Laurie Higgins’ Sad Tale of ‘Persecution’

Laurie Higgins of the Illinois Family Institute, one of the most extreme and bigoted voices on the Christian right, has a terribly sad story to tell. She used to be a school administrator, you see, and she’s still upset that they wouldn’t support her desire to attack gay students.

On today’s edition of “Sandy Rios in the Morning,” listeners heard the sad tale of Laurie Higgins, a cultural analyst at the American Family Association-affiliated Illinois Family Institute, who spoke of the “liberal intolerance” and “persecution” she encountered in her previous work as a high school administrator.

Higgins described how she was demoted and shunned by her colleagues because she spoke out against “pro-homosexual resources,” like “Angels in America,” being available to students in the school library. She was also frustrated by the school’s “complete unwillingness” to include resources on LGBT issues that offered “opposing views.”

Rios and Higgins were shocked that no parents, teachers, or pastors came out in support of her or “dared to stand up for their own faith” in fear of the “authoritarian regime” of the school system.

“The halcyon days of being Christian in America are over,” warned Higgins.

One can only hope. Of course, the “opposing views” that he thinks a public school should offer about gay students is that they are sinners who are broken and going to hell. Or perhaps that they’re demon-possessed, another common “Christian opposing view” on homosexuality. Because that’s exactly what a public school should do is demonize and marginalize gay students, right?

About Ed Brayton

After spending several years touring the country as a stand up comedian, Ed Brayton tired of explaining his jokes to small groups of dazed illiterates and turned to writing as the most common outlet for the voices in his head. He has appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show and the Thom Hartmann Show, and is almost certain that he is the only person ever to make fun of Chuck Norris on C-SPAN.

  • http://zenoferox.blogspot.com/ Zeno

    Of course, if Ms. Higgins were in charge of a high school whose library was replete with gay-bashing literature and videos, she would adamantly oppose adding resources with “opposing views” because those resources would be wrong and therefore unnecessary. In her mind, this would not be unfair, it would simply be right. And everyone would be happy (at least all the good people would be happy). Halcyon days!

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    Laurie Higgins, a cultural analyst

    I suppose David Duke is cultural analyst, too.

  • karmacat

    It is encouraging that no one supported her.

  • Chiroptera

    Rios and Higgins were shocked that no parents, teachers, or pastors came out in support of her….

    I’m sure she’s exaggerating, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if it were true?

  • MyPetSlug

    I like that since no one supported her, the only possible conclusions that can be drawn in her mind was that no one was willing to stand up for their faith. Surely, it can only be that hundreds of parents secretly supported her, but had to remain silent out of fear of Big Gay. I mean, the only other explanation is that she is an unhinged bigot with extreme views that very few people in the community, despite being Christians, agreed with, which is almost too ridiculous to mention.

  • raven

    “The halcyon days of being Christian in America are over,” warned Higgins.

    Higgins means the, “halcyon days of being a bigot and hater in America are over”.

    Unfortunately, she got that wrong. They are doing very well these days and have their own religion, fundie xianity and own political party, the GOP/Tea Party.

    She must have worked at a school system that wasn’t interested in teaching fundie xian hate. There is even an outside chance it teaches evolution in biology classes.

    It is encouraging that no one supported her.

    It is very surprising. In some school districts such as in Michele Bachmann’s district, she would be a typical administrator.

  • raven

    ‘Friendly Atheist’ and Pro-Family Group Wage Public Conflict

    www. christianpost. com/…/friendly-atheist-and-pro-family-group-wage-p…

    Aug 24, 2009 – An Illinois conservative family group and a self-claimed “friendly atheist” … Laurie Higgins, director of the Division of School Advocacy for IFI, was … suggested to school administrators that he be fired or that he should resign.

    I’d never heard of Laurie Higgins. So many fundie bigots, so little time.

    She has been around for a while but is otherwise not notable. Her last big hit was tryhing to get Hemant Mehta fired for being an atheist.

    Didn’t work. She has a terrible aim. In some school districts in the South, you can be fired for being a “suspected atheist” I. e. Lakewood Texas. “Suspected atheist” is a meaningless term. Anyone can be a “suspected atheist” including the Pope.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    She was also frustrated by the school’s “complete unwillingness” to include resources on LGBT issues that offered “opposing views.”

    Haven’t you read Dyke and Jane? “See Dyke run! Run, Dyke, run!”

  • Athywren

    Sometimes I wonder… wouldn’t it be nice if you could actually experience intolerance and persecution? I could never justify it of course – I’m a hateful liberal who wants to commit genocide against white people, so it’s not really allowed under my philosophy – but, seriously, if you think that not being allowed to oppress others is oppressive? You really need to experience a little oppression.

    “Oh no, you’re not allowing me to punch this person in the face! Why are you breaking my nose? WHY!?”

    Pathetic.

  • caseloweraz

    “The halcyon days of being Christian in America are over,” warned Higgins.

    Perhaps she was referring to Halcyon, California, down in San Luis Obispo County, home to a temple founded by members of the Theosophical Society. One of its former members, mystic poet John Varian, figures in Silicon Valley history by way of his two sons Russell and Sigurd.

    Or perhaps she just meant the English-language adjective, one meaning of which is “rich, wealthy, prosperous.”

  • Chiroptera

    Athywren, #9: …if you think that not being allowed to oppress others is oppressive? You really need to experience a little oppression.

    Unfortunately, if history and current events are any guide, Christianists wouldn’t be likely to learn the correct lesson from that. There have been too many cases where a previously oppressed group (think of Orthodox Christians in Russia) get a measure of power. Instead of having learned the benefits of tolerance, many seem to feel that now it’s their turn to step on the necks of groups they don’t like. And not just payback against the previous oppressors; they will also attack other powerless groups that had also been oppressed under the previous regime.

  • caseloweraz

    Higgins described how she was demoted and shunned by her colleagues…

    Much like the fellow in Sony’s Killzone video game:

    Shunned, oppressed, and conquered by those we sought to escape!”

    s/escape/erase

  • D. C. Sessions

    “The halcyon days of being Christian in America are over,” warned Higgins.

    It’s so nice that we don’t have to rely on speculation, psychology, etc to understand what American Christianity is all about.

  • Athywren

    @Chiroptera, 11

    True, all it would really demonstrate is that we had failed to learn that lesson ourselves. Urgh, humans, I despair of us.

  • Pieter B, FCD

    a cultural analyst at the American Family Association-affiliated Illinois Family Institute

    Or as they used to say, “a common scold.”

  • dingojack

    Pieter – fortunately those loving Christians came up with an app for that.

    :s Dingo

  • dingojack

    here‘s how it worked…..

    Dingo

  • whheydt

    Re: Chiroptera @ #11…

    Reminds me of the Anecdote that Isaac Asimov related about the time he shared a panel with (if memory serves) Simon Wiesenthal. Wiesenthal maintained that the Jews had never oppressed anyone else. Asimov cited a historical case where they did. Wiesenthal came back with “But that’s the *only* time we did!” To which Asimov responded, “It was the only time we had a chance to.”

  • zenlike

    The tears of bigots taste so incredible sweet…

  • Michael Heath

    Let’s not forget people like Laurie Higgins aren’t merely and abstractly wrong in how they advocate treating gay children in a public school environment, where there numbers are dwindling. Much more insidious is that they abuse the children who attend churches who discriminate against gay people. Even liberals have yet to confront and deal with this nasty fact of life for gay kids raised in a fundie/evangelical church and sometimes Catholic/Mainline environment.

  • culuriel

    Ms. Higgins was apparently not allowed to place outright ignorant, religious propaganda around a government facility. Oh, the humanity!

  • raven

    I never quite knew how to respond to this: was he making a threat?

    LOL. Sure was.

    1. Everyone will be a xian someday. The vast majority will be in hell though, being tortured forever.

    The bible says eventually everyone will bend their knees to jesus and the bible is never wrong!!!

    2. You could have just pointed out that he is also an atheist. He doesn’t believe in any of the gods but the trinity while you don’t believe any of them.

    (And watch your grade drop two points.)

    3. In a public university, he would have been considered borderline out of line. There is a marked assymetry in power between professors and students and profs aren’t supposed to abuse this for personal reasons.

    Not that it stops many of them. I’ve got my own horror stories. At one time I was accused of being a Trotskyist by a Stalinist. At the time I was 18 and didn’t even know what the difference was.

  • JPS

    @8: Modusoperandi:

    … Dyke and Jane?

    Twasn’t in my elementary school library…

    ( new keyboard, etc. .. Thanks!)