The following column about “Rockford Pridefest” — Rockford, Illinois’ debut “Gay Pride” festival (June 9, 2012) — appeared in the Rockford (Illinois) Register-Star:
By Steve Scherrer
Some months ago sponsorship packets went out to various area companies announcing that the 1st annual Rockford Pridefest would take place on June 9th in Davis Park.
I found the cover letter to be quite interesting. In the second paragraph it states their objective:
In 1989 homosexual activists Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen co-authored a book called, “After the Ball,” in which they laid out a comprehensive strategy on how to mainstream homosexuality in the 1990s. They were brilliant strategists and over time their plan was executed flawlessly. If you are interested or skeptical a google search can pull this up quickly. The basic details of the strategy were:
The book fleshes out each one of these ideas in extreme detail. All of these elements are contained within the stated objective of Rockford Pridefest.
What they are saying here is really truly outrageous. In order to achieve harmony and unity you are required to surrender any moral or deeply held religious beliefs you may have. You are a disease. No debate is needed. You are the face of hate. You are the problem and not the solution that only we can offer.
This is intellectual blackmail and intimidation in its crudest form. They are making reckless assumptions about the motives of people who hold a contrary point of view to the activist agenda. The real objective is to create a platform where their propaganda will go unchallenged in the public square under the guise of education and raising awareness. Name-calling and the use of words like ‘homophobe’ are tools to bludgeon opponents into silence. How can they claim victim status? They are an extraordinarily powerful force in the popular culture. They receive overwhelming support from the entertainment industry, most of the media, the NEA, numerous politicians including the President, Lambda Legal offers them legal defense, and they are funded and supported by many major corporations. Their website lists Swedish American Hospital as a primary sponsor of this event which is truly bizarre considering the well documented health problems associated with the lifestyle. [See other Rockford Pridefest sponsors HERE.]
My problem is with the activist movement. They are not being truthful about their real intentions. The activists seek to redefine the foundation of society and culture to accommodate their alternate lifestyle. Activist assumptions regarding controversial issues can all be debated and challenged effectively when given a fair opportunity. It is why the activists seek to censor their opponents by using incendiary rhetoric as outlined in Rockford Pridefest’s own cover-letter.
This movement has a right to hold their event as long as the entertainment offered and personal behavior doesn’t violate laws or community standards. I personally don’t hate anyone. I am not attempting to tell anyone how to live. Strong disagreement does not translate into bigotry.
If the promoters of Rockford Pridefest are really interested in creating harmony I would suggest they show more respect and tolerance to people with whom they disagree.
Steve Scherrer is a Rockford, Illinois-area resident who writes frequently on moral issues.
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