For those of you who do not know Scott Lively, I can give you the most simplistic description: He’s another right-wing nut cake spreading lies and fear about LGBT Americans. However, that may be a bit too simplistic. More specifically, Lively is the president of the Abiding Truth Ministries, a Christian conservative organization based in Temecula, California. (It should be called the Blatant Lies Ministries.) Abiding Truth Ministries is classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Scott Lively is also directly connected to the anti-gay legislation in Uganda, which would make homosexual activity punishable by a lengthy prison sentence or death. Lively is the co-author (with Kevin Abrams) of The Pink Swastika, which poses the notion that homosexuals are the true inventors of Nazism, a preposterous position that Jonathan Zimmerman, a historian at New York University, states is a “flat-out lie.”
I’m a member of the lesbian American community, so let me give Mr. Lively a little history lesson on the holocaust. The pink triangle, today an international symbol of gay pride, did indeed originate in Nazi Germany. However, contrary to Livelys assertions, the pink triangle was used to identify male prisoners who were sent to concentration camps because they were deemed to be homosexuals. During the Nazi reign of terror, more than 100,000 men identified as homosexuals were arrested. Most of those convicted were sent to prison, while somewhere between 5,000 to 15,000 were sent to concentration camps. Some underwent castration to win their release from the camps. Others were either mutilated or murdered in the ‘medical experiments’ conducted by Nazi doctors, who insisted that homosexuality was a disease that could be ‘cured.’ Livelys assertion that Adolph Hitler was himself a homosexual is another outright lie. In fact, Hitler prescribed the death penalty for those police and SS members who were found to be indulging in gay activity.
Scott Lively has a penchant for lying because it serves the purpose of his supposed ministries. In a recent video, Lively makes the accusation that gay-straight alliances found in schools exist for the purpose of recruiting America’s youth to the homosexual lifestyle. In the video Lively states:
“When you see the kids who get wrapped up in this, they’re the misfits for the most part. They’re the kids who don’t have friends in other places. They’re chubby or they’ve got too much acne, or they’re socially awkward. And then the gay-straight alliance club reaches out to these kids and brings them in, and then they start adopting a gay identity. And then they will take these kids out – wherever there are these clubs in the schools – there’s almost always homosexual community centers, gay and lesbian community centers, usually taxpayer-funded these days, where they will go after school and in the evenings where they meet up with adult homosexuals.”
Livelys pack of outrageous lies plays into the worst fears of the right-wing Christians who live their lives in strict accordance to the Bible because they have absolutely no individual ideas of their own, or no ability to form their own rational judgments. (And Lively knows it.) It plays into the fear that children are being ‘indoctrinated’ into the ‘gay lifestyle.’ It plays into the notion that children are subjected to ‘pedophilia’ by asserting that these children are introduced to ‘adult homosexuals.’ Here are the facts about gay-straight alliances and the purpose that they serve in our schools.
The purpose of gay-straight alliances is to provide a safe and supportive environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) youth and their straight allies. The goal is to make the school community safe for everyone regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. They are student organizations who do indeed work with the Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network (or GLSEN) as stated by Lively. However, they are largely student formed, and the students who form these alliances have already identified themselves as members of the LGBT community and are simply seeking a supportive oasis in a school environment that can be quite hostile. It is not, as Lively asserts, a question of adult homosexuals recruiting children and making them homosexual. There are simple facts that Scott Lively is either not aware of or not interested in acknowledging because they do not benefit his ‘heterosexual agenda.’
According to the National Youth Association:
- 9 out of 10 LGBT students have experienced harassment at school;
- LGBT teens are bullied 2-3 times as much as straight teens;
- LGBT youth are 4 times as likely to attempt suicide as their straight peers;
- LGBT youth who are ‘out’ at school are at a higher risk for bias-related violence, including physical assault;
- Most teachers are committed to creating safe and supportive learning environments.
People from all walks of life – politicians, professional athletes, business people – have acknowledged this problem and are taking part in a new campaign called ‘It Gets Better‘. At the very opening of the ‘It Gets Better’ web site you are asked to take the following pledge:
Everyone deserves to be respected for who they are. I pledge to spread this message to my friends, family and neighbors. I’ll speak up against hate and intolerance whenever I see it, at school and at work. I’ll provide hope for lesbian, gay, bi, trans and other bullied teens by letting them know that “It Gets Better.”
The hateful lies spread by Scott Lively and his minions are the reasons gay-straight alliances are necessary to begin with.
Reading List of Actual Facts