Christian Bigot Freaks Out About Gay Marriage Becoming Legal in Illinois

What will happen if/when gay marriage becomes legal in Illinois?

Correct answer: Gays will be able to get married.

Wrong answer: The institution of marriage and all of civilization will be destroyed. At least, that’s what homophobic Peter LaBarbera thinks will happen (emphasis his):

Religious liberty and freedom of conscience (i.e., the freedom to oppose homosexuality) will be repressed by the state in the name of “gay rights”; Illinois has already experienced this under our “Civil Unions” law [see the case of the Walders' bed-and-breakfast in Paxton, IL]. Despite the current bill being amended to protect churches and religious institutions, business owners — even devout Christians — who cater to weddings (such as banquet hall owners and photographers) could be forced to use their facilities or expertise to celebrate homosexual “marriages”;

Liberal teachers, especially in public schools, will be emboldened to promote homosexual relationships to students in the classroom; homosexual teachers will be given a platform to discuss their “marriages” and to model homosexuality as normal, natural and good to students. Parents will have a harder time stopping the promotion of homosexuality in schools;

Legalized homosexual “marriage” will help “normalize” homosexual adoption, thus consigning greater numbers of innocent children to be raised in households that are motherless or fatherless by design.

I should clarify: Some of that will happen — I’m all for normalizing gay adoption — but it’ll benefit everybody, not hurt straight people.

Christians won’t have their rights taken away. Health teachers won’t suddenly begin advocating anal sex. Homosexuality won’t be “promoted” in our schools (because it’s not something that needs “promoting” in the first place).

All of that stuff happens only in LaBarbera’s mind… right next to all those images of gay men at the International Mr. Leather convention.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Kaessa

    All he needs to do is replace “gay” and “homosexual” with “black”, and he could be writing this 50 years ago.

  • MD

    Having marriage equality in Europe has been so detrimental to straight marriage that… nothing has happened.

  • icecreamassassin

    “Parents will have a harder time stopping the promotion of homosexuality in schools.”
    Read: Parents will have a harder time teaching their children that some people are inferior to them and should be put in their place.

    I’m desperately trying not to hate these people. I know that most of them really, truly believe that they are doing the right thing and acting ethically. But they make it so damn hard with s**t like this.

  • Wild Rumpus

    I live in Vancouver, Canada and I can attest that since homosexual marriage became legal here nearly a decade ago, it is indeed true that more homosexuals have gotten married.

  • TiltedHorizon

    Einstein once commented that it is easier to smash an atom than a prejudice. I’d like to put this to the test, anyone up for fundamentalist nutjob whack-a-mole? Now where did I leave my impossibly large cartoon rubber mallet?

  • griffox

    (Those horrible images of gay men at the convention have really riled me up. I think I need to go spend some time in my room praying for their souls.) Seriously, why did they feel the need to post all those pictures? That’s like something I’d expect to see on the Landover Baptist website. haha.

  • Pawel Samson

    So this Americans for Truth About Homosexuality site is satire…. right?

  • Witchgawd

    Closet homo is a closet homo. What a tool.

  • Baby_Raptor

    So, in other words…Bigot Christians might still have to follow the law?

    Yeah, they’d call that discrimination. Tools.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    The comment about abstinence only sex ed by him kind of proves the point that it is entirely religiously motivated. When you claim that abstinence only won’t work for LGBT because any sex they have is immoral already you show that it’s entirely religious based bs.

    Also, when do I get my super, special, secret world destruction powers unlocked? Who knew every time I kissed my boyfriend I was enraging Poseidon.

  • smrnda

    I find the idea that ‘employers will be forced to subsidize relationships they deem as sinful’ to be the most BS one. Your employer is required to pay you and offer you benefits for your spouse, period. If your employer doesn’t like who you are married to, it is none of their business if it’s an opposite sex or same sex partner. I get really bothered by this ‘o the poor employer! they have to pay money for something they don’t agree with’ since it’s pretty much saying that workers should be considered to be under the authority of their employers in how they live their lives. Worst thing is most of these reactionary bigots would probably be fine with giving employers the right to force you to live by their morals…

  • ortcutt

    You don’t have to go all the way to Europe though. We’ve had marriage equality in Massachusetts for almost 9 years now and society hasn’t broken apart. Treating gays and lesbians with equality doesn’t make others worse off.

  • observer
  • Sue Blue

    Yes, this reminds me of the day, not so long ago, when people could be fired for “moral turpitude” – for example, if your employer found out you were having premarital or extramarital sex, or you were pregnant and unmarried. I remember my parents talking about this happening to one of their friends back in the late 1960s, and it happened to me in the 1970s. This is the kind of loving Christian conservative milieu these assholes want to resurrect and force on us.

  • chicago dyke

    IML is the shizzle, Hemant. have you done it? the parties are awesome.

    Peter is just another hater too lazy to work a real job. he likes him some gay porn and is probably a closet case, but essentially he’s in it for the money and worried his gravy train is drying up.

  • GloomCookie613

    Give your honey an extra kiss today, really shatter the fabric of the world.

  • observer

    Actually it somewhat does make others worse off, and it’s what homophobes are generally fighting against: If people realize that gays are human beings like you and me, then the homophobes will fear that they’re the bad guys, and will be treated as the scum of society.

  • Rob Roop
  • Thundal Archsys

    It’s hilarious that people still advocate for abstinence only sex-ed… what the fuck, do people not read psych journals?

  • Richard Wade

    It can be difficult to make a differential diagnosis between advanced
    homophobia and advanced hydrophobia (rabies). The late stage symptoms
    are so similar.

  • DougI

    If gays were half the drama queens these fundies are then they’d be flamingly gay.

  • MD


    They only read The Good Book. (Cue Tim Minchin)

  • Katherine Lorraine

    Actually… I’m totally okay with health teachers giving sex education about gay and bisexual sex and how to practice it safely. Condoms are not only for preventing getting pregnant, but also for protecting against STI.

  • mobathome

    The usual answer I hear such bigots give to your proposal is that race isn’t a matter of choice. How about suggesting they replace any GLBT with a different religion. Then, they could have been writing this 150 years ago.

  • Matthew Anthony Virasami

    when religion intentionally dictates that you discriminate against another its time to question religion

  • pagansister

    IF he is that upset, he can go to another state that hasn’t approved gay marriage yet. Jeeze! Or he can dig a huge hole and crawl into it—pretending that all will just remain the same in his little safe world. Gay marriage will not have anything to do with his life at all—he won’t be forced to marry another guy or anything! :-)

  • Timothy Brannan

    I use their various “take action” links to remind our represenatives in government that not everyone in Illinois is a hate filled moron.

  • Miss_Beara

    I heard this reasoning before, even though it is irrelevant reasoning. People still said terrible things about interracial marriage, the same things they are saying about gay marriage. These same people, even though they claim that since race isn’t a choice, would be advocating against interracial marriage.

  • Miss_Beara

    “gay rights”
    “safer gay sex” will be taught
    “sex ed”
    morally “equal”
    “straight” students
    might “marry” a woman.
    vilified as “hateful and bigoted.”
    “LGBT rights”
    homosexual “marriage” will help “normalize” homosexual adoption

    That guy loves to use “”.

    He is another abstinence promoter. It is definitely not the ideal, all these people have to do is look at the teenage pregnancy rates.

    These people can be against gays and lesbians, but it won’t change the fact that this state is going to join the 9 other states and Canada in allowing gays and lesbians to marry.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    Thanks, I think he and I will have to experiment to see what acts will cause an earthquake that swallows up the nation

  • Bad_homonym

    Abstinence only birth control only fails to work with hetero couples! Kind of ironic isn’t it!

  • Lagerbaer

    I know the good book ‘s good because the good book says it’s good, and the good book knows it’s good, because a really good book would.

  • Phil

    That’s the reason he’s called “Porno Pete.” He really outdid himself when he posted the graphic picture of someone’s anal warts.

  • griffox

    Awesome. I had no idea. ha.

  • Friendly_Autist

    Science and sex. I’m trying to think of something witty, but I’ll just say that that sounds awesome.

  • Friendly_Autist

    As someone who detests human interaction, I love that fact that homosexuals are unable to create more in-the-way people.

    Of course, from a humanitarian POV, overpopulation is a problem, and it is good that so many more couples will be subtracting from orphanages, rather than adding to them.

  • Friendly_Autist

    God’s tools.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    Well it’s a sacrifice, but one that we are willing to make to advance science.

  • Sindigo

    Then, bar the differences in language, I suspect they could have been writing this or something very like it any time in the last 4,000 years (at least).

  • Sindigo

    They don’t even need to read psych journals. They could simply look at teen pregnancy and abortion rates in places with such educational programs.

  • Sindigo

    I wish I had more than one one up-vote to give you.

  • Thackerie

    And, I’ll bet that 50 years from now, the fundies will be claiming that they supported marriage equality all along, just as their ancestors opposed slavery.

  • Derrik Pates

    Oh, no, the freedom to oppose homosexuality will be repressed. Just like the freedom to oppose mixed-race marriages was repressed after the Loving decision? Seriously? I don’t think that stopped anyone from having the opinion – it’s just if you express it in public, you’ll look like exactly what you are – a giant bigot.

  • kaydenpat

    What exactly are people like LaBarbera afraid of? How will marriage equality hurt him personally? How will marriage equality hurt heterosexual marriages? He would still be allowed to spew his bigotry in his home/church/private club. He and his ilk just can’t force their religiously-based homophobia down the throats of society in the guise of morality.

    He refers to a couple who were sued for not allowing a same sex civil union at their bed and breakfast. Isn’t that the same as Civil Rights era Blacks suing private business owners for not providing services to them on racial grounds? If you have a business open to the public, you have to serve all of the public. You don’t get to discriminate against customers based on religion, race, sexual orientation, gender, etc.

  • RyanO

    i am a straight male and if they are going to make gay marrige legal they should not make kids shower together in school anymore and they should have seperate bathrooms we don’t have women and men going in the same room why should we have gays in the same room?

  • megge

    Your an ass im religous and my best friends are gay cant wait till every single state is leaglised. i will b at thir wedding