Scott Lively’s defense of Holocaust revision

Scott Lively has a new blog. His first post of substance is a defense of his revision of events surrounding the Nazi’s treatment of gays during WWII.

There isn’t much new there or of any real defense. He essentially says he’s right with no response to the claims raised against him. His defense boils down to this:

7. The Pink Swastika has not been “discredited” except by homosexualist reviewers, most of whom have failed to disclose their ideological conflict of interest. The few non-homosexual critics of the book have no expertise in the history of the “gay” movement and are thus not qualified to render judgment.

From his own perspective, Lively has no “ideological conflict of interest” which of course is contradicted by the body of his work. And, despite lacking the training he demands of others, he feels qualified to render his judgment.

Of course, his defense is self-serving. A gay person is just as capable of rendering the facts correctly as he is. Ideology matters but he is just as biased as any gay reviewer. And regarding his non-gay critics (e.g,, me), they are just as qualified to read and report what they read as he is.

Lively’s blanket dismissal of his critics obscures the fact that trained historians have dismissed Lively’s theories as inconsistent with the total picture. As I documented here in 2009, trained non-gay, even Christian, historians have considered The Pink Swastika and criticized Lively’s methods and his conclusions. Perhaps Lively will use his blog to actually respond to those critics, but I doubt it.

In light of the fact that he will not respond to the substantial and scholarly criticisms of The Pink Swastika, no one should take him up on his offer to debate. The ball is already in his court.

For more on The Pink Swastika, click the link.

For coverage of Scott Lively’s visit this weekend to an Oklahoma church, see this story.

Statement: Exodus International has no involvement in Scott Lively’s Oklahoma City event

Because Draper Park Christian Church has a history of involvement with Exodus International ministries (e.g., First Stone Ministries in OK), I asked Exodus President, Alan Chambers, for a comment about the upcoming series of talks at Draper Park by Holocaust revisionist Scott Lively.

Chambers quickly sent the following reply:

We have learned that Scott Lively is slated to speak on April 27-29 at Draper Park Christian Church, a location where Exodus International held a regional conference in 2009. We want to say clearly and without question that Exodus International has no connection to this event. Furthermore, due to our vast differences with Mr. Lively’s viewpoints, including his stance on the criminalization of homosexuality, we will not participate in, support or promote any event involving Mr. Lively.

Lively often says his opposition derives from gay fascism; however, I don’t believe anyone could say that Exodus is such an organization. The opposition to Holocaust revisionism is not a gay vs. straight issue, it is not a liberal vs. conservative issue. Mr. Lively is not being opposed because he is preaching the evangelical gospel; he is opposed because he promotes a revision in the historical record regarding the Holocaust and for his support of criminalization  of homosexual behavior. These are not gospel issues, but rather positions which are unpopular among those or many religious views.

The Pink Swastika and Holocaust revision

Inexplicably, Scott Lively, co-author of The Pink Swastika, has been invited to speak at an evangelical church this coming weekend in Oklahoma City. Draper Park Christian Church plans to have him in for three days of meetings.

Evangelical organizations Exodus International (scroll down) and Campus Crusade removed links to Lively’s article on the Pink Swastika in 2009. Even NARTH removed the article.

During the summer of 2009, with the help of historian J.D. Wyneken, I reviewed the claims of Lively and his co-author Abrams made in the Pink Swastika (click the link to read those posts).

With the Oklahoma appearance coming up, I reviewed those posts and here want to point out two which demonstrate Lively’s selective approach to the Holocaust. Unless something changes, Draper Park’s families will be exposed to Holocaust revisionism for three days.

The first is my post on how Lively and Abrams used Gunter Grau’s book The Hidden Holocaust. In this post, I point out how Lively and Abrams read all the way through Grau’s section on how the Nazi’s treated gays to pick out a segment more friendly to their position. No real historian does that. Real historians report what happened in toto. Grau reports the horrible treatment many gays received and Lively and Abrams do not.

The second is Lively and Abram’s treatment of German Nobel Prize winning author, Thomas Mann. Mann never came out as homosexual but disclosed same sex fantasies in his diaries which were barely hidden in some of his literature. Because of Mann’s interest in Nietzsche, Lively and Abrams view Mann as a contributor to the National Socialism, albeit indirectly. Although no one knows whether or not Nietzsche was gay, Lively assumes he was and because Nietzsche’s sister used some of his later writings (probably under the influence of mental illness) to praise National Socialism, Mann, the same-sex- attracted-married-to-a-woman man, is an indirect contributor to Nazism because he wrote favorably of Nietzsche. Pretzel logic much?

The strange moves don’t stop there. Mann, who we know was not completely straight, was an ardent enemy of Hitler and the Nazis. He recorded messages beamed in by Allied forces to the German people, urging them to resist Hitler and promising that help was on the way. Summarizing the post, I wrote in 2009:

First, it is worth noting how Lively and Abrams’ devotion to their thesis leads them to treat Thomas Mann. Apparently the primary reason he is mentioned at all is to make a stronger case that Nietzsche was homosexual. Mann was a great writer, one of the best fiction writers in modern history. He was a resolute opponent of Hitler and the Nazis. He left his homeland in service of his convictions and used his fame and gifts to try to bring down Hitler. In The Pink Swastika, his personal life is disparaged and he is discounted as an apologist for Nietzsche and thus an unwitting contributor to Nazism.

Lively and Abrams thesis collapses into absurdity when one considers the vigor of Mann’s opposition to Hitler’s fascism. People of all orientations and worldviews supported and opposed Hitler. The Nazis used anyone, gay or straight, religious or not, to get to power. And once they attained power, they systematically crushed opposition both gay and straight, religious and not.

The revisionist cannot rest on one or two revisions. He must continue until the revisions lead to absurd twists and turns. In the case of Mann, it is the same-sex attracted man who actively combats the Nazis. This glaring contradiction, along with so many others, must be either avoided or explained away.

Revising the Holocaust is not the same thing as denying it, but it is morally objectionable. Revising the causes and course of the Nazi evil does a disservice to an accurate view of human nature. Lively locates this evil in a variation of sexual attraction, thereby exonerating others. Such revision is a massive exercise in deception.

In 1961, Yale psychologist Stanley Milgram began his famous experiment on obedience to authority figures. Much to the astonishment of his peers, Milgram found that 65% of his sample consented to supply what participants perceived to be dangerous shocks to another person in obedience to an experimenter. This and other studies provide ample evidence that many of us, straight and gay, are capable of terrible evil under certain conditions. Revisionism takes our eyes off of this ball, and reassures the self-serving urges in us that we would never do something like that. Only those other people (insert the group you dislike) could do that.

Thus, such faulty revisionism also leads to stigma directed at the scapegoated group. As we have seen through history, ancient and recent, stigmatizing people based on their group affiliations or innate characteristics has led to the most awful atrocities.

When will we learn?

 

 

 

Oklahoma City Church to host Scott Lively

As unbelievable as that sounds, Draper Park Christian Church is hosting Scott Lively for a weekend of seminars April 27-29, 2012.

On the church Facebook page, they prep their congregants with an article from MassResistance.

Upcoming DPCC keynote speaker featured in this article…thanks Stephen Black of First Stone Ministries. Church, the Lord said “Be alert and ready for service!”. This Christian lawyer Dr. Lively needs our fervent, effectual, righteous prayers.

It is not clear what the role of Stephen Black and First Stone Ministries is. If that Exodus affiliate has anything to do with this appearance, they would be flying directly in the face of the policy of the national Exodus ministry, who denounced the Anti-Homosexuality Bill as well as Lively’s role in Uganda. They also removed Lively’s article about the Pink Swastika from their website.

I want to believe that the Draper Park people don’t understand what they are getting into. They read information from MassResistance calling Lively a martyr, but they will not hear Lively’s real message until he is inside their doors.

Most likely, he will tell them that the Holocaust was animated by homosexuals and gays want to recruit their children. He may tell them that he doesn’t support forced therapy, but he won’t tell them what would happen to gays who refuse state-sponsored ex-gay therapy. He might tell them that he didn’t support the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill but he might not be as candid as he was with Mariana Van Zeller here:

 

He might tell the church what he thinks causes homosexuality, as he did below to the Ugandans in 2009, but he probably won’t tell them that both Exodus and NARTH have removed his articles from their websites.

I know there other Christians of conservative theology who are grieved by this.  It is sad when Christians are tricked into thinking they are fighting evil when instead they mislead and misrepresent. Mr. Lively, as a Holocaust revisionist, should not have a platform in a Christian venue.

For more on the distortions and misleading presentation that is the Pink Swatiska, see this link.

WND: Lively sued over “biblically based beliefs”

Of course, WorldNetDaily would weigh in on the lawsuit against Scott Lively. As usual, WND slants the matter to misinform their audience. The article by Bob Unruh tells readers that Lively is being sued over

his biblically based religious beliefs that homosexuality is a sin, and his statements about his beliefs.

If you read the suit, you will find that the other people who went to Uganda with Lively (Don Schmierer and Caleb Brundidge) are not being sued. Those guys put out some misinformation too and indicated their belief that homosexuality is a sin but did not tell the audience that gays animated the Jewish Holocaust and were probably behind the Rwandan genocide as well. Those men did not tell the Ugandan audience that the best way to overcome public sympathy for gays is to portray gays as recruiters and threats to children.

Where does the Bible say that homosexuality is responsible for the Holocaust? For the Rwandan genocide? That gays are pedophiles? Are those Biblically based beliefs?

Even if one disagrees with the suit, the truth is that Lively is not being sued for his beliefs that homosexuality is a sin. There are many evangelicals who believe that in the U.S. and in Uganda who also abhor the Anti-Homosexuality Bill and tell the truth about their GLBT fellow citizens.

Lively is quoted extensively in the article but the bringers of the suit are not interviewed. When the lawsuit is cited, Unruh neglects to cite Lively comments and actions that are the basis of the suit. Here is one sugar coated example:

The lawsuit cites Lively’s visits to Uganda in 2002 to campaign against pornography at a conference to illustrate his responsibility for subsequent violence, as well as the Ugandan proposal to make illegal the publishing of pornography for the purpose of promoting homosexuality.

A WND reader would get the impression that Lively was combating porn in Uganda and/or that the Anti-Homosexuality Bill was about stopping gay porn. At the least, WND should link to the suit, but of course, they don’t.

For those interested, the suit is here.

 

Human Rights group sues Scott Lively over persecution of gays in Uganda

Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights filed a federal lawsuit against Scott Lively on behalf of Sexual Minorities Uganda over Lively’s activities in fostering persecution against gays.

You can find the filing and more background at CCR’s website.

CCR is basing the suit on accusations of violating the Alien Tort Statute (28 USC 1350) which states in sum: “The district courts shall have original jurisdiction of any civil action by an alien for a tort only, committed in violation of the law of nations or a treaty of the United States.”

The filing makes a strong case that Lively’s work in Uganda has systematically, since 2002, led to persecution of LGBT people in Uganda. Lively, according to this New York Times article, thinks the suit is ridiculous, adding, “I’ve never done anything in Uganda except preach the Gospel and speak my opinion about the homosexual issue. There’s actually no grounds for litigation on this.”

This will be an interesting case to watch. I can imagine other suits based on advocacy of persecution of other minorities, e.g., religious minorities, coming forward if this is successful. For instance, if there are people in the U.S. who support or work with foreign entities to limit religious freedom in other nations, perhaps religious minorities would bring suit here.

The Pink Swastika and NARTH

In 2009, I reported that NARTH (National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality) had removed all but one reference to Scott Lively’s works from their website. That reference was a note in their newsletter which described Lively’s short speech at the 2005 NARTH convention where he donated money to the organization on behalf of his Pro-Family Charitable Trust. As an aside, Lively has donated at least $2000 to NARTH since 2003.
In fact, Lively’s involvement with NARTH goes back further than his donations. In 1995, Lively spoke at the NARTH conference and presented his signature theme – homosexuals started and animated the Nazi party. In that paper still available on the NARTH website, Lively wrote, “In many respects, the SA was a creation of Germany’s homosexual movement, just as the Nazi Party was in many ways a creation of the SA.”
The problem is not that Lively documents the existence of homosexuals among the Nazis; that much was true. For instance, Ernst Roehm and others in his orbit were gay or bisexual. However, Lively errs by saying the “homosexual movement” created the Nazi party, as if the inevitable outcome of a movement for civil rights for gays is national socialism. See this link for more on the Pink Swastika.
In fairness, the paper does not show up in a search conducted on NARTH’s website (actually very little available on the website comes up from using that search engine). However, it does come up in various Google searches.
Although NARTH is not making this article easy to find, it is still available and demonstrates to me something about the DNA of the organization. Despite claiming to be a scientific organization, the leadership has invited anti-gay activists to present their views since the early days of the organization. Scott Lively favors legal restrictions on homosexual behavior and free speech surrounding advocacy for gay rights. At the most recent conference, NARTH featured Sharon Slater, a leading proponent of criminalization.
 
 

Things get ugly in Illinois

According to a World Net Daily report, a couple of bricks were thrown through the window of the Christian Liberty Academy which hosted the Americans for Truth About Homosexuality banquet earlier this evening. The vandalism was conducted in the early morning hours today with an email sent to a Chicago area news source.
No organization has taken responsibility for the incident which may mean that the attack was conducted by someone acting independently.
The email focused on Scott Lively, who was the recipient of an award at the AFTAH banquet.
This is an ugly episode and I hope those responsible for the vandalism are caught and prosecuted.
Reaction from WND readers to the attack reveals ugliness of another kind. One reader John Acord said gays should be confined to mental institutions (see comment below):

And then there is this comment from John Mccord:

Actually, Scott Lively and Mr. Acord are more on the same wavelength since Lively says he advised the Ugandan government to set up national gay rehab programs. He told WND this as well:

My advice to the MPs regarding the law they were contemplating but had not yet drafted was to focus on rehabilitation and not punishment. I urged them to become the first government in the world to develop a state-sponsored recovery system for homosexuality on the model we have in the United States for alcoholism.

I wonder why that suggestion would upset gays?
In any case, there is plenty of ugly to go around.
UPDATE: The comments I posted above have been removed from the thread at WND. However, if you look down the list, you can find more like them.
Chicago Tribune has a blurb out this morning in their “Breaking News” section. Since the story had already been reported several places, I assume they have a section for news about broken things.

What is violence? Scott Lively and the Uganda anti-gay bill

This weekend Moody Church pastor Erwin Lutzer is slated to speak at a banquet hosted by the American for Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH). Also on the agenda is the presentation of AFTAH’s “Truth Teller” Award to Scott Lively. You can read more about Mr. Lively here. I have written much about him, his book The Pink Swastika, and his work in Uganda.
Because of the presence of Lively, a Chicago area gay activist group, the Gay Liberation Network, wrote Rev. Lutzer to inform him of Lively’s views and background in Uganda. One of the accusations from the GLN is that Lively supports violence against gays in Uganda. Lively and LaBarbera say it is not true. Which is it?
To address this, the definition of violence is relevant. The Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines violence as an “exertion of physical force so as to injure or abuse” or “injury by or as if by distortion, infringement, or profanation.” Another definition is given describing intense force or turbulence, such as a violent storm. As it relates to interpersonal violence, the violent action may involve physical injury or “profanation” which can include verbal debasement (The Pink Swastika qualifies) or contemptuous treatment.
When it comes to the situation in Uganda, Scott Lively has rejected the death penalty associated with the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. He favors a situation where those convicted of homosexual behavior would have an option for treatment. In other words, face a penalty of some kind or “choose” to go into a government sanctioned process to change sexual orientation. Here is what he wrote about the matter in an essay:

Let me be absolutely clear. I do not support the proposed anti-homosexuality law as written. It does not emphasize rehabilitation over punishment and the punishment that it calls for is unacceptably harsh. However, if the offending sections were sufficiently modified, the proposed law would represent an encouraging step in the right direction. As one of the first laws of this century to recognize that the destructiveness of the “gay” agenda warrants opposition by government, it would deserve support from Christian believers and other advocates of marriage-based culture around the world. 

Note that Lively advises support for the bill if the death penalty was “modified.” As a reminder, the bill without the death penalty would still provide life in jail for someone who “touches another person with the intention of committing the act of homosexuality.”
Is advocating life in jail for disapproved private conduct violence toward those who engage in that conduct?
Scott Lively was interviewed by Marissa Van Zeller of Vanguard Television and asked his view of the bill without the death penalty. In that interview, he supported a bill without the death penalty as “the lesser of two evils.”
Watch:
Lively said:

Like I said, I would not have written the bill this way. But what it comes down to is a question of lesser of two evils, you know like many of the political choices that we have. What is the lesser of two evils here? To allow the American and European gay activists to continue to do to that country what they’ve done here? Or to have a law that may be overly harsh in some regards for people who are indulging in voluntary sexual conduct? I think the lesser of two evils is for the bill to go through.

Scott Lively says he does not favor violence toward gay people, but he does say that the Ugandans are to be commended and that the bill, sans the death penalty, would be acceptable. If the bill was passed and enforced in Uganda, GLBT people would be subject to arrest for physical actions that someone in authority thought was sexual in nature. They could lose everything they have and spend their remaining days in a Ugandan prison. Others could be arrested simply for advocating on behalf of GLBT people. Is this violence?
What if Scott Lively had his way and GLBT people in Uganda (or here, since he likes the idea so much) were forced into some kind of “treatment.” Even NARTH who is hosting an advocate of criminalization at their upcoming conference, has said forced treatment doesn’t work. Exodus clearly denounced it. If NARTH and Exodus say treatment applied under durress is ineffective, then what model are you recommending Mr. Lively?
I surely don’t want the government to take my freedom, access to my family and possessions because because of a moral disagreement. If I was the recipient of such treatment, it would seem like violence to me.
 

Scott Lively goes nuclear in Moldova

Scott Lively said once that his work in Uganda was like “a nuclear bomb against the gay agenda.” In January, he went nuclear-style to Moldova to oppose an anti-discrimination law. Radio Free Europe has the story:

When the Moldovan government submitted a draft antidiscrimination law to parliament last month, conservative Orthodox Christian forces in the country treated it as a call to battle.

And that call was heeded by U.S. pastor and lawyer Scott Lively, who traveled to Chisinau to warn the country against adopting any measure that would bar discrimination against homosexuals.

The bill outlaws discrimination against anyone on the basis of religion, nationality, ethnic origin, language, religion, color, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, political opinion, or social status. It was proposed as part of Moldova’s effort to gain an association agreement with the European Union.

The controversial Lively believes homosexuality is a lifestyle choice with dire social consequences and has made a career in recent years campaigning against gay rights around the world. His website claims he has spoken in more than 30 countries.

“I’ve been dealing with these laws all over the world and I recognize — as I said there in the lectures I gave and the media interviews that I gave — an antidiscrimination law based on sexual orientation is the seed that contains the entire tree of the homosexual political agenda with all of its poisonous fruit,” Lively tells RFE/RL, “and that, if you allow an antidiscrimination policy to go into effect, it essentially puts the power of the law and the government into the hands of gay activists and makes people who disapprove of homosexuality criminals.”

Mainstream science rejects the notion that sexual orientation is a matter of personal choice.

I was interviewed for this piece. The interviewer was interested in Lively’s past work, especially in Uganda.

Boris Dittrich, acting director of the advocacy group Human Rights Watch’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) program, just returned to the United States from a trip to Moldova, where he discussed Lively’s visit with rights advocates in Chisinau.

“He came there with a story like what he told in Uganda, that if this antidiscrimination law would be accepted, the society would be homosexualized and the homosexuals would take over and it would be very dangerous,” Dittrich says.

In Uganda, Lively met with lawmaker David Bahati, who drafted the antigay bill, and gave speeches in which he tied gays to the 1994 genocide in neighboring Rwanda.

“He stirred up a lot of fear in Uganda,” says Warren Throckmorton, an associate professor of psychology at Grove City College, a Christian college in Pennsylvania, who has followed Lively’s activity. “He told them that homosexuals had an unusual interest in children and so that to protect your children, you should construct stronger laws against homosexuality and enforce them.”

In Moldova, however, Lively did not publicly advocate criminalizing homosexuality, but limited himself to campaigning against the antidiscrimination bill. He said he met with one member of parliament while he was in Chisinau.

Exporting U.S. Culture Wars

Lively is not the first controversial U.S. antihomosexual campaigner to find his way to Moldova. Psychologist Paul Cameron — a sex researcher who argues that homosexuality is associated with child sex abuse and other social evils and whose work has been repudiated by major professional associations in the United States — visited the country in October 2008 and again in May 2009.

Cameron campaigns actively for the criminalization of homosexuality on public-health grounds, Throckmorton notes, and so he “promotes laws against homosexuality much in the way some countries criminalize or sanction smoking in public places. He just believes that homosexuality is harmful to health and harmful to the culture.”

I also provided this little gem which I think gives Mr. Lively’s views a proper context:

I have come to discover, through various leads, a dark and powerful homosexual presence in other historical periods: the Spanish Inquisition, the French “Reign of Terror,” the era of South African apartheid, and the two centuries of American slavery.

This quote comes from his lesser known book, The Poisoned Stream which argues that homosexuality is a “poisoned stream” through history. For Lively, money is not the root of all sorts of evil, homosexuality is.