Tony Perkins

Tony Perkins (Family Research Council) is famous for his divisive rhetoric. Everything is us vs. them. When it comes to raising money for his hate group he ratchets up the hyperbole.

Anger is an important motivational tool. We do the same thing — hopefully more truthfully and we are not perpetually pissed off. Okay, I am perpetually pissed off but I’m not asking for money and I try hard to be accurate, correcting from time to time any factual misadventures.

Perkins’ latest missive is titled: “Help expose Fake News for what it is-attacks on faith, family, and freedom. Perkins seems to forget that the phrase fake news was probably coined by those who saw the spread of untrue propaganda to bolster the campaign of Donald Trump (who Perkins supported), usually by claiming that Hillary Clinton did something awful (which she did not do). I cannot recall Mr. Perkins, for example, denying the preposterous Pizzagate conspiracy which was widely distributed.

Perkins first attacks the media:

Sadly, the Progressive Left, which overwhelmingly controls the media, manipulates the news to advance abortion-on-demand, homosexual rights, and attacks on Christianity.

With your prayers and financial contributions, we will call out the Lies of the Left.

♫Bringing in the sheaves.♫

Perkins has clearly (and willfully) confused news and editorial content. Easy to do if you are Tony Perkins because he often states opinion as fact. Do the New York Times and Washington Post get their facts wrong every now and then? Sure but I defy Perkins to provide any evidence that either paper has done so intentionally. Their editorial pages tend to support LGBT and reproductive rights but that is not fake news. If fact it’s not news at all. It is opinion. Attacks on Christianity? That is nonsense lacking in evidence.

The public believes that the media is liberal (along with academia). Maybe so and maybe not. The impact of Fox News, World Net Daily, Breitbart and the Wall Street Journal cannot be understated. There are many conservative dailies. Possible editorial bias is different from manufacturing news, something Perkins offers no evidence of.

It’s science, science, science:

One of the Left’s classic maneuvers is their claim to be “the party of science.”

This assertion is made for one purpose: to silence people of faith. You see, they don’t really think conservatives believe in science.

Nothing could be further from the truth! We do believe in the value and contribution of science and research, but we believe in real scientific studies, not fake ones that brazenly support a hard-Left agenda.

We believe science shows us that babies feel pain, life begins at conception, children do better being raised by their biological mom and dad, and that homosexuality greatly increases the chance of suicide.

The “Left” does not define a party. Some people of faith do sometimes prioritize religion over science. The greater the faith, the more that they seem to do so. I take this case by case rather than in the aggregate. Perkins is basically saying that he believes in science when it conforms to his religious beliefs. Science is not a belief system. Science is based upon evidence. I, for example, generally accept a scientific consensus based upon peer-reviewed research published to mainstream scholarly journals.

I presuppose that articles posing as research that are not published to respect journals subjecting submissions to peer review are junk science unless proven otherwise. A good example of this would be the anti-LGBT articles written by Paul R. McHugh, Lawrence Mayer and Paul Hruz which are “published” to a pretentious conservative Christian blog with neither editorial nor peer review.

Getting back to the statement, no one doubts that babies feel pain. Perkins is probably referring to fetuses. The scientific consensus is that they feel pain starting at about 27 to 28 weeks. Conservatives often claim 20 weeks. As for when life begins, that is an ideological question — one of belief in contrast to science. Children often do better when raised by their biological mom and dad compared to other forms of parenthood including single parents and, perhaps, step parents. That is not always the case. Consider, for example, a single parent who has divorced an abusive spouse.

Perkins is a hate group leader. He is referring to same-sex couple. All of the evidence (there’s that word again) points to the conclusion that the children of gay couples are as healthy, happy and secure as their peers raised in traditional families. There is no contradictory study including that of Mark Regnerus who did not study children raised by gay parents, let alone married gay parents.

On his closing claim, I defy Perkins to support with evidence the notion that homosexuality causes suicide. It is contemptible nonsense. Gays might have a higher suicide rate but it is not because they are gay. Rather, it is because of the oppression and persecution that they experience because they are gay. That oppression and persecution is orchestrated by hate mongers like Tony Perkins who think that people should not be gay and can make a choice not to be gay. What was that about science?

Perkins’ constituency probably accepts this bullshit at face value. For the nine months ended June 30, 2016 (it’s a short year due to an initial change in the fiscal year) FRC had revenues of about $12 million. That comes from somewhere. I suspect that the subject email is proven to work. Religious conservatives tend to be less curious and will probably accept Perkins’ prevarications at face value. It is all rather cynical which doesn’t seem to be very, well … Christian.

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.