Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) is planning to appear at a prayer rally on Jan. 24, 2015, on the campus of Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge.
Gov. Jindal has recorded a "heartfelt message" (video below) promoting the prayer rally, which is called "The Response."
In the video, Gov. Jindal says the event will be “a time of prayer, of fasting, of repentance, of celebration.”
However, he does not mention how “The Response” is mostly funded by the American Family Association (AFA), which has a long history of anti-gay statements.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the AFA has said:
"Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler, and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and six million dead Jews."
"Homosexuality is not only harmful to homosexuals themselves, but also to children and to society."
"As with smoking, homosexual behavior's ‘second hand' effects threaten public health….Thus, individuals who choose to engage in homosexual behavior threaten not only their own lives, but the lives of the general population."
The Advocate notes that students and faculty members have sent letters of protest to LSU president F. King Alexander, signed petitions opposing the event and are planning protests because of the AFA's statements.
“LSU’s association with this event is limited to the rental of the facility," the university said in a statement. "LSU does not regulate non-university related functions. Rental of an LSU facility does not imply any endorsement."
The school added that it “does not yet have a fully executed agreement for this event.”
In response to the controversy, Gov. Jindal's spokeswoman Shannon Bates told The Advocate in an email, "I hope those coming to protest will come out on Jan. 24 and decide to join us inside for prayer. It’s going to be a great event worshiping the Lord and praying for our nation.”
The Times-Picayune reported that a controversial (and dated) prayer guide, that was on "The Response" website until Dec. 12, stated in part:
We have watched sin escalate to a proportion the nation has never seen before. We live in the first generation in which the wholesale murder of infants through abortion is not only accepted but protected by law. Homosexuality has been embraced as an alternative lifestyle. Same-sex marriage is legal in six states and Washington, D.C. Pornography is available on-demand through the internet. Biblical signs of apostasy are before our very eyes. While the United States still claims to be a nation "under God" it is obvious that we have greatly strayed from our foundations in Christianity.
This year we have seen a dramatic increase in tornadoes that have taken the lives of many and crippled entire cities, such as Tuscaloosa, AL & Joplin, MO. And let us not forget that we are only six years from the tragic events of hurricane Katrina, which rendered the entire Gulf Coast powerless.