Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Family Research Council wants YOU to pay for its anti-gay lies

I have just received an email from the Family Research Council announcing a new initiative (the Marriage Preservation Initiative) and its purpose is to raise over $200,000 to expand FRC's research, flood Capitol Hill with ads, and put a bunch of ads on the Internet and major newspapers.

Supposedly the purpose of these ads it to spell out a message of doom should the Supreme Court overturn Prop 8 and DOMA.

In its email, FRC gave an indication of the kinds of claims they will make.  Allow me to list the claims and refute them:

  • Will the federal government now tell pastors what they can and cannot preach from the pulpit so it conforms to approved government speech? Didn't FRC say the same thing about lgbt-inclusive hate crimes legislation, i.e. that the government will tell pastors what to preach. NO such thing took place after lgbt-inclusive hate crimes legislation was passed. 

  • Will pastors who preach against same-sex "marriage" and homosexual behavior be prosecuted for hate speech? On the risk of repeating myself, didn't FRC claim that lgbt-inclusive hate crimes legislation would lead to pastors being arrested in the pulpits for declaring homosexuality to be a sin? No such incident took place after lgbt-inclusive hate crimes legislation was passed. 
  • Will churches that refuse to host same-sex "weddings" lose their tax exemptions? No church will be forced to host same-sex weddings. Period.

And FRC lists other portents of doom. Allow me to correct those also:

  • The military will have to provide "married" housing to same-sex couples at taxpayer expense. Oh this is terrible because you know, gays and lesbians are exempt from paying taxes. That was sarcasm, folks. 

  •  Christian adoption agencies will be forced to place children with same-sex couples or close their doors. Sorry but this situation has less to do with marriage equality and a lot to do with Christian adoption agencies taking taxpayer money and feeling that they still have the right to discriminate. 

  •  Christian-owned companies and even para-church ministries will be coerced to extend married benefits to same-sex couples. What the heck are "para-church ministries? But more importantly, notice the semantics here.  "Christian-owned companies" doesn't necessarily mean churches, but restaurants, apartment complexes, and as we have seen, bakeries and flower shops owned by folks who call themselves Christians. If you allow secular businesses to discriminate based on their religious beliefs, you are unleashing a huge dragon who will probably end up biting FRC in the ass. 

  •  And children who won't affirm the legitimacy of the homosexual "lifestyle" choice will be forced to undergo psychological counseling. For the life of me, I don't know what the hell FRC is talking about here.

So basically, the Family Research Council wants your money to help it spread a bunch of lies about marriage equality and the lgbt community in general.

'Gay man confronts homophobia, earns applause and respect' and other Tuesday midday news briefs

Gay Man Confronts Homophobic Subway Preacher, Train Crowd Applauds (VIDEO) - If the homophobia in the world ever depresses you, take a look at this video. A gay man confronts a homophobic subway preacher and earns the applause of other passengers. And I love his hat, by the way.  

Music Producer Clive Davis Comes Out As Bisexual - In case you haven't heard, legendary music impresario Clive Davis has come out of the closet. Welcome to the open family, Clive. Now I've got this cousin . . . .  

A Trans Man’s First Year As A NYC Public School Teacher - Fascinating article. We need more things like this and less of those "bathroom lies" the religious right likes to peddle.

 Do not be deceived—tomorrow's anti-#ILequality lobby day is all about 'rescuing homosexuals' - And who will rescue from those who are attempting to rescue us?

Video exposes religious right's talent for anti-gay misdirection, omission

This hideously bad video is by former Family Research Council intern Anna Maria Hoffman and she wants us to "stop the hate" of those who support so-called traditional marriage. Though it was excruciating to watch, especially the couple of seconds (Girlfriend can't sing. Not a lick!), her attempt to outline the point of view of those on her side of the marriage equality argument actually helps us.

Not because of what she says, via bad cue card reading, but because of her tone, how she misdirects the argument, and what she omits.

1. Tone - Ms. Hoffman whines about that those on her side of the argument are unfairly attacked, yet she makes it seem that those of who support marriage equality are doing it because it's a "trendy" thing to do. To the vast majority of us, gaining marriage equality is not like going to the new club or attempting a new dance. We have a desire to affirm our love and see our families protected as all Americans do.

2. Misdirects - Hoffman lists an entire set of reasons why so-called traditional marriage is in danger such as the rate of divorce and households without a father. However, none of the reasons she lists has anything to do with gays and lesbians getting married. Nor does she say how allowing gays and lesbians to get married would exacerbate these problems.

3. Omission - Finally, Hoffman seems to be taking a page from the Maggie Gallagher book of "Whine about being called bigots to cover up how bigoted our tactics are." She goes on a spiel about how unfair it is that those like her are labeled as "bigots" simply because they support so-called traditional marriage. Is she serious? Was Hoffman asleep during her entire tenure at the Family Research Council?  Hoffman seems to conveniently omit the many, many times her organization has demonized gays, labeled us as the "dangerous other," and expressed desires that we be either deported from the country or put in jail. And that doesn't even begin to cover the cherry-picked studies the Family Research Council uses against us.

Hoffman is unfortunately indicative of religious right group employees and spokespeople. They want to claim victimhood for being called bigots while at the same time spewing their bigotry.

You simply cannot have it both ways.

Hat tip to Jeremy Hooper.