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Lesbian Gang Raped in Hate Crime December 23, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, Religion.
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The New York Times reports…

A woman in the San Francisco Bay area was jumped by four men, taunted for being a lesbian, repeatedly raped and left naked outside an abandoned apartment building, authorities said Monday.

Detectives say the 28-year-old victim was attacked Dec. 13 after she got out of her car, which bore a rainbow gay pride sticker. The men, who ranged from their late teens to their 30s, made comments indicating they knew her sexual orientation, said Richmond police Lt. Mark Gagan.

……….

Skolnik said the group plans to analyze hate crime data to see whether fluctuations may be related to the gay marriage bans that appeared on ballots this year in California, Arizona and Florida.

”Anytime there is an anti-LGBT initiative, we tend to see spikes both in the numbers and the severity of attacks,” he said. ”People feel this extra entitlement to act out their prejudice.”

Pssst, Warren this is what happens when we normalize homophobia in our culture.

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Rick Warren, Liar! (and overview of the Fiasco) December 23, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, media, politics, Religion, Uncategorized.
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Popular Pastor, Rick Warren is now speaking out of both sides of his mouth. In response to the controversy over his comparisons between gay marriage and incest and pedophilia, Warren has posted a video blog on his website denying that he ever made such a comparison.

More behind the fold..

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Rick Warren–Severe Cognitive Dissonance December 18, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, politics, Religion.
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Rick Warren will be giving the Invocation at Obama’s Presidential Inauguration.  This choice has sparked controversey among the right who feel that a pro-lifer should not be a part of a pro-choice President’s Inauguration.  It has also ignited outrage on the left because Rick Warren supported Prop 8, recently equated gays with pedophiles, and has supported the criminalization of homosexuality in African nations.

From a recent interview with BeliefNet

Warren: “I’m opposed to having a brother and sister be together and call that marriage. I’m opposed to an older guy marrying a child and calling that a marriage. I’m opposed to one guy having multiple wives and calling that marriage.”

Waldman: “You think those are equivalent to gays getting married?”

Warren: “Oh, I do.”

Warren went on to say that he is not a homophobe, has gay friends, has eaten dinner in gay homes, and believes that gay couples should have other civil rights like benefits and insurance.

Yet how can he be friends with gay couples if he believes that their relationships or marriages (after all the 18,000 gay couples that got married in CA may end up keeping their marriages) are morally equivalent to incest or pedophilia?

And what about Rick Warren’s comments in Uganda which are diametrically opposed to his comments with BeliefNet that he views gays should have all equal rights and protections except for marriage?

Dr [Rick] Warren said that homosexuality is not a natural way of life and thus not a human right. “We shall not tolerate this aspect at all,” Dr Warren said.

Rick Warren was speaking in Uganda, an African nation that criminalizes homosexuality.

How can Rick Warren believe that gays in America should have all civil rights except marriage while simultaneously advocating for gays in Africa to be imprisoned or worse?

Its seems Rick Warren is like many of the other Right Wingers who experience severe cognitive dissonance (thats where people hold two opposing beliefs at the same time).

Either that or he is a liar.

 My Open Letter to Pastor Rick Warren…..

Dear Pastor Rick Warren,

How can you compare two gay adults in a loving, committed, consensual, and legal relationship to an adult who rapes a child?

Don’t you realize that the myth that gays are child molesters or just as bad has lead to hate crimes against gays where people have been beaten and murdered?

How can you say that gay marriage could lead to bestiality or pedophile marriages when animals and children cannot give legal consent and cannot enter into legal contracts/license?

Why do you say that gay marriage would lead to polygamy when the countries that have gay marriage (Canada, South African, much of Europe and soon Nepal) do not allow polygamous marriages?

Why do you say that every culture and religion has disallowed gay marriage when that is a lie since several Native American cultures/religions use to allow forms of homosexual marriage with their Two Spirits/Berdaches and Medieval Europe had Brotherhood Marriages where men married other men and the Dahomey of West Africa use to allow women to marry other women?

Why do you say that gay marriage will lead to Pastors being jailed when that is not true because America has a much stronger Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech than most of Europe?  We don’t have those kind of hate speech laws and what happened to that Swedish preacher could not happen here.

Why do you say that you believe GLBT Americans should have all civil rights except marriage while supporting the criminalization of GLBT citizens in African nations?

Why do you lie on all these issues?  Isn’t lying a sin?  Shouldn’t you repent and apologize to the GLBT community for all the hurt and pain you have afflicted on them?

Love in Christ,

Josh

Mike Huckabee, Dangerous Theocrat December 12, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, media, politics, Religion, Uncategorized.
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Although admired by many evangelicals, Mike Huckabee, did not get enough traction during the Republican primaries.  After all why would moderates vote for such an extremist?  However, now with his weekend show on Fox News and the release of his new book, Huckabee seems poised to re-position himself.

Yet, Huckabee isn’t going to shift towards the center.  He believes that the moderates can be sacrificed and that Republicans and Conservatives can win again by going hard core far right and reawaken the evangelical base.

Make no mistake about it, Huckabee is a hard core right winger.

In 1992 he expressed his views that the Federal Government should not fund AIDS research.  He also expressed his belief that Aids patients and gays should be round up and placed in quarantine camps. 

If you think that point of view is too radical to be shared by other Conservatives today– consider the views of Pastor Steve Kerns and his wife, State Representative of Oklahoma, Sally Kern….

    “We have to get rid of that and start curing those sinners. It’s past time that this nation stopped placating sin and start putting them in education programs. Courts can force drug offenders into treatment centers and violent people into anger management. There’s no reason our courts can’t do that with homos.”

Huckabee has also said that the Constitution should be changed to be more in line with the Bible.

The separation between Church and State be damned, one supposes, from ol’ Huckster’s point of view.

Huckabee has also stated that gay rights are not civil rights because gays have not experienced physical persecution. 

Umm, Huck, what about gays being burned at the stake during the Inquisition?  What about gay men being castrated during Colonial America?  What about some Native American tribes being exterminated because they accepted homosexuals/berdaches/Two Spirits?  What about thousands of gays being slaughtered during the Holocaust? What about gays being forced into institutions and lobotomized or recieving electro-shock therapy in recent American History?  What about the Stonewall Riots?  What about Matthew Shepard and Lawrence King?  What about many Middle Eastern and African countries that imprison and/or execute gays just for being homosexual?

Mike Huckabee v. Jon Stewart on gay marriage…

Jon Stewart of the Daily Show adeptly argues that Religion is much more of a lifestyle choice than homosexuality is yet religion is afforded many rights and protections.

Mike Huckabee is a dangerous politician who would distort the lines between Church and State, set up a Theocracy, and go all Nazi on gays in America if he could get away with it.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Racist December 5, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, media, politics, Religion, Uncategorized.
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On the December 2nd 2008 show of The View, Elisabeth Hasselbeck referred to Medical Doctor and Spiritualist, Deepak Chopra as “glitter glasses whatshisname” and said he should “go burn a bowel of incense” in a jab against his Hindu derived spiritual beliefs.

Fans from the Television Without Pity website spearheaded an effort to contact ABC and ask that Hasselbeck apologize.  On today’s Dec. 4th show, Elisabeth gave a half baked apology right before a commercial break.  She did not explain the context of the apology nor did she explain why some Indian Americans, Hindus, and others were offended by her remarks.

Elisabeth had taken a jab at Deepak after he did an interview on CNN about the Mumbai terrorist attacks.  Deepak Chopra criticized America’s foriegn policy (Iraq war, civilian casualties) for causing outrage and resentment among the Islamic world which many scholars maintain contributes to turning moderates into radicals.

The Wall Street Journal also attacked Chopra, saying that he blamed America for terrorism.

Chopra responded to the attacks with a very nuanced interview with the Huffington Post.  Deepak and his son will also have editorials published in Friday’s edition of The Wall Street Journal where they will respond to the criticisms.

Here are some excerpts from Deepak Chopra’s interview at the Huffington Post…

“I didn’t blame America,” Chopra says and then elaborates that placing blame is complex and that Pakistan is suffering because of the people that don’t want Pakistan to have a relationship with a nuclear-armed India. “The worst thing India could have done is to have a nuclear deal and to be part of a nuclear club… Why are we selectively choosing to have nuclear deals and making the rest of the world feel unsafe?”

“We have a very self-righteous attitude towards the rest of the world. We have no understanding of how these violent ideologies are born. We want to just go to war and kill the terrorists. Well, the bad news is you can kill as many terrorists as you want, but you cannot kill terrorism. In order to kill terrorism it’s gonna have to be a 50-year Marshall Plan to not build war torn cities, but to build ideas. To rebuild violence torn minds. To educate them, to help them, to cooperate with them, to create economic partnerships so that the rage disappears, and to understand them. There are very simple rules for having a dialogue. You respect your enemy. You talk to them with the attitude, ‘Yes. We understand that you also have injustice and we also feel injustice. Can we have a room here for forgiveness on both sides? Can we refrain from belligerence?’ The more belligerent we get, the more belligerent the radicals get.”

Chopra says that, according to Rabinowitz, “I’m a purveyor of aromatherapy, enemas, I say happy thoughts make people happy.” He touches on Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s comment that he should “go light some incense.” He takes personally when the media dismisses thousands of years of wisdom and traditions, and is patient in explaining that aromatherapy and incense work through neuro-associative conditioning. If anyone bothered to ask, he would mention that he is a neuro-endocrinologist and that everything he studies has a medical basis. “If you really examine this, this is racism. This is bigotry. This is hatred. This is prejudice. And this is total lack of knowledge of another person’s culture.” You can almost hear him rolling his eyes when he says, “The only time I’ve prescribed enemas is when somebody has constipation.”

Right Wing Monster, Laura Ingraham December 1, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, media, Religion, Uncategorized.
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Right Wing radio host, Laura Ingraham is either a charlaton or suffers from severe cognitive dissodence. 

As noted in a previous post, Laura Ingraham is known for her homophobia.

While working for the conservative campus paper The Dartmouth Review during the 1980s, Ingraham sent an undercover reporter to secretly tape a meeting of gay and lesbian students, under the auspices of pursuing a follow-the-money story on where a mandatory $100-per-student activities fee went. “The View’s” latest guest co-host then went on to print the names of those students, who had not been made aware a reporter was present.

The piece she then ran denounced the group as “cheerleaders for latent campus sodomites.”

Its ironic that Laura is now criticizing gays for listing individuals and companies that voted “Yes on 8” when she use to intentionally out gay people and with malicious intent.

However, Laura also has a gay brother, Curtis Ingraham.  Laura eventually did an interview for the Washington Post where she explained that her views on homosexuality had been tempered due to her brother. 

“In the ten years since I learned my brother Curtis was gay, my views and
rhetoric about homosexual have been tempered, because I have seen him and
his companion, Richard, lead their lives with dignity, fidelity and
courage.”

“My brother had to claim he was Richard’s
“caretaker” to gain full access in the hospital, “knowing what they had
been through together made it sound antiseptic, almost an insult.”

Laura stated that it was seeing her brother and his late partner living their lives and caring for each other that shifted her views and it was not due to them “prosteltizing gay rights”.  Laura and the other Right Wingers are not fans of “prosteltizing” for gay rights or any type of civil rights as they view this as “greivance mongering”.  I’m not sure why they can’t understand why a group of people who is denied equal rights and protections would actually advocate for those rights and protections.

Laura indicated that it was insulting that her brother had to say that he was his partner’s “caretaker” to get into his partner’s hospital room instead of being recognized and acknowledged as his life partner.  Yet to be officially acknowledged and to have visitation rights and rights to be party to medical decisions, Curtis and Ricky would have to have been married or in a civil union.  However, Laura Ingraham seems to be against both gay marriage and civil unions as evidenced by her diatribe in her book, Power to the People.

So it would appear that Laura would have wished that Curtis and Ricky had been treated equally to married straight couples while also expressing her desire that gay couples should not recieve equal rights and protections as married straight couples.  Which is it Laura?  You can’t have it both ways.

Finally, David Brock portrays a different side to Laura Ingraham in his book, Blinded by the Right–the Conscience of an Ex-Conservative.  David Brock was a “right wing hit man” whose job was to smear liberals and others who stood in the way of the right wing agenda.  He wrote a book blasting Anita Hill, the woman who accused Clarence Thomas of sexual harrassment.  He was friends with the Right Wing darlings of the 90s– some of whom are still Right Wing darlings.  However, David was also gay.  While some of his Right Wing friends like Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter knew that he was gay, his outing to the general Conservative community and the resulting homophobic backlash, lead him on his journey to becoming a liberal and holding the Right Wing media accountable through his organization, Media Matters.

The juicier parts of his book includes descriptions of him and Laura Ingraham snorting what they believed to be cocaine (but ended up being cat tranquilizer) in a gay bar and Laura and Ann setting him up on a date with Right Wing blogger, Matt Drudge (who has sense been outed as gay by several sources) of the Drudge Report. 

He (David Brock) tells of one crazy night at a gay bar in Washington where he and Laura Ingraham sniffed up what they thought was high-grade cocaine. It was cat tranquilizer! Both of them got violently sick, and Ingraham crawled on her hands and knees through a jam-packed dance floor of gyrating men to reach him — in the men’s room where he passed out.

And he also tells about how Ingraham and Ann Coulter fixed him up on a “blind date” with another gay journalist, Matt Drudge. Brock said he wanted to keep the friendship with Drudge platonic, but that Drudge showed up in his little red compact car with a dozen roses for Brock!

They went to another gay club where Brock saw someone he found attractive and interesting, but Drudge stepped on the guy’s feet and told him to back off. Brock said Drudge was “a scary date.”
 

Brock also says in his book that Ingraham admitted to him that she doesn’t really believe all the things she says (many of us already expected that) and that it was her job to generate hateful nasty sound bites.

So who is the real Laura Ingraham?  Is she the traditionalist Cathloic who champions family values or is she the party girl drug user?  Is she affirming of gay couples or does she think that gay couples do not deserve civil unions or marriage?

Is she conflicted about cultural issues or is she simply a money grubbing charlaton who sells out her real ideas and values to cash in on a niche market based on ignorance and bigotry?

Has she made fools of the millions of consevative fans who believe that she is the real deal?

Regardless, the fact that she would continue ratcheting up fear and prejudice against gay people (including her own brother Curtis) on her radio program and during her appearances on Fox News makes her a verifiable monster.

Religious Conservatives and Family Values! June 12, 2008

Posted by joshuachayne in Culture, Religion, Uncategorized.
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Religion conservatives often claim to be champions of family values. Many religious conservatives consider the nuclear family to be the bedrock of society. They also view the nuclear family as being ordained by God. Some religious conservatives view same sex marriage as an attack on the ‘traditional family’.

However, Jesus defined the family in terms of the Kingdom of God. Those who partake in the Kingdom and follow His ethics and help to bring about this transformation of society are family. As many Christians would see it, those in the Body of Christ or in the Christian Community are the family. Jesus viewed family as community thus viewing family as transcending biological and familiar barriers. Jesus’ community and family included Jews and Gentiles alike as well as the outcasts of society; prostitutes, lepers, and tax collectors. Some of Jesus’ critics accused him of being anti-family for his radical redefinition of what constitutes family.

In Matthew 19 verses 11 and 12, Jesus says that not everyone will marry. He acknowledges that there are eunuchs who were made that way, those that were born that way, and those who chose to be that way for the sake of the kingdom. He says that it would be hard for some to understand this. Was Jesus recognizing the castrated, homosexuals, and celibates?

In 1st Corinthians Paul does say that each man should have a wife and each woman should have a husband (and that they shouldn’t with hold sex except for fasting) but he wishes that more people were celibate like him. He stresses in verses 39-40 that marriage is not wrong or a sin but he recommends celibacy.

Yet many religious conservatives think that everyone should be heterosexual and should get married and rear a family. Many religious individuals continue to think that there is a soul mate out there for everyone despite what their own religious texts might say to the contrary.