Don Feder

Moscow Forum Attended By American Activists Ends With Call For More 'Gay Propaganda' Bans

UPDATED

According to the foundation run by Russian oligarch Constantin Malofeev, this week’s international gathering of anti-gay, anti-abortion-rights activists in Moscow ended with delegates issuing a proclamation that blasts liberal social policies in Western countries and calls for Russian-style “homosexual propaganda” bans to be passed throughout the world.

The forum in Moscow was originally organized under the name of the Illinois-based World Congress of Families, which officially “suspended” its planning of the conference after Russia invaded Ukraine, although two World Congress of Families officials were until recently listed as organizers on the event’s website and attended the gathering. National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown also spoke at the event yesterday, and American representatives from the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, the Christian Broadcasting Network, Personhood USA, and Family Watch International were also scheduled to speak.

It’s unclear if any of the Americans at the conference officially backed the resolution.

In the resolution — which was posted on the website of a foundation chaired by Putin ally Vladimir Yakunin, which also helped fund the event — the delegates express their “profound concern because certain countries are pursuing  tenacious policies and an unprecedented propaganda campaign, all of which is leading to the ultimate destruction of the Natural Family − an institution that in a civilized society is the foundation of order, state’s prosperity and social peace.”

In the resolution, delegates vow to "uphold the interests of children and to work for the adoption of legislative bans on all types propaganda concerning homosexual relationships in the environment of children and juveniles” and to support research on “the negative social and psychological effects of raising children in same-gender couples.”

The delegates also vow “demand initiatives and directives from the governments and heads of state to ensure protection of the natural family, childhood, and motherhood in both, domestic and foreign policies.”

UPDATE: Joe Jervis points out that an English translation of the resolution is available. I've updated the quotes above and you can read the whole thing here:

An Urgent APPEAL
To the Nations of the World

To all people of goodwill in the everywhere: To leaders of all faiths, To the architects of public opinion, To those at the helm of professional, women’s and youth organizations, To the UN General Assembly, To the heads of state and legislative bodies and To the mass media.

 We, the Participants of the Moscow International Forum “Large Family and Future of Humanity” (September 10-11, 2014), express our profound concern because certain countries are pursuing  tenacious policies and an unprecedented propaganda campaign, all of which is leading to the ultimate destruction of the Natural Family − an institution that in a civilized society is the foundation of order, state’s prosperity and social peace. 

 The preservation of mankind is based on a system of family and kindred ties that are formed through the bonds of marriage between a male and a female and the children born to them.  This and only this alone, is capable of ensuring the reproduction, stability and continuity of human civilization. All other kinds of sexual relationships or alliances intentionally that exclude the birth of children are meaningless for they are devoid of the notion set down in the very definition of the word “family.” And no political or economic interests can serve as a pretext for replacing the true and time-tested concept of “family” by any kind of surrogate.  

It is precisely this understanding that was set down in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (adopted by the United Nations in 1948), as well as in the constitutions of more than 100 countries and reflected in the holy scriptures of various religions. This understanding determines the philosophy and creativity of humanists and thinkers of the past and the contemporary epoch.

  We regretfully declare that the systemic policy pursued by the ruling elite in the developed countries of the world in order to implement the “theory of the post-modern society” – in essence, a “society of unrestrained consumerism,” a policy of creating a society of individuals who are absolutely unconcerned about the future and who are focused only on satisfying their selfish desires of the moment. Actually, such a society is ultimately aimed at destroying faith in God, as well as belief in good. These post-modern policies focused on the material wealth are destroying what is human in the human being (as created by God), at wrecking the spiritual dimension in Man – all of which are his distinguishing features in Living Nature.

  We appeal to all people who acknowledge the significance and values of the Natural Family for preserving human civilization:

  • To unite before the threat of total dehumanization of society, to set up a barrier on the road of ideology-lined, state-supported interference in the private lives of people, in an attempt to foist specific sexual lifestyles and preferences of the minority upon the majority;
  • To strive to set forth legislative initiatives in the laws and constitutions of all countries that clearly define the naturally predetermined relationships in the Family as relationships between the male and female, their children and their relatives;
  • To advocate and support the Natural Family as the sole source of preserving the civilization, the life of Mankind;
  • To make use of all thematic international Days (…protection of children, the family, etc.) whose slogans and mottos refer to traditional values, for demonstrating their disagreement with and dissent for State-supported destructive tendencies in the sex and family life, especially of the young people, and consolidating the understanding of a Natural Family as the foundation of human life at the level of the individual, society, state and civilization;
  • To oppose  the cynical utilization of women as surrogate mothers in the interests of same-gender liaisons and alliances;
  • To uphold the interests of children and to work for the adoption of legislative bans on all types propaganda concerning homosexual relationships in the environment of children and juveniles;
  • To initiate and support scientific research to study the conditions  and prospects of developing a Natural Family, as well as studying the negative social and psychological effects of raising children in same-gender couples;
  •  To support public efforts aimed at ensuring integrity of human life from the moment of conception to natural death, to protect children from influences taken against their individuality, and to uphold the child-rearing rights of parents – both father’s and mother’s;
  • To demand initiatives and directives from the governments and heads of state to ensure protection of the natural family, childhood, and motherhood in both, domestic and foreign policies.

  We  urgently call upon the UN General Assembly, the UN Secretary General and the UN Supreme Commissioner for Human Rights that, while formulating the programs of the United Nations, to follow the letter and the spirit of Article 16 in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which underscores the understanding of the Human Family as the only possible and acceptable notion to human civilization, and to proclaim in the foreseeable future a Special Year or Program in support of the Natural Family.

  We call upon all people who agree with the given Appeal to sign it and support it for the sake of preserving life and civilization on our Earth.

 

 

American Religious Right Leaders Join Moscow Event, May Not Be Able To Avoid Foreign Policy

This week, a number of American Religious Right activists are participating an in international forum on “large families and the future of mankind,” which is organized and funded by a number of close allies of Russian President Vladimir Putin and kicked off its session at the Kremlin yesterday with the reading of a personal message from Putin himself.

Among the Americans speaking at the forum, according to a preliminary schedule, are the National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown, the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute’s Austin Ruse, Family Watch International’s Sharon Slater and representatives from Personhood USA, the Home School Legal Defense Association and the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Janice Shaw Crouse is also scheduled to attend, although possibly no longer as a representative of Concerned Women for America, a group critical of the Moscow conference with which she seems to have parted ways.

The conference was originally organized under the name of the Illinois-based World Congress of Families, but after Russia invaded Ukraine, the group began to lose support from its American allies and announced that it had “suspended planning” on the event, noting that it “takes no position on foreign affairs, except as they affect the natural family.”

In reality, very little but the official name of the conference seems to have changed. World Congress of Families officials Don Feder and Larry Jacobs are attending in their personal capacities, and insist that their group is not “financially sponsoring” the event and would not have its name attached to it. But WCF’s sponsorship was always nominal — the group has a very small budget of its own and instead acts as an agent for bringing together better-funded activists and organizations. Even before WCF dropped its official involvement, it had given credit to a number of Russian allies for funding the conference.

Although the focus of the conference is the promotion of “large families” (and with it the resistance to LGBT equality and abortion rights), it may be impossible for attendees to ignore the foreign policy implications of the event.

As we have noted, Putin played up the supposed dangers of LGBT rights in his efforts to prevent Ukraine from joining the EU — a geopolitical ploy that had dangerous consequences for the LGBT communities in Russian and Ukraine.

Constantin Malofeev, the oligarch who helped to organize and fund the conference this week, brought this up in his speech to the event yesterday, presenting the “propagation of homosexuality and gay parades” as a defining factor in the battle over Ukraine:

In Ukraine, which is our fraternal country, association with European Union was not signed last year because, in this case, the Ukrainians learned that they had to allow propagation of homosexuality and gay parades. So, the new regime in Ukraine, the first thing they did was to allow a gay parade in Kiev. So we are defending our position. We are protecting fathers, mothers and children.

He also attacked the United States for including Yelena Mizulina, the force behind many of Russia’s harsh new anti-gay laws, on its economic sanctions list. (Putin ally Vladimir Yakunin, who along with his wife Natalia also spoke at and helped fund the conference, is another U.S. sanctions target).

And if we are part of the sanctions for Ukraine. But Madam Mizulina was included in the sanctions as one of the first, and this is just because she defends the family values.

And as Richard Bartholomew points out, today’s schedule includes a panel titled “Family Policy in Ukraine: Conclusions and Warnings for Russia.”

An ever-present theme at the first day of the conference was the idea of Russia as a bulwark protecting the world against the U.S. and Europe’s encroaching liberalism. The Moscow Times writes that the theme came up in both Yakunin and Mizulina’s remarks:

In choosing conservative values, Russia represents "the final hope" for the modern world, which has been corrupted by the Western debauchery of individualism, consumerism and globalization, participants of a Moscow forum agreed Wednesday.

Yakunin, whose wife Natalya moderated the proceedings, attended the forum, taking to the stage to talk about Russia's departure from the Western model of development that, according to him, does not lead to either material or spiritual well-being.

Mizulina, who chairs the Duma's committee on family, women and children's issues and has advocated a law requiring women to get their husband's permission in order to have an abortion, lashed out at the West.

"I am sure that in contemporary Europe it would not be possible to hold a forum like this," Mizulina told the audience after reading a welcome note from State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin.

"Even if they are held there, they are not hosted at the Kremlin, like in Russia, but somewhere on the outskirts," she said.

UPDATED: 'Cancelled' World Congress Of Families Kremlin Conference Begins Today, Possibly With Special Guest Star Brian Brown

Constantin Malofeev’s group has posted photos of one of today’s panels on Facebook, which show that Brian Brown did indeed present at the event.

Religious Right Hero Vladimir Putin's Forces Persecute Christians In Ukraine

The same Religious Right activists who accuse President Obama of persecuting Christians by supporting gay rights, have over the last few years hailed Russian leader Vladimir Putin as a hero and global leader of conservative Christians.

Religious Right leaders such as Franklin Graham, Phyllis Schlafly, William MurrayPat BuchananBryan FischerBrian BrownDon Feder and Scott Lively, among others, have lionized Putin as a fearless Christian leader who is bravely cracking down on gay rightsThe World Congress of Families even decided to hold its annual summit in the Kremlin this year (the group officially cancelled the event after Russia began its conflict with Ukraine, but its Russian partners are quietly going ahead with it).

Of course, while claims that Obama is persecuting Christians are completely manufactured by conservatives, there is ample evidence that Putin-sponsored forces in eastern Ukraine are violently persecuting evangelical and Ukrainian Orthodox Christians. The New York Times reports:

Embracing Orthodox Christianity as a force to unite these now divided Slavic lands and also their own fractured movement, the rebels, fortified recently by an influx of weapons and soldiers from Russia, used their period in power here purging Slovyansk of rival Christian denominations.



Among their principal targets were Christians defiant of the Moscow church’s claims of religious primacy and suspected of connections with the West.

“Their logic is simple: You are an American church and America is our enemy so we have to kill you,” said Mr. Dudnik, the evangelical pastor. No one at his center had been killed, he said but added that the rebels had murdered four evangelical Christians from another Slovyansk church.

Grabbed by pro-Russian gunmen in June after a Pentecost service at the Divine Transfiguration Church, all four victims were taken away for interrogation and were later found dead in a burned-out car.

We have previously noted that evangelicals in Russia, including Baptists and Pentecostals, are facing discrimination as a result of Putin’s drive to push minority denominations underground while growing the clout of the Russian Orthodox Church, which considers evangelical Protestants to be heretics.

While inventing never-ending conspiracy theories about Obama’s supposed crackdown on Christianity, Religious Right leaders don’t appear to mind the real attacks on Christians happening in Russia, under the watch of a leader who they see as an ally in the fight to turn back gay rights and reproductive freedom.

Don Feder Warns 'Human WMD' Obama Will Destroy America

Don Feder of the World Congress of Families is out with a new column warning that "the human WMD in the White House" is a Marxist/Muslim radical bringing about the "collapse of civilization."

Naturally, Feder claims that gay rights, immigration and abortion rights are Obama's tools to bring about the destruction of the country, noting that "if Cultural Marxism was a religion – which, come to think of it, it is – abortion and contraception would be its sacraments.”

Where will the human WMD in the White House do the most damage – the economy or national security?

Since Obama became president, 27 million jobs bit the dust. The labor-force participation rate (the percentage of available workers who are actually working) is the lowest in 36 years.

The National Council of La Raza's favorite gringo doesn't know or care how many thousands of "Dreamers" streaming across our border each month have communicable diseases or are criminals or terrorists traveling incognito. He's given up even the pretense of trying to control the border. It's all Congress's fault anyway for not passing a comprehensive amnesty – which will work as well at keeping out illegals as dousing a fire with gasoline.
...

More than an income-redistributionist, an ideologue who believes borders are mean-spirited, or a connoisseur of Muslim prayer-calls, Barack Obama is a Cultural Marxist – an expression that always draws snickers from the establishment media. And yet nothing better describes the left's corruption of Western culture and the coming collapse of civilization.

...

Cultural Marxists strive to replace Judeo-Christian morality with sexual license (sex divorced from values), the influence of faith on society with the marginalization of religion, and the family with isolated individuals who have as few ties as possible to past, present and future – the imperial self, unencumbered by tradition, a fixed moral code or family obligations.

While he didn't start us on this road – the journey was well underway before his birth – Obama has worked overtime to makes Gramsci's vision a reality.

...

"One of the remaining human rights challenges of our times" –(then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the United Nations, on mainstreaming homosexuality) Obama's commitment to the LGBT agenda earned him the honorific "America's first gay president" from Newsweek, in a 2012 cover story. The White House issues regular reports on the administration's "ongoing efforts to protect and promote the human rights of" blah, blah, blah and blah "people globally." This includes hosting the first Global Forum on LGBT/Human Rights, Secretary of State Kerry appointing five openly homosexual ambassadors, and US embassies flying the rainbow flag for pride month. In his remarks to the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, Attorney General Eric Holder called the Boy Scouts' refusal to have scout masters who are sexually attracted to adolescent boys, "a relic of an age of prejudice" (the era of Judeo-Christian morality). Earlier this year, Obama's UN team even tried to replace pro-family language in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (which recognizes the traditional family as "the natural and fundamental group unit of society") with one that claims the family "expresses diversity of individual preferences." Next Obama will try to repeal the laws of nature (which, admittedly, are discriminatory) by executive order.

...

Franklin Graham said the president and AG clone have "turned their backs on God and His standards." For Obama, gay rights is a two-pronged attack – by making "sexual ethics" the ultimate oxymoron, and giving the left another excuse to persecute Christians (a Colorado baker here, a New Mexico photographer there). In 2012, 62% of those who attend church occasionally or never voted for the "totally secularized man," while 59% of Americans who attend services weekly voted for Romney. According to Pew Research, in the past 5 years alone, the "religiously unaffiliated" went from just over 15% to just under 20% of the total population. Obama's war on religion pays unexpected dividends.

...

In Obama's America, sex is divorced from both values and consequences. (If Cultural Marxism was a religion – which, come to think of it, it is – abortion and contraception would be its sacraments.) Respect for alternative lifestyles is mandatory. Marriage is a free-form institution, which "expresses the diversity of individual preferences." Adhering to Judeo-Christian ethics is punished by hefty fines and sensitivity training.

One Year After Passage Of Gay Propaganda Ban, American Right Continues To Look To Russia As A Guide

The Human Rights Campaign released a report today to mark the first anniversary of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s signing of his infamous ban on “gay propaganda” and related anti-LGBT legislation. HRC reports “an uptick in violent attacks on LGBT people” since the bills’ passage that has accompanied a spike in “anti-LGBT sentiment” in the public square.

Yet despite the dangerous consequences of the increasing use of LGBT people as scapegoats — both in Russia and in neighboring Eastern European and Central Asian countries — and the place of anti-gay politics in Putin’s expansionist agenda, many on the American Religious Right continue to celebrate Putin’s crackdown on gay rights and even to hail it as a model for the United States.

The issue has been divisive on the Right. For instance, Accuracy in Media’s Cliff Kincaid — hardly a fan of gay people — got into a memorable shouting match earlier this year with World Congress of Families representatives, who he accused of cozying up to Putin.

It has also put some groups in tough positions. The World Congress of Families was forced to suspend its planned conference at the Kremlin, which was to be funded by a handful of people close to Putin, after Russia seized Crimea and groups including Concerned Women for America started backing out.

But we continue to hear right-wing activists heaping praise on Putin for his enthusiastic anti-gay politics and increasing embrace of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Just last week, Phyllis Schlafly praised Putin for “warming up to religious freedom” as “Americans are rejecting it”:

And earlier this week, WorldNetDaily announced that people around the world are “fleeing” to Russia to escape homosexuality in their own countries .

American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer continues to push for the U.S. to adopt a “propaganda” ban like Russia’s:

Anti-gay activists including Pat Buchanan,Peter LaBarbera,Franklin Graham,Scott Lively,Keith Davies,Linda Harvey,Randall Terry,Gordon Klingenschmitt,Janice Shaw Crouse, Austin Ruse, Bob Vander Plaats , Rick Scarborough and, of course, the WorldCongress of Families have defended Russia’s anti-gay crackdown or called for similar laws in the U.S.

And, of course, some have directly lent their support to the passage of anti-gay laws in Russia: the World Congress of Families has an active network in Russia and Eastern Europe and just days before Putin signed the propaganda ban recruited the National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown to warn Russian lawmakers about the risks of gay rights.

The support for laws that have dangerously scapegoated LGBT people in Russia is especially ironic coming from a movement that claims that the gay rights movement in the United States is persecuting them .

Don Feder: Stalin, Hitler, Capone & Lansky Are Obama's 'Ideological Soul Mates'

In a blog post Friday, World Congress of Families communications director Don Feder tackled the conservative debate over whether President Obama is an evil genius or a “dumb-bunny,” and concludes that the president is somewhere in between. Alongside his “ideological soul-mates" like “Stalin, Hitler, Al Capone [and] Meyer Lansky,"  Feder writes, Obama is “cold, calculating, ruthless, and diabolically clever at advancing his agenda.”

Feder goes on to argue that the president wants Americans to be poor and jobless: “Obama hates American preeminence. He hates economic growth. He hates energy production. He hates the private sector and middle-class prosperity. He hates a system where consumers can shop for health insurance and have real choices.

“He wants to leave America poorer, job growth stagnant, our people more dependent, and our economy gasping for air. That will be his enduring legacy to our national decline. America's failure is Obama's success.”

Feder has previously argued that Obama and gays in the military are a bigger threat to American national security than Russian President Vladimir Putin.

I keep getting e-mails from clueless conservatives about what a dumb-bunny our president is. This bromide has been rattling around the right since 2008: Obama can't walk and chew gum without the aid of a teleprompter. He'd need a brain transplant to achieve the IQ of dirt.

Okay, Obama isn't a bloody genius. Neither was Stalin, Hitler, Al Capone or Meyer Lansky. But like his ideological soul-mates, Obama is cold, calculating, ruthless, and diabolically clever at advancing his agenda. He also keeps a low profile. To quote Al Pacino as the Prince of Darkness in "The Devil's Advocate" – "They never see me coming."

Obama wants to do more – raising the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that will annihilate another 500,000 jobs. Bill Gates observes: "If you raise the minimum wage, you're encouraging labor substitution and you're going to go buy machines and automate things.... It does cause job destruction."

The president is counting on it. High unemployment is a symphony for the party of plunder. It gets to play lord bountiful with regular extensions of long-term unemployment benefits (now up to 99 weeks) which heartless Republicans will be castigated for opposing. As more Americans slip below the poverty line, the Democrats' base grows, and the president has another opportunity to demagogue about the "growing problem of income-inequality" and push new programs from the playbook of Marx and Engels.

Unlike employment, food stamps has had banner growth in the Obama years, up from 26 million in 2007 to 47 million this year. According to the Census Bureau, by 2011, more Americans were receiving one or more means-tested federal programs than were employed full-time, year round. These programs, which cost almost $1 trillion annually, cover over 100 million Americans.

Democratic power grows from dependency. The left wants a swelling army of the dole-addicted looking to Washington for food, housing, health care and other necessities – a mob which will storm the polls every two years to vote their perceived interests.

Obama hates American preeminence. He hates economic growth. He hates energy production. He hates the private sector and middle-class prosperity. He hates a system where consumers can shop for health insurance and have real choices.

He wants to leave America poorer, job growth stagnant, our people more dependent, and our economy gasping for air. That will be his enduring legacy to our national decline. America's failure is Obama's success.

 Stupid, inept, incompetent, hapless? The president and his supporters hope you'll keep right on underestimating him.

Don Feder Angry 'Noah' Didn't Blame Flood On Gay People

World Congress of Families spokesman Don Feder is upset that the movie “Noah” focused on climate change, suggesting that the flood actually represented divine punishment for homosexuality.

Feder joins the many anti-gay activists who insist that gay people are to blame for the biblical flood.

“Try to imagine Hollywood making a movie that inveighs against sexual immorality, when the entertainment industry goes Lady Gaga over gayness and presents cohabitation, adultery and abortion as lifestyle choices,” Feder writes.

Instead, he says that the film's message against human-induced climate change is proof that “warmingism” is a religion that treats its critics as “heretics.” He adds that “Enviros would have auto-da-fes in front of the United Nations building if not for concern about pollutants released by burning flesh.”

Scripture is a bit vague on the reasons for the flood. The Bible explains: "Now the earth was corrupt before God. And the earth became full of robbery. And God saw the earth, and behold it had become corrupted." (Genesis 6:11-12).

Corrupt in what way? Would God destroy the world over larceny? Later in Genesis, the Canaanite cities of Sodom and Gomorrah are blotted out, this time by fire, over sexual deviancy. The term "sodomite" doesn't refer to someone who knocks-over convenience stores.

Try to imagine Hollywood making a movie that inveighs against sexual immorality, when the entertainment industry goes Lady Gaga over gayness and presents cohabitation, adultery and abortion as lifestyle choices.



The cult of global warming has all of the characteristics of a religion – prophets (Al Gore, Hollywood savants, and scientists in mad pursuit of government research grants), evil (the internal combustion engine, coal-fired plants, population growth), good (measures designed to curb CO2 emissions) and salvation/redemption (draconian fines for carbon-polluters, severe limits on human reproduction – to erase carbon footprints – and eventual repeal of the industrial revolution). Dissenters aren't merely wrong, they are heretics labeled climate change "deniers." Enviros would have auto-da-fes in front of the United Nations building if not for concern about pollutants released by burning flesh.



Although adherents won't admit it, warmingism is also based on faith – a belief in the depravity of industrial society and the evil of progress. Unfortunately for its proponents, warmingism is demonstrably false and is increasingly refuted by reality. The earth isn't getting warmer. The ice caps aren't shrinking. The rise in sea-levels is insignificant and ecological doom is nowhere on the horizon. …

After spending decades (centuries if you want to go back to the French Revolution) trying to destroy religion, the left is now using religion to advance its pet causes. Coming soon, "Sodom and Gomorrah: The True Story" – wherein destruction is visited on the Mesopotamian metropolises for their homophobia, sexism and income inequality.

World Congress Of Families Spokesman Defends Russian American Adoption Ban

In an interview with WorldNetDaily this weekend, World Congress of Families communications director Don Feder defended the author of Russia’s “gay propaganda” ban, also a key proponent of the ban on American adoptions, and claimed that she had been “punished” with sanctions because the Obama administration is “controlled by the gay lobby.”

Yelena Mizulina, head of the Duma’s committee on families and an organizer of the World Congress of Families’ upcoming Moscow conference, was among the Russian officials hit with economic sanctions after the seizure of Crimea. Along with her role promoting the propaganda ban and a crackdown on adoptions to countries that allow marriage equality, Mizulina helped push the 2012 ban on Russian adoptions to the U.S.

Feder told WorldNetDaily that Mizulina was “absolutely right” in her push to ban American adoptions because children could end up adopted by same-sex couples. “The Russians are very traditional people,” he added. “They have a strong religious orientation. They haven’t got caught up in the whole politically correct thing that has captured so many people in this country.”

“They don’t want to see Russian children placed with homosexuals,” he said. “Frankly, I don’t blame them.”

Feder claimed that the Obama administration used the Crimea crisis as a “convenient excuse” for “payback” against Mizulina.

“This administration is clearly controlled by the gay lobby,” he said. “Whatever organized homosexuals want, the administration gives them.”

He added that he was appalled by the Obama administration’s commitment to defending LGBT people around the world from violence and persecution: “You have to shake your head in wonder. Promoting gay rights is now a major US foreign policy initiative!”

Right Wing Leftovers - 4/4/14

  • FRC's Tony Perkins was on hand as Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed a new Arizona-like "Religious Freedom Restoration Act" into law during a private ceremony.
  • Don Feder lays out the "10 Pillars of Patriotism."
  • Judie Brown, founder of American Life League, is outraged that President Obama gave a rosary blessed by the Pope to Nancy Pelosi: "I'm horrified, because as a Catholic, I think it's sacrilegious for someone like Pelosi – who is allegedly a Catholic – to accept anything from a pro-abortion president, but specifically when it is a rosary. It's a sacrilege for the president to have given it to anybody or to have accepted it in the first place. He has no faith."
  • You have been warned: "Without Revival, Our Civilization Will Become Like Sodom and Gomorrah."
  • Finally, Stuart Shepard blames groups like PFAW for an incident in which a little girl was allegedly told that she could not pray before lunch, even though the entire thing was false and ginned up by Todd Starnes.

How the World Congress of Families' Anti-Gay Activism Aided Anti-EU Propaganda In Ukraine

Late last week, Don Feder of the Illinois-based World Congress of Families sent out a press release announcing that his group was “concerned about the crisis in Ukraine” and would “pray for world leaders to come together to promote peace and resolve the conflict.” The group also announced that it would go ahead with a planned meeting in Kiev later this year; it did not mention whether its planned summit at the Kremlin in September was still on.

But the World Congress of Families’ involvement in relations between Ukraine, Russia, and the European Union is more complicated than Feder’s release lets on. Although WCF has distanced itself from Feder’s foreign policy opinions, Feder has been very clear where his loyalty lies in Ukraine’s unrest. In a column earlier this month, Feder attacked the “Maidan mob” that had ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych and bashed the EU’s “willingness to accept same-sex ‘marriage,’ abortion on demand, and anti-religion ethos.”

And the WCF itself has allied with anti-EU activists in Ukraine to push anti-gay causes, putting itself right in the middle of a powerful anti-EU wedge issue .

Many right-wing groups, including the World Congress of Families, have enthusiastically praised Russian President Vladimir Putin’s new focus on opposing gay rights and abortion access, promoting large families, and close alliance with the Russian Orthodox church, while conveniently ignoring the role these “family issues” play in his consolidation and expansion of power. When Russia seized Crimea from Ukraine two weeks ago, that dynamic became harder to ignore.

In fact, the World Congress of Families, an offshoot of the Howard Center on Family, Religion and Society, has done more than ally with Russia’s leaders as they seek to impose harsh anti-gay policies in their own country. The group has also brought its advocacy to Ukraine, where it has worked to push anti-gay legislation backed by pro-Russia, anti-EU groups in the lead-up the governmental crisis, which was precipitated by Yanukovych’s decision to back out of an association agreement with the EU in favor of a customs union with Russia. Putin strongly opposed closer ties between EU and Ukraine and offered Yanukovych’s government financial incentives to fortify its relationship with Russia.

In November, Buzzfeed’s Lester Feder (no relation to Don) published an extensive report on how Russia was pushing “homophobic nationalism” in Ukraine as part of its campaign to prevent the country from strengthening its association with the European Union. Those efforts were aided by pro-Russian lawmakers pushing a “homosexual propaganda” ban similar to the one passed last year in Russia. A similar bill had passed in parliament with wide support in 2012, but had become a potential sticking point in negotiations with the EU. An EU parliament member explained to Buzzfeed:

“I don’t think the more pro-Western [politicians] would necessarily be that much in favor of LGBT rights,” said Ulrike Lunacek, a member of the European Parliament from Austria and co-president of its intergroup on LGBT rights and sits on its foreign affairs committee. “But it’s very clear that the more pro-Russian side is using the … propaganda law that [means] you’re not allowed to talk about LGBT rights to enhance their political situation in the country. Very often the politicians in these countries … [use] the argument against LGBT rights to cover up problems that exist on the economic level.”

That is, Ukraine’s proposed “homosexual propaganda” law had support from advocates on both sides of the EU issue; but it was the anti-EU politicians aligned with Putin who were using it as a wedge issue to promote a larger geopolitical agenda.

In July, 2013, a pro-Russia Ukrainian lawmaker reintroduced the “homosexual propaganda” ban. Three months later, in October, WCF announced that Feder, the group's communications director, would travel to Kiev to meet with “key Ukrainian leaders, including members of parliament.” Speaking at a press conference in Kiev in October, Feder warned Ukrainians against following the US into the “abyss” of gay rights.

“Everywhere you look, from Washington to the United Nations to the European Union to the courts, the family is threatened,” he said. “There are forces in your country that want to put you on the road America’s taken. I urge you to resist them.”

He went on to warn that gay rights advances in the United States were leading to legalized pedophilia, “a campaign to abolish gender distinctions,” and ultimately “the criminalization of Christianity.”

“What starts by asking for tolerance ends by demanding obedience,” he warned.

The video below contains Feder's full speech; we have edited out the interjections of a translator.

Feder was surrounded at the news conference by Alexey Komov, WCF’s main organizer in Moscow, Fabrice Sorlin, a far-right French activist allied with WCF who has praised Russia for stopping gay rights advances like it fought off “Mongol hordes,” and by Aleksander Skvortsov of an NGO called the Parents Committee of Ukraine.

Skvortsov’s group doesn’t just oppose gay rights; it also pressed the Ukrainian government to reject an agreement with the EU because, as Skvortsov put it, “it will lead to the inevitable homosexualizing of Ukraine.” A couple of weeks after the press conference with Feder, Skortsov’s group burned a rainbow flag to protest the planned EU agreement. In November, when Yanukovych rejected the EU deal, tens of thousands of Ukrainians marched in protest; but Skortsov helped organize a flash mob dance in celebration of Ukraine’s rejection of  "homodictatorship.”

WCF was also involved in the effort to pass the gay “propaganda” bill that threatened to harm EU negotiations. In May, WCF’s “ambassador to European institutions” Pavel Parfentiev worked with Skvortsov’s group to write a memo to the Venice Commission defending the proposed “homosexual propaganda” bills in Russia and Ukraine, claiming such laws are “fully compatible with international human rights law provisions.”

In early November, shortly before Yanukovych rejected the EU deal, Parfentiev joined Skortsov at a press conference urging Ukraine not to sign an association agreement with the EU without amending it to prevent Ukraine from adopting gay rights laws. “I find it surprising that Ukrainian leaders did nothing to protect the family and family values ​​in the Ukraine Association Agreement with the European Union,” Parfentiev reportedly said, adding that EU gay rights protections present “a very real threat to the family and morality in Ukraine.”

“You need to work to change the treaty or simply refuse to accept it,” he said.

At the press conference, Skortsov also announced the creation of a campaign called “Stop It Now,” to counter “homototalitarianism” throughout the world. The campaign’s website contains various colorful materials educating readers about the myriad of dangers gay rights supposedly present to society.

The New York Times reported in December about how pro-government demonstrators were using opposition to gay rights as a wedge against an agreement with the EU:

"We are against the spiritual expansion of the West,” said another protester, Andrei A. Shyropov, a teacher. “We are against the Euro Sodom,” he continued, using a phrase rhyming with and mocking the name the supporters of European integration have given to their movement, the Euromaidan, which means “Eurosquare” in Ukrainian.

Valentin B. Lukyanik, an organizer of the march Friday, said the economic benefits of European trade were outweighed by “the expansion of European values that destroy the family.”

The World Congress of Families and the American groups it allies with– including Alliance Defending Freedom, Focus on the Family and the National Organization for Marriage – seem to be conveniently ignoring the role that anti-gay activism is playing in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s expansionist plans, including his efforts to wrest Ukraine’s loyalties away from the European Union.

Feder: Gays In The Military, 'Armed With Vibrators,' Greater Threat Than Putin

World Congress of Families spokesman Don Feder writes today in the American Thinker that gays and lesbians in the military, Muslim executive branch officials and a president who’s not “an American in the White House,” threaten American interests more than Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Feder writes that he doesn’t blame Putin for resisting Ukraine’s moves toward EU membership, because that implies a “willingness to accept same-sex ‘marriage,’ abortion on demand [and] an anti-religion ethos.” A parallel situation in Canada would bother us too, Feder writes. “It would, that is, if there was an American in the White House.”

Feder goes on to list what he actually sees as a “threat to America,” including “Muslims in the Obama White House,” because “a Muslim who takes his religion seriously must put loyalty to Dar al-Islam above allegiance to an infidel state.”

Another “threat” he sees to America is the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: “If Putin doesn’t take us seriously, is it any wonder?... Perhaps we could deploy an elite unit, armed with vibrators, to the Crimea to counter Spetsnaz commandos.”

Putin is a power player who cares more about Russia’s national interests, and Russian minorities in his near abroad, than in that mythical force known as world opinion. Would that America had a president who cared more about our interests than in promoting globalism and the left’s social agenda.

The Russian-backed government in Kiev came to power democratically, but was ousted by the Maidan mob. We’re told that the interim government is pro-Western and pro-EU.

When Reagan was president, the expression pro-Western meant something. It meant pro-representative government, pro-human rights and pro-Western (Judeo-Christian) values.

Today, it means a willingness to accept same-sex “marriage,” abortion on demand, an anti-religion ethos – the agenda of the EU’s cultural commissars  -- and the economic dictates of the Brussels bureaucracy.
Putin doesn’t want to see the EU -- and, possibly, NATO --- on his doorstep. Do you blame him? If someone overthrew a democratically elected, pro-American government in Ottawa and replaced it with an interim regime hostile to our interests, that contained neo-Nazi elements and which immediately moved against English-speaking Canadians, it would irritate us too. It would, that is, if there was an American in the White House.

But don’t I care about a possible Russian annexation of the Crimea and Eastern Ukraine (with its Russian-oriented, Orthodox population), conservatives who are still fighting the Cold War ask me? Not really. I’ll tell you what does concern me:

...

Obama’s life style-friendly military -- If Putin doesn’t take us seriously, is it any wonder? The headline in the March 2 Stars and Stripes beams: “Gay, lesbian troops perform in drag at Kadena Air Base” in Okinawa. The publication disclosed that the drag show was “in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered troops.” Doubtless, this will do much for the morale of the non-LGBT troops. But as then-Army Chief of Staff George W. Casey, Jr. said at the time of the Ft. Hood massacre (which the administration still refuses to call a terrorist incident), diversity is the New Action Army’s most important product. Perhaps we could deploy an elite unit, armed with vibrators, to the Crimea to counter Spetsnaz commandos.

Muslims in the Obama White House -- including Arif Alikhan (Deputy Executive Director for Policy in DHS), Mohamed Elibiary (Homeland Security Advisory Council), Rashad Hussain (Special Envoy to the deeply anti-Semitic Organization of the Islamic Conference), Imam Mohamed Magid  (Obama’s Sharia Law advisor, on loan from the Islamic Society of North America, with its Brotherhood ties) and Eboo Patel (on the Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships). A Muslim who takes his religion seriously must put loyalty to Dar al-Islam above allegiance to an infidel state.

Obama’s metastasizing autocracy -- We fret about democracy in the Ukraine while Obama treats the Constitution as a series of suggestions. For the president, the three branches of government are him, his pen and his telephone.

Putin is a strong man. Obama is a weak man (except when it comes to bullying our allies). Obama venerates multilateralism. Putin is willing to go it alone. Obama is committed to the entire LGBT agenda (including gay “marriage”). He’s also the only sitting president to address Planned Parenthood, such is his commitment to abortion without borders. Putin believes the foregoing is the road to national annihilation.

Where does the threat to America lie?
 

Rick Scarborough Is Upset He Can't Talk About Anal Sex In Church

Last week, World Congress of Families spokesman Don Feder joined Rick Scarborough on a Tea Party Unity conference call, where Feder got to talking about how liberals “intimidate” conservative pastors into not speaking out against gay rights.

As luck would have it, Scarborough was ready with a “very fresh and very real” anecdote to illustrate that this "threat" comes not just from gay rights activists, but from parishioners who don't want to hear about anal sex in church:

Well, let me give you a perspective that’s very fresh and very real.  When pastors speak on this issue, it’s not just a threat that comes from the left that they fear.

I spoke in a church the last four days – I don’t recall the name of the church, so maybe somebody on the line listening from that church, if they are, they’re going to be very familiar with what I’m about to say – but in the second service out of five, I mentioned the word ‘anal sex’ illustrating what homosexuality actually is. And I know that that’s a repulsive expression, I know that nobody likes to think about it, but Christians need to understand what we’re talking about. This is not a gay activity, it’s a perversion. And it does carry consequences because of the nature of the act.

The one thing that the homosexual community doesn’t want us to talk about is what they actually do. They love to disguise their activities with euphemisms. And the presentation they always give is some handsome, erudite young man that’s a gift to society, when in fact he’s committing indecent acts with consequences.

But the firestorm that one, two-word expression caused among the Christians in the church was just palpable, and consequently a segment of the church didn’t come to another service of revival and just basically boycotted because they found what I said to be reprehensible. In other words, the church families don’t find what they’re doing reprehensible, but they put such pressure on the preachers not to even mention it that a lot of preachers have gone silent.

So, it’s not just the fear of the left, it’s the fear of the right, because Christians are more concerned about what their sensitive ears have to listen to than what’s taking place at the high school that may be perverting their own children.

So, we’ve got a real challenge. Will the pastor be forced to speak to it? I sure hope so. But the reality is, a lot of the problem is in the pew as well as the pulpit.

World Congress Of Families Spokesman: Putin Will Save America From 'Heady Elixir Of Sexual Rights'

World Congress of Families spokesman Don Feder is once again defending Russian President Vladimir Putin’s crackdown on LGBT people. In a column posted at GrasstopsUSA yesterday, Feder defends Russia’s ban on “gay propaganda,” saying it merely prevents “two homosexuals” from standing “outside an elementary school with a banner that says: ‘Hey kids, sodomy is swell – and you should try it!’” (In fact, journalists have been fined under the law for reporting about openly gay people). He also claims that Russia is interested in cracking down on LGBT people in order to prevent HIV.

Feder echoes the assertion of Alexey Komov, a Russian anti-gay activist and the main organizer of WCF’s upcoming Moscow conference, that Putin is the new Reagan, come to “save” America from “communism,” including the gay-rights rulings of American judges “drunk on the heady elixir of sexual rights.”

There should be an event at the Sochi Olympics where advocates posing as journalists, celebrity nitwits and politicians can compete to see who can wail the loudest and longest about the supposed horror of Russia's dreaded anti-gay law, while Pussy Riot plays in the background. Extra points will be awarded for absurd and offensive analogies to the Holocaust.

A word about that law, which wasn't initiated by Putin and passed the State Duma without a single dissenting vote: It does not outlaw homosexuality. Dozens of gay clubs operate openly in Moscow. The only prohibition is publicly promoting homosexuality to minors.

For example, two homosexuals are not allowed to stand outside an elementary school with a banner that says: "Hey kids, sodomy is swell – and you should try it!" Each violation by an individual is punishable by a fine that's the equivalent of $50.00. Violations of the Nuremberg laws, which had nothing to do with Jewish parades in Berlin, were punished by imprisonment and hard labor.

Why would Russia, with a declining population, be concerned about promoting these "non-traditional lifestyles" to children? Might it have something to do with the British medical journal The Lancet's report that a male homosexual is 18 times more likely to contract HIV than a heterosexual – or those notorious homophobes at the Centers for Disease Control disclosing that in 2010, men who have sex with men (as they delicately put it) accounted for 63% of new HIV infections in the U.S.?


The left believes in popular sovereignty – within narrowly defined limits. In the United States, between 1998 and 2012, the voters of 32 states passed constitutional bans on same-sex marriage. This represents 50 million votes for maintaining the integrity of the institution on which civilization depends. On average, the referenda passed by two-to-one majorities.

Despite that overwhelming expression of popular sentiment, state and federal courts (SCOTUS included) have been working overtime to negate the will of the people. When he's through remaking Russia, perhaps Rushdie will help to "bring about a healthy democracy" in America.

Christians who refuse to participate in a travesty that violates their deeply held beliefs are pulverized by judges and bureaucrats drunk on the heady elixir of sexual rights .

When did engaging in non-traditional sexual relations become a human right? Where is the sodomy clause in the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution or U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights?


In a recent address, Putin observed: "Many Euro-Atlantic countries have moved away from their roots, including Christian values." The Russian President admonished, "Policies are being pursued that place on the same level a multi-child family and a same-sex partnership, a faith in God and a belief in Satan. This is the path to degradation." Putin could never make it in U.S. politics, being too grounded in reality.



As my friend and Russian pro-family leader Alexey Komov likes to say: "Under Reagan, America helped to save us from communism. We'd like to return the favor."

Feder Bashes 'Senator Juan' McCain And Immigration Advocates For Eroding 'National Identity'

Don Feder, the communications director for the World Congress of Families, is out with another anti-immigrant blog post, this time attacking immigration reform proponents like "Senator Juan" McCain for promoting the "loss of national identity" through immigration

In the blog post, posted in his capacity as a freelance "political/communications consultant" on the website GrasstopsUSA.com, Feder promotes the now-familiar line that Mitt Romney lost the 2012 election because he just wasn't conservative enough (or, in Feder's words, lacked "manly firmness"). In particular, FEder attacks McCain  and GOP strategist Karl Rove for their support for immigration reform, which he claims will turn off "Main Street voters" who "care deeply about...loss of national identity."

"Rove isn't just wrong, he's wrong the way Napoleon was wrong when he invaded Russia," Feder writes. "Today, elections aren't won in the middle but on the fringes."

He contends that the Democratic base, or "fringe," constitutes "the ideological, the envious, public employees, angry, single women and the mooch brigade."

Last year, Feder wrote a virulently anti-immigrant blog post, in which he claimed that "the illegal immigrants swarming over our southern border are more akin to the pagan armies which regularly invaded the land of Israel and were repulsed by military force."

Although Feder has written these rants in his personal capacity, his railing against Latino immigrants would seemato conflict with his employer's goals of uniting "many national, ethnic, cultural, social and religious communities" in their anti-gay, anti-choice cause.

The Democrats took what should have been an advantage in a down economy and turned it into a negative. Romney was one of those rich Republicans (it's hard to be successful in business and not get rich) who didn't care about the little guy, they told us. Instead of a venture capitalist who had saved ailing businesses, he was a corporate corsair and tax-cheat who cannibalized companies and slashed jobs.

The middle class never bought this; Obama's base did. The message was aimed at mobilizing the ideological, the envious, public employees, angry, single women and the mooch brigade – the Democrats' core constituency. Romney's answer was not marked by manly firmness, "The president is a nice guy, but we just can't afford him for four more years," Mitt the Mild peeped. Republicans accepted the media line that voters hate negative campaigning and will punish the perps. Democrats didn't.

Rove isn't just wrong, he's wrong the way Napoleon was wrong when he invaded Russia. Today, elections aren't won in the middle but on the fringes. It's not about who can appeal to so-called independents (most are aligned with one party or the other, but won't admit it) but who can best identify and mobilize their base. At this, Democrats are particularly adept and Republicans depressingly inept.

...

Supposedly, Romney lost Latinos with his silly self-deportation plan. But in 2008, Juan McCain, Senor Amnesty, got 31% of the Hispanic vote, compared to 28% for Mitt in 2012. If Romney had done as well – or as poorly – as McCain, he would have gotten four percentage points more (of 9% of the electorate) and the outcome, you do the math, would have been exactly the same.

This year, Wall Street Republicans are advising the party to get immigration off the table, to avoid further offending Hispanics.

If Republicans rabbits like Speaker John Boehner help the president to pass another amnesty, two things will happen: Hispanics will still vote overwhelming Democratic, based on their perceived economic interests. Hispanic households are twice as likely to benefit from a major welfare program as white families (40% versus 20%).

At the same time, Main Street voters – who care deeply about fairness (for taxpayers, workers and legal immigrants), loss of national identity, national security and the economic consequences of illegal immigration – will walk away from the GOP in disgust.

...


Recall Boehner's senseless attack on the Tea Parties (which made him Speaker) this fall. In a just-published interview in the News Republic, Senator Juan slammed the Tea Parties and called Fox News "schizophrenic." Coming from a man who's famous for his borderline psychotic temper, this must hurt. 

(Emphases ours).

Feder: Beware Of Obama Claus!

In his column today, Don Feder of the World Congress of Families warns of Obama Claus, “the smug community-organizer elf” who distributes “welfare state goodies” such as health insurance and food stamps.

Seriously, this is an actual column:

I suppose it's a natural mistake to make, confusing Santa Claus and Uncle Sam. Both are elderly gents – Caucasian, to be sure – with white beards. (Imagine the psychic pain and trauma this causes to millions of nonwhite children.) Both wear a costume. Coincidentally, both were popularized in their current guise by 19th century illustrator Thomas Nast.

Too many of my fellow Americans believe in Obama Claus – the smug community-organizer elf who stuffs stockings with Obama-phones, food stamps, extended unemployment benefits, health insurance for "30 million uninsured" and other welfare state goodies.

But does Santa steal to pay for the presents he leaves? Does he pick the pockets of parents to buy toys for kids? Does he spy, harass, lie and intimidate? Does he monetize the debt by inflating the currency? Is his sleigh loaded with 7% unemployment, growing dependency, and fatherless families? Does he promote poverty, which increased 16.7% under Obama?

Does Santa vacation at posh Martha's Vineyard digs, spend more time on the links than in the workshop, and then lecture us on our obligation to the less-fortunate?

Where do the presents in Obama Claus's bag come from? Do elves in the North Pole make them, or are they extracted from the peasantry? Are the "rich" the reindeer harnessed to this Santa's sleigh? With the energy expended in pulling it, is there any left over for creating wealth and generating jobs?

The spirit of human kindness does not drive us to larceny, regimentation and destruction of the economy.

Right Wing Leftovers - 11/12/13

  • CBN "journalist" David Brody loves Sarah Palin: "Folks need to cut Sarah Palin some slack. She’s got more principle and determination in one finger than hordes of liberals combined. Oh, and this Mamma Grizzly is smarter than the average bear. She’s ridiculed because she doesn’t play the mainstream media’s game and didn’t go to Harvard or Yale. Oy-gevalt."
  • The Religious Right activists behind the effort to overturn California's transgender anti-discrimination bill say they've gathered enough signatures to put the issue on the ballot.
  • Don Feder says that "only in Obama's America could a youth who may have been born in Kenya, who spent part of his childhood in Muslim Indonesia with his hippy mother, who palled around with communists most of his life (Frank Marshall Davis and Bill Ayers among them) grow up to be president." Frankly, that doesn't make any sense because this sort of thing obviously can (and did) happen in the America that existed before it became "Obama's America"; that's how he became president.
  • Apparently the Bible is so accurate it even contains prophecies about missiles and rockets.
  • Finally, "Dr. Chaps" explains that life actually begins before conception:

World Congress of Families Plans New Push For Anti-Gay Policies in Ukraine

Earlier this month, Ukraine’s parliament took the first step toward passing a law, similar to one recently passed in Russia, that would ban the “promotion of homosexuality” – essentially a gag rule on any LGBT rights advocacy.

The Rockford, Illinois-based World Congress of Families provided support for both laws: In May, the group’s two representatives in Russia, Alekey Komov and Pavel Parfentiev, sent a detailed memo defending the laws to the Council of Europe’s human rights commission. World Congress of Families has also joined an international coalition of groups defending Russia’s law.

In addition, it was representatives of the World Congress of Families who arranged for National Organization for Marriage president Brian Brown to testify before a committee of Russia’s parliament in support of a law banning gay couples and single people in countries that allow marriage equality to adopt Russian orphans.

So perhaps it should come as no surprise that before its upcoming world conference in Moscow, World Congress of Families representatives plan to meet with Ukrainian lawmakers to discuss “pro-family policies.” In a press release, World Congress managing director Larry Jacobs boasts of his group’s “support” for Russia’s “child protection law” (the “propaganda” ban) and adds that he’ll soon be taking his advocacy to Ukraine:

Prior to the Moscow meeting, Komov and WCF Communications Director Don Feder, along with Srdjan Nogo of the Serbian group Dveri (WCF’s newest Partner) and French pro-marriage activist Fabrice Sorlin, will be in Kiev for meetings with key Ukrainian leaders, including members of parliament.

Along with WCF spokesman Don Feder and Komov, the visitors to Ukraine will include Srdjan Nogo, the leader of the Serbian group that worked with WCF to get a recent gay pride parade cancelled in Belgrade, and Fabrice Sorlin, one of the far-right French activists (and a former Front National candidate) who accompanied NOM’s Brown to Moscow.
 

Globalizing Homophobia, Part 4: The World Congress of Families and Russia's 'Christian Saviors'

This is the final post in a four-part series exploring how American right-wing groups have supported Russia’s recent spate of anti-gay laws and its crackdown on LGBT citizens.

Last week, Serbian authorities abruptly cancelled a planned gay pride parade in Belgrade, citing “serious security concerns” about right-wing groups opposing the event. A few days later, an American group stood up to claim credit: the Rockford, Illinois-based World Congress of Families.

In its press release celebrating the parade’s cancellation, WCF highlighted its role in last week’s Belgrade protest against the planned parade. Speaking at the protest were WCF communications director Don Feder and the group’s top man in Moscow, Alexey Komov. Also present was Fabrice Sorlin, the far-right nationalist French activist who organized a delegation of American and French activists to advocate for anti-gay laws at the Duma in June, the subject of our last post.

It’s no coincidence that the WCF was able to pull such a delegation to Belgrade: For the past several years, the organization has built  an organization in Russia to advocate for anti-gay policies there and throughout Eastern Europe. WCF staff in Russia actively advocated for recent anti-gay laws, including a ban on gay “propaganda” – essentially a gag rule on gay rights advocacy – and the curtailing of international adoptions to gay couples and single people in countries that allow marriage equality. Through WCF, American Religious Right groups are able to provide support to anti-gay movements in Russia and throughout the world.

The World Congress of Families was founded in 1997 by Religious Right activist (and former Reagan National Commission on Children appointee) Allan Carlson as a project of the Rockford, Illinois-based Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society. WCF’s purpose is to be a multi-faith, multi-national coalition of social conservative groups working to push its vision in the United Nations and in governments around the world. But it draws its most prominent support from the American Religious Right.

The WCF has friends in high places. The Bush administration’s representative to the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women spoke at the WCF’s 2004 world meeting in Mexico City, saying, “As one of the pillars of civilization, families must remain strong and we must defend them during a time of great change.”

Since President Obama took office, the WCF has found itself in a different role, joining with groups like the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (CFAM) to resist the administration’s efforts to include gay rights in international human rights efforts and its repeal of the Mexico City Policy. WCF has strongly opposed international efforts to decriminalize homosexuality, and has even whitewashed the push by some Ugandan officials to make homosexuality a capital crime.

The group continues to draw financial support from nearly every major Religious Right organization in the United States. The WCF’s American “partners” include Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, Concerned Women for America, Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, Alliance Defense Fund and Americans United For Life. Concerned Women For America’s Janice Shaw Crouse is a member of its board. Leaders of many of these groups are also staples at WCF’s annual conferences.

The National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown is also an enthusiastic booster of WCF’s work. In an August fundraising email, WCF quoted Brown:

The World Congress of Families is THE group standing up for the family around the world. They have done amazing work in uniting all of those who stand for the truth about marriage and family. It has been an honor to partner with WCF and to be a part of their most recent Congress in Australia and regional conference in Trinidad and Tobago. I wholeheartedly endorse their work and urge you to financially support their efforts.

Through the World Congress of Families, American Religious Right groups that might shy away from international affairs in their more public work provide very direct support to efforts preventing international recognition of gay rights as human rights, and to the crafting of anti-gay policies abroad. And that is exactly what’s happening in Russia.

This month, the World Congress of Families joined with five other American groups in signing a statement with over 100 groups from around the world supporting Russia’s “gay propaganda” law and condemning the international outcry surrounding it.

In early June, shortly before the Russian Duma passed its ban on “gay propaganda,” World Congress of Families managing director Larry Jacobs told End Times radio host Rick Wiles that the ban was a “great idea,” as it would prevent gay people from “corrupting children.”

“The Russians might be the Christian saviors of the world,” he said. “At the UN, they are really the ones standing up for these traditional values of family and faith.”

Just a few days after the “propaganda” bill was passed, Jacobs took to Voice of Russia radio to defend the law, saying, “Russia is actually doing something that used to be pretty common in the west, which is trying to protect children from harmful materials.” Asked whether the U.S. should consider a similar law, Jacobs dodged: “Interesting question, and one that certainly politically would not fly, and again, mostly because of special rights and lobby interest groups on both sides of the issue.”

The World Congress of Families has done more than cheer on Russia’s anti-gay crackdown from the sidelines. It has also built an advocacy structure within the country.

In 2012, WCF helped found a Russia-based group called FamilyPolicy.ru, a group whose goal was “to build [a] highly efficient network of pan-Russian grassroots socially conservative activists, that would be able to consistently exert real influence on the family policy in Russia, at the U.N. and internationally.”

The top staff members at FamilyPolicy.Ru also hold positions with the WCF. FamilyPolicy.ru’s president, Alexei Komov (the one who spoke at the rally in Belgrade), is WCF’s official “Representative in Russia.” Komov also heads a program for St. Basil’s, the foundation headed by Konstantin Malofeev, the businessman and activist who hosted the June meeting on anti-gay laws attended by Brian Brown and Fabrice Sorlin.

In March 2013, WCF appointed FamilyPolicy.ru staffer Pavel Parfentiev to be its “ambassador to European institutions.”

Shortly after its founding, FamilyPolicy.ru held a “demographic summit” dedicated to providing “solutions to Russia’s well-below replacement fertility rate.” The summit featured Parfentiev, the World Congress of Family’s Don Feder and John Mueller of the Washington, DC based Ethics in Public Policy Center. The “demographic winter” theme is central to the scholarship and advocacy of WCF and the Howard Center, which fault feminism, gay rights, legal divorce, birth control and other progressive advances for falling population in the developed world. (In 2011, Jacobs attended a Moscow conference that influenced Russian activists in adopting American anti-choice tactics) And it is a program that Russian president Vladimir Putin has enthusiastically embraced .

FamilyPolicy.ru quickly became a leader in Russian anti-gay politics. In an interview with Voice of Russia radio in June, Parfentiev claimed credit for being an “initiator” of Russia’s ban on adoptions to gay couples and single people in countries that allow gay couples to marry. “As far as I know, I was one of the first people that publicly spoke about the necessity of such a move,” he said. “Of course, I would support this move because, in fact, I was one of its initiators.”

Parfentiev also advocated for Russia’s gay propaganda ban. In March, he sent a detailed memo to the European Commission for Democracy through Law defending the law (then still in progress) and a similar proposed measure in Ukraine. In May, he sent a similar memo to the Council of Europe.

When the Duma passed the propaganda ban in June, Parfentiev posted gleefully on Facebook that he “got greetings and congratulations from many foreign colleagues representing the movement to protect the family.”

Alexei Komov, meanwhile, has proved to be a prolific spokesperson for the anti-gay cause in Russia. In an interview with Voice of Russia radio in August, Komov announced that Russia remains “the last bastion of moral values” against a UN-sponsored push to recognize gay rights around the globe. In another interview, he Komov praised Republicans and the Tea Party for defending “traditional family values” in the United States.

When the World Congress of Families announced its participation in the statement of support for the gay “propaganda law,” Komov and Parfentiev sent out their own press release. The release quotes Komov as saying:

This announcement shows, despite the attempts of supporters of the interests of the so-called" sexual minorities "to create the opposite impression, that a huge number of people and human rights organizations around the world are supporting Russia in an effort to protect their children and their family values ​​from aggressive immoral propaganda.

Parfentiev added a statement comparing gay rights advocacy to “the use of toxic chemicals in baby food”:

Statement organizations in the world confirms that Russian law meets the generally recognized rules of international law. Protect children from propaganda contrary to the family and moral standards - completely normal, routine step. In fact, it is no different, for example, prohibit the use of toxic chemicals in baby food - against which hardly anyone will object. It's amazing how far-fetched and artificial boom created outrage around this simple measure by those who seem to displease the family and family values ​​are simple. Therefore, Russia today is very important this support of the international civil society."

Perhaps the clearest sign that the World Congress of Families is invested in Russia’s anti-gay renaissance – and sees it as a model for the world -- is that it has scheduled its next world conference for Moscow.

Leading the “the hosting committee” for the event will be Alexei Komov. Also on the committee is Konstantin Malofeev, the private equity head who convened “Traditional Values” roundtable with Brian Brown and the French activists that we reported on yesterday. The leading theme of the roundtable discussion was that Russia would be a leader for the world in stemming the trend toward greater freedoms and equality for gay people – a trend that Malofeev claimed would “lead to the physical extinction of humans.”

As we reported yesterday, Malofeev spoke at last year’s World Congress of Families gathering in Sydney, where, where, according to one attendee, he held out Russia as a model for the world, saying, “Now Christian Russia can help liberate the West from the new liberal anti-Christian totalitarianism of political correctness, gender ideology, mass-media censorship and neo-Marxist dogma."

Anti-gay activists in the United States, finding it increasingly difficult to push their agenda at home, have turned to Russia both as a place receptive to their politics and as a “savior” of the world against increasing social liberalism. In doing so, they have provided international backing for an oppressive, anti-democratic regime that is increasingly using LGBT people as scapegoats for broader political dissatisfaction.

When they support the World Congress of Families and attend its events – including the upcoming conference in Moscow – American groups send the clear message about how far they are willing to go to promote anti-gay ideology.

Six US Conservative Groups Sign Statement Supporting Russian 'Gay Propaganda' Ban

The Illinois-based World Congress of Families, which works to promote anti-gay and anti-choice legislation abroad, issued a press release today touting its participation in a worldwide network of conservative groups working to bolster Russia’s recent “gay propaganda” ban. The group has joined five other American organizations in signing on to a joint statement [PDF] supporting the law and condemning the related international outrage. Also signing the statement were the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, whose president Austin Ruse has spoken out in support of the Russian law; Mission: America, the group led by conservative radio personality Linda Harvey; GrasstopsUSA, a group linked to World Congress of Families spokesman Don Feder; the anti-choice Population Research Institute; and a Christian group called His Servants that sells such books as "An Ounce of Prevention -- Preventing the Homosexual Condition in Today's Youth." 

Interestingly, Feder and Harvey seem to have put aside their anti-Islam activism for the purpose of the statement, which was also signed by a handful of UK-based Islamic groups.

Here’s the text of the statement:

Statement by worldwide organizations in support of the Russian Federal Law On Protection of Children from Information Harmful to their Health and Development

The signing entities below are highly concerned about the heavy attacks that the Russian Federation is facing due to its recent Federal Law of June 29, 2013 No. 135-FZ “On Amendments to Article 5 of the Federal Law On Protection of Children from Information Harmful to their Health and Development …” that protects innocence and moral formation of children by prohibiting propaganda of "non-traditional sexual relationships" among them.

We affirm that the natural family created through the marriage of a man and a woman is the foundation of any human society and is entitled to protection by society and the State as stated in the international Human Rights norms, including Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Art. 16 (3)). Any harmful initiative for the natural family is destructive for the society as a whole. We also affirm that the children need special protection due to their innocence and immaturity.

We acknowledge that the Russian law protects the innocence of children and the basic rights of their parents recognized in the international legislation and treaties. With its new law Russia is protecting genuine and universally recognized human rights against artificial and fabricated "values" aggressively imposed in many modern societies. We also note that the concepts of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” are not outlined in the existing binding international treaties and agreements.

We thus call for respect of the sovereignty of the Russian people and we invite all organizations and people who feel responsible for the protection of the innocence of children and their rights, the natural family and parental rights to stand up for Russia, as well as for Ukraine and Moldova suffering the same pressure due to similar laws.

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