Reaching industrial-strength level of crazy

As right-wing anti-LGBT rhetoric  gets further ‘out there,’ we must step up to counter it

Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association

 

Hardy Haberman
Flagging Left

I guess it wasn’t enough that the right-wing crazies tried to equate homosexuality with pedophilia, now they have come up with the argument that giving LGBT people equal rights is an assault on freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

Funny, I never remember asking anyone to change their religion or to stop speaking, no matter how crazy they are.

I hold freedom of speech very near and dear to my heart. In fact it is one of my core values.

And religious freedom? Well you have the right to preach and believe anything you want, until you begin advocating violence against other citizens.

That is where the whole issue of LGBT rights breaks down for the far right. If they are not “free” to advocate outright physical assaults on LGBT Americans, they somehow feel it is impinging on their freedom.

Does this sound a lot like the anti-abortion crowd who advocate murdering doctors and blowing up clinics? Though they would be the first to deny it, they are cut from the same cloth.

Funny how these same folks are among the first to point fingers at all Muslims and cry “Terrorists!” In fact our friend from north of the border, Rep. Sally Kern of Oklahoma, has actually said that LGBT people are more dangerous than terrorists.

I really see all this as another attempt to re-frame the issue of LGBT rights by the right wing. They know that opinions in America are changing, and as a recent poll showed, even here in Texas an overwhelming majority of registered voters support expanded civil rights for LGBT Texans.

It is a rising tide and it scares them, and so they crank up the rhetoric.

Bryan Fischer, a mouthpiece of the American Family Association drove the point home with this gem delivered at the recent AFA-sponsored Values Voters Summit, attended by all of the main Republican presidential candidates:

“I believe we need a president who understands that just as Islam represents the greatest long-range threat to our liberty, so the homosexual agenda represents the greatest immediate threat to every freedom and right that is enshrined in the First Amendment. It’s a particular threat to religious liberty… .”

Now, if you have trouble understanding this strange equation, “LGBT rights = no religious liberty,” then let me explain the twisted logic.

The far right believes:

• We are a Christian nation, but only the fundamentalist, fire-breathing born-again variety of Christian.

• “Free speech” means “the right to attack, abuse and in general deny rights to anyone other than predominately white Christian Americans.” (See above for definition of “Christian.”)

• Limiting the ability to discriminate against LGBT people, particularly in areas that involve legal representation and equal rights, is a limit on free speech.

• Granting LGBT people equal legal rights “will end Western Civilization.” (That is a quote from Liberty Council’s Mat Staver.)

And so with this kind of logic it’s easy to see how we LGBT folks are such dangerous threats.

Now, take it a few steps further — which Bryan Fischer is more than willing to do — and go after the recent “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal. Fischer’s vivid imagination comes up with this whopper:

“And so, I’m predicting that things are about to get very ugly in the United States military for people of faith. We are going to see principle-driven officers, one after another, are going to become victims of systematic hate crimes. This is going to be a pogrom; this is going to be virtual genocide, military genocide, career genocide for people of faith in the military, perpetrated by the homosexual lobby.”

Now we have indeed reached the level of “industrial-strength crazy,” and it’s time we take a stand against it.

First of all, the idea that the American Family Association (a recognized hate group) can actually somehow have a lock on what it means to be “people of faith” is beyond laughable. It’s time liberal, progressive Christians came out of the closet and began reclaiming the word “Christian,” before it is too late.

Secondly, the idea that all the major candidates for the GOP presidential race showed up at an event staged by a hate group should put to bed forever the idea that the Republican Party is a big tent, unless that tent is for a fundamentalist revival.

Third, it’s time we realized that not only are these folks nutty, they are dangerous, and though it is easy to laugh at them, we need to take them seriously.

To do otherwise is just plain crazy.

Hardy Haberman is a longtime local LGBT activist and a board member of the Woodhull Freedom Alliance. His blog is at DungeonDiary.blogspot.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition October 14, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

David Pakman of Midweek Politics interviews AFA’s deranged homo-hater Bryan Fischer

Friend of the Blend and Midweek Politics ace interviewer David Pakman has a can’t-miss interview with homo-hater Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association —  and you won’t believe that garbage is spewing out of Fischer’s mouth. OK, you can probably imagine some of the filth, but look at the choice quotes below the videos.

Bryan Fischer, American Family Association Director of Issues Analysis and the Host of “Focal Point” on AFR Talk joins David Pakman to discuss ex-gays, quitting homosexuality, risks of gay sex, supporting gay porn stars, being on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s anti-gay hate group list, and much more.

Fischer: “The Southern Poverty Law Center belongs on its own list [of hate groups]…for peddling falsehoods about homosexuality”

“We’re the ones telling the truth about the link between homosexuality and pedophilia.”

“Active participation in the homosexual lifestyle will deprive a male of anywhere between 8 and 20 years of his life expectancy”

“There is ‘no such thing as a monogamous homosexual relationship’”

But wait, there’s more…

Fischer: “The rectal wall is one cell thick”

“We need to take our cue from gay porn actors”

“Those homosexual activists that are so intent on normalizing homosexual behavior…they must be harboring some deep seated longing to be straight”

“…homosexual activists must be latently heterosexual”

“When the American people have been able to go to the polls and vote on the definition of marriage, we are 31 and 0″

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AFA’s Bryan Fischer tries to refute hate group designation, gets smacked down HARD

crossposted on Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters

Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association (AFA) is not happy that the Southern Poverty Law Center declared the AFA to be an anti-gay hate group and he is especially distressed that his comments was listed as a big reason for this designation.

So recently, he took it upon himself to try and refute a key portion of SPLC's reasoning – a list it compiled of the 10 top myths spread about the lgbt community by organizations like the AFA. Fischer claimed that SPLC's Top Ten Myths list was false and the things his organization (and other religious right groups designated as anti-gay hate groups) say about the lgbt community are in fact true.

Fischer should have kept his mouth shut because Mark Potok of the SPLC took his phony refutations head on.  Potok does not answer all of Fischer's refutations because the ones he does answer are enough to cast doubt on the rest of Fischer's claims.

FischerTRUTH # 1

Homosexuals molest children at far higher rates than heterosexuals.

Absolutely true. Homosexuals comprise perhaps two percent of the population, yet according to the Journal of Sex Research, homosexual pedophiles are responsible for 33% of all child sex offenses. Homosexuals molest children at at least 10 times the rate of heterosexuals.

Potok – Fischer displays the sly predilection of anti-gay activists to cite legitimate research as supporting their claims when the researchers themselves explicitly reject them. Fischer is referring to a 1989 Journal of Sex Research article by the late researcher Kurt Freund, who concluded that homosexuals were not any more disposed to pedophilia than heterosexuals — a finding exactly opposite to what Fischer suggests.

Fischer constructs the 33% figure from Freund’s research by assuming that every case of men molesting boys is committed by a “homosexual” man — a conclusion rejected by virtually all legitimate sex researchers. As Freund said, since most pedophiles have no sexual interest in adults of either gender, terms like “homosexual” and “heterosexual” don’t apply at all. It is the child’s prepubescent nature, not his or her gender, that attracts this type of “fixated” pedophile, most of whom will prey on children of either gender. Freund and other researchers have found that those pedophiles who are capable of forming sexual relationships with other adults — so-called “regressive” pedophiles who only resort to pedophilia when under stress — overwhelmingly identify themselves as heterosexual.

FischerTRUTH # 2

Same-sex parents harm children.

Research indicates that children raised by homosexuals experiment with sexually aberrant behaviors at a higher rate than children raised by heterosexuals and at earlier ages, and do worse, according to a 1996 study by an Austrian sociologist, in nine of 13 academic and social categories compared to children raised by heterosexual married couples.

A 2001 article in American Sociological Review reported that children raised by lesbians are more likely to engage in homosexual behavior and are “more sexually adventurous.”

Potok – Fischer identifies neither report by name — and for good reason.

In the first instance, he is referring to an obscure 1996 study by Sotirios Sarantakos, an Australian, not Austrian, researcher. Anti-gay groups frequently cite this article — yet the article, the journal that published it, and Sarantakos himself, are all but impossible to locate online.

The other study Fischer cites was conducted in 2001 by professors Timothy J. Biblarz of the University of Southern California and Judith Stacey of New York University (pdf).

. . . In an E-mail to Hatewatch this week, Stacey blasted Fischer’s misuse of her research. “They are misrepresenting our 2001 article … by cherry-picking out of context one finding we mentioned that came from one very small British study,” she wrote. “Even so, their claim that children raised by lesbians are more sexually adventurous is also inaccurate. In the small study we mentioned … it was only the daughters who were sexually active a bit earlier than daughters of straight moms. Boys raised by lesbians were less sexually active than sons of straight moms! Our interpretation was that IF this tentative finding were to be replicated, it suggested that lesbians were transmitting a more egalitarian, single standard of sexual behavior to daughters and sons compared with the conventional double standard of sex being more permissible for boys. Moreover, it turns out that the … finding has NOT been replicated. In fact, a new study finds kids raised by lesbians from birth to be less sexually active!”

Fischer - TRUTH # 4

Homosexuals don't live nearly as long as heterosexuals.

According to an extensive study of the homosexual community in Vancouver, B.C., active participation in the homosexual lifestyle will rob an individual of a significant portion of his life span. Say the researchers, “[L]ife expectancy at age 20 years for gay and bisexual men is 8 to 20 years less than for all men.” In fact, they observe that participation in the homosexual lifestyle knocks life expectancy for a Canadian male back to what it was in 1871.

Potok – Again, Fischer ignores that the authors of that 1997 study updated it in 2001, pointing out that advances in treatment of HIV-AIDS even at that point had significantly improved the expected longevity of those infected, which would inevitably narrow any gap between gay and straight life spans caused by the disease. Moreover, the authors explicitly rejected the attempts of anti-gay organizations to construe the 1997 observations to justify denigration of gays.

“These homophobic groups appear more interested in restricting the human rights of gay and bisexuals rather than promoting their health and well being,” the authors wrote in their 2001 update.

. . .“I am aghast that the misrepresentation of these data continues,” Steffanie Strathdee, associate dean of global health sciences at the University of California, San Diego, and one of the authors of the two reports, told Hatewatch in an E-mail this week.

As I said before, Potok did not answer all of Fischer's refutations because he didn't need to. Potok was able to point out Fischer's bad errors in the refutations that he did address. And his answers does cast doubt on Fischer's entire piece. How can Fischer's seven other refutations be believed when he made such egregious errors on the three which were addressed?

But because I like to butt in, allow me to address a refutation that Potok didn't.

FischerTRUTH # 8

Homosexuals are more prone to be mentally ill and to abuse drugs and alcohol.

Even the pro-homosexual Gay and Lesbian Medical Association admits that homosexuals “use substances at a higher rate than the general population,” have “higher rates of alcohol dependence and abuse,” and are subject to higher rates of “depression and anxiety.” Homosexual activists attempt to blame homophobia for this, but the same trends are evident even in Scandinavian countries where homosexuality has received virtually unanimous societal approval for decades.

Me – Fischer omitted the fact that the GLMA clearly say that these behaviors are not indicative of the lgbt orientation but reactions to homophobia of society:

GMLA: Depression and anxiety appear to affect gay men at a higher rate than in the general population. The likelihood of depression or anxiety may be greater, and the problem may be more severe for those men who remain in the closet or who do not have adequate social supports. Adolescents and young adults may be at particularly high risk of suicide because of these concerns.

GMLA: Research indicates that lesbians may use illicit drugs more often than heterosexual women. This may be due to added stressors in lesbian lives from discrimination. Lesbians need support from each other and from health care providers to find healthy releases, quality recreation, stress reduction, and coping techniques.

Fischer's claim about Scandinavian countries is a distortion of a study by Dr. Theo Sandfort which looked at the mental health of gay men in the Netherlands.  And Fischer is not the first religious right figure to distort this study.

This is what Sandfort told me in a  Jan. 2009 email. At that particular time, PFOX (an “ex-gay” group) was distorting his study:

There is a difference between the U.S. and the Netherlands in terms of acceptance of homosexuality. That does not mean that there is no homophobia (and homophobic damage) in the Netherlands. It is not clear how difference in climate affects the prevalence of mental disorders. We don't know the final answers, but in the U.S. as well as the Netherlands, homophobia is related to mental health problems.

He also commented on how the religious right distorts his work:

“They use data to promote their moral convictions without truly understanding what the issues are. They are not interested in understanding how people's lives are affected by their social environment.”

It is clear that the SPLC designation has struck a nerve amongst these so-called Christian, pro-family groups. Unfortunately, it's not enough for them to at the very least address the charges.

But does anyone really expect them to? After all, that would be showing actual values and morality, two things which Fischer and the rest of his ilk lack in abundance.
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Quote Of The Day – Bryan Fischer

“In a strange way, it is a badge of honor for these groups to be tagged now by the SPLC as hate groups. It’s a sign of desperation on the part of the SPLC, and a sign that they are so threatened by the truths that these groups speak that they are now flailing about trying to silence them rather than to debate them. They’ve given up winning on points, and so have taken to trying to run them off the field. Their strategy now is not to persuade the public but to demonize their cultural adversaries.

“I’ve often maintained that liberals, progressives, Democrats, socialists, Marxists, etc. – they’re all the same under the covers – hate free speech. They hate freedom of religion, and they hate freedom of the press, because such freedoms threaten their stranglehold on public discourse and their goal of indoctrinating the American people with their non-traditional moral values. They hate the First Amendment, for the very reason that it was designed by the Founders to protect robust public discourse on political and social matters.” – American Family Association radio host Bryan Fischer.

(Via – Good As You)

Joe. My. God.

—  admin

Bryan Fischer: Pentagon doesn’t realize God will nuke an inclusive armed forces

And now another charming minute with the “pro-family” liability that is the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer:

Bryan-FischerA military that is weakened spiritually is a military that is a weakened fighting force. The ancient Scriptures still have it right: “Unless the Lord watches over a city, the watchmen stand guard in vain” (Psalm 127:1). The Founders understood this; our current crop of Pentagon leaders do not, and seem intent on making what will prove to be a fatal mistake. There is no quicker way to assign the United States to the scrap heap of history than to normalize homosexual behavior in our military.” [SOURCE]

Oh please, Bryan. Everyone knows that it’s our gay marriages that will take America to the scrap heap. Our open service will merely take the country to the intermediary garbage truck. Duh.

Though if it’s all the same to you, Mr. Fischer, we’ll keep subscribing to the recycling bin theory. You know, the one that says that all new forms of civil discrimination are merely repurposed versions of old biases, a circle of condemnation that will only end when the self-appointed salvagers of “sanctity” agree to bury their inorganic outlooks for good.

**

**FOR THOSE NOT FAMILIAR WITH FISCHER: He’s the guy who’s said that “homosexuals in the military gave us…six million dead Jews,” who’s said “homosexuals should be disqualified from public office,” who has called on Christian conservatives to breed gays and progressives out of existence, has called gay sex a “form of domestic terrorism,” who’s said only gays were savage enough for Hitler, has compared gays to heroin abusers, has directly compared laws against gay soldiers to those that apply to bank robbers, who once invoked a Biblical story about stabbing “sexually immoral” people with spears, saying we need this kind of action in modern day, and who has spoken out against gays serving as public school teachers, has questioned why Medals of Honor are given to people who save lives (rather than take lives), and who has blamed gay activists for dead gay kids, saying that: “If we want to see fewer students commit suicide, we want fewer homosexual students.” His words pretty much single-handedly landed the American Family Association on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate groups list.




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Bryan Fischer: All gays end up ‘diseased, lonely, and dead’

People argue that some folks have a genetic, hereditary predisposition to alcoholism. We would never say to such individuals, “Hey, in most cases, we tell people not to drink themselves into a stupor – it will destroy your life, your marriage, your family, your career – but hey, go ahead, you’re born that way, you can’t help it, knock yourself out, wreck your life, 6A00D8341C503453Ef0133F4Fd204C970Bdon’t worry about it.”

Of course not. We’d, say, hey the road may be a little tougher for you than others, but you have got to get control of these dark impulses before they wreak utter and total havoc in your life. I’m here to help, what can I do?

That’s the same message we have for homosexuals: sexual behavior is a choice, homosexual behavior will leave you diseased, lonely, and dead, you’ve got to learn to resist homosexual impulses, I’m here to help.

If homosexuals resist the offer of such help, well, I guess that’s a choice too, isn’t it?”

-The American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer

In other parts of his spiel, Fischer asserts that a gay gene would lead to mass abortions of gay babies and compares gays’ “sexual impulses” to Tiger Woods’ extramarital actions. So essentially, in Fischer’s world, LGBT people are condemned from birth to afterlife, with little more transient, STD-laden affairs to fill the days in between.

It Gets Better? Not if Fischer and the bitter, battering far-right can help it.

***

**EARLIER: This is the guy who Baptist Press columnist Penna Dexter says should advise us all on politics and religion: Just ask yourself where you’d stand in a Penna Dexter/Bryan Fischer world [G-A-Y]

**EARLIER FISCHER: He’s the guy who’s said that “homosexuals in the military gave us…six million dead Jews,” who’s said “homosexuals should be disqualified from public office,” who has called on Christian conservatives to breed gays and progressives out of existence, has called gay sex a “form of domestic terrorism,” who’s said only gays were savage enough for Hitler, has compared gays to heroin abusers, has directly compared laws against gay soldiers to those that apply to bank robbers, who once invoked a Biblical story about stabbing “sexually immoral” people with spears, saying we need this kind of action in modern day, and who has spoken out against gays serving as public school teachers, and who has blamed gay activists for dead gay kids, saying that: “If we want to see fewer students commit suicide, we want fewer homosexual students.”




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Video: Gays to blame for not sitting back, shutting up, and letting Bryan Fischer tell us how awful we are

**EARLIER FISCHER:

-The time Mr. Fischer said “there frankly is no other kind of homosexual than the dysfunctional kind”

-The time Mr. Fischer came out against “open homosexuals and sexually active single adults” teaching in public schools

-The time Mr. Fischer took on our anal cavities

-The time Mr. Fischer said ‘Nope’ to all GOP support for gay rights

-The time Mr. Fischer said “homosexuals should be disqualified from public office”

-The time Mr. Fischer said that “homosexuals in the military gave us…six million dead Jews.

-The time Mr. Fischer called on Christian conservatives to breed gays and progressives out of existence

-The time Mr. Fischer declared that “Every time an HIV-infected male has sex with another male, it’s essentially the same as plunging an infected heroin needle into his arm. He’s passing on a potential death sentence, just as the Taliban seeks to do on a foreign battlefield.”

-The time Mr. Fischer said only gays were savage enough for Hitler

-The time Mr. Fischer invoked a Biblical story about stabbing “sexually immoral” people with spears, saying we need this kind of action in modern day

-The time Mr. Fischer compared gays to heroin abusers

-The time Mr. Fischer told us to just shut up

-The time Mr. Fischer oddly interpreted past historical oppressions

-The time Mr. Fischer directly compared laws against gay soldiers to those that apply to bank robbers




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—  John Wright

Count Bryan ‘gay sex is a form of domestic terrorism’ Fischer in the Carl Paladino fan club

NY gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino has found himself a public supporter. This new voice of solidarity comes in the form of the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer, a man who has claimed that “homosexuals in the military gave us…six million dead Jews,” who’s said “homosexuals should be disqualified from public office,” who has called on Christian conservatives to breed gays and progressives out of existence, has called gay sex a “form of domestic terrorism,” who’s said only gays were savage enough for Hitler, has compared gays to heroin abusers, has directly compared laws against gay soldiers to those that apply to bank robbers, who once invoked a Biblical story about stabbing “sexually immoral” people with spears, saying we need this kind of action in modern day, and who has spoken out against gays serving as public school teachers.

Take it (way, way) away, Bryan:

Everything – every single thing – that Paladino said about the homosexual lifestyle yesterday was dead on the money. What he said is so true and so evident and so obvious that the real 6A00D8341C503453Ef01310F3588E8970Ccontroversy here is that there is any controversy at all.

The fact that homosexual activists will now bare their fangs, veritably dripping saliva as they go for Paladino’s carotid artery, and will do so with the full-throated blessing of the out-of-the-mainstream media, only illustrates the enormously dangerous clout these purveyors of perversity have been given in our culture.

Paladino properly shamed Cuomo for marching in New York’s gay pride parade with his two daughters, saying, “that’s not the kind of example we should be showing our children.”

Referring to the unconscionable way impressionable young children are being indoctrinated (rather than educated) in our public schools, he said, “I don’t want them to be brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid and successful option – it isn’t.”

He affirmed unapologetically that “marriage is between a man and a woman. Period,” and vowed to veto any same-sex marriage bill that reaches his desk on the grounds that it would be “immoral legislation.” He spoke the simple truth when he said that our children “would be much better off and much more successful getting married and raising a family.” Good for him.

In the written remarks he prepared for delivery to Hasidic Jewish leaders, he added that there is “nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual.”

There frankly is no other kind of homosexual than the dysfunctional kind. Homosexuals are dysfunctional by the very nature of the aberrant sexual conduct in which they engage. As the Roman Catholic Church correctly says, homosexual behavior is “intrinsically disordered.”

Bryan Fischer: Carl Paladino gets right up in the grill of homosexual activists [AFA]

Oh, you’re so silly, Mr. Fischer. We gay activists aren’t baring our fangs. Because why would we, when baring both your and Mr. Paladino’s intense hostility for a vibrant population sect is far more advantageous to our equality fight?




Good As You

—  John Wright

Wherein we compare cavities with Bryan Fischer

Him:

“Heterosexual marriage: right. Two men using the anal cavity for sex: wrong. This is not rocket surgery.” [SOURCE]

-American Family Association analyst Bryan “homosexuals in the military gave us…six million dead Jews” Fischer

Us:

A man using the vaginal cavity as a snack plate: no thank you. Homosexual marriage: right.

See, we can play the “ooh, I personally find that kind of sex gross” game too, Mr. Fischer! Grow. It’s not brain science.




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—  John Wright

Bryan Fischer: Christians must control the govt or atheists and pagans will take over

The Values Voter Summit is reaping a bumper crop of terribly disturbing, ignorant and faith-based FAIL this year. Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association contributers his fertilizer with this outrageous naked call for a theocracy.

We’ve gotten to the point where the fringe right social conservatives have not been able to come up with a winning arguments that papers over the fact their goal is to torch our Constitution and install the KJV of the Bible as the basis for governing the United States of America. The masks have been coming off at an alarming rate. Via Right Wing Watch, here is part 1; surf over for the rest of his speech.

Speaking today at the Values Voter Summit, Bryan Fischer used his stage time to lay out various reasons why Christians need to be involved in politics – like the fact that Christians are needed in order to clean up the messiness, otherwise our government will be run by atheists and pagans:

So Fischer says that, in his experience, the internal dealings of the church are way worse than anything he ever saw in politics … but the reason that Christians need to be involved in politics is so that they can “clean that mess up”? So who is causing all the messes in the church then? Atheists and pagans?

Related:

* People for the American Way calls out NPR for featuring hate-monger Bryan Fischer
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—  John Wright