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Friday, April 1, 2011

Anti-Gay Group visits Brown U., Needs ’Supernatural Protection’

Red sash-wearing "TFP" demonstrators at a "peaceful protest" similar to one at Brown University on March 23
Red sash-wearing "TFP" demonstrators at a 
"peaceful protest" similar to one at Brown 
By Kilian Melloy -

An anti-gay group on a tour promoting traditional marriage says that "pro-homosexual" students subjected them to violent treatment and claims that only "supernatural protection" saved them from "serious injury" at the hands of the pro-gay crowd.

Among the list of heinous offenses the group claim befell them: One young man attempted to destroy a banner bearing an anti-gay slogan; another allegedly spat on a member of the anti-gay group.

"What we faced today at Brown University, an Ivy League university, had the flavor of a religious persecution," wrote John Ritchie in a March 23 posting at the website for the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property.

Upon the group’s arrival at Brown University, an Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, a cry was heard from the school’s students: "Nooooooo, not at Brown!" reported Ritchie, who went on to marvel that there was "a large rainbow flag hanging from one of the campus buildings nearby. It was like a mini-Berkeley."

As the group drew attention, Ritchie’s account said, both supporters and foes approached. Some called the group "intolerant," the posting noted. The account seemed to suggest that the group was soon in the midst of a near-riot.

"As we peacefully campaigned, about 250 frenzied pro-homosexual students gathered to scream, spit, taunt, insult, assault, and even attempt to destroy our traditional marriage banner," Ritchie’s posting said. "Only with supernatural protection, and a strong police presence, did TFP volunteers manage to complete the campaign without serious injury."

The group posted a video of the allegedly violent proceedings to YouTube, but the video was struck from the site, allegedly for violating YouTube’s policies. What the exact violation might have been, however, was not made explicitly clear.

"It seems YouTube broke their own guidelines when removing it, because the policy states that the video poster will be notified of any problem, and be given 48 hours to either remove the video or correct the problem," Ritchie told anti-gay religious online publication LifeSiteNews, the site reported in a March 30 article.

At another TFP page--"Traditional Marriage Crusade Campaign Central"--links to several videos of the group’s greeting at Brown were available. Another link at the page asked readers to help distribute a leaflet titled "10 Reasons Why Homosexual ’Marriage’ is Harmful and Must be Opposed."

The leaflet’s stated reasons include "It Is Not Marriage" ("Calling something marriage does not make it marriage"), "It Violates Natural Law," and "It Always Denies a Child Either a Father or a Mother," among others. (The leaflet did not appear to address childless couples, whether of the same or opposite genders. It did, however, contradict itself in a later claim that stated, "It Does Not Create a Family but a Naturally Sterile Union," despite having asserted a universal and inevitable deprivation of two same-sex parents for children in every instance of same-sex committed relationships.)

The list went on to further claim that marriage equality "Validates and Promotes the Homosexual Lifestyle," and assert that, "It Turns a Moral Wrong into a Civil Right."

The leaflet’s posting is accompanied by a disclaimer of sorts that reads, in part, "In intellectually opposing individuals or organizations promoting the homosexual agenda, our only intent is the defense of traditional marriage, the family, and the precious remnants of Christian civilization.

"As practicing Catholics, we are filled with compassion and pray for those who struggle against unrelenting and violent temptation to homosexual sin," the disclaimer continued.

No reference to tender and loving long-term commitment between persons of the same sex was cited amongst the declarations referencing "violent... homosexual sin." The disclaimer also suggested that there was no reason for the group to employ logic, science, or anything other than faith in defense of their anti-gay views: "To the arguments in favor of homosexuality and same-sex ’marriage’ we respond with arguments based on right reason, natural law and Divine Revelation."
Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary for EDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.

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