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Laurie Higgins of the Illinois Family Institute – the state affiliate of the American Family Association – is very unhappy about Dan Savage’s appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher last summer.

Two weeks ago, Higgins urged her group’s members to watch a video of Savage’s “repugnant” appearance on the show. Today, in response to criticism from a reader who was offended by the Savage/Maher video, Higgins offered a long essay titled “ Random Thoughts on the Rapacious Rainbow Revolution.”

Higgins explains in detail why she felt obligated to share the “loathsome” video because “many conservatives do not fully realize the evil nature of the enemy we fight” and “merely describing it does not adequately convey how profoundly wicked it is.” She compares her sharing of the Dan Savage video to the showing photos of Nazi concentration camps and lynchings.

“I am not equating the enormity of the evil of the Holocaust and the American genocide of pre-born babies to that of the homosexuality-affirming movement,” she clarifies. “I am, rather, illuminating the necessity of occasionally viewing the evil in our midst about which humans have a remarkable capacity to delude themselves.”

She adds that she feels she must expose the horrors that LGBT people await in the afterlife: “As Christians, however, we should remain conscious of the fact that a life of unrepentant homoerotic activity will result in eternal separation from God,” she writes. “How do we measure the magnitude of temporal suffering relative to that of eternal suffering?”

“Christians should consider whether appearing to affirm that which God abhors is pleasing to God,” she adds.

I received an email last week from a Christian who was upset that I published the loathsome video of Dan Savage even though I provided ample warning that the content was offensive. It seems appropriate, therefore, to revisit the reasons we occasionally publish either obscene hateful emails we receive, excerpts from offensive novels taught in our public schools, or video reminders of infamous homosexual “anti-bullying” bully, Dan Savage.

We do not expose the dark realities of this pernicious movement in order to be sensationalistic or titillating. We do it because Americans are inundated daily with images and words about homoeroticism intended to desensitize, sooth, and confuse. These words and images are built on a foundation of unarticulated and/or unexamined false assumptions and lies that are persuading even Christians that wrong is right.

Unfortunately, many conservatives do not fully realize the evil nature of the enemy we fight. And merely describing it does not adequately convey how profoundly wicked it is. Without a fuller apprehension of the nature and extent of the evil, many Christians are complacent and silent. Often it is only an encounter with such evil that generates a proper response from Christians.

Why view photos from Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen? Why view photos of lynchings? Why view photos of aborted babies? Why view the photo of the young napalmed Vietnamese girl? Why view photos of animals caught in steel leg traps or baby seals bludgeoned to death? Aren’t these images shocking and obscene?

I am not equating the enormity of the evil of the Holocaust and the American genocide of pre-born babies to that of the homosexuality-affirming movement. I am, rather, illuminating the necessity of occasionally viewing the evil in our midst about which humans have a remarkable capacity to delude themselves.

As Christians, however, we should remain conscious of the fact that a life of unrepentant homoerotic activity will result in eternal separation from God. How do we measure the magnitude of temporal suffering relative to that of eternal suffering?

Well, here are some other ideas on which Christians should spend some time ruminating:

· Christians should consider whether appearing to affirm that which God abhors is pleasing to God.

· Christians should consider whether affirming or appearing to affirm homoerotic activity, which the Bible teaches will prevent entrance into Heaven, is a loving act.

What dupes and cowards Christians are. What poor servants of the one who was willing to die for us. While Christ died a humiliating and horrifying death for us, we’re unwilling to endure any degree of discomfort for him. As we welcome each sophistical lie with a secret sigh of relief for being offered a rationalization to justify either our silence or capitulation, we facilitate evil. Those who experience unchosen same-sex attraction are not evil. They are sinners just like every other human-save one-who has ever existed. We all experience myriad powerful, persistent, unchosen feelings. Our task as moral beings is to figure out upon which of these feelings it is morally legitimate to act. Christians do no service to God, women, children, men, or their country when they refuse to speak the truth about homosexuality. Instead, we help push America into the historical abyss.

h/t: Miranda Blue at RWW

thepoliticalfreakshow:

Despite bitter campaigns by NOM and the Illinois Family Institute, all three GOP Illinois state legislators who voted for same-sex marriage won their primary elections yesterday, although one may face a recount. They were gonna be punished! Via the Washington Post

When the Illinois state House passed a bill to legalize gay marriage last fall, just three out of 47 Republicans voted for it. On Tuesday, none of them lost. State Rep. Tom Cross (R) cruised to a 14-point victory in the primary for state treasurer while state Rep. Ed Sullivan (R) easily won renomination in his district. The third, state Rep. Ron Sandack (R), narrowly edged out his opponent by fewer than 200 votes, according to an unofficial tally. The close margin could mean the race goes to a recount. Sandack and Sullivan both faced pressure from third-party groups looking to oust them over their gay marriage votes. In Sandack’s case, the issue became a central focus. Had the three Republicans lost, it would have probably given pause to Republicans considering backing gay marriage in other states where the matter comes up in the future. But given two decisive wins and a third tentative victory, gay rights advocates have a lot to be happy about a day after the election.

The Windy City Times had threatened legal action against the Illinois Family Institute for using their above photo of Sandack in an anti-gay flyer. Image via New Civil Rights Movement.

UPDATE: Freedom To Marry reacts. 

Last night, Illinois Republican lawmakers who voted for the freedom to marry batted a thousand in the GOP primaries. Their victories—three out of three—in spite of desperate and ugly attacks from opponents of equality show that using marriage as a wedge issue no longer works and that backing conservative principles of freedom, family, and individual liberty will prevail. Our side was smart and strategic in these races and stood up for those who stood with us. Thanks to Equality Illinois and the Illinois Unity PAC for their leadership.

h/t:  Christian Walters at Towleroad

Laurie Higgins of the American Family Association-affiliated Illinois Family Institute is a big fan of Russia’s “gay propaganda” law, and she writes today that the United States should impose a similar law here in order to restrict the work of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN).

She claims that GLSEN is behind the “censorship” of anti-gay views, because apparently bigotry is needed in schools for the sake of balance, and urges the US to adopt a Russia-style propaganda law in order to curb GLSEN’s “totalitarian” grip over schools.

Now Laurie Higgins has an extra place to spew her bigotry: Matt Barber-run BarbWire.com

h/t: Brian Tashman at RWW 

Anti-gay activists including Rush Limbaugh, Fox News’ Todd Starnes, and the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer and Tim Wildmon have been having a field day this week attacking the Grammy Awards for hosting a performance involving a mass marriage that included same-sex couples. Today, the Illinois Family Association, the state affiliate of the AFA, joined the fray, sending out an email attacking the awards show for contributing to the “destruction of marriage.”

IFI’s “cultural analyst” Laurie Higgins writes that the Grammys were “a tragic freak show” and “a gawdy[sic] spitball hurled in the all-seeing eye of a holy God.”

The wedding ceremony, Higgins writes, was “a sorry, sick, non-serious ceremony that looked like something from the garish dystopian world of the Hunger Games” and “a non-wedding festooned with all the indulgent gimcrackery [sic] of Satan’s most alluring playground: Hollywood.” She particularly attacks “homosexual faux-pastorette” Queen Latifah and “the Dorian Gray-esque” Madonna for taking part in the proceedings.

But Higgins disapproval goes beyond the same-sex marriage portion of the entertainment. She also criticizes Beyoncé — the object of a few recent tirades from the Right — for providing a “vulgar anti-woman, anti-marriage performance” that Higgins compares to “soft-core porn.”

“Beyoncé has abused her power as a beloved role model for young girls to teach them terrible lessons about sexuality and marriage,” Higgins writes. Her anger extends also to Beyoncé’s husband Jay-Z, whom she claims “seems to revel in the lustings of strangers for his wife.”

Is it money that motivates his eager embrace of his wife’s immodesty, or pride that he has access to her body when all other leering men do not?” Higgins asks. “If it’s money, how is he different from a pimp?”

 

Another reason why the IFI are a bunch of fake “Christians” and advocate very dangerous values and a threat to the humanity of the State of Illinois.

h/t: Miranda Blue at RWW

The Illinois Family Institute, the state affiliate of the American Family Association that led the unsuccessful fight against marriage equality last year, is back to fighting smaller battles, this time attacking the University of Notre Dame for officially recognizing an LGBT group.

In an open letter to Notre Dame president Rev. John Jenkins posted on IFI’s website, the group’s “cultural analyst” Laurie Higgins expresses her “disappointment” that Notre Dame has for the first time recognized a student LGBT group, or as she calls it, “those who affirm homosexual acts and acts related to gender confusion as normative and morally defensible.”

Higgins tells Jenkins that in recognizing its LGBT students, Notre Dame might as well affirm “other sin predispositions” like incest or pedophilia.

She then turns to the eternal consequences of LGBT organizing, warning that openly LGBT students will bring “nothing but temporal and eternal harm” to themselves and their colleagues.

I also want to express my disappointment that Notre Dame has chosen to recognize a “student organization” initiated and shaped by those who affirm homosexual acts and acts related to gender confusion as normative and morally defensible. In permitting an organization that affirms subjective moral propositions that defy Catholic (as well as orthodox Protestant) doctrine, Notre Dame’s distinct Catholic identity has been weakened. Would Notre Dame recognize other “student organizations” initiated by those who affirm other sin predispositions (e.g. polyamory, consensual adult incest, or the “sexual orientation” recently designated “minor-attracted persons”)?


If the Notre Dame-recognized “LGBT” organization had been initiated by those who were committed to helping “LGBT” students live lives that embody Catholic beliefs on sexuality and gender, such an organization would be a service to Notre Dame students. Unfortunately, the central goals of students who affirm a homosexual or “transgender” identity are contrary to Catholic doctrine and as such can bring nothing but temporal and eternal harm—intellectual, emotional, physical, and/or spiritual harm—to “LGBT”-identifying students and the larger Notre Dame community.

Higgins did, however, praise Jenkins for Notre Dame’s challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage mandate.

h/t: Miranda Blue at RWW

The Illinois Family Institute, a state affiliate of the American Family Association, sent an email to its members today featuring an essay by IFI’s “cultural analyst” Laurie Higgins defending Russia’s draconian “gay propaganda” law.

Higgins calls the law – which is essentially a gag rule on gay rights advocacy – “reasonable and wise” and claims that gay rights advocates oppose it because  “nothing angers homosexual activists quite like being denied access to the hearts and minds of other people’s minor children.”

She goes on to claim that anti-gay conservatives in the U.S. face far more “draconian and insidious” penalties than gay rights advocates in Russia.

Higgins joins AFA’s Bryan Fischer, who not only praised the Russian law but said it didn’t go far enough.

To further put things in perspective, note that the consequences of violating this law are only fines of $120-150 for individuals, $1,200-1,500 for “officials,” and $12,000-15,000 for “legal entities.” Hardly sounds unreasonable to fine adults $150 for trying to inculcate other people’s children with their subjective beliefs about sexual morality, but nothing angers homosexual activists quite like being denied access to the hearts and minds of other people’s minor children.

Don’t be deceived, the outrage of homosexuality-affirming activists has nothing to do with concern for critical thinking, free speech, or intellectual diversity. Proof for that claim comes from a perusal of resources presented to American teens in their government schools on the topic of homosexuality. The suppression of conservative ideas on issues related to homosexuality is virtually absolute, and the consequences for violating the de facto bans on conservative resources are far more draconian and insidious than those imposed by the Russian law. Paying a $150 fine is small potatoes compared to the kind of personal and professional repercussions that would redound to any teacher in a public school who dared to present resources to minors that articulated conservative beliefs about homosexuality.

To assault people because of their beliefs or feelings is beyond the pale, as is making inflammatory statements that express a desire that others die, experience eternal damnation, or f**k themselves (things that are hurled at any public figure who dares to express moral propositions about homosexuality with which “progressives” disagree). Prohibiting the distribution of homosexuality-affirming resources to minors is both reasonable and wise.

Laurie Higgins, your defense of bigotry is neither reasonable nor wise. 

h/t: RWW

"It isn’t enough for homosexuals to have their own offensive annual parades every June in every major city dedicated to celebrating deviance. And it wasn’t enough to ruin Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade for families with a live performance from a play that celebrates cross-dressing. No, it seems their goal is to ruin every public event for families by publicly celebrating perversion: Inquiring minds want to know if Christian leaders would remain similarly (and oddly) silent if the sin being celebrated were consensual incest or the enslavement of other humans? What should Christian leaders do when a biblical truth is dragged into the public square and into the political scene? And what should Christian leaders do when their flocks are being deceived by the pervasive dissemination of lies, including even the dissemination of lies to our littlest ones—lies which are darkening their minds and molding their hearts. If the church does not participate in exposing these lies, which are confusing even adults, who, pray tell, will?" - Laurie Higgins, head of the Illinois Family Institute, posting to their Facebook page. (Via Good As You)

H/T: Joe.My.God

(via Having lost on marriage, IL’s anti-LGBT org. takes to equating same-sex marriage with junk food - Good As You:)

The anti-LGBT Illinois Family Institute has lots of extra energy to exert these days, what with never again having to fight the now-decided battle over marriage equality. Thus they have plenty of time to make fake nutritional labels, which are neither as humorous nor as biting as they surely think.

On Tuesday, the Illinois legislature voted to make their state the 15th to allow marriage equality.
The marriage law’s primary opponent, the Illinois Family Institute, did not take it well.

In a blog post emailed to the group’s supporters last night, IFI “cultural analyst” Laurie Higgins offers her “random thoughts” on the “tragic marriage vote,” which range from warning that “public schools will teach about sexual perversion in positive ways” to declaring that “plural unions” are now “inevitable” to lashing out at pro-equality Christians to comparing marriage equality to slavery, segregation, and “Hitler’s reign of terror.” 

We can only hope that Illinois will escape the fate of Maine, which IFI told us invoked the wrath of God when it legalized marriage equality.

 Laurie Higgins and the hate group Illinois Family Institute (IFI) are a bigoted disgrace to the state of Illinois and to Christianity by whining about the outcome of Tuesday’s SB10 vote in a malicious manner.

H/T: Miranda at RWW

(via Does Illinois’ top ‘defend marriage’ group think we’re all ‘mistakes’? - Good As You:: Gay and Lesbian Activism With a Sense of Humor)

When people say “God doesn’t make mistakes" in an LGBT context, typically they mean it in a pro-LGBT way. As in, "God doesn’t make mistakes, so clearly God wanted LGBT people here for a reason." That’s the obvious application to ours, a world that clearly does feature quite a few specimens who happen to be L, G, B, or T.

So what is IFI saying with these signs? If only the kind of family that is pictured on the sign qualifies as the “right” answer to the question of life and its acceptable courses, then where does that leave the millions of humans who exist outside of the man + woman + two kids structure? Are they saying we are all “mistakes”? That our families are all errors? That we get an automatic “F” on life’s final exam?

And if God is incapable of making “mistakes” like us, then who did? I mean, clearly someone or something “made” lots of people who do not fit the IFI model, and clearly the IFI thinks God creates all life and all plans. So who do they think created us? Are they following their pals Mike Heath and Linda Jernigan and claiming that Satan is responsible? Or maybe ObamaCare?

Seriously, what are they trying to say with those signs? And more importantly, will a state legislature that is tasked with weighing the two sides of this debate dare to ask what, exactly, the state opposition group is claiming and what it means for the citizens of their great state? Because I can tell you one thing for sure: It aint just about civil marriage. They have no intention of stopping their “course correction” at just this one branch of what they clearly view as a larger cosmic “mistake.”

On Tuesday, thousands marched and rallied for marriage equality in Springfield, Illinois as the state legislature reconvened for the fall veto session. However, it’s unclear if the bill will come up for a vote, especially now that the House leadership has canceled its Thursday session, further limiting the time available for a very busy agenda. According to BuzzFeed, it won’t come up until November 5, the very last day of the veto session — if at all.

As the Windy City Times’ Tracy Baim explained last month, the situation is complicated by a behind-the-scenes strategy, such that it’s difficult to determine which lawmaker stands where on the issue until a vote is actually held. Still, there is reason to be optimistic that the bill has better chances than it did when lawmakers failed to bring it up to a vote in June. Since then, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) inUnited States v. Windsor, which nullified the position of those satisfied with Illinois’ civil unions. Some of the federal benefits now available to same-sex couples are not available to couples in civil unions, and Social Security will only be offered to couples living in marriage equality states.

The Windsor decision is having a lasting impact on public sentiment as well, according to a new poll from Equality Illinois. The poll found that 52 percent of Illinois voters support marriage equality, but when they were reminded ofWindsor and the fact that Illinois same-sex couples cannot access federal benefits, support climbed to 54 percent. Only 40 percent oppose marriage equality — a number that dipped to 39 percent when reminded of the fall of DOMA.

Opponents of marriage equality, led by the hate group-identified Illinois Family Institute, will hold their own march in Springfield Wednesday. IFI’s rhetoric is incredibly hostile, with Cultural Analyst Laurie Higgins describing homosexuality this summer as a “tyrannical, oppressive, poisonous cultural force.” She also recently compared homosexuality to theft, plagiarism, promiscuity, and substance abuse, defending anti-gay bullying in schools. IFI believeshomosexuality can be changed and even offers a guide for when married — or as IFI says, “married” — same-sex couples decide to repent of their lifestyles.

Recent marriage equality victories in other states provide guidance for how the legislation might prevail in Illinois. At Tuesday’s rally, prominent lawmakers were already leading the charge by publicly calling for the bill’s passage. Here’s a highlight reel from Progress Illinois, featuring Gov. Pat Quinn (D), Attorney General Lisa Madigan (D), and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D):

h/t: Zack Ford at Think Progress LGBT

David E. Smith, executive director of the Illinois Family Institute, a state affiliate of the American Family Association, sent out a fundraising appeal today warning that if anti-gay activists fail to stop marriage equality legislation in Illinois, “America will collapse” like Sodom and Gomorrah.

Smith compared his own fight against the “evil agenda” of gay rights to that of American soldiers in World War II: “We should be inspired to defend marriage with the same courage, conviction, tenacity, and sacrifice that the greatest generation fought to defend American principles and to honor their fallen.  If we don’t stop the enemy from achieving his goal of destroying the family, there won’t be any monuments to visit.”

As a father of six children, I often wonder what Illinois will be like in twenty years.  What will it be like for your children and grandchildren?

We cannot know for sure.  We can’t predict the future.  Only God knows for certain.

I do know, however, that things are sure to be worse, much worse for our children, if we don’t do something now to stop the moral collapse, which will be hastened if our lawmakers undermine marriage by legalizing same-sex “marriage.”

I am doing everything in my power to prevent that from happening.  I’ve put tens of thousands of miles on my car and logged weeks away from my family to fight this evil agenda in 2013, and I need your help today.

I’m not alone in making sacrifices.  Many courageous people are stepping up and doing their part, including the staff and a dozen or so dedicated volunteers at IFI.  I need you to do your part today.

The Chicago Sun Times admitted this week that Leftists are still “shy” of the votes they need to pass homosexual “marriage.”  And that is because you have refused to stay silent.  Now we must finish what we started earlier this year.  We must show up in Springfield again.  The politicians need to know how strongly you feel about this attack on common sense, reason, and decency.  They have to understand that marriage redefinition isn’t as popular as some politicians and media pundits want you to believe it is.

And our politicians need to know that we aren’t going to allow them to ignore the best interests and rights of children and individual religious liberties without a fight.  I can do no less for my children.  It is my duty.  It is our duty.

A friend told me about a group of WWII veterans from Iowa that drove all the way to Washington D.C. this week. They risked arrest by passing through the barricades set up by the president to keep veterans from viewing their monuments. We should be inspired to defend marriage with the same courage, conviction, tenacity, and sacrifice that the greatest generation fought to defend American principles and to honor their fallen.  If we don’t stop the enemy from achieving his goal of destroying the family, there won’t be any monuments to visit.  America will collapse.  It is only a matter of time.  Read Genesis 19.


H/T: Miranda Blue at Right Wing Watch

Conservative neurosurgeon Ben Carson said last week that supporters of equal marriage rights for LGBT people were “directly attacking the relationship between God and his people” and could endanger “everything else in the Bible.” Speaking to…


 

From the 09.03.2013 edition of Lutheran Public Radio’s Issues, Etc.:

National Organization for Marriage (NOM) spokeswoman Jennifer Roback Morse praised a far-right anti-gay hate group for its efforts to block marriage equality in Illinois.

In a September 3 interview on Lutheran Public Radio’s Issues, Etc., Morse praised the “good guys” of the Illinois Family Institute (IFI), a Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC)-designated hate group. Ascribing the Illinois legislature’s failure to pass marriage equality this year to the IFI’s efforts, Morse proclaimed, “God bless the Illinois Family Institute.”

[…]

The IFI not only denounces same-sex parenting under any circumstances,  but also advises parents to pull their child out of the classroom if he or she has an LGBT teacher - or, just as horrific, a teacher who teaches students that LGBT people exist.

God bless the Illinois Family Institute, indeed. Without them, we’d have a less clear idea what rabid anti-LGBT bigotry looked like.

H/T: Equality Matters