Republican Appoints NOM Co-Founder to U.S. Commission
It was announced yesterday that House Speaker John Boehner (R) appointed the co-founder of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), Robert George, to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom -- a bipartisan U.S. federal government commission that reviews the facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom around the world.
NOM, an anti-gay group that will stop at nothing to have gay marriage outlawed in the U.S., made national headlines this week for being exposed by the Human Rights Campaign. The pro-gay organization obtained a number of confidential documents that outlined NOM’s strategies, which included a plan to create a strong divide between the black and gay communities.
Think Progress reported that George has worked with anti-gay projects in the past, one of which "paints gays and lesbians as a threat to children." He even made a video warning about Obama’s appointment of Kevin Jennings as Assistant Deputy Secretary for the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools.
In February 2011, an iPhone application was criticized for having homophobic content. The Manhattan Declaration app, which was co-authored by George, upset several LGBT activists who said that it was, "promoting anti-gay spiritual abuse" by having users ask themselves, "Have I been guilty of any homosexual activity?"
Apple eventually took the app down and a spokeswoman for the computer company said, "We removed the Manhattan Declaration app from the App Store because it violates our developer guideline by being offensive to large groups of people."
But George persisted to get the application back on the App Store by writing a letter to Apple founder Steve Jobs. He accused Jobs of anti-Christian censorship and said that the app did not contain anything that should be offensive.
"As you will immediately see if you read the Manhattan Declaration, it is written in respectful language, and it engages the beliefs of those who differ in an honest, thoughtful and civil manner. It is entirely free of rancor, name-calling or offensive rhetoric," he wrote.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) appointed Zuhdi Jasser to the commission as well. Think Progress notes that Jasser, the founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, a group that many U.S. Muslims groups have called "malignant," has promoted Islamophobia and supports "spying on innocent Muslims."