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Life out here by Bret Kofford: A campaign against adoptions by ‘certain' groups

March 27, 2002

NEW YORK (AP) — A group of homosexual rights activists has launched a nationwide campaign to stop the adoption of children by "right-wing religious nuts."

"We know that there are lots of children in horrible, heartless orphanages overseas and even children rocking themselves to sleep every night in orphanages in this country, but we just think it is too unnatural, too against everything we believe in, to allow even children who have languished in orphanages for years and years to be raised in the homes of right-wing religious nuts," said David Klank, president of Homosexuals Against Religious Right Yahoos (HARRY).

"What we are afraid of is that these kids will grow up to become angry right-wing religious nuts themselves, that seeing such a lifestyle in their homes will make them think it is acceptable to cast stones at everyone not like them," Klank said. "We cannot allow another generation to think this sort of ‘family' life is acceptable."

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The firestorm started after Kathie Lee Gifford hosted a two-hour network television special called "Kathie Lee: For the Children (Not My Own for Once)" in which she advocated that right-wing religious people be allowed to adopt children, despite laws banning it in liberal bastions such as Berkeley and Santa Cruz, Calif., Madison, Wis., and the state of Hawaii. She and the producers of the program went to various right-wing religious families, where kids were portrayed to be growing up happily in "normal" homes.

Gifford and others on the program said what matters is not whether children are raised in a home with right-wing religious adults but that they are in stable homes with loving, nurturing parents, no matter if one parent is a man and the other is a woman and that they don't have sex with each other.

"All I care about is getting these kids into homes where they can be loved, their parents' sex life be damned," Gifford said.

Homosexual groups soon started threatening boycotts and other actions against the network that broadcast the program advocating right-wing religious adoptions.

"This was an outrage," said HARRY's Klank. "What happened is executives at the network wanted Kathie Lee to come out of the closet on national television and admit that she is a right-wing religious nut. They knew that would be a huge ratings winner, so they conceded to do the program if she fessed up. They even acceded to Kathie Lee's demands that she be able to sing a couple songs on the show, which they knew would scare off a good portion of the audience. That's how much they wanted the ratings from her admission."

Klank and other homosexual rights activists lamented the network making such "anti-family" concessions for the sake of ratings. They said they think the network collapsed under considerable pressure from the ever-more-powerful right-wing religious groups in this nation.

Klank said the point is that the "right-wing religious nut lifestyle" is becoming increasingly acceptable in our country and if adoption is allowed for such families, it essentially means we as a society are deeming such practices as normal and acceptable.

"We think anyone can give up being a right-wing religious nut, with the proper counseling, which is why these programs advocating right-wing religious nut parenting make us so angry. We do not believe in the solely nature or even the part nature, part nurture argument regarding right-wing religious nuts and why they are in that lifestyle. We think right-wing religious nuts are not born that way, that they are making a conscious choice to be narrow-minded and condemning. Anyone, with time and love, can be cured of this unnatural affliction. And we know they will be happier in the long run.

"Yes," Klank continued, "some of the people who give up the lifestyle still will appear to be right-wing religious nuts on the surface — they'll still have a taste for syrupy music, polyester slacks and all types of doughnuts — but that doesn't mean they haven't given up the damaging right-wing religious nut lifestyle.

"These are people who truly have been cured of this affliction. They no longer attack who or what they don't understand, and while they usually still go to a church, temple or mosque, they no longer are convinced what their religious leader says is gospel when it contradicts all the good things in their holy books. And as an added bonus, they are starting to get back a taste for irreverent humor and satire," Klank said.

"All of that is why it is essential to keep fighting abominations such as adoption by right-wing religious nuts," Klank concluded. "It's better that we keep these kids locked up in places with no love than be loved unconditionally by people we don't approve of."

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