Saturday, March 13, 2010

Scott Lively demonstrates how to throw gasoline on an anti-gay brush fire

Earlier this week, I wrote a post about how anti-gay activist Scott Lively claimed on ABC News  that he didn't envision Uganda pushing for that draconian anti-gay bill even though he had:

a. visited the country earlier that year during a conference and told negative stories about the gay and lesbian community and

b. had been going to foreign countries as far back as 2007 (i.e. Russia) and advocating that they "criminalize homosexuality."

How about a little visual aid in regards to his technique courtesy of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The above video is him speaking at a WOTW conference in Novosibirsk, Russia in 2007. There are two things I want you all to notice.

1. How he makes the American gay community sound like a criminal syndicate from a James Bond movie.

2. A story he tells about the murder of a gay man in Sacramento. The following transcript of what he says is from Box Turtle Bulletin (an excellent site which chronicles, among other things, the how the Ugandan anti-gay bill came into being). It starts at 0.15

Now, I’ve been working with the Russian community in Sacramento. And I want to tell you this is an example of how bad things are in the United States. Because we’ve come to a place in the United States where the homosexuals have achieved very high power. And they’ve begun to punish… They’ve begun to cause the political powers to punish anyone who says that homosexuality is wrong.

There was a situation in Sacramento a few weeks ago in a public park. There was a group of homosexuals and they were very drunk and one of the homosexual men was taking off his pants. And there were children in the park. And a Russian man went over to these homosexuals and he was rebuking them and there started a fight. And the Russian man punched the homosexual. [The audience starts to shout and applaud.] No, no, no, don’t… The man was very drunk… the homosexual was very drunk. He was very drunk and he fell down and he hit his head and he died. [Some in the audience start to applaud and laugh] No…. no…

Now the Russian man has been accused of murder and the FBI is seeking him. And all of the powers in Sacramento have been accusing all of the Russian community of being murderers. And the goal is to silence everyone who speaks against homosexuality. And this is a very dangerous situation because we don’t want homosexuals to be killed. We want them to be saved. Amen?

The transcript does not lie. When they are told that the gay man died, members of the audience did start to laugh and applaud and Lively did signal that it was not appropriate.

Of course I am not making this clarification to somehow exonerate Lively in any fashion. His comments to the audience about how it's not right to laugh at the murder of a gay man is the equivalent of an arsonist setting a fire and then yelling at the fire to die down.

This audience is obviously rabidly anti-gay and Lively is instigating more anti-gay hysteria by falsely claiming that gays are corrupting the United States. The implication is obviously "if you don't do something, this corruption will happen to your country."

And again it accentuates my point. I personally refuse to believe that Lively did not know that the Ugandans would react so negatively to his lies about the gay community by creating that bill.

But even if by some chance he was telling the truth, does it lessen his guilt?

By the way, the murder which Lively spoke about so callously was committed against Satendar Singh. It happened like this:

A group of Slavic men picnicking with their families at the lake allegedly noticed that Satendar did not have a female date, and that he danced with both women and men in his party. Witnesses reported that the attackers began hurling anti-gay and racist invectives. As things escalated, the attackers sent their families home and called for backup. When a new group of men showed up, the party tried to leave, but was blocked by the attackers. One of the men struck Satendar, who fell unconscious, his head bleeding profusely. As the attackers went to their cars to get away, they hurled bottles at the members of Satendar’s party, which included a young woman who is 6 months pregnant.

Satendar Singh was taken to Mercy San Juan hospital, where tests indicated no brain activity. Over 100 family members and friends went to the hospital to be with him in his final days, and he died on July 5th.

And the outcome?:

Aleksandr Shevchenko, the man charged with a hate crime after fatally beating Satendar Singh at Lake Natoma, California, in 2007. When a jury deadlocked in Shevchenko’s trial, the court instead convicted Singh’s killer for disturbing the peace and simple assault. The court sentenced Shevchenko to 150 days in jail. An August 2, 2008, article published by the Sacramento Bee reported the Sacramento District Attorney’s Office will not retry Shevchenko on the hate crime charge. Because of the verdict, the value of Satendar Singh’s life has been reduced to approximately five months in jail.

So much for having "high power."

And how about one more bit a footage to gall your gut. The following video from an anti-hate crimes rally held in November of last year. At .09 is Lively speaking. His words about being ready to go to jail if arrested for proclaiming that homosexuality is wrong takes on a certain irony when one takes into account his actions in Uganda and Russia, don't they?:

One more thing - the woman standing behind him is Janet Porter, the religious right spokesperson who during a conference last week demanded that God give "Christians" like herself control of the media.

Makes you wonder just who are the heroes and who are the villains around here, doesn't it?

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