Conservatives are aiming to uproot openly gay safe schools czar Kevin Jennings, a choice decried by the far right since the Obama administration announced Jennings' appointment as director of the Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools.

The latest attack comes from the conservative daily The Washington Times, the same paper that paid a male prostitute for the sex scandal story that nearly ended Congressman Barney Frank's career over two decades ago.

Jennings, 45, is the former executive director of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), a group he founded to address the issue of discrimination based on sexual orientation in schools.

In an editorial titled Obama's Lewd Schools Czar published Sunday, the paper asserts that Jennings violated Massachusetts law when he “covered up” the “sexual abuse” of one of his students and repeats the lie that Jennings has praised the work of the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA).

Over two decades ago while working at the Concord Academy school in Massachusetts, Jennings counseled a student who was having an affair with an adult male. Jennings reportedly told the student to “use a condom.”

Conservatives pounced on the story, calling the student a “minor” and suggesting Jennings failed to report the sexual abuse of a minor.

In a note published by Media Matters for America, the student, referred to as Brewster, defended Jennings' help and unequivocally states that he was over the age of consent in Massachusetts when he sought the advice.

“Since I was of legal consent at the time, the fifteen-minute conversation I had with Mr. Jennings twenty-one years ago is of nobody's concern but his and mine. However, since the Republican noise machine is so concerned about my 'well-being' and that of America's students, they'll be relieved to know that I was not 'inducted' into homosexuality, assaulted, raped, or sold into sexual slavery.”

The Washington Times editorial goes on to repeat the lie that Jennings is unfit for his position because he has praised NAMBLA.

“The tale gets even more troubling,” the Times says. “On Oct. 25, 1997, at a conference for the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), Mr. Jennings stated, 'One of the people that's always inspired me is Harry Hay.' The late Hay was a 'gay-rights' activist most notorious for supporting the North American Man-Boy Love Association. In 1983, speaking in support of NAMBLA, Hay claimed: '[I]f the parents and friends of gays are truly friends of gays, they would know from their gay kids that the relationship with an older man is precisely what 13-, 14-, and 15-year-old kids need more than anything else in the world.”

In praising Hay, however, Jennings never mentioned NAMBLA: “One of the people that's always inspired me is Harry Hay, who started the first ongoing gay rights groups in America. In 1948, he tried to get people to join the Mattachine Society. It took him two years to find one other person who would join. Well, [in] 1993, Harry Hay marched with a million people in Washington, who thought he had a good idea 40 years before.”

The right wing's assault on Jennings began soon after the administration announced his nomination. In a June 2 press release, Peter LaBarbera, president of the anti-gay group Americans for Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH), said: “Barack Obama's homosexual agenda is beginning to take shape – but he has no election mandate to impose GLSEN's radical vision of celebrating homosexuality, bisexuality, and gender confusion in U.S. schools. Anti-religious bigots should not be setting policy for schools – and promoting dangerous sex and gender identities to youth is the antithesis of 'safety'.”

LaBarbera's release adds, “men who have sex with other men suffer from much higher rates of sexual diseases.”

“Americans for Truth will educate Americans on Jennings' and GLSEN's dangerous agenda, and we will work with other pro-family and parental rights groups across the country to urge that the Jennings appointment be withdrawn.”

On Wednesday, the Department of Education issued a statement defending Jennings.

“Kevin Jennings has dedicated his professional career to promoting school safety. He is uniquely qualified for his job and I'm honored to have him on our team,” Secretary Ann Duncan said.