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01/07/2013

'I will never stop threatening legitimacy of my own movement!' vows Liberty Counsel's Barber

by Jeremy Hooper

In one of the more telling turns that is meant for demonization but that will ultimately self-marginalize the anti-gay far right even further, Liberty Counsel attorney Matt Barber is trying his absolute best to rebrand California's ban on the junk science that is "reparative therapy" as the "Jerry Sandusky law":

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It is one of those overreaches that even the more overheated anti-LGBT voices would never get behind. Matt's basic argument (as it were) is that gays are often molested "into" being gay, so not "stopping" or "changing" gays poses a threat to children. I kid you not—that is why he is using this moniker. That, and because he hopes that by invoking one of the most loathed names in the American consciousness, he will be able to attach a similar sentiment to LGBT people and our associated movement, in hopes that the associated hostilities will befall our fates.

This is such an obvious highlight of the typical anti-LGBT playbook. They are always trying to transfer sentiment on to us, in hopes that their misidentification will seep into the conversation and put us on the defensive. It's been happening for decades, though in recent years it has grown more subtle.

But now here comes Matt, bluster a'blazing, trying to tell people that the principled resistance against a form of quackery that has no credible scientific backing is somehow like emboldening a convicted pedophile. As I said, even the more overheated anti-LGBT voices who care at all about political pragmatism would never get behind this ludicrous game, because (a) they know it is a step too far even more a movement that regularly goes too far and (b) they know that it too fully shows the hand of theirs, a movement that depends on rhetorical transference. Yet Matt, an employee of the very organization leading the opposition to the California ban, is all like "screw pragmatism—I got a WorldNetDaily base to rile up!" Once again, he's acting like the rhetorical bully that he so strangely (and humorously) prides himself on being, satiating his own unique needs at the expense of the movable middle.

By taking his typically rogue approach, Matt is violating the political "do no harm" rule and realistically threatening the relevancy of his own movement. I, for one, hope he never quiets down!

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