Tamaki apologises for years of offensive remarks about gay people

Perhaps it’s a double epiphany, perhaps it’s political pragmatism, but Brian Tamaki has apologised for past remarks about gay people, and he and his wife (and leader of the new NZ Coalition Party) “are encouraging respectful treatment and understanding of gay people.”

“After years of anti-gay rhetoric, Brian and Hannah Tamaki are encouraging respectful treatment and understanding of gay people.”

Stuff: Destiny Church’s Brian Tamaki apologises to gay community

Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki has apologised for years of offensive remarks about gay people.

In an extraordinary admission of regret, Tamaki said: “I said ‘I want to include something with the gay community’. We don’t want our children or our children’s children to carry those unresolved issues.”

“I think everybody remembers 2004,” he said, referring to the Enough is Enough marches against the civil union bill.

The self-proclaimed bishop voiced some regret at how he and Destiny had behaved in the early 2000s.

He said if he had another chance: “we’d do some things differently. It has never been my intent to cause hurt or harm.”

He blamed news media for what he called misconceptions about the church.

After the event, Tamaki said some people told him he shouldn’t have apologised.

“But I’m bigger than that.”

He said he was sincere about treating members of the Rainbow community with kindness.

He was asked if he believed gay people went to hell.

“I don’t go around talking like that. I don’t say that. I’ve never said that.”

In 2016, Tamaki blamed earthquakes on “gays, sinners and murderers“.

On Saturday night he said he did not believe homosexual activity in any way caused earthquakes.

A big step forward for the Tamakis, perhaps.