If you’re gay, like me, or are related to/work with/care about or know someone who is gay, like most of us, this has been a particularly wonderful week. And it was just lagniappe, as they say in The Big Easy, to sip a Sunday morning cup of joe while watching Kindly Doc Maddow shoot conservative fish in a barrel.
David Gregory hosted Maddow, along with Jim DeMint and Ralph Reed on Meet the Press to discuss fine points of conservative social policy in the wake of SCOTUS’ “extremist” decisions on marriage equality as well as the abortion bill train wreck in the Texas Senate, last week.
Conservatives showed up lumbered with their grab-bag of outdated, debunked polls and “scientific studies” designed to prove that their zombie social policies still walk among us and have some sort of relevance to some sort of American people.
The fellows in the suits settled in for an hour of pedantic bloviation about the impending Fall of Western Civilization should teh gayz be permitted to destroy traditional marriage and the lives of their children. And to trot out their new abortion meme about how closing abortion clinics and mandating pre-abortion trans-vaginal ultrasounds for all are just their way of saying “we care about the safety of women and babies.”
Well this should be interesting . . . while most of us are hoping for word that the US Supreme Court will uphold the Fourteenth Amendment and clear the way for gays to marry and enjoy the same legal benefits that currently accrue to heterosexual marriages, others are busily beating their plowshares into swords, girding their loins and making like a mighty army marching as to war.
Anticipating a Supreme Court decision on two gay marriage cases that could seriously rock the Casbah, a unit of Christian Soldiers, who have ironically dubbed themselves the Freedom Federation are threatening to stamp their feet, hold their breath and be otherwise really pissed off if SCOTUS finds in favor of marriage equality.
Freedom Federation turns out to be a rag-tag coalition of the usual suspects, anti-gay activists, designated hate groups, NOM [of course], Bill Donohue, leader of the one-man Catholic League, Ralph Reed, etc.
Apparently, some of the “values” of the Party of Family Values need a little re-tooling. How else to interpret the fact that, in one week, two separate spawn of the GOP—Tanner Flake (aka N1ggerKiller), son of Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Joey Heck, son of Rep. Joe Heck (R-NV)—are outed as social-media-opaths? Two All-American white, Christian paragons (ok, ok one’s Mormon), sons of All-American white, Christian paragon fathers, spend their leisure time just frothing, fuming and twittering hate at anyone who isn’t an All-American white, Christian paragon i.e., faggots, niggas, women, Jews, Obama, Messicans, Obama, Indians, Obama, Muslims, etc. [in their words]. These kids, if nothing else, are equal opportunity bigots, they pretty much hate every one who isn’t a white male.
Own your heckling, Powerhecklers of America! What, are you too noble to enunciate your vowels? Is it more authentic to make people look at you with amazement as they wonder, “What is that nutcase talking about?”
While Medea Benjamin insisted that she’s no mere heckler, she’s a protester, newest delicate media flower,GetEqual’s Ellen Sturtz, was “taken aback” when she shouted at Michelle Obama, only to have the First Lady get off the podium and right into her face. “One of the things I don’t do well is this, understand?” said Mrs. Obama, and offered to leave while Sturtz took the mike: crowd’s choice. Astonishingly to Sturtz, the crowd chose Mrs. Obama, instead of joining Sturtz in demanding that Michelle use the Power Of Pillowtalk to persuade her husband to sign an Executive Order offering protections to gays working for military contractors, rather than achieving that goal through legislation.
Most media outlets are omitting the fact that the crowd which had forked over a minimum of half a grand to hear Obama, was gathered at the home of “Power Couple” Dr. Nan Schaffer and Karen Dixon. (ActEqual had ponied up for Sturtz’s entry, too). So it may be presumed that Sturtz was not the only one there who’d known the pain of living a closeted life; she was just the only one shouting at Michelle Obama about it. And the only one to be surprised when the First Lady had the temerity to answer her back.
As any oppressed minority will tell you, winning civil rights that put one on a more even footing with the rest of society usually comes at a pretty hefty price—and the bills keep coming in long after the celebrations and victory parties are over. It’s no surprise, at least to the gay community, that more legalized gay weddings are triggering more gay bashing backlash around the world.
We LGBT people are used to this. In my lifetime [which includes pre-Stonewall days], we have gone from literally cowering in the closet to marching in Pride parades down the streets of our home towns. That’s quite a leap, in under a century, but each step of the way has been hard-fought and exacted huge costs in terms of career options, family life and isolation. Favorable public opinion and community support are only very recent boons to my community.
Given all of that, I hope that at least some of you will forgive my cynicism regarding the recent spate of “mystery posters” (see below) appearing on the streets of at least two cities in the state of Washington which also, just happens to be a state that recently legalized gay marriage.
So far, no one has actually taken credit for anything other than the photo of the “Annies that got their gun.” That photo, by “Oleg Volk: An American”, is in the public domain, sans text, and his reaction on learning of the posters using his photo was:
The photo poster is my design, the line drawing isn’t. I encourage re-posting of my graphics, so I approve of the use in general. The specific use wasn’t coordinated with me but that’s just fine, pre-approval is not necessary.
I have no idea who posted them but they acted as my allies in the cause. I want everyone -— especially people who have been traditionally facing discrimination and danger — to be more secure and independent. Minorities of all kinds are in that exact predicament.
The QR code links to Volk’s pro-gun website a-human-right.com. The funny little flag next to the QR code is known as The Doug Flag [for Douglas Fir] and is the official flag of Cascadia, a secessionist notion whereby parts of Canada and the Pacific Northwest become an independent country—a sort of eco-topian pipe dream that’s been kicking around for over a hundred years and just adds that little soupçon of crazy to the whole thing.
The line drawing of the male guntoters is signed by a “Nale Dixon” who is off the GoogleGrid.
These posters, as amateurish and lacking in 21st century realSHOCK!!1! value as they are, have set off quite a flurry of political debate having mostly to do with the rightful “ownership” of American political ideologies.
When I started writing a series of posts themed “Mad Scientists of the Laboratories of Democracy” I had no idea what a frightening, depressing task I’d started. I was interested in the process by which so many unsuitable, unqualified candidates had infiltrated our national political scene. You know what I mean—people who believe rape can’t result in pregnancy; people who admit to a tendency toward witchcraft; people who push ideas like “self-deportation.”
So I decided to take a look at the Farm Teams, out in the states, where many of our leaders get their start, just to get a feel for how they roll at that level. And it’s truly scary. So far, I feel that I’ve uncovered a lot of borderline personalities and outright sociopaths in the state legislatures.
In a spirit of fairness, I set a pretty high bar, I’m not interested in sniffing out the gaffe-prone or “hot mic” victims. We all make mistakes. I’m most interested in the demonstrably extremist, incompetent, clueless repeat offender. And, truth be told, I really didn’t expect to find that many. Boy, was I wrong.
My interest now has evolved to “Do people really vote for these misfits?” or “does their hair not ignite until after they’re in office?” Also, what are the qualifications for holding state offices? And, finally, who votes in state-level elections? a broad cross-section of a state’s residents? or a handful of hard-core, old-school political patrons with vested interests? Are state representatives elected to office by attrition and voter indifference?
My concern lies mostly in the fact that this is important because, ultimately, these people are making the actual laws that we live by. And, some of those are real doozies.
There’s so much seasonal WTF in this clip from FilmOn TV Networks (via Battlecam TV) which is going viral.
There’s a fairly graphic trailer near the beginning for their stunt at the weekend, when they plan to crucify a guy identified by a usually reliable source (Daily Mail) as Robert Garrison, “a 30-year-old sado-masochist from Florida,” so presumably as long they’ve found some card-carrying sadists to do the nailing, everybody’s cool with that.
Then there’s the increasingly tetchy mobile unit interview between Joe Fioranelli of FilmOn TV and David Phelps—which, for the by now no doubt growing increasingly nervous, I’ll excerpt below, but sounds like it’s an outtake from SNL.
As the scene begins, Phelps—who starts off the interview as grumpy as Hell, and doesn’t get any sweeter as it progresses—kicks off with the charming opener, “I’m David Phelps. And God hates fags. If you hear nothing else I say, I need that message to get out.” Then Fiorelli cites biblical reasons for some skepticism about Jesus’ heterosexuality, which doesn’t go any way toward making make him Phelps’ BFF.
Phelps: This is a mockery. It’s been a mockery from the very beginning. Is this what you plan for your mock crucifixion as well? Fioranelli: It’s not a mock crucifixion, we’re actually crucifying the guy. I mean, he is actually gay. Phelps: Do you have any idea, do you have any idea what it is to receive the payment for your sins from a wrathful, an angry God? Romans 12 says He will pile it on your head like hot coals from a fire. ... May God bring His wrath in a way that all will know it comes from Him.
Things don’t get any better from there on in for Phelps as he makes a bid to abandon the interview, and the fate that awaits him may have made him pray for a visitation from a nice cozy bushel of hot coals. Whatever, he will verily have been in no doubt that It hath come from Him, who moveth in mysterious ways.
For at this point (at 1:30 for the impatient), yea, a 500-pound stark naked ex-wrestler MC by the name of Billy the Fridge emerges from the closet (imagery!) where he’s been waiting and lurches ominously toward Phelps.
Phelps: What do you want?
Now, in the circumstances, most of us might agree that’s not the sort of leading question you want to be asking. Never mind, since Billy ignores it anyway.
Billy the Fridge: THE LEVIATHAN! WE WILL GET YOU! LEVIATHAN! THE LEVIATHAN! WE WILL GET YOU!
At this point Phelps makes an extremely rapid getaway through the door, with Billy in hot, hot pursuit. Over to the Mail again:
An eye-witness later claimed that he saw Phelps being pursued down the street outside the mobile studio by a naked fat man.
Rob Cutler, from Topeka, Kansas, where the church is based, said: ‘I was amazed, first I see David run out of a motor home and the next thing I know he’s been sat on by this giant naked man who is screaming “who’s your daddy now Davey?”’
The way the Phelpses have been bailing out of the hitherto lucrative family cult over the past few years, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that Davey—his cherry now well and truly popped, possibly along with some vital organs—and Billy are an item. Happy Easter.
“I suppose the sea change has a lot to do with the political force and effectiveness of people representing, supporting your side of the case? As far as I can tell, political figures are falling over themselves to endorse your side of the case.”
Roberts seems to be unable to fathom a societal change taking place without the influence of hacks and flacks like himself. He sees the involvement of lobbyists in a movement that is driven by grassroots efforts. The groundswell of support for gay rights in general and same-sex marriage in particular is due to the fact that more and more gay people are out, and that more and more straight people have come to the realization that they have gay friends and family members.
I’ve been fascinated by some of the overwrought “revolution!” language that the usual Christian right trolls are using regarding the case against Prop 8 being considered by SCOTUS. It’s not that I’m comfortable that the pendulum has swung so far that there’s little resistance to marriage equality—it’s that I just don’t see that many people be invested enough to start a civil war over it. Regular folks just aren’t thinking about gay folks getting married all the time. It doesn’t really impact them because, well, it just doesn’t. Gay people getting married doesn’t raise anyone’s taxes or take away any right that any has previously enjoyed.
I think we’re going to win these cases. But say the worst happens and we lose in a broad way – that means that the Court somehow does a Roe, aRoe v. Wade, on marriage and says that all these state constitutional amendments are overturned, gay marriage is now a constitutional right – well, we’re going to press forward on a Federal Marriage Amendment. We’ve always supported a Federal Marriage Amendment, and there’s a lot of misconceptions about it. Some people try and argue, ‘Well, this is against federalism.’ No, our founders gave us a system where we can amend the Constitution. We shouldn’t have to do this, we shouldn’t have to worry about activist judges, you know, making up out of thin air a constitutional right that obviously none of our founders found there and no one found there until quite recently. But if we do, for us, the Federal Marriage Amendment is a way that people can stand up and say, ‘Enough is enough.’ We need a solution in this country, we cannot be, as Lincoln said, half slave, half free. We can’t have a country on key moral questions where we’re just, where we don’t have a solution. And if the Court forces a solution, the way we’ll amend that is through the Federal Marriage Amendment.
“Half slave, half free.” I can kind of understand wanting to do a Lincoln quote-pull because Lincoln, you know, was kind of a big deal. It’s just funny that Brown seems to think that people living in the states where marriage equality is recognized would be morally the people living in the “slave states”. Because those poor beset-upon long-suffering religious people would lack the freedom to…
So, Claire McCaskill announced her support for marriage equality this weekend. Brave move from a Senator in a red state? Craven bandwagon-jumping?
McCaskill can be exasperatingly Blue Doggy, but I think she deserves credit for openly supporting marriage equality, even if she’s hardly the first Dem out of the gate. Consider that she would have almost surely lost in 2012 to dead-eyed loon Todd Akin if he hadn’t been stricken with that peculiar strain of Rape Commentary Tourette’s that plagued last year’s crop of GOP candidates.
Even if the announcement is less than a profile in courage, it’s still a victory. Good for McCaskill.
Andrew Stiles at NRO implies that Secretary Clinton is dancing for donations from gay puppet-masters:
Big Money Backs Clinton on Gay Marriage
Former secretary of state and potential 2016 presidential contender Hillary Clinton announced her support for gay marriage on Monday in a video posted online by the Human Rights Campaign, one of the Democratic party’s most prolific campaign donors over the years.
The Human Rights Campaign has contributed more than $10 million to Democrats since 1990, and has spent more than $21 million on lobbying since 1998, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which describes the group as a “heavy hitter” in federal elections.
On what planet does $10 million in campaign contributions over 23 years qualify as “big money?” Hell, Sheldon Adelson shook $20 mill out of his sofa cushions for Gingrich’s Quixotic primary run before going on to spend serious cash on the actual nominee. And he’s just one dude in one election cycle.
The consensus for marriage equality is accelerating, thanks to the Democrats, notably President Obama. Conservatives like the nitwits at NRO still can’t quite believe this is happening, so they’re casting about for alternate explanations.
Republicans who have the most well-developed sense of political self-preservation will climb off the bigot bus toot sweet, leaving sad busybodies like NOM’s Brian Brown holding a pile of white sheets and “God Hates Fags” signs.
Ever since the Republican Party’s post-2012 election pursuit of sanity, some very peculiar things have been happening on the national level.
For example, taxes were raised, “Dreamers” were embraced and, just yesterday, in a somewhat jarring demonstration of Fellow Americanism, Rep. Eric Cantor (one of the older-and-wiser Young Guns) took the Republican gospel of self-reliance to “urban” schoolchildren (already on the right track because they attend a charter school). Americans can be forgiven any cynicism regarding these measures, but, you know, at least they’re trying.
Evidently, remoter Republicans toiling away in the “laboratories of Democracy” haven’t received the memo yet because they are still displaying batshit-craziness that, if anything, appears to be somewhat amped-up. Maybe they’re afraid the grown-ups will prevail?
Today I thought it might be instructive to introduce one Todd Kincannon, Esq., one of the Republican Party’s bright young things waiting in the wings. Young Guns, I think they call themselves, as they noisily racket around trying to reinvent the GOP for the eleventy-eleventh time.
By my reckoning the GOP change-meisters have managed—by hook or by crook—to drag the party into the 20th century and appear to be hell-bent on emerging into a solidly 1950’s mindset. What next?