Over the past few days, thanks to the "reporting" of anti-LGBT advocacy journalist Todd Starnes, there has been a minor public debate about whether or not the American Family Association is actually an anti-LGBT organization guided by animus for LGBT people and our rights. Starnes' own Fox News, in particular, has been at the forefront, hosting multiple segments on multiple programs (Fox and Friends, The Kelly File, etc.) in which outspoken AFA figures like Sandy Rios have "explained" to the at-home audience why, exactly, those of us who have observed the AFA's past few decades of aggressive advocacy have somehow had the wrong impression about the organization's constant attempts to undermine LGBT people's welfare.
When figures like Rios or, even more laughably, Bryan Fischer, attempt to spin the AFA as a mere "Christian ministry," people like me of course point out their years of jaw dropping comments and organizational actions against LGBT people's rights, protections, and basic peace of mind. Fortunately, thanks to GLAAD's Commentator Accountability Project, we have a quick rundown at our disposal.
But now I want to turn to perhaps an even more effective (and damning) tool. What follows is American Family Association founder Donald Wildmon describing that AFA's agenda in his very own words. In this piece, Wildmon notes the fact that fighting gay people's basic inclusion on TV was (and remains) at the forefront of the organization's founding mission. He also admits that the very idea of LGBT normalcy is what drives the AFA. He declares that gay people "have only one hope," which is to "change" into "ex-gays." Oh, and he says that the AFA opposes our normalcy because they "fear the judgement of God on our nation."
This is the American Family Association, as detailed by the man who birthed it:
...First, let me give you a little history of AFA's opposition to the homosexual movement. Around the time I began this ministry in 1977, homosexual rights supporters in the secular media began openly promoting homosexual behavior as morally equivalent to a heterosexual relationship.One of the very first fights in which AFA engaged was over NBC's "Love Sidney", a show which featured actor Tony Randall as a homosexual man. This was the first network TV show that featured a homosexual as the leading character. Of course, today openly homosexual prime-time characters are common on network TV. Disney/ABC's infamous "Ellen" is just one example.During the lifetime of AFA, the movement to normalize homosexual behavior has exploded on the American scene. Homosexual activists have captured the support of politicians, educational leaders, entertainment and media elite, business and sadly, many of our church leaders.I never dreamed I would see the day when sodomy would be called normal, and those who held to traditional values based on Christian teaching would be called bigots....Below I have outlined principles that guide AFA's attitude and actions in opposing the normalization of homosexuality in our society. I hope these are helpful to you and compassionate toward those who want help.PRINCIPLES WHICH GUIDE AFA's OPPOSITION TO THE HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA--The scripture declares that homosexuality is unnatural and sinful. It is a sin grievous to God and repulsive to Christians because it rejects God's design for mankind as heterosexual beings.--Though there may be many influences in a person's life, the root of homosexuality is a sinful heart. Therefore, homosexuals have only one hope of being reconciled to God and rejecting their sinful behavior - faith in Jesus Christ alone. AFA seeks to use every opportunity to promote and encourage the efforts of ex-homosexual ministries and organizations.--It is the duty of individual Christians and Christ's Church corporately to bring the gospel to homosexuals and to speak out against the acceptance of sin in our culture.--We oppose the homosexual movement's efforts to convince our society that their behavior is normal because we fear the judgement of God on our nation.--The homosexual movement is a progressive outgrowth of the sexual revolution of the past 40 years and will lead to the normalization of even more deviant behavior.--The homosexual movement's promotion of same-sex marriage undermines the God-ordained institution of marriage and family which is the foundation of all societies.--We oppose the efforts of the homosexual movement to force its agenda on our sentiments in schools, government, business and workplaces through law, public policy and media. Our strong opposition is a reaction to the homosexual movement's aggressive strategies.--We oppose the effort to convince our culture that because individuals participate in homosexual behavior, they have earned the right to be protected like racial and other minority groups.--While we are resolute in our opposition to the homosexual movement, we recognize the importance of maintaining Christian integrity in all our efforts. By God's grace we will reject the temptation to become bitter or hateful in our words or actions.--Finally, we seek faithfulness more than victory. We work with the confidence that the one true Sovereign God of the Bible will fulfill His purposes.DEFINING THE GAY AGENDA [AFA]