Saturday, May 05, 2012

The Glass Jawed Hypocrisy of Right Wing Bigots

While I have been on the road in the Middle East,  there has been some interesting developments back in the United States.

The  Social Conservatives on America's  political right wing,  are collectively going  berserk over the idea that their blatant hypocrisy has been called out  for exactly  what it is.

I have blogged extensively in the past about the horrific attempts by  right wing nut job  hate groups like the  "Family Research Council"  and  the  "National Organization for Marriage"  to block any programs designed  to address  the bullying to death of  LGBT youth in  Schools.

The reaction on the wing nut right  to  programs like Dan Savage's  It Gets Better Project, has been as predictable as it has been  vile .   To these hate mongers,  they see the bulling to death of  gay kids as their right.  As  protected  freedom of religious  expression. When LGBT people dare to  fight back,  well..  THAT is  the true bullying. That is  oppressing their religious freedom.

The latest round of  faux  outrage  from the American Taliban, stems from a speech by the aforementioned  Seattle based syndicated columnist and Anti-bullying activist,  Dan Savage.   Savage, speaking at a Student Journalism Conference in Seattle,  addressed the core reason many on the Conservative Evangelical right wing use  to justify their near constant attacks on LGBT people.  "The Bible says so..." argument.

When Savage began pointing out the  sheer hypocrisy of that position,  a group of  "Christian Student Journalists", (right on cue),  got up, walked out and ran straight in the arms of the Family Research Council to claim that  big bad Dan Savage had bullied  them.  Waaaaaaahhh!   Within hours, the WingNutosphere went into gleeful overdrive claiming  that meanie Dan Savage was attacking religion!

Shortly after,  Dan Savage  apologized for his choice of words, and for calling the walk out by the students during his speech  "pansy-assed".  But rightfully stuck to his guns on  his core point.
On "Bullshit" and "Pansy-Assed"

posted by  on SUN, APR 29, 2012 at 9:01 AM

I would like to apologize for describing that walk out as a pansy-assed move. I wasn't calling the handful of students who left pansies (2800+ students, most of them Christian, stayed and listened), just the walk-out itself. But that's a distinction without a difference—kinda like when religious conservatives tells their gay friends that they "love the sinner, hate the sin." They're often shocked when their gay friends get upset because, hey, they were making a distinction between the person (lovable!) and the person's actions (not so much!). But gay people feel insulted by "love the sinner, hate the sin" because it is insulting. Likewise, my use of "pansy-assed" was insulting, it was name-calling, and it was wrong. And I apologize for saying it.
As for what I said about the Bible...
A smart Christian friend involved politics writes: "In America today you just can't refer, even tangentially, to someone's religion as 'bullshit.' You should apologize for using that word."
I didn't call anyone's religion bullshit. I did say that there is bullshit—"untrue words or ideas"—in the Bible. That is being spun as an attack on Christianity. Which is bullshhh… which is untrue. I was not attacking the faith in which I was raised. I was attacking the argument that gay people must be discriminated against—and anti-bullying programs that address anti-gay bullying should be blocked (or exceptions should be made for bullying "motivated by faith")—because it says right there in the Bible that being gay is wrong. Yet the same people who make that claim choose to ignore what the Bible has to say about a great deal else. I did not attack Christianity. I attacked hypocrisy. My remarks can only be read as an attack on all Christians if you believe that all Christians are hypocrites. Which I don't believe.
...and maybe I shouldn't have used the word bullshit in this instance. But while it may have been a regrettable word choice, my larger point stands: If believers can ignore what the Bible says about slavery, they can ignore what the Bible says about homosexuality. (The Bible also says some beautiful things that are widely ignored: "Sell what you possess and give to the poor... and come, follow me.” You better get right on that, Joel.)
I'm not guilty of saying anything that hasn't been said before and—yes—said much better. What is "bullshit" in this context but "upwards of a thousand lies" in modern American English? And while those slamming me most loudly for "pansy-assed" may be on the right, they are also in the right. I see their point and, again, I apologize for describing the walk-out as "pansy-assed." But they are wrong when they claim that I "attacked Christianity." There are untrue things in the Bible—and the Koran and the Book of Mormon and every other "sacred" text—and you don't have to take my word for it: just look at all the biblical "shoulds," "shall nots," and "abominations" that religious conservatives already choose to ignore. They know that not everything in the Bible is true.
All Christians read the Bible selectively. Some read it hypocritically—and the hypocrites react very angrily when anyone has the nerve to point that out.
It is worth noting that Dan Savage is not the first to point this out. My favorite (and much missed),  television show The West Wing, tackled this same issue in a scene where a Conservative radio talk show host, clearly based on right wing talk show host "Dr." Laura Schlessinger , gets taken to task by President Bartlett, played by  Martin Sheen.
The anti-gay wing nuts have gone on to demand that President Obama denounce Dan Savage for his "bullying" of Christians.   So  once again we get  the ridiculous fiction from the American Taliban,  that  standing up and saying it is blatant hypocrisy  to selectively use the bible to justify at the very least, bigotry and discrimination,   and in so many cases, the bullying to  death of  LGBT Americans,  that  is  somehow attacking their freedom of religion.     
Dan Savage may have felt that it was a step to far to describe the walk out by those who were upset by his comments "pansy assed", and to call selective biblical interpretation "bull shit", but I disagree. 
Dan Savage has nothing to apologize for.   
Brian Brown, the  gay sex obsessed spokesnut  for the  hate group the "National Organization for Marriage" has decided he is going to ride the victim train  as far as he can on this one, and has challenged Dan Savage to a debate on this topic.   Savage was lightning fast in  his acceptance of  Brown's "challenge".   
Pop the popcorn kids,  this should be good.  Brown is all talk when he goes on Fox News, or  when he is swinging at  Wolf Blitzer's  "I guess we have to leave it there",  softball questions over on CNN.   I look forward to seeing how he deals with  the reality  of  his own words and actions  being held up for what they truly are.  Un-American,  anti-constitutional , theocratic fascism that would make the Taliban proud.

1 comment:

Biki said...

I totally agree with everything Dan Savage said, including the pansyassed and bullshit words he used. You and I see eye to eye on this subject, they are haters clear and simple who are classic bullies, they can dish but cant take it.

I'm reading a great book, God vs Gay. And one line really stuck out for me, and really it highlights the hypocrisity of bigots.

King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? john 4:20

If you are wondering if I'm religious? Not in any typical sense of the word. I suppose the word I'd use to describe me would be spiritual, but mostly I feel we shouldnt be so quick to condem differences in others, and to realize that at the base of it all, we are all the same, human.