Thursday, May 28, 2015

Idiot Todd Starnes repeats idiotic claim "Marco Rubio: Liberals Will Soon Argue Christian Teaching Is Hate Speech"

Todd Starnes

Thursday, idiot quotes idiot. It's a brief piece by Starnes limited to:
Plus, some of the nation's largest cities have been turned into bloody battlegrounds and the Obama White House and professional race agitators remain silent. And one NYC hotel is apologizing for disrespecting a Navy officer.
Which is followed by a Rubio campaign video. The video, hosted by Fox News, timed out. According to Rubio:
"If you think about it, we are at the water's edge of the argument that mainstream Christian teaching is hate speech," Rubio told CBN News. "Because today we've reached the point in our society where if you do not support same-sex marriage you are labeled a homophobe and a hater."

Over 200 businesses have now signed the "Texas Competes" equality pledge

The “Texas Competes” pledge now has 236 corporate endorsers. “Texas Competes” is a commitment to LGBT equality. The project was launched by 125 of Texas' largest employers in April, 2015.

At a time when the Texas legislature seems obsessed with attempting to thwart marriage equality it's notable that not everyone in Texas is crazy. Prominent business leaders (many of whom are Republicans) are rightly concerned about the state's ability to compete. Indeed, several highly toxic LGBT bills were allowed to die at the end of the legislative session. That might be because a fair number of the participants in “Texas Competes” also fund the GOP and exert their influence accordingly.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

NOM: "Our Chance" and they claim to be broke - again

Photo Credit: NOM
Does that look like 15,000 people?
National Organization for Marriage has gone to the well once more with “Our Chance.” According to NOM they are going to change the world if you just dig a little deeper. The only thing missing is a solicitation for a $65 million jet.
You know what we have done together standing for the truth that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.

Whether bringing nearly 15,000 diverse supporters of marriage to our nation's capital for the March for Marriage or supporting legislation that will protect our First Freedom to act and speak freely in our support for natural marriage—we are in this fight together.

Pious fraud: Did God give devout Christians a pass on deception?

Just another bit of prevarication from the holier-than-thou set. The marine in question is being court-martialed for disobeying a direct order, not for displaying bible verses.

Vatican official claims that Irish marriage equality is "a defeat for humanity"

According to Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Irish vote to allow same-sex marriage was a "defeat for humanity." On Vatican radio, the pampered prelate is also reported to have said "I was very saddened by this result." Poor him.

Parolin is Pope Francis' most senior Vatican official.

What does NOM's transphobic bigotry have to do with marriage?

National Organization for Marriage
In a blog post dated yesterday (but actually published today) National Organization for Marriage reveals its utter bigotry towards transgender people. It's worth noting that fundamentalist Catholics do not seem to believe that transgender people even exist. They are just confused individuals. The post titled “If for No Other Reason, Protect the Family for the Sake of the Children,” is not attributed to a specific author.

Part of this post is based on a piece on the Heritage blog, Daily Signal, by Denise Shick. Shick, who claims to have been raised by a transgender father, campaigns against adoption by transgender individuals. A NOM staffer did write the opening paragraph of this rubbish. Furthermore, the publishing delay on a group of posts suggests that they were subject to editorial approval by someone higher up in the organization. The disdain for transgender citizens is unmistakable:

Mohler: The Boy Scouts are doomed

Albert Mohler

On Wednesday, Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary took to his blog to write “A Requiem for the Boy Scouts.” According to Mohler:
The Boy Scouts were doomed the moment the national leadership decided to preserve the organization at the cost of the values and ideals that gave it birth. Speaking to a national meeting of Boy Scouts of America leaders, President Robert Gates, former Secretary of Defense and former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, called for the B.S.A. to abandon its policy of allowing the participation of openly gay scouts, but not the involvement of openly-gay adults.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

It is astonishing how the Christian Right portrays conversion "therapy" bans

There is a clear consensus among all of the medical and counseling professional associations that conversion or so-called "reparative" therapy is not only useless but toxic. The science is also startlingly clear that sexual orientation is innate and immutable. It seems that every supposed ex-gay that we meet has an economic interest in claiming to be ex-gay.

Moreover, there is no connection between sexual abuse and the forming of one's sexual orientation. Were that not sufficient the demise of Exodus International and the admission by its leaders that nobody really changes should serve to cause Christians to act like, well … Christians with respect to how they treat children.

Rubio Dishonestly Panders and Fear Mongers on CBN

Marco Rubio

Senator and (vice) presidential hopeful, Marco Rubio, has warned CBN's David Brody of a clear and present danger to Christianity. Seriously, those who comprise the overwhelming majority of Americans are in peril according to Rubio.
"If you think about it, we are at the water's edge of the argument that mainstream Christian teaching is hate speech," Rubio told CBN News. "Because today we've reached the point in our society where if you do not support same-sex marriage you are labeled a homophobe and a hater."

Monday, May 25, 2015

Thomas Peters and the persecution complex

Thomas Peters, master of rhetoric in his own mind, beseeches “Ask Them, Do Catholic Lives Matter?” I don't know who “them” is but I am familiar with Mr. Peters. Before he dived from a perch too high into water too shallow, Peters was Director of Communications for National Organization for Marriage. He was a rude little demagogue who would simply hang up the telephone on any reporter who dared to ask a tough question. In Peters' mind he was ordained by God to prevent gays from marrying.

NOM has no class - even on Memorial Day

Image via
On Monday National Organization for Marriage released its Memorial Day message: “A Blessed And Grateful Nation.” Brian Brown, NOM's president, gets off to a decent start:
Today the nation honors those heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice, members of the military who gave their lives in defense of the principles upon which our nation was founded. I hope that each of you will take a moment to pause and pray for those brave men and women, and their families, whose ultimate sacrifice through the generations …
Brown should have left it at that. But Brown being Brown, and NOM being NOM, they follow with six painfully verbose paragraphs of the usual BS. I guess that Brown felt some restraint by not asking for donations. Nevertheless, what Brown thinks is important, in order to “honor those heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice,” is the 2016 presidential campaign. That's right. Politics is what they died for. Friends of this author died in Vietnam. I doubt that they, or their families, would agree with Mr. Brown. It's all so tasteless.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The Boy Scouts reverses course - A sampling of the homophobia and perverse fantasies

Boy Scouts group
Photo credit: CNN
Last Thursday Robert Gates, President of the Boy Scouts of America announced that the group's ban on adult gay leaders cannot be sustained. It is widely seen as a move that could open the door to ending the policy. In the interim, Gates said, at a national meeting of the group, that he does not plan to revoke the charters of Boy Scout councils that allow gay leaders.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Reacting to BSA, hate group continues to portray gay men as pederast predators

Randy Sharp
AFA's Randy Sharp
On Friday, American Family Association, an anti-gay hate group, continues to propagate the mythology that gay men are a threat to boys. That claim is supported by neither the science nor the evidence.

AFA goes so far as to claim that by, just being around openly gay men, boys are more likely to – apparently “choose” – to be gay. It amounts to rank bigotry.

Statistically, by the way, I would bet that married Christian youth counselors pose a significantly greater danger to children than openly gay men. Nevertheless, according to an article on AFA's “news” blog:

Majority of US accept that gays are born that way - and other encouraging data

Legal progress often tracks social progress. On Wednesday, Gallup released polling data that is very encouraging in numerous ways. A clear majority of Americans now accept the science that sexual orientation is innate. Only 30% believe that people are gay because of environment and upbringing.

The political gap on marriage equality

Datapoints via Pew Research
Which party is out of touch? The R/D gap is 35% (as of 2014). None of the GOP candidates seem to be doing anything to narrow this difference.

Jacksonville elects a pro-equality city council


Jacksonville, Florida citizens went to the polls on Tuesday and elected 11 new city council members. Equality Florida reports that “an historic LGBT voter mobilization effort by Equality Florida Action PAC and the Human Rights Campaign has created a pro-equality majority on the Jacksonville city council! Tuesday's elections have delivered a clear majority on the 17 member council who are on-the-record in support of adding sexual orientation and gender identity to the city’s nondiscrimination law.”

Jacksonville is (surprisingly) the Florida metropolitan area with the highest percentage of residents who identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (4.3 percent of about 850 thousand citizens). In 2012 an anti-discrimination ordinance was defeated in the city council by one vote.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

John Stemberger claims that BSA is "risking the safety and security of boys"

John Stemberger

John Stemberger, head of Florida Family Policy Council, is also the founder of Trail Life USA. Trail Life was created as a Christian Scouting alternative solely for the purpose of excluding the participation of gay boys. Stemberger has a long history of anti-gay animus and literal, visceral homophobia.

In response to the Scouts' apparent intention to allow openly gay adult leaders, Stemberger has issued a statement:
Trail Life USA is saddened by the announcement regarding the anticipated membership change in Boy Scouts of America, as many families and boys will be negatively affected by this departure from their own long-standing principles. It is tragic that the BSA is willing to risk the safety and security of its boys because of peer pressure from activists groups.
SPLC hasn't gotten around to designating Florida Family Policy Council an active hate group. They don't have to. Stemberger makes this status all too apparent. Why not come out and say it? “Gays are evil perverted sexual predators who recruit adolescent boys into their lifestyle.” Ultimately, that's what Stemberger means.

Some schmuck at NOM needs a basic civics lesson

Today in a blog post a staffer at National Organization for Marriage offers “Warning from Canada: Do Not Redefine Marriage.” Well that settles it. We begin with the usual rhetoric:
Many same-sex marriage advocates continue to falsely present the redefinition of marriage as simply providing respect and recognition to loving same-sex couples, with no consequences for anyone else. But as we have seen with the frequent attacks against supporters of traditional marriage - bakers, florists, and others …
They sure are getting a great deal of mileage out of the florist and a couple of bakers. Stunning persecution, right?

Liberty Counsel: Militant homosexuals want superior rights

On Thursday, the anti-gay hate group, Liberty Counsel, is going to court representing some so-called "Christian" magistrates in North Carolina who want to opt out of officiating same-sex marriages. This litigation began in January when Liberty Counsel filed suit in the Superior Court of North Carolina. LC's suit names just two magistrates, Charlie Smoak and Jane Doe. Smoak is no longer a magistrate while the anonymous litigant continues to serve in that capacity.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Jindal makes a legal mess while licensing discrimination

Bobby Jindal

Bobby Jindal, Governor of Louisiana signed an odious executive order on Tuesday. Louisiana already has no LGBT protections so this enshrines second-class citizenship status. It was a face-saving stunt designed to obscure the fact that he was unable to get his agenda through a legislature dominated by his own political party. Before getting into the effect of the executive order, it is important to understand a bit about the executive orderer.

Ill House, Ore Gov. approve gay conversion therapy bans

The Illinois House of Representatives has approved a bill banning gay conversion therapy for children. The bill passed by a margin of 68 to 43. Give some indication of momentum a similar bill failed in the House last year by 44 to 51 with 22 members not voting. The measure goes to the Senate where it is expected to pass.

Meanwhile in Oregon, Governor Kate Brown signed a similar bill into law. The new law makes it illegal for social workers or licensed mental health professional to practice therapy treatments purporting to change the sexual orientation of children.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Our friend Tony Perkins is really pissed

Tuesday, Louisiana legislators rejected a license to discriminate bill. Tony Perkins, head of the anti-gay hate group Family Research Council, got his start in Louisiana politics. Indeed it was there that he purchased David Duke's contact list. Even then they had something in common it seems. Louisiana's rejection of this gay hate bill does not sit well with Perkins according to an email sent out to supporters:
FRC's Tony Perkins Slams Louisiana Legislators for Failing to Pass Marriage and Conscience Act, Urges Governor to Act

When will these good Christians stop baseless fear mongering that pastors will be forced to marry gay couples?

Tony Perkins
Tuesday, Family Research Council, an anti-gay hate group, is misleading people — again. Clergy will never be required to marry same-sex couples. The only possible exception is a for-profit wedding chapel which is a public accommodation but Elvis probably wants our business. Otherwise, clergy will never be required to marry same-sex couples. We all recognize – or should recognize – that the Constitution protects clergy from having to consecrate marriages that do not meet their requirements.

FRC is promoting a video of a Christian pastor claiming just the opposite. The video is from Reverend Bill Shuler, lead pastor of Capital Life Church in Arlington, Virginia.

Christopher Doyle wants to Debate Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA)

Rep. Speier has urged the FTC to investigate gay conversion therapy practices. Christopher Doyle, a practitioner of gay conversion “therapy” challenged Rep. Speier to a televised debate. According to Doyle, Rep. Speier has it all wrong. Don't purchase popcorn futures; this is never going to happen.

Christopher Doyle claims that he can turn people from gay to straight. No matter how he tries to rephrase it, Christopher Doyle claims that he can turn people from gay to straight. He represents International Healing Foundation, crackpot Richard Cohen's organization (which still has not filed it's 2013 tax return). Doyle makes every effort to couch his language with love, acceptance and tolerance. He farts daisies as he strides through a meadow with Thumper and Bambi. If anyone has any doubts that Doyle is a vile bigot – if you think he gives a crap about gay kids – one needs only to read Doyle's screed in WND:

Monday, May 18, 2015

Pastor: Decline in Christians means that pastors need to be more anti-gay

According to a recent Pew Research survey the number of Christians in America is dropping like a rock. As Pew puts it: “Christians Decline Sharply as Share of Population; Unaffiliated and Other Faiths Continue to Grow.” Nevertheless roughly 70% of Americans identify as Christians. Pew offers several theories for the decline including more religious intermarriage and increasing racial diversity. I would think that intermarriage should net out while increasing racial diversity generally means more Latinos which means more Christians.

Staver: "President Obama must hate America"

Mat Staver
Liberty Counsel, the anti-gay hate group is lashing out at President Obama's Middle East peace initiative. I'm not entirely sure that I agree with the president's plan either. It depends on the details. Nevertheless, LC takes things to biblical extremes. According to their head, Mat Staver:
President Obama must hate America because his hostility towards Israel will bring a curse on our country. No nation that has opposed Israel or taken the land of the Jews has survived. Babylon, Persia, Rome, and Nazi Germany have all ceased, but Israel and the Jewish people remain.

Uh, this headline on Charisma News

No we're not going to watch these two odious people try for a baby. Just imagining them in coitus is revolting. According to the folks at Charisma:
In an interview with the 700 Club, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar talked about their growing brood of grandchildren, including little Israel David, who was born earlier this year, and expecting moms Anna Duggar and Jessa Seewald.

But are the original Duggars considering growing their immediate clan?

Jeb's gibberish and Mike's mischief

Jeb Bush is a candidate who hasn't declared. Mike Huckabee is a declared candidate who really isn't. Both are opposed to marriage equality as they are competing for the same primary voters.

On the Christian Broadcasting Network's the Brody File Jeb Bush hardened his opposition to same-sex marriage:
Jeb Bush
It's at the core of the Catholic faith, and to imagine how we are going to succeed in our country unless we have committed family life, a child-centered family system, is hard to imagine. So, irrespective of the Supreme Court ruling – because they are going to decide whatever they decide, and I don't know what they're going to do – we need to be stalwart supporters of traditional marriage.

A listless NOM goes to pathetic

Money to burn

On Friday National Organization for Marriage went to the well with “Stories You Won't Hear Anywhere Else” (maybe there's a reason for that). From his office in Pennsylvania Brian Brown, NOM's president, decided that now would be a good time to reiterate their amicus brief in Obergefell v. Hodges wherein they claim that all of the polls are wrong — grossly overstating acceptance of same-sex marriage.

If National Organization for Marriage could, they would be relatively quiet pending the outcome of the marriage cases before the Supreme Court. But NOM needs to raise money and that means constructing appeals to their supporters. It takes balls to go back to the people with your hand out. Lighting their currency on fire would have produced some light and heat. That is considerably more, in the way of return on investment, than NOM has been capable of providing. Yet these are true believers and that makes them uniquely vulnerable to nonsensical appeals.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Russian police arrest 17 LGBT "activists"

Gay rights activists protest outside the State
Duma in Moscow, June 11, 2013.
The 17 protesters merely gathered in Moscow to launch colorful balloons to celebrate the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. Police moved in immediately, arresting the 17 for violating Russia's law banning LGBT propaganda. Haaretz (Israeli newspaper) reports that thus far only one has been released.

Friday, May 15, 2015

The millennial contrast

I have done little to advance LGBT equality. I am just an observer and blogger. I am deeply appreciative of the efforts of people like Evan Wolfson. Evan represented James Dale in what eventually became Boy Scouts of America v. Dale in 2000. The loss in that case was devastating but it only energized Evan who became founder and president of Freedom to Marry. Here in Florida people like Nadine Smith, head of Equality Florida, are in the trenches every day — fighting the good fight. I can live peacefully in South Beach as an openly gay man.

(who is correcting typo after typo - Ugh)

Even Texas nuttiness has its limits as same-sex marriage license ban dies

Friday morning the bill that would have prohibited Texas civil servants from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples died in the legislature. Seen as a response to the potential Supreme Court decision nullifying same-sex marriage bans, the bill would probably not have survived legal challenges.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Amy Ridenour is a tobacco hack

Amy Ridenour - circa 2006
On Thursday, Amy Ridenour's National Center for Public Policy Research decided to criticize Marriott International Corporation for their support of LGBT equality in Indiana. Ridenour's “think tank” has been closely associated with Jack Abramoff and his clients. In addition they have tried to shape public policy in favor of the tobacco industry as well as climate science denying polluters.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

I think that ADF wants us to put our children up for adoption

Wednesday, Alliance Defending Freedom provides us with a polemic on their blog titled “Is 'love makes a family' really a fair thing to tell kids?

They begin with some fiction:
In the movie What a Girl Wants, 17-year-old Daphne Reynolds has an exceptional relationship with her mother. They are best friends, she knows she’s loved, and she has a great life. But something is missing.
She longs for her separated father and so on ad nauseum. Why are we discussing a movie? By the way the movie, released in 2003 is a comedy.

Brietbart's favorite anti-gay physicians

Wednesday the headline on Breitbart reads “Exclusive: Doctors Slam American College of Physicians For Caving to LGBT Agenda” And just who are these doctors that gave Breitbart exclusive access?
Doctors representing both the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) and the American College of Pediatricians are condemning the American College of Physicians (ACP) for announcing its overwhelming support of the militant LGBT agenda.
Apparently marriage equality activism is “militant.” Who knew?

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Orthodox Jews for Religious Freedom - Oy vey

Proof that we Jews can be just as idiotic as conservative Christians:
Imagine a kosher caterer that is sued for refusing to serve at a wedding on the Sabbath or a wedding hall owner who is sued for refusing to rent the premises for an interfaith wedding. Many people interpret Jewish tradition as allowing these activities. But the government should never serve in the Archie Bunker role, telling people what their religion allows and forbids. No Jew, no American, should be forced to violate his deeply held religious convictions.
Everyone wants a piece of the victim cake. No the caterer cannot be sued for not providing service on days when the business is closed. That banquet hall owner, on the other hand, might be required to host an interfaith wedding if it is open to the general public. Why the hell not?

Regnerus as victim resurfaces at Witherspoon

Part of Regnerus' "Poor Me"

On Tuesday, embattled Professor Mark Regnerus took to the Witherspoon Institute blog to defend his work. It is an interesting choice of venue. Given that Witherspoon is run by an Opus Dei numerary, the orthodox Catholic Regnerus is appealing to his own constituency. It also causes readers to remember that Witherspoon funded a large portion of this research and that his study had a religious purpose. On the surface, and before critical review, Witherspoon got what they paid for and few people were fooled. Regnerus claims victimhood (which requires a fair share of chutzpah).
… after three years, and two separate inquisitions by my own university, I’ve come to conclude that “the beatings will continue until morale improves,” as the saying goes. Or in my case, until I capitulate and admit I was wrong. I’m not above admitting mistakes, but neither am I prone to the sort of reeducation that is being pursued.

Monday, May 11, 2015

NOM's Brian Brown writes about common sense and fairness

Brian S. Brown

Brian S. Brown, president of National Organization for Marriage issued an email and blog post Monday afternoon titled “Urge Congress to Act to Defend Religious Liberty Today!” I can only assume that Mr. Brown presumes that his supporters are as dim-witted as the folks around him. Perhaps they are. Brown begins:

Franklin Graham is a most unhappy fellow

Franklin Graham
Franklin Graham is always pissed off. Franklin Graham will never be known for his sense of perspective. Apparently he has determined (like many of his ilk) that same-sex marriage is the end of the world. Speaking of the Supreme Court and the marriage cases:
The impending decision will rank as the most historic and far-reaching judgment of the 21st century. If our nation's highest court decrees same-sex marriage as the law of the land, the consequences will be great.

Texas legislators will vote on two anti-gay measures this week

Texas' Fourth and Eighth grade students have reading proficiency that is below the national average — which is pretty dismal compared to the rest of the industrialized world to begin with. Yet, instead of addressing myriad problems in Texas, lawmakers are focused on gay marriage. Assuming that the Supreme Court strikes down same-sex marriage bans, about 98% of all marriages in Texas will still be of the “traditional” variety. Yet, well … you know.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Once again, we discover that NOM has not complied with financial disclosure laws

Apparently National Organization for Marriage, wed to the mistaken belief that they are doing God's work, decides which laws it will, or will not, obey. It's a stunning display of arrogance. It's also a pattern of lawlessness.

California law requires that all charities seeking donations from California residents provide the state with an unredacted tax return (form 990). The unredacted return includes a schedule of significant donors. This law applies to National Organization for Marriage Education Fund (NOM-ed) which is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization. Donations to a 501(c)3 are tax deductible. NOM decided that it would not comply. In 2012, NOM-ed received donations greater than $5 million. In 2013 that dropped to $1.7 million. It gets worse.

Friday, May 8, 2015

"Adam Miller: Con Artist" v. Transgender Atheist Activist

Adam Miller

You may have caught this on Raw Story. Some crazy ass spiritual healer con man is suing transgender and atheist activist Stephanie Guttormson essentially for outing him as a crazy ass spiritual healer grifter (who has the balls to call himself a healthcare professional) in this video:

Did you know that gay marriage is the cause of the California drought?

Bill Koenig
According to Bill Koenig, “White House reporter” for World Watch Daily, God is sending us a message. Talking to hosts Jan Markell and Eric Barger on the evangelical radio show Understanding the Times:
We’ve got a state that, over and over again, will go against the word of God, that will continually take positions on marriage and abortion and on a lot of things that are just completely opposed to the Scriptures. Unfortunately, a lot of times when it starts in California, it spreads to the rest of the country and even spreads to the rest of the world. So there very likely could be a drought component to this judgment.
As they so often say “God works in mysterious ways.” Ethnic cleansing of Native Americans and two centuries of slavery followed by institutionalized racism didn't seem to get his attention but a few queers getting hitched – well – God's about had it, huh?

h/t EcoWatch

California AG granted more time to thwart "kill-the-gays" referendum effort

A state court has given California Attorney General Kamala Harris an extension for processing the proposed “Sodomite Suppression Act” that makes gay sex punishable by death. On Thursday Judge Steven Rodda in Sacramento agreed to give the attorney general until June 25 to prepare an official title and ballot summary for the initiative.