....LMB: "Going to the Chapel, and We're Not Gonna Get Married"....

August 03, 2003

While you people have been wasting your time on trivial issues like war, terrorism, and economic turmoil, the President and the Pope have been taking on Real issues. Like whether or not women who like kissing each other should be able to get married.

Surprise, surprise, these two fellows oppose the idea of homosexuals having the right to marry. Actually, let me re-phrase that. Bush and Popey don't care too much about gays' rights to marry; they are publicly saying "we oppose gay marriage" because it's no longer PC to say "we think gay people are fucking disgusting."

Seriously, what else could this issue possibly be about? Folks who oppose gay marriage are generally opposed to it because of their feelings about homosexuality, not their concern for the "institution of marriage." If they are in favor of gay marriage, or for that matter, gay adoption or gay rights, it's like saying "I approve of homosexuality." Which they don't. Either because of their religious beliefs, or because they are disgusted by the idea of gay sex (or because they want everyone else to know that they disprove homosexuality).

I think that blogger Calpundit hits the nail exactly on the head here, arguing that anyone's stance on the issue is simply their own emotional reaction to the issue, that they have then encased in a rationale. In other words, your stance is based upon your gut feeling, and you make up reasons to justify that feeling later.

Following that, my gut feeling on the subject is "who the fuck cares?" Let gay people get married, it affects my life not a whit. On top of that, it does seem unfair to tell one group of loving couples that they are entitled to all the legal rights and privileges that marriage brings, and tell another set of loving couples that they aren't. I like humorist Adam Felber's tongue-in-cheek take on the issue, that depriving gays of the right to marry somehow makes marriage more special to the straight folks.

I'm always tempted at this point in conversation on the subject of homosexuality to say something like "I really don't understand what people have against gays." Except that that's a total lie. I know exactly what people (well, Americans) have against gays. And you do too.

American culture is extremely gendered. Our concepts of male and female spill over onto ever aspect of our society; the clothes we wear, the foods we eat; the jobs we hold; the words we speak. And, unfortunately for homosexuals, a large part of our concept for each gender is that, by definition, they are attracted to the opposite gender. Part of being a man is liking women, and part of being a woman is liking men.

So when a man likes another man, it really batters that traditional definition of masculinity, the same way that female homosexual attraction tugs at the def of feminity. What was once black and white is now possibly gray. And there's a large segment of the American people that doesn't like such blurring. They like their whites white, and their blacks black (and in prison). They know that men like beer and pussy, and women like cooking and obeying their husbands. Challenging those concepts makes them feel doubt, and they don't like that. The backlash against the doubt-bringers is fierce.

So homosexuality is a dangerous threat to the core concept of gender, and gender concept is a core component of American culture. In other words, homosexuality threatens to totally upend American culture.

And I say bring it on. Any society that can be torn asunder by the gender of the mouth sucking a guy's dick, deserves to be destroyed.

Does any god who spends his time utterly riveted by the position of humanity's collective genitalia really deserve anyone's worship? And does a civilation based upon this god's genital obsession deserve to survive?


I guess my feelings on all this come down to my particular moral code, "Do whatever you want, as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else." Not much room in there for prejudice or oppression.

Posted by Jake at 09:28 PM | TrackBack (1)

Given my thoughts on the "institution of marriage," I can think of no better way to indoctrinate gays on traditional values. If and when gays become accepted, it will only be because they are going to be assimilated into the established culture and its attitudes towards marriage and sex. A non-threatening gay couple will look safer than promiscuous gays running around (to mainstream America). After all, marriage keeps our sexual activity in line, right? Yeah right. I know this is probably hard to imagine right now, but I suspect that acceptance of gays will follow a similar pattern as the "Tame the Negro" approach -- and gay marriage is a good way to mainstream gays and assimilate them into the system. Hell, if the right-wingers were smart enough, they'd embrace gay marriage!

Okay, I'll try to make more sense when I'm more awake.

Posted by: Eric at August 3, 2003 11:44 PM

An interesting addendum to this piece would be information on all the members of Congress who voted FOR the "Defense of Marriage Act". I forget where, but I saw statistics a year or so ago, and an extremely high number of the people who supported that bill were either divorced (many several times) or had had affairs, or both.

Posted by: Hylo Bates at August 6, 2003 05:25 AM

Interesting points, particularly about the focus on gender in this country. My observation is that male homosexuality is more despised than female homosexuality. Several years ago, I read an article in the Texas Observer analyzing homosexuality in the Bible. Not that I buy the argument (at least entirely), but the argument was that what the Bible actually condemned in homosexuality was that a man was basically taking on the role of a woman in sex, which in that culture was bad.

Even though things have gotten better in this country about gender, there's still a good/bad dichotomy when it comes to gender: Women aren't as highly valued as men. And I think that does play into some people's disgust with male homosexuality.

That said, my brother and I were raised in Texas, along with biases that we've worked to overcome. We both support the idea of gay rights and accept it. Yet, he told me recently of going to an academic conference (he teaches) and being rather abused about being straight. In other words, it wasn't enough that he had no problem with homosexuality. He wasn't interested in even dipping his toe into it, which they criticized. He said he's seen this a bit over the last few years, among students and faculty.

I don't know that this attitude is common (I've not really personally seen it), but it is a prejudice itself.

Posted by: Tx Bubba at August 7, 2003 01:31 PM

I agree about people reacting on a gut level, then looking for justifications to back up their "beliefs." Here's a helpful hint from a hateful hetero, for the next time some sack of shit Right-Wing fuck tries to tell you that gay marriage is wrong because the Bible says homosexuality is an "abomination." The Bible ALSO says "Lying lips are abomination to the Lord."(Proverbs 12:22) Do they think that Liars should be discriminated against? Of course not, because they are Hypocrites (see Matthew 7:5), and, to paraphrase Cartman, "Hypocrites SUCK!" But they'll never see it, much less admit and correct it, so I say as always, Happy Armageddon!

Posted by: Scott at August 7, 2003 08:06 PM

Best comment I've heard on the subject was on public radio, where someone noted that marriage is a religious institution, while civil unions are the province of the state.

No one needs to make this a religious discussion -- it's not about religion, but about civil unions.

Gays can't get "married" in some churches. Fine. Not really, but if that's how it's gonna be, give them the right to engage in a meaningful and lawful civil union as spouses under the protection of the law.

Posted by: Dave at August 8, 2003 05:53 PM

Best comment I've heard on the subject was on public radio, where someone noted that marriage is a religious institution, while civil unions are the province of the state.

No one needs to make this a religious discussion -- it's not about religion, but about civil unions.

Gays can't get "married" in some churches. Fine. Not really, but if that's how it's gonna be, give them the right to engage in a meaningful and lawful civil union as spouses under the protection of the law.

Posted by: Dave at August 8, 2003 05:54 PM

For the definitive word on Bush & gay marriage, see this week's Tom the Dancing Bug:


(if you get a different cartoon, click on "previous date" until you get to the right one).

Eli Stephens
Left I on the News

Posted by: Eli Stephens at August 11, 2003 04:42 PM

"To each his/her own" Always one of my favorite sayings. When the family found out that one female member was a lesbian, there was mixed reaction. I watched her go through a 17 year marriage to a man. Unhappy, treated badly by him..and so on. She and her girl wear rings to symbolize thier unity. I, personally, am happy for them both. They are both GOOD people with big hearts. Personally, I wish the law would pass so that these two people who are highly commited to each other could enjoy some of the things you can only take advantage of if you are married..like ONE health insurance plan..married filing jointly. My stand on the issue lies mostly in the "pursuit of happiness" thought and less in the vaginal area( or penis area).

Posted by: erin at August 19, 2003 05:53 AM
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Media News

December 01, 2004

Media Mambo

The Great Indecency Hoax- last week, we wrote about how the "massive outcry" to the FCC about a racy Fox TV segment amounted to letters from 20 people. This week, we look at the newest media scandal, the infamous "naked back" commercial. On Monday Night Football, last week, ABC aired an ad for it's popular "Desperate Housewives" TV show, in which one of the actresses from the show attempted to seduce a football player by removing the towel she was wearing to bare her body to him. All the audience saw, however, was her back. No tits, no ass, no crotch, just her back.

No one complained.

The next Wednesday, Rush Limbaugh told his shocked viewers how the woman had appeard in the commercial "buck naked".

Then, the FCC received 50,000 complaints. How many of them actually saw this commercial is anyone's guess.

The article also shows the amazing statistics that although the Right is pretending that the "22% of Americans voted based on 'moral values'" statistic shows the return of the Moral Majority, this is actually a huge drop from the 35% who said that in the 2000 election or the 40% who said that in 1996 (when alleged pervert Bill Clinton was re-elected). This fact is so important I'm going to mention it over in the main news section too.

Brian Williams may surprise America- Tom Brokaw's replacement anchor, Brian Williams, dismissed the impact of blogs by saying that bloggers are "on an equal footing with someone in a bathroom with a modem." Which is really funny, coming out of the mouth of a dude who's idea of journalism is to read words out loud off a teleprompter. Seriously, if parrots were literate, Brian Williams would be reporting live from the line outside the soup kitchen.

In related news, Tom Brokaw has quit NBC Nightly News, and it appears that unlike his predecessor, the new guy can speak without slurring words like a drunk.

PR Meets Psy-Ops in War on Terror- in February of 2002, Donald Rumsfeld announced the creation of the Office of Strategic Influence, a new department that would fight the war on terror through misinformation, especially by lying to journalists. Journalists were so up in arms about this that the Pentagon agreed to scrap the program.

Don't you think that an agency designed to lie to the public might lie about being shut down, too?

This article gives some examples about the US military lying to the press for propaganda and disinformation purposes.

Tavis Smiley leaving NPR in December- African-American talk show host Tavis Smiley is opting to not renew his daily talk show on National Public Radio. He criticized his former employers for failing to: "meaningfully reach out to a broad spectrum of Americans who would benefit from public radio but simply donít know it exists or what it offers ... In the most multicultural, multi-ethnic and multiracial America ever, I believe that NPR can and must do better in the future." He's 100% correct. NPR is white. Polar bear eating a marshmallow at the mayonaise factory white. And the reason it's so white is that it is trying to maintain an affluent listener base (premoniantly older white folks) who will donate money to their stations. This is a great paradox of American public broadcasting, that they have a mandate to express neglected viewpoints and serve marginalized communities, but those folks can't donate money in the amounts that the stations would like to see.

U.S. Muslim Cable TV Channel Aims to Build Bridges- it sounds more positive than it is "Bridges TV" seems to simultaneously be a cable channel pursuing an affluent American Muslim demographic, and a way of building understanding and tolerance among American non-Muslims who might happen to watch the channel's programming. I was hoping it would be aimed more at Muslim's worldwide, but it ain't. Still, I'd be interested in seeing how their news programs cover the issues.

Every Damned Weblog Post Ever- it's funny cuz it's true.

Wikipedia Creators Move Into News- Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia, created collectively by thousands of contributors. It's one of those non-profit, decentralized, collective, public projects that show how good the internet can be. Now, the Wikipedia founders are working on a similar project to create a collaborative news portal, with original content. Honestly, it's quite similar to IndyMedia sites (which reminds me, happy 5th birthday, IndyMedia!). I'll admit, I'm a bit skeptical about the Wikinews project, though. IndyMedia sites work because they're local, focused on certain lefty issues, and they're run by activists invested in their beliefs. I'm not sure what would drive Wikinews or how it would hang together.

CBS, NBC ban church ad inviting gays- the United Church of Christ created a TV ad which touts the church's inclusion, even implying that they accept homosexuals into their congregation. Both CBS and NBC are refusing to air the ad. This is not too surprising, as many Americans are uncomfortable about homosexuality, and because TV networks are utter cowards. But CBS' explanation for the ban was odd:

"Because this commercial touches on the exclusion of gay couples...and the fact that the executive branch has recently proposed a Constitutional amendment to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, this spot is unacceptable for broadcast."

Whoa, what? First of all, the ad does not mention marriage at all. Second, since when do positions opposite of the Executive Branch constitute "unacceptable"? This doesn't sound like "we're not airing this because it's controversial", this sounds like "we're afraid of what the President might say."

Posted by Jake at 10:09 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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