

0:28:360:28:40

that say they don't believe it.

0:28:400:28:42

During my time in America,

0:28:480:28:50

the battle for the next presidency grew increasingly divisive.

0:28:500:28:54

One group in particular became a target for anger.

0:28:560:29:00

Donald J Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown

0:29:000:29:05

of Muslims entering the United States.

0:29:050:29:08

We will make America great again.

0:29:080:29:11

God bless you and good night.

0:29:110:29:14

CHEERING

0:29:140:29:16

I travelled to Cleveland, Ohio,

0:29:250:29:27

where Donald Trump was due to be announced

0:29:270:29:29

as the official Republican candidate for president.

0:29:290:29:32

Nearly 20 men from Ruben's network of street preachers

0:29:390:29:43

came from across America.

0:29:430:29:45

Green, gay, zombie, cannabis smokers or something.

0:29:460:29:51

Some said Trump's views were not extreme enough for them,

0:29:510:29:55

but all were here to preach against anti-Trump protesters,

0:29:550:29:59

sinners who needed saving from their liberal politics.

0:29:590:30:03

I've met them before.

0:30:040:30:06

-My family, y'all filmed my family.

-Yes.

0:30:060:30:08

We preached the Phoenix homo rally.

0:30:080:30:11

I recognised Aidan from Phoenix Pride in the group.

0:30:110:30:14

You've brought gas masks along. Why have you brought them?

0:30:170:30:19

Oh, because they're probably going to gas the crowds,

0:30:190:30:22

that's what the cops have done many times.

0:30:220:30:24

Here's one more thing we brought.

0:30:260:30:27

I've never brought it on a preach before,

0:30:300:30:32

but since these cops are getting shot left and right,

0:30:320:30:35

this is a hard-core 30lb bulletproof vest.

0:30:350:30:40

Do you really think you're going to need that?

0:30:400:30:42

If not, it's a good work-out, it's extra cardio for the day.

0:30:420:30:46

Feel how heavy it is.

0:30:460:30:47

-Yeah, that's...

-Yeah.

-OK.

0:30:470:30:49

So it's extra work-out, so I look at the positive.

0:30:490:30:51

I sensed a distinct feeling of paranoia coming from the men.

0:30:530:30:57

Mark, a leader of the group, even wore army fatigues.

0:30:590:31:03

Why are you wearing, like, kind of military clothes?

0:31:050:31:08

Because it scares the hell out of them.

0:31:080:31:10

-Were you in the military?

-No.

-No.

0:31:100:31:12

Aidan had brought a much more offensive prop.

0:31:140:31:18

So what are you going to do with the bacon?

0:31:180:31:20

Well, not until I get a really mad Muslim coming up

0:31:200:31:23

I'm going to say, "I'm actually starting to fear for my life

0:31:230:31:25

"from this Muslim, so I'm going to have to ward him off with my bacon."

0:31:250:31:29

The group set off for the centre of Cleveland

0:31:320:31:35

in search of anti-Trump protesters.

0:31:350:31:37

Do you realise that who you are sitting with

0:31:390:31:43

right now in his vehicle, Hannah,

0:31:430:31:45

is actually a remnant that God has saved up

0:31:450:31:49

to correct the nation that has forgotten God?

0:31:490:31:52

And you're talking about what, 12, 15 others?

0:31:520:31:56

That's it. So I say to those in the UK,

0:31:560:31:59

I know there's a remnant somewhere hiding in those church pews,

0:31:590:32:03

you need to come out from behind that pulpit

0:32:030:32:06

and get out in the street and get in the battle,

0:32:060:32:08

because it's coming and you'd better get ready.

0:32:080:32:11

-Man, start preaching, bro.

-Yeah.

0:32:160:32:17

Your sin is the reason you're going to hell.

0:32:190:32:23

Your sin is the reason God is angry.

0:32:230:32:26

The Bible says...

0:32:260:32:28

It was soon clear the preachers were willing to shout at anyone

0:32:280:32:32

who didn't appear to fit their model of Christian behaviour.

0:32:320:32:36

Hey, you drunk sinner, repent. Drunks, go to hell.

0:32:360:32:41

Put those beers down and pick up a Bible.

0:32:410:32:43

You're going to burn, sinner. You'd better repent.

0:32:460:32:49

Life eternal.

0:32:490:32:50

They set up camp in a public square,

0:32:530:32:56

close to where Trump himself was about to go on stage.

0:32:560:32:59

First they targeted gay men.

0:33:000:33:03

Then protesters from Black Lives Matter arrived,

0:33:100:33:15

a group which campaigns about police killings of black people.

0:33:150:33:18

-CHANTING:

-Black lives matter! Black lives matter!

0:33:350:33:39

As the day went on,

0:33:420:33:44

the street preachers' message seemed increasingly incoherent and chaotic.

0:33:440:33:48

After a couple of hours, only the police remained,

0:33:590:34:02

so the preachers left.

0:34:020:34:05

Walk that way.

0:34:050:34:06

Better your King Jesus do.

0:34:070:34:09

The men say their network has grown bigger in recent years.

0:34:110:34:14

But I wondered if they really expected

0:34:160:34:18

to attract new converts here.

0:34:180:34:20

God is wanting to save sinners' souls.

0:34:210:34:25

My life was changed and it wasn't willpower,

0:34:250:34:28

I used to love getting high, I used to love drinking alcohol.

0:34:280:34:32

I used to love having sex before marriage, yeah.

0:34:320:34:36

Turn or burn, guys, turn or burn.

0:34:360:34:39

What are you going to do, beat me up? I thought love wins.

0:34:390:34:41

-Burn what?

-I thought love wins.

0:34:410:34:42

I thought love wins.

0:34:440:34:45

Stop being a fudge packer.

0:34:480:34:50

Does it ever cross your mind that the way that you preach...?

0:34:510:34:54

I do two ways, you're just seeing one way.

0:34:540:34:56

But it puts people off.

0:34:560:34:58

I know, Romans chapter... Well, here's the... Good question.

0:34:580:35:02

You know a lot of Christians don't understand

0:35:020:35:04

confrontational evangelism

0:35:040:35:05

because they don't really understand the nature of Jesus Christ.

0:35:050:35:08

He got mad and he never sinned.

0:35:080:35:11

"Be angry and sin not," the Bible says.

0:35:110:35:13

But those guys, I'm pretty sure those guys that you just spoke to

0:35:130:35:17

are not going to go and read the Bible.

0:35:170:35:20

When they get the fear of God, they will read the Bible.

0:35:200:35:23

So we've got to help bring the fear of God into them.

0:35:230:35:26

Yeah.

0:35:260:35:28

It's called tough love.

0:35:290:35:31

The vast majority of American Christians

0:35:390:35:41

are uncomfortable with the extreme message of the groups

0:35:410:35:44

I spent time with.

0:35:440:35:45

But these preachers are cementing and increasing links

0:35:470:35:50

with like-minded people across the country.

0:35:500:35:52

Verity Baptist Church, Sacramento, California.

0:35:560:36:00

I followed Pastor Steven Anderson

0:36:000:36:02

to a so-called red-hot preaching conference.

0:36:020:36:06

Ten minutes to freedom.

0:36:060:36:08

Freedom from what?

0:36:080:36:09

Freedom from you, Hannah.

0:36:100:36:13

From your camera. No, just kidding.

0:36:130:36:16

-Pastor Anderson.

-Hey, how are you doing?

0:36:160:36:18

-Welcome, good to see you.

-All right.

0:36:180:36:19

Steven went in through the back door.

0:36:190:36:22

HORN BEEPS

0:36:220:36:24

Out the front, protesters against the conference started to arrive.

0:36:240:36:29

Many were from the LGBT community.

0:36:290:36:32

Another, Bish Roy, was a devout Christian.

0:36:330:36:36

I'm here today to change the hearts of all of these kids

0:36:370:36:40

within the church that are stuck

0:36:400:36:42

and even the hearts of those adults that are stuck there,

0:36:420:36:46

that just are blinded by the pastor,

0:36:460:36:49

and I also do hope to change the minds of a lot of the protesters

0:36:490:36:54

and people looking at this from the outside,

0:36:540:36:56

that think that this is Christianity, because it's not.

0:36:560:36:59

Christianity is a truly a loving religion.

0:36:590:37:02

It's meant to love everybody, regardless of who and what they are.

0:37:020:37:06

The point of Christianity is to love.

0:37:060:37:08

Inside, crowds gathered for the star attraction,

0:37:110:37:15

Steven Anderson.

0:37:150:37:17

Hey, what's up?

0:37:170:37:18

And he was being treated like a celebrity.

0:37:180:37:20

Hey, what's up, man? You got married?

0:37:200:37:24

The event attracted journalists.

0:37:240:37:26

Guys, we've got live streaming, for Facebook.

0:37:280:37:31

Steven prepared to aim his fire at them.

0:37:310:37:34

You know what, these people from the media here.

0:37:360:37:39

I mean, unless they turn over a new leaf and start telling the truth,

0:37:390:37:42

which probably isn't very likely,

0:37:420:37:44

but these bozos from the media over here,

0:37:440:37:46

they are going to show all the love wins and love conquers hate,

0:37:460:37:50

they won't show you how God-fearing family men and women

0:37:500:37:55

walk in this church,

0:37:550:37:56

and women are called a slut and a whore

0:37:560:37:58

and they've never even seen these women in their life,

0:37:580:38:01

because they'd just rail and hate and spew out all their filth

0:38:010:38:05

and they're disgusting,

0:38:050:38:07

but you won't show that on the media, will you?

0:38:070:38:10

No, you'll show all the little, pretty, little sodomites

0:38:100:38:13

and they all love each other.

0:38:130:38:15

Hey, by the way...

0:38:200:38:21

I mean, I didn't choose that, hey, in the end-times

0:38:230:38:26

before the second coming of Christ,

0:38:260:38:28

we are going to have to be ripping face

0:38:280:38:30

about bunch of perverts and homos

0:38:300:38:32

and that's going to be the big issue in America

0:38:320:38:35

that everybody talks about every single day in America -

0:38:350:38:38

I didn't choose this fight.

0:38:380:38:39

This fight has come to us. And you know what I say?

0:38:390:38:42

Bring it on!

0:38:420:38:44

Hey, look, whatever fight the devil wants to bring me, bring it on.

0:38:440:38:48

After the service, I caught up with Steven outside.

0:38:530:38:57

He seemed pleased with himself.

0:38:570:39:00

Everything is good. Just got a nice gift, so...

0:39:000:39:03

I mean, who doesn't want to get an AR15 as a gift?

0:39:060:39:09

That's a cool gift, right?

0:39:090:39:10

-Seriously, was it an AR15?

-Yes, I just got an AR15 as a gift, yeah.

0:39:100:39:14

That's the gift that keeps on giving.

0:39:150:39:18

Fresh from receiving his new assault rifle,

0:39:200:39:23

Steven spotted the few remaining protesters.

0:39:230:39:26

Did you go say hi to your buddies over here yet,

0:39:260:39:28

or no, or did you just ignore them, or what?

0:39:280:39:31

Those guys?

0:39:310:39:32

We call the one guy Aunt Jemima, the one with the hair.

0:39:320:39:34

Al coined the term.

0:39:340:39:35

This was the first time

0:39:370:39:38

I'd seen Steven confront his detractors face-to-face.

0:39:380:39:42

What's up, guys?

0:39:420:39:44

There we go, Mr Anderson, there we go.

0:39:440:39:46

-In the flesh.

-There we go. In the flesh, amazing.

0:39:460:39:48

Pastor Anderson, here I am.

0:39:480:39:50

Are you guys homos, or just sympathisers?

0:39:500:39:53

No, I'm a Bible-believing Christian, that's the difference.

0:39:530:39:57

For the Lord, or are you for the devil?

0:39:570:39:59

-I'm for the Lord.

-You're for the Lord, you think you're for the Lord.

0:39:590:40:02

No, I know I'm for the Lord.

0:40:020:40:04

The Lord hates all workers of iniquity, open the Bible.

0:40:040:40:07

Psalm 55, Psalm 11.

0:40:070:40:10

All of you guys pop out because you say I'm saved,

0:40:100:40:13

so whatever you do when you beat your wife, when you beat your kids,

0:40:130:40:16

when you do what you want and sin,

0:40:160:40:18

it's OK because you're already saved.

0:40:180:40:20

That's why you're just a copout.

0:40:200:40:21

You know what? It's a sin not to beat your kids.

0:40:210:40:24

-It's a sin not to beat your kids.

-It's a sin not to beat your kids?!

0:40:240:40:26

The Bible says thou shalt beat.

0:40:260:40:28

-Did Jesus Christ beat a kid?

-Thou shalt beat.

0:40:280:40:29

-Did Jesus Christ...?

-He didn't have kids.

0:40:290:40:31

The Bible says thou shalt beat.

0:40:310:40:34

I'm done listening to...

0:40:360:40:38

LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE

0:40:380:40:40

It's OK, it's OK, you have a bunch of halfwits,

0:40:400:40:43

halfwits laughing with you.

0:40:430:40:45

See you later, man bun.

0:40:450:40:47

You don't know your Bible.

0:40:470:40:49

33:11 read it. It's OK, it's OK, it's OK.

0:40:490:40:52

You guys are in denial, you're just trying to have a copout.

0:40:520:40:55

Trust me, you're far from saved, you're far from saved.

0:40:550:40:58

Yeah, I went and fraternised with them.

0:40:580:41:01

Yeah, you missed it.

0:41:010:41:02

What struck me about my time with both hate groups

0:41:130:41:16

was how they positively thrived on negative reactions

0:41:160:41:19

from the rest of society.

0:41:190:41:20

They feel their views are under threat.

0:41:240:41:28

And the more hated or persecuted they feel,

0:41:280:41:31

the stronger their convictions grow.

0:41:310:41:33

And the larger their networks seem to grow too.

0:41:360:41:39

Steven is due to open three new churches this year.

0:41:400:41:44

Do you like the power of being a pastor?

0:41:470:41:51

I definitely like the power to influence masses of people.

0:41:510:41:54

Absolutely. I like the power to be able to speak

0:41:540:41:58

and thousands of people hear me within 24 hours,

0:41:580:42:01

so, yeah, I do like that.

0:42:010:42:03

You know, because I want to...

0:42:030:42:05

..you know, I want to do something big with my life.

0:42:070:42:09

Director Hannah Livingston spends six months tracking two of America’s most radical Christian hate groups - a notorious pastor from Arizona, who has been banned from the UK and a network of preachers, who take their extremist message directly onto the streets. The film shows how American free speech laws allow these groups to spread homophobia and Islamophobia in an increasingly polarised and divided political climate. Drawing on what he claims is a literal interpretation of the bible, the pastor is opening new churches in America and claims to be influencing others by broadcasting his sermons over the internet.