Before my dad was a Pentecostal man he was a MAN. He spent some years in the Army, went to war, saw many things and did many things. He was a MAN. He did things that "men do". lol
The reason my dad (being a Pentecostal man) never allowed me to go on youth retreats or summer camps with the church was because he KNEW that certain men will take ANY opportunity to touch young girls. Be it by "hugging", praying, "laying hands" on them or coming to their rooms to "check on them"... Just like Bishop Charles H. Ellis III did Ariana Grande at Aretha Franklin's funeral.
So, many people took to the internet and Twitter to blame her short dress for HIS actions. Others said that her short dress was inappropriate for a funeral. Let's be clear on something here.
A WOMAN IS NEVER RESPONSIBLE FOR A MAN'S ACTIONS.
These religious, self-righteous, man made rules and doctrines condemn Arianna's dress and overlook his inappropriate touching. All of this contradictory condemnation by fellow church goers (who sin their asses off too) is why so many people don't go to church anymore. And it's the reason many women never told anyone they were molested or sexually assaulted in the church because no one would believe "that man of God" would do such a thing. Instead, young women would be punished for "lying about the man of God" and would be warned that they were bringing judgement against themselves for lying. As a matter of fact, women in other countries are STILL being sexually abused in church and are still keeping quiet about all the unwanted advances, touching and crimes.
Growing up in the church I heard many stories of "brother so and so" touching a young lady and blaming things like "the devil" or "something he saw in her that he needed to pray for her about". My father clearly didn't drink the full strength Pentecostal juice because he wouldn't let me out of his sight in church.
But let me get back to the funeral. Now, you can say what you want but that was not a funeral. It was a major production. It was a show with lots of entertainers. Ariana was there as one of those entertainers and she's 25 years old! Her dress was appropriate for the occasion, her age and what she was there to do! Her performance was REQUESTED BY THE FRANKLIN FAMILY. But wait! There's more ... If we're gonna "keep it Christian" we should note that Aretha Franklin had 3 outfit changes and that is vain and ostentatious. Clearly, not what the Bible wants for a virtuous woman. lol I'm being funny. Let's not forget how much Aretha loved and encouraged other women to be a "Natural Woman". I have trouble believing she wouldn't have liked Ariana's dress.
Recently, my daughter and I had a conversation where we discussed how women fear men because they are the stronger sex and how everyone still believes men in authority versus a woman's story. We spoke about how so many men are in the news abusing, sexually assaulting and even killing the woman he married. I NEVER had a conversation like this with MY MOM! But these are times we live in and I'm glad we can have these conversations.
Lest not forget the Bishop's comment about Ariana's name. He said he thought it was a new item on the Taco Bell menu. Now, if ANYONE would use a derogatory word in the same room or sentence where Black or African Americans were present there would be OUTRAGE! If anyone at Aretha Franklin's funeral would have used the words fried chicken, watermelon, monkey, slave or ANY word that is used as a racist trope... there would have been a commotion but this Bishop said something so racist to Ariana Grande and no one said too much about it. He later gave a half assed apology.
How is this OK in the "church"? Racism is racism. How did someone of color even joke that way about ANOTHER person of color? See? That's what so many don't understand. I am a Hispanic woman! I am a WOMAN OF COLOR! "Of color" is a term used to describe all non-White people in general. Bishop was wrong on so many levels. Come on, man!
Christians of all denominations need to wake up already. Baptists, Catholics, Seventh Day Adventists, Jehova's Witnesses, Mormons, Pentecostals, Lutherans, Anglicans, Methodists, Quakers, Evangelicals. Other religions too!
We need to protect and empower our girls and our women! It's OKAY to say #METOO and FINALLY make abusers accountable, whoever they may be or what title they may have. Sadly, a lot of them are hiding in the church and in positions of authority. I am disgusted by Bishop Ellis' actions, his apology and by how much of the public just brushed it under the rug.