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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 17, 2017 - Volume 45 Issue 07
DeVos-funded group classified as hate group by SPLC

Alliance Defending Freedom supports recriminalization of Gay sex
Section One
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DeVos-funded group classified as hate group by SPLC

Alliance Defending Freedom supports recriminalization of Gay sex

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

A group funded in part by the family foundations of newly confirmed Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has been listed as an anti-LGBT hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).

The SPLC describes the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) as 'a legal advocacy and training group that specializes in supporting the recriminalization of homosexuality abroad, ending same-sex marriage, and generally making life as difficult as possible for LGBT communities in the US and internationally.'

In its February 15 announcement, SPLC also released a series of anti-LGBT statements from current and former ADF staffers.

The anti-LGBT group was founded in 1994 at a meeting of 30 right-wing Christian leaders, including many anti-LGBT superstars: James Dobson of Focus on the Family; Bill Bright of the Campus Crusade for Christ; D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Ministries (now D. James Kennedy Ministries); and Don Wildmon, founder of the American Family Association.

Its original purpose was to oppose the ACLU and other 'radical groups,' as well as to fight for 'religious liberty.' Called the Alliance Defense Fund until 2012, the ADF has been funding lawsuits and training attorneys since its inception. In addition to 'advocating for freedom in court,' the group says it is also working to 'change the culture,' because legal victories aren't enough.

In other words, the ADF is attempting to challenge the separation of church and state and graft its version of Christianity onto federal and state laws.

The ADF reported a total revenue of $61.9 million for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2015, and net assets of $39.9 million. This compares with a budget of $9,000,000 in 1999.

Some of its funds come from the Richard and Helen DeVos Foundation, named for Betsy DeVos's father- and mother-in-law; the Edgar and Elsa Prince Foundation, named for her parents; the Bradley Foundation; the Covenant Foundation; and the Bolthouse Fund, which affirms 'that man was created by a direct act of God in His image, not from previously existing creatures, and that all of mankind sinned in Adam and Eve, the historical parents of the entire human race.'

After a bitter confirmation battle, DeVos became Secretary of Education on a 51-50 Senate vote, with Vice President Mike Pence coming in at the last minute to cast the deciding vote in her favor.

Her husband's father founded the Amway multilevel-marketing empire, and her brother, Erik Prince, founded the mercenary outfit Blackwater.

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