|Tony Perkins of FRC|
When the Justice Department is done violating journalists' First Amendment rights, it looks like they'll move on to employees'. In a chilling memo to DOJ staff, the Obama administration is warning managers that they'd better start embracing homosexuality--or else. The email, which a Justice employee leaked to Liberty Counsel, is a scary reminder of how far this administration will go to crush free speech and expression in America.
In advance of June, the DOJ is priming its staff for a four-week in-your-face "gay pride" celebration that demands, not only the participation of--but affirmation by-- all staff. Based on this new directive, "LGBT Inclusion at Work: The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Managers," it's no longer acceptable to be quiet or even neutral on homosexuality. In a not-so-veiled threat, the administration tells staff that when it comes to homosexuality and cross-dressing, "Silence will be interpreted as disapproval."
That's absolutely outrageous. Even criminals have the right to remain silent! President Obama's so-called Department of Justice is actually telling workers that there's no place in the government for people with unspoken objections to homosexuality. In fact, writes NRO's Ian Tuttle, "there is no longer a place even for private, unexpressed disapproval..."
Forget tolerance. The DOJ wants--and expects--vocal support for sexual deviance. Nowhere is that more evident than in this latest list of "DO"s and "DON'T"s, which includes some eye-opening advice for staff leaders. "DO assume that LGBT employees and their allies are listening to what you're saying" (sound ominous?) "and will read what you're writing (whether in a casual email or in a formal document)." "DO attend LGBT events sponsored by DOJ Pride" and decorate your office accordingly. "DO display a symbol in your office (DOJ Pride sticker)." "DO use a transgender person's chosen name and the pronoun that is consistent with the person's self-identified gender." "DO use inclusive words like 'partner,' 'significant other,' or 'spouse' rather than gender-specific terms."
It's hilarious how FRC claims that the brochure in question was "leaked." Makes the entire situation sounds ominous doesn't it? Don't be fooled by FRC's shuck-and-jive. There are certain facts about the brochure that FRC omitted. According to Ed Brayton of Free Thought Blogs:
First of all, this is a pamphlet of “practical tips to help managers create a truly inclusive workplace climate.” It’s not a set of commandments delivered from Mt. Sinai. It wasn’t even sent out by DOJ officials, it was sent out by DOJ Pride, the Association of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Employees of the U.S. Department of Justice and Their Allies.
In his post, Brayton was calling attention to the fact that another religious right spokesperson, Matt Barber of the Liberty Counsel, was distorting the brochure. Brayton especially called attention to the fact that Barber was cherry-picking portions of the pamphlet to make it seem more ominous.
Apparently FRC is doing the same thing. No matter how FRC attempts to make the brochure (this one) sound like a dangerously forced directive on behalf of the DOJ, it's really not. The brochure informs DOJ employees of the simple fact that some of their fellow employees are lgbt and gives tips as to how to behave towards them.
And really, what's wrong with that?
I think FRC's last statement on the matter gives a key to the entire matter:
As FRC has said for years, this debate has never been about tolerance. It's about forced acceptance. President Obama admitted as much when he praised the NBA's Jason Collins. Read what he said when Collins announced he was gay: "The LGBT community deserves full equality, not just partial equality. Not just tolerance."
On that score, I would say that FRC is partly right. Lgbt equality has never been about tolerance. You tolerate your pets having accidents on the carpet. You tolerate traffic jams. You even tolerate the slow cashier who makes you wait in a grocery store. But no one has the right to think that they are so superior that they should tolerate a fellow human being merely attempting to live his or her life.
Nor is lgbt equality about forced acceptance. To a degree, it's never been about acceptance but respect of a fellow human being. And with that respect comes the knowledge that your sexual orientation - gay, straight, or bisexual - does not put you on a pedestal where you have the patent to concepts like "family," "morality," or "love."
FRC seems to think that those who believe as it does do in fact have a patent to those concepts. That's all well and good if the organization wants to follow that delusion. However, FRC doesn't have the right and will never have the right to force the lgbt or our allies to live under that same delusion.