An Online Magazine in the Reality-Based Community.

Longing for the white country

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Pat BuKKKanan on Hannity and Colmes, longing for the good old days when the "brown menace" wasn't streaming across the border (Think Progress):

“What I would like is — I’d like the country I grew up in. It was a good country. I lived in Washington, D.C., 400,000 black folks, 400,000 white folks, in a country 89 or 90 percent white. I like that country.”
Someone get Tony Snow on the horn -- where's this end of racism he's been talking up?

Think Progress has the mind-blowing video.



The 'feminized' classroom causes 'gay bullying'

Talk about ass-backwards thinking. Teaching tolerance, according to the doyenne of Columbus, Ohio-based Mission[ary Position] America, Linda Harvey, is turning male students into stone cold killers and stressed-out neurotics. She's obsessed with Homosexual Agenda infiltrating the school system, and this freakout is par for the course.
Last year, 17-year-old Joshua Minks opened fire with a shotgun in a bathroom at Farmington High Schol in Missouri. The 6-foot-5, 400-pound boy recently pleaded guilty to assault on school property and unlawful use of a weapon. Amanda Minks says her son was bullied relentlessly by his classmates for his "unmanly" appearance and was called "gay" names.

Linda Harvey with the conservative group Mission America acknowledges that while bullying is rampant and children can be terribly cruel, many schools are feminizing boys with one-sided, pro-homosexual misinformation in the classroom. Homosexuality, says Harvey, is a "time bomb" that is "run into the schools" and left there.

"[T]hen, when chaos erupts ... our boys [especially] are greatly stressed over this issue and they only hear one side -- then we wonder why these things are happening," she says. "Of course, they are going to erupt in a very immature way. That doesn't excuse it, but that's what's happening."

..."[Students] are told that if you have one homosexual feeling, you're probably homosexual; [that] you're probably born that way and you'd better accept it," she says. "In the twelve- and thirteen- and fourteen-year-old boy, this is going to create a massive amount of internal stress that may erupt in all kinds of ways.

"The responsible thing to do is to de-stress the situation by taking the issue of homosexuality out of the schools," Harvey continues. "It doesn't belong there."
***

More on bullying -- as therapy

Sometimes you have to let the wingers just hang themselves with their own words:
The notion that a person is really someone of the opposite sex "trapped in the wrong body" is poetic stupidity. It doesn't exist in reality. A person wishing to change their external manifestations to appear to be a person of the opposite sex is someone very unhappy with being their "real" sex and/or believing in some idealized fantasy of how much better it is to be of the opposite sex.

...I suggest, indeed, letting children who wish go to school in clothes of the opposite sex -- but not counseling other children to not tease them or hurt their feelings.

On the contrary, don't interfere, and let the other children ridicule the child who has lost that clear boundary between play-acting at home and the reality needs of the outside world. Maybe, in this way, the child will re-establish that necessary boundary."

-- The wisdom of NARTH Scientific Advisory Committee member Joseph Berger, M.D., who feels that society is causing gender identity confusion among children -- and the cure includes letting kids be bullied for being different.
Some familiar names have much to say about this, including Blender Autumn, Wayne Besen and Daniel Gonzales of Ex-Gay Watch.
Autumn Sandeen a spokesperson for the Transgender Community Coalition of San Diego told PinkNews.co.uk: "It's shameful that NARTH's Dr Berger believes what children should bring with them to school is a propensity to ridicule gender variant children."

Wayne Besen, executive director of Truth Wins Out, an organisation which regularly protests against gay "conversion" groups, told PinkNews.co.uk: "This is cruelty disguised as compassion and an invitation to child abuse."

"NARTH regularly confuses self-righteous ridicule with research and this is why they are rejected by every respected medical and mental health organisation in the world."

Daniel Gonzales of Ex-Gay Watch, a similar campaign group, was shocked at the statement, he told PinkNews.co.uk "Regardless if a child's gender dysphoria persists into adulthood, allowing any child with a psychological condition to be harassed because of that condition is shameful.
But then later today, NARTH had a change of heart and released this retraction, sent to Dr. Warren Throckmorton:
Joseph Nicolosi this evening:

Narth disagrees with Dr. Berger's advice as we believe shaming, as distinct from correcting can only create greater harm. Too many of our clients experienced the often life long, harmful effects of peer shaming. We cannot encourage this.
Does the right hand not know what the left is doing here, if NARTH is distancing itself from its "Scientific Advisory Committee" member?

UPDATE: As Autumn pointed out, there has been little creative editing on NARTH's web site of the good doctor's text. That's not a retraction, only an admission that the comments were so out of bounds that it couldn't handle the heat.

Some screen captures...

Here's the original text (from Google cache):



And this is the scrubbed section up on the NARTH site now...





Open thread

Ho hum. Only confirming that the E-meter has no effect on queer suppression...Scientology can't take the homo out of the man.

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Caught by the Enquirer.

Why doesn't he just hang it up already; has anyone believed that marriage of convenience to fellow Church of Scientology follower Kelly Preston?

Q: Which stars need to come on out of the closet already?


Conrad Burns and those swarthy killer cabbies

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Montana -- you've got a winner in Conrad. (SFGate):
Republican Sen. Conrad Burns, whose recent comments have stirred controversy, says the United States is up against a faceless enemy of terrorists who "drive taxi cabs in the daytime and kill at night."

During a fundraiser Wednesday with first lady Laura Bush, the three-term Montana senator talked about terrorism, tax cuts and the money he has brought to his state. Burns is one of the more vulnerable Senate incumbents, facing a tough challenge from Democrat Jon Tester.

He has drawn criticism in recent weeks for calling his house painter a "nice little Guatemalan man" during a June speech. Burns, whose re-election campaign is pressing for tighter immigration controls, also suggested that the man might be an illegal immigrant. The campaign later said the worker is legal.

..."In Washington, Senator Burns is a respected voice on the issues facing rural communities in Montana and across the nation," Bush said.


Race to the bottom in FL gov race

It's obviously a badge of honor to be known as the biggest homobigot in the Florida Republican primary. Ms. Julien, who just relocated to NYC, sent this one in, saying, "There is no tax exemption in the world worth living full time in the land of the male clones of Anita Bryant…" (Advocate):
Candidates Tom Gallagher and Charlie Crist each claimed to be the "true conservative" in the Republican primary for governor of Florida during a Monday night debate that sounded much like the ad war they have launched against each other. Indeed, the back-and-forth heated up earlier on Monday in a new television ad released by chief financial officer Gallagher, imploring voters not to be fooled by his opponent's latest attacks that label him a tax-increasing flip-flopper and to oppose Crist because he supports gay rights.


The ad, titled "Sorry Charlie," notes that Crist, the state's attorney general, supports abortion and civil unions for gays. "Tom Gallagher opposes gay civil unions and is endorsed by Florida Right to Life," the ad says. "Only Jeb Bush conservatives get to be governor."

...Crist claims he is opposed to same-sex marriage but believes same-sex couples should have some rights similar to those afforded to married heterosexuals. The Gallagher ad comes after Crist released his latest television ad Friday, attacking Gallagher for supporting tax increases. Crist, 50, has run a campaign promoting a more moderate philosophy on social issues than his opponent.


Upcoming Focus on the Anus rallies

Daddy Dobson is ready to party, bringing along Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council and Gary Bauer, failed presidential candidate and head of the Campaign for Working Families. Also joining in the fun is black homobigot pastor Ken Hutcherson of Washington State's Antioch Bible Church.

The plan is to mobilize fundie voters for the fall elections because the GOP is afraid that the evangelicals are going to sit the midterms out. The "values" agenda will be front and center, meaning the straw homo is being dragged out again since they've got nothing to run on. Enter Daddy D. to scare the faithful to get them to the polls.
"It's clear that people of faith must continue to go to the polls and vote their values," Dobson said in a statement obtained by PageOneQ. "Our calling to be good citizens did not end in 2004 -– it requires us to be informed, diligent voters in each election," he added.
Eva at Dump Michele Bachmann says that the homo-obsessed Minnesota state senator and GOP Congressional candidate will be appearing at Daddy D's rally in that state.

Rallies are also planned for Pittsburgh and Tennessee; pass along any info about any counter demos you may hear of.

***

Meanwhile, FoF and FRC are also firming up speakers for their first annual Washington Briefing: Values Voter Summit, slated for Sept. 22-24, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C. Again, they are planning to rally the faithful and pole-stroke one another.

Look at all the usual suspects who are going to be there. If only the earth would open up and swallow the Omni while this shindig is going on.
FRC Action President Tony Perkins and co-sponsors Dr. James Dobson, Gary Bauer and Don Wildmon will also be joined by Ann Coulter, Newt Gingrich, Bill Bennett, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, Gov. Mitt Romney, Sens. George Allen and Sam Brownback, Gov. Mike Huckabee, Reps. Mike Pence and Marilyn Musgrave and many more.

With a combined network of over five million supporters, FRC Action, Focus on the Family Action, American Family Association Action and Americans United to Preserve Marriage, are gearing up for an event to galvanize values voters and shape the debate for this year's midterm elections and beyond.
The latest addition to that speaker's roster is Sean Hannity.


Court rules student can wear anti-Bush T-shirt

I wish there was a pic of this T floating around. A wingnut parent objected to the message on this middle school student's T-shirt and now the laugh's on the mind-control freak.
A Vermont schoolboy was within his rights to wear a T-shirt depicting George W. Bush as a chicken and accusing him of being a former alcohol and cocaine abuser, an appeals court ruled.

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Zachary Guiles' school violated the First Amendment when it ordered him to cover parts of the shirt, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said Wednesday.

Guiles was a 13-year-old seventh-grader at Williamstown Middle High School in Williamstown, Vt., in May 2004 when he wore the shirt, which he had bought at an anti-war rally, to classes once a week for two months. Complaints from a fellow student and her mother who had different political views caused school officials to take a closer look.

...The front of the shirt had Bush's name and the words "Chicken-Hawk-In-Chief" beneath it. Below the words was a large picture of the president's head, wearing a helmet, superimposed on the body of a chicken.

To one side of the president on the T-shirt, three lines of cocaine, a razor blade and a straw appear. Elsewhere on the shirt, the president is shown holding a martini glass with an olive in it.


Knickers are twisting at Porno Petey's pad

"The message is growing across our nation: Christians are the only group that can be discriminated against--especially if they live out their faith in the public square"
-- LaBarbera, bleating about the temporary suspension of "highly rated" psychologist (and IFI-affiliated) Dr. Michael Campion, by the Minneapolis Police Department
This "religious persecution" bleating is getting so tired. I do admit it's very versatile wingnuttery, as it can be applied to just about anything these fundies object to these days. The baby Jeebus in their minds is offended by secular society, homos, women who don't want the state in their wombs, and folks who might enjoy going to a strip club now and then.

Campion was psych screening potential officers for over a year for the Minneapolis Police Department. When community concern about his Illinois Family Institute affiliation was brought to the attention of interim Chief Tim Dolan, Campion was suspended pending an independent review. There was reason to take this step (Strib):
This isn't the first time Campion's objectivity has been questioned. In 2003, nine applicants to the Springfield, Ill., Fire Department sued the city claiming they were unfairly disqualified by either background checks or Campion's psychological evaluation. A judge dismissed the suit, but the Springfield City Council didn't renew Campion's contract last year.

...Members of the Police Community Relations Council had concerns about this group and had heard complaints from several people who weren't hired to be Minneapolis police officers after they were deemed "unqualified" by Campion's psychological tests, said council cochairman Clyde Bellecourt. During a meeting with council members last week, Campion made statements about single parents and race that disturbed them, said council member Ron Edwards.

Last fall, Lisa Epps was deemed unqualified. A Bloomington firefighter and former State Fair police officer, she had been through at least three psychological exams, she said. "But this one felt very different. I felt like he was judging me," she said. "He was asking me questions about being a single parent, and then he would make facial expressions."
Is it too much to ask that people working for public institutions be vetted for professional objectivity (Campion was on IFI's board of Directors from 1998-2005)? Apparently so. The shields went up at IFI HQ:
Campion, who didn't return repeated telephone calls from a reporter, was a board member three years ago, said David E. Smith, who became the Family Institute's executive director two weeks ago. He didn't know Campion's current level of activity with the group.

"We are absolutely, positively not anti-gay," Smith said. "Homosexuals were made in the image of God, and we're commanded to love them. But we don't have to accept their behavior. We tell them in a loving way that it's an unhealthy and unsafe lifestyle."
OK. Whatever. Former IFI executive director Porno Pete and Corporate Outreach Director Matt Barber worked the PR machine from the Americans for Truth offices.
"This official government action by the Minneapolis Police Department is a transparent and egregious violation of Dr. Campion's First Amendment rights to both freedom of association and religion," Barber said.

"The message from Minneapolis is clear: The Constitution be damned! If you work for the city, and you happen to be a person of faith belonging to a church or public policy organization that advocates traditional family values, then you might as well clean out your desk now -- because as soon as we find out…you're done."
Andy at Eleventh Avenue South nails it.
The Minneapolis Police Department merely responded to concerns by citizens over Campion's involvement with the Illinois Famliy Institute. The IFI is based in religion, but is not a church or place of worship, nor is it a specific belief system. It's a non-profit dedicated to making life miserable for gay people. The talk of Christian discrimination is a page from the Christian Nationalism movement, a network of churches and organizations such as IFI that are committed to forcing their version of Christianity down everyone's throats.
Yes, IFI is part of the "pray the gay away" school of thought, and spends an inordinate amount of time and bandwidth working to deny LGBT citizens civil rights in the name of "saving" marriage, the schools and any other public institution we pay for.

Andy noted in another post that the batsh*t crazies at Renew America (the home of Guy "sex with infants is the new gay trend" Adams) have been weighing in on the Campion dustup as well, whining away, the same broken record.
If you're a Christian working for the City of Minneapolis, watch your step - your job may already be in jeopardy. In what may be one of the most blatant acts of anti-Christian bigotry and discrimination by an American government agency to date, the Minneapolis Police Department has suspended a Police Psychologist, Dr. Michael Campion of Campion, Barrow & Associates, at the behest of pro-homosexual activists.
You can contact Dolan with support; the wingers are filling his inbox:
Timothy Dolan
Interim Chief of Police
350 South 5th Street
Room 130
Minneapolis, MN 55415-1389
612-673-2853
Fax: 612-673-2613
E-mail: police@ci.minneapolis.mn.us

Timothy at Ex Gay Watch has more on Campion's blatant anti-gay views.

Hat tip, Eva.

***

Oh, almost forgot about this fun. Daimeon mentioned this in an earlier thread, but the Blend (and other worthy blogs) made it onto Porno Petey's newly minted Resources page:



Kudos to Good As You, Ex-Gay Watch, News Fit To Post, and Sully

Of course we must balance the homos with the "Truth". Take a look at what PP says represents "Truth" --



Mike Adams?! ROTFLOL -- the unhinged UNC-Wilmington prof who writes for Townhall.com, who believes gays are "afflicted with an emotional or mental illness." Remember, he wrote this in a recent column.
For the record, I have never cheated on my wife. I did, however, attempt to cheat on my wife one time. Unfortunately, I couldn't get past Ms. Coulter's bodyguard.





Charles Barkley: gay marriage is ok

And the former NBA MVP may just run for Alabama governor. Gee, after Patricia Todd rocking the boat for change, are they ready for Barkley down there?


More sick perverted bastards

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Christian bookstore owner, cop admit sex with boy. The hits keep on coming, this time in Pennsylvania. Suffer not the little children.
A former college administrator, a former Christian bookstore owner and a former policeman admitted to sexual misconduct with a teenage boy.

They were among five men arrested in March as part of an ongoing investigation of men who meet boys through Internet chat rooms, authorities said.

William Gillin, 53, and Paul Skiles, 63, both of Johnstown, pleaded guilty yesterday to corruption of minors, indecent assault and unlawful communications with minors. Mr. Gillin is the former alumni relations director at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown. Mr. Skiles owned the now-closed B&K Christian Bookstore in Richland Township.
And for a double dipper of sickness, how's this bizarre news out of the Lone Star State:
A Texas pastor accused of raping a church member after telling her she was possessed by a lesbian demon at his house last year has been indicted.

Leonard Ray Owens, 63, who is free on $25,000 bail, is now awaiting trial on a charge of sexual assault, a second-degree felony punishable by two to 20 years in prison. He was arrested in November.

..Owens told her that a sex spirit and lesbian demon were inside her and needed to be cast out, police said. The pastor then asked her to lie on the floor and began yelling at her as if she were a demon, saying, "Loose her in the name of Jesus," according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

The woman told police that Owens pulled down her pants as he called for the demons to come out.

When she tried to get up, he pushed her down, the affidavit said. The pastor then began to fight with her as if she were a demon before climbing on top of her, pinning her down and raping her, police have said.
Damn. Where do you even begin with this one?

UPDATE: Oh geez, it does get worse; look at this child porn bust. At least he was caught by America's Most Wanted:
Robert M. Carey, 52, of Bowie, Md. was sentenced today to 15 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release for producing and possessing child pornography, announced U. S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein, of the District of Maryland. U.S. District Judge Roger W. Titus also ordered Carey to pay more than $50,000 in restitution to a family victim.

... According to the statement of facts presented to the court at Carey's guilty plea on May 19, 2006, Carey was employed at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) since 1974. Carey used government computers at his office and home to access child pornography over the Internet. In Aug. 2005, federal law enforcement agents searched Carey's NOAA office and residence, and recovered more than one million images of prepubescent girls and girls in their early teens in erotic or sexually graphic poses contained in photo albums, DVDs, CD ROMs and on the computers. Carey admitted to downloading child pornography for approximately 10 years at work. [OMG. How did this go on?]

Among the images recovered during the execution of the search warrant at his residence were images of a family member taken when the minor female was between eight and 13 years old. Many of these images were sexually explicit, and included photographs taken at Carey's NOAA office. These images also included photographs of sexual acts between Carey and the minor.
H/t PageOneQ.


Q of the day - what was your worst day at work?

The usual insomnia that allows me to write and post before heading out to work has now been exacerbated by dealing with a crush of projects at work that is leaving me nearly brain-dead.

Today tested about the last bit of my sanity. I was out the door around 7 AM to get snacks and drinks and such to feed all the folks who are attending this software training Tues-Thurs, I get to my office to check on things before going over and lo and behold, the freaking database system that we use to track projects is suddenly dropping records, searching is crippled and of course, the entire IT department is at training.

I dropped off all the foodstuffs and beverages at the training facility, and head back to the office. No one left at the office can do any work in the system without risk of losing data so I shut the whole f*cker down to begin recovery. Needless to say it isn't a simple affair, though we have adequate backups to work with. Out of 80+ files, almost all have some sort of index corruption, and it's not clear how long it has been going on and how far back the backups are affected.

To make a really long story short (I'm just getting home after a meal at 10PM), it took all freaking day, with the usual interruptions from obviously frustrated users asking when things would be back up -- can you see that I'm dancing as fast as I can?

Lord, I need to get out of IT before I lose my mind or get an ulcer.

And I have to go back to training tomorrow, and before that, check in and make sure the db is stable. Like I'll get any sleep tonight.

Oh, and did I mention the terrific thunderstorms we're experiencing right now?

***

Anyway, here's the Q of the day - what was your worst day at work?


A few polls to check out

Holy Joe's trailing Ned Lamont, even with the White House and the RNC staying away from the GOP candidate to help him out. Tiny violin...

You know...these last two days of training and now sh*t blowing up today are really wearing on me (more on that in a later post). That was written at 4AM after going to sleep around 1AM.


Source: Zogby Interactive survey of 533 likely voters statewide, conducted August 15 through 21, 2006. MOE +/- 4.2 percentage points.

It's not looking good for man-on-dog...


Source: Zogby Interactive survey of 671 likely voters statewide, conducted August 15 through 21, 2006. MOE +/- 3.8 percentage points.

These numbers below may explain the Governator's gay rights bill signing, he's trending up...


Source: Zogby Interactive survey of 1057 likely voters statewide, conducted August 15 through 21, 2006. MOE +/- 3.0 percentage points.

More from Zogby here.


Open thread

I saw this at Think Progress and, well, what can you say about the guest selection by Neil Cavuto?

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***

And how about this development for George "Macaca" Allen. More white supremacist lovin' history rises again. How does he explain his relationship with the Council of Conservative Citizens, which is the velvet glove descendant of the old White Citizens Council.

The Nation exposes the little problem -- Allen's shill can't seem to explain the enthusiasm for the chumminess with racists away.
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Asked whether Allen supports or deplores the CCC, John Reid, his communications director pleaded ignorance. "I am unaware of the group you mention or their agenda and because we have no record of the Senator having involvement with them I cannot offer you any opinion on them," Reid told me in an e-mail response.
I think this campaign may be circling the drain, though there are quite a few wingers in VA who would still cast a vote for this turd.

Shakes Sis has more.

***

I'm sure you all will have something to say. Feel free to chat, blogwhore and post links...


Exodus and Focus on the Anus: homos are violent

Head over to Box Turtle Bulletin, where Jim looks at the contortions Daddy D and "former homo" Alan Chambers go through to interpret data from the National Violence against Women Survey to make the claim that gay relationships are more violent than het ones.

The critical information that they don't share in the report is telling. Jim points out, "But the real question is who is doing the raping, assaulting, and stalking?"
Many women with a history of same-sex partnership also have a history of opposite-sex partnership. Because of that, they are far more likely to report being raped, assaulted or stalked because it is the men in their lives who are doing the raping, assaulting or stalking. Not the women. Same-sex cohabiting women were nearly three times more likely to report being victimized by a male partner than a female partner.

20.5% of women in opposite sex relationships were raped, assaulted or stalked by their husband or male partner. That compares to 15.4% of men who were raped, assaulted, or stalked by their male partners. In other words, gay men are safer around their same-sex partners than straight women are around their husbands or opposite-sex partner.

But Alan Chambers blindly clings to his off-kilter interpretation and offers this gem of an explanation:

Chambers blames the violence on an extreme sense of unhappiness that often leads to addictive behaviors.
If that's the case, then it looks like the straight men need to get over their unhappiness so the rest of us can live in peace.


Sink or swim solution

I can't stop laughing. Satire to die for -- Jon Swift: A Conservative Message to Blacks: Sink or Swim. There's so much rich stuff in this post that it was hard to decide what to excerpt.
Frankly, I don't know how it is racist to point out that blacks can't swim and it seems to me it's better that we confront this problem instead of sweeping it under the rug. Think of how many lives could have been saved if we had known about this before Hurricane Katrina and done something about it. I wonder if liberals want to keep a lid on this crisis so that they can blame President Bush for the lives lost after the hurricane, when it may in fact have been the fault of African-Americans themselves for not learning how to swim. Clearly, Hudson was trying to help black people by discussing this issue and it's unfortunate he was forced to apologize for broaching the subject.
The section on wingnut black blogger La Shawn Barber is exquisite.
I don't know how people could think conservatives are racists when La Shawn has one of the top conservative blogs. Yes, although you would barely know it from her completely colorless prose, La Shawn is, in fact, black (and, apparently, a poor swimmer).

...No one had to dumb down the blogosphere to let her in. In fact, her success is all the more remarkable when you take into consideration that, according to her, "whites generally have higher cognitive ability than blacks."

But while I am happy that La Shawn triumphed over her lack of cognitive ability, I am concerned about the possibility of her drowning. I think something should be done about blacks' inability to stay afloat. No doubt Democrats would want to throw money at the problem by handing out free life preservers or providing government-subsidized boat rides or swimming classes. A better solution might be to consider vouchers or private accounts to pay for life jackets or private swimming classes.
Just go read the whole thing. Beautifully done.

H/t, Steve.

Related: I guess I'll just sink to the bottom of the pool

***

And a few of you recommended this Jon Swift winner as well: Science Is Dead.
Recently there was some controversy when the Bush Administration accidentally left off evolution from a list of subjects eligible for government grants--whoops! But Mark Noonan at Blogs for Bush has an even better suggestion: That we just leave off science altogether. The debate between Evolution and Intelligent Design, he says, "got me thinking, and today ii [sic] occured [sic] to me: science is dead. We have reached the end of the Age of Science." I must say I haven't been so happy since we reached the End of History. What is especially great about Noonan's theory that science is dead is that he doesn't have to conduct any experiments or present any evidence to prove science is dead because science would actually have to be alive to do that.

...I'm hoping that the Bush Administration will redouble its efforts to kill off two other subjects I didn't much care for, Math and Geography. While important strides have been made, I still think more can be done to send Math and Geography to the dustbin of History, which, course, has itself been sent to the dustbin of . . . something else, I guess. I'm not ready to declare victory until our schools are teaching only two subjects: Religion and Gym.


Q of the day - beater wheels

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Kate and I were watching Pimp My Ride tonight, and this poor guy had a piece of sh*t '68 Cougar that had no hood, no working turn signals or brake lights. The best part of it all is that it took a three-step process to start the damn thing -- key in the ignition, press some sort of start button, and then he had to get out of the car with a wire to jump the engine.

Jeezus - I don't see how this crapper was on the road. Doesn't California have any inspection laws?

Anyway, the Q of the day -- what beater wheels have you owned/driven?

Mine was a 1973 Ford Pinto station wagon. That was the car I learned to drive on back in the day. Oh so sh*tty - it shook uncontrollably when you "floored it" up to 55 mph. Bucket vinyl seats that scorched your ass in the summer. No A/C. Not that the engine could have handled A/C; it probably would have required you to put your feet down like Fred Flintstone and pedi-power it up a hill.


Quality Is Job One.

This car was such a beater that one day (we were living in Brooklyn at the time - late 70s), I came out to go to the store, got in the car and turned the key...nothing. I tried again...nothing. I got out of the car and popped the hood. Someone had stolen the battery. Not the car, the battery.

The Pinto wagon's only saving grace was that the model wasn't the explosive variety. That lucky model was the Pinto hatchback:


See video of the crash test here.


Governator signs gay rights bill -- the wingers erupt

Instead of using their resources to educate future leaders, these schools will now be forced to defend themselves in discrimination lawsuits brought by the male teacher who perceives himself as female and wears a dress to school....For those who still don’t believe that there is a radical homosexual agenda, keep in mind that the characteristics added to the protected list are designed to target people of faith alone.
-- Karen England, Capitol Resource Institute, suffering from the vapors after Gov. Schwarzenegger signed SB 1441, which includes gays in anti-discrimination laws affecting state funded and run programs
[UPDATE: Added some more hot air from bible beaters below.]

Been in training class all day, and returned to a ton of emails in my inbox about this one...

The fundies are losing their cookies over Arnold. Blisssssss....(365gay):
The legislation is designed to protect from discrimination, Californians who utilize public services such as police and fire protection, financial aid, social services and food stamps. The measure would also include protections for those associated with a person receiving services who has, or is perceived to have, any characteristic covered by the bill.

The legislation passed its final hurdle in the legislature earlier this month when the Assembly approved it on a 43-25 vote.

This bill will help to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Californians are treated equally by our government and is an important step towards our goal of ending discrimination in the Golden State," said Geoff Kors, the executive director of Equality California which lobbied for the measure's passage.
Don Wildmon's ass-monkeys at AgapePress were right on it:
Shock and dismay -- that's how pro-family groups in California are reacting to news this morning that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed a bill that gives homosexuals new and far-reaching powers.

...Karen England, executive director of the Capitol Resource Institute (CRI), described the measure as not "even a veiled attempt at subtly advancing the radical homosexual agenda," but "an outright, blatant assault on religious freedom." She calls the bill "yet another attempt to prevent citizens with moral and religious principles from expressing their beliefs and educating their children according to those beliefs."


...California activist Randy Thomasson, head of the group Campaign for Children and Families (CCF), charges Arnold Schwarzenegger with betraying the state's pro-family citizens.

In signing SB 1441 into law, the governor has "trampled religious freedom to satisfy hyperactive sexual activists," Thomasson contends. He says Schwarzenegger apparently "has two faces. He speaks at churches and says he believes in religious freedom and family values, yet he's stabbing pro-family Californians in the back."
The WingNutDaily headline on this bleats "Gov. Arnold tosses
school moral codes: Bill forces condoning of homosexuality, critics say 'the gates of hell are prevailing'." Sweeeet.

You know where I had to go, friends...

Actual Freeper Quotes™

This law makes a mockery of the free exercise clause of the First Amendment.

I'm just speechless. Is he doing it because he's up for re-election?

This is just more proof that California is lost, and that victories by liberals like Schwarzenegger are nothing to brag about or to take hope from for the party. The only hope is that such madness can be mostly contained to the deep blue states.

Howl all you want Freepers, I am now sitting out the election for governor in the state of California this year.

And there are those who think the Patriot Act takes away freedom.

He did the same thing last year signing a bunch of onerous GLBT legislation, people just weren't paying attention.

I'll be voting Constitution Party for the governor's office.

Simply disgusting, so rather than strange people getting indoctrination rights with the children, I think they should have to offer vouchers to have a choice in the private sector away from this circus.

Actions have consequences. I'm willing to live with the consequences of being a Christian; the GOP had better be prepared to find new voters. I'm not the only cultural conservative/Christian out there that's now "ex-GOP".

The money will be spent, regardless. Would you rather see a parent use their CalWorks voucher at a Christian School or the communist La Raza charter school? This basically discriminates against all faith based organizations, or requires them to embrace the homosexual agenda.

So--if some person, business, group, or institution refuses to join in someone's fantasy that they've changed or "transcended" their sex--that's grounds for legal action? Fine. Conservatives should welcome a trial/test case to determine the scientific validity of these claims.

The reality is: California is several perfectly fine conservative states held under the political thumb of some coastal cities... and that ain't gonna change until there are some *major* changes. Seccede from California. Split Nor Cal off on it's own. Get the Central Valley and the Sierras away from the control of Sac and San and LA. Let the whackadoodles have fun in the Bay Area Nation.

Well, well well.....we impeached the last waste of skin. What makes Arnie think he can't be impeached as well? :I'm just sayin'.:

This is why when conservative Christians are quiet they allow evil to prosper. The pendulum has swung to the far left in CA. - moral relativism is also very alive on this board - many so called Freepers claim that this is all well and good and could care less about morality. The problem is who decides what is moral and what is superior? Everyone discriminates and the left makes the KKK look like angels - leftest are immoral, racist and hate filled - I guess many Christians will have to pay for their silence...shame to put this on children who deserve better.

I'm beginning to think Arnoiled himself is GAY!!! This certainly is queer behavior!!!

The Gay Agenda is no longer live and let live for a minority. Its about enlisting the state in the Gay Lobby's and by the extension, the Left's war on religion and traditional values in our society. It is more than just about eliminating religion from the public square; its about eliminating religion altogether.
Jeremy and Scott comment as well.

***

Joseph Farah loses his mind in his WND column, saying the Governator will now force all religious folks to homeschool their kids.
It's not Islam that Schwarzenegger and the state are forcibly pushing through all schools that accept any public form of financial aid for students. It's paganism. It's the worship of Baal. It's a primitive form of religion that is making a comeback. It's a faith that says sacrifice your sons and daughters on this altar – or else.

...I don't want to overstate this, but this is the end of religious freedom in the biggest state in the union.

The only alternative left for Christians and Jews and people of other faiths in California is quite literally to drop out. That means homeschooling. It means creating new institutions that won't touch any public funding – even when it is as tenuous as one student accepting a state grant. When you submit yourself or your institution to government regulation in California now, you tacitly accept the official state religion of paganism.

I saw this coming 15 years ago when I chose to leave California for good. It's over. It really is the late, great state of California.


The mullahs have nothing better to do

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Islamic Clerics: Ban Freddie Mercury Birthday. Good grief.
He may be Zanzibar's most famous son but religious leaders on the mostly Islamic island are demanding the government block an international party to mark what would have been Freddie Mercury's 60th birthday.

The mullahs say that the openly gay Queen frontman who died of complications from AIDS in 1991 brought shame on the island because of "his lifestyle".

"Associating Mercury with Zanzibar degrades our island as a place of Islam," the islands' Association for Islamic Mobilization and Propagation said in a letter to the culture Ministry.

The letter, signed by chief mullah Abdallah Said Ali, said Mercury led a life condemned by Islam. Mercury was not Islamic.


More model parents

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Foster parents locked their three-year-old in a closet for two days to attend a family reunion. Unspeakable horror in Ohio -- the little boy died and the foster dad burned the body to cover up the crime -- after sending police on a massive manhunt to find the "missing" child.

Goofy Ass Chick describes the heartbreaking, enraging events. A snippet:
But then I watched Liz and David Carroll Jr. live right on Local 12 giving an interview to Deborah Dixon crying her eyes out and pleading to everyone. She seemed sooo convincing! (Looking at this video now makes me so angry!!!) I felt guilty for suspecting that crying mother.

Then there were the reports coming out that the Children's Services agency that placed little Marcus in their home had been their recently and was told Marcus was sick and wasn't allowed in. And then reports came out that about the time Marcus went missing is right around the time that Children's Services workers were supposed to have another followup visit with him.

...The lady and man in that video went to a family reunion in Kentucky on August 4th "restraining" poor little Marcus in their home's closet for two days until they arrived back home. But Marcus wasn't alive when they got home. Just imagine that poor little boy. Suffering without any light, any food, any water, and temperatures that were surely up in the 90s even if the home had the air conditioning on. I wouldn't even think of leaving my dog alone for over 24 hours without any of those things.
This boy had no chance with his biological mother either.
Poor little Marcus. In January he fell from a two story window at his biological mother, Donna Trevino's home. In April, Marcus was discovered roaming the street by himself and was almost struck by a car. Officers removed Marcus Fiesel and two other siblings from the home of their biological mother. Marcus' bedroom had a foam mat, and there was feces on the walls and carpet, according to police. His biological mother told them that she couldn't care for the children any longer and they were "their problem now."
Jay Andrew Allen @ Parents Behaving Badly:
But, of course that’s preferable to letting Marcus live with a…a…gay couple. Goddess knows what would have happened then. I mean, he might still be alive! And maybe even (gasp!) happy!



Katrina, one year later: mission not accomplished

It's the anniversary of hurricane Katrina's assault on the Gulf Coast and there's no place to hide for the Bush administration. From the incompetence of the federal response, to the handing out of no-bid contracts and fleecing of the taxpayer, the man-made disaster almost equals the misery of the natural disaster.



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10,000 FEMA trailers rotting away...

***

From the Institute for Southern Studies, here is Facing South's The One Year After Index:
* Estimated percentage of New Orleans metro area's pre-storm population of about 460,000 that had returned as of June 30: 37

* Of the 368 buses operating in New Orleans before Katrina, number operating as of July 2006: 61

* Gallons of water the new Orleans water system loses each day due to breaks caused by Katrina and an underfunded repair budget: 85 million

* Months after Katrina that federal money for housing reconstruction was approved: 10

* Total federal funds dispersed so far to rebuild homes: 0

* Occupancy rate of livable apartments in New Orleans: 99

* Number of hospitals in Orleans Parish before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: 22

* Number as of August 2006: 11

* Approximate increase in New Orleans suicide rate since Katrina: 300%

* Percent of New Orleans small businesses destroyed by Katrina: 60

* By May 2006, percent of small businesses that had been approved for disaster loans from the Small Business Administration that had actually received them: 37

* Value of wages that contractors had not paid their workers but were eventually recovered by the Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance: over $700,000

* Number of New Orleans prisoners whose trials have never been set or have been delayed, or who have never seen an attorney: about 6,000

* Amount of oil spilled in Louisiana from damaged tanks and other production facilities during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: 10.5 million gallons

* Amount spilled from 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster in Alaska: 11 million gallons

* Portion of hazardous materials that authorities would be "lucky" to remove from the post-Katrina waste stream, according to an EPA official: 20 to 30 percent

* Percent of New Orelans cultural institutions that remain closed from storm damage: 75

* Of the 30 U.N. Principles guiding the handling of "Internally Displaced People," number that legal scholars believe were violated in the case of Katrina: 16

Source: One Year after Katrina, Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch/Institute for Southern Studies, August 2006.
***

Some of the features in the Institute's 96-page Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch report, One Year after Katrina:
* Profiting from Disaster: Fraud, scandal and greed has crippled the Gulf recovery -- but made some very rich. By Jordan Green.
* Feds Disaster Plans Neglect Nursing Homes: Those most vulnerable during the storms could be left behind again. By Sue Sturgis.
* A Place for Women after Katrina: An interview with New Orleans activist Shana Griffin. By Elena Everett.

This represents a herculean effort by Chris Kromm and the folks at the Institute. Help support its work. Print copies of the full report are available for $12 at www.southernstudies.org. For help or more information, please contact Elena Everett at elena@southernstudies.org or 919-419-8311 x25.

***

Chris and Sue Sturgis will be on the radio today:

Thom Hartmann at Air America Radio -- Tuesday 8/29 at 1 pm EST (Chris Kromm)
WEKZ in Wisconsin and Illinois -- Tuesday 8/29 at 8:35 am EST (Sue Sturgis)
KKSM in Sacramento, CA -- Tuesday 8/29 at 11 am EST (Elena Everett)
GW on the Hill on XM Radio --Tuesday 8/29 at 3 pm EST (Chris Kromm)

***

Blogswarm on Katrina: Shakes Sis / Royally Kranked / I’m Not One to Blog, But… / Night Bird’s Fountain / Amberglow at MetaFilter / Fluxview / Changing Places / Grumpy Old Man / Morning Martini / What Do I Know? / A Blog Around the Clock / After the Bridge / Swampytad / Rusty Idols / The Science Pundit / Harp and Sword / Mike the Mad Biologist / Momusfire / The Crazy Bird / The Psychotic Patriot (and here) / Truth, Justice & Peace / Stephenson Strategies / Konagod / Paul Krugman (provided by C&L) / BlondeSense / Driftglass / Gideon Starorzewski / The Talent Show / Mike’s Neighborhood / Pen-Elayne on the Web / Mockingbird’s Medley / Bark Bark Woof Woof / Progressive Purls / Booman Tribune / TalkLeft / The Intersection / Stranger Fruit / Poor Impulse Control / Quaker Agitator (and here) / Blue Gal / Talking Points Memo / Hughes for America / Brilliant at Breakfast / Aetiology / Legal Fiction / 300 Dollar Wonder / Drifting Through the Grift / Property of a Lady / HuffPo / Corpus Callosum / The Unknown Candidate / The Tattered Coat / 1115 / The Last Duchess / Facing South / True Blue Liberal / Demagogue / The Daily Background / Think Progress / Thoughts from an Empty Head / Afarensis / Life and Times of NotSoccer Mom / Thoughts from Kansas / Blanton’s and Ashton’s / State of the Day / Article of Faith / The Rude Pundit / The Katrinacrat Blog / The Democratic Daily / A DC Birding Blog / Zen Comix / Liberal Catnip / Firedoglake / First Draft / Left I on the News / The Left Coaster / The Garlic / Puffs and White China Dogs / Linkmeister / Bitty’s Back Porch / Thinking Meat / Lab Cat / Notes Toward Something / The Aristocrats / Dr. Joan Bushwell’s Chimpanzee Refuge / The Evil Petting Zoo / This Space for Rent / Pushing Rope / And This Too Shall Pass…


AFA columnist pits blacks against gays in Alabama race

Monday, August 28, 2006

I love how the fundies know exactly how to read the recent Patricia Todd/Gaynell Hendricks dustup over the Alabama House District 54 race. And it looks like Joe Murray (Mr. Sodomy Squadron) wants to make it all about civil rights as a zero-sum game with the evil homos pushing blacks out of office and raising the rainbow flag over the last bastion of "Christianity", the Deep South.

Jeezus, how transparent is this BS? (AgapePress):
The Todd story shows there is a power shift occurring in the Democratic Party. Homosexual activists are marching out of strongholds such as San Francisco, South Beach, and Provincetown, and they have their eyes set on other places, such as the Land of Cotton. It is not a coincidence that Howard Dean took great interest in this obscure Alabama race, for Patricia Todd stands to be Alabama's first lesbian representative -- and this will be seen as a major victory in cultural politics. Dean understands the new look of the party he chairs.

And while it may be true that some party bosses, such as Joe Reed, may be worried that District 54 will become a Michael Jackson district (i.e., once black and now white), the crux of this controversy centered on tensions between black and gay ambitions. Black Democrats are not eager to embrace the homosexual agenda. Just look at Miss Childress' complaint.

Conservatives need to take notice of this situation, for it is now happening in our backyards. This is not a tale emanating from the Northeast or Left Coast; it has its roots in the heart of Dixie. What is happening? How could a family values state like Alabama become a branch office of the Victory Fund? These questions must be answered.

Understand this -- the homosexual lobby is on a quest to raise its rainbow flag over every state house in the Union. Blacks in the South are now learning this lesson, for their party is on the receiving end of a forcible makeover. Make no mistake, Todd was a trophy candidate; a candidate funded by the gay lobby, and her victory signals the Democratic wind is blowing in a new direction. Gays in, blacks out.
That last bullsh*t is horrifying. I read that back to Kate and she nearly went apoplectic.

No, Joe, Todd won the race legitimately and black kingmakers who were unhappy with the outcome tried to overturn it -- are you advocating this kind of reaction if gays win races outright? Maybe you're prefer the "Diebold method" to ensure the "right" outcome.

We have to paint a picture for feeble minds like Murray -- civil rights aren't a limited quantity, to be doled out in portions with the fear of running out. He refers to "pro-homosexual bloggers were giddy with the news that Dean had called eight times during the meeting and been on the phone with Yellowhammer Democrats all week."

I guess that I'm one of those pro-homosexual bloggers...then again, I'm black as well -- how does that fit into Murray's little scenario?

His other scenario, as we've seen with the Rovian/Mehlman tactics over the last couple of years, is to try and woo the religious black community and turn social conservatism into votes.
Traditionalists must recognize this rift and bring the message of traditional values to the newly dejected black southern Democrat. Traditionalists must offer blacks a new home by using the issues of marriage protection, life, and school choice. Traditionalists must show southern blacks there is an alternative to the Democratic Machine -- that it is a reason to break ranks with the likes of the NAACP.
Kathy has more on this knob-end's column.

***

The question is, will this courting of blacks work? No one really knows, but the GOP is going to beat this like a dead horse while the Dems squirm about addressing homophobia in the religious black community.

It's the elephant in the room (irony there) that the Dems, as I've blogged about before, don't want to address because it swirls around race and the unwillingness to discuss the "tough stuff" for fear of offending defensive blacks. That fear's logical conclusion is that religious blacks may turn to the GOP -- who talk up a good game about moral values and throw faith-based cash around.

The GOP has managed to appeal to a growing number of black pastors, if not the flock. It's planting the seed, hoping those pastors in the pulpit can sway the people in the pews on the "values" issues (as spun by the GOP).

It hasn't worked in the past because the GOP cannot manage to eradicate the institutionalized racism in its policies, politics and populace. It's like an old comfortable shoe that the party turns to time and again. The sad truth is the GOP could gain broader appeal among many blacks and other minorities on if it truly wanted to, because Dems have taken those votes for granted time after time.

Ken Mehlman's job of courting minorities might be a lot easier if he didn't have to stand behind this disaster of a president. The GOP wants to scrape any votes it can from that demo -- our country is so polarized and elections are close; even a small shift is meaningful. As you can see, they always find black fundie pastors to buy off and hope that they can spew poisonous bigotry from the pulpit.

Dems can't sit tight and think religious black votes will never cross over and vote GOP if the Dems are unwilling to address 1) black homophobia and 2) perceived anti-religious sentiment in its party.

As we've seen, the Dems aren't good at addressing #2 either, since the idea of outreach is for Dean to go on The 700 Club. It's as if the only "religious" people are the fundies watching Crazy Pat.

What Karl Rove and the GOP are aware of (and the Dems have trouble with), is that the religious left is weak because such a vocal and powerful segment of the party is comprised of secular voters and non-believers. The one thing that has been proven on the right is that it is much easier to shape the views and mobilize a captive audience (fervent churchgoers), than to wrangle all the factions — as the Dems have to do.

A recent Pew poll confirms this : Many Americans Uneasy with Mix of Religion and Politics: 69% Say Liberals Too Secular, 49% Say Conservatives Too Assertive.
The Democratic Party continues to face a serious “God problem,” with just 26% saying the party is friendly to religion. However, the proportion of Americans who say the Republican Party is friendly to religion, while much larger, has fallen from 55% to 47% in the past year, with a particularly sharp decline coming among white evangelical Protestants (14 percentage points).

...On the left, a larger share of the public (32%) identifies as "liberal or progressive Christians." But unlike evangelicals, progressive Christians come from different religious traditions and disagree almost as often as they agree on a number of key political and social issues.
At least the GOP is losing its stranglehold on believers as well.


The Tool's ready to swing by Bob Jones U.

Bush humping John McCain, so desperate to win over the fundies, has come full circle in embracing Bob Jones University in SC, the very state in which Dear Leader basically cut off his balls in 2000.
U.S. Sen. John McCain riled Bob Jones University leaders in South Carolina's nasty 2000 GOP presidential primary by criticizing the Christian fundamentalist school - known for its ban on interracial dating and its anti-Roman Catholic views - and George W. Bush for speaking there.

Now McCain says he would consider speaking at the school himself.

"I can't remember when I've turned down a speaking invitation. I think I'd have to look at it," he told The State newspaper.

McCain, R-Ariz., says he would have to look at Bob Jones University's latest policy statements. "I understand they have made considerable progress," he said.
It's amazing how John McCain has thoroughly degraded himself, seemingly with masochistic pleasure, tossing a formidable surface political reputation as a war hero down the rat hole by sucking up to Bush and the AmTaliban. Is the presidency really worth this:


Get a room, already. via Mike Tidmus.

***

BJU's student handbook says "Loyalty to Christ results in separated living. Dishonesty, lewdness, sensual behavior, adultery, homosexuality, sexual perversion of any kind, pornography, illegal use of drugs, and drunkenness--all are clearly condemned by God's word and prohibited here." The campus bans all lAbercrombie & Fitch logos because it has "shown an unusual degree of antagonism to the name of Christ and an unusual display of wickedness in their promotions."

In checking out the dress code for women, the BJU guide provides a few good chuckles.
* The middle area of the torso may not be exposed, and tops must be long enough to meet the top of the skirt or pants.
* Sleeveless tops and dresses may be worn with a blouse, jacket, or sweater; otherwise, sleeves are required.
* Necklines may be no lower than four fingers below the collarbone--the choice of "four fingers" being only a convenient measurement.
* Tops may be fitted, but not clingy.
* Hemlines, slits or other openings may never be higher than the bottom of the knee. Denim skirts are allowed for casual dress but not in class or for other professional events.
* Shoes such as combat boots or hiking boots are not permitted.
* Hairstyles must be neat, "orderly," and feminine. Masculine cuts and "cutting edge fads" should be avoided.
* Tattoos are prohibited. A maximum of two matched sets of earrings are allowed, and they must be worn in the lobe of the ear. Any other body piercings are prohibited.
The guys get off easy though your hair will receive some scrutiny by the BJU staff:
* Men's hair must be traditionally styled with a conservative cut. Hair must not be colored, highlighted, shaved, shelved, tangled or spiked. Sideburns may not reach past the lower opening of the ear. No facial hair is permitted; students must be clean shaven. (Some exceptions are made for older students.)
And there shall be no naked man-toes. Socks must be worn at all time.


The whackadoo had zero to do with it

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I've been offline most of the day, so I just flipped on the news to see this ho hum development all over the news.
Prosecutors abandoned their case against schoolteacher John Mark Karr on Monday, saying that DNA tests failed to link Karr to the slaying of child beauty contestant JonBenet Ramsey.

Karr was briefly freed from jail but was quickly returned to await extradition to California, where he is wanted on five misdemeanor child pornography counts, Boulder County Sheriff Joseph Pelle said.

District Attorney Mary Lacy revealed how the case against Karr was built -- and unraveled -- in a five-page motion asking a judge to drop the arrest warrant that brought Karr from Bangkok, Thailand. (Read the documents. (Viewer discretion advised.))

DNA tests completed Saturday confirmed that Karr "was not the source of the DNA found on the underwear of JonBenet Ramsey" -- disproving his claim that he was sexually involved with the child and killed her by accident.

Karr's family also provided "strong circumstantial" evidence he was with them in Georgia at the time of the crime, court papers stated. The prosecutor's motion said "no evidence has developed, other than his own repeated admissions, to place Mr. Karr at the scene of the crime."
I called it (as did most people with brain cells).


Fundie follies at Charlotte Pride

Matt Hill Comer has a gallery of photos up from the recent Charlotte Pride. He was there representing the North Carolina Advocacy Coalition and promoting the Right to Serve DADT protest campaign (Greensboro will be holding one of these Soulforce-led events in Sept; check here for details). Over 30 cities will be participating.

Matt's comment on Pride:
We had a success with the NC Advocacy table and I took a bunch of great pictures, including some of the crazed, religious fanatics from Operation Save America who stood outside of the festival all day shouting their throats through loud speaker systems and blowing weird looking "Horns of God" (ooo… that so could be twisted to mean something else, lol).

MattHillNC.com | The Q-triad Blog

The Operation Save America trolls had a big-*ss Ten C out there for everyone.


MattHillNC.com | The Q-triad Blog

The goal of OSA, besides returning homos to the closet, is to get God back in the classroom and the state back into a woman's womb. This is the sort of drivel the Texas-based organization, headed by unhinged Rev. Flip Benham, spews.
Each year the radical homosexual agenda attempts to shove immorality down our throats through their pride festivals. The picture these militant sodomites like to paint of homosexuality in America's government schools is a far cry from the stark reality of sodomite culture. It is pornographic, obscene and disgusting and these festivals are tame compared their club scene. The depravity inherent in those choosing this perverted lifestyle of death is flaunted openly at their festivals held in public venues. Their clear intent is to destroy the Christian morality that is the glue that holds our society together.
He's an equal opportunity bigot, attacking other religions in the name of Jeebus, and rebuking "those who would use carnal weapons of war to win Christ's cause."
Unfortunately, if one wants to see the kind of extreme identity politics typical of fascism, there are examples nearby. Last month, in Pearl, Miss., the Rev. Flip Benham, leader of the anti-abortion group Operation Save America, burned a Quran, the Islamic holy book. Apparently, the intention was to demonstrate that Islam is one of several practices “detestable to the Lord."
That should help with community relations and brotherhood.

Check out the rest of Matt's Pride pix.

***

Also over at his pad, Matt Hill talks about the fundie losers at Called2Action, who are getting worked up for this year's attempt control what is read in the Wake County (Raleigh) schools because certain titles offend their "Christian" sensibilities, you know, works like the satanic "Beloved" and "The Color Purple."
The anti-gay Called2Action group, based in Raleigh, is gearing up again this year to challenge the Wake County Public School System on books they find "objectionable" due to vulgarity and sexuality… books like The Color Purple.

Called2Action, which has supported a number of blatantly anti-gay efforts in the past (including the promotion of the "Day of Truth," a cheap, prejudiced rip-off of the Day of Silence), is looking for parents who want to serve on its Parents Council. The parents would cross-check books on reading lists from the public schools with lists of "objectionable material" put together by groups like themselves from across the nation.
Check out more Blend posts on that awful Day of Truth nonsense.


Homobigot Ken Blackwell going nowhere with GOP voters in OH gov race

Well how about this -- Ken Blackwell, despite all the public support from the bible-beating Talibangelist Rod Parsley of Reformation Ohio and Russell Johnson, founder of the Ohio Restoration Project, his numbers continue to tank. These polling results are from Rasmussen.
During the past several months, Democratic Congressman Ted Strickland's edge over Republican Secretary of State Ken Blackwell has ranged from four to seventeen percentage points. Now, in our latest election poll of Ohio's gubernatorial race, Congressman Strickland leads his opponent by an intimidating 57% to 32%.

We conducted the new survey August 22, several days after the Strickland campaign began airing positive TV ads about the Democrat. The health of the steel industry has been one issue this electoral season, and Strickland's ad touts his help in securing a loan for an ailing steel company.

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Blackwell: "Christians should show that they are not going to be whupped."

Blackwell is not well established even with GOP voters, only 59% of whom now support him. He is perceived as conservative by 51% of all voters. By contrast, Strickland appeals to 88% of Democrats, and 55% of unaffiliated voters. A plurality of all voters (44%) see him as moderate.

Strickland is viewed favorably by 59%, Blackwell by 40%. Blackwell is viewed unfavorably by 55%. More ominously, 35% view him "very" unfavorably, a four-point increase since last month.
Look at how hard he pushes the gaybashing:
"I think homosexuality is a lifestyle, it's a choice, and that lifestyle can be changed. I think it is a transgression against God's law, God's will. The reality is, again, ... that I think we make choices all the time. And I think you make good choices and bad choices in terms of lifestyle. Our expectation is that one's genetic makeup might make one more inclined to be an arsonist, or might make one more inclined to be a kleptomaniac. Do I think that they can be changed? Yes."
Gee, Ken, why do you think you're not gaining any traction with the rank-and-file fundie voters? Hmmmmm? You're saying all the right things, but it's just not gelling, is it? What could be the problem?

Hell, even Karl Rove, who pimped you at a fundraiser, can't get those numbers up.

I love this photo w/a caption from Gilliard:


Man, I can't do shit with this negro

***

A side note: if you want to see religious black homobigotry in action, look no further than this campaign. A group of black pastors (who are Dems) will be crossing over to join white wingnuts like Russell Johnson in support of Blackwell.
The ministers, including the director of the Memphis-based Coalition of African-American Pastors, say they support Blackwell's conservative message, including his anti-tax position and his opposition to gay marriage...The minister group, Clergy for Blackwell, which includes black and white ministers, plans news conferences Monday in Columbus and Cincinnati in a move sure to add to a debate in Ohio over the role of religion in politics.
Related:

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* The friends of homo-bigot Ken Blackwell
* Ken Blackwell's outreach flyer
* Ken Blackwell is a vile individual
* Ken Blackwell is a vile individual, part 2
* Chris King's 1st Amendment Page on Blackwell
* More posts on Blackwell


TN judge: my wife's lesbian affair made me take kickbacks

Here's a novel plea for mercy. A judge in Roane County, Tennessee pleaded guilty to using his position to shake down driving school instructors as well as the probation police chief.

Thomas Alva Austin simply couldn't help himself because the stress of learning his wife was carrying on a lesbian affair just short circuited his brain, turning him to a life of crime to fatten his coffers by tens of thousands of dollars. Nice.
...Austin's attorney, Gregory P. Isaacs, in seeking a reduced sentence argues the judge had a breakdown.

"In early 2005, while Mr. Austin and his second wife were in marital counseling, she admitted her year-long involvement in an extramarital lesbian relationship," Isaacs wrote in his court filing.

"Mr. Austin was quite distraught, sought medical help for depression and was prescribed anti-depressants. Additionally, he began drinking heavily despite earlier struggles with alcohol. All of the charges that are included in this indictment occurred after this difficult and tumultuous period in Mr. Austin's personal life."

"He is corrupt to his core," [U.S. Attorney Charles ] Atchley wrote in his brief of Austin. "This case represents an almost incomprehensible breach of the public trust," Atchley wrote in the brief.
Austin was caught on video receiving cash from a victim who wore a wire after going to the FBI and reporting Austin's "stress-induced" behavior. The judge certainly doesn't sound like a man tortured by his actions when he brags to the victim about the kickbacks as well as a sexual harassment case he sat on:
"I've pulled every fucking thing in the book," he was recorded saying. "I've granted girls divorces in the morning and fucked them that afternoon."


Some top 10s - Princeton Review college rankings

Sunday, August 27, 2006

These lists are always interesting. The Princeton Review's "Best 361 Colleges" rankings are out, and it's always good to take a look at some of the interesting categories. I have a few top 10s below; the site lists 20 for each category if you want to surf over (registration reqd). There are plenty of other entertaining categories, such as Dorms Like Dungeons, and "Is It Food?"

Gay Community Accepted

1 New York University
2 Eugene Lang College--The New School for Liberal Arts
3 New College of Florida
4 Macalester College
5 College of the Atlantic
6 Simon's Rock College of Bard
7 Wellesley College
8 Mount Holyoke College
9 Bryn Mawr College
10 Bennington College

And I assume that homos would want to steer clear of any institution on the top 10 list of "Alternative Lifestyles Not an Alternative":
1 University of Notre Dame
2 Hampden-Sydney College
3 Brigham Young University (UT)
4 Wheaton College (IL)
5 College of the Holy Cross
6 Baylor University
7 Texas A&M University-College Station
8 Grove City College
9 University of Tennessee--Knoxville
10 Samford University

Here are the Top 10 Party Schools :
1 The University of Texas at Austin
2 Penn State--University Park
3 West Virginia University
4 University of Wisconsin-Madison
5 University of Mississippi
6 Ohio University-Athens
7 University of Massachusetts--Amherst
8 Louisiana State University
9 University of Iowa
10 University of California-Santa Barbara

Kate's shocked that Alabama wasn't on that list; however the University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa made the "Students Most Nostalgic For Reagan" list.

And Russ, here's your category: Reefer Madness - How widely used is marijuana?
1 Warren Wilson College
2 Bard College
3 Colorado College
4 University of California-Santa Cruz
5 Oberlin College
6 Pitzer College
7 Hampshire College
8 New York University
9 New College of Florida
10 Lehigh University


Wal-Mart blasted on all sides for partnering with G&L Chamber of Commerce

The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce recently announced a partnership with Wal-Mart:
Wal-Mart’s involvement with NGLCC, Dee Breazeale, vice president of divisional merchandise, SAM’S CLUB Jewelry, will serve on the organization’s Corporate Advisory Council (CAC). The CAC is composed of NGLCC corporate partners whose mission is to discuss issues upon which members of the NGLCC and CAC work together to educate Corporate America and the public on the economic benefits of providing a diverse workplace and creating mutually beneficial relationships with the LGBT and LGBT-friendly business community.

In addition, Wal-Mart will assist the NGLCC in developing, expanding and promoting corporate diversity business development and procurement opportunities by sponsoring some of its programs including two of the organization’s conferences.
The NGLCC also promptly got blasted by both labor groups and the AmTaliban, albeit for different reasons.

As we all know, recognition of the power of the pink purse is being recognized by Corporate America; so an alliance with the country's largest retailer is not all that surprising, given profit is what Wal-Mart is all about -- and that's the problem for labor organizations. In an interview with PageOneQ, Jeremy Bishop, the program director of Pride at Work (an arm of the AFL-CIO that works with the labor and LGBT community on social and economic justice issues, was blunt about the partnership:
We're not exactly sure how Wal-Mart fits into the LGBT friendly business category," he said. "In fact, We're not sure how Wal-Mart fits into anything worker friendly.

..."Encourage the NGLCC to demand that Wal-Mart create 'friendly' practices, of say, paying their employees above poverty line wages, offering affordable health care, and when that is done, they could think about offering domestic partner benefits and dealing with the massive class action lawsuit facing them regarding gender discrimination."
Naturally, the NGLCC issued a response.
Wal-Mart is the latest company that has heard our message about completing the circle of corporate diversity. No longer is just marketing to the LGBT segment enough. No longer is having a corporate non discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation enough. If a company is as truly committed to being a good corporate citizen in the LGBT space as they are with other diverse communities, then they need to buy back and invest in LGBT community-owned businesses like they do with other diverse segments. Their supplier base, those from whom they purchase goods and services, must look like the customer and employee base they have or are trying to attract.

Additionally, as the national LGBT business advocacy organization, we would be doing a disservice to LGBT businesses and the community at large if we did not extend our hand to help a company that has extended its hand in an effort to become a better advocate for its LGBT employees, customers and suppliers. In fact, as you might know, Wal-Mart is also partnering with Out & Equal, a national LGBT advocacy organization that specializes in educating HR professionals and employee resource groups on equal policies, practices and benefits in the workplace for LGBT people. These partnerships are further evidence that Wal-Mart is reaching out to learn best practices from other companies and LGBT advocacy organizations.
Both positions are pretty darn clear and not completely incompatible, but it's hard to look at Wal-Mart's litany of anti-worker policies and lawsuits at its door. Money is what drives its outreach, not altruism or fairness -- Wal-Mart is not a Buy Blue Costco. That said, the corporate giant is an 800-lb gorilla that could ignore LGBT outreach and do just fine on the bottom line.

Over in AmTalibanland, Peter LaBarbera and Matt Barber, fired off a breathless Americans for Truth press release, focusing on the real problem -- that damned Homosexual AgendaWal-Mart is signing on to...Petey:
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While understandably flying under the radar, Wal-Mart’s British subsidiary recently introduced a “gay wedding� line of products, and Wal-Mart corporate has inexplicably re-defined “family� in its corporate policies to include sexual partners of the same gender. It has also added employees who choose to engage in dangerous homosexual behaviors to its anti-discrimination policies.

... “Wal-Mart has always been a favorite of God-fearing Middle American customers who hold traditional family values. I’m very surprised that Wal-Mart would now bite the hand that feeds it and thumb its nose at those very customers. It seems to me that Wal-Mart should reconsider its unsavory alliance with these extremist homosexual activists in today’s heated and polarizing culture war. It risks entirely alienating the vast majority of its customer base. Perhaps this great corporation with such an impressive history should play Switzerland in the culture war, return to a position of neutrality, and get back to doing what it has always done best – selling high quality products at the lowest prices available.�

[A new investigation is about to be launched...] Americans for Truth indicated its intent to further investigate and report on Wal-Mart’s recent endorsement of the homosexual lifestyle, and to request a meeting with Wal-Mart officials to ensure that its family-values employees will not be discriminated against in light of Wal-Mart’s growing support of the anti-family, anti-Christian homosexual lobby.
BTW, I guess Porno Petey likes the publicity I give him here on the Blend, because I am now on the AFT mailing list without having joined.

Jeremy at Good As You comments on the bleatings about Wal-Mart from Tony Perkins at the Family Research Council and penis-possessing Bob Knight at Concerned Women for America who said the big box store is:

"validating the idea that homosexual activists have the right to shake down corporations out of fear of being called bigots."
Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Oh, that's too funny.

BONUS: The American Family Association is on Wal-Mart's case because Sam's Club refuses to keep the "Christ in Christmas" in its advertising for 2006.
Randy Sharp, special projects director for the American Family Association, says it looks like Sam's Club parent company Wal-Mart is adhering to the same "holiday" policy in the 2006 season as it followed in 2005. "Last year," he says, "Wal-Mart refused to use the word Christmas in their advertising, and they were inundated by angry customers. And already this year they're showing their true colors by again refusing to acknowledge Christmas."

This past June, Sharp notes, AFA sent Wal-Mart a copy of a letter and more than 200,000 petition signatures that went to most major retailers in America, asking them not to ban the word Christmas from their advertising and promotions. He says there was no answer until the advertisement in Source came out.

"Last week the first Christmas ad came out, and that was for Sam's Club, owned by the Wal-Mart Stores Corporation," the AFA spokesman explains. "The ad is clearly meant to promote Christmas decorations and Christmas tree items," he says, "but Sam's Club refuses to refer to Christmas as Christmas. They simply use the generic term holiday."


Open thread/Q of the day

Just got back into town a bit ago (was in Delaware visiting family); going through the overflowing mailbag, as usual. I haven't been watching any news the last couple of days, just surfing a couple of blogs.

* Went to the movies and saw (and loved) Little Miss Sunshine while there. God I haven't laughed so hard in a long time. A big thumbs up.

* We don't get Bravo here in Durham (Time Warner, you suck *ss), so my brother showed me two eps of Project Runway that he had recorded. I've never seen that show but boy, that was a hoot. I may have to rent the prior season DVDs.

Other miscellany:

* Kathy has another follow-up post to yesterday's events in Alabama. And it gives you hope.

* Is anyone watching the Emmys? I'm so out of touch, I don't even know who the nominees are.

* Whoa...here's a confident bit of news as the anniversary of Katrina is upon us:
It was too early to tell whether Ernesto would provide an early test for the city's levee system, which Strock conceded may not yet be strong enough to withstand a large storm surge.
Strock is head of the Army Corps of Engineers.

***

A Q of the day just for Sunday fun -- what is your favorite homemade comfort food from childhood? And did you learn how to make it if it was something your mom -- or dad -- made?

What's going on out there -- blogwhore and links, please...


Two different views of Dear Leader


Actual caption for the photo of this Freeper wannabe: Marge Trowbridge, a lone supporter of President George W. Bush, carries a sign claiming she is surrounded by idiots as she walks in front of an anti-war protest on Ocean Avenue in Kennebunkport, Maine, Saturday afternoon Aug. 26, 2006. President Bush is visiting his parents for the weekend as part of his summer vacation. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

vs. this:


Actual caption:
Anti-war protestors hold signs before the start of a protest march in Kennebunkport, Maine where US President George W. Bush is on vacation August 26, 2006. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES)


Another asinine Mike Adams homobigotry column

Mike Adams is a blowhard homo-hater who is a professor at UNC-Wilmington -- and a Townhall.com columnist who rails on about queers ad nauseum. He recently opened his pie hole again with more nonsense at the winger site:
Several years ago, I began writing columns questioning the so-called gay rights movement. I prefer to call it the "gay privileges" movement because gays are not presently deprived of anything that is rightfully theirs. A gay man has the same right I have to marry a woman. His waiver of that actual right does not allow him to substitute another "right" he deems more suitable to his needs.

At the time I decided to express such criticism of the gay agenda, I was not fully opposed to gay adoption. Nor was I absolutely opposed to hiring gay grammar school teachers. My criticism of the gay agenda was narrower than it is today and the tone of my criticism was far more subdued. That all changed when the homosexual rights crowd started to circulate some of my early columns.

Frequently, the criticism would come en masse from gay groups who would post my columns on PRIDE websites or chat rooms at universities like UNC-Greensboro, which is also known as UNC-Gonorrhea. They would work themselves into a fury over my well-reasoned essays and then respond with a flurry of obscenities unfit for reproduction in this column.
Blah, blah, blah...he goes on, clearly amused at his own writing, saying gays are mentally unbalanced for being mad at being called deviants. Gee, I wonder why? But then he lobs a joke that makes your stomach turn:
For the record, I have never cheated on my wife. I did, however, attempt to cheat on my wife one time. Unfortunately, I couldn't get past Ms. Coulter's bodyguard.
Have you lost your meal yet? He continues, sarcastically assailing the American Psychological Association for declassifing homosexuality as an emotional disorder because he feels gays and lesbians shouldn't be able to adopt or teach our children.
The job of raising a child is important - as is the job of teaching a child. Both require dealing with emotionally immature beings that require constant supervision and guidance to ensure they will develop into mature adults.

There is nothing wrong with discriminating against a class of people who are afflicted with an emotional or mental illness that is relevant to the completion of a given task – especially if that task is crucial to the well-being of the society at large. That is why I am opposed to the idea of gays adopting or teaching our children.
Adams, incidentally, in 2004 accused then-recently-elected out lesbian NC State Senator Julia Boseman of engineering her opponent's homophobic campaigning against her by committing "one of the most disgraceful episodes of political passive aggression in North Carolina history."

He's not funny, and not very bright either. That almost ensures a party being thrown in the swamps of Freeperland for Adams.

Actual Freeper Quotes™

You'd think it was commons sense NOT to have homos as role models or near kids. GEESH!

Adams is great. His further point that there is nothing wrong with discriminating against people with a mental illness is right on. Crazy people can (perhaps) hold a lot of different jobs. Teaching children is not one of them.

They are very EMOTIONALLY DISTURBED and ACT out this EMOTIONAL CONFUSION through SEX and their relationships. To be "gay" is to be VERY ANGRY, TOUCHY and UNHAPPY. They are vicious people to an extreme when criticized in any form.

Should schools be LEGALLY REQUIRED to disclose if their child is being exposed to homosexuals?

"...And now you realize why I am opposed to gays adopting or teaching our children."

Umm... because some of them made foul threats against you? Because they used to be considered mentally ill? If I wrote essays opposing Judaism, or stating that black people should not be allowed to adopt white children, or that women aren't fit to serve on juries, I would most likely get some pretty vicious hate mail from Jewish, black and female readers, respectively. That wouldn't prove much, even though various authorities have stated in the past that Jews are evil, blacks are violent and women are hysterical. You'll have to come up with a better argument than "because I've succeeded in pissing them off".

See, you are using a fallacy of logic to justify your position. Being of Jewish decent is NOT an option. Being black is NOT an option. Being gay IS an option. I can prove it by showing many examples of gay people going back to healthy relationships. Other than Michael Jackson, have you ever seen a black man change colors? A jewish person can denounce his religion, but by blood they are still Jewish, like it or not.

[Here comes the bestiality red herring again...] Next in line....sex with animals because they truely love thier dog and they are being denied the RIGHT to enjoy their dog sexually. Go ahead, bring on the "I was born this way" and "God made me this way" tripe. Every person has their crosses to bear. God made everyone, but their choices to follow their "Free Will Sins" move them closer or further from him. It is CLEAR from every society known to mankind...this is a filthy position to try to justify all in the name of being PC. All that is their choice, just don't expect special consideration and exceptions because of their unhealthy faults. The sexual disease rate among gays is much, much higher than general population. The casual sex, multiple partners is also way out of whack with the norm. Flame away.

Well, what if your neighbor wants to have sex with goats....in their own back yard? Guess thats ok since it's the way THEY want and where THEY want? It is their property ya know! That logic is what opens the door for....any one can justify any thing at any time for any reason. What 2 consenting "adults" do in the privacy of their own home is their business. I have an issue when it moves to the public forum and gets shoved in my families face because they want "special" considerations.

I have been reading Mike Adams for a couple of years...he is great!

Excellent column. Anyone who has criticized the homo-promo movement in a public way knows exactly what this guy is talking about. They'll try to ruin your life any way they can and have absolutely no compunction about it. Regardless of what APA has to say, same-sex attraction is a mental disorder--and a symptom of a cluster of other conditions. Such individuals should be absolutely disqualified from teaching children and/or adopting.

I do not agree with this article. In particular, I don't think gays should be banned from teaching. Let me first state that I am not gay. It is wrong to consider all gay persons as pedophiles. Also, many pedophiles are not gay.
I had teachers in High School and College that never came out and said they were gay, but they were not married, and all appearances were pointing in that direction. These were excellent teachers, and I doubt seriously if they ever tried to abuse any child. Ban pedophiles, not gays. As for adoption, that is more complicated. I would be more concerned about that, but in my state, only one person would be able to adopt (no gay couple). In some cases, it might be better than the foster home shuffle.

[Hey Matt Hill Comer, help me out here -- is this Freeper smoking something?...] UNC-Greensboro is very gay. Literally something like 50% of the male students are homosexual. However, if you're a straight young man, you can be ugly and dumb and still have a harem, since 70% of the student population is female. Even after accounting for lesbians, you've got about 4:1 odds. I used to know a smoking hot young lady from my hometown who went there who always complained about not having a boyfriend.

They are very EMOTIONALLY DISTURBED and ACT out this EMOTIONAL CONFUSION through SEX and their relationships. To be "gay" is to be VERY ANGRY, TOUCHY and UNHAPPY. They are vicious people to an extreme when criticized in any form.
I grew up in Key West...undoubtedly, I was taught by some gay people. Gay people babysat me. In fact, as I got older, I socialized with gay people, and considered these same gay people my friends. I doubt that you have ever met a gay person. And people wonder why FReepers are considered right-wing wackos....

I just love the "well, I know gay people and they are nice people." What you leave out is the fact that you do not call them on their position. Try it sometime. Tell them you don't agree with their forcing society to give them special consideration and see how nice they stay.

Did you know that all black people are theives, too? Anymore ridiculous stereotypes?

Again, you go with race verses someone wanting to stick their penis where fecies gets dumped. Face it...that is the bottom line with gay men. Take it to their private homes and keep it OUT of the public square. I have a better idea. Chat with a black person and explain to them how you believe the gay struggle is like their struggle for equal rights. Hahahahaha. You would be lucky if all they did was tell you how messed up your logic is.


Countering the 'ex-gay' movement in Texas

Wayne Besen's Truth Wins Out organization held a demonstration Saturday in Carrolton, TX to counter an "ex-gay" conference at Vista Ridge Baptist Church, put on by Living Hope/Lasting Change.

Living Hope is an arm of infamous Exodus International which is staffed full of ex-gay-for-pay individuals who attempt to convince people struggling with their homosexuality that they can "pray away the gay."

TWO is spreading the word on the terrible toll this sort of nonsense takes on people.
"This symposium is a masquerade of the misguided that shatters families, ruins lives and can lead to suicide," said TWO Executive Director Wayne Besen. "Living Hope should stop using distorted images of gay life, outdated science and slanderous stereotypes to scare people into attending its conference. We also reject the false message that gays and lesbians cannot be people of faith."

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Joining Besen at the demonstration were notable leaders such as: Rev. Colleen Darraugh, MCC of Greater Dallas; Rev. Ken Ehrke, Agape MCC, Fort Worth; Brother Curtis Smith, Pastoral Leader, Trinity MCC, Arlington; Daniel Gonzales, contributing author, Ex-Gay Watch; and Fort Worth Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG).
Wayne also notes that Exodus has included, as part of its "therapy", such tactics as "exorcisms, lipstick seminars for lesbians and repossessing men's Calvin Klein underwear because it is deemed 'too gay.'"

***

Flying with the End Times

I got an email from Daniel at Ex Gay Watch, who attended the above TWO counter-demonstration protest, and he passed along an amusing tidbit about his flight -- a
woman in the row ahead him was reading End Times magazine (the T in Times is a cross).

Garland, TX-based End Times Ministries is run by Irvin Baxter, Jr. There's a long description of his gift of prognostication on the site. A snippet of the batsh*ttery:
In 1965, when Irvin Baxter, Jr. was only twenty years old, a visiting evangelist taught one evening regarding the four beasts of Revelation, chapter 4. He said that they were Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John!

"I knew that wasn't right," relates Baxter. "He offered no evidence; no scripture. He just said it! It inspired me to find the truth. For the next 30 days, I read the book of Revelation nineteen times from front to back."

More than 25 years have passed since the spark was ignited in Irvin Baxter Jr. Since then, he has made several revolutionary discoveries in Bible prophecy. He has also become the editor of the most widely circulated prophecy magazine in the world, hosts the daily radio broadcast, Politics and Relgion, and is the author of several prophecy books and Bible studies. In 1968, Baxter predicted the fall of the Berlin Wall. He emphasized that this event would be the catalyst that would begin an international movement called the New World Order. Eighteen years later, in 1986, Baxter documented these teachings in his first book, A Message for the President, and he founded Endtime, a non-profit corporation. Three years later, in 1989, the Berlin Wall fell, Germany was reunited, and we've heard continually about the New World Order ever since.
Maybe you'd like to visit the End Times store and pick up a 666 - Satan's Master Plan DVD.

BTW, check out Ex Gay Watch's infographic photos from the recent APA convention, where the "former homos" picketed.


The Katherine Harris Freakshow

Saturday, August 26, 2006

It gets more painful by the day to hear anything out of the mouth by Florida U.S. Senate candidate Katherine Harris. The latest meltdown bleating:
In an interview with the Florida Baptist Witness, the weekly journal of the Florida Baptist State Convention, Harris described her faith, saying it animates "everything I do," including her votes in Congress.

She warned that if voters do not send Christians to office, they risk creating a government that is doomed to fail.


"Whenever we legislate sin," she said, "and we say abortion is permissible and we say gay unions are permissible, then average citizens who are not Christians, because they don't know better, we are leading them astray and it's wrong . . ."

"And if we are the ones not actively involved in electing those godly men and women," then "we're going to have a nation of secular laws. That's not what our founding fathers intended and that's (sic) certainly isn't what God intended."
Needless to say, Dem Bill Nelson will be cruising to victory in November.

Related:
* It's the end of the campaign world as she knows it

H/t, Autumn.


More details from Kathy on the big day for Patricia Todd

Kathy is back and has a post up. I want to focus on this snippet:
The meeting adjourned right after the vote, and I'm afraid there were some unhappy people leaving the room. One very angry black man came out yelling, "N*ggers and gays, n*ggers and gays, that's all this party has." He kept ranting about the Republicans winning in November until someone reminded him that Patricia is unopposed. Then he started carrying on about a write-in race. Unfortunately, the TV cameras were right there, and the reporters gave him a format to spew. Then he walked out, telling the Todd supporters that they’d better not touch him. I guess he was assuming that all her supporters are gay and that he might catch it. I could have reassured him that no one there had any desire to touch him.

Patricia was all smiles, and her supporters were ecstatic. I walked out with party Executive Director Jim Spearman, who told me that Howard Dean had called eight times during the meeting to find out what happened. He said he'd been on the phone with Dean all week, and that the DNC was frantic because of all the negative feedback. People were ticked off, and no funds were coming in.
Yes, people it's not just about race, no matter how many folks try to spin it that way. Black homophobia cannot be ignored as a core part of the problem in this dust up -- it is a serious impediment to progress and dialog within the party when it gets continuously swept under the rug.

Civil rights cannot be defined a race-only matter, and not as a zero-sum game either.

The vote of the people in Alabama HD 54 was allowed to stand -- and that is the bottom line. Those in the Hendricks camp -- who should know better, given how precious our right to vote is -- embarrassed themselves with these antics. A lot of healing is in order.

I should caution you all that a great deal of fury was unleashed in those who wanted a black representing a barely majority black district -- they were clearly willing to toss out legitimate results of an election. It looks like it may now manifest itself in a write-in candidate in the November election, intimated by Birmingham activist and former mayoral candidate Frank Matthews in the AL.com article, who is known as "God's Gangster."


Patricia Todd's victory stands!

Kathy @ Birmingham Blues just rang me on my cell -- the ruling was overturned by the Democratic Executive Committee and Patricia Todd's victory in Alabama's HD 54 has been upheld! The vote was 95-87. (al.com):

"I am relieved this is over so I can get to work helping the people of my district," Todd said after the meeting. She said she was not discouraged by the opposition to her nomination.

"This was a healthy Democratic vote," Todd said.

...The vote fell mostly along racial lines. Committee members were asked to stand to show their vote and no whites were seen standing to vote to uphold the subcommittee report, while a small number of blacks stood in support of Todd.
***

Release from the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund:
"Finally, the voters have prevailed. We are enormously proud of the courage and tenacity Patricia showed throughout this ordeal, and equally proud of her supporters in Alabama and beyond who stood by her unfailingly. The Victory Fund and its network of donors have worked to ensure Patricia had a level playing field and a fair chance to show that a qualified, committed public servant can win the trust of the voters regardless of her sexual orientation. We have no doubt her career in the legislature will reflect the same determination and skill she showed in her campaign."

The committee today voted to overturn a decision issued Thursday night by a five-person panel picked to hear evidence in an official challenge to Todd's primary win. That decision was roundly criticized by top state party officials and in newspaper editorials. The Birmingham News editorialized today that the state Democratic Party seemed to have a "death wish," calling the effort to strip Todd of her nomination, "the dumbest thing Alabama Democrats have done since 1986." That year the party nullified the primary win of its gubernatorial nominee and installed another candidate. It subsequently lost the governor's mansion to the Republicans for the first time since Reconstruction.


Guy Adams surfaces again


Illinois law enforcement officer and unhinged homobigot Guy Adams has resurfaced over at Replace the Lies With the Truth, to engage with blogger Joe Brummer.

You might recall that Adams was the hateful cretin who declared this on winger Stacy Harp's show "The Right View" about gays:
"Anyway…we were talking about homosexuality and basically about how a lot of homosexuals are beginning to have sex with animals and infants…"
The (former?) Deputy National Grassroots Director of Alan Keyes's AmTaliban organization RenewAmerica was asked to retract and apologize for his ridiculous, unsupported claim -- but he wouldn't back down.

From Joe's blog:
Finally Deputy Adams has responded via email to me:
"My comment about homosexuals and babies will not be retracted but this I am willing to do: I can mitigate its effect. I am willing to say that heterosexuals also engage in this act, so yes, it is not exclusively a homosexual phenomenon."
So, if I have read his response correctly, having sex with infants is also a growing trend for heterosexuals as well. The accusations this man makes are sick and immoral. I just thought I would put this out there if for no other reason, the more this man talks, the more likely it is people just think he is another “Fred Phelps” making crazy assertions that no one is hearing or listening to in the first place. Sadly, Mr. Adams believes the crazy things he says about gays. He has enough hate for us that he refuses to stop in his own tracks and ask real questions about gays and lesbians. He isn’t looking at the widened truth that we have to offer him. He prefers to fill his head with negative stereotypes and lies rather than looking at the whole picture. Why he has chosen to believe this stuff or make it up is beyond anything I could imagine, so I won't.
Adams is completely unhinged. Look at this:
Militant gays will stop at nothing to silence any opposition to their unnatural agenda. How else could you describe a group that asks for “tolerance” yet demands intolerance be shown to others, such as those critical of their lifestyle? Homosexuals are NOT tolerant and they are as a whole, insensitive to the damage they cause others by their intimidation. Homosexual activists use economic terrorism and the full force of law (Canada) to silence any criticism of their lifestyle.

A CHALLENGE TO HOMOSEXUALS:

IF there is nothing wrong with homosexuality, then you should ENCOURAGE criticism and inspection. Show the world that your lifestyle is valid, wholesome and good. But that openness will NEVER come because what homosexuals do is unnatural and the public rejects it. And with whom they do it will also not pass muster with the public either.

But again, I challenge the gays: show us what you do and what your lifestyle encompasses, invite criticism, and let the public be the judge.

But Canadian homosexuals have already figured out that should their lifestyle be exposed, it would resoundingly be rejected.

Replace lies with truth? I challenge you.
In another post, Joe asks some pertinent questions about Adams:
He is a police officer and children tend to look up to police officers. Does Mr. Adams really want kids to see that telling stories and lies is okay? Is that the example he wants to set for kids? I doubt it.
More Blend posts on this nutbag.


Open thread - your thoughtful president

Friday, August 25, 2006


U.S. President George W. Bush waves as he departs the White House in Washington to attend a fundraiser for Senator George Allen (R-VA) in Virginia August 23, 2006. Bush has no reservations about raising money for a Republican senator under sharp criticism for calling a rival-campaign worker of Indian descent 'macaca,' the White House said on Wednesday. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES)


Urgent Fundraiser? Bush Wanted Carpool Lanes Closed. He had to get there pronto to help Macaca Allen.
Secret Service officials confirm to The Washington Post they tried to get the Virginia Department of Transportation to close down the carpool lanes on a highway leading out of Washington Wednesday so President George W. Bush could easily get to and from a fundraiser for Republican Sen. George Allen.

State experts who monitor traffic predicted a commuting nightmare, because they would have had to close down the lanes for much of the day for logistical reasons, so they denied the request.

Vehicles using Virginia's high occupancy vehicle lanes must have three or more riders from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Some hybrid vehicles and motorcycles are exempt.

The president traveled to the fundraiser by helicopter.
Hat tip, ~ann.


The Alabama HD 54 plot thickens

Kathy emailed a pointer to Politics in Alabama, where Jeff has uncovered a bombshell -- the Alabama Dem Party filed for, but did not receive Dept of Justice approval for the 1974 amendment to its bylaws -- the very amendment that was cited and used at yesterday's hearing to disqualify Patricia Todd and Gaynell Hendricks in the House 54 race.*

That 1974 rule change needed to be approved under Section 5 of Voting Rights Act, according to Jeff.
...the 1974 rule was not pre-cleared by the Department of Justice. There is record of the DOJ receiving the motion for pre-clearance of the rule change and a record of the response from to the DOJ requesting more information; but there is no record of the approval of the change of the Alabama Democratic Bylaws. The letter sent by the DOJ to Robert E. Vance was requesting more information before the approval could be made. There was no record of receiving any of the requested information from the Alabama Democratic Party or of the bylaws change being approved. The response that was sent from the DOJ to the Alabama Democratic Party can be found here.
More coverage to check out:
* New York Times
* MSNBC.
* Birmingham News
* Montgomery Advertiser.

Local bloggers -- Birmingham Blues of course, and:
* Alablawg
* Doc’s Political Parlor
* The Other Politics in Alabama
* Between the Links
* Loretta Nall
* Red State Diaries
* The World Around You

***

Earlier posts:
* Déjà vu All Over Again
* Gentrification is at the heart of the Alabama House 54 debacle
* Kathy's coverage
* Blend coverage
___
* the amendment was that candidates had to file financial disclosures to the State Party, a measure ignored since 1988, once the candidates had to file with the Alabama Secretary of State's office.


Evangelist's 24-year-old son busted for distributing child porn

Reading this article you get the feeling that they'd like you to think this 24 year old MAN is some sort of child, not a perv adult. The man was going to be teaching special ed children for god's sake, and his bible-beating father is looking for sympathy. Bring out the tiny violin...
A local evangelist spoke with 10TV Thursday night after his son was arrested for possessing child pornography.

Zachary Daubenmire, recently hired to teach special education at Licking Heights High School, was out on bond Thursday after admitting to downloading video of young girls having sex with adult men onto a family computer.

Daubenmire was also a volunteer assistant football coach at Heath High School. But after the charges came about, he was let go.

His father, Dave Daubenmire, says what happened with his son could happen to any family. The elder Daubenmire is well known locally for being sued by the American Civil Liberties Union for conducting prayers with players before football games at London High School. He is also a longtime Christian leader who has worked to teach others about the dangers of pornography.

"Its certainly an addiction this struck our son -- our 24 year old son -- who has never been to the principal's office in his life," Dave Daubenmire said.

..."I tell people this: go home tonight and check your child's computer. Look into their files and hack into their files. It was in our home under our eyes," Dave Daubenmire said emotionally.
The perv was downloading child porn videos and images and trading them with other people online.

The school is hoping that the son will resign from his teaching position, otherwise they will terminate him.

Daubenmire's holier-than-thou household clearly didn't stop this from happening. Anyone see any public comment from Daddy Dobson, the Wildmons, Gary Bauer and the rest?

::crickets chirping::

There's video at the link.

H/t, Peter C.


Petey's new pad

I've taken a whirl over to Porno Petey's new digs, Americans for Truth, "the only national organization devoted exclusively to exposing and countering the homosexual activist agenda," according to LaBarbera. Now that he's been booted quit the Illinois Family Institute, he's got plenty of time on his hands.

He's slowly starting to populate it with fresh content. He's got a category for "Homosexual Meccas", which, in his world, seems to be restricted to Canada, Chicago, The Netherlands, New York and San Francisco.

SLDN peeps, you'll be happy to know you made Peter's list of "National GLBTQ Activist Groups," which he labels the "Servicemen's Legal Defense Fund."

Other categories include: Homosexual Parenting, Freedom Under Fire, Homosexual Hate, Public Sex in Your Neighborhood? (no posts yet; I'm sure he's ready to dive into research on this), and GLBTQ Quotes.

Related:
* Earlier Blend posts on Porno Petey

You can read more of his promotional bleating here. A snippet:
“Homosexual, bisexual, and transsexual groups spend tens of millions of dollars every year to market and normalize their aberrant lifestyles, yet after all these years there is not a single, serious national group dedicated specifically to exposing and countering their agendas,” he said.


Gentrification is at the heart of the Alabama House 54 debacle

The mess and self-destruction of Alabama's Democratic party in its decision to disqualify white (and out lesbian) Patricia Todd, who legitimately won the House 54 seat, and black challenger Gaynelle Hendricks) is now complete.

The people's vote doesn't matter. It's about party kingmakers, sore losers and race, with the added spice of gay demonization.

At the core of this issue is district 54, central Birmingham, is being gentrified. When Kate and I drove through the district on a recent visit, it was plainly apparent that Crestwood, in particular, is an area that is undergoing demographic change. This is no different than what many in-town neighborhoods are experiencing, as property is being bought by gay (and mostly white) urban homesteaders who remodel delapidated housing, attract new businesses and breathe life into those neighborhoods.

What it also brings, with the rise in housing costs is displacement of the urban poor, change in voting patterns -- and the power and influence of kingmakers like party vice chairman Joe Reed.

It's the loss of Reed's political control that was driving this insanity. It's not as if Patricia Todd didn't have black support -- she had to have a good amount in order to win -- those who supported her have had to deal with taunts and charges of "Uncle Tom" and "sellout." Reed and company are tossing a political temper tantrum and illegitimately tossing out the race card, hoping that noise and rage will overpower actual voting results. And yes, that still works in Southern politics, particularly in this case.

The anti-gay spin has been downplayed in coverage, but the fact of the matter is, as the NYT article notes, anonymous fliers were posted calling Patricia Todd a "confessed lesbian." No one needs to ignore this and let it slip below the radar. The black homophobia should not be swept under the rug.

And so, with the disqualification over an arcane rule that no Dem in a certified race has followed, this is a statement that "if we can't have the black winner we want, we'll sacrifice both of them to get the white lesbian out of the picture."

Gentrification and its impact on a district's representation is a worthy topic to discuss; using party machinery and backroom bigotry to toss out the legitimate results of an election is a travesty and embarassment. It's as if Reed and company have a short memory -- that they are reveling in the chance to take away the vote of the people now that blacks have gained political power is a sad state of affairs. It wasn't that long ago that party machinery was used against blacks; table-turning on an ally like Todd is self-defeating and racist in turn.

The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund will continue to back Todd as this will likely move to court:
"Patricia got the most votes in two separate elections - the primary and the runoff - but party bosses didn't like the results, so now they plan to handpick their own candidate. What happened today in Montgomery was unfair, undemocratic, un- American and unwise. Democrats in Alabama have been through this before, and they have suffered for it. When party power brokers insist they know better than the voters, the voters stay home. Alabamians who care about democracy should be outraged, and Democrats everywhere should tell party leaders to reject the tired politics of yesterday and listen to the will of the people, especially those who have already spoken twice. We will continue to stand with Patricia as she fights to ensure that Alabama voters will be able to choose their own representatives."
Birmingham Blues has photos up of the hearing. Thanks for the ace reporting, Kathy. She notes at her pad:
Are you horrified by yesterday’s subcommittee ruling?  Are you wondering what you can do about it?  If you live in the area, come to Montgomery for the State Democratic Executive Committee meeting tomorrow at 10 am at the Embassy Suites (click here for map).  If you can’t come to the meeting, contact state party chair Joe Turnham, and let him know you agree with his assessment.  And if you have a few dollars to spare, make a donation to the Victory Fund to help pay for Patricia’s legal challenge.


Todd, Hendricks Both Disqualified

Thursday, August 24, 2006

UPDATE: State Democratic Party Chair Joe Turnham is pissed off by this decision. Good!

This is what I missed while driving back from Montgomery. Unbelievable! Apparently the committee decided to disqualify both candidates for violating an archaic party rule -- which every other Democratic candidate violated as well -- and the Executive Committee will hand pick someone else to run. Of course, this supposedly doesn't affect any other candidates because their races were already certified, but so was this one.

I doubt this is over.


Déjà vu All Over Again

Hi, Blenders. Pam asked me to post on Patricia Todd's contest hearing. It's over, but we don't have a decision yet. Here's my account of the afternoon:

Today's hearing was a procedural battle of wills. In one corner, Raymond Johnson, attorney for Mattie Childress, Gaynell Hendricks' mother-in-law. In the other corner, Ed Still and Bobby Segall, attorneys for Patricia Todd. The crowd was larger than last week's and appeared to be fairly evenly divided by candidate. Unfortunately, it was almost completely segregated by race. After all the accusations, it came down to whether a 1974 party rule that has not been enforced for years should take precedence over the 1988 state law that superceded it.


The 1974 party rule requires all candidates to file financial disclosures with the Democratic Party. It also states that the party cannot certify a nominee who does not file the report before the set deadline. The 1988 Fair Campaign Practices Act requires candidates to file financial disclosures with the Secretary of State’s office. The Supreme Court has ruled that a candidate who files after the statutory deadline but before the election may face a fine but will not be disqualified. Only a candidate who fails to file at all or files on or after election day will face disqualification. While neither candidate filed financial disclosure forms with the state Democratic Party, Ms. Hendricks’ attorney insisted that Patricia Todd should be disqualified because she did what every other candidate did and filed her forms with the Secretary of State’s office – as required by state law. Executive Director Jim Spearman testified that no candidate filed financial disclosures with the party.


The original contest filing referenced the state law and challenged Patricia’s victory on that basis. An amended contest was filed after the statutory deadline that changed the grounds for the challenge to party rules, and Ed Still made a motion that the amended contest filing be dismissed. It's currently under advisement, along with everything else.


Fairly early in the proceedings, both sides agreed to drop any dispute over the vote totals certified by the party and the Secretary of State’s office. Patricia’s 59-vote advantage stands. They also dropped any challenge based on confusion over endorsements. If you’re following along in the original contest filing, that means paragraphs 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, and 9 were rendered moot. Paragraph 4 was the only one still in contention (there is no paragraph 5).


So the question for the subcommittee was whether it will selectively enforce a rule that has been superceded by state law. Ed Still made a motion that the subcommittee dissolve itself since all of its members had been on the ballot and no member had complied with the rule. His motion was denied.


Ms. Hendricks’ attorney didn’t seem to get the point that disqualifying Patricia based on the old party rule would also disqualify Ms. Hendricks, not to mention that it would disqualify virtually the entire Democratic slate.


Ed Still made it clear in his closing that he knows Ms. Hendricks has powerful supporters, but he appealed to the committee to respect the will of the people. Bobby Segall reminded us that the party has suffered from the perception that elections can be overturned on the whim of a few people.


Jerome Tucker, who was by far the most vocal committee member and appeared to be biased toward Ms. Hendricks, disputed the contention that the Democratic Party had abandoned the rule on financial disclosures in favor of following state law. He kept saying that the law is the law, and it can’t be superceded unless it’s officially changed. Mr. Segall pointed out that Amendment 111 technically remains the law of Alabama. That amendment gives a parent the absolute right to refuse to send his or her child to school with children of another race. I believe it was superceded by Brown v. Board of Education.


The Hendricks people are asking for selective application of a rule that hasn’t been used in eighteen years, and Bobby Segall made it clear that we all realize this is about race. He asked us not to sweep that under the rug. He asked, "What are we going to look like if we overturn a fair election?" He asked the committee members to act like Democrats and stand up for voting rights.


The committee adjourned the hearing around 5 pm and started its deliberation. Patricia's attorneys expect that they will reach a decision tonight, and Mr. Segall made it clear that he thinks today's hearing was a setup. He expects the dispute to go to court. Goody. More bad press for Alabama and the Democratic Party.


Committee members included Amy Burks (state party vice-chair), Darrell Sinkfield, Jerome Tucker, Monica Arrington, and Glenn Allen. We were not given a written list, so I make no promises on the spelling, nor were we told who these people are or how they are qualified to serve on the committee. Mr. Still made reference during his argument that all of them were elected officials and were therefore in danger of disqualification. Mr. Segall said he knew them all and knew the political pressures they were facing.


I have done lots of previous posts on this mess, and you can read them here. For good background information on the election and the contest, read Kyle Whitmire's coverage in the Birmingham Weekly.


As soon as I hear the result, I'll post it.



Kathy's covering the Patricia Todd hearing today

Over at Birmingham Blues, Kathy has a couple of prelim posts up in advance of attending the hearing in Montgomery over the District 54 election contest. She's there now. Hopefully the fireworks haven't caused yet another cancellation, so we'll learn what happened there first hand.

Check these out:

* Birmingham News On Today's District 54 Hearing
* Off To Montgomery, Again


I guess these folks will be tuning in to 'Darwin's Deadly Legacy'

The WingNutDaily crowd is obviously on board with Talibangelist D. James Kennedy, who will be airing Darwin's Deadly Legacy, his slap-down of evolution that will air August 26-27 on the Coral Ridge Hour. (See my earlier post.)

Darwin and evolution are not only responsible for the Holocaust, according to Kennedy and these numnuts, but for all abortions as well. What a bunch of knob-ends.

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Report chronicles the state of the post-Katrina Gulf region

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"Despite promises from national leaders to ‘do what it takes’ to rebuild the Gulf, the region’s recovery has been left to move at a snail’s pace – with tragic results. Without a revived national commitment, the Gulf and its people won’t come back.”
-- Chris Kromm, co-author of the report and director of the IInstitute of Southern Studies
The good folks at the Institute of Southern Studies (and home of the great blog Facing South) has published, as part of its Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch project, a stunning report, "One Year after Katrina." (PDF).

The 96-page report tells the tale of the glacial pace of "progress" in the region, and the people who are still suffering long after the storm has passed. The study highlights the signs of progress that are there and outlines the issues that have stalled the recovery of the Gulf. The Gulf region cannot come back without a helluva change in thinking by elected officials.
* Lack of HOUSING still keeps tens of thousands of Gulf residents from coming back home. Aid for homeowners in Louisiana and Mississippi was approved 10 months after the storms, and none has been disbursed. Little money has been earmarked for rebuilding rental units—none in Mississippi— and rents are skyrocketing. Eighty per cent of public housing in New Orleans is still closed, despite minimal storm damage, and Mississippi residents learned that three coastal facilities will be shut down soon.

* Problems continue to plague SCHOOLS in the region, making it difficult for many families to return. Only 57 of the 117 public schools in New Orleans before Katrina are scheduled to open in the 2006-2007 school year.

* CONTRACTING SCANDALS and other special-interest dealings continue to plague the recovery. The Institute report finds $136.7 million in corporate fraud in Katrina-related contracts, and government investigators have highlighted contracts worth $428.7 million that are troubling due to lack of oversight or misappropriation. Altogether, the Institute finds that corporate contracting abuse has cost taxpayers 50 times more than widely-publicized scandals involving individuals wrongfully collecting assistance.

* Threats to the ENVIRONMENT are exposing residents to a wide range of toxins and making many think twice about returning to the region. Federal officials also have yet to commit the resources to restore coastal wetlands—the region’s best defense against future storms.
"One Year after Katrina" report (pdf):
http://www.reconstructionwatch.org/images/One_Year_After.pdf
Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch:
www.reconstructionwatch.org

Institute for Southern Studies:
www.southernstudies.org


Q of the day - technical difficulties

I made it to Delaware. Zipped through the security screenings without any additional scrutiny this time. At 6AM the terminal wasn't too busy.

We left about an hour late because of "technical difficulties." Some indicator light came on in the plane and so the mechanics futzed around as we waited in the terminal. Better on the ground than when we're in the air, I say. The delay dragged on long enough that some passengers had to be rerouted to other flights. The flight to Philadelphia was uneventful (no one managed to board with liquids -- hot or cold).

***

Q of the day: what was your worst travel experience that involved "technical difficulties"?

I know some folks who have flown on Third World airlines have stories that will make your hair curl.

***

When we finally took off around 8AM, the plane was half full. Oh well, the flight is only about 50 minutes, so it was enough for a nap. My brother and sister-in-law picked me up and I got to see their new house, which is within walking distance of the University of Delaware. It's a gorgeous day here.

Well, they have their internets up, so I'll be able to post a bit while in Delaware - thank god, they have broadband. My brother held out on tortuous dial-up for the longest time.


Utah state senator: Brown v. Board of Ed was wrong

Bigot Chris Buttars (R), who is the author of the state's marriage amendment, also wishes that he could toss out the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling desegregating the schools, since, in his eyes, it's an example of those out-of-control "activist judges."

His answer at the local level: a bill that would give the Senate the power to overturn the election of perceived "activist" judges and to toss them out of office if the legislature didn't like the rulings. He went on a KVNU radio show (actually two) and made an ass out of himself. (365gay):
During the radio interview host Tom Grover noted that courts historically have been used by minority groups "to ensure [their] rights are protected."

"I don't know of an example where the minority is being jeopardized by legislative action," Buttars replied. Grover then brought up the Kansas desegregation case that resulted in the busing of black students to white schools and vice versa.


"I think Brown v. Board of Education is wrong to begin with," Buttars shot back.

When Grover attempted to press him on the reply Buttars refused to be more specific, saying only "one day call me again and we'll take a half hour on that one."
How did this frightening man get elected?

As with most politicians who step in the poo and figure out that they have to scrape it off without anyone noticing, Buttars, who is also the author of a (failed) bill that would have banned high school gay-straight alliances (LGBTs are "tearing down the moral pillars of society", you know), dug a deeper hole when he appeared on another radio show to further "clarify" matters. I'll leave the description of this to Outside the Tent:
Today he was interviewed on KCPW and dug himself even deeper into a hole. Buttars not-so-brilliant attempt at damage control was to say that parts of Brown were good and other parts were bad. Of course, you might wonder what part of ending school segregation was bad. Well, according to Buttars, it was this:
There's some things that Brown vs. Board of Education did that was [sic] wonderful, as I mentioned, by getting some of these minority kids in schools with more money, but in a lot of ways, once again, it broke up the educational system that was designed to maximize the number of minority kids in many schools in the South - that was my concern."
That's right, kids. Brown was good because it put some black kids in white schools but bad because it broke up a system designed to keep most black kids in the same schools. Give Buttars a chance and he'll probably say that the bad thing about the Allied victory in WWII was it broke up a system designed to "maximize the number of Jews in many camps in Poland."
You can hear the radio interview at Outside the Tent as well.


Ta ta, for now

I'm going out of town (again!) today-Sun, this time to visit my brother and sister-in-law in Delaware.

That means going through the liquid and gel hideaway pageant in the air once again. It's a direct flight, so I'll only have two opportunities to see whether banned substances make it onboard. (See my earlier post on the Cinnabomber and Mountain Dew contraband shows I witnessed.)

As I announced yesterday, Kathy of Birmingham Blues will be posting on the Patricia Todd goings-on down in Alabama today.


George Allen finally apologizes to 'Macaca' target

After Virginia Senator George Allen and his campaign repeatedly lied about having apologized directly to S.R. Sidarth for calling him "macaca," the sh*tstorm of bad publicity (and tanking polls) surrounding the matter finally got so bad he did the right thing and picked up the phone and said he was sorry.
Virginia Sen. George Allen apologized directly to S.R. Sidarth yesterday, telling the 20-year-old Democratic campaign staffer that he was sorry for offending him with remarks that have generated nationwide criticism for being racially insensitive.

Allen's telephone call to Sidarth was the first direct contact between the two since Allen (R) was caught by Sidarth's video camera calling him a "macaca" and welcoming the Fairfax native to "America and the real world of Virginia." Sidarth said Allen told him that the apology was "from his heart."

"His main point was he was sorry he offended me," Sidarth, a fourth-year University of Virginia student, said in an interview later. "He realized how much he offended me from the comments I made in the media."

..."I still have some questions about why it took so long, but, yes, he did the right thing," Sidarth said. Asked whether he thought the apology was sincere, Sidarth declined to comment.
Unfortunately, Allen's campaign manager, Dick Wadhams, tried to spin this debacle into some sort of attack by the Left, a feeding frenzy -- uh, no one made Allen use the slur in the first place.
Charlie Cook, editor of the Cook Political Report, said the Allen campaign is pursuing a two-pronged strategy aimed at convincing some voters that Allen is sorry while motivating his base with attacks against liberals and the media.

"They need a better foil," Cook said. "They need to shift this into 'We're the persecuted.' It was a very, very calculated move."
Related:
* George Allen: the stale cracker


Bomb yes, penis pump no

OK. This guy has to be one of the dumbest dorks on the planet.You're getting screened in the airport and when your wiener pumping device is undergoing scrutiny, what might you decide to call it in the presence of your mom?

I'm sure saying "it's a bomb" would not be at the top of your list. But that's what happened...(AP):
Cook County prosecutors say a 29-year-old man traveling with his mother desperately didn't want her to know he'd packed a sexual aid for their trip to Turkey. So he told security it was a bomb, officials said.

Madin Azad Amin was stopped by officials on Aug. 16 after guards found an object in his baggage that resembled a grenade, prosecutors said.

...He later told officials he'd lied about the item because his mother was nearby and he didn't want her to hear that it was part of a penis pump, Scaduto said.


Blowhard Marcavage goes after Phillies

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Recently, the Atlanta Braves courted Daddy Dobson's Focus on the Anus, letting the org co-sponsor its' Christian 'Faith Day' and pass out anti-gay literature. That relationship lasted for only one game before some heat was turned on the baseball organization, and it cut Daddy loose.

In contrast, the Philadelphia Phillies actively court the gay market, holding "Gay Community Night." This raised the hackles of the local fundie, Repent America's director Michael Marcavage, who goes ape in the AFA's "news" rag, AgapePress.
A Christian ministry says the Philadelphia Phillies organization is helping to advance the homosexual agenda while discriminating against those who express biblical views on homosexuality.

For the last four years, the Major League Baseball franchise in the City of Brotherly Love has been sponsoring "Gay Community Night" at the ballpark. In 2003 and 2004, the organization kicked out members of the Philadelphia-based Christian group Repent America for displaying a banner that read, "Homosexuality is sin, Christ can set you free."

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...According to Repent America director Michael Marcavage, after pressure from homosexual activists last year, the Phillies changed their banner policy. According to the revised guidelines, the ballpark now prohibits all banners and signs that "bear a message that contains derogatory matter relating to ... sexual orientation," and also took steps to bar Repent America representatives from entering the ballpark.

"In fact," Marcavage notes, "the Phillies officials even went to the extreme of searching their databases for ticket purchases associated with Repent America to ensure that the access to us would be denied." In other words, he asserts, the Phillies organization has now declared that the biblical message of freedom from homosexuality through Jesus Christ is "derogatory," and those who conveyed that message in the past have apparently been declared unwelcome...Marcavage says he finds it heartbreaking that the Phillies franchise continues to expose children to "this perverse lifestyle" in what ought to be a family-friendly environment.
Also:
* Marcavage's Philly fundie freakshow (bleating about being harassed by a "lawless mob" of homosexuals at Philadelphia's Pride parade)


Oy, I've been tagged

So this is the thanks JackGoff gives me!? ;) OK. I'm in, so here are my responses...

1... Things that scare me

Flying roaches (I killed that one)
People I'm driving behind who leave their turn signal on for miles at a time

2...People who make me laugh
Shakes Sis
Peter LaBarbera
James Hartline

Freepers

3...Things I hate the most
Funerals
Riding in the crowded subway next to someone who hasn't bathed
People writing a check for 2 bucks in an express line in the grocery store

4...Things I don't understand
Bush voters...

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Vernon Robinson (and any of the black Rethugs in Project 21)


Jesus-head rings

5...Things I'm doing right now
Packing for a trip
Blogging


Acting as a rawhide dispenser for Tonka, Bailey and Chloe

6...Things I want to do before I die
Get back to The Big Island of Hawaii and stay for a month
Retire and blog full time
Witness civil marriage equality come to pass

7... Things I can do


Treat my baby well :)
Beat my friends at Trivial Pursuit (brain full of useless info)
Cook a delicious breakfast

8... Ways to describe my personality
Patient
Witty
Eccentric
Introverted

9... Things I can't do
Home repairs of consequence
Work on the car (aside from washing it)
Sing (well)

10...Things I think you should listen to
anything by Anita Baker
your pets when they need to go out
NPR

11...Things you should never listen to
Any Bush family member
Rush Limbaugh
Any "salesperson" at a mall kiosk accosting you to pimp a product

12...Things I'd like to learn
Spanish
how to sing (better)
how to find a way to spend less time dealing with stupid people

13...Favorite foods
Tater tots
Spinach
Broccoli
Salmon / Steak (tie)

14...Beverages I drink regularly
English Breakfast tea
Diet Sprite
Crystal Light lemonade

15...Shows I watched as a kid
Mission Impossible
Night Stalker
Star Trek: TOS
Brady Bunch

16...People I'm tagging (to do this meme)
Kathy
Paul in SF (to make him update his blog!)
Callie
Sarah in Chicago
Jay


Open thread

Link and blogwhore away...

***

Praise Jeebus -- in the womb. More holy stargazing, this time in a freaking sonogram.
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After seven months of a difficult pregnancy, Laura Turner looked anxiously at the latest ultrasound picture of her unborn son.

She was reassured to see not just the baby sucking his thumb - but what she believes is an image of Jesus watching over him.
Does it ever stop?

Don't forget the various appearances of Jeebus and the Blessed Virgin Mary sightings in pasta dishes, burnt toast, tree trunks, water stains, and dripped chocolate.

Another hat tip to Shakes Sis (and Blondesense) for the latest insanity.


'Distracted, disjointed and dumbed-down'


Yes, that would be the man pictured above. That isn't from some lib, it's MSNBC talking head conservative Joe Scarborough, who actually ran a segment on his show last week called "Is Bush an Idiot?".

He goes into more detail on the mental meltdown of Dear Leader on his blog, and doesn't hold back. Joe thinks the best course of action is to simply hide Bush away for the rest of his term to avoid embarrassing the GOP.

...the George Bush of 2006 seems to be a far cry from the man I spoke with in 2001, or the back-slapping governor who charmed the hell out of me when I visited him in the Texas governor’s mansion in 1999.

These days the President seems distracted, disjointed and dumbed-down in press conferences. His jokes fall flat and are often inappropriate.

And like Reagan, George W. Bush seems to be getting worse with age instead of better.

...In the case of Bush I wonder whether there no one in the West Wing that can tell their boss he needs to spend more time in front of a teleprompter and less time watching ESPN.

Has anyone told him that making jokes about pig roasts after being asked about the bombing of the Beirut airport is not how a Commander in Chief acts in front of the international press corps?

Has anyone considered keeping the President away from the press altogether if he is no longer up to the task of answering questions?
Scarborough revisted his "Idiot" segment on his show and got slammed by a winger for attacking the president on his mental faculties -- or lack thereof. Jamie Holly @ Crooks and Liars, which as the video.
Terry Holt seemed to be rather upset with the whole "idiot" thing. True, Scarborough is a political reporter and that would make him the "scum of the earth" according to Terry. What is really interesting though is how defensive Holt gets over people questioning the mental capacity of Bush and denounces it by saying America doesn’t want to hear arguments asking if the President is an idiot or not. I wonder if he gave the same criticism when right wing pundits called our former President a rapist?


'Former homo' Hartline torches Crazy Lou Sheldon

CaliTaliban "ex-gay" freakshow James Hartline goes for the jugular of unhinged Traditional Values Coalition head Lou Sheldon in the latest installment of "The James Hartline Report."

The screed, entitled, "Apostasy 101: How Rev. Lou Sheldon & Traditional Values Coalition Betrayed Christianity in 2006 California Governor's Race," is one satisfying train wreck to read.


One major Christian organization is now demonstrating that the great falling away, known in most Christian churches as the great apostasy, is well underway. Traditional Values Coalition claims as its organizational slogan, "Empowering People Of Faith Through Knowledge." Founded in 1980 by the Reverend Lou Sheldon, TVC claims to be the largest non-denominational grassroots church lobby in America. Rev. Sheldon and his group claim on their website to speak on behalf of 43,000 churches in America, emphasizing "the restoration of values needed to maintain strong, unified families, focusing on issues such as religious liberties, marriage, the right to life, the homosexual agenda, pornography, family tax relief and education."

A bombshell was dropped this week during the California State Republican Convention when it was reported in the press that a longtime Sheldon staffer is now working for the reelection of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, one of the biggest anti-christian supporters of homosexuality and abortion in the American government. Hypocrisy and betrayal are not strong enough terms to describe Sheldon and his staffer's great sellout of the cause of Christ on this matter. Only the term apostasy will do.

Hints of Rev. Sheldon's betrayal of the cause of Christ really began to unfold in 2005 when he began fawning over Governor Schwarzenegger's appointment of lesbian abortion activist Susan Kennedy as the governor's Chief of Staff. In a move that reinforced Schwazenegger's rabid support of the radical gay agenda, Kennedy, who lives with her lesbian sex partner, was chosen by the governor to become the most powerful gay activist in his administration.

...Sheldon's soft pedaling on Kennedy would seem to run counter to the regular press relseases that the outspoken minister publishes regarding his stand against the radical gay agenda. Why would Sheldon build an organization that stands against homosexuality and abortion, but then compromise that same stand when dealing with the Republican Party and the liberal anti-christian governor of California? Perhaps money may play a pivotal role in Sheldon's fluctuating position on morality.
Oh, he digs deeper; this man is pissed at Sheldon, who has to be one of the most virulent homo-haters out there, seeing homo pedophiles around every corner. Here's a refresher on some of Lou's scare tactics on his site, look at the green-tinted pedophile in the banner...:



Hartline bleats on:
It seems that the Rev. Lou Sheldon has granted himself temporary amnesia on all of Schwarzenegger's homosexual and abortion activism. It would also seem that the amnesia is spreading to his staff as well. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Ben Lopez, the Traditional Values Coalition's state lobbyist, has taken a temporary leave of absence from the ministry so that he can work directly for the Schwarzenegger reelection campaign
Wingnut Lopez, who was supposed to shore up the governor's relationship with the fundies, was just fired from the Governator's campaign, so Hartline's probably doing the happy dance right now. But he doesn't let up on Crazy Lou...
It is clear, according to numerous media sources, that Rev. Sheldon is now taking all of the database on Christians that he has gathered over the years via his public campaigns against homosexuality and turning it over to the California Republican Party to access for the reelection of a governor that has destroyed the Christian moral foundation of the state of California. Sheldon's betrayal to the cause of Christ is one of great modern portrayals of Judas in church history and the long term effect on Christian credibility is overwhelming and devastating.
Check out Hartline's bio if you click over there. The man really needs to team up with Porno Petey (who recently left/was booted from the Illinois Family Institute)...
James Hartline is the least likely man to change a city, but that is exactly what he is doing. From fighting illegal porn stores to exposing the corruption within the homosexual agenda, James is being used to confront the powers of darkness in San Diego, California.
Hat tip, Autumn

***

Wait! I have some bonus Hartline batsh*ttery. He's over at AgapePress STILL complaining about San Diego Pride -- this time over students who were taken to the event by teachers.
He believes these pro-homosexual events are generally pornographic and that they are frequented by militant sodomites.
This is evidenced, the Christian activist says, "by the numerous triple-X porn companies that have vendors [at the San Diego Pride events], the distribution of condoms and sexual lubricants, and also just the really perverted sex classes that go on to teach people about S&M sex."

For example, Hartline recalls, the San Diego Pride organizers had a tent exhibit this year called 'the Leather Room.' In this tent, he says, "they actually were demonstrating piercings and other really grotesque types of sado-masochism."

Hartline says he feels the teachers with the San Diego Cooperative Charter School exhibited "gross disregard for the safety of children" when they brought students to the city's 2006 "gay pride" parade. The charter school is a K-8 institution in the San Diego Unified School District, and he believes the teachers had no business bringing young children into such a depraved and pornographic environment.


Reaching the bottom of the barrel

When you read the details of the Pentagon's move to deploy military personnel out of the Individual Ready Reserve in this Stars and Stripes article, you realize how desperate the situation is.
The Marine Corps will mobilize up to 2,500 Marines in the Individual Ready Reserve to go downrange, said Guy A. Stratton, head of Manpower and Mobilization Plans. Those called up can expect to be mobilized for 12 to 18 months, with a maximum service time of two years, Marine officials said.

Servicemembers in the IRR have left active duty but still have time on their obligation to serve. Unlike other reserve component troops, they do not drill.

For the past few years, the Marines have used volunteers from the IRR, but the number of Marines volunteering to be mobilized has decreased over the past two years, and now the Marine Corps is about 1,200 Marines short of its needs, Stratton said. “Most of the Marines when we call and talk to them will have told us that, ‘If you need me, call me, but right now, I just, I’m doing other things in my life, so I just don’t want to volunteer right now,’ ” Stratton said.

Of the roughly 59,000 Marines in the IRR, about 35,000 are eligible to be mobilized because the Marine Corps is excluding those who have already volunteered for duty or who are serving their first or fourth years in the IRR, Stratton said.

He said the Marine Corps is looking at mobilizing Marines in the following specialties: communications, engineers, military police, intelligence, aviation mechanics, truck drivers and infantry.
Back in May, I interviewed former Marine Corps Sergeant Brian Fricke, who now works with Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, about the possibility of a draft (this was prior to my liveblogging of SLDN's annual dinner).

Q: Can they, in theory, recall you into service now that you're out since you are individual ready reserves?

A: They could, but it's not likely. Typically they call active reservists. We have an active component of active reservists. Those are the ones that you hear are being deployed. IRRs are there on-call, if needed. A lot of IRRs don't PT, don't maintain their uniforms any more, and when they get a phone call, they might not be eligible anymore...Really, the only reason I could see them needing me is if they were fighting on several fronts and they really scraping the bottom of the barrel, because we are the last folks, and then after us, then it's the draft.

Q: You're out now. So would they still call you up?

A: They would call me up regardless. I think that if we're in that situation, where they need to call us...I don't think they would be picking and choosing who they are calling back if we're really in that situation.
I don't know when we're going to hit that draft wall, but yesterday's news makes it pretty clear that Rummy and Co. haven't had enough warm bodies on active duty to deploy for Dear Leader's Big Global Adventures for some time now.

The Army is in the same leaky boat, btw. Stars and Stripes reports that half of IRR members who were given call up orders in 2004 asked for an exemption or delay and hundreds of them failed to show up at deployment stations after receiving orders.

They can't paper this stuff over anymore.

Also:
* SLDN's blog, Freedom to Serve, comments on this, and encourages you to write members of Congress.

* Check out Musings of Life, Law and Gender on SLDN's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repeal toolkit for law student activists.


Fundie D. James Kennedy's 'special' on Darwin and Hitler

More flaming piles of dung-infused propaganda from the flat earth society -- D. James Kennedy, the Talibangelist titan of Florida-based Coral Ridge Ministries (and the Center for "Christian" Statesmanship) will attempt to give evolution a 60-minute beat-down this week with his TV special, Darwin's Deadly Legacy. He's going to tie the evil perpetrated by Hitler to his belief in evolution, thus, of course, extending the evil to the theory of evolution itself.
This groundbreaking documentary from Dr. Kennedy and Coral Ridge Ministries, looks into the chilling social impact of Darwin's theory of evolution -- and the mounting evidence that Darwin had it wrong on the origin of life.

This 60 minute special featuring Richard Weikart, author of From Darwin to Hitler, Lee Strobel, author of The Case for a Creator; Jonathan Wells, author of Icons of Evolution; Phillip Johnson, author of Darwin on Trial; Michael Behe, author of Darwin's Black Box, and Ian Taylor, author of In the Minds of Men will show why evolution is a bad idea that should be discarded into the dustbin of history.
Kennedy has whack job luminaries like plagiarist Ann Coulter to opine with gems like this:

"I never knew about the link between Darwin and Hitler until after reading Richard Weikart's book. [Hitler] was applying Darwinism. He thought the Aryans were the fittest and he was just hurrying natural selection along."
The Hitler connection didn't sit well with the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) or one of the guests interviewed for the program (and since scuttled from the promotional line up above, according to Pharyngula) -- Francis Collins, director of the Human Genome Project. Oops.
After being contacted by the ADL about his name being used to promote Kennedy's project, Dr. Collins said he is "absolutely appalled by what Coral Ridge Ministries is doing. I had NO knowledge that Coral Ridge Ministries was planning a TV special on Darwin and Hitler, and I find the thesis of Dr. Kennedy's program utterly misguided and inflammatory," he told ADL.

ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman said in a statement:"This is an outrageous and shoddy attempt by D. James Kennedy to trivialize the horrors of the Holocaust. Hitler did not need Darwin to devise his heinous plan to exterminate the Jewish people. Trivializing the Holocaust comes from either ignorance at best or, at worst, a mendacious attempt to score political points in the culture war on the backs of six million Jewish victims and others who died at the hands of the Nazis.

"It must be remembered that D. James Kennedy is a leader among the distinct group of 'Christian Supremacists' who seek to "reclaim America for Christ" and turn the U.S. into a Christian nation guided by their strange notions of biblical law."
Kennedy's response:
We have had nearly 150 years of the theory of Darwinian evolution. And what has it brought us—whether Darwin intended it or not? Millions of deaths, the destruction of those deemed ‘inferior,’ the devaluing of human life, and increasing hopelessness. Darwin’s legacy has been deadly indeed
The fun airs August 26-27 on the Coral Ridge Hour.

Hat tip, Coturnix.


Fart boy in chief

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

And no, that's not a typo. I don't mean frat boy in chief. Read and weep for our country:
He loves to cuss, gets a jolly when a mountain biker wipes out trying to keep up with him, and now we're learning that the first frat boy loves flatulence jokes. A top insider let that slip when explaining why President Bush is paranoid around women, always worried about his behavior. But he's still a funny, earthy guy who, for example, can't get enough of fart jokes. He's also known to cut a few for laughs, especially when greeting new young aides, but forget about getting people to gas about that.
Just a reminder: this is the same man who just did this:
President Bush has authorized the U.S. Marine Corps to recall 2,500 troops to active duty because there are not enough volunteers returning for duty in Afghanistan and Iraq, Marine commanders announced Tuesday.
And let's drag out these golden oldies to remind us of what a gem we have in Dear Leader. He brings a touch of class to each and every occasion...


There's video as well.

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* A touch of class part 73


* We can't send him abroad


* Bush's dome-rubbing fetish


* Bush using a woman's shirt to wipe his glasses (video)

H/t Bill @ DKos (Cheers & Jeers).


Paramount: Ta ta, Tom

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"As much as we like him personally, we thought it was wrong to renew his deal. His recent conduct has not been acceptable to Paramount."
-- Sumner Redstone, Viacom chairman, on Paramount's decision to cut him loose
Oy. In a town known for spinning a good yarn to explain away all sorts of controversial decisions, it looks like there's no mo' love for Cruise Control.
Paramount Pictures will end its longstanding relationship with Cruise/Wagner Productions, actor Tom Cruise's production company, citing his erratic behavior, according to a report published Tuesday.

Sumner Redstone, CEO of Paramount owner Viacom, said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal that Cruise's controversial behavior over the last year - including advocating for Scientology and denouncing the use of antidepressant drugs - was the cause for the move. The movie company is concerned that Cruise's behavior hurt his most recent film, "Mission: Impossible 3," said the report.
H/t, David R.


Idaho Supreme Court says Separation of Church and State is up for a vote


"We just put it up to a vote and the majority has decided that all public parks must be covered in little white crosses... or else the baby Jesus will cry!"

Sometimes I'm asked, "what's with the whole 'radical' thing?" The truth is that when I was in high school, there were five Russes. There was Redhead Russ, Science Russ, Football Russ, Sophomore Russ, and me. I was part of a group called "The Radicals", therefore I was Radical Russ. And the silly Eighties nickname stuck.

The quotation marks, I always joke, are to indicate irony. I'm actually pretty mainstream, for a liberal, anyway. Only two tattoos and two piercings per ear, and neither of those is even wide enough for a toothpick to fit through. Heck, for Portland, Oregon, I'm downright centrist. I like guns, red meat, leather, fast food, football, UFC, and the sexual objectification of women who choose to be sexually objectified -- not much your average tie-dyed Portland Birkenstock liberal would agree with. So the quotes were to indicate that I'm only "radical" in the context of the deep red state I grew up in.

Perhaps that explains part of my fascination with Princess Barbie Talibania, the resident wingnut-in-charge back in my hometown of Boise, Idaho. Pam first noticed her when she was protesting the movie Kinsey, and I've followed up on her many exploits, including her 30%-70% loss in the Boise City Council race, her fight to remove The Joy of Gay Sex from the Nampa Public Library, her lukewarm denouncement of Mel Gibson's anti-Semitic remarks (while defending The Passion of the Christ as not anti-Semitic), her protests of The Vagina Monologues presented at Boise State University, her cheerleading for Justice Scalito (she didn't utter "up or down vote" even once for Hariet Miers), her badgering a local official to say the Pledge of Allegiance, and so on, including stops on the Terri Schaivo Publicity Train, fighting the distribution of condoms to Olympic athletes in Salt Lake, and her never-ending crusade to allow the government to force women to breed.

OK, maybe another large part of it is that fake-tanned sexually-repressed hyper-religious blond virgins turn me on. They're like Rubik's Cubes, Tootsie Roll Pops, and cocaine-crazed mongooses all rolled up into one. (Don't even try to understand that one... I'm not even sure I do.)

Still, I keep a close eye on Barbie to remind myself of the culture I came from. Barbie doesn't scare me so much as the fact that she has major support and is considered a go-to resource for the Idaho mainstream media. After three years in deep blue, highly diverse Portland (a city with more colleges than the entire state of Idaho) I sometimes forget that more of America is like Boise than Boston, Berkeley, or even Beaverton.

One of the "culture war" issues that first grabbed her headlines has to do with the removal of a Ten Commandments monument in one of Boise's public parks. It had stood since the 1960s and honestly, as a lifelong Boise resident, I never even knew it was there.

Then came Fred Phelps, the "man" from Topeka, Kansas, who is single-handedly keeping Barbie and Idaho out of the #1 slot on the Top Ten Christian Fundametalist Hate Mongers list. He noticed that Boise was using taxpayer money to support religious scripture on public lands, so he wanted to erect a monument of his own to Matthew Shepard with some Leviticus on it, presumably not the shellfish or mixed-fiber clothing stuff. The Boise City Council, suddenly remembering that Idaho does belong to a country with a First Amendment and wanting to avoid the expense of fighting Phelpsbots in the courtroom, removed the monument and did the sensible thing of installing it on the grounds of a church.

You can imagine the rest of the story: the wingnuts get riled and theocrats get 'em focused and there's a lot of hoopin' and a-hollerin' and lawsuits and eventually a sensible Supreme Court gits all activist-judgy and reminds everyone there is a separation of church and state in this country. The wingnuts bleat some more about letting the will of the people decide how we should parcel out civil rights in a secular country (but never about medical marijuana or assisted suicide!) and are eventually distracted by a couple of boys kissing or a longhair burning a flag or a story of a missing white girl.

Nope. You don't know Idaho like I know Idaho.
(AgapePress) - Idaho's highest court has ruled that voters in the state's capital will be able to decide whether they want a Ten Commandments monument in a public park.

Two years ago a Ten Commandments monument was taken out of Julia Davis Park in Boise and moved to a church. Several members of the City Council said the monument violated the so-called "separation of church and state." Supporters of the monument, led by a group known as the Keep the Commandments Coalition, submitted 19,000 signatures of registered voters seeking to put the issue on the ballot, but the City Council refused the request.

A lower court sided with the Council, and that ruling was appealed. As Brandi Swindell of the Keep the Commandments Coalition says, the Idaho Supreme Court has now reversed that ruling in a 4-1 decision. Swindell says the ruling is more than a victory for just her group.

"It is vindication for the good citizens of Boise and for the state of Idaho," she says. "But more importantly, this has incredible national significance because this is a huge win for democracy, a huge win for voters' rights, [and] a huge win for religious freedom and religious liberty."

According to a press release from the Coalition, a voter referendum on the matter was all it had requested from the beginning of the controversy. The group is confident the monument poses no constitutional problem, pointing out the Decalogue can be found in four different places in the U.S. Supreme Court building.

According to Swindell, the ruling from the Idaho Supreme Court breaks new ground on a national scale.

"As far as we can tell, this is the very first voter initiative that will go to the ballot in which the people will vote on the public posting of the Ten Commandments," she says -- adding that the group's success has attracted others' attention. "I've already been in discussions with national leaders in Washington, DC, and we are strategizing on how what we have done in Boise, Idaho, can be implemented in cities and communities around the nation."

She says the Coalition is hopeful other cities will follow their lead and hold similar initiatives. The Boise initiative should be on the November ballot.
A 4-1 Supreme Court decision saying that the majority should decide whether Christian scripture is placed in a public park! Well, not exactly. The legal minutiae involve whether the City Council ignoring a public petition is OK because the Council's act was an administrative matter not subject to initiative (as Justice Trout dissented... yes, Idaho has a Justice Trout), or whether the Council must allow any crazy-assed initiative on the ballot, which can then be struck down or ignored later (as the majority concurred). So get ready for the great Ten Commandments vote in Boise, which will generate tons of media attention, which will mobilize conservative voters, then it will probably win in a landslide, and then it will then be challenged by the ACLU and a dozen other groups, which will cause the courts to issue a stay on implementing the law, which will keep the media spotlight going, and then it will rise to the US Supreme Court, which will then strike down the law, and then the wingnuts go even wingnuttier about "activist judges", and there's a huge religious voter turnout in '08 as other cities and states craft more wingnut legislation to challenge the "black robed rulers"... and God... and the Bible...

And that's the optimistic scenario. It doesn't matter that the Supreme Court's deicision hinged on technical issues. In the 21st century, my old hometown is voting on funding the display of Judeo Christian scripture in the public square. Am I too "radical" for thinking that's un-American?


How's that war going, Chimpy?

Thousands of Marines face involuntary recalls.
The U.S. Marine Corps said Tuesday it has been authorized to recall thousands of Marines to active duty, primarily because of a shortage of volunteers for duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Up to 2,500 Marines will be brought back at any one time, but there is no cap on the total number of Marines who may be forced back into service in the coming years. The call-ups will begin in the next several months.

This is the first time the Marines have had to use the involuntary recall since the early days of the Iraq combat. The Army has ordered back about 14,000 soldiers since the start of the war.
Pair that with this statement:

"What's happened [in Iraq] is nothing short of a miracle."
–-Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK), Tulsa World, 8/22/06
Yes. It all makes sense now. More from Senate Majority Project:
In a wide-ranging interview in today’s Tulsa World, in which Inhofe also reiterates his support for the "Bridge to Nowhere" as "one of the few things in Washington that works," gets wistful for the Cold War and claims that global warming is merely a front for "international economic movements"(??), Inhofe saves his most insane salvos for the situation in Iraq.

"What's happened there is nothing short of a miracle," said the Senator, who is also very proud to tell you that in the recorded history of his family, there has never been a divorce or homosexual relationship, and that if you believe in global warming, well, you’re sort of like a Nazi.


Those wild and crazy Baptists

"A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became sinner".
-- scripture quoted in a letter to 81-year-old Mary Lambert, who was booted from adult Sunday school position because she's a woman.
A lot of you sent this one in. I actually saw the CNN story about this when getting dressed yesterday. It was unbelievable. The pastor of First Baptist Church in Watertown, NY, Rev. Timothy LaBouf sounded like a dumbass, trying to defend the church's position. It was one of those times when a "no comment" would have sufficed. He was not convincing. (CNN):
The Rev. Timothy LaBouf, who also serves on the Watertown City Council, issued a statement saying his stance against women teaching men in Sunday school would not affect his decisions as a city leader in Watertown, where all five members of the council are men but the city manager who runs the city's day-to-day operations is a woman.

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"I believe that a woman can perform any job and fulfill any responsibility that she desires to" outside of the church, LaBouf wrote Saturday.

Mayor Jeffrey Graham, however, was bothered by the reasons given for Lambert's dismissal. "If what's said in that letter reflects the councilman's views, those are disturbing remarks in this day and age," Graham said. "Maybe they wouldn't have been disturbing 500 years ago, but they are now."
Let's see, do you really think his beliefs have no influence on his decisions for Watertown?


Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund to back Patricia Todd



As the ugly fight over out lesbian Patricia Todd's effort to hold on to her win in the Alabama House District 54 Dem primary continues, the good folks at the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund are on board to lend support.
Despite Todd’s ability to win the most votes twice, a formal challenge to the election was filed by Hendricks' mother-in-law. That challenge has now been tainted by powerful party officials, disappointed by the election results, seeking to improperly influence the decision of a panel that will hear evidence in the matter, according to reports. There is no Republican opponent vying for the seat in November, so Todd's primary win would make her the state's first-ever openly gay elected official.

"Democracy means nothing if backroom deals can change the outcome of a fair election. The people have spoken, but party power brokers are insisting on having the last word. That's un-American," said Chuck Wolfe, President and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund.
It looks like no matter what the decision is in Montgomery on Thursday, this is sadly, likely to end up in court as the race-baiting, homophobic, and backroom strongarm tactics swirl around the backers of challenger Gaynell Hendricks.

Read earlier posts on the Todd-Hendricks race.


***

NOTE: Ace blogger Kathy of Birmingham Blues will be on board to post her on-the-scene coverage of the Thursday hearings -- and all the follow-up -- right here at the Blend! Many thanks, Kathy!


The family values of fundie Randall Terry

Gee, Randall Terry's adopted children, including a gay son -- and daughter who had a child out of wedlock -- are conspicuously missing from his campaign web site photo as he runs for a state senate seat in FL. (365gay):
Among the conservative Christian's pledges are preserving traditional marriage and opposing gay adoptions. He has touted efforts to stop abortions. His campaign mailers sum up the value he puts on family: they show a picture with his wife, a daughter and three grinning young sons taken before a fourth was born this summer.

But Terry's adopted son Jamiel says the picture is missing two people: he and his sister Tila, also adopted. Both have been estranged from Terry since Jamiel came out as a gay man and Tila had a child out of wedlock.

Jamiel Terry said the self-image that his father is crafting and the campaign message about strong families ignores part of his own family history. He said voters have a right to know about that.

"He is very big on image," Jamiel Terry said. "In a large way Tila and I mess up that image."

..."He has tried to say abortion should not exist because families and churches should step in," Jamiel Terry said. "When his own daughter is pregnant, he refuses to help her."


Visibility counts

Head over to Keith Boykin's pad for Black LGBT Bloggers Flex Their Muscles (he kindly mentions the Blend there). He cites the acknowledgment of overall growing influence of blogs in affecting change when it comes to political activism, and how that has extended to LGBT blogs.
In recent years, LGBT bloggers like Andrew Sullivan, Doug Ireland, Michael Petrelis and Michael Rogers have had a major impact on public discourse, both nationally and internationally. Rogers, for example, has used his Web site, BlogActive.com, to out closeted public officials who threaten the gay community. U.S. Congressman Edward Schrock was forced out of office because of Rogers’s disclosure, and Sen. Rick Santorum’s aide, Robert Traynham, a black gay man, became another target. (Perhaps that explains why Santorum signed onto a recent gay-friendly anti-discrimination letter, before he retracted his position later.)
That's an impressive first wave, and now we're seeing the emergence of LGBT black bloggers in several high-profile and effective campaigns that represent another wave of blogosphere influence. One example - the campaign by black LGBT bloggers and allies to make LIFEbeat, the music industry’s AIDS charity, realize that the selection of homophobes Beenie Man and TOK to perform at an AIDS benefit concert was ill-advised (considering the artists call for the murder of gays and lesbians) -- it swiftly led to its cancellation and admission by the organization that there are better ways to reach out to educate segments of the community about HIV/AIDS that are also supportive of the black gay community.
Bloggers have also helped to spark a broader new activism and political awareness in the black LGBT community. Bestselling novelist E. Lynn Harris focused his most recent book on the decidedly political issue of homophobia in the black church. A group in Chicago led a protest of anti-gay rapper DMX when he came to town. And residents of Chicago called a local black radio station to complain after the station refused to allow singer Jody Watley to talk about a performance at the Gay Games in July.
Why does this visibility matter? One big reason is that homophobia in the black community, in particular, goes under-reported and almost completely ignored in the white LGBT blogosphere. It's sad, but true and reflects the problem we often chat here about at the Blend. It has less to do with racism and more to do with the discomfort of predominantly white-run organizations and politicians in dealing with race overall.

They fear calling out bigotry in the black community -- as if tolerating intolerance in any community should be the status quo. They can call out a Falwell or Dobson on homophobia, but not a Willie Wilson, a Creflo Dollar, or Keith Butler in Michigan because they don't want the race card tossed out -- it's easier to let black LGBT citizens twist in the wind and fend for themselves when attacked from within their own community than to deal with discomfort about race.

Black and gay bloggers are, obviously, stepping up to the plate in light of the dearth of public support in the dominant gay/straight culture to address black homobigotry. It's good to see the visibility, and sad that there isn't more blogging in the dominant culture on the many rich bigoted black pastor targets, for instance.

The black community, in many ways, is still in a state of denial about the existence of black LGBT individuals. "Gay," to them, is still largely considered part of white culture only. And it is, in many ways, if you consider the MSM image of what "gay" looks like. It gives these black bigots a pass to remain ignorant, and well, if no one is calling them out on it, why should they confront their hypocrisy?.

Out and visible black LGBT bloggers taking stands makes it impossible for them to get a free pass. We've got to start somewhere. Now who will join us?

Race is a third rail topic in the blogosphere, as I've said many times before. We can endlessly comment on gay issues without a thought, but when it comes to race, clamming up has always been the trend, though. I do hope that here on the Blend you have found it a safe and fair space to discuss the topic, because the goal of civil equality knows no color. We all have to work together, ask the "dumb" questions on race, and get it all out on the table to move forward. The real enemies are the culture warriors who love nothing more than to see us at each others' throats while they slide into elective office and try to remove all of our rights.

***

What do you think is going on right now in the Patricia Todd dustup in Alabama? It's an ugly confrontation with the intersection of race and sexual orientation that is ignoring fairness and logic in favor of tired political race games. Why must an election be in jeopardy of being overturned because the candidate that won isn't the right color (or orientation)? It's a perfect example of why the Right loves a mess like this. Why look -- as the groups who should be allies working together to fight the wingnuts are in a sad battle against each other -- the Freepi are in heaven.

Actual Freeper Quotes™

Poverty and homosexual agenda pimps scratching each others eyes out. Just a "normal" day in the modern American democrat party. Although it might be unfair to categorize Gaynell Hendricks in the al sharpton/jesse jackson vein, but given todays democrats, he probably is with the sharpton/jesse jackson poverty pimp wing.

If this keeps up, I'm going to run out of popcorn.

An unintended consequence of the liberal multiculti's balkanizing into identity groups? I just love it when moonbats self destruct!

Last Thursday, Gaynell Hendricks held a press conference in front of the Jefferson County Courthouse where her supporters in her plain sight accused white people of stealing the election for Todd. The modern American democrat party, it's not the issues that count, it's the color of your skin or sexual proclivities, that matter.

Cynthia McKinney has some time on her hands now. I wonder which candidate she would support.....

Wait till the Hispanics get political power in the Democrat Party - socialism, Catholic, anti gay and look down blacks for not being as hardworking as they are. You will need a factory of popcorn to see gay, black, hispanic fighting.

...this is why we should ALWAYS try to put forth candidates even in hard-to-reach districts. A Black Republican could take advantage of this situation (and in AL, the legislative terms are 4 years rather than the usual 2).

The GOP should present candidates and fund them, because it is right. The returns may be a long time happening, or never happen, but I don't care. It is a matter of sending out the message that ever voter matters to a party, and they wish to engage in a civil conversation. It is almost a moral issue to me.

I mean, this particular race could be a gold-mine opportunity for us. The one group of people more anti-gay than your average religious Conservative are Blacks. Having a White lesbian as the standard-bearer in a Black district IF we had a Black Republican candidate could yield us a pick-up opportunity. It'll still be hard, but not impossible.

"Todd, who defeated Gaynell Hendricks, a black candidate in a runoff election last month goes before a Democratic Party subcommittee tomorrow (Tuesday) to defend her 59-vote runoff win in House District 54."

If she won the runoff how can a party defeat the will of the people?

"Having a White lesbian as the standard-bearer in a Black district IF we had a Black Republican candidate could yield us a pick-up opportunity. It'll still be hard, but not impossible."
This is The Base. We all have a vested interest in battling bigotry together, no matter where it exists, for this reason alone.

Also:
* New Black Gay Ads: "I Am Gay" run in NYC to educate on HIV/AIDS. It launches today.


When the Levees Broke

Monday, August 21, 2006

"New Orleans is fighting for its life. These are not people who will disappear quietly - they're accustomed to hardship and slights, and they'll fight for New Orleans. This film will showcase the struggle for New Orleans by focusing on the profound loss, as well as the indomitable spirit of New Orleaneans."
-- Spike Lee
Spike Lee's documentary on Katrina, NOLA and the whole debacle, When the Levees Broke, airs tonight and tomorrow on HBO. It's on now (9 PM ET). From the HBO site:
As the world watched in horror, Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans on August 29, 2005. Like many who watched the unfolding drama on television news, director Spike Lee was shocked not only by the scale of the disaster, but by the slow, inept and disorganized response of the emergency and recovery effort. Lee was moved to document this modern American tragedy, a morality play witnessed by people all around the world. The result is WHEN THE LEVEES BROKE: A REQUIEM IN FOUR ACTS. The film is structured in four acts, each dealing with a different aspect of the events that preceded and followed Katrina's catastrophic passage through New Orleans.
The documentary airs in its entirety on Tuesday, August 29 from 8:00 PM-midnight -- the first anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

***

Scout Prime at First Draft emailed me about a video she did that's worth watching, The Great Deluge: Tom & Jen's Story. of a St. Bernard Parish couple who recounted what occurred when the flood waters hit their home during Katrina.



Scout: "Next will be how they saved their elderly neighbors stuck in their attic. Finally how they were evacuated. It is compelling and very detailed and even humorous at times. I doubt people have heard a Katrina story in such depth."

Here are parts Two and Three.


This is not a joke

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PJs for Jeebus. Thus begins the indoctrination of the "Christian" youth. Visit the site if you dare. The mission of the company:
The whole Armor of God Pajama set will help your children to depend on God to protect them from their fears, doubts, and uncertainties at night so their sleep can be restful and peaceful.
Get the togs for $39.95.

Hat tip, Shakes Sis (who was tipped by oddjob).


Can't Alabama Dems just let Patricia Todd's win stand?

The race-baiting and stupidity of the behavior of the Alabama Dems regarding the Patricia Todd win (by 59 votes) over Gaynell Hendricks in the July 18 primary runoff for the seat in the District 54 race continues.

Kathy @ Birmingham Blues is keeping tabs on the activities of Joe Reed, chairman of the Alabama Democratic Conference and vice chairman of the Democratic Party and his attempt to undermine the choice voters made to elect Todd by supporting the challenge to her win. There is, sadly, a history of this state party trying to manipulate the results of a primary.

In an editorial in The Birmingham News, editor Tom Scarritt is tired of the crap as well:
Voters believe their votes should count. Parties should respect that.

Instead, Reed and others are pursuing an agenda that the long-time party leader outlined in a letter to "Jefferson County Political & Civic Leaders" before the runoff. Expressing his desire to "elect blacks in majority black districts," he urged those leaders to "pull out all the stops to help elect" Hendricks, who is black.

Reed's position, he wrote, "involves the art of politics and, foremost, our group interests. We should always determine that - and not let others highjack or undermine our agenda."

This newspaper endorsed Hendricks because of her record of civic involvement and her position on such issues as transit and access to health care. The voters chose Todd, a white candidate who also is well-qualified. The party should not highjack or undermine that choice.
The contest hearing is now slated Thursday at 2:00 pm; Kathy says that she'll wrangle a way to get back to Montgomery to cover it.

Also: drop by and wish Kathy a happy belated birthday (she didn't let me know that was coming and I was there in B'ham -- you silly one!).


Military recruiters preying upon women looking to enlist

This should really help bring more women into the ranks. Sick and sad.
More than 100 young women who expressed interest in joining the military in the past year were preyed upon sexually by their recruiters. Women were raped on recruiting office couches, assaulted in government cars and groped en route to entrance exams.

A six-month Associated Press investigation found that more than 80 military recruiters were disciplined last year for sexual misconduct with potential enlistees. The cases occurred across all branches of the military and in all regions of the country.
The following facts, also from AP, tell the tale of a Pentagon with serious, ongoing issues with recruiters and women.
* The Army, which accounts for almost half of the military, has had 722 recruiters accused of rape and sexual misconduct since 1996.

* Across all services, one out of 200 frontline recruiters — the ones who deal directly with young people — was disciplined for sexual misconduct last year.

* Some cases of improper behavior involved romantic relationships, and sometimes those relationships were initiated by the women.

* Most recruiters found guilty of sexual misconduct are disciplined administratively, facing a reduction in rank or forfeiture of pay; military and civilian prosecutions are rare.

* The increase in sexual misconduct incidents is consistent with overall recruiter wrongdoing, which has increased from just over 400 cases in 2004 to 630 cases in 2005, according to a General Accounting Office report released this week.

* The Pentagon has committed more than $1.5 billion to recruiting efforts this year. Defense Department spokeswoman Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke insisted that each of the services takes the issue of sexual misconduct by recruiters "very seriously and has processes in place to identify and deal with those members who act inappropriately."

* In the Army, 53 recruiters were charged with misconduct last year. Recruiting spokesman S. Douglas Smith said the Army has put much energy into training its staff to avoid these problems.
It should be noted that this sort of thing is what sets off Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness, who always uses articles like this one to provide pithy quotes on why women's role in the military should be curtailed, or preferably eliminated. She also bleats endlessly about why gays cannot serve openly ("Servicemen and women should not have to expose themselves to persons who might be sexually attracted to them. It would be unfair to force the homosexual agenda on young people whose lives are difficult enough").


Minds that need to be washed out with soap

A regular commenter at Pandagon and here at the Blend, John Goff of One Big JackGoff, has a personal and pretty raw post up with some of the racist, sexist and homophobic statements his father has uttered over the years.

Some of these are pretty awful, so I thank him for letting me repost them to a wider audience. He said in his email: "father was from Kansas, as you know, a nexus of bigotted ideology."

What I noted to him is that the bright side is that he's breaking the cycle by not perpetuating this hateful BS. Not everyone breaks away from the bigotry drilled into you in your formative years; look at his dad's fellow Kansans, the Phelps Klan, who represent generations of hate-spewing. It doesn't have to be that way. From John's post, The Father Files: Chapter the First (I grouped the batsh*ttery by category), and you know we've all heard variations on these before:
On women and their place in the world:

"My mother loved my father. She wouldn't eat oatmeal, even though she liked it, because my father loved wheat mush. She made wheat mush every morning, just the way Dad liked it. That's what a real woman does. She cares about what her man likes and acts accordingly."

On race:

"Black people have always done the exact same thing. They wait for the white man to come and tell them what to do. And when he does, they call him a racist and a bigot and wonder why the white man doesn't help them out economically."

"Black people are responsible for the drug epidemic. They're the one's that sell it all the time, after all. Go to any major city and what do you see? Black people. And where are the drug problems? The big cities. Isn't hard to draw that conclusion."

"Black people are angry about slavery, even though there hasn't been slavery for over 150 years. Thet're fommenting revolution, nothing more!"

On gays (John had an uncle who died of AIDS-related pneumonia):

"There's an infection that causes homosexuality. It exists as a hedonistic love for something God has condemned. You'd be no better than dirt if you turn out like Howard (my uncle). You saw how he died. That was just God punishing him on Earth. Just think what how he's being punished in hell."

"Gay people are making us all gay."

"Gay people are the reason God will bring about the end of the world. The more Gay people there are, the closer we come to the Apocalypse."

And here are double-dippers of ignorance...

"A gay person acts like a monkey, having sex with what ever it sees. Black people are the same way. They don't care about love, they sell their own women for crack. Cocaine is all they care about. That's why they're poor. And gay people want to destroy our society be transforming it into a gay culture, one where we all desecrate God's plan for us."

"You're a fucking sissy! Women are supposed to do the housework. It's their natural province. If you let your girlfriend be slothful, you're no better than some lesbian and her sissy faggot partner!" [WTF?!?!]
It has to break your heart to have so little in common with relatives when it comes to tolerance and world view. Not only that, it's hard, not to mention, unpalatable, to even try to address comments like those above at a family gathering where you are clearly outnumbered when it comes to challenging bigotry. Lots of times the uncle/father/granny/aunt is used to being tolerated, even affirmed, in their spectacularly ignorant rants. All you can do is to choose to live your life differently and not pass that thinking on.

Feel free to contribute some of the gems you may have witnessed that made you want to run screaming from the room. Think of it as way to wash your brain clean of the hate and ignorance.


On the bus or left on the curb?

Did you catch the Wash Blade article, DNC rejects affirmative action status for gays? It's about Dean and the party's latest dance on a proposal by the Gay & Lesbian Americans Caucus to spell out rules regarding delegate selection for the 2008 National Convention, and lo and behold, it looks like more games are being played.

The DNC is tossing a bone to try and keep queer dollars flowing into the coffers without ensuring that there will be openly gay delegates at the convention from states in the South and Midwest (whcih have not sent openly gay delegates to Democratic conventions). The party says it is concerned about the appearance of "quotas."
DNC officials instead agreed to create a new "inclusion" section to the party's delegate selection rules that recognizes the "LGBT community and people with disabilities" as underrepresented groups within the party.

"The national and state parties shall adopt and implement 'Inclusion Programs' in order to achieve the full participation of members of these and other groups in the delegate selection process and in all party affairs, as indicated by their presence in the Democratic electorate," the proposed rule says.

"As is already the practice in some states," the proposed rule says, "state parties may use goals to achieve these ends; however, in no event may such participation be accomplished by the use of quotas."
Miss Wild Thing has a few spot-on things to say that capture the shell game:
There have been numerous conversations going on behind the scenes about this change. If you read the Washington Blade article, you will see concerns about "opening the floodgates" for other constituency groups to be represented in the affirmative action. Oh no, the party of inclusion having to be more inclusive? And the even more troubling comment about finding gay African Americans so they can "two-fers." Holy shit, folks, that's pretty racist. But then if you notice all the folks commenting in the Blade article are white. As are all the heads of the national lgbt organizations except for the Black Justice Coalition.

But hey, wait a second, there is a black lesbian on the DNC. But you wouldn't know it if you didn't have the inside scoop. Why? Because she is closeted. Can't have the Presidential campaign manager be a lesbian or you might lose. Oh wait, we did lose.

So this bone that was thrown to the gay and lesbian caucus seems a little weak. To look at it on the surface seems nice. After all, we are all friends, get along nice, blah, blah, blah. But if you knew like I know how state parties operate, this isn't any good. There are no teeth in this new resolution. All bark and no bite.

Parties are supposed to be inclusive but what if they aren't? Then what happens? Doesn't say. As Donald Hitchcock says in the Blade article there are no requirements to set specific goals. And to further the problems, what about my transgender brothers and sisters? Where are they left. (Slap my head) Of course, they are just left behind.


Tennessee wingnut: the proper definition of marriage means the parts fit

Sunday, August 20, 2006

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If the parts don't fit...

There are those who argue that a homosexual marriage would be no different than a heterosexual marriage. Obviously, this is not true. While the marriage of a man and woman has a potential life-giving procreative power, a homosexual marriage is a dead-end street...In life, there are some things that just are - a circle is a circle, a square is a square, and a marriage is between a man and a woman.
-- the wisdom of Rep. Bill Dunn, R-Knoxville (16th district in the Tennessee Legislature) in an op-ed for the Knoxville News
Are we back to the "parts need to fit" argument?

As Tennessee faces a vote on a marriage amendment (it's sure to pass at this point), this turd tosses up all the old hoary excuses for why it's OK to discriminate against gays and lesbians who wish to have marriage equality.
To illustrate this point, imagine a society composed of couples made up entirely of men. That society would age and die - it is not sustaining. Society has an interest in sustaining itself and giving incentives to couples that have that potential. That is why the state has the right to give privileges to those who marry.

Those who are trying to destroy the definition of marriage claim they are entitled to those same automatic privileges. They are not. If they want to enter into an agreement with people of the same sex so they can visit them in the hospital or leave them an inheritance, then let them use what is already available to them. A will can be used to pass on belongings, and proper paperwork can allow visitation at the hospital.

...Those who are working against this marriage amendment will say that their "anything goes" definition does not hurt or affect anyone, as though changing the foundation of society will have no consequences. Common sense and experience tell us that, if homosexual marriage becomes a right, public schools will be required to use our tax dollars in order to protect that right in school textbooks and programs. Clergy and congregations who speak out against this lifestyle will be silenced and punished, as is already happening in Canada.
He offers up as a resource in the fight to save marriage, the web site http://www.realmarriage.org/, which has a lovely photo of little blond kids that says "Children do better with a mom and a dad." These fundies are out of control, misinformed and hell-bent on miseducation in the name of Jeebus:
The institution of marriage is neither purely religious, purely private, nor purely civil; rather, it is a natural institution, rooted in the order of nature itself. What must be upheld against attack are the privileges and benefits of marriage as have customarily and wisely been bestowed upon the institution by the favor of God, government and mankind.

...No one should beileve that the ACLU, TEP, Tennessee Guerilla Women and even more extreme groups will roll over and give up on their designs on children and society. They will be back with a vengence and with slick deceptive ad campaigns and "talking points" that will prevent a true debate on the underlying issues in the time leading up to the November elections and a vote "by the people" on the definition of "marriage."
Also:
Check out these TN sites: Blender Callie over at Red State Exile, Tennesee Guerilla Women and Tennessee Equality Project.


Homeland insecurity 2.0

Hi folks, we're back in town after a short trip to Birmingham to our niece's baptism, which was lovely. Nothing like one of those fly-in, fly-out visits. Not enough time to see everyone (sorry Kathy, catch you next time), and just back in time to go back to work. Bleh. And how on earth did I manage to receive over non-spam 200 emails in just over 48 hours? Sigh, mailbag duty...

Anyway, I thought I'd toss up a post describing a few observations about this trip under our new Orange AlertTM fluid/gel ban.

Planning ahead, we packed everything liquid/gel/questionable in our bag that we were going to check in. I had my prescription meds in their original bottles and put them all in a Ziploc bag and had that in my carry-on.

We decided to give ourselves two hours to get to park and ride at RDU, shuttle over and check in, since we always assume brain dead folks will have arrived ahead of us, completely unaware of the restrictions and hold up everything. We get in line at US Airways, and there is a sizeable line to wait for a self-check-in kiosk. We were correct in that brain-dead people made in in there first, and it had nothing to do with security. Apparently two people in the line ahead of us were sheeple who needed to be led by airline personnel to empty kiosks awaiting passengers. One of the US Airways people said to step up that there were two available and these folks still didn't move, so we were around them. Last I looked they were staring blankly into space as we checked in.

That seemed like a bad omen. We see lots of signs posted about the alert and banned items.

So we proceed to the security area after getting our boarding passes. and we have our boarding passes/IDs checked twice before having to take off shoes and place the carry on bags on the conveyor belt. Both my bag and sandals are picked for further inspection. The TSA agent does the little swab test on the sandals and hands those back; another agent opens my bag and pulls out the medicines, all the while telling me something to the effect that "you know we have to do this monkey business; I'm glad you have this all in the original packaging, it makes it a lot easier." He waves over to another guy, I guess the official "fluids and meds" superior, who gives the thumbs-up. I am on my way. Kate, who flew through her line, waits for me.

This all went pretty quickly so we had to sit around at the gate for an hour and change before boarding. We're sitting and gabbing and as it gets closer to boarding time, the PA system comes on and they start bleating about all the banned liquids and gels -- all banned items will be confiscated, we are warned. Anything purchased to drink or eat has to be thrown away before anyone can board the plane, "including ice cream," the voice booms.

The cone of mass destruction...

Eventually we board and settle in. We're waiting to close up and take off and a couple of late arrival passengers get on. Here comes some dude down the aisle with an open bottle of Mountain Dew, right there in his hand! He had to have gotten by not only the gate attendant, but the flight attendants on the plane. Jeezus. Of course everyone knows this is no threat (he's obviously drinking it, not using it to mix an explosive), but what is the point of this increased security if it's such a obvious sham that even the airlines aren't really paying attention to it, at least on this flight. People on the plane are laughing out loud.

We changed planes in Charlotte and didn't notice anything like this on the second leg.

Coming home, my same carry-on with the same contents, along with the same sandals, weren't screened beyond the x-ray machine everyone's stuff goes through. Once we made it to the gate, we didn't wait too long (we got to the airport about an hour and change before flight time).

Again, the PA came on, this time it was for another flight -- on Continental -- that was boarding. This announcer, I'm not kidding you, went on for about 2-3 minutes warning people about taking on liquids and gels ("liquid" chapstick is a no-no, solid is OK), no coffee or soda will make it on board. Random checks at the gate would be performed. If they find contraband on you, you will be asked to give it up. If you don't give it up, you'll not be able to board, he boomed, and you would have to go on a later flight. "Not later today," he warned, "maybe not even this week...maybe not for a couple of weeks." OK, at this point, people are laughing, including the two of us. This is ludicrous.

Our flight is finally called and we board. The plane is about to close up and a couple of late arrivals get on. This time we have a woman taking her sweet time, coming down the aisle with a steaming hot cup of Cinnabon coffee, which she proceeds to balance on an armrest as she casually loads her bag in the overhead bin, blocking the aisle as a couple of people wait behind her.

Clearly, my friends, US Airways has let on the Cinnabomber.

I'm sorry, if people are going to be asked/threatened to check all of their liquid items and throw out beverages and food at the gate, then apply the rules consistently or deep-six these bogus policies that clearly aren't being enforced anyway.


Chocolate mania

Friday, August 18, 2006

Paul was thinking about chocolate today, so he passed on these two stories...

Wis. Man Trapped in Tank of Chocolate.
A 21-year-old man was trapped in a tank of chocolate for about two hours early Friday, police said.

Capt. Randy Berner said the worker said he got into the tank at the Debelis Corp. to unplug it and became trapped waist-deep in the chocolate.

"It was pretty thick. It was virtually like quicksand," Berner said, and co-workers, police and firefighters were not able to get him out until the chocolate could be thinned out.

"It's the first time I've ever heard of anything like this," the police captain said.
And we have the following to add to the various appearances of Jeebus and the Blessed Virgin Mary sightings in pasta dishes, burnt toast, tree trunks and water stains...

Confectioners see form of Virgin Mary in dripped chocolate.
As a chocolatier to the rich and famous, Martucci Angiano has posed with many celebrities — but on Thursday she held in her hand a figure that dazzles her more than any Hollywood star.

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Workers at Angiano's gourmet chocolate company, Bodega Chocolates, discovered under a vat a 2-inch-tall column of chocolate drippings that they believe bears a striking resemblance to the Virgin Mary. Since the discovery Monday, Angiano's employees have spent much of their time hovering over the tiny figure, praying and placing rose petals and candles around it.

"I was raised to believe in the Virgin Mary, but this still gives me the chills," Angiano said as she balanced the dark brown figure in her hand. "Everyone should see this."

...A tiny white circle, about the size of a pencil eraser, sits in the upper center of the creation, just above a slight ridge that runs across it. Cruz says the white speck is the head of the Baby Jesus as he is held in Mary's folded arms.
***

Kate and I are taking off for Birmingham in a bit (back Sun AM). Play nice and chat away...


Good news and bad news from NY

First the bad news, to get it out of the way...

Wrongful-death suit dismissed: gay woman's late partner is ruled not a legal spouse. No marriage equality, the NY Supreme Court ruled, and this is what happens. Equality is not an abstract concept, real lives are affected.
Linda Saegert and Victoria Sarafino lived together for 18 years, owned a house and a business together, and raised two children together. They were married in a ceremony at a Unitarian church in Freeport.

"We did everything that's the criteria for a nuclear family," said Saegert, a Valley Stream resident, adding that the two women even signed the children's report cards together. "We were a couple as well as any husband and wife."

But a State Supreme Court justice in Nassau County does not agree. Acting New York Supreme Court Judge Daniel Palmieri ruled that Saegert does not qualify as the late Sarafino's legal partner or spouse. Palmieri rejected last week Saegert's attempt to seek wrongful-death damages after Sarafino was killed in a car accident in 2003.

Citing previous court decisions, Palmieri ruled that Saegert was not eligible because of existing law that makes "a legal distinction between same-sex partners and heterosexual spouses." He noted that the state Appellate Division has ruled that "a same-sex partner, as executor, has no standing to sue in wrongful death on the partner's own behalf."
Examples like this are what potential allies need to hear about to illustrate why marriage equality matters. Sorry to say, it's not on the radar in all the jousting about religious marriage, and hellfire and brimstone. It's about the legal rights and acknowledgment of our relationships that convey with civil marriage that we currently lack.

And here is the good news...

Eliot Spitzer to back extension of domestic-violence laws to same-sex couples. The gubernatorial candidate also has pledged to legalize marriage for gays and lesbians if the legislature moves to do so (that's a big if). This was announced by his running mate, State Senator David Paterson.
"Fighting domestic violence is a family value," Paterson told a domestic violence forum.

"The person who hits their partner is a coward. The society that tolerates it is just about an accomplice."

The Spitzer-Paterson plan would include a major domestic violence education program to help people get out of abusive family situations, economic help for people trying to start new lives away from violent partners and reducing tuition costs at state schools for domestic-violence survivors.

It is the first time the ticket has discussed the platform plank.


The hive mind of the AmTaliban

Jeremy @ Good As You came across something interesting. Some bleatings about California's gay rights bill (SB 1437) were posted by CaliTaliban Randy Thomasson of the Campaign for Children and Families at Cybercast News Service:

"The flowery pro-homosexual language may have been removed [from SB 1437] but the thorny substance remains -- this is a bad bill and because of California's influence over textbook publishers, kids across the nation will be caught in Kuehl's web," warned Randy Thomasson, CCF president.
Strangely, look what turns up in the Washington Update column supposedly written by Tony "KKK" Perkins of the Family Reseach Council:

"The flowery pro-homosexual language may have been removed but the thorny substance remains - this is a bad bill and because of California's influence over textbook publishers kids across the nation will be caught in Kuehl's web."
Jeremy notes that Tony's piece was up first, but there's no way to know who initially wrote it. In either case, someone deserves a spankie, huh? Is Porno Pete available?


I guess I'll just sink to the bottom of the pool

Tramm Hudson is running for the U.S. Congressional seat in Florida's 13th district (the one vacated by Katherine Harris), and a video has surfaced of him making a foolish statement about blacks and swimming that threatens to sink his campaign like a stone.

How many times do you think he's told this tale behind closed doors and didn't think twice about it?

1984 we were in Panama. Our unit was doing a two-week training down there. I commanded an infantry company and we were practicing crossing a river. You know, an infantry company has 140 some-odd soldiers. A large number were black. I grew up in Alabama and I understand and I know this from my own experiences that blacks aren’t the best swimmers or may not even know how to swim. But we were crossing this and wanted to make sure every soldier could swim and if they couldn’t we’d get them across the river. We had the line across the river and we were making our passage way and one of the black soldiers with his ruck-sack on his back, his weapon and fell from the line…he let go. Sunk down to the bottom of the river. And I’ve got to tell you, it took my breath away.
I read this and think:

1. How many black people does he actually know?
2. It clearly never crossed his mind that maybe fewer blacks swim because of socioeconomic factors -- perhaps the ones he's been around don't have swimming pools or access to them.
3. If he did know about #2 above, he would have saved himself a lot of grief by adding a line about it to put his statement into context.
4. What about mixed race people -- how white do you have to be to possess floatability in Hudson's book?

Gee, I guess I need to forget that my mom took me to swimming lessons at the Y when I was a kid and I should just sink to the bottom of the pool.

That said, I'll put myself out there and say that Hudson's comments probably had no malice behind them. He did issue one of those standard political apologies when it blew up in his face.
"I said something stupid. I apologize for it and would apologize in person to anyone hurt by my comments. To those who are understandably offended, you have my deepest apologies and I want you to know that it was out of character for me and those who know me know that to be a fact. This was a thoughtless remark that does not reflect my lifetime commitment to treating everyone fairly and without bias. I apologize to everyone who is offended by this comment."
Some blacks came out with public comments of support for Hudson when this all went down, including a minister and the president NAACP of Sarasota County (Tramm apologized to him in person).

What it comes down to is that Hudson's ignorance is the kind of racism that makes me sad because it is so pervasive. It reflects zero thought and it's usually because the bonehead saying comments like this doesn't really know many black people at all. For too many people, black is some "other" mysterious breed of human being (if that for some) that is so dissimilar to whites physically that yes -- the inability to swim is some kind of innate genetic defect, which is ludicrous. One can extrapolate from Hudson's ignorance in this matter that he might hold some other serious misconceptions, say about the intelligence of blacks, but we'll never really know unless he steps in it again with another personal anecdote.

It's no different than Jimmy the Greek and former Dodger exec Al Campanis, two guys who famously said on the air, unbelievable comments that they proceeded to compound with even more mind-blowing defenses in the same breath.
"(Blacks) may not have some of the necessities to be, let's say, a field manager, or perhaps a general manager."
-- former Dodger general manager Al Campanis in 1987 on ABC's "Nightline"
I was watching Nightline when Campanis had his live meltdown. Poor Ted Koppel tried asking him eight different ways to get out of the hole, but it got worse each time. I was embarrassed for the guy.

I didn't see Jimmy the Greek's infamous comments live (his faux pas came about year after Campanis's), but I saw plenty of replays of it; here's a good summary:
Jimmy 'the Greek' Snyder remarked that black athletes already hold an advantage as basketball players because they have longer thighs than white athletes, their ancestors having been deliberately bred that way during slavery. 'This goes all the way to the Civil War,' Jimmy the Greek explained, 'when during the slave trading. . .the owner, the slave owner would breed his big black to his big woman so he could have a big black kid, you see.' Astonishing though it may seem, Snyder intended his remark as a compliment to black athletes. If black men became coaches, he said, there would be nothing left for white men to do in basketball at all.

Embarrassed by such rank and open expression of racism in the most ignorant form, the network fired Jimmy the Greek from his job. Any fool, the network must have decided, should know that such things may be spoken in the privacy of the locker-room in an all-white club, but not into a microphone and before a camera.
This reminds me of the interaction I had back in the day, which I recounted in an earlier post, Skin and the color of money.
"Can black people tan?"
-- a white college student at Fordham, back in 1983, asking me whether I could turn browner in the sun, as we sat outside in the late spring.
My answer to that question, by the way (after I picked my jaw up off of the floor) was to calmly say "yes," and I took off my watch so she could see the contrast between my tan and what was underneath my timepiece. I then held my arm up next to her olive-skinned Italian forearm to show her that my non-tan color was lighter than her skin tone.

Gina was quite friendly and earnest when she asked the question. The fact that she felt comfortable enough with me to ask it, made me feel that she deserved a response that would not humiliate or embarrass her by pointing out her ignorance. I was, however, quite perplexed by the blunt question for several reasons. It made me curious about what she exactly thought "black" meant in physical terms (educating her on the fact that race is a social construct probably would have been too much for her to handle). In her world, though, were we that different? Did she have no concept that all humans just have varying amounts of the same chemical, melanin, that affects the complexion they have? Was she just racist? That last word is loaded. Gina was not outwardly hostile toward someone of another race. To narrowly define that word here -- she is a victim of growing up in a world of cultural, institutionalized racism and lack of exposure to people of another color.

That lack of exposure perpetuates the problem on both sides. It must be hard if you're white, asking a question about skin tone, hair texture or any physical characteristics commonly associated with being "black." You've got to take the leap of faith that the person you're asking isn't going to react badly. If you're black, the insult of the question can cut psychologically deep. Are they judging my whole value by my color? Are they saying I'm subhuman? Am I, yet again, the inferior "other"? The fear of negative reaction on both sides in this politically correct world often ensures much-needed conversations on race will never occur. It doesn't stop the ignorance, the stereotypes, or promote healing on either side when you remove the ability to ask and answer simple questions about difference.

***

The above comments by these people are, again, not meant to offend, even as they do. What's embarrassing is that the level of ignorance is completely guileless, almost innocent. The problem is that they are sorry, but usually not sorry enough to want to correct their state of ignorance.

The people making the unfortunate comments don't feel any need to extend themselves to become better informed or really know any blacks on a personal level, because that's not their world. And if blacks aren't all alike, if these people manage to get that far in their thinking, evaluate blacks who do not fit in the stereotype emblazoned on their brains as somehow exceptions to the rule.

The fact of the matter is the "all black people are alike" problem is alive and well; it's just morphed a bit. The "one-drop rule" in this increasingly browning country isn't what applies here; this is really about whether one is visibly identifiable as "black". Mr. Hudson and others like him -- are then able to continue placing those blacks (and other minorities) in a comfortable slot of stereotypes perpetrated by the dominant culture. [Heaven help you if you're black and a woman.] In this case, it's the hoary "blacks can't swim" slot for Hudson.

Someone at winger site Red State aptly pointed out that Hudson's remarks came around the sixth anniversary of Anthony Ervin qualifying for the U.S. Olympic Swimming team, the first black man to do so.

Unfortunately some of the comments from other posters at Red State made my already kinky hair curl more, shall we say:
I hate to tell everyone this, but he's correct. African-Americans have higher muscle density, and less fat as a % of their body compostion. Whites have more fat and are therefore float more easily, hence they are(on average) better swimmers. Socioeconomic factors might might the problem worse, but there is nothing racist about this statement. Sounds like a good officer who made sure he didn't lose any men crossing that river. Is it racist to say that certaing Asians react very badly to alcohol?

This whole thing is crazy, what he said was No Big Deal. So what if he said blacks can't swim, it's nothing. He is just speaking his mind and I think that we need people that are willing to say what they really mean representing us in elected office. This liberal PC propaganda must stop!
There's a lot of work yet to do on this race front, huh?

Folks, don't be afraid to comment. I know these threads on race tend to cause commenters to turn into lurkers.

Hat tip, Shakes Sis and Political Wire


Open thread - crap cowboy

Thursday, August 17, 2006

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Actual caption: Britain's governing Labour Party MPs rallied behind Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott after allegations that he called US President George W. Bush, seen here, "crap" and "a cowboy", it was reported.(AFP/Tim Sloan)

The Brit DPM may have backtracked, but you know he said what a whole lot of people are thinking:
John Prescott has denied a newspaper report he called George Bush's administration "crap". The Deputy Prime Minister allegedly criticised the US president over the Middle East road map, according to Labour MP Harry Cohen. Mr Prescott added Mr Bush was just a "cowboy with his Stetson on", it was claimed.


Those teens are boinking after abstinence-only ed in Ohio

Sex Ed Changes At School With 65 Pregnant Teens. The failure of abstinence-only programs rears its ugly head again for an Ohio school board. "Education" like this can't be spun as a success when 13% of one high school's female students were knocked up last year.
There were 490 female students at Timken High School in 2005, and 65 were pregnant, WEWS-TV in Cleveland reported.

The new Canton school board program promotes abstinence but also will teach students who decide to have sex how to do so responsibly, bringing the city school district's health curriculum in line with national standards.

..."If we had math books from 1988, reading books from 1988, as a parent, I would be furious," said Patty Rafailedes, a physical education teacher.
The state Department of Education doesn't mandate sex ed or instruction on contraception. Way to go!

Hat tip, Daniel.

Also:
* That abstinence-only sex ed is really working, huh?
* Newsflash: fundies are f*cking before marriage
* Abstinence ed is really working: oral sex safe and not really sex, say teens
* Texas teens increasingly knocking boots after abstinence program
* Score one against abstinence-only ed


Chimpy couldn't have known he was helping the homos

New Federal Pension Law Includes Important Measures For Gay Couples. Tee hee. How long before some fundie goes ape?
President Bush on Thursday signed into law the Federal Pension Protection Act that contains two key provisions extending important financial protections to same-sex couples and other Americans who leave their retirement savings to non-spousal beneficiaries.

"For gay couples and all Americans with non-spouse beneficiaries, death and taxes weren't only certain, but also times of great and unequal financial difficulty," said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese who lobbied Congress to pass the measure.

"Today marks an important day for fairness under the law in America," Solmonese said.


Military readiness winger asks Dear Leader to call for men to volunteer

Elaine Donnelly, your demi-god's Big Overseas Adventures iare the reason young men are running as fast as they can from Bush's military recruiters.

The Center for Military Readiness mouthpiece is concerned that the heavy-handed tactics of recruiters trying to find warm bodies.
Center for Military Readiness (CMR) president Elaine Donnelly says she is disturbed by the recent report from the General Accountability Office (GAO) that indicates misconduct by military recruiters is on the rise because of the grueling pressure to recruit young troops to go into the armed services and possibly into combat. According to the report, recruiters have resorted to strong-arm tactics, including harassment and falsification of documents, all to satisfy the demand for more recruits.

...if the military is definitely finding multiple substantiated cases of wrongdoing among recruiters, Donnelly feels there is something President Bush can do to help. "That is, the president needs to publicly ask [eligible Americans], especially young men, to volunteer for military service," she says. "I think the president, in a very straightforward way, should address young men of this nation and say, 'Your nation needs you.'

"The president has not done this," the head of the CMR adds, "and yet we're in the middle of a war. I think young people would indeed respond if he did."
Hey now, the Yellow Elephants and strapping young College Republicans haven't said anything about wanting to serve. They plan on doing their part from their keyboards and little keg rallies.

How about these memorable quotes:
By the time I encountered Cory Bray, a towering senior from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, the beer was flowing freely. "The people opposed to the war aren't putting their asses on the line," Bray boomed from beside the bar. Then why isn't he putting his ass on the line? "I'm not putting my ass on the line because I had the opportunity to go to the number-one business school in the country," he declared, his voice rising in defensive anger, "and I wasn't going to pass that up."
-- from Max Blumenthal's piece, "Generation Chickenhawk," in The Nation, interviewing Young College Republicans about why they aren't enlisting.
But wait, there's more...
And besides, being a College Republican is so much more fun than counterinsurgency warfare. Bray recounted the pride he and his buddies had felt walking through the center of campus last fall waving a giant American flag, wearing cowboy boots and hats with the letters B-U-S-H painted on their bare chests. "We're the big guys," he said. "We're the ones who stand up for what we believe in. The College Democrats just sit around talking about how much they hate Bush. We actually do shit."

When 25-year-old candidate Mike Davidson emerged in the center of the room, the party fell to a hush. "Does everybody know why we're here today?" Davidson asked his supporters, who had huddled around him.

"Beer!" someone shouted. The crowd exploded with laughter.
They're ready to suit up!


Lazy news media

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

When you heard the news that John Mark Karr was arrested in connection with the JonBenet Ramsey murder case, did anyone else think that this whackadoo might have zero to do with it?

Karr clearly obsessed over her from afar and has prior child porn convictions charges, but that doesn't immediately translate into having been involved in the girl's death.

Maybe he just really wanted to get out of that Thai jail. Things aren't really adding up, just based on what's coming out. (AP):
Karr told The Associated Press he was with JonBenet when she died.

"I am so very sorry for what happened to JonBenet," he told the AP in Bangkok. "Her death was an accident." Asked if he was innocent, Karr said: "No."

A senior Thai police officer said Karr also told investigators he drugged and had sex with the 6-year-old beauty queen before accidentally killing her.

An autopsy done a day after her body was found on Dec. 26, 1996, said a blood screening showed no drugs or alcohol in her body but said she had vaginal abrasions.
All I know is that the talking heads were having a field day, as the news channels couldn't find anything else to cover. I couldn't find any real news.

The wall-to-wall coverage of the JonBenet case is not surprising though; the MSM has been aching for another sorry tabloid tale like this to rise from the dead. News about say, the meltdown of the Middle East or a ruling on the government's warrantless wiretapping program today, may just be tiresome for news directors. Even Wolfie was talking about JonBenet last night while reporting from the Middle East.

***

What constitutes "BREAKING NEWS" is quickly becoming meaningless. Kate was home sick yesterday and she had on one of the 24-hour news channels and said the network must have thought there was abso-flipping-lutely nothing out there to update people on. The network interrupted its regular afternoon coverage with "BREAKING NEWS" that in Huntsville, Alabama officials were demolishing an old bridge "LIVE".

She said that after the C.C. Clay Bridge, which has been replaced with a new one, hence the demo, the talking heads were asking breathless questions about what was going to happen to the sinking metal structure.

News I need to know. Kate was so incensed that she almost called me up to tell me about it.

Next thing you know the "BREAKING NEWS" will be about Dear Leader taking a crap.


Pennsylvania AFA nut whining at congressmen signing diversity statements

Diane Gramley of the American Family Association (PA chapter) is having a cow over congressman in her state who signed anti-discrimination measures from HRC and GenderPAC -- and she schools us on what gender diversity means to her.
A pro-family activist in Pennsylvania is bothered that three U.S. House members from the Keystone State -- Republican Jim Gerlach and Democrats Robert Brady and Mike Doyle -- have signed the statement from GenderPAC and the Human Rights Campaign. That statement says the congressmen will not discriminate in their hiring practices based on an employee's sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. According to the two sponsoring groups, 168 members of Congress -- mostly Democrats -- have signed the statement.

Diane Gramley, president of the AFA of Pennsylvania, is disturbed that three of the representatives from her state are among the signatories. Gerlach, Brady, and Doyle, she says, are sending the wrong message to their constituents.


"I don't know that they fully comprehend what the term 'gender identity and expression' means," says Gramley, offering this definition: "That phrase right there means that they are willing to hire men dressed as women to come to work -- and I don't think a constituent going into any of these congressmen's offices would want to encounter a man dressed in a woman's clothing."
Related:
* Little Ricky rescinds his John Hancock on GenderPAC's Diversity Letter


Angie Paccione closing in on Musgrave


Angie Paccione (l) has a chance to unseat the unforgivable bigot Musgrave, sponsor of the Marriage Protection Act.

Insufferable Colorado homobigot Marilyn Musgrave holds a tiny lead in the polls (46%-42%) over challenger Dem Angie Paccione in the 4th congressional district race. That's within the margin of error, folks.

Those numbers are despite heavy hitters like Defibrillator Darth and Dear Leader parachuting in to raise funds for the Marriage Protection Act queen. This is telling:
There are 61,000 more registered Republicans (166,487) in the 4th Congressional District than Democrats (105,388). There are 140,815 unaffiliated voters. Of the unaffiliated voters surveyed, 51 percent said they supported Paccione, while 29 percent endorsed Musgrave.

President Bush came to Colorado last November to raise money for Musgrave's campaign. University of Denver Political Science Professor Seth Masket says historically, when the President's approval ratings are low as they are now, his party's candidates for Congress suffer at the polls.
Fair-minded Coloradans need to boot that bigot.


Colorado lieutenant gov candidate has a friend in the Freepi

It's nice to know that Janet Rowland, who compared same-sex marriage to humping a sheep (see yesterday's post), has wrapped up the knuckledragger vote. She was added to the ticket of Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez to bring in the soccer mom vote.

This is the quote that garnered all the unwanted publicity for Beauprez's campaign:


"But I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. Homosexuality is an alternative lifestyle," she said. "That doesn't make it a marriage. Some people have group sex," she said. "Should we allow two men and three women to marry? Should we allow polygamy with one man and five wives? For some people, the alternative lifestyle is bestiality. Do we allow a man to marry a sheep?

The Freepi were falling all over themselves to praise her...


Actual Freeper Quotes™

I like this Rowland chick. LOL

She had a valid question. I notice that no one answered her question. Instead, they attack her for asking it. Clearly, homosexuals know that same gender sex is a perversion. They just play the victim to try to assuage their guilt.

I just wish that it was Janet Rowland running for Governor instead of Bob Beauprez. She is much more true to her values.

She never should have apologized; she had nothing to apologize for.

Agreed. Apologizing for speaking the truth is harmful to moral progress.

She's never held statewide office or been in the legislature, she's a county commissioner. She strikes me as out of her depth. But Bob is a Denver guy and he needed a women and a Westerner to balance the ticket.

What did she say that's wrong? Homosexuality is akin to bestiality. But to tell the truth in these times of moral relativism is enough to get you damned.

The sex positive agenda (which uses the homosexual agenda as a battering ram to society's laws and morals) seeks to end ALL moral judgment over sexual pairings regardless of sex, age, relation, marital status, number, or species of partner(s). We hear how the ancient Greeks have depicted homosexuality in their art and pottery. Same can be said of beastiality.

Agreed. The same people who applauded the gay cowboy movie are now saying doing it like sheep is outrageous. Well the act is almost the same, if you catch the drift.

I am sick of gutless republicans apologizing for speaking their minds. Say it how you feel it and to hell with the whining wussies who cry about it. No wonder the world doesn't respectus, we cringe and cower in the face of being called insensitive.

Homosexuality is an unnatural condition, depraved and a state of human sin. Now that's as politically incorrect as I can get.

Hey Bill,, I find the sodomites demands for normal people to accept their disgusting disease spreading practices offensive, close-minded derogatory and crude! Now apologize! What you shove, & where you shove it... I dont care to know! It's not my business, I don't want or need to know! Go back in the closet! You are NOT NORMAL! YOU ARE SICK! Stop spreading your disease!

No, the ones who are out of touch are the folks who are pretending that it's perfectly normal for men to diddle each other, and for women to ... well, never mind.

Homosexuality is not akin to bestiality because the animal has no choice in the affair. Similarly, there is no slippery slope from legalizing gay marriage to legalizing sex with minors because minors are also perceived has not being able to make a concious choice in the matter. The only slipperly slope gay marriage might lead to is polygamy.

Amazing that people no longer think that gay marriage is absurd. It shows, as the gays themself point out, how the sexual revolution has devalued the sex act. Anything goes.

Stupid comment. Beauprez needs to win the rural vote to win. Fight bestiality AFTER the election.

[Ding...ding...ding...today's winning Freepi receives Shakes Sis's Impurity Ball Deluxe Pack for this one:]
Alternative lifestyle translates into anal sex for men with resulting hemorrhoids and cunnilingus with women resulting in herpes and bad breath. Humanity needs saving from its ownself. Good grief!


The parenting nightmares continue

This sick sh*t just doesn't stop surfacing; you have to wonder what doesn't manage to get reported in the MSM.

Where are the fundies on these cases? Oh that's right, they are hard at work trying to keep gays and lesbians from adopting or fostering kids. My bad...

* Woman accused of helping her boyfriend rape her disabled daughter. This Michigan girl is 11 years old and has cerebral palsy. Her 30 year old mother let her 18-year-old boyfriend not only rape the child, but the two took pictures of the girl in sexually explicit positions. (H/t, ImpeachBush.)

* Marin County, CA: A registered sex offender used his 7-year-old daughter's sleepovers to molest young girls, a police detective testified Monday. The detective said Robert Alan Girard, 64, inappropriately touched 4 girls ages 6 to 8 while they were in his home on Montecillo Road in Terra Linda from January 2003 to March of this year....the girl, identified as Jane Doe No. 1, said Girard came into his daughter's bedroom to give her a massage. She told investigators that the daughter told her to remove her pajamas so that Girard could give her a massage, and after that he molested her.

* In Belize: A 15-year-old girl is back with her mother after she was raped by her own father and another man. Police have not revealed the name of the man, now under arrest, out of consideration for his daughter. Orange Walk Police have however revealed the name of another man, also under arrest, who forced the girl to have sex with him after she fled her mother's house.

None of these horrifying cases has anything to do with heterosexuality, of course. But there is no call to regulate the rights of straight folks to have children based on the fact that some heterosexuals, clearly do not deserve to be anywhere near a child. One cannot judge a person's character or ability to care for and love a child based on orientation alone, but that's exactly what goes on in many states where the rights of gays and lesbians are constantly under attack when it comes to their ability to adopt of foster children who need loving homes.

An aside: while homobigot and -- Illinois law enforcement officer -- Guy Adams is pulling winged monkeys out of his posterior about sex with infants is all the rage among gays, I don't see any homos in this news story: Pigeon Forge man charged with trying to molest, kidnap toddler. The creep in Tennessee also fondled himself while looking under a 10-year-old's skirt just before trying to snatch a two-year-old. The father was able to stop him.

Related:
* More parenting horrors
* What is wrong with people -- child dies in hot car
* Woman Leaves Disabled Daughter in Hot Car at Shopping Mall.
* Woman Charged For Allegedly Driving With Children In Trunk
* These women do not deserve to be mothers
* These women do not deserve to be mothers, part 2
* These women do not deserve to be mothers, part 3.
* These women do not deserve to be mothers, part 4




Patricia Todd is a fighter

The sorry political games being played by the loser (and supporters) in the Dem race for Alabama House District 54, which out lesbian Patricia Todd won, are sadly based on tossing out the race card by those in her opponent's camp. It's meshed with Alabama politics-as-usual gamesmanship, which Kathy @ Birmingham Blues covers in her post.

Yesterday, Todd outlined why the hearing contesting her win was delayed and what the backroom issues are, calling for the Democratic party to toss out the challenge of her win by the mother-in-law of candidate Gaynell Hendricks (who lost by 59 votes):

I cannot stand by as one person — [Alabama Democratic Conference Chair and Democratic Party Vice-Chair] Dr. Joe Reed — attempts to hold the Alabama Democratic Party hostage just because he doesn’t like the outcome of the race in District 54. Dr. Reed has been closely involved in the racial slander that played such a role in my opponent’s campaign, trying to pit white voters against black. Despite his direct involvement in the Hendricks campaign, he demanded to be placed on the contest committee, and to appoint two other members of the five-person committee. Yesterday in Montgomery, when it became clear that he was not going to control the process, he made sure the hearing would not take place. This is not fair, and I will not stand by as Joe Reed attempts to steal this election from the voters of District 54.

Therefore, I am calling on the Alabama Democratic Party to dismiss the election contest. First of all, I have contended from day one that the contest is without merit, and I stand by that contention. With specific regard to Dr. Reed’s involvement, the media and the public should be aware that Alabama state law requires that the person contesting an election pay the contest fee — in this case, that would be Ms. Childress. But the fee was not paid by Ms. Childress; it was paid by Dr. Reed. This is a clear conflict of interest by a party official, and taints the entire process.

I have spent my entire adult life working for civil rights and justice for all people. I have stood by and listened as my former opponent and her supporters — including the Mayor of this city and other elected officials — have painted me as a racist who somehow had the intention of becoming a Republican after the election. Clearly, they neither know nor care about me and my record of community services and my legislative priorities. I am a Democrat, and will be a Democrat as I go about my duties in the legislature.
Todd would be the first out lesbian lawmaker in Alabama. A date for a rescheduled hearing has not yet been announced.


Report on soldier with Arabic translation skills who was booted under DADT

Ian Finkenbinder translated high security information -- weapons cache locations, insurgent HQ locations -- but that was all meaningless when it was discovered that he is gay.The Army flushed all that training and experience down the commode.



Summary of the CNN report: during the last 10 years, over 11,000 outed gays have been discharged from the military. Nathaniel Frank of U.C. Santa Barbara conducted a study of gays removed from the military. Frank discovered that over 800 of the discharged gays were "mission critical specialists" and about 300 were linguists. Of which, 55 were rare Arabic linguists. Franks concludes that the policy towards gays is causing a "brain drain" in the military.

Hat tip, Paul.


Homeland Security rule would out trans people at work

Blender Autumn passed on this nasty development that does nothing to make folks safer, but almost certainly increase discrimination against the transgendered.

The National Center for Transgender Equality has been receiving calls from people who have been outed at work because of a "no match" letter that reveals gender reassignment.
SSA regularly checks to make sure that all persons working in the United States are the actual holders of the SSN that they put on their I-9 form. Further, this practice works to ensure that all workers eventually receive the Social Security funds that they are entitled to. In confirming this information SSA sometimes compares an employee’s gender. Because it is difficult to change your gender marker with the SSA this practice has resulted in employers receiving gender no-match letters from the SSA and DHS. Further, because SSA requires proof of irreversible Sexual Reassignment Surgery in order to change a gender marker, NCTE is of the belief that they should properly regard a person’s gender as a private medical matter.
Clearly this is an invasion of private medical information -- how does this not run afoul of HIPAA?

In any case, a new rule is being proposed that would make it even easier for someone who is transgender to lose their job, imposing a 60-day time limit in which all mismatched information related to gender must be rectified, and those no-match letters will go out as the DHS and SSA attempt to verify work-eligibility with SSNs, and names as well as gender, which is often used as a marker for ID.

One recommendation by the NCTE, is that accommodation be made in the no-match letter policy that allows for differences in ID requirements for people who have gone to the trouble of getting a legal name change, and to extend protections to those whose appearance that don't fit the social gender norms.

Sadly, there's not a prayer of anything like that happening in this administration.


Responses to homobigot's letter about San Diego Pride

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Allyson Smith's diatribe over the imagined perversions that she saw at San Diego Pride was published in the San Diego Union-Tribune. In her letter to the editor, she said this:
For days, we have been hearing from the Union-Tribune and other local news outlets about a purported “hate crime” committed by punks who assaulted homosexual men during the recent Gay Pride Festival. But there was another hate crime committed that weekend that was not reported: The hateful moral assault committed by the homosexual community against San Diegans of all ages through its degrading and indecent “pride” celebration...While the physical assaults are deplorable and rightly to be condemned, it should not serve as a distraction from these hateful moral assaults.
It generated quite a response

Blender Kevin Kaatz sent in a letter to the editor that was published in the San Diego Union-Tribune. Here's his, along with another good response to Smith's bigotry:
The festival that I attended as a volunteer was the harmonious coming together of a very diverse cross-section of San Diego. Allyson Smith even criticized the Union-Tribune's strong stance against the attacks on six gay men in Balboa Park "as a distraction from these hateful moral assaults" inherent in the pride festival. Unfortunately, she appears to be the one who has been distracted – distracted from Christian teachings I learned as a child: to love other people and to respect their differences. Such love and respect is on display at the pride festival for all who go there with an open heart and open mind.

The letter, excoriating the entire "homosexual community" for its "hatred," ironically drips with virulent homophobic hatred. In truth, there is probably no community in San Diego that is more loving, tolerant and supportive than the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Sadly, these features do not appear to be prominent in Smith's "Christian" perspective.

Another Christian teaching that I learned as a child is that people have the capacity to change. I sincerely hope that the letter writer will be able to cast off her disabling homophobia, and learn to love us all, despite our differences.

CHARLIE PRATT
University City

***

With the response of Allyson Smith, it comes as little surprise that there are hate crimes committed against gays and lesbians. She misunderstands the word "hate," which is something she obviously feels toward the gay and lesbian community.

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are an amazing group of men who selflessly give of their time to do fundraising for all levels of the community. They have nothing to do with hate, and it is the height of ignorance to suggest such.

KEVIN KAATZ
San Francisco


It's now all homos, all the time for Porno Pete

Leather-loving LaBarbera hangs it up.

Yes, that's not a typo, and not what you think. It wasn't enough for Peter LaBarbera to divide his attention between the world of gay male sex and dealing with matters like protecting the holy fetus, Plan B, and abstinence ed. That wasn't fulfilling enough.

So he's decided to leave the nest of the Illinois Family Institute and is moving on to the big time -- full time immersion into "researching" The Homosexual AgendaTM. No lie, folks:
Illinois Family Institute today announced the appointment of David E. Smith as its new Executive Director, to succeed Peter LaBarbera, who is resigning to pursue his goal of creating a national organization dedicated to confronting the homosexual activist agenda.

Smith, 37, has served as Senior Policy Analyst at the Institute since coming on board in March 2004, and is leading the push for a statewide Marriage Protection Referendum in Illinois. He gained national respect as a decency advocate after filing 70 FCC complaints against Chicago shock-jock Eric "Mancow" Muller, resulting in a $300,000 fine against Mancow's parent company, Emmis Communications Corporation.

"It is a great honor to be chosen to lead Illinois Family Institute," Smith said. "I will do my best to defend marriage, life, and decency for the families of this state against the determined efforts of liberal groups to disqualify Biblically- informed thought and action." LaBarbera, 44, who joined IFI in September 2003, is recognized as a leading opponent of the "gay" movement. Under his tenure, IFI's visibility and grassroots network grew tremendously. In the weeks leading up to the November election, he will stay on at IFI as an advisor to help with the transition. LaBarbera's group, Americans for Truth, will be based in Naperville, Illinois.

...Said Smith: "For the past two years, I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Peter LaBarbera. I will miss him and the passion he brought each and every day to the office. Yet I fully understand his desire to counter the powerful and well-funded homosexual lobby," Smith said. "I have learned many important lessons from Peter, and plan to continue to work with him and Americans for Truth here in Illinois. I wish him and AFT success in the battle for truth."
Lord this is so rich.

Here is what Porno Pete is bleating over at his new digs, Americans For Truth (several links don't work or areas are "under construction"):

“It’s time for Americans to unapologetically resist the demands of this lobby, and to counter the lies upon which it is built-the foremost being that certain people are inherently or ‘born’ homosexual and this is a civil rights issue.”

...“The reality we face is that the same ‘gay’ movement that has reached unparalleled power and influence also aims to redefine traditional Judeo-Christian sexual mores as ‘hatred,’ ‘bigotry,’ and ‘phobic’ prejudice on a par with racism,” he said. “Most Americans are simply unaware of the tremendous threat to freedom and morality that this radical ideology poses to society and especially to committed people of faith.”
Hat tip to Phil.

Also:
* Wayne Besen and Daniel at Ex-Gay Watch comment on Pete's New Adventure


George Allen: the stale cracker

This story has been covered well on other blogs (AmericaBlog has been relentless), but I'm sure you all want to put your two cents in on this good old boy.

U.S. Senator George Allen (Rethug-VA) is a bigot who's a proud Reb at heart and cannot even bother to paper over his longing for the good old days.

While on the road, the senator (and 2008 presidential aspirant) should have kept his mouth shut. No couth in evidence here. (AP):
[Democratic challenger Jim] Webb's campaign distributed to reporters a video clip of Allen's remarks about [S.R.] Sidarth, a 20-year-old University of Virginia senior who spent last week videotaping Allen's "listening tour" for the Webb campaign.

"This fellow over here with the yellow shirt — Macaca or whatever his name is — he's with my opponent," Allen said. "He's following us around everywhere."

After mentioning that Webb was in California on a fundraising trip, Allen exhorted the crowd: "Let's give a welcome to Macaca here. Welcome to America and the real world of Virginia."
[You can watch Allen in action (from the Daily Show).]

Macaca, as we've come to know, is a racist slur. John:
Nice of the Washington Post to, yet again, ignore the fact that Macaca isn't just a genus of monkey - in French it's also a slur for dark-skinned people of North Africa, and George Allen's French-speaking French mother just happened to come from North Africa. No, that's not relevant to the story, but the genus of Macaca in Latin is. Uh huh.
Unfortunately, Allen issued one of those all-too-familiar non-apologies -- and issued it to the media, not Sidarth himself. What a class act.
"In no way was it meant to demean him, and I'm sorry if he was offended."

...On Tuesday, Sidarth said he took little comfort in Allen's attempted amends.

"If he wants to make an apology to me, he can talk to me personally rather than doing this through the press," Sidarth said.
***

Bonus redneck points for the senator, who, according to the article, wore a Confederate flag pin in his high school yearbook photo, had a Confederate flag in his living room, a noose in his law office and kept a picture of Confederate troops in his governor's office. What does he have to say about that? He said "he has grown since then." Apparently precious little.

The New Republic has a laundry list of evidence outlining Allen's race problem.

It's hard to imagine a candidate for president that promises to surpass the moral deficits of GWB, but Allen is clearly a man up to that task.


DADT 'sit-in' going on at Minnesota National Guard recruiting station

[UPDATE (10:45 PM): Four people were arrested at 6:30 pm. See below.]

Andy of Eleventh Avenue South sent along word of an ongoing protest at a Roseville, MN National Guard Recruiting office, where over a dozen young LGBT folks attempted to enlist, and when turned away, began a sit-in -- they are not leaving until they get arrested.

The protest is organized by Soulforce's Right to Serve campaign, and they expect to be arrested around 6PM.

Are the protestors getting the cold shoulder by the recruiters? Not at all. From Andy's first-hand account:

Photo: Eleventh Avenue South

Sitting-in with the group was a great experience. The military recruiters at the center were incredibly gracious and treated us all like guests. It was clear that many staff there held negative views of DADT, and would rather see LGBT people openly serve, even if that was never the official statement from anyone. They set up tents, and made everyone as comfortable as possible.
UPDATE: Andy has details on the arrest of four people at the recruiting office.


Photo: Eleventh Avenue South


No gay-straight alliances, says NC school board

The wingers of the Rowan-Salisbury School System (Salisbury, btw, is the birthplace of The Empty Wig) have decided that it will ban a Gay Straight Alliance club at South Rowan High School and prohibit the formation of one at any schools in the system.

The reasoning? The club would promote sex and the system has an abstinence-only policy on sex ed. Good grief. As if these are orgy clubs, as opposed to safe spaces for LGBT and het students to meet and socialize. (Salisbury Post):
Without comment, the Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education voted unanimously Monday night to approve an amendment to the school's extracurricular activities policy banning sex-based student clubs.

Board member Jim Shuping read aloud the complete text of the amendment. The policy uses the system's existing abstinence-only sex education policy as the basis for the ban.

...Board Chairman Bryce Beard said later that the new policy has been thoroughly reviewed by attorneys. He expressed confidence it can withstand a legal challenge.

..."We have concerns that the policy ... is illegal," said Jennifer Rudinger, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Raleigh office. "When a school allows extracurricular clubs, it's all or nothing. They can't discriminate ... They can't pick and choose." Rudinger cited the 1984 federal Equal Access law.

Rudinger said she is not aware of any county or city school district that has a policy similar to the one adopted by the Rowan-Salisbury school board.

...Mike Clawson, president of the Salisbury-Rowan Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbian and Gays, also cited the Equal Access Act in an e-mail to the Post. "Simply put, the school cannot ban a Gay/Straight Alliance based on issues of morality if the Gay/Straight Alliance does not interfere with the orderly conduct of educational activities."
As usual, the fundie board's minds are focused on the sex act, not the orientation.


Daddy Dobson is herding his sheeple to vote

Shakes Sis is blogging about Daddy Dobson's Focus on the Anus registration drive to get The Base registered, hypnotized and ready to vote for the wingnuts.

FoF, in an LA Times piece says the organization will use "a variety of methods -- including information inserted in church publications and booths placed outside worship services" in order to mobilize voters for the mid-term elections.

That's all well and good -- and legal to a point, but the issue for Dems is that the Right is much more effective at using the church in recent times, in getting out the religious vote.
"Any time you go from a big presidential year like 2004 to an off-year like this, there's going to be a drop-off" in voter interest, said John Paulton of Focus on the Family Action, the political arm of Focus on the Family. "It's a question of how much. You could argue that the fear of what could happen if many more liberal politicians take over could be very motivating to get out and vote as strongly."

The program, announced in an e-mail to activists last week, is seeking county and church coordinators in the targeted states of Maryland, Montana, Tennessee, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Minnesota.

"In 2004, about 25 million evangelicals failed to vote. Now is the time to reverse the trend," the e-mail said.

According to the e-mail, county coordinators are being asked to work about five hours a week and would be responsible for "recruiting key evangelical churches."
The GOP is also, according to the article, courting the fundies by setting up registration boots at Christian rock concerts, state fairs and other events where The Base hangs out.

People are going to be peppered with voter guides with the candidates' views on the usual topics for these fools -- same-sex marriage, abortion, and stem cell research. While they cannot endorse candidates, they can hand out misleading materials in those voter guides. Shakes:
And, of course, paying attention to the law doesn't stop them from being mendacious pricks and doing fun things like misrepresenting the positions of women's organizations in a brochure subtitled "Exploiting women in the name of science."

The only way to stop these people is to throw out of the office the cynical base-pandering miscreants who are held in their thrall.


Black Jack, Missouri rescinds anti-cohabitation ordinance

I posted last week about an unwed couple in Black Jack, MO, Fondray Loving and Olivia Shelltrack, who challenged the town housing ordinance prohibiting unmarried couples and their children from living in the same dwelling.

The blowback woke up the City Council, and the ordinance was changed.
Fondray Loving, Olivia Shelltrack and their three children are now considered a family by Black Jack officials.

The City Council unanimously agreed Tuesday night to change the ordinance that had prevented the unmarried couple from obtaining an occupancy permit for their five-bedroom home, bringing national attention to the north St. Louis County suburb.

...The ordinance had prohibited more than three people from living together in single-family housing unless they are related by "blood, marriage, or adoption." Loving is the biological father of two of the children.

The revision extends the definition of a family to include unrelated people and the children of both or either person who live together as a single housekeeping unit. The amendment would make the family eligible for an occupancy permit, city officials said.
The Mayor, Norman McCourt, was trying to play cute about the purpose of the original language, saying it was about "maintaining the quality of the city's housing stock," and "preventing overcrowding," and had nothing to do with living in "sin." But his own official statements in the city records ratted him out.

City documents have contradicted that position, including a note from McCourt in an unrelated case. McCourt wrote in 1999 that Black Jack officials and residents "do not believe that an unmarried couple having children residing in our community is an appropriate standard that they wish to approve" in a letter addressed to the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Eastern Missouri, which defended the couple.
H/t, Bruce from Missouri.


The nexus of politics and terror

Olbermann puts it out there.
The term we employ is the nexus of politics and terror. It does not imply that there is no terror, but it also does not deny that there is politics. And it refuses to assume that counterterror measures in this country are not being influenced by politics.


Watch and decide for yourself whether our terror leash has been jerked ad nauseum.

H/t, Raw Story (which has the full transcript).


Candidate for lieutenant gov in Colorado: 'Do we allow a man to marry a sheep?'

Colorado Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez probably has a headache right about now. He picks Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland to run with him as the lieutenant governor candidate, and then an interview she did earlier this year on Rocky Mountain PBS's "Colorado State of Mind" surfaces, with her interesting comments about gays and marriage (Denver Post):
The host asked whether polls showing support for domestic partnership and a ban on gay marriage were "irreconcilable."

Rowland began her answer by noting that she has gay friends and respect for gays. [Uh, oh...you know what's coming...]


"But I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. Homosexuality is an alternative lifestyle," she said. "That doesn't make it a marriage. Some people have group sex," she said. "Should we allow two men and three women to marry? Should we allow polygamy with one man and five wives? For some people, the alternative lifestyle is bestiality. Do we allow a man to marry a sheep?

"I mean at some point you have to draw the line," she said.
Before this blew up, Beauprez called Rowland "a rock star" and was touted by the GOP for her ability to court the suburban soccer moms because "she's one of them" (as a former stay-at-home mom, and county child-protection caseworker). Rowland herself said she's followed a life path similar to "a lot of people."

Now she and Beauprez are now able to be described as "closed-minded" and "reflective of an 'intolerant, ignorant' ticket."

The Post article also quotes John Straayer, a Colorado State University political science professor, who noted that Beauprez didn't have much depth on the bench when he was looking to find the "right" Republican female to "balance" his ticket. Well he picked a winner, didn't he?

BTW, the Democrat running for governor, Bill Ritter, supports the domestic partner ballot initiative on the November ballot.

***

Columnist Jim Spencer of the Denver Post saw this train wreck coming back when Rowland said those remarks. She has since been doing damage control and attempted to "clarify" her remarks, only digging a deeper hole for herself. And are you surprised to learn that candidate Beauprez knew about her sheep follies? I didn't think so...
On Tuesday, I asked Rowland whether Beauprez knew about the bestiality remark when he invited her to join him.

"Yes," she said, "he certainly did know."

"She notified us that she made some regrettable statements," said Beauprez campaign manager John Marshall. "In the real world, people make mistakes. She's an unbelievably good candidate."

Rowland said people are taking her out of context. Here's a Web link:

www.rmpbs.org/csom060317b.mp3

Listen to the whole thing and decide.

On Tuesday, Rowland tried to clarify.

"The question I posed is: Where do we draw the line?" she said. "If marriage isn't between a man and woman - which I and the congressman believe it is - it can be between two men or two women. It can be between a threesome. It can be polygamy. I went on to give all the alternative lifestyles that people have a right to participate in. I probably stepped over the line by referring to bestiality. ..."

Probably?
There you go. That definitely clarified matters.

Hat tip, Karen T. in Boulder.


Winger radio show host Mike Gallagher is a dumb*ss

Please tell me how this makes any sense:

"It’s time to have a Muslims check-point line in America’s airports and have Muslims be scrutinized. You better believe it, it’s time...Most Americans want prejudice. Let’s be prejudiced against those who want to slaughter innocent American men, women and children. It’s time we start exercising some prejudice and stop these bloody terrorists."
This was said -- big surprise -- in a safe environment for such a statement, Faux News' "Dayside." (News Hounds):
A Fox News guest proposed having a "Muslims only" line for airport travelers, an idea that "Dayside" co-host Mike Jerrick called attention to it so that viewers did not overlook the proposal.

Conservative radio host Mike Gallagher suggested the idea during a segment Tuesday (August 15, 2006) with constitutional lawyer Michael Gross discussing racial profiling.

"Dayside" co-host Juliet Huddy set up the debate by noting that all terrorists have been Muslim extremists, and Jerrick claimed that some people oppose racial profiling as "politically incorrect."
The other guest on the program, constitutional lawyer Michael Gross, had to explain the obvious to the cretin --
"most Arabs are not Muslims, most Muslims are not Arabs. You don't even have your facts straight. How would you feel if we had a line for the Irish, which the English proposed during the IRA problems?"
And let's see, last time I looked, religion was not part of any information on a driver's license/ID -- how is that Muslim-only line supposed to be formed? And what about the non-Arab Muslims -- how does Mikey propose that be handled?

Jeebus, these people are stupid.


Cincinnati homobigots give up on petition drive

Ohio bible beater Phil Burress, who seems to have has his hands in all things anti-gay/anti-sex in Ohio (including porn-free CleanHotels.com), is also chair of Equal Rights Not Special Rights, a flock of sheeple trying to gather enough sigs to force a vote on whether the Cincinnati's Human Rights Ordinance should include protections for gays and lesbians.

The effort has been a bust and the group withdrew its petitions, asking that its measure not be placed on the ballot this year - or in the future, after being caught submitting forged signatures. Strike one for sanity in Ohio!
Phil Burress, chairman of Equal Rights Not Special Rights, said he made the decision Tuesday after it became obvious that many signatures on the petitions were forgeries. His group had collected just two signatures more than the minimum 7,654 needed to force the referendum. A hearing was scheduled at the Board of Elections on Thursday, where more than 1,300 of those signatures were to be challenged as forgeries, or as being improperly altered by paid signature gatherers.

The list of signatures to be challenged included Cuban President Fidel Castro, Reds owner Bob Castellini, former Hamilton County Commissioner Bob Bedinghaus and Enquirer reporter Greg Korte. Bedinghaus and Korte denied signing the petitions.

"Our own investigation revealed one person forged some names," Burress said. "It was quite obvious. So we immediately said, that's not right. It's a shame it went on this long, but we're sorry the people aren't going to be permitted to vote in this issue."

...Jennifer Branch says that's hogwash. Branch, an attorney for Citizens to Restore Fairness, said the fraud was systematic. "There were 1,300 reasons why those petitions were not going to be good enough," Branch said.
Branch sent out letters sent to people who allegedly signed Equal Rights Not Special Rights petition, and about 500 were returned because they were "not deliverable as addressed."

What about that family value of honesty the fundies are always bleating about?

Hat tip, Holly.


Impurity

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

I think Shakes Sis is about to make a mint on this product, which will be competing with the Abstinence Clearinghouse's Purity Ball Planner.

Click the image to see what she's marketing for $24.99.



What would you include in the Impurity Ball Deluxe Pack?

Think of all the depraved fundies we've seen here on the Blend for your inspiration.


Presidential priorities

Isn't it nice to know that Dear Leader works night and day (when he's not vacationing) tending to the urgent needs of the people...the holy roller people.

President Signs Bill to Save San Diego Cross.
Bush signed a bill sponsored by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-El Cajon) that designates the 43-foot cross and the city land beneath it as a federal war memorial under control of the Department of Defense.

A federal judge in May declared the cross a violation of the constitutional separation of church and state and ordered it removed by Aug. 2. That order was stayed last month by the U.S. Supreme Court until other legal issues can be resolved.

Cross proponents believe that shifting ownership of the land to the federal government will invalidate the judge's ruling and make it more difficult for opponents to prevail because the U.S. Constitution is more flexible about religious icons on federal property than the state Constitution is about city land.

..."The U.S. Constitution stands between the opponents and victory," said Hunter, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. "This is a great day for veterans."
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Chimpy puts his John Hancock on H.R. 5683 with (L-R) Bill Kellogg, president of the Mount Soledad Association; Philip Thalheimer, chairman, San Diegans for Mt. Soledad National War Memorial; U.S. Rep. Brian Bilbray, R-CA; U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa, R-CA; U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-CA; and Chuck LiMandri, chief counsel, San Diegans for Mt. Soledad National War Memorial.


Fundies go after American Academy of Family Physicians for article on lesbian health

This is the f*cking living end. Now the bible beating medical professionals of the Christian Medical and Dental Association (CMDA) is on the warpath over an article published in the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) journal American Family Physician, on "Primary Care for Lesbians and Bisexual Women."
The author suggests that doctors' hesitancy to ask questions about women's sexual orientation and lesbian and bisexual patients' hesitancy to disclose such information can pose potential barriers to optimal healthcare. She says physicians can improve primary care for these patients by acknowledging this and "working to create a therapeutic physician-patient relationship."

..."I think the concern about the article is the fact that, first of all, it seeks to normalize and seeks to glorify and promote a homosexual lifestyle," [CMDA Executive Director Dr. David] Stevens observes. He says the article does this while "at the same time admitting some of the significant healthcare problems that occur because of that lifestyle."
How about the main problem is that lesbian and bisexual women are reluctant to seek out medical care because they are afraid of being judged or proselytized to by holy rolling doctors? The CMDA devotes a whole page on its views of homosexuality on its web site, including statements like:
* Homosexual behavior can be changed. There is valid evidence that many individuals who desired to abstain from homosexual acts have been able to do so.

* Some homosexual acts are physically harmful because they disregard normal human anatomy and function. These acts are associated with increased risks of tissue injury, organ malfunction, and infectious diseases. These and other factors result in a significantly shortened life expectancy.
After reading that, why pray tell would a woman want to play Russian roulette and have to guess as to whether they are going to get a fundie gynecologist? Does she have to worry that when the doctor goes to look in her hoo-hah and has to say there's no chance of being pregnant -- because no pee-pees are involved -- that she's going to get a hellfire lecture?

What about the Florida woman who was given literature condemning homosexuality as "sinful and sexually impure" after a routine appointment? She also received photocopied pages, including Bible verses, that asserted God could "help her change."


From the National Center for Lesbian Rights

That sounds like a fundie agenda, no? But for the CDMA, it's all about The Homosexual AgendaTM in this article:
The Christian physician says he feels the AAFP has been hijacked by a small segment of its membership who lobby to endorse and promote homosexuality as a normal expression of human sexuality. The American Family Physician article on medical care for lesbian and bisexual women starts out benignly enough, he contends, but then it takes a turn into activism.

...The CMDA spokesman says the article also discussed issues like insurance for lesbian partners and their children, and inheritance laws as they affect lesbian couples. He believes the AAFP, in publishing this sort of material, is bowing to the desires of the homosexual agenda.
Personally I want these folks to put a Jeebus fish on the door or indicate CMDA membership in the Blue Cross medical provider handbook when I'm picking out a primary care provider so I can avoid them.


Open thread - and they vote

I keep hoping against all hope that when I kid about American know-nothings as "sheeple" that it's not true, and then I see poll results like these, from Zogby.

* 57 percent of Americans could identify J.K. Rowling's fictional boy wizard as Harry Potter, while only 50 percent could name the British prime minister, Tony Blair. [You can count Paris Hilton among the folks who don't know The Lap Dog.]

* Asked what planet Superman was from, 60 percent named the fictional planet Krypton, while only 37 percent knew that Mercury is the planet closest to the sun.

* Respondents were far more familiar with the Three Stooges -- Larry, Curly and Moe -- than the three branches of the U.S. government -- judicial, executive and legislative. Seventy-four percent identified the former, 42 percent the latter.

***

Is this a result of our weak education system, mass media dumbing down or what?


Conservative talk show host blasts Wisconsin marriage amendment

You know the fundie gay-bashers have overreached when the conservatives dog your attempt at "protecting marriage." In Wisconsin, a state that has a chance of turning away a marriage amendment at the polls this fall (it would be the first state to do so), the tide is clearly turning, and now Republicans are scared they could lose this one.

In his CNI newspapers column, Charlie Sykes of Newsradio 620 WTMJ realizes that by banning civil unions the bible beaters in Wisconsin have misjudged the opposition to a hate amendment.
Legislative Republicans thought they had an electoral magic bullet when they voted to put an amendment banning gay marriage on the November general election ballot. The constitutional amendment would allow them to highlight a popular issue, motivate a big conservative turnout, and help Republicans up and down the ballot stem what appears to be a Democratic tide in 2006.

...the first defeat of a ban on gay marriage anywhere in the country – could actually embolden Wisconsin’s courts to do what conservatives most feared: legislate it from the bench.

..."Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state. A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized in this state."

Had Republicans stopped at the first sentence, the debate would have been squarely and unambiguously on he issue of gay marriage and the amendment likely would have passed easily. But they didn't, and that decision has shaped the current debate and changed the political dynamic.
But they did, and it's too damn bad isn't it, Sykes. Now you and your fellow conservatives have to live with the fact that you're about to "let the people decide" on a matter of civil rights for a group of taxpayers, and it may not go your way.

Quite frankly, the people shouldn't decide, but that battle will be fought another day.

He's not the only one scared -- Wisconsin tourism officials concerned about marriage amendment. If the amendment passes, a good number of businesses and tourism folks are concerned about a backlash.
Wisconsin's tourism secretary, Jim Holperin, also said he believed enactment of the measure Nov. 7 would have an impact.

"It will hurt this state's reputation of being inclusive, tolerant and welcome to all," he said.

...The executive director of the Cultural Alliance of Greater Milwaukee, which hosted the national Americans for the Arts national convention here in June, said he doubted the group would come back to the state if the amendment was approved. "It would certainly discourage a return visit," Tony Forman said of the event which drew nearly 1,000 people. Neilson said it had an economic impact of $1 million to $1.5 million.
Visit FairWisconsin and help them defeat this measure at the polls.

H/t, Americablog


No hearing for Patricia Todd on her win in Alabama

Kathy at Birmingham Blues drove over to Montgomery to the Alabama Center for Commerce for the hearing on the House District 54 Dem race, which openly gay candidate Patricia Todd won by a slim margin. Her win is being contested by Gaynell Hendricks, who lost by 59 votes in the July 18 runoff. (Earlier post here).

The hearing today was canceled, with the State Democratic Party Executive Committee citing a mix-up over who was supposed to serve at the hearing.

What a lame mess. And unfortunate, too, as the racial divide rears its ugly head.

Kathy:
There looked to be about an even split between supporters of Patricia Todd and supporters of Gaynell Hendricks. Sadly, the sides were racially split as well, with just a few conspicuous black faces among the Todd group, including Charlie Williams, who ran for the nomination initially but endorsed Patricia in the runoff. Patricia's attorney was dressed in a Matlock suit, as were several of the other lawyers.

We sat waiting for the state Democratic Party subcommittee that would hear testimony and decide if Patricia would retain her nomination. News cameras at the ready, the buzz of conversation, and a bit of sweat as the room got warmer. Patricia was holding a particularly nasty flyer from the campaign, admonishing the reader to BEWARE the lesbian candidate. How does she laugh this off? I’d be devastated by the hatred.
Charlie Williams who lent his support to Todd, was told by a Hendricks supporter that he was "a man without a country" because he supported a Todd, a white candidate.

The problem here is that some of Hendricks supporters are now playing the race card, after trying out the gay card and having that blow up in their faces since Todd has been out and never hid the fact that she is a lesbian. It's truly sad.

Go read all of Kathy's first-hand account, "A Total Bust."


Porno Pete: no one to vote for

LaBarbera got the bad news last week, that the Illinois State Board of Elections found that his marriage referendum petition had insufficient valid signatures to get on the ballot, and now the "undercover gay sex investigator" is whining that he has no one to vote for in the Illinois governor's race.

[Well, he always has the anti-homo Constitution Party candidate, Randy Stufflebeam.]

He blasts Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich:
Gov. Blagojevich and First Lady Patti Blagojevich have used his office to advance the homosexual activist agenda in Illinois--such as issuing a proclamation homosexual activists in Chicago, and the governor's Executive Order to provide health coverage to the "domestic partners" of homosexual state employees.
He moves on to Judy Baar Topinka, the GOP candidate. She's no better in Petey's eyes...
GOP gubernatorial candidate and state Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka is shown above publicizing the $10 million, taxpayer-subsidized, low-interest state loan she approved for construction of a new homosexual "community center" in Chicago. On Friday, Topinka joined Gov. Blagojevich, below, in welcoming the potential demise of the Protect Marriage Illinois referendum. Topinka also recently attended a "Meet and Greet" event sponsored by the "gay" activist group Log Cabin Republicans-Chicago and held at a homosexual bar.
He can't count on the Green Party to help him out either.
Alternatively, the Illinois Green Party, which appears likely to get on the ballot in November, is to the left of Blagojevich and Topinka on homosexual issues. The following is part of the Illinois Greens' 2004 "human rights" platform:
9. Provide full, explicit, anti-discrimination protection equal rights for gays, lesbians, bi-sexual and transgender persons, including the right to marry, by amending the Illinois Human Rights Act.
10. Institute Civil Unions for same-sex couples.


Going nowhere fast

What a sad site: Black Republican Empowerment's page on "Black Republicans to make history in 2006."

It features the usual suspects, Ken Blackwell, Michael Steele, Lynn Swann, etc., but these folks also link to the incredible, embarrassing, self-loathing black man, Vernon Robinson, who's running against Brad Miller in North Carolina's 13th Congressional District.

I hadn't been to Vern's page in a while. He's done a little sprucing up. He removed the link to the "endorsements" page, because, well, he doesn't have any current ones that I can see. It might be due to his infamous Twilight Zone commercial. He touts it on his site, with the headline MSNBC's Chris Matthews calls Vernon's TV ad "amazing" and says he'll "remember it."

Well that's the truth. A transcript of the ad:

ANNOUNCER: If you're a conservative Republican, watching the news these days can make you feel as though you are in The Twilight Zone. Americans are under attack from Islamic extremists in every corner of the world. Homosexuals are mocking holy matrimony, and the lesbians and feminists are attacking everything sacred. Liberal judges have completely rewritten the Constitution. You can burn the American flag and kill a million babies a year, but you can't post the Ten Commandments or say "God" in public.


CHILDREN: One nation under --


ANNOUNCER: Seven out of every 10 black children are born out of wedlock, and Jackson and Sharpton claim the answer is racial quotas. And the aliens are here, but they didn't come in a spaceship. They came across our unguarded Mexican border by the millions.


VERNON ROBINSON: I'm Vernon Robinson. If you send me to Congress, I'll send that back to The Twilight Zone. I approve of this message and of traditional American values.
Read my earlier post on this commercial.

I must point you to the Issues page, which to me, tells you all you need to know about him -- Vernon Robinson is unhinged. There's no way "the Black Jesse Helms" needs to hold any elective office. Take a look at this (click to enlarge):



One of my favorite bits is the HOMOSEXUAL Importation Act section, where he says: "Vernon opposes Brad's plan to recruit thousands of foreign homosexuals to come to this country to be given American citizenship. Outrageous!"

He also tries to "smear" Miller by saying Brad has a 0% rating from the Family Research Council and the American Family Association, lolololol. That should gain him some votes in these parts, Vern.


Former Oregon Christian Coalition head confesses to molesting family members

Gay Rights Watch apparently has a scoop on the story of yet another fundie's fall from grace, and this is a steep drop off of a cliff -- a police report of former Oregon Christian Coalition head Lou Beres's admission of molesting family members, which he thought was sealed.

Now that he's being sued in civil court by one of his molestation victims, it's all coming out.
Beres claims in the police report that he "has sinned in the past". The investigating detective recorded the phone call with Lou Beres with his permission. During this phone call Beres made admissions to three separate victims at three different times. All involved underage females.
The descriptions in the report are graphic, and include Beres's fingers being inserted into privates, Vaseline, "licking all over", argh, it's enough to make you lose your meal. Beres, naturally, played the aggrieved "Good Christian"TM when he was accused, blaming it all on his political enemies:
Beres said on the Christian Coalition web site today, "I am grieved by the false allegations of my nephew, Richard Galat. I am attempting to determine the source of each claim."

Beres, who did immediately return a phone message from The Associated Press, is the former head of the Republican Party in Multnomah County, the Democratic stronghold that includes Portland.
What was that about the homos being the deviants in society? Will Daddy Dobson and Don Wildmon have a public comment on Beres?

::Crickets chirping::

Go check out the report at GRW, if you can stomach it.

Related:
* Christian Coalition leader accused of molesting generations of family members
* Christian Coalition head to "withdraw from political life" (Seattle Times)


The fries aren't that good

McDonald's customer hits two with car after dust-up over cutting in line. Want some crack with them there fries? In Athens, GA:
Melinda Ann Thomas, 34, and Linda Ann Thomas, 51, were standing in a crowded line around 8:30 a.m. Saturday as they waited to order breakfast, police said. A cashier opened a new line and they stepped to the front of it _ a move that angered another customer who was waiting to order.

According to the report, the unidentified woman started yelling at them and threatened to kill them.

The woman then left the restaurant before the Thomases and stayed in the parking lot, sitting in her dark blue Jeep Cherokee, witnesses told police. As the Thomases made their way to their car, witnesses said the woman pulled out of her parking space and sped toward the women, striking them both with the passenger side of the Jeep.


A heartwarming letter to the editor

Monday, August 14, 2006

Perhaps this is one of "ex-gay" whackjob James Hartline's followers. She has her knickers in a twist over San Diego Pride, and felt assaulted by queer people in the streets. She fired off a letter to the San Diego Union-Tribune, equating the Pride celebration with the violent attack on six gay men that day at Balboa Park:
Assailing behavior at gay pride festival

For days, we have been hearing from the Union-Tribune and other local news outlets about a purported “hate crime” committed by punks who assaulted homosexual men during the recent Gay Pride Festival. But there was another hate crime committed that weekend that was not reported: The hateful moral assault committed by the homosexual community against San Diegans of all ages through its degrading and indecent “pride” celebration.

That community demonstrated its hatred of innocent children by allowing them to view a parade where adults engaged in public nudity and simulated sex acts. It displayed its hatred of impressionable teens by exposing them to (hardcore) gay pornography, sadomasochistic practices and devices, and same-sex behavior in the festival area. [Was she there to see this firsthand? Judge for yourself; pictures from the event (taken by fundies) are here.]

It showed its hatred of Christians by giving an award to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, drag queens who dress up like nuns and mock the Catholic Church. It exhibited its hatred toward all San Diegans by turning Balboa Park into a filthy blot on “America's Finest City.” The politicians, law enforcement officials, churches, schools and businesses who participated are equally guilty of morally attacking San Diego's citizens.

While the physical assaults are deplorable and rightly to be condemned, it should not serve as a distraction from these hateful moral assaults. In the interest of journalistic fairness, the Union-Tribune and other local media should have exposed these degrading activities as much as they covered the physical assaults.

ALLYSON SMITH
El Cajon
Mind you, Oscar Foster, one of the victims in the attack, was hit in the head and torso 12 times with a baseball bat. His skull was fractured and he may need reconstructive surgery.



Fundie flim-flam artists

First we find out that an awful lot of these bible beaters have their hands in their pants and enjoy porn way too much. Then I posted about the consumer demand in the Bible Belt to let Wal-mart sell liquor in formerly dry counties.

Today we read about the increasing number of fundies -- who bleat endlessly about moral values, of course -- who seem to have their hands in the church cookie jar or are picketing the pockets of parishioners. What an example of Great American Values. (ABC):
Billions of dollars has been stolen in religion-related fraud in recent years, according to the North American Securities Administrators Association, a group of state officials who work to protect investors.

Between 1984 and 1989, about $450 million was stolen in religion-related scams, the association says. In its latest count from 1998 to 2001 the toll had risen to $2 billion. Rip-offs have only become more common since.

"The size and the scope of the fraud is getting larger," said Patricia Struck, president of the securities association and administrator of the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, Division of Securities. "The scammers are getting smarter and the investors don't ask enough questions because of the feeling that they can be safe in church."
Here are some beauts for in the article; clearly the sheeple are thinking about getting rich quick with "God's blessing"...a tiny violin for them:

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* Randall W. Harding might have been in the choir at Crossroads Christian Church, but through his investment firm JTL ("Just the Lord", isn't that quaint) he encouranged pastors and their flock to turn over their fundie money -- and bilked them out of $50 million.

* The SEC busted Lambert Vander Tuig of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest Calif., who also made off with $50 million of churchgoers' cash. He ran a real estate scam that also involved salesmen posing as devout Christians who distributed Saddleback pastor Rick Warren's The Purpose Driven Life for full effect.

* A flim flam parishioner of Daystar Assembly of God Church in Prattville, AL managed to get church folks to invest about $3 million in a real estate scam that involved promises of a new megachurch for them. That case ended up with Daystar losing its building in the debacle.

It's hard to feel sorry for folks who think like this.
"Most folks think 'I'm going to invest in some overseas deal or real estate deal and part of that money is going to the church and I get part. I don't feel like I'm guilty of greed,'" Borg says.

If a skeptical church member openly questions a deal, that person is often castigated for speaking against a fellow Christian.

Ole Anthony of the Trinity Foundation Inc. in Dallas, which investigates fraud and televangelism, partly blames the churches themselves for the problem. Anthony contends that the "prosperity gospel" which teaches that the truly faithful are rewarded with wealth in this life is creeping into mainstream churches.
H/t, Cat.


Open thread - dogs at work and play

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Actual caption: U.S. President George W. Bush carries his pet dogs Barney (front) and Miss Beazley off Air Force One at Andrews Air Force base near Washington August 13, 2006. Bush returned to Washington from an 11-day vacation on his ranch in Texas. REUTERS/Jason Reed.

Look what he was working hard on to keep you safe...

Bush sought to cut $6M in screening technology:
As the British terror plot was unfolding, the Bush administration quietly tried to take away $6 million that was supposed to be spent this year developing new explosives detection technology.

Congressional leaders rejected the diversion of funds, the latest in a series of Homeland Security Department steps that have left lawmakers and some of the department’s own experts questioning the commitment to create better antiterror technologies.
(h/t Ms. Julien).


Fort Leonard Wood and Fort Campbell lead in DADT discharges

Way to go, you dunces. As the military is depleted and the need for qualified people is greater than ever, it appears that kicking out the homos must be sport at Kentucky's Fort Campbell and Missouri's Fort Leonard Wood.
Fort Campbell had the single-biggest increase of discharged soldiers under the "don't ask, don't tell" policy in 2005, according to the Department of Defense.

And Fort Campbell has the second highest rate of soldiers discharged under the policy behind Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.

According to the Department of Defense, 49 soldiers were dismissed from Fort Campbell, an increase from 19 in 2004. Sixty people were dismissed last year from Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.
Servicemembers Legal Defense Network isn't sure why these the spike in charges of gay soldiers is occurring at these two bases, but it's clear that there's a past problem that may factor in at Campbell.
It was at Fort Campbell where a soldier, Pfc. Barry Winchell, was bludgeoned to death in 1999 by a fellow soldier who believed Winchell was gay. Gay discharges from the base went up sharply on the heels of that murder, but later subsided.

"The numbers at Fort Campbell remain disturbing because of the history there," said C. Dixon Osburn, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network. "The discharge numbers had gone significantly down. This seems to be a rebound. It's not clear why."

Steve Ralls, communication director with the SLDN says the post since 1999 has dealt quickly with anti-gay harassment, but he's not sure exactly why there's a recent spike in discharges.

Ralls said the new trend emerging in the SLDN caseloads are soldiers being outed by someone they know at various installations.

"I can't say that's been happening at Fort Campbell, but that's what we're seeing at more installations," he said, referring to ex-lovers, roommates and family members who don't approve of the soldier's sexual orientation. "It's an effective way to blackmail service members and put their careers in jeopardy. As don't ask, don't tell continues, they understand it's a very good way to exact revenge."
Of course the irony of this situation, Steve mentions in the article, is that hets are using the gay card to get out because of the hyperactivity surrounding the booting of the homos. When will the military wake up?

Also:
* Select Military Bases See Spike in 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Dismissals (SLDN)


RaptureReady.com

The "I'm not sh*tting you" post of the day.
A Website devoted to "calculating" how long the world has until "endtimes" arrive has garnered a lot of media coverage since the war in Lebanon began a few weeks ago, RAW STORY has found.

"Israel and Hezbollah began trading blows last month, the community at RaptureReady.com, a fundamentalist Christian site dedicated to the proposition that the end times are near, was atwitter, taking the conflict as another sign of an impending judgment day," Tom Zeller Jr. reports in Monday's edition of The New York Times.
Have fun surfing the Rapture Index, described as a "Dow Jones Industrial Average of end time activity." It was created by Todd Strandberg, who, according to RAW, is "a night supervisor at the spare-parts store at Offutt Air Force base, Nebraska."

I love the disclaimer that Raw Story found in a cache of the Index:
"The Rapture Index by no means is meant to predict the rapture, however, the index is meant to measure the type of activity that could act as a precursor to the rapture,"
Paul said in his email: "They don't believe in evolution, but they believe in this crap? Stop the world. I wanna get off. (take that second sentence however you wish)."


Abandoning the McMansions

I was wondering when this was going to happen. Is this going to spell trouble for the economy if all those cavernous abodes go up for sale as the price to heat and cool those places becomes unafordable in already unaffordable locales? If no one is buying, it's the start of the downward spiral in those hot markets.
"Steeply deteriorating." "Hard landing." "Kaput." These are some of the terms used by analysts to describe the slowing of the U.S. housing market. And with the glory days of home-price appreciation now over, some homeowners are declaring, "Downsize Me!"

A huge gap between the supply of homes for sale and demand for housing means prices are leveling off -- and could tumble. David Horwitz and his wife, Diane, are the type of homeowners looking to streamline their expenses and unload their roomy homes for more humbler abodes.

The Horwitzes, both semi-retired, just moved into a 1,200 square-foot apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan after living in a 2,200 square-foot home in Scarsdale, New York.

"Our property taxes went down by 1,000 percent, the ConEd (bill) was cut by two-thirds and the cost of home maintenance was reduced by at least 50 percent," said David Horwitz. "No gardener, no roofer cleaning gutters, no tree spraying, no snow removal, no exterior painting every six or seven years."

...Diane Ramirez, president of Halstead Property, has seen downsizing pick up steam in recent months, especially among suburbanites in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

"Homeowners are probably sensing now may be the right time to get the best price before the market cools further," Ramirez said. "Some of these homebuyers are empty-nesters now finding their homes are larger than what they need and more than they can handle."
Are you seeing a slowdown where you are? I was talking to someone who recently bought a home here and while the market is tight for the pre-existing, smaller homes in town, the McMansion developments are still going up around the Triangle.


More parenting horrors

Since the fundies have told us that gays and lesbians must be barred from adopting or fostering children (as well as marrying), it's always good to throw out a reminder that there are straight folks out there who don't have to fight for those rights and they certainly are upholding the highest standard of a model for us.

The acts some are committing are sick. Parenting isn't about orientation, bible beaters. You can't get much more deviant, twisted, and amoral than this and it has nothing to do with being gay.

Michigan man accused of striking deal for sex with girlfriend's child. The mother was afraid her boyfriend would dump her, so she pimped her daughter, promising her clothes and body piercings, offering her up as a sex toy for him. Shawn Dailey didn't want Michael Fitzgibbon to go without sex after her tummy tuck.

So that was the solution, folks. If you don't think it can get any sicker, it does -- this vile piece of sh*t was having sex with his own 12-year-old daughter for a pack of smokes.
In a case that shocked authorities in a small western Michigan city, a man stands accused of striking a deal for sex not only with the 14-year-old daughter of his girlfriend - who police say offered the girl to him while she recovered from surgery - but with his own 12-year-old daughter.

"I've never seen anything like this before. Parents aren't supposed to do something like this," Calvin Mahan, a detective with the Muskegon Heights police, said Friday.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
WOODTV.

...According to authorities, the 37-year-old man's girlfriend persuaded her daughter to sign a contract obligating the then-14-year-old girl to have sex with him in exchange for clothing and body piercings. Police said the woman was worried the man would dump her while she was recovering from tummy tuck surgery.

Authorities said the mother, daughter and the man all signed the contract. The man and the girl allegedly had sex about 20 times from June 6 to July 15, during which time she turned 15 years old. "Basically, mom was pimping out her daughter," Mahan said.

On Friday, Mahan said authorities also learned that the man had given his own daughter - who had been staying with him after living with her biological mother - packs of cigarettes for sex. According to the Muskegon County Prosecutor's Office, the man had sex with his daughter from sometime in November of last year to July 15.
***

And Paul passed this model of parenting in Texas on the other day...
A 35-year-old San Antonio man has been charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child after allegedly offering to sell his 13-year-old daughter for sex.

...A police affidavit says neighbors reported seeing the man walking down a neighborhood street on San Antonio's South Side on Saturday with the girl, who had a sad look on her face. The affidavit says the suspect told the neighbors that he was a sex offender and he was selling the girl for sex.

The neighbor couple told police they played along and negotiated a 100-dollar price, then took the girl to their home and called police.


Challenge showdown on Patricia Todd's victory in Alabama on Tuesday

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Kathy alerted me that on Tuesday morning (at 9:00 in Montgomery) there will be a hearing on Patricia Todd's win in the Democratic runoff for State House District 54.


Todd, who would be the first out lesbian lawmaker in Alabama, bested Gaynell Hendricks by only 59 votes in the election. Hendricks' mother-in-law, Mattie Childress, challenged the results, with overheated charges that Kathy documents well over at her pad in a great long post. A snippet:
Ms. Childress accused the Todd campaign of filing its most recent campaign disclosure forms late (that part’s true and not a big deal legally) to hide a contribution from the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund. I hate to break it to Ms. Childress, but Patricia has been out for years, and the Victory Fund solicited and matched contributions from her supporters (including me). We knew exactly where that money was going.
Patricia Todd has filed her response and is ready to fight. You can read that document here.


Flying will be fun on Friday


Skeletor Chertoff changes the rules again. What heaven help me, will be in effect when we go out of town this week? A few more things are now allowed; thank goodness someone at the Transportation Security Administration ("Vigilant, Effective, Efficient" it says on its web site) had the sense to approve these -- were they actually throwing out people's insulin up until this point?! Jeezus H. Christ.
The eased restrictions on medicine and the mandatory shoe removal were among several measures the Transportation Security Administration ordered Sunday in response to the thwarted terror plot in Britain involving U.S.-bound airplanes.

TSA had previously banned all liquid medications; now it will allow up to 4 ounces of liquid nonprescription medicine.

The alleged conspirators had planned to blow up as many as 10 planes flying from Britain to the U.S. using liquid explosives, which TSA's security equipment can't detect in carryon luggage.

In other measures, TSA said it would let flyers carry on low blood sugar treatments including glucose gel for diabetics; solid lipstick; and baby food. But it said all aerosols are prohibited.
And if you have gel insoles in your shoes, those have to go too. Dr. Scholl's as WMD. A couple of you wrote in about lube being allowed. How did that one make the cut? Just asking.

Here's the list of prohibited items as of today.

It's nice to know that these are allowed in checked baggage...
Billy Clubs
Black Jacks
Brass Knuckles
Kubatons
Night Sticks
Nunchakus


Hunky priest calendar

What must Papa Ratzi think of the Italian priests in Calendario Romano 2007?

One of the comments submitted to the site about it:
As a strong Roman Catholic, and a family man, I'd like to say that if I were the creator of this calendar, who I don't even know a thing about (I'd like to learn about the history of this calendar), but if I were him, I'd get down on my knees...and blow each and every one of these men.
Hat tip, Jay.


Bad city choice for HRC Carolinas dinner

We were at the NC Gay and Lesbian Film Festival today and I ran into the wonderful John Short, coordinator of the upcoming NC Pride festival (which is on September 30 this year with the theme "Pride, Not Prejudices.")

In the film fest guide there is an ad for the 2007 HRC Carolinas annual dinner; it's going to be held again in Charlotte. We were discussing how this is an unfortunate decision, given how the organization was treated last year by Mayor Pat McCrory, who refused to provide a letter of welcome from the mayor's office, something usually done for large conventions or events that are bringing dollars to the city.

Over 1300 HRC members came to Charlotte last time around, representing the third largest event in the country by the organization that year, and attendees and the organization spent plenty of gay dollars there. While HRC couldn't do anything about last year's event, certainly someone would have thought that holding another annual dinner elsewhere would have been an appropriate response to the snub. Maybe we shouldn't be surprised at HRC's decision; look at the feeble reaction last year after the slap in the face by McCrory.
The event marked the group's first trip to the area, but members say they did not receive the warm welcome they were looking for.

"You can welcome and embrace someone and you don't have to see eye to eye on all the issues," said HRC member Joni Madison.

Charlotte lawyer Phil Wells says he requested a letter of welcome from the mayor's office - a common occurrence for convention attendees. Wells was hoping Mayor McCrory would write a couple welcoming sentiments. He was disappointed by the lack of response.

"Here were a great number of people coming into this great city and spending money and wanting to see the best side of charlotte, and all he had to do was say, 'Welcome to our great city and he missed that opportunity,'" Wells said. Others attending the weekend festivities felt the same way.

"I just think that it was a kind of a courtesy, a protocol, and the fact that he didn't extend a hand, it was a missed opportunity for him," Madison said. "I think he's pandering to what he thinks his constituents believe and it's shameful," Mitchell Gold said.

Mayor Pro Tem Patrick Cannon says the mayor's office gets approximately 200 requests for welcoming letters every year. McCrory did not comment on the issue.
Mecklenburg County, which includes Charlotte, while the largest city in the state, and home to a sizeable gay population, it is at its core, more socially conservative than, for instance, the Triangle area. This is the same county with a district that keeps sending wild-eyed, anally fixated bigot Bill James back to his county commission seat unopposed. The county finally managed to squeak through a vote to add sexual orientation to its anti-discrimination policy last year, but not without a huge blow up and campaign by the fundies.

The annual Pride event in Charlotte has been dealing with controversy and adversity for some time, with fundamentalist bigot Flip Benham of Operation Save America trying to shut down events (this year's Charlotte Pride will take place on Aug. 26). Last year, the fundamentalist group called for the police working the Pride event who wore rainbow pins to be reprimanded for this simple act of freedom of speech. According to Q-Notes, which covered Charlotte Pride in 2004, OSA members went in and out of the crowd "harassing LGBT festival-goers by videotaping them, and asking them about their sexuality and suggesting they should consider changing their orientation."

And they had a friend in McCrory, who didn't want to grant permission for Pride events in public areas.
McCrory said he believes Charlotte Pride isn't appropriate for a public place. He said he's talked to lawyers about the legality of the festival, and has been told that it would be unconstitutional to deny organizers a permit based on what they might do. "I do not want that festival in a park setting," he said. "If they need to do it, I think it belongs in a hotel" or other private setting.
The park permit was finally obtained, but as you can see, it's a battle with wingnuts all the way.

With all that in mind, couldn't HRC Carolinas find a more accommodating city to host its dinner, one to hold up as a model of more progressive thinking about tolerance and civil equality to give its support and event dollars to?


Walmart incurs the wrath of the fundies over liquor in the Bible Belt

"This is an unprecedented attack against the family. We are going to fight this tooth and nail...I think Sam Walton, being the family-oriented man he was, would be rolling over in his grave about this. I’m really disappointed in Wal-Mart as a company."
-- the Rev. Ronnie L. Frankens, pastor of Homer Pentecostal Church in Diboll, TX, to cries of "amen" and "praise Jesus."
Walmart unhinges the bible thumpers yet again, as the retail giant uses its muscle to turn dry counties into wet ones. Expect the press releases to fly soon from the AFA, Focus on the Anus and the rest of those folks over big box distribution of beer and wine. (NYT):
Wal-Mart, based in a dry county in Arkansas, forbids drinking at events held at corporate headquarters. But the giant retailer has made a push in the last year to sell more liquor, along with beer and wine, in its stores.

Attempts by Wal-Mart and others to allow alcohol sales in other places that remain dry — 415 counties in the South and in Kansas still prohibit such sales — are meeting fierce resistance from some church groups and religious leaders. They argue that returning to the days when liquor flowed will mean more family violence, under-age drinking, drunken driving and a general moral decay in the community.

But voters are increasingly likely to follow their pocketbooks rather than the words of their pastors. Alcohol proponents often make the case that liberalizing laws will increase tax revenue and reduce the need for property tax increases, an issue looming large in voters’ minds.

More dry-to-wet measures have passed than have been defeated in the last four years in Texas, Alabama, Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee and Kansas, the states where the battles are concentrated. “The communities who effectively make arguments about economic development and tax dollars typically win the votes,” said John Hatch, a political strategist based in Austin, Tex.
These fundies doth protest too much (after all, they are consuming an awful lot of porn; should Walmart or Sam's stock that?). Any of these dry counties have a whole lot of drinking going on. As if these residents aren't already driving to bordering counties to booze it up.


Q of the day - guilty pleasure movies

Saturday, August 12, 2006

OK. This is an easy one.

Q: What movies do you always stop and watch when you're flipping channels, even though you've seen them a billion times?

These are ones that you probably don't want your friends to know that you like as much as you do.

I'm volunteering one of Kate's first...

* Mean Girls (2004). She likes looking at Lindsay Lohan (before she withered away) and she has a sick fascination with high school thing, the whole social order and how important it is at the time, and how meaningless it is once you're an adult (Mean Girls supplanted the earlier Clueless for her, which served the same purpose, lol).

OK, here are two of mine:

* Mildred Pierce (1945). Jeebus, this film is so beautifully sick, so outrageous and over the top. Long suffering mom, hard working entreprenurial mom Joan Crawford (of all people, in hindsight), has a viper of a daughter in Ann Blyth as Veda. There is much scenery chewing in this golden age of Hollywood drama, with great noir mise-en-scène, and incredible costume design by Milo Anderson. And who can forget Eve Arden as Mildred's sidekick and very single friend Ida. It was easy to read that character as lesbian. Some memorable quotes here. Here's quote beaut, Veda to Mildred:
Veda Pierce Forrester: You think just because you made a little money you can get a new hairdo and some expensive clothes and turn yourself into a lady. But you can't, because you'll never be anything but a common frump whose father lived over a grocery store and whose mother took in washing.
An aside: see my earlier post on Joan Crawford's fling with Marilyn.

* Die Hard (1988): I love this film. I can watch it over and over. Great pacing, and acting. Alan Rickman rules. There have been so many films made in this vein after DH, that it's easy to forget what a fresh take this was on the action genre. I love Bruce Willis in this film -- I know, he's a Republican, folks, so I always have to defend that, lol. I've been a fan since Moonlighting.

Here's a little bit of gas price nostalgia for you:


A shot (46:12 into the film) that pans up to the fictional "Nakatomi Plaza" where Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) is holding people hostage.


Porno Pete loves those activist judges now

Kathy @ Birmingham Blues popped me an email and said: I see Peter LaBarbera wants activist judges to help get the anti-gay marriage amendment on the ballot in Illinois, even though he and his pals didn't get enough signatures on their little petitions.

Now isn't that special?

The unrelenting mouthpiece and honcho of the Illinois Family Institute (and the Protect Marriage Illinois initiative) can't accept defeat, so now he's begging for a butt-searing spanking from those out-of-control, power-mad judges. Chaps or no chaps?
Organizers of the gay marriage referendum are claiming in federal court that getting a referendum on the Illinois ballot is both burdensome and unconstitutional because of the complicated process to gather and verify petition signatures, said Peter LaBarbera, executive director of the conservative Illinois Family Institute and Protect Marriage Illinois.

But LaBarbera and other gay marriage opponents were rebuffed earlier this month when a district court judge dismissed their claim so now they want a federal appellate court to intervene.

"It's not near over," LaBarbera said.
Damn, I thought social conservatives didn't want any part of the vile fed courts? He needs to be ratted out to Mother Schlafly.


Those lying bible beaters

Christian School Faces Suit After Coaches Molested Three Students. So much for caring about the children. The officials at Open Bible Christian School in Newberg, Oregon hired two male basketball coaches who are now serving time for molesting female students after liquoring them up.

What nice Christian behavior. Perhaps the administrators would have found out whether or not these teachers should have been around kids, or even qualified to do their jobs.
"Had [school officials] done a criminal background check on either man, or even a legal background check on either man," [Portland attorney Kelly] Clark contends, "they would have seen things that would have told them these weren't the kind of guys that they wanted to have working as coaches at a Christian school."

In the coaches' case, such a check would have revealed "nothing related to sex," the Oregon attorney admits. However, he says, a basic record-check would have uncovered enough information to give a clear indication of the men's character, including documentation of DUIIs (driving under the influence of intoxicants), failure to pay child support, evictions, and driving with a suspended license.
But you know what really puts icing on the cake about this BS? The school didn't support the assaulted girls throughout the incident, and then lied about the fact the administrators never did the background check at all. Good Christian Liars.
Meanwhile, the Open Bible Christian School's initial reaction to the allegations against its employees was less than truthful once the matter became public. "The school officials, whether because of a siege mentality or what, immediately after all this broke were quoted in the local newspaper as saying, 'When we did background checks on these men, neither of them had criminal records, etc., etc.'

"But we now know from documents and depositions that they didn't do background checks at all," Kelly says. "And when that came to the attention of the school officials and the church officials, we can't figure out why they didn't come forward and say, 'You know what? We misspoke. We never did a background check on these guys, and we're sorry that we misspoke.'"


Fundies launch national effort to ban hotel room adult pay-per-view

Phil Burress of the Cincinnati-based anti-gay Citizens for Community Values on Ohio has been all over pay-per-view porn on hotel TV "problem" for quite some time, establishing CleanHotels.com, a listing service to alert travelers where there is no availability to order such pay-for-play content.

Now the big guns -- the American Family Association, Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America and Morality in Media are teaming up, calling themselves "The Campaign for Corporate Responsibility" and are placing an ad in USA Today urging the Justice Department to investigate the purveyors of pay-smut for "violating federal and state laws about distributing obscene material."



Does someone need to tell these folks to simply not order the porn if they don't want to watch it? (AgapePress):
Not only does the coalition of groups believe the movie content is illegal, they are convinced such hardcore porn leads to sex crimes against women and children. The ad quotes three individuals whose work supports that assertion, and also makes the case that financial gain is the primary reason why hardcore porn -- which it refers to as a "toxic 'drug'" -- is readily available in virtually any hotel room in the country.

"It's ... time the producers, the distributors, and the hotels are held accountable for the tragic human and cultural expense from which they profit," states the ad.

According to Wildmon, all the groups feel it is important the DOJ enforce those laws. "Much of what's offered in hotel rooms in terms of the triple-x type material is the same kind of material that would be prosecuted were it sold down the street at a movie rental store," he explains. "It goes beyond just sexually explicit into hardcore material, which makes it legally obscene in our estimation."
Brad pointed out in the comments that DIRELAND links to a release regarding a ChristiaNet Poll that shows all that praying to Jeebus isn't stopping good evangelicals from ordering up and consuming porn, including way too many in the pulpit. As we say here all the time, these folks are fixated on sex to such a degree that it turns into a pathology. What a howler, these hypocrites.
If there could be one place protected from the cancerous infection of pornography and sexual misconducts, one would assume that the Christian church would be that sanctuary. But, recent research is revealing that no one is immunized against the vice-grip clutches of sexual addictive behaviors. The people who struggle with the repeated pursuit of sexual gratification include church members, deacons, staff, and yes, even clergy. And, to the surprise of many, a large number of women in the church have become victim to this widespread problem. Recently, the world's most visited Christian website, ChristiaNet.com, conducted a survey asking site visitors eleven questions about their personal sexual conduct. (http://www.christianet.com)

Amazingly, there were one thousand responses to the poll conducted by ChristiaNet.com. ChristiaNet.com partnered with Second Glance Ministries in evaluating the poll responses and it seems the Christian community is struggling with many of the same "temptations" that the secular society is faced with.

"The poll results indicate that 50% of all Christian men and 20% of all Christian women are addicted to pornography," said Clay Jones, founder and President of Second Glance Ministries whose ministry objectives include providing people with information which will enable them to fully understand the impact of today's societal issues. 60% of the women who answered the survey admitted to having significant struggles with lust; 40% admitted to being involved in sexual sin in the past year; and 20% of the church-going female participants struggle with looking at pornography on an ongoing basis.


Tee hee, Daddy Dobson

Atlanta Braves boot Daddy Dobson from Faith Day. I posted about this a while back but it was fun to see the headline this AM.
While the team wouldn't provide a reason for its decision, several gay rights groups on the Web bristled with speculation that Focus on the Family was given the boot for promoting its belief that homosexuality is a social problem comparable to alcoholism, gambling or depression.
However, the Braves aren't off the hook for this kind of dodgy response:
"For Focus on the Family, our involvement in Faith Days is all about being there to support the marriage and parenting needs of families," said Rich Bennett, the group's marketing director. "The Braves game in July was a great experience for us, and we are looking forward to participating in other Faith Days and Faith Nights events with Third Coast Sports in the future."
It should be an easy matter to say why FoF has no business being there, as the 365gay article notes, Focus's Troubled With site, which it was promoting at the game:
Under the heading "Love & Sex," homosexuality is listed along with items such as dating, miscarriage and post-abortion syndrome. The group opposes the belief that homosexuality is caused by genetics, saying that males are often influenced by incest, molestation, exposure to pornography and negative body image.
Third Coast Sports says its projects will continue with FoF and says the dustup was a matter between the Braves and Daddy Dobson's gang.


1-800-SUICIDE still afloat

Desi @ Mia Culpa passed on word in the comments of another thread that 1-800-SUICIDE has been given a reprieve, a two-week extension.
Help Save 1.800.SUICIDE

The outpouring of support and donations was the largest we have ever received in our history in a single day. We received over 100 donations and the day is not done. We made our target of 10k to keep the line live for two more weeks. We received calls of support from people who credit the Hopeline with helping them through their most difficult times and now they wanted to help us in ours. We also received the most media coverage in our 8 year history. So many more people will learn of our service as a result of this campaign.

There is much work to be done to get our organization into a secure sustainable position but our all volunteer Board is dedicated to helping us to get there, and with the support of people like you this grassroots network of community based crisis centers can be even better and stronger than before. From all of us at the Kristin Brooks Hope Center and the members of the National Hopeline Network, we thank you for your continued support, faith in us to be stewards of the nation's suicide hotline network and belief in our mission to offer help and hope from unconditional and confidential crisis centers.

Best always,

Reese Butler, President and Founder
KBHC Board of Directors
As I posted earlier, the line has been targeted for extinction by the fundies in the Bush Admin, who plan to roll services into one of its agencies, the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA), where sensitive at-risk caller data would be in the hands of this administration's fundamentalist Base.


More from the 2006 NC Gay and Lesbian Film Fest

The queer turnout at NC Gay and Lesbian Film Festival at the historic Carolina Theatre (which was lit up with rainbow lights) has been great. It's the second largest LGBT film festival in the Southeast -- and the biggest queer event in the state, even larger than NC Pride, which is also held here in Durham.

Last night (Fri), we pulled into the parking deck and the rainbow bumper stickers (and Subaru Outback wagons!) were all over the place. It was the first full night of films-only, so we expected crowds. Thursday's Margaret Cho show sold out, and a good number of films, even ones that are showing more than once during the fest, have sold out as well.

The weather was perfect. If the fundies' god is supposed to be punishing the homos, the bible beaters' batphone bill must not have been paid; it was blessed mild and the humidity was down. The large courtyard/plaza was teeming with people drinking smoothies and eating the offerings from the vendors in between shows.

***

We saw small town gay bar, a documentary by Malcolm Ingram (it was exec produced by Kevin Smith, yes, the director of Clerks). It was a wonderful look at what social life is like for gays in the rural South. I mean really rural -- the two Mississippi bars profiled were in Shannon (pop. 1,657) and Meridian (39,968). Durham, for comparison's sake has an estimated pop. of 204,845.

Watching this film is like going back in time if you live in a progressive area or large city; the closet is a necessity here, as you might imagine. Being out can be a death sentence for these people. The bar is their only refuge, their only time to let their hair down, be themselves and feel safe to be who they are, as gays, lesbians, trans, black, white -- all that matters is that you know you aren't alone. Drag queens had a home to perform out and proud at Rumors and Crossroads (now called Different Seasons).

The audience howled as Ingram interviewed the unhinged Rotting CryptkeeperTM Fred Phelps. Fred was his animated self, talking about "fanning the flames of fag lust" and it was clear he's energized and surprised by "all the fags that come out to protest him."

The Phelps Klan picketed the funeral of Scotty Joe Weaver, who was killed right next door in Alabama. The 18-year-old out gay teen, known to many at the Mississippi bars, was murdered by a trio of backwoods homobigots; he was tied to a chair in his trailer, beaten, stabbed, and partially decapitated. His body was dumped in the woods and then set on fire. No wonder these people remain closeted.

And since this is Mississippi, Ingram had to stop by the HQ and nexus of homohate, Don and Tim Wildmon's American Family Association, which is in Tupelo. Interviewees said that Tim Wildmon and the AFA had people scoping out a local bridge in a small town in Mississippi taking down the tag numbers of people who were going over the bridge to go to the gay bar.

The next day on his radio show, Don would read the tag numbers on the air. This, he said, "would keep people accountable." Evil does exist.

One of the queens in the film (who does drag at the bars by night and is a veterinary tech by day), and the sister of one of the bar owners, said that the Wildmons are a bunch of hypocrites because they have a homo sitting right there in the family circle.

And that's no surprise, is it?

You may ask, why on earth do these gay folks stay in these tiny towns? They are subjected to the possible loss of a job if someone outs you, shunning by family, or worse, you end up like Scotty Weaver. Kate and I talked about this for a while, but it's pretty clear that for many gays in rural areas, their fear of living in a hostile world like this is actually less stressful than the thought of living in a large, urban environment. The "big city" for them may be a 2-3 hour drive away, and it seems an inhospitable, cold place in comparison to the world they know and make for themselves. back home, hidden in the shadows of bars tucked away, deep in the woods.

It's both easy and difficult to understand. But the overwhelming theme running through this film is that we are everywhere. No matter how tight the bible belt is pulled, your tiny town has LGBT citizens, and they are making their space. The battle for survival and to be out in small towns is the last frontier. It's coming, and people like Wildmon are desperate to lean on that closet door to keep it firmly shut with their hate tactics. In the end, these fundies are going to lose.

***

Meeting Tab Hunter

After seeing small town gay bar, we met Tab Hunter in the lobby of the Marriott Civic Center (next door to the Carolina Theatre), along with his partner film producer Allan Glaser. Publicity Director of Algonquin Books, Michael Taeckens (who used to work with me at Duke Press, btw) dropped them off and then Allan and Tab kindly took us up to their suite to do the interview because the acoustics in the lobby of the hotel were heinous.

As a product of that era and a private person then and now -- and based on interviews he's done since coming out -- I knew going in that we weren't going to talk in-depth about gay issues related to film or politics surrounding outing, for example. Kate and I did ask how Tab felt about the impact of Brokeback Mountain, the differences between the coverage gossip rags of his era and today's incarnation of celeb-focused mags when it comes to gay celebs, and how studios handled the rumors, which he was more than willing to talk about. As I said in the comments of another thread, the gay angle wasn't particularly important to me; I was excited to do this interview because of my love of studio-era Hollywood and had so many questions about the star system of that time to pepper him with. I mean the man's worked with and/or knew Gary Cooper, Lana Turner, Natalie Wood, Debbie Reynolds, Linda Darnell, Gwen Verdon, Judy Garland; the list is way long.

We talked a lot about independent filmmaking and documentaries (our fave genre; Durham also hosts the wonderful Full Frame Documentary Film Festival)

We were scheduled for a 20 minute interview, but Kate and I were there for over an hour, gabbing about so many topics, even outside of Hollywood lore (we talked about his love of horses and dogs -- he asked about our own menagerie and loves Rhodesian Ridgebacks as well). We could have gone on all night, but we felt guilty for taking up this gracious man's Friday night, so we took pictures, he autographed our copy of Tab Hunter Confidential, and we were on our way.



As with the MCho interview, I'll have the audio up later; Kate will transcribe.

***

Today (Sat), we have tickets for:

CREATING A PLACE AT THE TABLE
(US, NR, 55 min, 2005) DVD

Three families, three different cultural backgrounds, and three different experiences... what do they all have in common? At the head of each family is a lesbian couple, each have navigated coming out to their families, and now each are creating their own families. This light-hearted documentary chronicles 3 multicultural lesbian couples & their families (yes, grandmas and grandpas, too), exploring the strengths they bring from their cultures of origin.
Viewer's Guide: Mature Themes.
OFFICIAL SITE: http://www.sunandmoonvision.org

--

TRANSPARENT
OFFICIAL SELECTION! London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
(US, NR, 61 min, 2005) DVD

With the documentary TransParent, Jules Rosskam presents us with 19 remarkable people: all female-to-male transgenders, all mothers. As one interviewee puts it, "I'm not the only one who transitions. Everybody around me has to transition." That includes one's children and one's parents. These men tell us about how they came to the decision to become men, their mixed emotions about mothering (as opposed to parenting), custody issues, talking to their own parents about FTM issues, pregnancy, reconnection with now-grown children, helping kids combat prejudice, gender roles in parenting and, yes, the perennial question: What does your child call you? One parent even talks about his transitioning teenager and "typical parent-child communication problems." Interspersed with the interview is home movie and video footage of the mothers and their babies. No matter where one stands on transgender issues, TransParent is a compelling look at remarkable individuals who refused to give up motherhood when they gave up their original genders.
Viewer's Guide: Language.

--

LUST IN THE DUST hosted by TAB HUNTER
(US, R, 1985, 84 min) 35mm

He Rode The West... The Girls Rode The Rest! Together They Ravaged The Land!
After forming a match made in trash-movie heaven in John Waters' Polyester, Tab Hunter and Divine reunited for this deliciously tasteless Western comedy, which borrows its title from the nickname for Duel in the Sun, the turgid Western that inspired director Paul Bartel's affectionate spoofery. With Hunter wearing two hats as hero and co-producer, the movie indulges its own outrageous excess while staying true to the dustiest traditions of the Western genre. It's just good enough to watch without shame, and rude enough to hide from more easily offended members of the family. Nothing's sacred in Chile Verde, the wild western town where lone gunman Abel Wood (Hunter) arrives after rescuing corpulent saloon singer Rosie Velez (Divine) from being defiled by Hard Case Williams (Geoffey Lewis) and his gang of misfit gunslingers. Saloon owner Marguerita Ventura (Lainie Kazan) gets hot 'n' heavy for Abel's wood, and passions flare up in a race for hidden treasure, the map to which is tattooed in two sections on Rosie's and Marguerita's ample posteriors. To reveal more would spoil the wretched hilarity; one needn't love Westerns to enjoy this pig-wallow of a comedy, but it helps if you know the legacy of screen villains like Henry Silva, whose riotous here while barely shifting his vile expression. No doubt, this is the wackiest Western that ever cooked under the "blistering, burning, blazing, scorching, roasting, toasting, baking, boiling, broiling, steaming, searing, sizzling, grilling, smoldering, very hot New Mexico sun."
Viewer's Guide: Nudity and language.

We may catch some others if they aren't sold out. Saturday's schedule.


The right definition of family

Friday, August 11, 2006

It's not just the homos on the hot seat. All you fornicating folks who are shacking up better not settle down in Black Jack, Missouri.
A small community in Missouri is being taken to court over its stand for biblical family values. The scene of the story is Black Jack, Missouri, population 7,000. According to a Reuters news report, Black Jack is a community that prides itself on its character and stability. But an unwed couple is challenging that, claiming that a town housing ordinance that prohibits unmarried couples and their children from living together is unconstitutional.

Now, with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, the man and the woman are taking the town to court. Their complaint states that the town of Black Jack has refused to grant them an occupancy permit for their home because they do not meet the community's definition of family. Town officials are not backing down, however; they say their ordinance is all about preserving neighborhood character, and a big part of that is upholding the traditional view of family. The unmarried couple's lawsuit comes after a North Carolina judge ruled last month that a 201-year-old law there that prohibits unmarried couples from living together was unconstitutional.


GOP To Do List: CYA before 11/7/06

I wonder if they can get this execrable bill through Congress before they lose Congress:
WASHINGTON — The Bush administration has drafted amendments to the War Crimes Act that would retroactively protect policymakers from possible criminal charges for authorizing humiliating and degrading treatment of detainees, according to lawyers who have seen the proposal.

The White House, without elaboration, said in a statement that the bill "will apply to any conduct by any U.S. personnel, whether committed before or after the law is enacted."

One section of the draft would outlaw torture and inhuman or cruel treatment, but it does not contain prohibitions from Article 3 of the Geneva Convention against "outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment." A copy of the section of the draft was obtained by the Associated Press.

"I think what this bill can do is in effect immunize past crimes. That's why it's so dangerous," said a third attorney, Eugene Fidell, president of the National Institute of Military Justice.
It probably won't matter, as Chimpy will likely pardon his loyalists, anyway. I wonder: if we impeach Chimpy & Darth, could Chimpy pardon Darth before the impeachment, leaving Darth to ascend to the presidency and pardon Chimpy after Chimpy's impeached. What's the mechanism for simultaneous impeachment of a president and vice president?


Jerkin' the Fear Chain

Blender Mena pointed me to the GOP editorial in the Wall Street Journal:
As we approach the fifth anniversary of 9/11 without another major attack on U.S. soil, now is the right moment to consider the policies that have protected us -- and those in public life who have fought those policies nearly every step of the way...

The plot was foiled because a large number of people were under surveillance concerning their spending, travel and communications. Which leads us to wonder if Scotland Yard would have succeeded if the ACLU or the New York Times had first learned the details of such surveillance programs.
"A large number", which, according to the Guardian, consisted of "...MI5 watching a group of young British Muslims after a tip-off from an informant." No monitoring of hundreds of millions of British subjects' phone calls and bank records, no torture and humiliation of a "disappeared" prisoner in the bowels of Gitmo, and especially no executive acting on alleged Constitutional authority to disregard the law and civil rights of citizens. It's a little set of effective techniques called "law enforcement" and "human intelligence", something John Kerry was excoriated for suggesting in fighting the War on Terra.
And almost on political cue yesterday, Members of the Congressional Democratic leadership were using the occasion to suggest that the U.S. is actually more vulnerable today despite this antiterror success. Harry Reid, who's bidding to run the Senate as Majority Leader, saw it as one more opportunity to insist that "The Iraq war has diverted our focus and more than $300 billion in resources from the war on terrorism and has created a rallying cry for international terrorists."
Man, projection ain't just for drive-in theaters anymore, huh? It's only too bad that, unlike Cheney and Mehlman, Reid doesn't get to rely on the political cues of knowing two days in advance there would be a major terrorism arrest and setting the "soft on terror" frame hours after a Lieberman loss.
Ted Kennedy chimed in that "it is clear that our misguided policies are making America more hated in the world and making the war on terrorism harder to win." Mr. Kennedy somehow overlooked that the foiled plan was nearly identical to the "Bojinka" plot led by Ramzi Yousef and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to blow up airliners over the Pacific Ocean in 1995. Did the Clinton Administration's "misguided policies" invite that plot? And if the Iraq war is a diversion and provocation, just what policies would Senators Reid and Kennedy have us "focus" on?
Are you telling us that there was a credible plan eleven years ago to blow up airliners with mixed liquid explosives, but you're only getting around to keeping liquids off planes yesterday?

And telling, isn't it, that the plotters are of Pakistani descent or Pakistani-born Muslims in Britain -- aren't we fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them in the streets of New York and London? -- captured after arrests were made in Pakistan, where it is believed that Osama bin Forgotten has been hiding. Not a single mention of an Iraqi terrorist in the bunch.

Wait, I know, it's because we're fighting a war in Iraq that the Iraqi terrorists don't have the time and money to attack us! It's also why there are no kangaroos in Iraq; our soldiers carry Magic Anti-Kangaroo Rocks that keep the kangaroos away. The problem isn't that we're fighting in Iraq; the problem is that we're not also fighting everywhere else in the world. Think about it - London subways, Madrid, Bali - all places attacked since 9/11 where we don't have troops and secret detention centers and torture chambers and the death of 100-200 civilians a day.
In short, Democrats who claim to want "focus" on the war on terror have wanted it fought without the intelligence, interrogation and detention tools necessary to win it...
Yet the British seemed to be able to fight it without the mass secret public surveillance, torturous and degrading interrogation, and unconstitutional detention tools you think are necessary to win it.
The real lesson of yesterday's antiterror success in Britain is that the threat remains potent, and that the U.S. government needs to be using every legal tool to defeat it...
That's the first reasonable thing you've said, except for the fact that you're using a Nixonian definition of "legal".
As the time since 9/11 has passed, many of America's elites have begun to portray U.S. government policies as a greater threat than the terrorists themselves. George Soros and others have said this explicitly, and their political allies in Congress and the media have staged a relentless campaign against the very practices that saved innocent lives this week.
Whew! No good GOP smear/spin is complete without a Soros reference. And an "elites" reference to boot! Who are these "elites"? Doesn't "elite" mean "someone holding the highest levels of political, economic, or social capital"? Which party do these "elites" overwhelmingly support come election day, anyway?


sHillary at the Museum of Sex



The 'Presidential Bust' of Hillary Clinton. I think I'll leave the commenting to you all.
The nude study of Senator Hillary Clinton used in creating her first portrait as U.S. President is featured in a documentary now viewable at YouTube.com, the net's leading video download site. "Hillary's Bust", an eight-minute short produced by Goodnight Film, reveals the sexy origins of a statue of the former First Lady planned for display at New York's Museum of Sex. The film contains the only footage taken of an unclothed preparatory study of Hillary Clinton's upper torso used for developing the heroic-scaled "Presidential Bust of Hillary Rodham Clinton: First Woman President of the United States of America."

The documentary reports Hollywood actor Sharon Stone's recent statements regarding Mrs. Clinton's potential White House bid as inspiration for her Presidential portrait. The bust's creator, Daniel Edwards, points out that during the promotion of her most recent Basic Instinct film, Stone sparked a sexual power debate with, "I think it is too soon for her to run. This may sound odd, but a woman should be past her sexuality when she runs. Hillary still has sexual power and I don't think people will accept that. It's too threatening."

"I've depicted Hillary Clinton in the traditional manner as befits the head of state -- with head held high and face matured with wisdom," says Edwards, "but with unmistakable 'sexual power' as a nod to Sharon Stone." The bust prominently portrays Mrs. Clinton's cleavage spilling from a lacy, low-cut inaugural gown with her bare shoulders enhanced by a "delicate" nape.
Feel free to use as an open thread.


More TSA Idiocy

BoingBoing captures the idiocy of the TSA seizing liquids from airline passengers:
CNN is reporting: "Because the plot involved taking liquid explosives aboard planes in carry-ons, passengers at all U.S. and British airports, and those boarding U.S.-bound flights at other international airports, are banned from taking any liquids onto planes."

And then they have the photo of the TSA guy dumping a tub of confiscated possibly explosive liquids into a garbage can in a crowd of people.

"Maya Leoni, who is held by Angela Perez, cries as her mother, A.J. Leoni, pours the last of her drink into the receptacle while in line for the security checkpoint at the Asheville Regional Airport."
"Sorry, ma'am, there's been a warning about terrorists smuggling in liquids disguised as ordinary products, liquids that are the ingredients for liquid explosives, that when mixed together would create a powerful bomb. So I'm afraid you're going to have to pour out the liquid in your ordinary product into this receptacle full of other liquids from other ordinary products that we seized because they might be the ingredients for liquid explosives."

While you're at it, travelers shouldn't be allowed to take lit cigarettes or gunpowder onto the plane, so let's dump all of them together into a bin at the security gate, too.

One of the first things I thought when this story broke was: how are they going to mix together all the chemicals (I know which ones they're talking about; a couple of my friends in high school were chemistry geniuses who liked to blow things up) on a crowded airplane where people might be a bit suspicious of a group of Pakistani men grouping together and secretively exchanging bottles of liquids? It would probably involve a complex series of interactions involving the airplane bathroom or an overhead compartment, one man leaving his ingredient to be picked up and combined with the next man's, until the final man adds the final ingredient that makes the big ka-blooie.

Do you really think, post-9/11, post Flight 93, that any plane full of passengers wouldn't notice this going on?

Here's an idea: rather than inconvenience tens of millions of travelers by making them pour out their Aquafina and give up their lip gloss and toothpaste, why don't we put a well-trained air marshall on every plane to watch for groups of men trying to mix together explosives?


Porno Pete slapped down on petitions

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Blender Sarah in Chicago passed on this great news emailed to her from Rick Garcia at Equality Illinois -- Peter LaBarbera's petition effort to "protect marriage" just went down the tubes...
The Illinois State Board of Elections met this morning and ruled that the Protect Marriage Illinois petition did not have sufficient signatures on its petitions. The board ruled that the question will not be on the November ballot! PMI did not show up at the hearing with objections to the official finding.


Two for two


Wow. I received an email this AM from Blender and Publicity Director of Algonquin Books, Michael Taeckens, and he's arranged an interview tonight with Tab Hunter. The actor is here hosting tomorrow's screening of Lust in the Dust at the NC Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.

Weeeeee! I love old Hollywood flicks, so I'll have plenty of questions about the old studio system. You all have any questions?

Algonquin, (based in Chapel Hill btw) is the publisher of Tab's autobiography.

Related:
* Meeting Margaret Cho

***

We'll be seeing Small Town Gay Bar at the fest tonight.


Lip Gloss of Mass Destruction

John at AmericaBlog has this post up:
"Yesterday, the TSA was confiscating MAKE UP at America's airports. Yes, MAKE UP. What kind of make up, you ask? LIP GLOSS. Yesterday, a friend of mine informed me that a girlfriend of hers waited in line for FIVE HOURS yesterday at National Airport.. and if you got out of line, to um, I don't know, TAKE A PISS, you had to go to the back of the line. Then the TSA made her hand over her Chanel lip gloss. Apparently Chanel Lip Gloss is a massive threat to national security."
And I heard on Thom Hartmann's local Portland show this morning of a person who goes into one of those airport snack shops to buy a bottle of water. The shop is after the security checkpoint and close to the boarding gate, and they still made this person give up the water.

I swear to you, faithful Blenders, that if I am ever forced to fly commercial airlines again, I am going to go with no luggage, no carry-on, and wearing only a Speedo, with "What 4th Amendment?" painted on my chest and "Feel Safer Now?" painted on my back.

(Don't worry, I'll give you plenty of notice of airports and times, so you don't have to suffer that sight. And perhaps we ought to take up a collection for my bail.)


This and that

Stuff in the mailbag...

After LIFEbeat canceled its Reggae Gold Live concert due to pressure from black gay activists over the inclusion of two homophobic artists (who called for the death of gays and lesbians in their lyrics), Beenie Man and TOK, you knew eventually one or both of those artists would surface to comment on their views. He's hurting (tiny violin, please).
Beenie Man (real name Moses Davis) has become used to the furore that seems to inevitably accompany his activities nowadays. His controversial lyrics such as "Well I'm think of a new Jamaica, me come to execute all of the gays" have led to activists campaigning against him and other dance- hall artists, and their anti-gay sentiments. Aside from these latest set-backs, the 35-year-old has also been unceremoniously dumped from the MTV Video Music Awards, dropped from the Mobo awards and even snubbed by his former pal Janet Jackson, with whom he collaborated for his 2004 single "Feel It Boy". "She said if she had known [that I was homophobic] she would have not sang a song with me," says Beenie, in a tone that implies he's still annoyed to this day. "I am not homophobic!"
Alrighty then, you know what's coming next. He then elaborates how he's not anti-gay with this winner:
What are his views on gays and lesbians, then? "People need to understand this," he sighs. "I'm a Rastafarian. And I believe in the Bible. I know that if a man sleeps with another man, life ceases to exist because a man cannot breed. Woman to woman can't make no kids. But I'm not fighting against gay and lesbian life. As a man, you don't like to see two men together, you find it disgusting. But that's their life. To you it's disgusting, but to them it's happy. That's why they call themselves gay, they are happy people.
Thanks for clearing that whole business up, Beenie... (h/t Cat).

===

A comedian fills in the blanks regarding an obvious question about the whole 72 Virgins matter. (h/t Wes).

===

While we're on comedy, I sh*t you not on this one -- Ann Coulter's Favorite Bible Verses. In a recent email interview, Beliefnet editor Charlotte Allen asked political commentator Ann Coulter to cite some of her favorite Bible verses. Really. Go read and keep your jaw off the table. (h/t, Jim, who received it on a PFOX mailblast).

===

Ms. Magazine has a Women's Petition for Safe, Legal, and Accessible Abortion and Birth Control, up as part of its "I Had An Abortion" campaign, which, in light of the successes of forced-birth advocacy movement, sheds light on how things have regressed since Roe v. Wade. Seventeen states now have trigger laws or bans that will, with a Supreme Court decision to reverse Roe v. Wade, go into effect.
In its 1972 debut issue, Ms. magazine ran a bold petition in which 53 well-known U.S. women declared that they had undergone abortions-despite state laws rendering the procedure illegal. These women were following the example of a 1971 manifesto signed by 343 prominent French women, who also declared they had abortions.

...At the time of the original Ms. petition, illegal abortions were causing untold suffering in the United States, especially for poor women who had to resort to unsafe self-induced or back-alley abortions. Today, in the developing nations each year, approximately 70,000 women and girls die from botched and unsafe abortions and another 500,000 maternal deaths occur-most of this suffering and loss could be prevented. U.S. international family planning policies contribute to this death toll: first, by conditioning its aid on a global gag rule that prevents medical workers from giving even information on abortion; second, by withholding or providing inadequate funds; and finally, by funding abstinence-only education.
The forced birth crowd can't be reasoned with, as Russ pointed out. With aborted fetuses flying overhead for show, perhaps it's a time to fly photos of the bodies of women who died from illegal abortions as well. Remember, for some of these womb controllers, "The Only Moral Abortion if My Abortion."

===

The bogus, non-peer-reviewed science of Paul Cameron rises again. Jim at Box Turtle Bulletin points to the latest garbage coming out of the "ex-gay" self-promoting "scientist." This sick, sorry "ex-gay" claims that gays account for 35% of all child molestations to bolster his belief that gays shouldn't serve as foster parents or adopt.

===

Jeezus, this is sad. Look at this anti-gay, anti-civil marriage-equality self-loathing homo, Aaron Maloy, who is running for the state senate in Massachusetts, of all states. (h/t Paul):
"A lot of religious people hold it very sacred," says Maloy. "I think that marriage is something that's more religious and perhaps should be - perhaps," he emphasizes - "should be separate from the state." Maloy is supportive of offering same-sex couples benefits and protections through civil unions or domestic partnerships. But marriage, says Maloy, "is an institution between a man and a woman and I think that it's part of the heterosexual culture. I don't buy the whole separate but equal thing," he adds, a reference to arguments by marriage equality advocates - and the Supreme Judicial Court's advisory opinion in Goodridge - that creating a separate legal status for same-sex couples is inherently unequal.

It would be easy to write Maloy off as a self-loathing gay man; indeed, he concedes, critics have accused him of being just that. But don't go there, says Maloy, who notes that he came out to his Evangelical Christian single mother when he was just 12 years old. His realization that he is gay coincided with his decision to leave home due to his mother's homophobia and other abusive behavior.

...School turned out to be equally as isolating; Maloy recalls being called a "fag" and doused with salad dressing by a fellow student. School administrators, he says, turned a blind eye to the anti-gay bullying he experienced. Nonetheless, Maloy adopted what could be described as a flamboyant style, dying his hair bright red, donning "funky leather jewelry, painting his fingernails. He hints that his experiences spurred him into gay activism during his teen years, but declines to elaborate for fear of alienating his conservative supporters.
===

Heh heh heh: Comandante Agi wants to punch "complete and utter douche-bag" and "money grubbing whore" Dick Cheney in the face behalf of the American people. He needs your help. ;)

===

Fredda points to this news from my state -- Ladies in waiting: Young women of Union Missionary Baptist celebrate their promise to God. Yes, I feel the stock of Jesus-head chastity rings going up. Buy low, sell high:
"It means I'm keeping my temple holy," said 13-year-old Myranda Rawley. "It means respect. Respect for your body and for Jesus since I'm his representation."

The service was part wedding, part sorority initiation. The girls wore elaborate white dresses, tiaras, long white gloves and received sparkling rings. White dresses to symbolize their purity. Tiaras to symbolize their royalty as heirs of God. Long white gloves to symbolize the veil of sin.
My question -- where are the boys? Why aren't they going through an equally elaborate ceremony to keep their pee-pees holy?

===

Daniel @ Ex-Gay Watch and I were both laughing at this release from Exodus:
Exodus International will join several other national organizations to protest the American Psychological Association's (APA) increasing political involvement at its national convention this Friday, Aug. 11, in New Orleans. In recent years, the APA has moved away from its mission to improve the welfare of its patients in favor of a more political one.
Exodus folks are a few pancakes short of a stack because they clearly haven't read the APA's mission statement. The "ex-gay" fundies are really mad because they would love to bully the APA into reclassifying homosexuality as a disease. The movement just cannot get traction as long as those facts are in evidence. Wayne strikes back:
These ex-gay groups keep no statistics, they produce no peer reviewed studies, most of their top leaders have reverted back to homosexuality and they conveniently disregard scientific evidence that does not conform to their political agenda.
===

Kevin passed on the latest pressure tactics against Ford from the American Family Association. Don Wildmon is bleating about a letter from the Greater Texas Ford Dealer's Advertising Fund demanding that the automaker stop advertising in gay publications. Kevin's hot:
This has me even more pissed off because this little bigot cabal of automobile dealers really doesn't do a good job of hiding their hate campaign, making repeated references to "all-American" and "all-American" image - meaning apparently that gays are not "all-Americans" and some whacked out bible beaters from the American "Family" Association ARE.


Gay wheels

This is interesting. The web site Gaywheels.com has a great breakdown of which car companies are LGBT-friendly (that designation is based on a manufacturer offering domestic-partner benefits to their gay employees in the US).
Gaywheels.com Top 10 Most Researched Vehicles

1 Saturn Sky
2 Toyota Yaris
3 Dodge Caliber (the car with the "silly little fairy" commercial)
4 Volkswagen Jetta
5 Toyota Camry
6 Audi A3
7 Toyota Prius
8 Saab 9-3 (sedan and convertible)
9 Pontiac G6 (sedan, coupe and convertible)
10 Mazda MX-5
What -- no Subaru?! There couldn't have been any lesbians surfing on that site. The information is based on website statistics gathered from April 1-June 30, 2006 from Gaywheels.com New Car section powered by Edmunds.com data.

By the way, the companies that don't qualify as gay friendly: Acura, Hyundai, Mini, BMW, Infiniti, Nissan, Honda, Kia, Suzuki.


Homobigot military watchdog moans over West Point grad's anti-DADT thesis

Thursday, August 10, 2006

I was waiting for Elaine Donnelly, head of the Center for Military Readiness, to surface on this one. She's the perennial bad penny that always turns up when you talk about gays openly serving in the military, the go-to person when you want to hear the "conservative" POV on matters like this:
Second Lieutenant Alexander Raggio describes himself as the straightest guy imaginable; but in his senior thesis at West Point Academy, he argued that the military's policy banning homosexuals from service is not only wrong but harmful to America's armed services. For his controversial paper, the then-senior cadet received an award from the Academy's English Department.

This incident has led Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness, to wonder what officials at the Academy were thinking. "I do intend to bring this to the attention of some of the people in the leadership roles at West Point," she says. "I think it ought to be questioned."

Donnelly says this is the first she has heard of Raggio's commendation from the English department, but news of the faculty's conferral of honor on a graduating cadet for his pro-homosexual thesis has given rise to some grave concerns.

...Raggio is entitled to his First Amendment rights of free speech and expression, Donnelly says. "However," she adds, "I question the judgment of the leadership at West Point, who would recognize such an essay and give it an award that can be used for a purpose contrary to military policy."
Donnelly also multi-tasks, providing pithy quotes on why women's role in the military should be curtailed, or preferably eliminated.

***

Speaking of DADT, Former Army Major Tammy Duckworth, the Democratic candidate for Illinois's 6th Congressional District (she seeks to fill the seat left by retiring Rethug Henry Hyde), said she strongly supported the repeal of the useless, harmful policy.

Duckworth, in service to her country lost both of legs during the Iraq conflict. (SLDN):

“When I was serving in Iraq, it made no difference to me what the sexual orientation of my comrades was,” Duckworth said in a statement to the Human Rights Campaign PAC. "It certainly did not matter to me what the sexual orientation was of the men or women who helped save my life after my Black Hawk helicopter was shot down over Iraq. As a veteran of the U.S. armed forces, I can speak from personal experience that our military’s performance depends on the skill of the men and women who volunteer to serve in defense of our nation. Any qualified American who is willing to make that kind of sacrifice for our freedom should be free to do so."
You can read more about Duckworth here, in the Daily Herald.

Of course, when you read the Herald article, it becomes murkier, as commenter Laurel pointed out -- Duckworth is now retreating from her above statement calling for a lifting of the ban.
"I think she only supports a repeal [of the ban] if it was deemed appropriate by military commanders of the armed forces," Duckworth spokeswoman Christine Glunz tells the Daily Herald newspaper.

"Tammy has not expressed strong support for repealing don’t ask, don’t tell."

..."It seemed to be a very strong endorsement about sexual orientation," Steve Ralls, a spokesperson for the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network told 365Gay.com on Thursday.

"We were pleased to learn we had an advocate in the race and we're now disappointed to hear that she is perhaps stepping back from the commitment."
Illinois Blenders out there, is her district so conservative on the issue that she'd actually risk losing the race over the initial, matter-of-fact support of her gay former colleagues, given the other issues out there?


Where we were this evening...

Clearly I wasn't blogging (sorry for the lack of posts); it was because we went to see the kick-ass Margaret Cho -- and here's the proof...



Her performance on the opening night of the 11th Annual NC Gay and Lesbian Film Festival was fab-u-lous. She brought the sold-out house down.

Many thanks to MC for almost a half hour of her time before she went onstage (we talked all the way up until the riotous opening gay rap act, Lisp, was already performing) and to Keri Smith @ Bill Silva Management. Keri, who's a regular reader of the Blend, emailed me late last week and set up the interview and backstage passes.

I recorded the interview and will have an MP3 of it up for you all once I clean it up. Kate has volunteered to be Ms. Ace Transcriber.

Kate and I will be taking in quite a few films at the fest Fri-Sun, including a special screening of Lust in the Dust, hosted by screen legend Tab Hunter.


Gays flee Iraq as Shia death squads find a new target

Huzzah, huzzah! Freedom is on the march! Democracy is taking root in Iraq! We've liberated them from the oppressive rule of Saddam Hussein so that the people of Iraq can live in a free and open democracy, free from the fear of Saddam's death squads and torture chambers. All Iraqis, please step forward and enjoy your new liberty!

Uh, hold on, queers, step back please:
(The Observer [UK]) [Iraq] is seeing a sudden escalation of brutal attacks on what are being called the 'immorals' - homosexual men and children as young as 11 who have been forced into same-sex prostitution.

There is growing evidence that Shia militias have been killing men suspected of being gay and children who have been sold to criminal gangs to be sexually abused. The threat has led to a rapid increase in the numbers of Iraqi homosexuals now seeking asylum in the UK because it has become impossible for them to live safely in their own country.
Holy Muhammad, Batman! What did those homosexuals do to deserve this, try and get married or something?
Homosexuality is seen as so immoral that it qualifies as an 'honour killing' to murder someone who is gay - and the perpetrator can escape punishment. Section 111 of Iraq's penal code lays out protections for murder when people are acting against Islam.
Ah, yes, wasn't that part of the Iraqi Constitution we helped them establish? You know, where Islamic law overrules secular law?
One shows two men, suspected of having a relationship, blindfolded with their hands tied behind their backs - guns at the ready behind their heads - awaiting execution. Another picture captured on a mobile phone shows a gay man being beaten to death. Yet another shows a corpse being dragged through the streets after his execution.

One photograph is of the mutilated, burnt body of 38-year-old Karar Oda from Sadr City. He was kidnapped by the Badr Brigade in mid-June. They work with the Ministry of Interior and are the informal armed wing of the Supreme Council of Islamic Revolution in Iraq, who make up the largest Shia bloc in the Iraq parliament. Oda's family were given an arrest warrant signed by the Ministry of Interior which said their son deserved to be arrested and killed for immorality as a homosexual. His body was found ten days later.
Well, after all, he did make the wrong "lifestyle choice". There's no word on how they managed to prove any of these men were homosexuals, but honestly, is proof even necessary? It's so obvious that these guys were gay by the way they talked, dressed, and acted, or at least, it must've been obvious, because nutjob fundamentalists would never mistake, say, shyness for effemininity or a speech impediment for a lisp. No matter: if you choose to be gay and Islam says its bad, you deserve to die. Vive la democracy!
Eleven-year-old Ameer Hasoon al-Hasani was kidnapped by policemen from the front of his house last month. He was known in his district to have been forced into prostitution. His father Hassan told me he searched for his son for three days after his abduction, then found him, shot in the head. A copy of the death certificate confirms the cause of death.
Oh, yeah, almost forgot: even if you are a child and don't choose to be gay, you still deserve to die, if someone forces you to do immoral acts.

Yup, we've really helped Iraq to set up a fine example of democracy to take root and flower throughout the Middle East. Between the Shia death squads in Iraq and the resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan, we stand a good chance of creating a long-term gay-free oil production colony. Somewhere in Topeka, Fred Phelps must be jealous.


'A sexual-agenda bomb dressed up as a child-caring Easter egg'

That quote is from the breathless CaliTaliban Randy Thomasson of the Sacramento-based Campaign for Children and Families. He's got an action alert out to pressure the Governator to veto the watered-down bill that merely ensures that school material should not be discriminatory toward gays.

Thomasson claims that every public school would now become "a sexual indoctrination center."
"SB 1437 still requires all teachers, all textbooks, and all instructional materials to positively portray cross-dressing, sex-change operations, bisexuality, and homosexuality, including homosexual 'marriages,'" said CCF President Randy Thomasson. "Governor Schwarzenegger said he would veto SB 1437. Fathers and mothers expect Arnold not to let them down."

...SB 1437 is a sexual-agenda bomb dressed up as a child-caring Easter egg. Lesbian legislators such as the bill’s author, Sheila James Kuehl, a Santa Monica Democrat, would have you believe that SB 1437 merely updates school anti-discrimination policies. To that end, the bill incorporates the explosive terms "gender" (which includes transsexuality and transvestitism) and "sexual orientation" (meaning bisexuality and homosexuality) in a long list of anti-discrimination clauses.
Since when has the word "gender" become "explosive?" Are trans folks the new WMD?


No hair gel at Heathrow

[UPDATE: See comments from Jill below.]

No laptop computers, mobile phones, or iPods, or carryon bags either. Isn't it sad that the first thing that comes to mind when I turn the TV set on is whether the Homeland Security political leash jerk is back in service.

Maybe the news about the latest terrorist roundup, this time in England, is the real deal (folks leave updates in comments; I have to head out). After all, a whole lot of people are stuck on the tarmac at Heathrow and sitting in miles of traffic approaching the airport, air commerce is completely screwed; that isn't something I'd imagine even Bush lap dog Tony Blair wants to be responsible for if the charges are trumped up. (AP):
British authorities said Thursday they had thwarted a terrorist plot to simultaneously blow up several aircraft heading to the U.S. using explosives smuggled in carry-on luggage. Britain's Home Secretary John Reid said 21 people had been arrested in London, its suburbs and in Birmingham, including the alleged "main players" in the plot.

Huge crowds formed at security barriers at London's Heathrow airport as officials searching for explosives barred nearly every form of liquid outside of baby formula.

Officials raised security to its highest level in Britain and banned hand-carried luggage on all trans-Atlantic flights.The extreme measures at a major international aviation hub sent ripple effects throughout the world. Heathrow airport was closed to most flights from Europe.
The article notes that Blair is vacationing in the Caribbean and Bush is "spending a few days at his ranch near Crawford, Texas."

Skeletor Chertoff has raised the airline threat level.

You can read Scotland Yard's full statement here.

John isn't buying it at all.

UPDATE: From Jill @ Brilliant at Breakfast...
Bob Orr just said on The Early Show on CBS that the U.S. government has known about this for a few days. He wonders why, if knowledge of this plot is a few days old, additional safety measures to protect travelers have not been put in place until today.

Why indeed. Why, if you know that travelers are at risk because of a plot to blow up airliners in midair, do you not advise travelers the minute you know? Did the British announcement thwart a plan by the once again beleagured Administration to once again allow terrorist attacks to play out to serve its own political agenda?
I'm not ready to jump to that conclusion just yet because our government is so slackass on security that matters, this could be another Keystone Kops intelligence operation. But is it possible Uncle Karl's rolling out his political game plan overseas now? Sure.

Dear Leader, of course, is beating his chest on cue for the sheeple...
"This country is safer than it was prior to 9-11," Bush said from the airport tarmac here where he was appearing at events focused on the economy. "We've taken a lot of measures to protect the American people but obviously we're not completely safe. ... It is a mistake to believe there is no threat to the United States of America...This nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation."


Paul the Spud noticed this timely ad placement on the Yahoo Story featuring Dear Leader.

...He and British Prime Minister Tony Blair held a lengthy teleconference on the matter Sunday and spoke again Wednesday by phone, Snow said.

"There were some signs," Snow said. "They thought it was time to move," he said of British authorities.
Yeah, right after Holy Joe tanked and your party is sliding into the abyss. Read the asinine mewlings at RedState:
The planned airline bombings by the terrorists should show the American people one thing, if only one things -- the Democrats' ideas on national security are bad for the safety of this country. Cut and run will not work because the terrorists do not follow the leadership of Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean, and Ned Lamont. Peace at any price is too great a price.
The numnuts at RS are also running a poll that you should freep, "Would Joe Lieberman Be The Dem Nominee If Today's Terror Announcements Occured On Monday?"

John has more here on Bush vacationing -- and knowing about the terror threat.


These people vote

30 percent of Americans cannot say in what year the attacks on the WTC and Pentagon occurred.

Think about that for a moment.
Of that group, six percent gave an earlier year, eight percent gave a later year, and 16 percent admitted they had no idea whatsoever.
Now think about this:
95 percent of Americans questioned in the poll were able to remember the month and the day.
Five percent of your fellow citizens, people. Kerry lost by how much in 2004? ((Boy, chronic insomnia and thinking and typing at 3AM can get to you — I had Gore instead of Kerry there! An aside, Bush would lose to Kerry and Gore today.)

Are these the same people answering the WND polls?
This memory black hole is essentially the problem of the older crowd: 48 percent of those who did not know were between the ages of 55 and 64, and 47 percent were older than 65, according to the poll.
That's the one part of this poll I find hard to believe. I would have thought the ignorance would be spread along the age spectrum. Older folks are at least reading or watching the news (maybe Faux News is the problem there), but plenty of younger folks are just plain tuned out.

As Shakes Sis said: "Let me guess—it’s the same boobs who voted for Bush, a man who has uttered the term “9/11” more than I’ve said the word “fuck,” which is really fucking saying something, but still the date that “changed everything” hasn’t managed to stick in their idiot heads."

Remember, now, Uncle Karl told us:

"There are some in politics who hold that voters are dumb, ill informed and easily misled, that voters can be manipulated by a clever ad or a smart line. I've seen this cynicism over the years from political professionals and journalists. American people are not policy wonks, but they have great instincts and try to do the right thing. ...[It's] wrong to underestimate the intelligence of the American voter, but easy to overestimate their interest. Much tugs at their attention."


This woman is c-r-a-z-y

I hadn't heard about June Griffin before her unhinged quotes surrounding Rhea County Tennessee's voters booting commissioners who had attempted to ban homosexuality. At the time it was passed by those boneheads, Griffin bleated that she turned on her gaydar to spot the homos and "anyone I ever suspect, I go up and ask them directly."

Well Ms. Griffin got herself taken down in the paddy wagon for more insanity. (The Chattanoogan):
Conservative political activist June Griffin has been arrested for the theft of a Mexican flag from a Dayton business.

The 67-year-old Ms. Griffin, who ran for Congress in the recent election [is that not frightening?!], is facing misdemeanor charges of theft, vandalism and harassment and felony charges of civil rights violations.


She said on July 18 she had noticed a small Mexican flag at an Hispanic grocery in the former Rogers Drug Store. She stated, "I went in and there was nothing English in the store. There was one man who could not speak a word of English." She said she was outraged about the Mexican flag, saying it was an "act of war" and it "insulted my citizenship."

Ms. Griffin said as the Hispanic man watched, she tore off the flag from where it was suctioned to the building and left with it. She said, "Foreigners should learn English or leave."

...She said she had been to local governments trying without success to get them to ban all but American flags. Ms. Griffin said the operator of the Days Inn at Dayton "flew a British flag on of all days July 4." She said she went to him to protest the British flag.
H/t, James.


More on Little Ricky's trans debacle

Andy Humm @ Gay City News reports that a staffer in Santorum's office, not Little Ricky himself, signed GenderPAC's anti-discrimination letter on his behalf. Of course, if an Autopen was used, there may be no clearcut way to tell.

We do know that Little Ricky posed for a picture with the gay activists that secured the signature, and he seems to be a happy camper in that pic.

It doesn't matter (other than the embarrassment factor for Little Ricky), since the Pennsylvania senator's office was very public about faxing over a "retraction letter" to correct any misimpression that Santorum is not a bigot on trans issues, with his anti-gay-for-pay homo flak issuing the trans-bashing statement:
Santorum’s purported agreement was announced in a press release issued last week by the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition, or Gender PAC, which works to challenge gender role stereotyping and the discrimination it leads to. However, by August 9, Santorum’s out gay communications director, Robert Traynham, said that the statement was signed by an aide on Santorum’s behalf under the misapprehension that it was “consistent with our office manual,” which he said does ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, but not gender identity or expression.

Traynham said they have “legal issues” with the inclusion of protections for people of transgender experience. “It is not something we would accept,” he said, adding that Santorum still does not believe federal law should protect people based on sexual orientation.

...Right-wing groups also derided their champion Santorum when word spread that he had signed the statement. Joe Murray, who once served in the Pat Buchanan for President campaign, wrote in the Agape Press, that it was a “propaganda pledge” that ought to be called “the Coco Peru clause,” accusing Gender PAC of seeking to “rewrite the laws of nature, tamper with Mother Nature’s recipe, and turn biblical gender standards on their heads.”

The latest Morning Call/Muhlenberg College poll has Casey leading Santorum 45 to 39 percent. Other polls show Casey with a double-digit lead.
Hat tip, PageOneQ.


Jesus' General on retro Dem politics

The good General takes notice of Martin Peretz of The New Republic's reaction to the prospect of Dems retaking the Hill. JG writes, in his post, "Black is the new gay":
Dear Mr. Peretz,

I was very surprised when you implied on the Hugh Hewitt show that you do not want the Democrats to retake congress because you're "appalled by some of the people who would become head of Congressional committees." Who might those Democrats be, I wondered, who would be so loathsome, that they would cause the publisher of the National Republic to root for the Republicans in November?

Then yesterday, after I read your piece attacking Ned Lamont for integrating his campaign, the answer occurred to me. You were referring to the five brown Congresspeople (Rangel, Conyers, Millender-McDonald, Thompson, and Velázquez)who are in line to become committee chairs when the Democrats take the House. The thought of brown people with that much power scares the living hell out of you.
And that's just the start of the letter...wait till you get to the Birth of a Nation reference...

***

Speaking of Lamont, there's a movement by Wesley Clark to tell Holy Joe to step aside. 'Bean passes this on:
Wesley Clark, who has proven a good-if-very-practical progressive, has a "click and do" campaign going where you can send a letter to Lieberman, courtesy of Wesley Clark's PAC, saying, "Joe - don't do the 'independent' thing."

For those of you who found Joe just a WEEEE bit too "Republican Lite," this is a chance to use the power of a truly credible source (Ret Gen Wesley Clark) and have your voice heard.
Here's the letter up on the site, which you can edit at will:
On Tuesday, the message sent by Connecticut voters was loud and clear. They want change, and they want Ned Lamont to represent them in the U.S. Senate.

In 2000, the presence of a third party candidate, Ralph Nader, no doubt played a role in the defeat of you and Vice President Gore in your run for the White House. Now you are risking our party's claim on the Connecticut Senate seat by running as a third party candidate yourself.

As a Democrat, I have committed myself to supporting the Democratic nominee for the US Senate in Connecticut, and I ask you to do likewise. Because too much is at stake with our troubles abroad and at home, we cannot play games this Election Day.

I strongly urge you to drop your bid for the Senate as an Independent and endorse Ned Lamont, the duly nominated Democrat.
Go here to tell Holy Joe it's time to go.


Little Ricky's ass must have been on fire...

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

...because the fundies took a blowtorch to it after he went temporarily insane and signed an anti-discrimination letter that recognized sexual orientation and gender identity in hiring practices of his office. Not only did he sign the letter, but he posed for a photo with members of GenderPAC, the group that contacted the senator about signing on (see John's post).

Santorum has now sent a letter "rescinding" his John Hancock on GenderPAC's Diversity Letter. This is what he faxed over:

"To be clear, my office has not adopted the proposed 'diversity statement' nor the agenda of your organization.... My name should no longer be reported as having adopted the 'diversity statement.'"
Does that mean Robert Traynham, his out gay communications director, has anything to worry about? Or are Little Ricky's discriminatory practices conditional based on whether a homo is willing to work for him and doesn't care whether they are entitled to civil rights?

John has a copy of Ricky's signature on the Diversity Letter; Traynham dutifully witnessed and confirmed that his boss signed it. From GenderPAC's release:
Sen. Santorum's signature came after a meeting the week of July 24th with Adrian Shanker - a volunteer field trainer with GenderPAC's youth program and student at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA - and three of his classmates. Shanker had previously lobbied his school administration successfully to add "gender identity and expression" to its own non-discrimination policies.


They also met with Legislative Aide Anna Mitchell. After the meeting, the Senator posed for a picture with the four students. A copy of the Senator's statement was faxed to GenderPAC at 7pm the evening of August 1. The signature was confirmed the following morning by senior aide, Robert Traynham.
Tell me people -- how can he continue to work for Santorum after a debacle like this? It's f*cking sad and embarrassing.

The fundies can't possibly trust him now; he was their golden boy for conservative values up until he signed that anti-discrimination letter, sending them over the edge. Remember the unhinged reaction by Joe "Buggery Blitzkrieg" Murray at AgapePress:
Rick Santorum, the darling of the social conservatives and two-term senator clinging to his job like a shopper to a garment at a blue-light special, has signed the pledge guaranteeing that Ru-Paul's employment application is welcomed at his office; a pledge Arlen Specter has not even signed.

...At a time when the American public was fleeing same-sex nuptials' cause like George Michael a London park, why would Santorum sign a propaganda pledge that bestows legitimacy to a cause Santorum has long fought? Why bolster your opponents at a time when you have them on the ropes? Why let the enemy impose his will on you? This author knows no answer to these questions; one hopes Santorum does.
As John said, Little Ricky was for gay and transgender civil rights before he was against it; this buffoon is on the fast track to defeat.


"Ex-gay" road show in the Holy Land

Gay folks in the Holy Land are getting an eye and earful of the "evangelistic outreach" of Stephen Bennett, who has his show in Jerusalem August 6-12, during WorldPride 2006. From the SBM Jerusalem Outreach blog, a snippet of an entry by "Greg Q.", who shares his first-hand experiences surrounded by all the queer Jewish people who need saving.
This International Gay Youth Day is nothing more than a slick way to recruit. The propaganda used when I was in gay political circles was teen suicide and sex education. All teens are having sex so we need to show them how to be safe and explain how to be safe with all sexual practices to all children regardless of age. The say teen suicide is extremely high among gay youth, so we need to focus the world's attention on the vulnerability of these poor youth. Of course the data used to justify the claims was questionable and I remember being chastised by someone in Washington DC when I questioned the efficacy of the data.

...Later we went to a reception for "Gay" youth at a Synagogue. When we arrived there were very few people and most of them were young adults in there twenties. On the floor, in what appeared to be a Sabbath pre-school room surrounded by small plastic children’s chairs. The material on the floor included what appeared to be the Hebrew equivalent to "Heather has Two Mommies" and "Daddy and Daddies Roommate." But that wasn’t all; the table was rife with same sex nudity, explicit sexual material and homosexual propaganda. I am a former porn addict. In my view the material was soft porn at best. This is the material the World Pride organizers wanted to make sure that youth ages 15-25 had full access too. Thirty to thirty-five young people did finally show up. I had to think about what was ahead for these kids. A life of emptiness without purpose, a life that exists to satisfy base sensual pleasures. How my heart breaks for them. How I long for them to escape the trap that I know is ahead for them.
Mind-blowing, isn't it?

H/t, Daniel @ Ex-Gay Watch.


Sugar Lips bailed on Michigan homobigot Butler

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Even after cozying up to Dear Leader, did the brother really think the fundies would turn out for him? Liddy knew better; read on.

Despite Troy, MI clergyman Keith Butler raising a million more smackeroos for his campaign, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard cruised to victory, winning the Republican nomination for Michigan's U.S. Senate seat on Tuesday.

Bouchard handily defeated Keith Butler 60%-40%. Now how could that have happened? When Butler decided to run, he sounded like the right guy for his party:
"I'm strongly pro-life, and she's strongly pro-abortion, and life is the biggest issue of all. I strongly believe that marriage should only be between one man and one woman."

"Regardless of how you slice it, you cannot get around the fact that a woman is the one who carries the egg and the man is the one who carries the sperm. The natural union of the egg and the sperm is how you and I came into being."

"Marriage was instituted by God himself for the purpose of preventing the promiscuous intercourse of the sexes -- and for securing the maintenance and education of children."
-- Keith Butler, pastor and candidate "urged by God" to run for the U.S. Senate from Michigan
What went wrong? He certainly sounds like a card carrying member of the AmTaliban to me... let's take a look...(Det Free Press):
Butler and Bouchard agree on most issues, such as abortion, affirmative action and the war in Iraq, but there has been an undercurrent of animosity in the race.

Butler expected to be the favorite for the nomination throughout much last year, after Bouchard dropped out of the race early in 2005, citing health problems.

But Bouchard got back into the race last Halloween after being lobbied by U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C., the chairwoman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee.


Dole told the New York Times last month that she urged Bouchard to run, despite the party's efforts to appeal to black voters by recruiting black candidates, because she thought Butler was a weak candidate. She did not specify why.
I'm sorry, but I'm laughing so hard that I'm crying.

Maybe Sugar Lips knew about this.

Steve also took note.


The Freepers go for Holy Joe

UPDATE: 'Bean just pointed me to this Reuters article on Holy Joe filing for his indy run. I love this quote:
But Lieberman said he was anxious to renew the debate, calling Lamont an example of the polarizing forces that voters were tired of in Washington.


"I don't want these folks to take over my party or American politics," Lieberman said on CNN on Wednesday.
Nope. No way he'd rather have the folks below supporting him. Nothing like having the foul wind of the Freepi behind your back, eh, Indy Joe?

Actual Freeper Quotes™

Good luck, Joe. You can bet we all hope you win.

Here's a scenario I've not heard yet. Assume in Nov: Joe wins as Indy. Gov Rell easily sails to reelection as GOP gov. GOP retains control of congress. Joe gets offered job by Bush in some capacity on the war. Joe accepts (what's he leaving behind?). Rell replaces Joe with GOP senator.

Miller/Lieberman 08'???? Nahhhhhh. Never happen!

I like it. Chances are all will be surprised how this turns out.

Why not hope the Repub candidate wins? Joe's as liberal as Barbara Boxer, except for national defense. Let him split the 'rat vote and give us this opportunity.

I would not be suprised to see the Republican nominee drop out and the GOP choose Joe as its nominee.

Can I ask a question of our CT based freepers? I know the media is trying to make this a war issue but could this be an energy issue? Didn't Liberman vote to not drill in ANWAR?

The media is playing the Lieberman loss as a mandate against the war. Personally I hated to see him lose to the moonbat crowd but he is going to be a great unintentional ally. We managed to get rid of our RINO here in the Michigan 7th district. No drilling, pro amnesty Joe is gone gone gone.

Who's the GOP nominee for senator in CT? If the vote is split three ways, doesn't that mean that the GOP candidate has a real chance of winning in November?

The GOP nominee is Alan Schlesinger. Unfortunately, he's damaged goods. The state GOP has been trying to get him to drop out of the race, to no avail. He's gotten bad press for past gambling debts and subsequent lawsuits against him by the casinos. He's polling at 9% in a three-way race. We have no shot here.

If the conservative base doesn't show up and vote this fall, the democrats will win control of the congress and try to impeach the President and Vice-President. My hope is that republicans keep at least 45 seats in the senate to kill the socialists power grab. And prevent Nacy Pelosi from becoming President. Senator Liberman's seat is important in all this. So I hope Karl Rove and the gang look at the poll numbers and see if it's advantageous to have a 3 way race or back Liberman.

And it's not like Joe would be leaving anything behind. He'd be an outcast in a minority party in the Senate. I would think he'd rather serve in an executive capacity on the war.

I would. I don't think Lieberman would take a GOP nomination. He's very bipartisan, but he's still liberal. I believe what you're seeing is the split of the Democratic Party into a moonbat party and a patriotic/big government party.

The media is playing the Lieberman loss as a mandate against the war. You are right. A solid blue northeastern state is not representative of the entire country but the media would have us believe that it is. Look at Georgia, where the moonbattiest of the moonbats was defeated.

Why not hope the Repub candidate wins? Joe's as liberal as Barbara Boxer, except for national defense.

True, but national defense trumps everything. We cannot not risk a three-way race. Besides, the 'pub is probably a Rino. Suck it up Connecticut 'pubs. No loss to us if Lieberman wins. No gain of if the Rino wins. Disaster if the 'trustifarian' Dim wins.

Lieberman is the last of the Scoop Jackson Democrats. Liberal on domestic policy, hawkish on foreign affairs.

Joe, your "party" is dead. You are a liberal, but not a socialist. The RAT Party has become the socialist party...Americans need not apply.

The GOP needs to distance from Lieberman, lest they offend many Democrats would will vote for Lieberman, and may make them vote for Lamont out of spite. The GOP needs to stay low-key here.

I agree. I expect the state GOP will probably ignore Schlesinger, and work quietly behind the scenes to help Lieberman.


Open thread - critical thinkers

This is The GOP Base. Science-free, flat earth all the way...

WingNutDaily poll:



All of them will be lining up to go to the opening of The Creation Museum to see humans riding the dinos.

***

Links and blogwhoring encouraged.


Lesbian poised to become Missouri's first openly gay state senator


The Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund passed on the word that Jolie Justus is likely to be the Show Me State's first out gay state senator. She will face a Republican in the fall, but the 10th district is seen as a safe Dem seat.
"In Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma and now Missouri, excellent candidates are winning historic races. Jolie's win is a testament to her courage, commitment and skill, but it also confirms that fair-minded voters everywhere care more about good government than they do about whether their representatives are gay or lesbian," said Chuck Wolfe, President and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, which raised money for Justus' campaign from its national donor network.

Other breakthrough Victory Fund-supported candidates this year include:
-- Patricia Todd-The first openly gay elected official in Alabama history
-- Kathy Webb-The first openly gay elected official in Arkansas history
-- Al McAffrey-The first openly gay state legislator in Oklahoma history

Jolie would join Victory endorsee Jeanette Mott-Oxford, who won easily won her primary to retain her seat in the Missouri State House.
You can read more about Justus in this excellent LA Times article, More Gays Advocating Legislating. which appeared before the primary.
Sending even one lesbian to a legislature, they say, can force lawmakers to look at some questions differently. A rally on TV makes gay adoption rights a political issue, but a lesbian in the next seat makes it personal.

As Justus put it: "It's a heck of a lot harder to disenfranchise someone when you know them."

Her stump speech barely mentions gay rights. A longtime community volunteer, she focuses on expanding health insurance for the poor and bringing stem-cell research to Kansas City. But she also hopes to support the gay and lesbian community by barring discrimination based on sexual orientation and securing the right of same-sex couples to jointly adopt.

At a fundraiser the other night, over wine and cookies, host Peter Keeble asked Justus how she planned to legalize same-sex marriage if elected. Two years ago, a state constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions passed with 71% approval. "It's going to take a long time," Justus answered.

Standing next to her partner of two years, Lana Knedlik, Justus looked out at the room of about 30 supporters, including many same-sex couples. "I truly believe it will happen in our lifetime," Justus said. "But we have to continue to come out and tell our stories. We have to elect more openly gay people."


What was that about Republican successes?

R. Neal at Facing South points to matters that we cannot let Republicans try to walk away from as they attempt to talk about this administration and this Congress's "accomplishments."

How feeble and tragic is this -- nearly a year after Katrina, the situation with temporary housing is still a flipping mess.
It has been 11 months since Hurricane Katrina hit and Janice Tambrella still does not have a home. She doesn't even have a trailer of her own.

Tambrella is currently jammed in with 10 other relatives in a single trailer delivered to a luckier relative. Sleeping on the floor, living out of cars surrounded by overgrown grass and storm-felled trees, she sighs, "I need a place to stay."

Nearly 1,200 St. Bernard Parish families are still waiting to get into trailers that sit locked on their home sites but need utilities or other services; another 400 families waiting for trailers have none at all, FEMA said.
BTW, 10,000 FEMA trailers are rotting away in the Arkansas mud (your wallet is $1 billion lighter for that travesty), and even worse, Dear Leader's government has unused, undeployed trailers sitting right there in Louisiana.

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Maybe we just need to give more money to the highly effective contractors who are landing work with no-bid, no-scrutiny contracts. Four of those contracts are already about to top $3.4 billion (up from an initial $400 million).

What fiscal responsibility and efficient small government those Republicans on the Hill represent! Who wouldn't want to return them to office for more of the same?

***

And if that isn't enough, how about this:

Photographer for 'Times-Pic' Arrested As He Begs Cops to Kill Him .
A photographer for the Times-Picayune of New Orleans who has undergone severe personal trauma since Hurricana Katrina hit was arrested Tuesday after trying to get police to shoot him to death. Police said he claimed he was depressed after he found out he didn't have enough insurance money to rebuild his Katrina-damaged home.
George Bush and all his fat cat friends in the insurance business have abdicated their responsibility in so many cases, doing all they could to avoid getting claims adjusters, refusing to pay out for wind damage when it was clear it wasn't flood damage, the list of horrors goes on and on.

Kate's sister has a friend on Mississippi who was endlessly on the phone with her insurance company for months; the company would stall and say someone would be out to review the damage to the roof "next week", then no one would show. These folks were willing to do the repairs themselves, they just wanted money to buy the materials.


Here he comes again...


"Ex-gay" battle-axe James Hartline is up in arms because the San Diego City Council rolled out the welcome mat to the homos by voting to honor the city's Pride Celebration.
...Christian activist James Hartline, a former homosexual who has been transformed by his relationship with Jesus Christ, offers a unique perspective of the parade. Because of his "insider's knowledge," Hartline spoke passionately to the City Council about the dark side of the parade. He detailed segments of the event that feature graphic pornography, nudity, sadomasochism, and other activities too offensive to describe in print.

...During his testimony, Hartline recounted how several of the council members had made overtures to the religious community in their bid to become elected. In addressing the city leaders, Hartline specifically requested that those council members who claimed to be Christians not vote for the proclamation.
Why wouldn't he ask Jews or Muslims, for instance, to join in the fun and abstain from the vote endorsing all this debauchery? Just asking.

The AgapePress article also includes a link to photos from this year's San Diego Pride, with extreme warnings for tender fundie eyes:



The photographer made sure to get some shots of lube and condoms on display tables to spice up the garden variety shots of people marching and riding on floats that you would expect to see.


Challenging harassment of gays and lesbians in the military

"I'm a Tomcat guy and you're a homo."
-- T-shirts worn by some pilots -- and the commander of the fighter squadron -- on the USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier
Don't Ask, Don't Tell may be in place, but harassment of gays is prohibited in the military. Tell that to those who continue tolerating gay-baiting and creating a hostile environment for those serving in silence. (Reuters):
Gays in the U.S. military face regular hostility on some bases and ships where commanders fail to prohibit harassment more than a decade after the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law was enacted, although seeds of greater tolerance may be taking root, advocates and witnesses report.

While some leaders have created environments where harassment is not tolerated, others have not and the evidence, according to witnesses, is both verbal and visual.

On the Navy's USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier, for example, anti-gay statements and jokes are on display and have been incorporated into a video about the F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft, recently shown to reporters on the carrier. Pilots on the Roosevelt sported T-shirts, also shown to reporters including this Reuters correspondent, that said, "I'm a Tomcat guy and you're a homo."
A Defense Department's inspector general report noted that 80% of service members had heard anti-gay comments and 37% actually witnessed harassment.

What's changed, says C. Dixon Osburn of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, is that the brass is starting to hold homophobes accountable, and took action in this case. (Frontlines):
What is refreshing, however, is that the commander of the Naval Air Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Rear Admiral Denby Starling, promised immediate action to hold those responsible accountable when he learned of the incidents. He told Reuters that the anti-gay messages were “contrary to Navy policy and core values and have no place within Naval Aviation or the Navy.”

...Admiral Starling’s leadership is, I hope, a sign that the military is indeed changing. We know that there are 65,000 gays, lesbians and bisexuals currently serving.

We know that a majority of junior enlisted personnel support gays serving openly. We know from our own experience at SLDN that many commanders are quite good, and do not discriminate based on sexual orientation. We appreciate Admiral Starling’s leadership, and it will send a strong and unmistakable message to all under his command, and to his peers throughout the Navy, that discrimination and harassment violate all that the Navy and this country stands for.
You can thank Starling for doing the right thing:
Admiral Denby Starling
Commander, Naval Air Force
U.S. Atlantic Fleet
1279 Franklin Street
Norfolk VA 23511-2494

***

And many of you have emailed about the student at West Point who wrote an award-winning thesis about the unfairness of DADT. The tide is turning. The Pentagon looks foolish if the only card they have to play is "unit cohesion."
Alexander Raggio says he was 16 when he learned one of his relatives was gay — and watching that person's struggle gave him a grim introduction to discrimination against gays.

He carried those feelings into West Point, and in his senior thesis argued that the military's policy banning gays is not only wrong, but harmful to the Army.

The Pentagon may not agree, but the U.S. Military Academy gave him an award for the paper. "I love the Army and I think that this is hurting the Army," said Raggio, 24, in an interview this week from his new military post at Fort Riley, Kan. "I see it as my obligation to say 'I don't agree with what you're doing.' I'm not being insubordinate — I just think we're making a mistake here."

..."It won independent of the subject matter and content," said his thesis adviser Richard Schoonhoven, a philosophy professor at West Point. "It was a closely argued piece of philosophical prose. He tackled a substantive issue, took a stand and didn't back down from the controversy. He presented a good case."
How long can this ridiculous policy go on, when a bigger problem is the fact that they are recruiting skinheads, and people with antisocial personality disorder, autism, as well as those convicted of aggravated assault, robbery, vehicular manslaughter, receiving stolen property and making terrorist threats.


Holy Joe thread

Tuesday, August 08, 2006



11 PM: It's all over for Dear Leader's smooching buddy; he conceded and he will run as an independent. Ass. Sore Loserman; he ran as a Dem, he lost. Now he needs to step aside.

The New York Times:

Latest Results 11:08 PM ET
Joseph I. Lieberman 133,323 48.2%
Ned Lamont 143,363 51.8%

98% of Precincts Reporting


Two questions:

1) How will the media spin the Lamont win/Lieberman loss? Is it only about the war, or the big picture - no more business as usual?
2) What will the real story be?

Raw Story called the election for Lamont around 10:45..

The Hotline on Joe's defeat:
Sen. Joe Lieberman's narrow defeat for renomination has started a vigorous round of second guessing among sympathetic state Democrats. The campaign's decision late last week to scale back its GOTV effort is seen as a crucial error in the surprisingly close-run contest. Lieberman's ground game today was not as extensive as challenger Lamont's. Proof of that came in the returns from the state's largest city, Bridgeport. The Democratic organization there had become frustrated with Lieberman's campaign and failed to make its usual exertions for Lieberman, instead concentrating on Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Dan Malloy. Lieberman lost Bridgeport by 4%. He had been expected to win convincingly.
Hotline is also hearing whispers from GOPers who are ready to support a Holy Joe indy run (that's really going to help with his image, huh?).
A senior Republican official in Washington confirms that the party might encourage Republicans and others to support Sen. Lieberman if he runs as an independent...Says the GOP official: "I just think there will be folks who want to support – regardless of what we think. And, we don’t think that’s a bad thing."
And how about this, also from Hotline:
We're hearing that some members of the Lieberman braintrust have been quietly canvassing Washington in search of a new campaign team (staff and consultants); Dem campaign history is a must as the Lieberman team doesn't want any GOP consultants helping due to his need to keep the Dems he has already. While it's possible Lieberman can be talked out of the indie run, the person closest to Lieberman who shares his last name (hint hint) is pushing her husband hard to keep running.
***

11:40 PM: What Kos said:
Now, Lieberman wants to stab his allies and his party in the back. It won't be the first time.

Here's what we all need to do the next few days:

1. Push Harry Reid to strip Lieberman of all committee assignments.

2. Let people know what a sore loser Lieberman is.

3. Get all Democrats -- including Bill Clinton -- to publicly back Ned Lamont.

4. Get the Democratic interest groups who backed Lieberman to switch allegiances in the general.

The DSCC and the DCCC will have to deal with the fact that this race will continue to suck oxygen from great pickup opportunities. And I won't apologize for that, because as a proud Democrat, I will help in whatever way I can the Democratic nominee from the Great State of Connecticut.

The Republicans rejoiced at Lieberman's decision to stay in. They couldn't be happier. And let's not talk about the lobbyists! They're besides themselves!
NOW, I'm off to bed...again.


L.A. Clippers owner: blacks attract vermin, Hispanics are drunks

Every time I read sh*t like this, I think of White House spokesbot Tony Snow's infamous quote on racism that "it's rapidly becoming an ugly memory."

Not if you're trying to rent an apartment from this man:

The Justice Department on Monday filed a discrimination suit against Los Angeles Clippers owner and real estate mogul Donald Sterling, accusing him of favoring Korean tenants while seeking to exclude African Americans and families with children from his apartment buildings in Los Angeles County.

The suit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, charged Sterling with violating the Fair Housing Act, a part of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, by engaging in "discrimination on the basis of race, national origin and familial status." It also named Sterling's wife, Rochelle, and three Sterling companies and trusts.

,,,In the seven-page complaint, Justice Department lawyers said Sterling's agents at various times have refused to rent to non-Koreans at their buildings in Koreatown, and have been guilty of "creating, maintaining, and perpetuating an environment that is hostile" to existing non-Korean tenants.

According to the lawsuit, the Sterling companies also have refused to rent to African Americans at properties in Beverly Hills, and have misrepresented the availability of units to blacks and families with children.
This isn't the first time Sterling has been on the bigot hot seat.
The case is an echo of a private lawsuit filed against the Sterlings in 2003 on behalf of about 20 mostly black and Latino tenants or prospective tenants. According to that suit, filed by the Housing Rights Center, a Los Angeles nonprofit group, Sterling had told members of his staff that he did not like to rent to Latinos or African Americans because "Hispanics smoke, drink and just hang around the building," and "black tenants smell and attract vermin."
This bit of fun and games must cost Sterling plenty, since the article mentions a confidential settlement that resulted was said to be "one of the largest ever obtained in this type of case," and "a significant and wide-ranging nonmonetary component and public benefit," according to U.S. District Judge Dale S. Fischer. The only figure that was made public was the $4.9 million paid to cover the plaintiffs' attorney fees.

He doesn't mind paying blacks to shoot hoops for him, he just doesn't want to rent to them.


Gardening company prez: get those homos off my TV

An avid gardener who ordered from a Independence, OR-based company called Outsidepride.com, which touts that it "provides something for every person who enjoys taking care of the outdoors. From serious do-it-yourself landscapers to the novice homeowner, you will find what you are looking for at Outsidepride.com."

What the customer found in his inbox from Outsidepride.com's president, Troy Hake wasn't what he was looking for. Mr. Hake decided to use his customer database to send out this missive (my emphasis), calling for action against one of the well-known institutions of The Homosexual AgendaTM, CBS:
This is not your typical newsletter from Outsidepride.com, Inc. In fact, this is the first one in six years which is not business related. I apologize for cluttering your inbox with an unsolicited email; however you are free to unsubscribe just by clicking the link at the bottom.

I want to share with you my television viewing experience the other night on prime time television. I ask those of you who agree with me to go to www.cbs.com and go to the bottom of the page, click the feedback link and express your opinion. I know the vast majority of you will agree with me as all polls indicate. We are the majority, not the minority as the liberal media would lead you to believe.

My wife and I sat down to watch television the other night with our children. Cold Case was on which is normally a fairly enjoyable show to watch; however, the last half hour of the show dealt with a young man who wished he had asked his male friend to come with him (long story short). The show ended with the two men hugging and obvious intimation they had discovered their gay feelings towards each other. The very next show was Without A Trace. The whole last half hour of this show was about two lesbians who were struggling with their feelings of lesbianism. It ended with full acceptance from one father and the two lesbians making out. Yes, they were kissing right at the end of the show on public prime time television. So much for wholesome family television.

[Uh, oh, here comes the familiar fundie disclaimer and subsequent spewing...]

Now, I am NOT trying to bash homosexuals and I am not a bigot; however, I feel homosexuality is morally wrong and should not be "promoted" as what is the norm for society. Text books are being rewritten as I am writing this to "highlight" every homosexual who has made a contribution to society. There are teachers who have been asked to make sure students know that, "This person in history was a homosexual." History is being rewritten to promote homosexuality and prime time television is doing its best to make homosexuality a "normal" behavior. If homosexuality was the norm, civilization would have ceased to exist thousands of years ago. Procreation takes a man and a woman. There was Adam and then there was Eve, not Adam and Steve.

There are literally tens of thousand of you reading this email right now. If you are tired of the way public television is going let CBS know! It will only take about 1 minute of your time. Again, just go to www.cbs.com and click the feedback link at the bottom. It is time the majority speak up and not let the minority run this country. The majority can bring back the Christian heritage this country was founded on because it is, "In God We Trust."

Thank you for your time,


Troy Hake
President
Outsidepride.com, Inc.
That was quaint, huh? Mr. Hake made a blanket assumption that all the recipients of that email are as bigoted as he is. Perhaps this is a new marketing tactic to increase revenue. Somehow, I think this is going to backfire on him.

I love the irony of the company's name, though -- Outsidepride.com. That's such a homo-friendly name.

CBS should be commended for those episodes. As Hake said, the feedback form as at the bottom of the network's web page. I'm not sure if Hake is referring to the Cold Case episode A Time to Hate, but that was another excellent gay-positive show set in 1964 about a mother who seeks justice for her murdered son, who was beaten to death for being gay. Tidbit: one of the gay men was played by Brandon Routh (Superman Returns).

Hat tips to Loaded Orygun and Scott.


Barbie Talibania ♥ Mel Gibson

Yes, it's the story that will not die. OK, sure, it tried to wheeze out its last breath last week, but then I shot it full of adrenaline and put it on a ventilator. Think of it as the Terri Schaivo of celebrity gossip.

Anyway, I knew that I couldn't complete the Mel Gibson saga without checking in on my favorite orange-skinned virginal warrior for Christ, Princess Barbie Talibania. Seems she was interviewed as a "local Christian leader" in Boise on the local news, looking for reactions to Gibson's anti-Semitic tirade. She starts with a tepid denouncement of Gibson but quickly moves on to her true purpose, protecting the reputation of her favorite snuff film, "The Passion of The Christ":
(KBCI) BOISE - Critics who claim actor-director Mel Gibson's 2004 film The Passion of the Christ was anti-Semitic say his drunken tirade against Jews is further proof the man himself is an anti-Semite.

"I would hope that the Hollywood community would have the guts to distance themselves from him, because he is a bigot," said Abraham Foxman with the Anti-Defamation League in an interview with CBS News.

Christian leaders in the Treasure Valley who two years ago embraced The Passion as an unprecedented evangelical opportunity agree the Oscar winner's words to police, as reported in the media, during his recent DUI arrest were appalling.

But they say the artist's behavior should not reflect on the art.

"His comments were wrong, they were inappropriate," said local Christian activist Brandi Swindell. "But it in no way proves the movie was anti-Semitic."

"It's sad what has happened with Mel in this latest incident," said Roger Zanders with Boise-based Mission Media. "But as far as the film goes, it was an accurate portrayal of the life of Christ."

Those who believe The Passion of the Christ was a true religious experience say the fallen Hollywood star deserves the forgiveness he seeks.

"So I think it's a test of our maturity as a society how we will respond to his genuine apology," said Bryan Fischer with Idaho Values Alliance.

"Mel Gibson has personal problems," said Swindell. "He's in a bad place, he needs out prayers right now."
See there? If you say something awful about Jews, it's okay because God and His followers understand forgiveness and repentence, especially if you directed the highest-grossing Christian recruitment film in history. So Jews, hey, lighten up. Mel slandered an entire worldwide religion, but, y'know, he's got problems, y'see, and Jesus will fix it all up.

Brandi continued on the riff with these comments in her blog:
Mel Gibson is being attacked publicly when other movie producers have not been held to the same standard.

Director, producer, and actor Woody Allen married his adopted daughter. Roman Polanski fled to France after he had sexual relations with a thirteen year old girl to avoid jail.

Both these men are still celebrated and acclaimed directors.
I know you were young when Woody & Soon-Yi got married, and you probably weren't born when Polanski banged a minor, but I seem to remember Allen and Polanski getting attacked publicly in the press for years, far more strongly than anything flung at Gibson. After all, Allen and Polanski didn't have the luxury of pulling the "poor me, I'm an alcoholic and Jesus forgives me" card.

Yes, both men are still acclaimed directors. So is, and forever shall be, Gibson. No anti-Semitic remark is ever going to dull my appreciation of "Braveheart", nor will it ever make "Paparazzi" worth watching. Most adults are able to separate an artist's controversial views from their art.

That is not to say that Gibson's remarks don't highlight the anti-Semitism of "The Passion". The name itself derives from the old "stations of the cross" passion plays that were performed to incite hatred of Jews. Gibson was even forced by protests to remove the subtitle "His blood is on our hands and our children's hands" from "The Passion" when ADL pointed out that was a none-too-subtle "Jesus killers!" charge, a tactic used throughout history to demonize the Jews.
Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson have both made harsh anti-Semitic comments and are still respected public figures.
Oh, yeah, that "Hymietown" remark from Jackson in 1984 is right up there with "the Jews are the cause of all the wars in the world". And Sharpton's 1991 remark about "the diamond merchants right here in Crown Heights" was taken far out of context. Both made stupid comments 22 and 15 years ago, and both were pilloried in the press for doing so. Barbie seems to want us to forgive Gibson for his remarks, but is complaining that we've forgiven Allen, Polanski, Sharpton, and Jackson.

This should be as no surprise, because the 11th Commandment for these Christofascists is always "What's sauce for the Christian goose is not sauce for the secular gander." You notice that Brandi isn't bringing up decades-old anti-Semitic remarks by...

Christian Leader Pat Robertson: from his book, "The New World Order", (1991), p.17; "Communism was the brainchild of German-Jewish intellectuals." (The whole book is filled with such anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, the typical Jewish cabal stuff.)

Christian Leader Bailey Smith, a founding father of Robertson's Christian Coalition, once told 15,000 people at a Religious Roundtable briefing in Dallas, "With all due respect to those dear people, my friend, God Almighty does not hear the prayer of a Jew." (Petersburg Times, June 26, 1994) *AND* "I don't know why God chose the Jew. They have such funny noses." (The Sunday Record [Hackensack, NJ], June 21, 1981)

Christian Leader Jerry Falwell: WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) -- The Rev. Jerry Falwell said the Antichrist is probably alive today and is a male Jew. He also believes the second coming of Christ probably will be within 10 years. In a speech Thursday about the concern people have over the new millennium, Falwell told about 1,500 people at a conference on evangelism at Kingsport, Tenn., that the Antichrist is male and is a Jew. *AND* "A few of you don't like the Jews and I know why. He [sic] can make more money accidently than you can make on purpose." (The Washington Star, July 3, 1980).

Christian Leader Rev. Dan C. Fore, former head of the Moral Majority in New York, said, "I love the Jewish people deeply. God has given them talents He has not given others. They are His chosen people. Jews have a God-given ability to make money...They control the media, they control this city." (The New York Times, February 5, 1981).

And how about Brandi's own cause celebre, the anti-women-controlling-their-own-bodies-abortion movement? Anti-Abortion Leader Randall Terry, founder of the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue, said, "We have tried to do some outreach to the black and Jewish communities," but admitted that those efforts have failed, "...and that he is critical of the Jewish doctors, who he believes perform a large number of abortions." (Newsweek, May 1, 1989, p.32)

And how about the joke book created by Life Dynamics, another anti-abortion group, which contains this gem: "Q. What would you do if you found yourself in a room with Hitler, Mussolini and an abortionist, and you had a gun with only two bullets? A. Shoot the abortionist twice."

I'm sorry, Princess. Do go on:
It is important to make it clear that Mel Gibson's comments were wrong and go against the teaching of Scripture. But we must remember that Mel Gibson is very apologetic and embarrassed. The heart of Christianity is forgiveness and healing the wounded.
Oh, so you're forgiving Michael Schiavo now? Sorry. You were saying?
My father has battled alcoholism for 20 years. It is a very bad place to be. I understand first-hand the process of recovery and how important it is to pray. Mel Gibson's decision to check himself into rehab and meet with Jewish leaders shows this hit home, and he is willing to take personal responsibility for his actions.
Hmmm... absent daddy issues... religious repression... flip a coin and in a parallel universe, Brandi goes by "Cristal" and dances on a pole in a club near an airport. Or maybe that's just my secular humanist lust fantasy talking.

Girlfriend, you wanna talk about alcoholic fathers? Mine's got your beat, in spades, unless your daddy was also snorting speed, smoking weed, and dropping acid. Twenty-five years of alcoholism and drug addiction, followed by twenty years of sobriety and ten years as a drug and alcohol rehab counselor. And with all that experience and education, dad tells me "alcohol will make you do things you wouldn't do sober, but it won't make you think things you don't think when you're sober."

Checking into rehab may indeed be genuine for Gibson, since he's finally been forced to suffer some consequences for his drunk driving. But I don't buy the meeting with Jewish leaders as anything more than career resuscitation in a heavily-Jewish industry. He may learn to keep his mouth shut, but I doubt the "New World Order" / Opus Dei / Jews are Christ killers mindset is going to fade away after a few meetings with some Rabbis.


Captioning contest at Blogactive

This picture of RNC chair and Bush apologist Ken Mehlman, speaking at the National Urban League is running over at Mike's pad.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Best caption wins DVDs from Wolfe Video and HereTV!.

You have to post your caption over in Mike's comments, of course (you should read some of the ones over there!). Feel free to share your contribution here with the Blenders.

I'm heading back to bed now...


Open thread

Not feeling well today...chat, blogwhore, leave links, and play nice while I head to bed and try not to hurl.

One bit of great news...there's a strong possibility that I'll be able to interview Margaret Cho, who will be appearing at the North Carolina Gay and Lesbian Film Festival this week (a rep is trying to work out a time to do it).

What questions would you ask if you had the chance? Of course now I'll jinx the whole thing by mentioning it...


California gay history bill gutted to avoid veto

They had to water it down in order to save it. Out state senator Sheila Kuehl (D-Los Angeles) authored a bill that would have mandated the inclusion of instruction of gay history, but it was clear that it was going to be vetoed by the Governator if passed, so Kuehl requested a language change that dilutes its impact.
The Assembly voted 56-2 to remove sections mandating the inclusion of gays in history courses and now says only that school material should not be discriminatory toward gays.

...California already requires that African Americans, native peoples, Mexicans, Asians and Pacific Islanders be included in textbook descriptions of "the economic, political and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society."

Kuehl's bill would have added gays and lesbians to the list.

Now the bill, rather than being proactive, would simply prohibit any negative portrayal of gays in textbooks and other instructional material.
The Freepi, of course, had much to say about this development -- they are, naturally, unhappy with the watered-down version as well.

Actual Freeper Quotes™

H It is still unacceptable. For example, in texas it is required that homosexuality be taught as a negative lifestyle from a health and scienctific point of view. Which dead people will the homosexuals protect as a "homo".

If it is shown Hitler was a homosexual, does that mean Calif. Schools will have to portray hitler positivly? How about hitler's browshirts who were lead by homosexuals?

Good decision. This would have meant giving special treatment based on sexual orientation and there is no justification for that. Also, how would you know who was gay? - historically most gays have been in the closet... and probably still are.

I'm writing the Governor tonight. This has to be stopped - not because it's evil personified, or because it's extreme; but because it's the first step on a slippery slope that even the most depraved among us do not want to go down - they only THINK they do. And as usual, it's up to us to protect them from themselves, just like teenagers. How very, very tiresome.

In the long run, this will encourage more California parents to switch to private schools and homeschooling.

Her bill instead would prohibit any negative portrayal of homosexuals in textbooks and other instructional material

Because, you know, we have a problem in California right now with the textbooks just being full of negative portrayals of homosexuals. Someone needs to fix that.

I agree that it makes no sense to label historical figures as homosexual--especially in light of the fact that Michel Foucault gives 1870 as the "invention" of the modern concept of homosexuality. Before then, so Foucault opines, individuals were not thought of as being homosexual, but rather they were people who sometimes engaged in deviant behavior. In that vein, it is unlikely that Michelangelo or Socrates or whoever else somebody might want to label as homosexual would have actually thought of themselves as homosexual.

A big controversy amongst Willa Cather scholars is whether to label her as a lesbian. She certainly never identified herself as a lesbian, though she usually adopted a masculine appearance, never married, and from time to time lived with a woman.

It's not as simple as just slapping a lable on somebody and then somehow trying to make that label be an integral part in whatever contribution the person made. I do think it is better to just leave the issue alone, at least in high school textbooks.

Maybe graduate students can discuss the possibility of Michelangelo's attraction to men (if it can indeed be historically verified, I've heard about it but I haven't seen the evidence so I don't know) somehow impacting his artwork--but is that really something that pre-college children need to be worrying about?

As long as opinions are being altered in textooks... tapeworms and pinworms have received much bad press. Textbooks should include a statement advocating non-discrimination toward these life forms when mentioning the gay lifestyle.

Apparently, some of these lawmakers have never been in a middle/high school classroom. The mere mention of the word(s) sex, sexuality, etc. can throw a group of immature students into a hysteria. Sexual orientation of any type needs to be left out of core academic textbooks.

I'm skeptical because I received virtually no sex-ed back when I was in High School in Texas (graduated in '00). It just seems crazy that in these few short years, Texas could have progressed from a state that thinks "sex is a topic best left to parents" to a state that openly discusses homosexuality in school (even if the discussion is about the negatives of the homo lifestyle).

Are you sure it is not a local ordinance, or do all schools in TX have to teach about the destructive nature of the homo lifestyle? It just seems like the liberals would never let something like that pass without making a big stink about it, and I have trouble believing it could be true having never heard about it until now


Will Holy Joe go down today?



It's primary day in Connecticut...will it be the end of the line for the man who:

* has backed Chimpy all the way on Iraq, even after it was clear it was a horror and failure. In fact, Holy Joe's already on board to bomb Iran.

* said "In Connecticut, it shouldn't take more than a short ride to get to another hospital."
(for women who are raped and have the misfortune to end up in a hospital that refuse to give contraceptives for "principled reasons")

* said "homosexuality is wrong," and helped craft “don’t ask, don’t tell” and joined Jesse Helms to remove federal funding from schools that counsel suicidal gay teens.

John has an excellent post up on why the media can't seem to get a handle on why Holy Joe is faltering.

The Freepi, of course, are pulling for a Holy Joe win. Here's a classic endorsement:

If Lieberman loses, then the Democrats have no strong voice in the War On Terror or War on Islamofacism or War on Anti-Western culture or War against anything not Islamic.

Yes, they lose their ONE voice and the world will know the democrats STAND with the FRENCH.

Raise the WHITE FLAG!
If you're looking for full-time coverage on the Lamont and Lieberman duke-out, the place to go is Firedoglake.


Bonehead bigot commissioners tossed out in Tennessee

In the rural county of Rhea in Tennessee, voters decided that a change was needed on its board of commissioners and dumped five commissioners who wanted to, among other things, ban homosexuality in a misguided, bone headed vote in 2004. Basically they asked state legislature to introduce a bill to not only criminalize "gay sex" but to allow the filing of charges for any homo who resides, visits or enters the county.

Now that's a winner bit of business.

The knob-ends thought they were simply asking for a same-sex marriage ban.
Voters turned out incumbents Harold Fisher, Tom Davis and R. Paul Tallent. Incumbents Dennis Tumlin Brad Varner didn't seek re-election. Four incumbents were returned by voters. Fisher had been a commissioner for 20 years and was chairman of the body.

In March 2004, commission members voted unanimously voted to ask state lawmakers to introduce legislation amending Tennessee's criminal code so the county could charge homosexuals with crimes against nature. Two days later, they rescinded the vote, saying they didn't understand they were voting to ban homosexuality in the county.
It's noted in several articles on this story that this is the same county, and that the commission meets in the the same courtroom, where the Scopes Monkey Trial was held. The commissioner who made the motion, J.C. Fugate, was clear when he said "we need to keep them out of here," so I'm not sure what the confusion was for these now-tossed-out commissioners in that vote.

Here's a snippet of what happened when, after it was clear the county looked like fools in the media, the vote was rescinded:
June Griffin, a Christian activist, said the commissioners had bowed to "pressure from the liberal press."

She said, "We need to raise a better generation that won't chicken out." She said the majority of Rhea County residents supported the resolution. Mrs. Griffin said she did not believe there are any gays living in Rhea County. She said, "Anyone I ever suspect, I go up and ask them directly." She said anyone she had asked had denied it.

But Daniel Shipley said he lives in Graysville near the Hamilton County line and is "gay and proud of it." He walked up to June Griffin and said, "Honey, I'm gay and I want you to know I'm dressed as good as you." Mr. Shipley said there are "a lot of gays in Rhea County."

One man at the brief meeting said the commission "kicked a hornet nest. They've made a laughingstock of Rhea County."

A man from Dunlap, who had a truck with anti-gay writing on it, was passing out tracts. The truck said, "Sodomites Don't Produce, They Recruit."
H/t, Raw Story.


'WorldPride' Event Might Bring God's Judgment

Unhinged Rabbi Yehuda Levin of Jews for Morality is at it again. I do have to say that he provides the most pithy quotes. He's still bleating about "WorldPride" week, which opens in Jerusalem this week and he:
...fears that this homosexual pride event is turning the Holy City into a "homo city" -- and he is worried that the government's support of the week will bring on severe judgment from God


"The homosexualization of the Middle East, beginning with God's backyard, is one of the end-day struggles that could literally lead to a spiritual and physical Armageddon in both Israel and spread back to America," says Levin.
This is the same man who said that Katrina as a moral "cleanser" with parallels between the flooding of NOLA and the biblical flood that wiped out life on Earth (save Noah and the dinosaurs on the Ark) :
"in the aftermath of the flood that there was a significant amount of sexual crime, rape going on there. We know the Days of Decadence immorality, homosexual immorality -- they were expecting at least 125,000 people literally at the time that the flood struck. I mean, I don't think it takes a spiritual rocket scientist to make the connection."


Slipping from the fundie grasp...

Monday, August 07, 2006

SBC Leader Alarmed Over Young Adults 'Dropping Out' of Churches.

It's time to drag out the tiny violin...boo hoo...

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In 2002, the SBC's Council on Family Life reported that roughly 88 percent of evangelical children are leaving the church shortly after they graduate from high school. Dr. Frank Page, the denomination's new president, says SBC churches need to counter that statistic by finding ways to make themselves more relatable, more pertinent and significant to students before they graduate.

"We're seeing a societal trend where a large number of young people are opting out of the church," Page notes. "Estimates of 15 to 20 million people now in America have said they are Christians but they simply don't want to be a part of the church," he says.

Some blame the church "drop-out rate" among young people after they graduate on the secularist influence of America's public schools. However, the SBC's president observes, "The sad thing is that we're seeing that number of dropouts from church [among] those who went to public school and private school, and that's an unfortunate trend."
Gee, what do they expect when they are trying to force hilarity like virginity pledges, Jesus-head chastity rings, and idiocy like The Creation Museum down their throats.


Guy Adams is trying to scrub his bio

I guess Guy "sex with infants is the new gay trend" Adams knows he is in trouble.

Now that the extremist homobigoted views of Adams have been exposed by blogger Joe Brummer, and it's now out in the open that the Deputy National Grassroots Director of Alan Keyes's organization RenewAmerica is also a law enforcement officer (a 2005 Outlet Radio Network piece refers to him as "Cook County (IL) Deputy Sheriff Guy Adams"), he's trying to scrub all references to it lest he receive scrutiny from his superiors -- like the Ethics Commission in Cook County.

Here's his current Renew America bio:

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August 7, 2006. Click to enlarge

But look at this screenshot of his bio from the Google cache of the same page:

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August 2, 2006. Click to enlarge

[UPDATE: Joe has a new post up, where Adams writes him yet again, and continues the lies, trying to claim "I have not identified my department or my job. Not even by inference." Oops.]

That Outlet Radio page also has an uncropped picture of the above photo, which shows Adams wearing a badge. Nice try, Guy.

As I posted earlier, it appears that Joe's blog went down (bad timing, huh?), and all of the content was erased. Fortunately the trail of vicious, unhinged and threatening emails that Adams sent Joe are online in all their glory.

Joe's back online now, and almost all of his blog has now been recovered (comments were lost).

Related:
* Replace the Lies With TRUTH hacked?
* Over the edge batsh*t crazy
* Nutcase homobigot Guy Adams on his 'gays having sex with infants' comments
* Mike Tidmus on unhinged Guy 'infant sex' Adams
* Why we cannot reason with the fringe fundies
* Some 'new trends'?


Joe Murray, Man-on-Dog, and the Buggery Blitzkrieg

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Our boy Joe "Sodomy Squadron" Murray is back with a new name for The Homosexual Agenda -- The Buggery Blitzkrieg.

In an AgapePress column, Joe's got his knickers in a twist over the fact that Pennsylvania's Little Ricky Santorum, fearing his re-election campaign is circling the drain, signed a sexual orientation non-discrimination letter by the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition assuring that he believes in equal opportunity for homos in his office.

This was just too much to bear for this homobigot:

Rick Santorum, the darling of the social conservatives and two-term senator clinging to his job like a shopper to a garment at a blue-light special, has signed the pledge guaranteeing that Ru-Paul's employment application is welcomed at his office; a pledge Arlen Specter has not even signed.

...What does Rick Santorum have to gain by placing his John Hancock on this statement? Does he really think that the same homosexual lobby that has hitched its bandwagon to Bob Casey, Jr. is really going to mosey on over to the man who once compared the "fundamental right" of sodomy to incest and bestiality?
Well he's got that right, what appeal does Santorum hold for gays with his long history of anti-gay advocacy? Murray, who served as national director of correspondence for Pat Buchanan's failed 2000 presidential bid continues with the over-the-top military symbolism.
...The Buggery Blitzkrieg that started in 2003 came fast and furious. Not unlike the French of World War II, traditionalists were quickly overrun and astonished at the lightening-fast strike that came from the homosexual lobby. From Lawrence v. Texas to Gavin Newsom's weddings by the bay, traditionalists were overwhelmed by the war that was unleashed on them.

Judge Marshall and her Massachusetts' Supremes added cover to the Buggery Blitzkrieg, permitting homosexual groups to go on the offensive, subvert the will of the people by way of the Judiciary, and force traditionalists to fight on the terms the homosexual lobby had established. But every blitzkrieg must meet its Battle of Britain, where its weakness is exposed and its tide reversed.

What was the weakness of the Buggery Blitzkrieg? Despite its fast and furious assault, it could not undo the laws of nature. While it is true that the attack initially leveled the walls protecting the institutions established to foster traditional marriage, such accomplishments began to disappear as quickly as they came.

...At a time when the American public was fleeing same-sex nuptials' cause like George Michael a London park, why would Santorum sign a propaganda pledge that bestows legitimacy to a cause Santorum has long fought? Why bolster your opponents at a time when you have them on the ropes? Why let the enemy impose his will on you? This author knows no answer to these questions; one hopes Santorum does.
Related:


* Bring on the Sodomy Squadron!


Shoot first, ask questions later

15 States Expand Right to Shoot in Self-Defense.

These are called "stand your ground" laws by supporters and "shoot first laws" by opponents, and the National Rifle Association, no surprise, is lobbying for versions of the law in eight more states in 2007. What they amount to is a license to use deadly force in self-defense situations that in the past would have resulted in prosecution for murder.

Does this seem reasonable? No flipping way if you look at the law as implemented in the Sunshine State:
The Florida law, which served as a model for the others, gives people the right to use deadly force against intruders entering their homes. They no longer need to prove that they feared for their safety, only that the person they killed had intruded unlawfully and forcefully. The law also extends this principle to vehicles.

In addition, the law does away with an earlier requirement that a person attacked in a public place must retreat if possible. Now, that same person, in the law's words, "has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force." The law also forbids the arrest, detention or prosecution of the people covered by the law, and it prohibits civil suits against them.
The law allows people to kill other citizens in defense of property, not just self-defense.

That second paragraph quoted also leaves it wide open for 1) innocent people to be caught in crossfire; and 2) a hole large enough to drive through when it comes to interpretations of what is a perceived "threat."

I predict a rise in young minority men and gays and lesbians on the wrong side of the gun barrel when paranoid/bigoted folks feel free to open fire.

The insanity has already begun.
Jason M. Rosenbloom, the man shot by his neighbor in Clearwater, said his case illustrated the flaws in the Florida law. "Had it been a year and a half ago, he could have been arrested for attempted murder," Mr. Rosenbloom said of his neighbor, Kenneth Allen.

"I was in T-shirt and shorts," Mr. Rosenbloom said, recalling the day he knocked on Mr. Allen's door. Mr. Allen, a retired Virginia police officer, had lodged a complaint with the local authorities, taking Mr. Rosenbloom to task for putting out eight bags of garbage, though local ordinances allow only six.

"I was no threat," Mr. Rosenbloom said. "I had no weapon."

The men exchanged heated words. "He closed the door and then opened the door," Mr. Rosenbloom said of Mr. Allen. "He had a gun. I turned around to put my hands up. He didn't even say a word, and he fired once into my stomach. I bent over, and he shot me in the chest."
Shakes Sis has a post up on this pathological Wild West mentality:
Does this mean I get to shoot aggressive panhandlers? Can I shoot a guy at a bar who won’t leave me alone? It seems to me the defensibility of either of those acts is determined singularly by my own assessment of how at risk my personal safety is, giving jumpy, prejudiced fuckwits a rationale for shooting to assuage their own cultural anxieties. The same idiot knob-ends who feel compelled to lock their car doors when driving through a poor neighborhood now have carte blanche to shoot first and ask questions later.


AfterEllen.com hacked

[UPDATE: More hacking news below.]

Michael Jensen of AfterElton.com emailed me this AM with news that on last Thursday night, its sister site, AfterEllen.com, was hacked because of its lesbian-focused content. It appears to be the work of Islamic fundamentalists, though as mentioned in the comments, our home-grown "Christian" fundies are equally capable of this kind of thing.

The lesbian movie poster contest was the first to be obliterated, then every movie article was trashed as well as all of the site's blogs. Sarah Warn, AfterEllen's editor, was able to restore everything except the blogs, which are now gone forever.

Below is a screen shot of what the hackers left behind. The message comes from a chapter in the Koran.

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The whole passage reads: [4.78] Wherever you are, death will overtake you, though you are in lofty towers, and if a benefit comes to them, they say: This is from Allah; and if a misfortune befalls them, they say: This is from you. Say: All is from Allah, but what is the matter with these people that they do not make approach to understanding what is told (them)?

Michael said:
Neither AfterEllen.com or AfterElton.com will be deterred by this sort of thing. As sites devoted to covering lesbians and gays we're not surprised to be the target of homophobia, but it's especially sad to see such things done in the name of religion. Our motto is "Because Visibility Matters" and the actions of these few extremists trying to "erase" us proves how true those words are.
After hearing about that bit of business, I made sure to back up my posts this AM.

***

Replace the Lies With TRUTH hacked?

It looks like Joe Brummer, who exposed Guy (gays have sex with infants) Adams and his BS on his blog Replace the Lies With TRUTH, might have been hacked as well. He also emailed me this AM: "The bad news is my blog has been hacked or had a serious malfunction."



Guy Adams is a law enforcement officer.

He's back up now, but all of his archive is GONE.

His latest message says that the blog's database will be restored from his host's back up, but he's unsure of how recent that is.

You can, however, see posts (but not ones from the last day or so) by viewing the Google cache.

***

Here is a post from yesterday by Joe from that cache:
Dear Readers,

Thank you for all your supportive emails and help in spreading the word regarding the inappropriate actions of Stacy Harp and Deputy Sheriff Guy Adams. It is in this combined committment to change that change can come.

I have been gettting many emails and requests to report Guy Adams to the proper authorities for his email threats. On a combined level, his comments on Stacy’s show, his article on Renew America’s website and the personal threats he has made to me via email constitute some serious ethical violations. I would ask people to contact the Ethics Commission in Cook County and voice your concerns over these issues and ask that they investiagte. I am filling out the paperwork to fax over to them and will be sending over copies of the emails and tracking information to them.

I am in no way out to destroy Mr Adams career in police work, but it must be understood that public officials need to be held accountable for their actions. In the same way the anti-gay activist organization have helped to create a climate where hate is acceptable, we need to help create the climate where it is not. Holding people accountable when possible for using hate speech is the first step in creating this climate of peace.

I have seen many people call Mr. Adams a variety of names in their anger over his comments. Let it be known, I in no way support that. Mr. Adams is a seriously misguided person, but he is still a person and should be treated with dignity and respect. Calling him names only gives the religious right firepower to shoot back us. Our response must be that of love. Only love can stop hate. More hate will only make things worse.

Please know that I am not letting this go and that actions will be taken.

Joe
Related:
* Over the edge batsh*t crazy
* Nutcase homobigot Guy Adams on his 'gays having sex with infants' comments
* Mike Tidmus on unhinged Guy 'infant sex' Adams
* Why we cannot reason with the fringe fundies
* Some 'new trends'?


Handling -- or not handling -- gay rumors

The NYT has an article up, If You Must Know, I'm Straight that delves into how public figures are now handling the media's increasing willingness to inquire about sexual orientation.

If you ask me, the premise itself isn't correct -- I don't think the MSM is being all that forthcoming about bringing up the subject. Take a look at the glossy gossip mags, like US Weekly, InTouch (there's a long list of them) which focus endlessly on the private dalliances of figures. These pubs are not of the Enquirer ilk (exposing/outing); their main purpose is to cover celebrity relationships, lifestyles, trends, fashion, etc. -- and part of that is discussing Person A is dating/breaking up with Person B. This is casually tossed in our faces when the celebrity or public figure is hetero, or if the person is fully out of the closet (Elton, Rosie, Ellen, etc).

Here is how the NYT's Mireya Navarro describes the current public figure reaction to inquiries about orientation:
Step 1: State emphatically what it is you are not.

Step 2: Scoff at the rumor with good humor.

Step 3: Note, for the record, your true feelings about the rumor: not that there's anything wrong with that.

Or, skip steps 1 through 3 and opt for evasion with the nondenial denial: "I don't want to talk about my private life."

We are talking, of course, about denying the Gay Rumor, that surreptitious creature that attacks scores of entertainment, political and athletic personalities and that most recently has prompted disclaimers from Oprah Winfrey, the "Superman Returns" star Brandon Routh and Michael Strahan, the New York Giants defensive end.
In Oprah's case, she opted to address her close relationship with her best friend of 30 years, Gayle King by saying: "People think I'd be so ashamed of being gay that I wouldn't admit it? Oh, please."

Routh came clean on "Larry King Live," since there were many stories that ran on the 'Net before and during the release of the film about Superman's "gay appeal." This gave Larry King the opening to ask the question in the context of whether the discussions about this reading of the character could lead people to assume the actor was gay (Routh's response: "I'm very confident in who I am and my relationship with my lovely girlfriend.").

Strahan had to field the questions when his wife claimed during acrimonious divorce proceedings that he was having a same-sex affair (which she retracted), but for once, in the field of team sports, we had an athlete give a non-gay-bashing response, to Strahan's credit -- "I have plenty of friends that are bi or homosexual. It's fine with me. This is New York City. If you can't accept people for being people, then you have no business being here."

The forthrightness of media coverage gets questionable when you have these figures who are rumored to be gay for one reason or another -- they are never linked to anyone of the opposite sex publicly, they define their situation as "married to work," or, in the case of actors, they play gay onscreen and thus the subject of their orientation, in the media's eyes, becomes relevant.

There's also that gray area of public figures, like the recently self-decloseted Lance Bass of NSYNC, who are professionally have the closet door locked, but are socially out, even appearing in public with their same-sex partner. This kind of celeb declines to answer the questions about orientation until the rumors reach fever pitch (or the photos of the carousing/gay socializing hit the Internet). This is also the category of celebrity in most jeopardy of being outed nowadays, because in decades past, the media, and quite frankly, others in the gay community who knew that person was gay, and kept the public at large in the dark about those same-sex relationships. Kevin Naff of the Washington Blade addresses that in his column on Bass.
The key point that many readers — and mainstream media reporters covering the Bass story — missed is that Bass outed himself. Gays and lesbians are under no obligation to keep each other’s dirty little secrets and partying in P-town’s gay bars on a holiday weekend with a celebrity boyfriend in tow is not the behavior of someone living a closeted life.

Here’s the thing about privacy: it’s an easy thing to attain. Go home, lock your door and draw the curtains and you have privacy. Bass’ days as a teen heartthrob are long over. There are no paparazzi camped at his doorstep anxious to chronicle his every move. He is fully capable of living a quiet, private, closeted life. He made another choice.

Outing involves investigating and reporting on the private behavior of a public figure who denies being gay. Hanging out in gay bars doesn’t constitute private behavior. It didn’t take any sneaky detective work to uncover Bass’ sexual orientation. No one peered through his windows or sorted through his trash. He walked into a gay bar with his boyfriend and witnesses connected the dots. Sorry, but there’s no outing in this case.
Blogs, gossip sites and the ability to circulate rumors -- and evidence -- is clearly what is driving the MSM to finally address the issue. When mainstream publications and broadcast media continue the heteronormative default when the buzz on the 'Net is 180 degrees from it, that destroys their credibility. It looks as though they are conspiring to hide some kind of "dirty little secret" when the truth is already circulating elsewhere.

So the situation we presently have is really an increasing shift from the default assumption in media coverage that a public figure is straight if that person has not made it clear in some way. I'm sure that control freak PR flaks used to controlling the subjects covered in interviews with celebrities (think Tom Cruise) are under increasing pressure to allow reporters to "go there" with questioning, and are under even more pressure from their closet case clients to avoid the topic of sexual orientation or any rumors floating out there. There are a lot of A-list celebs who have the power to quash any discussion of this, threatening access to that celeb from the MSM outlet if it lobs the homo bomb question out there.

Access is the life blood of celeb rags and entertainment shows. That's why the MSM is only dipping a toe into this realm of truth-telling, or, to be more accurate, reality-based interviewing.
"The media is more willing to ask the question, because being gay has become a more publicly acknowledged fact of life," said Larry Gross, director of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California and author of "Up From Invisibility: Lesbians, Gay Men and the Media in America" (2001, Columbia University Press).

But while that may speak well of the achievements of the gay rights movement, some sociologists and gay advocates say that all the fuss over the Denial is one more indication of the stigma still attached to being gay.

"At least there's no longer the presumption that everyone is straight," said Laura Grindstaff, an associate professor of sociology at the University of California, Davis, who teaches on gender and sexuality. "But this intense interest in knowing, and the need to deny, are problematic. Why does the difference matter? Because there are all these consequences."
Back in the day, you might remember Richard Gere and Cindy Crawford taking out an ad to declare their heterosexuality when rumors swirled about them both. That's the old school, paranoid reaction by the celeb set. There are now better celeb models to follow, like Jake Gyllenhaal, that show how far Hollywood has come in addressing the question:
Gay media watchers regard Mr. Gyllenhaal, who fielded questions about his sexual orientation after his starring role as a gay cowboy in "Brokeback Mountain," as a model for the right approach.

"I can honestly say I've never been attracted to a man sexually," he said, "but I don't think I'd be afraid of it if it happened."
For the homophobes like Mel Gibson, I wonder how his publicist would tell him handle the question today, as opposed to that 1992 interview with the Spanish newspaper El Pais where he responded: "Do I sound like a homosexual? Do I talk like them? Do I move like them? I think not."

The PR flaks will continue to defend their masters in ways that perpetuate the idea that being gay is somehow wrong, and that's part of the problem.
The New York publicist Ken Sunshine said that among his celebrity clients, being an attractive 20-something man is almost a guarantee that gaydars will go off.

"It comes up all the time," Mr. Sunshine said. "The gay rumors are based on nothing and then they have to make the decision to comment on their sexuality." Mr. Sunshine said his media strategy varies depending on the circumstances and the wishes of his clients, most of whom he said choose not to comment.

"Sometimes I yell and scream, sometimes we threaten to sue, sometimes we try to charm," Mr. Sunshine said of how he deals with prodding from the news media. "It's very difficult to combat with the celebrity obsession that we're going through."
Mr. Sunshine needs to wake up. The Gay Question is not going to go away, so he's got to let his clients know how to gracefully answer the question.


Migrating out of legally gay-hostile Virginia

"As an African-American, having grown up during the Civil Rights movement in Birmingham, Ala., I am not willing to have my rights taken away from me by ignorant, religious zealots who don't respect the constitutional understanding of separation of Church and State when scripting laws...It was apparent to me that things weren't getting any better, but worse. Why should I continue to pay taxes to support such a hateful government?"
-- Emmanuel Vaughan, who moved from Arlington, VA to DC with his partner, because of the state's anti-gay legal environment
This should surprise no one; why should gay and lesbian taxpayers live in a state that not only refuses to recognize their relationships, but seeks to place gay families in legal jeopardy because of bigotry?

Virginia, which has an upcoming vote in November on a constitutional amendment to bar gays and lesbians from marrying, if passed will ban civil unions, partnerships or any legal status approximating the rights conveyed with marriage. Gays are now moving to DC, Maryland or Delaware, leaving the legal bigotry behind. (WaPo):
Many gay people in Virginia and some family-law attorneys say they worry that the state law and proposed amendment are more far-reaching than simple bans on gay marriage -- that the measures could threaten the legal viability of the contracts used by gay couples to share ownership of property and businesses.

The exact effects are unclear, and the 2004 law remains untested, but gays fear the laws could affect their ability to own homes together; to draft powers of attorney, adoption papers or wills; or to arrange for hospital visitation or health surrogacy.

Married people get these rights automatically through long-established common law; gay people use legal documents to ensure they can leave their property at death to their partner or allow their partner, rather than the patient's birth family, to make end-of-life decisions for them. Some gay people worry that hostile family members could use the language in the laws to seize their possessions or take custody of their children if they could prove the couple had a relationship that illegally approximated a marriage.
The WaPo spoke with two dozen gay people who decided to move out of the state, with ten others who will decide whether to leave after the results of November vote. Trust me, there will be an exodus of many more if this amendment passes.

What really galls me in this article is the completely disingenuous statements coming out of the bible-beating set. It's unreal. They know the legal hurdles that they are placing in the way of gay relationships in Virginia, yet find it sad that gays are leaving the state.
Victoria Cobb, executive director of the Family Foundation, the Richmond-based group that backed the 2004 law and the proposed constitutional amendment, said the goal isn't to drive gay people out. She said "extreme homosexual organizations" might be trying to frighten their members by circulating false information about the amendment. She said it wouldn't add new restrictions on gays but would simply underscore the ways their relationships are already restricted.

"I think it's extremely sad they would leave because of something they were never allowed to do anyway," said Cobb, who said she believed gays could go to court to defend themselves if a partner's family members challenged their right to own property in common, arrange powers of attorney or visit each other in the hospital.
Gays could go to court. Yes, Virginia, you, from the privileged position of heterosupremacy, have a hell of a lot of nerve, since you don't have to file a lawsuit to receive any of the rights you can obtain by going down and obtaining a marriage license. You don't have to worry about hostile parents interfering with custody or property rights of their children because the bible tells them homosexuality is wrong. Jeezus, I think that I'm going to be ill.

It's not hard to believe that many straight people are not aware of what is at stake with the marriage amendment vote coming up in November, but there are also gay folks out there who have no clue about what legal challenges await them in Virginia.
Art director Beth Lower and her partner, Kati Towle, owned a home in Arlington but didn't know about the Virginia laws until they went to a lawyer to draw up a will and adoption paperwork for Lower after Towle became pregnant. "The lawyer said, 'Don't have that baby in Virginia,' " recalled Lower, who works for a trade association. "We weren't really into Virginia politics, so we didn't really know about any laws that might be working against us."

Towle, a school teacher in Alexandria, delivered the baby at George Washington University Hospital in the District, and the three moved to Silver Spring.
That couple is not alone. You might recall that Mary Cheney, who lives in the state with her partner Heather Poe, was clueless about the matter as well. From a Larry King interview while shilling her sorry-ass book:
KING: On domestics -- what's the rule -- what's the law in Virginia?

CHENEY: Actually I'm not sure what the law is in Virginia. I should know that.

KING: Does your partner have -- if you're in the hospital, god forbid, does your partner have rights?

CHENEY: My partner and I have living wills, regular wills, powers of attorney, everything that quite honestly any couple married or not should have.
Yeah, Mary, and all that paperwork will be subject to legal challenge for all those couples who can afford to obtain them. What about your fellow Commonwealth residents who aren't in a position to draw up those legally vulnerable documents?

Clearly, this exodus -- a gay brain-drain -- from states with marriage amendments is a powerful message to send. Companies and institutions that support civil equality measures will think twice before doing business with a state that makes second-class citizens of its LGBT taxpaying residents.

There are two schools of thought about the migration -- should gays stay and fight where the legal deck is stacked against them, or leave for more gay-friendly pastures? David Lampo, VP of the Log Cabin Republican Club of Virginia in the article muses that gay flight would hand a victory over to the anti-gay forces in the state.

I say, so what? Any state that puts discrimination on the ballot needs to "pay" for taking such a position. There's no way that a gay couple, especially one with children, needs to stay and be subjected to this kind of institutionalized legal BS. There's no way that an amendment, if passed, will be overturned any time soon, and that's the tragedy of the states that have "gone all the way," passing amendments with negligible support for opposition efforts from elected officials and national gay orgs, particularly in Red states. Endless court battles now lie ahead; not everyone is willing or able to deal with a protracted legal fight in their state for the most basic of rights.

In a deep Red state, there's only so much open hostility one can take, never mind outright danger. For those in Purple states (Red states with Blue enclaves) our interests in the long run are better served if gay folks stay and reclaim them by coming out, getting politically active and protecting their interests. But that's a lot to ask once the door is effectively shut with an amendment.

Perhaps the wingnut forces will be defeated someday in these states (realistically, change at this point will require a SCOTUS decision overturning the amendments), but the best medicine for now may be for Virginia -- and states that have passed these hate amendments -- to see what the economic price is for letting the people decide who is entitled to civil rights.

If "letting the states decide" is the stated position of both political parties regarding these matters, it needs to be clear that gay citizens, gay friendly businesses and allies will vote with their feet and their wallets as well.

Hat tip, Holly.

***

UPDATE: A commenter mentioned the fact that NC is on of the few remaining Southern states without a marriage amendment and asked whether this is "because (1) Tar Heels are more enlightened than their neighbors? Or is it because (2) Democrats control the North Carolina legislature, and won't give Republicans a chance to use this form of bigotry to get out their base voters?"

The biggest issue is that Democrats control the North Carolina legislature. There are plenty of wingnuts here, and if it went to a ballot, an amendment would pass. The General Assembly keeps bottling the bills in committee.

That said, many of the pols here are pragmatists and pro-business, and many of the companies based in RTP and in larger areas (Greensboro, Charlotte) have gay-affirming policies. Durham and Orange counties (as well as the city of Durham and towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro) provide domestic partner benefits; Greensboro is mulling it.

There are many factors like this that would make it very politically explosive if a bill managed to make it to the floor for debate because of the economic ramifications.

The State of NC naturally doesn't recognize same-sex relationships or protect the rights of LGBT citizens (see here), though UNC carefully treads water with its non-discrimination policy (the state schools are governed as a separate entity), but it has this important footnote: "The University’s policy prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation does not apply to the University’s relationships with outside organizations, including the federal government, the military, ROTC, and private employers."

In case you're wondering about other area universities and non-discrimination policies, NC State's includes transsexuals and Duke has a strong non-discrimination policy and provides full same-sex spousal equivalent benefits.

***

Another aside, one that reminded me why getting straight allies on board in this fight is going to take some work...

I recently had a conversation at one of the functions surrounding my brother's wedding with a progressive friend of my now-sister-in-law's family. Kate and I were floored, after telling her that we went to Canada to get married, when she asked us why we couldn't get legally married here in the States (remember, out of staters cannot marry in Mass.). She honestly thought we were in the clear to marry and have fully equality (even at the fed level, which doesn't apply with a Mass. marriage license either).

Since the straight folks I'm around here in NC are generally in touch with the issue, it was a big reminder that a huge portion our potential allies around the country are undereducated about this issue in a distressing way. A significant awareness campaign targeting straight allies is critical to garnering enough support to turn this ship around.

***

Here's a must-read piece that dovetails with this discussion quite well: Terrance's "What Rights Should Same-Sex Couples Have?" Since we're acquiring our rights piecemeal (or being outright denied them), it's an interesting exercise to think about what constitutes civil equality, and whether we, as gay taxpaying citizens, can or should "settle" for something less.


Q of the day - the boss from hell

Sunday, August 06, 2006

There's a piece in the Palm Beach Post about Florida U.S. Senate candidate Katherine Harris and the staffers who are telling all about her as a The Devil Wears Prada-like boss from hell. It's a long piece, chock full of horrors about her treatment of just about anyone involved with her campaign. She's already experienced a mass exodus of staff - twice.

Her nickname is "The Hurricane" because she would spin completely out of control over insignificant things.

Q of the day: do you have any boss from hell tales to tell?

Harris really does sound deranged, though I get the feeling that a lot of elected officials have swelled heads and treat their staffs badly, regardless of party affiliation. She's just a textbook case of someone who needs serious help.
In July, congressional speechwriter Jennifer Hickey informed her friends she was quitting in an e-mail that said: "Value of Handing in my Resignation Letter: Priceless."


...She chastised speechwriters, press secretaries, fund-raisers, even travel aides who drove her from one event to another.

For those travel aides, a top priority was to get her Starbucks coffee, no matter where she was campaigning, "and God help him if it wasn't hot," an aide said. Several aides said Harris was so obsessed with Starbucks coffee she insisted that Starbucks locations be mapped out when she was traveling from one campaign stop to another. One aide recalled going to Harris' house for a day of fund-raising calls without bringing her a cup of Starbucks. The aide said Harris made it clear that it was expected he bring her a coffee when coming to her house.

Another time, the aide said, he went to dinner with other staffers after a full day of campaigning while Harris was attending a church conference in Fort Lauderdale. By the time he returned, Harris had called the campaign manager to find out where the aide was so he could bring her something to drink. The aide said he was incredulous because there was a water fountain nearby.

"She literally yelled at me in the hallway," the aide said. "She said, 'Never, ever do that again.' I just walked away."

The aides said Harris constantly yelled on the telephone to her top staffers. Once, she threw a stack of paper at Miller when he criticized her.





Open the door, get on the floor, everybody walk the dinosaur

"The museum has all the scientific answers for creation, but they really want people to know that if you take the Bible as your starting place, you're probably going to be more successful in looking out at the world."
-- Ken Ham, the Australian-born science teacher and founder of The Creation Museum
According to Ken Ham, his new museum will bring everyone closer to God and solve all the confusion in the culture war about evolution versus creation.

After all, one of the scientific positions taken in the $26 million effort, described in a Toledo Blade article by David Yonke, is the common belief in the fundie set that the Earth is only 6,000 years old (rather than 4 billion years old), which also means that human beings were walking around with dinosaurs and were present on Noah's Ark.

The real issue here is that this is really about the culture war in the country; it's a reaction to science that conflicts with the bible and Ham and Co. want to take it back, taking people back into the Flat Earth Society. The current method of brainwashing in fundie churches and schools isn't working, so they have to create an entire hermetically sealed reality that will not challenge their fantasy world where "science" has a much different definition than the one we're used to.
How a person views creation and evolution sets the tone for how he or she views the world, Mr. Ham asserted.

..."There is a widening chasm between those who adhere to Christian morality - i.e., absolutes that are actually founded in the Bible - and those who adhere to moral relativism - i.e., everyone has a right to determine his or her rules for life," Mr. Ham said in an interview with The Blade.

"The more that generations are trained to disbelieve the Bible's account of origins, the more they will reject the rest of the Bible," he said. The teaching of evolution as fact, rather than as theory, has undermined the authority of the Bible and brought about the rise of secularization and moral chaos, Mr. Ham said. He also believes the rejection of the Bible as a moral compass has given rise to an array of cultural conflicts on issues such as abortion, divorce, homosexuality, and euthanasia.

The Creation Museum is designed to inspire Americans to accept the Bible as absolute authority and to halt the spread of secular humanism and moral relativism in society.
Where do you begin with all of this insane propaganda? In the Noah's Ark exhibit, for instance, it will show 12 animatronic characters hammering and sawing away while Noah shouts instructions to them. I'm sorry, how can someone take that ark story literally -- that must have been a big f*cking boat, and who did sh*t patrol with all that animal waste on board? There are so many holes in that story; these folks have to be sheeple of the highest order.

One of the goals of this museum, which Ham stated in an address to charter members (who forked up $149 for one-year memberships, $495 for five years ones, or $1,000 for a lifetime of fantasy science), is that he feels many visitors "will experience a spiritual conversion" after touring the Creation Museum.

Hat tip, Holly.


Some 'new trends'?

Since Guy Adams can make claims that gays having sex with infants and animals represents a new sexual trend without producing any evidence or statistics, I guess could we toss out these examples out as a trend of some kind as well, huh? At least these cases made the mainstream media, which is more than Adams can say about the crap he makes up while on the air...

From Ontario, California:

As many as 200 girls may have been molested by a substitute teacher. 28-year-old Eric Norman Olsen is under arrest. Olsen was taken into custody when he came into the Ontario Police Department for an interview.

He had been under investigation since mid-June when a student reported that she had seen him molest a 10 year old girl.
Olsen managed to perpetrate this horror on this many girls in only three years.

What about this: Capitol Cop, Coach Charged in Sex Case.
A U.S. Capitol Police officer has been charged with sexual abuse after he allegedly made videotapes of himself having sex with a 15-year-old girl who said she was working as a prostitute for a Maryland high school football coach.

According to court documents, Sgt. Michael Malloy told authorities he and Arron Burroughs videotaped themselves engaging in sexual acts at Malloy's home in Charles County. Malloy has been charged with first-degree child sex abuse while armed.
Now, based on The Guy Adams Rule, one should go on the air and cast a wide net on this topic, completely without any expertise or data, and accuse all male teachers of engaging in a growing trend of pedophilia -- and toss in all coaches and law enforcement officers as well. Hey, Adams is a law enforcement officer.

The Olsen case prompted an excellent article on the psychology of the child molester, which Adams should read before he shoots his mouth off again. This is not about orientation, this is about sick individuals who place themselves in proximity to children, who cannot control their deviant, compulsive behavior.
The predators themselves may not know what drives them and may not care, but many know exactly how to continue their behaviors, said Xavier Von Erck, founder of the online predator tracking organization Perverted Justice.

Child predators are not typically strange old men in raincoats who lurk behind trees waiting for an unsuspecting little girl to walk by.

They are often the pastor, the Little League coach and, according to Von Erck, the teacher. "It almost seems like the number one profession we find is male teachers," Von Erck said.
Now Adams has completely snuffed out what little credibility he had (if he had any to begin with), by not only promoting bigoted, hateful and unsupported charges against a whole community, he attacked the messenger in a way that showed Adams to be a completely unhinged, unraveling man given a soapbox to shout from by "Christian" activist Stacy L. Harp on her broadcast.

These are the kinds of people that Karl Rove and Ken Mehlman court, allowing them to rile the Base with bigotry while keeping their hands clean. If any one of the fringe bible beaters goes over the edge, they can simply disassociate from them, tag the wild eyed ones that go over the edge as "outside the mainstream" (think Phelps) and go about their business. If Adams goes down, there are hundreds more, many with more couth than this dude, to take his place whipping on the homo straw man.


More Yellow Elephants for Joe



Brilliance from The Good General. Holy Joe actually has College Republicans canvassing for him in the home stretch (the primary is Tuesday).

Also:
* Holy Joe's GOP dough
* DSCC to Holy Joe: you're on your own
* NARAL backs Holy Joe over Lamont
* Holy Joe collecting signatures for independent campaign
* Holy Joe vs. Ned Lamont on LGBT rights
* Holy Joe: Bombs away on Iran
* Holy Joe on-air meltdown
* Hey Hey, Ho Ho, Holy Joe has got to go!

***

It's an open thread...


Fire sale at the American Family Association bookstore

Blender Paul wanted to alert all of you that Don Wildmon is holding a fire sale over at the AFA and didn't want you to miss out on it...Here's what he emailed me:
A couple of items from the AFA site.  First, good news for those Blenders who don't have their own copy of the Gay Agenda Donnie has moved his remaining stock of that book into the closeout bin, but buyers better hurry, there are only 26 copies left. 

And he has lowered the suggested donation for the It's Not Gay DVD down to $10.  I'm still trying to figure out how that can be considered a "suggested" donation, when his ordering software demands that price, but hey, I guess it's the thought that counts.
The Gay Agenda looks like a real barn burner. The author, Pastor Ronnie Floyd, takes an in-depth look at the purpose of and impact on society of "the homosexual movement."

Paul adds, "Now if we could just get Pete 'I take it up the ass so you don't have to' LaBarbera' to put some of his book collection on sale..."

Well, Porno Pete doesn't have that particular research collection up for sale, but he is selling some fish wrapper on the Illinois Family Institute web site called The Homosexual Agenda, by Alan Sears and Craig Osten (suggested donation $15).
Educate yourselves about the strategy and persistence of the homosexual agenda. In this book by Alan Sears and Craig Osten weren't you will learn the depth and breadth of the homosexual movement, and will better understanding of how to counter this dangerous movement.

This book clearly demonstrate how religious freedom (in particular the freedom to believe homosexual behavior is wrong) is being stifled by homosexual activists.

President and vice president of the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), Sears and Osten are the authors of The Homosexual Agenda. , which was published prior to the Goodridge decision last year.

Illinois Family Institute is proudly affliated with ADF, a pro-family organization that has been at the legal frontlines fighting for religious freedom.

The authors depict the current state of affairs clearly and in a manner so fact-filled that the book verges on serving as a reference work.
Well, alrighty then. I'll have to go on faith on that claim, since I'm not shelling out $15 to read that claptrap. The Amazon listing for it is here (a steal -- 61 used & new available from $4.72, people); check out the reviews. Here's one:
Move along, thinking folks, nothing to see here.
More deluded paranoia and preaching to the misguided choir, strictly for the sort of people so gullible and brainwashed as to be able to believe the childishly absurd claims made herein. The audience for this alleged "book" consists of those with severely limited thought processes, and those who enjoy a laugh.

It's bad enough that there are persons so fundamentally corrupt and deceitful as to argue that not being allowed to violate the rights of other citizens by cramming absurd superstitious beliefs down those others' throats is a violation of THEIR rights - that's sad, indeed. But that there is anyone over the age of eight who is credulous enough to buy such laughable humbug, that constitutes a national tragedy!


Why we cannot reason with the fringe fundies

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Joe Brummer at his pad Replace the Lies With TRUTH has done an excellent job of uncovering the unhinged homobigot Guy Adams and his "performance" on the Stacy L. Harp broadcast, where he claimed:
"Anyway… we were talking about homosexuality and basically about how a lot of homosexuals are beginning to have sex with animals and infants…"
The heat has been so searing for these two over the last couple of days that Ms. Harp took her blog offline, purged it and now it's fresh and clean (that or Blogger just mysteriously ate it). All the rest of the original commentary surrounding her interviews with Adams is gone, though the mp3s of the interviews are up there.

Her pre-purge blog entries can be easily found with a Google cache search of her blog, btw, which turns up the cache of her original post (with comments) about her interview.

Isn't that just like the Right, running for cover when the lies are exposed. She's clearly shaken, because she issued one of those lame non-apologies that Joe managed to scoop up before she obliterated her blog.

Guy, on the other hand, has no such intention of retracting his statement that the new trend among gays is having sex with infants, but he has proven how unbalanced The Base really is because on Friday he sent Joe Brummer 4 emails within 20 minutes that are unbelievable. I'm putting just a couple up to give you an idea of the kind of deranged, and quite frankly, threatening, taunts that can come in the mailbox when you challenge these people on their lies.

Remember, these are allegedly God-fearing "Christians" pouring out this naked hate (my emphasis below):

From: "Guy Adams"
To: "Joe Brummer"
Cc: stacyharp
Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 2:16 AM
Subject: Reply: From Joe


What's your point Joe? It sex with babies the truth; it IS happening, so what's your point?

Let's just assume that gays are not screwing babies. Okay then, what ARE gays doing? Can you describe it for me and the public???

If you won't describe it, then I will. Openly and in a national forum.

One thing you will quickly discover about me -- I CANNOT be intimidated nor will I retreat. I will stand my ground no matter what.

YOU brought this war to me and I will finish it. And there are many, many more like me too.

We simply don't care about you petty proclamations, not does Alan.

You woke up the wrong guy.

~Guy

***

From: "Guy Adams"
To: "Joe Brummer"
Cc: stacyharp
Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 2:22 AM
Subject: Re: From Joe

Your comments are not even worth me read. I'll bypass. WHO ARE YOU? WHAT'S YOUR NAME?

In the course of a few short months, no one will want to mention your name out of sheer fear.

You CANNOT tear my words apart because you are speaking from the moral low ground and because my words spoke the truth.

In other words, you have no firm ground on which to stand. You are a coward. I initially had a heart for you but you have proven yourself to be a reprobate.

The war is on. As Reagan said: We win, you lose.

Understand that quite well, because in a true war (unlike Iraq), all means available to me will be used.

You targeted the wrong guy, but I thank God that you did.

Enjoy your brief stay in the spotlight.
Read Joe's final response to this man.

An aside -- look at the above picture of Adams: it's the same one running on the Renew America site (where he's the organization's Deputy National Grassroots Director).

Blender Kevin pointed me to that same pic, which ran with a January 12, 2005 piece on Outlet Radio Network about Adams (Illinois Deputy Sheriff Laments 'Sick and Depraved Homosexuals), only now we can see that it was cropped for good reason over at Renew America.



Guy Adams is a law enforcement officer, people. The man is licensed to pack heat. After reading those emails, that's truly disturbing.

More takes on this:
* Wayne Besen of Truth Wins Out calls for Renew America's Chairman Alan Keyes to dismiss Guy Adams
* Jeremy at Good As You.
* Timothy at Ex-Gay Watch


Q of the day - where do you surf in the AM?

What are the top sites that are must-visit blogs/sites for you each day? If you want to share why, that's cool too.

In my case, I had to think about this one a bit, because the top places I go when booting up in the AM aren't necessarily my "favorite" places, meaning blogs with the best writing, or who are my favorite bloggers because of their perspective, or the best news sites, etc. I'm thinking about where I go to find out info and to see what's going on out there.

OK. This was hard Here are mine. I split them into blogs and news sites/aggregators and simply stopped at 10 picks arbitrarily. These are not in order of preference, just off the top of my head.

Blogs
* Shakes Sis (my bloggrrrl always has blogworthy stuff; we often riff on the same topics coincidentally, which is funny; I go over there and see things I've posted about or that she beats me to)
* Think Progress (it is a go-to for what's breaking)
* The Blend (this should be true of most bloggers -- you go to your own pad to read comments; I always check back in the threads, even if I don't have time to comment or respond in them all).
* Pandagon (have to see what Amanda and jedmunds are ranting about, and to read comments, since I post there)

News sites
* Raw Story
* PageOneQ
* Yahoo News (have to have one MSM in there)
* 365gay
* AgapePress / Freeperville (my "news" patrol - just so you don't have to)

There are many more that I visit almost as often (AB, Crooks & Liars, Queen Drudge), but I had to cut off this list somewhere or it would be a mile long. I get a lot of links to sites from readers who send in emails these days, so I get tipped to things before even hitting the newsreader.

For those of you who are readers and commenters, not bloggers, it will be interesting to see the differences in lists.

***

Every once in a while I check out what search strings bring people to the Blend. They are always odd. Take a look at this list...weird.

1 oprah
2 sexy guys
3 pam's house blend
4 pams house blend
5 porky pig
6 linda lay
7 ann coulter
8 Oprah
9 porno star
10 ford logo
11 krispy krem-
12 ted nugent
13 Is Anderson Cooper married
14 realdoll
15 olsen twins
16 tissues
17 david lee roth
18 Linda Lay
19 Bleu Copas
20 women kissing


The Rotting CryptkeeperTM to picket funeral of U.S. Senator's nephew

Fred and his moral wrecking ball crew take their roadshow on Sunday to the funeral of Marine Cpl. Phillip E. Baucus, who died last Saturday during combat operations in Iraq. He is the nephew of Montana Senator Max Baucus.



From the Billings Gazette:
The church, based in Topeka, Kan., has gained headlines for its religious-based rhetoric bashing gays and, more recently, fallen U.S. servicemen who the church believes are fighting on behalf of a "sinful nation."

While the comments posted on the church's Web site were unfit to print, the text condemned Sen. Max Baucus for a variety of issues and accused Cpl. Baucus of "disobeying" his creator by serving in the U.S. Marines. "Sunday is about mourning Phillip and celebrating his life and his service to our country," Sen. Baucus said Thursday evening. "And that's what we are going to do."

The church was last in Helena in February 2005 to picket the Montana Supreme Court and its ruling that gay and lesbian partners of the Montana University System have the same right to health insurance benefits as everyone else.


This and that


"I failed to restrain myself ... I did not appreciate what was going on."
* Kathy updates us on the saga of Bush's former domestic policy advisor and Jesse Helms protegeClaude Allen; you might recall that this dude claimed his twin brother (he actually has one) was the one who stole items from Target in a return-the-merchandise-I-lifted-for-a-refund scam. He "tearfully pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor theft charge." He blames his behavior on the stress of working long days without much sleep during the aftermath of Katrina. (?!) He received probation.

* You can pretend to be Dear Leader as he massages Kim Jong-Il, Andrea Merkel and Vladimir Putin.

* Andrea of Equality Ohio passed along news that they've launched a new blog about religious extremists and their influence on Ohio public policy, Happy Agenda. You know that Rod Parsley, Russell Johnson, and Phil Burress will turn up as subjects all the flipping time.

* More Lieberman-watching as the desperation mounts. 'Bean points here and here for you. Lamont has a 51% to 47% advantage in the latest poll.

* How about this one, from Paul -- is it the new "ex-gay" therapy? Three beat gay man to 'scare him straight' (there's video).

* Whaleshaman sent in this link to WholesomeWear after I said this in my Rude Pundit guest post:
These days I am awaiting the issue of appropriate "burqa-wear" for today's modern young woman, because any flesh exposed, particularly the titty, must have an effect on the fundamentalist man of causing that potentially fatal four-hour boner the disclaimers warn you about on those Viagra, Cialis and Levitra commercials.
* Surf over to vote for your favorite lesbianized movie poster. AfterEllen.com has its 2006 Movie Poster Contest Finalists up for your consideration. You can only vote once, and voting ends Sunday, August 13. Right now, parodies of The Break-Up and Cinderella are in the lead. Sweet.

* We are a beacon of light, huh (h/t Val)? U.S. officials must do more to protect gay citizens from discrimination and abuse, according to a United Nations report.

* Woohoo! City of Greensboro considering domestic partnerships. Another step forward in NC, hat tip to NC Advocacy Coalition for this. BTW, Durham city and county, along with the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro -- and Orange county -- already extend benefits to domestic partners.
A Feb. 22 letter from Kelly Chambers, the state's special counsel for development and diversity, advised the mayor [Keith Holliday] that the city has the authority to define the term "dependents" for the purpose of purchasing insurance for employees and their family members "so long as the definition of dependent is not illegal or against the public policy of the state of North Carolina."

..."There were strong feelings on both sides when it was first implemented," said Michael McGinnis, a Durham human resources manager who helped develop the city's policy before it was implemented in 2003. "Once it was adopted, that has decreased over time. It's just an accepted practice. It's seen as a way to provide benefits to employees, to help us hire and retain." Officials in Durham and Chapel Hill said their municipality's policies have made only a minor impact on budgets.
* This comes to the Blender Troy who sent in an email about some great Hoosier activism:
"I'm a reader from Indiana who is trying to fight a constitutional amendment that is scheduled to show up on our ballot in November 2008. To do so, I organized a photography exhibition called "We Do Too--Life, Love, and Unions" that highlights same-sex couples and the issues surrounding them. It was free to the public and we think we had about 3000 visitors. It was put together (on a shoestring budget) with gay families and other people who might be supportive if they had more information in mind. Here is the online version of the exhibition, which will continue to run as the photographs move to other sites...here's a podcast interview about the exhibition and how it happened.

In September the photographers and I are part of a panel discussion at the Indianapolis Museum of Art where I will be showing the website. I hope to have lots of families from all over the U.S. to show to that crowd."
* And in other Hoosier events, Gary at Advance Indiana blogs about the news that same-sex couples are now clearer to legally adopt children after the state Supreme Court turned down an appeal to a ruling earlier this year.


The Tool is beatable

Friday, August 04, 2006


Get a room, already. via Mike Tidmus.

Just go read Shakes Sis. Bookmark it as 2008 heats up. Here are two of my faves.
On McCain’s slavish devotion to Dear Leader: [P]erhaps McCain is actually a Real Doll, as it occurs to me that the owners of Real Dolls and the Bush administration have approximately the same needs—loyalty, compliance, someone who looks real enough but doesn’t ask too many questions, a realistic body with no brain to help convey one’s basest urges. And I don’t think McCain is the only Real Doll floating around the Beltway. He’s certainly not the only GOP hack willing to get repeatedly fucked while never saying a word.

...On McCain being a hypocritical, lying douche: My only question is where he buys his trousers. It’s got to be some kind of specialty shop, because I’ve never noticed his enormous set of balls, but only a dude with gonads that could take out ten pins each could pull a stunt like this while simultaneously running a PAC called Straight Talk America.


Plug 'n' play

Any guesses as to how long it is before the fundies launch a protest or boycott of this company and its product, billed as the "Ultimate Music Player Acsexsory."
The OhMiBod vibrator is a whole new way to enjoy your iPod® or any other music player. Everyone loves music. Everyone loves sex. OhMiBod combines music and pleasure to create the ultimate acsexsory™ to your iPod.


A whole new way to plug 'n play!

Simply plug OhMiBod into your iPod® or any music player and it automatically vibrates to the rhythm and intensity of the music. Let your body feel the vibrations as you get down with your favorite tunes. The combination of listening and feeling your music quickly transports you to a place where music, mind and body come together to create an unbeatable sexual experience.
One testimonial on the site: "black eyed peas!!! we'll never listen to them the same way again..."

H/t, Jessica @ Feministing


Mike Tidmus on unhinged Guy 'infant sex' Adams

You know, if Guy Adams can just make sh*t up about the sexual behavior of gay folks, Mike says: just turn the tables.

Guy Adams is an insatiable bottom.

Adams just loves to ring up convicted Nixon aide turned prison proselytizer, Chuck Colson, and have him send over a dozen or so NFL-sized ex-cons, with a weekend shack-pack of Crisco and a more than ample bottle of poppers to set Adam’s sling to rockin’ all weekend long. Monday morning, it’s back to his cush day job, which seems to consist of giving failed Republican candidate Alan Keyes moustache rides, fantasizing about what gay men do in the sack, and telling America how to live by his own Adams family values.

What do you mean I made all that up? Of course I made it up! It’s not like I’d say, without a shred of evidence, that Guy Adams likes to have wild and crazy sex with six-month-old children. I’d never say that, because, unlike Guy Adams, I’m not a pseudo-Christian liar.
Mike has more here, including an interesting look at the columnist-on-the-Bush-payroll, homobigot Maggie Gallagher, who makes up marriage statistics in The Netherlands in order to bolster her case against marriage equality.

Also:
* Over the edge batsh*t crazy
* Nutcase homobigot Guy Adams on his 'gays having sex with infants' comments


Huckabee bleats about SC's marriage amendment vote

Ordained Baptist minister, advocate of covenant marriage, governor of Arkansas and likely 2008 presidential candidate Mike Huckabee feels the need to weigh in on South Carolina's upcoming amendment vote, no doubt fishing for some buxxxx from Palmetto State fundies. (365gay):
Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee has become the second out-of-state governor [Anti-gay Massachusetts Mormon Mitt was the first.] to tell South Carolinians to support a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would ban same-sex marriage, civil unions and quite possibly domestic partner benefits.

Speaking at an event in Columbia, South Carolina called a "Celebration of Classic Marriage" Huckabee called on voters to show that "marriage still means something."
He was the keynote speaker, and the event was sponsored by the anti-gay Palmetto Family Council. SC Gov. Mark Sanford also attended the fete.

Huckabee's state already has constitutional ban, passed in 2004 with 75% of voters choosing bigotry.

Huck is still smarting because his own state's supreme court upheld the ability of gays and lesbians to become foster parents, so he's hot for the anti-homo action and PR. Arkansas attorney for Health and Human Services used this pathetic argument -- "The health, safety and welfare of foster children is of the utmost concern to the state -- and that can't happen in a home where unmarried sex occurs."

Classic Huck: "We've seen our country go from 'Leave It to Beaver' to 'Beavis and Butt-head,' from Barney Fife to Barney Frank."


At least we learn that our fundie Prez reads

Our Fundie President is working hard on that End Times thing (via Saul Friedman, h/t AB):
There is an alien influence, mostly unpublicized, running like an undercurrent beneath the Bush administration's Middle East policies. It may help explain George W. Bush's single-mindedness, his oblivious inability to face reality as his war in Iraq, his war against terror and his policies towards Arabs and Israeli have collapsed.

I say "alien," because I believe this to be the first time in modern American history that a president's religion, in this case his Christian fundamentalism, has become a decisive factor in his foreign and domestic policies. It’s a factor that has been under-reported, to say the least, and that begs for press attention.

Bush, who says he reads the Bible daily, acknowledges his fundamentalist beliefs. Biblical and Middle East scholar Karen Armstrong writes in The Guardian, "Whatever Bush's personal beliefs, the ideology of the Christian right is both familiar and congenial to him. This strange amalgam of ideas can perhaps throw light on the behavior of a president who, it is said, believes God chose him to lead the world toward Rapture, who has little interest in social reform, and whose selective concern for life issues has now inspired him to veto important scientific research.
You'd think this was a story worth covering by the MSM, but they have been completely asleep at the wheel, as time and again, Bush shows all the signs of a completely delusional man, guided only by his faith (and his bible beating friends on the White House batphone speed-dial), ignoring ample factual evidence that his policies are failing. Yet he and his team barrel ahead, full bore, unfazed.

For the rest of us it's as though GWB was put on this earth for the sole purpose of driving the U.S. into the f*cking ground in the name of the holy baby Jeebus.


Exodus head: do away with the use of 'ex-gay'


Alan Chambers: "We need to do away with the term entirely and make sure it's never used again."

Exodus International's executive director, professional "former homosexual" Alan Chambers, who claims that "tens of thousands of people" have successfully prayed away the gay, objects to the use of the term "ex-gay" and want his colleagues to stop using it pronto. I'll let Timothy at Ex-Gay Watch fill you in. A snippet:
I find the phrase used by Chambers, "former homosexual" to be even more deceptive. "Ex-gay" could legitimately be interpreted as no longer identifying as part of a community or identity. However, the much more clinical sounding "former homosexual" brings with it all of the connotations of the scientific and medical world. The only reasonable interpretation would be that the subject is no longer same sex attracted. As this is (by admission of a sizable portion of the ex-gay movement) simply not true, as a description it can at best be described as deceptive.


Pew poll: 'Culture war' is overblown

Try as fundies might to spin that their anti-gay, anti-woman, anti-science agenda is picking up steam, another poll comes out that dashes their hopes and dreams that the American people are on getting board. It's much more murky.

By the same token, activists on our side of the fence can't find too much comfort in these Pew Research figures, which show that while we've gained ground on the civil equality front in many ways, there's a long way to go... (Pew):
Despite talk of "culture wars" and the high visibility of activist groups on both sides of the cultural divide, there has been no polarization of the public into liberal and conservative camps.

Indeed, public opinion has moved little on these issues in recent years and continues to be mixed and often inconsistent, reflecting a blend of pragmatism and principle. For instance, a clear majority (56%) continues to oppose allowing gays and lesbians to marry while 35% express support. But nearly as large a majority (54%) supports allowing homosexual couples to enter into legal agreements that would give them many of the same rights as married couples.



...The poll also found no consensus among either supporters or opponents of gay marriage over how far to go to press their respective positions. Barely half of all those who favor allowing gays to marry say supporters should "push hard" to make it legal as soon as possible, while slightly more than four-in-ten urge caution so as to avoid creating "bad feelings against homosexuals." Similarly, only a small majority (54%) of gay marriage opponents favor amending the U.S. Constitution to ban gay marriage. The public is similarly divided on other hot-button issues. A slim majority (52%) opposes allowing gays and lesbians to adopt children.
The breakdown of opposition and support for civil marriage equality is interesting (most folks polled opposed a federal marriage amendment):

* 83% of conservative Republicans and 66% of moderate and liberal Republicans oppose.
* 59% of conservative and moderate Democrats opposed
* Independents are evenly divided (46% in favor, 45% opposed).

And what about religious Americans questioned?
* 78% of White evangelical Protestants
* 74% black Protestants
* 58% white Catholics
* and 47% of white mainline Protestants oppose.the right of gays to marry.
* Among seculars a majority (63%) supports civil marriage equality.

So, what thoughts do folks come away with after reading this info in terms of progress and strategy?



Hell on earth for Crazy Pat

[UPDATE: I went over for the Freeper reaction...]

It's finally hot enough here on the planet to convince Pat Robertson that global warming is real.
Televangelist Pat Robertson says he hasn't been a believer in global warming in the past, but this summer's record-breaking heat is, quote: "making a convert out of me." On his 700 Club broadcast, Robertson said, "It is getting hotter, and the icecaps are melting and there is a buildup of carbon dioxide in the air." Switching sides on an issue that divides evangelical Christians, Robertson said, "We really need to address the burning of fossil fuels." The religious broadcaster told viewers, "If we are contributing to the destruction of this planet, we need to do something about it."
I guess he better tell his flat earth fundies at the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance, who have no such concerns. Those folks said "God made human beings to be stewards of the Earth, and they should not be made to feel guilty for using its resources."

***


Actual Freeper Quotes™

Hey Pat, there is something called a season that has happened for thousands of years, it's called summer in the English language.

It's funny, when Pat comes out in favor of banning capital punishment and says that Global warming is real, the media is all over it, but if he makes a pro life comment, it's ignored.

Excellent. Now Pat can lead the evangelicals who advertise on the radio about enviro-whacko nonsense. Just more proof that my judgement of him 15 years ago was accurate. He's a blithering idiot.


Well, that's all I need to know that the Global Warming is a farce! LOL!

Oh Cripes...he is just an @ssh*le no matter what he says. Here Pat, read this you dumbass. http://www.clearlight.com/~mhieb/WVFossils/ice_ages.html

Why anyone would accept Pat Robertson as an expert on anything is beyond me. I'm surprised the senile lump can still tie his own shoes. Isnt he one of the few who proudly proclaimed that 9/11 was God's revenge for America's wickedness...kind of the same thing that AlQaeda was saying. Then in his next breath suggested that we ought to assasinate Chavez.

Listen boys, I have been telling you that this issue is real and that conservatives better get on to tackling it or we are going to lose out big time when the left imposes a top-down command economy solution. Pat gets it. Perhaps you might want to start getting your heads out of the sand along with him.

Pat must have been bitten by a rabid liberal ding bat. He needs several shots of logic in his gut.

Embracing environmental concerns has become trendy among the nation's evangelicals. This allows Pat to join his brethren in the trend.

That's the problem. There IS no "solution" to the "global warming problem" that isn't a top-down command-economy one, aimed specifically at the American economy. That's the genius of the lefties who dreamed it up. The global-warming phenomenon, as Pat demonstrates here, is essentially science-by-anecdote.

Just a general question to everyone...What is the general opinion whether there is global warming occuring? I believe it's occuring in a general sense, but I believe human activity plays only a very small part of it. Heat waves like this years', are just cycles...But when you look at the pictures of glaciers through out the world and their amazing retreats, those locations are experiencing some weather changes. I tend to view what some have already mentioned regarding sun activity and how it is even affecting other planets of our solar system. I don't think there is a need to be defensive about the fact that there is some weather patterns that indicate our world is getting warmer.

STFU Pat.


A seasoned citizen reletive of mine also beleives this globaloney stuff put out by the MSM, even though that reletive has lived through many heat waves with no air conditioning. There is an adage that people will always talk about the weather. When it is mentioned at such places at the checkout line at a store and everybody is complaiing how hot it is, I say, "When it's 10 below zero in January, you will be wishing for the dog days of August". A light bulb usually goes off in their head and the conversation turns to another subject. The problem is the liberal MSM plays up heat waves as the end of the world and they know they can use heat waves and cold snaps to push their liberal agenda, IMO.

Ain't real at all. Biggest crock of crap since Global Cooling.

Whether global warming exists (and it does) has never been the issue. Whether global warming is man made or not is the issue. The multiple volcanic eruptions over the last year has put more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than man has since the invention of the combustion engine! Maybe that has something to do with the warming? If only man could come up with a way to make volcanos enviromentally friendly...


Nutcase homobigot Guy Adams on his 'gays having sex with infants' comments

Blogger Joe Brummer has a transcript of a follow-up interview that winger Stacy Harp did with Guy Adams of Alan Keyes's RenewAmerica, conducted to address his unhinged assertions, speculations and outright lies about gays (see my earlier post). Joe notes that, even in this interview that Guy Adams, the man didn't cite any evidence other than hearsay of gays “having sex with infants.”

In fact he added some new gems, including:
* Gays want to silence the religious people
* Gays want to outlaw the First Amendment
* Gays can be "cured"

No one is silencing the man, in fact, more people know about his views than they would have otherwise, given the way the his "infant sex" comments have circulated the blogosphere. When you spew insane sh*t like that, someone's going to notice.

Joe said I could post the whole exchange, so here it is -- it's a doozy...
This was transcribed from Stacy Harp's August 3, 2006 interview with RenewAmerica's own Guy Adams.   My commentary is in RED.

STACY:  Gay activists are upset because when they listen to our podcast you made the comment that there is a new trend with gays having sex with infants...in Chicago....boy! That just blew up and uh, people are outraged about that and uh, I've been accused of allowing you a platform to spew hatred and um and, and incite violence towards people, and uh I just wanted to make sure that ..uh ...well. (laughs) I wanted to say first of all that's not true, were not doing that were not incited hatred

Joe's commentary:  By making false claims that gays are after infant children, you most certainly are inciting violence against them.   This is more of the Call to Arms, Mob Mentality that feeds the climate of violence against gays.   Your claims have been a clear call to others to "stop the homos".  Those gays are destroying marriage, after your children, spreading disease.    All the same claims made by the Nazi's about the Jews.  You will have a hard time making anyone believe you are not inciting violence when your claims about gays match the Nazi film The Eternal Jew.   

GUY ADAMS:  That's right

STACY: or violence towards anybody. The whole point of our show is to expose the gay agenda and also...um..to offer hope to people, which is actually what we will be talking about in the second half of this program that will air right after this.  But I did..one of my  um...um...mistakes...I guess, if you wanna call it that was that I didn't actually ask you for the resource or your evidence for making that claim. Um and the reason why...why I didn't is because I didn't is because I've done so much research on pedophilia that I understand the trends but I didn't know specifically what you were talking about in Chicago, so I wanted to give you the floor and have you answer that question.  How do you know about that.

Joe's commentary:   Stacy states here that she has researched pedophilia and knows the trends.  Stacy is also a Family and Marriage therapist with a Masters Degree.   If she really did study the research she would already know their is NO TREND of gays having sex with infants in Chicago.   She has flat out lied folks and a copy of this transcript will be going to the licensing authorities in her State.

GUY ADAMS: Sure...uh well a number of ways, umm.  One of the ladies we were with on the first day, her daughter is a lesbian and, and found information out from that, I am trying to remember it. [Guy can't remember it because It never really happen, did it?] We talked to a number of homosexuals in the area [and the first thing they said was we sleep with infants??? come on now, who are we kidding. Where is your sense of reality?  No gay person said to you  "yeah I have sex with infants, GET REAL!] and ex-homosexuals [and there is a reliable source of info on gays, seeing as though they have a history of lying about homosexuality] as well and um there are plenty of ex-homosexuals. But I think that some of these people have kind of taken it out of context. [it is not possible that we could have taken the original statement out of contect.  Just to be positive that we didn't do any such thing GUy, Here is your words, in context. Maybe this will refresh your memory:

"The newest thing in Chicago, it's becoming a trend, and you're gonna find this hard to believe...sex with infants,"


GUY ADAMS continues: They say their outraged but they should be outraged. I mean pedophilia is a terrible crime and I would also say that Heterosexuals practice pedophilia too, I mean anyone whose been watching Bill O'Reilly over the last year knows that ..that its not an exclusively gay thing. But the guy that claimed, this activist that claimed that I hit a new low, you know I find that very interesting because while he is accusing me of inciting hate and, and I absolutely do not, as someone who has read my article you know I don't hate gays and I frequently say that I do not advocate any violence done against them, period. But it is interesting that he would claim that I have reached a new all time low if when you just look at homosexual behavior, I mean fisting, rimming..uh is not basically a heterosexual thing, it's a homosexual thing and those are terrible sex acts, uh gays going into the back of gay bars for anonymous sex and bath houses, that's primarily a homosexual thing so for an activist to claim that I've hit a new all time low, I think that pretty disingenuous.

Joe's commentary: Trying to insinuate that either Wayne or I is lower than you just because we are gay is wrong and immoral.  You are no better than anyone.   Adding to that Fisting and Rimming are well enjoyed by heterosexuals.  A short google search will cure you of your lack of knowledge.   I would also ask you to do your homework and you will see the most studies show gays are no more wild and crazy than any college age frat boy who can't even remember who he banged last night.

STACY: Now, can I ask you a question by, by even saying these things are you trying to dehumanize the entire gay community by saying these things, cause that's what there saying.

Joe's commentary: How about I answer that for you Stacy.   DUH!   Saying gays all have wild sex in the streets, have sex with infants, have sex withg animals, of course that is dehumanizing.  You make us sound like a bunch of animals.  Any gay person listening felt a sense of pain and hurt as some radio interview inaccurately and violently depicts our lives like animals.   YES, that is very dehumanizing.  

GUY ADAMS: Well apparently they didn't listen closely enough to the first interview or they haven't read my articles. I believe I said that we should not strip away their dignity um and by dignity I mean their precious in the site of god for being his creatures. God did not create them gay, but he did create them as humans and Psalms 139 says that um...that god is responsible for bring them into this world.  The fact that as a result of social or emotional circumstances they chose homosexual behavior, well the behavior itself is what god calls an abomination not the individual.  I, I see that with criminals too.  I talked to many criminals who are murderers or rapists and you could still see the divine spark in them, yeah they did some really egregious behaviors but god still loves them and that might be hard for some people to understand but for me no, I um don't hate the gay at all, I am not trying to dehumanize them at all.

Joe's commentary:  Oh Mr. Adams, we heard the interview, some of us many times.   We had to listen a few times to be sure we were really hearing such utter lies.   Be not fooled, there is not one medical, mental health or even EX-GAY group who agrees with your claim that gays chose to be gay.  Not even your idol Stephen Bennett agrees with this claim.   How do you expect we are to believe you are an expert when you disagree with the people you worship.   Get your facts straight before speaking.

I will add to that, it is dehumanizing to compare the love and the life I have built with partner of many years to rapists and murderers.

STACY: Okay, you made one other comment, you made one other comment that we should address and that is that you, you said that uh...that, that, that gays haven't um, well actually they say GLBT people, actually we were addressing all that but you said that gays haven't  made any contribution to society except AIDS and pornography um...

GUY ADAMS:  Well that isn't exactly what I said. Umm What I said was um I think they've taken that out of context too, I believe I..I..I asked you, ya,you said something devil's advocate to the effect of are you saying, are you just painting this the bad side or the dark side of homosexuals which I replied something to the effect of, well what's the good side, I mean, so I am asking these people what is the good side of homosexuality when you've got 30% of gay men having HIV virus, Dr. Diggs says that going to be 50% within a short while, what good about that, what good about having anonymous sex in bath houses and gay bars. Uh you got your great musicians who are gay like Elton John and certainly tremendous contributions, but never the less the flip side of guys like Elton John is his homosexuality. God say that is clearly wrong and up until recently, all of America said it was wrong.  Most of America still says its wrong, but got some gutless politicians who are saying like in Texas that sodomy is not illegal, there spineless in my opinion. (sirens)  You can probably here the ambulance going by...

Joe's commentary: Yes, it is exactly what you said.   Why don't you go back and listen for yourself.   It is what you said.   You are also citing Dr. John Diggs, a member of a debunked research group the Southern Poverty Law Center (the leader in hate group watching) has named a hate group.   The group Dr. Diggs belongs to has called for the execution of gays since 1983.    The evidence of this is ample.  DO you still want to claim you are not inciting violence?

STACY: Yeah (laughs), I hear that, well you know I am glad you've uh taken a couple minutes to clarify your points and I would also like to point out that uh you can still listen to the first part of the interview, I still have it online, I don't plan on taking it down and um I think you also described um some of the events that took place at the Gay Games um in particular like um the men going through the maze and all that and none of the that was debunked by anybody in the gay community.

Joe's commentary:  Lets get this straight.  It isn't true for all gay and lesbians Americans.  If some small percentage of gays was out having an orgy, it is not a reflection of all gays in America.   The US Census data can prove this to be true.

GUY ADAMS: Well no because they know its true and what they like to do is paint themselves as victims, victims in need of special civil rights and that's wrong. They try to say we're using hate speech, that we're inciting violence and, and Renew America and Myself have clearly and repeatedly stated that we don't want violence or discrimination in many areas done against them, that they have an inherent dignity as (inaudible) and we don't hate them, but you won't hear them say that, there just going to pick and choose and twist and that's wrong. We, I think we have the moral high ground and we just tell it like it is...uh, we do our best, sometimes we makes some mistakes umm. I probably should have said that heterosexuals engage in pedophilia as well but never the less that doesn't take away from the fact of the awful nature of what their doing.

STACY:  Well. I'm pretty confident that you coming on here and explaining yourself probably won't matter to anybody who is opposing to you anyway, but for those of you who do want to hear the ........

Joe's commentary:  And Stacy, you would be wrong.  it did matter.   It made this situation worse and we, the gay community want an apology.

Read more from Wayne Besen at Truth Wins Out. A snippet:
“The slurs by Adams are a shameful attempt to dehumanize an entire community and he has taken anti-gay propaganda to a disgraceful nadir,” said Truth Wins Out’s Executive Director Wayne Besen. “These remarks are intended to incite hatred and Alan Keyes should make it clear that Renew America does not support such rhetoric by immediately distancing the group from Adams.”

Aside from working with Renew America, Adams claims to be a law enforcement officer and was Keyes' bodyguard in the 2004 Senatorial elections.


My guest post at The Rude Pundit is up

I took the assignment given to me by the generous Rude One very seriously, getting extra rude and crude for that audience. [He was on vacation all this week and had bloggrrrls minding the store.]

Check it out if you want some light, foul-mouthed reading.


Open thread - 'The Beauty of Conservatism'

Thursday, August 03, 2006

graphic: Chris Clarke, Creek Running North

Chris Clarke of Creek Running North took a whirl with the plagiarist she-beast Coulter poster ("Hot!") on sale for $4.87 at the Young America's Baby Wingnuts Foundation web site -- the caption: The Beauty of Conservatism.

Blogwhoring, links and chatting encouraged...

***

BTW, Shakes Sis has a post up about the she-beast's gaydar follies -- Ann's been bleating that the The Clenis, Al Gore and sHillary are queer.


Little Ricky signs sexual orientation non-discrimination policy

Hahahahahahahahahahaha. Man-on-dog really didn't have much of a choice on this one, since the cat is out of the bag that he has an out gay communications director, Robert Traynham. Questions about that would have been dicey, albeit delicious, to see him field. (PageOneQ):
After a meeting with a Pennsylvania-based activist Adrian Shanker, US Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) has signed onto a letter affirming that his office does not discriminate in hiring on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, PageOneQ has learned. Santorum is the 170th member of Congress to sign the statement.

In a statement issued by GenderPAC, the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition, executive director Riki Wiliams said, "We welcome Sen. Santorum's signature affirming the need for basic equality in his own hiring practices. It puts him in good company with 169 other Members of Congress who have signed this statement."
Maybe doing this will scrape up a few sad homo votes for the Pennsylvania senator, since he's trailing Casey so badly in the polls that Ricky and the GOP are bankrolling the Green Party candidate to toss a wrench in the works.

A little blast from the past:


"If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything."
-- First-class public homophobe Rick Santorum (R-PA) on the Lawrence v. Texas case


"It is entirely unacceptable that my staffs' personal lives are considered fair game by partisans looking for arguments to bolster my opponent's campaign. Mr. Traynham continues to have my full support and confidence as well as my prayers as he navigates this rude and mean spirited invasion of his personal life."
-- Rick Santorum, on his communications director Robert Traynham, who was already out of the closet




Over the edge batsh*t crazy

Guy Adams, Deputy National Grassroots Director of AmTaliban organization RenewAmerica ("that supports the 'Declarationist' ideals of Alan Keyes") needs to be committed. A strait jacket is necessary.

How else can you explain claims like this:
“Anyway… we were talking about homosexuality and basically about how a lot of homosexuals are beginning to have sex with animals and infants…”
He said this in an interview (audio) with fundie activist Stacy Harp on her show “The Right View."

Oh, but Adams has more to share. Joe Brummer of Replace the Lies With TRUTH listened to the drivel and passed on a list of the over-the-top, hateful, and fact-free claims that came out of Adams's mouth:
Some of his outlandish claims from part one of the show include:

* Gays have sex with infants (He says its “The New trend”)
* Gays have sex with animals (yuck)
* Gay relationships only last about a year and 1/2 (and that came from what study? cause every gay couple I am friends with has been together at least 8 years or more)
* Gays have 200 to 300 partners in their lifetime (really? Where do they find time to do drugs, take over the schools and destroy marriage? Wow, they are busy)
* Gays have made no contibution to society (except AIDS) (Elton John is crushed)
* He says Dr. John Diggs in the foremost medical authority on AIDS. (not true its Ken Meyer from Boston, Diggs is a quack refuted in detail)
* Quote: “There are not alot of really good gays”
* Says we are working towards hate speech laws (first amendment 101 anyone?)

WOW!

Lucky for us, no one has to work all that hard to show this man is not telling the truth. At least if you are going to make some claims about gays, make them sort of believable!
Joe also ran into Adams on a thread where Guy made a claim that truly boggles the mind, in a "call to arms":

Dear bloggers, It is important to separate the person from the behavior and let God judge the person. Having said that, we must now devote our attention to the greatest danger facing America since possibly the Civil War – the homosexual agenda. Why is this dangerous? Because it threatens the established morality that has proved stable over thousands of years and esp because of the ensuing “hate-speech” laws that can effectively silence the Church. That is what the gays want. They want to silence any and all opposition to their perverted lifestyle and most of this opposition comes from the Church at large. I urge you to stay tuned for Stacy’s updates in this area as she is quite informed about it. Others are MissionAmerica.com, TruthTellers.org, LC.org and DebraJMSmith.com among others. But first and foremost, GET INVOLVED! All that takes is a few minutes of your time every week or two to call your Senators and Representatives and let them know that if they vote for pro-gay legislation, then you will not vote for them. The squeaky wheel gets the grease – always.
The Homosexual AgendaTM has now risen to the level of The "War Between the States" for these people!? Jeebus H. Christ, the hyperbole just leaves you breathless.

I have to agree with Joe -- where is people’s sense of reality? It's hard to believe that we are sharing the planet with so many disturbed people like these folks.

Adams, by the way, is unhinged about the attention Joe is paying to the bigoted insanity spouted by the RenewAmerica functionary. Before I left the RA web site, I came across this howler -- Adams calling the Democrats the "party of the Phallus":
Our elected Senators had a one of a kind chance to protect the country from same-sex marriage by a Constitutional amendment and they failed us. They betrayed our charge. If you as a legislator, support homosexuality or same-sex marriage (or if you continue to practice it), I also doubt your Christianity, because God calls it an "abomination." It would be like seeing a pastor brought a statue of a Buddha into your church and expecting the congregation to seriously listen to him. Homosexuality is like that Buddha — it's genital worship, pure and simple, and Democrats are part and parcel to it. They're the party of the Phallus.

...The American church is not in much better shape, and the Church in Europe is far worse. We see too many spineless pastors who REFUSE to confront evil, and in many cases, like the Presbyterian Church USA, actually endorsing it by giving the finger to God by endorsing 'gay priests.' Please, don't call yourself a Christian because you're a phony. If God Himself calls it an abomination and you call it a blessing, please, become a Muslim terrorist, because that's how far away you are from Heaven. Christ called such people vipers. They're like the white-wash covering up a rotten fence. Eventually the rot will surface, and that's what we're seeing with the glorification of homosexuality and the Liberal proclivity for murdering babies. Time Magazine had an issue about a potential "God gene." Well, could there be an evil gene, and do many Democrats have it? Or if you have that evil gene, do you tend to become a liberal democrat?
Whew. I need to dunk the keyboard into the Purell to sanitize it after that surfing trip...


San Francisco's RC Archdiocese stops adoption placement


Pope graphic by Mike Tidmus

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco has decided that it's impossible to reconcile Papa Ratzi's policy that children cannot be placed in gay homes, so it's getting out of the adoption business completely. It joins Boston Catholic Charities, which made that decision five months ago. (Boston Globe):
"We are not continuing to do direct placements," said Brian Cahill, executive director of Catholic Charities of San Francisco in a telephone interview.

Cahill acknowledged that the move comes after the agency acknowledged last spring that five children had been placed with gay or lesbian parents in the past five years. The Vatican has said gay adoptions were "gravely immoral."
What was that? And what about the morality of the men raping and molesting innocent children and covering it all up?

That said, the agency will work with an outside organization that does not discriminate...
Cahill emphasized that his agency, which had been finalizing adoptions for nearly a century, would still be active in the preparatory and follow-up work related to adoption, though not directly in "individual home studies, specific family/child matching, adoptive placement or finalizations." He said three full-time staff members, whose paychecks will come from Catholic Charities, will be assigned to work in the offices of California Kids Connection, a nonprofit group that specializes in adoption information and referrals.

He said that the Catholic Charities staffers will assist any prospective foster or adoptive parents who approaches California Kids Connection, regardless of sexual orientation, and if that work leads to a match between a gay parent and a foster child, that is fine. "God loves them all," he said.
So, what kind of dodge is this? I can't imagine that the Vatican (or the Catholic wingers) will approve of this hair splitting.


Baby wingnut gathering

The 28th annual National Conservative Student Conference is under way this week, sponsored by Young America’s Foundation. Its site says that over 400 participants from 39 states and 179 colleges and universities are meeting in DC "to learn about conservative ideas and how to advance them in the face of liberal hostility."

Take a look at some of the "blockbuster" speakers, who are speaking to the wingnuts of tomorrow (and Yellow Elephants extraordinaire of today):
* Newt Gingrich: What’s his vision for the future and how would he deal with the Middle East, Iraq, and Iran?
* Robert Novak: The most respected journalist in Washington makes his ’06 Predictions and shreds Valerie Plame’s lawsuit against Rove.
* John Stossel: Bottled water is a scam, raising the minimum wage hurts the economy, and women do make a comparable wage to that of men. Myths are blown to bits!
* David Horowitz: Why has higher education become a haven for pro-Osama bin-Laden points of view? What can be done about it?
* David Brooks: Get the inside scoop on the culture war from one of the nation’s premiere writers.
* Harvey Mansfield: Why is “manliness� under attack? Do feminists really loathe masculinity?
* Michelle Malkin: From illegal immigration to the War on Terror, can liberals ever be trusted with national security?
* Ramesh Ponnuru : Are liberals devoid of any values? How can anyone be in favor of partial-birth abortion and euthanasia?
For the horny conservative boyz, there is a poster of the she-beast Coulter on sale ($4.87!), with the caption "The Beauty of Conservatism."

I couldn't stay at that site any longer; it was nauseating.


'Hacker Hanky Panky' on a Diebold



Voting for the rest of us, thanks to Diebold -- all you need is a flash drive, a screwdriver, a USB gender changer ($2.99) and a USB-to-serial converter in your pocket when you head into the voting booth if a Diebold is in use at your polling place.

You start laughing, and then you want to cry.

Video by Marty Kaplan at HuffPost.

Think it's BS? Try looking at this series of shots of the interior of the same machine at Open Voting Foundation, the source of the shots in the video.
Open Voting Foundation is releasing 22 high-resolution close up pictures of the system. This picture, in particular, shows a "BOOT AREA CONFIGURATION" chart painted on the system board.

The most serious issue is the ability to choose between "EPROM" and "FLASH" boot configurations. Both of these memory sources are present. All of the switches in question (JP2, JP3, JP8, SW2 and SW4) are physically present on the board. It is clear that this system can ship with live boot profiles in two locations, and switching back and forth could change literally everything regarding how the machine works and counts votes. This could be done before or after the so-called "Logic And Accuracy Tests".

A third possible profile could be field-added in minutes and selected in the "external flash" memory location, the interface for which is present on the motherboard.
Oh hell, why worry about messing with the damn thing on election day anyway, when the software can be set up in advance for the "right outcome." From VerifiedVotingFoundation's David Dill:
Typically, modern voting machines are delivered several days before an election and stored in people's homes or in insecure polling stations. A wide variety of poll workers, shippers, technicians, and others who have access to these voting machines could rig the software. Such software alterations could be difficult to impossible to detect.

Diebold spokesman David Bear admitted to the New York Times that the back door was inserted intentionally so that election officials would be able to update their systems easily. Bear justified Diebold's actions by saying, "For there to be a problem here, you're basically assuming a premise where you have some evil and nefarious election officials who would sneak in and introduce a piece of software... I don't believe these evil elections people exist."
Bear said the above comments in May. Elections are already under way and these touch-screen electronic voting systems are still in use. With enough organization, time and access to do the hanky-panky, your vote is toast.


Boozin'

Lord, Mel Gibson's career is furiously circling the drain with this series of pix from In Touch Magazine that are online and probably hitting the stands soon. It's a slideshow of fundie hero Mel boozing it up with several women in the hours before the homophobic, misogynist, anti-Semite got into his car, drove completely toasted, and launched into his outrageous Jew-baiting tirade when he was pulled over.

In the hours before his arrest, Mel Gibson partied at Malibu's Moonshadows restaurant, regaling the patrons with stories about his family, his films -- and religion. At one point, Gibson put his head in his hands and said, "I am drunk."
It's an otherwise open thread, folks...


Georgia wingnut equates Gay-Straight Alliance club with pedophile, gambling orgs

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Ding Ding Ding!!! We have a winner for homobigot of the day -- Perry McGuire, a candidate for Georgia attorney general.

This turd, interviewed by Don and Tim Wildmon's "news" organ, AgapePress, unleashed this gem when objecting to a ruling by a federal judge that will allow the establishment of a Gay-Straight Alliance club at White County High School in the town of Cleveland, GA:


"[It's] much like allowing a pedophile club or a gambling club to meet at school."

McGuire a former corporate attorney and state senator, continues bleating away about what he believes is the real purpose of a GSA club -- to promote sex...
"I think the problem here, and I think where the court substantially erred, is that the intent of the Act was never to allow organizations that advocate illegal activity [to have campus access]," he says. "And in Georgia, sex between minors is illegal; statutory rape laws apply."

..."So there really should be no clubs permitted in school, period, that deal with illegal activity," McGuire continues. "Homosexual activist clubs in schools are detrimental to students and to the moral well-being of society," he asserts.
Again, we have the Right fixated on sex acts, and not the real reason these clubs exist -- to promote understanding and tolerance and to provide a safe space for LGBT and straight students to communicate.


The Freepers on marketing to the gay community

I was surfing around and came across a Time Magazine article on European advertisers marketing to the gay demographic, an area that U.S. advertisers seem to be ahead of the curve on.
About half of all branded advertising in gay media in the U.S. is tailored for that market, and that, says Ian Johnson, managing director of Out Now Consulting, is "what European companies are not yet getting right." Some brands hit the right note: ads for the German National Tourist Office appearing in Britain earlier this year had a separate message for gays and lesbians. Others simply strike out heterosexual references for a gay audience. Ads in mainstream media in Britain last year suggested that without L'Oréal's moisturizer for men, "she thinks you look overworked"; for similar ads in gay publications, "she" became a "he." Others are less careful. One recent advertiser in Britain's gay press tried to pass off a cropped wedding snap of the groom and best man as two grooms.

...The U.K. Advertising Standards Authority (asa) in recent months received 19 complaints that the gay kiss featured in Dolce & Gabbana's TV spot was "unacceptable" (asa dismissed the complaints upon investigation). Brewer Guinness didn't even get that far. In the mid-'90s, the company created a TV commercial featuring a man dashing to get ready for work; when he kisses his partner on the way out — to the tune of Tammy Wynette's Stand by Your Man — it becomes clear that his partner too is male. A veteran clean-up-TV activist panned the clip, and the ad was never aired.
In Britain, the article points out that openly gay men in FT jobs earn about $18K a year more than the male national average; $12K more for lesbians; both groups account for 6% of the population.

After reading this, I turned to Freeperville for a reaction. One of the fun issues that came up, almost as an aside, was the fact that a couple of the knuckle-draggers were bemoaning the queerness of HGTV. They were actually surprised at the gay quotient of the programming and content, manifesting itself in the healthy representation of gay couples, designers or hosts without making a big deal about it.

Gee, who'd have thunk it? Homos on HGTV. Now I know the Freepi are morons.

Actual Freeper Quotes™

Coming soon, the nose-picking market, largely untapped, will yield huge rewards for advertisers who tailor their message to their proclivities.

Sorry Dolce & Gabanna, there is nothing cool about thinking pink.

Consider: Britain's gays — accounting for around 6% of the population

It's 2%. Some are old, some are poor, some are sick, some are in prison. The number of valuable homosexual consumers is negligible. To build an ad campaign around such a small sample is silly -- but I'm sure the homosexuals who work for advertising agencies feel that the effort is worthwhile.

The "nose-picking" market would be a relief , compared to the "same sex" market

Yes, they begin to believe their own lies. But I bet there is a large percentage of people like me who turn the tv and radio off or to another channel when I encounter that homersexual crap (pardon my french) These advertisers focus on gains, not NET gains.

"Oh, I just adore that fabulous-looking belt that dark man is wearing. It is soooooooooooo outre! I just love it!" I am afraid there's a lot more of this on the way. I'm not looking forward to it. Western civilization takes another step down into another circle of Hell.

Gays may make more money on average, but they also die much younger (life expectancy of about 45 years). That gives heterosexuals 15 more years of earning power. Offending heterosexuals to cater to homos may end up costing a company more than it gains, not counting the Hell fire that awaits unrepentant sinners.

45 years? Where did you get this figure? I'm interested.

Gay life expectancy...I used the 45 year figure from memory. A quick google search shows several articles on how homosexuality shortens a man's expected lifespan, but the results are highly contested and appear to be based on an old Canadian study.

Links:
http://www.godandscience.org/doctrine/homosexuality.html
http://www.aegis.com/aidsline/2000/sep/A0091430.html
http://www.renewamerica.us/columns/bates/050607

One problem would be the selection of a sample group. Like heterosexuals, homosexuals can be everything from celibate to highly promiscuous. Also, AIDS drugs appear to be countering some of the effects. I'm sorry, but I can't find any studies that prove conclusively one way or the other.

Some do, sure. But I tend to think that this is partially a myth. Consider:

Half the homosexuals are lesbians. In general, they are not widely considered a high-income group. So, about 1% of the overall population are homosexual men. Look at the stereotypes: homosexual waiter, homosexual actor, homosexual teacher. These are generally not high-income professions.

Liberace, George Michael, and Gianni Versace are considered somehow "typical" of the high-income homosexual without kids. But most homosexuals are less like Gianni Versace and more like Mr. Jones the depressed music teacher at the Middle School.

I was recently listening to some internet radio ad where an effeminate guy talks about his nails and how he can now not be ashamed of wearing open-toed sandals in public. After the third time of hearing this thing I turned to my sons and warned them that under no circumstances should they EVER care whether or not to wear open-toed sandals or anything else like this. Then my daughter checks out a video from the library and the whole plot is that a guy animal character is pressured to play a sport when he really wants to dance ballet. Finally it is clear that he can follow his leanings and do pirouettes. Being wussies is now becoming the "moral of the story" behind every new story line!

I've noticed quite a few billboards lately that feature two couples, but the two men are always walking together and the two women are walking together. It's not overt, but they're certainly subliminally trying to reach the homos.

English Gay - Who knew.

You know what I hate, is when I watch Home and Garden TV, and they have a design show that involves a gay couple decorating their house, or decorating their bedroom.

Yeah, that's really annoying!

I am afraid there's a lot more of this on the way. I'm not looking forward to it. Yep, more and more there will be gay kissing on TV. Then some 'brave' soul will put in a gay bedroom scene on prime time. It will get worse and worse and be everyone in the name of tolerance.


9/11 Live: the NORAD tapes

Vanity Fair has the scoop on the Air Force response to the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Michael Bronner sat and listened to 30 hours of previously unreleased tapes from the control room of NORAD's Northeast HQ. What's clear in the article is that the Pentagon didn't tell the whole story to the 9/11 Commission (big surprise!); the level of chaos and lack of coordination on that day was a matter that they intended to bury.
The story of what happened in that room, and when, has never been fully told, but is arguably more important in terms of understanding America's military capabilities that day than anything happening simultaneously on Air Force One or in the Pentagon, the White House, or NORAD's impregnable headquarters, deep within Cheyenne Mountain, in Colorado. It's a story that was intentionally obscured, some members of the 9/11 commission believe, by military higher-ups and members of the Bush administration who spoke to the press, and later the commission itself, in order to downplay the extent of the confusion and miscommunication flying through the ranks of the government.

The truth, however, is all on tape.

..."The real story is actually better than the one we told," a NORAD general admitted to 9/11-commission staffers when confronted with evidence from the tapes that contradicted his original testimony. And so it seems.
The VF article includes transcript excerpts as well as the audio.


Mad Max: Beyond Bigotdome

So Mel Gibson was doing 89 MPH in a 45 MPH zone with a half-empty bottle of tequila in the back seat and then gets pulled over by cops who test his BAC at .12%, which is 50% higher than "legally drunk"* That right there is enough story for me to get a good chuckle. I love it when the rich and powerful take umbrage when treated as if they are just another citizen. (And I hate it when the rich and powerful get the same traffic fine as we do. What kind of deterrent is a $100 speeding ticket to a multi-millionaire? In RussWorld, traffic fines would be indexed to your income. But I digress...)

Then he goes on a profanity-laced tirade, saying all sorts of anti-Semitic remarks along with the standard celebrity "do you know who I am / I own Malibu!" self-important attempts to evade responsibility. Hmm, an actor slandering Jews... in Hollywood. That's the greatest PR disaster since Bush wanted to call the war "Operation Iraqi Liberation" (spell the acronym) and described it as a "crusade".

It's even more fun to read Gibson's apologies. Take 1:
"I acted like a person completely out of control when I was arrested and said things that I do not believe to be true and which are despicable."
Yeah, you know, that happens to me a lot when I get drunk, too. You can't shut me up from saying despicable things I do not believe. Like last New Year's Eve, when I got loaded on Jager and blurted out "F*ckin' n*gger butt-pirates, they're the cause of all the depravity in the world. Are you a fag?" to the black officer arresting me.

Of course, I never said such a thing (I don't drink, either), but it would be easy enough to prove that I don't really believe that statement. I write for a black lesbian's blog and have many black and many gay friends who could vouch for my unbigoted nature (don't know if they would after a statement like that, though). It would be tougher for me to deny if, say, my father has famously denied that slavery or Jim Crow ever happened, or if, perhaps, I directed a three-hour snuff film showing black homosexuals torturing and killing Jesus.

It doesn't pass the smell test. Usually when we drink, our inhibitions are lowered so that we'll say or do things we're too uptight or socially-controlled to say when sober. You may think Madeline the company receptionist has an awesome rack, but you wouldn't say it in public, especially to any co-worker. But get a few drinks in you at the Christmas party and you may blurt out what you have felt so deeply for so long. It's not likely you would blurt out something you don't believe, but rather, something you do believe but are not allowed to say.

Then today we get Gibson's apology, take 2:
"The tenets of what I profess to believe necessitate that I exercise charity and tolerance as a way of life. Every human being is God’s child, and if I wish to honor my God I have to honor his children. But please know from my heart that I am not an anti-Semite. I am not a bigot. Hatred of any kind goes against my faith."
Yeah, and avarice, pride, gluttony, and drunkenness are against your faith, too, but it doesn't look like faith has had any ameliorating effect on those conditions, either.

Now Mel's playing the forgiveness / redemption / addict card for all they are worth. He's got a problem with alcoholism, he tells us. He's reaching out to the Jewish community for guidance in "understanding where those vicious words came from during that drunken display" (it's called "the id") and assistance in his recovery. Of course, this latest move has nothing to do with rescuing his career in the land of Weinsteins, Katzenbergs, Spielbergs, and Eisners.

Forgive me if I don't buy it. It's not like he's a first-time offender. Pam's already blogged about Mel's homobigoted comments from the 90s. Mel was also forced to remove the subtitle about Christ's blood being "on us and our children" from his The Passion of The Christ movie. And lost in all the anti-Semitism is a sexist remark where he referred to one of the female arresting officers as "sugar tits".

Another thing we shouldn't lose sight of is the actual offense of driving nearly twice the speed limit while 150% drunk. I've heard some commentators crying that the statements are getting more play than the offense and it's not fair because if it were any other person, those statements wouldn't have become public. Yeah, that's true, but I think it's a decent trade-off for the fact that any other person wouldn't be able to raise $5,000 bail at the snap of a finger and might actually have to spend some real time in county lock-up. Or the fact that any other person might lose their license from a DUI and not be able to just have their limo driver take them to work the next week.

All in all, this couldn't have happened to a better guy. I can't wait to see what the South Park guys do with this.

* Legally drunk? As Carlin would say, "if it's legal, then what's the f*ckin' problem?


Reading between the lines of upcoming state marriage amendments

Back in June, I posted about Wisconsin's chances at turning away the upcoming marriage amendment vote at the ballot box. Joshua Freker of Fair Wisconsin feels that it could be the first state to turn back a constitutional ban on civil unions and marriage.

Virginia, as I mentioned in an earlier post this week, faces a tough battle on this front as well, with the polls showing 56% support passage in one poll, and 45% in favor and 40% against in another.

Josh Goodman at Governing.com sent me this email about the issue.
...I think the marriage referendums this fall in Wisconsin and Virginia could get very interesting. One poll had the Wisconsin ban on gay marriage only ahead 49%-48%, while another had it up 53%-44%. Virginia's was ahead 56%-38%.

To put this in context, 15 of the 16 gay marriage bans that have passed in the last 24 months did so with a higher percentage of the vote than Bush received in the state in 2004 and the average difference was a massive 13.5 percentage points (I have a post on Governing Magazine's blog that has the entire list and makes this same argument). If the polls are right in Virginia and Wisconsin, the difference will be five percentage points or less.

This might not signal a shift of sentiment on marriage per se, since the language in both states would also ban civil unions. But it never mattered much in previous votes whether or not the measures included civil unions, so that in itself would be an interesting development.
Here is Josh's breakdown of the percentage of votes for Dear Leader and the amendments, from his post, "A Gay Marriage Reversal of Fortune?":



His thesis is that the closing of the gap between pro and con in later votes could suggest a weakening of the impact that civil marriage equality (and gay righs issues generally) has as an issue for Republicans.
Of course, as a matter of state law it doesn't matter whether a gay marriage ban passes with 51% of the vote or 75% of the vote. Nor does it matter much to the individuals affected by the policy. But, if these polls turn out to be right, the long-term political and policy implications are significant.

Obviously gay marriage will lose some of its political punch if it becomes just another issue where Republicans and Democrats are united in opposition to one another (as I argued last week, it also may be eclipsed by gay parenting issues). Furthermore, competitive votes would signal greater support for the broad array of gay rights causes, from non-discrimination laws to adoption to hate crimes. So, you can bet legislators around the country will be watching.
All that said, Wisconsin remains the best hope for a defeat of a state amendment. The pot is being stirred...

Yesterday, unions representing a big chunk of the state's workers strongly denounced the ban on marriage equality and civil unions, citing that the amendment could affect the union's ability to bargain for benefits for domestic partners (of gay or straight employees).
Brian Weeks, director of AFSCME's political arm, called the amendment "an attack on labor unions' collective bargaining rights." He said the group's locals representing public employees for the city of Madison and Dane County stand to lose benefits if the amendment passes.

"Backers of this ban are trying to break deals and take away rights and protections that working people have earned through good-faith negotiations," Weeks said.

...Cathy Rought, spokeswoman for 17,000-member AFT-Wisconsin, said the amendment threatens benefits enjoyed by some of technical college faculty and staff it represents. Other employees would not be able to bargain for similar benefits in the future, she said.

"We will be collaborating to go door to door and talk to people about the importance of defeating the amendment," she said. "Most people, once they understand this is not an issue about being gay or being straight and that it's an access to health care question, they oppose this."
Fair Wisconsin has been receiving support from other unions as well, such as the the state's largest teachers' union, Wisconsin Education Association Council ($25,000), AFT-Wisconsin ($5,000), and Communication Workers of America (Milwaukee, $1,000).

This influx of cash and outreach (AFT members plan to go door-to-door to educate other union members on why the amendment must be defeated) has the fundies scurrying to counter it. It's nice to see them off balance.

***

And one Wisconsin couple of note stepped forward in opposition to the amendment.

Couple of 49 years parted only by death

Andy at Towleroad has a wonderful story of Wisconsin couple Richard Taylor and Ray Vahey, who were together for 49 years until the death of Taylor last Friday at 81.
Spurred by the proposed Wisconsin amendment to ban gay marriage, Taylor and Vahey decided to begin speaking publicly about their relationship last June. Vahey described the difficulties of having a relationship in the closeted 1950's as "an exaggerated version of don't ask, don't tell."



Last December, I posted about the couple after they made an appearance at a state hearing against the proposed Wisconsin amendment. At that time, Vahey said, "Richard and I met and fell in love in 1956. For 49 years, we have yearned for a marriage recognized in America. Yet until this year, we had never come out in a public way. We decided this cause is not only worth it to us but to millions of others..."

He added, "Euphemisms like 'partnership' or 'union' set us apart from society," Vahey said at the Legislative hearing last fall. "Substitute terms that categorize and separate us become our yellow Star of David badges. . . . Here at home, African-Americans learned long ago that 'separate but equal' is not equal."
***

After reading that, take a look at the unhinged rantings of one of the true believers, Kevin McCullough over at WingNutDaily. Expect more obsessing from our fundie friends, who think about homosexuality 24/7, fixated on sex acts. They simply cannot help themselves; they cannot let go of the homosexual boogeyman.
No gene, no cell, no DNA has ever been proven to cause one man to engage in all varieties of sexual acts with another man. Pure unbridled lust maybe, but not DNA. And for the record, pure unbridled lust almost always turns out bad, no matter what gender of person you're engaging with sexually. Restrained sexuality is certainly what scriptural texts call for, but it is also what science has proven to be the healthiest for the individuals involved.

The reason homosexual activists are losing on the battle to redefine marriage is simple – it's just plain wrong.

I know, it's not a popular position to take. Neither is telling the uncle who is always drunk how alcohol might kill him someday. But if you really loved you're uncle, wouldn't you at least try? And you certainly wouldn't let him get behind the wheel.

Calling for sexual restraint is not popular. Calling for sexual discipline in society that matches the scriptural model isn't, either. (One man, one woman, in marriage for a lifetime.) But ultimately, if you truly love those around you who are injuring themselves and others they love, it is your obligation to speak up.


Evolution opponents lose one in Kansas

I really can't figure out why we're still debating evolution vs. creationism in the classroom. Did these folks ever read up on the Scopes Trial?

In any case, sanity prevails in Kansas for once.
Conservative Republicans who pushed anti-evolution standards back into Kansas schools last year have lost control of the state Board of Education once again.

The most closely watched race was in western Kansas, where incumbent conservative Connie Morris lost her GOP primary Tuesday. The former teacher had described evolution as "an age-old fairy tale" and "a nice bedtime story" unsupported by science.
Even with this news, a poll by six news organizations last year found that about half of Kansans thought both evolution and "intelligent design" should be taught.

H/t, David.


This and that

* Javier passes along this powerful video on marriage equality, Permission, the winner of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Rights Award at the sixth annual "Media that Matters" film festival:



* U.S. Park Officials Try To Block Black Gay Pride Event in New York (via Keith). This weekend, black gay pride takes place in New York City (Pride In The City), and for the past 5 years there has been a gathering at Jacob Riis Beach, an event that has transpired without fanfare, discord or problems. Until now. Host organization People Of Color In Crisis (POCC), a local AIDS organization has been told in a letter from the U.S. Park Service that the event cannot be held unless, among other things:
-- there is only one tent set up for HIV testing
-- no entertainment or music can take place on the field or on the beach.
-- only 200 people could be present at event (at either the tent or on the ball field).

Otherwise, no permit will be granted. Keith asks some questions (and provides Park Service contacts):
How can you limit a public black gay pride event to 200 people, and why is that even necessary? The Pride In The City beach party has been an enjoyable and peaceful tradition at Riis Beach for years, and park officials should not be allowed to stop the show now. As [Gary English of POCC] points out, "There have been no stabbings, no shootings, and no overdoses." In fact, the letter from the park service itself makes no mention of any police incidents or violations at any point during the history of the event.

So what's this all about? Are the park service officials afraid of having thousands of black people come into this mostly white beach community? Do they care that this event has been going on peacefully for years without any problems?
* MadKane takes on Holy Joe again, with The Ballad Of Joementum (sung to the tune of Danny Boy). While we're on the subject of Lieberman, check out Salon's piece, How Joe went wrong.

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* That DMX concert -- and protest against the homophobic, misogynist rapper -- took place in Chicago (I blogged about it here). In a followup report, it appears that there was heckling of those out in protest, but awareness was raised. It was noted that the concert wasn't well-attended, something that's nice to hear. Jasmyne was quoted in the piece.

* Mike Tidmus has a great post on the controversy stirred by an anti-homophobia ad run by the Gay Police Association (in the UK).


This has resulted in death threats against its head, Paul Cahill. He received an email saying that he would be "struck down in God's name" and that his "days on this earth are numbered"). Brit fundies gone wild.

* Philip J. wrote in to recommend the film Wordplay:
Last Saturday night, my wife and I saw "Wordplay", a documentary about a crossword puzzle competition in its 28th year. As an inveterate crossword puzzle solver, I expected to enjoy its obvious virtues, and I did. But my wife and I were both pleased at the simple, matter-of-fact inclusion of the gayness of one of the primary contestant as a wonderfully affirming statement: this guy is one of the fastest crossword puzzle solvers in the country, a total word nerd, and his partner admires him for his word prowess (as well as other virtues, we assume).

No big point is made of it, but neither is it hushed up or hinted at...it's merely what ought to be the norm: that somebody's being gay is as significant and/or relevant to other things as that he's left-handed.
* I'm jazzed because next week the 11th Annual North Carolina Gay and Lesbian Film Fest opens. Kate and I already have our tickets for this movie marathon (and appearances by Margaret Cho and Tab Hunter). See my earlier post.

* The 2006 Black Weblog Awards are open and taking nominations. Noms will be open from August 1 - August 15, and on August 16, the top three nominated sites from each of the categories will be posted; open voting for the finalists is August 16 - August 31. Rules are here. The Blend, if you wish to put in a nom, for this pad, could fall into a few of these categories:

Best Blog Community * Best Blog Design * Best Hip-Hop Blog * Best Humor Blog * Best International Blog * Best LGBT Blog * Best New Blog * Best Original Content * Best Personal Blog * Best Photo Blog * Best Podcast * Best Political/News Blog * Best Pop Culture Blog * Best Technology Blog * Best Teen Blog * Best Topical Blog * Best Video Blog * Best Writing in a Blog * Black Blogger Achievement Award * Blog of the Year * Blog to Watch

* And one more Mike Tidmus for the road. He does a series of rip-roaring graphic interpretations of The Passion...of the drunken anti-Semite. Here's one; go see the rest...



Concerned Women for America finds another copy of The Homosexual AgendaTM

"Having failed in most of their attempts thus far to get state legislation passed for homosexual marriages, leftist groups have joined together to broaden their agenda. They want to tear down all the norms and eliminate all barriers, [and] they declare that traditional marriage should not be legally and economically privileged over all other forms of 'family.'"
-- Janice Crouse of CWA's Beverly LaHaye Institute
Dammit. Who keeps leaking this information out?! Janice Crouse must have a mole in the movement because she has secured an updated copy of the The Homosexual AgendaTM, complete with our new objectives to destroy society as we know it.
According to Concerned Women for America, advocates of same-sex "marriage" wish to expand the marriage debate to include such issues as divorce laws, abstinence education, and marriage promotion efforts -- and to involve in the effort proponents of "diversity" concerns (sexual orientation, gender identity, class distinctions, citizenship status).
Added action items are, according to Crouse:
* separation of church and state in all matters pertaining to relationships, households, and families
* access to government support programs regardless of marital or citizenship status
* lobbying efforts to prevent state regulations from adversely affecting individuals' "sexual lives and gender choices, identities, and expression."

According to the CWA mouthpiece, our "alliance" of deviants will enlist single parents, senior citizens, caregivers of adults, and cohabiters in our battle by waving our magic "social justice rhetoric" fairy wand.
While not identifying the groups signing onto this "new strategic vision," CWA says they are groups that "support the GLBT goals and 'dare to dream' about a world that 'has room for all.'" And Crouse sounds a somber warning to family advocates around the country, saying that the coalition's "soft" rhetoric "covers a hard wrecking ball capable of destroying those things that are the foundation of strong communities and nations."
Fun facts about Crouse: she's also the author of the Sex Pyramid. She's also concerned about the state of marriage: 'You don't want to get married until you're settled in your career; until you've established yourself and gotten enough money to buy a house and buy a good car and those kinds of things.'" The result? "We have downgraded marriage in the minds of young people."

***

UPDATE: Jeremy at Good As You has an excellent post on Crouse, Daddy Dobson and the winger spin that all of the Homosexual Agenda Alliance is in support of the statement released by BeyondMarriage.org.

***

Here are other versions of the Agenda that have surfaced.


Q of the day - Bush physical

"I find him to be fit for duty and have every reasonable expectation that he will remain fit for duty for the duration of his presidency."
-- statement released about Dear Leader's condition by his medical team, White House physician Richard Tubb and Dr. Kenneth Cooper, the president of the Cooper Aerobics Center in Dallas
Bush had his physical today. Nothing eventful to report, not that we'd be told if there was something to explain the man's megalomania. So my question is:

What would the results of a psych eval be on this guy?

Narcissistic personality disorder?
At least five of the following are necessary for a diagnosis:

* has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
* is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
* believes that he or she is "special" and unique and can only be understood by other special or high-status people (or institutions, eg: Harvard and other Ivy League institutions)
* requires excessive admiration
* has a strong sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations
* takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends
* lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others
* is often envious or believes others are envious of him or her
* has arrogant affect, haughty behaviors or attitudes


Creation museum receives $1 million gift

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Answers in Genesis's Creation Museum, which is under construction near Cincinnati (Ohio again!), will be a delight for flat earthers everywhere:
The Creation Museum is a 55,000-square-foot center that will take future visitors on a walk through the history of the Bible. They will be treated to animatronic dinosaurs, a planetarium (nearly finished), a special effects theater, 55 videos and high-tech, family-friendly exhibits that will show that the Bible, including its creation account, is the true history of the world. It will also present the gospel in many parts of the museum.
The good god-fearing folks running this pageantry of fables just received a hand-delivered check for one million smackers from a family representing the Christian Community Foundation of Colorado Springs.

Spindentist at All Spin Zone clues us in on who's behind the buxxx.
Certainly the CCF gives to good Christian causes, but also whack job religious zealots...But they also gave money to Focus on the Family ($250,530), Family Research Council ($100,000), and Promise Keepers ($118,730), each of which organization has been accused of a great deal of radical extremism. But the big question here concerns just who is the individual who gave $1 MM to the Creation Museum?

At the end of the 2004 tax form for the CCF it mentions a relationship the foundation has with the Cary Brown Family Foundation, which appears to be an entity run by CCF, but completely controlled by the Cary Brown family. Cary is a second generation oilman. He speaks about his charitable interests all over the country, including at this little event here, where he spoke about Christian giving. Seems laudable to me, except that he and his wife Jill are supporting a museum about humans riding the backs of dinosaurs…that's about as whacked as it gets, unless maybe they took the Flintstones to heart a bit too much as kids.


Mel sees his career flash before his eyes

[UPDATE: See below; a fundie says Mel will rise again.]

I guess after ABC pulled his little Holocaust miniseries project, Mel Gibson, who's supposedly in rehab for his little drunken anti-Semitic tirade the other day, is having one hell of a hangover.
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The mug shot

Mel Gibson admitted making anti-Semitic remarks during his drunken driving arrest and asked members of the Jewish community Tuesday to help him recover from his alcohol addiction.

In a statement issued through his publicist, the actor-director asked to meet with Jewish leaders "with whom I can have a one-on-one discussion to discern the appropriate path for healing."

"There is no excuse, nor should there be any tolerance, for anyone who thinks or expresses any kind of anti-Semitic remark," Gibson, 50, said in the statement, which directs an apology to "everyone in the Jewish community."
Related:
* The passion of the drunken anti-Semite
* The passion of the drunken anti-Semite, part 2: mea culpa

***

How are the fundies taking this? Here's the reaction from Ted Baehr, founder of MovieGuide and chairman of the Christian Film and Television Commission. Sounds like he and Mel are on the same page, alright...
Baehr says while Gibson's actions are deplorable, they probably will not end his career or influence.

"The industry is not the industry of the founding fathers of the movie industry, which was predominantly an industry controlled by people out of the garment district who were Jewish," says Baehr. "The point of the matter is that what they want are people who are team players."

The Christian media expert believes that Gibson's success with The Passion will overshadow his arrest and controversial remarks. As he points out, the actor-producer is not a quitter.

"Mel Gibson's career has been over many times," notes Baehr, "and he's reinvented himself many times. Mel has stooped many times to get back into the industry, and I wouldn't be surprised that he wouldn't do anything he could to get back into the industry again." Baehr encourages Christians to pray for Mel Gibson and his battle with alcoholism.


GOP told Harris to drop out in May


Oooh. That drop-kick hurt. Miss Florida Sunshine, Katherine Harris, was flipped the bird by her party back in May, when the Florida GOP Chairwoman, Carole Jean Jordan, personally wrote the delusional Senate candidate to tell her to drop out of the race. (Sun Sentinel):
"The polls tell us that no matter how you run this race, you will not be successful in beating Bill Nelson, who would otherwise be a vulnerable incumbent if forced to face a stronger candidate," Jordan wrote, in a letter co-signed by national committeewoman Sharon Day and national committeeman Paul Senft.

The letter was written while party leaders were intensifying their pursuit of House Speaker Allan Bense, R-Panama City. At the time, Harris was trailing Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson by more than 30 percent among Florida voters in some polls.

Within days of Jordan's letter, Bense declined to run, calling the prospect of challenging Harris "an extremely steep mountain to climb in a short period of time."
The howler is that a spokesman for the Florida GOP said that the letter was intended to remain confidential. Yeah, right, lololololol.

The other funny bit about this story is Harris's reaction -- she's as delusional as ever, because there's nothing that will make her drop out of this race. She will take the party down in flames.
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Harris' campaign issued a statement quoting her as saying "this letter is not applicable today," emphasizing the last three words. And Harris herself told The Associated Press that the leaders were pressured into their move by "the party elite."

"I knew the background, I knew the pressure that was applied," Harris said. "I knew the motivation and I knew the players and I knew they had no choice."
H/t, BarbieAnn


WWJD about porno text messaging?

Cops: Wife pulls gun on pastor in church. Who said the bible beaters are living in the dark ages? There's nothing like sinning with your unholy thumbs on the keypad if you're a man of the cloth.
A preacher's wife was arrested after police say she pulled a gun on her husband because she allegedly was upset over text messages he had sent to a member of a church youth group.

Tammy Estes surrendered to law officers at the Pentecostal Church of God in Newport after a brief standoff at the church Sunday evening. No one was injured.

...Police say a church service had just begun when Estes pulled a gun on her husband, preacher Larry Estes, about 7 p.m. According to congregation members, she was upset over messages Larry Estes allegedly exchanged with a youth group member and she demanded he admit infidelity.


Desperate Little Ricky and the GOP try to steal the election



Man-on-dog Santorum's trailing in the polls, so now he's trying to shave votes from Casey by aiding the Green Party candidate. Yet another incumbent who feels entitled to his office -- and he admits it.
Green Party candidate Carl Romanelli, making his first bid for statewide elective office, acknowledged Monday that Republican contributors probably supplied most of the $100,000 that he said he spent gathering signatures to qualify for the Nov. 7 ballot.

...Santorum said he hopes Romanelli makes it onto the ballot. "This is politics," the second-term senator told reporters Monday while campaigning in suburban Pittsburgh. "It's no surprise when you're an incumbent, it helps to have more people on the ballot."

...Virginia Davis, Santorum's campaign spokeswoman, declined to answer questions about whether he solicited the contributions.
Well, I guess Ricky knows he can't win on, say, the issues.

H/t, Americablog


Sugar Lips' anti-gay homo NRSC spokesbot

Mike Rogers has exposed another politically closeted operative who is working to oppress other gays and lesbians by working for anti-gay pols and organizations.

Brian Walton, spokesman for the Dole-led (poorly led for that matter) National Republican Senatorial Committee uses his position to churn out homo strawman sleaze like this (via BlogActive):

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Mike: I have spoken with individuals who have had intimate encounters with Mr. Walton. I spoke with him via telephone and he acknowledged he was gay. Mr. Walton then asked me if he could call me back in fifteen or twenty minutes and I said "sure." Mr. Walton did not call back and he did not return two messages left for him on his office phone and cell phone.
Walton, btw, also acknowledges he's gay on this web site.

Mike has more on his site and an email action item.

Has someone alerted my senator, The Empty Wig, Elizabeth Dole, a supporter of the Federal Marriage Amendment, that her NRSC spokesman is a anti-gay homo?

Actually, when BlogActive was doing a series of outings last year, the hubbub made it into an issue of GQ, and it mentioned Liddy's response to nervous closet cases in her office:

"Senator Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina reportedly told her staff they had nothing to worry about, should any of them be outed.

...One staffer tells [the article's author Jake] Tapper a fact known inside the beltway but not widely reported-that some members of Congress posture as being more anti-gay than they actually are to please constituents. "We're a representative democracy," the staffer told GQ. "And while members may not have personal problems with having gay staff, they vote the way their constituents want them to."
More on the "politically closeted" problem here, here, and here.


Daddy Dobson co-sponsors Atlanta Braves' Christian 'Faith Day'

[UPDATE: That was fast -- Think Progress reports that the Braves have disinvited Focus on the Anus -- see below.]

There's nothing like a fundie day at the ball park. What on earth can the Braves management be thinking? This boggles the mind -- the Focus on the Anus functionaries get to pass out "gift packages" containing anti-gay materials to folks coming to the ballpark.
The Atlanta Braves is the first Major League Baseball team to participate in the Christian “Faith Day” — a promotional event co-sponsored by the anti-gay Focus on the Family to get evangelical Christians to pack the stands of ballparks across the country.

The event that attracted some 3,000 members of local Christian churches to Turner Field on July 27, which included team speakers and Christian musicians, was begun in 2002 by Third Coast Sports. Until last week, Third Coast Sports’ “Faith Days” were only held at minor league games.

“Focus on the Family is pleased to support these community events where professional athletes and top Christian musicians share their faith in Christ,” said Steve Maegdlin, Focus on the Family senior vice president. “We are looking forward to impacting families at an event that is good, wholesome fun for the entire family.”

The press release goes on to say that during games, Focus on the Family will distribute gift packages for parents, teens and clergy representing a variety of Focus on the Family's family outreach ministries.

These include the Focus on Parenting program (www.focusonyourchild.com) — which features a “Hot Topic” about children and homosexuality and how gay activist groups are “targeting” public schools — and TroubledWith.com, a site for individuals and families in crisis that also lists homosexuality as a topic.
UPDATE: That was fast -- Think Progress reports that the Braves have disinvited Daddy Dobson's drones -- they won't be passing out their hate literature at the upcoming Faith Days coming on Aug. 13 and Aug. 26.
Unfortunately, Focus on the Family remains a cosponsor of several other Faith Day events at baseball games this summer, which are organized by a group called Third Coast Sports. Email the CEO of Third Coast — mike@thirdcoastsports.com — and urge him to completely sever their ties with the anti-gay group.


Flat earth fundies

There's a group of fundie windbags countering a movement by other evangelicals to address global warming. The warming naysayers aren't sure whether global warming is real, and if it is (hedging their bets), the spin is that calling for a reduction in CO2 emissions will hurt the poor.
An evangelical group is presenting an alternative view on global warming. Just months after another evangelical group called for Christians to help combat what it sees as the crisis of human-caused climate change and its effects, the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance is casting doubt on the theory of catastrophic global warming.

Recently, 86 evangelical clergy, college presidents, mission and ministry heads, and other leaders signed a document called "Climate Change: An Evangelical Call to Action," which called on the U.S. government to pass federal legislation requiring significant reductions in carbon dioxide emissions to fight global warming. This group argued that such changes are necessary to protect the poor from the much touted harmful effects of an "unprecedented" environmental warming trend. (See related article)

In response to that document, the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance issued one of its own, titled "A Call to Truth, Prudence, and the Protection of the Poor: An Evangelical Response to Global Warming." In that report, the Alliance presents evidence arguing against the extent and significance -- and possibly even the existence -- of the purported "scientific consensus" on catastrophic, human-induced global warming.
If you want to see the true unhinged nature of this movement, take a look at this bit of business:
Another Alliance spokesman, Professor Kenneth Chilton, feels Christians need to have a more balanced view of environmentalism. He says God made human beings to be stewards of the Earth, and they should not be made to feel guilty for using its resources.
I just don't get these people.


Open thread: U.S. education -- top notch

Look at what our system proudly produces, courtesy of Paul the Spud.



Note the Minutemen sticker.




Remember, these people v-o-t-e (and procreate).