For those who missed it, this fall HGTV was planning to air a reality show called "Flip It Forward" starring Charlotte-area real-estate developers David and Jason Benham. But less than 24 hours after People for the American Way's Right Wing Watch revealed that the Benhams have a long history of homophobic and Islamophobic activism, HGTV pulled the plug on the show.
Earlier today, the Benhams responded with a statement that claimed anyone who suggested that they hated gays or those of other faiths was either "misinformed or lying.". But that doesn't pass the smell test. Here are some examples of the Benham brothers' hate:
- In January 2012, David Benham told anti-gay activist Michael Brown that gays were controlled by "demonic forces." He also vowed to help defeat Islam as well. Benham is a member of the board of directors of Brown's ministry, which has helped drive the bus on Uganda's odious anti-gay law.
- In an August 2012 interview with Brown, David Benham called Islam a "demonic agenda" bent on taking over this country.
- The Anti-Defamation League reports that David Benham called the proposed Ground Zero Islamic center "a den of iniquity," and described Muslims as "the enemy attacking America."
- The Benhams led a prayer rally, "Charlotte 2012," in conjunction with the 2012 Democratic National Convention, which David Benham claimed was necessary to stop homosexuality and other "demonic agendas" attacking this country.
There's more, but these are just some of the most visible examples. For more, check out Right Wing Watch's database on the Benhams.
It turns out that the Benham brothers are the sons of Flip Benham, the leader of Operation Save America, the original Operation Rescue. While they haven't gone nearly as far as their father, who was convicted in 2011 for stalking a Charlotte abortion provider, their ideology is just as odious as their father's. Being from Charlotte, I'm surprised I didn't make the connection sooner.