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Pro-LGBT black clergy ad counters misinformation on hate crimes legislation

<img src="" align="left" title="" border="0" hspace="5" vspace="2"In response to the ads run by anti-gay black ministers fronted by Bishop Harry Jackson of the High Impact Leadership Coalition, which paid for spots in Roll Call USA Today spreading disinformation about the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act, a group of pro-LGBT pastors have responded in kind.

In a new ad appearing in USA Today (PDF), the National Black Justice Coalition, Human Rights Campaign and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, black religious leaders counter the claim of the puppets of the white evangelical bigots that the passage of the measure would muzzle pastors like Jackson from spouting homophobic sermons from the pulpit.

Bishop Harry Jackson believes passage will result in the imprisonment of  pastors for quoting Leviticus; gays are simply taking over…

[G]ay activists around the country are getting nervous that they are about to experience an embarrassing political setback. Instead of amending the hate crimes legislation that protects churches in a substantive way, they are simply crying out in a louder, more threatening manner. Gay advocates are not looking for fairness; they are looking for an upper hand.
— Jackson, in a Town Hall column.

Jim Burroway aptly notes this about the religious anti-gay voices at his pad:

We saw them completely make up bogus hate crime statistics out of thin air to try to prove that gays and lesbians aren?t hate crime victims. But they won?t tell you that sexual orientation is the third most common motivation for hate crimes, running a virtual tie with religious bias. Further, the Justice Department’s National Crime Victim Survey (NCVS) shows that 58% of hate crimes based on sexual orientation go unreported.

…We saw them falsely claim that the legislation would “punish some crimes more severely against gay people than they would against any other person,” even though it would cover everyone — gay or straight — regardless of sexual orientation. Otherwise, the FBI?s own hate crime statistics would not have bothered to count 935 anti-White, 58 anti-Protestant, or 23 anti-heterosexual hate crime incidents in 2005.

See the ad from the bigots after the jump.Even though a recent Gallup poll showed that 68% of Americans support adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the existing hate crimes laws, this is the kind of misinformation that Harry Jackson and his homobigot friends in the pulpit dished out in their ad.

Visit HRC’s Clergy Against Hate site.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding