Rep. Paul Stam
North Carolina House Speaker Pro Tem Paul "Skip" Stam distributed material to his colleagues during a debate over anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people in charter schools that comes from virulently anti-gay hate groups.

The hate groups behind NC House leader's anti-gay propaganda

During a debate over charter schools in the North Carolina House yesterday, Rep. Susan Fisher, an Asheville Democrat, offered an amendment that would have prohibited discrimination in hiring teachers -- including discrimination based on sexual orientation.

In response, Rep. Paul "Skip" Stam -- a Wake County attorney and Republican House speaker pro tem -- objected to adding sexual orientation as a protected class, saying that "pedophilia" is also a "sexual orientation." He then distributed a flier titled "What Is A 'Sexual Orientation'?" that compares being lesbian or gay to mental disorders such as apotemnophilia (sexual arousal associated with an amputee's stump) and coprophilia (sexual arousal associated with feces). The image of the flier, below, is from the Facebook page of Rep. Tricia Cotham, a Mecklenburg County Democrat; click on the image for a larger version.

The handout appears to have come from the Traditional Values Coalition (TVC) -- a conservative Christian "social welfare" nonprofit that has been singled out by the hate-group watchdog Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) for spreading "demonizing propaganda" aimed at lesbian and gay people.

TVC distributed the same material at least as far back in 2007 when Congress was considering legislation to amend the Civil Rights Act by including lesbian and gay people among the protected classes.

TVC was founded in 1980 by Lou Sheldon, a former Presbyterian minister with a history of what SPLC calls "extreme gay-bashing." It has called for forcing AIDS sufferers into "cities of refuge," made the false claim that homosexuals are more likely than heterosexuals to molest children, and says the real purpose of marriage equality is to destroy marriage and replace it with group sex and polygamy.

The same document distributed by Stam and the TVC was also included in the 2009 book "Redeeming the Rainbow: A Christian Response to the 'Gay' Agenda" by Scott Lively, the president of Abiding Truth Ministries, a conservative Christian organization based in in California. Lively, who is also tracked by the SPLC, has called for criminalizing "the public advocacy of homosexuality" and was the target of a lawsuit by LGBT rights activists in Uganda over his involvement in that country's Anti-Homosexuality Bill. He is also the author of the discredited Holocaust revisionist book "The Pink Swastika," which claims that the Nazi party was full of gay men whose "savagery" enabled them to carry out mass murder.

In response to Rep. Stam's words and actions, Rep. Marcus Brandon, a Guilford County Democrat and the legislature's only openly gay member, spoke in defense of anti-discrimination protections, saying that "no school should be able to deny you" because you are LGBT.

Chris Sgro, executive director of the LGBT advocacy group Equality NC, called Stam's words "an embarrassing display of anti-LGBT rhetoric" and a reminder of why anti-discrimination protections are necessary.

"Clearly, this type of bullying and harassment of LGBT North Carolinians starts from the top down in our General Assembly," Sgro added, "and we will do everything in our power to join with a majority of voters at the polls to show our legislature that hurtful and hateful words and sentiments like those we heard today do not represent North Carolina values."

North Carolina House Speaker Pro Tem Paul "Skip" Stam distributed material to his colleagues during a debate over anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people in charter schools that comes from virulently anti-gay hate groups.
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What the heck is "cultural reconciliation?"

So, Matt, what the heck is "cultural reconciliation?" I haven't run upon that phrase before in the culture wars.

American culture would seem to be on a pretty rapid path toward reconciling itself to the notion that gay and lesbian folks shouldn't be denied a variety of civil rights based on the fact that they are gay and lesbian. Perhaps that is the "cultural reconciliation" of which you speak.

The article certainly can be read as an attempt at pursuing guilt by association, since we have no idea where Stam actually ran upon this piece of rubbish. It would be good for the Institute to exercise some caution and not commit the same sort of sins that its opponents are regularly guilty of. But I doubt that was what the author intended.

I found it pretty interesting to see the source traced -- and expect that it might be useful for Stam to know where it came from, as well. Maybe he'll be more careful next time.

It would have been helpful to pair this article with a deconstruction of the document itself. Two things stand out immediately:

First, heterosexuality is included in a list of supposed "Mental Disorders."

Second, the document itself suggests that the list is one of "paraphillias," not a list of "Sexual Orientations," as the headline implies.

Third, while each numbered point in the document has a page reference, the entries for "heterosexuality" and "homosexual/gay/lesbian" do not. That suggests they were not included in the source document, which likely means that Stam not only passed out a document pulled together by people with extreme views, but that the piece itself is an attempt to deceive.

If Stam is venal enough to have attempted to perpetrate this deception, then we probably don't need him in the General Assembly. If he is not smart enough to have seen the obvious flaws in the document, then we probably don't need him in the General Assembly.

It is not clear to me that folks who post comments here are notified via email when others have joined the conversation. If that is not the case, then it would be a useful feature to add.

Pedophiles are people too

The MBLA thinks that pedophilia is a natural expression of love. Pedophiles need the same protections as gays and lesbians.

This article is just

This article is just shameless special pleading--a barrage of ad hominems with little argumentative substance addressing the issue. Should any sexual orientation be exempt from discrimination? Besides this, every line I read above works off the assumption that any position offering a perspective of homosexuality contrary to that of the far left-wing extremist who operate "southern studies" is simply hateful barbarism. Yet another emotively driven nail in the coffin of cultural reconciliation. Thanks guys.

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