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06/25/2013

Bono sits down with Focus on the Family for veritable lovefest

by Jeremy Hooper

Just days ago, Focus on the Family president Jim Daly was once again telling gays that we "struggle sexually" and that we need to go to an "ex-gay" organization like the truly radical "Restored Hope Network." This is the same Jim Daly who recently told far-right radio host Janet Mefferd that gay people are upset with folks like him because we are in "pain" and that gay activists like me are in "battle" with the "creator of the universe." It's the same Jim Daly who has written of gay people's supposed need:

"[T]he message found within the lyrics of Born This Way is in stark contrast to the message of the Gospel. All of us are born into sin, the Bible tells us, with desires and resulting actions that separate us from God and put us at odds with His blueprint for our lives. But the Good News is we’re not hopelessly trapped in our sin and failure. Despite the fact that we were 'born this way,' each of us can be set free – from homosexuality, or heterosexual sex outside of marriage, or pornography, or greed, or gossip, or any other human shortcoming – to be the men and women God intended us to be."
[Note: After people like me noticed it, Focus on the Family scrubbed the post off their site; one backup copy can be found here]

Oh, and it's the same Focus on the Family that still—right now, to this day, on its website, under the leadership of Jim Daly—runs the following claim about gay people:

All sexual sin is wrong because it fails to mirror the Trinitarian image, but homosexuality does more than fail. It's a particularly evil lie of Satan because he knows that it overthrows the very image of the Trinitarian God in creation, revealed in the union of male and female.
This is why this issue has become such a flashpoint. It will become even more contentious because nothing else challenges this image of the Triune God so profoundly and thoroughly as homosexuality. It's not what we were made for.
[Focus on the Family]

And it's of course the same Focus on the Family that has funded some of the past four decades' biggest battles against LGBT rights

That all being true, I find this little lovefest to be more than a little concerning:

Screen Shot 2013-06-25 At 1.41.55 Pm
Screen Shot 2013-06-25 At 1.41.41 Pm
[FULL AUDIO]

Look, he can speak to whomever he wants. He surely even believes that his noble humanitarian work benefits from the widest net possible. I get and respect that.

But the fact of the matter is that this is someone who has a HUGE international profile—one that comes with a lot weight and much influence. So when this rock superstar sits down with an organization that has done considerable damage to LGBT people and that denies every single right, benefit, and protection that we seek, he is helping to raise this highly controversial organization's profile so that it can do further damage to our lives and families. That is not an overstatement. Focus on the Family is surely going to promote this as a sign of its influence and connections, which they surely hope will bring in some new cash. The U2 frontman is helping them do all this, even if unwittingly (and even if his intentions are noble).

As I said: concerning.

***

*I've created a Change.org petition. Please consider signing (and sharing).

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