Teresa Cao, who was arrested Thursday for disrupting the reading of the U.S. Constitution in the House of Representatives, attended a rally in May that featured remarks from the antigay activist Peter LaBarbera. Advocate.com: Daily News
If you want the quintessential fact why the Southern Poverty Law Center is correct in calling out certain religious right organizations for their anti-gay bias, check out this portion of an interview between members of two of these groups - Peter LaBarbera, head of Americans for Truth and Martha Kleder of the Concerned Women for America:
Kleder: One of the things I've also noticed is that the SPLC seems to be riled by the fact . . . uh . . . if they don't particularly like your source that you document then you must be a hate group.
LaBarbera: Paul Cameron Kleder: Yeah.
LaBarbera: They say if you cite Paul Cameron, then you are a hater. I mean that's ridiculous. You know there is a researcher who just came out and found that Paul Cameron's work on the greater likelihood of homosexual adoptive parents to have . . . for the child to emerge as a homosexual. He confirmed Cameron's thesis. You don't have to agree with everything Paul Cameron ever did but how proposterous to say that citing a researcher . . Paul Cameron's work has been published in peer-reviewed journals. What they've done, Martha is set up these criteria and then you violate them, they call you a hate group, and then they have their little echo chamber on the left which reports their charge. And of course the media, which really doesn't like us anyway. The media is very pro-gay, they cite us and so it begins to take a life of its own.
One of the main reasons why religious right groups (i.e. Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, The Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, etc.) have been profiled by the Southern Poverty Law Center as anti-gay hate groups is because of their repeated citings of the work of discredited researcher Paul Cameron. They use his work to spread propaganda about lgbts.
As all of us, if the not the vast majority of us, knows, Cameron is a researcher who has made a name for himself by creating studies designed to demonize the lgbt community. These studies for the most part have been published in “vanity” or “pay-for-publish” journals and they are not “peer-reviewed” in the normal sense. No “peer” who objects to Cameron's work has the right to remove it from the journal.
He has also been discredited and censured by many group and individuals on the left, the right, and in the middle due to his bad research techniques. Several of his studies have been criticized for such errors as having small sample sizes, showing an anti-gay bias in interviews, and not having enough responses to establish a suitable analysis.
Let's take a quick look at his history:
“Right now, here in Lincoln, there is a 4-year-old boy who has had his genitals almost severed from his body at Gateway in the rest room with a homosexual act… It’s really awkward. I could see where Gateway would want to suppress this. I could see where the parents would want to suppress it. It could be just a rumor. But enough things have happened recently so that such a thing doesn’t have to be invented.” – Paul Cameron told this story to a group in 1982 in Lincoln, NB in an attempt to kill a human rightsordinance, Lincoln Star May 8, 1982
The story was discovered to be a hoax and Cameron was called out in the local newspaper- “A leading opponent of the proposed Lincoln Human Rights Amendment spreads rumors of an alleged vicious incident calculated to damage the proposal’s chances at the polls. When asked about it, he admits the rumor was without foundation. He refused to say from whom he heard the rumor. Nonetheless, he still insists it ‘could be true’, even though responsible authorities in the city say there was not a shred of evidence such an incident ever took place. The seed is planted, to the contrary.” – Editorial. Lincoln Star (May 10, 1982), as quoted by Brown, Robert D.; Cole, James K. Letter to the Editor, Nebraska Medical Journal 70, no. 11 (November 1985)
. Cameron has also had numerous condemnations rained down on him by the medical community:
“(Cameron) misrepresents my findings and distorts them to advance his homophobic views. I make a very clear distinction in my writing between pedophilia and homosexuality, noting that adult males who sexually victimize young boys are either pedophilic or heterosexual, and that in my research I have not found homosexual men turning away from adult partners to children . . . I consider this totally unprofessional behavior on the part of Dr. Cameron and I want to bring this to your attention. He disgraces his profession.” – Dr. A. Nicholas Groth in letter written to the Nebraska Board of Examiners of Psychologists on August 21, 1984 “Paul Cameron (Nebraska) was dropped from membership for a violation of the Preamble to the Ethical Principles of Psychologists – American Psychological Association, 1983 The science and profession of psychology in Nebraska as represented by the Nebraska Psychological Association, formally dissociates itself from the representations and interpretations of scientific literature offered by Dr. Paul Cameron in his writings and public statements on sexuality. Further, the Nebraska Psychological Association would like it known that Dr. Cameron is not a member of the Association. Dr. Cameron was recently dropped from membership in the American Psychological Association for a violation of the Preamble to the Ethical Principles of Psychologists – Nebraska Psychological Association, 1984 Dr. Paul Cameron has consistently misinterpreted and misrepresented sociological research on sexuality, homosexuality, and lesbianism” – American Sociological Association, 1985
The Canadian Psychological Association takes the position that Dr. Paul Cameron has consistently misinterpreted and misrepresented research on sexuality, homosexuality, and lesbianism and thus, it formally disassociates itself from the representation and interpretations of scientific literature in his writings and public statements on sexuality. – Canadian Psychological Association, 1996
And while we are at it, let's not forget those on the right who dismiss Cameron's work:
“Given what I now know, I believe there are flaws with Paul Cameron's study. One cannot extrapolate from his methodology and say that the average male homosexual life span is 43 years.” – former Ronald Regan Cabinet member William Bennett criticizing Cameron's “gay lifespan study.” – New Republic (1998, February 23, page 4)
And if that's not enough to convince you of Cameron's lack of credibility, check out various comments he has made regarding the lgbt community:
“What homosexuals do is so incredibly stupid, so patently absurd and antibiological, that only a foolish society would take their whimpering about ‘equal rights with heterosexuality’ seriously . . . Are we supposed to feel so sorry for them that we join them in the march to the cemetery?” – Paul Cameron, The Advocate, October 29, 1985
“At the 1985 Conservative Political Action Conference, Cameron announced to the attendees, ‘Unless we get medically lucky, in three or four years, one of the options discussed will be the extermination of homosexuals.’ According to an interview with former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, Cameron was recommending the extermination option as early as 1983.” – Mark E. Pietrzyk, New Republic, October 3, 1994
“If you isolate sexuality as something solely for one’s own personal amusement, and all you want is the most satisfying orgasm you can get – and that is what homosexuality seems to be — then homosexuality seems too powerful to resist. The evidence is that men do a better job on men, and women on women if all you are looking for is an orgasm.” -Paul Cameron, Rolling Stone, March, 18, 1999
Cameron is the religious right's dirty little secret. Many of the organizations named as anti-gay hate groups by the SPLC have used Cameron's studies even though they are aware of his dubious history of condemnations.
However, many of them won't admit to this fact.That is except for Peter LaBarbera. And what makes it worse is that LaBarbera is trying to justify work he knows has credibility problems.
And by the way, LaBarbera's claim that another researcher proved Cameron's thesis about children in same-sex households is also incorrect. LaBarbera failed to mention that the researcher, Walter Schumm, used the same bad methodology Cameron used to come to his original thesis:
Schumm’s “meta-analysis” (and Cameron’s before him) doesn’t even have the benefit of being built off of random convenience samples. There were no convenience samples in any of the ten prior works that Schumm used for his meta-analysis. In fact, they weren’t even professional studies. They were popular books! That’s right, each of the ten sources that Schumm used to construct his “meta-analysis” were from general-audience books about LGBT parenting and families, most of which are available on Amazon.com. Schumm read the books, took notes on each parent and child described in the book, examined their histories, and counted up who was gay and who was straight among the kids.
But here is the important thing – with Cameron's credibility problem, if he were “publishing studies” about the African-American community, Jewish community, or women, then he and those who freely cite his work would be thought of as either racist, anti-Semitic, or gender biased.
So what's the difference between Cameron's work impugning any of these groups and what he is doing to the lgbt community? Why shouldn't be he and those who use his work be thought of as “haters” in spite of the fact that they can hide their lies behind the Biblical condemnation of homosexuality?
At any rate, the usage of Cameron's work certainly does put a monkeywrench into religious rights claims that they are being “targeted” by the SPLC because of their “Judeo-Christian” beliefs.
I never knew that freely citing research known to be sloppy and inaccurate was a tenet of “Judeo-Christian” beliefs.
“I am always perplexed to hear adult homosexual men talk about how they “knew they were gay” from a very young age, say, five years old. Normally, boys don’t even know what sex is, much less homosexuality, in their early years, so such comments in an of themselves seem to indicate dysfunction, at best, or victimhood at the hands of a predator, at worst, in the young lives of these homosexually identified men.” [SOURCE: AFTAH's web site, find the link yourself]
Pop culture is filled with imagery of little boys and girls, hand in hand, fetching pails of water or sneaking sweet kisses. Young mothers celebrate kid crushes, complete with predictions of future marriage for the growing tots. In Hollywood and in life, these portraits of youth are painted as the epitome of human purity and innocence:
But leave it to Peter LaBarbera to sexualize these feelings as they apply to LGBT children. Since he’s already internalized the notion that the adult gays he challenges lead with the crotch and/or leather ball gag, Peter feels compelled to apply these same outlooks to the LGBT population’s youthful counterparts. Peter takes the tales of what caught young gay eyes — which are just as sweet and innocent (and vivid) as hetero peers’ own remembrances — then puts them through his typical spin machine (one that not only slights LGBT children’s memories, but also indicts their home lives). The resultant meme is one where lil’ Johnny, fresh off a bender of juice boxes and candy cigarettes, bides time between molestations by luring his fellow innocents into rounds of salacious Wii playing. Where lil’ Susie turns her back yard pool party into a mini Dinah Shore weekend. Where kid-sex guides the play dates. Where crushes become dysfunctional, simply because the in-born attractions weaken the far-right’s requisite “it’s a choice” strategy.
So okay, whatever — Peter can act like he’s “perplexed” all he wants. He knows exactly what he’s doing here. If he’s honest with himself, he knows that all humans have stirring attractions and exciting feelings in their minds long before they have any kinds of growth spurts. In our hyper-analyzed world, these instinctual responses should be among the easiest to let play out naturally. It’s only because of certain grown adults’ fetish for screwing gay people that the natural course of things becomes a point of interest, conflict, and controversy.
Sometimes, in order to make the anti-gay noise more enjoyable for you, the dear reader, we need to write a few quips, turn a few phrases, and inject a general sense of wit into what is often a very depressing conversation. Other times, we simply need to print Peter LaBarbera’s press release in full, then get out of the way, so as not to impede your lolz:
CHICAGO, Nov. 16 /Christian Newswire/ — Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) today questioned the propriety of “same-gender’ TSA (Transportation Security Administration) “pat-downs” — if the TSA agents doing the ‘patting down” are homosexual, lesbian or bisexual.
Homeland Security Sec. Janet Napolitano went out of her way yesterday to stress that the TSA pat-downs are “same-gender” — mostly to reassure women that men will not be groping them at airports in the name of safety.
“But what about homosexual TSA agents?” AFTAH President Peter LaBarbera responded. “Isn’t it just as inappropriate for a ‘gay’ male TSA agent to pat down male travelers as it is for a normal, heterosexual male TSA agent to pat down female travelers?
“The reality is, most traveling men would not want Barney Frank to pat them down at the airport security checkpoint,” LaBarbera said. “Neither would it be fair to assign Ellen DeGeneres to pat down female travelers. (In the same vein, the Army should no more force normal male soldiers to shower and bunk with homosexual male soldiers than it would force females soldiers to bunk and shower with their male counterparts.)”
The TSA, as a federal agency, is barred from discriminating on the basis of “sexual orientation,” thanks to a pro-homosexual Executive Order signed by President Clinton in 1998.
Said LaBarbera: “Obviously Napolitano wants to assure the public that sexual tension will be taken out of the equation. Hence, we must take seriously the self-identified desires of homosexuals. ‘Gay’ men define themselves as being sexually attracted to other men. Lesbians are sexually attracted to women. And bisexuals are attracted to both.” Some observations:
Perhaps some common-sense, healthy “discrimination” is in order: the TSA should put conditions on employment for self-acknowledged homosexuals — that they not be assigned to pat down travelers so as to avoid being put in sexually compromising situations;
It would not be workable to assign, say, gay male TSA agents to pat down female travelers — as the latter — thinking the agents to be normal men — would protest that they are being patted down by males. Chaos would ensue;
Does the TSA know which of its employees are homosexual, anyway, and how? If not, is it fair to travelers who may end up getting “groped” by homosexual TSA agents who are secretly getting turned on through the process?
Could the TSA be subjected to a sexual harassment lawsuit if the agent who engages in an overly aggressive “same-gender pat-down” — and gets sued — turns out to be homosexual?
LaBarbera said that even if it could be assumed that most TSA agents — regardless of their sexual proclivities — would act professionally, that is not the issue. Male TSA agents — no matter how “professional” their conduct — cannot frisk female travelers.
“To allow homosexual agents to conduct same-gender pat-downs is tantamount to a new form of discrimination that must be recognized and prevented,” he said.
Your “friend and mine,” Peter LaBarbera has returned to the tactic that has made him a controversial laughing stock in pro and anti-lgbt circles.
He is back to posting risque pictures of Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco. Now while I won't repost the picture, I will post his explanation:
The cities with large homosexual populations, and which advertise themselves as “gay’ meccas, are the most perverse in the world. San Francisco is an example. Deviance begets deviance, pushing “tolerance” to preposterous extremes. Only the committed, and corrupted, social liberal sees this as acceptable. A couple of years ago when I and others went to observe Folsom and protest the public depravities, we were struck by how straight liberals came to accept these hideous “fairs” in the name of tolerance. One reporter, who told me she had been raised in a Christian home, acted as if we outsiders who were condemning the public lewdness were more suspect than the debauched behavior itself. (I doubt her mother would agree.) God does indeed give people over to a reprobate, depraved mind – and it is only through the inestimable grace of God that some men and women once lost in the twisted world of Gays Gone Wild (and its advocacy) leave it and return to sanity. — Peter LaBarbera, www.aftah.org
The photo below was taken by an Americans For Truth reporter who attended the annual Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco on Sunday, September 25, 2010. It confirms that public sex continues at the devent sex “fair” despite past pledges by fair organizers and the city to stop public nudity and open sex in the streets (following exposes by AFTAH and others in previous years). Children were photographed attending this event.
In the (redacted) center of the photo, a naked man is standing on the ground performing oral sex on another naked man, who is standing on the stage of a booth sponsored by ‘Steamworks,’ a local bathhouse (anonymous homosexual sex club). Behind him (at left), another barely-clad man grabs the genitals of a fellow “fair”-goer at Folsom
I can forgive LaBarbera for the inaccurate claim about what happens in cities with “large homosexual populations” and I won't be petty as to criticize the fact that he can't spell “deviant” (goodness knows he has used it a lot to describe the lgbt community) because I am “thrilled” that the “Porno Pete” side of his personality has returned.
For those who are not in the know, LaBarbera is famous (or infamous) for attending subcultural events like Folsom Street Fair, taking pictures of gay men in questionable activity (while making sure to ignore the heterosexuals engaging in the same activity) and posting them on his Americans for Truth webpage along with descriptions about what exactly the men were doing in the picture and at times, relating how long it took them to do said activity.
And even when the pictures show no risque activity at all, we can always count on Porno Pete to manipulate them to imply that they do, like he did in May during a tirade against Progressive Insurance for their pro-lgbt support.
He would like to think that what he does is an attack on Democrat Nancy Pelosi and the lgbt community at large. But his activity has been the subject of much criticism in religious right circles and derision in lgbt circles.
And it's beginning to remind me of some cheesy, but enjoyable television movie I recently saw. A prim and proper woman is possessed by an alternate personality which would force her to dress in black, seek out men, and kill them.
Oh come on. Can't you just see it? LaBarbera spends the entire year pretending to be an upstanding “pro-family” activist but every time Folsom Street Fair rolls around, the voices in his head start to talk to him. He tries hard to ignore them, but they become louder and louder until they overcome his will.
Under their spell, he enters a secret chamber in his house (paid for no doubt by his years of dubious “anti-gay activism) where in a closet is a complete leather outfit equipped with a secret camera and a pair of butt-less chaps.
He puts on the outfit and stares at himself in the full length mirror that sits in the middle of his secret chamber.
Peter LaBarbera, the proud “pro-family” activist is gone and in his place is Porno Pete, the radical, extreme anti-gay activist who takes no prisoners, but lots of pictures.
There's nothing more flamboyant and over-the-top than a right wing crusader. No, not even a drag queen.
With all their self-righteousness indignation, social conservatives provide us, the viewing public, with some real gems of what would otherwise be performance art. Take, for example, Peter LaBarbera, leader of the Americans for Truth.
He's just full of outrageous musings, like when he described San Francisco's Folsom Street Fair as "the most immoral and outrageous sexual behavior that ever disgraced the streets of any American city."
Few of LaBarbera's past hits, however, have been as entertaining as his theory about Don't Ask, Don't Tell's inevitable, yet slow-going, repeal. According to LaBarbera, it's all part of a plot — and why wouldn't it be?
"The irony," LaBarbera concluded, "is that if President Obama and his determined 'queer' allies succeed in turning our Armed Forces into a driving force for immorality, it will only hasten the deterioration of our culture to the point, ultimately, where weapons and soldiers cannot save us from oblivion. If America rejects God, her prospects are dim."
While my years on the LGBT beat have trained my brain to translate most of the right wing's queer codes, I'm still a bit stumped as to how weapons would help "save" a culture from the homosexual scourge.
Unless, of course, LaBarbera means to use the weapons on us. If that's the case, his theory puts gay rights on the same monstrous level as Godzilla. And that's the truth.
But then just a week and change later, Gagnon flew across the country to join Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse‘s official NOM affiliate, The Ruth Institute, for their annual ‘It Takes A Family” conference:
Same man. Same views. The only difference is ownership of those views.
There’s Pete, who proudly declares in reliably coarse terms that the wants to “change” gay people. He wants to stop gay people. And often, he uses Gagnon to do it. He’s at least honest about his motives.
Then there’s Ruth/NOM. They pretend they are all about the institution. About marriage. About not being against anyone, but rather for “tradition.” And they would never, ever, EVER come out and fully admit their belief in or desire for “ex-gay” therapy. It’s the whole “nice” vs. direct conversation that we’re seeing around the Prop 8 legal strategy. In this case, NOM/Ruth are on the criticized side that went up in Judge Walker’s court, while Pete (who said the Prop 8 proponents engaged in “namby-pamby…legal malpractice”) is firmly on the critical side.
But at the end of the day, there is more overlap in terms of both views and intent than the “nice” side would ever publicly admit. Thankfully, their “pro-family” connections are starting to do it for them.
**FOR MORE GAGNON INSIGHT: Read this open letter in which Gagnon peddled his “gays can and should change” views, as well as said that “the closest parallels to adult-committed homosexual relations is not ethnicity or gender but rather adult-committed incestuous unions and adult-committed polysexual unions: Prof. Gagnon’s Open Letter to U. of Toledo re: Suspension of Crystal Dixon [AFTAH]
American For Truth’s Peter LaBarbera says the Alliance Defense Fund and fellow Proposition 8 proponents were “namby-pamby” in a defense that constituted “legal malpractice,” setting up a situation that he’s calling calling Prop8Gate.
Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber wanted to see “ex-gays” and officials from the scientifically-discredited NARTH on the stand:
Meanwhile Good As You’s Jeremy Hooper is sitting in NYC whispering the words “fight, fight, fight!” under his breath, reveling in the unwitting insight that these “pro-family” players are fleshing out through their public rifts.