May 03, 1998

James Dobson, president of the multi-million dollar Focus on the Family empire, seeks to create a fundamentalist theocracy in America through his radical ultra-conservative agenda, according to a new report released by Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Describing Dobson's power and intentions in great detail, AU's report, published in the May issue of Church & State, outlines how and why Focus on the Family plans to influence the political process through pressure on the Republican Party. Further, the report provides examples of Dobson's efforts to advance a far-right, hyper-moralistic agenda through his vast media machine. Dobson is in Washington, D.C., this week for high level meetings with GOP congressional leaders and to preside at Nat ional Day of Prayer events.

"Though not as widely recognized as Religious Right figures such as Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, James Dobson has achieved a status that makes him just as powerful and just as dangerous, if not more so," said Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Am ericans United. "Anyone concerned with the freedom of religion in America should be keeping a close eye on the activities of Focus on the Family."

Examples of Dobson's extreme positions include:

* Dobson's magazine issued a scathing attack on the Girl Scouts in 1994, insisting they had "lost their way," after the group made a religious oath optional for membership. He added that the Girl Scouts are "pushing a philosophy - a philosophy that includes humanism and radical feminism."

* Dobson attacked use of the word "tolerance" in 1996. He insisted that it has a "double meaning" and can be misconstrued by those "who reject the concept of right and wrong." He concluded that tolerance is "kind of a desensitization to evil of all varieties. Everything has become acceptable to those who are tolerant."

* Dobson wants to criminalize all abortions, even in cases of rape or incest. Referring to women impregnated by rapists, Dobson concluded, "What is right and moral for the unborn child is ultimately best for the mother and father, too."