I agree with Sutherland Institute president Paul Mero ("World Congress of Families is not a hate group," July 7) that strong families are essential to a healthy society and support his work on immigration reform and poverty. But these laudable actions do not excuse his or the Family Research Council’s efforts to deny LGBT rights.
Mero claims that some demonize the Family Research Council because of its "pro-family politics." However, nobody of note in the LGBT community seeks to weaken families or deny them their rights. Nobody is telling him how to practice his faith, who he should marry, or how to raise his kids.
He implies that "honest pubic policy opposition" is mutually exclusive from bigotry. Govs. Ross Barnett and George Wallace of Mississippi and Alabama were certainly as "honestly opposed" to integration as Mero is to denying marriage rights. His honesty, however, does not make his positions any less bigoted than those of the governors.
Mero has every right to host his conference without threat of violence, but, as happened with the segregationists, people who oppose his bigotry will call him out on his attempts to disenfranchise people and deny them their rights.
South Salt Lake
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.