Legal threats from the fundamentalist, anti-diversity Liberty Counsel recently forced the cancellation of Diversity Day at a Wisconsin high school.
In response, a columnist for the Wisconsin State Journal wrote the column, Hijacked diversity day can’t deny differences.
In retaliation, PFOX executive director Regina Griggs wrote the following letter to the newspaper.
The letter was copied today to the organization’s e-mail discussion list for antigay parents:
The above column by Susan Lambert Smith seems to express a phobia of ex-gays [“Hijacked Diversity Days Can’t Deny Differences”].
Contrary to Smith’s assertions that former homosexuals do not exist, the ex-gay community can attest to the fact that thousands of men and women with same sex attractions have made the personal decision to leave homosexuality. Because people like Ms. Smith refuse to respect that decision, ex-gays are subject to an increasingly hostile environment where we are reviled simply because we dare to exist. This is exactly why Diversity Days must include ex-gays — to combat intolerance against people who are different from Ms. Smith.
Contempt of those who have resolved unwanted same sex attractions perpetuates misunderstanding and harm against the ex-gay community. It also demonstrates a disregard for diversity and a refusal to respect a basic human right to dignity and self-determination. We now need to face the other side of sexual orientation — intolerance of ex-gays. Please remember that former homosexuals are also worthy of respect.
Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays
Griggs imagines contempt for exgays where there is none in the column. Griggs asserts that “we are reviled simply because we dare to exist,” but Griggs provides no examples where exgays are “reviled” — and by saying “we,” Griggs falsely states that she and the other antigay parents and relatives of PFOX are exgay. They are not — nor are their adult relatives, most of whom still identify as gay.
In protesting the columnist’s sincere doubts that fully heterosexual exgays exist, Griggs fails to provide evidence that they do exist. And Griggs fails to point out that PFOX has historically opposed antibullying programs in schools if they discourage bullying on the basis of sexual orientation.
Like the Liberty Counsel, Griggs seems disinterested in promoting true diversity — which would oppose bullying and include ex-ex-gays and liberal Christians if it includes exgays and fundamentalists. Instead, Griggs would turn Diversity Day into a podium for antigay fundamentalists to hurl stereotypes at the gay couple and non-Christians that had been scheduled to speak.
Griggs possesses the chutzpah to make bullies out to be the victims of those whom they defame.