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Right Wing Round-Up - 1/29/15

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 1/29/15

  • If GetReligion is going to criticize those who don't "tell both sides of the story" regarding the American Family Association's designation as a "hate group," perhaps GetReligion ought to actually bother to address the bigotry that regularly flows from the AFA which earned it that designation.
  • A couple of sociologists have "discovered" that a small group of "Americans demonstrate signs of anti-Christian hostility." That is some groundbreaking research!
  • J. Lee Grady is going to be sick! "We Americans get really angry when oil companies spill toxic fuel in our oceans; yet we applaud when Hollywood dumps a tanker of poisonous garbage like 'Fifty Shades of Grey' on our country—with no offer to clean up the damage. We should be outraged."
  • Larry Tomczak continues to try and milk his fifteen minutes of anti-gay infamy.
  • William Gheen wants to draft Jeff Sessions and Laura Ingraham for president and VP.
  • Finally, the devastating new report from the Justice Department is probably just further proof that the government is covering up the fact that it hacked Sharyl Attkisson's computers!

MRC Spox: Dan Savage Is 'One Of The Most Well-Known Vicious, Hating Individuals In The World'

To say that Tony Perkins is no fan of Dan Savage would be an understatement, as the Family Research Council president has threatened Savage with legal action and claimed that the It Gets Better Project is a “disgusting” attempt to “recruit” children into “perversion.”

Perkins invited Dan Gainor of the conservative Media Research Center onto his “Washington Watch” radio program to discuss reports that Savage will have a new show on ABC, and the two fumed at the news.

“How in the world can ABC think that this will fly?” Perkins asked. Gainor warned that Savage’s new project “will be like Glee was to the gay agenda,” describing Savage as “one of the most well-known vicious, hating individuals in the world.”

“It is something you would expect from the old Soviet Union,” Gianor added.

Has The AFA Changed Its Position On Sodomy Laws?

Yesterday, the American Family Association announced that it was stripping Bryan Fischer of his position as a spokesman for the group. The AFA's move to distance itself from Fischer’s regular barrages of bigotry apparently came in response pressure from its allies in the Republican National Committee, who are preparing to go on a tour of Israel on AFA's dime. (Though the fact that the group is retaining Fischer as a radio personality on its American Family Radio network makes the whole thing somewhat less convincing.)

In what seems to be part of this effort, AFA has sent the Southern Poverty Law Center a letter explicitly denouncing a laundry list of Fischer’s statements, from his blaming the Holocaust on gay people to his insistence that the First Amendment applies only to Christians.

But one statement in the letter stands out:

AFA rejects the policy advocated by Bryan Fischer that homosexual conduct should be illegal.

Really? Is AFA renouncing its support for criminal sodomy laws?

If the AFA has indeed changed its positions on criminal prohibitions on “homosexual conduct,” that would certainly be news! But we somehow wonder if this is yet another example of the group saying one thing to its critics while it continues to say another to its base.

After all, in 2003, when the Supreme Court was preparing to hear arguments in Lawrence v. Texas, the case that struck down state-level prohibitions on sexual relationships between consenting adults of the same sex, the AFA submitted an amicus brief [PDF] passionately defending such laws.

AFA’s attorneys urged the court to consider the “injury caused to the public by same-sex sodomy,” which it implied was more harmful than rape:

In addition to the concrete physical harms that can be caused by private vices, morals laws may prevent moral harm, both to the potential wrongdoer and to the community at large. Just as “[a] physical environment marred by pollution jeopardizes people’s physical health; a social environment abounding in vice threatens their moral wellbeing and integrity.” The injury caused to the public by same-sex sodomy was well understood in the past. Blackstone, having spent several pages immediately prior on rape and abduction, introduces the section on sodomy as dealing with an offense “of a still deeper malignity,” “the very mention of which is a disgrace to human nature.” Plainly, this crime is of a different magnitude. [citations removed for clarity]

AFA also warned that sodomy laws protect “the well-being of those engaged in the immoral behavior,” and that though they “may seem severe to those struggling with strong sexual urges” they will be “beneficial in the end”:

Another interest often overlooked in analysis of the issue of public harms occasioned by private immorality is that of the well-being of those engaged in the immoral behavior. The enormous price in terms of illness, disease and death resulting from the conduct…is well documented.

But even aside from the health issue, it has been almost universally recognized that restraint is the sine qua non for social harmony. “Human society requires the direction and restraint of many impulses. Few of those impulses are more powerful or unpredictable than sexual desire.” Laws such as [these] may seem severe to those struggling with strong sexual urges, but the restraint they encourage is beneficial in the end. American jurisprudence long ago rejected Hume’s notion that “reason is, and ought only to be, the slave of the passions.”  [citations removed]

The same year, AFA’s Ed Vitigliano wrote in the American Family Association Journal that a victory in Lawrence would be necessary to preserve “the notion of law and morality inherent in the Judeo-Christian worldview” and praised sodomy laws as deriving “from an older recognition of an orderly natural world, reflecting an intelligent design and, thus, purpose within nature, called natural law.”

Interestingly, the nation’s highest court will be revisiting in Lawrence and Garner v. Texas the same general issues dealt with in a previous Supreme Court case. In Bowers v. Hardwick (1986), a 5-4 high court majority upheld Georgia’s sodomy statute.

That narrowest of decisions, however, pitted two culturally distinct appraisals of morality and law against each other – and in fact provides a clear lesson about what has become known as the culture war.

Sadly, however, since 1986 the more traditional Judeo-Christian views which prevailed in Bowers have been steadily eroding in our culture, in favor of the more postmodern views of the minority in that case. Should the Supreme Court in Lawrence take an opposite view than it did in Bowers, that would mean – quite remarkably – that in the span of only 17 years, the notion of law and morality inherent in the Judeo-Christian worldview had been decreed, by unelected judges, obsolete.

Most sodomy laws have already disappeared anyway. In 1960, all 50 states had such laws on their books – now only 13 states do. However, the repeal of these laws – either by state legislatures or judges – indicates that the statutes represent a worldview that is rapidly being abandoned in favor of postmodern relativism. Sodomy laws derive from an older recognition of an orderly natural world, reflecting an intelligent design and, thus, purpose within nature, called natural law.

We look forward to seeing the AFA issue a full retraction of its previous support for criminalizing “homosexual conduct.” But we aren’t holding our breath.

Bryan Fischer Says That He Has Not Been Fired, Will Retain His Position As AFR Radio Host

Bryan Fischer kicked off his radio program today by refuting reports that he had been fired by the American Family Association, explaining that he has simply given up his role as an official AFA spokesman while retaining his role as a daily radio host for AFA's radio outlet, American Family Radio.

Fischer said that his designation as an AFA spokesman while he also served as a radio host was creating confusion and resulting in the personal opinions he expressed on the radio being unfairly attributed to the AFA. As such, Fischer will no longer serve as an official voice for AFA but will continue to spew his bigotry from the AFA's radio stations:

As we noted earlier today, this supposed change is utterly meaningless and does nothing to absolve the AFA of its responsibility for giving Fischer a national platform from which to spread his hate.

Of course, the AFA doesn't see it that way, having recently sent a letter to the Southern Poverty Law Center claiming that its radio network is "a free speech zone" and therefore AFA should not be held responsible for any of the things said on its programs. 

AFA nonetheless did explicitly repudiate an array of bigoted claims Fischer that has made over the years, thereby insisting that no longer can Fischer's views be attributed to the organization:

AFA rejects the idea expressed by Bryan Fischer that "Free exercise of religion" only applies to Christians. Consequently, AFA rejects Bryan's assertions that Muslims should not be granted permits to build mosques in the United States;

AFA rejects the ideas expressed by Bryan Fischer that the violent expulsion of Native Americans was divinely ordained and that, "Superstition, savagery and sexual immorality" morally disqualified Native Americans from "sovereign control of American soil."

AFA rejects the ideas expressed by Bryan Fischer that "we" need to clamp down on immigration because Hispanics are socialist by nature and vote Democratic because it allows them to "benefit from the plunder of the wealth of the United States."

AFA rejects Bryan Fischer's characterization of minorities as "people who rut like rabbits."

AFA rejects the statement by Bryan Fischer that, "Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler, and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and six million dead Jews."

AFA rejects the policy advocated by Bryan Fischer that homosexual conduct should be illegal

AFA rejects the notion advocated by Bryan Fischer that, "We need an underground railroad to protect innocent children from same-sex households."

AFA rejects Bryan Fischer's statement that, "If Hillary Clinton becomes president In 2016, she will not only be our first female president, she could be our first lesbian president."

....

In light of this notice, do not continue to charge AFA with the statements by Bryan Fischer that we have repudiated. When identifying "hate groups" in the context of training military or law enforcement personnel, do not put AFA in a false light by quoting Mr. Fischer's statements that we have repudiated.

The AFA will continue to provide Fischer with the staff, resources, and national outlet through which to share the views that AFA reportedly finds abhorrent ... but wants to do so without having to answer for all of the hatred that it is responsible for producing and promoting.

Mike Huckabee: Obama Giving Muslims 'Special Rights' While 'Stomping All Over Christians'

Mike Huckabee stopped by the American Family Association’s radio network today to denounce the Obama administration as “incapable of knowing the difference between good and evil” in the fight against extremist groups.

The former governor and likely presidential candidate told Kevin McCullough of “AFA Today” that the Obama administration is “bending over backwards to do everything possible to accommodate Muslims but they don’t mind stomping all over Christians and they do it regularly. This is just the most astonishing reversal of true American tradition that I’ve ever seen.”

Huckabee, who in a previous appearance on American Family Radio said that the president is more familiar with madrassas than Boy Scout meetings, argued that the administration wants to let Muslims “enjoy special rights and privileges” while it at the same time ignores terrorists who claim they are motivated by Islam.

Group Organizing RNC Israel Trip Attacks Israel's 'Atheist Jews'

Sandy Rios, the American Family Association’s director of governmental affairs, said today that criticism of her organization’s role in financing a Republican National Committee trip to Israel is unfounded because Israel “could not have a better ally” than the AFA … despite the fact that God disapproves of the country’s “secular government” and is not “fond of atheist Jews” who live there.

“In terms of our teachings and our biblical understanding there could not be any more strong support for Israel than you find among people who understand and believe in the Bible and believe that God’s hand is on Israel, in spite of what’s happening there, in spite of its government,” she said. She mocked the notion “that God is in favor of a secular government or that God is fond of atheist Jews who occupy the land in Israel.”

“It is His land and I believe He will reclaim it in time,” Rios said.

In an apparent response to pressure from the RNC, the AFA distanced itself from its main spokesman Bryan Fischer yesterday, stripping him of his title while still allowing him to host a daily talk show on the organization’s radio network.

Rios has a history making such statements about American Jews. She has argued that “powerful Jewish forces” use groups like the ACLU to destroy America, claimed “Jewish leftists in this country are eager to embrace Islam,” lamented that “the Jewish vote in this country is so confused, so many of the Jews in this country are atheist and their hearts are with this President,” and warned that “Jewish atheists” are among “the worst enemies of the country.”

AFA president Tim Wildmon has agreed with her assessment: “Most of the Jews in this country, unfortunately, are far-left.”

David Barton Heading To D.C. To Teach Congress How To Abolish Courts That Rule For Gay Marriage

On his "WallBuilders Live" radio broadcast today, David Barton revealed that he will be heading to Congress to lead a training session for lawmakers on how to prevent the court system from ruling in favor of marriage equality.

Responding to a question from a listener on what steps Congress can take to rein in the judiciary on this issue, Barton declared that Congress has several options: it can pass a law declaring that federal courts cannot hear gay marriage cases, it can pass a law that says that no federal money can ever be used to enforce a ruling from the Supreme Court in favor of gay marriage, or it can simply abolish any court, outside of the Supreme Court, that issues any ruling for gay marriage.

"All Congress has to do," he said, "is pass a law saying, 'you know, we saw the Northern District of Georgia struck down the marriage law; we're abolishing the Norther District of Georgia court. It doesn't exist any more.'"

The reason that Congress hasn't already taken such steps, Barton explained, is because members of Congress are products of "our government education system" and therefore never learned this  ... which is why he is being brought to Washington, D.C., to teach it to them.

"I was at a conference recently where I was speaking on judicial myths," he said, "and I just quoted from the Founding Fathers and the Constitution and quoted from the Founders' own writings and congressmen said 'we never heard that' and so they've asked me to come to D.C. and do a training for them on ways to limit judicial activism":

Nebraska GOP Board Of Education Member With Racist Blog: 'I Am Not A Racist'

The Republican member of the Nebraska Board of Education who until recently ran a blog that called President Obama a “half-breed” and railed against “queers and perverts” is facing calls from his peers to resign from his post.

By a 6-2 vote yesterday, Pat McPherson’s fellow state school board members approved a resolution calling on him to step down, but he has refused to comply.

McPherson, who maintains that he didn’t write the posts in question but refuses to reveal who did, told the board that the controversy over the racist posts on his blog was manufactured by his political adversaries on the left who want to “overturn an election.”

“I am not a racist,” McPherson said, before blaming “the frenzy around this” on “political interests who opposed me in the general election” who want to “inflame the issue using the racist appellation.”

One of McPherson’s allies, Doug Kagan of the conservative group Taxpayers for Freedom, claimed McPherson is the victim of “a witch hunt against him.”

McPherson said he was merely “negligent” in supervising the material that appeared on his blog and said it was the first time he had ever been accused of racism.

CPAC Superheroes: Who's The Hulk?

If “superhero” is not the word that comes to mind when you think of Rick Santorum, Ted Cruz, or Rick Perry, you clearly aren’t CPAC material. The Conservative Political Action Conference, the annual right-wing gathering hosted by the American Conservative Union, is promoting this year’s event with a graphic inspired by the movie “Avengers” – or Disney’s animated series “Avengers Assemble.”

As in the Marvel universe, there are some household names, and some clearly second- or third-tier heroes. We’ll leave it to you to speculate on the superpowers wielded by Bobby Jindal, John Bolton, Laura Ingraham, Ben Carson, and others.