Tag Archives: gay rights

The World Reacts to Clinton’s Gay Rights Speech

The World Reacts to Clinton’s Gay Rights Speech – summation of articles from around the world

In the American rightie blogosphere, we find the usual reaction: claims that Secretary Clinton said something that she didn’t actually say.

The first time in over 60 years a United States President imposes a “gay rights” speech on the UN

Clinton Says Obama Wants Gay Rights Over Religious Freedom in Key Speech
Liberty Counsel, Family Research Council Enraged by Move to Consider Gay Rights in Foreign Aid

What far too many commenters on the tubez of the internets are failing to note is the actual bigotry and intolerance against gays in other nations which was the target of Secretary Clinton’s speech. She was not advocating for gay marriage or gay adoption or gay bars, rather she was focusing on the actual human crimes that are being perpetrated by far too many third world governments.

With the aid of various evangelical missionaries, particularly in Africa, local governments have been passing laws that demand the death penalty for gays, or if they are a bit more ‘tolerant’, just life imprisonment. The developed nations, particularly in Europe have been pushing for the decriminalisation of homosexuality for years, all while mostly American fundie ministers promote the death of gays. In the normal manner of such proselytisers, they say one thing at home and something else altogether different in the church halls of the third world countries.

Of course the right wing talking heads have done exactly the same thing as our reliably righties always do, and as “Good Hair” Perry did in his recent ad (the one with the Brokeback Mountain jacket) – attempt to conflate the civil struggle in the US for gay marriage and equal (not separate) rights for gays with the battle for saving the lives of gays in other, mostly poor, nations.

and before someone else says I’m excusing them – Yes, fundie Muslim clerics are advocating the same type of atrocities as the fundie Xian clerics. Religious interpretations have been used to justify crimes since the days we were painting shadows on cave walls. Take note of the following quote from some old guy

“To the common man religion is true, To the wise it is false, and to the rulers it is useful”
Lucius Annaeus Seneca 5BCE – 65CE

Are you a homophobe?

An interesting discussion on the subject may be found at Deacon Duncan’s blog, Alethian Worldview. It comes in three parts

I am a homophobe

I am a homophobe, the sequel

Homophobia vs the Bible

The comments are particularly interesting with many of them having a focus on the ‘nature vs nurture’ aspect of homophobia.

Companies get even ‘gayer’ as U.S. economy plummets

Hard to believe but Somerville is linking to a WorldNutDaily article

Despite an economy languishing in high unemployment and low consumer confidence, more American companies are jumping on the bandwagon to provide support for homosexual and transgender employees.

More than 300 firms have now received perfect 100 percent scores in this fall’s Corporate Equality Index, produced annually by the Human Rights Campaign which ranks businesses on their “treatment” of employees who have chosen homosexual, lesbian, bisexual and transgender lifestyles.

The list, which saw a 20 percent increase this year in the number of perfect scores, includes newcomers such as theater giant AMC Entertainment, Costco, Delta Air Lines, Food Lion and General Mills.

Now obviously, all Gawd-fearin’ real he-man xians will want to avoid coming close to any of these “pro-homo, anti-marriage” companies so Ed Brayton has released a guide for those folks.

How to Avoid the Gay Agenda

This is quite a problem for groups like the American Family Association, who have made quite a public scene with their attempts to boycott Ford because they advertise their cars in gay magazines and have a policy of not firing gay people just for being gay. But since there are now more than 300 major corporations that, like Ford, score a perfect 100 for their gay-friendly policies, how does a bigot avoid unwittingly supporting one of them and thus helping to advance the “radical gay agenda”? You’ve come to the right place for advice. Here’s a brief list of some of the things you can’t do.

Read the rest at Ed’s Place

No need for thanks, I’m just doing ‘Gawd’s work’

He’s exactly right

John Aravosis of AmericaBlog, posting today about America’s religious right factions

I’ve called the religious right “America’s Taliban.” And I would again. I didn’t sloppily choose the allusion simply because the Taliban is bad and the religious right is bad. I did it because both are uber-conservative religious zealots who oppose modernity, and who wish to force the majority in their own country, and the world, to live under their own draconian, backward, discriminatory rules. It’s a real comparison based on multiple, actual details.

With all of their wailing about “Islamofascists trying to destroy us because we are good and they are evil”, John has made the connection between the thought patterns and belief systems of the American religious right and those of the Taliban. In the recent past, the xtians have joined with the Islamic fundamentalists at several international conventions to stop moves that would aid women. They have also worked together to prevent family planning appropriations and against gay rights around the world.

Why are engineers so frequently wrong?

Last night went out with my brother-in-law for beer and ribs while the Ladies Who Command went to the Ritz for martinis and hors d’oeuvres.  We shoot a couple games of pool and they discuss financial matters and politics.

He’s a New York City guy, born and bred in the boroughs of the city, just about his only time away from New York was his service in the military. He’s a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Chairman of the Engineering Department at a university in New York. In other words, he’s a smart guy – well except for one thing, he’s a karaoke nut, but that’s not relevant to this post. Unlike many other engineers I have met, he knows the limit of his knowledge and expertise and is quite open about it. It is one of the many reasons that our nights out can be so interesting; I know a little bit about a lot things and he knows a lot about a couple of things, so the discussions can be wide-ranging.

All of which brings me to a letter to the editor from the Lake City (FL) Ledger, written by an engineer. Why am I reading the newspaper from a small town that I haven’t even driven thru in a number of years? That is a story for another day – anyway, I posted the following in the forums of the Ledger and thought – Hey, I’ve got a blog now! So my first real post at Somer’s Place

When an engineer goes wrong, they can really be wrong. (Those letters, PE, after Mr Frodge’s name tell us that he is proud of his status as a Professional Engineer) Education in one field of endeavour does not convey knowledge of other matters outside of the discipline studied, although engineers in particular like to think that the difficulty of their studies must mean they know everything about everything because they are obviously intellectually superior to most everybody else, particularly liberal arts majors. That sense of superiority is perhaps one reason we find so many engineers signing onto these lists of ‘scientists’ who dispute global climate change and the Theory of Evolution. Now we have another example of an engineer making wildly wrong statements about matters in which he has little real knowledge. The bolded comments in the following excerpt are mine.

First, civil rights refer to the struggle to overcome discrimination based upon unchangeable physical characteristics, such as skin color or ethnic heritage. Homosexuality is a chosen abhorrent lifestyle, and the pretense that it should be a civil right denigrates the real struggle for civil rights in the U.S. …

Second, these propositions simply amend the state constitutions to define the institution of marriage as between a man and a woman to prevent activist judges from rendering their own definition. And in doing so, those amendments remove rights from one class of American citizens .  Amendments define rights: the right to bear arms, the right to religious freedom, etc. By their nature, amendments are discriminatory in the same way that laws prevent an adult from marrying a child. Willoughby needs to realize that all laws are discriminatory – that is why they are laws. This statement by Engineer Frodge is so wrong that it begins to redefine the nature of “wrongness”

The Rev. Willoughby suggested in his closing paragraph that “prejudice, ignorance and fear” were the reasons why these amendments were successful. Yet he resorts to these very tactics that expose his own prejudice against “evangelicals” and his own ignorance by demonstrating his lack of even the most rudimentary understanding of the nature of law.


“Civil Rights” are those rights that are to be enjoyed by all citizens of a nation and the term does not specifically “refer to the struggle to overcome discrimination based upon unchangeable physical characteristics”. At various times in the story of America, people were discriminated against and had their civil rights abrogated owing to property ownership, place of residence, religious beliefs, level of education, place of birth and “skin color”.

Engineer Frodge writes, “Homosexuality is a chosen abhorrent lifestyle” and I’m sure he believes that is a true statement, it is not. Even if it were true, the state of being homosexual is not a civil right just as having European heritage (being white folks) is not a civil right. The capacity to marry the adult person of one’s choice is however a civil right.

Amendments to the various state and the federal constitution MAY define rights but they also do many other things from naming the state bird to how schools are funded and in general defining how a government is to operate.

Engineer Frodge has shot himself in both feet with this little gem. His use of the word “abhorrent” (–adjective: causing repugnance; detestable; loathsome: an abhorrent deed.) when describing homosexuals would certainly indicate to most people some degree of “prejudice, ignorance and fear” on his part. He then continues to create new states of wrongness and exibits an amazing degree of unawareness when he writes that a previous letter writer has demonstrated “his lack of even the most rudimentary understanding of the nature of law.”

If someone tells me that the earth is less than 10,000 years old, in my opinion he should see a psychiatrist.. — Francis Crick