10 Things You Should Know About The Liberty Counsel

1. Liberty Counsel Chairman Mat Staver says LGBTQ young people have “confusion” because of “the likes of a Jerry Sandusky abuser,” so they need to be cured by dangerous attempts to change their sexual orientation – a practice that has been condemned by every major medical and mental health organization in the country.

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Defended Reparative Therapists, Calling Laws Banning The Practice “One Of The Greatest Assaults On Children And Families That Has Risen In Recent Times.” Mathew Staver, in an audio report on BarbWire.com called Freedom’s Call, said “Last week I had the opportunity to submit a brief to the U.S. Supreme Court and to testify before Congress regarding the attacks on religious freedom of licensed mental health professionals, minors, and their parents. Homosexual activists have attempted to enact laws throughout the country that would silence mental health professionals from expressing the truth that an individual can successfully reduce or eliminate unwanted same-sex attractions behavior or identity. These efforts are nothing more than an attempt to censure any viewpoint concerning scriptural teaching on human sexuality. They represent one of the greatest assaults on children and families that has risen in recent times.” The name of the post was ‘Liberty Counsel Defends Minors Against Homosexual Political Activists.”  [Barb Wire, Freedom’s Call, 6/19/2014, AUDIO]

Staver Called Laws Prohibiting Reparative Therapy “Religious Discrimination” That Were “An Attempt To Censor Any Viewpoint Concerning Scriptual Teaching On Human Sexuality.” Before Congress.  According to Huffington Post, “In his testimony before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice, Staver called it ‘religious discrimination’ that two states, California and New Jersey, have passed laws prohibiting counselors from practicing gay conversion therapy on minors, a widely discredited approach to trying to change someone's sexual orientation. New York is also mulling a similar ban. ‘Homosexual activists have attempted to enact laws throughout the country that would silence mental health professionals from expressing the truth that an individual can successfully reduce or eliminate unwanted same-sex attractions, behaviors or identity and live consistent with their sincerely held religious beliefs concerning human sexuality,’ Staver wrote in his prepared remarks. ‘Those efforts are nothing more than an attempt to censor any viewpoint concerning scriptural teaching on human sexuality, and they represent one of the greatest assaults on children and families that has arisen in recent times.’” [Huffington Post, 6/11/2014, VIDEO]

Liberty Counsel Opposed DC’s Reparative Therapy Ban And Fought For DC Religious Schools Right To Discriminate Due To Their Religion. According to a press release, “This week, the D.C. City Council trampled on the religious liberty of Christians in Washington, D.C. The council repealed an exemption in the Human Rights Act that allowed private religious schools to practice their faith pertaining to human sexuality. Additionally, the council banned sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), violating the fundamental rights of counselors, minors, and parents. Liberty Counsel sent a letter in opposition to Bill 20-803 to every member of the DC City Council. ‘This vote will have a severe impact on religious liberty in our nation’s capital,’ warned Mat Staver, Founder & Chairman of Liberty Counsel. ‘Religious schools and church-affiliated schools must now choose whether to obey God or to obey government. In addition, if signed into law by the mayor, the law will trample the First Amendment rights of counselors to provide, and patients to receive, counseling consistent with their religious beliefs. The unfortunate irony here is that this bill was passed in the name of ‘human rights.’ By restricting religious freedom, a fundamental human right, this bill is injurious to human rights and equality. It is my hope that Mayor Gray will refuse to sign this bill into law,’ Staver explained.” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 12/4/2014]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver And Mihet Said Reparative Therapy Bans Were Part Of “Intense And Coordinated Effort To Silence People Of Faith When It Comes To The Subject Of Homosexuality.” According to Right Wing Watch, during a panel at 2014 Values Voters Summit, “[Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver and Harry Mihet] also discussed bans in California and New Jersey on providing ‘ex-gay’ therapy to minors, which Mihet said were part of an ‘intense and coordinated effort to silence people of faith when it comes to the subject of homosexuality.’ ‘Folks, we’re talking abut the United States of America, not China, not Russia, not communist Romania where I grew up,’ he said, adding that he saw a future where ‘the only thing that matters is the sexual orthodoxy that the government wants you to adopt.’” [Right Wing Watch, 9/9/2014, Values Voters Summit 2014, 9/27/2014]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Same-Sex Attractions Caused By “The Likes Of A Jerry Sandusky Abuser” And Were “Dangerous” And “Confusion.” According to World Net Daily, when decrying California’s ban on reparative therapy, “Staver said California legislators and judges ‘have essentially barged into the private therapy rooms of victimized young people and told them that their confusion, caused by the likes of a Jerry Sandusky abuser, is normal and that they should pursue their unwanted and dangerous same-sex sexual attractions and behavior, regardless of whether those minors desire their religious beliefs to trump their unwanted attractions.’” [World Net Daily, 9/13/2014]

Liberty Counsel Represented Reparative Therapy Groups And Therapists Appealing Law Banning Reparative Therapy Practice In New Jersey. According to World Net Daily, “In the New Jersey dispute, Liberty Counsel represents two licensed mental health professionals, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality and the American Association of Christian Counselors. In both states, pro-homosexual lawmakers worked to forward laws that prohibit counselors from speaking to minors about ways to overcome unwanted same-sex inclinations, no matter the cause.” [World Net Daily, 9/13/2014]

Staver Said Many Minors Benefitting From Reparative Therapy Developed Same-Sex Attractions “Because Of Abuse Of A Pedophile” And Benefited From Therapy. In response to the Supreme Court declining to take case on California reparative therapy ban, the New York Times reported, “Liberty Counsel, a Christian legal aid group that is affiliated with Liberty University in Virginia, had petitioned the Supreme Court to step in, arguing that lawmakers had no scientific basis for their contention that conversion therapy does harm. ‘I am deeply saddened for the families we represent and for the thousands of children that our professional clients counsel, many of whom developed these unwanted attractions because of abuse of a pedophile,’ the founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, Mat Staver, said in a statement. ‘The minors we represent do not want to act on same-sex attractions,’ he said, ‘nor do they want to engage in such behavior. They are greatly benefiting from this counseling.’” [New York Times, 7/1/2014]

  • Supreme Court Declined To Hear Liberty Counsel Appeal Of California Reparative Therapy Ban. Scientific And Medical Groups Have Said Practice Can Be Harmful. The Supreme Court declined on Monday to hear a challenge to a California law that bans ‘conversion therapy’ aimed at changing the sexual orientation of gay and lesbian minors. The court, in rejecting the case, effectively let stand a federal appeals court ruling issued last August that said that the state’s ban on the practice did not violate the free speech rights of counselors or people seeking treatment. The appeals court had said that the state had an interest in banning professional treatments it considered harmful…..Some conservative and religious groups continue to argue that sexuality is not innate and that a person could change his or her sexual orientation. Scientific and medical groups, however, have said that there is no evidence that sexual attractions can be changed. They also say that conversion therapies can be harmful.” [New York Times, 7/1/2014]

2. Liberty Counsel actively and aggressively defended exporter of hate Scott Lively in U.S. District Court when he was defending himself against charges of “crimes against humanity” for his involvement pushing Uganda’s odious anti-LGBTQ law, which promises life in prison for Ugandans convicted of being gay. Lively told Ugandans that “predatory gays” are “looking for other people to be able to prey upon” and bragged that “our campaign was like a nuclear bomb against the ‘gay’ agenda in Uganda.” Liberty Counsel called the suit an attempt by the “intolerant homosexual lobby” to “intimidate” people from going overseas.

March 2009:  Lively And Two Other Americans Headlined A Conference In Kampala On “The Gay Agenda.”  “Last March, three American evangelical Christians, whose teachings about “curing” homosexuals have been widely discredited in the United States, arrived here in Uganda’s capital to give a series of talks.  The theme of the event, according to Stephen Langa, its Ugandan organizer, was ‘the gay agenda — that whole hidden and dark agenda’ — and the threat homosexuals posed to Bible-based values and the traditional African family. For three days, according to participants and audio recordings, thousands of Ugandans, including police officers, teachers and national politicians, listened raptly to the Americans, who were presented as experts on homosexuality. […]The three Americans who spoke at the conference — Scott Lively, a missionary who has written several books against homosexuality, including ‘7 Steps to Recruit-Proof Your Child’; Caleb Lee Brundidge, a self-described former gay man who leads ‘healing seminars’; and Don Schmierer, a board member of Exodus International, whose mission is ‘mobilizing the body of Christ to minister grace and truth to a world impacted by homosexuality’ — are now trying to distance themselves from the bill.”  [New York Times, 1/3/10]

  • Lively Gave A Five-Hour Presentation At The Conference That Was Broadcast On Ugandan Television.  “On the last day, Lively gave a marathon five-hour presentation, which was broadcast on Ugandan television. He claimed that homosexuals were aggressively recruiting Uganda's children and argued that human rights protections shouldn't be extended to these ‘predatory’ figures.”  [Mother Jones, 3/10/14]

March 2009:  The Entire Ugandan Parliament Was Invited To A Breakfast With Lively To Discuss “The Dangers Of Homosexuality.”  “The Speaker: Thank you very much, hon. Minister. Hon. Members, this brings us to the end of today’s business.   Before we go, I have this communication to make. All Members are invited to an executive breakfast meeting seminar on the dangers of homosexuality. The theme is, Exposing the truth about homosexuality and the homosexual agenda. The meeting will take place in the Parliament Conference Hall tomorrow Thursday, 5th March starting at 7.30 a.m. to 9.00 a.m.  Guest speakers include Dr Scot Libley [Sic] of the United States, Caleb Lee of the United States and Mr Stephen Langa of the Family Life Network. All Members are invited to attend and breakfast will be served.”  [The Official Report of the Parliament of Uganda, 3/4/09]

  • Lively Told The Ugandan Parliament To Pattern The Anti-Homosexuality Law On Marijuana Laws In The US.  “In March of this year I had the privilege of addressing members of the Ugandan parliament in their national assembly hall when the anti-homosexuality law was just being considered. I urged them to pattern their bill on some American laws regarding alcoholism and drug abuse. I cited my own pre-Christian experience being arrested for drunk driving. I was given and chose the option of therapy which turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life. I also cited the policy in some U.S. jurisdictions regarding marijuana. Criminalization of the drug prevents its users from promoting it, and discourages non-users from starting, even while the law itself is very lightly enforced, if at all. Additionally, I urged them to actively promote the marriage model in their schools as a form of inoculation to the anti-family messages flooding their country through Western media.”  [Scott Lively, DefendTheFamily.com, 6/2/09]

Lively Said That “Predatory Gays” Are “Looking For Other People To Be Able To Prey Upon.”  “Lively:  Predatory gays, and there are a lot of them, but not everyone is so please don’t misquote me.  There are a number of people that are very predatory.  They are very sexually oriented.  They want to satisfy their sexual desires.  Often these are people that were molested themselves and they’re turning it around and they’re looking for other people to be able to prey upon.  When they see a child from a broken home it’s like they have a flashing neon sign over their head”  [Scott Lively, Kampala, Uganda, 3/5/09-3/7/09]

Lively In Uganda:  “The Gay Movement Is An Evil Institution.”  “Lively:  The gay movement is an evil institution.  The goal of the gay movement is to defeat the marriage-based society and replace it with a culture of sexual promiscuity.”  [Scott Lively, Kampala, Uganda, 3/5/09-3/7/09]

Lively Told Ugandans That A Category Of Gay Men He Calls “Monsters” Were Responsible For The Rwandan Genocide.  “They’re sociopaths.  There’s no mercy at all.  There’s no nurturing.  There’s no caring about anybody else.  This is the kind of person that it takes to run a gas chamber.  Or to do a mass murder.  The Rwandan stuff probably involved these guys.”  [Scott Lively, Kampala, Uganda, 3/5/09-3/7/09]

Lively Told Ugandans That They Needed “Public Policy That Discourages Homosexuality.”  “Lively also likened homosexuality to a disease, and suggested that if Uganda didn't ‘actively discourage’ same-sex relations, the nation's children might soon be throwing orgies and performing oral sex on school buses. ‘That's what happens when the immune system becomes overwhelmed. The body begins to suffer, disintegrate,’ he said. ‘We need public policy that discourages homosexuality.’” [Mother Jones, 3/10/14]

Lively Bragged About Campaigning “Like A Nuclear Bomb Against The ‘Gay’ Agenda In Uganda.”  “On the positive side, my host and ministry partner in Kampala, Stephen Langa, was overjoyed with the results of our efforts and predicted confidently that the coming weeks would see significant improvement in the moral climate of the nation, and a massive increase in pro-family activism in every social sphere. He said that a respected observer of society in Kampala had told him that our campaign was like a nuclear bomb against the ‘gay’ agenda in Uganda. I pray that this, and the predictions, are true.”  [Scott Lively Report From Uganda, 3/17/09]

  • Lively:  “I Commend The Courage Of The Ugandan People.”  “I commend the courage of the Ugandan people. During the past decade or so, Uganda has been one of the few countries of the world that has firmly resisted the enormous power and relentless pressure of the international ‘gay’ lobby, while other developing nations such as South Africa and Brazil have been systematically homosexualized. This is one of the reasons that Uganda’s AIDS rate went from the highest to the lowest in Africa during this same time period.”  [Scott Lively, DefendTheFamily.com, 6/2/09]

Liberty Counsel Represented Scott Lively And Said Lively, Author Of Anti-LGBTQ Ugandan Bill Was A ‘Peaceful’ Man. According to Equality Matters, “Appearing on Salem Radio Network's The Janet Mefferd Show on August 19, Staver called Lively, whom Liberty Counsel represents, a ‘peaceful’ man victimized by ‘a George Soros-backed organization.’ The ‘George Soros-backed organization’ Staver referred to is the New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights, which is working with Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) to hold Lively accountable for his complicity in human rights violations in that country, where Lively's preaching against gays stoked anti-gay violence and inspired legislation - popularly known as the ‘kill the gays’ bill - to make ‘certain homosexual behavior’ punishable by death….. Liberty Counsel's official line is that Lively merely conveys to international audiences his biblically-based opposition to homosexuality, and that any abuses of human rights have nothing to do with his work. But Lively's actions and his own words suggest otherwise.” [Equality Matters, 8/20/2013, Janet Mefferd Show, 8/19/2013, AUDIO]

Liberty Counsel Represented Scott Lively Against Civil Lawsuit Accusing Him Of Crimes Against Humantiy For Lively’s Uganda Advocacy. According to a press release from Liberty Counsel, “Today, Liberty Counsel will represent Rev. Scott Lively, an evangelical pastor who was sued by the foreign group called Sexual Minorities of Uganda (SMUG). The suit heard by the U.S. District Court in Springfield, Massachusetts, alleges that Rev. Lively committed ‘crimes against humanity’ in violation of ‘international law,’ simply by sharing his Biblical views on homosexuality during a 2009 visit to Uganda. Representing Rev. Lively today is Senior Litigation Counsel Harry Mihet and General Counsel Steve Crampton. The suit is a direct attempt to silence Rev. Lively and intimidate other pastors against teaching the Biblical position on homosexuality. Mathew Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel, said, ‘This lawsuit against Rev. Scott Lively is a gross attempt to use a vague international law to silence, and eventually criminalize, speech by U.S. citizens on homosexuality and moral issues. This suit should cause everyone to be concerned, because it a direct threat against freedom of speech.’” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 1/7/2013]

Liberty Counsel Agreed To Represent Scott Lively And Said Lawsuit Alleging Crimes Against Humanity In Uganda “Is A Direct Attempt To Silence Rev. Lively Because Of His Speech About Homosexuality And Pornography.” According to a press release, “Liberty Counsel has agreed to represent Rev. Scott Lively, an evangelical pastor who was sued in a Massachusetts federal court by a foreign group called Sexual Minorities of Uganda (SMUG). The premise for this lawsuit is based upon the Alien Tort Statute (ATS). The ATS provides a cause of action for violations of international laws that are “specific, universal, and obligatory.” Courts have found torture, cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment; genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity; summary execution, prolonged arbitrary detention, and forced disappearance to be actionable under the ATS. The lawsuit claims that beginning in 2002, Rev. Lively preached in Ugandan churches and shared his opinion on homosexuality and pornography. It further claims that as a result (albeit a convoluted one), some members of the so-called LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex) community faced discrimination, and one (SMUG Advocacy Director David Kato) was killed on January 26, 2011. The suit leaves out the fact that a man named Enock Nsubuga Balibagga killed Kato because Kato tried to force him to have sex. The suit is a direct attempt to silence Rev. Lively because of his speech about homosexuality and pornography.” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 3/22/2012]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver And Mihet Said Lawsuit Against Lively Was To “Punish People Who Travel Overseas” And “Intimidate” Others Into Not Going. According to Right Wing Watch, “Staver and Liberty Counsel attorney Harry Mihet pointed to the lawsuit against anti-gay activist Scott Lively by the group Sexual Minorities of Uganda for Lively’s role in crafting draconian anti-gay legislation in Uganda. Staver warned that the lawsuit, which is still pending in U.S. courts, represents an attempt by ‘the intolerant homosexual lobby’ to ‘punish people who travel overseas to speak on pro-family or pro-life issues in other countries’ and to ‘intimidate’ others into not going. Mihet saw a deeper goal. ‘The end game plan here is to punish not only speech that takes place overseas but also speech that takes place here in the United States,’ he said. ‘They are not bashful or subtle about the game plan here, this is it.’” [Right Wing Watch, 9/29/2014, Values Voters Summit 2014, 9/27/2014]

3. Liberty Counsel supports and defends archaic laws criminalizing homosexuality with harsh punishments around the world, and has condemned President Obama and the U.S. government for speaking out against such laws, saying, “America should not be trying to make that country act in an immoral way.”

Liberty University Dean Mat Staver And Dr. Yuri Mantilla Addressed The Peruvian Parliament In Lima On November 7, 2013.  “Dean Mathew Staver and Dr. Yuri Mantilla have been invited to address the Peruvian Parliament in Lima, Peru on Thursday, Nov. 7. They will be speaking on the rule of law, the Western legal tradition and natural law.”  [Liberty University Press Release, 11/6/13]

  • Staver And Mantilla Were Featured On The Front Page Of The Lima Expreso On November 6, 2013.  [Lima Expreso, 11/6/13]

Staver Said He Received An “Overwhelming Reception” In Peru.  “I was just in Latin America in Lima, Peru.  They have in their constitution the sanctity of human life from conception and marriage as the union of one man and one woman.  After I spoke in Congress and met with other people as well it was very clear that the reason we got this overwhelming reception is because they are concerned that America – particularly President Obama and people like George Soros – are actively working to undermine their family values of marriage and life.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 1/28/13]

Staver Said He Went To Peru To Address Concerns That The Obama Administration Is Promoting “Pro-Abortion” And “Pro-LGBTQ” Initiatives.  “Staver:  And one of the things that they are concerned with is that America is trying to undermine that Judeo--Christian foundation, particularly the Obama administration is funding through the State Department and other ways pro-abortion initiatives, pro-LGBTQ initiatives, lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, etcetera, and same-sex marriage initiatives.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]

  • Staver:  “I Encouraged The Peruvians To Stand Strong.”  “Staver:  And my message was about worldview and two different worldviews, one with God and one without God and how it makes a difference in law and policy. And then I took it down to specifics such as abortion and marriage and that these are part of God's natural created order, that there's a sanctity of human life because we are created in God's image and marriage is part of God's natural created order and it is part of the very first form of government and that we must protect those and I encouraged the Peruvians to stand strong.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]

Staver:  “We Were There To Help Them In Any Way So That They Could Maintain That Judeo-Christian Foundation.”  “Staver:  They were very appreciative to us that we were there to help them in any way so that they could maintain that Judeo-Christian foundation. What we see is an imperialist America, a colonialist America under this Obama administration exporting anti-God, anti-values to these countries in Latin America and around the world.” [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]

Staver Spoke To The Peruvian Congress And Other High-Ranking Government Officials.  “Staver:  I recently returned from Peru and it was quite an eye opening experience. I was invited there and I had an opportunity to speak to Congress and also the head of the attorneys and the head of the judiciary and the head of all the educational accrediting body as well.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]

  • Staver Said Hundreds Of Attorneys From Around Peru Attended His Speech To The Congress.  “Staver:  So when I spoke to Congress, I was supposed to be there at ten o'clock in the morning on a Thursday and I was there in a room and I looked out through the chamber, which was the Senate chamber, and we had to delay the meeting until about 10:30 because it was packed and people were standing in the aisles and standing in other places. They had put in an extra row of seats and there was at least a hundred people, attorneys from around Peru, that could not get in, they were standing out in the aisle and they could not get into this event.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]
  • Staver Said High Ranking Military Officials And Judges Attended His Speech.  “Staver:  Sitting in the very front row was a general in the Peruvian Navy, he had all of his regalia on. Next to him was another high-ranking member of the military, Navy Seals, members of Congress, judges, the number one person over all of the attorneys in Peru was sitting at a table with me, he co-sponsored this event. And there's educators, there's teachers, there's young people.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]
  • Staver Was Awarded The Congressional Medal Of Honor In Peru.  “Staver:  So after that, we got an ovation, a standing ovation there, and  to my amazement then, the next part of the ceremony was they awarded me a Congressional Medal of Honor.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/25/13]


Staver Said He Would “Stand For Our Brothers And Sisters In Latin America And Other Parts Around The World.”  “Staver:  This, I believe God has opened up some amazing opportunities.  It really encouraged me to continue to fight the battle here in America and also to stand for our brothers and sisters in Latin America and other parts around the world who also still share these same Judeo-Christian values and that America, ultimately, is trying to  undermine.  We need to stand for this value of what ultimately makes America great, these Judeo-Christian values.” [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/26/13]


Staver:  “Obama Is A Colonialist Or An Imperialist With Regards To Exporting Anti-God, Anti-Family Values.”  “Staver: One of the things that is interesting is, you know, Obama is a colonialist or an imperialist with regards to exporting anti-God, anti-family values. And while he might want to pull away from colonialism in the understood sense of exporting the country to another country, he certainly is doing that very same thing to undermine God and values in these countries.  And so he's working hard through this administration to fund programs and undermine the sanctity of human life and marriage in Peru and other Latin American countries and, frankly, around the world.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 11/26/13]

Mat Staver Said American Opposition To The Criminalization Of Homosexuality Is “Immoral.”  “Staver: More than sixty countries have laws criminalizing homosexuality and virtually every country in the world has laws that criminalize pedophilia and child incest. Malawi was doing what it was doing in its own best interest and America should not be trying to make that country act in an immoral way.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 8/15/11]

Staver:  The US Is “Trying To Create And Extend This Immorality Globally.”  “Staver: We're not the world's moral leader under this administration; we're one of the world's immoral leaders ... What the administration is doing is just putting its own immoral views into its funding, trying to get other nations to come around and do the same thing. And they're literally trying to create and extend this immorality globally.”  [Faith and Freedom Radio, 8/15/11]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Russia Is One Of the Countries Around The World “Reaffirming Marriage….And Rejecting This Radicalized Homosexual Agenda.” Staver said, discussing what Matt Barber called “encouraging” actions by Russia with regard to same-sex marriage, “Well, it seems as though, if people are having AIDS and most of that, as the CDC comes down and says, it is transmitted by male homosexuality, by and large, what are you going to do? Are you going to say, are you going to elevate that to a preferred status and say, well yeah, men ought to be able to marry men? That's an oxymoron. What Nigeria has done by reaffirming marriage as between one man and one woman is what a number of countries are doing around the world. They're reaffirming marriage as one man and one woman. Russia is one of those countries recently that did that. Latin American countries have reaffirmed marriage as one man and one woman. Then other countries around the world are reaffirming marriage as one man and one woman and rejecting this radicalized homosexual agenda.” [Right Wing Watch, 1/22/2014, AUDIO]

Liberty Counsel’s Barber Said Russian Officials Were Aiming To “Stop This Homosexual Activist Propaganda From Corrupting Children In Our Nation, And We Need To See That Right Here In The United States.” According to Huffington Post, “As Right Wing Watch first reported, the Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver and Matt Barber praised Russia, Uganda and Nigeria for their anti-LGBTQ laws, respectively, in a recent "Faith and Freedom" radio broadcast. ‘[These nations are] rejecting this notion that you can take the institution of marriage and radically redefine it by sanctifying what every major world religion and thousands of years of history and uncompromising human biology have long held: that homosexual behavior and conduct is both immoral, unnatural and self-destructive to the individuals engaged in the behavior,’ Barber noted. He then went on to add that Russian officials were aiming to ‘stop this homosexual activist propaganda from corrupting children in our nation, and we need to see that right here in the United States.’” [Huffington Post, 1/23/2014]

4. Liberty Counsel says that judges and magistrates in marriage equality states who go rogue and refuse to marry same-sex couples are basically like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rosa Parks. Telling two people in love they can’t get married = advancing core civil rights like voting protections and equal treatment under the law.

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Of Continuing Marriage Fight Despite Polling, “You Can’t Change Gravity Because A Number Of People Want To Fly And Get Rid Of Gravity.” According to World Net Daily, Staver said of Republicans who wanted to ease out of the marriage debate because it was a political loser, “‘Just because polls change, that doesn’t make the marriage issue change. You can’t change gravity because a number of people want to fly and get rid of gravity. You can’t change marriage and what it is (it’s ontologically the union of a man and a woman) simply because some people think that their vote is over or the winds of change have come,’ said Staver, who noted that some in the GOP may want to put their fingers back in the wind to discover the polls are shifting back a bit. ‘You’re starting to see the polls switch back the other way,’ he said. ‘In fact, Pew Research recently showed that there has been a substantial decline in support for same-sex marriage. I think you’re going to continue to see that.’ Staver concluded, ‘Politicians who govern themselves by polls and popularity have no business leading anyone.’” [World Net Daily, 10/8/2014, AUDIO]

Staver Urged Magistrates To “Stand Your Ground” And Not To Resign In The Face Of Same-Sex Marriage, Promising Liberty Counsel Representation. According to a press release, “Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver is urging people in states affected by same-sex unions to stay: ‘Stand your ground. Do not voluntarily resign your post when confronted with this intolerant agenda.’ Staver made these comments after several magistrates in North Carolina resigned because they refused to preside over a same-sex marriage. ‘I appreciate the conviction of these magistrates, but rather than resign they should remain at their post. Liberty Counsel will represent them, but once they resign there is not much we can do to help,’ said Staver.” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 11/3/2014]

Staver Compared Magistrates Refusing To Give Out Same-Sex Marriage Licenses to Martin Luther King, Jr. And Rosa Parks. Urging magistrates who oppose same-sex marriage not to resign their positions, but to stay and fight with representation from the Liberty Counsel, Staver said, “Where would the Civil Rights movement be if Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., voluntarily went home when he faced opposition? Where would we be today if Rosa Parks had voluntarily moved to the back of the bus? The quest for religious freedom was the reason American was born. We cannot voluntarily give up this unalienable right.” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 11/3/2014]

5. Even better -- Liberty Counsel compared marriage equality to slavery and forced sterilization. Enter Mat Staver: “It’s shameful for the Supreme Court for what they have done to marriage as it has been shameful in the history of the court with regards to the Dred Scott decision or the Buck v. Bell decision, where they said that the state of Virginia can forcibly sterilize her because of this eugenics idea that they want to eliminate the undesirables of the world. That was the shameful day that we ultimately look back with shame upon and I think this is going to be one of those same kind of situations.”

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said A Third Party Would Take The Place Of Republicans If GOP Gives Up On Marriage, “That’s What Happened With The Issue Of Slavery.” According to World Net Daily, “Mathew Staver is the chairman of Liberty Counsel and has represented the traditional marriage position in in many states around the country. He is appalled at the suggestion that Supreme Court has effectively ended the political debate over marriage. ‘That’s ridiculous. In fact, you can’t have anything such as marriage or life over as a political issue. It’s [absolute] stupidity to have that kind of an opinion. You cannot just simply sit back and allow the Supreme Court or any justice or any judge to undermine something as basic and as fundamental and as necessary and as important as marriage,’ said Staver, who is furious what he sees as the GOP wilting on this issue once it stopped being an easy political winner for the party. ‘They’re cowards, and if Republicans don’t stand up for this, the party will become a non-issue. There will be a third party that will ultimately take its place,’ he said. ‘That’s what happened with the issue of slavery, and there’s no party that’s immune from the situation.’” [World Net Daily, 10/8/2014, AUDIO]

Staver Compared Supreme Court Same-Sex Marriage Ruling With Dred Scott Decision, Buck v. Bell Decision, Called Decision “A Shameful Day In American History.” According to Right Wing Watch, “Staver lamented that America is witnessing ‘a debasing of morals’ as county clerks in new marriage equality states begin to issue marriage licenses, with even ‘people on the sidelines who don’t necessarily participate directly in the debasing acts cheering on those that do.’ ‘This is not something to cheer about, this is a shameful day in American history, it’s a shameful day that the Supreme Court has ultimately engulfed itself with,’ Staver said. ‘It’s shameful for the Supreme Court for what they have done to marriage as it has been shameful in the history of the court with regards to the Dred Scott decision or the Buck v. Bell decision, where they said that the state of Virginia can forcibly sterilize her because of this eugenics idea that they want to eliminate the undesirables of the world. That was the shameful day that we ultimately look back with shame upon and I think this is going to be one of those same kind of situations.’” [Right Wing Watch, 10/8/2014, Crosstalk, 10/7/2014, AUDIO]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Legalized Same-Sex Marriage “Is The Beginning Of The End Of Western Civilization.” According to World Net Daily, “Staver also asserted that far more is at stake in terms of basic American freedoms and even life as we know it. “[Same-sex marriage] is a direct assault and collision on religious freedom,” he said. “It happened before. It continues to happen. We’re going to see it increase. This is something that I believe is the beginning of the end of Western civilization. You can’t simply redefine and pretend that marriage and ontological differences between men and women do not exist. This will have consequences.” [World Net Daily, 10/7/2014, AUDIO]

Staver Said That “There’s No Place In The Constitution” For Same-Sex Marriage And That Natural Law Considers It “A Crime Against Nature.” According to a discussion captured by Right Wing Watch, Staver said, “There’s no place in the Constitution that you could stretch it to mean same-sex marriage. At the time of the founding of this country obviously no one even thought about the fact that two men and two women would be wanting to marry. It just is absurd to even think about that. It has always from that moment on been considered a crime against nature. Again, you go back to nature, if you go back to what they called these acts of same sex is crimes against nature. Nature being just the natural law. The revealed law plus the natural law that we actually are able to see and understand that governs the universe that governs our interaction.” [Right Wing Watch, 2/11/2013, VIDEO]

  • Liberty Counsel’s Barber Said Because Same-Sex Behavior Was A “Crime Against Nature” In The Original Colonies, Framers Did Not Intend For Same-Sex Marriage To Be Legal. According to a recording by Right Wing Watch, Barber responded to a suggestion by Mat Staver that acts of same sex were crimes against nature by saying, “The aberrant sexual behavior, the twisting of normal human sexuality that would be involved in order to consummate a same-sex marriage in all thirteen of the original colonies was a crime, in many of the colonies a crime punishable by death. Now, do we advocate that, no, of course, but the point is that was the mindset of the Framers as they drafted the Constitution. There’s no way that they would have ever intended and twist and deconstruct the fundamental cornerstone institution of marriage in order to put the government’s official stamp of approval on a crime against nature.” [Right Wing Watch, 2/11/2013, VIDEO]

6. Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber attacked U.S. Sen. Rob Portman’s son for living an “abhorrent lifestyle” (being gay). Liberty Counsel’s Mat Saver referred to Portman as being one of “the cockroaches within the Republican Party” for standing with his son and supporting marriage equality.

Staver Said Pro-Same- Sex Marriage Republicans Were The “Cockroaches Within The Republican Party.” According to Right Wing Watch, discussing Rob Portman, Reince Preibus, Karl Rove, and other Republicans who are either supportive of marriage equality, or want to de-emphasize social issues, Mat Staver said “You know it’s like going into a building at night and you flip on the lights and all of the sudden the cockroaches start running, and I think this same-sex marriage issue has shown the cockroaches within the Republican Party, the RINOs: Republican In Name Only. That’s why we lost the 2008 election, that’s why we lost the 2012 election, because they put forth their party person who is not really a conservative and doesn’t resonate with the American people and couldn’t carry a conservative message and articulate it if it was handed to them.” [Right Wing Watch, 3/28/2013, Crosstalk, 3/27/2013, AUDIO]

Staver Said Failure To Push For Marriage Will Cause A Mass Exodus In Republican Party And It’s Karl Rove, Reince Preibus, And Rob Portman’s Fault. Staver said “[President Bush] had a marriage mandate and coming into 2005 we asked him to push forward with a Federal Marriage Amendment; instead, he and Karl Rove backed away. They tried to reform Social Security, which was not a mandate of his, and he failed and we lost that opportunity. So now you have Karl Rove and you have [Reince] Priebus and some others, [Rob] Portman, they’re going down a way that ultimately will split the Republican Party. I can tell you what, if the Republican Party were to adopt same-sex marriage, if they were to do that, evangelicals will leave en masse and that will create a third party. No one wants to create a third party, they want to work within the system, they want to make sure that it advances freedom and liberty and the sanctity of life and marriage, but if the Republican Party goes down that road you can bet that there will be a mass exodus from that party and it will not win elections again for many, many years in the future.” [Right Wing Watch, 3/28/2013, Crosstalk, 3/27/2013, AUDIO]  

Liberty Counsel’s Barber Said Portman’s “Love For His Son Has Deceived Him” Into Accommodating “His Son’s Abhorrent Lifestyle.” According to Right Wing Watch, following Portman’s announcement of a change of heart on marriage equality due to his son’s coming out, Barber said, “‘Perhaps [the senator’s] love for his son has deceived him in not being able to differentiate between loving his son and helping his son to do the right thing, versus changing his entire worldview and his view of the natural institution of legitimate marriage in order to accommodate his son's abhorrent lifestyle,’ says Barber. Portman told reporters his previous views on marriage were rooted in his Methodist faith and his change of heart came because of ‘the Bible's overarching themes of love and compassion.’ Barber challenges that interpretation. ‘This provides us a perfect example of the danger of looking at things through the jaundiced prism of our own feelings rather than on objective truths,’ says the Liberty Counsel attorney.” [Right Wing Watch, 3/19/2013]

7. Liberty Counsel thinks being LGBTQ is not only a health hazard, but is also just like being a drug addict, which justifies legal discrimination. They actually said, “Both are about protecting children and society. Laws that single out those who want to engage in a harmful behavior, like drug laws that discriminate against heroin users, are not unlawful discrimination but rather compassionate public policy.”

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Compared Same-Sex Marriage Ban To Age Of Consent Laws And Drug Laws. According to a press release, “‘Memorializing the natural definition of marriage into our law is not sexual discrimination, any more than requiring young people to wait until they are 16 before they can engage in intimate sexual relations is age discrimination,’ Staver said. ‘Both are about protecting children and society. Laws that single out those who want to engage in a harmful behavior, like drug laws that discriminate against heroine users, are not  unlawful discrimination but rather compassionate public policy,’ said Staver.” [Liberty Counsel, Press Release, 7/7/2014]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Supporting Same-Sex Marriage “Is An Oxymoron” Especially Given AIDS Transmission. In a discussion with Matt Barber discussing same-sex marriage reported by Right Wing Watch, Staver said, “President Obama has been going in a direction to really deconstruct this and to create this idea of same-sex marriage, which is really an oxymoron. But, at the same time, the rest of the world seems to be going exactly opposite of the president and some of the states....Well, it seems as though, if people are having AIDS and most of that, as the CDC comes down and says, it is transmitted by male homosexuality, by and large, what are you going to do? Are you going to say, are you going to elevate that to a preferred status and say, well yeah, men ought to be able to marry men? That's an oxymoron.” [Right Wing Watch, 1/22/2014, AUDIO]

Liberty Counsel’s Staver Said Same-Sex Marriage Is Physically And Mentally Harmful Because They Spread “Serious And Deadly Diseases.” According to Right Wing Watch, when asked who was harmed by gay marriage, Staver responded, “we know, for example, male-male sexual relationships are notoriously harmful, physically as well as mentally, and also female-female, same kinds of things. And that’s not something that I’ve created. You can go to the Center for Disease Control and find that out. So it’s harmful to the individuals and those harms ultimately effect those around because they’re communicable and other kinds of serious and deadly diseases.” [Right Wing Watch, 10/8/2014, Crosstalk, 10/6/2014, AUDIO]

Liberty Counsel’s Barber Said “Who Is The Author Of This Perverted Marriage…Which Is The Flip-Side Of The Coin? God Is The Author Of Natural Marriage. The Enemy Is The Author Of Unnatural Marriage.” On the Faith and Freedom radio program, Matt Barber said to Mat Staver, “"There are flip sides to a coin here," Barber said. "God designed marriage between man and woman in Genesis and Christ himself reiterated this Matthew 19, said it's between a man and a woman. If God is the author of marriage, man-woman marriage, then you have to ask, we're talking about the spiritual context here, who is the author of this perverted marriage, idea of marriage, which is the flip-side of the coin? God is the author of natural marriage. The Enemy is the author of unnatural marriage, and that's what we're talking about here, unnatural marriage, counterfeit marriage. It's the flip side of the coin. It's light and dark.” [Right Wing Watch, 12/5/2014, Faith and Freedom, 12/5/2014, AUDIO]

Liberty Council Said That LGBTQ People Do Not Commit To Relationships That Are Both Exclusive And Permanent And Thus Can Not Enjoy The Benefits Of Marriage And Government Can Discourage Their Relationships Due To Health Reasons. According to Think Progress, “ThinkProgress reached out to the Liberty Counsel Friday morning for clarification as to how maintaining the status quo for marriage might impact the health of people who identify as gay, lesbian, and bisexual. Mandi Campbell, a litigator for the organization, explained that in general, homosexuals cannot — or at least do not — commit to relationships that are both exclusive and permanent. Thus, they cannot enjoy the benefits of marriage. The government’s actions communicate what is “right and wrong” and “good and bad,” and so because of the health consequences associated with gay sex, it should not encourage or endorse that behavior. Campbell confirmed that the Liberty Counsel believes that even though banning same-sex marriage will not change the number of people who identify as gay, it will discourage people from engaging in same-sex sexual behavior.” [Think Progress, 5/16/2014]

Liberty Counsel Brief On Michigan’s Same-Sex Marriage Ban Cited Increased Health Risks Among Same-Sex Couples That Justified Government Bans Of Same-Sex Marriage. According to Think Progress, “The Liberty Counsel, a Christian law firm and affiliate of Liberty University, has submitted an amicus brief urging Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage. Among the reasons for maintaining the ban, they argue, is that there are ‘inherent harms associated with same-sex unions.’ Though the Liberty Counsel brief refers to higher transmission rates of HIV and other STD’s among men who have sex with men, the group concludes, ‘The nature of the sexual acts in which same-sex couples engage carry health risks that are not as prevalent, or in some cases, not present at all, in heterosexual individuals.’ Citing various health reports, the brief highlights a number of health concerns that are unique or specific to the LGBT community, including lower life expectancy, suicide, higher rates of substance abuse, depression, inadequate access to care, HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, certain cancers, and eating disorders.” [Think Progress, 5/16/2014]

8. Liberty Counsel advocated on behalf of a woman named Lisa Miller who claims to have “renounced homosexuality” thanks to her religion, and then kidnapped and fled the country with her child in order to avoid allowing her same-sex former partner – the child’s other parent – from seeing her. She fled after she was found in contempt of court for denying a Vermont court order that she grant the child’s other mother visitation. Coincidentally, it was reported in 2011 that Miller and her child were living in Nicaragua in a home owned by Mat Staver’s administrative assistant’s father.

Liberty Counsel Advocated For Biological Mother In Custody Dispute In Jenkins V. Miller Case. According to the Windy City Times, “There have been a number of recent cases across the country in which a biological or adoptive parent tries to claim the other parent has no parental rights. Best known among them is the case of Janet Jenkins and Lisa Miller, which has grabbed headlines nationally. Miller, the biological mother, asked courts in both Virginia and Vermont to deny Jenkins visitation and custody, and has taken issues to the U.S. Supreme Court five times, without success each time. Miller was eventually ruled in contempt of court for defying a Vermont court order that she allow Jenkins visitation. The court then granted Legal custody to Jenkins. But Miller went hiding with the girl at the end of 2009, and a man accused of helping her leave the U.S. was arraigned in a federal court in April…. In several of these cases, notably Miller v. Jenkins, attorneys from conservative legal organizations such as Liberty Counsel and the Alliance Defense Fund have represented the biological mothers.” [Windy City Times, 9/14/11]

Liberty Counsel Attorney For Lisa Miller, Rena Lindevaldsen Wrote Book Promoting Case And Discussing “Homosexual Rights Movement And Its Destructive Consequences” After Miller’s Disappearance. According to the Amazon description of Only One Mommy By Rena Lindevalsan, “Only One Mommy exposes the truth about the homosexual rights movement and its destructive consequences. Written from the vantage point of Lisa Miller's seven-year custody battle for her biological child against her former same-sex partner, Only One Mommy offers a first-hand account of how people are lured into believing that they are born ‘gay’ and cannot change. As a result of that belief, they make life choices that have devastating consequences for our children, families, and freedoms. This book offers truth to those struggling with homosexuality, encourages churches to minister to those caught in the lifestyle, and stirs freedom-loving Americans to get involved in the culture war that is raging all around them….’Lisa Miller's story illustrates the clash between two radically different worldviews. One will win, and one will lose. No one will escape this impending storm. This book should be required reading.’ Mathew Staver, Founder & Chairman of Liberty Counsel, Dean of Liberty University School of Law, Chairman of Liberty Counsel Action Rena Lindevaldsen is an Associate Professor of Law at Liberty University School of Law and serves as Special Counsel to Liberty Counsel. Rena has written this book based on her first- hand experience as Lisa Miller's attorney, as well as on her defense of traditional marriage and family in courts throughout the Nation.” [Amazon.com, Only One Mommy, Accessed 12/1/2014]

Lisa Miller Went Missing With Daughter After Missing Court Order Surrender Of Daughter To Former Same-Sex Partner, Janet Jenkins, Whose Custody Of Daughter Was Upheld In Vermont And Virginia Courts. The Associated Press reported that “Lisa Miller and Janet Jenkins were joined in a Vermont civil union in 2000. Isabella was born to Miller in 2002, and the couple broke up the following year. Miller then moved to Virginia, renounced homosexuality and became an evangelical Christian. She was granted custody of Isabella, but Jenkins got visitation rights. Courts in Vermont and Virginia have since ruled in favor of Jenkins on the custody issue, most recently in November 2009, when Rutland Family Court Judge William Cohen — frustrated by Miller's refusal to obey court orders — ordered her to surrender custody to Jenkins. Miller, who at one time lived in Forest, Va., failed to appear with the girl for a court-ordered Jan. 1, 2010, custody swap in which Jenkins was to take her. A federal arrest warrant has since been issued for her. The girl is listed as missing by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Jenkins' attorney had said last year the two were reported to be in El Salvador at some point, but the FBI says they were last known to be in Nicaragua.” [Associated Press, 4/22/2011]

After Fleeing Country, Lisa Miller Lived In Home Owned By Philip Zohiates, Father Of Mat Staver’s Administrative Assistant Victoria Hyden. According to Right Wing Watch, the criminal complaint arresting Timothy David Miller (no relation) for his participation in Lisa Miller’s disappearance contained “an assertion that Miller and her daughter are staying at a home owned by a man named Philip Zodhiates and that Zodhiates' daughter [Victoria Hyden] just so happens to work at the Liberty University Law School [as an administrative assistant].” Mat Staver was dean of Liberty Law School at the time. Miller’s Liberty Counsel lawyer, Rena Lindevaldsen, also was an Associate Professor of Law at Liberty University. Liberty Counsel denied knowing Miller’s whereabouts.” [Right Wing Watch, 2/22/2011]

Phillip Zohiates, Liberty Law School, And Thomas Road Baptist Church Were Indicted In RICO Civil Suit For Involvement In Lisa Miller Kidnapping Case. According to court papers found by Right Wing Watch, Liberty Law School, Phillip Zohiates, Kennth Miller, and Thomas Road Baptist Church were also implicated in RICO suit filed by Janet Jenkins over the Lisa Miller kidnapping case. Among the evidence listed were phone calls from Zohiates to a landline owned by Liberty Counsel while travelling back to Virginia after leaving Miller and her daughter near the Canadian border, and actions taken by Zohiates daughter, Victoria Zohiates (Hyden), including soliciting donations for Lisa Miller at Liberty