Dana Milbank: The Southern Poverty Law Center’s ‘Reckless’ Name-Calling

DanamilbankDana Milbank, the generally pro-gay Washington Post columnist, yesterday published a column in which he repeatedly insisted that he wasn't blaming the non-fatal Family Research Council shooting on the Southern Poverty Law Center's labeling of the FRC a "hate group." Nevertheless, he claimed that such "reckless" label-throwing "stirs up the crazies" and leads inevitably to violence:

… the organization that deemed the FRC a “hate group,” the Southern Poverty Law Center, [should not] be blamed for a madman’s act. But [it is] reckless in labeling as a “hate group” a policy shop that advocates for a full range of conservative Christian positions, on issues from stem cells to euthanasia.

… The National Organization for Marriage, which opposes gay marriage, is right to say that the attack “is the clearest sign we’ve seen that labeling pro-marriage groups as ‘hateful’ must end.”

Milbank's argument rests on the assumption that the Family Research Council is, as he puts it, a "mainstream conservative think tank"; one which operates in good faith, eschews violence, and generally tries to manage its affairs in such a way that it will not contribute to the ruination or end of any human lives. RightWingWatch has disemboweled this argument rather neatly:

The reality is that FRC is not a “mainstream conservative think tank.” That’s why FRC is one of only a handful of the many, many groups that oppose equality for gays and lesbians to be designated a “hate group” by SPLC. There’s a big difference between being conservative and being an extremist, but many in the media are missing the distinction …

RWW pulls out the most egregious example of FRC's unique craziness: FRC president Tony Perkins's support for Uganda's "Kill The Gays Bill," about which he lied to make the bill more palatable to American audiences. In 2010, on his radio show, Perkins said:

At the recent National Prayer Breakfast, President Obama took the podium calling for greater civility in Washington, which in my opinion is a laudable goal. However, his comments quickly turned to his preoccupation with defending homosexuality.

The President criticized Ugandan leaders for considering enhance penalties for crimes related to homosexuality. The press has widely mischaracterized the law which calls for the death penalty, not for homosexual behavior which is already a crime, but for acts such as intentionally spreading HIV/AIDS, or preying upon vulnerable individuals such as children, which has been a problem in Uganda for years because the large number of orphans.

The President said that “We may disagree about gay marriage, “but surely we can agree that it is unconscionable to target gays and lesbians for who they are.” Mr. President, as long as you characterize efforts to uphold moral conduct that protects others and in particular the most vulnerable, as attacking people, civility will continue to evade us.

Actually, the bill did call for the death penalty for those convicted of "aggravated homosexuality" — which is to say, repeat offenders. Those caught engaged in homosexual acts before having the opportunity to become repeat offenders were to suffer mere life imprisonment.

The relevant bits of the bill:

2. The offence of homosexuality.

(1) A person commits the offence of homosexuality if-

(a) he penetrates the anus or mouth of another person of the same sex with his penis or any other sexual contraption;

(b) he or she uses any object or sexual contraption to penetrate or stimulate sexual organ of a person of the same sex;

(e) he or she touches another person with the intention of committing the act of homosexuality.

(2) A person who commits an offence under this section shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for life.

3. Aggravated homosexuality.

(1) A person commits the offense of aggravated homosexuality where the
(a) person against whom the offence is committed is below the age of 18 years;
(b) offender is a person living with HIV;
(c) offender is a parent or guardian of the person against whom the offence is committed; (d) offender is a person in authority over the person against whom the offence is committed; (e) victim of the offence is a person with disability;

(f) offender is a serial offender, or

(g) offender applies, administers or causes to be used by any man or woman any drug, matter or thing with intent to stupefy overpower him or her so as to there by enable any person to have unlawful carnal connection with any person of the same sex,

(2) A person who commits the offence of aggravated homosexuality shall be liable on conviction to suffer death.

(3) Where a person is charged with the offence under this section, that person shall undergo a medical examination to ascertain his or her HIV status.

Very unambiguous. Which in no way means it's okay to shoot Tony Perkins or the security guards outside his office. It only means Milbank is a bit confused when he suggests that:

… the Southern Poverty Law Center should stop listing a mainstream Christian advocacy group alongside neo-Nazis and Klansmen.

Nope. That's right where they belong. Incidentally, it's not okay to shoot neo-Nazis or Klansmen, either.

Comments

  1. nick says

    Milbank is just plain wrong- and it follows that he would tiptoe around anything that purports to be a Christian organization- something that automatically trumps intellectual thought from the start. The Post like any other publication is not going to make any critical remarks about Christianity. And if anyone thinks that there is going to be a thoughtful, unbiased examination of Mormonism is dreaming. We are more likely to see Willard in his magic underwear strolling down Pennsylvania Avenue….

  2. Francis says

    Dana Milbank is yet another person who simply doesn’t get it. There is this prevailing attitude that is very insulting, to be frank, that it’s OK to be homophobic and say as much anti-gay crap under the sun, and as FRC has done, advocate DEATH towards homosexual persons, under the guise of religion. There is still an attitude out there, that even many gays believe, that religion makes it OK to be vehemently anti-gay.

    That view is wrong. Being anti-gay is WRONG. And FRC is a HATE GROUP that spreads lies and intentionally attempts to pit groups such as blacks against the gay community. Tony Perkins not only worked with Ugandan parliament in drafting the Kill The Gays bill, but has made statements in the past that LGBT teens essentially deserved to die because they’re not normal. This man and his partners goes out of their way to attack and destroy our community yet they’re not a hate group?

    When is it going to dawn on people that it’s not OK to hate people solely because of their orientation?

  3. Brian in Texas says

    While I agree that the FRC is a completely useless and bigoted group. They are not a hate group in the same vain as the violent and murderous Ku Klux Klan, Neo Nazis, or even the Westboro Baptist Church.

    Ironically, the young man who reportedly volunteered at gay charities and then decided to go murder as many as he could at the FRC was the one in this instance acting like the violent hate groups I mentioned above. Not good at all for our cause.

  4. Robert Ellison says

    Tony Perkins and people like him go on national media tours and peddle phony theories and bogus science (even though they reject “science”) and outright lies to push a discriminatory political agenda. That’s not something I would describe as “mainstream Christian advocacy”. The SPLC is correct in labeling FRC as a hate group because they are certainly not a mainstream Christian advocacy group and is exactly why the SPLC doesn’t describe ACTUAL mainstream Christian advocacy groups as hate groups. Dana might want to un-fog his glasses.

    P.S. I love how he labels NOM as a “pro-marriage” group when their entire existence is based on legally preventing people they don’t like from marrying. That’s rich Dana.

  5. says

    “mikenola08
    6:34 AM PDT
    FRC has supported and called for the decimation, destruction and incarceration of LGBT people. The FRC continues to falsley claim that LGBT people have an agenda to harm children, and that they are Pedophiles.

    That is hate speech.

    Perkins goes on the national media and behaves as if he has done no wrong and lies about comments he makes and that his group makes. Then he goes on the extremist right wing sites and says different things.

    FRC has had direct dealings with the KKK and David Duke.

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/why-would-ma

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/setting-reco

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/religious-ri

    each of those three links contains monitoring articles from Right Wing Watch that include definitve proof of the actions and words of FRC.

    Dana Millbank is a self loathing gay dude who cannot bother to do research and when the proof smacks him in the face he takes it like a battered wife who claims it wasn’t the abusive husbands fault.”

    — One of the letters answering Millbank in the WaPo

  6. Watcher says

    Brandon Thorp

    I want to thank you and other gay journalists that are focusing on this story. Dana Milbank is not a conservative but he is part of the DC establishment press, so his column carries some weight and can not be dismissed as the work of a right wing crank. It is very important that the facts do not get twisted, even if the reason is a benign misunderstanding.

    Again, kudos!

  7. Steve says

    He also uses the ridiculous phrase “deeply held religious beliefs”, which means he loses instantly right there. As if that means anything. On the contrary. It means their whole foundation is a made up nonsense.

  8. Rick says

    I am going to have to agree with Francis in this instance (gulp!).

    If FRC were only opposed to marriage equality–however disingenuous their reasons for it–it would not be fair to call them a “hate group”.

    But they go WAY beyond this. They actively try to fan the flames of homophobia and inspire people to treat gays as social pariahs and would love to see even private homosexual acts re-criminalized. They would deny us the most basic rights of citizenship.

    And yes, their support of legislation in Uganda that would literally result in the execution of people simply for having sex with someone of the same gender cannot possibly be regarded as anything but the actions of a hate group.

    When you deliberately try to villanize a group of people on every level imaginable, your collective actions cease to be “differences of opinion” and become persecution.

    I don’t see how any reasonable individual could view it any other way.

  9. Elegir says

    OMG, Rick! Rick, is that really you? Or has an anti-trolling troll hijacked your name? :) Sprinkle me with fairy dust and lay me down to die!

    Thank you, sincerely, for the pleasant, polite and thoughtful post.

  10. Bobby says

    Oh, how sweet. “We’re a hate group but don’t call us a hate-group because someone might get angry at us for hating homosexuals and thinking they should have no rights”.

    Suck it Milbank.

  11. lukebrux says

    I do not agree with violence, but I strongly disagree with such vision of the freedom of speech in USA that become freedom of hate. In very democratic and civilized countries like France, UK, Italy and Germany, Tony Perkins, the FRC and the members of Westboro church they would be in jail since long time ago for hate speech. Germany did the mistake to let Hitler to abuse of his freedom of speech and we know what’s happened.

  12. simon says

    “mainstream conservative think tank”
    “mainstream” is debatable. “think tank” label is absurd. They don’t think. They based their logic mainly on the Bible or “tradition”? Calling themselves “Research Council” is like Mitt calling Ryan an “intellectual” simply for putting together some numbers called the “budget”.

  13. says

    He doesn’t blame the the shooting on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s labeling of the FRC a “hate group.” However, according to him it is such ‘reckless’ labeling that motivates/entices the crazies. Really? Does he even understand what is he saying. Equivocal fool, it’s like saying FRC’s a hate group but still one should never condemn it. You namby pamby, what do you think we should be better doing then? Read your fu*king ARTICLES.

  14. EchtKultig says

    “However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way.” -Leviticus 25:44-46

    If there were a Biblical-based organization advocating for the return of slavery, would Dana consider them a hate group? Dana, as sometimes happens with a “liberal” columnist, is trying to have it both ways.

  15. MaddM@ says

    I don’t even know where to start with the general screwed-up-ness of this article..

    -FRC *is* a hate group. I don’t think the burden is on SPLC when someone uses that to justify doing something illegal. It is not the responsibility of SPLC or Glenn Beck or Rachel Maddow or Ann Coulter or Streisand etc to make sure the mentally ill aren’t using their ideas to hut or kill others. The issue is our country does a very poor job of providing the care that people with mental illness need and prefer to instead just deal with the outcomes including homelessness, assaults, fatal shootings etc- it’s a public health issue/risk but I’m starting a tangent

    -I am upset by this piece because from what he says he does sound supportive of marriage equality, however he is one of the heterosexuals for which the “culture wars” are losing novelty, and from his place of heterosexual privilege you can see him getting turned off b/c it’s not that deep of an issue to him. I hope more allies do not go down this path as the “Religious Right” will double down before they fold and I think we’re in for a lot of ugliness before we ultimately win. Luckily more people are seeing the “RR’s” true colors (which would be wrath and pride)

    -yes, the KKK is a hate group, but it’s also an organized crime syndicate, and I don’t think you need to be at that level to be a hate group. It’s like saying McDonald’s isn’t a restaurant because there are 5 star restaurants that exist. I would also consider more extreme anti-mexican-immigration groups hate groups even if their actions were solely political

  16. Greg Cali says

    He’s not really an ally of ours at all if he can’t inform himself as to WHY FRC are catagorized as a hate group. He just flippantly mouthed off, threw LGBT under the bus, and wrote a piece that DIRECTLY connects us and groups that support us for contributing to the tension…when the tension is paved by homophobia. That begins all these chaotic events.

  17. says

    This piece written is nothing but hetersoexual privilige

    Heterosexual privilige dictates they can vote on our relationships, fire us from our jobs, ATTACK OUR YOUTH, attack our livelihood, and proudly display hate speech….

    …and we DARE NOT respond, or call a spade a spade: a hate group. If we do, we deserve all the backlash we get and instead of calling out the haters, WE are made to feel guilt written for daring to have integrity to respond.

    Yes folks, heterosexual privilige has become the new hate flavor of the week and it’s vile.

  18. IonMovies says

    Can someone please provide this mans contact info? I believe we should ALL touch base with him, and *educate* him as to why Family Research Council and NOM are rightfully and very factually deemed hate groups. And how truly irressponsible it would be, for millions of gay children, for these groups to have that label removed.

    This man just sounds ignorant. It’s unfortunate to be ignorant, but it’s downright dangerous to be ignorant and speak your ignorants in an article as a matter of fact.

  19. Frank Cordello says

    I agree: we should all be contacting Dana Milkbank and speaking our truth. Only those of us in LGBT affected by the actions and words, al hate inticed, by FRC & NOM know and can explain how truly hateful they are. Not just for what they stand for, but their actions and false claims. They need to be brought to this mans attention.

  20. C.J says

    We’re the only demographic that can have groups call us monsters, animals, consider us devils, say we need to be murdered, say we are the demise to society, and then have Washing Post articles DEFEND the people who call us those things, and claim we need to not call them hateful.

    Imagine ANY other demographic being called the things we’re called by FRC. Substitute blacks, Jews, women, Hispanics…and then come tell me Dana Milbank would argue in favor of not calling them hate groups. There would be national riots if those groups were targetted.

  21. says

    It REALLY feels like we’re being told to accept homophobia, even the most extreme and militant forms of homophobia, and learn to almost embrace it. Not labeled such homophobia, not even so much react to it. Just accept it.

    I agree with a poster above. It’s heterosexual elitism, and hetero privilige at it’s worst and we really should not stand for this from ignorants who have no clue how homophobia destructs lives.

  22. says

    Brian in Texas,

    How typical that the very man who CONSTANTLY screams racism on here and demands racial equality and respect is the same poster who consistently throws gay people under the bus, and is so brazen you would go so far to say “our side” should be frowned upon for the actions of that shooter. You and your posts have proven to be nothing but disgustingly homophobic, and I truly believe you’re actually a violent homophobe, but worse, you preach to the gay community about racial tolerance. YOU are the last person qualified to speak on respect and tolerance.

  23. 2Dads says

    Brian in Texas has long been a hate monger, and homophobic sympathizer on here. I too have noticed his quick whistle in his mouth to call out any (percieved) racism on here. As for homophobia? you’ll see with his posts he’s always quick to chalk up homophobia as either invented, non existant, or the result of gay people. And people like him wonder why there’s tensions between the African American community and gay community? Look right in the mirror Brian in Texas. Regardless of what race you are, the fact that you are hyper sensitive in demanding justice for one group of people while having zero consideration for another actually hurts YOUR cause.

  24. Michelle says

    These are all attempts by heterosexuals to get us to become complacent when faced with homophobia. This is all nothing but brain washing to get us to feel homophobia, and really crazy homophobia at that, is normal and should be tolerated. This is all part of a propoganda, and I sincerely hope the larger LGBT community does not fall for it. All they want is for you to be indifferent toward our issues. That way, there voice trumps ours, while ours is silenced. Think about that.

  25. LazerLightBeamz says

    It’s amazing how disposable the lives of LGBT have become. FRC has a long line of history with terribly extreme, wreckless, irresponsible actions. Their words and thinkings is absolutely no different than the most dangerous group you can muster up, because their true goals are to see the demise of the gay community and being gay. That is a fact spelled out on their own website, not to mention, their own actions. To overlook that is to give amunition to what drives thousands of deaths related to our people. It’s shameful.

  26. Shane says

    These are the SAME people who blame the suicide of gay youth like Tyler Clementi on the gay victim, and blame gay people.

    These are the SAME people who never respond to the anti gay bullying our children face.

    These are the SAME people who believe anti gay hate crimes don’t exist and the gay victim “brought it upon themselves by flaunting their sexuality”

    These are very, very dangerous people, and we each owe it to ourselves, but most importantly the next generation of LGBT to stand up for them. Loudly stand up for them. If that takes each of us being an activist in our own varrying capacities, so be it. But this soccietal level of homophobia is esecelating because these conservative whacks are spreading false, hate laced, insanity out to their impressionable masses. This is getting out of hand, and we need to be prepared to stand tall and even put on our gloves.

  27. Tanoka says

    You cannot be against same-sex marriage and also call yourself pro-marriage.

    If Mr Milbank is worried about how hate-labeling leads to violence, he might want to take a closer look at what lies behind the label. Putting the responsibility on SPLC instead of the haters themselves is ridiculous and ignorant, and extremely lazy.

    This man is supposed to be a journalist? Pfft.

  28. says

    Milbank dot PWNED.

    And yes, he is ignorant and speaking from a place of heterosexual privilege. just as i’m sure we’ve all seen and heard a lot of heterosexuals in the last few weeks telling us gay folk how we should “feel” about institutionalized anti-gay bigotry.

    *sigh*

  29. Lions says

    Dana Milbank (and all other anti-gay apologist)….donate ONE day of your time to the Trevor Project. Or the thousands upon thousands of homeless gay *children* in our countries streets starving to near death (because their families kicked them out for being gay) ….and then come talk to us about who should be labeled what. It’s easy to mouth off with tangibe; knowledge.

  30. J says

    Dana Milnak’s email. Please take a moment to educate him and enlighten him. No one can tell our story better than we can. It’s by not ignoring homophobia, or careless ignorance to homophobia, that we can challenge and triumph over homophobia. While it’s great many of you are expressing your thoughts here, take it to the actual source too, and educate them so we can see a mental shift in their outlook.

    danamilbank@washpost.com

  31. Ken says

    I wonder how much violence toward gays has been caused by the words of the Family Research Council. I’m sure it is far more than any violence caused by the Southern Poverty Law Center against them.

  32. Hugh says

    Ugh! Good lord David Ehrenstein,
    I don’t agree with Milbank either but when you claim a man who has be married for two decades is a self loathing gay dude just because you disagree with him makes you look stupid, immature and no better than the fabricated lies that the homophobes spew. Stop it and grow up. Argue on the facts, not schoolyard tactics.

  33. says

    Wait…

    where’s the response to the thousands of gay beatings, shooting, stabbings, killings every year in this country, where they are targeted simply for minding their own business, being who they are, and harmed for not harming anyone. My friend was attacked with his boyfriend at our local park by three thugs last month, all of which coming out of nowhere to attack them while screaming homophobic crap. Of course, police didn’t care, the local residents didn’t care much, no press, no end result. Where’s the justice for them? and the thousands of other gay people who die in vain?

  34. Collins says

    Hugh,
    Your own statement alone speaks volumes at how misinformed to facts YOU are. Some of the most homophobic people I’ve met have been gay, self loathing, self hating gays, who may identify as gay, but take every opportunity to undermine other gays. You need the educating.

  35. says

    Hugh, either you need to get out more, or you need to be exposed to more. A person can be gay, openly gay, in the most proudly openly gay marriage ever and still be either anti gay in their POV or downright homophobic. If you haven’t met any, than thats says more about you than anyone else. This whole notion that just because someone is openly gay means they can’t possible harbor anti gay, or ignorant views toward gays is laughable.

  36. Austinite says

    I wrote him in the emailed provided above to explain to him why the actions and tactics of Family research Council has destructed and hurt the lives of millions of gay people. It’s important we respond to those who are in the dark concerning homophobia and homophobes, and enlighten them. Not just let them think what they do, and kick rocks. That’s what leads to more dangerous ignorance.

  37. Brian in Texas says

    I never defended the FRC. I said they were a bigoted group. I was simply pointing out why many Americans (not myself) have a hard time understanding why they are labeled a hate group by the SPLC in the same vain as the Black Panthers, Ku Klux Klan, Neo Nazis, Etc. That is really the crux of Milbank’s column.

    If the FRC is a hate group shouldn’t we also add to the list: the republican party, the catholic church, the mormon church, and most evangelical churches? These groups and their members all support anti gay legislation and policies.

  38. Scott Johansen says

    Brian in Texas,

    You have a history of making rather facetious counter points or playing devil’s advocate in issues concerning LGBT, and then when called out on it, your rebuttal is to backpedal. I agree with other posters, you very clearly said that this shooter is going to essentially be a stain for “our cause” according to who? You? NOM? Tony Perkins? The average rational individual, including hundreds of my very heterosexual friends on facebook, and hundreds of comments I’ve read regarding this story do not link this shooters isolated violence on all gay people or the pillars of our community. They know better than that. And to do so would be absolutely no different than claiming OJ Simpson and his actions represents all black males, and looks terrible for the black community. You made the inference about that deranged shooter making our community and our cause look bad. That is a blanket statement, insulting, not factual, and directly insults every single gay person. I’ve read insensitive to downright ignorant remarks from you in the past, but this one truly takes the bitter cake. Work out whatever issues you have with gays, but stop using those issues as your catalyst to fabricate lies about the LGBT community. Most people in this country don’t link that shooter with the LGBT virtues, because 99.9999% of LGBT don’t go around shooting people for being homophobic. It actually works in the polar opposite manner, if you really want to get technical.

  39. Malone says

    Brian in Texas,
    It’s very convenient you say that Floyd Corkins makes us look bad. If this one incident of a mentally disturbed individual who’s issues travel far beyond being gay and into mental health make the greater GLBT community at large look bad, I’d love to know what (and where? since you never share them) are your thoughts about the thousands, upon thousands, upon thousands of crimes committed annually against gay people strictly because they are gay. I wanna see some real nice sweeping generalizations about how shameful all heterosexuals should feel for the anti gay crimes of some. How horrible all religious people should feel for the hateful actions of some. If we’re going to play that game, the millions of anti gay crimes comitted by heterosexuals will far outweigh any shame or bad looks the gay community gets for this incident. But of course, you already knew that.

  40. Diogenes Arktos says

    At least he’s one step above the Religious Right’s viewpoint that using one of SPLC’s own criteria of a hate group (spreading false evidence about LGBT folk) the SPLC themselves are a hate group and the FRC &c should be delisted, because the SPLC has no support for their statements while the FRC &c do. Having “support” for their statements must make FRC &c mainstream.

  41. Brian in Texas says

    I never alluded to the shooter being a representation of all gay people.(rolls eyes) The FRC will use this though as propaganda that they are the victims of militant left wingers and gays. I’m not saying its right, but that is what they are already doing. The Chick-Fil-a strategy basically.

  42. EchtKultig says

    Brian:
    “If the FRC is a hate group shouldn’t we also add to the list: the republican party, the catholic church, the mormon church, and most evangelical churches? These groups and their members all support anti gay legislation and policies.”

    Oh please? Tell me you’re a paid troll and not just incredibly stupid? The difference is these are historically religions whose anti-gay beliefs are presumably secondary to some other mission. Some evangelicals go on missions to build housing in the 3rd world. Catholic charities do do some good in this world too. (and some harm, too, like lobbying against birth control) Although such a characterization really starts to be strained with the Mormon church, in particular. As for the Republican party…well…there used to be socially liberal Republicans, but I won’t even go into that. But again, homosexuality has never been the FOCUS of the Republican party.

    FRC is NOT a religion. They are a political lobbying group, whose sole objectives seem to be denigrating gay people, and stopping legal abortion. They accomplish the former mission, at least, with lies. Spreading lies IS a form of hatred. The Nazis started by spreading lies about Jews. A world taken over by the FRC would head down the same course, believe me. (As was aptly demonstrated by the North Carolina “pastor” who wanted us all put behind an electric fence – i.e., in concentration camps)

    It really doesn’t matter if Milbank seems closeted or not, so it shouldn’t be brought up. He’s excusing FRC, as others have pointed out, from a place of heterosexual privilege. Even though he’s an allegedly progressive national affairs columnist. OTOH, for the people like Tony and Brian who make the entire point of their professional lives to cause gay suffering, the fact they are probably closeted obviously is germane. I’m not one of the trolls who’s going to say the democrats are just as homophobic as the republicans, obviously they are not. BUT it’s worth remember that there is some hypocritical, subsurface homophobia on the part of some in the American left. I’ll never forget a guy in college who grew up in DC and went to the purportedly somewhat leftist “Field School”: who told everyone in the dorm during the first week that he was “a liberal on every issue but gay rights”. Kind of a childish fear about seeming gay for supporting gay rights, probably, but alas, some of them never completely outgrow it.

  43. Sammy says

    What Mr. Milbank and others seem so willing to ignore is just how hard FRC has worked to earn the distinction of Hate Group. That’s right, SPLC doesn’t just award this label to any group, a lot of hard work must be done over an extensive period of time to join the ranks of the KKK (which by the way, every mainsteam news outlet story I’ve read so far ignores the actual ties between these two groups). So why should we ignore this body of work? Just because those doing the work dive for cover under a cross when they’re exposed? Mr. Milbank should try to do a little more journalistic work before giving a pass to actual hate.

  44. Hugh says

    Soap-boxers, (Collins, USC Trojan Fan, David E)
    Where did I say that gay men can’t be married to a woman? Of course gay men can and have been married to women. Also, I said nothing about disputing claims that homophobic men are really closeted gay men.

    But in this case, the burden of proof is on YOU if you are going to make the claim that someone is a self loathing gay dude. What is your PROOF that Milbank is a married gay dude? Crickets – that’s what I thought.

    Your unfounded claims make us all look ridiculous. Stick to the facts! Your childish claims makes you no better than the other side with their blatant lies. Rise above your immaturity.

  45. Francis says

    The real problem is that a lot of people don’t even see anti-gay hate as hate. Like Brian (and several other regulars here). As has been said, one can be gay and yet totally permissive of homophobia and even individually be homophobic. Does Dana Milbank truly see being anti-gay as bad, does he truly see homophobic hate? Or does he see it as a simple disagreement on values. It’s things like this that goes to show we’re still living in a society where being anti-gay is still given a green light, which highlights that as a community, we’re still not truly accepted.

    Echtkultig is right as well in that there are people who proclaim leftist ideals who may say they’re OK with us but are truly just doing so because they are “supposed” to and not because they truly are. There are conservatives who are truly progressive on this issue and are pro-gay. It goes both ways.

  46. Malone says

    This man is hardly progressive. I’d say he’s more of a conservative writer having actually seen some of his ramblings, especially against democrats.

  47. MikeH says

    It has been socially acceptable for many years to scapegoat and verbally abuse gay folk. Right now we are at a tipping point, leaning toward it being socially unacceptable but have not quite gone over the edge. Milbank’s article typifies this point.

    Milbank whines about the Hate Group label stirring up outrage, but the vile rhetoric spewed by FRC is apparently not that big of deal.

    Excuse me, but the FRC and their ilk are cockroaches hiding in the darkness and the SPLC has turned on the lights, showing what and who they really are. Since when is the light of truth a bad thing? Apparently, according to Milbank it is when it challenges the status quo of it being A-OK to bash gays.

    I’m sorry, but his article is flawed on so many points it is embarrassing.

  48. MikeH says

    It has been socially acceptable for many years to scapegoat and verbally abuse gay folk. Right now we are at a tipping point, leaning toward it being socially unacceptable but have not quite gone over the edge. Milbank’s article typifies this point.

    Milbank whines about the Hate Group label stirring up outrage, but the vile rhetoric spewed by FRC is apparently not that big of deal.

    Excuse me, but the FRC and their ilk are cockroaches hiding in the darkness and the SPLC has turned on the lights, showing what and who they really are. Since when is the light of truth a bad thing? Apparently, according to Milbank it is when it challenges the status quo of it being A-OK to bash gays.

    I’m sorry, but his article is flawed on so many points it is embarrassing.

  49. Joey says

    Dana is a villager. He lives in that bubble of DC that has nothing to do with the real world. Why anyone would bother reading him is beyond me. The FRC is a hate group. If Dana was a real journalist he would worry about why Christianity in America is devolving from a religion that taught morality into one that promotes hate. And why Americans seems to grab a gun whenever they feel the slightest bit threatened.

  50. happy blackbird says

    The fact that Tony Perkins uses the term “enhanced penalties” as a euphemism for “death sentence” shows how much media training the man has received in order to intentionally deceive and mislead his American audience. Let’s not forget, we were spoon fed the notion that “enhanced interrogation” techniques were fine and dandy till Christopher Hitchens allowed himself to be waterboarded and reported that, yes, it was akin to being downed.

    Bottom line, FRC is NOT a mainstream Christian organization doing good works for the poor, sick, and underprivileged. They are a group whose sole purpose is to see the destruction of specific groups of people (gays, lesbians, and uppity women on the whole) by any means necessary. That sounds like a hate group to me. I think Dana Milbank has been sipping from the Kool-Aid.

  51. GregV says

    I’m disappointed that the Washington Post would allow such a shoddily-written piece to be printed. So much is inconsistent and misleading in what Milbank wrote.
    One example among many that exemplifies his obviosuly-biased style:

    “…[SPLC] says the FRC “often makes false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science.” Exhibit A in its dossier is a quote by an FRC official from 1999 (!)…”

    Exhibit A? SPLC’s page in question kicks off with a small selection of the FRC’s quotes before going into more detail what the FRC has done.
    The first three quotes are from 2010 and the next from 2011 and then the fifth one (which Milbank chose is the oldest. How did the fifth quote on the list become “Exhibit A” and how did the oldest quote among others (the median date among which is 2010) deserve an exclamation point next to its date, as if to suggest they haven’t said such thing in years?

    We are constantly learning of innocent gay people in Africa who have been murdered, tortured or “correctively raped” and African leaders who threaten gay people and even anyone who befriends them with the same horrific treatment.
    Gay rights groups have universally denounced the violence at FRC as they denounce ALL violence. Meanwhile, Tony Perkins calls gays “hateful” and has helped develop and encourage the Kill-The Gays Bill in Uganda, the text of which clearly DOES crimialize anyone who simply “touches another person for the purpose of homosexuality.”

    Imagine if a bill in a backward oil emirate were to threaten with life imprisonment anyone who reads a Bible once and would threaten death to “aggravated Bible reading” which would be defined (a) being accused twice or more of reading a Bible or (b) beating a baby to death with a Bible.
    Now imagine anyone who denounces such a bill were met with a Tony-Perkins-style reaction of “If you’re against this Bill then you’re FOR beating children to death, because, you know, that’s all it says.”

    Why does Tony perkins continuously get away with making false statements which are EASILY proved false? And why does the Washington Post print such a misleading opinion piece on the matter?

  52. GregV says

    I’m disappointed that the Washington Post would allow such a shoddily-written piece to be printed. So much is inconsistent and misleading in what Milbank wrote.
    One example among many that exemplifies his obviosuly-biased style:

    “…[SPLC] says the FRC “often makes false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science.” Exhibit A in its dossier is a quote by an FRC official from 1999 (!)…”

    Exhibit A? SPLC’s page in question kicks off with a small selection of the FRC’s quotes before going into more detail what the FRC has done.
    The first three quotes are from 2010 and the next from 2011 and then the fifth one (which Milbank chose is the oldest. How did the fifth quote on the list become “Exhibit A” and how did the oldest quote among others (the median date among which is 2010) deserve an exclamation point next to its date, as if to suggest they haven’t said such thing in years?

    We are constantly learning of innocent gay people in Africa who have been murdered, tortured or “correctively raped” and African leaders who threaten gay people and even anyone who befriends them with the same horrific treatment.
    Gay rights groups have universally denounced the violence at FRC as they denounce ALL violence. Meanwhile, Tony Perkins calls gays “hateful” and has helped develop and encourage the Kill-The Gays Bill in Uganda, the text of which clearly DOES crimialize anyone who simply “touches another person for the purpose of homosexuality.”

    Imagine if a bill in a backward oil emirate were to threaten with life imprisonment anyone who reads a Bible once and would threaten death to “aggravated Bible reading” which would be defined (a) being accused twice or more of reading a Bible or (b) beating a baby to death with a Bible.
    Now imagine anyone who denounces such a bill were met with a Tony-Perkins-style reaction of “If you’re against this Bill then you’re FOR beating children to death, because, you know, that’s all it says.”

    Why does Tony perkins continuously get away with making false statements which are EASILY proved false?
    And why does the Washington Post print such a misleading piece that reads as if the writer could not be bothered to actually inform himself (with easily accessible information) before making conclusions?

  53. Mike says

    Millions of sane people are calling these antigay Christians hate groups who destroy gay children and adults, antigay Christian hate groups hate groups and the people in these antigay Christian hate groups are dangerous and should be arrested for stirring up trouble in society and making trouble for decent people in our society who want no part of them.

  54. andrew says

    @ Texas C: If only there were 40 million. It is probably more like 15 million. And unfortunately many of the younger members of the LGBT community are more interested the clubs and hooking up, as I was, than they are in politics. It is doubtful that most of them even know who their Senators and Congress persons are, let alone know where they stand on issues.

  55. Mark says

    Aww poor angry Andrew. 15 million? Hahahaha there’s an estimated 8 million gay parents raising children in this country alone. There’s many many many of us gays, lesbians, transexuals an bisexuals in this country. Thousands more coming out every day. PROUDLY so! Millions of us are soooo proud to be part of the LGBT community knowing people like you resent it. We wilk fight with every fiber of our being to be out, openly proud, and attain our rights. I know that kills you. I can tell by your postings it really really angers you knowing how loud, and galvanized and GROWING the LGBT community is becoming. An this is just the start.
    Btw, over 25,000 LGBT organizations in this country. Eat it up baby

  56. says

    Andrew is nothing but a mentally disturbed, chemically inbalanced poster on here who contributes nothing but negative commentary toward the gay community. His issues are far and deep but people like him truly motivate someone like me who used to be more indifferent toward our cause, to REALLY roll up my sleeves and get involved.

    Thank you Andrew. It’s folks like you who preach us being complacent who really inspire an activist out of us.

  57. Greg Cali says

    Hahahaha Andrew, or as your name on queerty is Brandon, like you are qualified to tell the GLBT community about anything. The only thing you ever say regarding our issues is “the homophobe has every right to be a homophobe” do you think we’re dumb? Gay people are some of the smartest folks around. We can smell a hater from a mile away. Your tactics of being critical of gay activism are so transparent, it’s sad. Gay activism will never go anywhere until we attain full respect and rights. Until that day, you bette be prepared to sit on the sidelines miserable and frustrated at our actions because part of why we do it is just to piss off silly fools like you. You are worthless. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

  58. DurationNConvexity says

    Andrew-

    Are you proudly this ignorant or by accident?

    There’s mor than 15 millions people who fall under LGBT.

    Also, most LGBT are heavily involved in their movement, the younger ones more so today than ever before. You’re ignorance is really bith disturbing and pathetic. The gay rights movement has been the fastest growing movement in history, and no other demographic has seen such vast progress in both legislation and public opinion in such a quick time span. None. In fact, about 9 years ago homosexuality was still outlawed in parts of the country. Today, a majority of polls show people are in full support of us attaining the same exact rights as straight marriages. And gay marriage is legalized in many states. That is by virtue of the many, many, many gays, lesbians, trans who have fought hard to make this happen. I don’t know a single one of my many young gay friends who aren’t involved in fighting for gay rights and politicallly involved in some capacity.
    Heck, I can’t escale gay related status updates from my hundreds of gay friends on their facebook pages. And that fills me with joy.

  59. Klien says

    Guys,
    Ignore Andrew. He’s a resident troll on here with many troubled issues. Ever see him contribute anything worthy to a discussion? One that didn’t involve sympathizing with the HATE mongers and being an apologist? Exactly. Just know people like him eventually grow a tumor from their resentment and obsession with our community. They are mentally not all there

  60. BeckieSays says

    People, if you have cogent counterpoints to make, you should make them, when you resort to the kin of behavior and name-calling that you complain about from the extremists, how does that make your arguments rational or compelling?

    It doesn’t. Grow up. I’ve yet to see why the Catholic Church or the Republican Party isn’t labeled the same way as NOM by the SPLC. I’v yet to see a cohesive attempt by us as a community to go after those who defame us on a daily basis.

    What I am seeing is a lack of cohesion and the same kind of hypocrisy I’ve come to expect from our enemies.

  61. Christopher says

    Andrew, why do some folks like you assume that it’s impossible to have a vibrant social life, go out clubbing, go to bars and still be actively involved in the pursuit of politics? or any higher pursuit? It’s never been an either or for many out there. Life is about a balancing act, and part of that for many is indeed going out, go to parties, bars even dancing at some clubs. That’s life, and most often; a very fun and enjoyable time. I know many people who can do both. To even suggest one can’t coexist with the other is very one dimensional and narrow both in terms of thinking and ideology.

    I feel some people, like yourself, just don’t like the notion of a gay night life, or gay social scene, so you take unnecssary jabs at it when it’s unwarranted. Like in a topic related to community service for LGBT causes. It’s not only possible to be have both an active social life in the gay community and gay volunteerism, but I’d argue being out & about in the gay social scene, be it parties or clubs exposes you to a wide range of people, many of whom will enhance opportunities to get involved. That’s definitely been the case for me. Sounds like you just wanted to air your own negative storyline, and make a blanket statement about us. But you’re simply just projecting and representing no one but yourself. I salute the LGBT who can go out and have fun at a Pride event, or gay club, and then attend a rally, or email their elected officials the next day. Many, many do just that. Many of whom I call friends. Your loss you don’t have any friends like that.

  62. Steve-ATL says

    Beckie,
    I see more cohesion and galvanized comments here and in many LGBT forums than you’re willing to give credit for. Of course there will be the apologist gays who try to police us by telling us to not fight back, or be more complacent, and of course said people will ruffle up a response. But on the whole, the community knows who the enemies are, and isn’t afraid to stick our necks out and challenge them on it. Not to mention, many of us who educate those around us on why our rights mean so much to us. More of us are involved and united than you’re giving us credit for. That’s another problem within our community, we rarely applaud each other as much as we salute the efforts of the haters and give credit for how ‘powerful’ they are. Clearly they aren’t that great at what they do given the amazing strides we’ve made and continue to make.

  63. andrew says

    @Mark, Layermultiple,greg Cali, Durationnconexity,Klein et al: I happen to be an out and proud gay man. Most of my friends are gay and everyone who knows me knows that I am gay. I do volunteer work at an LGBT community center and live in the gayest section of the city. I am a liberal democrat and will vote for Obama/Biden again in November. It troubles me that gay folks like you attack me because you don’t agree with some of my opinions. Some of your comments about me as a gay hater etc are laughable. You show yourselves to be as intollerant of those who disagree with you as are the right wing extremists.

  64. FunMe says

    FRC is a HATE group. They are called a HATE group because all they do is spill out hate.

    Do they even know the prayer of St. Francis?
    “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
    Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
    Where there is injury, pardon.
    Where there is doubt, faith.
    Where there is despair, hope.
    Where there is darkness, light.
    Where there is sadness, joy.

    If they spend their time focusing on good things instead of HATE, then perhaps they wouldn’t even be candidates of being a hate group.”

    But truth be told … they are a HATE group because all they do is spill out hate.

  65. andrew says

    @Funme: Just because someone disagrees with you or me on marriage equality doesn’t make them haters. Do you know who knows The Prayer of St Francis? His followers, the Franciscan Catholic Religious Order. They oppose same sex marriage. Are they haters too?

  66. andrew says

    aug 18 at 11:03 Mark posts criticism of Andrew. aug 18 at 11:06 Layermultiple posts anti-Andrew rant. aug 18 11:10 Greg Cali posts anti-Andrew rant. aug 18 at 11:17 Durationnconexity posts anti-Andrew rant. aug 18 at 11:23 Klein posts anti-Andrew rant. Gee I wonder if these are all from the same intollerant ranter? LOL LOL LOL

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