Peter LaBarbera is president of American’s For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH), a single-issue group whose only goal is “…exposing and countering the homosexual activist agenda.” Over the course of LaBarbera’s career, he has held positions at many of the various antigay organizations, including Concerned Women for America and the Family Research Council. Establishing his own organization, however, has revealed his single-minded focus on the “evils of homosexuality” and his ability to get his fringe ideas repeated by less extreme spokespersons.
LaBarbera views increased tolerance and acceptance of LGBTQ people as America’s backsliding, on the Janet Mefferd Show he said homosexuality “is Satan’s point of attack on the United States of America, including the church.” He has often claimed pedophilia is the cause for same-sex attraction, and views homosexuality as a pervasion of Juedo-Christian morality. He has also called for parents to remove their children from public schools that have anti-gay bullying programs, believing that they attempt to convert children to homosexuality. LaBarbera has also proposed sodomy bans in state legislatures which the Supreme Court ruled unlawful.
LaBarbera fears gay judges will undermine religious liberty and proposes a homosexual litmus test for federal judges. In an article written for One News Now, he asserts “I think it’s time that the public be informed if a politician or a high court nominee has a special interest in homosexuality — that is, they are practicing homosexuality or maybe they once practiced homosexuality.”
LaBarbera attacks LGBTQ civil rights issues with an almost singular fervor among his anti-homosexual peers. He often cites bogus scientific data and draws slanderous conclusions to fit his agenda. He and his organization have a well-earned spot on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of hate groups. Recently the IRS revoked AFTAH’s nonprofit status for failing to file required statements about its budget for three consecutive years. Despite AFTAH’s consistent false claims, Glenn Beck and other well-known conservatives often refer to its materials, bringing LaBarbera’s marginal ideas to the mainstream.
LaBarbera is also known by the nickname “Porno Pete,” in many circles. He earned the name after developing a reputation for going to strip clubs, leather bars, and other venues where he could take photos of scantily-clad people and then post the pictures on his website.
This profile is part of a series on key anti-LGBTQ opponents adapted from Political Research Associates Resisting the Rainbow report.