'Homosexuality Not Civil Right' billboard appears in Western Michigan

Sun. June 7, 2015 9:35 AM by OnTopMag.com

An electronic billboard which states that "homosexuality is not a civil right" appeared this week in Wyoming, a city in Western Michigan.

The billboard features two faces against a black backdrop: a person in a minority group and a gay person. In one version, a Latino man's face is captioned by "Born Latino," while the gay person's caption reads, "Not born this way." "Homosexuality is a behavior. Not a civil right," the billboard states.

Similar billboards first appeared in March in other parts of the state.

The group Restrain the Judges is behind the billboards. It includes numerous Christian conservative groups, including Faith 2 Action, Americans for Truth About Homosexuality and American Family Association of Pennsylvania, which have come together to call on the Supreme Court to uphold bans on gay marriage in four states, including Michigan.

At its website, people can buy personalized "restraining orders" directed at the Supreme Court justices and congressional leaders. For $49.95 a user can buy 544 such orders.

Brian Keeley, who is openly gay, told NBC affiliate WOOD that the billboard's message was incorrect.

"The message that individuals are not born within the LGBT community is a complete misnomer and science has proven that time and time again," said Keeley, a local activist.

"Fundamentally, who you are is something you should be allowed to express and if there are benefits given under laws to certain individuals as well as protections towards individuals, that needs to be provided to everyone on an equal basis," he added.

The billboard says it is paid for by the Michigan Oak Initiative and advertises the website RetainTheJudges.com.

"Any time you're engaged in any activity that is involved in a sexual arena, you have a choice," said Mark Gurley, a director at the Michigan Oak Initiative. "And a choice is different from the civil rights that black people fought dearly for in our nation because they couldn't change their skin color."

Gurely added that if the Supreme Court strikes down the nation's remaining 13 marriage bans that will lead to the criminalization of Christianity.

"[B]ecause any Christian that speaks what's in the Bible can be framed for hate speech," Gurely explained.


Article provided in partnership with On Top Magazine