Pastor, and South Dakota State Representative Steve Hickey speaks what is on his mind and in his heart. He doesn't ponder the world from behind closed doors.

We don't learn what he is thinking based on secret recordings released to the public. He has the courage to put it on paper and let others react. I like that about him.

His latest Facebook post has gone viral. Pastor Hickey challenged the medical community to talk about what he sees as the medical and psychological problems of being gay.

He also questions whether high school coaches should be deciding how to handle transgender children and their involvement with sports. The South Dakota High School Activities Association is currently dealing with this issue.

Reaction to his writing has been harsh. The full text of his writing and some reactions can be found on his Facebook page.

We interviewed him Friday afternoon on Viewpoint University on 1140 KSOO. He has received hate mail from many segments of society. His wife's cell phone has also been on the receiving end of the wrath.

During the interview, Hickey wondered back and forth on the gay and transgender issues. He did not seem focused. My impression: the strong reaction to his writing has affected him.

On the issue of gay marriage and relationships I think Hickey is wrong both as a pastor and a legislator.

The over riding theme of the Bible is tolerance, acceptance, forgiveness. Gay people aren't freaks. Like heterosexuals, they are God's children. He made them just like he made the rest of us.

God didn't make junk. His world is divine.

Humans have messed it up with our choices and behaviors. If two people of the same sex wish to spend their lives, caring for each other in mind, body, and spirit, who am I to judge them, either in church or in public policy?  Besides, why should only heterosexual people get to experience the joys of divorce?

In his writing he talks about the problems of anal sex as if only gay males do it.  The reality is humans of both sexual persuasions engage in sex acts which may not be  healthy. To single out gays is wrong.

Hickey is concerned about marriage both as a religious and legal institution. He says we are on a slippery slope, going down it quickly and with negative consequences.

In my life time, laws forbidding interacial marriages disappeared. Society did not crumble. Churches remained open and the government continued to function.

Hickey, and others like him, say the next downward step might be a return to poligamy, or adult/child sexual love, and the biggest leap, animals.

I would question the mental health of any three, four, or more people in a sexual relationship. Children are NOT consenting adults so that issue is moot. Animals? Clearly another mental health issue.

Understanding the complexity transgender children and sports participation is beyond me. Others with education and life experiences will have to educate me. I am open to the opportunity.

Back to Pastor and Legislator Steve Hickey.

Last legislative session, Hickey proposed eliminating the death penalty in South Dakota. The usual suspects spoke out against his legislation and the issue was summarily 'executed.'

Hickey also took on the Payday Loan and Title lending industry. Those businesses do well in our state because we have so many people living in or on the brink of poverty.

If you weren't in trouble as you took out your first 'payday loan' you probably sank into real trouble as you tried to pay back the 'small' payday loan, with the exorbitant interest rates and fees. A horde of special interests, gang-tackled the idea.  Hickey lost.

Actually we all lost.

Steve Hickey is right on both the death penalty and pay day loans. He is wrong on the issue of gay marriage. He is two for three. In baseball that would make him eligible for the Hall of Fame, batting .666. Oops, bad number....

We are all mortal. Death is coming. In Steve Hickey's case, maybe sooner, because he needs a lung transplant to continue living. That reality may be causing him to ponder the big questions of the day differently than the rest of us.

Pastor Hickey's writings and proposals don't offend me. They challenge me to go deeper in my philosophy and thinking.

He has the right to be wrong, just like the rest of us.