Kim Davis, the reviled county clerk and notorious hypocrite has not been fighting her absurd legal battles alone. She has been supported by a group of “lawyers” known as the Liberty Counsel- which has just been classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. They join the ranks of the Ku Klux Klan and the Family Research Council for their attempts to masquerade as a “legal organization advocating for anti-LGBT discrimination under the guise of religious liberty.”
The Liberty Counsel was founded by Mathew and Anita Staver, conservative activists with close ties to ultraconservative patriarch Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University. They describe themselves as a legal non-profit working to defend “religious liberties” and the “sanctity of life”- code for anti-gay and anti-women’s rights. The SPLC collected a group of quotes to illustrate why this nonprofit should be considered a hate group:
“Homosexual conduct can result in significant damage to those involved who engage in such conduct. There is no evidence that a person is born homosexual. And there is evidence that people can change. Our culture is being pressured with demands that our homes welcome, our daycares embrace, our schools indoctrinate, our businesses promote, and our laws reward this harmful sexual behavior.” – Liberty Counsel website
“Your lifestyle – homosexuality – is always and forever, objectively and demonstrably wrong. It is never good, natural, right or praiseworthy. … In almost every category – disease, depression, drug and alcohol abuse, and suicide – those who call themselves ‘gay’ live and die with consequences that have nothing gay, in the true sense of the word, about them. – Matt Barber, Liberty Counsel attorney
Clearly a group of intolerant boors, this group is made of up of the kind of people who would accuse a library promoting the new Harry Potter book of pushing witchcraft on schoolchildren, defend hate criminals and push gay conversion therapy. Most recently, they have taken up the Kim Davis case as their new chance to jump back into the spotlight.
While Kim Davis will soon be forgotten by the mainstream media’s minuscule attention span, it is crucially important to recognize that there is still a concentrated and organized opposition to granting LGBT Americans the rights they deserve. The conservatives across the South fighting against LGBT and abortion rights are linked to white supremacy and neo-Nazi groups, and they are still very dangerous. We must stay vigilant and put a stop to their hateful preaching.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.