Jeff Allen, senior editor of Matt Barber’s BarbWire website, today defends harsh anti-gay laws in Uganda, Nigeria and Ethiopia, which he calls “maliciously mischaracterized” and “a matter of national survival.”
Yet to Allen, these laws are merely resisting “the West’s imposition of ‘sexual rights’ on these countries.” In a review of a 2012 documentary by Family Watch International that blames the AIDS crisis in Africa on Western aid that emphasizes family planning and gay rights, Allen writes:
The maliciously mischaracterized anti-‘gay’ laws in countries like Uganda, Nigeria, and Ethiopia are actually a matter of national survival. The documentary makes the case that the West’s imposition of “sexual rights” on these countries erodes their religious and cultural values, leading to social chaos through the demise of the natural family unit and the deaths of millions by AIDS-related illnesses.
Bryan Fischer and Robert Oscar Lopez commiserate over the fact that they are both considered too radical to be accepted by the "mainstream" pro-family movement.
Finally, Glenn Beck is getting into the movie-making business because "I hate politics. I hate politicians and I feel like I'm wasting my life." Which explains why he spends hours on radio and television every single day talking about politics and politicians.
American Family Association radio host Sandy Rios said today that yesterday’s memorial service for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing, along with the “Boston Strong” slogan, are demonstrations of human pride that could cause God to stop protecting the city.
Rios said that because the mourners gathered in Boston didn’t thank God for preventing a more damaging attack that “could’ve been a whole lot worse” with “thousands of casualties,” now God may allow another terrorist “onslaught” to take place:
“Because we have denied him and ignored him and refused to acknowledge him, we cannot assume and in fact we can probably likely count on the fact that God, unless he does on behalf of the people that are called by his name, those of us that serve him, unless he hears our prayers above what we see happening in this country, I’m not sure that there will be something to stop the next onslaught.”
The overall things that come to my ears in the face of what happened a year ago just seem empty. It’s like going to a funeral and remembering someone’s life when there is no thought to who God is and to our place in the universe, that’s what was missing. When they start talking about, ‘We are Boston Strong,’ and I addressed this when this happened last Spring and they started talking about ‘Boston Strong,’ this is not the first time I’ve mentioned this, something in me just, just—I close my eyes and I think, oh please, don’t go there. What they’re saying is, ‘We are so fabulous, our response to this was so wonderful.’ You heard Joe Biden say, ‘We are strong, we’ll never stand down, we respond, we endure, we own the finish line.’
No, no, really, the truth of the matter, last spring, a year ago yesterday, was—only by God’s grace was it not worse than it was, only by God’s grace Boston could’ve been wiped out, there could’ve been thousands of casualties, it could’ve been a whole lot worse, they could have been devastated as a city, they could have been in a situation where they couldn’t recover. It’s only by God’s grace and mercy that it wasn’t worse than it was. It was not because of ‘Boston Strong.’
And I have to say, because we have denied him and ignored him and refused to acknowledge him, we cannot assume and in fact we can probably likely count on the fact that God, unless he does on behalf of the people that are called by his name, those of us that serve him, unless he hears our prayers above what we see happening in this country, I’m not sure that there will be something to stop the next onslaught.
Well, if the Texas Eagle Forum has its way, the GOP state and county party committees would preserve their extremist stances and go even farther in embracing the far-right.
The group has unveiled its lists of proposed resolutions for party committees in hopes of shaping the state GOP’s 2014 platform, asking members to demand Congress impeach and remove judges who rule in favor of gay rights and urge the party to approve a resolution condemning homosexuality:
WHEREAS, the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit; and
WHEREAS, the practice of homosexuality is unhealthy and puts the American public at risk for disease; according to the CDC, homosexuals make up only 2% of the U.S. population, yet are the population most severely affected by HIV, especially young men 13-24 years of age; and
WHEREAS, homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans; and
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that homosexuality should not be presented as an acceptable lifestyle in public policy, and the “family” should not be redefined to include same-sex “couples.”
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin, and we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction or belief in traditional values.
The model resolution is almost exactly the same as the one found in the current Texas GOP platform [PDF], which reads:
We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans. Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable “alternative” lifestyle, in public policy, nor should “family” be redefined to include homosexual “couples.” We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction or belief in traditional values.
But the group, led by Cathie Adams, now wants the party to go one step further by endorsing the discredited practice of ex-gay therapy:
WHEREAS Reparative therapy and other Sexual Orientation Change Efforts are based on the understanding that healing emotional wounds and reducing shame will reduce same-sex attraction and empower individuals to live in accordance with their own faith and values;
WHEREAS, psychological and spiritual counseling have been well-documented in scientific and psychological literature to help individuals with unwanted same-sex attractions reduce and/or eliminate their unwanted homosexual feelings;
WHEREAS, laws have recently been passed in California and New Jersey severely restricting the free speech rights of licensed therapists who support counseling/therapy to change or reduce homosexual behavior in individuals who seek their help;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that licensed therapists, psychologists and counselors in the state of Texas cannot be forbidden or penalized by any licensing board for practicing reparative therapy and supporting clients of any age with sexual orientation change efforts.
Another proposed resolution warns that “religious liberty is under severe attack in our churches, schools, the military and the public arena by anti-religious organizations and the federal government,” calling on elected officials to reject “the ‘politically correct’ efforts by the Obama administration and anti-religious groups to intimidate, bully, and silence people of faith.”
Texas Eagle Forum’s recommended resolutions call for required drug testing for welfare recipients and sweeping opposition to gun safety laws while featuring warnings about the purported use of foreign laws in US courts, which are all resolutions that are part of the current Texas GOP platform.
The group also proposes a resolution asserting that there is “overwhelming scientific evidence” that humans have no influence on the climate and that “the earth has not warmed since 1998,” referring to climate change as a “non-existent theory of climate change [that] is a political agenda which attempts to control every aspect of our lives.” Similarly, Texas Republicans have a plank on “protections from extreme environmentalists.”
We strongly oppose all efforts of the extreme environmental groups that stymie legitimate business interests. We strongly oppose those efforts that attempt to use the environmental causes to purposefully disrupt and stop those interests within the oil and gas industry. We strongly support the immediate repeal of the Endangered Species Act. We strongly oppose the listing of the dune sage brush lizard either as a threatened or an endangered species. We believe the Environmental Protection Agency should be abolished.
Gun Owners of America executive director Larry Pratt is one of those people we wish we could ignore. Every interview he gives devolves into a mess of anti-government conspiracy theories, thinly veiled racism, and good-guy-with-a-gun revenge fantasies. This puts him at around the extremism level of 9/11 truther Alex Jones and unhinged Internet newscaster Stan Solomon…both of whom regularly host Pratt on their programs.
But we can’t ignore Larry Pratt because, as we are reminded every few weeks, he remains one of the country’s most influential gun lobbyists. Today’s reminder of this unsavory fact came from the New York Times’ report on Michael Bloomberg’s plan to spend $50 million promoting gun safety laws this year. The NRA declined to comment, so the Times called the second best option: Larry Pratt.
“He’s got the money to waste,” Mr. Pratt said of Bloomberg. “So I guess he’s free to do so. But frankly, I think he’s going to find out why his side keeps losing.”
It was also the New York Times that reported last year that Gun Owners of America was “emerging as an influential force” in the effort to defeat new gun laws. The Times quoted Sen. Ted Cruz praising GOA, noting that Cruz was the group’s “key ally in the Senate.” (Pratt, for his part, returnsthe praise every chance he gets).
In the past year, Pratt has appeared on CNN and MSNBC. And just a few months ago, when Fox News Sunday hosted Gabrielle Giffords’ husband Mark Kelly to speak on the anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting, they decided that Larry Pratt would be the perfect person to join him with an opposing view.
That Larry Pratt is an influential Republican lobbyist who is regularly quoted by mainstream news sources shows that it is basically impossible to be too extreme to be taken seriously in today’s right wing.
After all, back in 1996, Pratt was too extreme for even Pat Buchanan. Pratt stepped down from his role in Buchanan’s presidential campaign after his ties to white supremacists and promotion of the right-wing militia movement came to light. As Southern Poverty Law Center director Morris Dees said at the time, “He's got one foot in that far-right fringe and another foot in mainstream Washington, which makes him really dangerous."
That certainly hasn’t changed. In just the past couple of years, Pratt
It should come as no surprise then that Harris will join some of the nation’s most fervent opponents of gay rights at the April 24 North Carolina Regional Briefing, hosted by the anti-gay Family Research Council. Speakers joining the GOP hopeful at the event include:
I know of a case where in a hospital a homosexual male had a cellphone lodged in his anus and as they were operating on him the phone went off, the phone started ringing. There’ve been instances where men have put bats, baseball bats, in their rectums.... Even the homosexual lobby knows, those who are pro-homosexual, they know that they cannot win the argument describing what it is that these people actually do to each other, the objects, the animals in certain cases, the little gerbils; thank God I’m a human being!
“Since they cannot produce they must recruit young people to their perverted, warped agenda. One cannot think of anything more nauseating, debased, lewd and immoral than recruiting precious young people into such shameful conduct,” he wrote in a Return America newsletter.
Testifying yesterday against Lousiana’s bill to allow its residents to access REAL ID compliant drivers licenses, Eagle Forum spokeswoman Sandy McDade said the gold stars marking REAL ID licenses are like the Star of David badges Jews were forced to wear in Nazi Germany.
However, she said that while she opposes the REAL ID Act, she does support requiring a photo ID to vote because she had “read documents” about people voting “several times.”
McDade, who is the chairwoman of Eagle Forum’s Louisiana chapter and who also serves at the national group’s political chairwoman, told the state house’s transportation committee that the only country she could think of with a national ID card was Nazi Germany.
“I will leave that there, I won’t go down that path, I just want you to have that image,” she said.
But then just a few minutes later, she ended her testimony with a “humorous, but it’s not really” anecdote. “We’re talking about putting a star on our drivers’ licenses,” she said, “and I have to ask: Is that a ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star’ or is it the Star of David? Because we all know where that went.”
After her testimony, Rep. Sam Jones asked her if she supported requiring photo identification to vote. McDade replied that she did because “I have read documents where people go and vote several times and declare themselves to be different people.”
Glenn Beck's transformation from a one-time "rodeo clown" into a quasi-prophetic religious leader of a doomsday cult continues to pick up steam, with Beck informing his staff during yesterday's morning meeting that his "longest running, unspoken prophecy" is now beginning to be fulfilled in the world.
Echoing the remarks he made on his radio show yesterday, Beck told his staff that he has been arguing with God for months over this frightening vision of the future that God has been showing him but he has finally accepted the fact that everything that God warned him about is now happening "and I know it."
"It's going to get ugly," Beck warned, "but now is the time. The Malcolm X/Martin Luther King time is here. It's here. It's happening":
Before the 2012 election, many conservative pundits, including Ken Blackwell of the Family Research Council, predicted that African American voters would turn on President Obama because of his support for marriage equality and either refuse to vote for the president or back Mitt Romney. Of course, this didn’t actually happen. As Politicoreported, “Fully 96 percent of black voters supported Obama and constituted 13 percent of the electorate, a 2-percentage-point rise in their national turnout.”
But right-wing commentators like Blackwell, the former Ohio Secretary of State and GOP activist, persist in arguing that black voters are abandoning Obama over the marriage issue.
On Tuesday’s edition of Washington Watch, Blackwell told guest host Richard Land that African Americans are strongly opposed to marriage equality and are dismayed by Obama’s abandonment of “biblical truth.” “There is no confusion on this issue in the African American community,” he said.
Land: Isn’t it true that same-sex marriage is less popular among African Americans than any other segment of the society?
Blackwell: That is correct. If you go to California, look at Ohio, what you find out is that the black communities across this country have come out in strong numbers to underscore the point that marriage, natural marriage, is a union between one man and one woman. There is no confusion on this issue in the African American community and I think that we should hold our African American president and another African American leader who speaks to the contrary to account because he’s not reflecting the aspirations or the biblical truth that most black Americans hold onto.
Land: You’re on the frontlines, you’re in the battle. It’s not lost, is it? We can still win this.
Blackwell: Absolutely. We will win this and we can’t give up.