Here's the president yesterday, decrying not-minor human-rights violations against gays overseas (from the Washington Times):
"I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered] persons around the world -- whether it is passing laws that criminalize LGBT status, beating citizens simply for joining peaceful LGBT pride celebrations, or killing men, women, and children for their perceived sexual orientation," President Obama wrote in a memorandum with his name attached. "Under my Administration, agencies engaged abroad have already begun taking action to promote the fundamental human rights of LGBT persons everywhere."
Here's an example that springs to mind of what he's talking about, from the New York Times in 2009:
One month after the conference, a previously unknown Ugandan politician, who boasts of having evangelical friends in the American government, introduced the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009, which threatens to hang homosexuals, and, as a result, has put Uganda on a collision course with Western nations.
And here, from ABC News, is the governor of this fine state arguing that what Obama is pledging is a "special right" that should not be bestowed on gay people:
"Just when you thought Barack Obama couldn't get any more out of touch with America's values, AP reports his administration wants to make foreign aid decisions based on gay rights. This administration's war on traditional American values must stop," Perry said in the statement. "Promoting special rights for gays in foreign countries is not in America's interests and not worth a dime of taxpayers' money."
Perry moved beyond the national security implications of the decision and honed in on what he deemed to be an attack on "traditional American values."
"But there is a troubling trend here beyond the national security nonsense inherent in this silly idea," he said. "This is just the most recent example of an administration at war with people of faith in this country. Investing tax dollars promoting a lifestyle many [Americans] of faith find so deeply objectionable is wrong. President Obama has again mistaken America's tolerance for different lifestyles with an endorsement of those lifestyles. I will not make that mistake."
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Along with the recent videos posted below -- in which Perry bemoans gays serving in the military and Obama's "war on religion" -- the statement seems to be part of a recent push to deepen his connection with his evangelical base. It's a fitting way to do it, since the most extreme members of that base not only turn a blind eye to human-rights abuses against gays overseas but promote them.
That bill threatening hanging for gay Ugangans? That was promoted in Uganda by pastor Lou Engle, the founder of the The Call. The Call is the sister organization to the International House of Prayer, which helped organize Perry's prayer jam over the summer. And that prayer jam was based on events organized by The Call.