Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Contact: Wayne Besen, Executive Director
Phone: 917-691-5118

TWO Calls Appointment of Robert George to Religious Commission a Farce

Anti-Gay Activist is Denier, Not Defender of Liberty

BURLINGTON, Vt — Truth Wins Out condemned Republican U.S. House Speaker John Boehner today for his appointment of National Organization for Marriage co-founder and Chairman Emeritus Dr. Robert George to the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), a two-year appointment that comes with a taxpayer-funded federal salary.

“The appointment of Robert George makes it clear that this commission is the equivalent of a kangaroo court with the goal of casting the victimizers as the victims,” said Truth Wins Out Executive Director Wayne Besen. “It is farcical that a man who has dedicated his life to curtailing liberties and limiting the freedoms of those who hold different beliefs would be named to a commission that oversees liberty.”

George is an anti-LGBT extremist who once described being gay as “beneath the dignity of human beings as free and rational creatures” and said that committed same-sex relationships have “no intelligible basis in them for the norms of monogamy, exclusivity, and the pledge of permanence.” The organization that he co-founded, the National Organization for Marriage, is the nation’s foremost opponent of marriage equality, fighting to preserve the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) on the federal level and pushing constitutional marriage discrimination amendments in the states.

George’s National Organization for Marriage was disgraced earlier this week when internal documents revealed that the group engages in disrespectful and unsavory race-baiting tactics in its fight against marriage equality. The confidential memos asserted that NOM’s strategic goal is to “drive a wedge between gays and blacks” and “make opposition to gay marriage an identity marker” among young Latinos, “a badge of youth rebellion to conformist association to the bad side of ‘Anglo’ culture” and “a symbol of resistance to inappropriate assimilation.”

Last year, Speaker Boehner and House Republicans decided to defend DOMA themselves after President Obama’s Justice Department halted its defense, citing the law’s unconstitutionality. Boehner hired a team of private attorneys and committed to spend as much as $1.5 million in taxpayer dollars to defend the discriminatory measure in court.

“By appointing an extremist like Robert George, Speaker Boehner is again using taxpayer funds to further an aggressively anti-gay social agenda,” said John Becker, TWO’s Director of Communications. “But his stunt may ultimately backfire with Latino voters, given George’s demonization of LGBT people and his group’s appalling use of racial politics.”

Truth Wins Out is a national nonprofit organization that fights anti-LGBT extremism, religion-based bigotry, and the “ex-gay” myth. Its goal is to create a world where LGBT people can live openly, honestly, and true to themselves. TWO monitors anti-LGBT organizations, documents their lies, and exposes their leaders. It specializes in turning information into action by organizing, advocating, and fighting for LGBT equality.

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