Sunday, June 19, 2016

ABC Rightly Dumps Tony Perkins From Sunday News Show

I and many others have been arguing for years that no reputable news channel should ever offer a platform to hate group leader Tony Perkins who has documented white supremacist ties and who heads an organization certified as an anti-gay hate group.  Indeed, recently a petition was launched making this argument.  Now, finally, someone at ABC News finally got the message as Perkins was unceremoniously dropped from a panel on The Week that was to discuss the Orlando massacre.   For years Perkins has been preaching anti-gay animus and outright lies yet time and again he'd be given a platform.. Seriously, would someone who advocated lynching blacks or murdering Jews have been given a platform?  Think Progress looks at what will hopefully become a trend among news organizations and cause Perkins and his like to be banned from networks that want to be considered responsible and interested in objective fact.  Here are highlights:
This week, a prominent news agency considered offering a platform to the leader of an anti-LGBT hate group to discuss the Orlando shooting, then quietly dropped him from the show without ever mentioning that it was a bad idea in the first place.
On Friday morning, ABC News released a preview of its guest line-up for This Week, its Sunday morning political talk show. Among those listed to join the “Powerhouse Roundtable” was Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council (FRC).
FRC has long been identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a prominent anti-LGBT hate-group, and Perkins himself has a notorious reputation for his anti-LGBT vitriol. Though he often tames his rhetoric in mainstream news appearances to sound like his anti-gay views represent all U.S. Christians, he then tells FRC’s audiences things like that homosexuality leads to “eternal damnation” and is “harmful” to individuals “and to society as a whole.”
In the past, FRC spokespeople have even tried to blame other shootings on the advance of LGBT equality.
The group Faithful America quickly launched a petition calling on ABC to drop Perkins from the lineup. Noting that Perkins “has repeatedly accused gay men of molesting children,” the petition also pointed out that no other Christian leader was scheduled to offer a different perspective on behalf of people of faith. This is a recurring problem in media; evangelicals and other conservative Christians are over-represented in media appearances, but progressive faith voices and representatives from the Humanist, atheist, and agnostic communities are severely underrepresented.
Southern Poverty Law Center has a rundown of the vile things Perkins regularly says about the LGBT community here.  Perkins and his hate-filled followers truly need to become social and political lepers who are shunned by decent, moral people and by politicians who want to be considered anything more than demagogues and/or pandering whores. 

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