State Issue: LGBTQ Equality

Religiously motivated opposition to same-sex relationships is ancient, accompanying simplistic and harmful views of the appropriate roles of males and females in society. Unsurprisingly, religion has continued to be a major oppositional force to LGBTQ equality under the law.

Many politically powerful individuals would love to undo recent gains in marriage equality and return to a “biblical” legal definition of marriage. This theocratic endeavor is antithetical to state/church separation, and the FFRF Action Fund vigorously opposes such efforts. All consenting adults should be provided the legal rights, without government interference, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Action Fund supports states banning conversion therapy, a discredited anti-gay practice favored by Christian fundamentalists and other religious extremists. Often targeting dependent minors, it involves therapists who actively attempt to change patient sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. There is wide consensus among medical professionals that the practice is illegitimate. The American Medical Association backs a nationwide ban on conversion therapy. Zealous legislators who defend the practice are sacrificing LGBTQ children on the altars of religion and politics.

The same anti-gay lawmakers who opposed same-sex marriage and have defended conversion therapy have focused on attacking the rights of transgender individuals in recent years. These assaults come in a wide variety of bills, including transgender sports ban, bans on gender-affirming care, bills supporting discriminatory practices of university student groups, and more. These measures are invariably based on fearmongering and scapegoating, not on science or reason.

A strong separation between state and church requires a united front against theocratic policies, including unscientific, religion-based assaults on LGBTQ rights. The Action Fund will continue to vigorously defend the rights of those targeted by religious bullies, and will always stand up for LGBTQ equality against pious politicians who place their personal religious beliefs above the wishes and well-being of their constituents.