Over the past 10 years, with Tony Perkins as its head and chief spokesman, the FRC has been a leader in defending traditional family values, speaking out convincingly against abortion, pornography, divorce, legalized gambling, and many other issues that impact the stability of families in America.
What is driving the “Faithful America” group’s animus toward Perkins, however, is his unquestioned leadership in the efforts to preserve marriage in America, specifically his vocal opposition to the legalization of homosexual marriage, an issue for which he is often called upon to comment on such MSNBC programs as Hardball With Chris Matthews, the Ed Show, and Weekends With Alex Witt.
In its petition, “Faithful America” noted that FRC has been labeled a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center, solely for its efforts to warn of the dangers of allowing homosexual couples to be designated as “families.” It complained that MSNBC had essentially ignored the SPLC’s self-serving “hate group” hunt, having invited Perkins on network news shows a record 23 times since the dubious designation.
“MSNBC has built its business on progressive viewers,” insisted the homosexually-inclined “faith” group about the network, “and they need to hear that we find it unacceptable to provide an unquestioning platform for the religious right’s hatred and fear-mongering.”
In a press release the group boasted that it had delivered 20,000 petition signatures to MSNBC, demanding that the network silence Perkins’ reasoned voice. “We’re here today, because Tony Perkins doesn’t speak for us,” declared group spokesman Michael Ellick, implying that he and the 20,000 supposed petitioners spoke for the multiplied millions of Americans who truly cherish Judeo-Christian values.
“We’ve got teenagers killing themselves because of what groups like this are saying,” shot Gene Robinson from the hip, with no evidence whatsoever to back up his claim. The homosexual bishop added that he and his group wanted MSNBC to consider “other Christian voices … even conservative Christian voices, but just not those associated with what is clearly a hate group.” What Robinson meant, of course, is that the only “Christian” voices he and “Faithful America” would welcome on MSNBC and other networks are those that endorse the clearly un-Christian view that homosexual behavior is compatible with the faith of Scripture.
Thus far neither Tony Perkins nor FRC has felt inclined to respond to the attack by the pro-homosexual group — observers say most likely because, having been in the thick of the battle for the family and Judeo-Christian values for so many years, they are used to such baseless charges.
As for the officials at MSNBC, they may be more inclined to buckle under the pressure, in light of their recent response to another longtime conservative commentator who has often found himself under assault from liberal groups for his views. Pat Buchanan — who over the past decades has often had to deflect charges that he is racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic — was dropped on February 16 as a regular commentator on MSNBC four months after he was suspended for the publication of his latest book, Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025? The book, which includes such provocative chapter titles as “The End of White America” and “The Death of Christian America,” gave his critics an entry point to re-energize their attacks against him.
Ari Rabin-Havt of Media Matters, a liberal mouthpiece thinly disguised as a media watchdog group, charged that Buchanan’s book “was not his first, nor his worst offense. He’s been making the same racially insensitive, anti-Semitic and homophobic statements for the past 50 years.” Similarly, the ultra-liberal Anti-Defamation League has long contended that Buchanan “publicly espouses racist, anti-Semitic, anti-Israel and anti-immigrant views.” The ADL’s Abraham Foxman quipped that “I think he outed himself in the book and that’s the straw that convinced a lot of people that what we were saying was true.”
Buchanan himself countered: “Consider what it is these people are saying. They are saying that a respected publisher, St. Martin’s, colluded with me to produce a racist, homophobic, anti-Semitic book, and CNN, Fox News, C-SPAN, Fox Business News, and the 150 radio shows on which I appeared failed to detect its evil and helped to promote a moral atrocity.”
In announcing his firing from MSNBC, Buchanan wrote on his blog site: “My days as a political analyst at MSNBC have come to an end. After 10 enjoyable years, I am departing, after an incessant clamor from the left that to permit me continued access to the microphones of MSNBC would be an outrage against decency, and dangerous.”
Last month MSNBC president Phil Griffin laid the foundation for the suspended Buchanan’s termination, declaring that the ideas about the destruction of American ideals he discussed in the book “aren’t really appropriate for national dialogue, much less the dialogue on MSNBC.” However, upon the announcement of Buchanan’s firing the network said, simply, that “after 10 years, we have decided to part ways with Pat Buchanan. We wish him well.”
While thus far MSNBC has issued no answer to the attack on Tony Perkins and demands to ban him from its programs, one might reasonably expect a similar response after the network’s higher-ups have had a chance to weigh the potential fallout from ignoring the noisome clamor of the pro-homosexual voices at “Faithful America.”