Friday, November 15, 2019

Is a Focus affiliate an anti-LGBTQ hate group?

Family Policy Alliance is the political arm of Focus on the Family. While FoF is trying to blur the connection, Family Policy Alliance operates out of Focus on the Family facilities. As an aside, this very day I made a FOIA request, long overdue on my part. I have requested all documents related to the Service's determination that Focus on the Family is a church. The most recent tax return that we have is from 2015. But I digress.

To answer the question of whether or not Family Policy Alliance might be a hate group, let us briefly review some very recent communications.
November 14
21st Century Barbarism by Cole Muzio.
Imagine a society that is so medically backward that it unquestioningly allows patients to self-diagnose a life-altering condition without any testing or scientific basis to back it up.
It is a reference to people with gender dysphoria and it is a lie. Patients do not self-diagnose their condition. DSM-5 provides clear criteria for diagnosing gender dysphoria in children and adults. It is based on medical science which is based on evidence. The literature regarding gender dysphoria goes back more than 100 years.
Imagine the next-level barbarism of a civilization that condoned mutilating the genitals and castrating young children on the basis of nothing more than a feeling.
Again, the above is a lie. Young children with gender dysphoria do not receive medical interventions. At roughly 13 years of age, they might receive puberty blockers (GnRH agonists) which are fully reversible. In their late teens they might receive hormone treatment. No one is “castrating” children. The recommendations of WPATH are to reserve gender confirmation surgery for adults.

On October 29 the Pediatric Endocrine Society issued a statement expressing concerns over irresponsible rhetoric. It says, in part:
…we strongly oppose public discourse that misrepresents and contradicts evidence-based standard of care recommendations and risks the well-being of transgender youth and their families.
You can read the statement in full at the link, above. Clearly, the rhetoric that emanates from Family Policy Alliance is precisely the kind of “discourse” that concerned the professional organization. Consider the following:
Consider the wickedness of a community that encouraged the growth of such operations or chemicals that do irrevocable, life-long damage on the youngest among them – those suffering from intense psychological harm – and setting them up for a life of depression and all-too-often suicide.
The above is a lie. See my comments, above, on age eligibility for interventions. According to the researchgender affirming care relieves the depression and anxiety associated with gender dysphoria — greatly reducing the potential for self-harm. It is the exact opposite of what FPA is asserting.

FPA is also calling the “community” evil while implying that the same group of people receives medical care based on wicked activism rather than their medical needs. That is a lie.

There is more to FPA's diatribe but I want to be brief.
November 14
Keep the Faith in Kansas: The Church by Brittany Jones.

Family Policy Alliance is determined to convince people that nondiscrimination protections threaten the rights of people and religious freedom. They are trying to dishonestly claim that nondiscrimination measures adversely affect houses of worship. Waving the American flag in one hand while holding a bible in the other:
As an attorney for the city of Overland Park pointed out, the only real push back to SOGI laws comes from the faith community. In fact, this attorney suggested that the city council needed to figure out how to “get over” religious objections to a SOGI ordinance. Having this sentiment spoken openly by a city official in a public meeting is an extremely disturbing, though not shocking, development. The free exercise of religion is our first listed freedom in the Bill of Rights and is one of the oldest and dearly loved freedoms in American culture. It should be a right that we all work to defend because it is the foundation of all of our other rights.
First some perspective. The First Amendment provides Free Exercise of religion which is conditioned on the Establishment Clause. 140 years ago (1879) in Reynolds v. United States the Supreme Court ruled that the state can regulate conduct while the regulation of belief would be impermissible. Nondiscrimination laws do not infringe on religious beliefs.

Burwell v. Hobby Lobby (2014) applies to the U.S. Religious Freedom Restoration Act. In 1997 the Supreme Court ruled (City of Boerne v. Flores) that the RFRA was unconstitutional as applied to the states.

It is an undisputed fact that opposition to LGBTQ nondiscrimination laws comes from religious conservatives. Most Christians and Jews support the idea that LGBTQ people should be free of discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations. There is no secular opposition to that goal.

The observations of the attorney for Oakland Park are based on reality. They beg the question: Why should we allow the religious fringe to affect public policy? If Family Policy Alliance finds those conclusions “extremely disturbing,” they are helping to define the nature of opposition to basic fairness. What they really find disturbing is nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people.
The once hidden agenda to overcome and violate religious beliefs is increasingly obvious. Even more now than ever, there is a clear conflict between religious freedom, free thought, and the LGBTQ agenda. LGBTQ+ activist demand that everyone agrees with their belief system. It is not even enough to just passively accept their beliefs; they want everyone to celebrate their lifestyle or else be pushed out of society.
The evil Agenda™. Being LGBTQ is not a “belief system.” Nor is being left-handed a belief system. They are projecting. What they are saying, in essence, is that we are looking for approval which confuses service by a public accommodation with approval.

They cannot accept the simple fact that we neither seek nor require their approval. The very point of nondiscrimination laws is that service should not be conditioned on approval.
November 14
BREAKING NEWS: Topeka Targeted By LGBTQ+ Activists Again by Brittany Jones.
LGBTQ+ activists are pushing your city council members to pass a sexual orientation and gender identity ordinance (SOGI). The Topeka Policy and Finance Committee will be discussing your freedom TOMORROW when they meet. These types of ordinances will be used to undermine religious freedom in Kansas, and your voice is needed to stop it!

The measure is similar to laws in other states that have been used to punish business owners (such as bakers and florists) who decline to participate in same-sex weddings. In some cases, those owners have been forced to close their businesses and have been hit with tens of thousands of dollars in fines. These laws also cover “gender identity” and have been responsible for opening women’s bathrooms, showers, dressing rooms and other public accommodations to men and boys regardless of their biological sex.
To be brief, the above could have been written by hate group leaders Mat Staver (Liberty Counsel) or Tony Perkins (Family Research Council) or Peter LaBarbera (Americans for Truth…) and others. It represents the nonsensical claim that service means participation in an event that they do not approve of.

Furthermore, they are claiming that transgender women and girls pose a threat to cisgender women and girls in spite of the fact that it hasn't happened — there is no evidence to support what is an irrational fear.

This goes on at considerable length. Oh the abject horror of not being able to discriminate!
November 12
Join 2,200 New Jerseyans Who Signed a Petition to Protect Students! by Len Deo
Impressionable students – our children and grandchildren – are about to be forced to endure radical LGBT sexual indoctrination in the classroom. That’s after state lawmakers ignored the comments of their constituents and instead bowed to the pressure of powerful lobbying groups.
“Endure.” “Radical.” “Sexual indoctrination.”

As you will see, what they are claiming is that learning about the contributions of LGBTQ people poses a peril to “impressionable” children, as if they are being victimized. Thus, the assertion is that LGBTQ people are a peril to children. Claiming that we are somehow harming kids is a sure sign that rhetoric is hateful. It is a smear and it is wrong.
Beginning in the 2020-2021 school year, a new mandated curriculum will require textbook authors to speculate about the sexual preferences and gender identity of noteworthy historical figures – and then impose this false narrative on our children in public schools. The radical left’s endless obsession with sexuality should not be forced upon our children!
“Sexual preferences?” Beginning in the fall of 2020, New Jersey public schools, in grades 6 to 12, will teach students about the social, political, and economic contributions of LGBTQ people across all relevant subject areas. The claim that this constitutes a “false narrative” is a lie. The assertion that applicable history “should not be forced” on children is preposterous.

About 40% of us — including school kids — have an LGBTQ family member. Almost all students in grades 6 to 12 are going to have an LGBTQ classmate. The only reason that FPA would oppose teaching about the contributions of LGBTQ people is to deter acceptance of LGBTQ people.

There is an ominous undercurrent to all of this (an intended inference) that, if children learn that it is acceptable to be gay or transgender, then they might choose to become gay or transgender.

It is important for kids to know, for example, that astronaut Sally Ride was gay. She was also an important physicist and academic with a PhD from Stanford. A gay man, Alan Turing, was instrumental in the Allies winning World War II. Today, the CEO of perhaps the world's largest corporation (Apple) is a gay man.

In spite of the efforts of anti-LGBTQ groups to suggest otherwise, people are not defined by their sexuality. Nor are people limited by their sexuality except to the extent that they are sometimes limited by religious bigotry. Ask yourself this: Does teaching these things to children make them better informed or less informed? Does it make them better citizens?

This is just what was in my news aggregator for the last few days. I have noticed increasing anti-LGBTQ hyperbole and hateful rhetoric from Family Policy Alliance. In my opinion, Family Policy Alliance is conducting themselves as an anti-LGBTQ hate group.

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