Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn will seek to offset federal aid to victims of a massive tornado that blasted through Oklahoma City suburbs on Monday with cuts elsewhere in the budget.> more ... (0 comments)
Is someone keeping track of all the repressed anti-gay Republican politicians in the country who get caught in the midst of all sorts of flaming gayness?
Sources tell CBS13 a state senator from Southern California was arrested for allegedly driving drunk after leaving Faces, a gay nightclub in midtown Sacramento, early Wednesday morning. [...]
The Sacramento County district attorney says Republican state Sen. Roy Ashburn’s blood-alcohol level was .14 percent when he was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving near the Capitol.
Ashburn, a father of four, is a Republican Senator representing parts of Kern, Tulare and San Bernardino Counties with a history of opposing gay rights. [...]
A male passenger, who was not identified as a lawmaker, was also in the car but was not detained. [...]
Ashburn served six years as a state Assemblyman before being elected to the State Senate. According to Project Vote Smart, Ashburn’s voting record shows he has voted against every gay rights measure in the State Senate since taking office including Recognizing Out-Of-State Same-Sex Marriages”, Harvey Milk Day and Expanding Anti-Discrimination Laws.
This is truly remarkable. If I see another thing written anywhere that claims that fighting against marriage equality (or Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, or whatever) isn’t motivated by animus toward gay people, I will scream – loudly:
Matthews: Do you think we should outlaw gay behavior?
Sprigg:Well, I think certainly..
Matthews: I’m just asking, should we outlaw gay behavior?
Sprigg:I think the Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas which overturned the sodomy laws in this country was wrongly decided. I think there would be a place in this country for criminal sanctions against homosexual behavior.
Matthews:So we should outlaw gay behavior?
Sully’s updates on the Prop 8 trial are invaluable. I was particular interested in this one (full copy, shame on me):
One fascinating aspect of the Prop 8 trial is whether the proposition was a good faith effort to support what its backers think of as traditional marriage, or whether it was a campaign driven by animus to a small minority. Of course, proving intent on this is hard. Except when it isn’t. In a court room you have to assess the facts pertaining to the specific issue at hand and cannot rely on emotional or religious or psychological distractions. The deposition of one of the “Offical Proponent” of Prop 8, Harry Tam, is pretty devastating:
Question: “And it is your understanding that part of the gay agenda is legalizing underage sex?”
The conflation of homosexuality with child abuse was a central issue for the people who ran the Prop 8 campaign, hence the ads that focused on the threat that gays posed to children. Since this plays on the oldest blood libel against gays, it certainly implies that the Proposition was motivated by prejudice. Imagine a Proposition that argued that Jews should be denied, say, being school-teachers because of the threat to the kids. No one would dispute that that’s a vile, blood libel motive for a constitutional amendment. But when exactly the same bigotry fuels a Proposition to deny gays the core right to marry, a right deeper in the constitution than the right to vote, it’s all apparently motivated by high-minded concern for family life.
Among the emails retrieved by the court from Tam – who was a year-long organizer and fundraiser for the Proposition – is this one:
This November, San Francisco voters will vote on a ballot to “legalize prostitution”. This is put forth by the SF city government, which is under the rule of homosexuals. They lose no time in pushing the gay agenda — after legalizing same-sex marriage, they want to legalize prostitution. What will be next? On their agenda list is: legalize having sex with children … We can’t lose this critical battle. If we lose, this will very likely happen…
1. Same-Sex marriage will be a permanent law in California. One by one, other states would fall into Satan’s hand.
2. Every child, when growing up, would fantasize marrying someone of the same sex. More children would become homosexuals. Even if our children is safe [sic], our grandchildren may not. What about our children’s grandchildren?
Tam has requested to withdraw from the case. Because he helps prove just how powerful some of the most vile slurs against gays were in fomenting the denial of civil equality under the law in California. No wonder Maggie Gallagher wants as little sunlight in this trial as possible. Because it reveals the true motives of those who are in her movement.
Ted Olson, one of the most prominent conservative legal icons of the last quarter-century, penned a remarkable defense of marriage equality in the new issue of Newsweek. This passage stood out for me:
I understand, but reject, certain religious teachings that denounce homosexuality as morally wrong, illegitimate, or unnatural; and I take strong exception to those who argue that same-sex relationships should be discouraged by society and law. Science has taught us, even if history has not, that gays and lesbians do not choose to be homosexual any more than the rest of us choose to be heterosexual. To a very large extent, these characteristics are immutable, like being left-handed. And, while our Constitution guarantees the freedom to exercise our individual religious convictions, it equally prohibits us from forcing our beliefs on others. I do not believe that our society can ever live up to the promise of equality, and the fundamental rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, until we stop invidious discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Sully highlights a truly disturbing video taken of Christianist fanatic Scott Lively spewing forth a vile screed against homosexuals in Uganda:
It is important to point out that Scott Lively, this hate-filled sack of human excrescence, is no stranger to pushing for laws that attack and demonize homosexuals.
The “Nuclear Bomb” Against Gays. That’s the term used by American Christianist Scott Lively to advocate for the new law in Uganda. He now claims to be shocked at any idea that he could endorse the execution of people for homosexuality and appalled by the violence threatened against gays in Uganda during the evangelicals’ anti-gay crusade in Africa.
[This] video of Lively’s talk in Uganda reveals what he says when he doesn’t think he’s being watched by Americans. He likens gays to mass killers, as the kind of people who would create a holocaust, as terrible dangers to civilization. This is the core of the Christianist message and the Christianist message is now the core of the GOP. At some point, you have to take these people’s words seriously.
I know because I lived through a harrowing time during my teen years in Oregon when Scott Lively was a primary driving force behind Ballot Measure 9, a measure forced on the state by the rightwing Oregon Citizens Alliance that would have amended the Oregon constitution to include the following:
All governments in Oregon may not use their monies or properties to promote, encourage or facilitate homosexuality, pedophilia, sadism or masochism. All levels of government, including public education systems, must assist in setting a standard for Oregon’s youth which recognizes that these behaviors are abnormal, wrong, unnatural and perverse and they are to be discouraged and avoided.Suffice it to say that this man and his hate-filled cohorts tore my young psyche apart in the 90s with this vicious campaign to enshrine fear and hatred in my state’s founding document.
I’m just too pissed off right now to write much more, but here is a representative sample of the violence that Scott Lively visited upon me in my formative years:
‘In the past, the OCA has been compared with the Nazis in its campaigning methods and goals, so this time around, they are turning the tables by claiming that not they, but the gays are ones who should be compared to Nazis. In the state Voter’s Pamphlet the organization says “Nazism was largely an outgrowth of Germany’s gay rights movement.”
‘The GT article states: “Lively said in a letter to the editor in The Daily Astorian that homosexuals ‘were an integral part of the Nazi party throughout history.’” The article goes on to say: “Lively said Wednesday that gays were in Nazi ranks but that does not mean they managed the Holocaust. ‘The fact that homosexuals were in the leadership of the Nazi party from the beginning is a fact documented by respected historians,’ he said. ‘The holocaust was racial genocide of the Jews that had nothing to do with homosexuality.”‘
See also “OCA: Gays Had Big role in Nazism“
Sully points us to the fact that the New York Times finally discovered a horrifying story that has been developing for months:
The NYT has just discovered the Ugandan bill, inspired by key American Christianists, that will round up, jail and execute homosexuals. (Non-MSM readers would have been following this essential story for months on Box Turtle Bulletin). The multi-media page is superb. What’s fascinating is that the rhetoric the Christianists use is the same in Africa as it is in America, but in Africa, the public consensus is so anti-gay already that the consequences of this demonization are felt much more immediately and brutally. Here’s the American rhetoric:
For three days, according to participants and audio recordings, thousands of Ugandans, including police officers, teachers and national politicians, listened raptly to the Americans, who were presented as experts on homosexuality. The visitors discussed how to make gay people straight, how gay men often sodomized teenage boys and how “the gay movement is an evil institution” whose goal is “to defeat the marriage-based society and replace it with a culture of sexual promiscuity.”If a movement is “evil” and trying to “defeat” all families, as evangelicals claim of gays (and Nazis and Communists said of gays), then of course some already predisposed against gays would believe it is essential to identify, round up, forcibly cure or execute this foul threat from within. And yet the Americans now claim they are shocked, shocked! by the results of their strategy. Maybe they are.
If so, they should have provided some smidgen of balance in their campaign to demonize a tiny minority of already persecuted people:
The Ugandan organizers of the conference admit helping draft the bill, and Mr. Lively has acknowledged meeting with Ugandan lawmakers to discuss it. He even wrote on his blog in March that someone had likened their campaign to “a nuclear bomb against the gay agenda in Uganda.” Later, when confronted with criticism, Mr. Lively said he was very disappointed that the legislation was so harsh.So a nuclear bomb is fine as a metaphor, but actual executing gays is too far. (And remember that Lively has written a disgusting little book claiming that Nazism itself was a gay plot.) But wasn’t Lively right in the first place? The Bible is absolutely clear that the death penalty applies to homosexuals. Why are these Christianists not following God’s literal truth? Or now that they have unleashed a proto-fascist pogrom against gay, bi and trans people in Africa, have they finally come to terms with the actual consequences of what they actually believe? Here’s hoping it’s the latter.
But if you ever wondered what the ultimate fantasies of the Christianist right are with respect to gay people, just look at what they say when they think no American is listening.
Doesn’t it always fascinate you how the right likes to talk a good game about how horrible that dreaded “political correctness” is, but yet, when they tables are turned, they get so royally and fantastically butthurt that they become compelled to rush out and issue press releases, object strenuously, pound on tables and generally bleat to anyone who will listen?
Whereas liberals get all politically correct about saying words like “negro”, “bitch”, “honey”, “darkie” and “macaca”, rightwingers have their own dreaded “politically correct” words they want you to avoid, i.e., “bigot”, “racist”, “homophobe”, “misogynist” and others.
I’ll take on the word bigot today because Sully posted up some fetid concern trolling about how people need to be more sensitive about using the word bigot, even when it clearly applies:
Many people who don’t support same-sex marriage are not bigots, and it does not help us to use the epithet promiscuously. John tries to tease out a more helpful definition of “bigot” than dictionaries provide, and moves the ball downfield a bit. But he sets himself a hard task.Now let’s consider the many germane definitions of the word bigot:
That struck home for me when a rabbi (whose name I did not catch) testified against the New Jersey bill, and asked the legislators to think about the fate of an “innocent lonely child” who is adopted by a same-sex married couple. His testimony is at the 8:18 mark in Blue Jersey’s live blog.
The unadorned words do not capture the rabbi’s deep, fearful concern for this hypothetical child. I obviously can’t speak about what moved this man. But listening to him, it is tragically clear that there is no room at all in his world for the simple possibility that such a child might not be lonely in a loving home headed by a gay couple, or that the child could thrive and have a wonderful life.
The irony is that by eliminating such a possibility from his imagination, he may be preventing some real child that tangible benefit. It is this moral editing – this internal censorship of good possibilities – that exempts some people from being called bigots.
- Wikipedia: a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices.
- Mirriam-Webster: a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance
- American Heritage Dictionary: one who is strongly partial to one’s own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ.
Is he “a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices”? Check.
Is he a person “who is strongly partial to one’s own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ”? Double-check.
I mean, I know people don’t like to call nice little rabbis who speak with conviction and a cute accent a BIGOT but, for fuxake, the guy is a freaking bigot.
I really don’t care much about why someone is a bigot, just being a bigot is good enough for me.
Is a bigot less of a bigot because he fervently believes that homosexuals must be eliminated because they harbor evil alien viruses that will kill us all? Nope, still a bigot.
Is a bigot less of a bigot because he stridently wants to protect the children (!!!) from some unnameable qualities about the gays that make them unable to parent effectively. Nope, still a bigot.
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