Record Numbers of Ex-Gays Rally: Almost 10
There was no Michele Bachmann, no Tim Huelskamp, not enough in the crowd to constitute a minyan by Jewish law or a quorum by Robert’s Rules of Orders, and although the stalwart group of less than ten fell far short of the thousands predicted in attendance by the American Family Association, the first annual "Ex-Gay Pride Rally" lived up to the old adage - "the show must go on!" in a spectacular showing that would have rivaled the attendance record set in the Garden of Eden, but not since.
Record numbers of ex-gays descended upon the steps of the Supreme Court, July 31. As this was their First Annual Ex-Gay Lobby Day for their (now postponed) First Annual Ex-Gay Month those record numbers were almost 10.
This number was just shy of the "thousands of ex-gays" they anticipated and even less than the "tens of thousands" of ex-gays that exist but are "in the closet because of fear, shame and threats from gay activists," claims Christopher Doyle, Voice of the Voiceless (VoV) Co-Founder and Acting Director. Co-Founder and Acting Director of the event’s organizer’s Voice of the Voiceless (VoV) an offshoot group of Christian ex-gay ministry the International Healing Foundation and who, according to their website are "the only anti-defamation organization dedicated to defending the rights of former homosexuals, individuals with unwanted same-sex attractions, and their families."
The event was first announced in a June 17 Press release issued by the Voice of the Voiceless (VoV) which described Ex-Gay Pride as a "time to recognize the unique experiences of ex-gays and former homosexuals and celebrate their existence in American culture." It went on to say that its timing was strategically planned for "July, after June’s annual gay pride month, in order to draw attention to the ever-increasing phenomenon of ex-gays or former homosexuals; that is, individuals who formerly had unwanted same-sex attractions and/or lived an LGBT-identified life, but now do not. These individuals may be in heterosexual relationships, pursuing heterosexuality, or living celibate lives as former homosexuals."
Additionally, VoV unsuccessfully sought a Presidential Proclamation from the White House to commemorate the event.
For a while, it seemed as though all systems were go with this event. Permits were secured, a venue for a Gala Dinner was booked, invitations boasting an unconfirmed stable of "A-List" conservative Christian politician invitees were printed, and a contest for music videos celebrating the festivities was announced.
Fast Forward less than a month later when a press release issued by VoV dated July 12 announced: "Due to some anti-ex-gay extremism that has occurred since we first announced Ex-Gay Pride 2013, the July 31 Lobbying Day on Capitol Hill and Evening Dinner/Reception at the Family Research Council has had to be moved and postponed to an undisclosed location in September. The harassment has caused several security threats which has forced us to change plans, and that is unfortunate."
The postponement announcement continued with an apology, "For all of our supporters that have made travel plans to attend the July 31 event, we sincerely apologize for having to change plans, but we thought it was in the best interest to ensure the safety and security of all participants and speakers."