Pseudo-Historians Unite: David Barton and Scott Lively use Fake Scholarship to Disguise their Extremist Views
David Barton defends his junk history by pointing to an anonymous group of academics who apparently approve of his “scholarship” while simultaneously saying that people can trust his work because the liberal, secular, academic elite doesn’t approve of it. While Barton refuses to name anyone from his supposed gaggle of admirers in academia, he is touting the support of a fellow pseudo-historian: Scott Lively, who blames the Holocaust on the gay community.
That’s right, Barton, who has the ear of Republican politicians and is helping to write the Republican Party platform, is touting the endorsement of someone who thinks gays brought about the Holocaust.
As Kyle reported yesterday, Lively appeared on WallBuilders Live, Barton’s radio show which he co-hosts with Rick Green, to defend Barton and denounce his critics, namely Professor Warren Throckmorton of Grove City College. Throckmorton co-authored “Getting Jefferson Right,” a book that scrutinizes and debunks many of Barton’s claims in “The Jefferson Lies,” which was so inaccurate it was pulled from publication.
Even before Lively’s appearance on WallBuilders Live, Barton was promoting Lively’s attack on Throckmorton via Twitter and Facebook, arguing that Throckmorton lied about Lively’s involvement in shaping Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill and therefore shouldn’t be trusted in whatever he said about Barton. While on WallBuilders Live, Lively said it is “absolutely not true” that he promoted “forced therapy of homosexuals in Uganda”:
However, that is exactly what he told Janet Mefferd back in May, arguing that he wanted Uganda to treat homosexuals just like drunk drivers who have the choice between jail time and therapy, in this case sexual orientation conversion therapy:
This brazen dishonesty is how both Lively and Barton operate. While they like to fashion themselves as historians they are in reality simply political activists.
Similar to how Barton misrepresents the Founders as conservative evangelical Christians to advance his own conservative political agenda, Lively rewrites the history of Nazi Germany to argue that gays and lesbians are responsible for the rise of Nazism and the Holocaust in order to further his own anti-gay politics in the U.S. and abroad.
In “The Pink Swastika,” Lively asserts that “the glaring truth of history is that homosexuals bore a disproportionately large share for the responsibility for the rise of Nazism.” He claims that gays in Germany sought to restore homosexual occult religion and eliminate its Judeo-Christian detractors: “there is a spiritual element to the Holocaust that suggests that it was, in some respects, vengeance against the people whose moral laws had relegated pagan homo-occultism to obscurity and ignominy” (p. 49). According to Lively, “the rise of homosexuality in a Judeo-Christian based culture” inevitably means that “violence and depravity increase” (p. 137).
“The Pink Swastika” later shifts the conversation to the U.S. debate on gay rights, warning that “Nazi themes are common in the homosexual community” today (p. 146) and that American society is heading down the same path as pre-WWII Germany thanks to gay rights (p. 187).
No legitimate historians have given any credibility Lively’s claims that the Nazi party leadership was overwhelmingly composed of gay men. Throckmorton has posted one of the most thorough refutations of Lively’s book. In fact, homosexuals were a targeted for persecution in Nazi Germany and thousands were sent to concentration camps.
Throckmorton and countless others haven’t criticized Lively and Barton’s work out of a malicious desire to smear conservatives, as the two claim, but because it is necessary to call out those like Lively and Barton who are clearly rewriting and twisting history in order to advance their own political goals.