Right-Wing Leader Urges Discrimination In Sept. 11 Aid

PFAWF leader calls Rev. Sheldon’s suggestion ‘cruel and reprehensible’

Today, Rev. Louis P. Sheldon, chairman of the right-wing Traditional Values Coalition, urged relief agencies working in the aftermath of the September 11 tragedies to withhold assistance to surviving partners of gay people who died: “[Relief organizations] should be first giving priority to those widows who were at home with their babies, and those widowers who lost their wives,” Sheldon said. “It should be given on the basis and priority of one man and one woman in a marital relationship.” Sheldon added: “This is just another example of how the gay agenda is seeking to overturn the one man-one woman relationship from center stage in America, taking advantage of this tragedy.”

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Statement of Ralph G. Neas, president of People For the American Way Foundation, in response to Rev. Sheldon’s comments:

“These statements are cruel and reprehensible.”

In the aftermath of the September 11 tragedies that killed thousands of Americans in New York City, Virginia and Pennsylvania, several relief agencies have stated that in addition to assisting surviving spouses and children, they will make relief funds available to the domestic partners of gay men and lesbians who died. News reports have identified gay people among the Sept. 11 victims, including the co-pilot on American Airlines flight 77, which was hijacked and crashed into the Pentagon.

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