ruth institute

Meet The Anti-Gay Foundation Behind The Utah World Congress Of Families

The executive director of this year’s World Congress of Families (WCF), which meets this week in Salt Lake City, has said that despite organization’s efforts to oppose LGBT rights around the world, opposition to same-sex marriage “has never been an emphasis” of the gathering. But opposition to marriage equality is a major priority of one foundation that appears to be a major financial backer of the Utah conference.

Although the WCF is a project of the Illinois-based Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society, this year’s event is being organized by the Utah-based Sutherland Institute, and a donation page for the event directs contributions to the institute. The institute has also apparently been soliciting funds specifically for the World Congress of Families event, with the Michigan-based Earhart Foundation giving it $20,000 last year earmarked for the conference.

While we won’t have further information on the funding of the event until this year’s tax forms are filed, the Sutherland Institute has at least until recently been supported largely by one Utah family’s charitable foundation.

The GFC Foundation (it stands for God, Family and Country) is run by Sutherland Institute’s chairman and interim president Stan Swim, whose father  the Sutherland Institute’s founder — and grandfather were also Utah-based philanthropists. Swim serves on the WCF’s board of directors and signed the deal to host the upcoming conference. Swim’s foundation has helped to fund previous World Congresses in Warsaw and Amsterdam. In the five years from 2009 through 2013, the most recent for which tax documents are available, GFC contributed $392,500 directly to the Howard Center.

GFC is a major funder of the Sutherland Institute, and the two organizations share some leadership. In addition to Swim’s dual roles, Sutherland Institute’s former president Paul Mero has long served on the foundation’s board. In 2011, the foundation provided almost half of the institute’s $1.3 million in revenue; in 2012, it provided over half of the $1.4 million that the institute brought in. In 2013, GFC nearly doubled its contribution to Sutherland, giving the organization $1.2 million, making up the bulk of the grants it distributed that year. The institute’s 2013 tax documents are not yet publicly available, so it’s unclear what portion of the organization’s budget GFC’s grant represented.

The Sutherland Institute has also been a top beneficiary of the Foundation for the American West, another charitable group established by the Swim family, which in turn receives substantial yearly contributions from the GFC Foundation. The GFC Foundation contributed about $1.2 million to the Foundation for the American West from 2009 through 2013; the Foundation for the American West contributed roughly the same amount to the Sutherland Institute during that time.

Along with funding the Sutherland Institute, the GFC Foundation appears to be directly involved in organizing this week's conference: A recent WCF newsletter instructed organizations wanting to exhibit at the Salt Lake City event to contact a GFC events staffer.

Although the Sutherland Institute is the primary beneficiary of the GFC Foundation’s largesse, the other social conservative causes that the foundation backs provide further hints about its ideology. Along with regular contributions to Mormon educational institutions and to Utah cultural programs, the GFC Foundation has been a major contributor to groups fighting marriage equality.

From 2011 through 2013, the foundation contributed $270,000 to the National Organization for Marriage as it attempted to fight back the gradual march toward marriage equality in the states. During that time, it also contributed $150,000 to the Ruth Institute, which was then a program affiliated with NOM. It also contributed $150,000 to the Marriage Law Foundation, which is run by a top Sutherland Institute staffer, making up about 60 percent of that organization’s budget.

Notably, the GFC Foundation has helped to fund some of the social science research that is being used to argue against marriage equality. In 2013, the foundation contributed $30,000 to the Institute for Family Studies, the think tank run by conservative family scholar Brad Wilcox and $7,500 to the Austin Institute, the think tank run by Mark Regnerus. Regnerus’ 2012 study of gay parenting, in which Wilcox played a key role, has been used by activists around the world to push back against gay rights, despite the fact that it has been exposed as severely flawed. GFC has also given five-figure grants to Wilcox’s Ridge Foundation and the Witherspoon Institute, which helped to fund Regnerus’ study. (Regnerus and Wilcox will both, incidentally, be speaking at this week’s event.)

The GFC Foundation has also been a major backer of the Utah Eagle Forum, the state affiliate of Phyllis Schlafly’s organization, led by the irrepressibly anti-gay Gayle Ruzicka. The foundation contributed $10,000 to Ruzicka’s group in 2013 and $20,000 each year in 2009 and 2010. In the intervening years, whether by coincidence or not, the Swim-affiliated Foundation for the American West filled the gap, giving Utah Eagle Forum $20,000 each in 2011 and 2012.

The GFC Foundation’s apparent work through the Sutherland Institute to host the World Congress of Families fits neatly into this pattern of funding the fight against advances in LGBT rights.

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 10/21/15

  • Linda Harvey wants to take back the color pink: "Women, let’s rise up and tell these groups that pink is for real women, and real women do not help fund abortion."
  • Former Rep. Dan Burton is now lobbying for the Church of Scientology.
  • Glenn Beck is very sad that George W. Bush does not like Ted Cruz, but is not surprised since Bush is a total "progressive."
  • A new Ruth Institute brochure on same-sex parenting unsurprisingly leans heavily on a discredited study by Mark Regnerus.
  • Now you know: "There are no muddled lines or gray areas about it. A committed follower of Jesus Christ should not celebrate Halloween."

Anti-Gay Activist: Conservatives Were Tricked Into Supporting Contraception Access, Just Like Gay Marriage

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, president and founder of the Ruth Institute, a former National Organization for Marriage affiliate, joined Patrick Coffin of “Catholic Answers Live” on June 26th to discuss the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling.

Morse agreed with a caller who said he could envision in the future “a judge issuing a court order to a priest that they are to marry a homosexual couple within the church.”

After joking with Coffin that President Obama promised Christians that this would not happen, Morse warned that this situation is just “another one of the dominoes that is likely to fall.”

“And I want to just point out,” Morse continued, “this is the whole pattern of the Sexual Revolution.” She recalled how Christians were tricked 50 years ago into agreeing to widespread contraceptive access when proponents argued “that contraceptives will only be used by married couples who need to space their births because of serious health reasons.”

However, it “never occurred” to contraceptive proponents, she said, that eventually “we’d be giving condoms to fourth graders.”

Marriage equality, she said, fits into this same pattern of progressives coming “up with one little thing that seems so harmless” and telling conservatives that they’re “so mean to not give us what we want.”

Morse: 'Radical Sexual Revolutionaries' Using Divorce And Gay Marriage To Expand 'Power Of The State'

The Ruth Institute’s Jennifer Roback Morse joined Phyllis Schlafly on “Eagle Forum Live” last week for a special Valentine’s Day episode on how “radical sexual revolutionaries” are destroying marriage and the family.

Morse told Schlafly that the “goal all along” of the “radical feminists” and “radical sexual revolutionaries
was to advocate for liberalized divorce laws in order “to break down that dividing line between public and private and just scoot that family court right into your living room, right into the backseat of your minivan, right into your bedroom and taking jurisdiction over the life of the family.”

“This is a gross expansion of the power of the state,” she said. “And gay marriage will only accelerate that, because gay marriage now will create a whole series of situations where family courts will be deciding who actually counts as a parent in the first place.”

Right Wing Round-Up - 7/31/14

  • Jeremy Hooper @GoodAsYou: Ruth Institute (former NOM affiliate): Same-sex marriage is as much of a wedge as interracial marriage bans.

Religious Right Group Says 'We've Been Focused Too Much' On Gay Marriage And 'Not Focused Enough On Divorce'

The Ruth Institute's Jennifer Johnson wrote on the organization's blog yesterday that marriage equality advocates who criticize the Religious Right for singling out gay marriage while ignoring straight divorce "have a point."

"Have we been too focused on “same sex marriage” and not focused enough on divorce?" she asks. "I think so."

"Divorce is a big problem that Christians have not confronted adequately," she writes. "Thus, we have lost our witness and moral authority in regards to the institution of marriage. At least, that’s how it looks to me. "

The Ruth Institute — which until last year was affiliated with the National Organization for Marriage — doesn't always conform with the Religious Right's messaging, most recently taking issue with the movement's "whining" persecution rhetoric.​

That's not to say that the rest of the Religious Right doesn't care about divorce — the advent of no-fault divorce is frequently brought up as as a milestone in the slippery slope of the sexual revolution, and "covenant marriage" laws are popular among some activists. (Family Research Council president Tony Perkins sponsored the nation's first covenant marriage law when he was a Louisiana state legislator.)  But the movement as a whole knows that villainizing people who get divorced is going to be a less popular strategy than scapegoating the much smaller LGBT population.

Jennifer Roback Morse: 'Thank God For The Men On The Supreme Court' Who Are 'Sticking Up' For Women

In a Christian Post column this weekend, the Ruth Institute’s Jennifer Roback Morse thanks God that the men on the Supreme Court are “sticking up for ‘everywoman’ against the Elite Women,” represented by the women on the Supreme Court who have allowed feminism to help them through their careers.

Morse argues that because Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan are childless, they don’t “understand and respect the lives and aspirations” of women who prioritize children over their careers, while Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a “lifelong radical feminist ideologue.”

Let me tell you about a friend of mine named Katie. She is a brilliant attorney, who works part-time for a non-profit public interest legal organization. Katie has nine children, whom she homeschools. She lives out in the country in coastal California. By any reasonable reckoning, Katie, is "having it all:" big family, country living in one of the most beautiful places on earth, and meaningful, intellectually challenging work.

However, it is safe to say that Katie is highly unlikely to ever be appointed to the Supreme Court. She has other concerns. She does not have the single-minded focus on her legal career that would allow her to be a serious contender.

I too, have had a wonderful advantaged life: meaningful work, good family life. But I never chaired an economics department. I never sat on any prestigious commissions. I wasn't given any political appointment as my childless or male peers have done.

Which brings me back to the subject at hand: whose interests do the women on the Supreme Court actually represent?

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a lifelong radical feminist ideologue. She came of age in the short window of time when women could still get married, have kids, go to law school, and have a career after child-bearing. Her two children were born when she was 22 and 32. Thanks to radical feminism, highly educated women have a much more difficult time doing these things. They can go to law school and have a career alright. But getting married and having children sometime before menopause, not so much.

Justice Ginsburg had the lifelong support of her husband in her career aspirations. Thanks to no-fault divorce, women today cannot count on a lifetime of mutual support with their husbands. Justice Ginsburg has been safely insulated from the negative fallout of the sexual revolution which she and her radical feminist colleagues did so much to champion.

The other two women on the Supreme Court, Justices Kagan and Sotomayor, are childless. It is highly unlikely that the two of them understand and respect the lives and aspirations of women like my friend Katie and me. And for less educated women, family is everything and "career" is a job to put food on the table. Elite women know nothing of "everywoman," the people who have endured the sexual revolution, and who do not have high status jobs as compensation.

Women like Katie and I are willing to let ourselves see the harm that the Sexual Revolution had done to the poor. Our lives do not depend on defending the Sexual Revolution. By contrast, for many Elite Women, the sexual revolution has made possible their lives as they know them. They literally cannot imagine what their lives would be like without contraception, with abortion as a back-up plan.

As I say, Katie and I will never occupy the seats of power that are available to childless women. We have many achievements to our credit, but Elite Women will run the show. We have good lives: I do not regret for one moment, the choices I have made. But there is no getting around it: childless women have an advantage over mothers in the competition for power and influence.

All I can say is: thank God for the men on the Supreme Court. At least someone is sticking up for "everywoman" against the Elite Women.

Jennifer Roback Morse Compares 'Sexual Revolution' To Nazism, Says It’s Bringing Back Slavery

Jennifer Roback Morse, head of the Ruth Institute — which was formerly affiliated with the National Organization for Marriage — urged conservative law students earlier this month to resist the “pagan ideology” of the “sexual revolution” like those who resisted Nazism.

In a lecture to the Alliance Defending Freedom’s Blackstone Legal Fellowship, Morse explained that while Christianity ended slavery, the sexual revolution is now bringing it back.

“All of these issues — divorce and remarriage, abortion and infanticide, slavery, the buying and selling of human beings — all of these things, the Christian religion put a stop to. But they’re all on their way back because of the sexual revolution,” she said. “The sexual revolution is bringing back all of these points.”

“We, in fact, are on the right side of history,” she said.

Later in the speech, Morse urged the students in the audience to emulate Maximilian Kolbe and Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s stands against Nazism in resisting the “pagan ideology” of the “sexual revolution.”

Morse: Professional Women 'Victimized' By 'Totalitarian' Sexual Revolution

Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute – a former wing the National Organization for Marriage dedicated to “making marriage cool” – is preparing for a conference this month that will bring together “victims” of the sexual revolution. She discussed the event in an interview with the National Catholic Register yesterday, in which she claimed that the sexual revolution is a “totalitarian” movement pushed by “hipsters” and “radical feminists” that victimizes professional women who build their lives “around the lies.”

As an example of this “totalitarianism,” Morse points to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage mandate, which she claims is a government effort to “ control people’s behavior and even people’s thoughts.” By requiring that insurance plans cover contraception, Morse argues, the government is” stifling dissent by essentially saying: ‘This society will be built around contraception, and there will be no dissent from that.’”

Which groups have been pushing this sexual revolution?

A mix of people have promoted it: population controllers (who think there are too many poor people); hipsters (who just want to be libertines); radical feminists who think babies are keeping women from being “equal.” All these groups have one thing in common: They’re controlled by elites, people who want to re-create the world in their own image.

The sexual revolution promised freedom and fun. Yet you say it was — and is — a totalitarian movement. Why?

Because its goal — to separate sex from reproduction and both from marriage — is impossible. When men and women have sex, babies have a way of appearing. So the government has to step in and control people’s behavior and even people’s thoughts about what’s possible, desirable and realistic. The HHS mandate is just one example of the government stifling dissent by essentially saying: “This society will be built around contraception, and there will be no dissent from that.” That’s one example of totalitarianism coming straight from the government and literally shutting down people who disagree.

You call another group of sexual-revolution victims, who bought into the sexual revolution only to discover its promises of fun and freedom are false, “the heartbroken career women.”

These women are also all around us, but we simply don’t see them. [Culture says] the entry fee into the professions for women is that you chemically neuter yourself during your peak childbearing years in your 20s — and if you have an “accident,” you get an abortion.

By the time a woman figures out, “If I have no children, that’s going to be terrible for me,” she’s 35. The in vitro fertilization industry is making huge profits off people’s infertility problems, which often happen because women put off having kids for so long they can’t do it naturally anymore.

And yet when that woman is a lawyer, college professor, TV news anchor or some other professional, she’s going to dig in her heels and defend the sexual revolution, because her life is literally built around it. We want to help this type of woman “connect the dots” and see that she has been victimized because she built her life around the lies.

Morse: 'Deadly,' 'Totalitarian' Feminism Wants To Make Everyone Androgynous

Jennifer Roback Morse of the Ruth Institute, which was until recently affiliated with the National Organization for Marriage, joined Phyllis Schlafly on Eagle Forum Live this weekend to discuss her new book of marriage advice.

Of course, the two turned immediately to bashing feminism, which Morse praised Schlafly for exposing as a “deadly” and “totalitarian” movement that made “men compete with women instead of competing with each other for the sake of women.”

Later in the program, Schlafly asked Morse about a “kooky” new law in California that requires schools to respect the gender identities of transgender students.

“In the end they want to get rid of male and female,” Morse said. “In the end they want everyone to be androgynous.”

She added that this showed that feminists and the gay rights movement harbor a “deep resentment of the human body.”

Morse also linked the fight against gay rights to the fight against the women’s movement, lamenting the cultural “wounds” from the push for equality: “There are so many people out there who have been wounded by the sexual revolution and no one has ever taken the slightest responsibility for that, none. And the only reason we’re dealing with gay marriage now is because we never faced up to the harms that have already been inflicted by feminism.”

Correction: A previous version of this post incorrectly stated that the Ruth Institute is affiliated with the National Organization for Marriage. The two groups formally broke ties in November, 2013.

Right Wing Round-Up - 12/4/13

NOM: No More Brides and Grooms If Gay Marriage Becomes Legal

Jennifer Thieme of the National Organization for Marriage’s Ruth Institute is worried that marriage equality laws will mean that no one can be a bride or a groom ever again. According to Thieme, in states that recognize same-sex marriages, “no woman gets to be a bride and no man gets to be a groom,” which may come as a surprise to all of the couples who have been married there since marriage equality was approved.

And of course, big government will step in to pick up the pieces. “The state will not likely give up the increased power it gets over individuals, children, and the church as this change gains traction,” Thieme writes, urging libertarians not to back gay rights because “socialists support it.”

First, I do not think it is realistic to believe the government will actually get out of marriage, especially once the definition of marriage becomes sexless (genderless) as a widespread policy. Sexless marriage as a policy is what must happen in order to allow gay couples to marry. It wasn't fair that only straight women could be brides, and only straight men could be grooms. So now no woman gets to be a bride, and no man gets to be a groom in same sex marriage states. The state will not likely give up the increased power it gets over individuals, children, and the church as this change gains traction.

"How does gay marriage affect YOUR marriage?"

I've encountered honest, far-left leaning Democrats who admit that sexless marriage is the destruction of traditional marriage. They admit it, point blank. One even likened it to slavery. This is not how it gets marketed to voters. Voters are told that marriage is simply being expanded to include gay couples. Expanding marriage vs. eliminating traditional marriage are two very different things.

Furthermore, father of Marxist thought Friedrich Engels was against traditional marriage. It is not possible to know what sort of stand he would take on the sexless marriage issue. I think it's very fair to say that his modern day followers support it. It frustrates me that some prominent libertarians refuse to engage an important social policy that socialists support. Does it occur to them why socialists support it?

Right Wing Round-Up - 4/4/13

Richard Land Blames the Devil for the 'Homosexual Lifestyle'

National Organization for Marriage’s Jennifer Roback Morse stopped by Richard Land Live this weekend, where the embattled head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission claimed that homosexuality has demonic origins. Land chatted with a caller who thanked him and Morse for fighting the “demon of homosexuality,” and Land agreed with her that “the Devil takes pleasure in anything that causes destruction in human society and the homosexual lifestyle does cause destruction.” He went on to claim that homosexuality was at least partly responsible for the collapse of empires in the past:

Caller: My comment is that I thank God for you all for standing up for God’s holiness and righteousness against this demon of homosexuality. My pastor past but he once said that this demon will be the last one to leave this earth because it is so strong and over in all of the New Testament and coming up to now it’s—

Land: Let me just say that first of all that the Devil takes pleasure in anything that causes destruction in human society and the homosexual lifestyle does cause destruction. It’s seen as one of the evidences in the decline of every empire we have seen; studies have shown it became rampant in the Persian Empire, the Greek Empire, the Roman Empire, the British Empire.

Land and Morse said that they are working against a “secular theocracy” and “sexual nihilists,” with the SBC’s top “ethicist” maintaining that America is witnessing a return to “paganism” where homosexual priests worshiped sex:

Morse: What we learned in California in the marriage fight is that the secularist thrust, I don’t even know what to properly call it, Richard, maybe you have a good name for it, but the secularists, the sexual nihilists.

Land: It’s a secular theocracy is what it is.

Morse: Yes, that’s exactly—

Land: It’s a secular theocracy driven be a full-blown pagan understanding of human sexuality. It’s just pagan.

Morse: When you say pagan, what do you mean by pagan? I can imagine what you mean.

Land: I mean totally focused on self, anything that feels good do it, just like the Greco-Roman orgies of the 1st Century and 2nd Century AD; same thing that our early Christian forefathers faced.

Morse: That’s very true, the hedonism, the hedonistic aspect of the culture. What I wondered you were going to say is full-on paganism I would think of as somehow worshiping sex, as sex taking on a kind of sacramental role.

Land: As you know many of the Roman religions, the idolatrous religions were sexual, and the priests were homosexuals and they worshiped in Corinth they had homosexual priests had these temples that were pre-Christian paganism.

NOM's Roback Morse Says the 'Gay Lobby' is behind 'Rank Political Corruption'

Jennifer Roback Morse of the National Organization for Marriage’s Ruth Institute appeared on Breakpoint with Chuck Colson this week where she accused the “gay lobby” of “having an absolutely corrupting impact on the whole political process.” She claimed that the gay lobby, along with “rich, Republican, Wall Street guys,” have been able to “buy state legislators” in order to win their votes for marriage equality. “So all of these legislators across the country, it’s like they’re salivating over all this money they might get if they vote the way the gay lobby wants them to,” Morse said, “the gay lobby has figured out that they cannot win a voter referendum, they have never won a voter referendum, it’s easier to buy state legislators than it is to try to buy off a whole population.”

The National Organization for Marriage, of course, repeatedly pledges to spend millions of dollars raised from a handful of out-of-state donors in order to finance the campaigns of any legislator who opposes the legalization of same-sex marriage and support any challenger to a marriage equality supporter, but apparently Morse doesn’t consider the same efforts from her own group “rank political corruption.”

Morse: In a way most ominously something that happened earlier this year is the New York state legislature voted to redefine marriage and the reason I say that one was so ominous is because it was Republican votes that did that and it was rich, Republican, Wall Street guys who came in with a lot of money and said ‘we want to get this done’ and basically they dangled money in front of swing voters, state legislators, and said ‘we’re going to put money into your re-election campaign if you vote the way we want you to.’ Now I’m not just saying that, they wrote about that in the New York Times, they wrote about it in the New York Times, they bragged about it, and to me if that’s not political corruption, I don’t know what it is. I mean, that’s just rank political corruption. So all of these legislators across the country, it’s like they’re salivating over all this money they might get if they vote the way the gay lobby wants them to, so it’s having an absolutely corrupting impact on the whole political process. The gay lobby has figured out that they cannot win a voter referendum, they have never won a voter referendum, it’s easier to buy state legislators than it is to try to buy off a whole population, and that’s where they are, and that’s what’s going on around the country.
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