Religious leaders join PFLAG in support of Disney

PFLAG President Nancy McDonald issued a challenge to PFLAG's 69,000 members, 400 Affiliates, and all fair-minded Americans in response to the Southern Baptist Convention's boycott of the Walt Disney Company.

At a Houston press conference, McDonald stated: "The members of PFLAG are deeply saddened that the Southern Baptist Convention has voted to boycott the Walt Disney Company for its equal employment policies. The majority of Americans and people of faith support such policies. We challenge fair-minded American families to join us at our national conference in Orlando this September to affirm our support of the Walt Disney Company and real family values."

Taking up the challenge, PFLAG Affiliates in Houston, Orlando and Nashville held simultaneous press conferences. PFLAG Executive Director Sandra Gillis convened the Nashville press conference on the heels of "Family Reunion 6" moderated by Vice-President Al Gore. PFLAG's Orlando Affiliate was joined by James Armstrong, President of the Florida Council of Churches.

Retired Southern Baptist Minister and PFLAG Chattanooga Chapter President Matt Nevels affirmed the need for a public display of support for companies like Disney. He remarked: "I won't be supporting my denomination's boycott of Disney. To the contrary, I will be joining PFLAG in Orlando this September to demonstrate my support for the company. My wife and I are a part of PFLAG because we want other mothers and fathers to understand their child and experience their love without fear of ridicule and harassment. Negative rhetoric is un-Christian. Let us live life the way God meant it be lived -- with love and compassion, not hate."

PFLAG's Annual Conference will be held Orlando, Florida September 11-14. Orlando is one of the premier vacation spots for American families -- primarily because of the family-friendly entertainment offered by Walt Disney. All PFLAG conference attendees will be encouraged to take full advantage of the entertainment options offered by the Walt Disney Company.

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian and bisexual persons, their families and friends through: support, to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure civil rights. PFLAG provides an opportunity for dialogue about sexual orientation, and acts to create a society that is healthy and respectful of human diversity. Serving more than 69,000 members, PFLAG affiliates are located in more than 400 communities across the United States, and in 11 other countries.

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