Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Huckabee continues to hide his homophobia behind religion

Mike Huckabee (right) meeting with Brian Camenker, leader of the anti-gay hate group Mass Resistance in 2009 during a conference. Camenker later claimed that Huckabee said he receives the group's emails. Just one more thing the media won't ask Huckabee about.

Folks who read my blog know that I have a special dislike for Mike Huckabee.

No I have never met him but I still regarding him phonier than most anti-gay activists. With Peter LaBarbera, Brian Brown, Linda Harvey, and most other anti-gay activists, the lgbt community know where we stand.

Huckabee is that certain type of noxious homophobe who attempts to make his bigotry seem perfectly sound even though he is saying and doing some of the most offensive things against the lgbt community. He attempts to use his "Christianity" as an excuse for all of his homophobia. Take the following he put on his facebook wall for example:

I'm willing to bet that Huckabee will gets lots of press for this. Of course the press won't ask him about his history of demonizing the lgbt community

'Girl Scouts return transphobic donation' & other Tue midday news briefs

Girl Scouts stand up for the transgender community.

‘I don’t stand alone': County clerks invoke religious freedom to ignore law on same-sex marriage - So what if you "aren't alone." Gay couples have the law and the Constitution on their side. Actually we could easily sidestep this petulant diversion by, while agreeing some clerks may have religious objections to issuing marriage licenses to gay couples, demanding that there be a mechanism or procedure in place which will still allow gay couples to receive licenses with the same ease as their heterosexual counterparts. We shouldn't surrender the fact that we are the most important element in this factor and our rights rank right up there with the rights of opposing county clerks. 

Girl Scouts Return $100,000 Donation from Transphobic Donor - Huge kudos to the Girl Scouts. THIS is standing on principal.  

Asking Hate Groups About Marriage Equality Isn't Balance, It's Bad Journalism - I totally agree with this. I don't think they should be kept off the air. I do think that they should not be mis-identified as a "traditional values" group. I also think they should have to debate lgbt-oriented spokespeople more often. And at the very least, there should be some focus on THEIR deceptive tactics  for a change.  

These Religious Leaders Are Celebrating Marriage Equality - ANOTHER thing the media could do is to stop letting the religious right be the only religious voice heard on television. There are plenty of lgbt-friendly clergy out there being ignored. 

 Religious Right Pundit: 'Victims Of Homofascism' Will Take To The Streets Against Gay Marriage - have you noticed that those calling for 'civil disobedience' over marriage equality aren't even TRYING to lead by example?

 Conservatives Explain Why They Lost On Marriage - Notice how quickly they shift to new talking points.

Jon Stewart, Daily Show exposes conservative nonsense regarding marriage equality decision

On one hand, I love how Jon Stewart and The Daily Show calls out conservative hypocrisy and talking point babble over the recent SCOTUS decision on marriage equality. However, on the other, it demonstrates just had bad American journalism is. It's a shame when a comedy show does much more quality work to educate the American people than the folks who are paid handsomely to do so.

Monday, June 29, 2015

And the winner for the most insane anti-marriage equality comment goes to . . .

What does this pic have to do with this post? Keep reading

When I was a child, I remember a certain horror movie hyping itself by claiming that it was so scary and shocking that viewers would be constantly repeating to themselves the mantra "it's only a movie, it's only a movie."

The reason that I recall this now is because for the past few days, I've been reading the responses on anti-gay sites with regards to the recent SCOTUS marriage equality ruling. As to be expected, the comments have bordered on ludicrous, Biblical, and downright angry.

However, the following comment from the viciously anti-gay news site Barbwire (and emanating from an article by anti-gay activist Michael Brown)  is so insane that it had me constantly repeating "this is why we are winning, this is why we are winning." 

 It was the only thing I could do to keep from screaming.

I wish I could add something to that but I simply can't.

Photo taken from http://brightestyoungthings.com/articles/gay-icon-of-the-week-aliens.htm#

'Photographer loses client because of marriage equality support. Does not care' & other Monday midday news briefs

FRC's Peter Sprigg trying to smile in spite of lgbt victories

Jewish Group, With Hired Protesters, Opposes the Parade - Without a doubt, the single most ghetto anti-gay protest you will EVER hear about. Outsourcing your anti-gay protest to Mexican day laborers? I "ain't mad" at the day laborers. Heck, a buck is a buck.

 A Photographer Lost A Client For Supporting Marriage Equality. His Response Shows Why #LoveWins- That's okay about losing the client because you will get lots more. 

'It's Sad LGBT People Are Unwilling To Be Gracious Winners': FRC Calls For Anti-Gay Religious Law - Whatever. If we had lost, they would still be plotting but it would be to destroy the marriages already made legal. 

We won on marriage. Hiring and housing discrimination are next. - Why, after we have won marriage, the battle for lgbt equality isn't over. Still more to do, folks.  

Everyone should watch John Oliver's segment on transgender rights - And last but certainly not least, we NEED to get together on this one.

  This Is What Happened When Christian Groups Tried To Shut Down Korea Pride - A happy ending to the Seoul pride which began with protestors basically bogarting the event. The protestors  ended up losing.

Repost - Message to the religious right - this isn't about marriage. It's about history

Editor's note - I wrote the following on Nov. 17, 2008  just days after we lost the fight against Prop 8, the bill which would ban marriage equality in California. In light of Friday's final victory for marriage equality (who knew it would take seven years), I am reposting this resonating battle cry as a reminder for us to celebrate this well-earned victory, but never slack off in fighting for equality:

I keep hearing all of this nonsense about us lgbts attacking people, about us using intimidation and violence to oppress people, about us somehow being ugly aggressors. Newt Gingrich (who wrote the book on deceptive messaging during his tenure in the U.S. House of Representatives) actually accused us of being "secular fascists." Gingrich's attack on us seem to be the prevailing theme with those on the other side of the Proposition 8 argument.

And I think there needs to be some historical perspective on this matter.

 True, Proposition 8 has galvanized our community. We have become a bit more politically engaged in our anger. That is a good thing. However, any display of violence on either side of the argument should never be tolerated.

Nor should letting the religious right frame the moment. I have a few questions to people like Newt Gingrich, Bill O’Reilly, Chuck Norris, Gary Bauer, Peter LaBarbera and the rest who are trying to push this "gay intimidation" image.

Where were you in the late 1970s when Anita Bryant accused us of trying to “recruit” children?

Where were you in 1983 when Paul Cameron accused gay men of stuffing gerbils up our rectums and castrating children? Or afterwards when he went from state to state pushing his phony research papers all designed to make us the boogiemen of American society?

Where were you when Jerry Falwell exploited the AIDS crisis to generate more money for the Moral Majority? Or when those dying of AIDS were cast out of their communities and excommunicated from their churches?

Friday, June 26, 2015

'The Good, The Bad, and The Country Fools' - Reactions and news briefs to SCOTUS marriage equality ruling

Today's victory at the Supreme Court with regards to 50 state marriage equality is victory for not only the present but particularly the future as we craft a world in which the lgbt community (particularly our children)  know that our choices are not dictated by what we are NOT allowed to do, but what we have the ability to do.

You have to be living in a cave with your fingers in your ears to not hear what happened this morning at the Supreme Court. Below are several news briefs to help you understand this most awesome victory:

Gay Marriage Backers Win Supreme Court Victory - With a 5-4 victory like so many predicted. 

Obama Praises Supreme Court's Decision To Legalize Gay Marriage Nationwide - Obama should be especially pleased. With the decision on ACA yesterday and today's decision, his legacy is secure. Now about that Jimmy Carter comparison the right likes to make . . . 

The Beautiful Closing Paragraph of Justice Kennedy’s Gay Marriage Ruling - And another prediction which came true. It was Justice Kennedy who provided the pivotal vote.

 A New Right Grounded in the Long History of Marriage - Let's examine how we got here.

 Frequently Asked Questions about the Supreme Court’s Marriage Ruling - And what happens next. 

However, let's not celebrate too much. There are very pissed-off conservatives:

 Scalia Dissent: SCOTUS Gay Marriage Ruling Represents ‘Threat to Democracy’ - Making personal potshots at your fellow justices, Scalia? Tacky!

 Huckabee: Obama and SCOTUS Stink Worse than My Grandson’s Diapers - So what have we learned from this . . . I will NOT make any jokes about Huckabee smelling his grandson's diapers.  

'Satan Dancing With Delight': The Religious Right Reacts To The Legalization Of Gay Marriage - AND the rest . . .

Right-Wing Media Respond To Nationwide Marriage Equality: "We Should Weep For Our Country" - Oh yeah. "They mad." 

Map courtesy of  The Movement Advancement Project

Clinton campaign unveils wonderful video on marriage equality

Say what you will about Hilary Clinton's presidential campaign, its video on marriage equality is still absolutely STUNNING:

Thursday, June 25, 2015

'Ex-gay' group found guilty of consumer fraud, must refund thousands of dollars

Ex-gay group JONAH  found guilty of consumer fraud

And another nail has been hammered into the coffin of "ex-gay" therapy.

 From The Washington Blade:

A New Jersey jury on Thursday found a group that promotes so-called “conversion therapy” guilty of committing consumer fraud under state law. The verdict came in a case brought against Jews Offering New Alternatives for Healing in 2012 on behalf of four men who underwent “conversion therapy.” The Southern Poverty Law Center, which filed the lawsuit, argued JONAH violated New Jersey’s consumer fraud law with its claims that gay men could become straight. The Associated Press reported jury awarded the remaining three plaintiffs and two parents $72,000.

“This verdict is a monumental moment in the movement to ensure the rights and acceptance of LGBT people in America,” said Southern Poverty Law Center Deputy Legal Director David Dinielli, the lead attorney for the plaintiffs. “Conversion therapy and homophobia are based on the same central lie — that gay people are broken and need to be fixed. Conversion therapists, including the defendants in this case, sell fake cures that don’t work and can seriously harm the unsuspecting people who fall into this trap.”

And Buzzfeed:

Filed in 2012, the complaint said that the young men were required to stand naked as part of their therapy and, in one exercise, were told to wrestle away oranges representing testicles from each other. In another exercise, a client said he beat an effigy of his mother with a tennis racket until his hands bled.

In February, Hudson County Superior Court Judge Peter Bariso Jr ruled in a pre-trial decision that the jury could not hear testimony from conversion therapy proponents, including Joseph Nicolosi and Christopher Doyle, who argued that homosexuality is a disorder.

“[T]he theory that homosexuality is a disorder is not novel but — like the notion that the earth is flat and the sun revolves around it — instead is outdated and refuted,” Bariso ruled at the time.

The jury’s verdict found that JONAH must refund thousands of dollars paid by former clients for violating New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act, NJ.com reported.

'Plantiff couples await SCOTUS marriage ruling' & other Thur. midday news briefs

Bayard Rustin
Plaintiff couples on pins and needles awaiting ruling - Still no ruling from SCOTUS on marriage equality and we are ALL - including the plantiff couples - on pins and needles.

 Iowa's Görtz Haus Learns That Refusing To Host Gay Weddings Is Bad For Business - Of course we will probably be blamed for this. Sorry but you can force folks to use a business.  

Logo Honors Civil Rights Leader Bayard Rustin At 2015 Trailblazer Honors - That's right! And keep those honors coming! Bayard Rustin should be honored continuously! 

Stonewall Inn granted landmark status by New York commission - Sweet! Now we need some Southern lgbt landmarks thrown in the mix.

  Kyrgyz Lawmakers Overwhelmingly Support Moving “Gay Propaganda” Ban Forward - Ugh. This isn't good! 

 Barber: Gay Rights Activists Are 'Pawns' Of Satan - Ah yes. There is that repulsive homophobia which I miss . . .

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

When gays say 'equality,' some conservatives can't help but to think of sexual intercourse

You ever notice how so many times when we talk about lgbt equality, anti-gay figures always try to make the conversation about gay men having sex?

Check out this snippet of an interview between Al Jazeera America anchor David Shuster and Cathie Adams, former Texas GOP head. Adams is attempting to justify the discredited the idea of "ex-gay therapy."

The portion beginning at 3:55 simply boggles the mind. Shuster is biting his lip so hard to keep from laughing that he should have just done it :

Editor's note - I apologize for the fact that the video has been taken down. Please try this link, courtesy of my buddy, Richard Sparrow:


'Alan Keyes blames gays for Charleston Massacre' & other Wed. midday news briefs

I should have titled this post  'Alan Keyes is an idiot.'

Alan Keyes Suggests Charleston Massacre Was Gay Rights Terrorism - So Alan Keyes is linking Dylan Roof, that awful man who initiated the shootings in Charleston, to lgbt equality? What the @!#%!*!!!! 

Family Acceptance Is The Biggest Factor For Positive LGBT Youth Outcomes, Study Finds - And that's just common sense.  

FRC flat-out lies about Gen X and marriage equality; typical but no less egregious - The Family Research Council is caught lying (it's like always for this group).  

Annual Black Pride Festival Takes on New Urgency in Wake of Charleston Shootings - SC Black Pride is holding its 10th anniversary. It's sweet that an organization I helped start is still going strong and especially poignant this week.

 Feds Order Federal Employee Health Plans To Cover Transgender Health Services - Because it's the right thing to do.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Conservatives attempting to piggyback on Charleston tragedy to attack gays

The recent events in Charleston are bad enough. Unfortunately, Bryan Fischer and a few other anti-gay conservatives are attempting to make things worse by tying in the move to remove Confederate flags from places of honor at state houses to attacks on gays. They are claiming that the rainbow flag represents anti-Christian hate and should also be removed:

I am not aware of any rainbow flags flying at state houses but making ridiculous assertions has never stopped Bryan Fischer. And as The New Civil Rights Movement points out, Fischer is not the only conservative exploiting Charleston to attack gays:

'Anti-gay right moving to drama queen mode, Huckabee becoming delusional,' & other Tues midday news briefs

Mike Huckabee
Martyrdom And Dominion: Religious Right Conference Prepares For A 'Spiritual Battle' Against Gay Marriage - As we move closer to the POSSIBILITY of 50 state marriage equality, the religious right is moving into getting serious drama queen mode and are also getting confused. They don't know whether to become martyrs or attempt to take "total control." I personally wish they would make up their minds. 
‘One Million Moms’ attacks LGBT-inclusive Chobani, Tylenol pride month ads - These ads contained no nudity, nothing of a sexual nature, and profanity or violence. They just simply acknowledged that gay couples are raising children. OH YEAH. Pass the pitchfork.

  No, High Suicide Rates Do Not Demonstrate That Transgender People Are Mentally Ill - Zack Ford of Think Progress refutes some serious nonsense.  

Huckabee Announces Support For Term Limits – For Supreme Court Justices - Mike Huckabee has it confused. To be president, you must convince voters that you have the best plan for the country. It's not a race regarding how many times you show your ignorance.  

Mike Huckabee Pledges To Block Gay Marriage If Elected President - Doesn't mean that Huckabee won't try, though.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Disgustingly anti-gay documentary has an atrocious theme song to match

In several posts, People for the American Way's Right Wing Watch has been chronicling a wacky and vile anti-gay documentary by infamous activist Janet Porter.

This documentary ironically called "Light Wins" features Republican presidential candidates Mike Huckabee and Rand Paul, as well as lots of discredited information such as the work of anti-gay activists John R. Diggs and David Barton.

Central to this documentary, as with anything anti-gay,  is the claim that gays are wanting to recruit children. The following is a clip featuring that madness:

And hold on to yourselves. This documentary has its own theme song, which is as bad as the documentary itself:

How in the hell is someone supposed to "tootsie roll" to that?

'Documentary looks at U.S. government's nasty war on gays' & other Monday midday news briefs

FBI director J. Edgar Hoover - rumored to be gay but helped to wage an ugly war ON gays

Uniquely Nasty: The U.S. Government's War on Gays - A documentary looks at the time in history where the United States government actively and specifically waged war against the gay community. Actions happening in the past may seem to be in the past, but the repercussions always come back to bite us in the behind. It would do the lgbt community well to remember ALL of our history. It's always nice to remember events like Stonewall, but we shouldn't forget the events which led to Stonewall nor the folks who had to endure the awful indignities during those times so that we wouldn't have to. Especially when folks are attempting to push a false narrative of "intolerant gays." 

How LGBT Teachers Deal With Intolerance Across The Country - While we are waiting for the SCOTUS decision on marriage equality, let's not forget the other issues the lgbt community has to deal with. 

 IBM cancels ribbon-cutting because of Bobby Jindal’s anti-gay executive order - Sock it to 'em, IBM!!!!  

GOP Candidates Vie to Be Most Antigay at Rightwing Event - While America was dealing with much more pressing issues last weekend, the anti-gay right had another one of their homophobia festivals. 

 Mike Huckabee: Fight Gay Marriage Like Dred Scott Ruling With Civil Disobedience - Yeah, but just WHO fought the Dredd Scott decision with civil disobedience? I may be wrong but I don't think Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation in response to the Dredd Scott decision.

Marriage equality explained by 'The Golden Girls'

The SCOTUS decision on marriage equality will be coming this week or next week. While we keep our fingers crossed, let's not forget that this is a simple issue. The opposition will try to complicate matters by their talking points and scary anecdotes, but the following clip from The Golden Girls says it all about why us gay folks want marriage:

Friday, June 19, 2015

'Huckabee cannot sign NOM's anti-marriage equality pledge because . . .' & other Friday midday news briefs

Huckabee's grandstanding may have backfired.

Mike Huckabee can't sign NOM's marriage pledge; he's already vowed to not - Uh oh. Huckabee can't sign NOM's ugly anti- marriage equality pledge. At least unless he goes back on his word. I just LOVE this! 

 Brian Brown Suggests Terry and I Stole Our Son from His Biological Parents - Yesterday, I pointed out how Brian Brown said some awful things about Dan Savage's family. Later that day, Savage wrote a very polite but direct answer. And by the way, I do not blame Dan's husband, Terry, for what he said to Brown. 

This trans woman just became the first to sing at a professional sporting event - Yes this is a landmark happening. Positive visibility is always a good thing. And I bet she was awesome.  

First ever gay couple graduates from Boston Police Academy - Not bad. Not bad at ALL! 

Chad And Jeff's Story From The Let Love Define Family Series - We can't EVER get enough happy stories about same-sex parents and their children.  

Former Religious Freedom Ambassador Debunks Right-Wing Myth That Obama Ignores Christian Persecution - Not that it's going to stop the religious right from spinning lies. But it's still good to have clarification.

NOM's anti marriage equality pledge would undermine presidential candidates

Below is the pledge The National Organization for Marriage wants candidates for president to sign. The pledge would undermine the Supreme Court should it rule for marriage equality.

It also includes a couple of other things which should send a chill up your spine.  Needless to say that anyone who signs this junk will NOT be making their residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue after 2016 (click on image to enlarge):

Hat tip to Jeremy Hooper

Thursday, June 18, 2015

'NOM's Brian Brown calls out Dan Savage's family' & other Thur midday news briefs

Editor's note - I was contemplating not posting another piece in light of that awful terrorist act in Charleston last night. Yes it was a terrorist act and I will not rehash it to prove my point. There is no need. My prayers and condolences got out to all of the victims (the deceased and their families) and I hope we can learn something. How many times must this happen before we all get down to discussing the things which keep us down?  

For those who want to know more, Buzzfeed is consistently updating about the incident.

I am only posting because I feel my news briefs are still needed, even on a day like today:

Audio: The one where Brian Brown attacks @FakeDanSavage's son at an anti-gay church conference - So even after being invited into Dan Savage's home, seeing his family, and having a discussion about the importance of ALL families, NOM's Brian Brown pulls this mess. Not smart, my friend.

Michigan GOP Lawmaker Wants School Officials Held Criminally Liable For Teaching Students About Homosexuality - Anti-gay state legislator Gary Glenn teams up with anti-gay activist Janet Porter. Vulgarity ensues.

Pledge Pressures Republican Presidential Candidates To Reinstate Anti-Gay Discrimination - Just. try. it. 

South Bend Mayor: Why Coming Out Matters - His message is important.

Tips for reporting (and not reporting) the upcoming SCOTUS marriage equality decision

Media Matters suggests five "do's and dont's" for the media when covering the upcoming SCOTUS decision on marriage equality.

I personally think these tips would work just as well when it comes to covering lgbt equality issues and this so-called cultural war. Attached are three of the tips:
DON'T Cite Debunked Horror Stories

In recent debates over marriage equality, anti-LGBT groups and activists have trotted out the same tired "horror stories" about the supposedly negative consequences of same-sex marriage on religious liberty, including that:
All these claims were thoroughly debunked years ago, but news outlets tend to cite them without checking the facts. Journalists should avoid lending credibility to anti-equality myths and hold commentators who push this kind of misinformation accountable.

DO Accurately Identify Anti-LGBT Commentators 
Mainstream media often fail to give their audiences relevant information about guests they ask to comment on marriage equality. If a guest represents an anti-LGBT hate group for example -- like the Family Research Council or American College of Pediatricians -- identifying the person as such is essential to providing audiences the context they need to assess that guest's point of view. On CBS' Face the Nation this past April, Bob Schieffer exemplified how the media should introduce such opponents when he accurately identified one of his guests as the president of an anti-gay hate group. Schieffer's decision to properly identify Tony Perkins, of the Family Research Council, infuriated anti-LGBT conservatives, who rely on softball media interviews to whitewash their extreme positions. Anti-LGBT groups also frequently use legal scholars and academics to advance their talking points without revealing the animus that motivates their work.

DON'T Pit Gay Rights Against Religious Beliefs
Pitting religious communities against proponents of marriage equality is a common practice in the media, but it ignores the fact that most religious people support legalizing same-sex marriage. Media outlets have historically had trouble separating anti-LGBT animus from sincere, mainstream religious belief, framing the debate instead as a "God vs. Gays" issue. A recent study found significant margins of people in major religious groups -- including 84 percent of Buddhists, 77 percent of Jews, 60 percent of Catholics, and 56 percent of Orthodox Christians -- support same-sex marriage. Among all religiously affiliated Americans, supporters are in the plurality, with 47 percent favoring same-sex marriage, compared to 45 percent who oppose it.

Aside from misrepresenting support for marriage equality among religious people, elevating the "God vs. Gays" myth reinforces the right-wing campaign for anti-LGBT "religious freedom" laws. Coverage of the marriage equality decision will offer media outlets an opportunity to accurately portray the support for same-sex marriage among religious groups, and dispel inaccurate tropes about religion and gay people.   

The rest of the "do's and don't's - DO Rely On Empirical Evidence, DON'T Cite Flawed Social Science - are equally important. Check them all out here

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

GLAAD's wonderful documentary short spotlights South Carolina's lgbt community

From The Huffington Post:

The 20-minute film, "GLAAD Presents: State of Change -- South Carolina," was produced as part of GLAAD's Southern Stories program and is the first in a six-part series of short documentaries that aim to accelerate acceptance of LGBT people living in the American South.
 . . .The documentary screened in Charleston, South Carolina on June 15 as part of GLAAD's Southern Stories Summer Tour, a six-state, 10-city tour across southern states. GLAAD officials will meet with LGBT citizens as well as allies during the tour to spotlight their stories in local and national media.

 I saw this last night at the Nickelodeon and thought it was wonderful. One of the people you will see in this short documentary is USC professor Ed Madden, the man responsible for my eight years of hell-raising when he once remarked, "Gee, Alvin. Why don't you start a blog."

(In my best "Peg from Married with Children" voice) Thank Ed, everyone.

'Ryan Anderson - an anti-lgbt activist on the rise with help of junk science' & other Wed midday news briefs

Ryan Anderson peddles anti-lgbt junk science in a "nice" way.

Meet Ryan Anderson, The Anti-LGBT 'Scholar' Peddling Junk Science To National Media - When Michelangelo Signorile and the rest of us intrepid lgbt activists say that the battle for lgbt equality is not over SHOULD SCOTUS rule for marriage equality, people like Ryan Anderson are the reasons why. Anderson is the new face of anti-lgbt activism - intelligent, less fire and brimstone and more attempts to form "logical" arguments which speak against marriage equality and lgbt equality in general. Silly jokes about his possible homosexuality won't work on him. They have the opposite effect because this young man wraps himself in self-victimization like a second skin. BUT, as with all anti-lgbt activists, he has flaws in his arguments and sources. Educate yourselves on him because unfortunately you will be seeing and hearing more from him.

New Study Shuts Down Common Claim Against Same-Sex Parenting - Yet ANOTHER study proving that same-sex parenting is no danger to children. I'm all for it because the more studies proving this, the better when folks like Mike Huckabee, etc claim that our raising of children is simply a "social experiment."  

Pope Francis's Comments On Heterosexual Parenting Alienate Gay Catholics - But someone needs to tell the Pope about this study. He came around on climate change, now how about same-sex parenting.  

We Deserve Representation, Too - A letter to the editor by me published in The Free Times, local newspaper. Apparently the gay vs. black divide has hit the city of Columbia by way of a human relations committee and a ministry association wanting to play the "Oppression Olympics." The head of the association needed to be reminded that lgbts of color exist. It's always pleasant to be complimented on what I write, but writing stuff like this always depresses me simply because while I receive kudos and lots of reads, it generates NO needed discussion. Kinda like the column of mine about the systematic erasing of lgbts of color from Black history & the Black community, which was published last year by The Huffington Post. I got a lot of read and positive comments, but still no needed discussion by the folks who really should be having one. Unfortunately a large part of the African-American community either love playing the "black vs. gay" argument or pushing narratives which see lgbts of color pleading for acceptance from their heterosexual black brothers and sisters. Nothing too defiant or assertive because it scares people too much to talk about.

 'Spiritual warfare' on gay marriage declared by Southern Baptists - Oh stop it already. The Southern Baptists have declared "spiritual warfare" on lgbts so many times that at the beginning of every year, we mark the date they will make the announcement on our calendars.  

North Carolina Teacher Quits After Reading Gay Fairy Tale To Third Grade Class - I really wish he hadn't have done that.

Brian Brown, NOM, & the church of ' I'm not gay no more!'

Brian Brown of NOM recently bragged about the following:

Recently I had the great honor of presenting two distinguished awards to leaders of the Church of God in Christ (COGIC) at their 65th annual Women's International Convention/Crusade in Minneapolis. Over 10,000 people were in attendance as I presented Bishop Charles Blake the "Outstanding Leadership Award" for his principled stand for faith, family and God's definition of marriage. Bishop Blake is the Presiding Bishop and Chief Apostle of COGIC. . .

For those not familiar with COGIC, that's the church which was the subject of a, shall we say, interesting event at its convention last year:

Imagine. Hanging around with a group full of charlatans who exploit people's fear about lgbts . . . . COGIC should know better.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

'GOPers threatening constitutional crisis over possible marriage ruling' & other Tuesday midday news briefs

The New Nullification Crisis: GOPers Vow To Defy SCOTUS Over Gay Marriage - Allow me to put it plainly as I can - IF SCOTUS rules for marriage equality, you have to follow the ruling. If elected officials encourage any type of defying, they are creating a constitutional crisis. You just can't decide NOT to follow a ruling because you don't like it.  

The Rise of Christian Conservative Legal Organizations - Dear lgbt community, familiarize yourself with these groups. IF we win at SCOTUS, you will hear from them whether you want to or not (and you will not want to). 

 Fisher-Price Backs LGBT Families - Here is where we have to call out folks who attempt to call this move "political." Fisher-Price is merely acknowledging the existence of same-sex households and the children who grow up in these households.

How Mexico Gradually Became A Marriage Equality Nation - By either the easy or hard way (and there is no easy way) we win again.  

This Trans Man's Breast Cancer Nightmare Exemplifies The Problem With Transgender Health Care - What happened here was awful and any health care provider who even tries to plead "religious liberty" in a case like this deserves to get a foot broken off in their tuckuses.

Signorile - Lgbts fell for a false 'turning point' narrative after Indiana win

Michelangelo Signorile
Ah, but the Indiana moment, I was told by some activists, was truly different from the Arizona moment. The Indiana moment, they exclaimed with jubilation, was really, totally and completely the true turning point, honest!

Unfortunately, they were swept up in victory blindness, intoxicated by a win, letting their guard down, seduced into believing in the inevitability of equality while anti-LGBT forces moved on to other states. Just last month I penned an op-ed in the Washington Post pointing out that, on balance, anti-LGBT conservatives actually had a pretty good 12 months, despite Indiana and other losses. I noted that they operate through trial and error, and that they'd be back, finding a new way to turn their animus into law. Last week they did, and it was a stellar win for them and an infuriating setback for LGBT people.

And please, spare me the argument that the laws won't hold up in court, which is often yet another symptom of victory blindness. First off, no one knows that, and after the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision, we should all be concerned. Secondly, the goal of anti-LGBT conservatives is in fact to keep LGBT equality tied up in the courts as they gather their forces, raise more money and deny us our rights for as long as possible while they attempt to roll them back, just as they do on abortion rights, voting rights and other issues. So, yes, they had exactly the win they were seeking.

Michelangelo Signorile, Why Indiana Wasn't a Turning Point on LGBT Rights -- and Why You Should Be Mad About It

Michelangelo Signorile, in his new column, Why Indiana Wasn't a Turning Point on LGBT Rights -- and Why You Should Be Mad About It, puts the right perspective on the recent anti-gay laws passed in Michigan and North Carolina.

The lgbt community is like a character in a cheesy horror movie in that we hit the monster once and then celebrate a supposed victory. Meanwhile, the monster gets back up and we are in the same position we were before.

We  celebrated prematurely after Indiana because we believed a false narrative. There are too many of us ready to declare the battle for equality over after one victory. When we do this, we seriously underestimate those who fight against lgbt equality and set ourselves up for future disappointments.

The battle for equality will be long and strenuous. In the long run we will win, but it won't be pretty. If people on our side of the spectrum are ready to talk about "turning points" or wanting to celebrate  after one victory in the beginning of a new chapter of this battle, then maybe those folks should either re-educate themselves or examine their minds to see if they are up to the fight in the first place.

Monday, June 15, 2015

LGBT myths revealed and debunked

This video about the debunking of LGBT myths may either make you laugh or have you saying "no kidding!" However consider that the totality of our struggle for equality has been and currently is people with money and influence believing these lies or fooling an enormous amount of folks to believe these lies and then conflating them with their faith. The question becomes how do we combat that?

'Anti-gay archbishop resigns in disgrace' & other Monday midday news briefs

Anti-gay Archbishop Nienstedt just resigned in disgrace.
Southern Baptist Manual Offers Suggestions on How to Get Around LGBT Anti-Discrimination Laws - How about just obeying the law? One thing has never changed in this world. Those who claim the loudest to be on the side of the angels do so in order to divert attention away from their horns and tails. 

44,500 People, Including Two Presidential Candidates, Vow To Defy The Supreme Court On Marriage Equality - Y'all, perhaps you should wait for the court to rule before making such plans. It's not like the ruling (if it goes on the side of lgbts) will force you to marry someone gay. 

 Archbishop John Nienstedt, Deputy Resign After Archdiocese Of St. Paul and Minneapolis Charged With Sex Abuse Coverup - No happy karma here. Just sad truth. I know an archbishop who directed so much attention to stopping gay couples from getting married, that he may have failed to protect the children from monsters, like he was supposed to. 

 Rupert Murdoch: LGBT Advocacy In Clinton Speech "Almost Fascist" - Murdoch accuses Hilary Clinton of saying something she never said. Just in case where you wondered where Fox News gets it from, look towards its founder.  

Rick Santorum Interviewed By Gordon Klingenschmitt, Colorado's Premier Anti-Gay Demon-Hunting Legislator - And there was no spontaneous combustion involved. Darn.

Family Research Council's Peter Sprigg - Marriage equality IS segregation

Peter Sprigg
Loving Day is an annual celebration held on June 12 and it commemorates the day the Supreme Court struck down laws against interracial marriage via the Loving vs. Virginia ruling.

The lgbt community has taken this day and the Loving vs. Virginia ruling to heart because it gives us hope that anti-marriage equality laws will be defeated in the same manner.

However, leave it to the Family Research Council, and one of its spokespeople, Peter Sprigg, to attempt to claim that laws against interracial marriage and laws against marriage equality are different.

And Sprigg's attempt at doing so should leave you scratching your head or laughing your proverbial butt off.

In a column, What Loving Means, Sprigg goes through the history of Loving Vs. Virginia and then compares that to what he seems to think marriage equality entails. It's a boring, legalese-filled piece until this hilarious sequence of paragraphs (bold emphasis added by me):

The clear purpose of the bans on interracial marriage was to build walls between two groups of people in society, blacks and whites. Such laws were designed to reinforce a system of racial segregation, keeping the races apart from one another.

In contrast, defining marriage as the union of male and female has exactly the opposite intent and effect. Rather than building walls between two classes of people, it creates a bridge across the most fundamental gap in humanity -- the gap between male and female. Bridging the divide of the sexes by uniting men and women in marriage is common to all human civilizations, and serves the good of society.

Interracial marriage does not change the definition of marriage, and laws against interracial marriage had as their only purpose preserving a social system of racial segregation.

Homosexual "marriage," on the other hand, changes the fundamental definition of the institution, and would form at least three segregated forms of marriage: male-only unions, female-only unions, and opposite-sex unions.

In addition to  me saying "that don't make a lick of sense," allow me to go into short detail as to why. In his first statement, Sprigg is accurate. Bans on interracial marriage were to enforce a system of segregation. But that's the only thing Sprigg gets correct.

The problem lies with his sleight of hand. Defining marriage solely between man and a woman does have the same effect as banning interracial marriage, particularly because gay couples do exist and these couples have children. Keeping the rights and privileges of marriage away from them and their children does in fact reinforce a system of inequality designed by animus to tell gays that they are second class citizens. Neither Sprigg nor anyone else on his side of the argument has been able to prove that such animus does not exist

Furthermore, there is the simple fact that allowing gays to marry does not prevent the "uniting of men and women together." At no time does allowing gays to marry prevent heterosexuals from marrying each other.

Which of course means that Sprigg's claim that marriage equality would create "three segregated forms of marriage" is just plain stupid. More than that, Sprigg comes across as a high school student spinning odd theories in order to fulfill a quota of words in a class writing assignment.

If that were the case and I was Sprigg's high school teacher, I would give him an "F" for that paragraph alone.

Hopefully the Supreme Court will be as strict of a teacher to Sprigg and all of those on his side of the marriage equality spectrum who would try to pass his hokum as any degree of truth.

Friday, June 12, 2015

'Survey - People of faith oppose 'religious liberty' laws' & other Friday midday news briefs

This booklet breaks down anti-gay lies
What Religious People Actually Think About Using ‘Religious Liberty’ To Justify Anti-Gay Discrimination - I hate to sound like Sarah Palin, but the media is not doing this job to get this news out. To hear them tell it, the only religious folks are those white Christian evangelicals who are always spouting against lgbt equality. THIS article is what I'm talking about when I say "nuance." 

 Seoul’s Pride Events Are Off To A Pretty Terrible Start - This is NOT good. The lgbt community in Seoul have been outdone by the anti-gay opposition in a huge way. They would never be able to do that here, but still . . . 

Teen Sues School District In Potentially Key Federal Case For Transgender Restroom Rights - I hope he wins. He certainly has my admiration. 

 'Oranges, Baby Powder, Handcuffs And Duct Tape': Inside The Trial That May End The Gay 'Cure' - I still have my eyes on this trial. The repercussions could be sweet!  

How They See Us: Unmasking the Religious Right War on Gay America - shameless plug time. If you haven't downloaded this free booklet on anti-gay propaganda, please do so. This link will take directly to it for you to download, read, share, etc. Michelangelo Signorile said it best. This is NOT over regardless of whether or not the Supreme Court gives us 50-state marriage equality. As we saw yesterday in North Carolina and Michigan, the anti-gay right and their supporters have already planned for that outcome and we shouldn't ignore them. They have the money, influence, and intelligence to conflate religious belief with anti-gay lies and propaganda. This short, but definitive, booklet on anti-gay propaganda breaks it down in a way it should have been broken down a long time ago.

Ben Carson's 'black vs. gay' gambit backfires in his face

Leave it to wannabe presidential contender Ben Carson to begin the dreadful "black vs. gay" argument again by declaring that gay rights aren't the same as civil rights because there was no segregation against gays.

Of course that would be excluding these "religious freedom laws" which the religious right and their cohorts are pushing through the state legislatures.

But aside from that, Carson is conveniently forgetting the presence of lgbts of color during segregation. One day, I am going to find that spaceship which folks like Carson seem to think people like me were on during segregation and other pivotal moments in black history.

But for now, I will console myself by enjoying how the 'black vs. gay" gambit blew up in Carson's face when Brianna Keller of CNN challenges him on it:

Related column - The Erasure of 'Gay' From Black History and the Black Community Must Stop

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Michigan now making it more difficult for gay couples to raise children via bad adoption laws

Michigan Gov. Snyder slaps gay taxpayers in the face with new laws.

If my lgbt brothers and sisters thought that this so-called culture war was nearing the end thanks to a possible Supreme Court ruling for marriage equality (which hasn't even happened yet), they got a wake up call today.

North Carolina's "religious liberty" law regarding magistrates is bad enough, but thanks to Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, not only will children be potentially denied good homes, but the state's lgbt community just got a huge slap in the face.

Now it is legal for Michigan's adoption agencies to not only imply to the state's lgbt community that they are not worthy of having families and raising children, but these same  adoption agencies can receive lgbt tax dollars for the privilege:

Michigan's governor signed legislation on Thursday allowing private adoption agencies to refuse to place children with same-sex couples on religious grounds, one of a series of Republican-backed measures at the state level targeting gay couples. Governor Rick Snyder, a Republican, signed three bills into law a day after Michigan's Republican-controlled Senate approved the measures that had been advanced by the state House of Representatives.

 . . . The Michigan bills that were signed into law let faith-based agencies that contract with Michigan refuse adoption services to couples on religious grounds. The legislation does not specifically mention gay couples, but is considered a version of religious freedom acts considered in a number of states to shield businesses that may refuse services to same-sex couples from discrimination lawsuits. Child placement agencies that decline services to couples will be required promptly to provide prospective adoptive parents a list of other adoption agencies willing and able to serve them. 
One bill amended the state's child protection act and the others amended other laws to add language on refusing service.

Freedom Michigan, a coalition of business and other groups supporting gay rights, said the law will make it harder for the more than 13,000 children in the state's adoption and foster care system to find nurturing homes.

The ACLU is already considering challenging the laws in court:

ACLU attorney Brooke Tucker said the group is looking at ways to challenge of the law on constitutional grounds."The constitution doesn't allow discrimination based on religion and you can't do that with state funds," she said. "We're looking at our legal options and especially looking to hear from people who will be adversely affected by this."

This is NOT the last we hear about this in Michigan and, unfortunately, in other states. The signal has been given and I am sure that other states will be attempting to follow.

How long will it be before our lazy media creates the false narrative of the "backlash" to the progression of lgbt equality?

'Trouble for lgbts in North Carolina & Michigan' & other Thursday midday news briefs

House overrides magistrate same-sex marriage veto - A law which allows county magistrates a "religious excuse" to refuse to perform marriages for any couples (i.e. same sex couples) has become law after the legislature overrode the Governor's veto. Ugh! 

Michigan Lawmakers Pass Bills That Could Allow Adoption Agencies To Reject LGBT Families - And then there is THIS thing. Will the Governor sign it? Regardless, when Michelangelo Signorile once remarked that "it's not over," if folks didn't believe it then, they had better believe it now.

  Report Attacks African Nations' Justifications For Anti-Gay Laws - The same lies and junk science which once had IMMENSE power in America has a greater deal of power in Africa.  

Ben Carson: Gay Rights Aren't Civil Rights Because Gay People Don't Have Separate Water Fountains - Oh stop it already! The segregation was a symbol of inequality, just like the sodomy laws, and the pogroms against Jewish people. For a person who is supposed to be intelligent, Ben Carson is a serious dumbass.  

Right-Wing Pundits Rail Against Gay Military Leaders - So much for respecting those who fight for our freedoms. 

22 Stunning Same-Sex Wedding Photos That Are So Full Of Love - Let's end these abysmal set of news briefs with something happy.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Niece of Martin Luther King, Jr. becomes 'Paris Hilton' of anti-gay right

Alveda King - the 'Paris Hilton' of anti-gay activism

Those who read this blog or keep up with the struggle for lgbt equality should be familiar with the name Alveda King.

For those who aren't, she is the niece of the late and legendary activist Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. A polite way to describe her would be the "Paris Hilton" of anti-gay activism, or someone who brings nothing to the table but her name, which gives  a psychological but transparent relevancy exploited by the religious right when they want to make their homophobia sound noble or connected to the African-American civil rights movement.

As such, Alveda really doesn't have the good sense God gave a goose, but she knows how to take advantage of a good gig when she sees one. This being the case, she is constantly on the ready to be called to speak at an anti-gay rally, or on television. In fact, Fox News recently hired her as a pundit (which should say a lot about Fox News, but nothing you probably haven't already heard).

Recently, she took part in a Family Research Council panel discussion where she made several outrageous claims. First she said according to polls, little children have shown that they want a biological father and mother. But hold on because that's not the only outrageous claim she makes. King claims that not only are there more studies which prove that same-sex households are a danger to children, but that media is conspiring to cover this up. She also said she could personally testify about being "harmed and confused." Her statements to this effect begins at 1:30 :

King's entire statement is questionable. I say this as someone who has interviewed her in the past regarding claims she made (more on this later) and based on our conversation, I got the impression that she is a person who is "flying by the seat of her pants," i.e. makes outrageous claims, but can't back them up with proof.

'Target ad breaks down love of pride, will surely confuse Franklin Graham' & other Wed. midday news briefs

Poor Franklin Graham. I guess he is going to have to also get his followers to boycott Target. This ad is simply awesome!

 In other news: 

 Meet The Doctor Social Conservatives Depend On To Justify Anti-Transgender Hate - Wonderful!! There needs to be more refuting of anti-gay junk science on a larger scale. A queen gets tired of feeling like he is doing it alone. 

 Maggie Gallagher's familiar 'victim' psychodrama - Just what I needed today. A silly white woman telling me that a crazy black man is an icon in a black community when the residents of said community are saying the opposite. Maggie Gallagher still thinking of black folks as "the help."

Judge: Arkansas Must Recognize in-State Same-Sex Marriages - By the way, this happened yesterday. It's nice to post something out of Arkansas besides those darn Duggars.  

Family Research Council: Anti-LGBT Conservatives Are The New Civil Rights Leaders - And they are clever, too. They've figured out a way to spread lies in the name of Christ, collect HUGE paychecks, and not even get one hose sprayed at them or one dog nipping at their feet. And the racists simply LOOOOOOOVE them!

How do children feel about Caitlyn Jenner?

One of the constant refrains of the religious right is how learning about lgbts, particularly the transgender community, will confuse and ultimately damage children. It's a load of hokum. Based on the reactions they have about Caitlyn Jenner, children seem to be more hip to the truth of the matter than most adults:

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Lindsey Graham kisses his presidential aspirations goodbye with one statement

Lindsey Graham wants Caitlyn Jenner's vote.

Sen. Lindsey Graham is running for president. He's not even going to make it past the preliminaries for a number of reasons, particularly this statement:

Republican presidential contender Lindsey Graham says his party has room for transgendered people like Caitlyn Jenner.

The South Carolina senator calls himself a "traditional marriage kind of guy." But he says he "can only imagine the torment that Bruce Jenner went through" before becoming a transgendered woman. He hopes that, now, she's "found peace."

The underdog Republican candidate is campaigning on the need to counter threats from terrorists and Islamic State militants. He shares the opposition to same-sex marriage expressed by his rivals but says the Supreme Court is settling that question.
Graham says if Jenner wants to be a Republican, she's welcome. And he says if she wants a safe country and a strong economy, she should vote for him.

He spoke Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."

That ought to play well with Rush Limbaugh, Erick Erickson, other conservatives, and the wannabe kingmakers of the religious right.

My guess is that James Dobson hasn't commented on this yet because he is still being fed oxygen after originally hearing it.