Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Kentucky anti-gay adoption/foster care bill is DEAD for now

Editor's note - despite what the opposition says, bills like this one are meant to target gays and lesbians. And that talking point about "children doing better in a home with Mom and Dad" is just insulting. None of these bill even guarantee that children in foster care will receive homes, whether two-parent or single.

Adoption, foster-care bill is dead for session

Some contend measure targeted gay couples

The sponsor of a controversial bill to ban unmarried couples from becoming foster or adoptive parents acknowledged yesterday that the bill is dead.

"It's too late," Sen. Gary Tapp, R-Shelbyville, said of Senate Bill 68, which was voted out of committee last week but still hasn't been called for a floor vote. "It didn't go anywhere this session."

Tapp said he didn't know why the Senate's Republican leadership didn't schedule a vote on SB 68.

"I quit asking," he said.

Neither Senate President David Williams nor Majority Leader Dan Kelly, the chamber's top leaders, could be reached for comment last night.

Even if the bill were to win Senate approval, it would still need to be passed by the House. And there is little chance of that happening with only three scheduled days for passing bills remaining in this year's session.

Opponents of the bill -- including those who said it was aimed primarily at gay couples -- were relieved to hear that SB 68 won't advance.

"We're encouraged," said Chris Hartman, executive director of Louisville's Fairness Alliance, which held a Feb. 25 rally at the Capitol to oppose the proposal.

Hartman said he hoped the numerous calls, letters and e-mails to lawmakers from opponents have "driven home the message that hate legislation should never be passed in the commonwealth."

The rest of the story is here.
Open Letter to the Exodus International Board of Directors

We, the undersigned organizations, have monitored the ex-gay industry for more than a decade. To our great horror, prominent members of the ex-gay organization Exodus International participated last week in a conference in Uganda that promoted shocking abuses of basic human rights. This included draconian measures against gay and lesbian people such as forced ex-gay therapy, life imprisonment for people convicted of homosexuality and the formation of an organization designed to “wipe out” gay practices in Uganda. The conference also featured Scott Lively, a holocaust revisionist who at the event also blamed the 1994 Rwandan genocide on gay people.

The facts incontrovertibly show that Alan Chambers, President of Exodus International, was aware of the list of speakers and abhorrent content prior to the conference. Exodus board member Don Schmierer, who spoke in Uganda, made no objections to the radical and dangerous platform offered. Instead, these mortal threats to the lives of gay and lesbian people were met with a deafening silence. Exodus, in effect, gave this insidious conference its tacit approval.

Today, we take the unprecedented step of joining together to demand that Exodus International’s Board of Directors take immediate action to hold accountable those who used the Exodus brand to promote an atmosphere conducive to serious human rights abuses. The accountability must begin with reasonable and responsible action by Board Chair Bob Ragan, including:

Dismissing Exodus President Alan Chambers for his knowing role in using Exodus to promote human rights abuses

Removing Board member Don Schmierer for speaking at a hate conference that promotes physical harm and psychological torture against GLBT people

Boldly articulating Exodus’ policy against human rights abuses including forced therapy

Promising to end future participation in all conferences that call on the persecution and criminalization of gay and lesbian people

We do not take this call to action lightly. These steps are necessary and commensurate with the massive breach of ethics and trust by the Exodus leadership. Clearly, Exodus has lost credibility and its claim to “love” gay people in the aftermath of Uganda seems duplicitous and insincere. As long as Chambers and Schmierer remain at Exodus, the organization is hopelessly compromised and even complicit in grave human rights abuses. It is time for the Exodus Board, led by Bob Ragan, to assert its moral authority by appointing new leadership and taking the organization in a more humane and principled direction.


Jim Burroway
Box Turtle Bulletin

David Roberts
Ex-Gay Watch

Wayne Besen
Truth Wins Out

Mike Airhart
Truth Wins Out

More at

Is Peter trying to get someone fired?

For all of their talk about the alleged intolerance of gays and how we are trying to silence folks and get them fired, some members of the religious right have no problem with engaging in those same tactics when it suits them.

Witness the recent situation involving our friend Peter LaBarbera and one Warren Throckmorton.

As I recall, I have never written about Throckmorton before. He is a professor at Grover City College and is also vocal about the subject of homosexuality. From what I see, there is plenty to disagree with him about but his demeanor is nothing like that of LaBarbera and company. He tends not to froth at the mouth while going on some tangent about "radical gay activists."

And sometimes he disagrees with LaBarbera and company. For example - this Day of Silence Walkout that I talked about on Monday.

Throckmorton posted a piece criticizing the walkout. He says that a walkout would be more disruptive than silence.

Yesterday, LaBarbera posted a reply from phony gay expert Laurie Higgins. What strikes me are the little notes LaBarbera included in the response making what I think are hints that Throckmorton needs to be let go from his job:

Grove City College professor Warren Throckmorton has directed his hostile “reporting” at NARTH, “reparative therapy,” former homosexual Richard Cohen, Sally Kern and now the pro-family coalition campaign to boycott the homosexual activist “Day of Silence” in schools (April 17). But Throckmorton doesn’t like it when pro-family critics focus attention on his unScriptural positions, which are presumably at odds with Grove City’s Christian mission.

We will have more in the coming weeks on controversial Grove City College associate professor Warren Throckmorton, who has strayed far from a Biblical worldview on homosexuality, and far from the mission of his employer. (Grove City College’s mission statement affirms that the college “remains true to the vision of its founders. Rejecting relativism and secularism, it fosters intellectual, moral, spiritual, and social development consistent with a commitment to Christian truth, morals, and freedom.”)

We will provide further excerpts of this interview, (editor's note - an interview Throckmorton did with Micheangelo Signorile) and possibly the entire transcript, which we will provide to Grove City College officials (who have already been contacted by pro-family leaders concerning Throckmorton’s controversial statements and tactics).

Bear in mind that LaBarbera is the same one who sounded the horn for Matt Barber and Crystal Dixon, claiming that they were fired for conduct done on their own time, even though the conduct was in direct opposite of their employers' mission (and in both cases, involved their employers).

I guess he won't extend that same courtesy to Throckmorton.

I doubt that his bleatings will have any bearing on Throckmorton's employment, but any day that I can shine a light of LaBarbera's hypocrisies is a good day.