LGBT, Michigan Democrats — September 27, 2014 at 11:28 am

UPDATED: Dem candidate for Michigan’s 93rd House District sends epic response to anti-gay hate group


UPDATE: Josh Derke now has a fundraising page up at Please support this incredible Democrat.

You’ve probably heard of the Westboro Baptist Church and their hideously offensive protests. You may not have heard, however, of the Public Advocate of the United States. Public Advocate has been rightfully designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center and is run by Eugene Delgaudio, the Sterling District representative on the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors in Virginia.

Public Advocate is a notorious anti-gay group and recently sent out candidates questionnaires to candidates in Michigan. One of these hit the mailbox of Josh Derke, the 27-year old Democrat running in Michigan’s 93rd House District. His response was epic.

First, here is the cover letter accompanying the questionnaire Derke received:

Dear Michigan Candidate,

On behalf of Public Advocate of the United States and our members and supporters, thank you for your willingness to serve the families of Michigan by being a candidate for political office in your State

Every day, the radical Homosexual Lobby erodes the American family through legislation designed to incorporate the homosexual “lifestyle.” As a moral, pro-family organization, Public Advocate defends American citizens against such immoral legislation.

In order that members and supporters of Public Advocate may know your views on these important issues, I have enclosed your copy of the 2014 Michigan Family Values Survey.

Review, fill out, sign and return the enclosed questionnaire to me by October 1, 2014. […]


P.S. Responses to the 2014 Michigan Family Values Survey will be reported to the members and supporters of Public Advocate of the U.S. – even if you fail to respond. Sadly, experience has taught us that a candidate’s silence on pro-family legislation is usually a warning of the future abdication to the Homosexual Lobby.

Here are the questions on the questionnaire itself:

1. I Believe the REAL MARRIAGE is exclusively between one (1) man and one (1) woman and should never be redefined to include homosexual “marriages” or any other variation.

Yes:____ No:____

2. I Support the State of Michigan’s right to define marriage as between one (1) man and one (1) woman and will do everything in my power to defend and restore the Michigan Marriage Amendment – which protects marriage thusly.

Yes:____ No:____

3. I Pledge to refuse any donation from the Homosexual Lobby or their allies – especially from Tim Gill or Paul Singer – understanding that such donations will be intended to buy my support for their Anti-Family Agenda.

Yes:____ No:____

4. I will Oppose attempts to add “Homosexuality”, “Transsexuality” or “Pedophilia” as protected classes or statuses under Michigan’s Anti-Discrimination Law.

Yes:____ No:____

*Please Note: Failure to answer a question will be graded as a no.

On his website, Delgaudio says that homosexuals want to change laws to add civil rights protections in order to “elevate this abnormal behavior [which] serves as legally sanctioned discrimination against Christians and heterosexuals.” He also makes these Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs claims:

[I]n recent years enemies of real marriage and traditional families have sought to elevate pedophilia to the same medically defined level as homosexuality: Sexual Orientation.

The Homosexual Lobby is pushing to have pedophilia reclassified as a Sexual Orientation as soon as possible.

Legislation that protects “Sexual Orientations” de facto leaves the door open for Pedophilia’s elevation to a “protected class” if/when it is reclassified.

What came next, Derke’s response, is a thing of beauty. It is posted on his website but I have transcribed it here for you to read. Please stop by his website to learn more about his candidacy.

Eugene Delgaudio,

Alas, Mr. Delgaudio, it seems your letter has reached me far too late. The Homosexual Lobby has already dug their fabulously manicured claws into me, and I am afraid to report that I have been brainwashed into mindless support of the Homosexual Agenda. Would that it were that your erudite survey had reached my desk earlier, ere I succumbed to their influence, my mind might yet be unshackled from the horrible idea that all people deserve equal treatment and dignity.

Let me tell you what pro-family is, Eugene. Pro-family is standing by your gay brother for merely being who he is. Pro-family is accepting your cousins, your friends, and homosexual parents across the globe for who they are. It is recognizing that all credible studies that have explored the issue of gay and lesbian parents have shown that they raise well-adjusted children who are just as successful as those raised by straight parents. Pro-family means that you’re not going to rip established families apart because you can’t see through the veil of your own self-defeating prejudices.

Pro-family is not demonizing and dehumanizing people because they’re different than you are. It is not labeling a group of people immoral because you don’t understand human sexuality.

I am far from silent on pro-family issues. I am, in fact, vociferous. I imagine that it is a voice you’d rather be silent. The truth is that there is no homosexual agenda. There is no homosexual lobby. There are only people – men, women, transgendered, and others – who deserve equal treatment under the law, and equal respect in our society. Human beings with dignity, who love and are loved, in return.

I am capable of independent thought and reflection on this issue. There is no abdication. There is no brainwashing. There is recognition of the simple, irrefutable fact that you and people like you want to degrade and discriminate against a group of people based on nothing more than learned prejudice.

Let me address the balderdash on the survey you sent me. What is REAL MARRIAGE? Is real marriage a sanctified union of two people who love each other, and pledge to honor a commitment they make, legally and religiously? Is it an arrangement that has been recognized to foster a healthy environment in which to best raise children? I would argue that yes, marriage is, generally, these things. So why does it have to be restricted to one man and one woman if all the data says that gays and lesbians are just as capable of raising children and loving each other as straight couples? Who is harmed by such arrangements? Certainly not the children. Certainly not you. Certainly not the gay and lesbian couples who seek such arrangements.

As for the second bit of nonsense, let me say this on Michigan’s gay marriage amendment: it lost in court because the judge ruled that there was no legitimate state interest in banning gay marriage. The state could not defend itself in court, and the reasons it gave for maintaining the ban, as revealed in the documents, were not found to be logical or conducive to the ends Michigan seeks to achieve through marriage (Judge Friedman’s ruling can be found here: – I suggest that you read it). As has been ruled in Michigan and in other states, there is no right for the State to define marriage so narrowly as to only include one man and one woman without violating time-honored principles of the United States Constitution. As an elected official, I could do nothing to change this. It is not within the power of elected officials to run roughshod over the constitution. If the cases were upheld all the way to the Supreme Court then it is a settled matter. States do not have the right to ban same-sex marriage, and there is nothing anyone can do to change that without either ignoring or changing the United States Constitution.

The third statement is asinine. I don’t know who Tim Gill or Paul Singer are, nor do I particularly care. It would be impossible for any group to buy my support if I already agree with their founding principles. But, again, I must stress that there isn’t any such thing as the homosexual lobby. You are fighting a phantom of your own creation, sir. Each parry and thrust against this phantasm is merely you fighting yourself. I just hope that you’re brave and wise enough to come to understand this someday.

The final point is one that I find to be the most offensive, and to me, solidifies your divorce from reality. Polling in the State of Michigan indicates that as many as 73% of citizens support expanding the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to include language similar to this: “sexual orientation and gender identity or expression.” I am amongst them. Nobody, however, has ever seriously proposed adding language to protect “Pedophilia” in these kinds of acts. You signed the letter as “HON. EUGENE DELGAUDIO,” but there is nothing honorable about your letter, your survey, or your conduct. You and your group should be ashamed of sending this pile of excrement. And I hope that if there is even a shred of humanity within you that you feel a twinge of guilt and shame for comparing loving couples and parents to pedophiles.

It is my sincere hope that you should one day drop your prejudice and listen. Listen to the gay and lesbian couples who only want to marry so that they can express their love. Listen to the sons and daughters of gay and lesbian parents. Do not try to silence them. Do not ignore them. They are people, and they deserve to be heard. They deserve to be defended, and represented in government.

I shall be sharing your letter and your survey, along with my own response, on my website. I believe strongly that people should be made aware of the groups that seek to influence elections in this country, and the kinds of language they use and the claims they make.

Josh Derke
Democratic Candidate, State Representative, 93rd House District

For the win.

UPDATE: Josh Derke now has a fundraising page up at Please support this incredible Democrat.

[Meme by Leslie Salzillo, used with permission | Daily Kos]