Press

Anti-Gay Ads are Political Ploy

Date: 
May 14, 1999

MEDIA CONTACT:
Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications
media@theTaskForce.org
646.358.1465

"It is bankrupt of the very virtues it espouses — love and compassion..."
— Kerry Lobel, Executive Director, NGLTF

Download "Calculated Compassion" Adobe Acrobat PDF
NGLTF's Kerry Lobel statement on the release of "Calculated Compassion"

May 14, WASHINGTON — The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) today sharply criticized the latest attack by right-wing groups against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. This week, right wing groups have run television advertisements entitled the "Truth In Love" campaign, produced by Coral Ridge Ministries and the Center for Reclaiming America. Running on Mother's Day in the Washington, DC media market, the ad featured the mother of an alleged "ex-gay" recalling her and her son's struggle with his homosexuality.

The multi-million dollar "Truth in Love" political campaign began last summer with a series of full-page print ads in national newspapers including the New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal. The so-called "ex-gay" movement asserts that people can be "converted" to heterosexuality by embracing fundamentalist doctrine or through "reparative therapy." These claims have been rejected by the medical community and repudiated by most national religious organizations.

"This ad campaign is simply one more weapon in the conservative arsenal of those who want to wage war against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people," said Kerry Lobel, executive director, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. "It is bankrupt of the very virtues it espouses — love and compassion."

According to the report Calculated Compassion: How the Ex-Gay Movement Serves The Right's Attack on Democracy, the movement "provides political cover for a significant new phase of the Christian Right's long-running anti-gay campaign." The three-year study is the first comprehensive examination of the political role of this movement. It was commissioned by the Boston-based research center Political Research Associates (PRA), the Policy Institute of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in Washington, D.C., and Equal Partners in Faith, a national network of religious leaders. Calculated Compassion is available online at http://www.ngltf.org/downloads/calccomp.pdf.

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The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movementís premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.