10 Things You Should Know About Focus On The Family

by Charles Joughin

WASHINGTON – Focus on the Family claims its mission is to help families thrive. Yet to anyone paying attention, it’s clear the organization is focused on one specific kind of family, and instead spends a lot of time, energy and money advocating against equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and their families. In fact, the organization suggests that marriage equality will bring the destruction of civilization, and it has referred to the children of same-sex couples as “human guinea pigs.” At a recent conference in Nashville, two Focus On The Family leaders showed an improved tone on talking about LGBT issues. This of course is a positive step forward, but the organization and its leaders continue to promote many dangerous ideas, practices and programs that cause real harm to LGBT people and their families. If Focus's leaders truly want to practice what some among their ranks are beginning to preach, then the organization needs to reject and denounce these damaging positions.

Over the years Focus On The Family has made anti-LGBT activism a cornerstone of it’s “pro-family” cause. Take a look at 10 things you should know about Focus On The Family:

  1. Focus On The Family has raised over $515 Million over the past five years, making it one of the most well funded anti-LGBT organizations in America.  They invest in public education campaigns against LGBT equality, while their related organization CitizenLink supports radical anti-LGBT candidates who work against basic civil rights and legal protections.
  2. Focus On The Family promotes the harmful and discredited practice of “conversion therapy,” claiming, “just as there are many paths that may lead a person to experience same-sex attractions, there are likewise multiple ways out.” For years, they were behind Love Won Out, a national tour preaching that same-sex attraction is ‘preventable and treatable.’ 
  3. In fact, even after the leading national organization promoting “conversion therapy” – Exodus International – shuttered their doors and apologized for the harm they had caused, Focus On The Family continues to endorse junk science rejected by every major medical and mental health organization to this day, blaming molestation, divorce, and straight up “rebellion against societal norms” for people’s sexual orientation. 
  4. Focus On The Family opposes allowing same-sex couples to adopt, saying the children of gay and lesbian parents are “human guinea pigs” in the “same-sex family experiment.” 
  5. Focus On The Family believes that they know better than psychiatrists – actual doctors – when it comes to counseling transgender people.  They called trans people “mentally ill” suffering from a “devastating condition.” They also believe that living according to their affirmed gender identity ignores reality “like Cinderella in a fantasy world.” 
  6. Focus On The Family claims the reason more LGBT young people are unhappy is because the Human Rights Campaign “encouraged them to self-identify as gay or transgender.” 
  7. Focus On The Family accused anti-bullying programs in schools of “promoting homosexuality” and creating “a system ripe for reverse discrimination.” They even created a whole website to help parents fight against programs teaching tolerance towards LGBT students.
  8. Focus On the Family declared that anti- workplace discrimination legislation “must be stopped” because if it passed, employers might just face consequences for firing LGBT people for no other reason than their “moral convictions.”
  9. Focus On The Family wants business owners to have the right to turn away LGBT customers just because they believe their religion requires them to oppose their very existence.
  10. Focus On The Family thinks being LGBT is “a particularly evil lie of Satan.” President Jim Daly even says marriage equality means the destruction of civilization. 

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. HRC envisions a world where LGBT people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.


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