Chicago Pride reports that the Illinois Family Institute (IFI), which has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, will be holding a press conference to condemn the progress in LGBT rights with the claim that Martin Luther King was for civil rights, not gay rights.
"The recent passage of the 'civil unions' bill has been trumpeted by some lawmakers as an achievement to civil rights. It is not," the anti-gay Illinois Family Institute (IFI) said in a press release.IFI executive director David Smith added, "Skin color is not analogous to behavior. To equate homosexuality to race is offensive and perverts the noble cause of a great man and an important movement in our history."
IFI and the Catholic Conference of Illinois lobbied hard to block the passage of the Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act (SB 1716) in Illinois, which passed on Dec. 1, 2010.
The event organized by IFI is being held Monday, Jan. 17 at 10:30 a.m. at the Freedom Baptist Church in Hillside, a western suburb of Chicago.
"For years, homosexual activists have exploited an absurd and offensive analogy between homosexuality and race in order to advance their moral and political agenda," the group said in a press release. "Homosexualists use the heroic battle to end racial discrimination as a Trojan Horse to eradicate moral judgments about homosexual conduct. All civilized persons -- particularly African-Americans -- should be outraged."
The group said that religious leaders including Pastor Al Cleveland, Bishop Michael Love, Dr. Hiram Crawford, Dr. Eric Wallace, Pastor Larry Rogers and the Rev. Isaac C. Hayes, a member of the Illinois Coalition of Black Republicans, will speak at the event.
Prior to her death, the late Coretta Scott King became an avid supporter of LGBT equality and said that she believed that her late husband would have done the same.Here she is in her own words at a speech she gave at the 1996 Atlanta Pride Festival.