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Jerry Falwell, 73, Meets His Maker

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The infamous leader of the Thomas Road Baptist Church, the PTL, the National Liberty Journal, Liberty University, and the Moral Majority was found dead this morning in his office at Liberty Univeristy in Virginia.

The controversial televangelist used his influence to push his agenda of conservative intolerance onto the Republican party who accepted it and enable it even today.

That sort of influence hasn't always sat well with all Republicans. John McCain in 2000 said, "Neither party should be defined by pandering to the outer reaches of American politics and the agents of intolerance, whether they be Louis Farrakhan or Al Sharpton on the left, or Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell on the right." But then almost a year ago today McCain delivered a commencement speech at Liberty University, in what many called a sell-out move on McCain's part.

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Two days after 9/11, Falwell went on the 700 Club with Pat Robertson and blamed feminsts, gays, lesbians, and the ACLU, among others, for the terrorist attacks: "And, I know that I'll hear from them for this. But, throwing God out successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way -- all of them who have tried to secularize America -- I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.'"

Just like Rush Limbaugh and others, Falwell seemed to hate feminists more than any other group. He once said this about people who yearn for equal rights for women: "I listen to feminists and all these radical gals - most of them are failures. They've blown it. Some of them have been married, but they married some Casper Milquetoast who asked permission to go to the bathroom. These women just need a man in the house. That's all they need. Most of the feminists need a man to tell them what time of day it is and to lead them home. And they blew it and they're mad at all men. Feminists hate men. They're sexist. They hate men -- that's their problem."

In regards of making it easier for teens to practice safe sex, Falwell said, "the argument that making contraceptives available to young people would prevent teen pregnancies is ridiculous. That's like offering a cookbook as a cure to people who are trying to lose weight." The portly minister was clearly ignorant to the fact that the successful diet program Weight Watchers has many cookbooks, and studies have shown that people who use condoms find that they get pregnant less than those who don't use protection.

The photo above is from the time that he promised his viewers that if he was able to get $20 million from them that he would slide down the water slide at Heritage USA.