Tag Archives: bryan fischer

Anti-gay leader Bryan Fischer hints that he’s felt attraction for other men

As head of the anti-gay hate group American Family Association, Bryan Fischer has built his professional life around fighting laws discouraging discrimination against LGBT people and legitimizing same-sex relationships.

But, as reported by the Huffington Post, Fischer became tongue-tied with Fox News radio host Alan Colmes when he asked whether Fischer has ever experienced same-sex urges.

“Alan, I am not going to talk about that. We’re not going to talk about that,” Fischer said.

“If you’ve been able to overcome your gay impulses and you’ve been successful in doing it, you could be a model for other people you’d like to see act the same way,” Colmes prodded.

“The focus here, Alan,” Fischer said, “is that everybody experiences sexual impulses that, if they acted on those impulses, it would destroy them. You’ve experienced them. I’ve experienced them. Every man, every woman has experienced certain sexual impulses that, if they acted on them, if they conducted themselves by yielding to those impulses, would destroy them. Ask Tiger Woods about that.”

Several months ago, Julaine Appling, director of Wisconsin Family Action, acknowledged to a Madison reported that she’d felt attraction for other women. WFA, the state’s leading anti-gay organization, spearheaded a 2006 effort to add an amendment to the state Constitution banning same-sex marriage and civil unions.

Appling, who has never married, has lived for decades with another never-married woman. The two own a home together in Watertown.

Tebow bows to pressure, cancels date at hate church

Bowing to pressure, fundamentalist Christian NFL quarterback Tim Tebow has canceled his appearance to speak at the opening of a new Dallas megachurch presided over by pastor Robert Jeffress. The pastor has been likened to Fred Phelps, of the notorious Westboro Baptist Church, for his condemnation of gays, Jews, and others.

“Due to new information that has been brought to my attention, I have decided to cancel my… upcoming appearance,” tweeted Tebow, who is famous for making showy displays of his faith on the field.

Those shows have inspired the coining of a new word – “tebowing.”

“I will continue to use the platform God has blessed me with to bring Faith, Hope and Love to all those needing a brighter day,” Tebow added in another Tweet.

According to Jeffress, Tebow said the quarterback texted him that “some advisers around him had counseled him that he needed to go ahead and not come and he was going to stick with that decision.”

Representatives for Tebow did not return multiple requests for comment sent by The Daily Beast.

“Tim is a member of a Southern Baptist Church, the First Baptist Church of Jacksonsville, Fla., that believes exactly what we believe about those issues, and Tim affirmed that that is what their church believes,” Jeffress said. “So I think Tim was probably speaking the truth when he said it wasn’t the belief of our church – it was the controversy surrounding his appearance.”

Tebow also bowed out under pressure from an appearance at a hate church in Ohio last year.

Although Jeffress was understanding of Tebow’s action, the rest of the far-right religious community has responded with outrage, charging that Tebow is more concerned about his image than spreading the Gospel.

“Tim Tebow now joins the pantheon of celebrities who’ve cowered before the Homosexual Lobby,” tweeted right-wing, anti-gay religious leader Peter LaBarbera – also known as “Porno Pete” for his habit of meticulously videotaping sexual activity at gay party venues.

“Very sad that he threw Jeffress under the bus,” LaBarbera added.

Hate radio host Bryan Fischer said to his audience, “Does he disagree with (Jeffress) when he says that homosexuality is a sin? Does he disagree with him when he says that Islam is a false religion? If Tebow does not in fact disagree with Jeffress on any of these points, then his decision looks like nothing more than craven capitulation to the nattering nabobs of negativism and intolerance.”

Tebow is coming off a dismal season with the New York Jets. The team is reportedly looking to trade the back-up quarterback.

Chicago area school district rescinds protections for transgender students

The East Aurora School District in suburban Chicago has rescinded a policy put in place just days earlier to protect transgender students.

The Chicago Tribune reported that following a special meeting of the district school board, proponents of the protections policy called out “shame” and “coward.” About 100 people attended that meeting on Oct. 19.

Days earlier, the same board voted unanimously for the policy, which, among other things, would have allowed transgender students to use rest rooms and locker rooms for their identified gender and to go by their gender-identified name.

The special meeting took place following complaints from several Christian right organizations and some parents. The most vocal opposition came from the Illinois Family Institute, an anti-LGBT group associated with the far-right American Family Association.

Both groups have circulated lies and misinformation about LGBT people. IFI spokesperson Laurie Higgins has called being gay an “evil” and likened same-sex relations to incest. AFA spokesman Bryan Fischer has said that gays are responsible for Adolf Hitler and the Holocaust, according to GLAAD.

Efforts are now under way to reinstate the policy.

 “The board’s decision to rescind the policy threatens the safety of our transgender students and students who may not conform to gender norms,” said Anthony Martinez of The Civil Rights Agenda. “We will now take the necessary steps toward overturning this decision. Health, safety and wellness are human rights entitled to all individuals regardless of gender expression or identity and must be upheld in order to promote and provide a safe space for transgender and gender non-conforming students in the East Aurora Public Schools.”

Rick Garcia, an advisor to The Civil Rights Agenda and longtime LGBT rights advocate in the state, said, “As a public accommodation, this school district is prohibited from denying or refusing a transgender individual the full and equal enjoyment of the facilities, goods and services provided to all students.”

Garcia noted the climate of harassment that LGBT students face in school, which is documented in reports from the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network.

GLSEN says:

• 56.9 percent of students reported hearing negative remarks about gender expression from teachers or other school staff.

• 43.9 percent of students felt unsafe in schools because of their gender expression.

• Students who were more frequently harassed because of their sexual orientation or gender expression had lower grade point averages than students who were less often harassed.

Right-winger promotes abducting children from gay parents

Right-wing pundit Bryan Fischer has called for “an Underground Railroad to deliver innocent children from same-sex households.”

Fischer, suggested such a network in a tweet on Aug. 8, as a minister went on trial for helping a woman and child leave the United States. The woman had abducted her daughter from a lesbian relationship and faces a kidnapping charge.

Fischer, in a second tweet on Aug. 8, said, “Head of Underground Railroad to deliver innocent children from same-sex households goes on trial.”

The Human Rights Campaign responded to Fischer’s tweets in a blog post: “Fischer’s call for kidnapping children from same-sex partners is not only offensive, but a harmful mischaracterization of families that struggle daily to provide loving and safe home environments despite significant legal, financial and dignitary inequality.”

Fischer is the director of issues analysis for the American Family Association. He hosts the talk radio program “Focal Point” on American Family Radio and posts on the AFA-run blog Rightly Concerned.

The Southern Poverty Law Center characterizes the AFA, based in Tupelo, Miss., as a hate group.

The SPLC’s profile of Fischer includes quotes calling for recriminalization of homosexuality, blaming gays for the rise of Hitler and treating homosexuality like drug addiction.

He’s also advocated barring Muslims from coming to the United States and said Native Americans are mired in poverty because they refuse to accept Christianity and “the superior culture” of the newcomers to the New World.

In the minister’s trial taking place in Vermont, prosecutors allege that Kenneth Miller helped Lisa Miller and Isabella, then 7, flee the country to avoid sharing custody with Janet Jenkins of Fair Haven, Vt.

The defense says the 46-year-old Kenneth Miller from Stuarts Draft, Va., believed Lisa Miller, who is not related, had full custody of her daughter.

The trial began Aug. 8 with jury selection and continues today. If convicted, Kenneth Miller could be sentenced to a maximum prison term of three years.

Lisa Miller and Jenkins entered a civil union in Vermont in 2000. Lisa Miller gave birth to her daughter in 2002. The couple later broke up, and Lisa Miller returned to her native Virginia.

A custody battle ensued in both Vermont and Virginia courts, with the supreme courts in both states eventually ruling the disagreement should be handled as a parental rights case under Vermont law.

Two months after Lisa Miller left the United States, a Vermont judge transferred custody to Jenkins. The current whereabouts of Lisa Miller and her now 10-year-old daughter are not known.

On Aug. 9, prosecutors presented records for a cellphone of Virginia businessman Philip Zodhiates as evidence of Lisa Miller’s movements from Virginia to Buffalo, N.Y., on Sept. 21, 2009. They said calls were made between Zodhiates’ cellphone and Kenneth Miller’s cellphone during the trip to Buffalo.

According to previous testimony, a Mennonite pastor met Lisa Miller and her daughter in Canada and he drove them to the Toronto airport. The records then track Lisa Miller from Canada to Mexico City to Nicaragua, the prosecutors told jurors this week.

In court documents, prosecutors say that Lisa Miller and Isabella stayed for a time at a Nicaraguan beach house owned by Zodhiates and that Zodhiates sent the mother and child, who were not using their real names, a care package.

Right-wing groups use Penn State scandal to fight gay parenting

The arduous task of rebuilding Penn State’s shattered image began Friday with a pledge by the board of trustees to search for the truth amid an unfolding child sex abuse case against a former assistant football coach, a scandal that has already claimed the jobs of coach Joe Paterno and the school’s president.

And now right-wing groups are using the scandal to lobby against the rights of gay parents and same-sex adoption.

Paterno, the winningest coach in major college football and Graham Spanier, president of Penn State, were fired Nov. 9 in the fallout of a shocking days-old grand jury report alleging repeated, illicit contact between retired assistant coach Jerry Sandusky (pictured) and boys as young as 10 over a span of 15 years, sometimes in Penn State’s facilities.

Sandusky has been arrested and charged with 40 counts of sexual abuse involving eight boys over a 15-year period.

Bryan Fischer, of the anti-gay hate group American Family Association, said the abuse by Sandusky shows that gay men are pedophiles.

“It’s a simple, stubborn fact that homosexuals molest children at much higher rates than the heterosexual population,” Fischer said. “This is one of the reasons the Boy Scouts have every right to keep homosexuals from becoming Boy Scout leaders.”

Appearing on the NPR news and analysis program “To the Point,” the Family Research Council’s Jerry Cox, made the same implication. “I find it interesting that we talk about the Penn State situation, and then when we talk about people who claim to have these rights to adopt or foster; in both cases, the children’s rights get put in second place.”

But Sandusky is not part of the LGBT community. In fact, he is married and has six children.

A grand jury report said that Penn State administrators did not contact law enforcement authorities after a graduate assistant for the football team said he saw Sandusky sodomizing a boy of about 10 years old in the locker room showers at the team’s practice center in 2002. Top school officials, including Paterno and Spanier, say they weren’t told about the seriousness of the matter.

Sandusky has been aware of the accusations against him for about three years and has maintained his innocence, his lawyer has said.

Real men kill

The American Family Association blasted the president for “feminizing” the Medal of Honor by giving it to a solider who saved the lives of his comrades instead of killing the enemy.

Barack Obama awarded the medal to Sgt. Salvatore Giunta for heroism in Afghanistan. Giunta “exposed himself to withering enemy fire” to engage the enemy so wounded comrades could be rescued.

“When are we going to start awarding the Medal of Honor once again for soldiers who kill people and break things, so our families can sleep safely at night?” wrote Bryan Fischer, director of issues analysis for the AFA, in a column.

Summoned

The anti-gay Family Research Council put out the call for headliners at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C. Who responded? Presidential GOP hopefuls Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich and Mike Pense, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachman, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and American Family Association issues director Bryan Fischer, who has said gays should be disqualified from holding public offices and “gay sex is a form of domestic terrorism.” Not on the fall getaway list.