Fox’s Shepard Smith: Some States that Fought Integration, Fighting Same-Sex Marriage

Fox's Shepard Smith: Some States that Fought Integration, Fighting Same-Sex Marriage

Fox’s Shepard Smith: Some States that Fought Integration, Fighting Same-Sex Marriage (Photo Credit: Google Maps)

Every now and then, someone of Fox News makes sense. Shepard Smith compared the states resisting same sex marriage in the U.S. to those states who wanted to keep segregation in tact in the U.S. during the Civil Rights Movement. This comes as the U.S. Supreme Court will hear four different cases challenging same-sex marriage in four different states — Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee.

Smith said, “Not in every case, but in most cases, the same states which were fighting integration are fighting this as well.”

“Those states which always seem to be behind the curve for reasons which are explainable and understandable. Those are the places where this is going to turn out to be the most difficult, especially if the Supreme Court stays with what has seemed to be a trend toward inclusion and away from discrimination.”

He addressed Wall Street Journal editor John Bussey’s comment that “there’s still disagreement on this issue within the American population, saying, “There’s still disagreement on segregation.”

Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran Fired Over Inflammatory Anti-Gay Book

Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran Fired Over Inflammatory Anti-Gay Book

Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran Fired Over Inflammatory Anti-Gay Book (Photo Credit: 3 G Publishing)

Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed fired Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran over inflammatory comments he made in a self-published book, entitled, “Who Tod You That You are Naked?” The book has been criticized by many as anti-gay and discriminatory.

Cochran was recently returned from suspension over the book.

Cochran’s book contained passages that referred to “uncleanness — whatever is opposite of purity; including sodomy, homosexuality, lesbianism, pederasty, bestiality, all other forms of sexual perversion,” describing homosexuality among behaviors that are “vile, vulgar, and inappropriate” and “defile their body-temple and dishonor God.” Source: Think Progress

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports Mayor Reed “said he decided to terminate Cochran not just because the fire chief didn’t consult him before publishing the book, but also spoke out about his suspension despite being told to remain quiet during the investigation into his leadership.”

“LGBT citizens deserve the right to express their beliefs regarding sexual orientation, and deserve to be respected for their positions without hate and discrimination,” he said. “But Christians also have the right to express their beliefs regarding sexual orientation and be respected for their position without hate and without discrimination. In the United States, no one should be vilified hated or discriminated against for expressing their beliefs.” Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution

Kasim Reed also said “he believes Cochran opened up the city to the potential for litigation over future discrimination claims,” the AJC reports. There is no other way to say it, Kelvin Cochran used poor judgment by writing this book and continuing to spew venom despite being told to remain silent until the investigation was concluded. Another bad manager gets fired…..

MA Governor’s Daughter Katherine Patrick Engaged to Alisha Marie Lemieux

MA Governor's Daughter Katherine Patrick Engaged to Alisha Marie Lemieux

MA Governor’s Daughter Katherine Patrick Engaged to Alisha Marie Lemieux

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick announced that his daughter, Katherine Patrick, is engaged to marry her partner Alisha Marie Lemieux, of New Bedford.

Here’s the statement from Gov. Deval Patrick’s office:

The Governor and Mrs. Patrick joyfully announce the engagement of their daughter Katherine Wintersmith Patrick to Alisha Marie Lemieux of New Bedford.  Ms. Patrick is a graduate of Smith College and is studying for her doctorate in psychology at the Wright Institute in Berkeley, California.  Ms. Lemieux is studying for her bachelor’s degree in sociology at Mills College in Oakland, California.  The couple reside in the Bay Area.

[Photo Credit: Office of Gov. Deval Patrick]



Bryan Fischer: Anti-Gay Activists Need to “Reclaim the Word Discrimination”

Bryan Fischer: Anti-Gay Activists Need to "Reclaim the Word Discrimination"

Bryan Fischer: Anti-Gay Activists Need to “Reclaim the Word Discrimination”

Evangelical wingnut Bryan Fischer says anti-gay activists need to “reclaim the word discrimination.” Adding, “I suppose, like they need to reclaim rainbows. In other words, the American Family Association’s director believes discrimination is a good thing:

 Discrimination, when it comes to sexual behavior is not bad, it is good, and it is necessary. The alternative is utter social chaos. So [it’s] time, ladies and gentlemen, to reclaim the discrimination word when it comes to sexual matters. It’s not bad; it’s good. It’s a virtue and it’s necessary.

He also adds:

Discrimination is not a bad word. The left has turned discrimination into a bad word.

Never mind the fact that the America has a dark past of slavery and racial discrimination, of which the latter is still occurring, albeit with less frequency. I would venture to say, the word Bryan Fischer needs to reclaim is shame.

‘Duck Dynasty’ Patriarch Phil Robertson to Speak at Republican Leadership Conference

'Duck Dynasty' Patriarch Phil Robertson to Speak at Republican Leadership Conference

‘Duck Dynasty’ Patriarch Phil Robertson to Speak at Republican Leadership Conference

Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson is set to speak at the Republican Leadership Conference on Thursday. Um, so much for that more inclusive GOP that RNC chief Reince Priebus talked about.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is expected to speak at the conference as well, but don’t bet on him being insulted to be on the same stage with Robertson.

“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” he said in the interview. “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers—they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

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Gov. Jan Brewer’s Anti-Gay Bill Veto Sends Strong Message to GOP Religious Extremists

AZ Gov. Jan Brewer's Anti-Gay Bill Veto Sends Strong Message to GOP Religious Extremists

AZ Gov. Jan Brewer’s Anti-Gay Bill Veto Sends Strong Message to GOP Religious Extremists

Could Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s veto of the controversial anti-gay “Religious Freedom” bill, known as SB 1062, signify a turning point in the right wing evangelicals lunatics holding the Republican Party hostage? The religious liberty scams being pulled by people like Mike Huckabee and Rep. Michele Bachmann, is literally creating a huge problem for the Republican Party. The GOP is literally at war with itself. Well, the tide may be turning with Gov. Brewer’s veto.

Any political advantage the Republican Party hoped to gain by positioning itself as tireless warriors for the religiously devout is imploding. The efforts to apply the same religious freedom argument to anti-gay measures in states such as Arizona, Georgia and Mississippi, are being met with strong resistance. This is eerily reminiscent of the Civil Rights era, when blacks and many whites fought for racial justice and equality. Yes, against some religious scam artists. The fact is, SB 1062, and other similar bills, not only gained resistance from liberals, but from business leaders, Republican celebrities and GOP political officials. We are all collectively giving the religious right extremists a dose of their own medicine — the middle finger.

Republican Gov. Jan Brewer decided to buck the trend, despite the rallying cries from conservative windbag Rush Limbaugh, Rep. Michele Bachmann and many others, who felt that discriminating against the gay community was the right thing to do, for their own self-righteous sake. Gov. Brewer decided with whom she would stand and vetoed Arizona’s right-to-discriminate bill. She is now one of powerful group of conservatives who understand that religious freedom can’t be used as a tool for exemption from every law or issue conservatives don’t like. The threat to religious freedom can’t be imagined. It has to be verifiable. Gov. Brewer effectively admitted as such during her speech.

CNN’s Anderson Cooper had proven during an interview with GOP state senator Al Melvin, a supporter of SB 1062, that the freak-out from the religious right over discrimination because of their religious beliefs was imagined and not factual.  Melvin could not provide one example of what needs to be protected.

The ‘Stand Your Religion‘ law is akin to the ‘Stand Your Ground‘ law that allows people in Florida and in other states where it’s a law, to shoot dead anyone who ‘threatens’ them. No matter if the threat is imagined. Michael Dunn shot an unarmed black teen, Jordan Davis, over an altercation about ‘loud music.’ He could have very easily moved his vehicle if the music was such a bother. No, the gun gave him a sense of invincibility. So, he decided to start an argument with the teen, ending in a fatality. Curtis Reeves fatally shot Chad Oulson in Florida, after the two argued about the latter texting at a movie theater. The threat to retired police officer Reeves was a bag of popcorn.

Brewer said, “Senate Bill 1062 does not address a specific and present concern related to religious liberty in Arizona.” “To the supporters of the legislation, I want you to know that I understand that long-held norms about marriage and family are being challenged as never before. Our society is undergoing many dramatic changes. However, I sincerely believe that Senate Bill 1062 has the potential to create more problems than it purports to solve. It could divide Arizona in ways we cannot even imagine and no one would ever want. Religious liberty is a core American and Arizona value, so is non-discrimination.” In other words, Gov. Brewer recognizes bullsh*t when she sees it. Namely SB 1062.

Brewer’s veto sends a strong message to the other states toying around with similar legislation. It’s not going to pass the smell test, much less be signed into law. There are far too many influential players on the sidelines in this dogfight. This uprising engineered by the right wing evangelicals is losing steam.

Of course, National Review editor Rich Lowry, is one of many Republicans who disagree with Brewer’s veto. He called it “foolish.”

A religious freedom statute doesn’t give anyone carte blanche to do whatever he wants in the name of religion. It simply allows him to make his case in court that a law or a lawsuit substantially burdens his religion and that there is no compelling governmental interest to justify the burden.

I have to ask Rich Lowry, should blacks have simply walked away from lunch counters where they weren’t welcomed to find other establishments? Or should they have found another means of getting to and from work after being told to sit at the back of the bus?  The fact is, Gov. Brewer just sent the message that those days are over when the right wing thought it could push its agenda while hiding behind the claim of religious freedom.

In closing, let me address the Stand Your Ground law because there are some shades of Jim Crow laws evident. Jordan Davis is our new Emmett Till. Florida Gov. Rick Scott should make the same argument about his state’s controversial ‘Stand Your Ground’ law. He said he would have vetoed the Arizona bill. How many more people, particularly young men, need to be killed in Florida before he takes a stand and ends this law?

#BREAKING: Gov. Jan Brewer Vetoes ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill, Says It’s Too Broadly Worded

#BREAKING: Gov. Jan Brewer Vetoes 'Religious Freedom' Bill, Says It's Too Broadly Worded

#BREAKING: Gov. Jan Brewer Vetoes ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill, Says It’s Too Broadly Worded (Credit: Twitter)

#SB1062:  Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed the controversial “religious freedom” bill, known as SB 1062, saying that it is too broadly worded and could have “unintended and negative consequences” in the future. She said the bill has the potential to create more problems than it purports it will solve. Brewer said her agenda is to sign legislation that furthers Arizona.

And, as the backlash intensified, even more conservative constituencies pressured Brewer to reject the bill. Arizona business groups sent her letters, Republican U.S. Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake expressed their opposition and even GOP lawmakers who voted for the bill pushed her to reject it.

Only a select few hard-line conservatives, like Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) and the Heritage Foundation, remained steadfast in their support.

Brewer stressed that she had consulted with all sides before making her decision.

“I call them like I see them, despot the cheers and the jeers from the crowd,” she said. “Religious freedom is an American value, and so is non-discrimination.” Source: Talking Points Memo

The battle isn’t over. There are still anti-gay “license to discriminate” bills pending in Mississippi and Georgia. Many believe the Georgia bill,  House Bill 1023, also known as “The Preservation of Religious Freedom Act,” is dead in the House. Many believe the bill would allow private business owners to cite their religious beliefs as a reason to deny service to gay customers. There is also a bill in the Georgia Senate, Senate Bill 377, that is very similar to HB1023.

Gov. Jan Brewer SB1062 Veto Letter

Rush Limbaugh: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer Being ‘Bullied’ to Veto New Jim Crow Bill

Rush Limbaugh: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer Being 'Bullied' to Veto New Jim Crow Bill

Rush Limbaugh: Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer Being ‘Bullied’ to Veto New Jim Crow Bill (Credit: Salon)

I double dog dare Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to listen to conservative windbag Rush Limbaugh and sign the new Jim Crow bill, SB 1062 ( the Religious Freedom Restoration Act). I might also add that Georgia Republicans are trying to ram an equally controversial bill down our throats too.

Right talk radio is turning its focus this week to Arizona’s controversial bill that would allow business owners to deny service to gay and lesbian customers, and Rush Limbaugh is leading with the charge that Gov. Jan Brewer is being “bullied” into vetoing the measure “in order to advance the gay agenda.”

Limbaugh on Tuesday told his listeners that the media’s “soap storyline of the hour” is whether or not Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer will veto SB 1062, which the state’s legislature passed last week.

“Religious beliefs can’t be used to stop anything the left wants to impose, unless they’re Muslim religious beliefs and then we have to honor those. But any other religious beliefs are not permitted,” Limbaugh said. “The left will not allow them. Now, the current thinking is that Gov. Brewer will probably veto the bill, which, you might think on the face of it will make her a hero with the news media and the rest of the left.”

Sure, it might make her a hero, he said — “for five minutes.” And then she’ll go back to being a “near criminal conservative Republican,” Limbaugh continued, because “their reaction will be, what took her so long? Why did she even consider not vetoing this?”

“She’s being bullied by the homosexual lobby in Arizona and elsewhere,” he said. “She’s being bullied by the nationwide drive-by media, she’s being bullied by certain elements of corporate America in order to advance the gay agenda. I guess in that circumstance bullying is admirable. In fact, this kind of bullying is honorable.” Source: Politico

Um, yeah…whatever Rush, whatever…..

Uganda President Museveni Thumbs Nose at President Obama, Signs Anti-Gay Bill

Uganda President Thumbs Nose at President Obama, Signs Controversial Anti-Gay Bill

Uganda President Thumbs Nose at President Obama, Signs Controversial Anti-Gay Bill

Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni signed controversial anti-gay legislation into law, despite international outcry. The Anti-Homosexuality Act, calls for seven years in prison for “the offense of homosexuality” and a life sentence for “aggravated homosexuality.” Uganda newspaper The Observer reports, “The bill will formally become law when it gets published in the Uganda Gazette. That, however, remains a formality. For Uganda’s largely anti-gay population, the most important part was the president’s signature.”

I guess President Museveni doesn’t value his country’s relationship with the U.S. Earlier this month President Obama warned that the signing of the bill would “complicate” the U.S.’s relationship with his country. The U.S. sent Uganda over $256 million in aid last year.

The bill’s author, David Bhati, claims that the law is aimed at protecting children. Let’s be real, it’s not about protecting children for him. Being gay doesn’t mean one is a pedophile.

I think President Yoweri Museveni has what it means to be gay all twisted. The Observer reports:

The president suggested he could not to understand how men could fail to be attracted to Uganda’s beautiful women and, instead, get attracted to fellow men.

The president also paraded the mostly Ugandan scientists who concluded that homosexuality wasn’t generic.

I’m not sure if the writer of the article meant to say ‘genetic’ instead of generic. Since Museveni specifically said he was looking for a gay gene and that his scientists couldn’t come up with one.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney denounced the bill in a scathing statement:

Instead of standing on the side of freedom, justice, and equal rights for its people, today, regrettably, Ugandan President Museveni took Uganda a step backward by signing into law legislation criminalizing homosexuality. As President Obama has said, this law is more than an affront and a danger to the gay community in Uganda, it reflects poorly on the country’s commitment to protecting the human rights of its people and will undermine public health, including efforts to fight HIV/AIDS. We will continue to urge the Ugandan government to repeal this abhorrent law and to advocate for the protection of the universal human rights of LGBT persons in Uganda and around the world.

Is Opposing Gay Marriage Based on ‘Christian Beliefs’ Racist?

Is Opposing Gay Marriage Based on 'Christian Beliefs' Racist?

Is Opposing Gay Marriage Based on ‘Christian Beliefs’ Racist?

The Week has an interesting article asking if conservative opposition to gay marriage is the same as being racist. For starters, the Bible did address slavery, but it didn’t seem to be in the context of race-based slavery, as was the case in the U.S., Great Britain, Spain and the Netherlands. It’s true that there were some Christians, who were members of the Ku Klux Klan, went to church at 11 a.m., then burned crosses on front lawns and lynched innocent blacks later in the evening. Some people back then used their religion to justify their racist attitudes and treatment of blacks. Some are trying to do that with the gay community. Marginalizing people on the basis of their religion and sexual orientation is just wrong. I will admit, I wasn’t a gay marriage proponent for many years,  but I have come to the realization that depriving someone of being with the person they love is just wrong. It’s morally wrong. The fact is racism and homophobia should have no place in our society….period.

The big deal is that strictures against homosexuality are rooted far more deeply in the Judeo-Christian tradition than racism ever was. Yes, slavery is found throughout the Scriptures and comes in for criticism only, at best, by implication. But race-based slavery — and the racism that made it possible and continues to infect ideas and institutions throughout the West to this day — receives no explicit endorsement from the Bible.

Which isn’t to say that those seeking to justify race-based slavery or racism couldn’t, and didn’t, twist biblical passages to make them provide such justification. But the Hebrew Bible and New Testament clearly do not teach (either explicitly or implicitly) that buying, owning, and selling African slaves is next to godliness.

The same cannot be said about the normative teaching on human sexuality contained within the Judeo-Christian scriptures — and even more so, within the interpretative and theological traditions that grow out of them. In dismissing this teaching so casually, Chotiner ends up implying that traditionalist churches and religious communities are the moral equivalent of the Ku Klux Klan.

If that’s an accurate evaluation of their moral status, then we can expect that before long traditionalist religious views will be denied legitimacy by the courts, denigrated in the public schools, and thoroughly marginalized in our public life. (For a sober but concerned exploration of how the social and legal persecution of traditionalist belief might unfold over the coming years, see Rod Dreher’s recent cover story in The American Conservative.)

Chotiner and his fellow secular liberals may well be right that traditionalist views of sexuality are bound to evolve, with nearly everyone destined to accept and affirm the dignity of homosexual relationships. But given the commitments of these same liberals to personal freedom, shouldn’t they also insist that the evolution take place at its own pace, without being forcibly imposed by the coercive powers of the state? Source: The Week

Um, I remember a time when interracial marriages were against the law in America. It’s still frowned upon by many who are still hellbent on living in the Dark Ages.  While it may not be a popular position, people are free to have their own opinions. I wouldn’t call someone a racist for believing that marriage should be between one man and one woman. You have to consider the context in which the person is voicing his or her opposition to gay marriage. Yes, there are some people who have racist views of the gay community, but there are some who aren’t. If the truth be told, no matter where one stands on the issue of gay marriage, it’s very easy for each side to twist the Scriptures to fit their ideology. That doesn’t make it right. Far from it. The bottom line is that we are all afforded freedoms under the Constitution. That also includes the LGBT community. So, deal with it.