NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–In 1972, some 200 homosexual-rights activists met in Chicago to plan their strategy for what was then a fledging movement. Calling themselves the “National Coalition of Gay Organizations,” they adopted a platform of 17 goals for implementation on the federal and state level.
So far, their strategy is working.
Goal No. 1: prohibit discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations. Goal No. 2: remove the ban on homosexuals serving in the military. Goal No. 6: implement same-sex education courses in schools, where homosexuality will be considered a “viable alternative to heterosexuality.”
The Chicago group has since been replaced by another generation of homosexual activists who have many of the same goals. The new groups comprise the alphabet soup of homosexual activism: GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and NLGJA (National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association), just to name a few.
“It’s an agenda that’s ever-progressive,” said Jerry Flowers, a vocal opponent of a sexual orientation preference bill in Nashville, Tenn. “It’s very libertarian and very secular-humanistic. Anything goes.”
Flowers is a former senior vice president of Gaylord Entertainment who has angered some friends for his public stance against homosexual rights. Now self-employed, he travels around Nashville, giving public speeches about the homosexual movement. He began educating himself on the issue after stumbling across the 1972 Chicago platform. He was shocked by its content.
State goal No. 3: abolish prostitution laws. State goal No. 7: repeal age of consent laws. State goal No. 8: rescind marriage laws, thus allowing same-sex polygamy.
“Christians are uninformed,” Flowers said. “We don’t know what’s going on out there. … A lot of times there’s been an assumption that it really doesn’t bother me because it’s just the gay community.”
Flowers said a handful of groups are at the forefront of the homosexual-rights movement:
–National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF)
The NGLTF website states that the organization works for “the civil rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people, with the vision and commitment to building a powerful political movement.”
It is one of the leading organizations promoting homosexual “marriage.” Following a recent congressional bill promoting fatherhood, NGLTF posted a statement on its website arguing that “marriage and father involvement in the raising of a child should be determined by the individual parents and the courts, not mandated by the federal government.”
Activist courts are integral in the homosexual-rights movement, Flowers noted. “That’s why you see so much widespread resistance to conservative judges,” he said. “The last thing they want is a public referendum.”
— The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD)
GLAAD “is dedicated to promoting and ensuring fair, accurate and inclusive representation of people and events in the media as a means of eliminating homophobia and discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation,” its mission statement reads.
Said Flowers: “They’re the ones that write the nice press releases and shape the message and package the message so that it’s more palatable to as many people as possible.”
— Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG)
Part of PFLAG’s mission is to educate the “ill-informed.”
Its mission statement reads: “PFLAG promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered persons, their families and friends through: support, to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights. [PFLAG] provides opportunity for dialogue about sexual orientation and gender identity, and acts to create a society that is healthy and respectful of human diversity.”
PFLAG is one of the groups pushing for homosexual-education in the public schools, Flowers said.
“It claims to be an organization of parents and friends who support gay and lesbian students, particularly children and adolescence,” he said. “They’re the ones who are leading the push into the public schools to work on the curriculum [and] to eliminate what they view as intolerance and bigotry.”
— Lambda Legal
“Lambda Legal carries out its legal work principally through test cases selected for the likelihood of their success in establishing positive legal precedents that will affect lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, the transgendered, and people with HIV or AIDS,” its mission statement reads.
Lambda and the American Civil Liberties Union are the two primary legal bodies representing the homosexual-rights movement, Flowers said.
“[Lambda is] predominantly campus-based … in law departments,” he said. “There are chapters everywhere, but their real push comes out of law departments of schools like Vanderbilt.”
— National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA)
NLGJA is an organization that “works from within the journalism industry to foster fair and accurate coverage of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues,” according to its website.
NLGJA publishes a style guide for media members intended as a supplement to the Associated Press Stylebook, which is used by media members across the nation as a reference for such categories as spelling, capitalization and punctuation.
NLGJA, in attempting to shape coverage of homosexual issues, says that the word “homosexual,” for instance, should be rarely used. It defines homophobia as “fear, hatred or dislike of homosexuality, gay men and lesbians.”
— American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
Easily the most well-known of the groups, the ACLU has a large legal team devoted solely to homosexual-rights issues.
Its website boasts that it has backed homosexual rights since the 1960s, although many goals remain unachieved.
“No federal law prevents a person from being fired or refused a job on the basis of sexual orientation,” the website reads. “The nation’s largest employer — the U.S. military — openly discriminates against gays and lesbians. Mothers and fathers still lose child custody simply because they are gay or lesbian. And gay people are still denied the right to marry in all states.”
Said Flowers: “They have page after page of initiatives on gay rights.”