Kemp’s endorsement by anti-LGBTQ organization sparks backlash

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Georgia’s LGBTQ leaders are calling on Governor Brian Kemp to reject the endorsement he received from an organization that believes their sexual and gender identities are a sin.

Frontline Policy Action, a Christian pressure group, endorsed Kemp in May as proven supporter of his goals. The organization lists “God’s purpose… for a happy marriage between a man and a womanfor sexuality and for gender” as a key lobbying issue and encouraged its supporters to push back Pride month.

“I hope Kemp shows leadership and rejects their endorsement because otherwise it sends the message that he supports discrimination and marginalization of the LGBTQ community and other vulnerable members,” the rep said. State, Sam Park. Park is the first openly gay man elected to the Georgia General Assembly.

Kemp responded positively to the approval of the organization, saying he was honored to have his support. He also said he worked closely with Frontline Policy Action on past legislation. The organization boasts that it played a leading role in passing Georgia’s so-called heartbeat bill to limit abortion rights in the state. Kemp’s campaign did not respond to The stream request for comment.

About 4.5% of Georgia’s population identifies as LGBTQ, according to data released in 2019 by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. This percentage represents more than 450,000 people.

Kemp, like many Republican leaders in the state, nonetheless maintained a distant relationship with the LGBTQ community, according to Donovan Edward, board member of the First City Pride Center of Savannah, an inclusive rights-focused advocacy group. LGBTQ.

“I’ve never seen him show his support for the LGBTQ community,” Edward said. “Absolutely not. It’s always quite the opposite, talking about conservative values ​​and what’s right to keep Georgia the way it is.

Georgia has become the 49th state in the nation to pass hate crimes legislation, a delay largely due to a Republican-dominated legislature that for years has been unwilling to legally equate anti-LGBTQ violence with racist attacks. The state passed this law, with the support of Governor Kemp, in 2020, following the murder of Ahmaud Arbery.

When Kemp was running for governor in 2018, he promised to pass legislation backed by evangelical Christians to bolster their traditional views on marriage, sexuality and reproduction. This spring, as he faced a tough primary and a split state party, he made a last-minute effort in the legislative session to pass laws banning trans students from playing sports in schools. public and prohibiting the teaching of “divisive concepts”.

Parents of LGBTQ children have criticized these new laws as adding to a climate of fear and intolerance for their children.

“Rather than trying to push through public policy that helps protect our community, he has unfortunately politicized and stigmatized our community for political gain,” Park said.

In a message to his supporters at the beginning of the monthFrontline Policy Action has characterized the LGBTQ community as embracing evil and passing off its “distorted distortion of human sexuality as ‘normal’.” The organization went on to detail how its supporters could reject Pride during the month of June, as first reported by The Georgia Voice. Front line policy action was not returned The stream request for comment.

” It is not normal. You don’t have to accept it,” the message continues. “…the LGBTQ+ Agenda is a desire to normalize sin, impose ‘acceptance’ of sin on others, and ‘prepare’ a rising generation to view anyone willing to stand up for the truth as hateful, bigoted and narrow-minded.”

New Georgia bills supported by Kemp this spring also include HB 1178, which allows parents to challenge administrators over their child’s program, and SB 226, which gives directors 10 days to review a parent’s complaint. about a book and decide whether or not to remove it from the school shelves.

Supporters say these bills could have a disproportionate impact on LGBTQ students. Almost a third of books banned in the United States deal with LGBTQ themes or have prominent LGBTQ characters, according to a banned book index created by the free expression organization PEN America.

“He makes it clear that he has to protect people who aren’t gay from those of us who are,” said Edward, of the First City Pride Center. “This is just one more example of how Governor Kemp has directly and indirectly harmed the people he is charged with protecting.”

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