Marcus Bachmann claims recording of him comparing gays to barbarians was doctored
Marcus Bachmann, husband of presidential candidate Michele Bachmann and proprietor of Bachmann & Associates, told the Star Tribune on Thursday that audio of him comparing gays and lesbians to barbarians was doctored. The audio clip was used extensively in the media following reports that Dr. Bachmann’s clinic performed therapy aimed at “curing” gays and lesbians of homosexuality.
In the clip, Point of View radio host Penna Dexter asked Dr. Bachmann what parents should do if a teenager tells them they might be gay.
Bachmann said parents should tell them what the Christian Bible says about homosexuality.
Here’s a transcript of his full remarks:
Dexter: Today The Wall Street Journal came out with an article, “What do you say when your teenager is gay?” What do you say to Christian parents who come up with this?
Bachmann: Well, I think you clearly say, what is the understanding of God’s word on homosexuality. And I think that this is no mystery that a child or pre-adolescent, particularly adolescents, will question and wonder about sexuality. That’s nothing new under the sun since the beginning of time. But I don’t think we should take that as, because we wonder or we think or we question, does that take us down the road of homosexuality —
Dexter: Could you add the word experiment to that?
Bachmann: Well, certainly, there’s that curiosity. But again, we, like, you know, it is as if we have to understand: Barbarians need to be educated. They need to be disciplined. And just because someone feels it or thinks it, doesn’t mean that we’re supposed to go down that road. That’s what’s called the sinful nature. And we have a responsibility as parents and as authority figures not to encourage such thoughts and feelings from moving into the action steps.
Let’s face it what’s our culture doing today? What is our public school system doing today? They are giving full wide open doors to children not only giving encouragement to think it, but to encourage actions steps. That’s why when we understand the percentage of homosexuals in this country is small but by these open doors we can see it is starting to increase.
He told the Star Tribune that he wasn’t talking about gays and lesbians.
“I was talking in reference to children. Nothing, nothing to do with homosexuality. That’s not my mindset. That’s not my belief system. That’s not the way I would talk,” Bachmann said.
Radio host Dexter backed Bachmann up. “It was an endearing term, in a way, that made sense to me and to our audience,” Dexter told the Minneapolis paper. “We believe that children are born with a nature that inclines them to challenge and break rules, and that it is thus the parents’ responsibility to guide their children along good and productive paths.”
Whether or not Bachmann was referring to children or gays and lesbians, based on the interview, it is clear that Dr. Bachmann does not view being gay or lesbian as a good and productive path.
In addition to suggesting his intent was misunderstood, Bachmann also told the Star Tribune that someone must have doctored the audio. That’s similar to what a staff person at Bachmann’s clinic told Truth Wins Out, the group that went undercover to determine whether or not the clinic was conducting “ex-gay” therapy.
“It sounds like… something that someone just did. It doesn’t sound accurate,” the staff person said.
When I listened to the original audio in 2010, which was linked in an article the Minnesota Independent published on Bachmann & Associates’ contracts with the state of Minnesota, it was identical to the recording captured by Dump Bachmann, a blog that follows Michele Bachmann’s career with a sharply critical eye.
That audio was altered for brevity but not the section where Bachmann is speaking about homosexuality: Dr. Bachmann speaks for a full two minutes — uninterrupted by editing — answering the radio host’s question of what to do when a child tells a parent that they may think they are gay.
New York Magazine talked to Ken Avidor of Dump Bachmann who captured the audio.
“Flat out, I didn’t doctor a damn thing,” said Avidor. “If I did doctor it, why would I have a link to the original podcast, which is no longer up? Marcus could get a hold of that original podcast. Just call up his friends at the station.”
Here’s Avidor’s audio of Bachmann: