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AFA calling 10 year old Pride Grand Marshall child abuse

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By Julia Rosen

Remember that precocious 10 year old that refused to say the pledge of allegiance because he felt that there was not liberty and justice for all if LGBTs were not able to marry or adopt children?

The Northwest Arkansas Pride has invited him to be their Grand Marshall, which the American Family Association, a far-right group is calling it “child abuse”. The Advocate:

“It’s shameful that adults would abuse a brain-washed child in this way,” AFA president Tim Wildmon writes in a press release. “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. For gay activists to trot out this child and make him the poster child for promoting unnatural sexual expression is a form of child abuse.”

Anyone who has seen a video of Will talking knows how ridiculous Wildmon’s claims of brainwashing and child abuse. Speaking of that here is Will accepting an award from GLAAD.

More from the Adocate:

Wildmon then uses the Food and Drug Administration’s ban on gay blood donors as justification for discouraging acceptance of gays. “There is nothing about homosexual conduct to be proud of, and much to be ashamed of,” Wildmon writes.

Wildmon is referring to the recent decision by the FDA not to suspend the ban on men who have had sex with other men from donating blood. It’s decisions like this one that has a negative impact on the general public’s perception of LGBTs. Wildmon is taking advantage of that and using it as an opportunity to encourage the perception that gays are unclean and shameful. That’s the danger of the failure to make progress or small incomplete gains. They further buttress the impression that LGBTs are different and less worthy of equal treatment under the law.

Take the advancement we made this week with the Family Medical Leave Act. LGBTs are able to take unpaid leave take care of their partner’s kids, but not their partners themselves. It perpetuates the notion that there is a reason LGBTs should be treated unequally, attaching a negative stigma to this class of people.

Activists like the readers of this site know that it is DOMA that is preventing the ability to take time off to care for a partner, but that detail often gets lost in the shuffle of the news.

That’s why we need major reforms, not piecemeal efforts that can be repealed when another party takes the presidency. We’ve seen what happened in Virginia after a conservative Republican replaced a moderate Democrat and started rolling back the protections that were gained. That can happen federally and is one of the reasons why this trial is so important. It has the potential to get DOMA fully repealed and ensuring LGBTs are treated completely equally under the law.

93 Comments

  • 1. fiona64  |  June 23, 2010 at 9:44 am

    That little boy is one of the most articulate young people I have ever seen; no one was coercing him to do anything.

    This is just more fearmongering from those who want to conflate a relationship between two consenting adults with coercive, criminal pedophilia.

    What idiots.

  • 2. Brandy  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:00 am

    Where is the AFA when those Phelps kids are carrying hate signs on the corner of a busy street?

  • 3. truthspew  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:09 am

    BTW, that he's a Star Trek geek makes it all the better.

    As to WIldmon he's proving to be as much a horses ass as his father.

    Want to talk about child abuse? How about Sunday school?

  • 4. Richard W. Fitch  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:10 am

    Obviously, Wildmon is counting on all his sheeple getting their info thru FauxNews ans OneNewsNow. Anyone who saw the interviews that include this young man and his father realize how committed Will is the positions he so ably articulates. As far as the Phelps kult is concerns, I am sure Wildmon commends the parents for brainwashing these children before they start thinking on their own.

  • 5. Marlene  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:11 am

    Applauding!

  • 6. Scott  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:13 am

    You know what's child abuse? Sending the message out to kids that whoever among them that turns out gay is going to hell. That God hates them. Forcing them in the closet. Dashing their hopes of one day falling in love, settling down, and raising a family of their own.

  • 7. Marlene  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:13 am

    I became aware of this young man when the incident happened.

    AFAIC, he's more intelligent than Rush, Sarah, Glenn, Timmy, and the entire cabal of the American Taliban *combined*!

  • 8. melodie griffis  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:18 am

    I will be riding on a float in this parade on Saturday morning :) Yay Will!! We in Northwest Arkansas are proud of you and your wonderful parents! And Brandy, good point! I'm sure there will be plenty of underage protesters on the sidelines spouting their parents' ugliness, I wonder if the Phelps klan will appear.

  • 9. Kathleen  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:22 am

    Here's where it was reported in local news. As you can see, Tim Wildmon was not the first to claim it's child abuse. sigh.. http://www.topix.net/forum/source/kfsm/TFFUJKDDD9

  • 10. Mouse  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:25 am

    “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. For gay activists to trot out this child and make him the poster child for promoting unnatural sexual expression is a form of child abuse.”

    We see first in others that which we are most ashamed about ourselves.

    Of course it looks like child abuse to these hateful people; that's one of their most powerful tactics.

  • 11. Ronnie  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:37 am

    Lets rephrase this:

    “It’s shameful that adults would abuse a brain-washed imbecile in this way,” Soldier of LOVE, Ronnie Mc writes in a press release in reference to AFA (Anti-Ameircan Family Association) president Tim Wildmon . “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. For anti-gay activists to trot out this imbecile and make him the poster child for promoting un-American Fascists tyrannical is a form of human abuse.”

    there thats better…..<3….Ronnie

  • 12. Ronnie  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:38 am

    dang….subscribe…..<3…Ronnie

  • 13. Holly  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:57 am

    "He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults."

    I could say the same thing about the Phelps kids…

  • 14. Bolt  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:58 am

    Religious bigots are perverts. They're always thinking of sex!

  • 15. Derrick  |  June 23, 2010 at 11:00 am

    "He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults."

    Does this mean that we are now allowing child abuse charges to be filed against religious people who brainwash their children?

  • 16. Shun  |  June 23, 2010 at 11:39 am

    at least you can scream child abuse at everything they do now :)

  • 17. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 23, 2010 at 11:40 am

    They will simply keep playing the same tired cards over and over again, until they have been called on their bigoted BS enough that they give up. this is just another of their death rattles being emitted. They are going down like the Titanic, and they cannot deal with that like rational, adult, human beings. they are seeing the end of their theocratic rule, and the future scares them to no end.

  • 18. JonT  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    “It’s shameful that adults would abuse a brain-washed child in this way,” AFA president Tim Wildmon writes in a press release. “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. "

    Maybe Joey should read this :)

    (and subscribing).

  • 19. JonT  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Yes! And I have to admire his father for supporting his beliefs as well.

  • 20. JonT  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    Yes! Now that's child abuse IMO.

  • 21. Jason  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    Does anyone else think it's ironic that at one time we called ourselves "family" as a metaphor for gay, and now that word seems to be tied to a lot of grief for us – The American FAMILY Association, Focus on the FAMILY, Family Research Council. They took a perfectly good word and messed it up.

  • 22. Shun  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    I think they keep on going on and on as if we are trying to ruin their lives or something…when no one can really give good reasons as to why their hetereosexual marriage lives will somehow fall apart if same sex marriage is allowed.

  • 23. JonT  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    I think it's because we stand in the way of their theocratic utopia.

    I really cannot think of any other reason.

  • 24. JonT  |  June 23, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    @Jason: "Does anyone else think it’s ironic that at one time we called ourselves “family” as a metaphor for gay, and now that word seems to be tied to a lot of grief for us – The American FAMILY Association, Focus on the FAMILY, Family Research Council. They took a perfectly good word and messed it up."

    To be fair, they could claim the same for the word 'Gay'. Imagine the future:

    The American GAY Association
    Focus on the GAY (my fav :)
    GAY Research Council.

    Hopefully they won't try that with 'gay'. Would be fun if they did though eh? :)

  • 25. Shun  |  June 23, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    I would imagine also that they just think the world should be more like them…and that anything that's different are just wrong (this includes other religions, culture, etc.)

  • 26. Amy  |  June 23, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    I agree

  • 27. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 23, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    What, Will is a Star Trek fan! That is way cool! I named my Suzuki Sulu in honor of George Takei, and I now have a Sulu figurine that I will be mounting in Sulu Suzuki SX4 tomorrow.

  • 28. Fluffyskunk  |  June 23, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Implanting his beliefs, you mean. Just to put things in their proper perspective, this is a ten-year old kid. Ten-year olds do not have beliefs, opinions, or ideas that weren't planted in their heads by their parents, their church, their school or their peer group.

    The kid's essentially the equivalent of a ten-year old who speaks in tongues or cries and sings at the top of his lungs at a jesus camp. Damn right he's parroting what he's been told by his parents. The fact that the words he's spewing are about equal rights rather than hellfire and damnation doesn't change the fact that the poor kid's dad is using him as a front for his own fifteen minutes of fame. I'm glad his dad's on our side, but come on, this is a ten-year old kid who told his teacher to jump off a bridge. His dad saw the opportunity and ran with it. I wouldn't exactly call it "child abuse", but it's not ethical.

  • 29. Fluffyskunk  |  June 23, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    It's all about male superiority. Homosexuality subverts traditional gender roles, and that's what upsets them.
    http://atheism.about.com/b/2005/05/30/homophobia-

  • 30. Alan E.  |  June 23, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    There is much that can be learned from Star Trek about equality.

  • 31. Alan E.  |  June 23, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    subscribing so I can go get some popcorn to watch the show.

  • 32. Straight Ally #3008  |  June 23, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    [youtube =http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMqGlSjAbwA&hl=en_US&fs=1&]

  • 33. Sheryl  |  June 23, 2010 at 6:55 pm

    I think a 10-year old is perfectly capable of having an opinion, unless the 10-year old has been kept away from other children, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, school, etc. Then perhaps just parroting mom and/or dad. I guess there are still those who think that children should be seen and not heard. AND, it is only child abuse if what the child is being taught is about equality for everyone not just those who think the same as you.

  • 34. Richard A. Walter (soon to be Walter-Jernigan)  |  June 23, 2010 at 7:34 pm

    They most certainly did.

  • 35. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 23, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    Yes, there is, Alan.

  • 36. Marlene  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    In a word, Fluffy…. bullshit!!

    When I was *7*, I knew that what was happening in the south to the followers of Dr. King was wrong.

    About that time, I had a disconcerting feeling that I wasn't a boy, but should've been born a girl instead. I went right to the library *on my own* to look up what it was I was feeling inside. I got no help from my parents, as they weren't very well educated, and had no ability to look things up in the library like I did.

    All kids are different… some are like those kids in Jesus Camp because their natural ability to wonder and learn has been drummed out of them by their fanatical parents.

  • 37. Marlene  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    You and I can agree on this, Fluffy…

    Not to mention lesbians (means they can't have them as wives or concubines), and transgendered (we're all "confused" because our "real" gender is between our legs)!

  • 38. Sagesse  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    NOM's 'Summer for Marriage' tour

    NOM launches summer tour; Freedom to Marry to respond in kind
    http://www.bilerico.com/2010/06/nom_launches_summ

  • 39. Sagesse  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    Obama's address at the White House Pride reception

    [youtube =http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUBI7dmUeb4&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xd0d0d0&hl=en_US&feature=player_embedded&fs=1]

  • 40. Sagesse  |  June 23, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    A win for the children

    NY Senate Passes Dignity for All Students Act 58-3: Why?
    http://www.bilerico.com/2010/06/ny_senate_passes_

    If you have a "bill [that] empowers the New York Commissioner of Education to establish policies and prohibiting harassment and discrimination against students based on a number of categories, including sexual orientation and gender identity", it follows that children can and do understand what sexual orientation and gender identity are?

  • 41. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 23, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    @ Marlene; #4 ::STANDING OVATION::
    You hit that one right out of the park!

  • 42. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 23, 2010 at 11:34 pm

    I am emailing Michael right now to see how my husband and I can participate in this. Thank you for the link, Sagesse. Once again you have proven, as all of the women who are part of the P8TT Family have, just how important it is that our wise women are also free to be outspoken.

  • 43. Mark  |  June 24, 2010 at 1:31 am

    Why is a 10 year old having a well-worded and humerous opinion being viewed as a bad thing when Prop 8 was passed largely because of bussed in Families from Utah standing on street corners holding signs. I personally remember seeing children as young as 4 holding signs.

    Who is doing the brain-washing again?

  • 44. fiona64  |  June 24, 2010 at 2:03 am

    This. ^^

  • 45. Ronnie  |  June 24, 2010 at 2:06 am

    "Just as I was very proud to say the obvious more than 15 years ago in Beijing that human rights are women’s rights — and women’s rights are human rights — let me say today that human rights are gay rights and gay rights are human rights."~Hillary Clinton

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton delivers opening remarks at an event celebrating LGBT Pride Month at the Department of State in Washington, DC June 22, 2010:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x66HWNjMPmQ&fe…!

  • 46. Mark2  |  June 24, 2010 at 2:48 am

    Thank you Hillary. Please also make this speech in Uganda and Singapore.

  • 47. bJason  |  June 24, 2010 at 2:54 am

    Check out this juicy bit of hot-hotness!!

    Court refuses to keep petitioner IDs private
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100624/ap_on_go_su_c

  • 48. Bill  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:26 am

    Fluffyskunk can't fathom that a 10 year old knows it is wrong to treat human beings as something besides human beings???

    To you, I can only say that I feel a bit sad for you.

  • 49. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:29 am

    Some of them may even be painting the signs for them so that they have replacements if they get wet or torn.

  • 50. Mark  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:30 am

    ^^ Great news. Transparency in the political process is what will hopefully keep it just a bit more honest.

    Hate groups and fear mongers should not be able to take away rights and then hide themselves away. Isn't that what the KKK used to do?

  • 51. Ronnie  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:33 am

    Don't forget to watch, set your DVR or TIVO tonight..at 8pm EDT, CNN is running "Gary and Tony Have a Baby" on Soledad O'Brien's "In America". The special chronicles Gary Spino and Tony Brown's journey to form a family through surrogacy……..<3…Ronnie
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIMQlNobVbo&fe

  • 52. Ben Lewis  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:33 am

    Well, if children can attack each other for sexual orientation and gender identity, then it would follow that they know what these concepts are. I have realized now that I should have figured out some things years ago, in about the fourth grade. Which would have then suggested that I understood sexuality ( in a broad sense ) as a child.

  • 53. James Sweet  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:34 am

    It’s shameful that adults would abuse a brain-washed child in this way. He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults.

    That's funny, that's pretty much exactly how I feel about the way AFA wants people to raise their kids…

    I mean, do they have no sense of irony? "Parroting the nonsense he's been told by manipulative adults" is pretty much the definition of Sunday School…

  • 54. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:35 am

    Fluffyskunk, when I was in my psychology calss as part of my business Administration degree, one of the things we learned is that psychologists, sociologists and other research scientists have found that children as young as 3 not only have their own opinions, but can be very vocal when expressing them. And if you want a living example of that, all you have to do is walk up to a child of any age and ask him or her if he or she likes your outfit, your hairstyle, or even if he or she likes you! Trust me, they will be more than happy to tell you what they think. And if they hurt your feelings? Oh, well, you'll get over it. Believe me, I am also speaking from experience. I have more than three dozen nieces and nephews, and many of them are now old enough to have children and in some cases grandchildren of their own, and I also have adult stepchildren and several grandchildren. And not even our five year old granddaughter is left out when it comes to having a valid opinion and being able and willing to express it.

  • 55. Slick  |  June 24, 2010 at 5:03 am

    “It’s shameful that adults would abuse a brain-washed child in this way,” AFA president Tim Wildmon writes in a press release. “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. For gay activists to trot out this child and make him the poster child for promoting unnatural sexual expression is a form of child abuse.”

    Interesting… the YesOn8 folks did the exact same thing with their kids before the '08 elections. They were out on every street corner in town for months before the election, parading them back & forth & chanting "protect the children". I also found it interesting that the largest contingent of support for the NoOn8 campaign in my town came from high-schoolers… which gives me hope for a better future.

  • 56. Ronnie  |  June 24, 2010 at 5:18 am

    Oh and we can't forget their little commercial exploiting children with this little gem of spoon fed bullshite "If my dad married a man, who would be my mom"

    a hypocrite is hypocrite is a hypocrite….as a friends of mine on FB calls them…."Hypocritstians"….

    they are just as guilty if not more of exploiting children to forward their anti-Ameircan agenda & theocratical tyranny to dominate America and force all who do not follow their religious beliefs lock in step into oppression. They are the ones being abusive to children since their antiquated words enable hate, bashing, and even murder

    The soooooo…FAIL..on so many levels….and it is sad that don't see their own comical hypocrisy…..<3…Ronnie

  • 57. Mark M.  |  June 24, 2010 at 5:19 am

    Now THIS is child abuse!
    Just look at this poor boys face and tell me he is not being abused!
    http://campusledger.jccc.edu/system/files/imageca

  • 58. Gew  |  June 24, 2010 at 5:22 am

    Speaking of abuse; what about all the homeless gay youth unceeimoniously ousted from their homes by their unable to manipulate them parents?

    To say nothing of the high rate of suicide among gay youth because their parents failed to instill in them the choice of heterosexuality?

    Excluding Fundie Christians who are in deep denial about who they really are, many of them have gay children. How sad that they have so failed god in raising their children correctly.

  • 59. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 24, 2010 at 5:25 am

    And I foresee this young man doing exactly what Nate Phelps did and getting the hell out of Dodge at his first opportunity.

  • 60. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  June 24, 2010 at 8:49 am

    HUH?
    The choice of heterosexuality????
    Failed God by not raising their children correctly???

  • 61. Kathleen  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:06 am

    There may be some miscommunication happening.

    I think when Gew said 'the choice of heterosexuality' this refers to the parents' perception that it is a choice and that when the parents fail to force this 'choice' on their children, the children respond by attempting suicide.

    I also read the 'have so failed god in raising their children correctly' to mean that the correct way to raise their children would have been to love them for who they are.

    Maybe I'm the one misunderstanding what Gew is saying.. hopefully Gew will clarify.

  • 62. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:16 am

    I think Gew is trying to turn the fundies' argument back on them by using satire and irony. At least that was how I saw it.

  • 63. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Oh okay…..wasn't sure so thought I would ask Gew what was meant

  • 64. Richard A. Walter (s  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:27 am

    I would still like to know exactly what Gew meant, even though I saw it as satire.

  • 65. Straight Grandmother  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:47 am

    I DID NOT fail to raise my children correctly. I raised them correctly and they turned out gay. And I LOVE my gay son and daughter. Initially after my chidren came out to us I spent a lot of time thinking and wondering, "What did I do wrong?" I finally figured out that I didn't do anything wrong, they are just gay… becasue they are gay. Apparently my egg and my husband's sperm make gay children. That is all there is to it.

  • 66. Monty  |  June 24, 2010 at 9:50 am

    Unfortunately, this medium lends itself to ambiguity. There's been at least three distinct interpretations of the post so far, and no way to say confidently which one is most accurate until we hear from Gew.

  • 67. JonT  |  June 24, 2010 at 11:18 am

    I am not familiar with 'Gew', but the post seems like it was meant as sarcasm?

  • 68. Mel from Fayettevill  |  June 24, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    The AFA has sent hundreds of form letter emails to Mayor Jordan of Fayetteville to demand that he withdraw support for this parade. Please help send the message to the mayor that we support his courage in standing up to this religious bigotry! Here is a link to the AFA form letter. Use it to email Mayor Jordan, and turn the AFA's own tool against them!
    http://secure.afa.net/afa/activism/TakeAction.asp

    or, email Mayor Jordan directly:

    mayor@ci.fayetteville.ar.us

  • 69. Monty  |  June 24, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    Obvious troll is obvious.

  • 70. Alan E.  |  June 25, 2010 at 1:40 am

    I reformed their own letter to say this:

    Dear Mayor Jordan and Fayetteville City Council:

    I fully support your decision to have pride in your LGBT citizens, so I have decided to make a few changes to this form letter that you have been receiving.

    I am not shocked to learn that the city of Fayetteville is issuing a proclamation in support of the homosexual activist group, Northwest Arkansas Pride.

    It's nowhere near offensive that they are going to parade their pride in their immutable characteristics on the streets of the city.

    It's even more exciting that the city is supporting it, knowing very well that the organizers of this event are supporting free-thinking children to promote their event.

    I implore you to maintain the proclamation, but still focus on issues that promote a healthy and safe lifestyle.

  • 71. UM  |  June 26, 2010 at 10:51 am

    I have to say, I gave my first speech in front of people when i was 4. The notes were done for me, and I was supposed to memorize them and read them. You know what I did? At that age, I decided to give my own speech. I spoke what I knew about the subject, not relying in the notes. And I was 4.

    So yes, a ten year old knows perfectly fine what he is saying and what he's standing for. AFA people: Don't call it abuse or brainwashing just because he's saying something you don't want to hear.

  • 72. UM  |  June 26, 2010 at 11:36 am

    What an amazing speech.

  • 73. Mel from Fayettevill  |  June 26, 2010 at 11:40 am

    The parade went off today without a hitch, and there were very few protesters. Will spoke and was cheered, and Mayor Jordan went on to proclaim Pride Week as he said he would. There were 3 times as many people there this year than last year, all due I'm sure to the nastiness of the AFA. It seems the AFA's campaign backfired and caused people to rally around the LGBT community! Wow, what a wonderful day!

  • 74. Kathleen  |  June 26, 2010 at 11:50 am

    Thanks so much for letting us know!

  • 75. Mel from Fayettevill  |  June 26, 2010 at 12:02 pm

    Hi Fluffy,
    "His dad is using him as a front for his own fifteen minutes of fame" ?

    Uh, when exactly did you meet and talk with Will and his parents? These are good people. You don't know what you are talking about.

    The parade was wonderful this morning, btw. Believe me, Mr. Phillips was far more concerned with Will's safety than with being on tv.

  • 76. PamC  |  June 26, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    This is awesome news, and made my day. Thanks! I'm so proud of all my family right now (and always).

  • 77. Regan DuCasse  |  June 27, 2010 at 3:56 am

    Thank you Brandy!

    Not only do the Phelps force their children to read Scripture all day, Nate Phelps one of the older sons said they were beaten into doing what the patriarch wanted and so was their mother.

    Shirley Phelps-Roper is ALSO a white supremacist. And we know that those children have has signs depicting figures in sexual positions on their signs and they've been out in extreme weather too to advance the Phelps's message.

    You are SO right. That if any children are subject to abuse, it's the kids in the Phelps prison.

    Young children do sometimes have innate empathy and sense of helping and what's fair. Will's father wisely enhanced that aspect in his son. That doesn't require brainwashing. It's a family that's bringing out the best in their son.

    Where the Phelps train THEIRS to be at their worst. Especially in the disrespect and cruelty they show someone burying a dead family member.

  • 78. Regan DuCasse  |  June 27, 2010 at 4:12 am

    My parents LOVED Star Trek! They read and had us read all kinds of science fiction. I grew up reading the greats, as well as loving the family trips we took to space and astronomy sites. I live in Los Angeles where we have the Jet Propulsion Lab.
    And I've visited every space flight and rocket center in the US.

    Star Trek appealed to my parents because it envisioned a future without all the 'isms' our society is plagued with.
    IDIC, that is etched on the Star Fleet insignia is an anacronym for 'Infinite Diversity, Infinite Combinations'

    Your typical Trekker, believes fully in that future and all the possibilities of being at one in our diversity.
    I was eight years old when Star Trek first hit the television and look at all the incarnations it's wrought since.
    And look at all the devices conceived by people who want a future for our world like that.

    I was influenced by ST to make it happen, and so is Will. That's what makes us advocate for the gay members of our human family.
    And people like Wildmon are cowards, despotic and feel entitled without earning anything.
    And an embarrassment if the time comes more advanced aliens show up who care about those things.

    Will is the courageous young genius, stupid people like Wildmon don't like it because they don't have the talent and imagination or balls to make anything better, really.
    So they take on an easy target and go on the offensive.
    What pathetic losers!

  • 79. Regan DuCasse  |  June 27, 2010 at 4:23 am

    I love you for what you just said S G it's that simple. Being gay doesn't make you a bad person, just different. And if more parents were like you, this would be a better place for everyone.

    I think that the anti gay make parents lose the courage they'd ordinarily have in protecting their children, just for the sake of knowing their children best.
    Even when I watched debates on mixed marriages and the question the potential grandparents would ask is: what about the children?

    MY answer to that is, no…what about YOU? It's up to YOU to learn how to defend them. It's up to YOU to protect who you know is YOURS from people who don't.

    What an adult is really saying when they ask that question is: I'm not willing to defend my blood. I'd prefer an ideology to my own flesh.

    But an ideology won't make you hand made greeting cards, hug and kiss you or help you make pancakes. An ideology won't become the professional that's the first to graduate from college in your family and that ideology won't comfort you in sickness or old age like the warm, loving hand of your child.

    A parent should know that, before they let some stranger tell them their child can't do all of those things AS WELL AS be gay.

    But you, SG are one of the people who knows their better angels.
    And I'm so very happy for your children. They have much to be proud of, as do you.

  • 80. Mark M  |  June 27, 2010 at 5:06 am

    EXCELLENT!!!!!

  • 81. Bob  |  June 27, 2010 at 6:36 am

    another showing of pride, for the Rainbow Flag, carried by our people, after listening to peronal stories on this site, pride begins to take on a much more deeper meaning.

    JOY to the World

  • 82. Mel from Fayettevill  |  June 27, 2010 at 8:55 am

    The Northwest Arkansas Pride Parade 2010 featuring Will Phillips. If the embedded video doesn't work, here's the link:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD-QICClETY

  • 83. carolina  |  June 28, 2010 at 12:49 am

    As a survivor of actual child abuse, the words of the AFA make me physically ill. From what I understand, the boy was invited, not forced.

    I honestly can't write anything coherent about how upset I am.

  • 84. Ed-M  |  June 28, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    “He’s obviously just parroting the nonsense he’s been told by manipulative adults. For gay activists to trot out [Will Phillips] and make him the poster child for promoting unnatural sexual expression is a form of child abuse.”

    And Don Wildmon and his ilk infecting young kids everywhere with their Fundamentalist Extremist Christ-psychosis isn't??? The theotard, who has made a twentyplus-year career out of antigay, sex negative hysteria and bigotry in the name of protecting the family (HAHAHA) conveniently forgets that Will took the initiative in his fourth grade class not that long ago and that his parents support him in his fight for equality! Now if parental support is now considered to be child abuse when it's not considered by insane pressure groups to be "religiously correct," then I must be living in the wrong Universe!

  • 85. Ed-M  |  June 28, 2010 at 7:19 pm

    Strongly agree.

    And what's worse is, these same people who force these kids deeply into the closet are now, when the kids are teenagers, finding ways to force or bring them OUT of the closet. Then punish them for it.

  • 86. Ed-M  |  June 28, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    Exactly. These nuts think that they are restricted from the free exercise of their religion unless they're cramming it down our throats.

  • 87. PamC  |  June 28, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    And again, they are reducing relationships to "sexual expression." But if marriage is all about procreation, that makes sense. However, note that they are careful to make sure that gays are interested in sexual expression, while they are only interested in sex to have chldren. Poor things!

    So all of the long, wonderful conversations, shared meals with friends and family, community participation, reading aloud to one another, giving time and money to causes, supporting each other in our pursuit of education and careers, tending to adopted pets, day hikes, shared enthusiasms, helping others, creative projects, gardening, yard sale treasure hunting, wedding and graduation gifts for nieces and nephews, and general celebration of life in its diversity, through thick & thin–none of these are part of what Will is standing up and supporting; he's only supporting our right to sexual expression???

    Their arguments demean all long-term relationships, including their own.

  • 88. Mykelb  |  July 8, 2010 at 4:46 am

    Anyone ever read "All I ever needed to learn I got in Kindergarten?" Think about it.

  • 89. Mykelb  |  July 8, 2010 at 4:50 am

    I agree that organized religion should be only for 18 and up. Where is the government when these children are being brainwashed by the likes of Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell and James Hagee by being forced by their parents to endure this torture?

  • 90. Alan E.  |  July 8, 2010 at 4:50 am

    ,blockquote>Anyone ever read “All I ever needed to learn I got in Kindergarten?” Think about it.

    I think about that every day when I line up for BART (one system of public transit in San Francisco). So many people don't understand the concept of forming a queue at the designated spots and will just push in on the sides. I commended a woman one day for teaching the kids she was accompanying about the merits of standing patiently in line.

  • 91. Mykelb  |  July 8, 2010 at 4:57 am

    Failed God? Boy, you ARE PROJECTING your religious bigotry now. How can one fail a non-existent fairy tale?

  • 92. Ed-M  |  July 8, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    Even when I was in kindergarted I was taught to line up in a queue. I think there was a critical mass of parents NOT TEACHING CHILDERN HOW TO BEHAVE starting in the late 40s early 50s. We've had to put up with rude behaviour ever since.

  • 93. Ed-M  |  July 8, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    I hope this is sarcasm!!! And so what if they failed their Imaginary Friend.

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