Monday, March 31, 2008

Now come on, y'all. Don't you think you are being just a teeny bit dishonest?

It's been one of those days.

I woke up this morning with a bad head cold. Subsequently, I missed work and have spent all day in bed watching old episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents and the Alfred Hitchcock Hour on

They are very apropo for the stuff that has been going on.

Now I know some of you are probably tired of this but it's important:

On Wednesday, April 2, Concerned Women for America (CWA) will join over 50 pastors in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to rally support for State Representative Sally Kern (R-Oklahoma City) and her right to free speech. Recently, Rep. Kern has been under attack from radical homosexual activists and their followers over remarks she made regarding the homosexual agenda. Rep. Kern took a Biblical stand against homosexual activism and has refused to back down from her statements despite receiving death threats.

CWA applauds Rep. Kern for continuing to be steadfast and resolute in this fight against the homosexual agenda and for shedding light on the threat it poses to our nation. Rep. Kern has been quoted as saying that the homosexual agenda is dangerous “because it destroys the basic moral fiber of this nation, which is traditional marriage and the traditional family.” She couldn’t be more right.

So they are pushing the free speech lie? Interesting. And don't think I didn't notice that other lie about death threats either.

Now this upcoming part by our friend Matt Barber is a real lulu:

“There are certainly those who hate Rep. Kern. They’ve made that perfectly clear with vicious personal attacks and even death threats. But millions of Americans proudly stand alongside Sally Kern and say, ‘Thank you. Thank you for boldly standing your ground and for unapologetically defending Biblical Truth.’

Millions of Americans? Where is he getting that? Talk about your puppets spewing talking points.

For someone who is supposed to dislike homosexuality, Barber seems to have the CWA hand waaay up his ass.

I can just imagine the award being made for Ms. Kern. No doubt, she will be sure to attend THIS function, even though she was "unable" to attend the last one featuring many of her constituents who were angry at her remarks.

We really don't have to predict how this will end do we? No matter how many people show up or don't show up, the anti-gay industry will announce that the event was a "triumph" for "Christian values" and the like:

CWA of Oklahoma State Director, Linda Caswell, said “Rep. Kern has exercised her right to free speech and has spoken boldly about the effects of homosexuality on our families and on our nation. We strongly encourage everyone to come to the rally and show your support for Rep. Kern. Let others know that we will not back down from taking a Biblical stand on the moral issues facing our state and our nation today.”

I see. Using bad studies and stereotypes (see the last post) to demonize the lgbt community are Biblical stances. Right.

I could get angry over this, but I'm too ill right now.

Also, too optimistic.

People, based upon their own personal beliefs about the situation, have been predicting whether or not this situation has been a boon or a curse for Ms. Kern.

Those who despise lgbts are saying Ms. Kern is being commended for her stance.

While those of us who are reasonable individuals seem to think that the rest of the nation is either laughing at Kern or shaking their heads at her ignorance.

It really doesn't matter right now.

Ms. Kern demonized lgbts, referred to bad studies, and out-and-out lied about a meeting she had with PFLAG (which, by the way, PFLAG gave the true story on). Sooner or later, it's all coming to come to a point.

I'm patient when it comes to things like these because you can only tell a lie so long before it bites you in the ass.

One more thing. In all of my posts, I neglected to say something very important, so let me do it now (hat tip to Pam Spaulding):

You can help fight these bigots by supporting Oklahomans for Equality and Cimarron Alliance.

Now if you have gotten this are in my post without throwing up your hands over yet another mention of Sally Kern, check out these links. They are rather good:

TWO Launches Dynamic Multi-Media Website Refuting the 'Ex-Gay' Myth

Gay idealist fights for undiluted protections

Philanthropists ensure gay community's future (I really like this one!)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sally Kern cites Paul Cameron - it was bound to happen

It was just a matter of time.

Besides her Biblical admonitions about homosexuality, Sally Kern said there were studies as to the so-called "danger of homosexuality."

In the past, she hinted about the studies, focusing on the religious side of the argument. But in a recent letter to the editor, she sent out what she feels are proof of her claims.

She really should have stuck to the religious side of the argument.

Two things stood out in Kern's letter to the editor:

The study “The Longevity of Homosexuals” found that the average lifespan for lesbians is only slightly higher than that of homosexual men.

I looked it up. And that is a study conducted by our friend Paul Cameron. The entire piece is called The longevity of homosexuals: Before and after the AIDS epidemic

If you aren't familiar with Cameron, let me give you a few facts about him:

1982 - He invented a story about a child being mutilated in the bathroom by a gay man. When the police investigated and found the story to be false, he admitted to making it up.

1983 - He was kicked out the American Psychological Association after an investigation that he distorted the work of six researchers to prove negative theories about gay men.

1984 - A. Nicholas Groth, director of the Sex Offender Program at the Connecticut Department of Corrections, complained to the Nebraska Board of Examiners of Psychologists about Paul Cameron’s usage of his work to make the claim that gays molest children at a high rate.

1985 - The Midwest Sociological Society censures Paul Cameron. Also, the American Sociological Association and the Society for the Study of Social Problems both pass resolutions against him.

Like pretty much all of Cameron's work, the study, The Longevitity of Homosexuals, derives from his infamous 1983 survey regarding gays and lesbians. The survey contained many errors. Of over 4,000 people asked questions regarding sexual behavior, only 65 claimed to be gay or lesbian. Also, even before the study was completed, Cameron had publicly said it will prove negatives about gays and lesbians.

To find a good chronology of Cameron's distortions and lies (and how he has been rebuked and laughed at by legitimate researchers and physicians), you can go here, here, or here (pan down to the time line).

Kern also says:

“The International Journal of Epidemiology” states that the mortality rate for those engaging in homosexual relations before age 20 have their life expectancy reduced by as much as 30 years."

What Kern does not tell readers is that in 2001, the authors of the study went on record with the International Journal of Epidemiology saying that the religious right was distorting their work:

Over the past few months we have learnt of a number of reports regarding a paper we published in the International Journal of Epidemiology on the gay and bisexual life expectancy in Vancouver in the late 1980s and early 1990s. From these reports it appears that our research is being used by select groups in US and Finland to suggest that gay and bisexual men live an unhealthy lifestyle that is destructive to themselves and to others. These homophobic groups appear more interested in restricting the human rights of gay and bisexuals rather than promoting their health and well being.

The entire letter is here but I doubt Kern will want to read it.

Now I did not decipher the rest of Kern's letter, but it stands to reason that these two distorted pieces of work she cites negates her entire premise. And I'm sure anyone digging through her letter can find more distortions.

It's sad on so many levels. The saddest part is that Kern continues to mix distorted studies with Christian beliefs.

Sooner or later this thing is going to come to a point. But who is going to get stuck?

By the way, I wrote a nice, polite letter to the editor outlining the problems with Kern's sources. The address is

Hint, hint, hint.

The more Kern talks, the irresponsible she reveals herself to be.

But here is the rub. It doesn't matter as long as the truth doesn't come out. Someone has to make sure people know exactly what she is doing. Not the fact that she is a "bigot," or a "homophobe," but the fact that she is using bad studies from a man so filled with lies that he couldn't be truthful if his blood was replaced with truth serum.

That is the task that needs to be undertaken here.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Sally Kern tries to reverse her position on job discrimination.

Sally Kern has said she denies the PFLAG version of their meeting.

The PFLAG statement:

As PFLAG reported earlier today, Kern said she would consider meeting other families with GLBT loved ones in her district . . . and she told PFLAG representatives that “I agree with” the idea that gays and lesbians should not be fired from their jobs based on their sexual orientation.

Statement from Kern:

PFLAG has also spun my words to say that I am in favor of “sexual orientation” laws. I unequivocally do not support “sexual orientation” laws. While I do not advocate employers going on a witch hunt to fire homosexual employees who are performing their jobs in a manner just like any heterosexual employee, I do not support laws that would force employers to check their First Amendment rights to freedom of religion, speech, and association at the workplace door.

PFLAG never said that Kern is in favor of "sexual orientation" laws. In fact, there is nothing in their statement regarding these laws.

She also said the following:

While I did meet with PFLAG in what was a cordial and polite meeting, they have taken my statements and have spun them to make it appear that I am backing off my comments that homosexuality is a sin.

But according to the PFLAG press release:

“We appreciate Representative Kern taking the time to meet with us and consider an important, ongoing dialogue about our families and loved ones,” said Rev. Newton-Edwards. “Representative Kern expressed a commendable desire to consider every family, every Oklahoman and every constituent. Today, she took an important first step forward that, we hope, will be the beginning of many conversations with our families and our community.”

Kern did not express an apology during today’s meeting, nor did she back away from any of her earlier comments.

That doesn't sound like PFLAG was misrepresenting her statements.

Not only did Kern lie but she used the opportunity to say that she will no longer meet with PFLAG:

Since PFLAG has shown their lack of integrity by misinterpreting my statements from our meeting to fit their agenda — thus revealing their purpose of open dialog to be just a means of seeking to weaken my position and strengthen theirs — I see no benefit in having future meetings with them.

How convenient to make this statement. According to the PFLAG press release, Kern agreed to possibly attend future PFLAG meetings. I guess she has an excuse to get out of that now.

Then Kern adds this:

God’s Word does not change. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. His Word expresses His moral character. Therefore, my opinion also will not change.

Funny. Kern claims that God's word doesn't change. But apparently hers does.

Just more proof to the fact that Kern has not been truthful throughout this entire situation. She claims to stand for moral values, but thinks nothing of falsely accusing PFLAG of misrepresenting her position.

Cowardly and very un-Christian. But not surprising.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

A study ripe for the picking. How long will it take for the anti-gay industry to pick it

A study recently reported in Medical News Today said the following:

The odds of substance use for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) youth are on average 190 percent higher than for heterosexual youth, according to a study by University of Pittsburgh researchers published in the current issue of Addiction. What's more, for some sub-populations of LGB youth, the odds were substantially higher, including 340 percent for bisexual youth and 400 percent for lesbians, researchers found.

Now the question I have is how long will it take for our friends Peter, Matt, Janet, and the rest of the anti-gay industry to use this study.

If they do, they will be forced to omit a crucial part:

"Homophobia, discrimination and victimization are largely what are responsible for these substance use disparities in young gay people," said Michael P. Marshal, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychiatry at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC, who led the study. "History shows that when marginalized groups are oppressed and do not have equal opportunities and equal rights, they suffer. Our results show that gay youth are clearly no exception."

If they were to do this, it wouldn't be anything new. In 1998 Boston pediatrician Robert Garafalo complained that his study was being distorted. Garafalo had said that there is a danger of at-risk behavior amongst gay youth.

Anti-gay industry groups cited that ad naseum. However, they omitted that Garafalo found that the homophobia these youths were facing was a reason for their at-risk behavior.

Ironically when Garafalo complained, he was attacked as a "thrall of political correctness."

So back to my original question. Just how long will a distorted version of this recent study appear on anti-gay industry webpages, propaganda films, or worse, be cited by well-meaning but ignorant legislators (i.e. Sally Kern)?

Stay tuned for further updates. I have a feeling that they will be coming soon.

How are they going to spin this one?

It's the story that continues to get interesting.

Sally Kern met with members of the local PFLAG in her area:

Kern did not express an apology during the meeting, nor did she back away from any of her earlier comments.

Nevertheless, PFLAG said it believed the meeting was the beginning of a dialogue. It was her first meeting ever with a group working within the LGBT community.

And she made a commitment about workplace rights. During the meeting she told the PFLAG group that "I agree with" the idea that gay and lesbian Americans should not be fired from their jobs because of their sexual orientation.

Meeting with her constituents is the first thing Kern has done right in this situation. I'm curious to see how her comments about job discrimination will sit with members of the anti-gay industry.

Bear in mind, many of these groups think that protecting lgbts from job discrmination is a no-no, so I am anxious to see if they what they are going to do next.

Are they going to use what Kern said to show how much of a good legislator she is, turn their backs on her,

Or ignore her comments altogether.

My money is on the last option.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Peter LaBarbera and Matt Barber lie about Joe Solmonese - perfect example of distortions and bigotry

Matt Barber of Concerned Women for America, Peter LaBarbera and the rest of the anti-gay industry like to constantly beat the same tired drum of lies, claiming that the gay community wants to endanger America and silence Christians.

They are telling blatant lies, of course. And today's posting on the Americans for Truth (in name only) site is a perfect example of this:

Joe Solmonese of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s leading homosexual pressure group, says the federal ban on accepting blood donations from “men who have sex with men” is “discriminatory

The entire article talks about comments Solmonese made regarding the CDC ban on accepting donations from men who have sex with men.

Its a well written piece, being sure to include all of the anti-gay industry talking points of so-called Biblical admonitions against homosexuality, distortions of old articles (an article from 2006 relating how gay activists in South Africa were allegedly trying to taint the blood supply there - having of course nothing to do with the United States), and even a little mention of our friend Sally Kern.

The article pretty much attacks Solmonese for comments he made regarding the CDC ban:

Solmonese recently placed politics over science, falsely declaring this commonsense public health precaution to be “discriminatory.” He has called for the ban to be lifted, with the wildly irresponsible claim that, “[T]here is no medical or scientific rationale for this discriminatory policy.”

But it omits something very important; something very crucial.

The entire controversy over Solmonese's comments came about last week, as this Concerned Women for America press release proves.

Solmonese's comments came about because of a hearing at the Food and Drug Administration in which the American Red Cross, the American Association of Blood Banks and America’s Blood Centers all said that the ban on blood donations from men who have had sex with men since 1977 should be lifted.

Solmonese was merely commenting on this testimony.

Now the links to Solmonese's comments on the Americans for Truth (in name only) web page are to a January 2008 article regarding a Seattle blood bank.

It seemed that Barber knew about the testimony from the hearing and rather than being forced to mention the parts about the American Red Cross, the American Association of Blood Banks, and the America's Blood Centers, he decided to dig and find earlier comments from Solmonese about the CDC ban.

The following comment is on both the original CWA press release and the article on LaBarbera's web page:

Solmonese recently placed politics over science, falsely declaring this commonsense public health precaution to be “discriminatory.” He has called for the ban to be lifted, with the wildly irresponsible claim that, “[T]here is no medical or scientific rationale for this discriminatory policy.”

Now some may say big deal, this doesn't mean anything.

But that mindset is wrong.

The original press release by Barber and company had to do with Solmonese's comments about the hearing. But because Solmonese's comments were backed up by credible officials from the American Red Cross, the American Association of Blood Banks, and America's Blood Centers, attacking Solmonese over them would have been futile.

So Barber or his cohorts dug up comments by Solmonese from two months ago talking about the very same subject. That way, they didn't have to mention the hearing or the organizations whom Solmonese's comments were referring to. They could continue to push forth the false image of the "reckless homosexual who will endanger America while pursuing his agenda."

Some people may not see that there is anything wrong with what Barber and company did but I think there is.

It's unethical and highly irresponsible.

Attempting to distort someone's comments is bad but the fact that these folks are doing it in the name of Christian values goes beyond the pale.

You see this is a perfect example of the levels that some people will stoop to in order to demonize the lgbt community. They claim to have nothing but love in their hearts but with their poison pens filled with enough venom to kill a herd of elephants they work little by little to dehumanize the lgbt community.

My question is how low can they stoop after this?

Nothing will shock me anymore.
What else can be said about you know who?

I've said pretty much all I could say about Ms. Kern. So barring something new happening, let me relate what will happen next:

She will probably get a rally. Peter LaBarbera and Janet Folger will attend and present her an award. She will be called a "defender of the American family." And she will probably say a speech or issue a statement on how "this time has been trying for her and her family but her faith in God has gotten her through."

Such is life.

But I think this story isn't over yet. Kern fears that gays will attain political power. Those supporting her, especially on the site One News Now, fear that we will continue to become a part of the mainstream of this country.

They are right and I think we should continue to give them more to fear about. Ultimately this fight over lgbt self-determination will come down to us being politically active and intelligently involved.

And despite all they do and say, all the times they pat themselves on the back, the anti-gay industry need to ask themselves just what their behavior is doing to the view of Christianity.

All actions have reactions. And sooner or later, all of the lies told about lgbts, all the dehumanizations, all of the distortions and discredited studies are going to add up.

And I don't think the anti-gay industry will be able to afford the bill.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Janet Folger distorts studies to defend Sally Kern - should we be shocked?

Sally Kern was on a local program, KFOR TV's Flashpoint, talking about her comments.

Taking the other side of the debate was Scott Jones, an openly gay pastor at the Cathedral Of Hope in Oklahoma City.

I was very disappointed.

I understand the need to not shout and talk over each other during a debate but Mr. Jones was a little too milquetoast for my tastes. Kern talked over him and was able to go off on long monologues.

It wouldn't have hurt for him to say every now and then, "Excuse me ma'am but can I get a word in edgewise."

Really though, that sort of thing is a conundrum in our community. On one hand, we have people who want extreme action regarding Kern and folks like her. They have sent ugly emails to her expressing their objections to her comments.

And on the other, folks with access to television and the media seem to appeal to the victim mentality:

"Sally Kern's words are going to cause more hate to be thrown at the lgbt community. More gays may get beaten up because of her."

I don't like either voice. One is too ugly and the other makes lgbts look like victims.

There has to be a medium. And I have yet to see it played out.

A lot of what Kern said is incorrect on a scientific level. But she plays that Anita Bryant card. That is when someone says some of the most outrageous things about lgbts, but then claim that "love" caused them to say such things.

"I don't hate homosexuals," they would say, "I just hate their lifestyle."

Why is it so impossible for someone to say "Sally Kern, you have claimed that medical information says that homosexuality is a deadly lifestyle. Let's see you back it up."

Yes I have said this on more than one occasion. And I am saying it again because I have yet to see someone ask her about this.

And that debate was yet another way for her to hide her lies behind her religion.

Meanwhile, our friend Janet Folger has risen to defend Kern. And she distorts medical information:

The Canadian Medical Association Journal (Jan. 11, 2000) said, "Among young gay and bisexual men in Vancouver, the HIV/AIDS epidemic has reduced life expectancy by up to 20 years."

According to the New England Journal of Medicine (Feb. 12, 1998), smoking, on the other hand, reduces your life expectancy "7.3 years for men and 6.0 years for women."

Homosexuality is three times more dangerous than smoking. Think about that when they insist on teaching it to your children. And that doesn't even touch the other life-threatening risks ranging from hepatitis to fatal rectal cancer.

Folger omitted that in 2001, the authors of the Vancouver study went on record saying that their work was being distorted. They also said:

It is essential to note that the life expectancy of any population is a descriptive and not a prescriptive mesaure. Death is a product of the way a person lives and what physical and environmental hazards he or she faces everyday. It cannot be attributed solely to their sexual orientation or any other ethnic or social factor. If estimates of an individual gay and bisexual man's risk of death is truly needed for legal or other purposes, then people making these estimates should use the same actuarial tables that are used for all other males in that population. Gay and bisexual men are included in the construction of official population-based tables and therefore these tables for all males are the appropriate ones to be used.

You see people like Folger is where Kern gets her information. And while we are focused on the religious aspect of what is said or how to be victims, Folger gets away with peddling her lies.

By concentrating on the ugly emails and then debating folks who seem to go overboard in being "polite," Kern and her defenders are slowly doing very well to turn the lgbt community into the aggressors and her as the innocent victim.

And whose fault is that?

Monday, March 24, 2008

Short post today

How is this for comedy: I received a check from AT&T for the grand total of . . . $.11.

That's not a typo. They sent me a check for eleven cents.

It just marks how strange and slow this day has been.

But check out these links:

A Boy the Bullies Love to Beat Up, Repeatedly

Apples vs. oranges; homosexuality vs. homicide

Exhibit A: Pat Buchanan - why we desperately need to discuss race

And don' think that I have forgotten about Ms. Sally Kern. This weekend, One News Now published a distorted article that claimed Kern was being sued for her comments.

Today, the story is gone from the front page. I'm sure that it is still in the archives, but I also noticed that the article isn't listed in One News Now's popular story archive.

Just more proof as to how reluctant the anti-gay industry is to defend Kern.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

How to defend Sally Kern - when all else fails, lie like hell

In Peter LaBarbera's silly defense of Kern (highlighted in Thursday's post), he made it a point to infer that no complete transcript of her tape was produced.

Well this was a bold faced lie, as a copy of the speech has been online for sometime now.

So what does Peter do? He publishes the transcript of her speech without any acknowledgement that his original inferences were wrong.

And not only that, he is now embracing her words.

I guess Peter felt the need to "clarify" certain points; definite proof that many of Kern's statements presented a problem to defend.

You know, the very fact that I’m talking to you like this, here today, puts me in jeopardy. Okay, and so, so be it. Okay, and I’m not ‘anti’, I’m not gay bashing, but according to God’s Word that is not the right kind of lifestyle. It has deadly consequences for those people involved in it. They have more suicides and they’re more discouraged, there’s more illness, their lifespans are shorter. You know, it’s not a lifestyle that is good for this nation. Matter of fact, studies show that no society that has totally embraced homosexuality has lasted more than, you know, a few decades [Kerns told Americans For Truth’s LaBarbera that she meant to say “generations” here rather than “decades”].

So it’s the death knell for this country. I honestly think it’s the biggest threat even, that our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam which I think is a big threat, okay. [Kern told AFTAH that that here she was talking singularly about radical Islamic terrorism]

What a bunch of horseshit. Kern meant every words she said and an after-the-fact correction is useless here. And by the way, she is still incorrect regarding that "I meant generations" nonsense. Also, I still say that if she meant radical Islamic terrorism, she should have said so. I think she was talking about Islam in general.

Kern's speech is trash, pure and simple. It embodies every lie, every distorted study, every discredited study that the anti-gay industry has used against the lgbt community. That Peter took so long to embrace it is beyond me.

It's the same trash coming from his site every day.

And the lies keep coming, courtesy of One News Now

And now One News Now has gotten into the act. It took the phony news service time to "give the Christian perspective" on the situation. As of course they get the story all wrong:

Okla. lawmaker threatened with legal action for practicing free speech

Oklahoma state lawmaker Sally Kern has had to obtain legal representation in the wake of a barrage of tens of thousands of hate-filled emails and threatened lawsuits after she spoke publicly about the dangers of the radical homosexual agenda.

What lawsuits? This is the first time I have heard of lawsuits. Of course One News Now does not go into detail as to who is threatening to sue Kern. And the news site does not talk to people on the other side of this issue, like this legitimate news service did.

Of course the One News Now piece was written to rally support for Kern. As you can see by the comments section, this country has an excess of "guillible Christians" willing to be taken in by such tripe.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Peter LaBarbera tries to defend Sally Kern . . . and reveals more about why the comments came out of her mouth

Over two weeks after Kern's dumb comments, members of the anti-gay industry are slowly crafting a public relations defense for her.

Yesterday, it was the Thomas More Law Center. Today, it's our friend Peter LaBarbera and his group, Americans for Truth (in name only.)

Their defense is to try and turn focus on the responses Kern received regarding her comments, rather than the comments themselves.

Peter today, published a few unsavory emails that Kern allegedly received. To be honest, they are not nice.

Now I myself sent Kern a very short email asking just what sources did her information about gays and lesbians come from. And my letter represents a great number of emails by folks who decried her comments in a very respectful manner.

But of course Peter won't talk about those emails.

It is unfortunate that some folks choose to let their fingers wander on the keyboard before they calmed down from hearing Kern's comments. But you know what's more unfortunate?

Trying to make Kern into a victim.

I don't like some of the emails she received and I certainly don't think that she should receive death threats, but her comments were polarizing.

And people sending unsavory messages is what happens when polarizing comments are said. It happened in the case of the Dixie Chicks, it happened to Ann Coulter when she attacked the 9-11 widows, and it will probably happen again to someone else at another time.

What did Kern think the reaction would be? I tend to think that if her comments were about Christians, she would most likely receive the same type of vitriol.

However, the difference is that Peter and company would be trying to draw attention away from the vitriol rather than to it.

And on that note . . .

Our friend Peter also tries to lodge a serious defense of Kern's comments. The following are some his points along with my take on them:

Peter - No complete tape or transcript of the speech has been produced

My take - Unless Kern said at the end of the speech, "I'm just kidding. I really support the gay community," the fact that there was no complete tape is irrelevant. The comments on the portion produced is the reason for the anger.

Peter - Rep. Kern told AFTAH that she gave the (public) speech four times in her legislative district and never received a constituent complaint for its content.

My take - Again irrelevant. She certainly pissed off folks this time, didn't she?

Peter - Kerns told AFTAH that when she said, “I honestly think it’s the biggest threat our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam,” she was speaking singularly and directly to the threat of radical Islamic terrorism.

My take - She really should have indicated this in her speech and in her nonapologies about the speech. What took her so long?

Peter - Some homosexual activists are crusading to allow “men who have sex with men” (and women who have had sex with such men) to give blood – as part of their crusade for “gay rights” – despite the warnings by FDA that this would pose a “small but definite increased risk to people who receive blood transfusion if the policy were changed

My take - This is happening where in the United States? Oh that's right. It's not. Peter is referring to a 2006 article that dealt with gay activists in South Africa. But notice how he sneaks in the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) to infer how this is happening in the United States.

Peter - Homosexual activists are waging a legal/political/cultural war against the Boy Scouts of America, demanding that Scouts allow homosexual scoutmasters against their moral creed — and smearing this noble organization while seeking to cut off all government support for the Scouts nationwide.

My take - notice the phraseology behind the statement "demanding that Scouts allow homosexual scoutmasters . . ." The Boy Scouts do not allow gay scouts at all, but Peter is trying to covertly push the "gay pedophile" lie. For the record, I think the Scouts have every right to not allow gays, but they also should not have access to taxpayers' money. Some of that money comes from lgbts. You simply can't have it both ways.

Peter - Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, admitted what most of the rest of the country knew already when he said, “HIV is a gay disease”

My take - And Julian Bond of the NAACP called HIV a "black disease." Both comments were a challenge to both communities to take charge in eradicating these dieases, which is a good idea.

Peter - The GLBT “youth” movement – through organizations like GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network) — promotes homosexuality, bisexual and transsexuality as harmless “identities” to young people, thus putting children at tremendous risk. The result is widening youthful experimentation with “GLBT” behaviors and a plummeting of the average “coming out” age (when people publicly declare their homosexuality): some children now are even claiming that they are “gay,” lesbian, “bi” or “transgender” before they become teenagers

My take - The GLBT "youth" movement, as Peter puts it, sprung from the fact that young people are declaring and discovering their sexual orientation. If organizations like GLSEN did not exist, this would still be happening. GLSEN exists to provide support to these youth.

Peter - homosexual activists encourage the formation of “gay-straight alliance” clubs in middle schools across the nation

My take - That's right because these children need support rather than condemnation. And according to the Equal Access Act, it's perfectly legal.

Peter - the GLBT movement promotes homosexuality and transsexuality to our nation’s very youngest students – toddlers and kindergartners included — equating homosexuality with “love” in the minds of the most impressionable, grade-school children. Meanwhile, these groups are working to break down children’s natural opposition to homosexuality and establish “gay” activists as curricular role models in the classroom, while they simultaneously work to undermine parents’ rights and ability to keep their kids away from such lessons;

My take - Peter's comments here are filled with errors and entitlements. First of all, where is the proof that "homosexuality and transexuality" is being "promoted" to kindergartners and toddlers. And if children are equating homosexuality with love, it's probably because of their home environment. You see that is the part Peter omits when he says that gays are "undermining" parents. Many of those parents are lgbt and many of the homes these children come are same-sex households. And what's the deal with that comment, "children's natual opposition to homosexuality"? What natural opposition? Since when did Peter become a medical professional as to make such a comment?

If Peter's ridiculous tirade reveals anything, it's where Kern received her information as to homosexuality being more dangerous than terrorism. Don't you recognize the same vitriol? The same incorrect notions that lgbts are somehow outsiders and every move we make to protect our families and our futures being compared to tactics of a soulless invading army?

We get mad at Kern but really it's folks like Peter and other members of the anti-gay industry who are the blame for her nonsense.

And what makes matters worse, they claim that their demonization of the lgbt community, their distortion of legitimate medical information and statements made by our leaders, their entire program of misinformation about the lgbt community is somehow ordained by their Judeo-Christian values.

But in a way, I am glad that Peter wrote this "defense." He is taking responsibility for being one of the reasons behind Kern's lies.

Whether he meant to or not.

UPDATE: And now they lie about Joe Solmonese and donating blood

Peter's nonsense about gays giving blood may come from a recent Concerned Women for America press release:

But risking lives is apparently of little consequence to Joe Solmonese, president of the "Human Rights Campaign" (HRC), the nation's largest homosexual pressure group. Solmonese recently placed politics over science, falsely declaring this commonsense public health precaution to be "discriminatory." He has called for the ban to be lifted with the wildly irresponsible claim that, "[T]here is no medical or scientific rationale for this discriminatory policy."

"Joe Solmonese's demand is incredibly reckless and selfish," said Matt Barber, Policy Director for Cultural Issues with Concerned Women for America (CWA). "Unfortunately, it's a common demand among his fellow extremists.

Of course this is somewhat of a distortion. The press release juxtaposes Solmonese's comments with "recent studies" that are connotated to make it seem that gays are disease-ridden.

But what the press release fails to mention is that Solmonese's statements came about because of a hearing at the Food and Drug Administration in which the American Red Cross, the American Association of Blood Banks and America’s Blood Centers all said that the ban on blood donations from men who have had sex with men since 1977 should be lifted.

Solmonese was merely commenting on this testimony.

So what did the Concerned Women for America press release say about these organizations and their belief that the ban should be lifted?

Why nothing. Apparently the group was too busy trying to make Solmonese into a bad guy.

Just more proof as to why Sally Kern has the mindset that she does.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

It's Wednesday and stuff is going on

The Sally Kern bullshit train rolls on:

“I see no reason to apologize for what God says, that homosexuality is a sin. I will not apologize. I did not say anything false. I did not say anything malicious or hateful. . . And they really want me to come down and talk to them? It would be like throwing myself to the lions."
Oh the poor thing. She calls some of her constituents worse than terrorists and won't meet with them, but it's the constituents who are in the wrong.

How dare they demand to meet with someone who is supposed to protect their interests but calls them names.

What do they think this is? America?

This new statement by Kern is a teachable moment. She said she won't apologize for what God said. Well I rarely get into Biblical discussions, but God Himself never said that homosexuality is a sin. Neither did Jesus.

The supposed admonitions against homosexuality come from Moses, but he also gave certain rules about behavior (i.e. eating shellfish and how women should be treated while having their periods) that we do not follow nowadays.

Supposedly the Apostle Paul also spoke out against homosexuality. But Paul also said that women should be silent in church and gave several statements that seemed to justify slavery.

Lastly, don't even get me started about Sodom and Gomorrah. People take serious dramatic licenses with the story of these two cities. I remember reading a Biblical comic book that inferred children were being raped in Sodom and Gomorrah, even though this idea is not in the Bible.

God never said that homosexuality was a sin, if you want to be technical about it. Some will probably argue against that point and that is their right.

The point is that God never said all of those other things Kern said about gays either. And no matter how much she tries to make this story one about her defending God's word, it just won't play like that.

UPDATE: And she just won't quit

Sally Kern has retained the services of the Thomas Moore Law Center, a right wing organization that claims to "defend and promote the religious freedom of Christians, time-honored family values, and the sanctity of human life through education, litigation, and related activities."

She is pushing the "I'm the real victim here" angle really hard. But the good news is that she may just agree to meet with some gays from her district.

However, get this: the law center is trying to tackle probably the hairiest thing potential Kern defenders have to deal with; her claiming that gays are trying to "indoctrinate" two-year-olds.

The law center is doing this by recounting past incidents in a manner that looks as if gays are in fact trying to "indoctrinate" children:

A 24-page pro-homosexual booklet is set to be distributed to all 16,000 school districts in the nation. The booklet produced by the National Education Association and the American Psychological Association falsely tells students that homosexuality is a “normal expression of human sexuality.”

Every year, homosexual rights groups, with the blessing of school officials, sponsor a “Day of Silence” when students and some teachers in schools across the nation remain silent ? with tape across their mouths ? throughout the school day. This year it’s on April 25. The stated purpose is to make others aware of discrimination against homosexuals. In reality, it is a means of propagandizing and pressuring students to regard homosexual, bisexual and transgender behavior as normal.

In the Montgomery County, Maryland School district, eighth and tenth graders are taught that homosexuality is innate? they’re born that way. As if to underscore the point, students are shown a film instructing them on how to use condoms in anal and oral sex.

Of course the law center's recounting of these events are distorted but it doesn't matter. What matters is repetition. Repeat lies long enough (especially if you have a network of anti-gay industry groups and blogs willing to do so) and pretty soon the lies become truth.

What gets me is how they are trying to blur the lines by saying the following:

“Her comments represent the view of a majority of Americans. All you need to do is look at all of the states that have overwhelmingly adopted constitutional amendments or statutes defending traditional marriages from the homosexual agenda. Christians believe that homosexual acts are acts of grave depravity, contrary to the natural law and under no circumstances can they be approved. However, Christians also believe one must love the sinner, but hate the sin.”

They are being very deceptive here. Now the marriage amendments may have had overwhelming support in many areas and many Americans may feel that homosexuality is a sin . . .

BUT I refuse to believe that a majority of Americans truly believe that gays are worse than terrorists.

Sorry, that is the real issue here. No matter how hard she tries to mask her lies under "Christian beliefs," no matter how hard she tries to manipulate semantics Kern can't run away from her words.

Big props to Pam Spaulding for this update.

And the winner in the category of "geeze he must be running out of material . . ."

Americans for Truth (in name only) has posted a bizarre picture of what it calls "gay terrorist."

I guess our friend Peter is trying to be funny. I'm not really offended by it.

But the word "pitiful" does come to mind.

And I'm not describing the person in the picture.

I just have to brag about my city of Columbia

I mentioned this before, but it deserves mention again. It just demonstrates how awesome my city of Columbia, SC is:

City Council Passes Gay, Lesbian Protection

Columbia is possibly the first city in South Carolina and one of only a handful of municipalities in the Southeast to make it illegal to discriminate against people in housing and public accommodations based on their sexual orientation.

City Council gave unanimous final approval to the protection March 5. At-large council members Daniel Rickenmann and Tameika Isaac Devine proposed it.

The measure makes Columbia one of only three cities in the South that have comprehensive nondiscrimination ordinances, says a write-up on the web site of the Washington Blade gay and lesbian newspaper, which serves the Washington, D.C., area. The other two cities are Atlanta and New Orleans, the story says.

The rest of the story is here.

Just wanted to end this post on a high note.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

And the foot in mouth disease spreads - this time it's in Oregon

Over three hundred people gathered today at the Oklahoma State House to protest Rep. Sally Kern's dumb comments (that don't need to be repeated because we have heard about them ad naseum). They also demanded a meeting with her.

Naturally Ms. Kern wasn't there.

I am not surprised. Her kind of Christianity wouldn't allow her to be in a situation to admit when she is wrong.

UPDATE - Concerned Women for America rewrite the Bible in order to defend Sally Kern

Concerned Women for America just sent out an absolutely ludicrous press release defending Kern against the group of Oklahomans who gathered to meet with her:

An Oklahoma State Representative is being "jammed" by homosexual activists and a sympathetic media for taking a stand on homosexuality, and she is not backing down. The term "jamming" refers to the public smearing of Christians, traditionalists or anyone else who opposes the "gay" agenda.

Two Harvard-educated marketing experts, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen, authored a book called After the Ball; How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90's (1989, Doubleday/Bantam). In their manuscript, they laid out the homosexual lobby's blueprint for success in what is regarded as the handbook for the "gay" agenda.

Oh I see. The lgbt voters, families, and supporters aren't demanding a meeting with Kern because they are angry at her unfair comments branding them worse than terrorists.

They are doing so under the direct orders of a "plan" by national gay headquarters.

Now I get it.

That lie about After the Ball seems to never go away. It continues to be an anti-gay industry talking point, despite the fact that it just isn't true.

But here is the funniest part of the press release:

Oklahoma State Representative Sally Kern (R-Oklahoma City) has taken a Biblical stand against homosexuality, and she is being maliciously attacked by militant homosexual activist groups.

Well friends, that was just bound to happen.

Now Concerned Women for America is rewriting the Bible. They have to be because I don't remember the part about gays "indoctrinating" two-year-olds and being worse than terrorists.

Concerned Women for America should just stop trying. The more they defend Kern, the deeper they sink.

Even One News Now and other anti-gay industry groups aren't touching the Kern situation (at the present moment).


Oregon recently passed legislation that prohibits housing and employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, but there is a repeal effort under way, and one of the three lawmakers leading the charge is State Senator Gary George (
The local LGBT publication
Just Out, managed to snare an interview with George, and he had quite a lot to say about the uppity homos . . .

Just Out: What if an employee is fired because of his/her sexual orientation or gender identity? Isn't the Oregon Equality Act in place to guard against such discrimination?

George: As an employer, I don't wanna hear about it. This workplace is for work purposes. My advice to the gay community is SHUT UP, just don't talk about it. If you walk around talking about what you do in the bedroom, you should be on the pervert channel.

Now that's just ignorant but it's nothing lgbts have not had to deal with.

I had a similar problem with a friend of mine at work. When I told her I was gay, she began saying she didn't want to hear about my "sexual exploits."

Despite the fact that she was a friend, I had to set her straight. Saying that you are gay is a matter of being honest. It does not mean that you are all the sudden going to start talking about sexual intercourse.

So many people think that gays in the workplace wouldn't face discrimination if we "just shut up about it."

That would mean of course when our partners send us gifts for Valentine's Day, we either have to be silent in the face of questions (because they will come up when the gifts are seen) or we have to make up some lie about having a girlfriend or boyfriend.

I say why should we. It's our work environment too. And there were times where I was sent flowers and stuffed animals. When I was asked about them, I was honest.

And I never felt ashamed about it.

Also on my job, we have wedding showers and baby showers. And on special days, workers will wheel in their infants, putting everything to a standstill while other workers herd around the baby carriage making cooing noises.

There is nothing wrong with that. And there is nothing wrong with lgbts acknowledging our relationships and families at work either.

Last year I was blessed to receive the Volunteer of the Year award from my local gay and lesbian community center. The writing on the plaque clearly says the words "gay" and "lesbian."

I have that award hanging on my wall at the job with my college degree and other platitudes.

What makes that award different from the others? What makes that award different from an award that another co-worker may receive from his or her church.

Not a damn thing. Putting the award on my wall does not mean I am going to start talking about sexual intercourse nor does it put anyone in a situation where they have to "accept" my gay orientation.

So sorry Rep. George and everyone else who has the ignorant idea that an honest acknowledgement of homosexuality is the same as talking about sex.

Your believing so is YOUR problem, not mine. I won't hide myself or put myself in isolation to appeal to your insecurities.

And no one else should either.

Monday, March 17, 2008

If this is the calvary, then Sally Kern can kiss her butt goodbye

So a week after Oklahoma Rep. Sally Kern made her ugly comments about the lgbt community, members of the anti-gay industry are slowly crawling out to defend her.

Kern and our friend Peter LaBarbera conducted an interview with Concerned Women for America member Matt Barber in which they did everything short of standing on their heads in attempting to defend her comments.

And now a Canadian so-called "pro-family" site tries to spin the story in her favor.

I give them all a C - for effort in trying to shift focus away from Kern's comments and to the responses she received.

They emphasized the possibility of Kern receiving death threats, omitting of course the fact that the claim of death threats were exaggerated.

I noticed also how they are trying to phrase Kern's comments as an example of a Christian "speaking the truth" about homosexuality without actually going into too much detail in terms of the comments, especially the one about gays "indoctrinating" two-year-olds.

Sorry, y'all but it's just not going to work. And I think you know that. After all, why did it take you so long to defend her?

No matter what your beliefs about homosexuality, you just can't skip over how Kern compared the lgbt community to terrorists.

While some people may not approve of homosexuality per se, many know a lot of gay couples who are maintaining a home and raising a family. In their eyes, comparing these families to people who will fly planes into buildings or carry strapped bombs into shopping plaza just isn't right.

And anyone who tries to gloss over this fact should really examine their belief systems.

And yes, I know that I am repeating the main point about this situation, but you see, it bears repeating. This thing should not be approached like an item on Perez Hilton's blog.

And the real story is just beginning. Gay Oklahomans are wanting to meet with Kern.

She has a duty to meet them. It doesn't have to be a large meeting or one in which the media is invited, but Kern has a responsibility to sit down with her constituents and explain to them why she feels that some are worse than terrorists.

This situation has never been about her, but them. Oklahomans, just like other Americans, elect people to protect their interests and look out for their well beings.

Kern has a right to her opinion but a duty to do her job.

Of course the ironic thing about her defenses is the headline on the Americans for Truth (in name only) page saying that Kern trusts God to protect her from alleged death threats.

I tend to think that if she had truly consulted God in the first place, she wouldn't be in this mess.

Where do these people come from?

Apparently the foot in the mouth disease that plagues Sally Kern is spreading.

And it is looking like the highest risk group are those who call themselves "Christian conservatives."

Mary Frances Forrester, the wife of North Carolina Representative James Forrester, wrote an absolutely ridiculous piece in which she did what the anti-gay industry does on a daily basis: accuse the lgbt community of trying to take over America and harm children.

And like the anti-gay industry, she uses the standard lies and junk science, including the "studies" of our friend, Paul Cameron (now there is a name I haven't said in a while.)

My gosh, she even distorts the infamous Michael Swift piece of 1987. Swift's piece was a satirical look at what the anti-gay industry actually thinks lgbts want to do to children and the country at large.

The problem is that many took it seriously, even though the piece clearly said at the beginning that it was meant to be satire.

In Forrester's trash, she omits that part and Matt Comer of Q-Notes calls her on it.

In fact, he even calls her out on many of her bad references, including this one:

What the great senator’s wife neglects to tell readers is that her statistics come from the debunked and APA-booted “Doctor” Paul Cameron. His lifespan “studies” have been proven to be methodically inaccurate and skewed. But Mrs. Forrester’s intellectual dishonesty doesn’t stop at where she gets her statistics from, or her failure to properly cite them. In her op-ed, Mrs. Forrester actually twists the twisted study from which she received her numbers.

Forrester and Kern seems to suffer from egotism. They are so sure of their Christian beliefs about homosexuality that they cite bad sources as proof of their arguments without even checking for truthfulness.

In Kern's case, when she was called to the carpet for her inaccuracies, she blames other people. She seems to forget that humility and admitting when you are wrong are Christian virtues.

And I have a feeling that Forrester may be the same way.

I would definitely recommend Comer's excellent deconstruction of Forrester's lies, but if you want more detail as to how these lies came into being, go to my web page Anti-Gay Lies and Liars and pan down to the time line.

For details about the Michael Swift piece, check out the year 1987. For information on Paul Cameron, pick any year from 1981 onward. Trust me on that one.

Yes, it's a shameless plug, but it needs to be said. What Kern and Forrester said did not happen in a vaccum. There has been an over 20-year accumulation of bad science, distorted studies, and urban legends about the lgbt community which the anti-gay industry now uses to beat us over the head.

And more attention needs to be focused on it.

Otherwise we are going to be up to our armpits with Forresters and Kerns.

That is if we aren't already.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Superintendent of Schools gives truth behind Angels of America situation . . . and is attacked on a personal level

One of the main things that causes me and others to want to beat our heads against a brick wall is the insistence of the anti-gay industry to engage in lies even after the truth has been revealed, explained, told, etc.

It has to do with plain stubborness and a desire to be right even when you are wrong.

Consider the nonsense published on the Americans for Truth (in name only) page by one Laurie Higgins, a person in the middle of the Deerfield High School controversy.

A little recap first: Laurie, Peter LaBarbera, Matt Barber and other members of the anti-gay industry have been telling lies about a reading assignment in Deerfield High School.

They claim that the school is "exposing" students to "racist pornography" by having them read the Tony and Pulitzer Prize-award-winning play Angels in America. The claim is even punctuated by portions of the play cherry-picked to induce shock and rage.

Of course Ms. Higgins and others sounding the alarm minimize other details about the moral panic they have caused.

Such as the book is offered as an "option" in a senior AP Literature Class. And that parents had to sign permission slips in order for their children to be able to read the book

But I guess to them, facts are irrelevant when you are trying to stamp out "godlessness."

Anyway, the Superintendent of Schools, George Fornero, has responded to the allegations in an excellent letter.

Higgins has taken it upon herself to tear apart this letter, including making snide comments about Fornero's sexuality.

But in doing so, she reveals the recklessness of herself and her cause.

Let's look at some choice bits along with my take on what they mean:

Fornero: Students studying the play are second semester seniors in Advanced Placement English.

Higgins: (Translation: “We save the most offensive tripe for the most intelligent.”)

My take: Well that was a mature way to start a conversation Ms. Higgins.

Fornero: The College Board oversees all Advanced Placement testing; the class syllabus, including all readings was approved through the Board’s audit process.

Higgins: (Translation: “Of all the readings offered through the College Board, we’re including the most offensive.”)

My take: Why should Ms. Higgins rely on facts when hyperbole seems to work so much better.

Fornero: Parents received information about Angels in America that specifically addressed the mature content and potential for offense.

Higgins: (Translation: “We’re using the inaccurate euphemism ‘mature’ for the more accurate term “obscene.” Reality: The use of obscene language represents the very antithesis of maturity. It is intemperate, puerile language. In addition, the information given parents did not adequately convey exactly how obscene and perverted the material is.)

My take: please note that Higgins sidestepped the fact that parents were told about the book. I doubt that she has any idea as to what was sent out to parents explaining the book. And I really don't think she cares.

Fornero: Parents were asked to make an informed decision about the text their child would read. Two viable choices were presented: Angels in America and Albert Camus’ The Plague. They were also given the option of having their students read both texts. Letter to parents requested that they provide permission for their student to read the selected text(s).

Higgins: (Reality: Many parents have neither the time nor interest in reading read the entirety of Angels in America; This teacher is much beloved by students, and teens are rebellious, therefore, even parents who don’t want their children to read Angels may feel the force of social pressure, compelling them to allow their children to read the provocative, controversial text. The school has potentially set parents up for conflicts with their own children.”)

My take: Are there any facts behind Ms. Higgins's claim? Where is the proof behind her charges? She is speculating that parents did not sit down with their children to discuss whether or not they could read this book. As seen by the post yesterday (if it turns out to be accurate), there was at least one case where the parent and the child did talk about the book and its subject matter. And I am sure that there were others.

Fornero: Excerpts taken out of context from the play by NSSA are being used to diminish the work’s social and political themes.

Higgins: (Reality: There is no context that can justify or render acceptable the teaching of the most extreme violations of decency and truth that occur in this play. Put another way, can the administration or school board imagine any text in which the sexual vulgarity, obscenity, profanity or sacrilege is so extreme or offensive that its very presence would render a text unsuitable for teaching, no matter what positive elements may also be present? Or will positive literary elements always trump issues of obscenity, profanity, and sacrilege? Are administrators saying they will never, under any circumstances take into account the nature and extent of obscenity, profanity, and sacrilege?)

My take: So if I cherry picked portions of the Bible that talked about castrations, mutilations, rapes, and genocide, would Ms. Higgins be on my side? I really doubt it.

Fornero: According to Lake County State’s Attorney Mike Waller, the reading and discussion of the material is not a violation of the obscenity laws, or any other laws, of the State of Illinois.

Higgins: (Reality: The fact that it may not technically violate obscenity laws does not mean it is not obscene. I guarantee that if I start using Kushner’s language in the writing center where I work, or if students start using it in their classrooms, faculty members and administrators will curtail it due to its obscene nature. And if I or students refuse to cease and desist, we will be disciplined.)

My take: When this controversy started, the organization speaking out against the book (NSSA) said that the State Attorney General's office did say it violated obscenity laws. When Waller said this was not true, the group quickly changed its tone. Not quick enough for other anti-gay industry sites to stop claiming that the book violated obscenity laws, however.

So in one corner, we have an excellent, very thorough letter explaining the entire situation. And in the other, we have bad refutations that reveal the shrill nature of not only the person responding but the parties who have started this entire nonsense.

The sad thing is that new lies are being told. Town Hall columnist Mike Adams claimed that 14-year-olds are being required to read Angels in America:

Deerfield High School in Deerfield, Illinois, recently assigned the pornographic book “Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes” to students as young as 14 as a required reading. Somehow they didn’t expect parents to be offended by its graphic sexuality and overt racism. But, of course, they were. And that is why I am proud to report that the school has decided to make the reading “optional” over-riding the gay teacher’s original intentions.

And this lie is being repeated on other sites

Deerfield High School did nothing wrong, so I doubt that there will be any dismissals. However, I cringe to think that somewhere down the road, Matt Barber, Peter LaBarbera, or other members of the anti-gay industry will be able to refer to the situation and lie about it unchallenged.

It underscores that these groups and the folks behind them aren't interested in truth or values. Only power and control.

If this isn't the case then why did they rely on hyperbole, distortions, and misdirections to make their case.

Not very Christian, is it?

One more thing. If Ms. Higgins reads this post, I would suggest to her that she read yesterday's post from a student attending the AP Literature class.

She could learn a little something about maturity.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Youth speak out about Sally Kern and Deerfield High School . . . and outclasses the adults

Oklahoma Representative Sally Kern is still getting no defense from anti-gay industry members such as Peter LaBarbera and Matt Barber. This silence is interesting since (as seen in yesterday's post) it was their words she used in making her claims, including the one that homosexuality is worse than terrorism and Islam.

You will remember how Peter LaBarbera rushed to Fort Lauderdale mayor Jim Naugle's defense when he made controversial statements about the gay community.

Hell, Janet Folger even gave Naugle an award.

Meanwhile, there is an excellent letter from a senior in an Oklahoma high school addressed to Kern. This student lost his mother in the 1995 Oklahoma City Bombing. The letter has not been verified as legitimate. If this letter turns out to be legitimate, it is a powerful indictment on Kern's ignorance.

Part of the letter reads as follows:

You represent a district in Oklahoma City and you very coldly express a lack of love, sympathy or understanding for what they've been through. Can I ask if you might have chosen wiser words were you a real Oklahoman that was here to share the suffering with Oklahoma City? Might your heart be a bit less cold had you been around to see the small bodies of children being pulled out of rubble and carried away by weeping firemen?

I've spent 12 years in Oklahoma public schools and never once have I had anyone try to force a gay agenda on me. I have seen, however, many gay students beat up and there's never a day in school that has went by when I haven't heard the word **** slung at someone. I've been called gay slurs many times and they hurt and I am not even gay so I can just imagine how a real gay person feels. You were a school teacher and you have seen those things too. How could you care so little about the suffering of some of your students?

The entire piece is here.

And yesterday, I received a comment from someone who claims to be a senior attending Deerfield High School and a member of the AP class embroiled in the Angels In America controversy.

If this post is accurate, then this student puts the entire situation in perspective:

I am in the AP English class in question and have chosen to read the book.

Many of the articles make a fuss about how this book was "required reading." What they fail to point out is that there is ALWAYS the opportunity to opt out of reading a book if you or your parents are truly offended by it. It's not well-publicized, but it's there.

Some articles went as far as to say that forcing this book on us was "child abuse," which I think is patently ridiculous.

1. This cannot be child abuse because we are not children. Everyone in the class is eighteen or close to it. We can see similar things in R-rated movies; why can't we read about them in a class where we can discuss them in a mature and intelligent manner? If we are of legal age to vote for president and to die for the country, I should think we are capable of deciding what we believe and what we want to read.

2. If parents are trying to protect us from the issues discussed in the book, they must know that their efforts are doomed to fail. We all know that homosexuality and racism exist, and any parents who think their darling angel couldn't possibly have used or at least hear the "objectionable language" need to pull their heads out of the sand. These issues are out there, and refusing to let us read this book in class will not change that. If anything, more of us are likely to go out and read this book just to see what all the fuss was about.

For those have or are tempted to connect this to the SAGA Advisory pannel and say that the school is forcing homosexuality down our throats, I disagree. The freshmen are not asked to agree with the panel members and their decisions. They are asked to respect them, as we are asked to respect all of our peers. My English teacher has not told us his views on homosexuality, much less tried to convince us to agree with him. The hate mail he has received is unjustified.

Because we were not allowed to read the book without having a parent sign the permission form, I talked with my mom about the book. Our conversation was very short. She told me that I was eighteen and could make my own decisions. I wish all parents--not to mention the NSSA--had as much faith and respect for their children.

My hat goes off to these two youngsters. But it's also sad when the young act more mature than adults.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Short post today - This brother's tired

My mother got her cast removed today.

For those not keeping up with this situation, my mother broke her ankle in two places two months ago.

It has been an interesting two months as she was confined to a wheelchair and I learned how to cook her version of soul food.


Seriously though she now goes through rehabilitation in order to learn how to walk with the pins the doctors put in her ankle.

We always need your prayers.

Sally Kern - too hot to handle?

Is it just me or is no one in the religious right rushing to defend Oklahoma Rep. Sally Kern's comments.

Short from very few right wing blogs, I have yet to see any major religious right group sound the alarm about "freedom of speech."

There is nothing from the Focus on the Family, Concerned Women for America, and even One News Now.

Hell, I expected our friend Peter LaBarbera to say a little something.

Apparently he is too busy telling lies about the upcoming Day of Silence.

How convenient.

Could it be that they are scared to defend Kern's comments for fear of being asked about whether or not they agree with her comments regarding gays indoctrinating two-year-olds and homosexuality being worse than terrorism and Islam (and by the way, I neglected to mention how she insulted Islam).

Or could it be that the anti-gay industry actually has a sense of shame and realize that maybe their comments and propaganda can go too far?

What do you think?

UPDATE: One of my biggest bone of contentions over this entire thing was Rep. Kern not being asked to provide proof of her claims. Well now she has.

She gave KSBI-TV "proof" of her claims:

KSBI-TV received copies from Representative Kern of what she calls proof of a homosexual agenda. A document and links to some of those are below.

So her proof are links from the anti-gay news site, One News Now.

Are we really surprised?

One more thing

I neglected to mention that I made additions on my Anti-Gay Lies and Liars webpage. The additions include incidents from last year and this year (featuring our favorite state representative at the moment.)

Check it out and tell me what you think.

Monday, March 10, 2008

We've been here before - Sally Kern

By now everyone knows about Oklahoma Representative Sally Kern's diatribe of lies against the lgbt community.

Let me tell you all how this is probably going to end:

Us gay folks are going to focus on calling Kern a homophobe for what she said but we won’t focus on the specifics of how she is lying.

Kern is going to hide behind the first amendment probably because no one is going to ask her just where did her information come from.

The religious right is going to try and make her a martyr. It’s not unusual for them. Lies and distortions are what they deal in.


We all recognize those claims from Kern’s mouth. The lies about gay men and children, the lies about the alleged "gay life span;" they are the lies the anti-gay industry have been throwing at us for years. And no matter how many times these lies are discredited, they are still useful.

Let’s face it. No matter how Kern tries to make herself seem innocent, the fact of the matter is she referred to discredited work. And people need to know that. It probably won’t change some minds but I have a feeling that quite a few won’t exactly feel comfortable with a legislator who cites bad studies about gays.

Especially when that legislator has a history of targeting gays with her bills.

How often does this sort of thing happen across the country? How many legislators are privy to bad information about the gay community via religious right propaganda.

And how often do we NOT engage in “show us where you get your facts from” campaigns. This is what needs to be done in situations like this.

By calling people names and not showing just why they are wrong in their claims, we help out the enemy. When people are angry, they tend to react rather than proactive.

And almost every time a situation like this happens (i.e a legislator attacks the gay community via anti-gay industry propaganda) we tend to react angrily. We aggressively write letters and have marches.

Meanwhile the offending legislator tends to act all innocent and superior.

“I am only debating the issue,” he or she would say, “I am only using my First Amendment Rights.”

It was done in the case of Ft. Lauderdale mayor Jim Naugle and it will be done here.

Rep. Kern was not speaking impromptu. She did not just think of this information out of thin air. Someone fed this woman the information which she is now repeating.

And when we attack those sources, we get to the true root of the lies and the words that causes fear and murder.

And by the sources, I mean the propaganda movies from American Family Association, the pseudo-scientific papers from Concerned Women for American, Family Research Council, and the Traditional Values Coalition, the astroturfing groups pretending to be "parents' rights organizations" across the country.

All have a hand in manufacturing the lies that came from Kerns's mouth. And all must be made accountable.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Update on the Deerfield High School situation - The things the anti-gay industry omitted in their hyperbole

This is from an article by the Lake County News Sun regarding the controversy surrounding Angels in America and Deerfield High School. I bolded the more interesting parts:

North Shore Student Advocacy called for School District 113 Superintendent George Fornero, Deerfield High School Principal Sue Hobson, and all involved teachers to resign or be fired by the School Board.

The group claimed a victory when, after its complaints, the school district made "Angels" an "opt in" book rather than required reading in the Advanced Placement English literature course. Parents and students have to opt in to read that book, "The Plague" or both . . .

Lora Sue Hauser, executive director of NSSA, complained that the book is replete with profanity, overt racism, an explicit description of a sex act involving Mother Theresa, and vivid depictions of sodomy.

"After almost 15 years of school advocacy and reviewing many objectionable books and curricula, I have never seen anything this vulgar and harmful to students," Hauser said.

She said NSSA also talked to the Lake County state's attorney's office and claimed that office concurred that the play violated the state's obscenity statute prohibiting adults from "distributing harmful material to minors.

State's Attorney Michael Waller disputed that claim, saying it did not violate any criminal statute.

Carol Votsmier, school spokeswoman, said there was a problem with NSSA extracting passages of the play out to illustrate vulgarity.

The book and the class curricula were approved by the Advanced Placement College Board, she added. The students who "opted in" for the class will not be reading it until April. The class is limited to seniors, and 51 signed up to take it, but not all have made their choice of one or both books.

Votsmier said the play also has been taught in Highland Park High School.

The school district and NSSA clashed last year over a freshman orientation session where students talked about bullying and other issues and included gay students relating their experience in high school.

Matt Barber, director of cultural issues with Concerned Women for America, said his jaw dropped when he read the book.

"This isn't a First Amendment issue. This is about school officials betraying the community trust. Heads need to roll here. Assigning this racist, pornographic smut to high school kids is nothing short of child abuse," Barber said.

Votsmier said no one has been asked to resign, and there have been no voluntary resignations. She said the teacher of the course feels the students have the maturity and thoughtfulness to read this book and learn from it .

Let's clear up a few things:

No one is required to read Angels in America.

By offering it, Deerfield High School is not breaking any laws.

The class in which the book is offered is an AP class limited to seniors.

The book and the class curricula have been approved by the Advanced Placement College Board.
Now tell me something - just who is pushing a negative agenda? Is it Deerfield High School or someone pushing the following headlines:

Taxes provide free porn to teens

Deerfield High School Promotes Porn

Deerfield High School outside Chicago Offers Homosexual Pornography To Students

My friends, hyperbole and truth just don't mix.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

The anti-gay industry beats up on Deerfield High School (again)

Last year (last year this month in fact), members of the anti-gay industry attacked a high school in Illinois, claiming that not only was it "indoctrinating" students into homosexuality, but also that it was "forcing" students to sign a confidentiality agreement to keep said indoctrination from being found out by their parents. Here are the facts:

At Deerfield High School, there is a program that is geared to helping students adjust to high school. One component of this program is a panel discussion that includes speakers from the school's gay/straight alliance. These students talk about such things as being bullied because of their orientation.

Parents were able to opt their children out of the program.

The alleged "confidentiality agreement" was an agreement between the students that they would not discuss the program with other students who did not attend. The agreement said nothing about keeping details from parents. It is as follows:


Every person keeps what comes up in class confidential, unless it is dangerous to do so - that is unless a situation in class requires us to get outside help.

We do not repeat what someone says in class outside of class except if we have permission of the person that said it.

We will not continue a conversation outside of class without permission from all the people that were involved during the class.

Bottom line: What happens in our classroom stays in our classroom.

Exceptions to the confidentiality in which case (the teacher's name - I will not repeat it) will get outside help are:

If someone in the class reports being hurt;

If someone reports that they are hurting someone else; or

If someone reports that they are hurting or want to hurt themselves

The agreement was a part of a larger list of rules those participating in the program agreed to follow. Other rules included courtesy and respect for other expressed opinions.

Now omitting (who are we kidding - ignoring) these facts, Peter LaBarbera and other members of the anti-gay industry made a huge stink. As far as I know, their lies didn't get far.

So apparently they rested for a year and began attacking the high school again about another matter:

Deerfield High School outside Chicago Offers Homosexual Pornography To Students

And what is this pornography you ask?

Why it's the Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award, and Emmy Award winning play by Tony Kushner, Angels in America.

Neither Peter nor the group he is supporting in this matter (North Shore Student Advocacy) is giving details as to what exactly is going on. All they are saying is that the school is giving homosexual pornography to students via English classes.

Which is ironic because they are encouraging parents and others to write in to complain based on the miniscule degree of information they are providing them.

And to back up their "claims," they have included graphic portions of the play.

It reminds me of what young girls used to do to Judy Blume's Forever when I was in middle school.

Angels in America is not pornography. It is a thought-provoking moving series of plays about the beginning of the AIDS crisis. And the only problem Peter and company have is with the gay aspect.

In digging more, I found the following information:

The books were part of required reading until NSSA filed a formal complaint with the school, asking the books to be reviewed by committee. The committee decided to remove the books from required reading but continued to offer them in the classroom as an optional title. “Optional Title,” according to the principal, means that the student may select the books to study with peers and be guided by the adult, male teacher. A parental permission slip will be required but without full disclosure of the sexually explicit content. This conclusion is unacceptable to the complaining parent and to NSSA. They are asking that this pornographic book be removed from curriculum completely.

After contacting the State’s Attorney’s office of Lake County, Illinois, they deemed the books “obscene” according to Illinois obscenity laws, violating the “distributing harmful materials to minors” statute. But, state and federal obscenity laws exempt schools and libraries under “affirmative defense” so it becomes impossible to prosecute a teacher or school.

So apparently Peter and company didn't let folks know that the books are optional titles. Can you say censorship?

What's next? To Kill a Mockingbird because it contains racism? Or how about The Chocolate War because of it's unhappy ending?

No doubt folks will try to use this to not only censor high schools but to attack lgbts yet again.

To me, that is the real travesty.

I commend Deerfield for standing firm last year and I hope that the high school will not be bullied this year.

UPDATE: I have just rejected a comment by someone who thought it was thought-provoking to post the graphic comments of Angels in America I alluded to earlier in this post.

I rejected it for two reasons. First, the attempt to get a viceral reaction from me is immature.

The second and most important - to illustrate just why the moral panic over this situation is not necessary. Just as I was able to reject those comments, students were not required to read Angels in America. It was an option.

Again, I repeat, no one was forcing the students to read Angels in America. That's the beauty of this country. No one can force you to do anything you don't want to do.

So to that poster who tried to leave the comment - nice try.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

First the good news

We now break from the madness of the anti-gay industry for a nice moment of lucidity:

Apparently the word has come down that the Columbia City Council (located in South Carolina - where I currently reside) has unanimously passed ordinances that prohibits discrimination in housing and public accomodations on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

The laws were presented and passed with very little opposition.

In other words, the Columbia City Council passed a law that keeps people from being discriminated against when they are seeking a place to live or eat, etc.

There was no talk about "being forced to accept homosexuality."

There was no talk of "men and pedophiles invading women's locker rooms and restrooms,"

There was no talk of "churches beinig forced to rent to or hire 'she-males' and 'drag queens.'

This, my friends, is what America is all about.

Now the other stuff

According to, anti-gay industry groups are banding together to protest the upcoming Day of Silence. They are even encouraging parents to keep their children home on this day.

What I want to know is whatever happened to that lovely bullshit they called "The Day of Truth."

This was an attempt to combat the "Day of Silence ." School children were encouraged to "tell the truth about homosexuality."

Of course this translates to reciting anti-gay industry propaganda about gay men and short life spans, probably a little dash of "lesbians have a problem with alcohol and domestic violence," with just a hint of "according to prominent researchers Paul Cameron and John R. Diggs . . ."

Apparently their lies weren't working in that avenue so they are taking a different road. Hopefully it will end up at the same place.

And finally . . .

Box Turtle Bulletin is reporting that Glenn Stanton from Focus on the Family is distorting scientific views.

And this just in . . . the sun is yellow.

Seriously, a Focus on the Family newsletter item said the following:

Glenn Stanton, director of global family formation studies at Focus on the Family, said there’s a clear consensus among anthropologists.

“A family is a unit that draws from the two types of humanity, male and female,” he said. “Those two parts of humanity join together, create new life and they both cooperate in the legitimization of the child, if you will, and the development of the child.”

Now we all know the first rule of dealing with the anti-gay industry. When they make a claim, check on it because it's, more than likely, a misrepresenation or an out-and-out lie.

Well Box Turtle Bulletin did check on Stanton's claim. The site checked with an actual anthropologist.

To read what they found, click here.

This incident will definitely go onto my other site, Anti-Gay Lies and Liars (shameless plug ahead). I will be updating it this weekend.