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Audio: His own caller schools Tony Perkins on nondiscrimination law, gays, life

by Jeremy Hooper

When Tony Perkins opened up his phone lines and asked his callers to weigh in on these we-want-to-flout-nondiscrimination-laws-as-they-apply-to-LGBT-people notions (and proposed laws) that are in the news in a big way, he surely expected the usual chorus of supporters that he typically gets. But what he got instead is a calm, rational, informed speaker who, despite saying he believes in much of what Tony says, very much understands why denying business/public accommodations to people on the basis of their sexual orientation is a truly dangerous slippery slope that should send a chill down any freedom-loving American's spine. And the caller remains steadfast even as Tony tries to trip him up with asides about whether or not pastors have to marry gays (not up for debate), baseless claims about people not being born gay (junk science), and canards about the vendors' business decisions constituting support (since when?). Listen in:

SOURCE: Washington Watch, 2/19/14

With these new attempts to claim "victim" status while pointedly denying services to gay because we are gay, the far-right has opened up a big ol' can of credibility-draining worms. It's just so obvious to so many people! With many of the other things they've so carefully spun with their code wording, there has at least been some sort of inroad for their base to make an anecdotal argument. But with this, where they are seeking a carve out that allows one type of licensed business owner (a conservative religious person) to get around fairly enacted nondiscrimination laws as they apply to one specific group (LGBT people), the twists and turns sound that much twister and turn-ier. The facts are pretty darn cut and dry. People know what the expressed denial of service looks like.

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