Category Archives: Homosexuality

On Boy Scouts And Equality

I was a Boy Scout, once upon a long time ago. I did Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. Made it to Second Class… failed the swim test twice. Not because I can’t swim, but the first time was in a lake where I couldn’t touch the ground and that always freaks me out and the second time I ate too much for breakfast. …feel I have to defend myself there. Anyway, when I switched high schools, I basically just stopped doing Boy Scouts, though I probably could have made it to Eagle without much of a problem. I had most of the requirements done.

Anyway, Boy Scouts was intended to help young boys become men with a certain set of skills and traits. A Boy Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.

Nice traits to have, right? Not bad things, I think, and entirely independent of any religion or dogma. Unfortunately, despite those traits being independent of dogma, most of the Boy Scouts have aligned themselves with a conservative Christian viewpoint. What this has come to mean is, openly homosexual males are not allowed to be involved in the organization at all.

Well, the times, they are a’changin’, maybe.

Recently, with gay rights taking some big steps in both reality, such as the new states that have legalized gay marriage and the ending of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and symbolism, via President Barack Obama’s reference to gay rights in his inaugural address, things seem to have a bit of a forward momentum. Recently, that forward momentum hit the Boy Scouts of America and they’ve started considering dropping their ban on homosexuals.

But it’s not all good news for equality, of course. See, a large portion of Boy Scout Troops are sponsored by churches. Christian churches. Many of which have particular views about homosexuals and homosexuality. Views that are frankly often contrary both to Christianity and reality, but that’s a topic to rehash another time. Anyway, many of those churches are threatening to pull their sponsorship and funding if the Boy Scouts change their stance on homosexuals.

I just don’t get it. If you can show me once, just once, where Christ turned away a sinner and said, “No, I can’t be seen around you, I disapprove of the things you do,” I’ll eat my hat. Did he rebuke some sinners, like the Pharisees? Sure. But he also ate with sinners, mingled with them, talked to them, treated them as equals. Not as a separate species to be treated with disdain and derision.

If Christ walked among us today, it’s the conservative Christians that would have him crucified this go round. The Pharisees are back, and they just don’t like gay people.

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When Will People Stop Listening To Idiots?

We have a pretty big problem in the world. America in particular has a problem.

That problem is giving stupid people a platform to speak on.

Before anyone gets all shocked and yells at me, I’m not saying we should be denying some people the freedom of speech. What I’m saying is that America has confused the freedom of speech with the freedom of national attention. We can all agree, I think, that there are some people that very simply should not have a voice in a national discussion on certain subjects. Members of the KKK probably shouldn’t be allowed to have an influential opinion on matters of Affirmative Action, for example. Nazis simply shouldn’t be allowed to be seriously considered on efforts of peace in the Middle East. They are allowed to say those opinions, but we shouldn’t be letting them mold and shift the public opinion and the direction of discourse.

And yet, we continue to let people do exactly that. All the time. It’s usually never as blatant as a KKK member or a Neo-Nazi… but sometimes, it’s pretty bad.

The thing is, sometimes we give people national platforms not only when they’re seemingly morally repugnant and wrong, but also when they’re simply factually wrong. Heck, that seems to be almost a requirement to be hired as a cable news pundit, particularly on Fox News. Probably the worst is the combination of the two.

I’ve talked about Bryan Fischer a couple of times and mentioned, subtly of course, how he’s a bit of a buffoon. Unfortunately, people still listen to him and give him support to be a nationally recognized voice that gets reported on from time to time. It’d be great if we could bring him to just enough attention to somehow work out a massive “ignore the crap out of him” campaign, but the likelihood of that is unfortunately low.

Anyway, this time, Fischer has decided to attack President Barack Obama’s mention of gay rights in his inaugural address. Apparently, “gays have no right to sodomy.” And let the silliness begin.

It’s people like Fischer that continue to perpetuate the fallacious idea that homosexuality, targeting male homosexuality almost exclusively, requires sex to be homosexuality. It also perpetuates the idea that sodomy is something only for homosexuals. Sodomy is actually any anal, oral or bestial sex. Gender doesn’t matter. And there are quite a few heterosexual couples that engage in sodomy quite often.

It’s people like Fischer that perpetuate the fallacious idea that arguments based on history are sensible and logical, that they have a place in modern discourse. As he says, sodomy was a felony for so long in American history for a reason! Why change it? It should be quite simple to realize exactly why that’s a terrible line of reasoning. Tradition isn’t a good reason to keep doing something. Arguments like that hold back the forward momentum of growth in civilization, hold back the equality of people.

I guess this is partly an argument for the desperate need of an objective, imperial and updated education system in America, and really the whole world. Without one, we just get people saying ridiculously idiotic things and ensuring that people will continue to believe them for years and years. Maybe the first step to fixing education would be taking certain people out of the national discourse. It sounds like anti-free speech nonsense, I know… But not everyone’s opinion has a right to be heard or taken seriously. If that were true, we would truly get nowhere with anything. Some people are, quite simply, wrong in every way.

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Americans Should Be Allowed To Vote Out Politicians

You know what we need as Americans? Crimes specific to politicians. We need some way to hold the members of our government to a higher standard. Not the Constitution, which just lays out what they’re supposed to do. I think we need some method of being able to just fire them when they do or say certain things, such as creating segregationist laws,  abusing legal loopholes to their benefit and the detriment of Americans, something.

I know that Congress has ethics rules and such… but you know what happens to people that violate those? Practically nothing. Many resign, and many get voted out that don’t, but too often are there politicians that say things in direct counter to what their jobs are supposed to be. Members of the science committee decry science. Members of the ethics committee get caught having sex with underage people. Representatives of the people suggest using humiliation as a tactic to target specific groups of people.

Basically, there needs to be a much easier way to fire people in government instead of letting them rake in money for two to six years doing jack-all or actively harming this nation.

Yes, I know a lot of this comes from me being a liberal and finding conservatives like Representative James Lankford blaming gun violence on welfare moms and suggesting we humiliate homosexuals until they lose equal protection rights repugnant to the utmost degree. It’s disgusting to think that there are people, voters, that agree whole-heartedly with Lankford. But I have faith that every time one of these politicians spouts out some awful, ridiculous, shameful thing, their constituency doesn’t want them saying or thinking what they’ve said or thought.

Unfortunately, to the best of my knowledge, getting that person out of office becomes a herculean task. If they’re a senator, you have to wait six years for their term to be up. By then, people have forgotten all sorts of sins, which is just a sad reminder of the state of our national attention span. If they’re a representative, they’ve only got two years, but that’s still enough time for many to forget or to obfuscate the issues.

I don’t have a real suggestion for a solution, unfortunately, other than a recall vote that can be triggered by a certain number of people petitioning for one. And maybe that is a possibility that can be used in the real world. I recall governors facing that problem before… never any senators or representatives in my memory, but maybe it’s possible. If it is possible, that option needs to be used far more often and people need to be made far more aware of it.

Our nation’s not in the greatest position it could be. One of the places we need to start cleaning up is with our politicians, kicking the ignorant, vicious and lying out as soon as they reveal their true colors. Let the people keep them on a short leash. We need to start working on an oversight from the population that isn’t just voting them out next election. We need a way to oust them, deny them their pension and try someone new that might actually try to do the right thing.

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From The Inkwell – Camp Gethsemane Character Development

M’k. So, I’m still plugging away at the second edition of my taking-way-too-long-daggum-it full length play, the one that tackles religion (Christianity), how I interpret faith, relationships and sexuality in a pretty big and perhaps somewhat provocative way.

While I’m way behind schedule, in that I wanted this done last month at the latest, it is at least still moving bit by bit. I’ve really been trying to take the many criticisms and critiques to heart, though I know this will still be nowhere near the perfection a better writer could make it move toward. It’s admittedly quite frustrating, reading and watching the works of far superior writers, knowing you’ll never match their level.

Anyway, one of the critiques I had was with the antagonistic character Craig. Craig Thompson is the man who runs Camp Gethsemane, supported by his church. Still, the camp is his child, so to speak, and he is extremely zealous in his desire to protect it and its mission, or the mission as he sees it. The problems most that read the first draft had with Craig were pretty communally shared, the biggest one and most agreed upon one being that Craig seemed too villainous and too caricatured. No one really understood why he snaps and gets physical. Nor did people understand why he even allows Gary, who is now Evan Carter, to teach at his camp when their views are so different.

Basically, I focused so much on everyone else in the story, including the character Emily (who is no longer in the play as an on-stage character, sadly), I kind of painted a picture of Craig in my mind and left it as a picture. But for a story to work, we need to understand him, at least a little. The difference between Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church and Count Frollo of “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” is that, with Frollo, we’re given a glimpse into his psyche, his reasoning for being so vile. Phelps is just a putrid sack of crap that exists to rile everyone up and generally be a hateful dude. No one understands why he’s such a tool, so he’ll never be as captivating and memorably evil as Frollo.

So, I ended up going back and writing a few new scenes, partly to flesh out Craig’s character and partly to give a more solid backing to the strong relationship Craig and Frank, one of the counselors, have. And also to explain why Gary (now Evan) is at the camp. All were lacking detail. And, as I’m trying to encourage myself to finish writing the last fraggin’ scene of the play, I’ve decided to let people read the first of two or three new (and therefore completely non-peer reviewed) scenes I wrote in this vein. And somehow, even with new scenes, the play has ended up about 15 to 30 minutes shorter (hopefully closer to 30). Anyway… please enjoy. Or don’t. I wouldn’t mind hearing feedback, though. I know at the very least the language could use some polishing, but I figure that’ll be focused on in the next (potentially final?) edit. (Note: We’ve already seen Craig onstage at this point, so his description isn’t included.)

——————————————————

Inside CRAIG’s office. CRAIG sits behind his large, neatly organized desk. There is a landline phone on the desk and a chair in front of it. CRAIG pores through his Bible when a young man enters. FRANK SINGER, a young man in his mid-twenties, is also dressed in a counselor’s outfit. CRAIG doesn’t look up when FRANK enters.

FRANK: You wanted to see me, sir?

CRAIG looks up from his Bible.

CRAIG: Ah, yes. Come in, Mr. Singer. Have a seat.

FRANK enters the room and sits down in the chair across from CRAIG.

CRAIG: I just wanted to let you know, we’re going to be having two different Bible Study classes this year. The leaders at the Church of the Mount have… requested that I allow the new youth pastor to participate in this year’s camp. Have you met him?

FRANK: Evan? I was introduced to him during the business meetings about getting a new youth pastor, but I haven’t sat down and gotten to know him yet.

CRAIG: Hm… I’ve not talked to him very much myself, either. But I suspect that the church is perhaps grooming him to eventually take my place running the camp.

FRANK: What? No. The church would never do that. This is your camp, you brought it into existence.

CRAIG: (Smiling, wistful.) I hope you’re right, and I appreciate your loyalty to me, Mr. Singer. It is, as always, a comfort. I suppose my worries could be misplaced. (Looks down at his Bible, running his fingers over the pages.) And if my eventual retirement and replacement is God’s will, then so be it. …we must all follow God’s plans. Whatever they may be… (Begins subconsciously playing with his wedding band, falls into a reverie.)

FRANK: …Mr. Thompson? Are you okay?

CRAIG: (Snaps out of his wandering thoughts. Looks down at his ring finger, pulls his hand away.) Sorry, I was lost in thought there for a moment. You can go.

FRANK nods and stands up. As he turns to go, CRAIG remembers something.

CRAIG: One last thing, Mr. Singer.

FRANK: (Turning back.) Yes sir?

CRAIG: Take some time to get to know Mr. Carter, would you? And let me know if you discover anything… well, anything you think I should know. For the smooth running of the camp. Something just seems… off to me about him.

FRANK: Yes, sir.

FRANK again turns and exits. CRAIG looks down at his Bible again, but seeing his hands, he puts his left hand in front of his face. He removes the wedding ring from his finger and looks at it, a somber look on his face. He grips it in his fist, closing his eyes tightly, before placing it back on his hand and returning to his Bible, turning the page and reading.

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“Christians” Praising Uganda Need To Stop

I fell behind again. My apologies. I guess I don’t want to write crappy “So sorry, not today” posts so often? Anyway… catching up now.

I swear, I feel like I run up on this subject over and over again, just from different angles.

I dunno how aware you are about this issue, but several years ago, Uganda brought a very harsh anti-homosexuality bill forward as a proposal for law. How harsh? Basically, it would allow the government to execute homosexuals, people that test positive for HIV, pedophiles and repeat offenders. Ignoring how pedophiles managed to get bundled up with homosexuals, the bill was hugely criticized by the international community and it was shot down.

In that it was really only tabled to come back to like right about now. It’s the infamous “Kill the Gays” bill, and those in the Ugandan government are keen on having it passed before the new year.

It’s okay, though. Apparently, it’s no longer about killing the gays. No, apparently they decided to take out all the parts about killing gays, maybe to get people to be okay with the law. Instead, it’s just about protecting children from gay pornography (as opposed to all pornography), banning gay marriage, “counseling” gays and punishing those that “promote a gay lifestyle.” Jail is a potential punishment for all of those ill-defined crimes, and the jail time isn’t very specifically laid out. So, from execution to indefinite detention… I suppose there’s a silver lining to be found, but it’s mighty faint.

This bill is pretty heinous and flies in the face of everything the world has (unfortunately slowly) been coming to accept as basic human rights. It highlights the underlying hatred for homosexuals still hugely prevalent in Africa, as ignorance blames homosexuals for the AIDS epidemic that has swept through the continent.

What may be equally as disturbing, however, is the reactions of “Christian” Americans, prominent preachers, praising Uganda and even going as far as defending the bill.

I don’t know how many times I’ll have to come to this subject, the subject of the most popular religion in the world, one I personally ascribe to, having major vocal proponents butt heads with its most basic and simplistic tenets, much less butt heads with basic human decency. So many “Christians” cry and wail about the growth of “Godlessness” in the Western world… they can’t seem to comprehend that, more often than not, it is their vicious hatred, their discrimination and acceptance of violence toward those they’ve deemed as “sinful,” that drives people away from God. And if Christianity is right, they’re going to find themselves quite surprised in the end.

It’s a plague on decency, a plague on Christianity, a plague on humanity that people can still think and act like this. We have the Family Research Council President Tony Perkins giving the Ugandan dictator a big hug over Twitter, praising him for leading his nation in repentance. We have Pastor Kevin Odor of the Canyon Ridge megachurch in Nevada going to bat for both the bill and for Martin Ssempa, one of the more prominent backers of the bill. The church is even helping support him financially.

What happened to “He who is without sin?” To “Judge lest not ye be judged?” To “as you have done for the least of my people on earth, so have you done for me in heaven?” The Good Samaritan? Loving thy neighbor? Pretty much ANYTHING Jesus EVER said in the Bible?

It’s no wonder that “militant” atheists, the ones that actively go out to bash and tear apart at religion, so often bring up Adolf Hitler as a Christian. Sure, Hitler used Christian sentiment in his speeches and, in doing so, committed the most heinous mass crimes in our world’s history. But, honestly, with people like these pastors walking around, with people paying them to say and do these things, with no chastisement from the Christian base, it’s no wonder that people think Hitler really was a Christian.

There’s really only one mark by which you can actually tell if someone’s a Christian or not. 1 John 4:8 and 4:20 say “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. […] Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.” If you hate a brother or sister, if you hate, then you don’t know God. If you don’t know God, you’re not a Christian. And if you’re giving Uganda and their heinous, evil bill any sort of praise or support? You’re not a Christian.

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Churches Might Be A Little To Blame

Man. I’m even further behind now. This is a bad stain on my once-a-day deal. My bad. I will definitely get at least two up today, hopefully all three. …not that anyone reading this after the fact knows what I’m talking about because I always backlog these things… Let’s just pretend I’m a Time Lord and leave it at that.

So, I can’t remember if I told you guys, but I ended up in a bit of a verbal brawl over my Thanksgiving break. I kind of expected it, truth be told. This wasn’t the prettiest election, and the disdain for President Barack Obama ran high among conservatives, which my parents are. This election was also the election of bringing up ridiculous, unnecessary, irrelevant and occasionally completely fictional stories in attempts to smear candidates. Sure, it happens every year, but the birther thing? The “Obama’s going to send in UN troops” thing? Seriously. It got ridiculous.

But, of course, my parents are conservative. And I’m, well… not. So, on the drive to my grandma’s, I ended up verbally combating both of my parents with the occasional assist from my older sister. I’m pretty sure I was doing well on my end. Had it been a presidential debate, I like to think all the papers would’ve said I won, partly because my parents often adamantly refused to actually source any of their claims… but we all know that’s not how things work in the debates, sadly. One of the subjects my parents were wholly unable to accurately back-up was the claim that religious freedoms are being and will be squashed under Obama.

Ignoring how “religious freedom” extends beyond Christianity and the argument is easily made that many non-Christian religions have suffered obstructionism in the more Republican and religious areas of the United States, the idea that Christianity is suffering under Obama is silly and I said so. They of course bring up several superfluous things, like Obama asking Buddhists to pray and yadda yadda… and eventually, the subject of homosexuality got brought up. Which pretty much confirmed to me that, were I gay, I likely would’ve been disowned by my family. I hadn’t heard my dad’s side on that particular subject before, but he definitely lost respect from me when he suggested homosexuals shouldn’t be allowed to adopt because they’re pedophiles.

I couldn’t really comprehend where this animosity and disdain was coming from… except I know exactly where it comes from. And it isn’t the Bible. It was interesting how, when I said that the Roman Catholic Church’s Catechism (my dad being Catholic) specifically states that homosexuality is not a sin, my dad got more upset saying I was wrong. I eventually clarified my point (or, you know, repeated it) until he agreed (because it’s true), but he was still very against the idea. And, while I avoided getting into a Scriptural-based argument, it’s been my experience that most that think homosexuality is anti-Christian simply use the excuse “The Bible says so.” Occasionally, you’ll get someone quoting Leviticus, or Jesus talking about man and woman skipping off into the sunset to marry or whatever. They usually can’t get into specifics or details. So, it basically boils down to “someone told me the Bible says so.” And that someone is usually a pastor, or just a church body in general.

So, imagine my surprise when one of the (admittedly more sensible) pastors of an American megachurch, Pastor Rick Warren of the Saddleback Church, admitted that perhaps some of the animosity and hatred toward gays, some of the negative – and occasionally violently so – atmosphere they live (or not) through might be the fault of churches.

See, here’s the thing… churches have gotten into the nasty habit over the past, oh, probably couple thousand years of demonizing certain sins. Lying, for SOME reason, was always pretty safe… but adultery, witchcraft, divorce, they all went through the ringer. When people were convinced that the Bible placed whites as superior to blacks, animosity and disdain followed. Violence, a poisonous atmosphere where sin and sinner both became equated with evil to not be tolerated, to be cast out. And while many of those other stigmas have faded or lessened, homosexuality stands still reviled.

I feel like I’ve talked about this before… but maybe if more churches stopped and said, “What are we doing?”, things could be better. Maybe if people focused on teaching the message of loving and tolerating everyone, no matter their flaws, the sort of stuff Jesus did, maybe that toxicity would dissipate. And maybe more people would actually think Christianity isn’t such a terrible idea.

But what do I know. I’m clearly a socialist, atheist heathen on a fast track to hell. And it’s not like the Bible ever said “Love thy neighbor as thyself” was the second most important thing for Christians to do. But it sure would be nice to have more pastors follow Warren’s lead. Then, maybe, churches could actually focus solely on doing good without spreading bad.

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Ridiculous PETA, Innocent Elmo And HeavenO

I don’t really have any single grand subject to take some philosophical stance on at the moment, though I may rant about the definition of art in an entirely close-minded fashion later this week. Because it’s apparently something I can rant about easily, and something a lot of people will probably disagree with me on, so yay for fostering discussion.

But tonight, there are three different stories that have caught my eye for various reasons, and I just want to chat about them for a little bit.

First, being that it’s the annual slaughter-of-the-turkey time of year, not that you’d notice what with all the Christmas decorations hiding the cranberry sauce and peanut oil, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has something to say about it.

Now, I’m a meat eater. Always will be. I have a friend that went vegan (or more likely just vegetarian, I forget) and thinks my reasonings for not doing the same are crap… and they probably are. I don’t like the way most animals are treated on farms and the like. Shoving a metric crapton of chickens into the same far-too-small space, for example, where they grow up harassed and harried only to be slaughtered young and rather beaten up is, in my opinion, not cool. From the standpoint of “I like meat,” it makes the product smaller and worse and customers shouldn’t be accepting such sub-par end results. From the standpoint of just ethics, I do think it’s cruel and completely not cool. Animals should be treated better, even if their ultimate destination is a plate.

That said, I still think we should be able to eat meat, and I don’t think an essential hunger strike is going to get to any solutions unless there becomes a massive, widespread hunger strike and demand for ethical treatment. There have been some changes made through the legal system and just naturally on their own through free range and maverick meats that I think would be better to work through. How unfortunate that treating animals ethically is apparently so much more expensive these days, though, otherwise the solution would be far easier for consumers.

Anyway, I digress. While I think that much of the treatment of animals for consumption is cruel and detrimental to the consumer, the individual animal and the continuation of the animal as a species, I still think PETA’s a bunch of ridiculous people that very often make no sense whatsoever. This is one of those times. They’re petitioning President Barack Obama to stop the traditional pardoning of the turkey, and their arguments are perhaps a bit… lacking.

First, they say you wouldn’t eat your puppy, so why would you eat a turkey? At which point I jokingly think that Obama was the wrong president to make that analogy to… but more seriously think those are kind of false equivalencies. Or it seems that way to me. I also don’t understand why society thinks eating dogs and cats, wild ones, is necessarily bad. I’m not going to start, but people eat bunnies and I think those are the cutest best pets ever. Maybe dog and cat just taste bad? Anyway, they also call turkeys intelligent. If I recall, turkeys are the birds that drown on accident by looking up when it rains and sometimes are too stupid to eat their own food, starving to death. Farmers have to put shiny things in the food to get them to eat it, but keep a close eye so the turkeys don’t choke on the shiny things. But maybe that’s just domesticated turkeys. Finally, PETA compares the struggles of the turkey with the struggles of minorities. That there is definitely feeling like a false equivalency to me. Unfortunately for PETA, animals aren’t protected under the U.S. Constitution, so their struggles aren’t quite like the struggles for civil rights. At all. As for the “stop calling it a pardon, they’ve done nothing wrong” thing… it was a joke referencing the fact that turkeys are often sentenced to die during Thanksgiving. So…

But I knew my opinion before I started out, so maybe I’m just intensely close minded.

Another story, the Muppeteer for Elmo, Kevin Clash, is resigning from Sesame Street amid allegations of sex scandals. Now, this story is still growing and very murky. Apparently, an anonymous accuser said Clash had homosexual sex with him when he was underage. He later recanted that statement. I’ve read some places where he LATER said he was coerced to recant, and others that said he said he wasn’t coerced. And now, there’s apparently another person mounting a lawsuit against Clash. According to TV Guide, which is where I first read about this second guy, Cecil Singleton is alleging that he and Clash first crossed paths when Singleton was 15. Back in 1993. And he’s just now realizing that what Clash did screwed him up emotionally.

Now, I’m not sure if Clash is innocent or guilty. But I know in our American justice system, someone is supposed be treated as innocent until proven guilty. I also think that Singleton’s suit sounds suspiciously like the “Ooh, I can squeeze some money out of this guy by jumping on the hate bandwagon” lawsuits that are far too common. He could be on the level, but waiting nearly 20 years to figure out the negative things done in your life, landing the suit in the middle of another contentious scandal, seems a bit too well-timed. All I know is that too many people are upset to find out Elmo’s Muppeteer is gay. I just wish people would let the whole truth come out before demonizing someone. It’d be great to avoid reactionary responses.

And, finally, Something Positive cartoonist Randal Milholland tweeted earlier today about people on Twitter saying “LOL” stands for “Lucifer Our Lord” and is therefore bad to say. Now, that could be a joke someone started, and I really hope so because completely re-appropriating an acronym and changing what it stands for is just silly. Not to mention how silly it is that people still think Lucifer is equivalent with Satan (or Ha’satan, The Accuser). But he also tweeted about an actual movement. It has a terrible looking, almost geocities-esque website and everything. Apparently, in a tiny county in Texas, Kleberg County, in the city of Kingsville, it was resolved by some to change the greeting “Hello” into the more positive, Jesus-friendly “HeavenO.”

…do I even need to talk about why that’s ridiculous? I think sticking to “Praise Jesus” as a greeting would be easier and slightly less ridiculous.

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Gay Men Will Steal Your Girlfriend

In case you hadn’t heard, several states have voted through a mandate to legalize same-sex marriage. Washington, Maine and Maryland (And maybe another one? I can’t remember.). Throw in the polling data that shows that Americans are finally feeling a majority approval of same-sex marriage’s legalization and it seems like America may actually legalize it within the next 50 years or so.

…yeah, it’s probably a while off for the entirety of the nation, but we’re getting there finally.

Still, it’s a slow, arduous process, one that many are lobbying and fighting to speed up. The reelection of President Barack Obama may help on that front, but it’s really the states that each need to turn around and legalize it, ultimately, unless the Supreme Court steps in with a Loving v. Virginia type of case for same-sex marriage. And CollegeHumor.com has come up with quite the convincing argument to help the more reluctant male voters change their minds.

If you don’t vote to legalize same-sex marriage, gay men will marry your girlfriends.

The video is not entirely safe for work, but it’s pretty funny. And potentially outlines a credible threat. Think about it. I mean, really think about it.

…I don’t really have anything deep to say. My mind is kind of nonexistent at the moment for some reason. I’ll probably get back to ranting about capitalism and greedy, stupid business owners (particularly big, corporate owners) and their consistent resistance to any change that loses them a single personal penny tomorrow. But for tonight, I’m really exhausted.

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Obama Wins

I don’t really have anything else to say. President Barack Obama has beaten the Republican contender Mitt Romney, making this election out to be just like 2004 with different colors.

In other news, three of the more heinous candidates for U.S. Congress got ousted or kept out… Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock of the infamous rape quotes lost their Senate races and Representative Joe Walsh lost to Tammy Duckworth. Also, the hotly contested, high profile Massachusetts senate race was won by Democrat Elizabeth Warren. Colorado has become the first state to legalize marijuana, which will probably bring the far too pointless and costly war on drugs (particularly marijuana) to the front of Obama’s next term, and Maryland just became the first state to legalize gay marriage by a popular mandate. Or maybe Maine was. It seems like both are doing it.

In more downer-esque news for my state, it seems the controversial, will-be-a-major-pain-and-harm-our-state Judge Roy Moore will win the election for Chief Justice of the Alabama State Supreme Court. I can only imagine the SCOTUS will get a lot of appealed cases from Alabama.

Anyway. As the elections unfold, I’ll keep my eyes on them, pretending to try to sleep and failing miserably. If your candidate(s) just lost, please don’t say you’ll move to another country or America’s going to be destroyed. It won’t happen. Just calm down, breathe deep and try to get through it. And maybe take a more active role in government.

…I guess my political posts are going to be severely truncated now. Lord knows what I’ll write about.

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The AFA Is Certainly Not Pro-Family

Now, first, I want to talk about this attaching “pro-” in front of random words. It’s something that probably gained mainstream attraction with the abortion debate, and the whole “pro-life” and “pro-choice” labeling. And there’s a bit of a problem with the whole pro-whatever labeling.

Pro- tends to suggest an active movement toward the broad application of the word following. Often, it’s meaningless outside of context. “Pro-choice” refers to abortion, not the ability to choose cake versus pie. And pro-life, while we like to point out that many pro-life people support the death penalty and foreign wars where many people die, aren’t actually pro-life. They’re anti-abortion. Someone just wanted to put a more positive sounding spin on their views. But pro-choice shouldn’t really be mixed with “pro-abortion.” Some people like to pretend that means “abortions for everyone” or something. Except many pro-choice people can be not fond of abortion, they’re just less fond of demanding no one can have one.

So, to put this in terms for this post, the other day I tweeted to an article about the American Family Association, who likes to say they are pro-family. In the tweet, I said they were pro-hate and pro-bullying. And someone kind of passive-aggressively put up a Facebook status about how those are silly terms. And, yeah, they kind of are, out of context in particular. But when limited to 140 characters, sometimes you’ve got to crunch more philosophically sticky wickets into semi-meaningless phrases. When the AFA says they’re “pro-family,” they’re actually “pro-married heterosexual parents with children,” which does not even come close to describing every family out there. They might be “pro-single parent families” too, but they don’t seem to focus on that too much. Whatever they are, they are actively against anything to do with homosexuality, be it in the family or anywhere else.

When I called them pro-hate and pro-bullying, however, I was referencing the main subject that we’re going to talk about: “Mix It Up At Lunch Day.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center is promoting a day wherein students in elementary, middle and high schools sit with people they normally don’t sit with during lunch. If you went to public school, you may recall an unintentional segregation of cliques. Generally, kids would sit with the same people day in and day out. I often sat by myself, due to lunch schedules, or with a few friends from the bus. But it rarely changes. At ASMS, I noticed that most of the black students sat together on one side and the white students sat on the other side – with our Asians and occasional Hispanic student (of which there were few, now that I reflect on it) sitting wherever. And it’s not like these students never mingled or talked. That’s just how lunch ended up. So, the SPLC is attempting to promote tolerance by suggesting students get to know the other students that are perhaps “different” or whatnot. After all, humans fear the unknown, right? It’s usually the most ignorant that are the most hateful.

Well, the AFA thinks that’s totally gay.

Stephen Colbert, giving a tip of his hat to the AFA (so you know they’re TOTALLY on the right side), explains exactly how the AFA believes the day is a “nationwide push to promote the homosexual lifestyle.”

Later, CNN interviewed AFA spokesman Bryan Fischer about the whole complaint against “Mix It Up” day. Besides jumping straight down the gullet of Godwin’s Law by trying to say Hitler’s stormtroopers were all gay (So, I guess, homosexuals are Nazis?), Fischer also tried to say that if the day is NOT about homosexuality, the SPLC needs to put up a disclaimer saying so. At which point I wondered, should they also put up a disclaimer saying it’s not about animal cruelty? Or healthcare? Or apple picking? Also, apparently, the entire thing is like poisoned Halloween candy. So… an urban legend, I suppose? CNN eventually cut him off, because he was kind of saying crazy things. Some have criticized CNN for this, but, frankly, we don’t need people spouting hate and saying factually incorrect things for a living being given a national stage. We’ve already got politicians for that. Let Fischer get into politics if he wants CNN not to cut him short.

Well, CNN’s cutting him off led to today’s very anti-homosexuality rant. Apparently, homosexuality is blasphemy against God (one of those lovely sins that apparently never gets mentioned in the Bible) and CNN is part of the gay gestapo (so, once more unto the Nazi imagery).

I’ve written about the AFA before, back when they tried to compare people eating faces with homosexuality. And it was the same guy, Fischer, that made that comparison. Yet, despite proving he is clearly hateful and mentally unstable, the AFA continues to let him be a spokesperson.

And that’s where my “pro-hate” and “pro-bullying” things come in. The AFA is very clearly in support of some rather heinous emotional negativity toward homosexuals and homosexuality. It’s really quite hard not to see that as hate. Further, the AFA and other “Christian” organizations have been quite outspoken lately against messages of tolerance. If anyone is promoting tolerance, they’re there to decry it. I phrased it as “pro-bullying” because of a review on a “Christian” website about the movie “Paranorman.” The review warns viewers against “strong Romantic political correctness against bullying and intolerance of people who are different.”

…I don’t know about you, but that reads to me like they think people shouldn’t say bullying is bad. And that intolerance of people who are different is good. Combine that with the AFA railing against this “Mix It Up” day, which is meant to promote tolerance, and I start to see a really awkward pattern of disliking tolerance. True, that’s not necessarily pro-bullying, and it may have been silly of me to say that… but tolerance can certainly help stop bullying, and that movie review definitely mentions messages against bullying as though they’re bad things.

What’s ironic is that the AFA screams bloody murder any time someone tells them they’re being hateful, or jerks. That this “pro-family” shtick is outdated and intolerant of people. They say people are just being intolerant of “Christian” views on marriage. Well, first, as a Christian, I call a whole lot of BS on anything the AFA says as being Christian. And second, if you’re okay with intolerance in one direction, you really ought to be prepared to have that street go both ways. Granted, there are many who don’t tolerate intolerance. Myself included. I don’t like racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia or any of the other words we’ve come up with to say, “This person is different in ________ way, something they were likely born with and did not choose. I dislike them for that reason and/or will treat them as lesser than me because of it.”

But, frankly? I don’t know that that’s a problem, as long as you don’t take it as far as hating the person for the belief. Maybe just keep it to smacking them in the back of the head and calling them stupid. Lovingly, of course.

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