Dear Brian Brown,
After Wednesday’s shooting at the Family Research Council, you quickly leveraged the event into a self-serving denunciation of the Southern Poverty Law Center. I can’t fault you for that. After all, in the wake of Gabrielle Giffords’ shooting, I denounced Sarah Palin for lacking the decency to take down her “target map” with its Giffords crosshairs as the Congresswoman struggled through intensive care. However…
However, you’d be more persuasive if you didn’t exploit this crime to lie about yourself and your organization.
Today’s attack is the clearest sign we’ve seen that labeling pro-marriage groups as ‘hateful’ must end. The Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled the Family Research Council a ‘hate group’ for its pro-marriage views, and less than a day ago the Human Rights Campaign issued a statement calling FRC a ‘hate group’—they even specified that FRC hosts events in Washington, DC, where today’s attack took place.
NOM has always condemned all violence and vilification connected to our ongoing national debate about the meaning and definition of marriage.
Please, Brian, this event is too important for casual deception. NOM has long, long history, not just of failing to condemn violence and vilification, but of promoting it.
- 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 Bishop Robert Evans announced gay marriage represents “the evil modern day works of Satan,” NOM was there to spread the message.
- When Kirk Cameron called same-sex marriage a threat to civilization, NOM was there to create a video helping him spread his views and dubbing him a “champion of marriage.”
- When Chik-Fil-A president Dan Cathy said marriage equality activists “are inviting God’s judgment on our nation,” NOM was there to suggest a weekly appreciation day for him.
- 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.”
- When your own commenters on your own blog responded to your complaints about incendiary rhetoric by claiming homosexuality is “a perverted act, just like pedophilia,” and saying they understand why a country like Uganda would want to punish gays with the death penalty? Maggie Gallagher was there — but to defend her own self, not to condemn violence and vilification.
NOM is there. Over and over, when gays are demonized, vilified, and threatened with violence, NOM is there. Whatever history you have of condemning such rhetoric is dwarfed by your history of sponsoring it.
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.