Sunday, May 21, 2017

They Are Everywhere!

Who are “they?” They are rightwing conservative Christians legal organizations that sue at the drop of a hat. They say that they are for “religious freedom” but in reality they are just anti-LGBT.
Matthew Shepard's Mother: Multimillion-Dollar Hate Groups Are Bullying LGBTQ Children
By Judy Shepard
May 15, 2017

Aren’t you exhausted by the constant barrage of news — the proposed legislation against our communities and the reports of hate crime after hate crime? One fifth of these crimes are now reported to be done in President Donald Trump’s name.

In the 19 years since my son Matthew Shepard was murdered because of his sexuality, my foundation has seen the ups and downs in the numbers and targets of hate crimes. But in the last few months there has been a dramatic increase in reports across the spectrum.
The bigots have received a green light to spread their hate, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a big cut in the budgets of those federal agencies that track anti-LGBT hate crimes.

But it goes beyond individuals to…
Unfortunately, groups like Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which describes itself as a conservative Christian organization, exploit children in the name of hate. It parades them around a courtroom for frivolous lawsuit after frivolous lawsuit. One prime example is a suit filed recently against a school district in Boyertown, Pennsylvania, claiming that a high school student was sexually harassed when he saw a transgender boy changing in the school locker room.
The Southern Poverty Law Center labeled ADF as a hate group this year because of their longstanding history attempting to criminalize LGBTQ people. But I know firsthand the extent of their hate. At a 2014 conference, an ADF lawyer asserted that my son’s murder was a hoax fabricated to advance the “homosexual agenda.” These same lawyers are now trying to take advantage of young people who are “uncomfortable with” transgender students using the same restroom or locker room in school districts across the country. Everyone would be better served if education and acceptance were the solutions to feeling "uncomfortable" rather than nuisance lawsuits.
Back in the fifties and sixties "uncomfortable" was a code word used against integration as in “I would be uncomfortable with a black man in the bathroom with my son!”

Throughout history discrimination was justified by vilifying a minority and now it is our turn to be demonized. But what is different is not we have these so called defenders of “religious freedom” legal organizations.

Connecticut had its own run-in with a rightwing conservative Christians legal organizations, the American Center for Law and Justice which defended the town of Enfield when they wanted to hold their high school graduation in a church (you can read about it here, here, here, and here).

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