Gays Rights Activists to Protest “Academy” Encouraging Youth to Hate Gays

On August 4th a group which calls itself Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) is hosting a banquet / lecture to kick off what they call an “academy” to “train young people (as well as older pro-family advocates) how to answer ‘gay’ activist misinformation and fight the homosexual-bisexual-transsexual agenda.”

Call to protest!!

Who:Gay Liberation Network (GLN),
What: Has initiated a 5:30 PM, August 4 protest against AFTAH’s opening banquet lecture
Where: At AFTAH’s headquarters, 25W560 Geneva Road, Carol Stream, IL.

For Immediate Release – July 23, 2010
For Information – Bob Schwartz, Gay Liberation Network,
Andy Thayer, Gay Liberation Network: LGBTliberation@aol.com

Gays to Protest “Academy” Encouraging Youth to Hate Gays

Carol Stream, IL — On August 4th a group which calls itself Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) is hosting a banquet / lecture to kick off what they call an “academy” to “train young people (as well as older pro-family advocates) how to answer ‘gay’ activist misinformation and fight the homosexual-bisexual-transsexual agenda.”

Advocates for legal equality for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people (LGBTs) counter that the gathering is aimed at promoting continued legal and social discrimination against gays, and worse, aims to promote this bigotry among young people.

“AFTAH has a long history of telling lies about LGBT people and recently was designated a ‘hate group’ by the Southern Poverty Law Center,” said Bob Schwartz of the Gay Liberation Network (GLN), the group which has initiated a 5:30 PM, August 4 protest against AFTAH’s opening banquet lecture at their headquarters, 25W560 Geneva Road, Carol Stream, IL. Joining GLN in the protest will be DuPage NOW, Woodstock/McHenry County PFLAG and La Voz de los de Abajo.

“Using typical far-right scare rhetoric about gays, AFTAH’s literature about their forthcoming ‘academy’ calls the LGBT rights movement ‘destructive to America’ and invites people to donate money to fund scholarships for people as young as 14-years-old to attend their event,” said Schwartz. “What they are really trying to do is inculcate the next generation with a religious, sectarian-based hatred of gays.”

“Particularly in difficult economic times, it is vital that opponents of discrimination remain vigilant and forthrightly oppose any attempts to scapegoat any group for the failings of society,” said GLN co-founder Andy Thayer. “Youth should not be taught to hate their peers and thus fuel the cycle of self-loathing, depression and suicide which too many LGBT youth experience. Bigotry must be vocally and publicly opposed, especially when haters like AFTAH try to recruit young people.”

Recently AFTAH announced that one of the “instructors” at its forthcoming event will be Cliff Kincaid, who has been a vocal proponent of a notorious Ugandan bill which not only would proscribe the death penalty for gays, but also imprisonment non-gays who fail to report the gay people whom they know.

“With the inclusion of a ‘kill the gays’ spokesperson like Kincaid, the AFTAH youth academy is an attempt to legitimize a set of politics so vile that even leading figures on the religious right have felt compelled to condemn them,” said Schwartz. “If AFTAH’s Executive Director Peter LaBarbera were just a lone kook, then I would say just ignore him. But to say that would be to ignore the fact that LaBarbera was the leading proponent of two attempts to get anti-gay referenda on the Illinois state ballot.”

“Harvey Milk and other pro-equality activists defeated Anita Bryant and her anti-gay referenda a generation ago not by ignoring, but by highlighting and making infamous her anti-gay bigotry,” said Thayer. “This is what needs to be done against LaBarbera, and which is why we have called this August 4th protest. Learning from the failed, polite campaigns to defeat California’s anti-gay Proposition 8 and Maine’s Question 1, we must instead loudly highlight the bigotry of our opponents as Milk and others did, and thus politically marginalize them.”

For more information about the August 4th protest, email the Gay Liberation Network at LGBTliberation@aol.com

7 Comments

Filed under anti-gay bigotry, gay rights

7 responses to “Gays Rights Activists to Protest “Academy” Encouraging Youth to Hate Gays

  1. rudeboi

    This is where we part ways. I cannot support gayness. I don’t knock it, I don’t bash but I also don’t want it around me. I have to draw my line somewhere and it is right here. Sorry, you can ban me if you want, but I just don’t not support this.

    • ladylibertyslamp

      WE aren’t going to ban you, but, we are a social justice blog and gay rights are an intrinsic part of our cause, as are rights for everyone.

      It is amazing how much people tolerate in hate and can’t seem to accept how people love.

      It’s just love, something we are all supposed to do, just that everyone has their own way of doing it.

  2. Arslan Amirkhan

    Dude, I used to live and work in a neighborhood full of gay people. It never affected me adversely at all.

    • ladylibertyslamp

      A.A.- Religion is the blame in most gay hate. Sometimes I think religions can be the worst hate groups around, even more so than the Klan and Nazis.

      Rudeboi is a good sort, we like him and welcome him always, but he has been misguided by either society’s or religious unhealthy hang ups about human sexuality.

      Hopefully we can open his eyes and heart to those whose only crime in his mind are the fact that they love differently than he does.

      They aren’t going to hurt him or rape him, they just want to be able to live their lives in peace without being demonized.

    • Rudeboi

      I’m not affected personally, I stand on my own two feet. It just goes against everything that is natural to me. I don’t rant about it and don’t say anything to people about it. I just personally don’t and have never liked it. I’m not Finns take away peoples right to love whom every or however they like and I don’t want my right to say something taken away either. I live and let live.

      • ladylibertyslamp

        Rudeboi- I think that is all the gay community is asking from anyone.

        But, the protest is against a group who is actually training kids to hate them and potentially hurt them.

        Protesting against such a group is completely understandable even by someone like yourself who might not be a supporter but can see the evils in preaching hate.

        You don’t have to protest with them or even wave a flag for them, but, you can open your mind and heart to understand what they are facing.

  3. Arslan Amirkhan

    Of course it seems unnatural to you, because you are straight. It’s normal to expect such a thing. Could you ever understand, for example, why a straight women finds men so attractive, or would such a woman understand what we find attractive about them? This is the whole point of differences in sexuality. They are not easily understood because they have a lot to do with chemical reactions rather than conscious thought.