Conservatives balked that GLAAD and other LGBT activists were trying to suppress religious free speech by urging CNN, MSNBC and other news outlets to stop booking homophobic commentators like Family Research Council's Tony Perkins and American Family Association's Bryan Fischer on their respective shows.
Well, fast-forward a few months and now the right is doing the same precise thing by calling on Fox News to stop booking pro-equality guests like Wayne Besen from Truth Wins Out, an organization dedicated to combating conservative lies that denigrate gay people.
Read part of the press release signed by representatives from hateful groups like Liberty Counsel, the "ex-gay" group JONAH and Americans for "Truth" About Homosexuality AFTER THE JUMP.
From the conservative coalition's press release:
The SPLC and Wayne Besen are united in demonizing conservative organizations and individuals. Despite repeated complaints about Besen's appearances, producers of the O'Reilly Factor continue to feature Besen, a radical homosexual activist aligned with the SPLC, as a guest commentator.
Last year the controversial Besen and his SPLC ally jointly staged a protest outside of FRC's Values Voters conference, falsely accusing FRC and the American Family Association of hatred and lies. Besen publicly labeled FRC's conservative speakers as "certifiable lunatics with dangerous agendas." Both Besen and the SPLC took out an ad in the Washington Post falsely blaming FRC for gays being more likely "to be victimized by violent hate crimes" and "driven to suicide by relentless bullying."
Besen and the SPLC also target the ex-gay community, claiming that former homosexuals are a "myth" and that ex-gays are not entitled to the same rights and respect that gays currently enjoy. In a bizarre move, Besen and SPLC are now filing complaints against therapists who counsel homosexuals with unwanted same-sex attractions, thereby denying gays the right of therapeutic self-determination.
It is time that the O'Reilly Factor cease using Besen as a guest commentator. Providing Besen with a forum lends credibility to his pernicious tactics and enables Besen to exploit his appearances for fundraising purposes.
When Fox News provides a forum to a radical homosexual activist known for employing inflammatory and hateful language in the service of promoting lies, the network becomes complicit in the damage done to the victims of Wayne Besen's and the SPLC's smear campaigns.
We ask the News Corporation, Fox News, and Bill O'Reilly to find more ethical spokespersons for the liberal view of sexuality. In their infamous Washington Post ad accusing FRC of hateful values, Besen and the SPLC claim that "words have consequences." Yes, they do. And Besen's may lead to violence.
The press release also uses "liberal journalist" Dana Milbank's assertion that the FRC is not a hate group to bolster their point.