LGBT activists are calling on CNN to stop featuring anti-gay guests who have no expertise other than bigotry on its news shows.

According to the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) CNN “has had a giant blind spot when it comes to issues that impact the LGBT community”.

The organisation said out of a desire for ‘balance’ on LGBT issues, CNN regularly asks representatives from anti-gay groups to appear on its shows to provide a counterpoint.

It points out, however, that usually these guests’ only qualification is that they are anti-gay.

“CNN and the rest of the media are doing nothing but exposing their viewers to dangerous anti-gay rhetoric when they invite members of these anti-gay groups onto their programming. Starting in 2011, this needs to stop,” said GLAAD.

The organisation is hosting a petition on its site to tell the “media that if they can’t find someone who isn’t part of the anti-gay industry to discuss an issue that involves the LGBT community, then the ‘other side’ of that issue isn’t one worth hearing”.

CNN responded that it “appreciates GLAAD’s concern for objective and fair reporting” and insisted that it books guests on its show in order to reflect “different points of view”.

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