by Leah Waldron
When was the last time you heard about a gay man—one who has been in an actual gay relationship with another man (married to God does not count) —getting arrested for 25 years of pedophilia, drunk driving his boat into a family of six, masturbating next to a children’s playground or being convicted of aiding and abetting an international kidnapping? In the past month, four anti-gay activists were convicted of these crimes,while at the Family Research Council and on Fox News, gays are still being compared to pedophiles.
If you subscribe to the views of organizations like the Family Research Council, all homosexuals are just pedophiles waiting to happen. But in reality, pedophilia and other crimes that endanger children are not a gay problem, but a problem, period. The crimes of the past month have all involved anti-gay marriage campaigners in a political or religious leadership capacity: former youth pastor Caleb Hesse, the creator of ProtectMarriage.com, admitted to molesting children for 25 years; Maryland delegate Don H. Dwyer, Jr., who tried to impeach Maryland’s Attorney General for supporting gay marriage, injured four young children while driving his boat at twice the legal blood alcohol limit; pastor Grant “Christian Patriot” Storms, who has worked tirelessly to keep LGBT events out of Louisiana, was convicted of public masturbation in front of a children’s playground; and finally, Mennonite pastor Kenneth Miller was found guilty for helping an ex-lesbian kidnap her daughter so that her lesbian ex-wife (who was given custody) would not raise the child.
In all four crimes, a man placed a child in harm’s way while preaching the importance of keeping children safe from the negative consequences of gay marriage and gay adoption. But when has a gay man, or a gay couple, posed a threat to a child that is as significant as these crimes, and the constant barrage of child sex abuse cases in the Roman Catholic Church?
Less than 48 hours after 52-year-old Caleb Hesse admitted to decades of child molestation, Fox News went on the defense. On The O’Reilly Factor, host Bill O’Reilly and the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Mark Potok debated the Family Research Center’s designation as a hate group. As Potok tried to explain that the FRC disseminates false information about the link between gays and pedophilia, O’Reilly defended the FRC for highlighting the correlation, pointing out that male molesters abuse little boys, and not little girls.
Never mind that pedophilia is not a sexual orientation, but an illness. What is more important is that sex abuse is more likely to be committed by heterosexual-identified men, and often within the walls of religious institutions. According to a landmark two-year study by Dr. Carole Jenny, less than one percent of pedophiles identified as gay or lesbian in their adult life.
So why the constant reminder that gay men are pedophiles-to-be? Wouldn’t it be easier to say that religious or anti-gay politicians (or a combination of the two) are more closely related to pedophiles than men who enter into relationships with other men?
In the case of Kenneth Miller, the devout Mennonite testified this month that he could not watch a lesbian—Janet Jenkins, who was about to receive sole custody–raise her daughter because it would emotionally hurt the child. In his mind, relocating a 10-year-old girl to Costa Rica, where she would never see her friends or second mother again, was in the best interest of the child. Luckily, the jury thought otherwise. A jury also convicted pastor Grant Storms of public masturbation, but instead of labeling him a sex offender for masturbating in the proximity of children, the judge sentenced him to “probation.” Storms, a straight man who masturbates within yards of children, has more legal rights to adoption than a gay couple.
But hey, who wants a gay couple near a child? The kid might get hurt.
The O’Reilly Factor
Lighting Their Way Home