Oppressive Soviet values are alive and well in Sacramento, where evangelical Russian and Ukranian immigrants are harassing and intimidating gay rights advocates. The behavior of these goons has become so threatening that gay activist Jerry Sloan founded Stand Up, a gay self-defense organization. Apparently, one is needed because these Soviets like to forcefully bang gay people on the head and yell "Saved." Such actions are assaults and the police must begin to aggressively arrest and prosecute those who engage in such anti-American behavior.
Unlike normal Russian immigrants who abide by American rules of civility, this Sacramento crowd is different because they belong to puritanical, apocalyptic evangelical churches. These hateful storm troopers are being trained by California right wing activist Randy Thomasson and dispatched at the state capitol or Pride events waving Fred Phelps-like anti-gay signs.
In the LA Times article illuminating the new threat, it says this Soviet-like mafia of messianic morons may have led to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoing a bill that would have banned negative references based on sexual orientation from state textbooks and classes.
The GLBT community must deal with this new reality by quickly acting to educate this community. They are ignorant of homosexuality and genuinely afraid their kids are getting caught up in "sin." A coming out guide and a fact sheet on homosexuality written in Russian are sorely needed. We can't let our hard-fought gains be revoked by new arrivals who have no clue what this nation stands for.
So are we seeing the beginnings of the Mark Foley-related backlash at the hands of religious and other conservatives against Republican gays with important Capitol Hill staff jobs? Chicago Tribune blogger Frank James lays out the case that a purge may already be in motion.
On the Chris Matthews Show this Sunday, loud mouth blowhard Tucker Carlson told the cold truth about the relationship between religious fanatics and the Republican elite: They can't stomach the James Dobson crowd. This helps explain why Republican offices on Capitol Hill are stocked with gays like salmon on a salmon farm. Here is the transcript:
CARLSON: It goes deeper than that though. The deep truth is that the elites in the Republican Party have pure contempt for the evangelicals who put their party in power. Everybody in ...
MATTHEWS: How do you know that? How do you know that?
CARLSON: Because I know them. Because I grew up with them. Because I live with them. They live on my street. Because I live in Washington, and I know that everybody in our world has contempt for the evangelicals. And the evangelicals know that, and they're beginning to learn that their own leaders sort of look askance at them and don't share their values.
MATTHEWS: So this gay marriage issue and other issues related to the gay lifestyle are simply tools to get elected?CARLSON: That's exactly right. It's pandering to the base in the most cynical way, and the base is beginning to figure it out.
One of the most successful techniques used by the right wing is creating shadow organizations designed to ape mainstream institutions in an effort to undermine them. By deceptively using scientific names and manipulating research, much of the public can't tell the difference between the reputable groups and the reputed ones.
One such mock organization is the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH). It was co-founded in 1992 by Drs. Charles Socarides and Joseph Nicolosi as a fundamentalist foil to the American Psychiatric Association, which had taken homosexuality off the list of mental disorders in 1973. The group lobbies to re-label homosexuality a mental illness and promotes the myth that gay people can become heterosexual through therapy.
Although NARTH works mightily to present a veneer of respectability, its rhetoric always has a way of showing its true colors. In 1998, the now-deceased Socarides (whose own son, Richard, is gay and the former gay liaison to President Bill Clinton) told The Washington Post that homosexuality is "a purple menace that is threatening the proper design of gender distinctions in society." This churlish rhetoric belied the scholarly facade the group tried to impart.
That same year, while millions of people mourned the gruesome murder of Matthew Shepard, Nicolosi crassly complained about people protesting NARTH's annual meeting by sneering, "A kid gets killed in Wyoming, and we can't even have a scientific meeting."
The theories promoted by NARTH are as bizarre as its insensitive rhetoric. Dr. Nicolosi has said factors in the causation of homosexuality include "fear of tall bridges" a "phobia of the phone" and once claimed that gay men are more likely to be "pee shy." He has encouraged his clients to become more masculine by drinking Gatorade and calling friends "dude." The good doctor also applauded a patient in one of his books as making progress toward heterosexuality after he didn't give a man his phone number at a bathhouse after they already had sex. Even more ludicrous is Nicolosi's notion that, "non-homosexual men who experience defeat and failure may also experience homosexual fantasies or dreams."
With such quack-like ideas, it is not surprising that Nicolosi does not keep track of his failure rate. When asked by a Newsweek reporter why he kept no statistics, he blithely claimed, "I don't have time." More troubling is that Nicolosi does have the time to analyze children as young as three, telling the Advocate magazine that, "It's my job to increase the possibility of a heterosexual future for these effeminate boys."
Holding such peculiar opinions, NARTH quickly attracted fringe psychologists. For example, a prominent member of the organization is Dr. Jeffrey Satinover who once reported that "Prozac" may be a cure for homosexuality. Another major NARTH contributor is Holocaust revisionist Scott Lively, co-author of The Pink Swastika, a book that partially blamed gay people for the Holocaust. "The Pink Swastika will show that there was far more brutality, torture, and murder committed against innocent people by Nazi deviants and homosexuals than there ever was against homosexuals," wrote co-author Kevin E. Abrams in the preface describing the book.
Unfortunately, the sickening and revolting work propagated by NARTH now has a large audience thanks to Focus on the Family. The behemoth right wing organization, with an annual budget of more than $137 million, now features Nicolosi as a keynote speaker in its ex-gay road show Love Won Out.
However, the sun may finally be setting on NARTH thanks to recent articles written on its website. In one polemic, Canadian doctor Joseph Berger, who serves on NARTH's "Scientific Advisory Board" said that gender variant children should be sent to school in opposite-sex clothing so they can be "ridiculed" into conforming. Truth Wins Out, my organization, filed a grievance with The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario and they will examine the complaint on November 1.
A second article, written by "Scientific Advisory Board" member Dr. Gerald Schoenewolf, justified slavery and said that African-Americans taken away in chains on slave ships "were in many ways better off than they had been in Africa."
The National Black Justice Coalition quickly called on NARTH to apologize and The Southern Poverty Law Center also turned up the heat by writing an illuminating article on the brouhaha. As a result, some prominent members and supporters are defecting. Dr. Warren Throckmorton canceled his appearance at NARTH's annual conference in November and former committee member David Blakeslee resigned.
Amazingly, NARTH has failed to apologize and Berger and Schoenewolf remain on the Board. Meanwhile, Nicolosi refuses to comment and continues to cower in his bunker, which may be a wise strategy considering what usually happens when he opens his mouth. But as the controversy metastasizes, the group that tried to ape the APA increasingly looks as ridiculous as a circus monkey.
Remember Rep. Marilyn Musgrave (R-CO)? She's the original author of the Federal Marriage Amendment. That's not news, but what is raising eyebrows amongst political observers is the fact that she has been able to accomplish something that really is truly remarkable. What is her amazing feat? She's single-handedly turned her ultra-conservative Colorado district into a possible pick-up for Democrats!
What could have possibly caused a district of stalwart conservatives to consider electing Angie Paccione, a Democrat who supports same-sex marriage, over "home grown homophobe" Marilyn Musgrave? It has to do with water. Yep, water. Farmers in District 4 are losing their farms as a result of a vicious drought that's enveloped the state, and all Marilyn can do is talk about banning same-sex marriage.
In fact, at a recent so-called "Values Summit" sponsored by the Family Research Council, a hate group that gives her a 100% rating, Musgrave boldly ascended to the podium to declare that the most important issue in America was "banning same-sex marriage." Unfortunately for her, voters in her district want water and irrigation, not Pat Robertson's talking points. This is evidenced by Marilyn's pitiful 33% approval rating.
Indeed, recent polls show that the race is in a dead heat. Could it be that deep-fried homophobia just doesn't get votes like it used to? We're not willing to go that far, but when you have to sell the farm because your representative is more concerned with religious zealotry than she is in securing drought relief, vilifying homosexuals just doesn't seem all that important anymore.