This past Friday, Tony Perkins of Focus on the Family had a public tête-à-tête with Nicolle Martin of the ironically named Alliance Defending Freedom. He had this to say in response to the baker from Colorado who lost his case for his refusal to bake a cake for one of those weddings.
I’m beginning to think, are re-education camps next? When are they going to start rolling out the boxcars to start hauling off Christians?This notion that our equality is like the rise of the Third Reich in Germany is becoming the norm from hate groups, the go-to assertion that gets made when the coffers begin to dry. It makes the argument that our equality will undermine the institution of marriage and family sound positively quaint.
We have a man named Scott Lively to thank for this tactic that has now taken such a strong foothold with our opposition. In 1995, Lively co-penned a book which he cutely titled The Pink Swastika, a shameful play on words that belittles the pink triangles worn by gay prisoners in concentration camps during WWII. The SPLC gave a not so glowing review.
Written by fundamentalist activists Scott Lively and Kevin Abrams, The Pink Swastika says that rather than being victimized by the Nazis, gay men in Hitler's inner circle actually helped mastermind the Holocaust.As our victories mount, so do the innuendos and outright assertions that what is unfolding in this country is nothing less than what occurred in Nazi Germany in the 30s. Religious right power brokers, finding themselves with little left of whatever shame they might have once had, have set out to frighten and agitate an already paranoid generation who lived through the most perverse time in modern history.
"While we cannot say that homosexuals caused the Holocaust, we must not ignore their central role in Nazism," write Lively and Abrams. "To the myth of the 'pink triangle' — the notion that all homosexuals in Nazi Germany were persecuted — we must respond with the reality of the 'pink swastika.'"
Historians agree that this "reality" is utterly false. But many anti-gay crusaders have used the "gay Nazi" myth as proof that gay people are immoral and destructive.
It isn't enough anymore for these people to ridiculously assert that our equality will undermine the institution of marriage. The new ploy to part terrified donors with their pension money is to plant the sinister notion that the LGBT community is ultimately seeking the murder of Christians in a repeat of the Holocaust. Not to silence their voice in the public square, but to actually, physically murder them for their Christian beliefs. It is profoundly dangerous propaganda and must be strongly met and exposed for the naked cynical cruelty.
It is sad that this even needs to be said, but the dishonor it does to the millions of people who were well and truly slaughtered during the Holocaust comes from a place of sheer disturbed hatred.
Yet, this is where we are today and it does need saying. As a gay man, I think I'm in a better position than Mr. Perkins to explain to people what we want.
We want our place at the American table. We want to walk down the street without being fearful of our fellow citizens for being who we are. We want to know that we won't be fired from our jobs because of who we love. We want the freedom to marry the person we fall in love with and enter into the institution of marriage with all the bells and whistles our country affords to these unions. We want our tax breaks and we want to eat our wedding cake too.
I also think I'm in a better position than Mr. Perkins to tell you what we don't want. We don't want Christians hauled off in boxcars and shoveled into ovens. We don't want our government to strip them of their given right to believe exactly what they wish to believe. We want them to enjoy their right to the freedom of religion, to worship as they see fit. We don't want to indoctrinate your children. We want to nurture them and let them know that it is okay to be exactly who they are. We may occasionally want you to bake us a cake, but we do not want to murder you.
And we really, really do not want a Fourth Reich.