ICYMI - VIDEO: Human Rights Campaign, Allies Call Out Indiana Legislators for Partnership with National Hate Group on House Bill 1041

by Henry Berg-Brousseau

Alliance Defending Freedom Carrying Out National Campaign Against Country’s Transgender Community

Indianapolis— Yesterday, the Human Rights Campaign State Legislative Director and Senior Counsel Kate Oakley, State Senator JD Ford (District 29), Greencastle City Councilor Veronica Pejril and activist Dana Black called out the Indiana General Assembly for partnering with a national hate group - the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) - to pass House Bill 1041, legislation that targets innocent minors who simply want to play the sports they love.

The ADF is currently embarking on a national campaign against the country’s transgender community, and HB 1041 is their latest tactic. In fact, the ADF and Idaho State Rep. Barbara Ehardt have both collaborated with state legislators and testified in support of this legislation in multiple states - including Idaho, Montana, and now Indiana. According to a 2021 poll, only about 30-percent of Republican voters support legislation like House Bill 1041.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated the ADF as a national hate group for their longstanding opposition to the LGBTQ+ community. Their work includes efforts to criminalize LGBTQ relationships, opposing settled law like marriage equality, and even opposing the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.


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“(The ADF) wants to do all they can to make transgender kids afraid of themselves, and forced them to believe that they’re broken. They are being pitted against their neighbors and their communities solely for political purposes…The supermajority for our General Assembly seem to value extreme culture wars and partnerships with this national hate group over creating a better future for Hoosier families,” said State Senator JD Ford, District 29.

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“‘The ADF is setting its sights on the nation's transgender because they've lost the war already to criminalize the entire LGBTQ community, [it is] a political tool not designed to benefit Hoosiers,” said Greencastle City Councilor Veronica Pejril.

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“The bill is a ‘cookie-cutter’ version of the bill passed in eight states last year…part of a national ‘culture war’ agenda,” said Human Rights Campaign State Legislative Director and Senior Counsel Kate Oakley.


Alliance Defending Freedom Worked In Multiple States To Pass Anti-Transgender Sports Laws

In Arizona, Nancy Barto Worked With Alliance Defending Freedom To Introduce Bill That Would Prohibit Transgender Girls From Playing High School Sports. “Transgender girls and women would be barred from participating in sports on the team that aligns with their gender identity under a proposed Arizona law. The proposal announced by GOP Rep. Nancy Barto on Friday is co-sponsored by 22 other Republican House members and is the latest on a growing list of more than a dozen states with bills that focus on transgender young people... Barto said she is working with the ADF and the Center for Arizona Policy, a powerful group at the state Capitol that lobbies for religious freedom and anti-abortion legislation, to push the proposal." [Associated Press, 1/25/20]

  • The Daughter Of ADF General Counsel Testified In Arizona In Support Of Transgender Sports Ban, But Did Not Identify Herself As Connected To ADF, And Lied In Her Testimony About Competing Against A Transgender Athlete. “As the Arizona Legislature considered barring transgender students from girls and women’s sports last year, the bill’s sponsor zeroed in on the testimony of one high school softball player. Grace Waggoner told lawmakers in February 2020 that her team had lost the first state tournament game it had played in decades to an opponent with a transgender player. She blamed an “unfair” Arizona Interscholastic Association policy that allows students to join teams consistent with their gender identity after going through a review. Waggoner offered few details on the athlete’s impact on the game, but bill sponsor Rep. Nancy Barto accepted it as evidence of a problem in her state. “I had read stories about this happening in other states,” Waggoner told lawmakers, “but I never expected it would happen at my school.” Only, it hadn’t. The game Waggoner referenced in her testimony turned out to be a state tournament play-in game in 2019 that Scottsdale Christian Academy lost to Heritage Academy, 16-6. Heritage Academy coach Steve LaDrigue said his team did not have a transgender player. What Waggoner didn’t say is that she’s the daughter of Kristen Waggoner, general counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom – a conservative, legal nonprofit that has pushed transgender sports bans in states across the nation. When pressed for details about the game, an ADF spokesperson said in an email, “The widespread understanding on the team – including the coach, parents, and players – was that the athlete was male.” LaDrigue guesses the suspicion fell on the team’s catcher, his daughter, because she has short hair.” “That’s disappointing because apparently it’s rumors or speculation or excuses that somebody has made,” LaDrigue said. “But it’s not really fair to my athletes.”” [USA Today, 6/30/21]

ADF Contacted Rep. Ehardt And Offered Her A Pre-Written Bill, Known As Model Legislation, To Ban Transgender Participation In Sports. “In 2019, he worked with Idaho Rep. Barbara Ehardt on a bill she was drafting. Ehardt, a former Division I basketball player and coach, said the idea came to her while she was watching news coverage about Miller and Yearwood. Sharp contacted her to offer a pre-written bill, known as model legislation, which she adopted, Ehardt said. In February 2020, she introduced her bill the day after ADF filed its lawsuit in Connecticut. Ehardt said she viewed it as a “collaborative partnership of trying to move this forward.” “That you were able to just help piece legislation together that has become model legislation throughout the United States has been an amazing journey, very gratifying,” Ehardt said.” [USA Today, 6/30/21]

In Indiana, Rep. Christy Stutzman Linked To An ADF Article To Explain Why She Introduced The Anti-Transgender Sports BIll. “This is why I am authoring House Bill 1088 - The Fair Play for Female Athletes Act. It was filed in the Indiana House last week. If you support the cause of protecting the integrity of female sports, please comment and share. We must protect the opportunities and scholarships of our hardworking female athletes in junior high and high school! A recent study matches what athletes, and indeed most people, know to be true. ADFLEGAL.ORG Recent Study Confirms Common Sense: Men Shouldn’t Compete in Women’s Sports.” [Christy Stutzman Facebook, 1/6/20]


The Alliance Defending Freedom Filed Multiple Briefs In Lawrence v Texas That Argued For The Criminalization Of Same-Sex Sodomy As An Issue Of Public Health

ADF Compared Consensual Homosexual Sex To Rape, Incest, Polygamy, And Prostitution, “States have used this police power to promote marriage and direct the sexual activities of their citizens into marriage by criminalizing a wide variety of nonmarital sex acts, such as polygamy, rape, fornication, adultery, prostitution and incest. While crimes such as rape and incest are not consensual, adultery, prostitution, polygamy and fornication are private acts between consenting adults that have been regulated throughout our nation’s history. As we shall demonstrate, states have possessed and properly exercised the authority to regulate deviate sexual conduct including sodomy at all relevant times in our nation’s history.” [John Geddes Lawrence and Tyron Garner v State of Texas, Brief Amicus Curiae Of The Center For Original Intent Of The Constitution In Support Of Respondent, 2/18/03]

ADF Opposed Marriage Equality And Warned About The “Radical Homosexual Agenda”

In The Homosexual Agenda, ADF Founder Sears And Osten Compare Marriage Equality To Polygamy, Incest, Bestiality and Child Marriage. “George W. Dent Jr., writing in The Journal of Law and Politics, writes that once same-sex marriage is affirmed, then other forms of “marriage” will quickly be affirmed as well, such as polygamy, endogamy (the marriage of blood relatives), bestiality, and child marriage.” [The Homosexual Agenda: Exposing The Principle Threat, Page 80, 2003]

ADF Opposed Repeal Of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

ADF Worked With The Family Research Council To Send Letters To All 535 Members Of Congress To Oppose The Repeal Of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” “Alliance Defense Fund attorneys, working with the Family Research Council, sent letters to all 535 members of the U.S. Congress Wednesday, advising them regarding the legal and religious freedom implications associated with the proposed repeal of the military’s standing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The information provided to Congress included legal analysis by ADF of the religious freedom threat posed to both chaplains and service members. ADF also provided Congress a letter to President Barack Obama and Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, signed by 41 retired military chaplains, advising key officials that a repeal will, among other things, “endanger religious liberty for chaplains and service members.” A news conference to discuss how overturning “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” will undermine religious liberty in the military will be held Thursday at 2:30 p.m. EDT at the House side of the Capitol Building, Room HC-8, in Washington, D.C., with Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, Rep. Jack Kingston, ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot, and pastors from across the country.” [ADF Media, 5/27/10]

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