Values Voter Summit: What Kind Of Values, Exactly?

On October 7, thousands of will gather at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC for the Value Voters Summit, an annual political conference for American social conservative activists and elected officials from across the US.

The event's Facebook page states that the Values Voter Summit is held "in the cause of family, family, and freedom." I'm not so sure that's a typo, as the VVS is hosted by the Family Research Council, the conservative Christian hate group that spends the majority of its resources advocating against LGBT rights, women's heath, sex education, embryonic stem-cell research, gambling, and pornography. All of these things, according to the Family Research Council, are a threat to family.

Or at least the FRC's definition of family, which, according to their views, must include one heterosexual man and one heterosexual woman who are married to each other, and whose values must be aligned with the Judeo-Christian worldview.

What kind of values are these folks peddling? 
Based on the statements attributed to the event's sponsors and speakers, these values are: homophobia, xenophobia, dishonesty, ignorance, denialism, Christofascism, paranoia, hysteria, oppression, discrimination, bullying, misogyny, exceptionalism, and bigotry.

The Speakers
Let's take a look at some of the event's speakers, and some examples of their values:

Tony Perkins
Tony Perkins, President, FRC Action and Family Research Council (FRC)

Representative Ann Marie Buerkle (R-N.Y.)

Representative Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.)
Rep Vicky Hartzler

Genevieve Wood, Vice President, Leadership for America Operations, The Heritage Foundation

Mathew Staver, Chairman, Liberty Counsel and Dean, Liberty University School of Law

Senator Rick Santorum, Republican Presidential Candidate

Governor Rick Perry (R-Texas), Republican Presidential Candidate

Rep. Steve King
Representative Steve King (R-Iowa)

Governor Bob McDonnell (R-Va.)
Herman Cain

Herman Cain, Republican Presidential Candidate

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Republican Presidential Candidate
Ken Cuccinelli

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R-Va.)

Representative Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), Republican Presidential Candidate
  • Said of Melissa Etheridge's cancer: "This may be an opportunity for her now to be open to some spiritual things, now that she is suffering with that physical disease. She is a lesbian.”
  • Said that we live in a time when "a judge will say to little children that you can't say the pledge of allegiance, but you must learn that homosexuality is normal and you should try it."

Bryan Fischer
Bryan Fischer, Director of Issues Analysis, American Family Association

Tom McClusky, Senior Vice President, FRC Action

Derek McCoy, President, Maryland Family Alliance

Brian Brown
Brian Brown, Executive Director, National Organization for Marriage

David Tyree, Former Wide Receiver, New York Giants
  • Said that the Marriage Equality Act would "be the beginning of our country sliding toward...anarchy," and would trade his famous catch and the team's Super Bowl title to keep marriage between a man and a woman.

Gary Bauer
Gary Bauer, President, American Values

Glenn Beck, Founder, Glenn Beck TV (yes that's how he's being billed.)
Bishop Harry Jackson

Bishop Harry Jackson, Senior Pastor, Hope Christian Church

Jason Mattera, Editor, Human Events
  • Accused President Obama of using cocaine and called him "scrawny street agitator" and "jack-ass."

Lila Rose, President, Live Action

Dr. Kenyn Cureton, Vice President for Church Ministries, Family Research Council
Brent Bozell III
  • Believes that those who do not support FRC's agenda are pawns of Satan.

L. Brent Bozell III, President, Media Research Center

Mark Levin, Host, "The Mark Levin Show"
Phyllis Schlafly

Phyllis Schlafly, Founder, Eagle Forum

The Sponsors
The event is heavily represented by the following organizations (those with asterisks are event sponsors):

The American Family Association*:
  • Designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
  • Claims "[p]rominent homosexual leaders and publications have voiced support for pedophilia, incest, sadomasochism, and even bestiality."
  • Sent out mailers which read: "For the sake of our children and society, we must OPPOSE the spread of homosexual activity! Just as we must oppose murder, stealing, and adultery!" and "Since homosexuals cannot reproduce, the only way for them to 'breed' is to RECRUIT! And who are their targets for recruitment? Children!"

2 hate groups are sponsors
Family Research Council*
  • Designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
  • Claimed that children in gay households are at greater risk of sexual involvement with a parent.
  • When American Airlines introduced domestic partner benefits, the AFA asked, "What are you going to develop next? A pedophilia market?"
  • Stated that "the research is overwhelming that homosexuality poses a [molestation] danger to children."
  • Claimed that “homosexuals are overrepresented in child sex offenses” and that “homosexuals are attracted in inordinate numbers to boys.”
  • Claimed that “one of the primary goals of the homosexual rights movement is to abolish all age of consent laws and to eventually recognize pedophiles as the ‘prophets’ of a new sexual order."

National Organization for Marriage
  • Founding president Maggie Gallagher wrote: “In a simple biological framework abstracted from all religion and morality, homosexuality is like infertility. It is a sexual disability preventing certain individuals from participating in the normal reproductive patterns of the human species.”
  • Gallagher believes polygamy is better than same-sex marriage.
  • Has deep ties to the Mormon Church, the Catholic Church hierarchy, and right-wing evangelical pastors.
  • Have engaged in a "radical, nationwide plan to flout long-established campaign finance disclosure laws. This is nothing short of a strategic, coordinated plan to hide their political activities from voters and state offices charged with monitoring campaign spending. This effort has prompted several state investigations and resounding legal defeats for NOM."
  • Are occasionally hilarious.

Liberty Counsel*
  • Argued that hate crime laws are “actually ‘thought crimes’ laws that violate the right to freedom and of conscience.”
  • Argued that it should be considered “criminally reckless for educators to teach children that homosexual conduct is a normal, safe and perfectly acceptable alternative.”

With values like these...
Good luck, Values Voters Summit. Your particular brand of 'values' is on the decline, and, in a few generations, will likely be extinct. Support for same-sex marriage has risen over the past two decades, soaring from 11 percent approval in 1988 to nearly 50 percent by 2010.

The number of young people who claim 'no religion' has increased drastically. Nearly a third of young people today say they have no religion. Any idea why that is?  Well, it's complex, but according to David Campbell (professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame, and author of 'American Grace: How Religion Divides Us And Unites Us'), "We have good reason to believe that the growth of the nones...is a direct reaction to the intermingling of religion and politics in the United States."

So, at the end of the day, what we have with the Values Voters Summit, is a group of dinosaurs lamenting the fact that society is moving away from the very values which are causing people to move away.

The message I have for you, Values Voters, is evolve or become extinct. Personally, I prefer to stick with my own values, and pass them along to my children. Those values are knowledge, reason, justice, compassion, and human fulfillment. These are values which, unlike yours, never dictate that I inflict harm upon, or restrict the rights of, other human beings. These values will allow us to evolve. And they will evolve with us.


  1. I see a Robert Smigel cartoon in the making here. The Stupid Friends! Meanwhile, at the Hall of Ignorance...

  2. these sick people are who WE VOTED for remember, lets hurry up an VOTE THEM OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!GEORGE CRONGEYER AUG. 20TH, 2012