The National Rifle Association has made board member, Fox News contributor, and disgraced former Marine Corps officer Oliver North the organization’s new president. North brings to the office his experience in foreign arms sales and his long history of anti-LGBT statements.
In a speech at the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference, North compared opposing LGBTQ equality to fighting slavery.
“In the 1850’s a political party was born on the idea of a great moral issue, human bondage, the abolition of slavery in America,” North said. ” If we as conservatives cease to be a place where people of faith and those who believe in strong moral values can come, we will cease to be a political force in America.”
In a 2015 appearance on Fox News, North disparaged female and transgender soldiers as “radical social experiment.”
During a 2010 appearance on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show, North warned that “NAMBLA members” were next if gays were allowed to serve in the military. In another video, North claimed that repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” would lead to “a whole lot fewer voluntary enlistments” and a reinstatement of the draft.
In a video for the Family Research Council, North said that repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” would keep recruits who choose the bible over porn not to enlist.
At a 1993 GOP fundraiser in Virginia, North “told the crowd that he tried to telephone [Bill] Clinton, but the White House switchboard wouldn’t let him through until he disguised his voice with a lisp.” When a local LGBTQ group demanded an apology, North responded, “If it angered some subset, that’s their problem.”
The NRA itself has a long history of attacking LGBT people.
- Top NRA lobbyist Chris Cox called social acceptance of transgender people “perverted” and “twisted.”
- NRA head Wayne LaPierre said the Obama administration was “in the toilet” because of its efforts to protect transgender students from discrimination.
- Board member Ken Blackwell compared DC’s legalization of same-sex marriage to incest and blamed the 2014 mass shooting in Isla Vista, California on “the attack on … natural marriage.”
- Board member Ted Nugent slammed the NBA for fining player Kobe Bryant for using an anti-gay slur, “because he used a word demeaning to homosexuals, the most protected class of people in America.”
- Longtime board member Jeff Cooper praised Zimbabwe dictator Robert Mugabe for declaring gays “perverts who do not deserve civil rights.”
Given his record, North ought to fit right in at the NRA.