Thursday, December 31, 2009

My last post of 2009 starring Barney Frank and Rachel Maddow

2009 was a busy year - busy, tiring, and in some ways annoying. I intend to recap the year with my 2009 Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters Misinformers of the Year awards (coming this weekend).

However for now, I am going to wish you a Happy New Year and leave you with two of my favorite memories of 2009 courtesy of Barney Frank's very satisfying destruction of a someone comparing President Obama to Hitler and Rachel Maddow's even more satisfying destruction of so-called ex-gay Richard Cohen.

Don't party too hard tonight:

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Jenkins/Miller custody case, Rick Warren's problems, and other Thursday midday news briefs

Missing person report filed for child - The Janet Jenkins/Lisa Miller case gets sadder and sadder. We need to pray all involved.

The Purpose Driven Schadenfreude - Is it the usual push for donations are is Rick Warren's group really having financial difficulties?

Oregon High School with Ugandan sister school plans protest against Uganda's gay genocide bill - And yet again the children shall lead them.

Argentina hosts Latin America’s first gay marriage - Boom!

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Attacks against Kevin Jennings becoming sad parodies

Though the noise has faded a bit, members of the right are still attacking Obama appointee Kevin Jennings.

I've been pretty much ignoring the new attacks because they have gotten stupid.

The right-wing site Big Government has continuously attacked Jennings with a series of  National Enquirer type articles filled with bad innuendoes and lies.

And the site makes sure to give each attack the clever name of "Fistgate (choose your number here), making reference to the original attack on Jennings, i.e. that he supposedly taught children how to "fist" - a charge that has been continuously refuted.

Now you will remember the huge ado about the suggested reading list that GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network - the group that Jennings founded) had suggested for students.

That's the reading list which contained some books with mature themes; so much so that GLSEN advised that adults peruse the list of books and make choices regarding reading material for students.

Well the website Big Government isn't letting  the pseudo controversy over the list go without putting it to good use. The website seems to be intent on taking every book from the reading list, outlining some of the most graphic material, and then presenting what it found as a "new controversy."

Choices from the suggested reading list have been the basis for several recent "Fistgate" "articles."

We are up to "Fistgate 13," the most pathetic of them all.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Racism in Columbia has me bummed out. Time to call The Boondocks

I interrupt the regularly scheduled takedown of the religious right to announce something.

I am bummed out.

News about that ridiculous racial slur painted on the wall of Columbia's City Hall reminds me again of how ugly things have gotten.

So I'm going to not post tonight and put up a couple of videos dealing with racism from one of my favorite shows, The Boondocks.

It may make you angry, it may make you laugh. But it will make you think (if you think it's funny, it's okay to laugh. I won't tell the NAACP):

(Editor's note - if you still want to see some really wacky religious right nuttery, check out this bit from about Linda Harvey)

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Racial slurs painted on Columbia City Hall and other Wednesday midday news briefs

Racial slur spray painted on side of City Hall - First Columbia pass gender-inclusive non-discrimination laws and now black folks think that they can run for public office. Just WHAT is this world coming to?

Don Belton Murdered - The black and gay community both loses a leading light thanks to a senseless murder.

Older gays hit by the blues - A problem that needs to be addressed.

Lawbreaking ‘Ex-Gay’ Mother’s Supporters Encourage Disappearance, Kidnapping - Unbelievable.

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Janet Jenkins/Lisa Miller custody case still not resolved despite judge's orders

The custody case between Janet Jenkins and Lisa Miller has taken an ugly turn.

From Religious Right Watch:

We've written a few posts in the past about the custody battle being waged between Lisa Miller and Janet Jenkins, a Vermont couple who had a daughter together in 2002 but eventually separated and soon became locked in a custody fight after Miller moved to Virginia, became a Christian active in Jerry Falwell's church, and sought sole custody of their daughter, Isabella, with the representation of the Falwell-founded Liberty Counsel.

The fight has dragged on for years and earlier this month, a Vermont judge ordered Miller to transfer custody to Jenkins due to the fact that Miller had repeatedly refused to abide by court-ordered custody arrangements.

Miller was ordered to do so by Jan. 1, 2010, but it looks like that might not happen because nobody seems to know where Miller and Isabella are

For those not aware of this case, allow me to recap again.

I covered the following facts here and here:

When they were a couple, Miller and Jenkins decided to raise Isabella together.

When they split,  Miller agreed to let Jenkins have visitation rights. Jenkins was even paying child support.

Miller refused to allow Jenkins to have unsupervised time with Isabella, claiming that Jenkins was harming Isabella. The Virginia Child Protective Services investigated and found the charges to be false.

Since that time, the two have been in and out of court for years (with Miller keeping Isabella away from Jenkins) until the case finally reached its apex in November due to Miller's constant refusal to follow the law:

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Senate approves nation's first gay marshal and other Tuesday afternoon news briefs

America Is Cursed By God For Electing Barack Obama - Crazy Janet Porter strikes again.

Senate approves Lubinski, nation’s first gay U.S. Marshal
- Congratulations Ms. Lubinski!

Gays, lesbians should be able to serve openly in the military
- I agree with the Washington Post.

Gay Groups Win 25K Grants
- Shhh! Don't tell Andrew Breitbart.

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Religious right cheer abandoning pro-lgbt portion of U.N. resolution

I found this monstrosity via  One News Now:

Homosexual activists have failed in an effort to impose acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle on the world.

The United Nations General Assembly voted to delete language from a proposed resolution that claimed that two new anti-discrimination categories exist: sexual orientation and gender identity.

"What this body is trying to do is to elevate the homosexual agenda to a global right that governments are treaty-bound to accept," explains Austin Ruse, head of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM). "There was an attempt to have this reinterpretation officially accepted by the General Assembly, and it was defeated."

 One News Now does not provide details regarding the resolution but another right-wing publication, Lifesite News, does:

The deleted reference was to General Comment 20 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). The ICESCR was adopted by the UN on December 16, 1966, and declares that states that are part of the agreement will "undertake to guarantee that the rights enunciated in the present Covenant will be exercised without discrimination of any kind as to race, color, sex, language, religion ... or other status."

General Comment 20 states that the phrase "other status" includes "sexual orientation" and "gender identity." This means, according to the Comment, that members of the ICESCR "must ... adopt measures, which should include legislation, to ensure that individuals and entities in the private sphere do not discriminate on prohibited grounds."

This state of affair accentuates the problem for lgbts worldwide.

Even in the midst of all of this madness in Uganda, the raping of lesbians in South Africa as a "corrective measure," the recent arrest of a Malawi gay couple for getting married,  and a host of other facts regarding the mistreatment of lgbts in other countries, there are some people still clinging to the notion that lgbts are trying to "indoctrinate people."

That by merely wanting to conduct our lives in peace, we are trying to "force acceptance,"

And that somehow we aren't deserving of basic human dignity.

Austin Ruse, the man cited in the article further said:

"Most countries have a very traditional view of human sexuality, of marriage, [and] of the family, so when these ideas percolate through from radicals in the United States and the European Union, and they eventually get to the General Assembly where a lot of traditional people are represented, they get defeated," Ruse notes.

Someone should ask Ruse just what is his view of  "traditional human sexuality and people."

Does it involve hanging children like they did to those two innocent boys in Iran?

Or how about butchering innocent activists like what was done in Jamaica?

Or what about the laws in 30 Islamic countries that make homosexuality a criminal offense. In most cases punishment range from floggings to life imprisonment. In Mauritania, Bangladesh, Yemen, parts of Nigeria and Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Iran, convicted homosexuals can also be sentenced to death.

Ruse and those who stand with him not only have a warped sense of tradition but also of right and wrong.

And it leads me again to say while I love and fear God, I have a serious concern about those who claim to represent Him.

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The Peter Vadala controversy was a major victory for lgbt community

As we remember major lgbt stories in 2009 like Maine and Carrie Prejean,  let's not forget the so-called minor stories.

One in particular I would like to point out because it was a victory for the lgbt blogging community.

Remember Peter Vadala?

He was the former employee of Brookstone (a Massachusetts retailer store) who was fired for supposedly expressing his Christian beliefs.

As we learned more about Vadala, it turned out that him "expressing his Christian beliefs" amounted to telling a lesbian employee that she is a "deviant" for simply talking about her upcoming wedding. Gay marriage, by the way, is perfectly legal in Massachusetts.

At first glance, the incident looked like a perfect cause celebre for the religious right. A young Christian attacked by the supposedly intolerant and invisible homosexual lobby - a perfect fundraising tool if there ever was one.

But it flopped.

What made Vadala's story different than say the story of Repent America when a supposed religious group was arrested at Philly Pride in 2004 or the group of city workers who filed a lawsuit against the city of Oakland when they were told to remove an anti-gay flyer from their workplace?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Anti-gay video of the year - NOM's The Gathering Storm

Pending something major, many bloggers are either playing it low-key or having a fond look back at some moments in 2009.

For me, it will be time for the 20009 Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters Misinformers of the Year Awards in which I look back at some of the highlights (and lowlights) of anti-lgbt hysteria.

I can tell you right now that there will be a few surprises because unfortunately some of our own went out of their way to help the religious right in their anti-lgbt endeavors via unnecessary ugly words or abandoning an lgbt leader before he even had a chance to defend himself.

But it's still all in fun. And in that spirit, let me announce one award now:

The Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters Video of the Year
award (or the Ed Wood Memorial Video Vanguard Award) goes to . . . oh come on, as if you would be shocked:

National Organization for Marriage's Gathering Storm Ad

In April of this year, the National Organization for Marriage launched an ad campaign claiming that gay marriage will have negative consequences for people's freedom and rights. Central to this campaign was a commercial. Naturally, this commercial recycled a bunch of lies about current events involving cases of lgbt rights and families.

But all of that took a backseat because the commercial was bad. I mean just plain awful. Valley of the Dolls bad, Heaven's Gate bad, Plan 9 from Outerspace bad.

See for yourself:

Instead of anger, the ad elicited laughter and a huge amount of parody ads, as well as ads which served to correct its phony claims. Among the funniest and most informative were:

Then there was Stephen Colbert:


And just when it looked like things couldn't get any funnier, it came out that the people in the "Gathering Storm" ads were actors. We know this because somehow their audition tapes got released on youtube, thereby further revealing the abject phoniness of the entire campaign:

The fight for marriage equality has had some major victories and setbacks in 2009. However the "Gathering Storm" controversy was a watershed moment. It demonstrated the weakness of the argument against marriage equality and also demonstrated that all the money in the world and backing can't replace the integrity of your position.

If you don't have integrity, you will fall on your face.

Related posts:

No California Doctors Were Harmed In The Making Of This Commercial

Why the National Organization for Marriage ad failed

NOM lies about David Parker controversy

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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Know your lgbt history - The Jerry Springer Show

I hope everyone had a happy holiday. Back to the @!& as they say.

A couple of weeks ago, this segment focused on the Ricki Lake Show and how it did much for positive lgbt visibility.

Now comes the flipside. The Jerry Springer Show is a twisted ongoing train wreck. It actually started out as a legitimate talk show but struck it big by focusing on guest fights and other outrageous topics.

And unfortunately the lgbt community was victimized by this. I can't count how many times the talk show focused "poor straight men" who was "tricked into sex" by trangendered women. And often these segments would end violently for all parties involved.

Or the following segment which features a "former" gay man trying to keep his gay brother away from another gay man.

Now I've heard that the show is staged and the guests are actors, but that's besides the point. The negative lgbt images showcased by the Jerry Springer Show was just flat out wrong:

Past Know your lgbt history posts:
Know your lgbt history - Martin Lawrence and that 'gay guy' on his show

Know your lgbt history - The Ricki Lake Show

Know your lgbt history - Which Way Is Up

Know your lgbt history - Gays in Primetime Soaps

Know your lgbt history - Boys Beware

Know your lgbt history - The Boondocks

Know your lgbt history - Mannequin

Know your lgbt history - The Warriors

Know Your LGBT History - New York Undercover

Know Your LGBT History - Low Down Dirty Shame

Know Your LGBT History - Fortune and Men's Eyes

Know your lgbt history - California Suite

Know your lgbt history - Taxi (Elaine's Strange Triangle)

Know your lgbt history - Come Back Charleston Blue

Know your lgbt history - James Bond goes gay

Know your lgbt history - Windows

Know your lgbt history - To Wong Foo and Priscilla

Know your lgbt history - Blazing Saddles

Know your lgbt history - Sanford and Son

Know your lgbt history - In Living Color

Know your lgbt history - Cleopatra Jones and her lesbian drug lords

Know your lgbt history - Norman, Is That You?

Know your lgbt history - The 'Exotic' Adrian Street

Know your lgbt history - The Choirboys

Know your lgbt history - Eddie Murphy

Know your lgbt history - The Killing of Sister George

Know your lgbt history - Hanna-Barbera cartoons pushes the 'gay agenda

'Know your lgbt history - Cruising

Know your lgbt history - Foxy Brown and Cleopatra Jones

Know your lgbt history - I Got Da Hook Up

Know your lgbt history - Fright Night

Know your lgbt history - Flowers of Evil

The Jeffersons and the transgender community  

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Chrismas courtesy of Miss Piggy

One of my favorite Christmas memories:

Don't you just love the way she flings her hair.

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Giving props to Media Matters and talking about my new book

Media Matters has done a lot this year to fight right-wing nonsense.

They were very helpful in fighting the lies against Kevin Jennings (helpful? Hell, a lot of my information came from them) as well as other lies pushed by some those on the right who seek to exploit ignorance and fear.

So with that in mind, I want to throw out props to the group and encourage you all to support them. Lgbt issues are just one of the things they deal with:

Now secondly, some of you may have noticed that I have been hinting about a second book.

Well to give you more information, I have been working on a second book. But this one won't be as detailed as Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters, my first book.

I want to break down religious right distortions in a manner that conveys their nastiness as well as shining a light on the entities who spout them. My goal is to bring more attention to the historical hypocrisy of these so-called pro-family groups.

That's all I am going to tell you for now.

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Father forces son to be with prostitute to cure 'alleged gayness' and other Wednesday midday news briefs

Heterosexual Menace: Father forces sex on son - This mention is not meant to bash heterosexuals. Lord knows if lgbts were the offending party, this incident would be in a religious right email as well as a "news item" on One News Now. This mention is just to show the depths of ignorance people can stoop to about us.

Reason #4,543,019 why FRC should stop shunning gays: Access to better choreography!- Yes there are no words cause we are busy vomiting.

Ex-Gay’ Mother Loses Ground in Bid to Topple U.S. Family Court System - This is a sad story for all involved.

Members of U.S. Congress Invoke their Faith to Oppose Ugandan anti-Gay law - Well this is good news

Lesbian lawyer Julie Kamps files $50M sex harassment & discrimination lawsuit vs. her firm - And I hope that sister girl wins.

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Teabagger has weepy breakdown over 'misdirected prayer'

Every now and then, a situation takes that place that's so strange, it diverts my attention away from focusing on the religious right.

During the mad battle over health care reform, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) recently gave a speech on the Senate floor hoping that a senator would not make the vote. He encouraged prayer on the matter:

What the American people ought to pray is that somebody can’t make the vote tonight. That’s what they ought to pray.

Now some people thought the Senator he was implying about was 92-year-old ailing Robert Byrd (D- West Virginia). Coburn's comment got much criticism, including from Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Illinois):

I have been trying to reach Sen. Coburn. … This statement troubles me, and I’m trying to reach him come back to the floor and explain exactly what he meant about a senator being unable to make the vote tonight. … I’m reaching out to Sen. Coburn. I’ll be on the floor for the next 45 minutes, and I hope that he will join me there.

As far as it is known, Coburn did not clarify what he meant by his statement.

In an interesting case of irony, when a vote did come up, a senator missed it - Republican James Inhofe.

And all of that led to this mindboggling, bizarre call to CSPAN from a teabagger who not only thought Sen. Inhofe was dead but that his prayer caused it.

Personally I prefer on-camera breakdowns to be done by either Joan Crawford or Maggie Smith.

Don't worry, by the way. Senator Inhofe is not dead - he just didn't make the vote.

But I don't know what's so weirder about this video - the fact that it reveals yet again the abject cluelessness of these teabaggers or the fact that both the CSPAN host and Senator John Barasso (R-Wyoming) kept a straight face throughout the entire thing:


CALLER: Yeah doctor. Our small tea bag group here in Waycross, we got our vigil together and took Dr. Coburn’s instructions and prayed real hard that Sen. Byrd would either die or couldn’t show up at the vote the other night.

How hard did you pray because I see one of our members was missing this morning. Did it backfire on us? One of our members died? How hard did you pray senator? Did you pray hard enough

HOST: Senator Barasso, he was referring to Senator Inhofe, who was not part of the round of voting this morning.

BARASSO: The votes today, they needed 60 votes in favor of the bill. Senator Inhofe is opposed to the bill, and whether he was there or not didn’t make any difference. There was no way that Jim Inhofe was going to vote for the bill, the senator from Oklahoma. So that’s why he wasn’t there this morning.

HOST: Do you know where he was, senator, why he wasn’t able to make the vote this morning? 

BARASSO: No, I don’t know.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hey Peter LaBarbera! Take a good look at one of your fans

Despite the fact that some of us consider Peter LaBarbera to be a laughing stock and a useful @^!* in this so-called culture war, there are some people who support him.

Such as the creator this site.(click at the risk of getting righteously indignant).

Please note that the site owner took LaBarbera's Grinch of the Year post (in which he did not nominate me . . . the bitch!) almost word for word and added his/her own interesting headline:

 Who are the faggot and dyke Grinches this year?

And so that you don't miss it, check out the lovely side graphics about African-Americans. Or if you don't want to get on that nasty site again, I incorporated one for you:

I won't even talk about the comments regarding President Obama.

Some may disagree with me giving this blog attention. However, I just want to remind people that a lot of times, homophobia and racism are indistinguishable.

If you hate one group, it's easy to transcribe that hate to another.

And if LaBarbera thinks he is aiming for Heaven when he attacks the lgbt community, then he really should take another look.

If he is on the side of the angels, then why is he attracting this devil?
Hat tip to my online buddy who did not express that I reveal his name in this post. If he does, then I will reveal it.

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Ugandan anti-gay pastors mad at Rick Warren and other Tuesday midday news briefs

Ugandan pastors demand apology from Rick Warren - timid hypocrites can't please anyone

Mich. Dept. of Corrections ‘looking’ into ex-gay ministry affiliation with prisons - A story under everyone's radar.

Grasping At Straws - How dare Peter LaBarbera not nominate Joe Jervis or Pam Spaulding for one of his grinch awards. Come to think of it, neither Pam nor any other woman got a nomination. Hmmmm. I ought to pull a Kanye on him.

Scarborough Needs Money To Stop The Sodomites - Yes he actually said "sodomites."

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Gov. Tim Pawlenty - saving us all from 'cross-dressing' third grade teachers

Now that Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is running for president (unofficially that is), he is backtracking from pro-gay legislation he signed:

To borrow a phrase, have your views evolved over time?
In 1993 I voted for a bill prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation in public accommodation, housing, and employment. That was 16 years ago.

Yes, gay-rights activists regarded you as a pretty cool guy at the time.
We overbaked that statute, for a couple of reasons. If I had to do it over again I would have changed some things.

That statute is not worded the way it should be. I said I regretted the vote later because it included things like cross-dressing, and a variety of other people involved in behaviors that weren't based on sexual orientation, just a preference for the way they dressed and behaved. So it was overly broad. So if you are a third-grade teacher and you are a man and you show up on Monday as Mr. Johnson and you show up on Tuesday as Mrs. Johnson, that is a little confusing to the kids. So I don't like that.

Has the law been changed?
No. It should be, though.

So you want to protect kids against cross-dressing elementary-school teachers. Do you have any in Minnesota?
Probably. We've had a few instances, not exactly like that, but similar.

For the record, there have been cases of teachers who have returned to class after gender reassignment surgery, although I am not sure that any of them occurred in Minnesota. After initial fears and some trepidation, the schools, students, and parents adapted to the situation. And there have been cases of transgendered students who are as young as six.

So certainly the issue is complicated but the way Pawlenty tries to trivialize it as a way to flip flop on his earlier pro-lgbt stance is rude. It reveals not only a misrepresentation of non-discrimination laws but also a cynical willfulness to exploit ignorance of the transgendered community.

Monday, December 21, 2009

2009 - The year of Glenn Beck and the anti-lgbt crazies

Just a precursor to my own 2009 Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters Misinformer of the Year awards. Can last year's champion Matt Barber hold on to his title or will he be outdone by a group effort not unlike the one that gave the Saturday Night Fever album the Grammy award in 1978? Stay tuned for more details.

Media Matters (who will probably be sending me a bill) has just announced their 2009 Misinformer of the Year award and to the surprise of no one, it's Glenn Beck:

Now while Beck gets the major award, Media Matters also gave a host of minor awards for outrageous statements.

And again to the surprise of no one, many of those statements had to do with comments made against the lgbt community:

In addition to a sustained assault on Department of Education official Kevin Jennings, right-wingers made outrageous attacks based on sexual orientation:
Of course I'm disappointed that the Media Matters list omitted the dust-up between Matt Barber, Peter LaBarbera, and Exodus International which recently came up.

However, it just occurred to me that our biggest strength in this so-called cultural war is the mouths of our opposition. Give them enough time and they verbally hang themselves.

And in this case, a public hanging is just what we need. After all, why keep the craziness of the religious right to ourselves. In the spirit of holiday generosity, everyone needs to see just how crazy these folks are.

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Another day, another batch of lies about Kevin Jennings and other Monday midday news briefs

David Limbaugh continues right-wing smear campaign against "known homosexual activist" Jennings - Another day, another bunch of lies aimed at Kevin Jennings.

A Gay Wedding Ceremony In Uganda - Lgbts in Uganda are some of the bravest people in the world. Love will always conquer fear.

Parent Files Complaint Against Gay Teacher for Corrupting Child’s Innocence - Oh give me a break!

The Pathetic State of the Anti-Gay Right - More on that lovely religious right catfight between Exodus International, Porno Petey and Matt Barber. Why don't they just all kiss and make up?

India holds first Miss India Transgender beauty pageant - This sounds highly interesting.

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Two black pastors supporting gay marriage break it down in the Washington Post

I's always annoying to me how so many, the media included, write off the black community when it comes to whether or not it supports lgbt equality, particularly gay marriage.

There is too much of a need to create conflict between the lgbt and black community without examining the nuances of just the black community feels regarding gay rights.

And there is generally an unfortunate omission of the thoughts and opinions of lgbts of color.

With that in mind, I am very pleased with yesterday's editorial in the Washington Post with Rev. Dennis W. Wiley and the Rev. Christine Y. Wiley, pastors of Covenant Baptist Church in Washington.
They are also co-chairs of the organization DC Clergy United for Marriage Equality, a group which helped get marriage equality passed in D.C.

It's an excellent read, particularly this part:

We are sometimes asked what accounts for the homophobia within the African American community. This question seems to assume that the community is disproportionately homophobic compared with other racial and ethnic groups. We are not aware of any credible study that has conclusively proved this assumption. However, our first-hand experience has convinced us that homophobia within the black church and the wider community is real. And the factors that have nurtured these beliefs over the years are complex.

When issues of gay rights and gay marriage come up, the first question many black people ask is, "What does the Bible have to say about it?" This seemingly innocent question doesn't acknowledge that when we approach the Bible, our perspective has been shaped by where we were born, by whom we were raised, what Grandma taught us, where we went to school and what our pastor preached in church -- usually conservative ideas on matters such as homosexuality. Therefore, we tend to interpret the Bible not objectively, but through the lens of our cultural and historical context.

The conservative strand of black religion is evident in what Harvard professor Peter Gomes calls "bibliolatry" -- the practice of worshiping the Bible rather than worshiping God. It is also found in a "literal" interpretation of the Bible that focuses more on the letter of the text than on its spirit, and concentrates on passages about domination, oppression, hierarchy, elitism and exclusion rather than on the major themes of love, justice, freedom, equality and inclusion that run throughout the Bible.

A more complicated element of black homophobia is the lingering influence of sexual stereotypes that originated during slavery. According to theologian Kelly Brown Douglas, the myth of "over-sexualized" black bodies portrayed black men as violent "bucks" who posed an ever-present threat to white women, and black women as "Jezebels" who seduced white men.

All I can say is that we need more of these editorials and more of these discussions AND in places like Ebony and Jet magazine, AND The Advocate magazine. Preferably as a magazine cover story.

Editor's note - in an aside that has absolutely nothing to do with this piece, I want to give a quick shout out and congratulations to my online friend Jeremy Hooper, whose marriage to his partner will be included in the Winter 2010 edition of Martha Stewart Weddings.

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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Religious right feud over gay sex and Jim DeMint's 'gay fears' made for an interesting week

What can I say about last week other than the fact that it was business as usual with the religious right.

Uganda's 'Kill the gays' bill brings out the nuts in America - Apparently expressing the idea of shipping all lgbts (or as our friends puts it - sodomites) to Calfornia and putting a huge electrified fence around the state gets your video knocked off of youtube. Who knew?

Fox News cites me in article about Kevin Jennings . . . and almost gets it right - If I were one for irony, I could easily point out that the constant barrage of negativity thrown at the lgbt community (and especially lgbt youth) by people like Sprigg and LaBarbera and the organizations they run with only add to conditions that cause lgbt youth to be placed in situations like those mentioned in the books.

Sen. Jim DeMint fears a gay president - . . . the fact that DeMint fears having a gay president doesn't surprise any of us lgbts in South Carolina. It's just more proof that DeMint doesn't care about us - the people whom he was elected to represent.

In celebration of D.C. pro-gay marriage vote, let's revisit the 'D.C. hot mess' - How could anyone forget "sister girl?"

Lgbts catching hell in Rwanda - We need to start thinking of lgbt equality as more of a global issue. Whether or not we get full rights and privileges that we deserve in this country, let's not forget about our lgbt brothers and sisters catching hell around the world.

Uh oh! Peter LaBarbera and Americans for Truth tries to call out my blog - Honestly speaking, if the Southern Poverty Law Center ever labeled LaBarbera's organization (Americans for Truth) as a hate group, it would be an act of charity.

New low: Exploiting the voices of lgbt youth to attack Kevin Jennings - Are some of the books mature? Yes. But they aren't pornography anymore than a personal experience of rape should be considered as pornography.

Gay sex quote causes three-way feud between Porno Petey, the Liberty Counsel and Exodus International - LaBarbera and his silly group, Barber and the Liberty Counsel, and yes even Exodus International are all phonies. They all serve to stigmatize and villify the lgbt community whether be it through paying too much attention to how they think we have sex or hiding their lies and distortions behind a veneer of piety. It's fun to watch how these phony Christians slice each other into little pieces.

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Matt Barber seeks to end feud with Porno Petey by painting the Liberty Counsel as liars

Yesterday, I brought you an interesting story regarding religious right figures Matt Barber, Peter LaBarbera and Randy Thomas and their organizations (Americans for Truth, Liberty Counsel and Exodus International) feuding over a very rude comment made by Barber on LaBarbera's webpage about the lgbt community:

It boils down to this: there is nothing “conservative” about — as (Matt)Barber inimitably puts it — “one man violently cramming his penis into another man’s lower intestine and calling it ‘love.’” Or two women awkwardly mimicking natural procreative relations or raising a child together in an intentionally fatherless home.

The Liberty Counsel said that Barber never made such a statement:

“Neither Matt Barber nor anyone with Liberty Counsel wrote or made any such public statement that is being alleged in this blog. Liberty Counsel promotes the traditional family of one man and one woman because we believe that such relationships are best for society and for children. While we strongly disagree with the sexual politics and agenda of activist organizations and individuals, we also believe that each person is entitled to respect. While there are some that hate us because of our message of sexual integrity, redemption, change, and hope, we have never, and will never, confuse the person with the agenda. We have never sought to dehumanize people to promote our message. Our message is one of redemption through the power of Jesus Christ.”

But LaBarbera stuck to his guns, even verbally attacking Exodus International Vice President Randy Thomas.

Well today via LaBarbera's webpage comes the news from Barber that he did make the comment, but before joining the Liberty Counsel:

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Gay sex quote causes three-way feud between Porno Petey, the Liberty Counsel and Exodus International

From Wayne Besen and Truth Wins Out comes news of a possible feud brewing between Peter LaBarbera and the Liberty Counsel with Exodus International thrown in as a side diversion.

And wouldn't you know it? It's about lgbt sexual encounters The feud stems from a piece LaBarbera wrote for his group in an attempt to keep GOProud, a gay conservative group, from co-sponsoring the Conservative Political Action Conference:


Porno Pete’s latest issue is ensuring a gay conservative group, GOProud can’t sponsor the annual CPAC conference. In his opposition, LaBarbera attributed a quote to Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber:

“What is conservatism?” asks Porno Pete. 

It boils down to this: there is nothing “conservative” about — as Barber inimitably puts it — “one man violently cramming his penis into another man’s lower intestine and calling it ‘love.’” Or two women awkwardly mimicking natural procreative relations or raising a child together in an intentionally fatherless home. This does not mean that people practicing those and other immoral (andchangeable) behaviors cannot think and act conservatively on other issues like lowering taxes, cutting government spending, ending abortion, etc. But let’s be honest: the “proud” in GOProud is not about pride in opposing the death tax, or defending the right to bear arms; it’s about proudly embracing sinful homosexual behavior – and that is hardly a conservative value.
But, as Besen notes, the Liberty Counsel responded, claiming that Barber never made such a statement:

Friday, December 18, 2009

Know your lgbt history - Martin Lawrence and that 'gay guy' on his show

Martin (1992-1997), a sitcom starring comedian Martin Lawrence was broad and not for everyone's tastes.

I'm ashamed to admit that I found certain episodes and characters (particularly the ones created by Lawrence) to be hilarious.

Then there are other characters who are just downright insulting.

One character in particular is the gay man who hits on Lawrence in two episodes.

I will admit that I sometimes find a broad portrayals of a gay men to be funny, but not on a show which features no lgbt characters except for that broad one.

And especially not when the show is geared towards a community (in this case being the African-American community) in which lgbts are mostly pushed in the closet.

Hell, the gay guy isn't even given a name (although Lawrence does call him a "fake RuPaul).

In this clip, Lawrence is trying to distract his girlfriend by making suggestive motions. The gay guy picks up on his vibes starting at 3:25. Keep watching the clip so that you can see what Lawrence's friends does so as to tell the gay guy that they aren't interested. It can be considered as funny, but I found it insulting:

Then in this clip from another episode, Lawrence meets the unnamed gay guy at the DMV. Phony hilarity ensues at 0:37:

Past Know your lgbt history posts:

Know your lgbt history - The Ricki Lake Show

Know your lgbt history - Which Way Is Up

Know your lgbt history - Gays in Primetime Soaps

Know your lgbt history - Boys Beware

Know your lgbt history - The Boondocks

Know your lgbt history - Mannequin

Know your lgbt history - The Warriors

Know Your LGBT History - New York Undercover

Know Your LGBT History - Low Down Dirty Shame

Know Your LGBT History - Fortune and Men's Eyes

Know your lgbt history - California Suite

Know your lgbt history - Taxi (Elaine's Strange Triangle)

Know your lgbt history - Come Back Charleston Blue

Know your lgbt history - James Bond goes gay

Know your lgbt history - Windows

Know your lgbt history - To Wong Foo and Priscilla

Know your lgbt history - Blazing Saddles

Know your lgbt history - Sanford and Son

Know your lgbt history - In Living Color

Know your lgbt history - Cleopatra Jones and her lesbian drug lords

Know your lgbt history - Norman, Is That You?

Know your lgbt history - The 'Exotic' Adrian Street

Know your lgbt history - The Choirboys

Know your lgbt history - Eddie Murphy

Know your lgbt history - The Killing of Sister George

Know your lgbt history - Hanna-Barbera cartoons pushes the 'gay agenda

'Know your lgbt history - Cruising

Know your lgbt history - Foxy Brown and Cleopatra Jones

Know your lgbt history - I Got Da Hook Up

Know your lgbt history - Fright Night

Know your lgbt history - Flowers of Evil

The Jeffersons and the transgender community  

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What the heck is a 'Homo-Tom' anyway? and other Friday midday news briefs

Kaufman at Huff Post: misguided race-based rant on LGBT rights -- and 'Homo-Toms' - Pam Spaulding handles her business in an answer back to a Huffington Post piece.

Ugandan Pastor Responds To Rick Warren’s Statement; Revives “Forced Therapy” Option - Oh yeah. That's much better. Thanks a lot for the sour persimmons.

UPDATED: The Jennings smear = the latest right-wing "scandal" to flop in the mainstream - Just what is the deal with these liars and "fisting" anyway?

Newsweek prediction: Obama Does Nada on Gay Rights in 2010 - When pragmatism bumps up against the desire for progress, it's never pretty. I am hoping that this prediction will be wrong.

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New low: Exploiting the voices of lgbt youth to attack Kevin Jennings

Far be it from me to focus a little more attention on the religious right's flurry of lies against Kevin Jennings, but one thing about the entire incident has been really bugging me. And I have to talk about it just a little.

Is anyone paying attention to the plight of our lgbt youth?

Some of the attacks against Jennings have focused on the suggested reading list that GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network - the group that Jennings founded) has suggested for students. Some on the right have said that this is proof that Jennings approves of sexual behavior between adults and children.

For example, look at this article in One News Now:

Fox News has picked up on reports that Kevin Jennings, founder of GLSEN, the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network, has been surrounded by controversy concerning his organization as GLSEN has been accused of visiting middle and high schools where spokespersons engage in explicit sexual discussions with students.

In conjunction with the controversial talks, it has been uncovered that GLSEN has recommended an alleged pornographic reading list for underage students. Exact details of the reading list are too explicit for print, but the material includes frank descriptions and the glorification of adult-on-minor homosexual sex. Brian Camenker, head of Mass Resistance, the pro-family organization that first brought these disturbing details to light, is encouraging the public to contest the progression of this promotion.

Like usual, the One News Now article is one-sided and inaccurate. Jennings is NOT a czar. He is an appointee under Arne Duncan, secretary of Education.

Secondly, notice that Camenker from the hate group Mass Resistance and Paul Cameron enabler Robert Knight are the only people cited in the article.

Thirdly, the article omits this fact:

GLSEN states in red type: "All BookLink items are reviewed by GLSEN staff for quality and appropriateness of content. However, some titles for adolescent readers contain mature themes. We recommend that adults selecting books for youth review content for suitability. The editorial and customer reviews listed at often provide information on mature content.

GLSEN is not pushing anything on anyone. The organization has said that adults should review the list and select suitable books for students.

But there is the fourth thing which is the crux of this piece.

I was having an email exchange with a young man who swore up and down that the material on the reading list is pornographic. He even included passages that he said encourages children to have sex with adults:

Quoting _Queer 13_ about one young victim of statutory rape: "I really did enjoy those sexual encounters. That feeling of doing it to them and them doing the same for me was just too damn good."

Of course he omitted this part:

"This was the year I realized I was helpless, different, wholly alone and defenseless. This was the beginning of my worthlessness. It was always pointed out to me that I wasn't good enough and that there was always someone somewhere doing better, and that no matter what I did, I could still have done better."

Unfortunately the man who emailed me is not alone in his "selective omission." The right-wing webpage Big Government and other sites are posting seemingly salacious passages from the book list in an attempt to give an impression that these books are meant to titillate rather than educate.

And this is far from the truth. Some of these books are personal stories; they come from a place of sadness and rejection. They are the stories of how some of our lgbt children went through a rocky process to a place of love and self-acceptance.

The thing that should disgust people here is how their words are being used to exploit the lgbt community and thereby perpetuate conditions in which lgbt children are rejected and kicked out of their homes, lured into bad situations, and generally made to feel ashamed of their God-given orientation.

Are some of the books mature? Yes. But they aren't pornography anymore than a personal experience of rape should be considered as pornography.

Studies have shown that isolation and rejection push lgbt children into depressive and self-harming behaviors such as drug use and unsafe sex. And some of the stories in these books bear that out.

If anyone is angry over what they have read, then that is good. But to blame GLSEN for it is like blaming the messenger. GLSEN did not create situations in which lgbt children are depressed, isolated, and sometimes seek out love and support in places they shouldn't go.

Society is to blame here

I remember sitting in a meeting with a large group of  parents who were angry because a gay/straight alliance was being started at their children's school. They were going on and on about "their values" and how they wanted to "protect their children."

But when lgbt students who attended the same school spoke up about the need for a gay/straight student alliance and how they were picked on or isolated because of their orientation, the only thing these "upstanding" adults could say was, "I am sorry that this happened to you, but . . ."

And that got me a angry. But what? Why was there even a caveat? What were they saying here?

"I am sorry that this happened to you, but I can't do anything about it."

"I am sorry that this happened to you, but since my child isn't gay, why should I care?"

It's that attitude of ignorance which some folks are hoping will bring Jennings down. But regardless of whether it does or not, it won't eliminate our lgbt children nor the problems they face.

And I hope it doesn't make things worse for them.

I don't fault religious conservative groups and others on the right who exploit the voices of our lgbt youth for their own purposes. They can't help it if they don't care about lgbt children.

But I do fault everyone else who fall for their nonsense.

Related posts:

LGBT Youth At Risk

Family Rejection Of Lesbian, Gay And Bisexual Children Linked To Poor Health In Early Adulthood

In return to Jennings beat,'s Lott rehashes book smear

New smear launched against Kevin Jennings using old tactics of omission

Unraveling the Right's false attacks on Kevin Jennings

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sign the Affirmation Declaration

With a lot of attention devoted the Manhattan Declaration, that awful religious right driven hot mess, it's hard to remember that not all Christians are bullheaded individuals who seem to think that the world should rise and set in accordance to their beliefs.

The Affirmation Declaration serves as that reminder:

The Affirmation Declaration is a statement that expresses the convictions of Christians all over the world. It was written in response to the now famous Manhattan Declaration, to correct egregious errors contained in the document, errors that have been preached in the pulpits of many local churches for far too long.

With the growing notoriety and support for the Manhattan Declaration, our Affirmation Declaration reflects an urgent need to respond to the portion of the Manhattan Declaration dealing with issues related to sexual orientation—specifically, homosexuality and same-sex marriage. We strongly disagree with the contention that same-sex attractions and the oft-resulting romantic activities are immoral.

Because of the large number of people affected by this serious issue one way or the other, we felt it expedient to respond formally, both by submitting our Declaration to the drafters of the Manhattan Declaration, as well as by releasing our Declaration to the public, allowing Christians to show their support for love and affirmation, just as so many have shown their support for the propagation of false doctrines of oppression and inequality against the GLBTI (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex) community.

We also desire to let the world know that not all Christians are locked in what we believe to be an ancient worldview regarding homosexuality. We want to give people hope—hope to know that God loves them just as they are; hope to know that their gay loved ones are not destined for Hell; hope to know that although some Christian churches will never accept them or their same-sex unions, a great many will.

May the signatures we garner serve as a fire that will never burn out, lighting the way through the darkness of bad theology, and setting Christ's Church back on the right track as it relates to matters of sexual and gender orientation, and gender identity.

Go here to sign it.

Even if you don't sign it, it's a good thing to remember that there are Christians who still believe in the unconditional love of God.

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Yes there were gay cowboys and other Thursday midday news briefs

Cowboy Museum looks at gay and transgender folk in the wild west - I'm a serious history buff and our lgbt community needs to be aware of their entire history. So this is excellent news.

DOMESTIC PARTNER BENEFITS BILL CLEARS COMMITTEE - Good news for lgbt couples from the U.S. Senate.

Press Release: Darrell Tucci Elected To GLSEN National Leadership Council - How about some positive GLSEN news instead of all of the lies that have been lately thrown out.

Lesbian Rabbi to Attend White House Hanukkah Reception - That's nice but I want more invites to more White House functions.

BBC’s Idiotic Polling Question - I hear that the next poll question will be should black men be lynched (that was sarcasm.)

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Tom Joyner Morning Show addresses homophobia in the black community

From the National Black Justice Coalition (an excellent lgbt of color organization which we all should support) comes this news about an excellent commentary on the Tom Joyner Morning Show.

The commentary addresses homophobia in the black community (Editor's note - since I have no idea how to embed audio files on my blog, click on the "excellent commentary" link to hear it. It's one of the best commentaries I have ever heard):

We'd like to call your attention to a commentary from yesterday's Tom Joyner Morning Show, from regular TJMS commentator Jeff Johnson.

This brief clip includes commentary on the great lengths some factions went to in trying (unsuccessfully) to prevent Houston's election of an openly lesbian mayor, which leads him to calling out what he sees as a crisis caused by the African American community's unwillingness to be honest about its own homophobia. The clip is less than six minutes long, but in that time Jeff speaks an awful lot of truth to those that may not always want to hear it.

For those that don't know his work, Jeff Johnson is a Washington, DC based journalist, activist and commentator. He is the author of Everything I'm Not Made Me Everything I Am: Discovering Your Personal BEST and is chief correspondent for talk show The Truth With Jeff Johnson.

This clip is an example of the type of dialogue we need - open and honest, and a call to action asking the Black community to "stop being afraid, and start being willing to understand." His willingness and courage in speaking truth to those who may not want to hear it is inspirational, energizing and deserving of our praise.

Again, click here to listen to the commentary.

UPDATE - From Box Turtle Bulletin comes a partial transcript:

We as a Black community still have not been willing to have an honest conversation about the fact that we’re homophobic, about the fact that our churches in many cases are running the lead on demonization of homosexuality even when their doctrine speaks to restoration. And so if we want to be serious we’re going to lift up this notion of there’s a problem or theirs a crisis with our down-low brothers — the down-low brothers are leading the AIDS epidemic and we have a problem — but not recognize that you create down-low brothers by having a community that’s unwilling to embrace its own brothers that are gay.

… How can we begin to have honest conversations about the fact that these are our brothers, our sisters, our mothers, our fathers, our sons and our daughters that in many cases are dealing with a crisis of identity in an environment that tells them that who they are is wrong?

I don’t want to argue the theology of homosexuality. I don’t want to argue whether you think it’s moral or not. What I want to deal with is that these are members of our community that needs to be supported. There are young people in schools that are being abused because of their sexual orientation, and we’re turning our backs on it.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

'Porno Petey' writes a dirty headline and other Wednesday evening news briefs

Due to my having to address Peter LaBarbera's absolutely hilarious "calling out," I had to push back today's news briefs until now:

New York gov extends protections to transgender New Yorkers - Good news out of New York. NOM will just plotz!

NC: largest county - Mecklenburg - approves domestic partner benefits for workers
- Don't celebrate just yet. In the middle of the hearing regarding the vote, not only did the opposition try to push a phony report, but a commissioner said something nasty to another commissioner regarding her deceased son who died of AIDS. Par the course.

Liberty Counsel May Lead Pullout of CPAC if Homosexual Group GOProud Remains as Co-Sponsor - I rarely link to LaBarbera during my news briefs but the story not only shows the singleminded nastiness of folks on his side, but the headline is hilarious. What can one expect from Porno Petey?

Updated: Christian registrar Lillian Ladele loses appeal
- Do the job you were paid to do or quit. It's that simple.

Oklahoma City school board passes protection for gay pupils - Good news from the land of Sally Kern.

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