Houston Anti-LGBT Leader Attacks Boy Scouts (Again)

Dave Welch, head of the rabidly anti-LGBT Houston Area Pastor Council, is spittle-spewing angry that the Boy Scouts of America is changing its name to Scouts BSA and allowing girls to join. Read More

Faith leaders teach that lying is a sin. So why do religious-righters distort the truth so shamelessly in pushing their extreme political agenda? You can see at least two big examples in Texas right now.

One of the biggest falsehoods religious-right groups are pushing right now is the claim that Margaret Sanger founded Planned Parenthood to help exterminate the African-American population through abortion and other methods. Today the right-wing Texas Pastor Council, a political front group run by odious hate-monger Dave Welch, tweeted a partial quote from Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger:

“We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population.”

We won’t help spread this nonsense by posting the full tweet here, but you can see it at the link above. The tweet includes a photograph and a phone number activists can call to demand that the Smithsonian Institution remove a bust of Sanger.

But wait. Did Sanger want to exterminate African Americans? Of course not. And PolitiFact has already debunked that claim as a ridiculous lie. It did so more than four years ago when checking a similar claim from Herman Cain, then a Republican presidential candidate. Cain had claimed that Planned Parenthood was guilty of genocide for planning to “kill… Read More

Religious-righters are twisting and redefining “religious liberty” so much that the term itself is in danger of becoming almost meaningless. Fortunately, a growing number of mainstream religious leaders from around the state are calling out the nonsense. The latest battleground: public subsidies (such as vouchers) for religious schools.

The rabidly anti-gay, religious-right group Houston Area Pastor Council, which also goes by the name Texas Pastor Council and U.S. Pastor Council, is leading the effort to repeal the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO). The group, led by one of Houston’s most vicious anti-gay activists, Dave Welch, claims that barring discrimination against people because of who they are or whom they love violates the religious freedom of people to, well, discriminate.

Then last week Welch’s group filed a brief with the Texas Supreme Court arguing that the failure of the state to provide taxpayer funding to faith-based schools is also a violation of religious freedom. The brief is for a major court long-running case on whether the way Texas funds its public schools violates the state Constitution. The Pastor Council argues, in part:

The total and complete exclusion of religious providers from the public education system severely implicates religious liberty, whereas their inclusion clearly does not violate religious liberty or the Establishment Clause per… Read More

Religious-right opponents of Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO) announced today that they will continue their legal fight for the right to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

A state court on April 17 ruled that HERO opponents had failed to gather enough valid signatures on a petition to put repeal of ordinance up for a public vote. At a press conference and in a press release this afternoon, the far-right Houston Area Pastor Council and its supporters announced plans to appeal that court ruling. The hateful press release repeats the usual fear-mongering about transgender people using public restrooms and claims that Mayor Annise Parker is guilty of “tyranny and lawlessness.”

Well, they should know something about lawlessness. The court found that many of the signatures on their anti-HERO petition were forgeries or illegible, among other serious irregularities. The ruling that HERO opponents failed to follow the law came after lengthy and very detailed analysis of the petition signatures by a jury and the presiding judge.

The City Council voted to pass HERO in May 2014. City officials finally implemented HERO’s provisions after the April 17 court ruling. HERO bars discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression as well as race, religion, gender,… Read More

Religious-right activists are now directly attacking the faith of elected city officials in Plano in an increasingly vitriolic campaign to repeal the North Texas city’s new anti-discrimination ordinance.

The ordinance, passed in December, bars discrimination against LGBT people in employment, housing and public accommodations. Religious-right activists have been trying for weeks to frighten Plano residents by arguing that the ordinance will endanger women and children in public restrooms.

Those deceitful appeals to fear and bigotry are appalling. But the far-right Texas Pastor Council/Houston Area Pastor Council is also suggesting that God supports discrimination. In an email to activists today, the group even uses violent rhetoric in charging that Plano’s mayor and City Council members who support the ordinance have rejected God:

“Remember, it is Mayor Harry LaRosiliere and the five city council members who railroaded this ordinance through with complete disrespect to the community and good government practices who ‘threw the first punch.’ LaRosiliere and the council declared that God either doesn’t exist or His word is false and that even basic biological facts are up for grabs. They assaulted the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God – not us.”

Attacking the religious faith of those who support equality for all is repugnant. Texas Gov.-elect Greg Abbott, who receivedRead More

Texas Rising

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