My last entry—here—addressed shady “Christian” programs that attempt to “reform” gay teens and how such programs obviously are harmful to teens and should therefore be monitored more closely by the authorities. Now it seems that a Christian group calling itself Exodus International has made headlines for threatening litigation against blogger Justin Watt, who posted a parody of Exodus International’s message. The ACLU stepped in to defend Justin, and Exodus International has agreed to drop the case. From the USA TODAY:
Exodus International initially claimed the altered image of one of its billboards by Justin Watt infringed its copyright. But Exodus is no longer pursuing the matter after Watt stopped using its “watermark” logo, Exodus President Alan Chambers said.
Watt, operator of the Justinsomnia blog, says he exercised free speech when he parodied the Exodus billboard, which says, “Gay? Unhappy? http://www.exodus.to.” Wyatt re-created the billboard on his site so it read, “Straight? Unhappy? http://www.gay.com.”
Obviously I find homophobia and intolerance abhorrent, but as a liberal I respect this Christian outfit’s right to voice such opinions (I am far more wary of their actual methods of dealing with gay teens via “reform” programs, however, but that is another issue). One can preach all the hate and ignorance that one wants, but don’t expect others to remain silent in turn. Justin Watt has proven this, and the ACLU has rightly defended him.
Have I mentioned that I love the ACLU? Because I do.
Link to USA TODAY found at BOING BOING.