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Archive for the ‘religious bigot’ Category

US-BUSH-KNIGHTS-COLUMBUS

In a press release, spokesman for the Knights of Columbus, Patrick Korten said that the donation from the Knights “is both an indication of how important we believe this referendum to be, and an encouragement to other groups and individuals of all faiths to lend their support as well.”

“From the day the organization was founded 126 years ago, strengthening and protecting the family has always been central to the mission of the Knights of Columbus. Preserving marriage as the indispensable institution in which children are conceived, born and raised to adulthood by a loving father and mother is vital to a healthy society. It is also the most favorable environment in which to protect the rights and best interests of children. We are proud to join the Catholic bishops and priests of California, and so many other people of good will, in this effort on which so much depends.”

The Knights of Columbus, a Catholic fraternal organization, may be best known as the group that collects glasses for needy people outside of stores. That gives me the opportunity to run into members a few times per year outside of stores. The next time I see a member outside of a store I’ll let him know how I feel about his organization giving $1,000,000 to take away the rights of my California brothers and sisters. I’ll also let the store manager know what I think.

Don’t email me telling me what a great job they do as a charitable organization. There’s been many groups and individuals over the years seen as ‘good’ only to later disappoint. In this case, the bad far outweighs the good. Their press release above is ignorant and Catholics around the world should be ashamed.

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mrnicegay

I have some work to do. Work that will include coming out to more people, publishing the names of pro prop 8 donors and filing complaints with the IRS to have the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints’ (Mormons) tax exemption revoked. More on the last two later. First, a note from HRC:

Dear Eliot,

On Tuesday night, our community felt the emotions of electing a pro-equality President and expanding our numbers in Congress and state houses across the country, but the next morning our hearts were broken as the dust settled and it was clear we lost the marriage ballot measures in California, Florida and Arizona. I will certainly provide you with further insight in the coming days to how we effectively organized and motivated LGBT voters in elections throughout the country, but today, as we find ourselves in this agonizing intersection of victory and defeat, I felt it was important to try and give some perspective about our losses.

I’ve drafted the following op-ed that I wanted to share with you. I know that mere words aren’t enough to provide the salve for our wounds that we desperately need but perhaps they will begin to shape a path for how we move forward. And for those of you who gave your time and resources, your sacrifices were not in vain. You’ve helped lay the foundation for the victory that will one day be ours. And I thank you.

You can’t take this away from me: Proposition 8 broke our hearts, but it did not end our fight.

Like many in our movement, I found myself in Southern California last weekend. There, I had the opportunity to speak with a man who said that Proposition 8 completely changed the way he saw his own neighborhood. Every “Yes on 8” sign was a slap. For this man, for me, for the 18,000 couples who married in California, to LGBT people and the people who love us, its passage was worse than a slap in the face. It was nothing short of heartbreaking.

But it is not the end. Fifty-two percent of the voters of California voted to deny us our equality on Tuesday, but they did not vote our families or the power of our love out of existence; they did not vote us away.

As free and equal human beings, we were born with the right to equal families. The courts did not give us this right—they simply recognized it. And although California has ceased to grant us marriage licenses, our rights are not subject to anyone’s approval. We will keep fighting for them. They are as real and as enduring as the love that moves us to form families in the first place. There are many roads to marriage equality, and no single roadblock will prevent us from ultimately getting there.

And yet there is no denying, as we pick ourselves up after losing this most recent, hard-fought battle, that we’ve been injured, many of us by neighbors who claim to respect us.

By the same token, we know that we are moving in the right direction. In 2000, California voters passed Proposition 22 by a margin of 61.4% to 38.6%. On Tuesday, fully 48% of Californians rejected Proposition 8. It wasn’t enough, but it was a massive shift. Nationally, although two other anti-marriage ballot measures won, Connecticut defeated an effort to hold a constitutional convention ending marriage, New York’s state legislature gained the seats necessary to consider a marriage law, and FMA architect Marilyn Musgrave lost her seat in Congress. We also elected a president who supports protecting the entire community from discrimination and who opposes discriminatory amendments.

Yet on Proposition 8 we lost at the ballot box, and I think that says something about this middle place where we find ourselves at this moment. In 2003, twelve states still had sodomy laws on the books, and only one state had civil unions. Four years ago, marriage was used to rile up a right-wing base, and we were branded as a bigger threat than terrorism. In 2008, most people know that we are not a threat. Proposition 8 did not result from a popular groundswell of opposition to our rights, but was the work of a small core of people who fought to get it on the ballot. The anti-LGBT message didn’t rally people to the polls, but unfortunately when people got to the polls, too many of them had no problem with hurting us. Faced with an economy in turmoil and two wars, most Californians didn’t choose the culture war. But faced with the question—brought to them by a small cadre of anti-LGBT hardliners – of whether our families should be treated differently from theirs, too many said yes.

But even before we do the hard work of deconstructing this campaign and readying for the future, it’s clear to me that our continuing mandate is to show our neighbors who we are.

Justice Lewis Powell was the swing vote in Bowers, the case that upheld Georgia’s sodomy law and that was reversed by Lawrence v. Texas five years ago. When Bowers was pending, Powell told one of his clerks “I don’t believe I’ve ever met a homosexual.” Ironically, that clerk was gay, and had never come out to the Justice. A decade later, Powell admitted his vote to uphold Georgia’s sodomy law was a mistake.

Everything we’ve learned points to one simple fact: people who know us are more likely to support our equality.

In recent years, I’ve been delivering this positive message: tell your story. Share who you are. And in fact, as our families become more familiar, support for us increases. But make no mistake: I do not think we have to audition for equality. Rather, I believe that each and every one of us who has been hurt by this hateful ballot measure, and each and every one of us who is still fighting to be equal, has to confront the neighbors who hurt us. We have to say to the man with the Yes on 8 sign—you disrespected my humanity, and I am not giving you a pass. I am not giving you a pass for explaining that you tolerate me, while at the same time denying that my family has a right to exist. I do not give you permission to say you have me as a “gay friend” when you cast a vote against my family, and my rights.

Wherever you are, tell a neighbor what the California Supreme Court so wisely affirmed: that you are equal, you are human, and that being denied equality harms you materially. Although I, like our whole community, am shaken by Prop 8’s passage, I am not yet ready to believe that anyone who knows us as human beings and understands what is at stake would consciously vote to harm us.

This is not over. In California, our legal rights have been lost, but our human rights endure, and we will continue to fight for them.

Warmly,

Joe Solmonese
President, Human Rights Campaign

Protest sign photo above via towleroad.

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Oh, Sally Kern, what will it take for you to buzz off? Remember Sally? The bigoted, gay-hating Oklahoma state representative that made national news with her hate earlier this year is up for re-election. Here’s a quote from her:

“While terrorism has killed more than 3,000 people, in the continental United States in the last 15 years, homosexual behavior has killed more than 100,000,” she said. “It’s a danger to life. It is a danger to health.”

God I hope she is defeated.

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Remember Sally Kern, the bigoted Oklahoma state representative that spouted hate while unknowingly being recorded? Well she now has competition in the next election:

A 59-year-old social worker says he plans to run against an Oklahoma lawmaker whose anti-gay remarks have provoked calls for her resignation.

Democrat Ron Marlett said Monday he will oppose Republican Rep. Sally Kern in this fall’s election for her Oklahoma City-area seat in the state House.

Kern has been criticized for saying homosexuality poses a bigger threat to the U.S. than terrorism. Her comments to a Republican group were recorded and posted on the video sharing Web site YouTube by the Washington, D.C.-based Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund.

Marlett says he abhors hatred and believes everyone is worthy of respect. He says extremists share many of the same views voiced by Kern.

Marlett was introduced during a news conference called by Democratic Party head Ivan Holmes.

source: Washington Blade

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Have you seen this? I caught it on CNN. It has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on youtube.com. Glad I don’t live in Oklahoma.

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Thanks to my pals Christian and Michael, I now know the bigots are back! Not that they really left…

While I am not going to get into the recent filth they have been spewing, my friends at the Westboro “church” are back in the news. I have previously blogged about these nut jobs here. Led by Fred Phelps, the disbarred former attorney, they are the ones that protest at military funerals, saying God is punishing America for its acceptance of homosexuality.

Members of the “church” have decided to protest the Academy Awards and Heath Ledger’s funeral because Ledger was in Brokeback Mountain. In fact, they have already bought their tickets to Los Angeles. Now, I had hoped that the writers’ strike would be over and the awards would go forward but now I have to admit that I hope they are canceled. Because of the massive lawsuit they recently lost, the “church” probably had to buy the cheapest airline tickets and probably would be unable to get a refund.

I do not see how they will be able to get to Australia to protest his funeral. Perhaps if they somehow did, they would be met with bodily harm. More info from abcnews.com here.

Mark my words: When Fred Phelps dies, I will be in Topeka, at his funeral, with “God Hates Bigots” sign in hand. Won’t you join me?

The other bigot is Fox News Radio and TV host John Gibson. Here is a summary from Wikipedia about what Gibson has said lately:

Following the announcement of the death of actor Heath Ledger, Gibson opened his show with funeral music and used an audio quote of Ledger saying the line “I wish I knew how to quit you”, taken from the movie Brokeback Mountain, and commented “Well, he knew how to quit you!” Laughing, Gibson then played another clip from Brokeback Mountain in which Ledger said, “We’re dead,” followed by his own, mocking “We’re dead” before playing the clip again. Throughout the course of the show, Gibson continued to bring up Ledger’s death, jokingly claiming that current events may have caused him to commit suicide, suggesting that Ledger killed himself because he had “a serious position in the (stock) market” or perhaps “watched the Clinton-Obama debate last night. I think he was an Edwards guy, cause he saw his Edwards guy was just completely irrelevant.” He also referred to Ledger as “a weirdo” with a “serious drug problem.”

My gosh. What a douche. Bell Guy works for AT&T, who is a commercial sponsor for Gibson’s show. Bell Guy has agreed to email the LGBT organization at AT&T and urge them to formally complain to AT&T. For much more info on this, and to see where to complain and sign the GLAAD petition, click here.

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snydermatthewa.jpg
Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder

I hope that most of you have heard the huge news that the Westboro Baptist Church was ordered to pay nearly $11 million to the father of a deceased US Marine, Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder. Mr. Snyder witnessed his son’s funeral picketed by the hate group, who blamed his death on a gay tolerant America. This judgment, should it withstand possible appeals, should completely cripple the gay-hating group.

Some bloggers have argued that Westboro’s tactics, while deplorable, are protected under the First Amendment. I completely disagree. As the judge in the case stated in his instructions to the jury, the First Amendment has its limits, including the prohibition of vulgar, offensive and shocking statements. I believe that protesting at a soldier’s funeral, especially in the manner Westboro employs, does in fact go beyond the limits of the First Amendment. The jury agreed.

Westboro has been around a long time. It is run by a family of hate mongers and back as far as 1993, the church sent a photograph of a gay musician that died of AIDS to his parents. The caption read: “Kevin Oldham: Dead Fag.” Westboro uses Matt Shepard’s death throughout its website as propaganda and told his Mom, during his memorial service, that she would be joining him in Hell. Westboro doesn’t reserve its protests just to fallen soldiers. The group threatened to picket at the memorial of the Amish school attack and Virginia Tech attack but relented once they were given free, unrestricted airtime on a radio station. The group did protest at the Sago mine disaster memorial.

Even Jerry Fallwell, no friend of gays, called Fred Phelps, the leader of the group, “a first class nut.” In return, they protested at his funeral. Will gays protest at Phelps’ funeral?

The Southern Poverty Law Center, a hate watch group that sues hate groups, has classified Westboro as a hate group. The Anti-Defamation League claims that Westboro uses gay bashing as a cover for bashing other religions and minority groups.

I have not even scratched the surface of this group. Its messages are so disgusting I am not going to post them. In fact, I was going to post a picture of one of their protests, but they do not deserve it. Instead, you saw the picture of Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder above.

Isn’t it amazing that a hero’s death, in a far away land, dealt the final blow to a homegrown terrorist group?

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