In a slap in the face to the honorable gay and lesbian men and women who serve this country, a loony right wing activist attacked gay service members in front of the House Armed Services personnel committee.
The nut job, Elaine Donnelly, warned of "transgenders in the military." She warned that lesbians would take pictures of people in the shower. She spoke ominously of gays spreading "HIV positivity" through the ranks.
"We're talking about real consequences for real people," Donnelly proclaimed. Her written statement added warnings about "inappropriate passive/aggressive actions common in the homosexual community," the prospects of "forcible sodomy" and "exotic forms of sexual expression," and the case of "a group of black lesbians who decided to gang-assault" a fellow soldier.
Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank wrote that, "at the witness table with Donnelly, retired Navy Capt. Joan Darrah, a lesbian, rolled her eyes in disbelief. Retired Marine Staff Sgt. Eric Alva, a gay man who was wounded in Iraq, looked as if he would explode.
Rep. Vic Snyder (D-Ark.) labeled her statement "just bonkers" and "dumb," and he called her claims about an HIV menace "inappropriate." Said Snyder: "By this analysis...we ought to recruit only lesbians for the military, because they have the lowest incidence of HIV in the country."
Let's just call Donnelly's statement what it is: Raw Hate.
Such right wing activists will say and do anything to smear gay people. They have no scruples nor a conscience. What they do have are fanatical fringe religious beliefs that do not conform to reality - so they must create an alternative reality. When their strange "world view" rightfully gets mocked, these "victims" - who work to take away equal rights of others - scream "religious bigotry."
Bigotry, of course is an irrational fear, (and fearing right wing crazies is quite rational) while holding people accountable for screw ball world views is necessary in a civilized country. In any case, Donnelly's tomfoolery hurt her case, more than it helped.
The Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy is as immoral as it is insane - kind of like Donnelly.
According to The Associated Press, an Oklahoma state lawmaker who was made infamous by an anti-gay tantrum was prohibited from entering the state Capitol Wednesday when she was found to have a loaded pistol in her purse.
A Highway Patrol spokeswoman Chris West said Republican Rep. Sally Kern was not charged because there did not appear to be any "malicious intent" behind her actions. West said officers are allowed to "use their brains" when determining if an arrest should be made in such instances. Unfortunately, we are still waiting for Kern to use her brain - or discover if she actually has one. Clearly, the woman is dumb as rocks. She can't even remember if she packed a pistol. Didn't she notice her purse was a tad heavy?
West also confirmed that Kern is a habitual gun runner with this the second incident in which Kern made it into the building with a gun in June. Kern, the loopy legislator, whined earlier this year of receiving death threats after an audio clip was posted on YouTube in which she calls homosexuality a bigger threat to the U.S. than terrorism. Clearly, she's just an all-around paranoid and should have her head examined.
Guns and knives are prohibited in the State Capitol and those who enter must pass through an airport-style security checkpoint, including a metal detector and an X-ray machine. It is a misdemeanor to bring a weapon inside. Kern told The Associated Press Wednesday that both incidents were simple mistakes. (So was the parking ticket I got while I was in Oklahoma City. But, I got no special break after the meter expired)
The first time, the weapon got through the security checkpoint, she said. "I got all the way up to my office before I realized I had it, so I reported it," she said.
On Wednesday, she said she forgot to take the .380 caliber semiautomatic handgun out of her purse after she stopped to talk to a colleague. "It was an honest mistake from being out of my routine, you know," she said. Kern said she had a permit for the gun and had carried it long before the YouTube controversy.
To the good people of Oklahoma: Can't you elect anyone better than this clown or the new weirdo who writes ant-gay cartoons?
Vice Presidential candidate Sen. John Edwards was caught visiting his mistress and secret love child at 2:40 this morning in a Los Angeles hotel by the NATIONAL ENQUIRER. The married ex-senator from North Carolina - whose wife Elizabeth continues to battle cancer -- met with his mistress, blonde divorcée Rielle Hunter, at the Beverly Hilton on Monday night, July 21 - and the NATIONAL ENQUIRER was there! He didn't leave until early the next morning.
I know that this is the Enquirer....but it isn't like the tabloids are always wrong on affairs. Let's see how this develops. I hope it isn't true. I prefer my scandals to be of the Republican variety.
Dr. Gary Remafedi Says 'Ex-Gay' Group Manipulated His Study And Should Immediately Take The Distortions Off Its Website
Truth Wins Out published exclusive comments today by Gary Remafedi, M.D., M.P.H., a professor of pediatrics at the University of Minnesota, who claimed the "ex-gay" organization PFOX distorted his research findings.
On its website, PFOX expressed its displeasure with The Washington Post for publishing what it called "a sympathetic article about a 15-year-old boy named Saro who described his homosexual feelings and how Gay Straight Alliance student clubs help such gay teens to deal with discrimination and bullying in high school and middle school."
"What the article failed to describe," said PFOX Executive Director Regina Griggs, "is the danger of young sexually confused teens self-identifying as gays at an early age. Research has shown that the risk of suicide decreases by 20% each year that a person delays homosexual or bisexual self-labeling.* Early self-identification is dangerous to kids."
Dr. Remafedi's study was the one cited by PFOX to back their unfounded conclusions. Today, Dr. Reamafedi released the following comments to Truth Wins Out:
"My work has been cited by PFOX in response to a Washington Post article on gay-straight alliances (GSA)," wrote Dr. Remafedi. "PFOX misuses one of my studies on suicide attempts in gay youth to argue that people should not identify their sexual orientation at young ages. Our findings do not support the contention that young people choose their identity or the timing of events in identity formation. Nor is there any evidence that the availability of GSAs influences those developmental processes."
Remafedi's report was published in Pediatrics in 1992. The study explored patterns of sexual orientation in a representative sample of more than 34,000 Minnesota students in grades 7 to 12. PFOX, as well as Focus on the Family, distorted his findings to make the case that young people should not learn about homosexuality because they were sexually confused, and could thus be influenced by educational material.
Last year, several researchers held Dobson accountable for misrepresenting their work. Letters and videos from these scientists can be viewed at www.RespectMyResearch.org.
"We thank Dr. Remafedi for stepping forward and not allowing his research to be manipulated for political gain," said Truth Wins Out Executive Director Wayne Besen. "The right wing thrives on twisting legitimate research in its efforts to confuse people. We are doing everything in our power to stop this insidious practice."
Truth Wins Out is currently working to find examples where right wing organizations have twisted scientific work. If you have a case that is worthy of investigation, please contact TWO's Director of Research, Peter Cabrera, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The IRS has charged millionaire Charles Merrill with tax evasion. His trial has been delayed until next year, 2009, at the U.S. Tax Court in San Diego.
Merrill, who recently suffered a stroke, said from his wheelchair, "I have buried $2 million worth of gold coins in the desert as a hedge against the economy collapsing. My partner doesn't even know where it is at."
He continued, "If the IRS allows me to file a joint federal income tax form like any other married couple, the money is there to pay. All they have to do is dig it up. I want to pay taxes, but not treated as a second-class citizen. Gay marriage is not a state issue, as the political candidates McCain and Obama claim, any more than heterosexual marriage is. They need to rescind DOMA and make us equal citizens under federal law. As it stands now, gay married couples are taxed without full representation."
The 74-year-old artist has been in a relationship with Kevin Boyle for 16 years. Merrill is a cousin of the co-founder of Merrill Lynch. Prior to coming out as bisexual he was married for 23 years to Evangeline Johnson, the only daughter of Johnson & Johnson founder Robert Wood Johnson.
"Marriage between 'gender neutral' couples is legal in California, but our union is not recognized by the federal government, and we don't get the over 1,000 federal benefits automatically extended to heterosexual couples," Merrill said Wednesday.
Sporting a fog machine for its smoke and mirrors routine and an extravagant stage that would make The Rolling Stones blush, the "ex-gay" group Exodus International held its glitzy annual conference in Asheville, North Carolina. I was in town all week to partner with regional and state organizations to oppose the meeting and its dizzying array of distortions. A dark cloud hovered over the Exodus event, with violent hate crimes unsettling the local GLBT community. At the very moment ex-gay televangelists were railing against homosexuals in the foothills, news broke of an 18-year old boy in Anderson, South Carolina whose father, "yelled, cursed, swung a baseball bat, prayed and tried to cast the demon of homosexuality out of him."
In nearby Greenville, South Carolina, Stephen Moller, an anti-gay thug who murdered 20-year-old Sean William Kennedy outside a gay bar, just learned that he would spend approximately 10 months in jail for his ferocious crime. In this gross miscarriage of justice, the message was sent that murdering gay people was tacitly acceptable, if not encouraged. While in town, I spoke to Sean's grieving mother, Elke Kennedy, who rightfully called the sentence, "a joke and a slap on the wrist." Meanwhile, on the opening day of the Exodus conference, an anti-bullying bill was stalled in the North Carolina legislature.
Into this backdrop of brutality stepped the ex-gay activists Alan Chambers and Randy Thomas, who were determined to show the progressive residents of Asheville that Exodus did not stigmatize gay and lesbian people. Unfortunately, they kept tripping over reality and revealing the true nature of their duplicitous, deceptive and depraved ministry.
For a week, western North Carolinians were dazzled with disingenuousness. The audacity of the lies was breathtaking and the sheer nerve was mind numbing. By the end of the conference, everyone who had paid attention learned that Exodus leaders are shameless charlatans who lack even a modicum of morality.
For example, Thomas tried to distance Exodus from the controversial practice of "reparative therapy," telling the Asheville Citizen-Times, "We get lumped into the groups that do reparative therapy, when it's just not true."
To put it kindly, Thomas sees the truth as a political pinwheel that he can spin in his efforts to win. I personally visited the Exodus conference (before I was evicted) and found that they were selling several books that taught "reparative therapy" including one from Dr. Joseph Nicolosi who invented the term.
In yet another instance of insincerity, on a local radio talk show Thomas feigned compassion for people living with HIV and AIDS. What "good guy" Thomas failed to tell listeners was that Exodus addresses AIDS on its website by saying that, "In today's society, homosexuality is reaping a bitter harvest...Homosexual involvement reaps deep devastation in the lives of many who practice it." That Thomas runs away from such judgmental words when speaking to more liberal audiences shows what a phony he truly is.
The double-talk and dissembling continued when Alan Chambers told the Citizen-Times that Exodus was, "not about fire and brimstone." This, of course, was the same person who wrote in a 2005 newsletter, "One of the many evils this world has to offer is the sin of homosexuality. Satan, the enemy, is using people to further his agenda to destroy the Kingdom of God and as many souls as he can." On Sept. 21, 2007, Chambers told a crowd of social conservatives in Florida, "We have to stand up against an evil agenda. It is an evil agenda and it will take anyone captive that is willing, or that is standing idly by."
With such bombastic broadsides, does one really have to wonder how the violent Andersonville father got the idea that homosexuality was demonic? Or, how the gay bashing hooligan, Stephen Moller, believed he could devalue the life of a gay man?
To underscore this connection, consider Exodus' keynote speaker on Friday, author Andy Comiskey, who wrote a book that Exodus was selling, which calls homosexuality "spiritual disfigurement" and says that "Satan delights in homosexual perversion." Inside of a packed chapel, 700 vulnerable and confused gay people had their souls strip-mined, as Comiskey declared war:
"Wickedness is a reality," said Comiskey on-stage. "And those with same-sex attraction that succumb to the spirit of the age, can become agents of that wickedness...When you claim healing for the homosexual, you have declared war. And people, it is only going to get worse; it is only going to get worse in the changing cultural climate in which we live. Ours is not a benign healing path, it is a call to battle."
And, Exodus claims it does not preach fire and brimstone? Exodus may smile sweetly and tell the mainstream media they love homosexuals. But, judging by the recent hate crimes in the Carolinas combined with the reactionary rhetoric of Exodus, it seems that they are literally "loving" us to death. (Exodus Selling Hate Books At Conference)