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US: Gay families condemn Utah anti-gay activists for using their pictures during conference

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Anti-gay activists in Utah have been condemned for using pictures of the children of same-sex couples without permission during a homophobic conference.

The ‘Stand for the Family’ conference, was organised by Family Watch International, and took place in the state’s capitol on Thursday.

It was purportedly in favour of ‘traditional’ marriage, but mostly instead focussed on banning same-sex couples from raising children.

During her speech, organiser Mary Summerhays showed the crowd pictures of local same-sex couples with their children, used without their permission or consent.

She showed a picture of couple Matthew Baraza and Tony Milner holding their son Jesse, and said: “This child has a mother,”

“These are the faces of the children who will pay the price of redefining marriage.”

Next showing a lesbian couple with their children, she continued: “These children are being created for the purpose of never having a father.

“It strains the credibility of the courts to suggest that children must give up their most formative relationships when they get in the way of adult relationships.”

A statement from Equality Utah said: “We are deeply concerned after learning that photos of our community members with their bright and beautiful children were used as anti-marriage equality propaganda at a rally at the Utah State Capitol yesterday.

“It is a disgrace to use our families for a misguided and debunked view of what is best for children. It is one thing to disagree with the freedom to marry, it’s quite another to go after loving parents and their children at a political rally.

“That is not an example of the family values in which Utahns take deep pride.

“All credible research has shed light on the health and success of children raised by same-sex parents, proving that if anyone poses a threat to our children, it is folks like those who gathered yesterday at the Capitol.”

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