I've always supported the rights of the LGBT community so it's disheartening to see members of that same community embrace the type of smear tactics once used against them.
The ugliness emerged after three young adults allegedly attacked a gay couple on Sept. 11 on Chancellor Street near 16th. The full facts of the case aren't yet known. But that hasn't stopped a full out assault on social media in an attempt to "slut shame" and try the case online.
Calling them "faggots."
Calling them "bitches."
Calling them "privileged."
Selectively publishing their social media history to shame them. Detailing their high school years. Trying to get them fired from their jobs. Publishing their home addresses for bigoted vigilantes to see and take action.
Sorry. Don't look for a link for those web addresses. I won't aid and abet a potential crime. But it's right there for anyone to find and easily Google-able.
I'm asking the Philadelphia LGBT lobby where its sense of morality is when they engage in "slut-shaming" accused – mind you – accused suspects.
And, by the way, not all those who have been hurt by the community have been accused by the police.
Take Fran McGlinn -- the now former assistant basketball coach at Archbishop Wood High School. Resigning before he would have been fired, McGlinn was among the group of young adults on Chancellor Street that night.
But he was not charged with any crime – though his name was smeared online. In fact, some reports have emerged saying McGlinn actually attempted to break up the fight. An attempt to speak to Brian P. McVan, McGlinn's attorney, was unsuccessful.
I also asked the Archdiocese whether it would offer McGlinn his job back now that he's been cleared. "That's a personnel matter and we won't be discussing that further at this time," emailed Kenneth A. Gavin, the director of communications for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
I hope that the Archdiocese offers McGlinn his job back. If alleged immoral conduct took the job away, shouldn't he get his job back now?
The Catholic Church has a lot at stake in this case. It should take note. The amount of vicious, anti-Catholic postings on Philly.com and elsewhere over the case is chilling. Many comments suggest the same thing. I will lump them into a slurless sentence: That due to the child sex scandals, the church is morally bankrupt and has no moral authority.
That is untrue. And it's something that we must all fight against.
It's like analyzing a woman's entire sex life in a rape case. One has absolutely nothing to do with the other.
It's Catholic bashing like we've never seen it in Philadelphia.
And much of it is at the hands of the unforgiving LGBT lobby.
I want to know if the LGBT lobby has a sense of morality, or whether their push for hate-crime legislation trumps all else – including morals, decency, fairness and truth.
We should treat all LGBT Americans equally. For me, that means equality in marriage and in the workplace. Equal rights – but not special rights. Those aren't just my words, but they were the words of the gay-rights movement until recently.
But the uncompromising Philadelphia LGBT lobby – which penalizes its supporters if they are not 100 percent in lockstep with their vicious smear tactics – does not care about fairness.
Taking suspect Kathryn Knott's Twitter feed and selectively culling through her years of postings to show the ones where she uses anti-gay slurs paints a very biased picture of her – making her out to be bigoted. But we don't know much about her other than selective snippets.
Funny, many of the same young, gay activists who are castigating Knott on their own social media had better look in the mirror. While I won't do the same and shame them, several notable LGBT activists who were at the LOVE Park, pro-hate-crime-legislation demonstration yesterday have some pretty self-inflicted damaging words on their own Twitter feeds.
I could not find one other article at Philly.com yesterday where a murderer's or rapist's high school name was mentioned and their Twitter feed had anything exposed – even selectively.
Why is it that the LGBT community – one that I personally have embraced until now – feels it's acceptable to put multiple Scarlet Letters on suspects – and non-suspects – when the community knows what it's like to be labeled themselves?
Equal rights must be afforded to gays and lesbians. Nothing short of that is acceptable.
And make no bones about it. The three accused will get a trial, and they will face justice for their actions.
But the Orwellian and McCarthy-like tactics of the LGBT community gives me pause.