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The Five Worst Religious Right Claims About Safe Schools Initiatives

In honor of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network’s Day of Silence today – an annual event meant to draw attention to the “silencing effects” of anti-gay harassment and name-calling in schools – Right Wing Watch is re-releasing a collection of some of the most troubling recent claims from the Religious Right about safe schools initiatives.

Relying on harmful myths depicting LGBT people as abusive and “perverse,” it is clear from these examples that the Religious Right is far more interested in pushing homophobic lies than in protecting and supporting all students through commonsense legislation. Our elected leaders face a stark choice between protecting students and siding with the dangerous and hateful lies of the far right.

5. Gordon Klingenschmitt: Al Franken is 'Causing More Suicides' by Backing Anti-Bullying Bill (January 2012)

Previously, Gordon Klingenschmitt accused Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) of “homosexualizing kids” and acting like late North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il over his efforts to pass legislation geared at preventing bullying because Franken and other progressives have “deified sin as their god.” Now, Klingenschmitt is accusing Franken of “causing more suicides” for sponsoring the anti-bullying bill. “Teen suicide is tragic enough without Senator Franken recruiting more kids into homosexuality, which causes depression, self-hatred, self-rejection and self-murder,” Klingenschmitt writes, “Franken's plan will result in more teen suicides, not less.”

4. Linda Harvey Warns That Anti-Bullying Programs Will Turn Schools Into ‘Indoctrination Camps’ (November 2011)

Linda Harvey of Mission America urged voters to oppose the Safe Schools Improvement Act and the Student Non-Discrimination Act, warning that such anti-bullying legislation was “using bullying prevention as a tool to force approval of homosexuality and gender bending on children, teachers and families.” On her radio show, Harvey urged members of her Ohio-based group to contact Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman to oppose what she called the “promotion of these lifestyles to kids brought into schools in the Trojan Horse of anti-bullying programs.” She went on to say that schools will be turned “into indoctrination camps” in order “to fulfill the fondest wishes of those who want traditional morality to disappear” if the safe school legislation passes.

3. Public Advocate: Congress Using Schools ‘To Force The Homosexual Agenda’ On Children (April 2011)

Religious Right groups consistently try to tarnish anti-bullying initiatives by labeling them as “homosexual indoctrination” and “special rights,” among other absurd claims. A Religious Right group called Public Advocate and led by Virginia politician Eugene Delgaudio launched the “Protect Our Children’s Innocence” petition to protest the Student Non-Discrimination Act, which it labeled the “Homosexual Classrooms Act.”

2. Gordon Klingenschmitt Says ‘Sick and Perverse’ Student Non-Discrimination Act Will Legalize ‘Sexual Assault’ (April 2012)

After President Obama announced his support for the Student Non-Discrimination Act, Gordon Klingenschmitt went back on the attack against the anti-bullying bill, warning in an email message that the “sick and perverse” legislation will “give homosexuals and perverts protected status,” “mandate pro-homosexual recruiting of kids in public schools,” promote “child abuse” as “homosexuals will have full control of classrooms” and even allow for harassment and “sexual assault.”

1. Sandy Rios: Schools No Longer Teach Reading and Writing, Now Just Promote Homosexuality (April 2013)

The American Family Association’s Sandy Rios hosted Linda Harvey of Mission America to criticize the Day of Silence, the anti-bullying event which Harvey has previously described as dangerous and blasphemous.

Rios, who once said that test scores are dropping as a result of schools “teaching” homosexuality, kicked off the program by arguing that public schools no longer instruct students in subjects like “reading, writing, cursive, spelling, grammar [and] punctuation,” but are instead completely dedicated to “cramming, twisting, perverting all academic subjects to the way of supporting homosexuality.”

 

Right Wing Round-Up - 4/10/14

Right Wing Leftovers - 4/10/14

  • Bob Marshall continues to rack up support, this time scoring the coveted endorsement of E.W. Jackson.
  • FRC prays: "Pray for those who have succumbed to pressure from activists, frenzied by their radical agenda. May business leaders understand the issues and not allow themselves to be used to promote an anti-Christian agenda. May Craig James prevail in his Texas action and may God use him mightily in his new role as Assistant to FRC President, Tony Perkins!"
  • "Who Is Gordon Klingenschmitt?" Let him tell you!
  • Some keen insights from Michael Brown: "It is one thing to use the 'N' word, since it is overtly offensive, while I understand that terms like 'colored' or 'Negro' have been abandoned in deference to the preferences of black (or African) Americans. At the same time, black Americans have not said to us, 'Don’t say "colored," say "special,’'' whereas gay activists have said, 'Don’t say "homosexual" say "gay"'' thereby dictating concepts as well as terms."
  • Finally, Ben Shapiro has written the dumbest thing you will read all day.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio Dismisses Racism Because He Doesn't Complain About Being Italian-American

Speaking with right-wing talk show host Joyce Kaufman today, notorious anti-immigrant Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio said that there is a “double standard” on racism in America because while people talk about racism directed towards people of color, “no one seems to care” about racism directed against Italian-Americans like himself.

Arpaio has faced an investigation for abusing and targeting Latinos and recently was honored at a roast complete with racist jokes.

Kaufman: There’s no justice in the Justice Department, yesterday I heard the Attorney General say that he’s treated badly because he’s black. Come on, Sheriff Joe, everything is upside down in this country right now.

Arpaio: Am I treated badly because I’m Italian? And they use that W-O-P on menus to this day. No one seems to care about that, but if I said something wrong I’d be driven out of the country. There’s double standards around today.

Matt Barber Started His New Website Because 'We Are At War' With Satan

Matt Barber was recently the guest on Cliff Kincaid's "America's Survival" program recently where the two men discussed how "Homosexual Fascists Use Putin-like Tactics" to destroy their enemies.

During the program, Kincaid asked Barber about his new BarbWire website and why he felt the need to start this new project, to which Barber replied that it was built because "we are at war" with Satan and so the website was designed to play a key role in waging "spiritual warfare."

"We are going to take a firm position," Barber explained, "we're not going to take even an inch step backward in this culture war. We recognize that we are at war here with the radical progressive left in the United States of America and so we are going to cut through all of their nonsense, all of their propaganda, the lies of the enemy; you know, as a Christian site, the enemy being the Prince of the Earth, Satan himself, that's what we're up against here. And this is very much spiritual warfare":

Rep. John Shimkus Pushes Phony Internet Scandal To Warn Of Threats From 'Totalitarian Regimes'

Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) is citing debunked right-wing claims that President Obama handed over the Internet to foreign powers in order to attack the Obama administration. 

Speaking yesterday with Frank Gaffney, one of the first conservative activists to push the discredited claim, Shimkus wondered if “we risk a totalitarian regimes taking over” the Internet, speculating that governments that “shut down social media” will gain control over Internet access in the US.

Gaffney agreed and said Obama’s policies are “very detrimental to freedom of expression.”

Beck Tells The Rest Of The World To 'Run From Us' Because America Is Becoming 'A Danger To The Human Race'

Earlier this week, the EPA released the results of an internal investigation that found that the agency had failed to fully disclose possible long-term health risks to eighty-one subjects who had agreed to participate in experiments that involved breathing in diesel exhaust and other pollutants.

Because neither Beck nor anyone on his staff could apparently be bothered to do any basic research into what the EPA report actually said, Beck spent a segment on his radio program utterly misrepresenting it by falsely asserting that the EPA had been secretly poisoning people with diesel fumes without their knowledge ... just like the Nazis did!

"I hope the entire world sees the monster that we are turning into," he stated. "People for the rest of the world, you need to see how far America has gone off track. Please, run from us; we are becoming a global danger ... We are a danger to the human race":

Cory Gardner Wonders If Senate Is 'Politicizing' Torture Report To Help Mark Udall Win Re-Election

Colorado Republican congressmen Cory Gardner suggested yesterday that the US Senate is “politicizing” a report on illegal torture during the Bush administration in order to help Gardner’s opponent, Sen. Mark Udall, win re-election.

J.D. Hayworth, a former GOP congressman who now hosts America’s Forum on NewsmaxTV, speculated that the Senate Intelligence Committee only voted to release portions of the report on torture to “save Mark Udall’s Senate seat” and “set himself up politically for re-election” — a baseless allegation that Hayworth admitted was only grounded on his personal “instincts.” Gardner agreed and said that the report could jeopardize military service members.

In that case, Republicans must be involved in the conspiracy to help Udall since several GOP members of the committee voted to advance a summary of the report’s findings.

Kris Kobach Claims Voter Fraud Is Real Because Widows Vote For Their Late Husbands 'All The Time'

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach – the mastermind behind anti-immigrant and voter suppression legislation throughout the country – joined radio host Joyce Kaufman yesterday at an event hosted by the anti-immigrant group FAIR, where he currently holds a top legal position.

Kobach has been on a media blitz recently defending Kansas’ strict voter ID law, which requires people registering to vote to present a birth certificate or other proof of citizenship, a requirement that has left tens of thousands of Kansans with incomplete registrations .

Kaufman, who is based in Florida, told Kobach, “I can’t imagine how many widows are voting for their dead husbands.”

“Yeah, it happens all the time,” Kobach replied, going on to explain that people who die or move out of state often stay on a state’s voter rolls.

Kobach’s conflation of out-of-date voter rolls with fraudulent voting is common among advocates of voter suppression laws. While fraudulent voting is extraordinarily rareincluding in Kansas – Kobach has used the threat of such fraud to push faulty voter roll purges in states across the country.

Kobach went on to claim that those who cite the disproportionate effect of voter ID laws on people of color are in fact themselves making a “racist argument.” “You’re telling me that because of a person’s skin color, he’s less able to find his birth certificate?” he asked. “That’s just crazy to make that argument.”

In fact, numerous studies have shown that voter ID laws disproportionately affect minority communities and are often passed in response to an increase in minority voting.

Kaufman: I can’t imagine how many widows are voting for their dead husbands in communities like I lived in.

Kobach: Yeah, it happens all the time. There are basically three sources of people on our voter rolls who are not supposed to be there. One is people who die and they stay on the voter rolls. The other is people who have moved out of state, but they’re on the rolls in both states. And the third is aliens, people who were never entitled to vote in the first place. And we’re trying to do something about in Kansas, but you can imagine how the folks on the left complain and say, ‘Well, you can’t do that.’ Well, yeah we can do that and we’re going to do that.

Kaufman: And it’s not bigoted.

Kobach: It’s not at all!

Kaufman: You’re not doing it to close the doors on minorities.

Kobach: Yeah, exactly. And I think it’s outrageous the argument some make that it hurts minorities. It’s almost a racist argument! You’re telling me that because of a person’s skin color, he’s less able to find his birth certificate? That’s just crazy to make that argument.

Peter LaBarbera Demands Liberty University Fire Openly Gay Choreographer

Americans For Truth About Homosexuality head Peter LaBarbera is demanding the notoriously anti-gay Liberty University fire theatre artist Geoffrey Goldberg, who was hired to choreograph the school’s production of Mary Poppins, because he is gay. On Voice of Christian Youth America’s Tuesday edition of Crosstalk, LaBarbera and host Vic Eliason ganged up on Liberty University and demanded Goldberg’s ouster.

Liberty University has responded to news reports by saying that Goldberg is an “independent contractor supplied to the university through a third-party association who has never been employed or applied for employment” at the school. 

LaBarbera name-dropped fellow anti-gay activists at Liberty including Mat Staver, Matt Barber and Rena Lindevaldsen, and urged the school to “do the right thing” and part ways with Goldberg. He even demanded Liberty and other universities refuse to allow “open homosexual advocates as students” and called on Grove City College to fire professor Warren Throckmorton over his criticism of ex-gay therapy and anti-gay laws in countries like Uganda.

Not to be outdone, Eliason worried about “percentage of homosexuals that have invaded the arts such as drama” in order to “capture the minds of individuals.”

Eliason: Christian News carried this story with the headline, ‘Liberty University Hires Open Homosexual Advocate To Choreograph Its Upcoming Broadway-Style Mary Poppins Production,’ what more do you know about this thing?

LaBarbera: I don’t know a lot about this one. Apparently he was a contractor and I think that the woman who spoke out on his behalf probably did not have the clearance of the university before she did that. I know the people I’ve worked with at Liberty and I hope they fix this problem because this is such a great organization, it’s done so much good work. Jerry Falwell did such tremendous work, Ronald Reagan would never have been president without Jerry Falwell, the founder of Liberty University.

The bigger story Vic is the one that didn’t get much play which is: Liberty University and other Christian universities who call themselves Christian, will they allow open homosexual advocates as students? In the old days if a student was out there celebrating sin, there would be consequences. But apparently that doesn’t happen much. We have other examples of course of universities gone bad. Good golly, Grove City College has some wonderful professors but they also have Warren Throckmorton who is pretty much a de facto gay activist now; a professor at Grove City College, which calls itself Christian and advertises in World Magazine and other Christian places, they have Warren Throckmorton who is pretty much a gay activist the way he advocates for homosexuality.

Eliason: It’s alarming when you see the percentage of homosexuals that have invaded the arts such as drama. But drama ends up being a tool to persuade the minds of people. It becomes a tool to do some mind-bending or to capture the minds of individuals. They’re starting now and you can see using Open Core [sic] and right on through the core idea of training children from right on up government-controlled education, and now we see what’s happening at the options of a university that could have put the brakes on this and said no, we’re going to look for someone who is really a representative of the lifestyle that we’re doing here. Does not Christianity have people of talent enough to do the choreography of a dramatic presentation without having to go to someone who openly endorses same-sex marriage?

LaBarbera: I think they do and I hope that Liberty does the right thing. Mat Staver, Matt Barber, Rena Lindevaldsen are just wonderful people and I think Liberty really has to watch it because of course the homosexual activists want to undermine Liberty, of course they want to undermine Christian institutions.

The AFTAH president went on to condemn gay rights advocates as the “Gay-KK” and “Gay-Stapo,” warning that the movement is a “homo-Marxist” effort based on “idiocy” and “tyranny.”

Eliason: I’ve heard of people talk about homo-fascists but you’ve got another term that’s been brought forward which is a little bit different.

LaBarbera: Well I’m using homo-Marxist and homo-fascist. Homo-fascism suggests this bully mentality, this idea that the homosexual activists know what is best for everybody and they’re going to take people down, anybody who gets in their way, undemocratic, that’s where that came from and now it’s really starting to gain popularity. Other pejorative sort of joking terms like the Gay-KK and the Gay-Stapo, but I’m also using homo-Marxist and here’s why I think it is actually more accurate.

The Communists, the Marxists, they’re the ones who had this radical egalitarianism, they thought they were going to make everybody equal and what did it do, it led to tyranny. Look at the homosexual lobby, they’re trying to pretend that homosexual behavior is somehow equal to the real deal, they call it marriage equality, that somehow two men getting ‘married’ is equal and deserves the same benefits and rights and standing in society as real marriage, and of course that’s idiocy, that’s nonsensical.

The interview concluded with a truly bizarre rant by Eliason calling transgender people and women construction workers “disgusting” and attacking “the Islamics, who can grow a beard now, which who knows it can get caught in a barbed wire fence, that wear a turban to designate who they are, I wonder if they’re trying to look for sympathy so that no one would shoot a guy with a turban on. I don’t understand.”

Eliason’s group is based in Milwaukee County, where in 2012 a white supremacist murdered six Sikhs, whose adherents wear turbans, at their Oak Creek temple.

LaBarbera: If they allow transsexuals into the military, you’re going to see guys and women joining the military just to get their body-altering, these terrible sex-reassignment surgeries paid for by the taxpayer.

Eliason: Mutilation, if you please.

LaBarbera: Mutilation, right.

Eliason: I can only imagine the confusion that would be there if here is some guy dressed in a big skirt trying to look feminine climbing into the left seat in a bomber or into a jetfighter and getting his dress all snarled up trying to climb in. We’re talking about guys running jackhammers and making bunkers and things like that, if there’s anything disgusting it’s to see, and I mean this kindly but women are made of God to be very special, and one day I was driving down the street and I saw this, well this lady was pretty hefty, but she was operating a jackhammer and what it did to her was absolutely astounding, it was wicked, it was a violation of the very purpose of the wonderful gift of femininity.

If we’ve got people here now suddenly all on the altar of being able to — it’s not just the transgenders [sic], now if you feel like you’re feminine one day and feel like you’re masculine the next day, you can change back and forth, switch-hitter. And of course we have to be fair, so we have also turned the option to the Islamics, who can grow a beard now, which who knows it can get caught in a barbed wire fence, that wear a turban to designate who they are, I wonder if they’re trying to look for sympathy so that no one would shoot a guy with a turban on. I don’t understand.