November 18th, 2010
I ruffled some feathers here (and reaped a heap of accusations) by doubting the wisdom and appropriateness of the methods employed in proposing and planning a mosque that was perceived to be “at Ground Zero”. But – for those who got a bit carried away at that time – there is a difference between concern about the circumstances of a situation and downright bigotry.
An example of the latter category comes to us from Murfreesburo, Tennessee, where some local folk have been trying to block a community of Muslims from expanding their worship and cultural center.
Following a suit filed under the pretenses of concerns about traffic, water quality, and soil contamination, the court case soon devolved into bald bigotry. (AP)
But much of the questioning from plaintiffs’ attorney Joe Brandon Jr. during seven days of testimony since late September was about whether Islam qualified as a religion. He pushed his theory that American Muslims want to replace the Constitution with extremist Islamic law.
The argument was founded on the nonsensical assumption that all Muslims adhere to the most conservative and literal interpretations of their text, (LA Times)
At one point, he asked whether Rutherford County Commissioner Gary Farley supported hanging a whip in his house as a warning to his wife and then beating her with it, something Brandon claimed was part of “Shariah religion.”
The commissioner protested that he would never beat his wife.
The ironic part is that the objection to the mosque was funded by those who consider themselves good Christians, the Bible-believing, force-everyone-to-follow-my-doctrine type. It would have been amusing to have various parts of the Bible read allowed and accuse the plaintiffs of practicing slavery and stoning their children. I think it would have been fun to just ask Attorney Brandon whether he holds the Constitution or the Bible in higher regard and watch him squirm.
To their credit, the commissioners stood by their decision and local religious leaders defended the mosque. And, of course, the judge found no merit in the rantings of stereotype and hatred.
But that didn’t stop some politicians from capitalizing on anti-Muslim animus. (CNN)
Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey publicly criticized the project during a speech in August.
“You could even argue whether being a Muslim is actually a religion, or is it a nationality, way of life, a cult, whatever you want to call it,” Ramsey, then a candidate for Tennessee governor, said at a rally.
The only valid criticism seems to be that one of the board members had posted pro-Hamas comments to his MySpace page. And that, indeed, does deserve public rebuke.
But at the end of the day, people have the religious and intellectual freedom to support Hamas. That such a view is contrary to decency does not mean that they lose their constitutional rights.
And besides, personally I have a hard time distinguishing between the attitudes of hard-core Muslim extremists who want to impose their religion on others, and their Christian counterparts.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.