Wednesday, March 14, 2007


Gay babies can't take thingth off the shelvth

OK, this is IT. This is the single most outrageous -- and outrageously FUNNY, and pathetic, and sad -- thing I have heard YET on the topic of gayness, orientation and the Church.

Grab a box of Kleenex to wipe your eyes, hold your sides and read on.

AP National Writer

NEW YORK- The president of the leading Southern Baptist seminary has incurred sharp attacks from both the left and right by suggesting that a biological basis for homosexuality may be proven, and that prenatal treatment to reverse gay orientation would be biblically justified.

Read all about it from The Denver Post.


1 Redneck Rock'n'Roll Point to the first person to identify the obscure '70s pop culture reference in the headline.
Alice Cooper "Dead Babies"

Dead Babies dont take things off the shelf
dead babies can take care of themself

Next best song (in this vein) "COld Ethel" ooh shes so cold

This is good. Now you know how far they are willing to go. Life starts at conception in their mantra, thus they are willing to take a living thing and purge the sin out of their genes. Sort of a blend of science and inqusition. Why stop in the womb. Maybe we can develop an anti-gay virus that will alter these genes in children and adults. Put it in the water maybe in gods name.
Woo hoo!

I RR&R Point to Holio!

Thanks fer playin'!
Nooooo!! There is SO much wrong with this line of thinking I can't even grasp that someone formed such a theory!

God the creator knows us from the beginning of time and has our names written on the palm of his hand. How can we fathom going into the womb to alter something we can't even agree is a "defect"? And please, tell me this: What happens if "fixin' the gayness out of baby" results in the death of the fetus? How does a Southern Baptist square that up? OOPS? Better dead than gay?
Trixie--unfortunately, some folks do appear to think exactly that. Why else the occasions when gay, transgender, and lesbian people have been beaten to death?

Mohler's logic is just such a slippery slope.

And would someone tell me why it's ok to give a potentially gay fetus hormonal treatments, but it isn't ok to give girls the HPV vaccine?
Sorry, ER... I missed the humor in Mohler's posting. I caught the "sad and pathetic" pieces, though.

I'm gay; however, I'm not broken, afflicted with a medical problem, ill or disordered.

To the extent that I do struggle with my sexual identity, I struggle because the culture in which I grew up and live insists that I am all of the above things. I am exposed, every day of my life, to ideas and accusations that hurt me and fly in the face of my identity as a person, my experience and my integrity.

I am baffled by the refusal of intelligent, educated people to explore and grapple with the historical context in which Levitical and other Biblical prohibitions on homosexual behavior arose and to think about what impact a modern understanding of sexual orientation should have on their views on gay people's sexuality.

It is wrong to condemn naturally-arising expressions of love and closeness when they occur in a context of mutuality and consent.

To the extent the Christianity has any right to prescribe standards of moral behavior, it should do so evenhandedly using the best scientific, historical and intellectual understanding of the present day.

Harming another is sin.

In the category of sexual harms, then, lie such things as:
• exploitation of the weak, the powerless and the oppressed
• use of force, coercion, authority or a position of power to evoke sexual behaviors in another
• using sexuality to manipulate another's thinking, emotions or behavior

Within the realm of sex but outside the bounds of "sin" are:
• acting sexually out of ignorance of risks and consequences
• expressing one's natural sexuality in mutuality and love
• enjoying one's natural sexuality -- on one's own or with partners of mutual choice

Primum non nocere. Would that those who claim the name of Jesus would submit themselves to this Hippocratic guidance!
Well, I didn't mean funny "ha ha" -- I meant the sheer ridiculousness of it made me laugh because ... if I didn;'t know it was an actual news story, I'd swear it was from The Onion!

Help me out peeps: I didn't mean funny." What's the better word for something so stupid that it *would* be funny if was a joke?

Scott, thanks for the comment. Poor choice of words on my part aside, you are welcome here, in the name of Jesus no less.
Funny as in pathetic, beyond satire precisely because of its earnest honesty. What morons.
BTW, "Dead Babies" is an awesome song.
Funny as in :irony
More specifically comic irony. That irony which you find in absurbity and the irony of juxtaposition of incongruent concepts as though they were appropriately matched. See: Far Side cartoons. See: The Daily Show
Ironic Humour, See: My Paystub

Thanks for the welcome, ER... I know it's sincere!

May I suggest "ludicrous," "ridiculous" and "laughable"? I'm reminded of the Buffett line: "If we couldn't laugh, we'd all go insane."

It's been a week for anti-gay rhetoric... Garrison Keillor's apparently weighed in, too, on the topic of non-traditional (especially, gay) families. [sigh]
Whatr the heck did Garrison say??? He's usually the epitome of tolerance ...
Check it -- Garrison Steps In It

Sometimes the written word delivers a vastly different message from the spoken word. I don't know that that could possibly be the case here, though.
Naw, Kiellor's monolog was about how confusing mixed-blended-broken families are and that is all about the welfare of the kids.
First he talks about the once-upon a-time-1950 hetero-sexual parents of his era..."Monogamy put the parents in the background where they belong and we children were able to hold center stage. We didn't have to contend with troubled, angry parents demanding that life be richer and more rewarding for them....and we started down the path toward begetting children while Mom and Dad stood like smiling, helpless mannequins in the background.

Then he says (among other things) that the current stereotypic Gay couple will have to tone it down to let the children be the focus too. "The country has come to accept stereotypical gay men -- sardonic fellows with fussy hair who live in over-decorated apartments with a striped sofa and a small weird dog and who worship campy performers and go in for flamboyance now and then themselves. If they want to be accepted as couples and daddies, however, the flamboyance may have to be brought under control. Parents are supposed to stand in back and not wear chartreuse pants and black polka-dot shirts. That's for the kids. It's their show."

Read the original stuff:

Tame stuff compared to the hateful crap I've heard on FOX news recently.
Thanks. That sounds more like GK. I don't blame gay activisits for being way sensitive, but they need to simmer down and be careful who they consider their enemies.

And I absolutely agree with the following, meaning, I think "middle America" will demand it:

"If they want to be accepted as couples and daddies, however, the flamboyance may have to be brought under control."
BTW, for the uninitiated:

"Dead Babies," by Alice Cooper

Little Betty ate a pound of aspirin
She got them from the shelf upon the wall
Betty's mommy wasn't there to save her
She didn't even hear her baby call

Dead babies can't take care of themselves
Dead babies can't take things off the shelf
Well we didn't want you anyway
Lalala-la, lalala-la, la la la

Daddy is an agrophile in Texas
Mommy's on the bar most every night
Little Betty's sleeping in the graveyard
Living there in burgundy and white

Dead babies can't take care of themselves
Dead babies can't take things off the shelf
Well we didn't love you anyway
ma ma ma-ma, ma ma ma-ma, ma ma ma

Goodbye, Little Betty
Goodbye, Little Betty
So long, Little Betty
So long, Little Betty
Betty, so long

Dead babies can't take care of themselves
Dead babies can't take things off the shelf
Well we didn't need you anyway
ma ma ma-ma, ma ma ma ma-ma, ma ma ma

Goodbye, Little Betty

(Order in the court! Order in the court room!
Order! Order in the court! Order!...)
Setting aside, for charity's sake, Keillor's use of storytellers' hyperbole (harmful though the repetition of oppressive stereotypes is), let us extract the essence of his argument:

1. Nature is predominantly (exclusively?) about the bearing and raising of children.

2. (a) Nature doesn't care about the emotional well-being of older people, because
(b) Older people exist (in nature) only to bear and raise children, thus
(c) Parents should always subjugate their own happiness to that of their children.

3. Monogamous, two-person partnerships conform to the cultural norm and allow the wider community to focus, without distraction, upon the children of that partnership.

4. Relationships other than monogamous, life-long partnerships of only two people confuse children by surrounding them with many relatives of various types and with concomitant pressures to divide their families' time and travel.

5. Stereotypical gay men cannot be socially acceptable parents because they stand outside the cultural norm.

6. The flamboyance of stereotypical gay men harms their children because it distracts the community and draws attention away from the children.

7. For the good of their children, gay male parents should conform (as much as possible) to the cultural norm.

I counter with the following:

1. Human beings live far beyond their optimal reproductive years. We also have capacities far beyond those required to raise functional, fecund children, including: art, music, spirituality, science & philosophy. Human nature is about far more than children, as blessed as we are by them (and as necessary as they are to the continuation of our species).

2. Happy, well-adjusted parents generally raise happy, well-adjusted kids. Troubled, out-of-balance parents often raise troubled, imbalanced kids. (What's included in "out of balance"? Too much work, not enough work, too much interest in/control of kids' lives, too little interest in kids, too much focus on themselves, too little attention to their needs & desires... and more.) My parents have been married for over 30 years; they remain married, in large part, because they mutually committed to putting their marriage first and their children (a deliberately close) second. They knew that a broken marriage would hurt their kids and that a healthy marriage would undergird and enhance their parenting.

3. In reality, the wider community's attention is already too scattered to honestly consider "the community" to have a large role in children's upbringing. You want to improve the lot of children in your community? Turn off your television and encourage your neighbors to do the same. "American Idol," "Wife Swap," FOX News, CNN, MSNBC, local news... all are shallow, riven through with contention and incivility and antithetical to good child-rearing. Today's television programming is terrible -- for children and adults. Cut down on things, too... iPods and Wiis and the latest Elmo doll are no substitute for the caring attention of parents, relatives and neighbors.

4. Children are remarkably adaptable. Non-US cultures demonstrate the strength and endurance of complicated family structures that knit children into a wider social fabric. The harm to children from our culture's scattered families comes from the unhealed rifts between adults and from parents' eager participation in the modern culture of consumption.

5. A pox on social acceptability. Raise your children to be courteous, compassionate, generous, thoughtful and resilient; they'll endure whatever the culture throws at them -- and do good for society while they're at it!

6. See the latter half of my item 3.

7. Ibid. See also my item 5.
Scott, touche!
Old Guard, man. Old Guard. I know political cannibalism is what we do, but it's hard for me to be critical of GK when he otherwise is such a dyed-in-the-wool Farmer-Labor-Dem-Lib type. We need him and the likes of him.
I grew up with Garrison Keillor... I've memorized & quoted his jokes, sung along with recorded shows and read some of his many books. For years, in short, I've been a fan.

In the last few years, Keillor's become a public voice for many progressive values; I honor him for that. I think ER & I agree that we need more voices speaking out against unjust war and political corruption.

The national Republican Party machine has become skilled at repeating catchy statements thousands of times so that they lodge in the brains of those who hear them. Truth is buried by the roar of repetition.

If progressives are to make headway, we must concentrate (in public, at least) on repeating the positions on which we agree. Distilling them is hard, but we'll continue to be buried unless we put something memorable -- a phrase or an image, maybe the face of someone our hearers know -- in the minds of the malleable middle. We're smart enough to get into the nuances; so are our audience -- if they're willing to give the time to absorb things and think about them. (That's hard in our always-on, constantly-accelerating culture!)

What we mustn't do is surrender to the easy way, giving up on any part of our constituency or shushing them into obscure conformity. Our diversity is our strength; we must dare to move all of us forward.
Re, "Our diversity is our strength; we must dare to move all of us forward."

Amen and amen!
Just for the record, Keillor's comments on his Gay remarks:

"The readership gave me a good whack upside the head over last week's column, hundreds of them in fact. The column was meant to be witty, but two sentences about gay people aroused some readers to a high pitch of indignation, and I now know the meaning of the word "scorched." Oh well. You shouldn't write a column if you're afraid to be compared to weasels, sociopaths, Ann Coulter or Vlad the Impaler.

I live in a small world -- the world of entertainment, musicians, writers -- in which gayness is as common as having brown eyes. Ever since I was in college, gay men and women have been friends, bosses, associates, heroes, adversaries, and in that small world, we talk openly and we kid each other a lot. But in the larger world, gayness is controversial. In almost every state, gay marriage would be voted down if put on a ballot. Gay men and women have been targeted by the right wing and so gay people feel besieged to some degree and rightly so. In the small world I live in, they are accepted and cherished as individuals. My column spoke as we would speak in my small world and it was read by people in the larger world and thus the misunderstanding. And for that, I am sorry. Gay people who set out to be parents can be just as good parents as anybody else, and they know that, and so do I."
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