– Bryan Fischer, AFA director of issue analysis for government and public policy, 2010
With the statements that Bryan Fischer routinely makes about LGBT Americans, it’s no wonder that the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) officially made the American Family Association a ‘hate’ group in 2010. There’s certainly no shortage of right-wing Christian groups out there waiting to guide our souls in the right direction but few, if any, are as over the top as Bryan Fischer and the AFA. What better way to ring in the New Year than by taking a look back at some of Fischer’s 2011 greatest hits.
In his own charming style, Fischer recently called for the criminalization of all sexual activity that does not occur within the confines of traditional heterosexual marriage. On his Focal Point radio show, Fischer asserted that adultery, fornication and infidelity all lead to sexually transmitted diseases, making these transgressions a public health issue. If I wasn’t so sure that Fischer hates Islam as much as he hates the gay community, I’d swear that he’s calling for some form of Sharia Law right here in the United States. I know that Fischer is spreading the wealth here by raising morality issues that spill over into the heterosexual community, but don’t worry. His primary target is still LGBT America.
In August of this year, Fischer also called on all fifty states to criminalize homosexuality. Noting that every state in the union criminalized sodomy until 1962, and that it was criminalized in forty nine states until 1972, Fischer stated “there is no reason why it cannot be a criminal offense once again, absolutely none.” Fischer often uses scriptures to justify his position on this topic. This is a common tactic used by right-wing extremists. I may not be a practicing Catholic anymore, but I grew up Catholic. The funny thing is that religion is all about personal responsibility. You don’t really have to worry about what your neighbors are doing, what your friends are doing, or what your acquaintances are doing. Just take care of yourself. Worry about what you are doing. The whole notion of the government policing people’s private lives and legislating morality has come about because the line separating church and state has not just been blurred; it’s virtually been erased.
Perhaps the American Family Association might want to reconsider this whole idea of criminalizing adultery and fornication. One blogger stated that millions of people across the nation would be in prison if the AFA had its way. I have an even more tantalizing thought: Probably more than half of our public servants would be in prison and, given the GOP predilection for hypocrisy, I’m thinking a good portion of the incarcerated would be Republicans. Everyone knows that the AFA needs the GOP in its ballpark. Hell, if we make the law retroactive, we should be able to put Newt in prison right now. Three marriages. Three life sentences. But I digress here. Let’s get back to Bryan Fischer’s assault on gays and lesbians.
My personal all time favorite Bryan Fischer allegation is that gays present a heightened security risk for the United States. His rationale for this claim is that “homosexuals are subject to more pathologies than the rest of the populace.” That’s why gays and lesbians should not be allowed to serve in the military or be trusted with sensitive national security information. Of course, like many other right-wing Christian nut cakes, Fischer never backs up his premises with actual facts. Fischer has spoken out against the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, calling it a “treasonous” act that leaves America “with a military comprised of sexual deviants.”
Earlier this year when Peter Vidmar was forced to resign as the U.S. Olympic Committee’s chef de mission for the 2012 games because he participated in two anti-gay marriage demonstrations and donated money in support of California’s Prop 8 amendment, Fischer equated his resignation with a ‘hate crime.’ On the AFA Rightly Concerned blog, Fischer wrote, “For his belief in the laws of nature and nature’s God, Peter Vidmar has become the victim of a hate crime, perpetrated by homosexuals. This criminal prejudice against Vidmar is criminal prejudice against his religious belief, the teaching of the LDS [Mormon] church that marriage is sacred and reserved for the union of one man and one woman. Due to intense pressure from the thugs in the homosexual movement, Vidmar was forced to resign his position.” Based on the Vidmar resignation, Fischer went on a tirade, accusing LGBT activists of being the primary perpetrators of hate crimes. This was based on the fact that LGBT activists questioned whether or not Vidmar was the best person for the job given his position on LGBT equality. From a legal perspective, Fischer doesn’t know what he’s talking about. A crime, say murder or assault, must first be committed.
When you talk real facts on hate crimes, statistics prove that Fischer is, to put it bluntly, full of shit. The fact is that LGBT community is the group most victimized by hate crimes. In fact, LGBT Americans are 2.6 times more likely to be attacked than blacks; 4.4 times more likely than Muslims; 13.8 times likely than Latinos; and 41.5 times more likely than whites. In addition, gay and lesbian youth are the most likely targets of bullying.
It really is too bad that harassment alone is not classified as a hate crime. If it were, Bryan Fischer would be serving a life term based on the garbage coming from his mouth just since May of this year. Instead, we’ll just call him nine condoms short of a full pack.