Self-proclaimed ex-gay Stephen Bennett has a habit of issuing questionable statements, apparently to gain news coverage. As he fades from his minor moment in the spotlight – even mainstream ex-gay organizations don’t seem to care for him – he makes more and more disturbing claims to draw attention to whatever ministry he is promoting at any given time. Bennett’s offerings are often for fee only, which is described as a tax deductible donation.
This time Bennett is upset over a picture issued by the White House of Vice President Dick Cheney and his wife holding their new grandchild, Samuel David Cheney. Samuel is the child of the Cheney’s daughter Mary, and her partner, Heather Poe. That’s the part that incensed Bennett.
Unlike the official White House photo caption, a man and a woman, a Daddy and a Mommy, are Samuel David Cheney’s REAL biological parents.
Then who is Heather Poe?
Heather Poe is Mary Cheney’s live-in lesbian lover. She may act like a parent, she may treat the baby as a parent, she may love this baby with all of her heart, but in this reality we all live in, Heather Poe is NOT the baby’s real parent. She has NO biological connection to the child whatsoever. Some man, the baby’s real Daddy, is the child’s other REAL parent.
In his fervor to portray same-sex parents as vile and invalid, which is callous enough, he does the same to all families with adopted children. The foundation of his argument is that only biological parents are “REAL” parents [his emphasis] no matter how much genuine love exists between them. Alan Chambers, President of Exodus International, the largest ex-gay organization and himself the father of two adopted children, had this to say in response:
“I found Stephen Bennett’s release on the birth of Mary Cheney’s son Samuel to be in extremely poor taste. All life is sacred and should be celebrated regardless of the circumstances surrounding it.
As someone who regularly ministers to parents of gay and lesbian people I wholeheartedly encourage those parents to put relationship above all else. I do not know the Cheney’s personal beliefs about homosexuality but I do know that they have been publicly respectful of their daughter and her partner, Heather Poe, and welcomed them into their lives. That is what parents should do.
“Mr. Bennett’s diatribe about REAL parents was an affront to every family that has been blessed by the miracle of adoption. As adoptive parents, my wife, Leslie, and I consider ourselves the REAL parents of our precious son and daughter. No doubt, even at two years old, they consider us their REAL parents. Biology is not the determining factor in one being a REAL parent.
“Congratulations to Mary Cheney on the birth of her son, to Vice President and Mrs. Cheney on the birth of their grandson. I do pray that Ms. Cheney and Ms. Poe consider the deep need their son will have for a father and seek to have that need met in surrogate, but significant ways.”
Sometimes we overuse the word “hate” I think, but if so it may be because there are so many instances such as this when the hatred so overshadows everything else that anyone of conscience must recognize it. And if history is any indication, we will soon see emails and articles floating around which claim “the homosexuals are attacking Stephen Bennett” with some nonsense about how he really didn’t mean this or that. He may wish he hadn’t said it, but it’s pretty obvious he means it.
Read Bennett’s entire press release to understand the true nature of his statements.