Conservatives Protest Homosexual GOProud’s Presence at CPAC

By Penny Starr | February 14, 2011 | 4:01am EST
(Correction: Several conservative organizations chose not to participate in CPAC this year; they did not boycott the event.)


( – For a second year, the homosexual lobby group GOProud took part in the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), and some conservative groups chose not to participate in the event, including the Media Research Center and the Heritage Foundation.

One conservative group, however, decided to attend the event as a way of protesting GOProud’s inclusion.

“What we’re doing here is we’re focusing on the importance of moral values in society as the bedrock of the conservative movement,” John Ritchie, spokesman for the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP), told

Ritchie said he hoped his organization and the leaflets they were distributing, entitled “10 Reasons Why Homosexual ‘Marriage’ is Harmful and Must be Opposed,” would send a message at CPAC.

“There has been a lot of confusion lately with the introduction of the homosexual agenda at CPAC with the presence of GOProud, so we’re here to oppose that,” Ritchie said.

CPAC this year was held at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C., Feb. 10-12.

When asked by if homosexuality fits in with the conservative philosophy, Ritchie said it did not.

“The core principles of the conservative movement are very clear,” Ritchie said. “Without strong families, without strong marriages, we don’t have a strong society, we don’t have a strong country.”

“Therefore, it undermines the very essence of the conservative movement to have a group here that is in favor of same-sex marriage and also in favor of introducing open homosexuality in the military,” Ritchie said.

Ritchie further said he backs the organizations that decided not to participate at CPAC this year because of GOProud’s presence. ( is a division of the Media Research Center.)

“We applaud those organizations that are boycotting but we thought it was important to have a presence here to encourage the conservatives that come to CPAC to take a firm stand – a peaceful and firm stand -- against the homosexual movement,” Ritchie.

When asked by about the contradiction between homosexuality and the moral and natural laws conservatism is based on, Jimmy LaSalvia, executive director of GOProud, said God created him as a gay man. asked LaSalvia, “People who would agree that to be conservative, that the foundation of conservatism is the moral, natural law. In other words, people base their conservatism on God-given laws and natural laws and that homosexuality and the gay lifestyle works against that and that’s why it can’t fit in to the conservative movement.”

“God made me this way,” LaSalvia said. “I was born gay. And that’s the bottom line.”

“I’m a conservative and God made me gay,” LaSalvia said. “And I choose to be a conservative because I believe in limited government and personal freedom. And I believe I should have the freedom to live my life the way God made me.”

LaSalvia also told that the groups that boycotted CPAC had an “anti-gay agenda.”

In addition to the Heritage Foundation, some of the other groups who chose not participate in this year’s CPAC include the Family Research Council, Concerned Womon for America, the American Family Association, American Principles Project, the Centerr for Military Readiness, Liberty Counsel, and the National Organization for Marriage.

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