Last October, ThinkProgress’ Tanya Somanader pointed out that despite a growing number of LGBT suicides, conservatives are claiming “that anti-bullying measures are nothing more than insidious tools of the ‘homosexual agenda.’” Several anti-gay Republican candidates in the election last year even made opposition to anti-bullying measures key components of their campaign.
But the fight against anti-bullying laws simply exposes the true vitriol of the organized anti-gay lobby in America. At the Tea Party Policy Summit in Arizona last month, we spoke to American Principles Project executive director Andy Blom. Blom, a veteran organizer for conservative causes, has mobilized Tea Party activists to rally against gay marriage. Recently, he has taken up the charge of stopping bullying laws on both the state and national level. According to Blom, children are rarely bullied on gender issues, and anti-bullying laws are really a Trojan horse to “force homosexual teaching into the schools”:
BLOM: The core of the anti-bullying agenda is all gender-based and this is a really serious mistake for a lot of reasons. Bullying is not good, okay. The reasons people are bullied are size, clothing, economic circumstance, race, it’s like anything having to do with gender falls down on number five or number six. But all the curriculum on bullying is about LGBT [...] All of it is being used as an opportunity to force homosexual teaching into the schools. And we, the curriculum, we start to peel this and look at the curriculum, it’s frightening what people want to teach under the rubric of bullying. And because being in favor of bulling is like hating apple pie, it’s being very effective at skidding a lot of very unseemly things into curriculum. And there’s legislation in the Hill to force private and parochial schools to adopt the same anti-bullying thing. So this means Catholic Schools are teaching about the pleasures of homosexual sex or teaching about you know Johnny has two daddies if they’re able to push this through. [...] In truth, the whole homosexual agenda gets filtered into the schools through anti-bullying.
Blom gained notoriety earlier this year for leading an effort to boycott the conservative CPAC convention because of its inclusion of GOPAC, a nominally pro-gay organization. During our interview, Blom also suggested that he would have a problem with Republicans including GOPAC or any pro-gay group in the 2012 Republican convention. Even Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) troubled Blom because Christie signed a landmark anti-bullying bill into law in January.
In the coming days, ThinkProgress will investigate the key organizers, institutions, and donors to groups mobilizing against efforts to stop bullying in schools.