Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Matt Barber stretches out those 15 minutes

The picture that I will carry with me from all of this hullabalo about California and marriage equality is, of course, the one of the 80-year-old lesbians who have been together for 54 years. And they were the first to be married.

That's just too cool for words. And it proves the point that everything the anti-gay industry says about us are lies.

Tell me again how we don't care about family. Tell me again how hedonistic we are. Tell me again how we are evil sinners going to hell.

Give me more reasons to laugh in your face.

Speaking of which, we may have lost an opponent last week. Matt Barber has left Concerned Women for America:

Matt Barber, Policy Director for Cultural Issues with Concerned Women for America (CWA), will be leaving his post with CWA and joining the staffs of Lynchburg, Virginia-based Liberty University School of Law and Liberty Counsel, two of the nation’s premier pro-family organizations. Barber will serve as Associate Dean for Career and Professional Development with Liberty Law School and will be Director for Cultural Affairs with Liberty Counsel.

Personally, I am going to miss Barber. Every time he opened his mouth, he moved the lgbt community closer to the doors of acceptance.

Initially Barber was an employee with Allstate Insurance. He also wrote Paul Cameronesque anti-gay screeds on the side. This led to him being fired because one of his columns invoked the name of his employer. Also, there were some claims that despite Barber writing the columns on his own time, he may have used company equipment to do so.

For a time, he allowed himself to be portrayed as a "martyr of the gay agenda," until his lawsuit against Allstate was settled out of court. The terms of the settlement were not publicized.

Then Barber took the job at CWA. And things got better for us.

Barber looked good on television and for a while, sounded like a good talking head. But as time went on, one could tell that he was way out of his league. The following are my favorite Matt Barber missteps. And all of them happened this year:

MRSA virus

Barber led the charge in claiming that a possible outbreak of staph infections amongst gay men in San Francisco was the result of a “politically correct” doctrine of not telling people about the so-called dangers of homosexuality. He even helped to infer that it was the new AIDS crisis.

However, the Centers for Disease Control quickly issued a statement contradicting this. Amongst other things, the statement said: The strains of MRSA described in the recent Annals of Internal Medicine have mostly been identified in certain groups of men who have sex with men (MSM), but have also been found in some persons who are not MSM. It is important to note that the groups of MSM in which these isolates have been described are not representative of all MSM, so conclusions can not be drawn about the prevalence of these strains among all MSM.

When confronted about this, Barber claimed that the gay community strong-armed the CDC into downplaying the MRSA virus. In addition, he denied that he linked the MRSA infection to the AIDS crisis. However, his original comments about the MRSA infection showed otherwise.

This was such a misstep that Barber's predecessor in the CWA, Robert Knight, jumped into the situation to downplay what Barber did.

The Gay Agenda claim again

Barber claimed to have revealed the "gay agenda." His "revelation" was an old one - the claim that the gay community is trying to take over America through points of attack from the book, After the Ball.

Barber's predecessor, Knight, once cited the book, as did Peter LaBarbera, as did Janet Folger, etc., etc. Pretty much every anti-gay "expert" on homosexuality has incorrectly cited this book as sort of a homosexual manifesto before Barber came on the scene.

The gay early death lie

Barber claimed that "multiple studies have established that homosexual conduct, especially among males, is considerably more hazardous to one’s health than a lifetime of chain smoking."

He also referred to the 1997 Canadian study to claim that gays have a short lifespan. Interestingly enough, he also addressed the 2001 complaint by the researchers of the study regarding the misusage of their work.

Barber tried to dismiss the complaint as "worthless fluff." He also claimed that the researchers were under "tremendous pressure" to refute their original study. But that is where Barber made two mistakes. Not only did he neglect to go into detail as to what pressure was "exerted" on the researchers, but his mention of the 2001 complaint led many to look it up.

Needless to say that Barber's claim of the complaint being "worthless fluff" didn't hold up in the eyes of many. And even on rightwing webpages, he got critcism for what he did.

Yes, with enemies like Barber, the lgbt community didn't exactly need friends. So with a tear in my eye, I say goodbye to the right-wing version of William Hung.

I am going to miss your stupidity Mr. Barber. She-bang! She-bang!