Chris Matthews: Activists Make “Good Argument” For Not Having Tony Perkins On Hardball

A gay-rights activist from Faithful America went vigilante yesterday, confronting MSNBC host Chris Matthews during a book signing. The group wants Family Research Council president Tony Perkins taken off the air, because, as head of a SPLC-certified hate group, they believe his hateful views on homosexuality misrepresent those of actual compassionate Christians.

They’ve even tried to take out ads on MSNBC saying as much. (MSNBC rejected them.)

The Faithful America activist confronted Matthews and asked him why he has a double standard with having hateful commentators on the show—he rejected Islamophobe Franklin Graham for making hateful statements against Muslims earlier this year.

Said Matthews: “I talked about this with my producers last night and we’re trying to decide how to deal with it. My view is I don’t like censoring opinion and Tony Perkins has been on this show and he hasn’t said something like that on my show, he doesn’t talk like that on Hardball.”

Is that true, though? What he says on Hardball isn’t fire and brimstone, but GLAAD’s new Commentator Accountability Project points out he says things like, “They say the research is overwhelming that homosexuality poses a risk to children.”

The activist bravely continued, “Do you think it gives him credibility when he’s on Hardball though, for what he says off Hardball?”

He responded: “You know I think that’s an argument—that’s a good argument. I’m thinking about it. You’re doing the right thing, you’re doing the right thing. Keep it up. You know where I stand on the issues that I care about, you know. And I’m probably with you on these issues, but I got to think it through.”

Hopefully Chris Matthews and his producers will come around on this issue and ban Tony as well as these GLAAD-disapproved folks, because hate is one thing that deserves to be silenced in this country.

Photo via David Shankbone

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  • Mark

    He has an audience of about eight people.

  • Steve 2.0

    I totally disagree that hate deserves to be silenced. How else can we learn not to be hateful? Censorship is not the answer, full disclosure is. If Matthews understands what Perkins is all about and what he stands for, he should disclose that to his audience each time he has him on the show, so his audience has the proper context and can judge for themselves.

    When the nut jobs start ranting and spewing hate disguised as Chistian love, it’s the media’s job to call them out on it, not silence them. Let them rant all they want and show themselves for what they are, but hold them accountable.

    Matthews also needs to be held accountable for not properly vetting his guests. He does have access to Google, right? Ignorance of Perkins activities and FRC’s Hate Group status is inexcusable.

  • J

    People have the rights to be bigots,and bigots have the right to hate speech.


  • The Real Mike in Asheville

    @J: No one is saying that Perkins does not have the right to be a bigot and no one is saying Perkins does not have the right to speak his hate speech. The First Amendment, though, is a ban on GOVERNMENTAL interference and censorship of free speech; it is not a requirement that everyone or anyone has to give Perkins a stage to spew his hate.

    Chris Matthews and MSNBC have the right to select whomever they wish to appear and speak on their show/network. I think it would be best to continue to invite Perkins PROVIDED Matthews stops playing softball with Perkins, allowing his hate speech to go unchallenged as Perkins pretends that his hate is not hate. Expose that asshole bigot as the asshole bigot he is. Once that is the action of Matthews/MSNBC, Perkins will stop accepting invitations, and his hate goes unreported.

    Matthews claims to be a “hardball” player. He has taken that most Nixonian concept to promote that he, Matthews, is no pushover. Alas, EVERY FUCKING TIME PERKINS IS ON, Matthews tosses slow softballs instead of playing hardball.

  • cam

    The issue isn’t whether or not Perkins has a legal right to lie and spew hate.

    The issue is, that if they are talking about say….affirmative action, they don’t have a pro afirmative action person on one side, and then a member of the KKK on the other side.

    Then they are talking about whether or not women make as much as men in the workplace, they don’t have a woman’s advocate on one side, and a waahabist Cleric who thinks women do not deserve any rights above what their husbands give them on the other.

    Perkins isn’t a legal expert who thinks that gays shouldn’t get married because of what the constitution etc.. says, he is the leader of a hate group and putting him on TV labels him and his group as valid.

  • timncguy

    Yesterday, Matthews was asked about the situation, and said he’s trying to figure out how to proceed, but that it’s difficult since Perkins has never spoken any anti-gay hate on Matthews’ show. We now know that this is not the case. FRC’s Tony Perkins accused gay men of being pedophiles on Matthews’ a year and a half ago, on November 29, 2010 (h/t Wayne Besen):

    Let me go back to the first issue that mark brings up about the connection between homosexual men and pedophilia. If you go back to the archives of sexual behavior, a peer reviewed journal that stated that in self-identified – 86% of men homosexual men who are in — men who engaged in molestation of children. 86% of them are identified as homosexual or bisexual. that study has not been refuted. based — that statement was based upon. If you look at the American College of Pediatricians they say the research is overwhelm that homosexuality poses a risk to children. so mark is wrong. he needs to go back and do his own research because this — this evidence is out there. and what we’re saying is this is not beyond debate and this is what is troubling here, chris , is the left is losing ground in this public policy debate and so they start this juvenile process of name-calling and trying to shutdown debate over public policy.

    As Wayne points out, the American College of Pediatricians is a sham anti-gay advocacy group whose most family staff member was George Rekers, the religious leader who was caught traveling abroad with a rent-boy who was hired to “carry his luggage.”

  • Hyhybt

    Don’t ban them. Have them on (pre-taped, not live) and make them support what they’ve said that made GLAAD’s list.

  • Geoff

    Didn’t MSNBC fire Pat Buchanan? I don’t how much hate he spewed on Morning Joe, but evidently that which he wrote in his book was enough for MSNBC. Isn’t there a correlation!

  • comus

    @The Real Mike in Asheville: “Alas, EVERY FUCKING TIME PERKINS IS ON, Matthews tosses slow softballs instead of playing hardball.”

    I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed. Perkins should not be given free national TV time.

Comments are closed.