FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Wayne Besen
American Prayer Hour Will Be Held As An Alternative To The National Prayer Breakfast on Feb. 4
NEW YORK — The lead sponsor of Uganda’ controversial Anti-Homosexuality Bill, David Bahati, was reportedly disinvited today from The National Prayer Breakfast, which is scheduled for February 4, in Washington, DC. The news came only one day after a coalition announced The American Prayer Hour (APH), a multi-city event scheduled on the same day as the breakfast. The APH is a positive alternative to The National Prayer Breakfast and will highlight The Family’ ties to the bill in Uganda.
According to The Advocate Magazine, Ambassador Richard Swett, a breakfast spokesperson, distanced the group that hosts the event, The Family, from Bahati and the “Kill the Gays” bill in Uganda.
“The National Prayer Breakfast is an organization that builds bridges of understanding between all peoples, religions and beliefs and has never advocated the sentiments expressed in Mr. Bahati’ legislation,” said Ambassador Swett.
Truth Wins Out responded today with astonishment and called Swett’ statement inaccurate and dishonest.
“The Family, which hosts the National Prayer Breakfast, is intimately tied and directly connected to the politicians who sponsored Uganda’ Anti-Homosexuality bill,” said Truth Wins Out’ Executive Director Wayne Besen. “As a result of negative publicity, The Family is covering its rear-end and scurrying away as fast as it can. However, it is completely outrageous, totally insincere and remarkably deceitful for The Family to deny the crucial role it played in the introduction of the “Kill the Gays’ legislation.”
On November 24, 2009, Terry Gross, host of National Public Radio’ Fresh Air, interviewed Jeff Sharlet, the author of “The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power.” In the interview, Sharlet identified Uganda’ dictator, President Yoweri Museveni, as one of The Family’ “key men” in Africa. He also linked Bahati directly to The Family.
“David Bahati, the man behind this legislation, is really deeply, deeply involved in The Family’s work in Uganda, that the ethics minister of Uganda, Museveni’s kind of right-hand man, a guy named Nsaba Buturo, is also helping to organize The Family’s National Prayer Breakfast,” Sharlet revealed to Gross on Fresh Air. “And here’s a guy who has been the main force for this Anti-Homosexuality Act in Uganda’s executive office and has been very vocal about what he’s doing, in a rather extreme and hateful way. But these guys are not so much under the influence of The Family. They are, in Uganda, The Family.”
“Along with eggs and bacon, The Family is serving up extremism behind the scenes at The National Prayer Breakfast,” said TWO’ Besen. “This is not a benign organization and they have displayed atrocious judgment in selecting “key men” across the globe. The people they have held up as “moral’ have turned out to be monsters and it is time they apologize for the damage they have inflicted on innocent people.”
On February 2, respected religious leaders will hold a press conference to announce the formation of The American Prayer Hour, a multi-city event on February 4, 2010, with primary events in Washington, DC, Dallas, Chicago and Berkeley. Speakers at the media conference will include:
Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church
Frank Schaeffer, author, “Crazy For God: How I Grew Up As One of the Elect, Helped Found the Religious Right and Lived to Take All Back.”
Harry Knox, The Human Rights Campaign, Director of Religion and Faith
Moses, A gay Ugandan man seeking asylum in The United States
Rev. Elder Darlene Garner, Metropolitan Community Church, Board of Elders
Bishop Carlton Pearson, Senior Interim Minister at Chicago, Illinois’ Christ Universal Temple
Truth Wins Out is a non-profit organization that defends the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community against anti-gay misinformation campaigns, counters the so-called “ex-gay” industry and educates about the lives of LGBT people. Our goal is to help individuals be true to themselves and lead genuine lives of honesty and integrity.