North Carolina

Family Research Council: DOJ Defending Trans Rights Is 'Fascistic'

This week the U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the state of North Carolina over the now-notorious HB2, which overturned local civil rights protections for LGBT people and banned transgender people from using public bathrooms that match their gender identity. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch explained that the law violates federal laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex and gender identity, and creates state-sponsored discrimination against transgender people.

Lynch placed the current controversy in the historical context of other forms of state-sponsored discrimination, appealing to the people of North Carolina, “Let us write a different story this time. Let us not act out of fear and misunderstanding, but out of the values of inclusion, diversity and regard for all that make our country great.”

Not surprisingly, the Family Research Council doesn’t exactly see it that way. Senior Vice President Rob Schwarzwalder says in his “Social Conservative Review” this week that the Obama administration’s actions to “crush the government of North Carolina’s efforts to preserve privacy and security in public bathrooms, changing rooms, and showers” represent an “essentially fascistic approach to law and policy — the banning of dissent.”

Earlier in the week FRC praised North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory’s “political courage and moral clarity” for the state’s own lawsuit against the DOJ. Said FRC’s Tony Perkins, “It’s time for Republicans in Congress, who have the constitutional authority as a coequal branch of government, to bring the imperial White House under control.”

Schwarzwalder appealed to a higher power — not Donald Trump:

The federal government is a servant, not a master. Americans are citizens, not subjects. The Tenth Amendment, reserving to the states those things not specifically assigned by the Constitution to the federal government, remains in force.

Those are the principles upon which conscientious men and women have always stood in our country. To abandon them is to abandon liberty. And to abandon liberty is to abandon America.

May God give us the grace and strength never to accede to such a sordid, tragic betrayal of our historic commitment to and movement toward liberty and justice for all.

 

NC Lt. Gov: Trans People Want To 'Trample On' The Rights Of '99.9 Percent' Of People

Dan Forest, the lieutenant governor of North Carolina and an outspoken advocate of the state’s new anti-LGBT law, joined American Family Radio’s Bryan Fischer yesterday to discuss the Justice Department’s civil rights lawsuit against the state.

Forest alleged yet again that it is really the Justice Department and LGBT rights advocates who are being discriminatory in opposing the bill, which among other provisions bars transgender people from using the public restroom that matches their gender identity.

“In trying to appease that community and trying to say that they are trying to not discriminate against them, what they did was really open up the law and they’re discriminating against 99.9 percent of the people out there, all the women and children who don’t have a say in this,” he said.

“Vulnerable women and daughters and granddaughters, they have civil rights too,” Fischer responded, “and that seems to be what’s being forgotten by the Obama administration here, is the civil right of females to be safe in bathrooms and locker rooms and shower rooms.”

“Exactly,” Forest said, “you can’t have one person’s rights trample on top of another person’s rights, and that’s really what they’re trying to do here. In fact, it’s the vast minority who would be trampling on the vast majority of women and kids out there, so they have a real conflict on their hands, certainly, with these lawsuits.”

We can’t help but point out the irony that Forest chose Fischer’s program to claim that the LGBT rights movement is discriminatory.

The lieutenant governor told Fischer that he hopes that Congress will “get engaged on multiple fronts” in response to what he called the Obama administration’s “extortion” of the state and “holding our kids hostage with our own money.”

“I think Congress should get involved there because they create the purse strings, they’re the ones that give the funding, I believe they need to have hearings on this, into the Justice Department, the Transportation Department and HUD so that we can get this thing set straight,” he said.

Mat Staver: Transgender Nondiscrimination Laws Are 'Being Financed By Those Who Are Actively Promoting Pedophilia'

On today's "Faith and Freedom" radio program, Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver asserted that North Carolina's anti-LGBT law and the Religious Right's boycott of Target are necessary because efforts to allow transgender people to use facilities that match their gender identity are being pushed by pedophilia advocates.

"The fact is we know sexual assaults occur," he said, "they are going to occur with or without these laws, there's no question about that. People commit sexual assaults, they commit them in buildings, they commit them in restrooms; but what you have now done, knowing that sexual assaults occur, knowing that they occur in these places where women are trapped and they can't get out, now what we've done, through these laws, is we've opened the door for every rapist and pedophile."

"Frankly," he continued, "when you look at some of the people behind the North Carolina law and some of these other laws, who are they? They have been identified, some of them that have been advocating this, as pedophiles. Some of this is being financed by those who are actively promoting pedophilia."

Of course, Staver did not disclose which groups were identified as organizations that promote child abuse.

NC Lt. Gov. Complains Of 'Amazing Smear Campaign...Based On A Bunch Of Lies'

North Carolina’s Republican lieutenant governor, Dan Forest, hit back at critics of his state’s new radical anti-LGBT law in a radio interview yesterday, saying that the state has been hit by “a pretty amazing smear campaign” when all legislators were trying to do was “protect women and children from predators and sexual offenders and so forth going into bathrooms freely.”

Forest responded earlier this month to PayPal’s decision to cancel a planned expansion in North Carolina in response to the law, which among other things blocks transgender people from using the public restroom of their identifying gender, by saying that if the law protects “the life of just one child or one woman from being molested or assaulted, then it was worth it.”

He continued that theme in an interview yesterday with Relevant Radio host Drew Mariani, saying that North Carolina has been the victim of “a pretty amazing smear campaign” that’s “all based on a bunch of lies.”

The whole thing, he said, was the fault of LGBT rights activists and the Charlotte City Council, whose nondiscrimination ordinance was overturned by the state law.

“They knew that the General Assembly in North Carolina was going to have to do something about it,” he said, “they were going to have to fight it constitutionally, but more importantly they were going to have to protect women and children from predators and sexual offenders and so forth going into bathrooms freely.”

Of course, there have been zero cases of child predators using LGBT nondiscrimination laws to assault children.

Richard Land: LGBT Rights Advocates Practice 'Child Abuse'

Yesterday, Religious Right leader Richard Land appeared on “Sandy Rios in the Morning” to defend North Carolina’s new anti-LGBT law, citing information he received from a group called the American College of Pediatricians.

Despite the group’s official-sounding name, the ACP is actually a tiny fringe organization launched by anti-gay activists who objected to the mainstream medical community’s greater acceptance of LGBT identities. The leading organization in the pediatric field, the American Academy of Pediatrics, has joined other health and children’s groups in calling for the repeal of the North Carolina law.

Nonetheless, Land cited the an ACP paper titled “Gender Ideology Harms Children” in an effort to substantiate his claim that nondiscrimination measures are “confusing and doing psychological harm to 98 percent of the boys and 88 percent for the gender-confused girls who eventually figure out that they are girls and that they are boys in order to further confuse and confirm in their confusion the small minority that don’t.”

“These people are practicing psychological and physiological child abuse on a whole generation of our nation’s children and it’s up to us as responsible and clear-thinking adults to stop them,” he added.

Land has previously said that gay couples with children are also practicing “child abuse.”

North Carolina Activist Slams 'Social Terrorists' Opposing Anti-LGBT Law

Mark Creech, who as the head of the Christian Action League of North Carolina has been a leading proponent of the state’s new law mandating discrimination against transgender people , wrote on his group’s website this weekend that LGBT rights advocates opposing the law are “social terrorists” using “totalitarian tactics.”

North Carolina, Creech wrote, “has had its name maligned about as bad as calling a virgin a whore” when it was simply trying to “rise up and take the whip from the task masters [sic] hand.”

To smear someone means to sully, vilify, or soil a good reputation. It carries with it the idea of smudging or blurring the truth.

Since the North Carolina General Assembly passed HB 2, my beloved state has had its name maligned about as bad as calling a virgin a whore. The state has certainly been as innocent.

But who is interested in the truth when a leftist media, celebrities, sports organizations, and various corporate entities are crying out, “bigot,” “hater,” “homophobe,” etc. When you sling mud it sticks. It doesn’t have to be true. People move away as fast as a Jew did in Bible times from possible contact with a leper whenever hearing, “unclean, unclean.”

Thank you. Well said, Governor. Still, figuratively speaking, don’t expect these social terrorists like the HRC to let-up on the pressure. There is no meaningful dialogue with them, only total domination. They are an unbending, immovable, aggressive, insistent force that would have every norm and moral turned on its head – every objection to their way vilified, penalized, fined, and criminalized by law.

Even though some big businesses have come out against the Tar Heel state, threatening to leave or not to bring their companies as promised because of HB 2, in a way they’re victims of HRC’s totalitarian tactics too.

Nevertheless, there is only so long one can get away with coercing people into submission. Eventually they will rise up and take the whip from the task masters hand. For the present, that appears to be happening in states like Mississippi and my own, North Carolina.

So call us names. Smear our state’s character. Listen to the parrots of political correctness. Heed the heavy hand of the HRC, if you will. Eventually, the truth will win out and the fog of a million lies will ebb away in the brightness of God’s light.

Pat Robertson: Many Transgender People Are Frauds

Yesterday on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson said he was “simply appalled” by the negative reaction to North Carolina’s new anti-LGBT law, claiming that the law is “perfectly reasonable” and that it was passed because “we don’t want men going into women’s bathrooms, we don’t want predators going out where little girls are, we don’t want voyeurs having free access to the women’s locker rooms during games when they’re changing clothes.”

The televangelist contended – without any basis in fact or reality – that while there are some people who truly are transgender, many people identifying as transgender are frauds.

“People like that are relatively rare,” Robertson said. “So much of this other stuff is put up, it’s put on and it’s just a fraud. And it’s one more opportunity for the left to demonstrate against some aggrievement they claim to have that doesn’t exist. This is a phony, phony, phony cause to get involved in. ‘Well, I’ve got to look after the transgenders.’ This is nonsense.”

Rally In Support Of North Carolina's Anti-LGBT Law Features Anal-Obsessed Preacher Patrick Wooden

Last week, we noted that anti-gay activists were organizing a rally in support of North Carolina's recently passed anti-LGBT law. The rally took place yesterday and featured members of the state legislature and various right-wing activists, including Bishop Patrick Wooden of the Upper Room Church of God in Christ in Raleigh:

Wooden is an almost cartoonishly vehement anti-gay activist who has asserted that by the time gay men reach middle age, they "have to wear a diaper or a butt plug just to be able to contain their bowels" because of "what happens to the male anus":

When criticized for those statements, Wooden refused to apologize and, in fact, doubled down by claiming that gay men regularly shove objects such as cellphones, baseball bats and animals up their anuses and that he personally knows a gay person who "literally died in diapers” because he "literally lost control of himself":

Anti-LGBT activists Mark Creech, Ron Baity and David and Jason Benham also spoke at the rally.

A Young Louie Gohmert Wouldn't Have Resisted The Temptation To Enter Girls' Bathrooms

In a radio interview yesterday, Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, defended North Carolina’s new anti-LGBT law, which bars transgender people from using restrooms consistent with their gender identity and prevents localities like Charlotte from enacting measures protecting LGBT people from discrimination, by insisting that it would prevent boys from going into women’s restrooms.

Citing his own childhood, the congressman said that boys would be unable to resist the temptation to see girls while they are in the bathroom.

Gohmert recounted to “Washington Watch” host and Family Research Council President Tony Perkins his junior-high fantasies.

“When it comes to this current legislation where — in most of the world, in most of the religions, the major religions, you have men and you have women, and there are some abnormalities but for heaven’s sake, I was as good a kid as you can have growing up, I never drank alcohol till I was legal, never to, still, use an illegal drug, but in the seventh grade if the law had been that all I had to do was say, ‘I’m a girl,’ and I got to go into the girls’ restroom, I don’t know if I could’ve withstood the temptation just to get educated back in those days,” he said.

Gohmert then said that businesses like PayPal are now “telling states that you have to let boys into little girls’ restrooms or we’re pulling our business, it’s just the height of lunacy.”

Anti-Gay Activists To Rally In Defense Of North Carolina's New Anti-LGBT Law

Anti-gay activist Mark Creech of the Christian Action League, who once declared that gay marriage is "an attempted gang rape of our culture," is organizing a show of support for North Carolina's recently passed anti-LGBT law.

In a video posted on his website, Creech asks people to demonstrate their "strong support" for the law and to push back against the "smear campaign" against it by joining him for a rally on Monday, April 11, at the state Capitol where they will hear from anti-gay activists like David and Jason Benham, Harry Jackson, Frank Turek, Ron Baity and others speak out in defense of the law and the lawmakers who enacted it:

Benham Bros.: Sexual Revolution Is 'Forcing Itself On Everyone'

After failing to block the Charlotte city council from approving a nondiscrimination ordinance protecting the LGBT community, conservative activists successfully persuaded North Carolina’s GOP-led government last month to pass a sweeping law blocking Charlotte’s measure.

Two of the most visible conservative activists advocating for the move were Jason and David Benham, who, along with their father, Flip Benham, have campaigned against LGBT rights in Charlotte and elsewhere for years, including calling for the Charlotte city government to deny permits to LGBT pride events and organizing a rally against gay rights when the Democratic National Convention was held in the city.

In a WorldNetDaily column today defending the new state law, the Benham twins write that just as the men in the city of Sodom tried to rape the angels who appeared in Lot’s house, now “the newest fruit of the vine of Sodom is the sexual revolution — and it’s poisoning our land. It has nearly taken over everything and is forcing itself on everyone.”

The brothers argue that just as the rapists of Sodom refused Lot’s offer that they rape his daughter instead of the angels, the sexual revolutionaries in America do not believe in compromise or accommodation and simply seek to destroy anyone who doesn’t go along with their demonic agenda.

“Today, the sexual revolution of Sodom has pervaded every sphere of society,” the Benhams write, “capturing both young and old. And anyone standing in the way will be surrounded by an angry mob demanding participation.”

“The sexual revolution is ‘blind’ to its own rage and hate,” they write. “It has no capacity for reason. It has no ability to see its own hypocrisy or discern its hopeless future. It just forces itself on others regardless of cost or consequence.”

America has fallen to this “demanding and pervasive” spirit, the Benham’s continue, “and nothing short of a miracle will stop its deadly poison.”

North Carolina Lt. Gov.: LGBT Rights Measure 'Discriminated' Against Women And Girls

Last week, North Carolina Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Forest spoke with anti-LGBT activist Tony Perkins about the state’s new law banning transgender people from using public restrooms of the gender they identify with and barring cities from instituting LGBT nondiscrimination measures.

The state law, HB2, was enacted in a special session that was called to block a Charlotte measure prohibiting anti-LGBT discrimination in places of public accommodation.

Forest, in a March 31 interview with Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, on his “Washington Watch” radio program, said that the state law was actually needed to prevent discrimination, alleging that Charlotte’s protections for LGBT people discriminated against women and children.

“Nobody likes discrimination,” Forest said. “We don’t like discrimination and that’s why we passed an anti-discrimination law, that’s what HB2 was. Nobody likes discrimination, so it’s easy to stand up and say, ‘We don’t like anybody being discriminated against.’ Well, our bill does not discriminate against anybody. In fact, the Charlotte ordinance was amazingly discriminatory against especially women and girls who no longer had the freedom to walk into a restroom and know that they would be safe and secure in that restroom without a man walking in or a pedophile or a predator walking into that bathroom. That’s really discriminatory if you want to talk about discrimination.”

Forest’s allegation that protections for LGBT people will empower child predators has been roundly debunked.

Forest then claimed that the LGBT “lobby” has misrepresented the law because “for them, truth is all relative, there is no absolute truth anymore so they can bend the rules and twist it however they want to to push their agenda.”

The Religious Right 'Liberty' Icons Behind North Carolina's Appalling Anti-LGBT Law

Earlier this week, North Carolina’s legislature passed a shockingly restrictive bill barring transgender people from using restrooms of their identifying gender and preventing localities from instituting protections for transgender people. (While they were at it, they also barred cities from setting their minimum wage higher than the state’s.) The bill was the result of a hurried special session convened in response to the passage of an LGBT nondiscrimination bill in Charlotte.

Ironically, the most public spokespeople against the Charlotte measure and in favor of calling a special legislative session to undo it were David and Jason Benham, two brothers who have built a high profile on the Religious Right by claiming that they are victims of persecution at the hands of LGBT-rights activists.

Back in 2014, the Benham twins were set to star in a house-flipping program on HGTV when we reported on their long history of virulent anti-gay and anti-Muslim activism, which was about to get a boost with a national TV platform. Faced with an outcry, HGTV cancelled the show, but the Benhams got their national platform anyway. They quickly became the latest — and the most photogenic — examples of conservative Christians who claimed to be martyrs at the hands of LGBT activists. They took their show on the road, becoming staples at conservative events and Republican campaign rallies.

Most recently, the Benhams endorsed Sen. Ted Cruz’s presidential candidacy and joined his campaign's “religious liberty advisory council” that recommended that a President Cruz roll back federal employment protections for LGBT people.

While the Benhams claim in their frequent presentations that they lost their TV show because of their personal views against marriage equality, they in fact had a long history of very public activism against what David once called “homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation.” In 2012, David led a prayer rally outside the Democratic National Convention which he said was necessary to stop “demonic ideologies” like gay rights from taking “our universities and our public school systems.” In 2004, the brothers tried to get the city of Charlotte to deny a permit to an LGBT pride parade, with David saying, “This is filth, this is vile and should not be allowed in our city.” Jason urged the city council to “deny [LGBT activists] every permit that they ask for.”

Then, last year, when Charlotte began to consider a LGBT nondiscrimination ordinance, the Benhams used their new right-wing celebrity to lead the campaign to stop it. Using the anti-LGBT’s movement’s new messaging on such bills, David called it a “transgender bathroom ordinance” and warned that it would put religious liberties “under attack."

David called the proposed ordinance “depraved” and the latest example of “the radical gay agenda’s plan to change America.”

The 2015 ordinance was defeated, but the city council considered it again this year, and this time it passed.

The Benham brothers, after speaking out against the ordinance at a hearing, responded to its passage with a Facebook video in which Jason said that he and his brother could now “declare ourselves women” and play in the WNBA. David surmised that the “ungodly ordinance” was the “direct result of God’s judgment” for legal abortion and claimed that it would allow “young women and girls” to be “victimized.”

David said that he prayed the ordinance would be “overturned at the legislative level.”

 

 

We lost the battle at the Charlotte City Council meeting over the transgender bathroom bill.....but, God is still on the throne. Boom.

Posted by Benham Brothers on Monday, February 22, 2016

 

Shortly afterward, the Benhams headlined a protest calling for a special legislative session to overturn it and promoted a petition campaign calling on the legislature and Gov. Pat McCrory to overturn the Charlotte law.

Speaking at the Awakening summit in Florida earlier this month, the Benhams cited the Charlotte ordinance as an example of “ungodly laws” that must be resisted with “biblical obedience” — their new phrase for civil disobedience.

This week, the Benhams got what they wanted, thanking Gov. Pat McCrory for signing the bill overturning the Charlotte ordinance and severely restricting the freedom of transgender people.

What happened in North Carolina this week underscores the reality behind the Religious Right’s claims that they are being persecuted in America. In the view of people like the Benhams, “religious liberty” doesn’t just mean the right to live freely as you choose; it also means the ability to restrict the freedoms of others as they see fit.

Pastor Who Said Gay Marriage Is An 'Attempted Gang Rape Of Our Culture' Endorses Ted Cruz

As we have noted several times before, people who hate gays sure do seem to love Ted Cruz, and to that ever-growing list we can now add Mark Creech of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, who endorsed Cruz last week:

We are witnessing possibly the most dangerous time in American history. It's not that our great country hasn't faced incredible challenges in the past, but today the enemies of our Republic strike at the heart of our national identity – the meaning of America. Such issues will determine the preservation of liberty for the generations to come.

Although the Christian Action League concedes there are many pressing considerations in choosing a President, none are more important than marriage and family, restoring a culture of life, and preserving our first right – the right to practice one's faith freely. No current candidate in the Democratic field demonstrates a proper commitment to any of these necessary supports for a healthy society. All the candidates in the GOP field have shown some commitment to these three, either with lip service or some demonstration of allegiance, but none has the long track record of their zealous defense and promotion as Senator Ted Cruz.

Creech is sort of right-wing activist who asserts that "hunger is rampant in India" because the people there have not embraced Christianity and that President Obama could be the Antichrist, so naturally he has some pretty strong feelings about gay people as well:

  • He has declared that homosexuality is "impure," "dirty," and "disgusting."
  • He said that those who identify as gay are insulting God: "What an insult to God to say that we are something other than what he really created us. We’re either born male or female and are meant to express our masculinity or femininity in a way consistent with God’s creation."
  • He warned that there is nothing loving about accepting gay relationships: "No one who is thoughtful can possibly believe that something as unnatural as the act of a man placing that part of his body which was designed to project life into that part of another man's body meant to expel death could possibly be a healthy lifestyle under any circumstances."
  • He proclaimed that homosexuality is worse than other sins because "the consequences of homosexual behavior can be considerably more grievous than some other sins. Homosexuality is unique in that it is especially abhorrent to God and constitutes a significantly perverse and wicked lifestyle that clearly shows that one is far removed from Him."
  • He has said that gay-friendly churches are a satanic "fifth column."
  • He warned that court decisions in favor of gay marriage are a sign of the End Times:  "Such court decisions are certainly a sign of the times – a sign that we are heading for an impending judgment. This matter burdens my heart greatly nearly every day, sometimes with tears."
  • He said that acceptance of homosexuality will lead to persecution of Christians: "These events of late prove, without question, that the normalization of homosexual behavior in the culture and the legalization of same-sex marriage will inevitably usher in a flood of religious persecutions for Christians who dare say homosexuality is a sin."
  • He stated that the push for gay marriage is an attempt to rape society: "No longer were their shameful sins simply tolerated by a permissive society, but it had gone much further than that. Now these people were an open, aggressive and insistent force, in a city where none dare interfere. Their behavior was not looked upon as criminal, but as constitutional. Yet as they pushed upon Lot's door to knock it down, their actions were nothing less than an attempted gang rape.Today, it is the same. I suggest the defying of marriage laws by gays and lesbians in California, New York, Illinois, New Mexico, and Oregon — the foisting of the issue of gay marriage on the country by judicial activists sympathetic with the gay agenda — is an attempted gang rape of our culture. It is an attempt to sodomize our society."

With views like these, Creech will fit right in among the radicals with which the Cruz campaign has aligned itself.

Latinos Vote! Dolores Huerta’s Four-State Tour with PFAW

Over a two-week span, People For the American Way (PFAW) staff and volunteers joined PFAW board member Dolores Huerta for a four-state tour to get out the vote in Latino communities and push back against anti-immigrant, anti-Latino rhetoric and policies of Republican presidential candidates.

Huerta attended the last two Republican debates, spreading the message that all of the Republican candidates stand firmly against the priorities of working families and Latino communities. At the start of our tour, leading up to the debate in Colorado at the end of October, Huerta joined Colorado Latino leaders and voters to discuss how the Republican candidates are out of line with Colorado Latinos.

latin life denver

latin life denver

Huerta also spoke at a rally that thousands attended. As Suzanne Gamboa at NBC News reported:

“Huerta planned to participate in an event with other Latino leaders Wednesday afternoon to launch a voter registration campaign and protest rhetoric of the campaign and some proposals she considered to be anti-Latino.

[…]"The Republican candidates are not really reflecting or even addressing the needs of the Latino community or American families," Huerta said in an phone interview with NBC News.

After Colorado, Huerta traveled to Charlotte, North Carolina to get out the vote leading up to municipal elections and to call out North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory for signing the severely anti-immigrant HB 318.

After her third radio interview of the morning – which also happened to be the day before Halloween – Huerta posed with the radio hosts of Charlotte’s La Raza 106.1.

la raza

Huerta joined Charlotte voters and activists to deliver an “award” to Gov. McCrory for his ability to disguise himself as a friend of immigrants and then to turn his back on the community.

charlotte

After Charlotte, Huerta joined PFAW staff and volunteers to get out the vote in Virginia. PFAW had already begun laying the groundwork in Virginia with Spanish-language ads encouraging voters to head to the polls on Election Day.

The Washington Post’s write-up of the ad included this explanation from PFAW’s Carlos A. Sanchez:

“By highlighting in Spanish how local and national Republican politicians from [former Virginia gubernatorial candidate] Ken Cuccinelli to Donald Trump have demonized immigrants, our ad urges voters to stand up against them by going to the polls."

While on the ground, Huerta mobilized voters and volunteers in State Senate District 29 to support Democrat Jeremy McPike.

Our efforts paid off, as McPike won his race!

To wrap up our four-state tour, Huerta traveled to Wisconsin leading up to the Republican debate there. PFAW joined with Voces de la Frontera Action to shed light on the anti-immigrant, anti-Latino policies of all the Republican candidates.

dolores press conf

Huerta also joined with allies for a Fight for $15 rally urging politicians to support a $15 minimum wage. Watch Huerta discuss her efforts on local CBS.

The 4-state tour is a part of PFAW’s Latinos Vote! program. Stay tuned for more updates on our work!

PFAW

Anti-Abortion Groups Target GOP Congresswoman For Expressing Concern About Rape Survivors

Anti-choice Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers of North Carolina became public enemy number one of the anti-abortion movement earlier this year when she helped sink a planned vote on a 20-week abortion ban — the top priority of many anti-choice groups — because she feared the legislation’s harsh treatment of rape survivors could turn off young voters.

Now, it appears that the anti-choice movement’s collective rage at Ellmers has kept her off of a House special committee investigating Planned Parenthood — which she had aggressively lobbied to join — and is fueling a number of primary challengers in her home state.

Ellmers was conspicuously absent from a list of Republican members of the Planned Parenthood investigative committee released today, after anti-choice groups — such as the Susan. B Anthony List, which had previously endorsed her lobbied to keep her off the committee.

On top of that, LifeSiteNews yesterday assembled an impressive collection of quotes from anti-choice leaders vowing to oppose Ellmers in a primary:

"Congresswoman Renee Ellmers has betrayed the pro-life community," said the North Carolina Values Coalition. The American Principles Project's founder shared, "I hope that Ellmers will be subjected to a strong primary challenge in the next election by someone who is genuinely pro-life and that our movement to protect the lives of unborn children at all stages and in all conditions will now move forward." National Right to Life said, "If you can't vote for such a humanitarian no-brainer of a law to protect the unborn, you can't be trusted to vote for any pro-life legislation."

"We need to send a message loud and clear to all 'pro-life' representatives who ask for our vote, but who betray the lives of vulnerable unborn babies when they get in office: If you vote or work behind the scenes to allow the slaughter of abortion to continue, you will hear from pro-life voters loudly and clearly at the polls," National Right to Life president Carol Tobias said.

Dr. James Dobson, author and founder of Focus on the Family, commented, "Conservatives will know Rep. Renee Ellmers best for her opposition to the Marriage Protection Amendment, her sponsorship of the radical Equal Rights Amendment, and for withdrawing her sponsorship of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act."

Ambassador and former presidential candidate Alan Keyes released a statement about Ellmers, saying that she is "a faithless Representative, favored by political bosses, who must be removed from office if decent politics is to prevail."

Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List, which has been training Republican candidates to avoid talking about rape when talking about their opposition to abortion rights, was furious at Ellmers for “creating a firestorm on an issue that this was never about, that this was about rape” and said back in January that if Ellmers got a primary challenger, “she deserves it.”

Meanwhile, Ellmers is desperately trying to remind her constituents that despite having once expressed concern about rape survivors, she still very much opposes abortion rights.

Culture War Politics At David Lane's 'Nonpolitical' Prayer Rally

Last Saturday, while the Values Voter Summit drew Religious Right activists and pandering politicians together in Washington, D.C., a group of Christian dominionists was holding an all-day political prayer rally in Charlotte, North Carolina, featuring Republican Gov. Pat McCrory. McCrory had objected to the way Response organizers used his name to recruit participants, but it didn’t keep him away.

This was the fourth “Response” rally headlined by a state governor. The first, in 2011, served as the unofficial launch to Rick Perry’s disastrous 2012 presidential bid. Since then, Response rallies have been hosted by Bobby Jindal in Louisiana and Nikki Haley in South Carolina. Florida Gov. Rick Scott is scheduled to host the next “Response” on October 24. The North Carolina Response was the smallest to date; one speaker referred to “hundreds” of participants, while the Charlotte Observer reported that it attracted “more than 1,000” people.

The rallies are in effect a series of bait-and-switch events. They are disingenuously promoted as non-political gatherings to create Christian unity by bringing people together across denominational and racial lines to pray for the state and the country. And while that promise of ecumenical prayer and worship is undoubtedly what brought many people to the event in Charlotte, the “non-political” veneer was discarded almost immediately.

The organizers are a group of Christian-nation zealots who believe every sphere of influence in society – including business, government, education, media, and entertainment – is meant to be controlled by the right kind of Christians. And they’re intent on electing politicians – and a president – who share that vision. The events are sponsored by Christian-nation extremist David Lane, a favorite of GOP presidential hopefuls whose American Renewal Project organizes and funds The Response rallies as well as other efforts to get conservative evangelicals more involved in politics. The American Renewal Project operates under the umbrella of the American Family Association, home to the notorious font of bigotry, radio host Bryan Fischer.

Here’s how Lane opened his prayer at the unifying, non-political Response rally:

The problem is us, a Christian nation founded for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith that has left God. So Lord, we start here. We’re so sorry what we’ve allowed to happen to a once-Christian nation, Lord. We deserve judgment. We pray for mercy, the mercy of God. A nation founded on the Bible; fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. And Lord, they removed prayer and Bible from the public schools in 1963 after 350 years as a principal component, as the fixed point in order to judge society. We did this, we allowed this to happen. We pray for mercy. Fifty-five million babies dead, homosexuals praying at the inauguration, red ink as far as the eye can see -- judgment is on us. We need mercy Lord. We deserve judgment.

Like other Response events, it was emceed by “apostle” Doug Stringer, who announced that the day would follow the five-theme Response formula: repentance, reconciliation, revival, reformation, and refreshing. As the Response moved through its five segments, Religious Right speakers took turns at the microphone, interspersed with praise music and prayers from locals. Some prayed for the church to be filled with God’s love, and some shouted out culture war rhetoric about abortion, homosexuality, and separation of church and state:

Lord, you’ve called us to be salt and light, and Lord, salt is flavoring, salt is an irritant, and salt is a preservative. Lord, it is sin for us to not study your word, and know it, and obey it. Oh, God, it is sin for us to not know our Constitution, our liberties, and it is sin for us to not know how to be good citizens, preserving our liberties and our freedoms. Change us, oh God, and help us be like Kim Davis, obeying the Constitution and defying federal criminals. In Jesus’ name.  

Cruz And Perry Join Pastor Who Warns God Will Wreak Judgment On America For Gay Marriage

GOP presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Rick Perry tried to burnish their Religious Right credentials this weekend by speaking at a “We Stand With God” rally in front of the South Carolina capitol, where Perry promised that he would root out corruption in Washington just like Jesus kicked the money changers out of the Temple and Cruz warned that the U.S. will soon be throwing pastors in jail like Iran.

The keynote address of the event was given by North Carolina Baptist pastor Ron Baity — previously known for warning that God would send a calamity worse than the Ebola virus in punishment for gay marriage — who told the crowd that marriage equality and legal abortion are inviting God’s judgment on America.

Pastors, he said, must stand up to criticism and preach that homosexuality is an “abomination” and “preach against Planned Parenthood.”

“The judgment of God will eventually fall on a nation that cheapens marriage,” he warned. “God had an urban renewal program for Sodom and Gomorrah!”

Baity warned that the U.S. will soon have to change its national bird from the eagle to the buzzard because “we have come to a time in America where we are ashamed of the old-time religion, we are ashamed of the Word of God, we are ashamed by the pastor that would stand in the pulpit, dare to raise his voice, point his index finger and dare to say, ‘Here’s the way, walk me in.’”

The Fight for Voters’ Rights Is a Necessary Interruption

“Forward together, not one step back” were the chants heard in every space we entered while we marched for voters’ rights in Winston-Salem, North Carolina last month. On July 13, Young People For (YP4) community college consultant Lela Ali, African American Ministers Leadership Council (AAMLC) administrative assistant Jasmine Bowden, and I participated in the Mass Moral Monday march and rally hosted by the North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP to share our voices and energy in the fight against the 2013 North Carolina law (H.B. 589) that advocates have called “the worst voter suppression law in the country.”

Community and religious leaders performed sit-ins three years ago in the North Carolina State Senate resulting in arrests opposing the voter suppression law. One month later, the North Carolina NAACP and Rosanell Eaton filed a complaint in federal district court due to the bill’s violations under the 14th and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. This history was uplifted by North Carolina NAACP State President Reverend William Barber, II – who is also an AAMLC member – at an ecumenical service at Union Baptist Church Sunday evening. He gave a great sermon titled “Necessary Interruption,” saying that allies and activists are being called to disrupt our nation in order to dismantle the systems of oppression that plague our country and leave behind countless black deaths with little consequences. He spoke on the need for Medicare expansion, policy changes like gun laws and criminal justice reforms, and economic empowerment for marginalized communities.  The North Carolina NAACP v. McCrory lawsuit, which challenges the provisions of embedded in H.B. 589, is one of those necessary interruptions of justice.

With a fiery ending to our first night in Winston-Salem, we were excited for the full day of teach-ins that occurred the next morning. We were hosted by Goler Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church and engaged in various topics from ‘Racial Violence & Criminal (In)Justice’ to ‘Building Coalitions to Sustain a Social Justice Movement.’ Many of our conversations were focused around allyship, direct action, and legal support to dismantle systems of inequity in local communities. We had the opportunity during our lunch break to meet with members of the Young Elected Officials (YEO) Network and ministerial leaders (AAMLC) from People For the American Way Foundation.

Later that day, we headed over to a rally and march only a few blocks away. At this time, the weather had reached its peak of 93 degrees, but this did not minimize the crowd of over 600 supporters. Music welcomed us and speakers from across the country greeted us with boisterous calls to action as they prepared us to take to the streets and rally for voters’ rights. We gathered our signs and water bottles and followed the crowd through the streets of downtown Winston-Salem as we chanted, “Forward together, not one step back!” and “What do you want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!” We were escorted by local police while onlookers from the side streets clapped and cheered us on. Music continued to serenade us as young and old, black and white supporters joined hands to dance in solidarity for justice and equality around voting rights. It was a magical experience that could only be felt in that moment. We walked back to our cars after the march not concerned with the sweltering weather or the sweat staining our clothes and faces. We were excited to be a part of history and exercise our rights to march and protest.

The lawsuit appealing H.B. 589 may not be resolved right away, but activists and allies will continue to take to the internet and streets to uplift the voices of marginalized communities whose rights are violated by those who were elected to serve an array of constituents – black, brown, and white. We will continue to interrupt the notion that young people can’t participate in the electoral process. We will align ourselves with the interests of those who fight for equality and human rights. The fight for voters’ rights is a necessary interruption in the face of injustice.

PFAW Foundation
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