Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Breaking Free from the American Family Association's Campaign of Hate

This powerful letter was posted on the web page of OUT IN THE SILENCE, a documentary film about the struggle for inclusion, fairness and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and all people. The film's stories take place in Venango County, which is also home to the American Family Association of Pennsylvania, a radical right extremist organization recently designated as a Hate Group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

by PM, a resident of a small Mississippi town:

I am writing to tell you a little about my story.

I was a conservative Christian. I was also an avid listener of American Family Radio, an operation of the American Family Association.

I responded to all the 'action alerts' they sent out. I believed everything they said.

I was in a very bad marriage. There was abuse towards me, then I found out he had been sexually abusing my daughters. Only then did I have the courage to leave him.

My girls are doing well now, and he is in prison.

After I was finally away from him, I began to think for myself. I began to question all my beliefs.

I am still a Christian, but I no longer judge.

To me, its about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Its not about organized religion.

I believe God created everyone, and loves everyone. No one is better then anyone else.

When I watched OUT IN THE SILENCE, I cried.

I knew that the LGBT community was being persecuted, but you really put a personal face to some of the people. That really touched me in a way I never expected.

I feel that even in whatever small way I can, I want to fight this.

My daughter is bisexual. She is such an amazing person and an inspiration to me.

Without my change of heart, she might never have came out to me. We wouldn't have the wonderful relationship that we do have.

I can't help but wonder how many kids have parents that they are afraid to come out to for fear of being rejected. I feel like maybe coming from the place I am, a former American Family Radio listener and conservative Christian that maybe I could reach people like this. I know their thinking. They are being brainwashed in my opinion.

I say all this to say that whatever way I might be able to help, big or small, you can count on me. Small town Mississippi is somewhere that is seriously needing to have the light of this documentary shined on it. It was made for such a place. You would not believe how judgmental the home of American Family Association is. I live about 20 miles from Tupelo. I thank you and look forward to helping in any way I can.


No comments: