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Ryan T. Anderson
Fellow at Heritage Foundation
Editor of Public Discourse
- Updated: April 21, 2023
—Authored Truth Overruled, which teaches readers how to combat marriage equality with “natural law” and religious liberty lawsuits, after the Obergefell decision of 2015.
—Authored When Harry Became Sally, which Amazon decided to discontinue selling on its platforms. According to a letter to inquiring senators published in the Wall Street Journal, Amazon said it had “chosen not to sell books that frame LGBTQ+ identity as a mental illness.”
—Argues that trans people should not serve in the military because “People who identify as transgender suffer a host of mental health and social problems—including anxiety, depression, and substance abuse—at higher rates than the general population. Biology isn’t bigotry, and we need a sober and honest assessment of the human costs of getting human nature wrong.”
—While referring to LGB people as people with “same-sex attraction” and referencing a Catholic “ex-gay” organization, he suggested that “inviting a same-sex attracted colleague or friend or member over your church” over for Thanksgiving dinner would be a meaningful consolation prize for not offering marriage rights.
—Dismisses the difficulty of coming out as LGBTQ, arguing that it’s often harder to come out as anti-LGBTQ.
—Penned column calling for gays to be chaste: “From the premise that homosexual characteristics are ‘determined,’ many make the unwarranted leap of asserting the moral legitimacy of homosexual acts. Alcoholism, for example, is often claimed to be genetic, yet its being genetic does not mean it is good. Certainly we know people who are ‘by nature’ gentle or violent, honest or dishonest, prudish or licentious. But we don’t assume every action is determined by one’s genetic composition. We neither excuse the crimes of a pedophiliac priest for genes that attracted him to children, nor do we dismiss the generosity of someone like Mother Teresa as the consequence of her biological makeup. We have good and bad desires, and likewise we have orientations that may incline us toward good or bad. These desires and orientations, however, are not morally important; only our actions and intentions are. Regardless of our ‘natural’ yearnings, we are called to the good.”…”All people, regardless of their genetic makeup, orientation, or “natural” urges, are called to be saints. No one is excused from living out his or her calling in the realm of sexuality — not the womanizer, the “easy” girl, the engaged couple that just can’t wait, the porn enthusiast or the sexually active gay couple.”
—Claims same-sex marriage is a “lie“: “Same-sex marriage never will be widely accepted in America for a simple reason: It’s based on a lie.”
—Wrote lengthy, misinformative, pro-”ex-gay” column advocating for a friend who “suffers same-sex attractions, he doesn’t want to, and he seeks to be made whole again”; followed up with a separate pro-”ex-gay” article.
—Tells gay man from a state with marriage equality: “you can get a marriage license, but you can’t get married.”
—Says Glee corrupts youth: “We should be as concerned about what the FOX TV show Glee has done to corrupt a young generation as we are about anything the Court has done.”
—In piece advising conservatives on how to move forward in marriage fight, says churches should work to “set free” people with “same-sex attractions”: “The second will be particular ministries to those who experience same-sex attractions and to those who experience gender-identity conflicts. Both the truths that we are created male and female, and that male and female are created for each other, are being challenged in ways that they never have been before. The church will need to think through these issues and develop pastoral plans that truly meet people where they are with the truth of Christ that can set them free.“
—Falsely claims (at 2:28) that “we see the same voices who advocate to redefine marriage to exclude sexual complementarity are also the voices who are saying that we should redefine marriage to include polygamy and polyamory and group marriage, to include sexually open relationships, and even to include expressly temporary relationships where marriage just lasts as long as the love lasts.”
—Claims gay rights are “makebelieve.” [sic]
—While at Princeton, co-authored a letter to the school’s paper calling on the LGBT Center to include “ex-gay” advocates (like Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s son) in their lectures: “We suggest that the LBGT Center invite Fr. Paul Scalia, the chaplain of the COURAGE ministry to Christians who experience same-sex attractions…. One would hope that the LGBT Center could be “by, for and about” the whole University—including those who do not share their ideology but still seek to learn about LGBT issues. The mission also includes ‘advocating for the needs and concerns of LGBT students.’ We hope that this includes students with same-sex attractions who, having evaluated the actual arguments on the competing sides, commit themselves to lives of chastity and desire support in living up to their commitment. Will the LGBT Center support them?”
—Denigrates same-sex couples’ sexualities and marriages by claiming: “Same-sex marriage is only plausible in a world that has already done so much damage to marriage and human sexuality.”
The GLAAD Accountability Project catalogs anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and discriminatory actions of politicians, commentators, organization heads, religious leaders, and legal figures, who have used their platforms, influence and power to spread misinformation and harm LGBTQ people.
Choose from the complete list of GLAAD Accountability Profiles:
For GLAAD Media Institute Alum Kevin Anderson, interviews with journalists have become increasingly prevalent in…