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Billy James Hargis
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Religious Figure
    (August 3, 1925-November 27, 2004)
    Born in Texarkana, Arkansas
    Fundamentalist preacher and radio evangelist
    Established Christian Crusade (1950) and American Christian College (1971)
    He claimed there was a Communist conspiracy involving the United Nations, the National Council of Churches, labor unions, the civil rights movement, feminists, homosexuals, the mainstream media, the Beatles and who knows who else.
    The Disciples of Christ withdrew their ordination of him as a minister after he began attacking other churches as part of his anti-Communist crusade (1957).
    The IRS revoked the tax-exempt status of the Christian Crusade for engaging in political activities (1964).
    He was forced to resign as president of American Christian College over allegations that he had had sex with students (both male and female) at the college (1974).
    He reportedly used the story of David and Jonathan to seduce male students.
    He initially blamed his behavior on 'genes and chromosomes,' then backtracked and claimed it was a lie by 'the forces of Satan out to silence anti-Communism.'
    After the collapse of the Soviet Union, he declared that Communism 'is making a dramatic, secret comeback.' (1994)
    At age 10, he promised to devote himself to God if his adoptive mother survived a serious operation.
    He was married to Betty Jane Secrest for 52 years.
    He also founded the David Livingston Missionary Foundation, which ran medical clinics and orphanages in Africa and Asia (1966).
    He said, 'I'd rather win souls to Christ than fight Communism any day, but a man has to do what God calls him to do.'
    He was the inspiration for the Don Imus character the Right Rev. Billy Sol Hargus.

Credit: C. Fishel

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