Oct 07, 2014 7:24 PM GMT
NFL star running back Adrian Peterson has always been on the periphery among anti-gay Christian athletes, moreso by association than his actual words or Tweets. Last year, the currently-suspended Minnesota Vikings and former Oklahoma Sooner star declared, as Minnesota debated marriage equality:
CBSSports"I have relatives who are gay," Peterson said on Sirius XM radio. "I'm not biased towards them. I still treat them the same. I love 'em. But again, I'm not with that. That's not something I believe in. But to each his own."
Peterson followed that weeks later with tepid anticipation that a hypothetical gay NFL teammate "wouldn't bother me that much."
Still, somewhat lost amid the media attention toward his forthcoming child (non-sexual, unless you count the welts on the poor child's scrotum) abuse trial was the charitable foundation AP leads, the "All Day" foundation named after the tireless persona likes to be known for.
The nonprofit foundation hasn't submitted tax information since 2011. But in that and the three prior years, one recipient of AP's foundation donations sticks out.
ESPN"Outside the Lines" examined IRS forms for Peterson's charity for the years 2008 through 2011 and found discrepancies between the All Day Foundation's stated mission of helping at-risk children and where much of its grants landed.
For the foundation's first four years, 2008 through 2011, its single largest beneficiary was Straight From The Heart Ministries. More than 50 percent ($207,081 out of $414,130 in grants) was given by the All Day Foundation to Straight From The Heart. More recent IRS forms were not available for review.
The man listed as the president and co-founder of that ministry is named Bill Horn, who was on the Peterson foundation's board and also, at one point, served as its treasurer.
In the late 1990s, Horn, a former sports broadcaster in California, ran an organization by the same name that publicly denounced the gay community. He also produced a graphic video titled "The Gay Agenda," which questioned the notion of homosexuality, and recruited Green Bay Packers defensive end Reggie White to campaign against gay rights in Iowa.
Years later, Horn moved to Oklahoma, where he befriended former Sooners defensive tackle Tommie Harris and started a sports marketing company. Before long, he was in control of Peterson's charity.
When contacted Tuesday, Horn told "Outside the Lines" that Straight From the Heart was just one name for an offshoot of a church in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Churches are not required to make their finances public, so it's not clear how they spend money. Horn, despite being listed in various government filings and directories as the Straight From The Heart president, said he was never on the board, but that he was "involved."
"We don't know everything it did," said Horn, who noted the ministry did business in Texas, Minneapolis and Chicago. "It was doing inner-city outreach and feeding people, giving haircuts to kids, did back-to-school programs, did turkeys at Thanksgiving," he said.
Horn acknowledged the ministry's mission was originally to oppose gay rights, but it "changed and decided not to do that and to help people."
Peterson's newest financial advisor vows that Horn is no longer involved with the group, and tax forms for 2012 and 2013 will be submitted soon demonstrating that.
As hinted in the ESPN article, Horn's jock-riding magnetism toward high-profile Christian athletes was not new. Former NFL all-time sacks leader Reggie White was recruited by Horn after an infamous 1998 anti-gay speech laden with racial stereotypes before the Wisconsin Assembly.
Dave Zirin, then writing for Counterpunch (2004)White continued to speak out against Gays and Lesbians, and in doing so, allied himself with a rogue’s gallery of bigots and hate mongers. His "family spokesman" became a man named Bill Horn, president of the vociferously anti-gay organization "Straight from the Heart Ministries".
Soon White was getting support, well-wishes and speaking engagements from the likes of the Rev. Donald Wildmon’s American Family Association (AFA), Gary Bauer’s Family Research Council, and the Christian Coalition. Unlike Bauer who resembles a Kermit the Frog Shrinky Dink, White could actually articulate the "Pro-Family agenda" equating Gays with child molesters and drug addicts, while not making the audience (nauseous). His Blackness was also a plus for near all-white groups trying to shake accusations that their anti-Gay "pro-family" agenda was a kissing cousin to both racist and white supremacist ideas.
Des Moines Register (November 1999)A rally protesting Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack's executive order on gay rights, scheduled for tonight in Des Moines, is drawing fire from Democratic activists.
Conservative leader Gary Bauer, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, and former professional football player Reggie White are scheduled to attend the rally at 7 p.m. at the Hotel Fort Des Moines.
The rally is sponsored by anti-gay rights activist Bill Horn of Altoona and his Straight From The Heart Ministries.
At issue is an executive order signed by Vilsack that bans discrimination in executive branch state agencies on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
Horn, in a statement issued Monday, said the order "is a big political payoff to the governor's transvestite and cross-dresser supporters and I am shocked that this small group of people should have so much influence over the governor of the state of Iowa."
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