ADF attorney calls Matthew Shepard’s murder a hate crime hoax

ADF attorney calls Matthew Shepard’s murder a hate crime hoax

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — An attorney for anti-LGBT extremist group the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is peddling the myth that the story of Matthew Shepard’s brutal anti-gay murder was fabricated in order to advance the “homosexual agenda.”

On October 27, the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission held its annual national conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The conference, “The Gospel, Homosexuality, and the Future of Marriage,” featured a presentation led by attorneys from the notoriously anti-LGBT legal group ADF.

During the presentation, ADF attorney Erik Stanley told the audience that “the end game of the homosexual legal agenda is unfettered sexual liberty and the silencing of all dissent.” After lamenting the fact that television shows like “Modern Family” had “normalized homosexual behavior,” Stanley went on to claim that the “narrative” of Matthew Shepard’s brutal murder had been “debunked”:

Denying the story of Matthew Shepard’s murder is a popular tactic for conservatives who want to deny that gay people face harassment, discrimination, and violence. It’s also a talking point that’s been thoroughlydebunked by experts familiar with Shepard’s murder.

ADF has been at the center of nearly every major media story about the supposed threat LGBT equality poses to religious liberty over the past several months. The group frequently represents business owners and individuals suing for the right to discriminate against LGBT customers, making it Fox News’ go-to source for anti-LGBT legal commentary.

It’s also one of the most “virulently anti-gay” legal groups in the country, opposing basic forms of protection for LGBT people and helping defend a statute in Belize that criminalizes gay sex.

Last week, New York Times columnist Ross Douthat apologized for speaking at an ADF fundraiser.

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