Marriage Equality

Garlow: Christians Will be 'Forced Underground' if Court Affirms Marriage Equality

In an interview with Janet Mefferd yesterday, pastor Jim Garlow elaborated on his theory that gay people don’t actually want to get married. In fact, Garlow told Mefferd, gay people want to “destroy marriage” and “force us to affirm an immoral behavior.”

Garlow further warned that if the Supreme Court affirms marriage equality, Christians will be “forced underground. Their buildings will be taken away from them, many of their rights will be taken away from them.”

Garlow: I think it’s important for people to realize what’s really at stake here. And I know this sounds sound strange, most of us assume naively that what homosexuals are actually for is marriage. And that is not true, at least not universally true. What they want is to destroy marriage.

I think Masha Gessen out of Australia was the most open one I’ve seen on it. She’s a homosexual activist and she just said bluntly, ‘Let’s face it, we don’t want marriage, we want the end of marriage.’ And that’s exactly what happened, of course, in European countries, where they changed the laws regarding what the definition of marriage is and people just stopped getting marriage. And you’d think marriage rates would go up. Instead, they dropped because nobody respects the institution anymore.

And that’s what the heart of this is, not only to end marriage, they’re not demanding marriage for themselves, they want us, to force us to affirm an immoral behavior.

Mefferd: That’s it. And the religious liberty issue, and I know you’ve been really big on this as well, I think more Christians need to understand the connection between advancing LGBT rights and retreating Christian rights.

Garlow: If same-sex so-called marriage is established as the law of the land, many of the people who are listening to my voice right now, not maybe immediately but at some point in the future, if they are followers of Christ, will be forced underground. Their buildings will be taken away from them, many of their rights will be taken away from them.

Barber: Children of Same-Sex Couples Live In 'Disordered and Dysfunctional Households'

Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber joined talk show host Sandy Rios today where he maintained that the children of same-sex couples are in “disordered and dysfunctional households where immorality is being modeled that is obviously not the gold standard and not the best environment for them.”

Barber was responding to Justice Kennedy’s claim that California children of same-sex couples “want their parents to have full recognition and status,” a point Barber dismissed since California already has a civil unions law, while then adding that he opposes civil unions.

According to Barber, “homosexual duos” know “that intuitively” they are “disordered and immoral” and are only capable of entering into a “mock marriage.”

Anecdotally certainly there are couples out there who want to enter into a mock marriage; homosexual duos that want to somehow get the government’s official stamp of approval on a behavior and a lifestyle that I think they inherently know is disordered and immoral, they know that intuitively so they want that official government stamp of approval and for people to say, ‘Hey what you are entering into is good and normal and natural and look we’re going to even call it marriage.’ I call it mock marriage. They want to enter into something that looks like marriage.



They have full recognition and full status. All the rights, privileges and responsibilities of marriage are inherent in a civil union relationship that California has already passed. Now, I don’t agree with civil unions and children clearly have a right to a mother and a father and those children who are in those disordered and dysfunctional households where immorality is being modeled that is obviously not the gold standard and not the best environment for them.

However, the honorable and learned Justice Kennedy I think overlooked for some reason the reality that they already have civil unions there so all we’re talking about here is what they’re really seeking, is to have the idea that this can be something that it cannot be, that it’s marriage. Ultimately, what they are trying to do is redefine the word marriage so that it will become something that it has never been and never will be or can be. They are seeking to do the impossible.

Pat Robertson and Jim Garlow Agree: Gays and Lesbians Don't Want Marriage

The 700 Club today covered the marriage equality cases and dueling rallies at the Supreme Court. Host Pat Robertson and pastor Jim Garlow used the same tired talking points about how gays and lesbians don’t really want marriage.

Garlow, the Proposition 8 activist who addressed NOM’s anti-gay rally yesterday, told Christian Broadcasting Network reporter John Jessup that “there isn’t that much interest in marriage, there isn’t that much interest in commitment and monogamy, it isn’t there; it’s attempting to force us to affirm a lifestyle, that’s what’s at stake here.”

Robertson concurred and said that “the foundation of our society since the founding of our great Republic is under attack” by “a few people [who] want to have their way doing of sex affirmed by everyone else.”

“They say it’s homophobia to believe that a marriage between a man and a woman is sanctioned by God,” Robertson said, “God is not a homophobe, God is almighty, He’s in charge of the world and this is the way he made it. “Two men do not have children, two women do not have children,” he concluded.

Watch:

Government Is Not God PAC: 'If Homosexuals Win, The Bill of Rights Dies'

The Religious Right group Government Is Not God PAC in a message to members this week warning that if the Supreme Court strikes down Proposition 8 and DOMA then “religious freedom, freedom of speech and the First Amendment will die.”

“If homosexuals win, the Bill of Rights dies and religious liberty/free speech will die with it,” GING PAC argued. “We either fight this evil or see our children and grandchildren brainwashed and/or coerced into accepting homosexuality as the new normal in our society.”

The group went on to say that “no institution will be safe from being homosexualized” and that society will soon “see our children and grandchildren brainwashed and/or coerced into accepting homosexuality as the new normal in our society,” as anti-gay activism “will be punishable by suppression, fines, or even jail sentences.”

If the U.S. Supreme Court decides that “marriage” in the United States includes so-called “gay” couples, religious freedom, freedom of speech and the First Amendment will die.

Once “gay” marriage is given the Supreme Court’s stamp of approval, any opposition to these bizarre sexual unions will be considered a violation of the law of the land and will be punishable by suppression, fines, or even jail sentences.

Every private institution – including religious ones – will be relentlessly attacked for “discriminating” against “gays.” No institution will be safe from being homosexualized.



Even secular groups like the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) are already feeling the growing wrath and viciousness of the “gay” political movement. Homosexual activists in the California legislature won passage of a bill – signed into law – that prohibits NARTH counselors from treating minors who freely contact them for help in overcoming same-sex attractions. NARTH won an injunction against the law, but the battle is far from over.

“Gay” activists only one point of view expressed in our culture: Theirs. And, they’re willing to suppress the free speech and religion of anyone who opposes them.

What’s ahead in America is what has already happened in The Netherlands. In a document published in The Netherlands Institute for Social Research publication, “Acceptance of Homosexuality in the Netherlands, 2011,” the authors stated: “The Dutch government is committed to increasing the social acceptance of homosexuality among ethnic minorities, members of orthodox religions, and the young – all groups which emerge in nationally representative surveys as having more difficulties than average with homosexuality.” (p. 24).

In other words, The Netherlands government is going to actively brainwash its population – including religious populations – into accepting homosexuality as normal and a positive good in society.

“Gay” activists have already infiltrated our military and can now brazenly promote their political goals inside the finest armed forces in the world. They’re relentlessly attacking the Boy Scouts for refusing to permit homosexual leaders or members. And, they routinely attack business owners – like the owner of Chick-fil-A – for expressing support for the God-ordained institution of marriage between one man and one woman.

Whatever the left-leaning Supreme Court decides, be sure of this: The battle will never end over the moral clash between homosexuals and biblical Christianity. If homosexuals win, the Bill of Rights dies and religious liberty/free speech will die with it. We either fight this evil or see our children and grandchildren brainwashed and/or coerced into accepting homosexuality as the new normal in our society.

NOM's 'Historic' Fail

For weeks, the National Organization for Marriage’s Brian Brown has been touting the “historic” March for Marriage, telling supporters “this is our time” to "change history." A month ago he wrote excitedly about a “game-changer,” a $500,000 matching gift from one of the major donors that keep NOM afloat. Brown had been inspired by a massive turnout for an anti-marriage-equality protest  in France, and hoped for something similar in Washington. But even with big donors and heavy-weight Religious Right co-sponsors, Brown and his allies couldn’t pull it off. Not even close.

In reality, NOM’s rally had a few, perhaps several, thousand attendees.  (NOM’s Thomas Peters claims 15,000, which seems, um, generous.) And every time one of the speakers tried to make the crowd feel like part of a larger movement by talking about the 200,000 people they said marched recently for one-man/one-woman marriage in Puerto Rico, or the hundreds of thousands or millions in France and Spain, or even the 585,000 who have signed the Manhattan Declaration or the half million who marched against legal abortion, it only served to highlight how few bothered to show up in Washington. According to various speakers, the Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia sent five busloads; anti-gay state senator Ruben Diaz claimed 32 buses from New York. Brian Brown gave a shout out to some Chinese Christians from Chicago.

The ethnically diverse speakers’ list was a mix of old and new, including some familiar faces on the anti-gay circuit, such as Harry Jackson, Gary Bauer, and Iowa’s Bob Vander Plaats. Harry Jackson led the crowd in a chant that he said was a prayer for the Supreme Court: “Let God arise and his enemies be scattered.” Bauer delivered a blustery message to the Republican Party that if they “bail” on marriage, he’ll lead as many people as he can out of the GOP (which may not be that much of a threat). Vander Plaats urged Supreme Court justices to look to the Founding Fathers, Billy Graham, and Pope Francis. Also speaking were Doug Mainwaring, now making the circuit as the anti-equality gay man the Religious Right loves to love; Frank Schubert, the mastermind of the dishonest Prop 8 campaign and every anti-equality campaign since then; and Jim Garlow, who made a name for himself among the Religious Right with his pro-Prop 8 organizing. Garlow insisted you cannot call yourself a Christian and support the Court’s “obliterating” what he called a “core aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ.” (Garlow should have seen the packed crowd at the morning’s pro-equality interfaith service at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation.) Garlow warned Supreme Court justices that they will one day stand before “the Chief Justice of the Universe” and will be held accountable if they defy His ways.

A couple of groups sent under-30 speakers to say how wrong the media is to suggest that Millennials are a lost cause on this issue.  But facts are facts, and polls show that support for marriage equality is overwhelming among under-30 Americans: 72 percent of Millennials believe same-sex couples should be able to get legally married, including 58 percent of under-30 Republicans.

Many of the speakers were on-message to the point of being boringly redundant, repeating the message on marchers’ pre-printed signs: “Kids do best with a mom and a dad” and “Every child deserves a mom and a dad.” Sometimes this came with a strong shot of gender stereotypes: mothers provide tenderness and fathers provide protection.  Brian Brown even showed a video of the Religious Right’s newest heroine, the 11-year old who testified against marriage equality in Minnesota and asked which of her parents she did not need, her mother or father. Perhaps someone could explain that no same-sex couples seeking to get married have any desire to force her to get rid of either parent.

NOM’s backers for the marriage march included the far-far-right-wing Catholic group Tradition, Family & Property, with its scarlet banners, capes, and marching band (see Adele Stan’s reminder who TFP is), Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, a couple of Catholic dioceses, the Knights of Columbus and the Institute on Religion and Democracy.  Brown gave special thanks to the Mormon-run GFC Foundation for providing grants for buses.

 

Rallying for Marriage Equality – Now

“What do we want?  Equality!  When do we want it? Now!”

This morning PFAW staff and members joined a crowd of thousands gathered in front of the Supreme Court to chant, march, and speak out in support of marriage equality.  As Supreme Court Justices heard the first round of oral arguments on the marriage cases before them this term, multitudes of supporters gathered on the Court steps to share a simple message: our country is ready for marriage equality.

Today, the Court heard arguments on California’s anti-gay Proposition 8. Tomorrow, it will be considering the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). In the weeks leading up to today, we have been asking friends of PFAW to share why dumping DOMA is important to them.  As I stood out at the rally this morning, I thought about all of the people who had been brave enough to share their story with us – and what this day meant to each of them.

For Bishop Allyson Abrams, a member of PFAW’s African American Ministers in Action, it’s time to dump DOMA “because it hurts and humiliates those who know love and who practice showing it each and every day.”  For Sam Paltrow, member of affiliate PFAW Foundation’s Young People For Program, DOMA has to go because it “teaches that gay families do not matter,” and for Young People For member Erik Lampmann, it’s an “issue of economic justice.”  Missoula City Councilmember Cailtin Copple, member of affiliate PFAW Foundation’s Young Elected Officials Network, “would like the chance to marry the person [she] loves someday.” 

While each person at the Supreme Court rally today – and those at the marriage rallies in all 50 states across the country – had a different reason for being there, we had a common goal:  Equality.  Now.

PFAW

Garlow: Supreme Court Trying to 'Flex Muscles Against Almighty God' By 'Obliterating' Marriage

Pastor Jim Garlow, who helped spearhead Proposition 8 and has described the gay rights movement as Satanic and part of an “Antichrist spirit,” delivered a stark warning to the Supreme Court during the closing speech at the National Organization for Marriage’s rally on the National Mall.

“Isn’t it interesting that the Supreme Court would be considering obliterating one of the core aspects of the Gospel of Jesus Christ” during Holy Week, Garlow said, as he marveled that “on this incredibly sacred week, the court would tend to try to flex their muscles against Almighty God: no one can win, your arms are too short to box with God.”

Watch:

Gary Bauer Threatens to Leave GOP if it 'Bails Out' on Issue of Marriage Equality

Today, the National Organization for Marriage and allied groups organized a "March for Marriage" orchestrated to coincide with arguments at the Supreme Court over the constitutionality of Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act. 

The march ended with a rally on the National Mall featuring a variety of speakers, including Gary Bauer, who used it as a platform to send a message to the Republican Party that "if you bail out on this issue, I will leave the party and I will take as many people with me as I possibly can":

Staver: Church Must 'Rise Up' If Supreme Court Backs Marriage Equality

Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel spoke to Sandy Rios earlier today and warned that the Supreme Court “will become an illegitimate arbitrator of the rule of law” if “the court goes the wrong way” on the marriage equality cases.

After complaining that the Bush administration sabotaged efforts to pass a federal marriage amendment, Staver insisted that gay rights advocates seek to “tear down the family and put the homosexual agenda, particularly led by same-sex marriage, on a collision course with the free exercise of religion.”

Staver concluded that “the church and people of faith and values need to rise up” if the court rules in favor of same-sex marriage as “we just simply cannot allow this to become the law of the land.”

Staver: When it came into 2005 his mandate was marriage and he didn’t do anything about it, that’s when we had the momentum to go forward with a national constitutional marriage amendment and both he and Karl Rove throttled back and went down a different path. But now we’re today and it’s the big day for Proposition 8 and DOMA and these are not conservative arguments that Ted Olson is going to make, these are judicial activism arguments, these are deconstructive arguments, these are arguments that will actually tear down the family and put the homosexual agenda, particularly led by same-sex marriage, on a collision course with the free exercise of religion.



Staver: This is a monumental point in American history. God forbid if the court goes the wrong way. If it does, the court will become an illegitimate arbitrator of the rule of law and become simply a political institution and it will ultimately hurt the value and the respect of the United States Supreme Court.

Rios: Well I totally agree with you, I think we really are on the precipice and it’s pretty scary. I’m seeing all kinds of prognostications of what’s going to happen and I think back to the hearing on Obamacare where almost everyone thought we knew which way the court was going to go and then we were shocked by Justice Roberts’ decision and we might be in for the same thing on this.

Staver: I pray that we are not. If we are, if worst case scenario the last week of June we come down with a bad decision, the church and people of faith and values need to rise up. We just simply cannot allow this to become the law of the land, it will fundamentally change who we are, it will fundamentally weaken the family and religious freedom will be in the crosshairs.

Perkins: 'Revolution' Possible if 'Court Goes Too Far' on Marriage Equality Cases

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins appeared on The Janet Mefferd Show yesterday where he joined other anti-gay activists in warning that a Supreme Court decision in favor of marriage equality could lead to a “revolution.”

Perkins, who in November feared that the Supreme Court may spark a “revolution” and “break this nation apart” by striking down anti-gay laws, told Mefferd that the Supreme Court “could literally split this nation in two and create such political and cultural turmoil that I’m not sure we could recover from” if it strikes down Proposition 8 and DOMA.

“If you get government out of whack with where the people are and it goes too far, you create revolution,” Perkins said. “I think you could see a social and cultural revolution if the court goes too far on this.”

Perkins: I think the court is very much aware with the backdrop of the fortieth anniversary of Roe v. Wade just two months ago that interjecting itself in this, especially when you have thirty states that have taken the steps that they have, could literally split this nation in two and create such political and cultural turmoil that I’m not sure we could recover from it.

Mefferd: I have had the same thoughts. It’s interesting; the National Organization for Marriage has been billing this as ‘1973 for Marriage.’ We’ve been telling people here about the March for Marriage taking place tomorrow and you guys are going to be involved in it as well, I know you’re cosponsoring it, but why do you think it is so important for Americans to come out and publicly stand for marriage like we’ve seen in France for example?

Perkins: That’s a good example. I’m just finishing my daily update that I’m going to be sending out and I made reference to France, you know support for natural marriage is coming from the most unlikely places, hundreds of thousands of people now have turned out multiple times in France to support natural marriage, young and old alike. It’s very important. We’ve been saying this all along that Americans need to speak out because the court likes to hold itself as being above public opinion, that they live in this ivory tower and don’t pay any attention to what’s going on; they do. I believe the court will push as far as they think they can without creating a social upheaval or a political upheaval in this country. They’re smart people, I think, they understand how organizations and how societies work and if you get your substructure out of kilter with the superstructure, if you get government out of whack with where the people are and it goes too far, you create revolution. I think you could see a social and cultural revolution if the court goes too far on this.

Concerned Women for America: Starbucks Discriminates Against Straight People by Supporting Gay Rights

Concerned Women for America’s Chelsen Vicari in a blog post yesterday attacked Starbucks for supporting marriage equality, which she argues will open the door to anti-straight discrimination. Vicari called Starbucks CEO and gay rights supporter Howard Schultz “prejudicial and bigoted” for telling Thomas Strobhar of the Corporate Morality Action Center that he should sell his shares in the company if he is so distraught over Starbucks’ endorsement of same-sex marriage legislation in Washington state.

Vicari claimed that Starbucks “refuses pro-marriage supporters service” and “is only tolerant of approximately 2 percent of America’s 300 million citizens who live homosexual lifestyles.”

She even said that the coffee company might as well have “two separate drinking fountains for liberals and conservatives or ‘now hiring’ signs reading, “Heterosexuals Need Not Apply.’”

Goodbye pumpkin spice latte. Forever.

Last year during this exact week, I wrote a blog titled, “Starbucks Disrespects Values Voters,” calling out Starbucks’ CEO, Howard Schultz, for supporting a liberal political agenda that totally disregards the traditional values of many customers and staff members.

Another year gone by and Schultz has become even more extreme and intolerant. At Starbucks’ annual shareholders meeting, Schultz sent a clear message that he does not want the business of anyone who believes that marriage is a sacred covenant between a man and a woman, pointedly telling one such shareholder, “You can sell your shares in Starbucks and buy shares in another company.” This outburst reportedly came right after Schultz stated he wanted to “embrace diversity of all kinds.”

He doesn’t want our business. Schultz statement isn’t tolerant. It is prejudicial and bigoted. So where are the newspaper headlines reading, “Starbucks CEO Refuses Pro-Marriage Supporters Service,” which is exactly the message his statement conveys?

What’s next, Starbucks? Two separate drinking fountains for liberals and conservatives or “now hiring” signs reading, “Heterosexuals Need Not Apply”?

Considering that there are twice as many conservatives as there are liberals, Schultz should have heeded my warning a year ago. In fact, during this year’s meeting, conservative shareholder Tom Strobhar admitted that after the company voiced its support for same-sex “marriage” in Washington state, the company saw a drop in profits.

So in the end, Schultz is only tolerant of approximately 2 percent of America’s 300 million citizens who live homosexual lifestyles. I do not hold an MBA, but I do remember that 4th grade arithmetic teaches us that the profits made from 2 percent are less than the profits from 98 percent.

I’ve already dumped Starbucks. I prefer Dunkin’ Donuts, anyway.

Bauer: 'The Republican Party Would Literally Destroy Itself' If It Drops Anti-Gay, Anti-Choice Stances

Gary Bauer of the Campaign for Working Families appeared on The Mike Huckabee Show today to discuss the upcoming marriage cases at the Supreme Court, where he reiterated his argument that the GOP would be winning more elections if focused more on opposing gay equality and reproductive rights.

Like other conservative activists who have floated the creation of an anti-gay third party, Bauer told Huckabee that “the Republican Party would literally destroy itself if it switches on those issues” as “we are facing the possibility of a possible fissure here which would hurt Republicans and probably hurt us all.”

Bauer: I actually think of people who may disagree with us on marriage and life see the Republican Party changing that instead of making the party more attractive they’ll look at that and say, ‘My goodness, if the party was willing to change their mind on something so fundamental I can’t really trust them on anything that they say they believe in.’ I really believe this with all my heart that the Republican Party would literally destroy itself if it switches on those issues and I actually think if it doesn’t start spending more political capital making the case for thsoe issues that may be what really ends up killing the party in the future. I want lower taxes, I want smaller government and I’m glad when Republicans spend time on that, but when they act embarrassed or ashamed to make the case for life or for normal marriage or that children need mothers and fathers, I’m not sure there’s much patience left among their voters for that lack of fight they we so often see among Republican elites.

Huckabee: Republicans historically have not been able to win elections without the evangelicals and devout Catholics. If they go soft on this issue, if they turn and say, ‘it doesn’t really matter,’ do you see evangelicals and a lot of devout Catholics walking away?

Bauer: For the first time in my life — I’ve always recommended not walking away — but I’m not getting a large volume of emails and faxes and so forth, letters from people saying, ‘Gary I’m not going to continue playing this game, I’ve done what I was supposed to do, I voted for all these candidates who said they were on my side, but I never hear anybody make the case for my values once they get into high office.’ This is a huge problem for the party and I think for the first time in my adult life I think we are facing the possibility of a possible fissure here which would hurt Republicans and probably hurt us all. You’ve got to see some progress and I don’t think our people are seeing it right now.

Huckabee: Yeah, I don’t either.

Knight: Gay Equality Is 'The Greatest Domestic Threat to the Freedoms of Religion, Speech and Assembly'

Washington Times contributor Robert Knight of the American Civil Rights Union warns in a column today that “the left’s drive for ‘gay rights’ poses the greatest domestic threat to the freedoms of religion, speech and assembly.” He asserts that legalizing same-sex marriage “will lead to less freedom and more government” as “civil rights enforcement becomes a gun aimed at the head of citizens, forcing them to choose between God and Caesar.”

“Tyranny is masquerading as enlightenment,” Knight writes, arguing that the effort to overturn statutes banning same-sex marriage is really a drive to “repeal reality.”

Recently, Sen. Rob Portman, Ohio Republican, announced support for homosexual “marriage” because his son is homosexual.

It’s one thing to have unconditional love and compassion toward a friend or loved one, and another thing to redefine marriage for the whole nation. Public policy is the force of law. Civil libertarians who are jumping aboard the homosexual “marriage” bandwagon might want to stop and consider why this will lead to less freedom and more government.

Sundered by no-fault divorce and cohabitation, marriage as a “genderless” institution will lose even more legitimacy and contribute less to stability, prosperity and self-sufficiency. As nuclear families fail, government grows to pick up the pieces — and to enforce the new reality.

This brings us to the bigger picture. The left’s drive for “gay rights” poses the greatest domestic threat to the freedoms of religion, speech and assembly. When traditional morality is equated with racist bigotry, civil rights enforcement becomes a gun aimed at the head of citizens, forcing them to choose between God and Caesar. That should never happen in America, where our Founders said rights come from our Creator, not capricious man, who can mistake fashion for morality.

In Massachusetts, which legalized homosexual “marriage” in 2004, public schools openly entice children to try homosexual behavior despite well-documented health risks. Penalties are enforced against dissenters. People are losing jobs. Catholic Charities, the largest Massachusetts provider of foster homes for orphans, closed its doors rather than give up placing children only in married, mother-father homes. Tyranny is masquerading as enlightenment.



In New Jersey, the Southern Poverty Law Center is suing Jews Offering New Alternatives for Healing (JONAH) under consumer fraud law. They contend that no one can overcome this particular temptation, despite ample evidence to the contrary.

In California, legislators passed a law making it criminal for parents to take their children to counselors for help in overcoming unwanted same-sex desires — even children who have been molested. A court has enjoined the law for now, but is this still America, land of the free and home of the brave?

Yet, conservatives, the GOP and even the Tea Parties are told they must bow before this increasingly intolerant movement. President Obama, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Lady Gaga and the Democratic Party embrace homosexual “marriage,” so it must advance conservative principles, right?

Laurie Higgins, a perceptive writer for the Illinois Family Institute, asks this question: “What if Portman’s son had announced he was bisexual or polyamorous? Would Portman then seek to have the government recognize plural unions as marriages? Imagine if everyone decided that the ‘Bible’s overarching themes of love and compassion’ and the ‘belief that we’re all children of God’ compel us to affirm all the feelings, beliefs and life choices of our loved ones. The truth is, it is entirely possible to deeply love people while finding their feelings, beliefs and life choices disordered or false. In this wildly diverse world, most of us do it all the time.”

Instead, we’re being asked to repeal reality, which is an unreasonable and dangerous request.

PFAW Foundation Releases Report Analyzing Critical Issues To Be Argued In SCOTUS Marriage Cases

WASHINGTON – Today People For the American Way Foundation released a new report outlining the history and arguments surrounding the two marriage cases before the Supreme Court this term: Hollingsworth v. Perry, challenging California’s Proposition 8, and U.S. v. Windsor, challenging Section 3 of the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

The report, Equal Protection or ‘Social Tradition:’ The Supreme Court’s Test in the Marriage Cases, details the legal histories of the current Supreme Court cases as well as past cases addressing the issue of marriage discrimination.  PFAW Foundation Senior Fellow Jamie Raskin, the report's author, takes apart conservative arguments against marriage equality, including those based on the goal of legislating social morality.  Released just before the Supreme Court hears oral argument, the report provides timely, in-depth analysis and historical background on the central issues of the cases.

“The only real question is what role the Court will play in the historical process of vindicating the rights of the people,” the report notes. “Will it constitutionalize discriminatory ‘traditions,’ as it did in Bowers v. Harwick, or will it defend the rights and liberties of the people, as it did in Lawrence v. Texas?”

The full report is available at www.pfaw.org.


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Why It’s Time to Dump DOMA: Paul Gordon

This piece is the eighth in a series of guest blog posts on “Why It’s Time to Dump DOMA.” In the weeks leading up to the Supreme Court arguments on the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act, we’re asking friends of PFAW to share why dumping DOMA matters to them. Be sure to check back soon for the latest post in the series.

At the end of 2008, my husband and I were married in the same synagogue where I’d had my bar-mitzvah more than three decades earlier.  As a 13 year-old in the 1970s, I read from the Torah and spoke to the congregation about letting the people we love know how much we love them. But as a closeted 13 year-old, I never dreamed that 30 years later, I’d be standing in the same chapel, with all the same people who are dearest to me, publicly professing my love for another man. Rick and I were surrounded by family and married in the traditions of our faith. And as we drank from the Kiddush cup, we adapted a practice from the Passover Seder; since Prop 8 had just passed, we removed eight drops of wine as a symbol that our joy was diminished by the suffering caused by marriage discrimination.

Passover is my favorite holiday because it is about living in a just society.  It teaches us to welcome the stranger, because “we were strangers in the land of Egypt.” It is a lesson that, unfortunately, must be learned and relearned, as every society has those whom it unjustly treats as outcasts.

It’s appropriate that the Supreme Court will be hearing oral arguments in both the Prop 8 and Defense of Marriage Act cases during the week of Passover. Although the Constitution uses the language of “equal protection” instead “strangers in the land of Egypt,” the underlying values are the same. It is wrong – and unconstitutional – for states to prohibit us from marrying and for the federal government to refuse to recognize our marriages. What better time than Passover to dump DOMA and strike down Prop 8?

Paul Gordon, Senior Legislative Counsel
People For the American Way

PFAW

Bauer: 'Only Reason that Romney Won North Carolina' was Anti-Gay Ad Campaign

Gary Bauer filled in for Family Research Council head Tony Perkins on Washington Watch yesterday where he once again blamed the Republican Party’s problems on a lack of opposition to gay marriage and abortion rights.

Bauer, who once led the FRC but now runs American Values and the Campaign for Working Families, chided President Obama for favoring marriage equality and claimed that “if Martin Luther King, Jr. were alive today” he would condemn Obama’s pro-gay rights stance, which Bauer said “twisted and distorted” the legacy of the civil rights movement.

“But in spite of all we’ve done, all of our work, everything that you’ve done at the grassroots level,” Bauer lamented, “we are right on the edge of losing that issue.”

Later in the program, Bauer told a caller from North Carolina that the sole reason Romney won the state and no other swing states was because Bauer ran ads there attacking Obama’s position on marriage equality.

“We lost them all again except for one state and it was North Carolina,” Bauer said. “I believe the only reason that Gov. Romney won North Carolina was because the voters of that state were reminded of that issue, so it’s a lesson I think for the Republican Party.”

Let me give a tip of the hat to North Carolina, you know in 2008 President Obama won all of the swing states that are so important in presidential politics. In this last presidential election in 2012 there was a major effort made by conservatives to get those swing states back. Unfortunately, we lost them all again except for one state and it was North Carolina. The people of North Carolina took another look at Barack Obama and decided, ‘hey, we made a mistake four years ago,’ and this time around they voted differently. I’d like to think at least in part that happened in North Carolina because of some ads that I and other groups ran in that state on the marriage issue, reminding the voters of North Carolina who had just voted just a little over a year ago to keep marriage between a man and a woman, that President Obama had come out right after that vote and had endorsed same-sex marriage. I believe the only reason that Gov. Romney won North Carolina was because the voters of that state were reminded of that issue, so it’s a lesson I think for the Republican Party.

That’s right; Bauer thinks that this ad put Romney over the top in North Carolina.

Brad Dacus: 'A Compassionate Nation' Can't 'Salute' Homosexuality Because It's 'So Dangerous and So Destructive'

Brad Dacus of the Pacific Justice Institute discussed the upcoming Supreme Court cases on marriage equality yesterday with host Jim Schneider on VCY America’s Crosstalk.

After a caller on the show ranted about how homosexuality is “Satanic,” Schneider called it an “anti-God lifestyle.” Dacus agreed and added that homosexuality, along with “looseness in the heterosexual community,” are signs that society is “openly waving our fist at God.”

Dacus said increasing support for marriage equality proves that people are unaware of the dangers of homosexuality: “When you look at it statistically, the medical ramifications, the psychiatric ramifications, the suicide rate, they’re way off the charts.”

“If we’re a compassionate nation, a loving nation and we care,” Dacus explained, “then we’re not going to want to salute something that is so dangerous and so destructive statistically to so many people who decide to engage in it.”

Schneider: We’re seeing a mass exodus Brad from those who once held to the belief to capitulate to the winds that are blowing today in our society and even a poll just released this week by the Washington Post and ABC News indicating support for same-sex marriage has never been higher, they claim that 58 percent of Americans now believe gay and lesbian couples should be allowed to wed.

Dacus: It’s most unfortunate because it’s a slippery slope, number one, and number two they’re not taking into account the real meaning which is to dilute the sanctity and the definition of marriage that God has given us and that the laws of nature have given us and there’s going to be ramifications for that. When you look at it statistically, the medical ramifications, the psychiatric ramifications, the suicide rate, they’re way off the charts and so how anyone can think that it’s in the best interest of America, promoting our general welfare, to change our definition of marriage in view of the ramifications and impact, just purely from an objective and secular perspective, makes absolutely no sense and I think we need to be better communicators of that harm. If we’re a compassionate nation, a loving nation and we care, then we’re not going to want to salute something that is so dangerous and so destructive statistically to so many people who decide to engage in it.

He argued that the members of the United Methodist church in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, which decided not to perform marriages as long as same-sex couples are denied marriage rights, are “betrayers of the teachings of the Lord” and “have decided to no longer make the Lord the lord of their life or lord of their church.”

Schneider: Another disturbing report came out Monday from CBS News that the Green Street United Methodist Church in North Carolina is actually electing to stop performing marriage ceremonies for straight couples until same-sex marriage is legalized and asking other churches to join them. Brad, in cases like this all I see is the word Ichabod, “the glory of God has departed.”

Dacus: Yeah, when a church decides to take that position it’s discouraging to see them do that because they obviously have decided to no longer make the Lord the lord of their life or lord of their church. They decided to follow the ways of man and “what tickles the ear of the day.” You know Galatians makes it very clear that we can’t be both pleasers of man and pleasers of God which means sometimes we’re not going to be very popular, sometimes when society decides to turn a different direction we can be rejected. But when you see churches do that and people holding themselves out as followers of the Lord and yet being betrayers of the teachings of the Lord and of scripture, it’s very serious to not only the congregation but it’s also especially serious to those in leadership positions abusing their authority.

How The Union's Victory in the Civil War Led to Gay Marriage

Steve Deace once again hosted far-right activist Michael Peroutka on his radio show to discuss the talk show host’s latest column on same-sex marriage and why we should not “validate relationships western civilization, heavily influenced by Biblical moral teaching, has up until now said for over a thousand years were immoral, destructive, and counter-procreative.” Peroutka explained that “the state has perverted” what “God called marriage,” and if we followed God’s laws then there would be “no way we are ever going to validate homo or sodomite-unmarriage.”

This can’t last, we are killing our own children, we are burying our own country; at some point reality has to set in. I like to use the term ‘reality,’ another term you use in your article you talk about if we can ‘wave a magic wand’ and that’s interesting because that’s an allusion to illusion. But what we really need is a dose of reality, what we need to do is wave reality over this situation and go back to what God called marriage, not what the state has perverted the definition to be but what God called marriage. That’s what we need to return to. There is no way we are ever going to validate homo or sodomite-unmarriage because God defined marriage as between a man and a woman once and forever.

Apparently the reason we aren’t following God’s moral code on the issue of marriage or other social issues, according to Peroutka, is because of the Union's victory in the Civil War, or as he called it: “The War Between the States.”

He argued that the South’s defeat opened the door to a “huge black hole of centralized power,” which means that people began looking to the government, rather than God, as the source of their rights.

Peroutka said that “the real effect of the War and the Reconstruction after the war was to take the very foundation of our understanding of our rights away from us, that is to say that they come from God, and put them in the hands of men,” who can then change the meaning of concepts like marriage.

Somehow we don’t think that this neo-Confederate logic is going to do a lot to help marriage equality opponents rescue their plummeting poll numbers.

Deace: What we’re coming down to here is: What is the law? Who determines it? How do we know that’s the right determination? Who gets to essentially apply and impose their interpretation of where the law comes from and what the law is? And we’re seeing that played out and frankly divisively with the marriage issue.

Peroutka: That’s right. When you ask me a question about this issue or other social issues, I always go back to these two standards: What does God say and what does the Constitution say? I don’t go to what many people, political talking heads, go to: What is politically effective? What does conservatism say? What does the Republican Party say? I go where our founders would’ve gone and where they did in fact go to declare their independence from Great Britain, they said: What does God say about this? And then in this case, what does the constitution say? So those are the standards I’m always going to use, it’s a new issue but it’s the same standard.

Deace: It’s the standard that founded this country, all the way from the Puritans to the people that ratified the Constitution.

Peroutka: And ever since, well there have been a number of watershed events in American history that have taken us away from this view that I’m describing, this American view. One of them was ‘The War Between the States.’ Ever since then there’s been this huge black hole of centralized power that’s formed in Washington D.C. People sometimes talk about ‘The War Between the States’ as being about the issue of slavery, I believe that history is written by the winners, it wasn’t about that at all. What it was about was consolidating power into the hands of a few people.

One of the best ways I’ve ever heard this explained to me was I was at a formal dinner party one time and a number of us at the table, a couple of gentlemen were talking about this issue and one lady piped up and she said, “Now don’t you start talking about that my great-great-granddaddy fought for the state of Illinois.” A gentleman at the table looked at her and said, “Mam, your great-great-granddaddy didn’t fight for Illinois, he fought for Washington D.C., maybe New York City, the banking interests, and by so doing he conquered Illinois, along with South Carolina and Tennessee and Alabama.” It was one of the best ways I think I’ve ever heard it explained because the real effect of the War and the Reconstruction after the war was to take the very foundation of our understanding of our rights away from us, that is to say that they come from God, and put them in the hands of men and say that they come from the Supreme Court or they come from the legislature or they come from the executive.

NOM March Sponsor Defends Criminalization of Homosexuality

The National Organization for Marriage’s upcoming Marriage March in Washington DC is sponsored by a whole litany of national and state-based Religious Right organizations and Catholic Church affiliates, and Jeremy Hooper has been doing an excellent job running down the list.

One notable sponsor of NOM’s march is Family Watch International (FWI), a group that defends the criminalization of homosexuality.

Other NOM march sponsors like the World Congress of Families and the Family Research Council have also defended such anti-gay laws, but as Warren Throckmorton reports FWI has been particularly active in pushing criminalization policies abroad.

Sharon Slater, American anti-gay activist and president of Family Watch International, recently encouraged delegates attending a law conference in Lagos, Nigeria to resist the United Nations’ calls to decriminalize homosexuality. Keynoting the Nigerian Bar Association Conference, Slater told delegates that they would lose their religious and parental rights if they supported “fictitious sexual rights.” One such “fictitious right” is the right to engage in same-sex sexual relationships without going to jail.



In Nigeria, homosexual behavior is illegal and punishable by up to 14 years in prison. In the Islamic North, where Sharia law is enforced, gays can be sentenced to death by stoning.

According to Family Watch International, Nigeria is a role model.



Given the application of U.S. ex-gay rhetoric to questions of criminalization in Africa, it appears that FWI and their ally the WCF are fighting ideological battles in Africa and at the UN that they have lost in the United States. As Slater noted, she opposed the repeal of sodomy laws over a decade ago and now these organizations are opposing UN efforts to encourage repeal of such laws around the world.

Despite recoiling from obvious violence of Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality bill, FWI continues to carry the banner for African and Arab nations that cause GLBT people to live in fear—and sometimes in jail. Opposing the repeal of laws criminalizing homosexual behavior in the U.S. is a far different matter than opposing such repeal in Nigeria or Ghana. Despite Slater saying the matter was “complicated,” the activities of FWI reveal a very uncomplicated, black-and-white strategy: laws opposing homosexuality in any form should be retained, while those which might provide basic freedoms to gays are opposed as bad for everybody else. The only caveat is that they prefer that gays not be beaten or killed.

Kerry Eleveld in the Political Research Associates report “Colonizing African Values” also looks into FWI’s promotion of ex-gay pseudo-science and FWI head Sharon Slater’s demand that homosexuality be treated like rape, assault, sexual abuse and drug dealing.

“It is one thing to allow others the right to engage in self-destructive behavior,” Slater warned in a 2009 article. “But allowing and even granting those same individuals the right to introduce this behavior as normal and healthy to society at large, especially to children, is a very different proposition. This is why we have laws that prohibit sexual acts such as incest, sexual abuse, and rape as well as drug dealing, assaults, and other crimes.”



This stance attracted the National Association of Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), which gave Slater a platform during its annual conference last year. As “scientific” organizations that used to employ discredited research in support of curing homosexuality continue to be marginalized, they seem to be reaching out to Christian Right figures such as Slater, and in return FWI’s website utilizes NARTH resources on ex-gay therapy.

Though Slater appears to have kept news of the most recent Global Family Policy Forum to a minimum, last year in a newsletter she recounted “one of the most moving presentations” as given by a person “successfully reorienting” from homosexuality to heterosexuality. According to Slater: “For many of these diplomats, this was their first exposure to the scientific and clinical evidence that proves homo- sexuality is not genetically determined and fixed like skin color or race and that in many cases, individuals who experience same-sex attraction can be helped by therapy.” (emphasis hers)

In order to curry favor with foreign diplomats and people from developing countries, Slater continually drives home themes of the West imposing its bankrupt and deleterious values on the rest of the world. FWI’s latest documentary, “Cultural Imperialism,” is described as a “hard-hitting exposé of how the U.S. and other Western governments and UN agencies are blackmailing developing nations to accept controversial sexual rights in the guise of fighting AIDS.”
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