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A central theme of anti-LGBT organizing and ideology is the opposition to LGBT rights, often couched in rhetoric and harmful pseudoscience that demonizes LGBT people as threats to children, society and often public health.

Top Takeaways

The Trump administration provided safe haven for anti-LGBT groups and individuals throughout the year, with a particular onslaught on transgender people in 2018. Anti-LGBT evangelical groups continue to enjoy unprecedented access to the White House and are intimately involved in forging public policy.

Key Moments

With help from a panel of pseudoscientific anti-LGBT “experts,” the White House issued a memo in March seeking to ban transgender troops from the military. Included on that panel was Tony Perkins of the anti-LGBT hate group Family Research Council, who has a long history of disparaging LGBT people. “If you’re a male — genetically you are a male, biologically you’re a male — and you say ‘Well, I’m not a male. I’m a female.’ I mean, what’s to keep you from saying you’re an animal?” Perkins said on his “Washington Watch” radio show last May. Obama-era policies recognizing gender identity in schools and prisons were rolled back. The State Department banned diplomatic visas for unmarried same-sex partners of diplomats or employees of international agencies who work in the U.S. The Department of Justice issued an amicus brief in support of a Colorado baker at the heart of the Masterpiece Cakeshop lawsuit against the Colorado Civil Rights Commission after the baker refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

What’s Ahead

The midterm elections of 2018 slowed the momentum of anti-LGBT groups as several LGBT and other progressive candidates were elected to office, but the impetus may not be large enough to counter the wave of anti-LGBT lawsuits and federal appointments that should continue well into 2019. Look for more federal policies to continue to marginalize LGBT people, with a particular emphasis on transgender people.


Anti-LGBT groups on the SPLC hate list often link homosexuality to pedophilia, claim that same-sex marriage and LGBT people, in general, are dangers to children, that homosexuality itself is dangerous, support the criminalization of homosexuality and transgender identity, and that there is a conspiracy called the “homosexual agenda” at work that seeks to destroy Christianity and the whole of society.

Viewing homosexuality as unbiblical or simply opposing same-sex marriage does not qualify an organization to be listed as an anti-LGBT hate group.

Anti-LGBT groups primarily consist of Christian Right groups but also include organizations like National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) that purport to be scientific. Anti-LGBT groups in America have employed a variety of strategies in their efforts to oppose LGBT rights, including defamation. Many leaders and spokespeople of anti-LGBT groups have engaged in the crudest type of name-calling, describing LGBT people as "perverts" with "filthy habits" who seek to "convert" or “recruit” the children of straight parents into a “homosexual lifestyle.”

Others link homosexuality to pedophilia and claim that LGBT people are threats to home and society. Others disseminate disparaging "facts" about LGBT people that are simply untrue — an approach no different to how white supremacists and nativist extremists propagate lies about black people and immigrants to make these communities seem like a danger to society.

More recently, hardline anti-LGBT groups have promoted “religious freedom” and “religious liberty” legislation and legal challenges to justify anti-gay discrimination.

2018 anti-LGBT hate groups

View all groups by state and by ideology.
*Asterisk denotes headquarters.

Abiding Truth Ministries (Springfield, Massachusetts)
Alliance Defending Freedom (Scottsdale, Arizona)
American College of Pediatricians (Gainesville, Florida)
American Family Association (Franklin, Pennsylvania)
American Family Association (Tupelo, Mississippi)
American Vision (Powder Springs, Georgia)
Americans for Truth About Homosexuality (Naperville, Illinois)
ATLAH World Missionary Church (All The Land Anointed Holy) (New York, New York)
Bible Believers Fellowship (Worthington, Ohio)
Center for Family and Human Rights (C-FAM) (New York, New York)
Center for Family and Human Rights (C-FAM) (Washington, District of Columbia)
Chalcedon Foundation (Vallecito, California)
Church Militant/St. Michael's Media (Ferndale, Michigan)
Concerned Christian Citizens (Temple, Texas)
Conservative Republicans of Texas (Houston, Texas)
D. James Kennedy Ministries (Fort Lauderdale, Florida)
Faith2Action (North Royalton, Ohio)
Faithful Word Baptist Church (Tempe, Arizona)
Family Research Council (Washington, District of Columbia)
Family Research Institute (Colorado Springs, Colorado)
Family Watch International (Gilbert, Arizona)
Generations (Elizabeth, Colorado)
Heterosexuals Organized for a Moral Environment (H.O.M.E.) (Downers Grove, Illinois)
Illinois Family Institute (Carol Stream, Illinois)
Liberty Counsel (Orlando, Florida)
Mass Resistance (Denver, Colorado)
Mass Resistance (Ft. Worth, Texas)
Mass Resistance (Torrance, California)
Mass Resistance (Waltham, Massachusetts)
Mission: America (Columbus, Ohio)
Pacific Justice Institute (Sacramento, California)
Pass the Salt Ministries (Hebron, Ohio)
Pilgrims Covenant Church (Monroe, Wisconsin)
Probe Ministries (Plano, Texas)
Public Advocate of the United States (Merrifield, Virginia)
Ruth Institute (Lake Charles, Louisiana)
Save California (Sacramento, California)
Stedfast Baptist Church (Fort Worth, Texas)
Stedfast Baptist Church (Jacksonville, Florida)
Sure Foundation Baptist Church (Vancouver, Washington)
The Campus Ministry USA (Terre Haute, Indiana)
The Pray in Jesus Name Project (Colorado Springs, Colorado)
Tom Brown Ministries (El Paso, Texas)
True Light Pentecost Church (Spartanburg, South Carolina)
United Families International (Gilbert, Arizona)
Verity Baptist Church (Sacramento, California)
Warriors for Christ (Martinsburg, West Virginia)
Westboro Baptist Church (Topeka, Kansas)