Brian Tashman's blog

Matt Barber Says Gay Rights Advocates Act 'Like A Horde Of Locusts'

Matt Barber warned Saturday that gay people have “swarm[ed] in like a horde of locusts” and “homosexualized the Boy Scouts.”

Barber was speaking with Mission America’s Linda Harvey, who told him that she had been outraged at the sight of Boy Scouts at the Columbus, Ohio, LGBT pride parade. Barber replied that he wasn’t surprised, since “the homosexual activist agenda” is “at the forefront of child corruption, that is a major part of their agenda.”

“It is absolutely reprehensible that they are exposing these children to this perversion, to this highly sexually charged, open acts of public displays of nudity, it is just absolutely appalling,” Barber said.

“It is simply disgusting to watch, it’s appalling to watch. They take every institution, they take things that are noble and good and they swarm in like a horde of locusts and they don’t care what damage is done because it helps further their agenda, then they fly away and what’s left is a husk of what was there to begin with.”

The Time A Corporation Cited Religious Freedom As A Way To Avoid Desegregation

In her dissent in the Hobby Lobby case today, Justice Ginsburg mentioned a 1968 precedent in which the owner of a chain of barbecue restaurants in South Carolina “refused to serve black patrons based on his religious beliefs opposing racial integration.”

Sandy Rios Cites Fake Obama Quote To Prove He Is A Marxist-Muslim

On her Friday radio show, Sandy Rios of the American Family Association chatted with a caller about whether Islam is the “whore of Babylon” mentioned in Revelation, which naturally gave her the opportunity to rant against President Obama.

“The President is a Marxist” whose “sympathies are most definitely with Islam,” Rios said, before telling listeners that they should be “prepared to die for their faith” in the face of supposed anti-Christian persecution.

“There’s no question about that, in his own book he said whenever there is a dispute about where I’m going to come down, I’m always going to come down on the side of Islam,” Rios said. “And he’s done that, he’s said that our space program was to help in the education of Muslims.”

Actually, Obama did not say that in his book. A bogus chain email claims Obama wrote in Dreams From My Father that “I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.” The real quote doesn’t even mention Islam:

Of course, not all my conversations in immigrant communities follow this easy pattern. In the wake of 9/11, my meetings with Arab and Pakistani Americans, for example, have a more urgent quality, for the stories of detentions and FBI questioning and hard stares from neighbors have shaken their sense of security and belonging. They have been reminded that the history of immigration in this country has a dark underbelly; they need specific assurances that their citizenship really means something, that America has learned the right lessons from the Japanese internments during World War II, and that I will stand with them should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.

Rios’ claim about NASA similarly has its origins in baseless right-wing paranoia

Hobby Lobby: Religious Rights For Secular For-Profit Corporations … Just This One Time

Writing for the majority in the Hobby Lobby case, Justice Alito emphasized [PDF] that the ruling, which partly overturned the Obama administration’s rules on birth control coverage, does not apply to other cases involving religious objections to government regulations:

This decision concerns only the contraceptive mandate and should not be understood to hold that all insurance-coverage man-dates, e.g., for vaccinations or blood transfusions, must necessarily fall if they conflict with an employer’s religious beliefs. Nor does it provide a shield for employers who might cloak illegal discrimination as a religious practice.



In any event, our decision in these cases is concerned solely with the contraceptive mandate. Our decision should not be understood to hold that an insurance-coverage mandate must necessarily fall if it conflicts with an employer’s religious beliefs. Other coverage requirements, such as immunizations, may be supported by different interests (for example, the need to combat the spread of infectious disease) and may involve different arguments about the least restrictive means of providing them.

Apparently, the Supreme Court has determined that contraception, unlike immunizations, just doesn’t cut it in terms of public health.

In a footnote, Alito cites findings of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to back up claims that the government should be allowed to require immunizations over the religious objections of people who oppose vaccinations.

Of course, the contraception rule, the New York Times points out, “relied on the recommendations of the Institute of Medicine, an independent group of doctors and researchers that concluded that birth control is not just a convenience but is medically necessary ‘to ensure women’s health and well-being.’”

It is undeniable that the advent of contraception, used by around 99 percent of sexually active women, and family planning has had an extraordinary impact on public health on a level similar to the creation of new vaccines. Unless, of course, your worldview leads you to believe that such pills are simply used by women as tools to have an abortion.

Justice Ginsburg points out in her dissent that the Supreme Court has rejected past religious objections to generally applicable rules from non-persons, including church-operated schools:

And where is the stopping point to the “let the government pay” alternative? Suppose an employer’s sincerely held religious belief is offended by health coverage of vaccines, or paying the minimum wage, see Tony and Susan Alamo Foundation v. Secretary of Labor, or according women equal pay for substantially similar work, see Dole v. Shenandoah Baptist Church? Does it rank as a less restrictive alternative to require the government to provide the money or benefit to which the employer has a religion-based objection?

Indeed, the high court previously rebuffed religious-based challenges to laws regarding the minimum wage, equal pay and regulation of illicit drugs.

Religious groups that believe in the subservience of women, reject vaccines and blood transfusions or seek to use controlled substances as part of religious rituals, according to the majority opinion, don’t have as much “religious liberty” than a secular for-profit corporation such as Hobby Lobby.

Ginsburg adds:

Hobby Lobby and Conestoga surely do not stand alone as commercial enterprises seeking exemptions from generally applicable laws on the basis of their religious beliefs. See, e.g. Newman v. Piggie Park Enterprises, Inc (owner of restaurant chain refused to serve black patrons based on his religious beliefs opposing racial integration)…

[H]ow does the Court divine which religious beliefs are worthy of accommodation, and which are not? Isn’t the Court disarmed from making such a judgment given its recognition that “courts must not presume to determine…the plausibility of a religious claim?”

Would the exemption the Court holds RFRA demands for employers with religiously grounded objections to the use of certain contraceptives extend to employers with religiously grounded objections to blood transfusions (Jehovah’s Witnesses); antidepressants (Scientologists); medications derived from pigs, including anesthesia, intravenous fluids, and pills coated with gelatin (certain Muslims, Jews, and Hindus); and vaccinations (Christian Scientists, among others)?

[A]pproving some religious claims while deeming others unworthy of accommodation could be “perceived as favoring one religion over another,” the very “risk the Establishment Claus was designed to preclude.”

While Alito stresses that only closely-held corporations are involved in this case, what about a company board dominated by Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christian Scientists, or evangelicals like David Barton who believe “that the Bible opposes the minimum wage, unions and collective bargaining, estate taxes, capital gains taxes, and progressive taxation in general”?

With Congress currently debating the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, what if Hobby Lobby’s owners cited their religion as a reason to discriminate against LGBT employees? Or refuse to cover HIV/AIDS treatments?

With this ruling, it seems that the court wants to decide for itself what counts as a necessary government strategy to protect public health, and what doesn’t.

Paranoia-Rama LGBT Pride Month Edition: 'Gay Gulags,' 'Reeducation Camps' And HIV Cure

RWW’s Paranoia-Rama takes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right.

In honor of LGBT Pride Month, we have dedicated this week’s edition to looking at five of the most bizarre anti-LGBT stories coming from the Right Wing just in the past week.

5. Rick Santorum Fears Gay ‘Reeducation Camps’

Religious Right activists continue to stoke fears about gay rights supporters organizing an anti-Christian holocaust, and Rick Santorum is happy to help. The former senator and presidential candidate, out with a new film about the purported loss of religious freedom in America, warned this week that Christians in the U.S. are being sent off to “reeducation camps” and face jail and martyrdom. Santorum was speaking to none other than Bryan Fischer, the American Family Association radio host who believes gay people are to blame for the Holocaust and are modern-day Nazis.

4. Gay Gulags

If you thought Santorum’s remarks were a rare occurrence in the Religious Right, just read today’s commentary from BarbWire senior editor Jeff Allen, who warns that the “gaystapo” wants its opponents “summarily shipped off on the ‘highway’ to the ‘gay’ gulag of sensitivity training — actually, reeducation camp to receive a government-provided, pro-perversity lobotomy.”

He warns about “alarming homosexual efforts at shredding the dictionary, distorting of the Constitution, creating false rights out of thin air, rewriting civil laws to criminalize deeply held moral convictions, hijacking science to promote a deviant political/social agenda, and eliminating all religious and conscience protections for business owners,” adding that “every advance of the militant ‘gay agenda’ comes at the literal expense of true democracy and freedom.”

“Many of the vindictive items on homosexual agenda are designed exactly as vengeance against their supposed oppressors,” Allen writes. “Unlike the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s in which African Americans united and fought against the truly heinous injustices of racial inequality and unprovoked acts of violence, the homosexual rights movement has no intentions of being peaceful. Nobody should fool themselves, this is a hostile takeover of America.”

3. Gays Want To Molest Their Kids

Those of you who haven’t been shipped off to a gay FEMA camp yet may want to consider this brilliant analysis by Mission America’s Linda Harvey, who this week alleged that gay parents are much more likely than others to sexually abuse their children because “when you are open to sinful, God-defying behavior in one profound way, violating other boundaries happens more easily.”

2. More GOP Rebranding

Speaking out in opposition to amendment to prohibit charter schools from discriminating in hiring on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, North Carolina House Speaker Pro Tem Paul ‘Skip’ Stam compared gay people to pedophiles and “distributed a flier titled ‘What Is A “Sexual Orientation”?’ that compares being lesbian or gay to mental disorders such as apotemnophilia (sexual arousal associated with an amputee’s stump) and coprophilia (sexual arousal associated with feces).”

The handout reportedly originated from the far-right Traditional Values Coalition. Catherine Thompson of TPM notes that “Stam did not mention that the information in his handout, which dated back to 2000, had been updated in the APA manual to classify those attractions as ‘disorders’ rather than ‘orientations,’ according to the news station.”

Local Religious Right activists quickly rushed to Stam’s defense after word of the flier got out.

This isn’t the first time Stam has tried to pull off this sort of stunt: he made similar claims while denouncing the School Violence Protect Act.

1. HIV/AIDS Cure At Pride

The latest religious group to claim to be able to cure HIV comes out of Minnesota, where an evangelical coalition is insisting that they will cure people of HIV at the upcoming Twin Cities Pride.

Andy Birkey of The Column reports that the group’s leader, Steven Uggen, believes God told him that he has the “healing power” to cure people of HIV, although most will not be grateful:

One of the words we got out of this outreach, the Lord really wanted to demonstrate his goodness to this community by releasing healing of HIV and AIDS, so we believe we’re going to see people healed of HIV and AIDS and we’re just, we’re carrying that word of the Lord into this outreach. And that will be part of our training just praying with boldness for the releasing of healing power and then sending them back to their doctors literally after praying for them. ‘Here’s what I want you to do: go to your doctor, get tested for HIV or AIDS and when you come back negative, you’ve got a decision to make whether you’re gonna serve the God who just healed you’ and then give them some gospel materials that they can take with them and encourage them to call on us and let us know and I’m confident that we’re going to have people healed of HIV and AIDS that are going to be contacting us. The funny thing is Jesus healed the 10 lepers and only one came back to acknowledge him so there may be 10 that get healed but only one come back, you know. This is a strategy that God wants to use so the very fruit of their sin is what he wants to, like, take away to show them his kindness and his goodness. I mean it’s just totally Jesus. I mean it’s like totally his way so we’re excited about that.

The Creationist Grand Canyon Trip You Always Wanted

Tired of hearing “anti-God, evolutionary explanations of the [Grand] Canyon’s formation”?

Then Ken Ham, the head of Answers In Genesis and the Kentucky-based Creation Museum, has just the vacation for you:

No matter where you go when visiting America’s national parks, city zoos, and other attractions, the religion of evolution and millions of years permeates the culture. To help combat these lies and proclaim the authority of God’s Word, every year Answers in Genesis partners with Canyon Ministries to hold creation raft trips through the Grand Canyon in northern Arizona. Canyon Ministries has been presenting the Grand Canyon from a biblical perspective since 1997. The trips were done while rafting through the canyon, showing guests firsthand the evidence of Creation and Noah’s Flood. But now Canyon Ministries has added something new.

Last year, Canyon Ministries began providing land-based rim tours of the Grand Canyon along its South Rim, operating under the name A Different View Tours. Now, rather than go to the rim and hear the anti-God, evolutionary explanation of the Canyon’s formation, I encourage you to consider a tour with Canyon Ministries. It will provide you with a Bible-based presentation of the geology of the Canyon and how it confirms the Bible’s account of a global Flood and belief in a young earth. The teaching is very similar to what you would receive on a raft tour, and it is done in the comfort of a vehicle.

Canyon Ministries, which holds that the “account of origins presented in Genesis occurred in the span of six consecutive twenty-four hour days six to ten thousand years ago,” attempted to have its Creationist material used by the National Parks Service but was rejected [PDF].

Rick Perry Doesn't Understand Why Everyone Is Hung Up On His Comparison Of Gays To Alcoholics

In a salivating profile of “Rick Perry 2.0,” Breitbart News senior editor-at-large Noel Pollack praises the Texas governor’s cool new glasses and his articulate, well-researched speeches to even the most “skeptical, if not hostile, audiences.”

“Indeed, Perry is so fluent and confident in the arcane details of cutting-edge policy issues that it is difficult to understand why he has developed a reputation for gaffes.”

Yes, that is a real sentence.

But don’t worry, Pollack reports that despite the fact that Perry is a genius, he is getting help from “some Hollywood conservatives who are advising him (though he will not reveal exactly whom, for fear of blowing their cover).”

Perry tells Pollack that he doesn’t understand why everyone focused on his comparison of gays to alcoholics, a connection he also made in his book “On My Honor”: “I spoke for 59 minutes about job creation and for one minute about that.”

When my Breitbart California colleague Adelle Nazarian and I met Texas Gov. Rick Perry at the magnificent La Valencia hotel in tony La Jolla, he looked more like a venture capital executive than a governor. He was dressed in shirtsleeves and a pale blue tie,

earphones plugged into his iPhone, tapping away on his MacBook Pro and wearing the dark-rimmed glasses that have become the trademark of the post-2012 Perry persona.

It's Rick Perry 2.0.



In addition to boosting California's fortunes, Perry seems keen on boosting his own--politically, at least, in advance of the 2016 presidential campaign. He is openly considering a second run at the job, after his 2012 effort foundered on immigration policy controversies and debate gaffes. And deep-blue California is the perfect training ground for Perry to hone his message and practice speaking to skeptical, if not hostile, audiences.

Perry has spent hours being briefed on domestic and foreign policy issues at the state's array of think tanks, including Stanford's Hoover Institution. He has spent days with tech entrepreneurs and scientists, and was deeply impressed, he says, by a visit this week to General Atomics, which is developing alternative energy sources. He has cultivated a connection to the Scripps Research Institute, taking interest in their work on adult stem cells.

Indeed, Perry is so fluent and confident in the arcane details of cutting-edge policy issues that it is difficult to understand why he has developed a reputation for gaffes. Yet his one-on-one spark sometimes fails to come across onstage.

Perry tells me he is working on that, too, practicing his presentation skills with some Hollywood conservatives who are advising him (though he will not reveal exactly whom, for fear of blowing their cover).

Perry is frustrated by missteps, such as the controversy over his remarks about homosexuality. "I spoke for 59 minutes about job creation and for one minute about that," he laughs.

Yet he regards such episodes as part of a learning process. In this case, Perry says, the lesson he took from San Francisco is to stay focused on the core issue--which, for him, is the economy. "Gay or straight," he says, "if you don't have a job, that's not good."

Peter LaBarbera Defends Uganda, Warns Of Gay 'Neo-Imperialism'

Yesterday on VCY America’s flagship radio show “Crosstalk,” Peter LaBarbera expressed outrage over Joe Biden’s recent remarks in support of LGBT rights, accusing the vice president of “neo-imperialism.”

LaBarbera, the head of Americans For Truth About Homosexuality, defended draconian anti-gay laws in Uganda and Jamaica: “The American government has embraced a neo-imperialism where we arrogantly override the beliefs of countries like Jamaica and Uganda and other countries with the idea that we, America, know what’s best for the world.”

He went on to tell host Jim Schneider that homosexuality is “destructive” and “highly dangerous.”

“This is not civilized behavior, this is sinful, destructive behavior which is being celebrated by our government, and if that’s not bad enough, then forced upon the world as if America with all of our sin and all of our decadence knows what is best for the world,” he said.

Noting the low turnout at recent anti-gay events, LaBarbera wondered if “God has given up on America” since “many people are giving in now” on gay marriage.

He also encouraged the boycott of pro-LGBT companies like JCPenney, Macy’s, Starbucks: “There has to be a price to pay.” He specifically called out Honey Maid, which drew the ire of Religious Right activists for its inclusive TV ads. “I’ll never touch those crackers again,” he said.

LaBarbera also took a call from a listener who said that the country is “headed for a civil war” to stop liberals from “destroying our great country.”

LaBarbera responded that liberals are “dangerous” due to their “intolerance.”

“They will not allow in their minds the acceptability as legitimate of a viewpoint against homosexuality, which means they’re against God,” he added.

WorldNetDaily Pundit Fears The World Cup Is A Leftist Plot To Ruin America

Following up on Ann Coulter’s trolling of soccer fans, WorldNetDaily columnist and radio talk show host Carl Jackson writes today that the World Cup is part of a left-wing plot to “bring America down to size.”

Jackson writes that while he watches the Olympics to get a “sense of nationalism and pride” when American athletes “prove that we’re home to the best athletes in the world,” he refuses to watch the World Cup because Team USA is treated as “just another nation.”

According to Jackson, President Obama and the media are promoting the World Cup to make the U.S. seem like it is not “an exceptional nation” and push “the globalization of America.”

Since he is such a great fan of America, Jackson says he only watches competitions where Team USA is likely to win. And if it were to lose, then Jackson wouldn’t watch!

The Olympics has a special place in my heart as well. I get a thrill rooting for USA teams and individual athletes kick butt over their foreign competitors. The sense of nationalism and pride that comes over me as I watch the events unfold and the medal ceremonies is often indescribable. There’s something comforting about knowing you’re the best. Admittedly, I like pretending our athlete’s wouldn’t win if I weren’t on my couch cheering and coaching them on. When it comes to World Cup soccer, however, I’d rather be bored to tears or outraged by another one of President Obama’s speeches – and I finally figured out why.

During the Olympics, our nation’s athletes go to prove that we’re home to the best athletes in the world. During the World Cup, our athlete’s go to prove we belong. We’re just one among many; we’re not an exceptional nation, just another nation. During the Olympics, the world envies us, but during the World Cup they pity us.

When President Obama proclaimed he wanted to “fundamentally change America,” the implication was that something was wrong with America’s founding. When he later went on to say that he sees America as an exceptional nation just as every other citizen believes their country is exceptional, he was implying that there’s nothing fundamentally distinct or special about America. The problem is he was wrong!



In the words of our president, “let me be clear”: Liberals are determined to bring America down to size. Whether it’s Sen. Harry Reid and Eric Holder bullying sports teams like the Washington Redskins (I’ll be sure to wash my mouth out with soap) that connect us to traditional Americanism, or local mayors and media promoting the FIFA World Cup – can you imagine a better strategy to have Americans adopt the globalization of America than through sports?

You knew that the president would never let “a good crisis go to waste.” Now you know the same goes for sports.

Why Aren't Gay People More Grateful To Nice Guy George W. Bush?

We learn in today’s POLITICO Magazine story, “Inside George W. Bush’s Closet,” that President George W. Bush is a really nice guy.

Such a nice guy, in fact, that we should look past his egregious gay-rights record as president because he was just so darn nice to everybody, even gay people! That is what politics is all about, after all, and anyone who sees differently is obviously just blinded by their own hatred and animus, because Bush is an objectively good man.

“We all were making our voices heard despite what was out in the press,” says Chris Edwards, who came out while working in the White House press advance office and introduced his boyfriend to the president and first lady on multiple occasions. “People say, ‘Just don’t work for him.’ Well, that’s just not reality. The reality is you need people in the party and outside the party to make change.”

George W. Bush started out as perhaps the most gay-friendly Republican president ever, an astonishing fact when you consider that, in his first year in office, 71 percent of Republicans thought homosexual behavior was morally wrong, according to Gallup. There’s no question that he recoiled at the gay-bashing of the religious right. “I’m not going to kick gays,” he told a friend before the 2000 campaign. “I think it is bad for Republicans to be kicking gays.” The party’s platform that year might have talked about the sanctity of traditional marriage as a foundation of American democracy, but this was nonetheless a president who, a few months before nailing down his party’s nomination in 2000, met in Austin with a dozen gay Republican leaders, proclaiming afterward, “I am a better person for the meeting.”



“What liberals can’t wrap their heads around is Bush is a good and decent man,” says Jeff Berkowitz, an opposition researcher and policy ace who worked in the White House, State Department and RNC during Bush’s presidency. “It’s possible for someone to hold a policy view as he did and still be a decent, normal person.” Berkowitz says that when he was “outed” by blogger Michael Rogers, whose campaign to publicize what he saw as the hypocrisy of gay Republican operatives was chronicled in the 2009 documentary Outrage, Bush staffers flocked to show their support. “It was great for networking,” he laughs. And besides, he says, he wasn’t in the closet at the time anyway.



If Rove saw political gain, other Bush aides saw a legal preemptive strike—against exactly the court-driven change that is now playing out. “The president’s position was that gay marriage could be imposed on the country by a federal court decision. One judge could do it,” says McConnell, the speechwriter, who is also a lawyer. McConnell says he understood that after a 2003 Massachusetts court ruling raised the issue, then-White House counsel Gonzales advised that “the only way to prevent that is a marriage amendment. It’s not an unreasonable position. It certainly was not anti-gay.”



But McConnell says Bush’s position on gay marriage was a reasonable combination of his personal concept of “morality” and the central GOP concept of frowning on an activist judiciary.

McConnell matter-of-factly told me he likely helped write Bush’s 2004 remarks endorsing the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. Even now the gay speechwriter defends that course. “I believed the president was taking a principled position, and the words he spoke on that issue were always reasonable and tolerant. That hasn’t always been the spirit of the debate, but it’s always been the spirit of George W. Bush. There was never a day I wasn’t proud of him and the vice president.”
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