Tuesday, December 08, 2009
Rachel Maddow annihiliates 'ex-gay' Richard Cohen over Uganda bill
From Daily Kos:
Rachel Maddow just completed one of her patented epic takedown interviews. This one was with Richard Cohen author of Coming Out Stratight and Gay Children, Straight Parents. Cohens work is one inspiration for the proposed homosexual death penalty law in Uganda.
. . . As soon as the interview commenced Cohen condemned the proposed Ugandan law, claiming that he was a proponent for tolerance and understanding of gay people. Maddow pointed to a section of Coming Out Straight in which Cohen quotes a debunked study claiming that most molestation of children by teachers is by gay teachers, that gays target children for recruitment and so on and so forth. Cohen promised to remove that section of his book when the 3rd edition is released, and acknowleged the faultiness of the study's. Score one for Maddow.
And it gets better:
Maddow also asked Cohen to justify a quote from Gay Children Straight Parents in which Cohen lists a series of reasons on why children may be gay. Amongst those reasons were divorce, and race. Maddow asked how race could possibly be a factor and initially Cohen denied that was in the book. Maddow held the book up, read the page number and the list again at which point Cohen pleaded that she was reading out of context. Maddow read the preceding paragraph from the book, in which Cohen explains there are several reasons children may be gay etc etc... Cohen then challenged Maddow to read the passage following the list, and it had no pertinence to the question. Finally Cohen just came out and admitted that race has no influence on whether or not a child may be gay.
One of the most electric moments in the interview came when Maddow told Cohen that he had "blood on your hands" because his work was being used to justify the persecution of gays. It was just riveting.
I've seen the interview and the words of Daily Kos does not do it justice. To borrow an old term, Maddow figuratively "ripped out Cohen's heart and held it front of him so he could watch it beating while slipping away."
I especially liked the part where she takes Cohen to task for using discredited researcher Paul Cameron ( if Maddow wanted to do a future show on Cameron and how the religious right continues to use his work, she could have a series of shows).
It just goes to show that having a "fierce advocate" is nice but nothing beats having one of your own take down the right.
It's like a narcotic. I need more of it.