Former Arkansas Governor and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has called LGBTQ rights the “biggest threat” to religious morality in America.
In an interview with The Christian Post, Huckabee — whose daughter Sarah Huckabee Sanders is Donald Trump’s White House Press Secretary — decried acceptance of LGBTQ people and blamed the “Christian Church” for not doing enough to combat LGBTQ equality.
In particular, Huckabee targeted the transgender community, calling gender identity an “illusion.”
“The biggest threat to biblical principles today is the failure to apply a biblical standard of maleness and femaleness,” Huckabee said. “We are creating this illusion that there is no gender, there is no identity, and I’m blaming the Christian Church.”
Huckabee placed blame on California — a common target for conservative ire — and its “no-fault divorce,” introduced in 1970, for the eventual legalization of same-sex marriage.
“That’s when we first started losing that sense of sacredness of what marriage meant,” he said. “So I’m not really that surprised that same sex-marriage has become in vogue because the Christian Church were the ones who essentially abdicated a strict responsibility about what biblical marriage should look like.
“Once you’ve destroyed that, why can’t you have any and everything?” he continued. “The gender dysphoria we’re seeing today is largely due to the fact that the Church has failed to present very clearly the words of Jesus and Genesis 5:2: ‘Male and female He created them.'”
Huckabee also took a swipe at same-sex parents during a diatribe about single mothers, lamenting what he views as society advocating that fathers “aren’t really necessary.”
“There are some people who are in single parenthood, not because they want to be, but because they were forced to be. And we ought to give [them] all the support,” he said. “But we should never pretend that it is as good as a loving mother and father in a home where a child sees both genders play out their norms because that’s the modeling of behavior that would be ideal for a child to grow up in.”
Huckabee said that Christian churches should return to rejecting LGBTQ people by presenting a biblical view of sexuality and gender, even though it’s not “politically correct.”
He called it “nonsense” that being “really biblical” would “alienate people,” instead arguing that it would only “alienate some people who are more interested in preserving the lifestyle they have chosen than a lifestyle that will be practical and will work. But it will also be a lifesaver for the people who are really looking for genuine truth.”
He also said that parents should reject when their child comes out as gay or transgender, and instead assert the “truth.”
“We need to be bold and say, ‘It doesn’t matter what you feel. It doesn’t matter what you think, or what you believe; what matters is truth,'” he said. “Real truth is objective; it’s not subjective. We may see things differently, but there’s only one truth.”
Huckabee is no stranger to opposing LGBTQ equality. Last year he was forced to resign his seat on the Country Music Association Foundation due to his views on LGBTQ people and same-sex marriage.
Music artists and industry executives objected to Huckabee’s appointment, with Jason Owen, the co-president of Monument Records and owner at Sandbox Entertainment, calling it a “grossly offensive decision” and saying that Huckabee had “made it clear my family is not welcome in his America.”
Some of Huckabee’s past comments on LGBTQ rights have included his contention that same-sex relationships have an “ick factor” associated with them, his likening of same-sex marriage to drug users, incest, and polygamy, and joking about using the girls’ shower and locker rooms in an effort to lampoon the idea of transgender people using facilities that match their gender identity.