Anti-gay extremists in Maine have a new talking point. In their battle against a marriage equality ballot initiative, they’re asking voters to reject “sodomy based marriage.”
Interesting. The term opens up all kinds of questions. My dictionary defines sodomy as “anal or oral copulation with a member of the same or opposite sex; also: copulation with an animal.”
So, we’re not sure if they’re against only marriage between same-sex couples – or all marriages where “sodomy” is practiced. And does their opposition apply only to marriages that are “based” on sodomy? Or do they include marriages where sodomy is merely incidental? We’re pretty sure they don’t mean to include sex with, say, chipmunks, though we’re almost positive they’d also be opposed to that.
It’s the work of Mike Heath and Paul Madore, founders of the new "No Special Rights" PAC. On Monday, the start of Pride Week at the University of Maine, the group distributed a "truth pledge" that includes 11 items that signers promise to do. No. 1 is “vote NO on sodomy based marriage.”
It also asks signers to avoid using the terms “same sex or gay marriage” and to inform their friends and neighbors that the term “same sex marriage” contains two contradictory terms and is therefore “illogical, false, and absurd.”
Oh, and there’s this: “Oppose the hellish doctrine that two parents of the same sex make better parents than parents of the opposite sex, an evil doctrine which is now being advanced by the homosexual rights movement.”
Funny, haven’t heard anything about that being advanced.
And then there’s the old chestnut: "homosexual rights are really an attack on the religious freedom of all Christian men and women," with an added "especially those who are truly Christian and oppose special rights for homosexuals." Signers of the pledge are supposed to oppose "homosexual indoctrination" in school curricula and pray to deliver the state and country from "this attack by demonic forces."
Demonic forces? Really?
Oh, wait. Heath said two weeks ago on his blog that the "gay movement" is "rooted in sorcery and it is a child of the devil, and an enemy of everything that is right." So basically, more of the same, only this time with the power of the pledge.
Don't be too surprised. Heath has a long history of outrageous and inflammatory statements about LGBT people. A former board chairman of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, Heath also had a long career with Maine's Christian Civic League (later the Maine Family Policy Council), including the directorship, until his resignation in 2009 amid rumors that he was shunted aside because of his extreme anti-gay rhetoric. That same year, he had called for the re-criminalization of sodomy, the repeal of domestic partnership laws, and the removal of "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" from the Maine Human Rights Act and the Maine Civil Rights Act. He has referred to homosexuality as a sickness, claimed that the "tyranny of 'gay' ideology" has silenced the church in Portland, and that it's "only a matter of time before the cancer spreads throughout Maine."
Strangely, he announced in April 2010 that he was running for governor and then dropped out the very next day. That was two months after the American Family Association granted Heath permission to start an affiliate, the American Family Association of New England. Doesn't look like that worked out, either, because the AFA's current web list of state affiliates does not include AFA-NE.
Madore headed up the Maine Grassroots Coalition and reportedly was responsible for bringing AFTAH leader Peter LaBarbera and MassResistance leader Brian Camenker to the state in 2009 during the bruising referendum battle that ultimately repealed marriage equality. He and the Coalition were disavowed by Stand for Marriage Maine, the official campaign to repeal the law. Just last week, in a press release about the launching of the "No Special Rights" PAC, Madore said, "Homosexuals have absolutely nothing good to contribute to family life." To really hammer home his point, he added that a relationship between a same-sex couple is a "sterile union … and has nothing good to contribute to marriage or family life – absolutely nothing."