Scott Lively goes nuclear in Moldova

Scott Lively said once that his work in Uganda was like “a nuclear bomb against the gay agenda.” In January, he went nuclear-style to Moldova to oppose an anti-discrimination law. Radio Free Europe has the story:

When the Moldovan government submitted a draft antidiscrimination law to parliament last month, conservative Orthodox Christian forces in the country treated it as a call to battle.

And that call was heeded by U.S. pastor and lawyer Scott Lively, who traveled to Chisinau to warn the country against adopting any measure that would bar discrimination against homosexuals.

The bill outlaws discrimination against anyone on the basis of religion, nationality, ethnic origin, language, religion, color, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, political opinion, or social status. It was proposed as part of Moldova’s effort to gain an association agreement with the European Union.

The controversial Lively believes homosexuality is a lifestyle choice with dire social consequences and has made a career in recent years campaigning against gay rights around the world. His website claims he has spoken in more than 30 countries.

“I’ve been dealing with these laws all over the world and I recognize — as I said there in the lectures I gave and the media interviews that I gave — an antidiscrimination law based on sexual orientation is the seed that contains the entire tree of the homosexual political agenda with all of its poisonous fruit,” Lively tells RFE/RL, “and that, if you allow an antidiscrimination policy to go into effect, it essentially puts the power of the law and the government into the hands of gay activists and makes people who disapprove of homosexuality criminals.”

Mainstream science rejects the notion that sexual orientation is a matter of personal choice.

I was interviewed for this piece. The interviewer was interested in Lively’s past work, especially in Uganda.

Boris Dittrich, acting director of the advocacy group Human Rights Watch’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) program, just returned to the United States from a trip to Moldova, where he discussed Lively’s visit with rights advocates in Chisinau.

“He came there with a story like what he told in Uganda, that if this antidiscrimination law would be accepted, the society would be homosexualized and the homosexuals would take over and it would be very dangerous,” Dittrich says.

In Uganda, Lively met with lawmaker David Bahati, who drafted the antigay bill, and gave speeches in which he tied gays to the 1994 genocide in neighboring Rwanda.

“He stirred up a lot of fear in Uganda,” says Warren Throckmorton, an associate professor of psychology at Grove City College, a Christian college in Pennsylvania, who has followed Lively’s activity. “He told them that homosexuals had an unusual interest in children and so that to protect your children, you should construct stronger laws against homosexuality and enforce them.”

In Moldova, however, Lively did not publicly advocate criminalizing homosexuality, but limited himself to campaigning against the antidiscrimination bill. He said he met with one member of parliament while he was in Chisinau.

Exporting U.S. Culture Wars

Lively is not the first controversial U.S. antihomosexual campaigner to find his way to Moldova. Psychologist Paul Cameron — a sex researcher who argues that homosexuality is associated with child sex abuse and other social evils and whose work has been repudiated by major professional associations in the United States — visited the country in October 2008 and again in May 2009.

Cameron campaigns actively for the criminalization of homosexuality on public-health grounds, Throckmorton notes, and so he “promotes laws against homosexuality much in the way some countries criminalize or sanction smoking in public places. He just believes that homosexuality is harmful to health and harmful to the culture.”

I also provided this little gem which I think gives Mr. Lively’s views a proper context:

I have come to discover, through various leads, a dark and powerful homosexual presence in other historical periods: the Spanish Inquisition, the French “Reign of Terror,” the era of South African apartheid, and the two centuries of American slavery.

This quote comes from his lesser known book, The Poisoned Stream which argues that homosexuality is a “poisoned stream” through history. For Lively, money is not the root of all sorts of evil, homosexuality is.