Presidential Hopefuls Huckabee and Paul Star in New Anti-LGBT Documentary

Potential 2016 GOP Presidential candidates Mike Huckabee and Senator Rand Paul appear in an ultrareligious and uberconservative anti-gay documentary. Watch not one, but two trailers for it here.

By Julissa Catalan

Per Right Wing Watch, the first trailer for a new anti-LGBT documentary has just been released, and it features numerous Republican politicians, including two likely Presidential candidates.

Light Wins: How to Overcome the Criminalization of Christianity features commentary from former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and current Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. Both have left little doubt that they intend to make a run at the GOP Presidential nomination, with Paul even selecting a campaign manager.

"What kind of freedom of speech do we have if a person who expresses a biblical viewpoint about marriage is told they can't open their businesses in a location?" asks Huckabee in the trailer.

But Huckabee's freedom of speech comments ignore the fact that discrimination is illegal. Businesses are prohibited from discriminating against potential customers.

Take, for example, the case against Elane Photographers in New Mexico. In June 2014, a same-gender couple sued the business for refusing to shoot their wedding because it only photographed "traditional weddings." The photographers attempted to appeal to the Supreme Court, but the court declined to review the case, saying it considered the action a violation "in the same way as if it had refused to photograph a wedding between people of different races."

Though the law provides an exception for religious organizations and schools, private business cannot discriminate based on sexual orientation.

Meanwhile, another person in the documentary trailer proclaims, "If homosexual activists get everything they want, it will be nothing less than the criminalization of Christianity."

But criminalization—never mind the LGBT community—doesn't threaten Christianity. Rather, a drastic increase in the number of Americans who are turning away from Christianity, and religion in general, is the issue. While a majority of United States residents still identify as Christian, that percentage (73 percent in 2008) has dropped significantly (83 percent identified as Christian in 1990). Today, 20 percent of Americans do not have any religious affiliation.

"Hate is not an American value, and we urge Senator Paul and Governor Huckabee to renounce their affiliation with this film as well and categorically reject Scott Lively's horrendous exportation of anti-LGBT bigotry abroad," said JoDee Winterhof, Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs for the Human Rights Campaign.

"It would be unconscionable for any American, let alone one who seeks the Presidency, to affiliate with such venomous and dangerous extremism."

The documentary also features four GOP congressmen: Iowa's Steve King,  Arizona's Trent Franks, Texas' Louie Gohmert and Kansas' Tim Huelskamp.

The trailer is reminiscent of The Blair Witch Project, with shots of dark wooded areas and eerie music—as if being gay could be compared to ghosts or aliens—punctuated by politicians and Christian leaders condemning homosexuality.

The trailer is ridiculous, but more ridiculous are the views the documentary perpetuates.

Watch the Light Wins trailer here:

A second preview says the Boy Scouts of America "needlessly caved to a dark sexual agenda that violates the safety [and] innocence of our children" for allowing gay scouts to join, and also compares the organization's inevitable future to the Catholic church and the Penn State football child-abuse scandal.

Watch the additional trailer here:

Faith 2 Action's Janet Porter—a radical religious activist, former radio show host, and author of The Criminalization of Christianity—is behind the documentary, which explains Huckabee's participation. The two are long-time friends: Porter co-chaired Huckabee's Faith and Values Coalition during his 2008 Presidential campaign.

In 2009, Huckabee introduced Porter at the How to Take Back America Conference, which she co-organized. He told the audience: "There are two Janets that I answer to: my wife Janet and Janet Porter."

Huckabee made headlines recently for his own comments about the LGBT community in an interview with CNN, in which he said that for Christians to accept same-gender marriage would be "like asking someone who's Jewish to start serving bacon-wrapped shrimp in their deli."

Of the film, Huckabee said, "Light Wins reveals the frightening trend not to simply ignore Christian believers, but to rid society of us altogether.

"This groundbreaking, eye-opening film will awaken viewers to the fact that being a spectator is no longer an option," he added. "One will be part of the solution or part of the problem, and I hope this riveting documentary will cause believers to take notice."

The anti-LGBT documentary is set to premiere at next month's National Religious Broadcasters Convention in Nashville.

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"We're dealing with police violence. We deal with these huge disparities in our criminal justice system. You know, if everything was wonderful you could ask the question, 'Why would you talk about the difficult past?' But everything is not wonderful."


Hundreds of people lined up in the rain to experience a long overdue piece of American history and honor the lives lost to lynching at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice and the Legacy Museum in Montgomery Alabama on Thursday.

The Equal Justice Initiative, sponsor of this project, has documented more than 4,000 "racial terror" lynchings in the United States between 1877 and 1950.

The first memorial honoring the victims includes sculptures and art depicting the terror Blacks faced; 800 six-foot steel, engraved monuments to symbolize the victims; writings and words of Toni Morrison and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; and a final artwork by Hank Willis Thomas capturing the modern-day racial bias and violence embedded in the criminal justice system and law enforcement.

Among memorial visitors were civil right activist Rev. Jesse Jackson and film director Ava Duvernay. According to the Chicago Tribune, Jackson said it would help dispel the American silence on lynchings, highlighting that whites wouldn't talk about it because of shame and Blacks wouldn't talk about it because of fear. The "60 Minutes Overtime" on the memorial just three weeks earlier was reported by Oprah Winfrey, who stated during her viewing of the slavery sculpture, "This is searingly powerful." Duvernay, quoted by the Chicago Tribune, said: "This place has scratched a scab."

The Montgomery Downtown business association's President, Clay McInnis, who is white, offered his thoughts to NPR in reference to his own family connection to the history that included a grandfather who supported segregation and a friend who dismantled it. "How do you reconcile that on the third generation?" he asked. "You have conversations about it."

A place to start: The Montgomery Advertiser, the local newspaper, apologized for its racist history of coverage between the 1870s and 1950s by publishing the names of over 300 lynching victims on Thursday, the same day as the memorial opening. "Our Shame: the sins of our past laid bare for all to see. We were wrong," the paper wrote.

The innumerable killings of unarmed Black men and the robbing of Black families of fathers, mothers, and children today not only strongly resemble the history of lynchings, but also bring up the discomfort and visceral reactions that many have not reckoned with.

Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative and the man who spearheaded this project, told NPR: "There's a lot of conflict. There's a lot of tension. We're dealing with police violence. We deal with these huge disparities in our criminal justice system. You know, if everything was wonderful you could ask the question, 'Why would you talk about the difficult past?' But everything is not wonderful."

WFSA, a local news station, interviewed a white man who had gone to see the Legacy Museum downtown, also part of the EJI project, located at the place of a former slave warehouse. He talked about how he was overwhelmed by the experience and that "Slavery is alive in a new way today."

Reactions on social media were reflective of the memorial's power and the work that is continuing toward progress.

During a launch event, the Peace and Justice Summit, Marian Wright Edelman, activist and founder of the Children's Defense Fund, urged the audience to continue their activism beyond the day's events on issues like ending child poverty and gun violence, according to the Chicago Tribune: "Don't come here and celebrate the museum ... when we're letting things happen on an even greater scale."

Perhaps the reason to honor and witness the horrific experiences of our ancestors is to seal in our minds the unacceptable killings of Blacks today, and the work we ALL have to do now to stop repeating the past.

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