The Radical Religious Right


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If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.

-- Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Fighting the Religious Right

With God On Our Side
Home page for the PBS series on the rise to political power of the Religious Right.
Who's Behind The Culture War? Contemporary Assaults on the Freedom of Expression by Mark Schapiro
Out Against the Right: An Organizing Handbook, by the Lesbian Avengers' Civil Rights Organizing Project.
In their own words...
HateWatch is an organization that monitors the growing and evolving threat of hate group activity on the Internet. Started in 1995, HateWatch provides and on-line resource for concerned individuals, academics, organizations and the media to keep abreast of and counteract hate activity in our world. By acting as a resource for interested parties, HateWatch catalogues hate groups home pages, tracks the use of these pages for recruitment purposes and provides bibliographic information by and for leading scholars.
Political Research Associates
Political Research Associates is an independent, not-for-profit research center which monitors the organizations, individuals, and activities of the US political right. Our purpose is to serve as an information clearinghouse providing archival information on the right wing, including links among right-wing groups, financing behind right-wing activities, and analysis of right-wing movements, and to serve as an "early warning system" for those who need to know about emerging trends and developments.
The Institute for First Amendment Studies
The Fight The Right Network
The Separation of Church and State Home Page
The Interfaith Working Group
The Interfaith Alliance
A multi-denominational, non-partisan, grassroots organization dedicated to providing a faith-based counter to the RRR's politics of hate.
Fight the Right Action Kit
An excellent (albeit somewhat dated) resource on fighting the religious right, produced by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.
Freedom Writer, October 1996, "Activist Guide: How to win the fight" by Skipp Porteous
How to Win: A Practical Guide to Defeating the Radical Right
A one-stop, do-it-yourself guide to fighting the Radical Right at the local level.
"10 things to do when the Radical Right comes to town by Matthew Freeman
Citizen's Project Editorial: What's wrong with the Religious Right
How To Fight The Right Wing
An essay by Stuart Norman on strategies and methods for fighting the religious (and non-religious) right.
Freedom Writer October 1994, "Using computers to fight the right"
Freedom Writer August 1994, "Responding to homophobic rhetoric"

The Radical Religious Right

The Anti-gay Propaganda of the RRR

Christian Reconstructionism

Christian Reconstructionism is an extreme form of post-millenial, Calvinistic Protestantism which holds that the Law of the Pentateuch continues as a standard of righteousness even today for Christians, and that Christians must exercise dominion through the power of God's Law over all the Earth before Christ shall come again. As part of their theology, reconstructionists hold that, under the coming "kingdom of God", which they are actively engaged in bringing about, that the Biblical penalty for homosexuality (death) will be enforced, though they will always demur that they do not advocate that the penalty be applied today.

Reconstructionism can be traced to the Cobb County, Georgia ordinance stating that homosexuality is against community standards. Particularly, several of the county commissioners of Cobb County are known adherents of the forms of Reconstructionism advocated by Gary North and Gary DeMar.

The American Family Association

The American Family Association, headed by the Rev. Donald Wildmon, headquartered in Tupelo, Mississippi, serves as the "media watchdog" of the radical religious right. Their primary activities have been the organization of boycotts and letter writing campaigns targetted at businesses and media entities which promulgate soft porn (ex. Playboy), or portray lesbians and gay men in a positive light. Secondarily, the American Family Association targets violence on television. The American Family Association publishes a monthly newsletter (the most recent edition of which is available on their web site) listing those television shows, businesses, and advertisers who they are currently targetting, as well as opinion pieces.

Exodus International and Other Ex-gay "Ministries"

Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition

Pat Robertson is quite plausibly the best known of the Religious Right, through his abortive 1988 challenge to George Bush for the Republican Presidential nomination, and through his daily appearances on his television program - The 700 Club. Robertson survived his own political demise, and the demise of the original religious right, centered around Falwell's "Moral Majority". He retrenched, brought in Ralph Reed to head the Christian Coalition, which he founded in 1989, pioneered the stealth campaign, and now weilds more raw political power than any other leader of the new religious right.

Pat Robertson has often been the victim of his own intemperate statements, perhaps nowhere so evident as his 1991 book The New World Order, in which he espouses a highly conspiracist point of view, one that would be quite at home in many of the extremist fringes of the far right. By contrast, Ralph Reed, titular head of the Christian Coalition, has appeared considerably more moderate, reaching out to Catholics and mainstream Jews in his efforts to build a broad base of political power. Reed has masterminded the grassroots campaigning tactics, as well as the art of advocating extremism with moderate language, which have gained the Christian Coalition their present power base.

Concerned Women for America

Concerned Women for America, headed by Beverly LaHaye, wife of evangelist and pastor Tim LaHaye, is a leading religious right organization. The group has long opposed abortion and women's rights, being originally formed to fight against the Equal Rights Amendment, and has recently become much more vocally opposed to equal rights for lesbians and gay people, and to the National Education Association, for it's support for a Gay-Lesbian-Bisexual History Month. Concerned Women for America has also recently taken a decidedly nativist turn in their pronouncements, opposing much United Nations involvement by the United States, and several United Nations conferences on the rights of women and children.

Family Research Council

The Family Research Council is a spin-off political lobbying organization from Focus on the Family, headed by Gary Bauer.

Focus on the Family

Focus on the Family, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and led by Dr. James Dobson is a leader in the "pro-family", "traditional values" fight. Focus on the Family disguises much of its anti-lesbigay work behind a facade of pro-family rhetoric, but those who subscribe to it's "Family Issues Alert" fax service, are treated to a double helping. Focus on the Family was very active in advocating the passage of Colorado's Amendment Two, which denies equality to lesbian, gay and bisexual Coloradans, while providing for special rights for heterosexual Coloradans, and in advancing similar ballot initiatives in Maine. Focus has also extensively used the AIDS plague to advance their abstinence-based views regarding sex education. Focus on the Family has maintained a long-term, mutually-beneficial relationship with the Family Research Council, and has also shown a great deal of support for the Promise Keepers organization.

Paul Cameron and the Family Research Institute

Paul Cameron is both the best known, and the least credible, of the various psychologists, medical doctors, and associated professionals which actively collaborate with the Religious Right, and attempt to lend a veneer of scientific respectability to the Religious Right's anti-gay propaganda.

The Eagle Forum

Phyllis Schlafly first broke onto the conservative political landscape with the publication of her book A Choice, Not An Echo in 1964, which was an endorsement of Barry Goldwater's campaign for the Presidency. She emerged as a leader of the Religious Right's opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment in the seventies. The Eagle Forum, which she founded in 1972, has continued her fight against gender equality and feminism, and has expanded their reach to also focus on homosexuality (one of the original bases for her opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment), education, abortion and the United Nations.

Schafly's son, John was outed by the now defunct magazine Queer World in 1992.

The Traditional Values Coalition

The Promise Keepers

The Lunatic Fringe - Militias, Conspiracy Theories, Holocaust Revisionists and Neo-Nazis

This page explores some of the extremist fringes of the Religious Right. While many of the more mainstream Religious Right will disclaim and repudiate many of the extreme views herein contained, these views have consistently been propounded by some within the Religious Right, albeit in somewhat watered-down forms. These fringe movements are also where some of the influencing philosophies of the mainstream Religious Right -- particularly nativism and populism, can be seen most clearly. Many of these groups, particularly the Identity Christianity, and neo-Nazi groups are also virulently anti-homosexual.

Anti-abortionists and Pro-lifers

Anti-abortionism, while not a directly queer-related issue, distinguishes itself as one of the few issues other than gay / lesbian / bi equal rights that defines the religious right. Not all anti-abortionists are per se part of the religious right, but all of the religious right are necessarily anti-abortion.

The Rest of the Religious Right

godhatesfags.com Fred Phelps' web site.
Addicted to Hate by Jon Bell.
An investigative report on Fred Phelps' history, background, and practices, by Jon Bell, formerly of the Topeka Capital Journal.
Washington for Traditional Values
Freedom Writer August 1994, "Inside Glen Eyrie: The organized assault on gay rights"
The Institute for First Amendment Studies on a recent anti-gay conference.
The Rutherford Institute web site

The Rutherford Institute specializes in religious liberty issues, as well as maintaining a strong presence in anti-abortion and anti-gay legal disputes. John Whitehead, the leader and founder of the Rutherford Institute first made a name for himself (successfully) defending Chuck McIlhenny, pastor of the First Orthodox Presbyterian Church in San Francisco, against a lawsuit filed by a gay man, formerly the church organist, whom he had fired for being gay.

In their own words: The Rutherford Institute is an international, nonprofit, legal and educational organization that specializes in the defense of religious liberty and human rights.

Freedom Writer June 1994, "Profile: The Rutherford Institute"
The Institute for First Amendment Studies profiles the Rutherford Institute, an activist Religious Right organization that promotes their agenda in the courts.
Campus Crusade for Christ
Government is not God, a Political Action Committee


The Radical Religious Right pages | Greg R. Broderick - greg@qrd.org
Last Modified 18 October, 1998

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