Thu Jul 26, 2012, 02:19 PM
JackBeck (12,162 posts)
Anti-Gay Kirk Cameron rejects Youth Caucus invite, Congressman Frank Pallone responds.
Last edited Thu Jul 26, 2012, 02:25 PM USA/ET - Edit history (1)
Teens Asked To Meet Him This Weekend When He Speaks Before The Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association.
Cameron, through his manager, stunningly tells the youth to watch his interviews online, where Cameron says being LGBT is “unnatural,” “detrimental” and “destructive to our civilization”
Steven Goldstein, Garden State Equality Chair: “Kirk Cameron has asked us to look into his heart. Now we know the sentiment there: ‘Let Them Eat Hate.’”
Here was the response from Cameron's spokesperson to Corey Bernstein of Garden State Equality’s Youth Caucus for a request for the Fundamentalist former 80s heartthrob to meet with them.
From: Mark Craig
Sent: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 4:48 PM
Subject: Fwd: Mr. Craig - for Kirk Cameron from Corey Bernstein
My name is Mark Craig and I am Kirk's manager. His schedule is quite hectic with his movie "Monumental" and working on a new one at the same time, as well as his Love Worth Fighting For events.
He usually flies in the day of the event and after the event is actually traveling to the next one. Because of this intense schedule, there is not time to set up extra meetings like you are suggesting. That being said I would normally just write a simple reply, "Thanks for your invitation, however Kirk's schedule will not permit," but because you have taken some time to share some of your feelings, Kirk asked me to personally thank you on his behalf for your kind invitation and is very sorry he can not attend because of the schedule that weekend. I also want to thank you for taking the time to write and share your heart in your letter.
For this reason, I want to share this thought with you, from someone who sees and works with Kirk almost everyday of the year - I promise you his goal is not one of trying to hurt people in any way, in fact it is just the opposite. He has a concern for their well being - not only now, but eternally. He goes out to share a positive message through events like this weekend and I assure you he will only be presenting a positive/ inspiring message.
I would like to suggest if you really are interested in Kirk's thoughts on the matter, you can listen online to the interviews and comments Kirk has shared where he was given ample time to communicate his heart and thoughts. I hope you can attend the event and see for yourself.
We wish you the best, Mark Craig
Manager for Kirk Cameron
Congressman Frank Pallone Stepped In – He Will Meet The Teens And Today Sends Cameron A Letter Asking Him To Reconsider
Dear Mr. Craig:
Yesterday, I was contacted by LGBT teens from the Garden State Equality’s Youth Caucus after one of its members, Corey Bernstein, received an email you sent on behalf of Kirk Cameron. In this email, Mr. Cameron rejects Corey’s request to meet him and the other bullied LGBT teens this weekend when he visits Ocean Grove for a public appearance. These courageous young people are heartbroken by Mr. Cameron’s response, and so am I. As a Member of Congress, I have been disturbed by Mr. Cameron’s statements regarding marriage equality, but I am confounded by his reaction to a teen who reached out to him seeking a meaningful conversation.
I read the letter Corey wrote you, describing how he and other bullied LGBT teens were devastated by Mr. Cameron’s statements that being LGBT is “unnatural,” “detrimental” and “destructive to our civilization.” These statements and others made by Mr. Cameron leave little doubt that he believes LGBT people cannot find the happiness in their marriages that non-LGBT people find in theirs.
The tenor of Mr. Cameron’s words is astonishingly hurtful to LGBT youth struggling with their self-esteem in a world where they and their LGBT peers are often the victims of merciless bullying. I believe your response to Corey only compounds this problem. You told Corey to listen to Mr. Cameron’s interviews and comments online, when in fact those comments were what prompted Corey, on behalf of himself and the other bullied LGBT teens at Garden State Equality, to write to Mr. Cameron in the first place. I find it remarkably insensitive for Mr. Cameron to suggest that these teens, once again, expose themselves to the words that so deeply hurt them upon their first encounter.
On his behalf, you also invited Corey to Mr. Cameron’s talk this weekend – and apparently all are welcome. However, there is little indication that Mr. Cameron’s presentation will reflect the kind of diversity of opinions that would make these teens feel welcome. I also question how Mr. Cameron’s talk, which he says online is “designed to fireproof marriages,” is relevant to these adolescents and young teens.
I submit that Mr. Cameron should remedy the problem with these teens that his words created, even if unintentionally. A start would be for Mr. Cameron to meet the youth who very respectfully reached out to him. Corey made clear that he and the other bullied LGBT teens would appreciate the opportunity to meet with Mr. Cameron just prior to or immediately after either of his two appearances in Ocean Grove this weekend, even if for only a few minutes.
As for Garden State Equality’s Youth Caucus luncheon this Saturday in Ocean Grove, which you said Mr. Cameron could not attend due to scheduling conflicts, I will now be there, and I am honored to do so. But again, that is no substitute for the bullied teens meeting the person whose comments they found so painful. I appeal to Mr. Cameron to meet with these young people when he is in town.
If you or Mr. Cameron would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to contact Brendan Hennessey in my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-4671.
Thank you for your time and consideration and I look forwarding to hearing from you soon on this important matter.
FRANK PALLONE, JR.
Member of Congress
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