May 19, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Conservatives who hoped that once Donald Trump became president the U.S. government would stop flying the “rainbow flag” at American embassies abroad, as happened often under former President Obama to mark various LGBTQ events, were disappointed Wednesday.
The U.S. Embassy in Macedonia tweeted this:
We’re flying the rainbow flag today to commemorate the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, & Biphobia. #IDAHOT2017 pic.twitter.com/QkanNBs0ZI
— US Embassy Macedonia (@usembassymkd) May 17, 2017
IDAHOT is celebrated worldwide every year by homosexual, bisexual, transgender, and other self-identified “queer” activists, one of many LGBTQ activist “days” on the calendar. Under Obama, the White House issued supportive IDAHOT proclamations in recent years, and several American embassies reportedly flew the “rainbow” flag under Old Glory.
Trump did not issue a formal IDAHOT proclamation, but at his State Department there was a muted celebration of the anti-“phobia” day with its “Worldwide Celebration of Sexual and Gender Diversities.” In addition to the flying homo-transgender rainbow flag in Macedonia, openly homosexual U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius took to the State Department’s official blog to honor IDAHOT.
The State Department’s official Twitter account retweeted Osius’ essay on the State Department blog, DIPNOTE. He wrote Wednesday:
“The International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) was created in 2004 to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders, and the public to the violence and discrimination experienced by LGBTI people internationally. And each June, we celebrate Pride Month in the United States and overseas. I am happy to reaffirm these messages because defending the equality of LGBTI persons is at the core of our commitment to advancing human rights globally — the heart and conscience of our diplomacy.”
Osius lives in Hanoi with his homosexual “husband,” Clayton Bond, and their adopted son and daughter. He recently spoke at an LGBTQ activist leaders’ conference in Washington, D.C., attended by LifeSiteNews, where he told the mostly LGBT audience, “There is no turning back” from Obama’s foreign advocacy of homosexual and transgender “rights” as “human rights.”
It was then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who in 2011 declared the new Obama approach, which alienated people of faith worldwide as undermining the historic, Judeo-Christian notion of human rights, and pitting newly-invented “gay/transgender” rights such as homosexual “marriage” against traditional societies.
In his blog piece, Osius described how he uses his and his “spouse’s” encounters in more conservative cultures like Vietnam’s to spread the message of acceptance for homosexuality and transgenderism. When a Vietnamese teenage boy asked him if he “had encountered difficulties” in his life or career “as a result of being gay,” Osius answered, “When I first joined the Foreign Service, we could lose our jobs for being out.”
He continued: “Because there is strength in numbers, we created a group, and we persuaded the State Department to stop discrimination based on sexual orientation. As American society grew more accepting, we insisted that our families be treated with the same respect as traditional families.”
Conservatives to Trump: stop “left-wing activism”
The pro-family organization Family Research Council objected to the State Department’s renewed pro-LGBTQ advocacy abroad under Trump, including the “rainbow” flag flying at the U.S. Embassy in socially conservative Macedonia.
“It is time for President Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to put a stop to the use of taxpayer dollars for this kind of left-wing activism, and focus on more urgent needs in our foreign policy,” wrote FRC President Tony Perkins in his daily “Washington Watch” newsletter, noting, “The Obama administration's promotion of this agenda abroad reflected woefully misguided priorities.”
Perkins cited polls and legislative votes showing that Macedonians overwhelming reject the LGBTQ political agenda. A 2015 survey of Macedonians indicated that “78 percent said they would oppose a political party that promoted ‘LGBTI rights.’”
Pro-family advocate Robert Oscar Lopez, director of Texas Mass Resistance, warned Trump about continuing Obama’s brand of international homosexual-transgender advocacy, which alienated citizens in less decadent nations like Kenya and Jamaica.
“Trump should be careful, because if he confirms all the worst fears about being a liberal, he will lose a lot of evangelical votes on this issue,” Lopez told LifeSiteNews.
Obama’s 'LGBT Envoy' remains under Trump
In February, it was reported that Trump is keeping in place Obama’s first-ever special international LGBT “envoy,” Randy Berry, whose mission is to promote acceptance of homosexuality, bisexuality, and transgenderism abroad under the rubric of “human rights” and in the name of the United States.
Berry, an open homosexual, is currently listed on the State Department website as “Deputy Assistant Secretary and Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBTI Persons, Term of Appointment: 01/20/2017 to present.” He is described as “currently serv[ing] as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor,” in addition to holding the “LGBT Envoy” job, which his conservative critics would like to see eliminated under Trump.
Berry’s Twitter account also lists the “LGBT Envoy” role but has been inactive since Jan. 25. Under Obama, it was very active: on May 17, 2016, last year’s IDAHOT celebration, Berry retweeted then-Secretary of State John Kerry’s IDAHOT statement.
Does disagreement equal irrational fear?
One ongoing tactic used by LGBTQ activists like the organizers of IDAHOT is to label disagreement with aberrant sex-and-gender behaviors, ideologies and self-identities as “phobias,” i.e., irrational fear. The term “homophobia” was coined in 1965 by the late psychologist and “gay” advocate George Weinberg, who died in March. Since then, it has been used to stigmatize opposition to not only homosexuality but also transsexuality (“transphobia”), bisexuality (“biphobia”), and Islam and sharia law (“Islamophobia”).
Being on the receiving end of these politically correct putdowns, some social conservatives are not pleased that President Trump, through federal government agencies, continues to honor LGBTQ celebrations like IDAHOT that implicitly mischaracterize moral-minded Christians as hateful and bigoted.
After conservative Fox News writer Todd Starnes posted the pro-“gay” “rainbow flag” flying beneath the American flag at the U.S. Embassy in Macedonia, one commenter responded, “Seeing how destructive homosexuality is — the CDC reported that over 20 percent of gay men in U.S. major cities have HIV/AIDS — maybe we shouldn't be celebrating homosexuality. Not to mention the flagpole is for actual flags of nations, etc. It shouldn't be up there any more than the Disney flag should be.”