Meet Florida's Biggest Homophobes

Browse the Facebook page of the Florida Democratic League for a few seconds and you'll come across a disturbing image of an effigy of a black man hanging from a lamp post with a sign attached to his dead body: "This n***** voted."

The image accompanied a rant on Miami-Dade Judge Sarah I. Zabel's decision to rule in favor of gay marriage. The ranter claimed that Zabel had "judicially lynched" Florida voters who had voted in favor of the state's 2008 constitutional ban on gay marriage.

If you find dredging up painful images from racist past to enforce present discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation logically absurd, at best, to deeply offensive, at worst, you're probably not familiar with the thinking of Florida's last bastion of (loosely) organized homophobes.

See also: The Top Ten Outed Right-Wing Homophobes

The groups -- the Miami-based Christian Family Coalition, Florida Family Policy Council, the Florida Democratic League and the People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality among them -- are a jumbled ball of contradictions.

They claim to be pro family, but only families that do not include LGBT members.

They claim to be concerned with voter's rights, but they themselves aren't democratic organizations. Most are little more than cults of personalities founded and run by a single man that have managed to attract some followers.

They call themselves "human rights organizations" and "social justice groups" despite their main goal being an effort to deny rights and social justice to gay people.

Lately they've been avoiding out-and-out anti-gay rhetoric, and harping on the idea of a judge striking down a law as unconstitutional is somehow "lynching" the rights of the voters who voted for it in the first place.

Never mind that the majority of Floridians now support gay marriage.

Never mind that this is how America's system of checks and balances is supposed to work.

They don't actually care about that anyway. They just really, really don't like gay people.

And yet anytime anything happens in Florida relating to gay rights, the media (dare we say call it the "lame stream media" in their parlance) flocks to them for quotes for some false sense of balance. Sometimes you wonder why these reporters can't find anyone smarter and less extreme to explain why denying the right to marriage to same-sex couples is a good idea, and then you realize you've answered your own question.

So without further ado, here are Florida's biggest homophobes. If you see them quoted in an otherwise objective news story about gay marriage, bear their history in mind.

Anthony Verdugo

Executive Director of Christian Family Coalition

Sample quote: "It is a judicial lynching of nearly 8 million Florida voters, " on recent court decisions striking down gay marriage.

Verdugo is the spiritual successor to Anita Bryant, and founded his group in the late '90s in an unsuccessful attempt to defeat Miami-Dade's gay inclusive human rights ordinance. Despite that early failure, he's still going strong. His most recent efforts have lead to transgender people being denied protection under that same human rights ordinance.

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Kyle Munzenrieder

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