For more than 40 years, the SPLC has battled against political extremism and political violence. We have argued consistently that violence is no answer to problems in a democratic society, and we have strongly criticized all those who endorse such violence, whether on the political left or the political right.The Washington Monthly reminds us that "criticism is not persecution".
But this afternoon, FRC President Tony Perkins attacked the SPLC, saying it had encouraged and enabled the attack by labeling the FRC a “hate group.” ....
Perkins’ accusation is outrageous. The SPLC has listed the FRC as a hate group since 2010 because it has knowingly spread false and denigrating propaganda about LGBT people — not, as some claim, because it opposes same-sex marriage. The FRC and its allies on the religious right are saying, in effect, that offering legitimate and fact-based criticism in a democratic society is tantamount to suggesting that the objects of criticism should be the targets of criminal violence.
This is a group that wants to use the coercive power of the state to....tell churches and other religious organizations whose relationships they may honor. It also engages regularly in slurs of anyone who doesn’t agree with its agenda as secularist Christ-haters.....The Family Research Council is not a religion. It is a professional political advocacy group with an anti-gay agenda. It does not represent Christians. Plenty of Christians support gay rights, and plenty of gay people are Christian.
Those determined to frustrate the Christian Right’s desire for total secular political power are neither Romans nor Communists nor Nazis, and it is far past time for smug powerful men like Tony Perkins to climb down from that cross and stop pretending they bear any resemblance to the actual Christian Martyrs who suffered and died—and still suffer and die—for their faith.
Here are some examples of what FRC folks say, that got it that SPLC designation. Now, if you don't see a problem with the quotes, under each one I've changed it to describe a different minority group. I don't think we'd consider the sorts of comments that they make about gay people to be acceptable to the mainstream if targeted towards other people. Would we?
Gaining access to children has been a long-term goal of the homosexual movement.”
Gaining access to children has been a long-term goal of the Roman Catholics.
“[Homosexuality] … embodies a deep-seated hatred against true religion.”
Jews embody a deep-seated hatred against true religion.
“[T]he evidence indicates that disproportionate numbers of gay men seek adolescent males or boys as sexual partners.”
“[T]he evidence indicates that disproportionate numbers of black men seek adolescent males or boys as sexual partners.”
The FRC has the right to say what it wants. But it does NOT have the right to do so without legitimate criticism. And legitimate criticism is not a call to violence.
Finally, if you want to look at explicit calls to violence, perhaps NOM (the National Organization [against] Marriage [Equality]) should explain some of these events, duly noted by Rob Tisinai at Box Turtle Bulletin. Here's some examples.
When Reverend Ariel Torres Ortega stood on your stage as your guest at your rally and proclaimed that gays are “worthy to death,” NOM was there. But you didn’t condemn it at the event, on your website, or on your blog.....
When Fox News asked NOM founder Maggie Gallagher about a pageant contestant who said gays “shall surely be put to death and their blood shall be upon them,” Maggie was there, not to condemn the call for violence, but to praise “her courage in coming forward.”
As Rob says,
The shooting at FRC was deplorable. Violence has no place in this debate. We can look at this shooting, as well as the people who are killed every year just for being gay, and agree on that. You certainly say you agree. So please, live up your own press release: stop supporting the very thing you claim to condemn.Update: John Aravosis on the methods the FRC uses to tell lies.