‘Him That Pisseth Against The Wall’: The Hopeless Sermons of Pastor Steven L. Anderson
“We got a bunch of leaders who don’t stand up and piss against the wall like a man.” -Steven L. Anderson
After spending five years in a Catholic school, hellfire sermons are old hat. In fact, I used to be able to gauge the skill level of the priest at the pulpit by how quickly I fell asleep in my pew. Those with a certain electricity in their words kept me awake, saving me from the wrath of the angry aging nun often seated to my right. Send in a priest without a flare for showmanship, however, and my eyelids almost immediately turned to paperweights. Not everyone, it turns out, is well-versed in the art of delivering guilt-laden sermons flavored with the promise of God’s eternal love.
Take Steven L. Anderson, for example. He’s a disaster. This is the pastor from the Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, Arizona who was beaten and tased by Arizona Border Patrol last April — an incident he leveraged via YouTube to become a regular speaker at Tea Party rallies. He’s the same pastor who last year was praying for Obama’s death — not to mention, hoping the soul of POTUS would then be ferried across the River Styx to a fire and brimstone suite in Hell. You may be wondering then, What’s this guy’s appeal? None, unless you’re a lunatic. But he does scream a lot, a trait that outraged Americans often mistake for bravery, or perhaps leadership skills. He also delivers sermons that come off as religious satire… until you realize he’s serious.
When Anderson’s videos were making their rounds on the Internet last year, I figured I had seen them all. But somehow, I managed to miss the crown jewel: an absolutely nonsensical sermon that devolves into a screamfest condemning those (i.e. Germany?) forcing Anderson to sit down while he urinates. When I watched this, I was instantly reminded of Warren Schmidt — Jack Nicholson’s character in the film About Schmidt — whose wife insisted he sit down to urinate. In an act of rebellion following the death of his wife, Schmidt reclaims his independence by pissing all over the walls and floor of his bathroom.
The above video is Anderson’s line of piss in the sand — his Warren Schmidt moment. Simply stated, he’s fed up with America (I think), and has decided that urine is the best metaphor for expressing that outrage. “That’s where we’re heading in this country, my friends,” Anderson says in the video. “We got a bunch of pastors in this country who pee sitting down. We got the president of the United States [who] probably pees siting down. We got a bunch of preachers… we got a bunch of leaders who don’t stand up and piss against the wall like a man. That’s what’s wrong with America.”
Now you know.