Press Release Published 3/22/2011
Dr. Michael Brown, author of A Queer Thing Happened to America, will discuss the release of the book and announce the launch of a nationwide campaign for religious tolerance and intellectual diversity at a Washington, DC news conference
Contact: Domenick Nati, 530-346-3342; firstname.lastname@example.org
WASHINGTON, March 22, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ — Within days of its release on March 15th, Dr. Michael Brown’s 700-page hardcover volume, A Queer Thing Happened to America: And What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been, was among the top 300 books on Amazon.com, even reaching #1 on Amazon’s “Gay and Lesbian Nonfiction” list and climbing to #3 among all “Gay and Lesbian” titles. Yet this book was considered so controversial that no major publisher was willing to touch it, even though Brown, who holds a Ph.D. from New York University, was the successful author of twenty books, and despite the fact that the book was the result of six years of meticulous research along with extensive interaction with the GLBT community.
Press Conference Details —
When: Wednesday, March 23, at 12:00 P.M.
Where: Lisagor room of the National Press Club,
529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC 20045
As Brown wrote in the Preface, “Those looking for a right-wing diatribe based on unreliable, second-hand sources will have to look elsewhere, as will those looking for an angry, mean-spirited screed. In fact, in the pages that follow, the reason there is no anger or hatred in my words is because there is no anger or hatred in my heart.” He explained that, “It is the purpose of this book to see how we got to this point in history, to examine some of the main lines of pro-gay thought, to consider the impact of gay activism on our society, and to ask the question: Where is the current trajectory taking us?”
Brown discovered, however, that even to ask that question was to ask for trouble. One conservative pundit noted that, “Book publishing is a difficult business now, and no media is willing to promote a book that opposes homosexuality. . . . Economic self-interest is going to make it very tough for a publisher to say yes.”
A conservative publisher informed Brown that, “Practically speaking [publishing the book] could actually destroy the firm,” while a top literary agent explained to Brown that he could find no secular or Christian publisher willing to touch the book: “Most thought the material was too controversial . . . all felt that the title would need to be changed.”
The representative of the head of a New York City publicity firm wrote to Brown, saying, “Unfortunately [he] spoke with his team and he doesn’t have anyone willing to take on Dr. Brown’s book,” while a publishing insider remarked: “I’d be better off burning the money in my fireplace. . . . . The economics of publishing a book like this are bleak.” Because of this, Brown’s ministry organization formed EqualTime Books, which is the publisher of A Queer Thing Happened to America.
Brown has named the speaking tour for his book “The Campaign for Religious Tolerance and Intellectual Diversity” since he feels there is an extreme intolerance — to the point of censorship — on the part of those who claim to be advocates of tolerance and diversity. Brown, who has been labeled a Nazi, a jihadist, a venom-spewing hater, and an intolerant bigot for graciously differing with the goals of gay activism, noted, “I find it ironic that people have refused to work with me because they were, in their words, ‘inclusive,’ while other groups have boycotted conservative religious speakers because they were ‘pro-diversity.'” For Brown, the goal is simple: “I want to put the information on the table and have a mutually respectful discussion with those who disagree with me.” He asks, “How can it hurt if we talk? Whatever happened to gracious, public discourse and dialogue? Is the only side to the story today the gay activist side?”
For more information about A Queer Thing Happened to America, to request a review copy, or to schedule an interview with Dr. Michael Brown, please contact: Domenick Nati, email@example.com; 530-346-3342. Brown is the host of the nationally syndicated talk radio program “The Line of Fire.” His website is: www.askdrbrown.org.
Posted in News, Sexuality & Gender Tagged with: a queer thing happened to america, Dr. Michael Brown, gay agenda, homosexuality, press release, religious freedom
Editor’s Note: Published in the Washington Post’s ‘On Faith’ section at the following link: What the Rabbi Doesn’t Get
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is not only “America’s most famous rabbi” and my frequent opponent in public debates. He is also a dear personal friend, which is why I was more than a little mystified to see his editorial in the Washington Post, published one day after our November 1 debate.
The title of that debate, as proposed by Shmuley but not to my liking, was, “Is Homosexuality America’s Greatest Moral Crisis?” In my opening comments, I answered this question in the negative, stating that America’s greatest moral crisis was certainly not homosexuality but rather the lack of the knowledge and consciousness of God, because of which every area of society suffered.
I also explained that what two gay men did in private was between them and God and was certainly not our greatest moral crisis, and I stated emphatically that rampant heterosexual divorce had done more to destroy marriage and family than all the gay activists combined. I then addressed the church’s sins against the LGBT community, for which I have publicly apologized a number of times. (Those reading Shmuley’s report on the debate would not have a clue that I made any of these statements.)
It was only after this considerable introduction that I explained that my issue was with gay activism, which was something I did not go looking for but rather something that came knocking at my door and at the door of my community. I argued that it posed a serious threat to our moral foundations and our religious freedoms, which I documented in terms of the queering of our educational system, the attack on the male-female gender binary, the implications of queer theology, the pervasive influence of the media in promoting gay-slanted values, and specific examples of the loss of religious freedoms as a result of gay activism.
My appeal to Shmuley was simple: Let’s stand together and address the sins of the predominant, heterosexual community, from pornography to materialism, as well as the negative effects of gay activism. Shockingly, rather than focus on these substantive issues, Shmuley pressed the question of whether I believed homosexual practice was on a par with incest or pedophilia. How in the world did this become the subject of the debate? (For the record, I stated that sin is sin, and that my own past sins were as bad as – or worse – than homosexuality.)
As to the alleged evangelical obsession with homosexuality (an accusation raised throughout the debate by Shmuley), I asked the almost entirely evangelical audience to respond to four questions: How many of them heard a sermon in the last year on the importance of marriage? Virtually every hand went up. The importance of devoting time and energy to the raising of their children? Same response. The dangers of sexual sin (and/or pornography)? The same response again. A sermon about gay activism? Not a single hand!
The truth be told, there is no “gay obsession” in evangelical churches, and, where pastors and leaders are concerned about the effects of gay activism, they are hesitant to speak up, lest they be branded intolerant bigots, homophobes, Hitlers, or jihadists, not to mention accused of inciting violence against gays.
Rabbi Shmuley wrote, “I argued passionately that evangelicals had become obsessed with homosexuality,” yet despite his best efforts to persuade and despite his considerable rhetorical skills, the audience was unaffected. “I could not move them,” he recounted. “Try as I might, my audience would not budge.”
Why was he so ineffective? It was simply because evangelicals have not become obsessed with homosexuality and, more broadly, because he was missing the whole point, which was not whether consensual homosexual acts were better or worse than consensual, adult incestuous acts (both are clearly proscribed in the Bible), nor was it whether we should ignore issues such as divorce, promiscuity, or materialism. Rather, the issue was this: Gay activism presents a serious moral threat to America in that it seeks to undermine the traditional family (which is already tottering through heterosexual failings), and by fighting for special LGBT rights and freedoms, the rights and freedoms of others are threatened.
Those who were present at the debate are well aware that my esteemed colleague completely skirted the issue of gay activism and refused to answer numerous direct and telling questions. Instead, almost by sleight of hand, he manufactured a misleading distraction from the real debate (“You believe that homosexuals are just like pedophiles!”) and turned a deaf ear to my appeal to join with the evangelical community in standing for comprehensive morality, upholding biblical values regardless of whether they are deemed politically correct. Worse still, he argued that homosexual acts were not moral transgressions and that a committed gay couple could have a fine, Jewish home, thereby marginalizing himself from both the evangelical community and the Orthodox Jewish world.
To watch the debate, go here: http://askdrbrown.org/about-dr-brown/itinerary/shmuley-vs-brown-debate-is-homosexual-activism-americas-greatest-moral-crisis.
Posted in Culture, News Tagged with: debate, Dr. Michael Brown, Evangelical Christianity, gay activism, homosexual activism, homosexuality obsession, Is Homosexuality America's Greatest moral crisis?, judaism, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, religious freedom
Jesus-followers from various denominations and movements have put together a document called the Manhattan Declaration, which Chuck Colson described as “a wake-up call—a call to conscience—for the church. It is also a crystal-clear message to civil authorities that we will not, under any circumstances, stand idly by as our religious freedom comes under assault.” Colson drafted the declaration along with Robert George (Professor, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University) and Timothy George (Professor, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University). The declaration is summarized on their website in the following way:
Christians, when they have lived up to the highest ideals of their faith, have defended the weak and vulnerable and worked tirelessly to protect and strengthen vital institutions of civil society, beginning with the family.
We are Orthodox, Catholic, and evangelical Christians who have united at this hour to reaffirm fundamental truths about justice and the common good, and to call upon our fellow citizens, believers and non-believers alike, to join us in defending them. These truths are:
- the sanctity of human life
- the dignity of marriage as the conjugal union of husband and wife
- the rights of conscience and religious liberty.
Inasmuch as these truths are foundational to human dignity and the well-being of society, they are inviolable and non-negotiable. Because they are increasingly under assault from powerful forces in our culture, we are compelled today to speak out forcefully in their defense, and to commit ourselves to honoring them fully no matter what pressures are brought upon us and our institutions to abandon or compromise them. We make this commitment not as partisans of any political group but as followers of Jesus Christ, the crucified and risen Lord, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
Dr. Brown had the following to say about the document:
In the words of this important declaration, this is a clarion call for us to rise up as a “truly prophetic Christian witness,” reclaiming our biblical heritage and the best elements of our historic, sacrificial witness, serving humanity as agents of good and as ambassadors of God’s grace. In this darkened and lost generation, our opportunity to shine as bright lights has never been greater. Let’s seize the moment, affixing our names to this document and investing our lives in the advancement of the Great Commission. If we don’t stand for truth and righteousness and moral sanity, who will?
The full text of the Manhattan Declaration can be found here. You can sign it by clicking here.
Posted in News, Revolution & Justice Tagged with: abortion, catholic, chuck colson, Dr. Michael Brown, evangelicals, gay marriage, Manhattan Declaration, orthodox, religious freedom
Press Release from the Alliance Defense Fund:
— An Alliance Defense Fund allied attorney filed motions with a New Hampshire court Monday asking it to reconsider and stay its decision to order a 10-year-old home-schooled girl into a government-run school in Meredith.
Although the marital master making recommendations to the court agreed the child is “well liked, social and interactive with her peers, academically promising, and intellectually at or superior to grade level” and that “it is clear that the home schooling…has more than kept up with the academic requirements of the…public school system,” he nonetheless proposed that the Christian girl be ordered into a government-run school after considering “the impact of [her religious] beliefs on her interaction with others.” The court approved the order.
“Parents have a fundamental right to make educational choices for their children. In this case specifically, the court is illegitimately altering a method of education that the court itself admits is working,” said ADF-allied attorney John Anthony Simmons of Hampton. “The court is essentially saying that the evidence shows that, socially and academically, this girl is doing great, but her religious beliefs are a bit too sincerely held and must be sifted, tested by, and mixed among other worldviews. This is a step too far for any court to take.”
The parents of the child divorced in 1999. The mother has home-schooled their daughter since first grade with curriculum that meets all state review standards. In addition to home schooling, the girl attends supplemental public school classes and has also been involved in a variety of extra-curricular sports activities.
In the process of renegotiating the terms of a parenting plan for the girl, the guardian ad litem involved in the case concluded, according to the court order, that the girl “appeared to reflect her mother’s rigidity on questions of faith” and that the girl’s interests “would be best served by exposure to a public school setting” and “different points of view at a time when she must begin to critically evaluate multiple systems of belief…in order to select, as a young adult, which of those systems will best suit her own needs.”
Marital Master Michael Garner reasoned that the girl’s “vigorous defense of her religious beliefs to [her] counselor suggests strongly that she has not had the opportunity to seriously consider any other point of view” and then recommended that the girl be ordered to enroll in a government school instead of being home-schooled. Judge Lucinda V. Sadler approved the recommendation and issued the order on July 14.
“The New Hampshire Supreme Court itself has specifically declared, ‘Home education is an enduring American tradition and right…,’” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Mike Johnson. “There is clearly and without question no legitimate legal basis for the court’s decision, and we trust it will reconsider its conclusions.”
Simmons filed his motions and supporting brief in the case In the Matter of Kurowski and Kurowski (Voydatch) with the Family Division of the Judicial Court for Belknap County in Laconia.
ADF is a legal alliance of Christian attorneys and like-minded organizations defending the right of people to freely live out their faith. Launched in 1994, ADF employs a unique combination of strategy, training, funding, and litigation to protect and preserve religious liberty, the sanctity of life, marriage, and the family.
Note: Facts in ADF news releases are verified prior to publication but may change over time. Members of the media are encouraged to contact ADF for the latest information on this matter.
Thank God for the ADF. Who else would be able to fight cases like this which infringe on our religious and parental freedoms?
Posted in Law & Politics, News Tagged with: alliance defense fund, christianity, christians, curriculum, home schooling, liberty, new hampshire, press release, religious beliefs, religious freedom
Dr. Brown wrote in his article Is There a “Civil Right” to Gay “Marriage”? that “A just-released study by The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty has also found that over 350 separate state anti-discrimination laws would likely be affected by the legal recognition of same-sex ‘marriage.’” Let’s take a look at the study in question.
The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty is a law firm based in Washington D.C. dedicated to protecting the free expression of all religious traditions. They describe themselves as “nonprofit, nonpartisan, and interfaith”, and they seek to operate in the court of law, public opinion, and academia. The study they released sought to assess how state anti-discrimination laws would affect conscientious objectors to same-sex marriage if gay marriages were legally recognized. The study can be viewed as a pdf file here: [Link to Study]
The study analyzed state laws having to do with gender discrimination, marital status discrimination, and sexual orientation discrimination. They found that “because gender discrimination laws are on the books in all 50 states, moral objections to same-sex marriage could be treated as a form of gender discrimination in every state.” For the 15 states that have marital status discrimination laws, but not sexual orientation discrimination laws, they would have a “sudden imposition of an entirely new category of anti-discrimination lawsuits if same-sex marriage were imposed.” After surveying over a thousand of these laws, they determined that “over 350 separate state anti-discrimination provisions would likely be triggered by recognition of same-sex marriage.”
Their conclusions are below (emphasis mine):
Based on this data, we conclude that if same-sex marriage is recognized by courts or legislatures, people and institutions who have conscientious objections to facilitating same-sex marriage will likely be sued under existing anti-discrimination laws—laws never intended for that purpose. Lawsuits will likely arise when religious people or religious organizations choose, based on their sincerely held religious beliefs, not to hire individuals in same-sex marriages, refuse to extend spousal benefits to same-sex spouses, refuse to make their property or services available for same-sex marriage ceremonies or other events affirming same-sex marriage, or refuse to provide otherwise available housing to same-sex couples. This wide-ranging conflict between governments and conscientious citizens would take years of litigation to resolve, assuming that it could be resolved.
From the words of a nonpartisan and interfaith public interest law firm, we see that the imposition of same sex marriage will likely result in a muzzling of our ability to live consistently with our loving and non-violent faith in Jesus. As Rob Dreher, editorial columnist for the Dallas Morning News, stated concerning the conclusion of the study: “It is not a scare tactic, or a made-up charge: there really will be a substantial effect on traditional churches, synagogues, mosques and religious institutions if gay marriage is constitutionalized.”
Posted in Law & Politics, News Tagged with: Becket Fund, Dr. Michael Brown, gay marriage, homosexuality, religious freedom, Rob Dreher