By Trudy Ring
Originally published on Advocate.com December 03 2013 7:24 PM ET
Bill O’Reilly is happy to have any allies in his pushback against the supposed war on Christmas, even if they’re antigay ones such as the Alliance Defending Freedom.
O’Reilly praised the Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal group formerly known as the Alliance Defense fund, on Monday’s edition of The O’Reilly Factor on the Fox News Channel. For the past couple of years O’Reilly has claimed there is a war on Christmas, citing the lack of Christian imagery in public schools and the use of inclusive phrases such as “Happy Holidays” to recognize that some people celebrate different winter holidays.
“Once again this year, I will keep an eye on the situation,” O’Reilly said. “Helping me is the Alliance Defending Freedom organization based in Scottsdale, Ariz. They have been very successful in defending traditional rights in the courts. Therefore I say to them, ‘God bless you, each and every one,’ with apologies to Dickens.” Alliance senior vice president Doug Napier was O’Reilly’s guest on the episode, and he and O’Reilly were complimentary of each other’s efforts in the “war.”
“What O’Reilly omitted from his praise of the ADF for ‘defending traditional rights’ is that the group is ‘virulently anti-gay,’ as the Southern Poverty Law Center put it,” watchdog group Equality Matters reports. “ADF has fought against gay rights at every turn and linked homosexuality to pedophilia, even currently working internationally to criminalize homosexuality.”
On its own website, the Alliance Defending Freedom calls separation of church and state a “myth” and denounces “the homosexual agenda.” It considers marriage equality a threat to society, saying, “Redefining marriage is ultimately part of a larger effort to redesign society in order to give social approval of homosexual behavior, and to empower social acceptance of a forgery of gender and sexual practice at odds with natural law and the faith of millions.”
O’Reilly, who once positioned himself as a libertarian-leaning conservative who had no problem with gay people, has in the past few years racked up a record of antigay statements himself, ridiculing LGBT people, opposing California’s transgender rights law, and claiming gay rights activists are protecting pedophiles, Equality Matters notes.
Watch the segment from The O’Reilly Factor below.