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Stupid Things People Say About Gays: Hate Crimes Legislation Will Protect Incest and Pedophilia

April 28, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Stupid Things People Say About Gays

Stupid Things People Say About GaysI haven’t done a “Stupid Things People Say About Gays” in a while.  Lots has been happening, but there’s certainly no shortage of stupid things people are saying.  Here’s the latest from the AFA (American [heterosexual only] Family Association):

Congress is set to give legally protected status to 30 sexual orientations, including incest. Because of pressure from homosexual groups, Congress has refused to define what is meant by sexual orientation in H.R. 1913, the “Hate Crimes” bill. This means that the 30 different sexual orientations will be federally protected classes.

Come on now… how much more ridiculous can you get.  Someone call Bullshit already…. ok, “BULLSHIT!”  Here’s the actual text of the bill, which states what a “Hate Crime” is:

[A Hate Crime ] is [a crime] motivated by prejudice based on the actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of the victim, or is a violation of the State, local, or tribal hate crime laws.

Now, because I like to play God’s Advocate and show this in a more telling light, I’ll be the first to admit that “sexual orientation” is not currently legally defined by the Hate Crime’s legislation; however, to argue that “incest” is a sexual orientation rather than a sexual act is completely bogus, speculative and would never hold up in any legitimate argument – not that the AFA is renowned for “legitimate” arguments.  Generally, when the law fails to specifically define a term, the term is given its “usual and customary meaning.”  In this case, sexual orientations usual and customary meaning is:

One’s natural preference in sexual partners; predilection for homosexuality, heterosexuality, or bisexuality.  [sexual orientation. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1). Retrieved April 28, 2009, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/sexual orientation]

One may note that neither the word incest nor bestiality is referenced in the usual and customary definition of sexual orientation.

The AFA has also made claims that the Hate Crimes legislation would prevent preachers from preaching homosexuality as a sin in church; however, they obviously have not read the bill which is very specific in defining hate crimes as a “crime of violence” a term defined by Section 16, Title 18 of the United States Code:

The term “crime of violence” means:

(a) an offense that has as an element the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against the person or prop­erty of another, or

(b) any other offense that is a felony and that, by its nature, involves a substantial risk that physical force against the person or property of another may be used in the course of committing the offense.

Therefore, unless the preacher specifically uses, attempts to use or threatens the use of physical force against a person or their property, they can say whatever they want.  If you are a member of a church that does use, threatens to use or attempts to use physical force against ANYONE, I highly suggest you realize that only SATAN would allow such treatment and consider a new church that has not been infultrated by Satan in the guise of God.  Remember, “Thou Shalt Not Kill.”

More from fellow blogger, SistersTalk.

Tennessee Bill Debated Today to Ban Gay in Schools

March 18, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Discrimination, LGBT News, Youth Issues

Radical extremist and Religious Reich member, Stacey Campfield, of Tennessee has introduced more controversial legislation.  With his latest push to outlaw the word “gay” from Tennessee schools, Campfield has stooped to a new low.

The proposed ban would prevent public elementary and middle school educators from providing information about nay form of sexual orientation and/or gender identity with the exclusion being heterosexuality.

On Mr. Campfield’s blog, which I refuse to link to but can be found easily enough, Mr. Campfield writes this about education:

Pass Education first so education can become funded properly instead of just a battle cry for more taxes, Pass local option for election of school superintendents to give locals more power and input in fixing their education system, Allow school choice at least for students in failing schools to help get kids a first class education, Remove teacher tenure putting teachers under civil service protection so teachers can be held accountable and principals can fix failing schools, allow merit pay for teachers who work in failing schools or improve standardized test scores of children to reward success and achievement, Allow home school students to play sports in schools their family pay taxes on.

It seems Mr. Campfield has forgotten his own words, “help get kids a first class education.”

On the bright side, at least in my humble opinion, such a bill would criminalize the Bible (or at least teaching the Bible) since homosexuality is discussed [allegedly] within its texts.

See also: Birmingham Progressive Politics Examiner: Extremist anti-gay bill ‘Don’t Say Gay’ debated in Tennessee today.

VIDEO: Evangelical Teachings of “TRUTH”

March 03, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Commentary, Religion

I’ve been contemplating this project for a while – Should I, do a video slide show?  Do a video monologue?  Use puppets?  All of that seemed complex and I wanted the message to be clear.  The fact remains that Evangelical Christians continue to abuse biblical text and the “authority” bestowed upon them by “God” to keep people other than themselves down.  But how do you express that in an honest and forthright way?  I attempt to with this video:

Author Merle Horwitz, Love is Love… but Business is Business

February 19, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Commentary, Thought of the Gay

Those of us in the gay community who are in long-term relationships have many legal hurdles to overcome when it comes to taxes, mortgages, health care, estate planning and other property matters, but now with Merle Horwitz’ book, Love is Love But… Business is Business, we can jump through one of those hurdles with less hassle and more humph.

In his book, Mr. Horwitz, a former trial attorney and contracts law guru, provides simple advice and guidance in navigating the realm of cohabitation.  Within the confines of the pages of this small but insightful instruction manual, Mr. Horwitz answers questions such as:

  • What happens to property acquired jointly?
  • How to I keep my separate property as my property?
  • What if you are cohabiting with one person and having an affair with another?
  • What about the kids?
  • “Can homosexuals who are cohabiting without a contract have the same rights arise as heterosexuals?”
  • and many more of the worries of cohabitation.

Mr. Horwitz is quick to point out that the cohabitation agreement in his book, although primarily for “those who can’t get married or those who won’t get married,” is not an agreement for the type of relationship, but for the property secured before and during the relationship.  In other words, the book is about property issues, not the nature of the relationship.

I had an opportunity to speak to Mr. Horwitz about the contract and its validity when confronted with various state laws.  For example, in some states, same-gender marriage bans written into the state’s constitution include language which bans anything “similar to marriage.”  This language, in large part because it is so broad, could potentially be construed to include wills, powers of attorneys and even Mr. Horwitz’ Cohabitation Contract.

In fact, the language is so broad that when proposed to Wisconsin voters, then attorney general wrote:

A ‘yes’ vote [for the marriage ban] would also prohibit recognition of any legal status which is identical or substantially similar to marriage for unmarried persons of either the same sex or different sexes. The constitution would not further specify what is, or what is not, a legal status identical or substantially similar to marriage. Whether any particular type of domestic relationship, partnership or agreement between unmarried persons would be prohibited by this amendment would be left to further legislative or judicial determination.

In spite of the fact that voter’s were presented with these remarks (which read like a warning label) prior to casting their ballot, Wisconsin voters overwhelmingly approved the amendment.

However, when asked how this language may affect the validity of contracts in jurisdictions such as Wisconsin, Mr. Horwitz stated:

That’s so vague, it cannot be enforced.

Mr. Horwitz further explained that the contract could not be invalidated based upon laws against cohabitation:

I’m perfectly convinced that if two people have a contract whether they are the same gender or otherwise, when it comes to enforcing that contract… why would that not be enforceable because the nature of the relationship doesn’t even come into evidence?

In part because I’m less optimistic than Mr. Horwitz and in part because I’m an activist and want to establish Court challenges of these laws, I asked Mr. Horwitz if he felt submitting the contract for declaratory judgment in jurisdictions such as Wisconsin would be advisable.  His response was resounding:

You don’t ask for trouble.  You don’t want to do that.

As a person who would want my contract to remain fully enforceable during my life or after my death, he’s absolutely right, I would not want to do that.  But would I want to do that as an activist for LGBT rights?  I contemplated this issue by asking two questions: (1) What would happen if the contract was declared by the Court to be invalid; and (2) What would happend if the contract was declared by the Court to be valid?

(1) What would happen if the contract was declared invalid?

It is my belief that if declaratory judgment was issued stating the contract was invalid, such would open numerous doors for Court challenges and expose this legislation for its spiteful content.  Many moderate folk claim to be supportive and non-critical of homosexuals, but wrongfully believe that marriage is a sacred right.  Some wrongfully argue that laws against same-gender marriage are not discriminatroy because same-gender couples can obtain the same rights by way of contracts and other legal documents.  The declaration of a cohabitation contract as invalid by a Court would certainly show beyond any argument that these arguments are completely false.  Thus, a victory for the LGBT civil rights movement, in spite of a negative ruling.

(2) What would happen if the contract was declared valid?

Although on the surface (or prima facie since we’re talking law) it would seem to be a victory for LGBT civil rights, such a finding would improperly re-enforce the argument outlined above; that same gender couples can obtain the same legal rights as married couples by legal documentation; therefore, a bitter sweet moment.  Obviously, many benefits cannot be obtained by contract that can be obtained through civil marriage (such as: Social Security benefits, health care tax relief, wrongful death or survivor benefits).  However, it is unlikely that those making arguments against same-gender civil marriage would be aware that such inequalities exist.

I thus decided that Mr. Horwitz is a genius.  “You don’t ask for trouble.”

You can purchase Mr. Horwitz’ book (which includes a CD with an editable contract) “Love is Love… but Business is Business” at Amazon.com.

Please remember to always seek the advice of an attorney familiar with laws in your jurisdiction.  No information herein is meant to constitute legal advise. This post’s author, Jay, is not an attorney.

Stupid Things People Say About Gays: Gays Attempting to Obtain Privilege Nobody Else is Allowed

February 17, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Stupid Things People Say About Gays

In part 20 of my posts exposing the stupid things people say about gays, we will analyze the following comment as it related to the gay marriage debate:

It’s not about equal rights. It’s about homosexuals obtaining a privilege that nobody else is allowed to have. Colorblind people are expected to accept red as red, green as green, and yellow as yellow. If they don’t have the capacity to see it that way, it’s nobody else’s problem. It’s their lot in life. Nobody is depriving them of their right to see. Same with homosexuals. Hemaun (a 36 y/o vlogger and religious zealot)

First, I’m going to talk about the comment, “It’s about homosexuals obtaining a privilege that nobody else is allowed to have.”  As a long time resident of Texas, USA, Earth, I know with certainty that no one has ever been allowed to marry except the homosexual.  In the United States, homosexuals already receive numerous privileges that are denied to everyone else, like marriage, adoption rights, 401K benefits from a spouse, Social security death benefits, etc…etc…etc…  Those privileges are provided gladly by our government to homosexuals, but no one else… they are exclusive to us. (Note the sarcasm?).  It is relevant to note that same-gender couples can, and often do, “marry” in a religious ceremony sanctioned by the church they attend.  Such is just not recognized by law.  It is the law denying recognition that is at the core of the issue.

Colorblind people are expected to accept red as red, green as green, and yellow as yellow. If they don’t have the capacity to see it that way, it’s nobody else’s problem.”  Wow, how myopic (pun intended).  I’ll have to use that argument against the fundamentalist Christians, that they are like Colorblind people and they just have to accept the fact that their anger, disillusionment, invocation of fear, bigotry and hatred is why the religion is dying.  I find it ironic that he uses such a very poor metaphor to say one group should just accept themselves and not try to force a belief on another when the group in which you are a part has been and continues to do just that!  Again, I say: How many gays have showed up at your door asking you to be gay?

Why DOMA was Actually a Pro-Gay Move.

February 12, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Commentary, Thought of the Gay

I recently read the article “The Land of the Till Murder” written by an African American author in 1956 for Ebony magazine.  I was so moved by the words of the author, I thought I would share them:

So he fights integration on every level, puts up more and bigger white-colored signs, enacts more laws, writes new ones when these are found unconstitutional, forms more economic pressure groups, boards more bullets, taps more phones, listens to more speeches painting the “horrors” of integration.

And the tension rises, thickens, tightens, until the grip of it is agony and something must be done to relieve it and sometimes the relief is found in violence. — Ebony (April 1956): 91–96; By Clotye Murdock.

I felt as though articles I’ve read or even written more recently mimicked the words of Clotye Murdock.  Each time LGBT people are successful on one law, another is passed that reads “differently” in order to fit the requirements of the constitution, then that law is deemed unconstitutional by the Courts and another law is put into place.

In the mid-1990’s, it appeared that Hawaii would become the first state in the United States to recognize same-gender marriage.  The fundamentalists began screaming for the Federal government to do something before we fell into a horrible pattern of sin (similar to the argument against racial integration).  Pressure was on for an amendment to the United States Constitution.  Clinton then did something that enraged LGBT people; he signed the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) into law.  Although obviously an unconstitutional action, DOMA remains in full force and effect today (with the small exception of an Internal Court Order of the 9th Circuit deeming it “unconstitutional”).  In spite of this, DOMA may be considered the smartest pro-gay action of any president.

I can hear it now: how can you consider DOMA to be “pro-gay”?  What sort of activist would say such a thing?  Frankly, at the time DOMA was passed it was VERY likely that the United States would ratify an amendment to the Constitution banning gay marriage.  Such Amendments, although repealable, are much more difficult to pass and even more difficult to repeal.  In fact, to repeal the constitutional amendment, ratification of an Amendment repealing it would have been required.  Such ratification of a Constitutional Amendment to repeal a Constitutional Amendment banning gay marriage would require either a 2/3 votes of the legislature (2/3 House, 2/3 Senate) and acceptance by the state legislatures or a Constitutional Convention [which has never been used to amend the U.S. Constitution].  With DOMA, we can argue the case in Court and the Court’s have power to repeal it without the super-majority requirement.  This is not to say that the laws provided for in DOMA are in any way, pro-gay; however, the repeal of DOMA will certainly be an easier hurdle than a repeal of a Constitutional Amendment.

Having Laid My Eternal Soul to Rest

February 10, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Commentary, Religion

As many of my readers know, I am an atheist.  This does not mean I lack faith, morality or inspiration; it merely means I find such outside of “God” or “Jesus” or “Allah.”  I find my faith, morality and inspiration from other people and from within myself.  Lately, however, I’ve come to some moments of questioning.  This is not to say I am questioning whether or not I believe in God; that is something that I feel is unquestionable.  I do not.  I’ve recently allowed myself to open discussions with people of the Christian faith and in so doing have realized something that may be a source of religious unkindness toward me; I have closed my heart and mind from religion.

Yesterday, my partner of 11 years, Christopher, was having a conversation with a friend.  The friend offered Christopher some coupons she had for Chick-Fil-A.  Christopher advised her that he is no longer eating at that establishment because of their contributions to organizations which continue to support violation of equal civil rights for homosexuals.  A person nearby, purporting to be a Christian, approached the conversation and emphatically stated that mariage was between a man and a woman, the Bible says so.  As you can imagine, Christopher was angry and frustrated that this person, who was in no way part of the conversation, felt obliged to approach him.  He relayed his story to me and I began pondering the question I pose here:

What is it about my eternal soul that makes Christians feel they have the right to deny me my mortal joy?

This is particularly relevant in my case because, as an atheist, I laid the idea of my eternal soul to rest years ago.  I don’t believe I have an eternal soul and therefore don’t feel it needs to be saved. Although Christian Fundamentalists may feel they are doing the right thing in attempting to save me, I feel they are degrading my personal beliefs, choices and sense of self.  Am I a danger to their eternity?

As I thought about what happened to Christopher, I became more and more angry; then it hit me.  I’m angry and passionate about my own belief in civil equality and I expect them to listen to me, but I refuse to listen to them; am I thus a hypocrite?

I’ve always considered myself to be a free-thinker, open minded and very kind and loving.  These are the qualities I thought best defined me.  But I realized I had closed my mind to religion and dismissed it entirely, not just to those within religion that have caused our people [LGBT people] to suffer so greatly.  In fact, I had become so entangled in my own disdain for religion, that a simple “God Bless You” after a sneeze would result in me rolling my eyes.  So, today I emailed a Baptist Pastor, who has extended an offer to me to join him for lunch after his church service, to advise him that I accept his offer.  I’m looking forward to the opportunity to better my understanding of his faith and, with any luck, open a door in my heart to religious people that has been closed for many years.

Stupid Things People Say About Gays: Children of Gays Trying to Fill Void Left by Parents

February 05, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Stupid Things People Say About Gays

I’ve been following this article on topix, and noted that the comments started referring to yours truly (uhm, that’s me). So I started watching the comments and ultimately found inspiration for this “Stupid Things People Say About Gays.” It also provided me with the unique opportunity to respond directly to causation.  The comment thread read, in part (and I keep it in its original in spite of the grammar issues):

Curious Questioner: Do you all really believe it is fair to a child to have gays get artificially pregnant and have a child to raise? What kind of life is that kid going to have? I draw the line with children.

Too many retards: Ask a adult child raised by gay parents

Curious Questioner: Well, I’ve only ever met one. The kid was a mess. These idiots are not thinking about the life of the child when the try this. They are thinking only of themselves and still trying to fill some void they’ve never been able to with a relationship that isn’t dysfunctional.

I felt obligated to respond as I’m generally overly optimistic:

Have you stopped to consider why the child is “a mess” as the person you know? Perhaps it’s because he is taught by people like you that his parents are horrible people and will damage him. Perhaps its because he sees homosexuals being bullied, outlawed, beaten, raped and sometimes murdered and wakes up in the morning and wonders, “Will my mommies be next?”

To De-Gay or Not to De-Gay…

February 02, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Commentary, Thought of the Gay

Tomorrow, a man from the local satellite company will be installing a new satellite system a la casa de jaysays – which we loving call the Fairy Ranch, not because we are homosexuals, but because it’s in the middle of no-where and the property is decorated with fairies.  As I sit here composing my blog for today, I’m also contemplating de-gaying the place (or “Straightening Up” as it’s commonly referred to).  Mr. Satellite Guy (I’ve been told it’s a boy anyway) will be working mostly in my office… the sacred area of the house which serves not only as my refuge into the wonderful world of jaysays.com, but can be transformed with a few crisp sheets to an over-flow bedroom in minutes.  So I take inventory of the room which remodeling forgot and try to decide what should go back into the closet.

Furniture wise, I’m ok.  Nothing too contemporary, but there is a regrettable satin glass wrap around desk that screams I was modern when modern wasn’t cool.  Not much I can do about the desk, but the clutter of scribbled-on CD-R’s and the poorly organized wiring of too many computers should throw him off sufficiently.  I then take a look at the contents of my entertainment center:

  • TV – no problem there;
  • Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post Print – yeah… that’s pretty “straight”;
  • Men’s magazine – borderline;
  • Steno pad of scribbled notes from late night TV watching – fine;
  • Carrier War book – very straight;
  • Autographed Lost Souls novel by Poppy Z. Brite – flaming, but he’ll never know.

Having confirmed my entertainment center was “straight enough” I took a look at the book shelf:

  • Office supplies – nothing gay there;
  • Stone, unpainted fairies – hmm;
  • Books on art, history, embroidering, and a rather large Poppy Z. Brite collection – maybe he won’t look at the books closely;
  • Chorus pedal and some other pedal for Christopher’s guitar – probably voids the fairies;
  • Autographed Debbie Harry print – shit.

Well, it may be able to “pass”, on to the desk, surely there is something extraordinarily gay here somewhere:

  • Family photographs in frames including niece, nephews, fantastic-niece (aka great niece but in need of a better adjective), friends, me and a friend’s dog, Christopher, Christopher and our niece – very hetero-esque;
  • Marble puzzle game thingy – If I don’t know what it is, certainly it can be that “revealing”;
  • Laptop, desktop, another desktop, monitor, keyboard, mouse, wireless mouse, printer, dvd burner, PS2, paint, cd-r’s – man I have way too much crap on my desk – but straight looking crap;
  • Book on learning Java Development in 21 days I got 6 months ago and still don’t know Java – geeky but not particularly gay;
  • Day after election news-paper featuring Obama.   .    .     .     .     . well, that better go in a drawer.

As I go through the above lists and start considering what should be put away, I realize a few things:

  1. I don’t have anything that’s “gay” thus our house is just like most other people’s homes;
  2. Even if I did have something that was “gay” like… I don’t know, GQ?… I shouldn’t hide it away even though I live in the middle of no where and it’s possible no one will hear me scream (and even if they did hear me scream it’s possible they would mistake the screams for a peacock and ignore it);
  3. And if they did ignore it and I were killed for being a homosexual it would be really really ironic;
  4. I don’t like irony;
  5. Even if I did like irony I would not want my death to be necessitated in order to provide “irony.”

But perhaps the most important thing I learned was that, although on the surface my house may be the same as a straight couple’s house, it is actually very different in one major way – straight couples don’t worry that the workmen coming over will kill them for being straight.

Gay Bashing and Christian Bashing – A Video Comparison

January 30, 2009 By: jaysays Category: Hate Crimes, LGBT News

I found this video to be informative, passionate and otherwise remarkable.  It says it all: