Jennifer Roback Morse of the National Organization for Marriage’s Ruth Institute is the latest conservative to object to GLAAD’s Commentator Accountability Project for raising media awareness that her views are anti-gay. Jeremy Hooper has already documented everything she gets wrong about the actual campaign, but at the core of her argument is the claim that opposing gay rights and being “anti-gay” are not the same thing:
Evidently GLAAD believes that raising legitimate questions about the group’s preferred policies automatically makes a person “anti-gay.” But surely one can disagree with policies advocated by the National Education Association without hating every teacher in America, just as one can surely oppose policies advocated by the NAACP without being a racist.
Redefining marriage raises questions that deserve to be fully aired. Trying to discredit skeptics changes the subject. Equating all disagreement with evidence of bias lowers the intellectual level of the discussion. These rhetorical tactics do not do the gay lobby any credit. In fact, responsible people of all parties should shun these strategies and make room for honest debate on this momentous question of changing the fundamental structure of our most important social institution.
Morse’s attempt to establish a nuanced distinction fails. The LGBT movement works toward a day when sexual and gender minorities are free from fear, distrust, discrimination, and moral condemnation. By spreading falsehoods about the nature of same-sex families and suggesting they are a threat to society, Morse very much stands in the way of that end-goal. Discrediting her bias and constant distortion of research is not simply a “rhetorical tactic,” but an imperative for protecting LGBT people from her “skepticism” — a codeword for her intent to stigmatize.
Morse also scoffed that GLAAD only provided four examples of her animus. Despite the project’s interest in concision, her page now features twelve examples.