Activists in Richard Spencer’s hometown state rally against anti-LGBT letter
The letter, written by Tim Adams, takes aim at local gay and trans activists and labels them “misguided children”, who “are serving evil and recruiting to increase their ranks.”
It also promotes gay conversion therapy and suggests that people with homosexual relationships are satanic and perverted.
Sophie Rosen, a member of the local LGBT+ community, told PinkNews that the letter was harmful in the state where white nationalist Richard Spencer “has threatened harm to some marginalized communities.”
Ronsen also said “although it’s easy for me to laugh off this ridiculous, stupid rhetoric, people like this are still a reminder that I cannot be accepted for who I am.”
The state of Montana, which is politically conservative, has no statewide formal law against employment or housing discrimination for LGBT people, according to Equaldex.
Ronson told PinkNews her classmates at the local community college were hesitant to support equal marriage, and were even more critical of measures to introduce gender inclusive bathrooms.
“Comments like this are, of course, hurtful to me, but this letter was particularly enraging because it will reach such a broad audience. Articles such as this one normalize bigotry, hatred, and discrimination,” Ronsen said.
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“LGBTQ+ readers of the Daily Interlake might internalize this misinformation and feel worse about themselves for something that they should be proud and unashamed of,” she added.
According to NPR, the state of Montana has long been a haven for white supremacists and other political extremists.
The NPR article reports that in 1988 the state passed a strict anti-intimidation law, but courts have generally ruled that speech doesn’t become illegal unless a threat is “imminent.”
Ronson said for activists like her, it’s truly “disheartening” that a journalistic organisation would publish something “so hateful,” especially regarding the “past injustices of the state.”
PinkNews has contacted the Daily Inter Lake for comment in response to Ronson’s comments, but has not yet received a response.