Don't get too jubilant about Bryan Fischer's supposed ouster from the American Family Association. The uber-homophobic, anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim commentator still has a platform to spew his venom, courtesy of the AFA.
Rachel Maddow broke the story on her MSNBC show last night that AFA leaders had stripped Fischer of his title of director of issues analysis and said he was not a spokesman for the group. Tim Wildmon, the organization's president, said Fischer is "just a talk show host," but his talk show, Focal Point, is on AFA-affiliated American Family Radio and it's still going strong.
This morning on his show, Fischer blamed the reports of his firing on "low-information media on the left" and said the AFA was simply clarifying that not all of his views represented those of the organization. He touted the AFA's latest campaign -- against highly sexualized ads fast-food chain Carl's Jr. plans to air during the Super Bowl -- and referred to the organization as "we" and "us." He also said he would continue to post on The Stand,a blog on the AFA's website.
The AFA apparently decided to downplay Fischer's role amid an uproar over the fact that the group is sponsoring a trip to Israel this weekend for nearly 100 members of the Republican National Committee. The AFA is virulently antigay and on the far right concerning every other issue -- the progressive Southern Poverty Law Center classifies it as a hate group -- but Fischer is its most outrageous face.
Fischer's remarks over the past few years read like a playbook of antigay hyperbole: that Adolf Hitler's most savage enforcers were gay soldiers (ignoring the fact that Hitler's regime sent gays to concentration camps); that gays and Mormons may be plotting together to legalize polygamy; that "flaming homosexuals" will storm Christian bookstores and demand jobs if antigay discrimination is banned nationwide; that the Supreme Court ruling against the Defense of Marriage Act was a bigger legal travesty than the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin; and that if schools are teaching LGBT history, they should include the biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah.
And that's just Fischer on LGBT issues -- he has also said that religions other than Christianity have no right to free exercise under the First Amendment, that Muslims are traitors, and that believers in evolution should not hold public office.
In saying he disagreed with some of Fischer's statements, AFA president Wildmon specifically cited only the one on gays being Hitler's lieutenants, Maddow reported. But even while trying to lower Fischer's profile, the AFA has plenty of antigay troops to send in.
"The RNC trip's chief organizer, David Lane of the American Renewal Project, which has close ties to the AFA, is no less radical than Fischer ... but his extreme views haven't stopped Republicans from embracing Lane," reports Right Wing Watch.
Some of Lane's greatest hits, compiled by Right Wing Watch, include that a "pagan onslaught" is bringing same-sex marriage to the nation; that supporting marriage equality is like supporting slavery; that homosexuality will ultimately destroy the U.S.; that Muslims worship a false god; and that separation of church and state is "a lie" and the U.S. is a "Christian nation."
So shed no tears -- of joy or otherwise -- for Bryan Fischer or the AFA. Both are still promoting homophobic hatred and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, while staying cozy with certain Republican politicians.