aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Monday, October 29, 2007
A first-hand report from outside of the McClurkin concert
BlackTsunami took part in the South Carolina Gay and Lesbian Pride Movement’s vigil that was held outside Columbia’s Township Auditorium:
A black woman who stood in line for the concert marched over to us and declared:
“God made man for woman and woman for man.”
She said a couple of other things of a Biblical nature (how homosexuality is ugly in God’s sight, blah blah blah), but I tuned her out. I have learned that little trick over the years.
The ironic thing is that if this vigil was held in the 1950s, the subject would be about segregation and her role would be played by a white person claiming that the “separation of the races” was Biblically mandated.
Via Stephen H. Miller.
Obama’s slow motion train wreck
It’s really really hard for me to see how this works for Obama:
He approached the subject gingerly at first. Then, just when the concert had seemed to reach its pitch and about to end, Mr. McClurkin returned to it with a full-blown plea: “Don’t call me a bigot or anti-gay when I have suffered the same feelings,” he cried.
“God delivered me from homosexuality,” he added. He then told the audience to believe the Bible over the blogs: “God is the only way.” The crowd sang and clapped along in full support.
The political implications of his performance are not clear. The concert-goers we talked with afterward were generally more focused on making allowances for Mr. McClurkin’s past homosexuality than on anything about Mr. Obama.
The Obama campaign had appeared to be caught off guard by the reaction to inviting Mr. McClurkin in the first place, and it may have been surprised tonight by the degree to which the singer focused on himself. The other speakers and singers had avoided referencing the controversy. Even an openly gay minister whom Mr. Obama had invited after the fact to try to appease his gay and lesbian critics spoke so early that few people heard him.
Adding the white gay preacher was a blunder, but this is how you compound an error:
Aides gave reporters a three-page memo detailing McClurkin’s and Obama’s views on gay rights that noted in capital letters “MCCLURKIN DOES NOT WANT TO CHANGE GAYS AND LESBIANS WHO ARE HAPPY WITH THEIR LIVES AND HAS CRITICIZED CHURCH LEADERS WHO DEMONIZE HOMOSEXUALS,” with quotes detailing those statements from the singer.
I know Obama’s not a homophobe and he has a great record on LGBT rights; the thing is that this whole fiasco has been horribly managed. And it seems to just keep on getting worse.
And while I’m linking Atrios, don’t miss his The Audacity of Homophobia.
Placed on sex offender registry for sex with a bike
A man has been placed on the sex offenders’ register after being caught trying to have sex with a bicycle.
Robert Stewart was discovered in his room by two cleaners at the Aberley House Hostel in Ayr, south west Scotland, in October last year.[...]
“The accused was holding the bike and moving his hips back and forth as if to simulate sex.”
Both witnesses, who were extremely shocked, notified the hotel manager, who in turn alerted the police.
Via Boing Boing:
I am wondering how this is different from using, say, a vibrator or blow-up doll? Do people in hostels have no right to privacy?
The real killer paragraph is the last one - apparently someone was jailed in 1993 for having sex with the pavement - or sidewalk in US English.
Pam had this story, too, in a post about a man having sex with an inflatable doll in a Cedar Rapids restroom.
I’m reminded of Bob Barr railing against sex education last week in the AJC. It’s not sex education that causes this kind of dysfunction, it’s the lack of it!
The great hoary myth of arson
You’ll remember that last week California officials said at least one fire was arson and a $70,000 reward was offered to find the arsonist.
Funny, we always hear about arsonists - this time around we even hear about al Qaeda - but never that fires are started by downed power lines. Makes you wonder if downed power lines just don’t make as interesting a television news story.
Certainly there, you know, are arsonists, and anybody who sets a fire with the deliberate goal of killing people and destroying their homes should be in super-max in Pelican Bay.
But this is one of the great hoary myths of the American West. During the First World War, of course, you know, there were German arsonists everywhere; during the Second World War, the Japanese. And my fear today, because there’s an FBI arson investigation going on, is we’re going to find some convenient link to the war on terrorism or to the immigration issue.
What fire scientists will tell you is that the biggest single cause of big fires like this is probably power lines blowing down, as they always do, during big Santa Ana winds. And even if all the arsonists could be identified genetically and locked up, it probably wouldn’t make a bit of difference to the fire pattern.
Sicko opens in UK
And not everyone is singing its praises:
Unfortunately Sicko is a dishonest film. That is not only my opinion. It is the opinion of Professor Lord Robert Winston, the consultant and advocate of the NHS. When asked on BBC Radio 4 whether he recognised the NHS as portrayed in this film, Winston replied: “No, I didn’t. Most of it was filmed at my hospital [the Hammersmith in west London], which is a very good hospital but doesn’t represent what the NHS is like.”
Of course, after 750 words of an unremitting battering, there comes this:
None of these problems mean we should abandon the idea of a universal shared system of healthcare. It’s clear we would not want the American model, even if it isn’t quite as bad as portrayed by Moore. [emphasis mine]
Er, that is precisely Moore’s point!
The author goes on to resort to the now familiar tactic of calling Moore fat (maybe his next movie should be on our industrial food system - I’d like to see him look into the farm lobby and Boss Hog - I’m ready for another Supersize Me).
More substantively, she’d probably not be pleased that I didn’t include what follows her quote above:
It’s clear our British private medical insurance provision is a rip-off. I believe we should as a society share burdens of ill health and its treatment. The only question is how best to do that and it seems to me the state-run, micromanaged NHS has failed to answer it.
But hey, that’s not my point. And it wasn’t Moore’s either. Let the Brits make their own film on the shortcomings of the NHS. Moore’s movie is about the shortcomings of our system and compared to theirs ours stinks! Even she says so.
Everyone wants Moore to make their film. The man is an advocate and a very entertaining one at that. I reveled in every minute of his over the top advocacy.
He could have made a safer, more balanced movie, but why the hell should he? Does anyone imagine that if he had the Right would stop calling him a zealot, propagandist and a demagogue?