Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Yes Maggie Gallagher, you are bigoted and NOM is homophobic. Here's why.

Maggie Gallagher, National Organization for Marriage
These days, it's relatively easy to be a talking head on news programs.

Just find some sucker with a lot of money willing to fund you,  created an organization with an important sounding name, give yourself an important sounding but meaningless title (senior fellow, research analyst, president, etc.), and they'll practically be beating at your door.

An incident today on Fox News more than demonstrates that point. Not long after Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Obama Administration would no longer defend DOMA, Fox News personality (you really don't think I'm going to call her a journalist, do you) Megyn Kelly had National Organization for Marriage head Maggie Gallagher on her show to whine about how evil this decision is for families.

Of course Gallagher's definition of families never seems to include lgbt families, leaving a lot of people out.

Nevertheless, Kelly allowed Gallagher to push her usual silly talking points, including one about how gays are inaccurately being compared to black people in terms of civil rights.

I sincerely hope that in discussing the DOMA decision - and hopefully this piece - no one falls for the divide and conquer technique of this person - Gallagher - who cares as much about the black community as she does the lgbt community.

And that level of care is zero.

What Gallagher and Kelly did were evasive tactics, much like other tactics Gallagher seems to have mastered when talking about gay marriage. Give her five minutes and she will try to pivot the conversation from the same-sex households negatively affected by her activism to how she and others like her are supposedly unfairly called "bigots" for supposedly simply trying to "protect marriage."

Okay, let go on that angle. Let's break down the acts of Gallagher and NOM and pose the question - are these the acts of a bigoted, homophobic organization or people simply trying to "defend marriage:"

November 20, 2009 - Signer of Manhattan Declaration wanted to jail gays and lesbians - By signing an anti-gay document, The Manhattan Declaration, Gallagher and NOM affiliates themselves with folks who want to jail lgbts.

February 1, 2010 - Maggie Gallagher commits 'sin of omission' to make case against marriage equality - Gallagher cites a study to bash gay marriage and gay parenting, even though the study had nothing to do with either concept.

March 8, 2010 - TinyU-R-Gay: @NOMupdates limits gay lives to less than 140 characters/years - A NOM tweet actually pushing the lie that gays have a short life span.

June 14, 2010 - National Organization for Marriage: Gays Were Never Hunted Down and Murdered Like 'Jews, Christians, and Blacks' - NOM is found to be affiliated with Louis J. Marinelli during its failed summer for marriage tour. Amongst other things, Marinelli claims that gays want to molest children. When Marinelli's words became public, NOM claimed that the organization had no affiliation with Marinelli. However certain links posted as an update to the story demonstrated that NOM did have an affiliation with Marinelli.

June 28, 2010 - Message to Maggie Gallagher: associating with bigots does make you a bigot - NOM associates itself with another bigoted group, The Traditional Value Coalition. Amongst other things, TVC head Lou Sheldon has said that gays should be referred to as "sodomites."

July 27, 2010 - National Organization for Marriage needs to disavow its 'zany' followers - NOM not only has a problem with the homophobia of those in its ranks, but also those who support the group, particularly the guy with the poster of the hangman's nooses.

February 11, 2011 - PolitiFact catches anti-gay group NOM in a huge lie about gay marriage and children - Pultizer Prize-winning news site calls NOM out on a lie that gay marriage is being taught to kindergartners in Massachusetts.

February 17, 2011 - National Organization for Marriage called out AGAIN for distortive tactics - NOM commissions a misleading poll claiming that the majority of folks in Maryland oppose gay marriage. They are called out on it by a local columnist.

February 22, 2011 - National Organization for Marriage makes the case for being an anti-gay hate group - NOM pushes a piece written by syndicated columnist Mike McManus of the group Marriage Savers. The column has several distortions about gays, including the lie that gay men have a shorter life span than heterosexuals. NOM has not distanced itself from this piece.

Again, I ask does this sound like a Christian defender of "the family" or a homophobic bigot exploiting fear and ignorance for a paycheck?

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Obama Administration will no longer defend DOMA

This just came in AFTER I posted my news briefs. Check them out in the post below this one. The following   piece is by  Jonathan Capeheart of The Washington Post:

A well-placed and trusted source tells me that, any minute now, Attorney General Eric Holder will issue a statement announcing that it will no longer defend so-called Defense of Marriage Act lawsuits in court. The source believes DOJ had come to the conclusion that heightened scrutiny would apply, and that these cases cannot be defended in court. A 530d letter has been sent to Congress informing it that, if it wants to defend the statute, it is free to do so. A case is pending now that has a filing deadline of March 11.

This is huge, folks. By definitively stating that gay men and lesbians deserve heightened scrutiny, the Obama administration is declaring that there is no government interest in perpetuating the discrimination aggrieved parties are trying to redress. 

The following is a partial statement from the Office of Attorney General Eric Holder:

The Attorney General made the following statement today about the Department’s course of action in two lawsuits, Pedersen v. OPM and Windsor v. United States, challenging Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage for federal purposes as only between a man and a woman:

In the two years since this Administration took office, the Department of Justice has defended Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act on several occasions in federal court. Each of those cases evaluating Section 3 was considered in jurisdictions in which binding circuit court precedents hold that laws singling out people based on sexual orientation, as DOMA does, are constitutional if there is a rational basis for their enactment. While the President opposes DOMA and believes it should be repealed, the Department has defended it in court because we were able to advance reasonable arguments under that rational basis standard.

Section 3 of DOMA has now been challenged in the Second Circuit, however, which has no established or binding standard for how laws concerning sexual orientation should be treated. In these cases, the Administration faces for the first time the question of whether laws regarding sexual orientation are subject to the more permissive standard of review or whether a more rigorous standard, under which laws targeting minority groups with a history of discrimination are viewed with suspicion by the courts, should apply.

After careful consideration, including a review of my recommendation, the President has concluded that given a number of factors, including a documented history of discrimination, classifications based on sexual orientation should be subject to a more heightened standard of scrutiny. The President has also concluded that Section 3 of DOMA, as applied to legally married same-sex couples, fails to meet that standard and is therefore unconstitutional. Given that conclusion, the President has instructed the Department not to defend the statute in such cases. I fully concur with the President’s determination.

Consequently, the Department will not defend the constitutionality of Section 3 of DOMA as applied to same-sex married couples in the two cases filed in the Second Circuit. We will, however, remain parties to the cases and continue to represent the interests of the United States throughout the litigation. I have informed Members of Congress of this decision, so Members who wish to defend the statute may pursue that option. The Department will also work closely with the courts to ensure that Congress has a full and fair opportunity to participate in pending litigation.

Furthermore, pursuant to the President ’ s instructions, and upon further notification to Congress, I will instruct Department attorneys to advise courts in other pending DOMA litigation of the President's and my conclusions that a heightened standard should apply, that Section 3 is unconstitutional under that standard and that the Department will cease defense of Section 3.

More here. Mass religious right head explosion expected SOON.

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Newt Gingrich called out for anti-gay hypocrisy and other Wednesday midday news briefs

The First Annual TransGriot African-American Trans History Quiz - When I published my recent lgbt black history month quiz, I made a huge goof in not including as many questions on the lgbt of color transgender community as I should have. Monica Roberts has rectified my error with an excellent quiz of her own.

Newt Gingrich confronted over affair - Anti-gay hypocrite gets confronted for his own discretions? Love it!

Game on in NC: marriage amendment bill filed in state Senate; would put it on 2012 ballot - Go get 'em Pam Spaulding!

Kansas Drops Hate Bill - A disgusting bill gets dropped.

Is Fox News the New CPAC? - Fox News gets called out for being too "pro-gay?" I'm not rooting for either side in this battle.

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'Marriage saver' can't defend his homophobic argument

Yesterday, I wrote a post about the National Organization for Marriage helping to peddle some hogwash written by syndicated columnist Michael McManus. The piece, Why One Should Oppose Gay Marriage, was full of the usual anti-gay distortions and misdirections.

In one passage, McManus claimed that gay marriage was a bad idea because of the so-called promiscuity of gay men. To accomplish this, he compared two studies. However, the studies in question were decades apart (1978 and 1997) and talked about two different dynamics - i.e. single gay men vs. married heterosexual couples.

And in another passage, he freely cited the bad research of one John R. Diggs, even going so far as pulling out the "gays have a short lifespan" lie.

The point of my column was to show the duplicity of the National Organization for Marriage. At the same time the organization tries to pass itself off as a so-called "defender of marriage," it is openly pushing homophobic propaganda.

However, as a sidebar, I took the liberty of emailing McManus. McManus, by the way, heads a group called Marriage Savers. The organization supposedly devises ways for heterosexual couples to have successful marriages.

Let's hope McManus is more successful at this than he is at explaining his mess. The following is a short email exchange I had with him:

Me - Dear Mr. McManus, I know that you think you are operating in the body of Christ, but lies and deception have no place in the body of Christ. See to yourself before you condemn members of the lgbt community. Editor's note - I also attached my entire post pointing out the errors in his piece.

McManus - Dear Sir:

I notice you did not question my data that homosexuals are really not interested in marriage. How do you explain the fact there have been only 5,000 gay marriages in Mass. after more than 5 years, many of which were from out-of-state gays, as I understand it. But even if all were from Mass. that is only about 10% of the gay population.

Why should the nature of marriage, as practiced for 5,000 years, be changed for such a tiny sliver of people, who are not even interested in fidelity? Or marriage?

Me - The reason why I didn't question your Massachusetts information is because your other citations were so flawed that I didn't bother. If you are citing other studies in an inaccurate manner, then how can anyone have any credibility in what you said regarding Massachusetts?

That being the case, would you care to address the flaws which I found in your piece, particularly you making a comparison of married heterosexual couples vs. unmarried gay men from two different studies decades apart?

Strangely enough, McManus didn't get back with me on this point.

What's with these so-called "protect marriage" types anyway?  They seem to be always throwing  all sorts of erroneous arguments against gay marriage against the wall and expecting everyone to go for the one which may stick while ignoring their other inaccuracies; inaccuracies which always tends to refute their entire premise.

It's almost as if these folks think that they not only have a divine right to choose who gets married, but also a divine right to have their distortions ignored.

Sorry but no one has that right, especially those who are always implying that their beliefs places them on the right hand of God.

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