Family Research Council

Tony Perkins: No Religious Liberty For Muslims; Islam 'Incompatible With Constitution'

Tony Perkins styles his group, the Family Research Council, as America’s premier defender of religious liberty … even though Perkins himself opposes religious freedom for Muslim-Americans (and perhaps even liberal Christians) and FRC’s vice president has proposed banning mosques and stripping Muslim-Americans of their First Amendment rights.

On his “Washington Watch” radio program yesterday, Perkins repeated his claim that Islam is not protected under the U.S. Constitution.

While discussing GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson’s recent statement that he would never support a Muslim candidate for president, along with the claims of Kim Davis’ critics that a clerk would never receive such praise from the Religious Right had she been a Muslim, Perkins railed against media commentators for “interjecting” Islam “into all of these discussions.” He said that the media is using Islam as a “wedge” to divide conservatives, suggesting that Kim Davis’ decision to impose her Christian beliefs onto her county office was different because Islam is not protected in the Constitution, while Christianity is.

“Religious freedom and our liberty is ordered liberty under the Constitution,” Perkins said. “And as Dr. Carson pointed out, and I know this is driving the left crazy, that Islam is not just a religion, Islam is an economic system, it is a judicial system, it is a compressive system which is incompatible with the Constitution. That’s what Dr. Carson said and he happens to be correct.”

Perkins said that the country is under no obligation to provide legal protections for people “who want to blow — I mean, when was the last time you saw a Baptist trying to blow something up?”

This may surprise Thomas Jefferson, the author of the First Amendment, who made clear while discussing a bill in Virginia that religious freedom protects Muslims and other non-Christians:

Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed, by inserting the word "Jesus Christ," so that it should read, "a departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;" the insertion was rejected by a great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mahometan, the Hindoo, and Infidel of every denomination.

Perkins’ remarks also go up against the Treaty of Tripoli, which was negotiated under George Washington, signed by John Adams and approved unanimously by the U.S. Senate in 1797.

As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.

The only thing Perkins’ remarks truly reveal is that the Family Research Council is more interested in promoting bigoted attacks on minority rights than actually protecting religious freedom.

Who's Who At The Values Voter Summit 2015

Next weekend, GOP presidential contenders and top lawmakers will mingle with some of the most extreme Religious Right activists in the country at the Values Voter Summit, an annual event in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, American Values, and others.

Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Rick Santorum, Bobby Jindal, Mike Huckabee, Lindsey Graham and Ben Carson have all confirmed that they will be speaking at the event. Carly Fiorina, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Chris Christie and John Kasich have been invited but have not yet confirmed their attendance, according to the event’s website. Jeb Bush, who was snubbed by FRC at last year’s event, declined to attend but will send a video address. Donald Trump is the only presidential candidate to have publicly turned down the invitation, provoking the ire of FRC’s president, Tony Perkins.

Candidates who attend the Values Voter Summit choose to align themselves with some of the most radical activists and organizations working to dehumanize LGBT people, erode reproductive rights, demolish the separation between church and state, and eliminate First Amendment rights for religious minorities.

The Family Research Council routinely smears LGBT people with false and degrading pronouncements and campaigns for a United States ruled by the dicta of a small faction of fundamentalists Christians. Another principal sponsor of the summit, the American Family Association, has an equally extreme record.

In addition to the abhorrent record of the sponsors of this event, the presidential candidates will also be joined by a host of radical Religious Right speakers.

Below is an introduction to some of the people who will be sharing the stage with the Republican presidential hopefuls.

Tony Perkins

As the president of the Family Research Council, the summit’s main sponsor, Tony Perkins heads the organization’s efforts to erode gay rights, reproductive rights, and the separation of church and state.

FRC continually expresses hostility to the rights of Americans who don’t share his conservative brand of Christianity. Last year, Perkins suggested that the First Amendment’s religious liberty protections do not apply to Muslims, not surprising for the leader of an organization that once issued a statement that read, “[W]hile it is true that the United States of America was founded on the sacred principle of religious freedom for all, that liberty was never intended to exalt other religions to the level that Christianity holds in our country's heritage…. Our Founders … would have found utterly incredible the idea that all religions, including paganism, be treated with equal deference." He similarly suggested that Christians who support LGBT rights should not have the same religious freedoms as anti-gay conservatives because “true religious freedom” only applies to those whom he believes hold “orthodox religious viewpoints.”

Perkins has also overseen one of the most anti-gay platforms of any major political organization. FRC officials have expressed support for the criminalization of homosexuality not only in the United States, but also in Malawi and Uganda. Senior fellow Peter Sprigg once said he would “much prefer to export homosexuals from the United States than to import them into the United States because we believe homosexuality is destructive to society.”

Perkins himself frequently reflects the extreme views of his organization. He has:

Jerry Boykin

Family Research Council vice president and retired Army Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin sparked a controversy when, as a high-ranking official in the Bush Defense Department, he framed the fight against terrorism as a holy war between Christianity and Islam. He has since built a career as a Religious Right speaker, specializing in anti-Muslim rhetoric and anti-Obama conspiracy theories. He:

Mat Staver

Mat Staver is the founder and head of Liberty Counsel, which is the organization currently representing Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in her campaign to deny marriage licenses to gay couples in her county. At a previous Values Voter Summit, Staver claimed that progressives are using LGBT rights and secular government as part of an effort to “ultimately implode America” and that the “agenda of the homosexual movement” is to destroy freedom and western civilization. Staver has:

Jonathan Cahn

Messianic rabbi Jonathan Cahn is best known for his novel “The Harbinger,” which asserts that the 9/11 attacks were a result of America losing God’s protection due to its sins.  Cahn also:

Todd Starnes

Fox News commentator Todd Starnes has become notorious for filing false reports based on right-wing conspiracy theories, especially about the supposed persecution of Christians in America, which of course makes him a favorite “journalist” among conservative activists. Starnes has also:

Star Parker

Star Parker is a longtime Religious Right activist who is particularly active in anti-gay and anti-choice advocacy. She has called legal abortion a “genocide” on par with slavery and the Holocaust and blamed “sexual promiscuity” for nearly all financial and societal problems. At the 2011 Values Voter Summit, she claimed that God was getting ready to punish America for marriage equality and legal abortion. Parker has also:

David and Jason Benham

Twin brothers Jason and David Benham were catapulted to national attention when an HGTV show that they were set to star in was cancelled following revelations about their anti-gay, anti-choice, anti-Muslim activism. Since the show’s cancellation, the brothers have become martyrs in the eyes of the Religious Right, which has lifted them up as an example of the supposed persecution of conservative Christians in America. One or both of the brothers have:

  • Asserted that the LGBT equality movement is part of a “spiritual fight" between God and the “kingdom run by Satan
  • Compared themselves to ISIS victims
  • Urged the city of Charlotte, North Carolina, to deny permits to an LGBT Pride event, calling it a “vile” and “destructive” activity that “should not be allowed in our city”
  • Compared the fight against marriage equality to opposing Nazi Germany
  • Called an Islamic community center a “den of iniquity” and referred to Muslims as “the enemy attacking" America
  • Organized a prayer rally to coincide with the 2012 Democratic National Convention, declaring that America must repent for “homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation”
  • Led protests outside of abortion clinics, praising anti-choice demonstrators for taking a stand at “the gates of hell” and confronting the “altars of Moloch”

Kim Davis

Kim Davis, the clerk of Rowan County, Kentucky, became a Religious-Right folk hero this summer when she refused to allow her office to issue marriage licenses after the Supreme Court decision on marriage equality. Davis, saying that she was acting under “God’s authority” and wanted to use her county office to spread “God’s word,” spent five nights in jail after a federal judge found her in contempt of court for violating multiple court orders to begin issuing licenses. The viciously anti-gay group Liberty Counsel and its founder Mat Staver has been active supporters of Davis and have been representing her in court

At the summit, Davis will receive FRC’s “Cost of Discipleship” award, which previously went to Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman who was actually persecuted for her Christian faith. Tony Perkins, the president of FRC, has previously compared Davis’ experience to that of Ibrahim, who was imprisoned for converting to Christianity and was later granted asylum in the U.S.

Casey Davis

Casey Davis (no relation to Kim Davis) is another Kentucky clerk who has refused to grant marriage licenses to gay couples. Davis called the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality a “war on Christianity,” and vowed to go to jail — and even die — in order to protect his “freedom” to deny gay couples marriage licenses.

Brigitte Gabriel

Brigitte Gabriel is the founder and president of ACT! for America, where she works with local activists throughout the country to promote fears that Sharia law is taking hold in the U.S. and must be banned and to challenge textbooks that she believes are insufficiently critical of Islam. She makes frequent media appearances to warn of what she calls the “secret Islamification” of the West. Among other attacks on Mulsim-Americans, Gabriel has:

Pat Fagan

Pat Fagan is the director of summit sponsor the Family Research Council’s Marriage and Religious Research Institute. He has compared a UN report criticizing the Vatican over its handling of sexual abuse cases to Kristallnacht, the spate of violence in which Nazis attacked Jews and destroyed their property while German police turned a blind eye, and  has advocated for coming up with new names for gay marriage, such as “garriage,” “larriage” or “harriage,” so that when he says “marriage” it will be clear he means heterosexual marriage. He has said that Eisenstadt v. Baird, the Supreme Court ruling that allowed the distribution of contraception to unmarried people, may be “the single most destructive decision in the history of the Court,” explaining that “functioning” societies “punish” and “shame” people who have sex outside of marriage.

Erick Erickson

Erick Erickson is a Fox contributor and the editor of conservative blog RedState. Constantly pushing for the conservative movement to move further to the right, Erickson has:

Craig James

Former sportscaster Craig James joined the Family Research Council in 2014. In addition to claiming that Obama may secretly be a Muslim, James has:

Aaron & Melissa Klein

Aaron and Melissa Klein are the owners of an Oregon bakery who were sued for violating the state’s nondiscrimination laws when they refused to bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple. They have since become Religious Right martyrs and were featured by Sen. Ted Cruz in a campaign video. Aaron Klein has said that denying a cake to a gay couple was part of his fight against “Satan.”

Ed Vitagliano

As research director of the American Family Association, Ed Vitagliano is a vocal anti-gay activist. Not only does he believe “pray away the gay” works, but he also claims that gay rights will lead to the destruction of America.

Brent Bozell

Bozell is the Founder and President of the Media Research Center, which works to expose what it claims is rampant “liberal media bias.”

Bozell has:

Tony Perkins: 'Lawlessness' Under Obama Paving The Way For The Antichrist

Yesterday on his “Washington Watch” radio show, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins asked listeners to call in and tell him what they think Congress should do to stand up to President Obama. Almost all of them demanded that Republicans impeach the president, an endeavor Perkins has heartily endorsed in the past.

Near the end of a program, a caller chimed in to “clarify why Obama is doing the things he is doing.” He explained: “The reason why Obama is doing what he is doing, keeping the Christian immigrants from Syria to come over here, because Satan comes to kill, steal and destroy and Obama is possessed by the Devil, Satan himself; that’s why he wants everybody dead, including the United States and Israel, and all the Christians dead because he’s full of the Devil.”

Perkins responded that we are witnessing the fulfillment of biblical prophecy that “in the End Times there will be a spirit of lawlessness and when that comes it will increase.”

“You’d be hard-pressed to say that lawlessness is not increasing in this nation,” he said. “I think that’s part of the age, it’s not a person presently, it will be, it paves the way for what scripture calls the Antichrist, but what we are seeing now is just an environment being fostered of lawlessness, which allows that to spread. Either you are influenced by God and you work for good or you work for evil. I think we need to be praying for our leaders that even if they don’t know God or have not submitted to him, that he will lead them and turn their hearts.”

He added: “I pray for President Obama, it’s hard sometimes and it’s increasingly difficult, but I do pray for him.”

Tony Perkins: 'I Fear For The Country And What May Occur' If Congress Doesn't Defund Planned Parenthood

The Family Research Council's Tony Perkins appeared on Glenn Beck's television show last night to promote his new book, "No Fear," and both men warned that God's judgment will rain down upon this nation if Congress fails to defund Planned Parenthood.

"I fear God much more than I fear man," Beck said. "I believe that the Lord has made it so clear on Planned Parenthood, couldn't be more clear on Iran, more clear on 'black lives matter' versus 'all lives matter.' I fear that we are at Jeremiah."

Perkins agreed, saying that God always "presents the evidence before He passes judgment" and that the Planned Parenthood smear videos are God's evidence of America's wickedness.

"This is why it is so important what Congress is doing," Perkins said. "I've had this discussion with congressional leaders, this is our moment, our opportunity. If we say this is just another political deal and we're going to back down, I fear for the country and what may occur."

Religious Right Attorney Debunks Kim Davis Defenders' 'Religious Liberty' Arguments

Ken Klukowski, the former head of the Family Research Council’s Center for Religious Liberty, admitted on a right-wing radio show last week that Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis was on “shaky legal ground” for ordering her deputies to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

While few legal observers ever thought that Davis had a case — to the point that some suspected that her attorneys must have been deliberately giving her bad advice — Klukowski’s former group, the FRC, has defended Davis and announced today that it will honor her at its upcoming summit for challenging “legal tyranny.”

FRC President Tony Perkins appeared last week at a rally in Kentucky defending the clerk and insisted in an interview with Megyn Kelly of Fox News that Davis was not stopping her deputies from issuing marriage licenses. However, that was exactly what Davis was doing, and Klukowski honed in on that fact in an interview with conservative broadcaster Eric Metaxas last week.

Klukowski told Metaxas that while he is sympathetic to Davis’ plight as a fellow gay marriage opponent, he said that Davis’ refusal to let deputy clerks issue marriage licenses to legally eligible couples was indefensible and incompatible with religious freedom.

He said that by trying to “exercise my governmental authority to order the other public servants here, that they are not going to do this either, that’s where I believe she is on, respectfully, she’s on very shaky legal ground. That would be the difference between a conscientious objector in the military who says, ‘I want to serve my country so I am going to volunteer for the military but because of my faith I don’t believe in bearing weapons.’ He can still serve, he’ll just be assigned to a noncombat role, he’ll never have to pick up a weapon. The equivalent here would be someone saying, ‘I will take command of this infantry unit, I am going to take command of this rifle company, but not only am I not going to fight I am also going to order all the troops under my command that because of my religious objection they are not going to fight either.’”

Metaxas, however, saw it a bit differently, and compared Davis to a Nazi officer who refused a command from Adolf Hitler to send his military unit to murder Jews.

Klukowski responded by saying that Davis’ defenders are turning the First Amendment on its head: “The First Amendment has never been construed as saying that whatever your personal beliefs are that if you are in a position of authority, if your power is in fact a governmental power, the power of the state, that you have the right to make other civil servants, who have their own rights under the First Amendment, to make them act in conformity with your personal religious beliefs. Then you have the issue of, well, what are their religious beliefs? What are their personal beliefs?”

He went on to say that there is no legal precedent saying that officials can “combine” their “personal individual liberty” with “your governmental power to also make other public servants partake in your objection.”

Religious Right Martyr Kim Davis To Receive Award For Fighting 'Legal Tyranny'

As many predicted, Kim Davis is cashing in on her new role as a right-wing celebrity. The Family Research Council announced today that Davis will receive its “Cost of Discipleship Award” at the upcoming Values Voter Summit.

FRC head Tony Perkins has already compared Davis to the previous award winner, Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman who, unlike Davis, actually faced persecution for her faith, as she was arrested and imprisoned by Sudan’s government for converting to Christianity. Leading up to Ibrahim’s appearance at the FRC event, Perkins attempted to use her story to attack the Obama administration, even though her U.S. supporters actually thanked the State Department for working diligently to secure her release. An attorney working on Ibrahim’s case, who is also a Religious Right figure, criticized Perkins for his rhetoric.

In announcing the award, Perkins praised Davis for her “courage” in standing up to “militant secularists”:

“We are pleased to announce that Kim Davis will be honored at this year's Values Voter Summit. After meeting with her last week, I can tell you that Kim Davis wasn’t looking for this fight, but she is not running from it either. What militant secularists are almost certainly afraid of is what is coming to pass: courage is breeding courage. When other people might have cowered in fear, Kim took a stand. And today, millions of Americans stand with her and for the religious freedom upon which our nation was founded.

“Far from the media's portrayal, Kim isn't trying to impose her views on anyone, she is simply asking that her orthodox religious views be accommodated.

“The courage of Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis isn't just changing the conversation -- it's changing the political landscape. In places like Missouri, where state officials watched with horror as Davis was hauled off to jail for her Christian beliefs, leaders are moving quickly to protect their people from the same fate. The Supreme Court created this mess -- now it's incumbent on states to protect the victims mired in it.

“While the Court redefined marriage, it did not redefine the First Amendment. Thank goodness for people of courage like Kim Davis, who refuses to let religious liberty be trampled by legal tyranny. We applaud her. In the face of intense pressure, she's shown more courage than 99 percent of the elected officials in Kentucky,” concluded Perkins.

Another county clerk in Kentucky who is trying to prevent same-sex couples from receiving marriage licenses, Casey Davis (no relation), is also scheduled to speak at the summit. He has gone so far as to say that he may die in his fight against gay marriage.

Perkins addressed the rally in front of the Kentucky prison where Davis was detained after a federal judge held her in contempt of court but doesn’t seem to know some basic facts surrounding the case. For example, Perkins told Fox News that Davis wasn’t barring her deputy clerks from issuing marriage licenses, even though Davis explicitly said at the time that she was doing just that.

Rep. Trent Franks: Prepare For Judgment For Legal Abortion, Like 'Altars Of Baal'

Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., was Family Research Council President Tony Perkins’ guest on his “Washington Watch” program on Saturday, where he warned that continued legal abortion “rivals almost anything that happened on the altars of Baal” and will lead to God’s judgment on liberals and on America as a whole.

“As a nation, we are accountable for what we know,” Perkins said, “and we do know now, without excuse, what Planned Parenthood is doing. I tremble for my nation, for this country, to move forward in choosing the wrong path when we now know what is happening in these abortion clinics across the nation.”

“You know, for some reason, and I don’t understand it,” Franks said, “all through history, God has always done His part, but He’s required us to do ours. And He ultimately wins the battle, but what happens in history is oftentimes directly reflective of man’s responsibility or irresponsibility. And for some reason, we are created to be responsible and to listen to God’s foundational precepts. And when we don’t, it brings great suffering on us and upon those we love and upon the greater human family. And right now, you are so right, we have seen the evil of Planned Parenthood and the murder of these little children that rivals almost anything that happened on the altars of Baal. And if we don’t, as a nation, say, ‘No, we reject that,’ I’m afraid we’ll bring great sorrow upon all of us.”

Franks went on to warn pro-choice liberals that if they believe in God, they should be “trembling.”

“You know, I have absolutely every conviction that God is on His throne and He’s going to prevail here,” Franks said. “But in human terms, if Christians and people of good will and people who have a respect for their fellow human beings don’t begin to assert themselves soon, the barbarians are going to overrun the gates.”

“I really fear for” pro-choice people, he said. “Because there are two questions I would ask the left: What if these really are babies? And what if there really is a God? Those are things that if I had to ask in their position, there would be great trembling in my life if I held their position.”

Is Jeb Bush Out Of Values Voter Summit?

Every year, Republican leaders flock to the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit, which gives them a chance to curry favor with Religious Right activists and gives FRC President Tony Perkins a chance to assert his political influence.

So it caused a minor hubbub last year when Perkins pointedly refused to invite presidential hopefuls Jeb Bush and Chris Christie to speak at the summit, saying that they “shouldn’t take it the wrong way” but they “just weren’t on the top of the list” for “values voters.”

We were interested, then, to see that Bush is not listed as an invited speaker at this year’s summit:

When, as recently as July, Bush was listed as invited:

Bush, for his part, seems to have been doing what he can to woo Perkins, meeting with him at the Conservative Political Action Conference this year and saying that he has “a lot of respect for Tony and his group.”

Interestingly, the Christian Post reported yesterday that Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump had turned down his invitation to speak at the summit and Perkins was miffed, saying that Trump was “not interested” in speaking with evangelicals:

Although some polls have shown that the misogynistic real estate mogul who once favored abortion and carries liberal views on same-sex marriage has had no trouble gaining the support of Evangelicals , Perkins asserted that Trump's refusal to speak at the conference is a sign that he has no interest in conversing with Evangelicals.

"We have got the Values Voters Summit coming up and Donald Trump has passed. He is not going to come," Perkins said. "I think that is going to send a message to Evangelicals and values voters that he wants their support, but he is not really interested in having a conversation with them."

"I think that is probably about the time, in about three or four weeks, people are going to start thinking more seriously about this as we move forward into the year," Perkins continued. "[Trump's absence], whether it was intended to or not, it will send a message."

"I think [Trump] is going to have to have conversations with Evangelicals and talk about issues they care about. He hasn't really done that in a way that is convincing," Perkins argued. "Could [Trump] make some progress with Evangelicals? I think he could if he tried, but I don't really see that happening right now."

Tony Perkins Blames Economic 'Roller Coaster' On Planned Parenthood, 'Moral Climate'

On his “Washington Watch” radio program today, the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins took a call from a listener who asked him about the End Times rabbi Jonathan Cahn’s “Shemitah” theory, which holds that some big event will happen this month as a sign of God’s wrath.

Perkins said that he was trying to arrange for Cahn to come on his show soon, noting that “we’re coming up to that point” that Cahn is predicting.

He then tied the whole thing into attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, saying that business groups were wrong to be concerned about the economic implications if the debate leads to a government shutdown this month because the real problem with the economy right now is “the moral climate.”

“I’ve been giving a lot of thought to that because there are a lot of things converging right now,” he said. "And this goes back to a point I didn’t get to, but those in the business community are really leaning heavy on Congress to not get into this fight on Planned Parenthood that could lead to a government shutdown or could affect the debt limit because we don’t want to in any way affect the economy."

“Well, folks, I’m telling you what, the economy’s going to be affected, if we can’t get the moral climate, the moral foundation of America straight, that’s why our economy is like a roller coaster. There is no stability in our society. Who knows, I mean there might be another riot. We are living in such a volatile time it is hard to predict anything.”

Last month, televangelist Pat Robertson similarly blamed a stock market plunge on Planned Parenthood funding.

Mike Huckabee: Gay Marriage Ruling Is 'Illegal' Because It Confuses People

As Steve Benen noted yesterday after Mike Huckabee claimed that the Dred Scott decision is still the “law of the land” and is just being ignored by elected officials, when it comes to the implementation of marriage equality, the GOP presidential candidate has invented “his own brand of crackpot civics.”

Huckabee put his made-up civics beliefs on full display in an interview yesterday with the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins in which he claimed that Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear could “very simply” fix the situation with Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who has refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, by removing clerks’ names from marriage licenses altogether … while simultaneously claiming that the governor actually has no authority to do so.

This, Huckabee explained, shows why the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality was “so illegal … because this has left the whole country in a state of ambiguity and confusion.”

“The governor can fix this very simply by simply saying he’ll change the form,” Huckabee said. “Now the question is, does he have the authority to do that? And if so, under what authority? This is where this all gets very confusing. And it’s why the haste to rush into implementing same-sex marriage is so ridiculous and, frankly, Tony, it’s why it’s so illegal is because this has left the whole country in a state of ambiguity and confusion.”

Huckabee went on to cite the Tennessee judge who denied a straight couple a divorce this month in a stunt ruling meant to protest the Obergefell decision, which the former Arkansas governor said was just a sign of all the confusion about gay marriage.

“It’s chaos, confusion that’s been created,” Perkins agreed, “and this is just the beginning of what we’re going to see play out here.”

Huckabee then proceeded to roll out some other desparate legal theories about Davis, claiming that she is not required to follow laws that were implemented after she took office and even claiming that she could be guilty of a felony in Kentucky “if she just arbitrarily changes the wording of the marriage license.”

“When she was elected to that position,” He said, “she was operating under the Kentucky constitution that expressly says that marriage is between a man and a woman. … So that’s what she was elected on, that is the job she is doing. And there is a specific statute in Kentucky law that if she just arbitrarily changes the wording of the marriage license, that’s a felony. So here’s the question: Which law does she follow? The ambiguous and unconstitutional judicial tyranny ruling of the Supreme Court that has not yet been codified? Or does she follow the specific constitutional and statutory requirements under Kentucky law, under which she was elected?”

“And I just really am disapponited that some of the people think the way to handle this is just have public officials resign their jobs,” he added, “because they’re going to go ahead and surrender to what Jefferson called judicial tyranny.”

Tony Perkins' Surprisingly Apt Kim Davis Analogy

The Religious Right activists who frequently claim that they are simply seeking to “live and let live” in a country that increasingly favors LGBT rights and other social progress sometimes compare themselves to the Pilgrims, citing the historical myth that the American concept of religious liberty originated with early Puritan governments.

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, made this argument on his “Washington Watch” radio program today in response to a caller who claimed that the arrest of Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who attempted to bar her entire office from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, portends laws making it “illegal to pray in the military” and is reminiscent of Nazi “legislation trying to annihilate the Jews.”

“It’s just kind of sad that if you have religious beliefs you can’t be an elected official,” the caller said.

Perkins agreed, attacking the “intentional” “misconception” that “religious liberty is simply the freedom to pick the church of your choice” rather than the freedom of people like Kim Davis to impose their religious views on everyone else.

“Do you really think that William Bradford and the Pilgrims came to America, to this land, seeking just to move their church membership because they couldn’t find a church that they really liked there in England or Holland, where they were before they came back to England?” he asked. “I don’t think so. And, in fact, they had religious freedom in Holland but they didn’t have the ability to build community and a framework to live under based on their religious freedom. That’s why they risked it all to come to what we now know as the United States of America.”

“They came here for the same thing that Kim Davis is asking for,” he said, “religious freedom. Not freedom of worship, but the freedom of religion.”

Perkins may have accidentally made the perfect Kim Davis analogy. The Puritans traveled to Plymouth Colony after a stint in Holland where, as historian Robert Tracy McKenzie notes, they “encountered a religious tolerance almost unheard of in that day and age.” In America, he writes, “they hoped to live by themselves, enjoy the same degree of religious liberty and earn a ‘better and easier’ living.” In doing so, they set up a theocracy, where, as PBS writes, they sought “religious freedom—but only for themselves.”

Perkins is absolutely right that Kim Davis and her supporters are seeking something similar to what the Pilgrims sought in the 17th century : not the freedom of religion, but a religious state, governed by them.

FRC Official: Call Gay Marriage 'Garriage' And Lesbian Marriage 'Larriage'

Pat Fagan, the director of the Family Research Council’s Marriage and Religious Research Institute, suggested yesterday that marriage equality opponents start referring to gay men’s marriages as “garriage” and lesbians’ marriages as “larriage,” with the overarching term for “homosexual marriage” being “harriage.”

Fagan made his proposal in a question to Ryan T. Anderson, the marriage equality opponent who was presenting on his new book “Truth Overruled” at FRC’s office.

"A proposal," Fagan said, "something along this line, that we in the pro-family movement start using related terms, but keep ‘marriage’ for what it always was. So we might call — and this is to be worked out — but something like, if you're talking about gay marriage you call it ‘garriage.’ If it’s lesbian, you call it 'larriage.' If you want a generic homosexual marriage it’s ‘harriage.’ But getting these words into use I think is key. And that will take time, but whomever holds the language ultimately holds the whole game.”

Anderson, who has been doing his best to soften the public face of opposition to marriage equality, politely told Fagan that while his “broader point” was “exactly right,” his “only concern with the three terms that you suggest is how will that be heard by other people?”

H/T reader Erik

Kim Davis Attorney: Marriage Equality Will Bar All Christians From Public Office

Mat Staver, the head of Liberty Counsel and the attorney representing Kentucky clerk Kim Davis in her effort to bar her office from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, claimed yesterday that if Davis doesn’t get her way then Christians will be effectively barred from holding all public offices.

Interviewing Staver on his “Washington Watch” program, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins said that he was “very disappointed” in Republicans who have suggested that Davis resign from her position if she is unwilling to perform a major part of her job.

“That would establish a reverse religious test where if you hold an orthodox religious view of marriage, you would be barred from holding public office,” Perkins said.

Staver agreed with Perkins, noting that Davis “believes God called her” to run for clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky.

“But if what we do is follow the advice of some of these Republican candidates that say she needs to resign, well what does that mean?” he asked. “That means that Kim Davis and anyone else who is an elected official … that means you have to check your faith at the ballot box. And once you’re elected, you have to change your faith, put it aside, transgress it, you cannot have your conscience accommodated. ‘No more Christians need to run for office,’ that’s essentially the message, and if you’re in office you need to resign your post immediately. Now what kind of America is that? It’s certainly not the America that the Founders envisioned and I don’t think it’s the kind of America that most people want.”

“It won’t stop with this issue, Mat,” Perkins warned. “It will be something else next. This is the time to stand and exercise our religious freedom lest we lose that religious freedom.”

Staver claimed that Davis was merely seeking the “simple accommodation” that her name be removed from marriage licenses in the county — a new line from the attorney who has been urging public officials to defy the marriage equality decision lest they run afoul of God’s law .

Davis, he said, is the first of many Christians who will be jailed “for their religious beliefs” thanks to the Supreme Court’s decision.

“This is a tragedy, it’s the first Christian jailed since the decision of the Supreme Court on June 26 on marriage,” he said. “But unfortunately, Tony, as you and I fear, I don't think this is going to be the last Christian jailed for their religious beliefs and conscience that collide with this issue of same-sex marriage.”

“No, not as long as there are Christians who are willing to live their lives according to their faith,” Perkins agreed, “and there are a lot of them out there.”

Tony Perkins' Breathtakingly Bad Defense Of Kim Davis

Yesterday, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins appeared on Fox News’ “The Kelly File” to defend Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who barred her county office from issuing marriage licenses after the Supreme Court struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban.

Perkins, who usually loves to talk about the supposed rise of Islamic law in America , dodged Fox News host Megyn Kelly’s question about whether a Muslim county clerk could deny a marriage license to an interfaith couple, saying that it is up to the voters to decide whether that Muslim clerk should keep his or her position.

Perkins also claimed that there is no religious objection to interracial marriage because “interracial marriage is very difficult to point to in scripture.” Public opposition to interracial marriage was actually much higher when the Supreme Court struck down 16 state bans on interracial marriage in Loving v. Virginia than opposition to same-sex marriage is today, and many of the Religious Right leaders of that day denounced interracial marriage as unbiblical. As the trial judge in the Loving case said: “Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.”

In fact, Perkins attended Liberty University, an evangelical school founded by Jerry Falwell, an interracial marriage opponent who got his start in politics by attempting to stop the federal government from stripping Bob Jones University of its tax-exempt status over the school’s ban on interracial dating.

“If Chief Justice Warren and his associates had known God’s word and had desired to do the Lord’s will, I am quite confident that the 1954 decision would never have been made,” Falwell said of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision in language reminiscent of anti-gay preachers today. “The facilities should be separate. When God has drawn a line of distinction, we should not attempt to cross that line.”

Perkins also falsely claimed that Davis is not barring her deputy clerks from issuing marriage licenses.

Kelly: You know the argument on the other side though. What if somebody goes in there and says, my sincerely held religious beliefs and now we're back in 1952 say, blacks and whites shouldn't get married. And therefore, I don't care that the Supreme Court said it's legal, I object and therefore, no.

Perkins: Well, it's much different. You have a long standing orthodox view about marriage in the Bible. The issue of interracial marriage is very difficult to point to in scripture. Are there some that hold that view? Yes. But it is --

Kelly: What about Muslims? What about Muslims who say, a Muslim man may not marry a Christian woman and therefore you applying to me on the Muslim clerck? I'm not giving you that marriage license.

Perkins: If -- are you saying if there is a Muslim and clerk that --

Kelly: The Muslim clerk says, I want a religious accommodation -- how many accommodations can we grant?

Perkins: Right. In this particular case. What you have are the voters of this district, of this region of the country that elected her as the clerk. If they don't like what she is doing they can kick her out. It is not up to some unelected judge to impose his views on her and hold her in contempt of basically whatever he wants.

Kelly: And she may yet be if somehow she interferes with future licenses to be issued by the deputies although it doesn't sound like she is going to do that if they changed the issue.

Perkins: Well, here is all she wants. All she wants is to have her name off the license. She is not saying nobody in my office can issue this. She's saying, I just don't want my name --

Mike Huckabee: It'd Be Nice Of Obama To Trade Terrorists For Kim Davis

On Friday, Mike Huckabee appeared on the Family Research Council’s “Washington Watch” program to defend Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who was found in contempt of court after repeatedly refusing to issue marriage licenses following the legalization of same-sex marriage.

Speaking with FRC President Tony Perkins, who will be joining the former Arkansas governor at a rally in defense of Davis today, Huckabee said that Davis’ rights have been “trampled upon by those who practice judicial tyranny.”

“I wonder if the president would be willing to trade some terrorists to get her out of jail,” Perkins joked. “It’d be nice if he would,” Huckabee said. “Bowe Bergdahl was traded for terrorists.”

Huckabee went on to say that prisoners in Guantanamo Bay have been “accommodated in every way and they were terrorists in our custody, yet Kim Davis is not given an accommodation of her faith and that’s why I say it is absolutely the criminalization of Christianity.”

Huckabee also told Perkins that Kim Davis’ case proves that gay marriage has an impact on all of us, claiming that now anyone who opposes same-sex marriage “may end up going to jail.”

“This is a county clerk who is in jail this weekend without bail, let me point out, because she believed that her faith was more important than following an illegal, unconstitutional and, as yet, an unlawful decision by the Supreme Court,” Huckabee said. “Congress hasn’t made a law yet that says there is same-sex marriage…. This federal judge is trying to enforce something that does not exist yet.”

Of course, Davis is not in jail because she opposes gay marriage, but because she has been held in contempt of court for consistently breaking the law. Requiring her to allow her office to perform its official duties for taxpayers in no way requires her to approve of same-sex marriage.

The GOP presidential candidate went on to say that Davis’ case shows that the government will soon imprison pastors or “the leader of a youth group that refuses to let transgendered [sic] people go and sleep in the same dorm at a church camp.”

'We're The Government': Jerry Boykin Says Our Government Was Founded To Be Run By Christians

The Family Research Council's Jerry Boykin joined Rick Joyner for a "special update" on Sunday where Boykin asserted that Christians must be involved in politics because the Constitution came directly out of the Bible and the Founding Fathers created our system of government to be run by Christians.

Insisting that the separation of church and state is a myth, Boykin declared that the church was primarily responsible for the success of the American Revolution and as well as the abolition of slavery and suggested that Christians who refuse to get involved in politics are cowards.

"You don't have the courage to stand for what you believe in," Boykin said, "because the church has always been a dominant factor in the politics of America and the 56 men who signed that document were men of faith. When they came back and wrote that Constitution, they wrote that Constitution and derived all of the principles out of that Constitution out of the Bible. So when you hold up a Bible, you need to hold up the Constitution right next to it and say, 'This Constitution came from this Bible and every freedom that's given in this Constitution came from the Bible.'"

"When Christians say we shouldn't be involved in politics, you've got to be kidding me," he continue. "We're the government."

Kim Davis' Lawyer Invokes Nazi Gas Chambers, Warns Of Massive Persecution

On Wednesday, anti-gay Kentucky clerk Kim Davis’ lawyer, Mat Staver, founder of the right-wing legal group Liberty Counsel, compared Davis to a Jew living in Nazi Germany.

Following a judge’s order yesterday that Davis remain in custody of U.S. Marshals for continuing to defy the courts by refusing to issue marriage licenses in her county, Staver appeared on the Family Research Council's “Washington Watch” program, where he once again brought up Nazi tyranny.

“Washington Watch” host Craig James, after mentioning his own lawsuit against Fox Sports for terminating his job as a football analyst over comments he made mocking gay rights, claimed that America is now on a “slippery slope” of anti-Christian persecution. Legal organizations like Liberty Counsel, he said, need to “confront people who are breaking the law" — which, in James’ mind, apparently does not include Davis.

Staver then accused Davis’ critics of turning America into Nazi Germany: “Back in the 1930s, it began with the Jews, where they were evicted from public employment, then boycotted in their private employment, then stigmatized and that led to the gas chambers. This is the new persecution of Christians here in this country.”

The Liberty Counsel chairman has previously claimed that respecting gay marriage laws is no different than handing Jews over to the Nazis: “You cannot obey something that is contrary to God's law. And we would easily say, well, what would happen if the government forced you turn over a Jew in Nazi Germany? All of us would say we wouldn't do that, we wouldn't listen to that. Well, we're about ready to walk into the moment.”

'The Onslaught Is Under Way!' FRC Urgently Needs Money To Fight 'Crackdown On Christians'

In a direct mail piece sent out this week, the Family Research Council warns that a “crackdown” on Christians in the wake of the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling has begun and urges supporters to contribute “as generously as possible” to help FRC fight the “onslaught.”

Calling the Obergefell ruling a “tragedy,” FRC president Tony Perkins warns that the “enemies of biblical truth and devotion to the same … are circling ready pounce, and protection for Christians is urgently needed.”

This protection, he writes, comes in the form of the so-called First Amendment Defense Act, which would sanction discrimination against LGBT people, single mothers and others in a wide range of private and public services.

The crackdown has begun.

I told you barely eight weeks ago that I believed a crackdown was coming and your own religious freedom would be in jeopardy. I didn’t really know it would hit this fast and hit this hard.

But here it is.



Some state government agencies and officials are already penalizing people for their moral and religious convictions about marriage!

What we are seeing are the side effects of a tragedy. It was a tragedy in the first place that the justices voted, but the slimmest of majorities, 5 to 4, to force a redefinition of marriage on all 50 states, invalidating the votes of over 50 million Americans.

This cataclysmic determination was made not by the overwhelming vote of the people throughout America—they voted otherwise—nor by elected lawmakers—but by five unelected liberal lawyers wearing black robes. They simply agreed that this would be settled policy—and not on the basis of the text of the Constitution, but based on their own personal analysis and apparently their own policy preferences.

Result: The First Amendment, and your freedoms that are protected under it, are under attack.

...

This can’t wait. This is not just a matter of “holding the line.” This is a matter of turning back a huge assault and protecting your fundamental freedoms.

What we’ve witnessed since the same-sex marriage ruling is a colossal push toward snuffing out your most cherished freedom, your religious freedom—your right to believe—crushing your constitutional rights as a Christian by forcing you to embrace practices that contradict biblical truth.



The onslaught is under way!

It is a tragedy that the moral and religious beliefs of people and faith-based organizations should need to be protected from oppression by our own federal government, especially given our nation’s history of recognizing, respecting and protecting those beliefs.



Ironically, individuals and nonprofit organizations could face the loss of tax-exempt status, disqualification, loss of professional license, or be punished by the federal government simply for believing in marriage as the union of a man and a woman, as President Obama himself professed just three years ago.

Yet now, in the wake of the high court’s same-sex marriage decision, enemies of biblical truth and devotion to the same—the President’s own allies—are circling ready pounce, and protection for Christians is urgently needed.

Boykin: God Will Judge Gay-Affirming Pastors For Keeping People In 'Aberrant Lifestyle'

Jerry Boykin, the retired Army general who got in trouble during the Bush administration for framing the wars in the Middle East as a Holy War between Christianity and Islam, is now the executive vice president of the Family Research Council, where he applies his fire-and-brimstone approach to theology to issues ranging from foreign policy to LGBT rights.

In a speech to FRC’s “Watchmen on the Wall” pastors’ event in Dallas last week, Boykin delivered a fiery appeal to conservative pastors to continue leading the fight against LGBT rights after the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision, in the form of “spiritual warfare” that he said would require bravery like those of his men on a failed mission to rescue American hostages in Iran in 1980.

Pastors who “compromise” on LGBT rights, he warned, will be judged by God “for what they’ve done to confuse the people in this country” and keep them in “an aberrant lifestyle.”

These gay-affirming pastors, he said, just want an “easy way out” because “they don’t want to fight, they’re not warriors, they don’t have the courage.”

Boykin, who has previously said that Jesus was a real “man’s man” who will return carrying an AR-15 assault rifle, told the Watchmen pastors that Christ will come back “riding a white horse, wearing a blood-stained white robe, leading a mighty army with a sword coming out of his mouth to destroy his enemies” and will be covered with “the blood of his enemies,” ready to "slay those who have stood against him and his kingdom."

Cahn: America Will Experience Judgment, Anti-Christian Persecution For 'The Institutionalization Of Sin'

Jonathan Cahn delivered a video message to the Family Research Council's emergency "Watchmen On The Wall" summit last week, where he reiterated his warning that America will soon receive God's judgment for legalizing gay marriage and that Christians must prepare for persecution.

"What happened at the end of June was a tectonic event," Cahn said. "It was culture changing, it was a paradigm shift with profound ramifications, not only concerning marriage but for America's future. Not only America's future, but concerning persecution, concerning society, law, education, apostasy, and even judgment."

"It represents the breaking of nothing short of the order of God," he continued. "If anything represents the disregarding of the eternal rules of order and right, which Heaven has ordained, it is this, what just happened. It represented a profound rejection of the nation's Judeo-Christian foundation and the Word of God on which this nation was initially built. An officially post-Christian nation or even an anti-Christian nation. It is the institutionalization of sin, and when that happens, persecution happens."

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