Campaign to Defend the Constitution (DefCon) was an American online organization founded in September 2005 to support the separation of church and state and to oppose what it perceived as the growing influence of the religious right. It was a project of the Tides Center, a non-profit organization that funds progressive groups. However, its funding ran out in December 2007, at which time its blog announced the organization was "taking a break."
DefCon described itself on its website as ...
... an online grassroots movement intending to combat the growing power of the religious right. We will fight for the separation of church and state, individual freedom, scientific progress, pluralism, and tolerance while respecting people of faith and their right to express their beliefs.
The DefCon advisory board included scientists, journalists, and religious and political leaders such as
Left Behind: Eternal Forces Campaign
After Bible publishing company Tyndale House released the video game version of Tim LaHaye's's Left Behind called Left Behind: Eternal Forces, DefCon asked their members to send emails to Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott to stop selling the game. Wal-Mart stated that it did not intend to comply with the request.
Stem cell research
DefCon was launched during the Dover Intelligent Design trial in September, 2005. Since that time the group and its members have played a "key role defending science education" in states around the country including Kansas, Utah, and Ohio.
DefCon ran ads asserting the involvement of conservative political strategist Ralph Reed, evangelist Lou Sheldon, and Focus on the Family's James Dobson in the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. Dobson has denied any connection to Abramoff, and a DefCon spokesman has conceded that there was no proof of collusion between Dobson and Abramoff. In response to the ads, Dobson characterized DefCon as "a radical leftist organization," and stated:
Despite the viciousness of the DefCon attack, we are not vengeful or vindictive about it. Nor are we discouraged or depressed. It goes with the territory. Everyone who tries to defend righteousness in the culture is treated to something similar. Jesus told His followers to expect persecution, and therefore, it comes as no surprise that we have been subjected to it.
- "DefConBlog final entry "Taking a break"". 2007-11-20.[dead link]
- "Our Advisory Board". The Campaign to Defend the Constitution. 2006-12-13. Archived from the original on November 18, 2006. Retrieved 2006-12-13.
- Bray, Hiawatha (2006-12-13). "Groups urge chain to drop Christian game". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2006-12-13.
- Lelchuk, Ilene (2006-12-12). "'Convert or die' game divides Christians Some ask Wal-Mart to drop Left Behind". The San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2006-12-13.
- Burke, Daniel (2006-06-17). "Senate Approves Three Stem Cell Bills". Religion News Service. Archived from the original on October 2, 2006. Retrieved 2006-12-13.
- Kate Michelman (2006-05-07). Kate Michelman Speaks Out On Stem Cell Research (YouTube Video). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0PalqE8gbE: Campaign to Defend the Constitution.
- "Guilt by Association". FactCheck.org. 2006-03-13. Archived from the original on 2006-04-26. Retrieved 2006-12-15.
- "Dr. Dobson's Response to the DefCon Attack". Focus on the Family. n.d. Retrieved 2006-12-15.[permanent dead link]