Tony Perkins, president of extreme anti-LGBTQ group Family Research Council, blamed the weekend's mass shooting in Midland and Odessa, Texas, on an “absence of morality” because of a “decades-long march through the institutions of America driving religion and God from the public square” during a Fox News appearance.
During the September 1 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends Sunday, Perkins repeatedly blamed the shooting, which left seven dead and 22 injured, on the lack of religion in public life. Perkins even said that “marginalizing” and “stigmatizing” religion has caused a “precipitous drop in the value that is placed on religious expression, patriotism, and the family, having children.”
He made similar claims in an op-ed for Fox News on August 25 following the mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas. In the op-ed, he dismissed stricter laws on gun ownership and knives, saying that the “focus on tools still misses the greater problem,” and claimed that the “missing component … is the impact of the moral vacuum created by eliminating values, faith and civility from the public square.”
Perkins’ comment that American institutions are “driving religion and God from the public square” and that’s a reason for problems in society is reminiscent of his past attempts to blame natural disasters on progress for the LGBTQ community. FRC pushes anti-LGBTQ policies such as the discredited practice of conversion therapy; uses extreme rhetoric; and fights pro-equality legislation. Perkins has even compared same-sex marriage to incest and called pedophilia a “homosexual problem.” Globally, FRC has supported a law in Uganda that could have punished sodomy by death and partnered with anti-LGBTQ group World Congress of Families, which worked to pass Russia’s “gay propaganda” law.
Under the Trump administration, FRC and other anti-LGBTQ groups enjoy increased influence over federal policymaking. For example, Perkins was appointed to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom in 2018 and now serves as chair of the commission. He also reportedly played a leading role in crafting the administration’s ban on trans military members. FRC enjoys access to members of Congress and administration officials, such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
h/t Raw Story