LGBT

NOM Board Member Advocates Criminalization of Homosexuality, Overthrow of Government

People For the American Way calls on the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) to repudiate the bizarre and troubling remarks made by its board member Orson Scott Card, who has advocated for criminalizing sex between same-sex adults and for overthrowing the government if same-sex marriage were permitted.

House Passes Hate Crimes Legislation

Today the House of Representatives passed the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009 by a bipartisan vote of 249 to 175. The legislation protects individuals from violent crimes motivated by victims' sexual orientation, disability status, gender or gender identity. The legislation still needs to be approved by the Senate.PFAW President Michael B. Keegan said, "I applaud the House for passing this legislation. Hate crimes remain all too common in this county, and it's important that the federal government take strong stand to ensure that no one is subjected to the threat of violence because of who they are. I'm especially pleased that this bill contains strong First Amendment protections to ensure that no one's right to free expression will ever be affected by this law. All Americans have a right to live in safety, and all Americans have a right to speak, preach, and worship freely."

Point Man for the Wedge Strategy: New Report Examines Political Activities of Bishop Harry Jackson, Face of the Religious Right's Outreach to African Americans

Bishop Harry Jackson, who has emerged as the leading African American voice of the Religious Right political movement, is waging a campaign in the District of Columbia against marriage equality. This report follows Jackson's years on the national political scene since he announced that God told him to campaign for George W. Bush's reelection in 2004.

Hate Crimes Legislation Passes House Judiciary Committee

The House Judiciary Committee today voted 15 to 12 to send the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009 (H.R. 1913) to the floor for a vote. People For the American Way President Michael B. Keegan issued the following statement: "Today's vote is a very positive step towards passing this bill into law. I'm extremely optimistic that this year we'll finally be able to enact hate crimes legislation that includes protections against violence based on disability status, sexual orientation, gender, and gender identity.

Right Sounds False Alarm On Hate Crimes Legislation

Religious Right leaders are vehemently opposed to federal hate crimes laws in large measure because they resist any legal recognition of LGBT people (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender). They know that most Americans support hate-crimes legislation, anti-discrimination laws, and legal protection for gay couples. So they create confusion by portraying these steps toward equality as dire threats to religious liberty. This is part of a larger political strategy by Religious Right leaders to advance their policy goals and mobilize supporters with alarmist claims that Christians in America are on the verge of being jailed for their religious beliefs.

People For the American Way Welcomes Introduction of Federal Hate Crimes Law

People For the American Way welcomed the bipartisan introduction of the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act in the U.S. House of Representatives. The legislation would provide federal resources to help local law enforcement departments combat violent hate crimes. H.R. 1913 was introduced this week by Reps. John Conyers (D-MI) and Mark Kirk (R-IL).

Unanimous Iowa Supreme Court Upholds Marriage Equality Ruling

A unanimous Iowa Supreme Court today upheld a lower court ruling that denying marriage to same-sex couples violates the equal protection clause of the state's constitution. People For the American Way Foundation, which was amicus in the case, welcomed the decision as a victory for core constitutional and American values. "The Iowa Supreme Court's decision is a historic affirmation of equality," said People For the American Way Foundation Interim President Michael B. Keegan. "It's a joyous day for the Iowa families involved in the case, and for equality advocates in Iowa and across the nation. Congratulations to the courageous couples who challenged unfair and unconstitutional discrimination, and to One Iowa, Lambda Legal, and all their allies. We were glad to support their work in this case."

Marriage Equality Opponents Blur Distinction Between Civil And Religious Marriage

Efforts to bring down discriminatory legal barriers to marriage equality have met with fierce resistance led by Religious Right organizations. Anti-equality leaders routinely blur the distinction between civil and religious marriage in order to portray legal marriage equality as a threat to their religious liberty. The truth can be a powerful weapon against that deception: when Americans understand that allowing same-sex couples to be legally wed would not require any church or congregation to bless or perform such weddings, support for legal equality jumps substantially.

People For the American Way 'Profoundly Disappointed' that Rick Warren Will Give Invocation

People For the American Way President Kathryn Kolbert responded today to the news that Rev. Rick Warren of Saddleback Church will deliver the invocation at the presidential inauguration of Barack Obama: "It is a grave disappointment to learn that pastor Rick Warren will give the invocation at the inauguration of Barack Obama. I'm sure that Warren's supporters will portray his selection as an appeal to unity by a president who is committed to reaching across traditional divides, but the sad truth is that this decision further elevates someone who has in recent weeks actively promoted legalized discrimination and denigrated the lives and relationships of millions of Americans."

Prop 8 Protest - Washington, DC - Nov. 15, 2008

People For the American Way joined thousands of protesters to stand against Prop 8 and for marriage equality.

Blaming Black Voters for Prop 8 Loss is Wrong and Destructive

The LGBT-equality movement should recognize that its real enemies are the Religious Right organizations and leaders who oppose gay and lesbian equality and who devise and fund strategies like Prop 8. And we must commit now to building long-term partnerships with equality-affirming African American clergy and community leaders that will allow us to advance the progressive values that we share.

Myths and Facts about Marriage Equality

As the fight for same-sex couples' right to marry continues, here's a debunking of some commonly held myths about marriage equality.

Anti-Gay Leaders: Fasting and Massive Mobilization Will Bring Prop 8 Victory

On Wednesday, September 24, 2008, the latest multi-church conference call by backers of Proposition 8 in California focused on encouraging pastors to raise more money for the initiative, get their church members involved in phone-calling and door-to-door .

People For the American Way Mourns Del Martin, Equal Rights Pioneer

People For the American Way President Kathryn Kolbert released the following statement: "We are greatly saddened by the passing of such an extraordinary and courageous woman. Del Martin and her partner of 55 years, Phyllis Lyon, fought for decades to secure equal rights for all Americans regardless of sex or sexual orientation. In recognition of their legendary struggle, Del and Phyllis became the first same-sex couple to wed in California after the state Supreme Court mandated equal marriage rights for gay men and lesbians."

Gearing Up for a Fight

Picking up where they left off on their July 30 conference call, anti-gay pastors at an estimated 170-180 locations in Arizona, California, and Florida reconvened for the third of seven conference calls between now and November, once more employing violen

"The Armageddon of the Culture War"

On July 30, 2008, pastors gathered at 215 sites to participate in a national conference call where they were were exhorted by Religious Right leaders and local anti-gay pastors to spare nothing in the cultural and spiritual war against Satan and his allies who support marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples.

The Fight for Marriage Equality in California 2008

An overview of the fight for marriage equality in California, where religious right leaders have gathered enough petitions to place an amendment on the ballot that would repeal the right for same-sex couples to marry.

Census Bureau’s Own Research Staff Demonstrated That Airbrushing Out Same-Sex Marriages Distorts Data

The Census Bureau reported this week that in completing the 2010 Census, it will 'edit' the data from same-sex couples who accurately report that they are legally married, and that it will instead re-classify them as "unmarried partners," the same procedure used by the Bureau during the 2000 census, when no states yet recognized same-sex couples as legally married.

McCain Courts the Right, Attacks Families

This weekend, The New York Times reported that Senator McCain said flatly that he opposed allowing gay couples to adopt. "I think that we’ve proven that both parents are important in the success of a family so, no, I don’t believe in gay adoption."

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