Who are the real villains in the battle between gays and the religious right?
When the Southern Poverty Law Center certified the American Family Association and the Family Research Council as official hate groups in 2010, some religious groups were faced with a very important reality: They’re not the good guys anymore. Rather than taking a good, hard look at their venomous rhetoric against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, they only dug in their heels and poured on the “we’re so persecuted” mantra to the point of martyrdom.
Before I go any further, I should make myself absolutely clear. I am a man of faith. I am not an atheist. I am not an agnostic. I am Christian — saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. My intent with this piece is to identify leeches — parasites that have attached themselves to the body of the living Christ — so that the Church can begin to cast them off as the vile creatures they are.
For decades, these cretins have been spewing their bile against the gay and lesbian community, specifically against the “homosexuals.” They were careful to find the most offensive images and descriptions of sex acts in order to demonize the “homosexuals” as much as possible. Images of scantily-clad men in leather chaps while waving large rainbow flags were carefully chosen as the ultimate in depravity. Other graphics included two gruff men kissing, hefty women in a lesbian embrace, or a drag queen dressed as a ludicrous-looking nun. Every image, every graphic, and every video was carefully chosen to paint LGBT people in as negative a light as possible.
By the early 1990s, political activist groups began to pepper the landscape. They quickly took on innocent, wholesome names that shrouded their true purpose. Nearly all of the group names include the word “family,” as if their work is to somehow promote the nuclear family and strengthen families with their “research” or “association” or whatever. Make no mistake: these groups are not about support. They were designed for war — war against their favorite obsessions: gays (oh, and abortion, too).
Their weapons in this very public battle are all built on a single goal: destroy the gay rights movement no matter the cost. Nothing is sacred, certainly not facts or science. They will say anything, do anything, and broadcast anything — whether it’s truthful or not — in order to wipe the gay community off the face of the earth. They don’t just want to prevent gay rights. They simply want gays… gone.
Make no mistake. They don’t merely “disagree” or “disapprove” of “homosexuality” or “the homosexual lifestyle” (whatever the hell THAT is…). Their goal is to eliminate our very existence. They want gay relationships criminalized. Some have made clear that they believe gays should be put to death “because the Bible says so.”
Another front that these groups practice is to find any legal cause celebre to trump up its “defense” mantra. They’ll herald poor, “innocent” simple Christians who are quiet “victims” that were overrun by the “militant homosexual activists.” For example:
“A New Jersey Methodist church was sued by a lesbian couple because it wouldn’t allow a same-sex ceremony in their facility.” No, this was a public pavilion that the church owned, and regularly rented to groups and parties — religious or not — to anyone who wanted to use it. When they declined to rent the pavilion to this couple, they violated the state equal access law.
The church changed their policy to rent only to its members. The law was very clear. If you have a public facility that you rent to the public, you cannot turn down a rental because you don’t want lesbians getting legally married there. The poor, simple, church had to circle its wagons because they didn’t want to obey the law.
Make no mistake. This isn’t some poor, little country church getting beat up by two mean bully lesbians. This the Camp Meeting Association of the United Methodist Church — which happens to own ALL of the land in Ocean Grove, NJ. They wanted to bar legal same-sex unions throughout the town. By the way, the Camp Meeting Association is not a legal part of the Methodist Church.
And that’s just one example of how the truth is distorted by these blowhards.
So let’s compare, and see who’s really oppressing whom. I will distinguish between “religious right groups” and “gay rights organizations” These are national organizations that are highly active in either pro-gay or anti-gay efforts.
The religious right groups that are used for this chart (Note: All of these groups are certified as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center.):
- Family Research Institute / Paul Cameron (FRI)
- American Family Association / Bryan Fischer (AFA)
- Family Research Council / Tony Perkins & Peter Sprigg (FRC)
- Americans for Truth About Homosexuality / Peter LaBarbera (AFT)
We’ll compare with major national pro-gay rights groups with similar questions:
- Gays and Lesbians Against Defamation (GLAAD)
- Human Rights Campaign (HRC)
- Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN)
- Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN)
Anti-Gay Groups FRI AFA FRC AFTAH
Actively engages in fundraising to prevent expansion of rights of LGBT people Y Y Y Y
Frequently dispenses known falsehoods to discredit or demonize LGBT people Y Y Y Y
Actively lobbies legislators to prevent or restrict rights of LGBT people Y Y Y Y
Actively works to create constitutional amendments to restrict rights of LGBT people Y Y Y Y
Uses sound research and peer-reviewed scientific studies to support its claims N N N N
Leaders have supported the criminalization of same-sex relationships with prison sentences Y Y Y Y
Supports the right to discriminate against LGBT people in employment Y Y Y Y
Supports the right to discriminate against LGBT people for housing Y Y Y Y
Pro-gay rights groups GLAAD HRC GLSEN SLDN
Actively engages in fundraising to prevent expansion of rights for Christians N N N N
Frequently dispenses known falsehoods to discredit or demonize Christians N N N N
Actively lobbies legislators to prevent or restrict rights for Christians N N N N
Actively works to create constitutional amendments to restrict rights for Christians N N N N
Uses sound research and peer-reviewed scientific studies to support its claims Y Y Y Y
Leaders have supported the criminalization of Christianity with prison sentences N N N N
Supports the right to discriminate against Christians in employment N N N N
Supports the right to discriminate against Christians for housing N N N N
Please feel free to discuss.