Political Advocacy Tracker is a roundup of what Christian activist organizations have been talking about this week.
Activists saw the political terrain shift in 2010, and as a result, political advocacy groups will likely need to change strategies next year. Here are six events from the past year that are likely to continue to shape politics in 2011.
6. The Line Between Debate and Hate
Next year, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) will list 13 "anti-gay" groups as "Hate Groups." The SPLC said that these groups use propaganda; it does not list groups simply for believing that homosexuality in unbiblical. While some groups listed might be considered extreme and incendiary, others are considered mainstream groups within conservatism. The SPLC designations included the Family Research Council (FRC), American Family Association (AFA), and Traditional Values Coalition (TVC). The SPLC stopped short of lableing Concerned Women for America (CWA), Coral Ridge Ministries, and The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) as hate groups, but it did list them as anti-gay groups that use propaganda.
SPLC's Mark Potok debated FRC president Tony Perkins on the hate group designation during Monday's Hardball with Chris Matthews on MSNBC. Potok said one reason for the FRC designation was Peter Sprigg's statement in February that homosexual behavior should be outlawed. Perkins responded by saying that Sprigg was referring to the FRC's position in 2003 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Lawrence and Garner v. Texas that sodomy laws were unconstitutional. Perkins said the FRC is not currently working to criminalize homosexuality.
5. Who Does Bryan Fischer Represent?
Bryan Fischer is an analyst, radio talk show host, and blogger for the AFA and ...1