By Alan Caruba
Archive for the ‘Gay Rights’ Category
Whenever a group or class of people is given special “rights” (which aren’t really rights, but privileges), the real natural rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are turned on their ears and shoved down the memory hole. In other words, the rights of the one are secondary to the “rights” of the other simply because one subgroup of individuals has been granted special privileges that never before existed.
Take the case in New York of a Catholic couple who had $13,000 extorted from them by the state of New York (not to mention thousands of dollars in legal fees over two years), were forced to undergo and subject their staff to a state-sponsored re-education camp and were ordered to prominently display on their property a propaganda message contrary to their belief system, all for the “crime” of declining to host a wedding on their farm. The wedding, if it can be called such, was for a lesbian couple.
But this was not just any lesbian couple looking for a wedding locale. This was a lesbian couple fishing for a free wedding and seeking to be offended — or, in their minds, deprived of their rights. The couple secretly recorded the conversation in which their request to have the wedding conducted on the farm — which serves the dual purpose of being a place for events and Robert and Cynthia Gifford’s home — was declined and then quickly ran off to the New York State Division of Human Rights to proclaim they had been aggrieved.
Never mind that the Giffords, while declining to host the wedding, offered to the couple the option of visiting the farm to discuss handling the reception. And never mind that the Giffords had recently hosted a birthday party for the adopted child of a lesbian couple, indicating they held no special animus toward homosexuals. The Giffords’ decision to decline to host the wedding — which was contrary to their faith because they believe God ordained marriage to be a union of one man and one woman — led New York’s DHR to determine they were insensitive and discriminatory and must be punished (discriminated against) and re-educated (brainwashed).
This sort of discrimination (depriving one of his natural rights) against the one on behalf of the other — especially if the other happens to be homosexual — is becoming more common by the day. In St. Paul, Minnesota, the misnamed Minnesota Department of Human Rights recently went after the owners of a lodge after they turned down a request to host a gay wedding — again because it violated their religious beliefs. In order to settle the complaint, the owners of Rice Creek Hunting and Recreation, Inc. had to pay for the couple’s wedding and reception at another location. So apparently in America now, if you are gay and persistent, you can eventually force someone you don’t know and don’t like and who is offended by what you do to pay for your wedding, all in the name of equality and fairness and anti-discrimination.
Dave Brat’s victory over Eric Cantor (R-VA) was attributed to his Tea Party backing, when national groups like the Tea Party Patriots gave him no financial assistance at all. What the media ignored was his campaigning in local churches and emphasis on family values.
In addition to opposing illegal immigration, Brat’s platform declared that “the most important factor in our nation’s success is the strength of the family unit.” It said that Brat would “protect the rights of the unborn and the sanctity of marriage, and will oppose any governmental intrusion upon the conscience of people of faith.”
“A man of deep faith,” his bio says, “Dave attends St. Mary’s Catholic Church with his wife Laura and their two children: Jonathan, 15 and Sophia, 11.” It says he went to Princeton where he obtained a Masters in Divinity and on to American University where he earned a Ph.D. in Economics.
During the campaign he also repeatedly emphasized a national security policy of “peace through strength.”
As they played down his pro-moral values message, in a victory that is continuing to send shock waves through the political establishment, our media have failed to report on how President Obama’s “fundamental transformation” of America has been working out in a process that can only be described as the homosexualization of the Armed Forces.
It is a topic that some Republicans, eager to sound like Democrats on social issues, want to avoid. But Brat’s victory—and the fact that his pro-traditional values message struck a chord—may cause them to start paying attention.
Many have been amazed at the lengths to which the Obama administration went to get Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl out of enemy hands, by exchanging him for five top terrorists. But consider the extraordinary June 5th Department of Defense “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month Ceremony,” which featured “the highest ranking transgendered civilian appointment in the Department,” a “woman” named Amanda Simpson who used to be a man named Mitchell Simpson.
Simpson introduced the event and proudly identified herself/himself as transgender, generating a round of applause.
We reported on Simpson in 2010, when he/she became the first openly transgendered appointee to the federal bureaucracy. Simpson has since moved from the Commerce Department to the Defense Department.
Simpson reflects the aggressive infiltration of the federal government, even the Pentagon, by the George Soros-funded transgender movement. The Executive Director of something called the “Army Energy Initiatives Task Force,” Simpson served as a board member of the National Center for Transgender Equality from 2007 to 2009. George Soros has been a backer of the group, giving them $150,000 through his Open Society Foundations in 2011 alone.
You may recall that former Army soldier Bradley Manning had listed the National Center for Transgender Equality among his “likes and interests.” Manning, who was sentenced to 35 years in prison for violating the Espionage Act, theft of government property, and other offenses, has now said, “I am Chelsea Manning. I am female.” He wants the taxpayers to pay for his sex-change operation and the Pentagon seems willing to oblige him/her.
At the Pentagon event, Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work delivered the keynote address, saying, “We honor the service and sacrifices of our gay and lesbian service members…” Clearly, Manning is not somebody the Pentagon is necessarily “proud” of.
So progressives and hoplophobes (sorry for the redundancy) are lauding the fact that the restaurant Chiplotle has chosen to deny service to people exercising their 2nd Amendment right.
Yet those same progressives went apoplectic when a bakery owner and a photographer chose — for religious reasons — not to bake a cake or photograph homosexual weddings. Can you say hypocrisy?
In a free society, a business should be able to engage in a voluntary transaction or contract, or not, as the owner sees fit, just as the customer has the ability to choose whether to purchase a good or service from a particular business. If a business wants to refuse service to a person wielding a gun, good for it.
Likewise, if a business wants to refuse to perform a service for any other reason, the business should have that right as well.
To support one business’ decision to deny service but not the other is utter hypocrisy. But hypocrisy is the norm for progressives and statists.
To paraphrase Howard Dean, we have had enough of the politics of hate and anger and division. The left wants power so much they think it’s OK to win by taking away the right to bear arms. They are not American. They would be more comfortable in England or Australia.
I like to think of myself as a tolerant person. I have, however, one prejudice that is based on biology and history.
Michael Sam, the first openly gay professional football prospect, made history when he was filmed by an ESPN crew giving his lover, Vito Cammisano, a long, lugubrious kiss to celebrate being selected in the National Football League draft on May 10th. The sight of two men kissing passionately was not something I and a lot of other folks wanted to see.
A spokesman for GLAAD, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Discrimination, called the kiss “a significant milestone”, describing it as “touching.” No it wasn’t. It was nauseating to any heterosexual having to witness it or explain it to their children.
We need to understand that being gay is not normal. Biologically, species exist because the male and female genders exist for the purpose of procreation and propagation. Historically, gays have been held in disdain in every era of civilization. Today in the Islamic Middle East you can be killed for being gay, but you can also be killed for being Christian. In the West both actions are an abomination.
One gets a variety of estimates regarding how many gays there are in America. To the question, how many gay people are there in the United States, “The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, a sexual orientation law and public policy think tank, estimates that 9 million (about 3.8%) of Americans identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (2011). The institute also found that bisexuals make up 1.8% of the population, while 1.7% are gay or lesbian. Transgender adults make up 0.3% of the population.”
Being as generous as one can with such estimates, it still means that 96% of Americans are heterosexual.
In terms of the news generated by gays and their depiction in films and especially these days on television, one might be inclined to think that they were a far greater part of the population, but they are a minority within other minorities. My own guess is that there a large number of gays in the news profession and most certainly in the world of entertainment. And now we are being informed of gays in the world of sports.
I don’t want to hear much about gays for any reason. The kiss was not something I would want young people to see on television or anywhere else. The bigger problem is that our younger generation, progressing through our schools, is being systematically taught to accept homosexuality as just another version of normality.
A group called MassResistance was created in response to an assault on the Massachusetts school curriculums and GLSEN, the Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network, is hard at work in all fifty states! As MassResistance points out, Its agenda is to ensure that “a wide range of psychologically penetrating homosexual and transgender programs (and) activities into the schools,” while “organizing and training teachers to integrate their techniques throughout the curriculum.”
In early April, GLSEN held an all-day conference in Boston with speeches and workshops. It was attended by approximately 325 people, approximately two-third of whom were students. “The GLSEN Conference is run by adults and is meant to train adults.
Imagine you apply for a college program, only to be denied entry because you believe in God. And the kicker is how school administrators knew about your faith.
This is precisely what happened to Brandon Jenkins when he applied for the Radiation Therapy Program at the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) in Maryland. And now he’s suing in federal court for religious discrimination. Writes OneNewsNow.com:
Not long after Jenkins initially applied to CCBC’s program as a very strong candidate, he was told by a faculty member that the “field [of radiation therapy] is not the place for religion.”
But why — especially after scoring the maximum amount of points possible during his observation and meeting all the standards?
Jenkins later found that his response to a question asked by college officials during the interview process was the culprit. When asked, “What is the most important thing to you?” the Christian candidate simply replied: “My God.”
What makes this case unusual — and places the school in what should be a legally untenable position, as it receives taxpayer funding — is that program director Adrienne Dougherty actually put the discriminatory motivation in writing, expressing in an e-mail:
I understand that religion is a major part of your life and that was evident in your recommendation letters, [sic] however, this field is not the place for religion. We have many patients who come to us for treatment from many different religions and some who believe in nothing at all. If you interview in the future, you may want to leave your thoughts and beliefs out of the interview process.
Such frankness “astonished” David French, an attorney with the American Center for Law and Justice, who is representing Jenkins in his lawsuit. Fox News’ Todd Starnes reports that French told him in a telephone conversation, “While colleges routinely discriminate against Christians, rarely do they state their discrimination so explicitly.”
Critics also may ask a few questions. If the school wanted Jenkins to leave his “thoughts and beliefs out of the interview process,” why did they ask about them? Was Jenkins supposed to lie? One also could wonder, if the school learned that a person was an ardent atheist, would Dougherty mention that “we have many patients who come to us for treatment who believe in nothing at all and from many different religions,” implying it was a given that the student’s atheism precluded him from treating those outside his world view fairly? Relevant here is G.K. Chesterton’s observation, “In truth, there are only two kinds of people; those who accept dogma and know it, and those who accept dogma and don’t know it.” There isn’t an individual in the CCBC radiation program who isn’t going to have to deal with people embracing different dogma. And as Dougherty seems to prove, unjustly discriminatory motivations aren’t restricted to people of faith.
In its defense, CCBC claims that Jenkins was rejected for other reasons. Dougherty also wrote in her e-mail, reports Starnes:
that while his grades were good, there were other students with higher grade point averages.
The biggest problem Christians and conservatives have in making the case for marriage to the younger generation is we don’t speak the same language, and I’m not referring to the number of ‘likes’ inserted into each sentence that replace thought. Our frame of reference has only a tangential connection with that of the younger generation.
The default authority for Christians when explaining their opposition to homosexual marriage is the Bible. But it’s not for the generation born after 1980. The Washington Times reports, “More Americans are doubting the infallibility of the Bible, treating it as a guidebook rather than the actual words of God, according to a survey released Wednesday.”
This belief (no pun intended) puts that generation in agreement with Episcopalians, Methodists and Unitarians who also don’t understand what the big deal is when Rev. Adam and his wife, Steve shake hands with the faithful as they leave the sanctuary on Sunday.
This finding was part of a survey conducted on behalf of the American Bible Society. In the Times its president, Roy Peterson explained, “I think young people have always questioned their parents, questioned the church…Today the skeptics are saying, ‘It’s just like any other piece of literature, and it’s no different from that.”
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that when a Christian references the Bible, the youngster counters with, “You may like the Bible, but I’m partial to the Epic of Gilgamesh. However, if there was a modern language translation, the Egyptian Book of the Dead also has some value for those who want to increase their spirituality quotient.”
This declining interest is an indication there’s a real chance the Bible may lose it’s spot as the perennial number one best–seller, although this is not sufficient cause for Ellen to hope her bio will take its place.
The importance of the Bible for moral instruction has also declined. In 2013 almost a third of respondents “blamed a lack of Bible reading as the problem” behind a decline in American morals. This year it’s only 26 percent, but that decrease may be explained by the corresponding number of Americans who purchased 70” TVs in the intervening months.
So how does one explain opposition to homosexual marriage in terms the young can grasp? How does one put in context the aggressive demand that Christians conform to an unprecedented definition of marriage that didn’t exist even 25 years ago and flies in the face of all of human history?
How can they relate to our rejection of this absurd definition of marriage that completely upends an accepted way of life in the interest of pleasing an intolerant minority and its cheering section.
There are essentially no sexual taboos today, so approaching the problem from a Biblical angle is like expressing your opposition to the healing power of crystals by using the Physicians Desk Reference, when your audience hasn’t read either one.
Fortunately in today’s brave new culture food taboos have replaced sex taboos and it is here Christians can make our case in a way that duplicates the situation we encountered with homosexual marriage and is simultaneously understandable by the younger generation.
My analogy works regardless of whether you’re locked in debate with a smug and superior homosexual marriage supporter or you’re simply answering a question from one of those ‘love and let love’ types unable to understand why we feel so strongly about the issue.
The demand that Christians completely redefine marriage and accept a radical new definition that institutionalizes and affirms a form sexual practice the Bible specifically forbids, is the exact equivalent of pork lovers demanding that vegan restaurants serve bacon.
If America’s homosexuals can demand “marriage equality” then bacon lovers can demand “flavor equality.”
A vegan’s unconstitutional exclusion of bacon is simply elevating personal preference over a fundamental human right to have food that tastes good.
Others have already pointed out the absurdity that gay marriage is becoming a right in places where plastic bags and large sodas are becoming against the law. This sort of next wave civil rights step is only an expansion of freedom if you aren’t paying attention.
All the arguments over the differences between civil unions and marriage are largely meaningless. Once gay marriage is recognized, then marriage becomes nothing more than a civil union. The real casualty is the destruction of the word “marriage”, but the left is adept as destroying language and replacing meaningful words with meaningless words.
There was no word in Newspeak for freedom. We can look forward to an English language in which there is no word for marriage. And what does freedom mean anyway in a country where most things are banned, but we are constantly throwing holidays to celebrate how free we are?
But if marriage is no longer refers to a natural social institution, but now means a civil union recognized by the state, then why stop at two? Gay rights advocates insist that there is some magic difference between polygamy and gay marriage. There isn’t any difference except the number. And if we’re not going to be bound by any antiquated notion that marriage is an organic institution between man and woman, then why should we be bound by mere number?
Surely in our enlightened age and time, it can be possible for large groups of consenting adults to tie their confusing knots together in any number from 2 to 2,000.
True marriage equality would completely open up the concept. But it’s not actually equality that we’re talking about. It’s someone’s idea of the social good. And the social good is served by gay marriage, but not by polygamy.
The question is whose social good is it?
Equality and justice are words that the left uses to cloud the question of who advocates the causes and who benefits from them. Who decides that the cause of justice and equality is served by limiting marriage to two gay men, rather than four gay men, three bisexual men, two women and a giraffe?
The rhetoric of equality asserts a just cause while overlooking the social good. Rights are demanded. The demand is absolute and the logic for it remains left behind in a desk drawer on the wrong side of the table. Instead there are calls for empathy. “If you only knew a gay couple.” Hysterical condemnations. “I’m pretty sure you’re the devil”, one recent email to me began. And a whole lot of vague promises about the good things that will follow once we’re all paying for it.
We aren’t truly moving toward anarchy or some libertarian order, but a calculated form of repression in which shrill demands substitute for legal guidelines and those who scream the loudest get the most rights.
The new freedoms are largely random and chaotic. Donate enough money to the right people while helping out the left and a special addition to the marriage split-level house will be carved out for you. Why? Because there will be a lot of yelling. Naturally.
THE ENLIGHTENED LEFT
The left does not care about gay marriage. In most left-wing regimes, homosexuality was persecuted. It was illegal in the USSR. Gay men were locked up in Cuba and are still targeted in China. Nicolas Maduro, the current hero of the left, openly uses homophobic language without any criticism from his Western admirers. It goes without saying that homosexuality is criminalized throughout the Muslim world.
Engels viewed homosexuality as a perversion born out of the bourgeois way of life that would be eliminated under socialism. The Revolutionary Communist Party of the United States stated that homosexuality “is a product of the decay of capitalism” and vowed that once the revolution took place, a “struggle will be waged to eliminate it and reform homosexuals.”
The left’s shift on this issue, as on many issues, was purely tactical. The left’s leading lights were racists who jumped into civil rights. They were sexists who became feminists. They were advocates for the working class who despised the idea of working for a living.
29 Muslim Terrorists Accidentally Blow Themselves Up
Terrorists and states negotiate differently. Terrorists escalate a conflict to achieve leverage for their latest demand. They don’t seek a final settlement. There can be no final settlement because that would mean the end of terror.
Arafat and Abbas always negotiated the same way. They arrived prepared to disrupt the negotiating session at a crucial moment. The “peace process” was their hostage and they always hijacked it and began issuing demands.
It’s no surprise that the same thing happened yet again.
DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF CROOKS AND THIEVES
“But there were some goods missing, a substantial amount around $75,000 worth and we were unable through our internal investigations and our ongoing dialogs with the DNC to resolve this,” said Taylor, “So, we’re working with our insurance company and the Charlotte police.”
How did that dialogue go?
LG: Give back our TV’s.
DNC: Why are you people so racist?
LG: What? Who said anything about race?
DNC: Homophobes! We are the 99 percent. Your televisions have been occupied by the poor. They were unsustainable. Hope and change.
Socialist Muslim Politician: “Women who are Raped should be Hanged”
Mulayam Singh Yadav defended rapists saying sometimes boys make mistakes.
In a bid to woo the Muslim voters, Mulayam said: “It is not that I am with the Third Front for some post in the government. In fact, I am with them for the Muslims. If the Third Front comes to power, I would expect from them to solve the problems of the Muslims within a year.”
THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT HILLARY
Protesters threw tomatoes and shoes at Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s motorcade on Sunday during her first visit to Egypt since the election of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi.
A woman was taken into custody after throwing what she described as a shoe at Hillary Clinton during a Las Vegas speech.
Obama to Spend $1.5 Billion Promoting ObamaCare – Including $52 million spent on celebrity endorsements
DOWN, DOWN, DOWN
While Google Chrome has been struggling with market share, Firefox has been in a steady decline down to 17% market share in March from 20% in May of last year.
I am going to draw on decades of having been a public relations counselor to corporations and other organizations for some thoughts about the resignation of Mozilla’s cofounder, Brendan Eich, after his donation to support a California proposition banning gay marriage six years ago became an issue for the company less than two weeks after he became its CEO.
Despite the passage of the ban, voted upon by a majority (52%) of Californians who believe that marriage should be restricted to the union of a man and a woman, the California Supreme Court ruled against it. Same sex marriages in California resumed after the U.S. Supreme Court restored the federal district court’s ruling that overturned Proposition 8 as unconstitutional. Heeding the will of the people is not the California way.
At the end of 2008, same-sex marriages were legal only in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Today seventeen states, including California, allow such marriages. The gay, lesbian and transgender population of America is about three percent, but they are among the most vocal special interest groups in the nation.
From a PR point of view, Eich’s decision was a very bad one. Other corporations have found themselves targeted by the gay community. Chick-fil-A, an Atlanta based company has opposed gay marriage based on its commitment to Christian values, but most corporations regard any vocal opposition with more fear than courage. It has a lot to do with being in the business of selling products and services as well as being answerable to their investors.
It also explains, for example, why most embrace environmental demands in some fashion, including Big Oil and Big Coal. It’s no accident that BP Oil has a television advertising campaign going these days emphasizing the way drilling for oil in Alaska generates thousands of jobs elsewhere in the nation. The Gulf of Mexico oil spill is fading into the past as well it should. Simply said, accidents happen.
I suspect that Eich’s decision was based in part on the fact that its corporate headquarters are located in San Francisco. A Reuters news article noted that “Gay rights are widely embraced in the San Francisco area” described as “long known for its thriving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Silicon Valley’s tech culture reflects that sensitivity and its companies rely on their CEOs to set that kind of tone.”
The curious thing is that Eich’s “views about gay marriage had been known within Mozilla for nearly two years…” His appointment as CEO put him in the limelight and a call for a boycott by OkCupid opened the doors to a decision to stand by his views or leave, presumably in the interest of the company. The company chairwoman, Mitchell Baker, said of his resignation that “you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard.”
After freedom of religion, free speech is the next one cited in the Constitution’s First Amendment. It’s not hard to stand for it if you have the courage to do so.
Largely unknown to most Americans is the growing matrix of laws at the state level that grant a special status to the GLBT community. This is particularly true in Massachusetts.