Thursday, May 28, 2009

An Online Debate

This will be a long post, so I apologize in advance.  But I've spent much of today debating with a very unhappy anti-gay person.  You can read the article and the comments (where the debate took place) here.

And now, here were my responses:

"Frankly, Link, nobody cares because heterosexuals, having had marriage for as long as they have, realize that it's not the panacea that the gay community insists that it will be."

But I thought that marriage was so fragile, so important, so sacred to society that the concept of same-sex marriage would destroy the United States of America and then the entire world?

If all heterosexuals believed that, there wouldn't be any opposition. But there is. A lot of opposition so some straight people must regard marriage in high esteem.

And NGT, you're damning an entire group of people based upon the actions of a few. For every misguided gay parent taking their kid to a leather convention, there is a well-rounded gay parent taking their kid to a park. This is true of STRAIGHT PEOPLE as well. People, regardless of sexual orientation, make bad decisions.

And some of us gays actually DO work for HIV charities and try to help the indigent and the sick. So NGT, please keep your self-righteous anger in check.

As for the Dan Savage comment, everyone seems to take his ideas out of context. He's not saying monogamy that is hurtful, it's the illogical expectation of it. Meaning for most people, it's not realistic, and for all people, it's difficult. Considering the 50-plus percent divorce rate in this country, I'd say that's fair assessment. 

Regardless, it is odd that the White House has made no comment on the actions of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, or Iowa, and the only time our President mentions gays or lesbians is in a joke. Forgive us if we take a little offense to that. As if discrimination against gays and lesbians is nothing more than a nuisance. Is it so awful to ask for a little respect from the government, who seems to have no trouble at all taking our tax dollars? 

And "Don't Ask Don't Tell" needs to be repealed. It's a stupid law, one that promotes homophobia, and is completely outdated.

Re: North Dallas Thirty

1) NDT, gays aren't sneering at the virtues of marriage, they're sneering at the HYPOCRISY OF SELF-RIGHTEOUS STRAIGHT PEOPLE. You can't use the argument that gays are not worthy of marriage because they are promiscuous and self-destructive when some married heterosexuals are guilty of the same type of behavior. 

But again, this is damning an entire group of people based upon individual actions. ANYBODY, regardless of sexual orientation, can have self-destructive and promiscuous tendencies. If these actions do not disqualify heterosexuals from marriage, then it shouldn't disqualify homosexuals.

2) The stereotypical "gay lifestyle" is misnamed. It should be called the POPULAR LIFESTYLE. All of pop culture is shallow, hyper-sexual, and excessive. This is, again, not homo-centric so you can't keep using it as an argument that gays are inherently irresponsible because of their "lifestyle." 

3) You're missing the other benefits of marriage. Gay couples are owning property together, joining their finances, and raising children. They have no federal protections for their property, their money, or their children. Straight people do. This is where the inbalance lies. The fact that a straight couple can cohabitate for 7 years and have a commonlaw marriage but a gay couple can be together for 50 years and not have ANY federal protection is bullshit.

Re: TS

Yes you are subjected to different laws in different COUNTRIES. This is the United States of America. There is a big difference. Also, I'm not sure why gay marriage is a "forceful" issue. The United States grants personal freedom to all its citizens as long as they are unobstrusive to others. If gay marriage were legal, churches would still have the right to refuse certain unions (as they do now), parents would still have the right to tell their children they believe gay marriage is wrong (as they do now), and businesses would still have to treat all of their employees, regardless of sexual orientation, race, or gender, with equality (as they do now). So what exactly would change?

One of the prices we pay as American citizens is that other citizens will believe and live their lives in ways that we don't approve. But just like we have religious and personal freedom, so should our neighbors.

It's easy for the majority to tell the minority to wait for their rights and be thankful for what they are given. If everyone would put themselves into a situation in which they are the minority, I think it would alter their worldview dramatically.

"Marriage is two things to the gay community: a convenient excuse and a useful proxy fight."

Well, isn't that true of the Republican Party as well? Haven't they used it as a divisive issue for years to gain votes and win elections?

"how willing they are to trash it when doing so allows them to attack heterosexuals and religious people." 

And by your words here, aren't you guilty of the same sin? Aren't you using marriage as a way to trash homosexuals in the same manner that you're claiming homosexuals are using marriage to trash heterosexuals?

"How can you call opposition to gay marriage a divisive issue when the Obama Party and its candidates proclaim their public opposition to gay marriage and support state and Federal constitutional amendments to ban it?"

Last time I checked, it was the voters who elected politicians, and the issue is divisive amongst VOTERS. 51% voted for Prop 8 in California, but 49% did not. I therefore call the issue divisive. 

And it's not the Obama Party, it's the Democratic Party. Saying that is just as assinine as me calling the Republican Party the "Limbaugh Party."

"it's hard to argue that homosexual couples are identical to heterosexual couples when homosexual couples are completely dependent on heterosexual couples to produce them."

So homosexuals are inherently lesser than because we were simply born? Wow. 

"In other words, heterosexual couples have the capability to provide something of value to society that homosexual couples don't."

My aunt and uncle were barren. Should their marriage be annulled because they didn't produce any children i.e. any value to society? My grandfather is almost 70 and won't be producing any children. Should he also not marry? 

"The best that can be hoped for in regards to gay marriage is that it might keep gays from irresponsible behavior, even though it doesn't do so for straights."

You still haven't addressed the issues of shared property, shared finances, and shared children. Adopted children who were abandoned by (ahem) straight people. And what about lesbian couples who use the same fertility treatments that naturally infertile straight couples use?

"Liberalism has made of marriage an inconvenience, something that you do for the tax writeoff with the current sexual partner"

Since gay marriage is illegal in 45 states, you are referring to the actions of straight people and, once again, damning all homosexuals for the actions of some, ***not all*** heterosexuals.

"your only concern is what marriage does for you and you alone, and my concern is what marriage does for society"

And what does gay marriage do to the society? That point you've never made. You've talked about how it's not essential to gay people but you've only argued that citing extreme behavior that is not limited to homosexuals and does not represent all homosexuals. 

And I guess homosexual couples spending money on houses, vehicles, education, insurance, entertainment, travel, food, clothing, and other items don't contribute at all to a capitalist society such as this one.

"Hence, it's pretty obvious that your behavior won't matter as long as you have the right opinions, and if you don't have the right opinions, everything you say will be wrong anyway."

You are airing your opinions in a public forum. Anytime you do that, you will be subject to praise, agreement, disagreement, and criticism. This is the price of a public forum. The Dixie Chicks and Miss California found that out the hard way so it hardly follows to a conservative or liberal bias. If you don't want your opinion judged, then simply don't give it. Or grow a tougher skin. 

Or how about don't comment on a gay friendly website. I don't comment on extreme right-wing websites because no one is going to be open to my opinion. Practice a little self-awareness next time.

"Therefore, I don't give respect under the belief that it will be reciprocated or thatit adds any value; I give it when I feel like doing so."

If you expect confrontation, you will always find it. It seems that were burned by the actions of a few extreme, misguided gay activists, and for that, I'm sorry. But you've taken those past experiences and made a hatred for an entire group of people and no matter what religion or philosophy you follow, I promise you none of them would condone it. 

As I've said before, you are damning all homosexuals (including me, by the way) for the actions of a FEW. I have not resorted to name calling at all during this thread, nor have I sent you hate mail or hateful messages. I have just criticized your opinion, which you stated in a public forum. Therefore, do not link me or others like me to the negative experiences you have had in the past.

Let's agree to disagree. It's apparent you are not open to my opinion and I do not agree with yours. I do hope you grow less vitriolic over time. Hate ages the soul but it does not make it wise.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

To my friends in California

Well California sucks. I'm not surprised by the ruling at all. But there is hope, friends. Look to the Northeast, the birthplace of America, and look to the heartlands of Iowa. Freedom and justice for all is coming. It will come one state at a time. CA is just a bump in the road. And that state will soon be ashamed of what they've done today.

Now let's do the one thing the Christian Right would never do to us: walk over to them and say, "We forgive you for trespassing against us." Just because they hate us does not give us the right to hate them back. Give the love and forgiveness we wish they could have shown us. Remember, kids, karma is a bitch. Get on its good side and don't worry...the supporters of Prop 8 and all its like will get their comeuppance. Bigots always do.

Much love from Tennessee,


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Dear President Obama

Unlike the letter to Miss California, I actually sent this one:

Mr. President, I first would like to say that I know your job isn't easy. Pleasing 250 million people is not a pleasant task. But I'm just curious as to the silence concerning the historic actions of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Iowa in regards to gay rights and gay marriage. I find it odd that you wouldn't even acknowledge these acts, especially given your campaign promises.

I know little of politics and I understand if certain promises are pushed aside, but Mr. President, I'm asking for an acknowledgment that what these states did was Just and American. That homosexual citizens matter enough to be spoken of. I live in TN, the state where 82% of the population believed I shouldn't ever be married or have a civil union, because my long-term relationship would be less than valuable to society. My family doesn’t even ask about my relationships, as if I were asexual, whereas they obsess over my brother’s (heterosexual) love life. At 25 years old, I wonder if I'll ever be considered a citizen and person of value instead of a dirty little secret.

I consider myself to be a good American, Mr. President. I'm currently working towards my MBA at Belmont University. My main goal is to fix an entertainment industry that, like our country, is falling apart. I pay my taxes, I vote, I educate myself on the issues and world events, I am kind to my neighbors, I work hard and I play fair. And yet, I have people telling me everyday through their actions that I don't matter. Whether it's talk shows, radio programs, blogs, newsprint, or even comments in a Nashville bar. And your silence is telling me, once again, that because of who I am, who I was born to be, who I was made to love, that I don't matter.

So I ask you, Mr. President, do I matter? Or am I just a dirty little secret?



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Dear Miss California

Dear Miss California,

I wanted to congratulate you. You are about to become the Christian Right's favorite martyr. You will be held up as the prime example of why gays are evil...because they make fun of you and oppress your right to say your God-approved opinion by criticizing you in public. Oh I know what you're thinking. They didn't actually take away my right of free speech. I said what I wanted in a public forum and I was criticized in a public forum. That's the way public forums work. But don't you give in to that rational logic and thought! That has no place in the Christian Right. You are a martyr, dying at the hands of evil, horrible gays.

I also wanted to thank you for the phrase "Opposite Marriage." It's a goldmine of a title and I can't believe no one had thought of it before. After all, if gay marriages are abominations, then straight marriages must be the opposite of abominations. What a mind you have, Miss California!

I myself am going to use your phrase, but in a slightly different context. You see, since almost 60% of straight marriages end in divorce--such as your own parents--I don't want my marriage to emulate straight marriages. No offense, but why pattern your life after so many abysmal failures? So my marriage will be "Opposite Marriage" too!

I think we could campaign together. I really do. We can both argue for "Opposite Marriage." When you strip away the lip gloss, the collagen, and the silicon, you and I are not that different, Miss California. We were both hurt by a vicious lie: that marriages are sacred. I can't imagine the horror you must have felt when your own parents betrayed that sacrament by an act of sacrilege known as "divorce." And then to have icky, icky gays want to participate in that same sacrament. How horrible it must be for you!

For me, I learned that since marriage was so sacred, and I was so not, I couldn't participate in the Renaissance Festival known as the Wedding Ceremony. Oh to never know the joy of spending thousands of dollars on clothes to be worn only once, to shove a cake with a five hundred percent mark-up in someone else's mouth, to pose for countless pictures as if we were the lead story in "Vogue," and to play the party host to hundreds of people who only came for the free booze. My eyes still tear up to this day that I can't spend half a year planning a single party that will end up being nearly identical to all the ones that came before and would come after it.

Miss California, we're both the victims of injustice, and I say we fight that injustice. We should fight for "Opposite Marriage." Marriage today is not the promise and commitment it once was, what with prenuptial agreements, no-fault divorce, and the fact that this country allows you to marry as many times as you want. (Hello, Rush Limbaugh!) It's time that we reclaim marriage's moral high ground, making it the flip side to the marriages of convenience and "covering up unexpected pregnancies." Indeed...making it "Opposite Marriage."

So I applaud you, Miss California, for your beliefs and your strong moral convictions. Those same convictions that led you to posing nude and having your breasts augmented a week before your crowning competition. You are the new botoxed face of feminism and free speech. Live long!...knowing that your breasts will be here for millions of years after because they're not bio-degradable.



P.S. ~ A word to the wise. The Christian Right aren't kind to their martyrs once they've finished using them. They treat their martyrs just like they treat their whores: use 'em up, throw 'em out. So if I were you, I'd brush up on those typing skills. If you'd like, I can give you some references.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Media Hot for Teacher/Student Liasons

So today at the gym I was jamming out to VH1 Classics as I often do when on came Van Halen’s “Hot for Teacher” video—you know, the one where Van Halen and their 7th grade doppelgangers make lewd and suggestive comments about teacher-beauty queen-strippers. At first I was merely struck, as I always am when subjected to anything Van Halen, at how dead-on Metalocalypse creators Tony Blacha and Brendon Small have captured the essence of David Lee Roth and the band with their characters Dr. Rockzo the Rock-n-roll Clown (I do Cocaine!) and Zazz Blammymatazz, the clown band. I mean, that dance number with them wearing matching peach suits and white gloves?! C’mon!

But as the video progressed, I became more surprised that it hadn’t been censored, or at the very least, prefaced by a disclaimer declaring it for adult audiences only. After all, here it was glamorizing, nay celebrating, what current news hysteria dubs a horrendous crime—student-teacher sex. I mean, even the original Sesame Street got slapped with a parental advisory sticker when it got released on DVD—too much depression, visible poverty, and cookie-eating for our delicate little snowflakes these days. But nope, not a single “views expressed in this video in no way reflect the opinions of VH1, VH1 Classic, or any of its affiliates” popped up.

This got me to thinking. What makes the news media so hot for teacher-student sex? Why has what was once the subject of rock songs (The Police’s “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” is another one) and bad jokes now one of the hottest headlines in a news outlet’s tackle box? Is the shock and outrage real? Merely feigned to mask our still prurient fascination with sexual coming of age? Displaced guilt? When did it stop being culturally acceptable for the young male to be initiated into sex by an older woman? Young women are almost as likely to engage in sexual activities are their male peers, so perhaps it’s a natural evolution that the current ideal seems to be for two equally inexperienced teenagers to grope their way to knowledge together.

Or perhaps it’s a reflection of our need to prolong childhood well into adolescent years, despite the hyper-sexualization of teenagers in the media. Denial is not just a river in Egypt, as my mother would say.

Yet, I think the new villainization of older women who engage in sexual contact with teen boys also reflects our changing definitions of masculinity—at least adolescent masculinity. We’re slowly becoming more accepting of seeing males as victims of sexual abuse, though the journey is constantly hindered by entrenched and entrenching ideals of hyper-masculinity. I mean, isn’t that why female teacher/male student sex was glamorized? Because being a manly man means not only wanting sex, but making women of all ages want your sex?

That’s the idea all those Axe commercials sell anyway.

For your enjoyment, Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher":

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Why is there still Don't Ask, Don't Tell?

Dear President Obama,

I mean this with all respect, because I do respect you. However, would you please man up and repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell? Or do you want to idiotically lose more servicemen and servicewomen who are working for our country and our intelligence agencies? Especially Arab linguists, because you know, what with our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, we *certainly* wouldn't need them....don't be a a light. Like you promised you would be. Repeal DADT.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

What we lost 8 years ago.....

While there has been an overwhelming bout of hysteria concerning Obama taking everyone's wealth away (and yet, I don't see a shortage of people with iPods so everyone's bank account must have remained intact during the first 100 days), let us not forget what former President Bush took away from us....a little thing called DUE PROCESS.

Because of the Patriot Act, a 16 year old boy is in jail and will probably remain so because there are no such things as trials or appeals once the government calls you a terrorist. I repeat, under the Patriot Act, an FBI or CIA agent only has to label you a terrorist and you are no longer a United States citizen--a citizen with a right to a fair trial, a right to a proper defense, a right to an appeal. This 16 year old, barring an act of God, will probably remain in jail for the rest of his life for doing absolutely nothing.

I would also like to point out, to those of you who think this won't happen to you because you're not Muslim and you don't have a darker skin pigment, this kid is white and is not a Muslim. Funny how everyone is screaming about Obama taking their rights away (oh my god, he's gonna take my gun and my inflated bonus away! Marxist!!!) when they've failed to realize, Bush already did that. But nobody seemed to notice because they got overpaid and fat. Me? I'd rather have freedom and protection.

And I don't know about you, but I'd rather pay higher taxes than go to jail because some asshole hacked into my IP address. Just sayin'....


Now...President Obama...repeal this under-handed, ham-fisted, Orwellian piece of legislation and STAT!