Box Turtle Bulletin

Box Turtle BulletinNews, analysis and fact-checking of anti-gay rhetoric
“Now you must raise your children up in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife…”
This article can be found at:
Latest Posts

Posts for July, 2011

Anti-Gay Extremist Sues Rachel Maddow for Quoting Him

Jim Burroway

July 27th, 2011

Minnesota extremist Bradlee Dean, who spoke favorably of Muslims because Muslims call for the execution of gay people, is suing MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow for playing his quotes over the air. That’s the only reason I can think of for his suing her. That and her deep pockets; he’s suing for $50 million.

According to a press release from Dean’s attorney:

In the course of his ministry, Dean once made a statement on radio criticizing his fellow Christians for not taking a stronger stand about the gay rights lobby promoting homosexuality in the schools. He made a strong reference to Muslims taking the issue more seriously in the context of Shariah law, but did not condone their practices. It was Bradlee’s intent to focus attention on the issue, not to advocate harm to anyone.

Despite the very clear disclaimer by Bradlee Dean on his ministries website and elsewhere regarding the false accusation that he was calling for the execution of homosexuals, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and others seized on and accused Dean on her show of supporting the killing of homosexuals, as is the practice in some radical Islamic countries. This seriously has harmed Dean and the ministry, who pride themselves on respect and love for all people.

Here’s the clip that Dean is upset about, in which Dean clearly shows his respect and love for all people:

YouTube Preview Image

Actually, Maddow’s comment is rather minimal. She basically let Dean do the talking, although she did read Dean’s disclaimer. It’s a sad commentary on the integrity of those who claim to proclaim the “truth” when all you have to do to be called a liar is to play a recording of their own words. Just replay his tape, and you’ve engaged in a “malicious attack” on Dean:

This explains the malicious attacks on Bradlee Dean and his ministry, which are being used to harm the presidential campaign of Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, who is a conservative Christian.

In the past, Dean and his ministry have been complemented by presidential candidate Michele Bachmann (who prayed for the ministry) for their work in promoting values for the nation’s youth. The left wing media’s effort to defame Dean is an obvious way to try to harm Bachmann’s presidential prospects, who they fear and despise. Other left wing media outlets have followed MSNBC and Maddow in their slanderous efforts. This suit may just be the first in a series of cases meant to protect the fine reputation of Dean and his ministry.

You can hear Dean’s full remarks and judge his reputation for yourself here:

YouTube Preview Image

And here’s his defense here, if you care to hear it. In essence, he’s upset that we’re not all thanking him.

YouTube Preview Image

Update: The Dump Bachmann Blog has more:

“Justice is coming in Jesus’ name,” he says. Thank you Bradlee.

“Kill The Gays” Bill Author And His American Friends: The Final Part of Rachel Maddow’s Interview

Jim Burroway

December 10th, 2010

Last night, Rachel Maddow wrapped up her pre-recorded interview with Ugandan M.P David Bahati, author of the proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill that is currently under consideration in that country’s Parliament. The full uncut video is available here, including portions that were not shown on Rachel Maddow’s show. The third part of that interview which aired last night follows:

This portion of the interview repeats a small segment that aired the day before, and here is the transcript of that portion:

RM: What is God’s law about homosexuality?

DB: God’s law is that homosexuality is sin.

RM: Punishable by…?

DB: God’s law is that homosexuality is sin. …

RM: … In your view, does God’s law prescribe an appropriate punishment for that sin?

DB: God’s law is always clear that the wages of sin is death, whether that is implemented through legislation like mine or by a mechanism of a human being, whatever happens is the end result. We need to turn to God.

Did you catch that? “…Through legislation like mine or by a mechanism of a human being, whatever happens is the end result.” This appears to be justification for killing gay people even if that killing takes place outside of the rule of law, through vigilante justice or other extra-judicial killing. Whatever happens, he says. This is truly a cold-blooded statement. It clearly matches Jeff Sharlet’s observation of him. In his must-read book, C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy, Sharlet interviewed Bahati in his home in Uganda, in which he asked Bahati what his ultimate goal was. This is how Sharlet explained it in an interview on NPR with Terry Gross:

Sharlet accompanied Bahati to a restaurant, and later to his home, where Bahati told Sharlet that he wanted “to kill every last gay person.”

“It was a very chilling moment because I’m sitting there with this man who’s talking about his plans for genocide and has demonstrated over the period of my relationship with him that he’s not some back bender — he’s a real rising star in the movement,” Sharlet says. “This was something that I hadn’t understood before I went to Uganda, that this was a guy with real potential and real sway and increasingly a following in Uganda.”

Bahati also has increasingly a following in the U.S., including people like Lou Engle; Andrew Wommack and his man in Kampala, Leland Shores; and now, a former director of non-public education at the Department of Education under the President George W. Bush. Sharlet has more on that in the next segment.

Sharlet explains in a post on his facebook page that Bahati and Jack Klenk met through Klenk’s “Ugandan missionary work with an anti-gay Anglican religious movement.” (Update: Klenk is on the board of directors for Uganda Christian University, located outside of Kampala.) Sharlet told Maddow that he had spoken to Klenk and said that Klenk wouldn’t take a position on the bill. But Klenk says that the bill comes from a “beautiful place” and that the punishments in it are “loving punishments.” These loving punishments include not only the death penalty for many gays, but life imprisonment for the rest, seven years imprisonment for talking about homosexuality, and three years imprisonment for even knowing a gay person or renting a home or hotel room to him.

Sharlet believes that Klenk is not part of the Family, but he points out that Bahati nevertheless has numerous connections both inside and outside the Family, including Lou Engle, the Family Research Council and Sen. James Inhofe, who regularly travels to Uganda to talk about these issues. Sharlet describes Uganda as an American Evangelical “laboratory of ideas” that they cannot promote in the U.S. By exporting those ideas to a place like Uganda, the hope is these ideas can ferment so that they can then use those “successes” to re-import those ideas back to the West. In fact, Bahati has said several times that he believes his bill will serve as an example for the rest of the world to follow.

The anonymous blogger GayUganda notes that Uganda is in the midst of a very active campaign season ahead of Parliamentary elections in February. He says that it’s odd that Bahati would take the time to go to the U.S. to attend a conference that he likely knew would not welcome him. Given his hob-nobbing with a well-connected former Bush administration official, GayUganda’s speculation that this was actually a fundraising trip gains much greater credibility.

Send Rachel Maddow a Message

Rob Tisinai

December 9th, 2010

Rachel Maddow is continuing her coverage of Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill tonight.  She’s done a great job of keeping the story in the public eye, but she’s still missing one thing:

The bill would kill gays and would kill their friends, family, or co-workers who didn’t rat them out to the government.  It would be impossible to be a gay person’s friend and not be subject to the death penalty.

I pointed this out in the video below, and it bears repeating.  In fact, I’ll ask you this favor:

Post the link to this video on Rachel’s Facebook page.  Email it to her, too. If enough people do this, it’s bound to get her attention.

YouTube Preview Image

Here’s the direct link to the video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2fuEsRJp2nU

Thanks.

Cohen On Maddow: “Disavows All Relationship” To Uganda’s “Kill Gays” Bill

Jim Burroway

December 8th, 2009

I just finished watching Rachel Maddow’s interview with Richard Cohen, of the International Healing Foundation. It’s hard to know where to begin in understanding the huge gulf between what Cohen said and what is actually true, particularly with regard to IFH’s culpability in fueling the flames behind the “Kill Gays” bill that is currently before Uganda’s parliament. Fortunately, Maddow was well-prepared.

It is extremely rare to see television personalities so well versed in this particular topic. Kudos to Rachel and her staff for an excellent segment.

There was a lot of discussion over Cohen’s characterization of gays as predators, a characterization that is constantly repeated by those who are putting forth the bill and included in memorandum attached as a preamble to the bill itself. At the 5:10 mark, Rachel Maddow pointed out that Cohen’s book, Coming Out Straight — which Cohen has donated untold numbers to Uganda to support their Kill-the-Gays mission — portrays gays as predators. Cohen denied that, insisting that Caleb Brundidge, who was at the Uganda conference on IHF’s behalf, didn’t convey that message.

That is a lie. In a summer 2009 newsletter (PDF: 7MB/12 pages) from the International Healing Foundation, Brundidge writes about his travels to Uganda. Concerning the gays-as-predators rumors, Brundidge writes:

On the other hand, the word is out on the street to the young people: If you want to make good money, pretend to be “gay.” Why? Gay activists are recruiting impoverished young boys and girls, offering them money to impersonate homosexuals. “Just tell people you are gay and we’ll pay you money.” In this way, they are trying to skew the data regarding the numbers of people who are homosexual. Last year one school teacher was told this information by two young female students. They admitted that they were being paid to say they were gay. Additionally these girls recruited 13 more girls that year! This is happening throughout their nation. Gay activism is alive and a powerful force throughout the world. They are raising up the next generation to be gay activists, just as in the USA.

In this particular passage which Brundidge repeats without questioning its authenticity or illogic, he doesn’t say that gays are being sexual predators, per se. But he does imply it by suggesting that these young people would become “the next generation [of] gay activists.” After all, people don’t become gay activists just because someone pays them to do so. The entire context of this account is the supposed recruitment of young people into homosexuality, which in Uganda is seen as predatory by whatever means that implies.

Also in that newsletter, Brundidge says that Cohen “donated his books and Counselor Training Program CD series and manual to the Family Life Network. They will use these resources to study and learn how to help those affected by SSA and their loved ones.” (SSA, by the way, is the acronym he uses to describe what he calls “Same-Sex Attraction” — always capitalized. More on that later.) I haven’t shelled out any money for his CD series, but the book, Coming Out Straight, certainly pushes the gays-as-predators theme.

In the second edition, the one that Cohen donated multiple copies of for distribution in Uganda, Cohen dedicates two full pages on sexual abuse as a cause of homosexuality. The researchers he cited say that there are some correlations with sexual abuse and uncertainty over one’s sexual orientation, but no reputable researcher as been willing to pin child sexual abuse as a cause of homosexuality, despite Cohen’s distortion of those researchers’ studies.

And who does all of this molestation. For that anwer, Cohen turns to  Paul Cameron. Maddow read this passage from page 49 at the 6:15 mark. Cohen writes:

Homosexuals are at least 12 times more likely to molest children than heterosexuals; homosexual teachers are at least 7 times more likely to molest a pupil; homosexual teachers are estimated to have committed at least 25 percent of pupil molestation; forty (40%) percent of molestation assaults were made by those who engage  in homosexuality.”86

Endnote 86 refers to a Paul Cameron study published in 1986 the pay-to-publish vanity press Psychological Reports, which is not a reputable journal. Maddow does a great job in recounting the many professional organizations who have denounced Cameron for his unethical behavior and fraudulent “research” over the years. Cohen claims that his forthcoming third edition of the book won’t have that citation. He doesn’t say whether his own mischaracterization of research by David Finkelhor, Patrick Dimock, Mike Lew, or many others will appear in that edition or not. (We covered much of that same material in our report, “Testing the Premise: Are Gays a Threat to our Children?”) At any rate, it won’t matter because it is present, plain as day, in the untold numbers of free books he has already shipped off to Uganda.

Cohen kept insisting that his whole effort was to preach of his “love” for gay people and not demonize them. Maddow refuted that rather effectively by repeating his own written words. She read loosely from that summer 2009 newsletter (PDF: 7MB/12 pages), this time from a piece written by Cohen himself:

For the past 40 years, members of the gay rights movement have been working to change the fabric of our culture. They have strategically and systematically been indoctrinating members of society, targeting the youth… As a result of their strategic plan, millions of innocent young children have been enrolled into this false teaching and led into a homosexual lifestyle.

If that’s not demonizing, I don’t know what is.

Maddow also read from Cohen’s 2008 book Gay Children, Straight Parents: A Plan for Family Healing, from page 75, on what supposedly “causes” homosexuality:

10: Other factors. Divorce, death of a parent, adoption, religion, race, rejection by opposite-sex peers.

Cohen reacted, “Race, that’s not in there.” But it’s right there in black and white, which led to the best line of the night: “I’m reading from your book, dude!” Cohen first tried to claim Maddow was reading out of context, but she continued reading passages before and after that line. Cohen was never able to explain how race could contribute to homosexuality. He also doesn’t explain it in his book. He finally had to tell Maddow that race has nothing to do with sexuality. Which means that he also acknowledged, in so many words,  that he — the guy who continuously promotes himself as an “expert” and “professional therapist” — has written two deeply flawed books. And that he shipped off a bunch of deeply flawed books to Uganda where his vilification of LGBT people has found fertile ground.

Cohen kept trying to convince Maddow that his organization doesn’t “cure” anyone, but he does use the word “healing” constantly and insist that people can “change.” To me, this is just semantics. What is “healing” if it’s not a cure? Furthermore, he constantly refers to homosexuality as “SSA,” or Same-Sex Attraction” — always capitalized. He used to called it SSAD, or Same-Sex Attraction Disorder, but he only stopped doing that when it became too untenable for him to call homosexuality a disorder after all the professional organizations insisted that professionals should not do so. On Maddow’s program, Cohen kept repeating his web site as ChangeIsPossible.com. But type that into your web browser and where does that URL redirect to? That’s right: GayToStraight.org, and in the program he kept referring to himself as being completely straight. If that’s not meant to be taken as a “cure,” then I wonder how Cohen would explain the difference.

So we have a man who says that gays molest children, then takes it back. He says that he doesn’t demonize LGBT people, has a passage he wrote just last summer demonizing LGBT people read back to him, and he has nothing to say. And he says that race is a factor, and then says, okay, it isn’t. And he doesn’t “cure” gay people, he just “heals” and changes them. And by the time the interview ended, he was left sputtering that the American Counseling Association disbarred him for life because they are anti-ex-gay. In fact, it was for ethical violations, and Maddow’s audience was left with numerous examples of Cohen’s lack of integrity by the time she was done with him.

But before we end this, we should note one positive thing on Cohen’s behalf: with all that, Cohen spoke out forcefully against Uganda’s proposal to legislate LGBT people out of existence. Whether he’s doing that because he has a new-found respect for gay people or because he’s trying to salvage his own tattered reputation, we don’t know — but I have my suspicions. At any rate, he said he is not only against executing LGBT people, he is also against imprisoning them. He’s a proven fraud, and an idiot to boot. But again, we’ll take what we can get.

Click here to see BTB’s complete coverage of recent anti-gay developments in Uganda.

Rachel Maddow: Should US Politicians Try To Stop The “Kill Gays” Bill?

Jim Burroway

December 5th, 2009

Rachel Maddow last night reviewed the role that Rick Warren has played in Uganda, including his siding with the Ugandan Anglican Church against the U.S. Episcopal Church over the ordination of gay clergy and bishops even though Warren’s background is Baptist.

Maddow also reviewed the role that several U.S. politicians — specifically Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK), Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), Sen. John Ensign (R-NV), Rep. Joe Pitts (R-PA), and Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) — in their own meddling in Uganda’s political affairs, mostly in changing Uganda’s previously successful fight against AIDS by insisting on abstinence only education. These politicians, it should be noted, are also all members of the secretive Evangelical group The Family, which seeks to “take over” (in Family leader Doug Coe’s words) the political, business and other power spheres around the world in a sort of “trickle down” national salvation plan, as opposed to focusing on individual salvation that is at the core of orthodox Christianity.

Rachel’s panel last night consisted of Congressman Anthony Wiener (D-NY); Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Associate Professor of Politics and African American Studies at Princeton University; and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. She asked them a very pertinent question:

“Is it reasonable to expect that American politicians who have been, frankly, pretty interventionist in Uganda in the past, should be trying to stop the ‘kill the gays’ bill there?”

Click here to see BTB’s complete coverage of recent anti-gay developments in Uganda.