Students at the University of Alaska – Fairbanks are protesting a long series of on-campus lectures by an “ex-gay” proponent of antigay prejudice.
Edward Delgado, a deacon at an Anchorage Baptist church, on Saturday launched a series of 14 lectures against sexual honesty. Delgado contends that honesty about one’s sexual orientation requires adherence to a non-existent “homosexual lifestyle” of “promiscuity, abuse, alcoholism, and drug abuse.” He further argues that people with a predominant same-sex orientation can only achieve “freedom” through conformity to antigay evangelical bigotry, misleading assertions of heterosexuality, shame regarding one’s same-sex attraction, sexless marriage, or lifelong celibacy.
While Delgado is not listed as a member of Exodus International, his poster slogan is borrowed from past Exodus billboards which imply that all gay people are — or should be — inherently lonely and confused. Delgado’s poster refers students to Exodus International and to “ex-gay” political activist Joe Dallas.
According to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Chancellor Brian Rogers said he wouldn’t order the poster removed.
Rogers said he wants a “welcoming and inclusive university” but said tolerance of opposing views and freedom of speech are at the core of the campus’ values.
No one appears to have been invited to offer “opposing views” to Delgado, however.
In his self-promotions, Delgado speaks about his “life of homosexuality” as a Southern California teen, when — according to the News-Miner — he says he had 10 male sex partners by age 19: A tally not much different from many heterosexual teen-agers. Delgado asserts that his own unfulfilling lifestyle choices must be representative of all gay people. “The things that I speak [against gay people] are not a lie, because I’ve lived these things,” he said.
Delgado is now married with two sons — though the Daily News-Miner does not say whether Delgado is sexually active with his wife, whether he is (or ever was) predominantly same-sex attracted, or whether the sons are his through biology or adoption.
Members of a campus gay-straight alliance planned to counter Delgado’s smears against healthy and well-adjusted members of the academic community with “Stop the Hate” T-shirts and literature, according to Queers United.