This may seem unbelievable if you aren’t from the South. For us down here it feels as familiar as it does sad. The head of the Southern Baptist Convention Public Policy was quoted as criticizing black pastors who called for justice in the Trayvon Martin case.

Richard Land is here quoted saying that President Obama “poured gasoline on the racialist fires” when he said that if he had a son it would look like Trayvon. Further, he said that people are justified in deeming young black men as threatening because a black man is “statistically more likely to do you harm than a white man.”

Land said he did not regret the comments. “I have no doubt, based on the emails I have received, that a vast majority of Southern Baptists agree with me,” he said.

The Southern Baptist Convention recently debated changing its name to get rid of the memories of its defence of slavery and resistance to civil right. They decided to keep the name, and apparently some of them decided to hold on to racism as well. The good news is that the convention is expected to choose its first black moderator. Let us hope the voices of hate will eventually lose their leadership roles in that body.