By Jase Peeples
Originally published on Advocate.com December 24 2013 6:00 AM ET
From the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic rulings on Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act to athletes like Jason Collins, Brittney Griner, and Robbie Rogers who kicked down the closet door and changed the game for LGBT visibility in sports, 2013 has been an incredible year for the LGBT community.
However, our progress has also been marked by the ravings of religious leaders, right-wing politicians, and even reality television stars who took antigay bigotry to a new level of insanity in 2013.
The following is a list of 10 homophobes whose antigay comments proved they aren’t simply a litter of bigots — they’re crazier than a bag of cats.
Bryan Fischer: DOMA's Death Is a Bigger Tragedy Than Trayvon Martin's
Bryan Fischer, the noted homophobe, conservative radio host, and director of issues analysis for the antigay American Family Association, is no stranger to outlandishly antigay statements. But in July the right-wing pundit managed to connect recent progress toward LGBT equality with the controversial "not guilty" verdict delivered to George Zimmerman in his murder trial for the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Fischer tweeted, “For example of injustice, don't look at Zimmerman. Look at what Supreme Court did on DOMA."
Kevin Swanson: Wish Gays Death Via Wedding Cakes
Christian right radio host Kevin Swanson made a recommendation in September on his Internet-based Generations With Vision program while discussing the Oregon bakery that had refused to make a cake for a lesbian couple’s wedding.
“If you bake a cake for a homosexual wedding you can put Leviticus 20:13 on the cake,” said Swanson. He quoted the verse: “If a man sleeps with a man as he sleeps with a woman the two of them have committed an abomination and they shall both be put to death.” He also suggested that wedding guests hold up signs with the verse on them.
Phil Robertson: Homosexuality Is Like Bestiality, Prostitution, Alcoholism, and Terrorism
In a now-infamous interview with GQ magazine, Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson equated homosexuality with bestiality, prostitution, adultery, alcoholism, and terrorism, and claimed LGBT people were illogical “sinners.”
“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” Robertson said. “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolators, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”
Gordon Klingenschmitt: Trans Equality Is the Demon of Rape
Noted homophobe and disgraced former Navy chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt expanded his vitriol in 2013 to encompass not only gay and lesbian people but transgender people as well. On his program Pray in Jesus Name in November, Klingenschmitt referred to parents who support trans youth as child abusers and vilified those fighting for trans equality, telling his viewers, “There’s not just a demon of deception here or confusion or sexual immorality, but there is a demon of rape inside of this movement [that intends] to violate your daughters.”
Brian Camenker: Gays Provoke Bashings and Can’t Be Athletes due to Psychological Issues
According to right-wing activist Brian Camenker, who leads the antigay group MassResistance, LGBT people provoke bashings. While discussing the situation in Russia with fellow homophobe Linda Harvey of Mission America on her radio show in October, Camenker claimed, “The natural way people react to homosexuality — outside of all the diversity training — is a certain amount of revulsion. So if two men start kissing in the public street, you can expect a certain reaction from people.”
“There’s some provocation going on,” he added before claiming that LGBT people don’t have the makings of great athletes because of “the psychological issues that are going through you in the homosexual lifestyle.”
“Because you just need this very high degree of stability, alertness, everything else, so you see almost no athletes, you know, homosexuals in the professional sports or the high level, football leagues or baseball or anything like that, almost none,” he said.
Scott Lively: Butch Homosexuals Are Beating Femme Russian Gays
Antigay evangelical preacher Scott Lively told fellow antigay right-winger Linda Harvey on Harvey's Mission America radio show in November that the LGBT Russians being harassed, kidnapped, beaten, raped, arrested, and sometimes dying, are actually victims of angry butch gay people.
"The guys that are beating up gays in Russia — and it’s not any more prevalent than it ever has been, really, and it isn’t all that prevalent at all," Lively said, "but the ones that are doing it are butch homosexuals who are beating up effeminate homosexuals, the same thing that happened in Germany; this is gay-on-gay crime, at least that is what it appears to be."
Ivan Okhlobystin: Gays Should Be Burned Alive in Ovens
Ivan Okhlobystin, star of a Russian TV program loosely based on the American show Scrubs, used gay slurs and ranted about "gay fascism" in front of a crowd of fans during a religious event in Novosibirsk.
"I'd put them all alive in the oven … it's a living danger to my children," Okhlobystin said of gay people, adding that they should be stripped of their right to vote. His comments garnered overwhelming applause from the studio audience.
Dmitry Kiselyov: Gay Hearts Should Be Burned
Dmitry Kiselyov, the anchor of Russia's most popular news program, appeared on a competing, Kremlin-controlled show and claimed the country’s law against "gay propaganda" doesn't go far enough.
"I think that just imposing fines on gays for homosexual propaganda among teenagers is not enough,” Kiselyov said. “They should be banned from donating blood, sperm. And their hearts, in case of the automobile accident, should be buried in the ground or burned as unsuitable for the continuation of life."
Pat Robertson: Gays Spread HIV With Special Rings
Antigay televangelist Pat Robertson really went off the rails when he claimed HIV and AIDS activists were deliberately trying to infect other people with the virus by wearing rings that cut other people when they shook hands.
“You know what they do in San Francisco? Some in the gay community there, they want to get people. So if they got the stuff they’ll have a ring, you shake hands and the ring’s got a little thing where you cut your finger,” he said. “Really. It’s that kind of vicious stuff, which would be the equivalent of murder.”
Vladimir Putin: "Genderless," "Fruitless" Tolerance Is Destructive
Russian president Vladimir Putin used his annual address to both chambers of parliament to defend the country's anti-LGBT laws and bans on "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations."
Putin spoke to legislators, judges, and lawyers gathered on the 20th anniversary of the Russian constitution this month, lamenting what he called the revision of moral norms, brought about by the influence of Western ideology.
Displaying his national pride, Putin said that Russia does not "claim the status of any superpower," nor does the nation "impose our patronage, [and we] do not try to teach anyone how to live."
The former KGB leader and three-term president contended it is "absolutely objective and understandable for a country like Russia, with its great history and culture," to reject "so-called tolerance, being genderless and fruitless."
Putin said such "top-down destruction of traditional values" inevitably leads to "negative consequences for societies."
"We know that in the world more and more people are supporting our position on the defense of traditional values," said Putin. "Which for ages have been a spiritual and moral basis of civilization and every nation: the traditional family values, true human life, including religious life, not only material but also spiritual life, values of humanity and diversity of the world."