This weekend is the Family Research Council’s Values Voters Summit, and Tony Perkins kicked the event off yesterday with a luncheon at the National Press Club. After reiterating his rebuke of the Southern Poverty Law Center for its “bitter characterization” of FRC as a “hate group,” Perkins openly took questions from the audience. At one point, Perkins was asked if he would disown one of children if he or she came out as gay. He responded that he wouldn’t disown, but just like a “lifestyle” of drugs, he wouldn’t condone the “destructive” behavior either:
PERKINS: I would not disown my children for anything, but let me say this… I believe that as a parent that I have a responsibility for the environment in which I raise my children. And I believe as a parent, we have the ability to protect them from a lot of unfortunate experiences that have shaping influences upon their lives…
We can do our very best job as a parent and still something may happen, whether they end up in drugs or whether they end up in some other lifestyle that they end up in… They’re our children. We’ll always love them, but we don’t necessarily condone what they do. And if we really love them, we’ll be wiling to tell them the truth that the choices that they have made to continue in what they are doing are both destructive to them personally and to society as a whole.
Perkins also let slip this ironic line: “It’s time to dial down your demonization of those who differ with you.” This seems reminiscent of Brian Brown’s admission during his debate with Dan Savage that “just because you believe something is wrong, it doesn’t mean that you make it illegal.” If only these anti-gay activists practiced what they preached.
Watch FRC’s full event at The Press Club: