Who Will Defend Free Speech in America?
By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media
In a story about Bret Baier’s withdrawal from a Catholic conference, where he was going to speak about his Catholic faith, the website known as Mediaite noted that Republican Governor Bobby Jindal (LA) was going to go through with his appearance at the event. But the website warned him about the consequences of offending the homosexual lobby. “Given the controversy that follows House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) more than a decade after he allegedly spoke before a group connected to white supremacists, Jindal, who has presidential ambitions of his own, must be giving his appearance some serious thought right about now,” it said.
Hence, the philosophy of white supremacism associated with the Ku Klux Klan and the Nazis is compared to Catholicism. That’s the message this so-called “respectable” source of news and information is sending. Jindal rejected that. The governor’s spokesman said, “Governor Jindal looks forward to addressing the summit and speaking about what faith means to him.”
The summit is sponsored by Legatus, a group that upholds the teachings of the Catholic Church on human sexuality and other matters.
If Baier was speaking at or attending a fundraiser for the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA), that would have been perfectly okay. After all, many Fox media stars, including Megyn Kelly, have done so in the past. In addition, Fox pours money directly into this important lobby in the homosexual movement, and it’s not even a controversy.
What’s fascinating in this case is that the attacks which forced Baier and actor Gary Sinise out of the Legatus conference do not involve opening fire on anybody’s editorial offices and murdering the offenders. These things are mostly done differently in America. I say “mostly” because of the terrorist attack on the Washington, D.C. offices of the Family Research Council (FRC) in 2012. That was inspired by a “hate map” posted by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) pinpointing the location of the FRC. A security guard was injured as he stopped a homosexual militant from trying to carry out a massacre in the FRC offices.
In most cases, however, the weapons of character assassination, distortion, and anti-Christian bigotry will suffice. The purpose is to intimidate and ostracize those who dare to associate with groups affirming traditional standards of morality. One of the new tactics, as used by Mediaite, is to associate Catholics with racial extremists. This is a smear that is beneath contempt, but the gay lobby and its fellow travelers will stop at nothing.
The message that the site was sending to Jindal is that he risks his political future by associating with a notorious hate group called the Catholic Church. It was a threat disguised as news.
The leftists have no quarrel with the views of the pope on economic matters. And they certainly won’t quibble with his encyclical on climate change when he issues that in March. But challenging the morality of the lifestyle of so many in Hollywood and the media is something else. Questioning the homosexual lifestyle simply cannot be tolerated.
Jindal, who is a Catholic, didn’t succumb to the pressure. He had the intestinal fortitude to remain true to his beliefs. He understood that the attacks on Legatus were an attack upon his own faith. He couldn’t back down and maintain his own principles. Jindal’s decision to stand up to the modern totalitarians in the gay rights movement has to be seen as courageous.
Backing out is especially troubling in the case of Bret Baier, since his speaking appearance at the Legatus summit was for the purpose of talking about his own Catholic faith expressed in his book, Special Heart: A Journey of Faith, Hope, Courage and Love. He wasn’t there to talk about gay rights. Neither was Sinise, for that matter.
Baier, or his corporate bosses, have to take the blame for giving in to the pressure. We would have thought that the Fox News Channel would have stood firmly for freedom of expression and freedom of conscience. It sets a terrible precedent that a “conservative” news channel, which became successful by speaking for many without a traditional voice in the liberal media, should bow at the altar of political correctness. Why they buckled to the pressure is a story in itself.
As we have pointed out, Fox News anchor Shepard Smith is allowed to pontificate on the air, including on behalf of the gay rights cause. But a Bret Baier speech about his book at a Catholic event is supposed to be offensive. This is the state of our media today.
The tactics used by the homosexual lobby have been perfected by such groups as the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Council on American-Islamic Relations against their enemies. What’s new is that the official Catholic Church teachings on human sexuality are now labeled as so offensive that people can’t even be associated with a group that promotes them. This is the kind of religious discrimination we have seen in countries like France against the Jews.
Some in the media called the summit “anti-gay,” which is a complete lie. As Legatus Executive Director John Hunt said in a statement, “Legatus embraces all that the Catholic Church teaches—nothing more, nothing less. Of course, at the core of all that the Church teaches is Christ’s unconditional love for every man and woman. While the Church has and always will teach about the morality of certain behaviors, these teachings are always to be understood in the context of the value of and respect for every human person.”
Turning Christian love into “hate” is an indication of how a situation can be twisted into something it’s not. This is how political correctness, a form of cultural Marxism, works in practice. The homosexual lobby has perfected this tactic of intimidation.
Hunt said the group’s members are only asking for the freedom to exercise their religious beliefs, “which includes the ability to gather together and discuss their faith.”
That such a meeting has become controversial, to the point where major figures in the media and Hollywood can be forced to back out, is a terrible reflection on the condition of the First Amendment right to free speech in America today. The news organizations that are involved in this silencing of freedom of expression have shown they have no understanding of what “I am Charlie” is all about.