I was going to post a video of this, but I’m going to just write it.
Gay rights, or rights in general, are of concern to every single one of us. Not just the gay community. If we say that we can deny rights to one group of people based on what makes a few people feel icky, then it opens the floodgates to a LOT of oppression.
I’ve seen four general arguments against gay marriage in the last few days, and, quite frankly, they’re fraking stupid.
Gay marriage is against the Bible.
You know what else is against the Bible?
Not stoning your children when they disobey
Marrying a non-virgin
Touching the skin of a pig
Not paying government dues (taxes)
There. Done. End of story. Stop cherry-picking.
If men can marry men and women can marry women, soon, people will be able to marry turtles, dogs, cats, children, or multiple people.
Marriage, in the legal definition, is a social contract between two people. Two gay adults are legally capable of giving consent for such an action. A dog, turtle, or child cannot do this. As for polygamy? If the adults are all fine with it, I actually have little reason to deny something like this. Of course, this might create a few legal knots.
Marriage has always been between one man and one woman.
False. Marriage has been MOSTLY within one man and one woman. However, various cultures have had some form of what we would today call gay marriage. Even in the 19th century, what we might call romantic gay relationships were not uncommon or even frowned upon.
The Bible itself has various definitions of what constitutes marriage and what is acceptable. Nearly none of these definitions would be socially acceptable today. A lot of things in the Bible were meant for another time, and many people pick and choose which ones they don’t like. Again, see the first entry. Or this article.
Gay marriage will ruin America (children will suffer/ families will crumble/ blah blah blah)
Oh, I’m sorry. Is that like how giving everyone votings rights made white people’s voting rights matter less? Or how freeing the slaves made freedom less valuable since no more people had it?
Shut up, you marriage hipster.
Children from gay couples actually do quite well. The reason they have it hard? Bigots make it hard for them. But you’re right. They should just not tell anyone about their parents. And gay couples shouldn’t have children. Families, after all are sacred. That’s why we make sure that couples that want to get married can have children and are stable before they procreate, right?
The Right lost the culture wars. That’s it. Suck it up, move along, or get left behind. If you don’t, there are some lovely areas of the American Southwest where you can establish your own little cult.
Based on the events of this last month, chicken sandwiches beat civil rights. Yes, I’m serious.
August 7, 2012
In a way, I’m sad that the culture war over gay rights has come to a head over a crappy chicken sandwich. On the other hand, I’m glad it finally opened the floodgates and we can tell who is for gay rights, who is pretending to be trendy, and who really has no idea what’s going on. For the latter group, let me explain a few things.
“This is a First Amendment issue!”
The most common gripe right now is that people who are boycotting Chick-Fil-A are somehow trampling on the company’s (and Cathy’s) freedom of speech.
He wants to believe gays shouldn’t marry, he has that right. He also has the right to donate money as he sees fit to whatever charity he chooses. My grievance, and that of many others, is WHO he gave the money to… the Family Research Council, among others. Just click the link and find out what kinds of people this good Christian man thinks deserve millions of his money.
Free speech means saying what you want. Paying to have others denied their rights is oppression. It’s that simple.
“Gay marriage isn’t that huge a deal! He’s just standing up for what he believes in!”
And what he believes in is hatred and intolerance even if he doesn’t sound like it.
Whenever people say they champion “traditional marriage,” it’s very likely they’re actually saying “the Biblical definition of marriage.” The problem, however, is that the Biblical definition of marriage is nowhere near what conservatives think. In fact, the Bible condones pretty much every other type of marriage except straight marriage. It advocates types of marriage we now consider highly unorthodox, so it’s ridiculous to claim opposition to gay marriage is based on the Bible.
Even worse, historically, “traditional marriage” has been a term used to deny rights to people who today can get married without fear of getting lynched. Interracial, different denominations, divorced couples… think about it. At one point, these groups were denied marriage for the same reason gay couples can’t get married. And every time, conservatives have been wrong. Their stance has been based on bigotry and hatred.
Why is this time any different?
Also, claiming that he’s innocent because he’s basing his actions on his beliefs pretty much frees any of us from any responsibility for our actions. The next time I get a traffic ticket, I can just say that my beliefs in chaos ruling the world make me except from the laws of man. So there.
“You’re just as intolerant as Cathy! You’re being intolerant of intolerance!”
…I’ve actually had people tell me this one. Somehow, calling someone out for being a bigot is the same as being a bigot.
Let me tell you something. Cathy and everyone like him can say whatever they want. I, too, can say whatever I want, and that includes disagreeing with him and his beliefs. However, I take special offense the actions he takes to limit gay rights and donate to a group that thinks homosexuality should be a criminal offense and thinks gays being killed for being gay is a good thing.
On the other hand, the Right doesn’t bat an eyelid when people on their side protest and boycott in the name of morals. Disney and General Mills, for example, have been hit with protests for their own stance on gay rights, and yet those actions were called brave, moral, etc.
But god forbid the Left protests something! We’re a bunch of communazi baby-killers, right?
“But it IS a First Amendment issue! Those mayors tried to ban Chick-Fil-A from their cities!”
Yeah, but they were wrong. A lot of people on the Left agree they were out of line to suggest they could deny a business a license based on their donations.
On the other hand, the Right was perfectly fine with denying mosques the right to build where they wished. That was also a First Amendment issue, but the Right screamed and whined that, well, they just didn’t want mosques in their cities. There was a wave of violence and a series of protests against Muslims who wanted to build houses of worship, and none on the Right stood up and said, “Hey, maybe this is a First Amendment issue.”
So remember, folks: chicken sandwich > religious liberty.
“Well, I don’t want to be part of this stupid debate. I’m going to keep going to Chick-Fil-A, but I still support gay rights.”
This is the same as saying, “I’m all for civil rights, but I’m going to keep eating at Swastikas and Subs, the Neo-Nazi shop down the street. I know they donate to the Klan, but they make a great meatball sub.”
If you know where the money goes and say you’re still for gay rights, you’re a hypocrite, pure and simple.
“But are you saying I have to check where companies donate their money and buy based on my stance on important social issues?! What about gas? Are you going to stop buying gas because it helps fund Middle Eastern dictatorships?”
Uhm, yes. You do have to check.
I know it’s impossible to check every major store, and it gets more confusing since many companies are owned by larger companies that are owned by larger companied, etcetera, etcetera, but if you KNOW you’re hurting the gay community and you keep doing this despite having the choice of going somewhere else, you’re complacent.
I’d love to stop buying gas form the Middle East, but have very little say on the matter. But this? I can NOT buy a chicken sandwich.
“What about all the jobs that will be lost if the boycott succeeds? You’re hurting everyone else!”
No, that would be Cathy. He made a terrible business decision by giving money to an organization that’s labeled as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Center. Management made a terrible decision that hurt the company’s image. If Disney decided to donate a million dollars to groups that wanted to keep minorities from voting, a good chunk of the population would be outraged and stop buying Disney products.
Any lost business would be the fault of management angering their customers. We’re responding to something the company did, and if employees lose out on it, it’s a simple fix: Cathy has to stop donating to hate groups.
The point is that companies aren’t entitled to our business. They have to please their customers and put out a quality product. Chick-Fil-A did something that has a physical impact on the gay community. Their customers don’t like that. We’re boycotting.
If anyone suffers, it’s Cathy’s fault.
Don’t believe me? When was the last time Christians lined up at strip clubs to give money to the poor girls dancing their way through college? Because, after all, who will think of the employees?
The Bottom Line
Cathy’s donations hurt the gay community. People who willingly buy Chick-Fil-A sandwiches are feeding those donations. To ignore that fact is to be complacent and culturally lazy if you actually think gays should have the same rights as the rest of us.
The Right took more offense to a business losing money and being called out for its homophobia than to houses of worship being desecrated and attacked in the name of hate. They mobilized like Jesus himself was making sandwiches.
Caiden Cowger explained his views on homosexuality, why he thinks it’s immoral, and the injustice of not being able to preach to homosexuals. He capped it off this week by explaining why he believes homosexuals are evil and yet he himself does not hate them, just the sin.
He sounds like a bigot three times his age. Let’s break this down.
The public and legal vows for eternal love are only for straight people who have a 50% chance of getting divorced anyway.
May 17, 2012
Maybe it’s me. Maybe I don’t get the big deal about wanting to ban gay marriage. If a gay couple wishes to get married and live together, how does that undermine my own coming marriage or the marriages of everyone else? I’ve bene doing some thinking and I have a few questions to everyone who opposes gay marriage or is otherwise against LGBT individuals having rights or being able to express themselves in the public forum. If you can answer these questions, you win. It’s that simple. And they’re not trick questions.
If you believe the Bible dictates we must shun homosexuality because it is a sin, should we also shun divorcees, people who eat shellfish, and people who do not worship in a Judeo-Christian way?
Much of the core argument against gay rights in any way, shape, or form, comes from Judeo-Christian readings of the Bible. It clearly states in Leviticus 20:13 that man lying with man is an abomination.
Of course, as I pointed out last year, there are other things in the Bible we seem to not pay attention to even though they are clearly commandments: paying taxes, not tattooing, wearing gold, etc. The problem with this justification is that it doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. It’d be like police arresting everyone who jaywalked but ignoring murders and rapists and focusing on only a single law.
Either enforce ALL the laws in the Bible or admit you’re cherry-picking.
If pro-LGBT groups wanting marriage for these individuals have declared “war” on traditional marriage, does that mean that North Carolina redefining marriage rights for a very narrow segment of the population is a war on heterosexual couples as well?
Buzzfeed put together a great list of all the consequences of passing Amendment 1. It’s not just that it takes rights from gay couples. It also takes rights away from ANY couple that is not married. Medical and financial decisions, for example, may now only be made by married individuals for another person. Likewise, domestic abuse laws no longer apply unless the couple is married. Oh, and domestic partner insurance benefits? Those are gone, too.
This is like when Texas was in such a haste to ban gay marriage that it banned marriage IN GENERAL. That’s right. North Carolina has taken rights away from straight couples, too, kind of like a doctor trying to remove a tumor with a shotgun. Straight couples will suffer and be discriminated against because of Amendment 1.
If the whole point of Amendment 1 in North Carolina was to protect traditional marriage but you can still marry your first cousin, does that mean we now consider marrying your first cousin is “traditional” and morally right?
There’s a Deliverance joke in there. Nothing more to say. Moving on…
If people who are pro-gay rights are “demonizing” so-called traditional marriage by disagreeing with it, does this mean that Christians are “demonizing” Jews by claiming the Messiah has already come?
This one is part of the conservative attack plan on gay rights. If someone wants gay marriage, then that person must therefore think people who believe in “traditional” marriage are monsters.
Well, yes and no.
Playing the victim is not an argument. Being upset or shocked that someone has the gall to disagree with you and acting all butt-hurt because you’ve been called out for bigoted views is not evidence that you are correct. For example…
Mother: “Steve, eat your vegetables while Mommy drinks her special water.”
Steve: “But Mom, isn’t that your third glass of vodka… this hour?”
Mother: “How dare you!? Are you saying I’m a drunkard? Just because you’re twelve and don’t rink you think I’m wrong?”
See the similarity. Being hurt someone disagrees with you is not an argument. End of story.
If Bristol Palin truly believes traditional marriage is the only way to raise children, why did she engage in behavior that led her to her teen pregnancy and why didn’t she stay with her baby’s father?
Bristol Palin was quite vocal in her disbelief that the President of the United States would endorse gay marriage. She endorses the view that only a mother-father family is good for raising kids.
I’m sorry, but isn’t she the most famous case of out-of-wedlock teenage motherhood in the last… however long we’ve been caring about this? Bristol Palin could not believe President Obama saw the need to speak to his children about gay marriage and would endorse it in order to expand their world view.
Maybe it’s me, but her saying traditional marriage is the only way to raise a kid stinks of hypocrisy. After all, if she truly believes that, she would have married her kid’s dad at the first opportunity.
If you are against gay marriage because you believe it will force citizens to be gay or invalidate straight marriage, do you actually understand the law?
Pat Buchanan is the perfect example of how the Right sees gay marriage. In their minds, making gay marriage legal will invalidate straight marriage because gay marriage will now be the norm? He also does a nice job of showing the fake outrage at being called out for being bigoted I mentioned earlier. You really have to see this to admire how Buchannan manages to stuff nearly everything I’ve talked about until this point
You got all that? He can’t believe someone would say we’ve been wrong up until this point. He can’t believe someone is challenging marriage. The only rational way gay marriage will invalidate straight marriage is if it supersedes it. Which is NOT the plan.
Following that logic, does that mean almost half of America is gay?
You don’t have to be part of a group to advocate for that group, but the Right can’t seem to grasp this. Obama reaches out to Europe? He must be a socialist. He wants good relations with Muslim countries? He must be a Muslim! He supports gay marriage? He must be gay!
That’s weird. I support feminism but am not a woman. I support gay rights but am straight. I support welfare and social safety nets for the less fortunate yet haven’t been in those situations myself. Am I a gay unwed mother?
No, I am a Hispanic straight male. And one that has empathy, something the Right seems to forget exists.
There you have it. If homophobes and everyone against LGBT rights can answer these questions in satisfying manner, if they can justify the cognitive dissonance inherent in making these arguments, then they win.
They can have all the straight marriage they want. And… go!
And now, let’s enjoy some levity by listening to Ahnold’s greatest hits. Remixed!
It seems that Star Wars: The Old Republic, the latest Star Wars video game, will allow players to enter into homosexual relationships as part of the plot. That’s great! In a modern world where many young people have embraced the idea of gay marriage and gay relationships, it makes sense to give that part of the fan base and population an opportunity to be themselves, even if it is in a world of turbolasers and lightsabers.
Of course, you know what this means?
Star Wars is going to make your kids gay. I know, I know. But now, to my eternal delight, someone has summoned the poor, innocent children. Won’t someone think of the children?!
By the way, the group that is protesting this? It’s the same group that called for a boycott of Girl Scout Cookies. The Family Research Council really has a knack for going after things that are trying to help children or just provide entertainment. I love how they’ve got their tighty-whities in a knot over the possibility of kids seeing a digital gay couple that won’t be able to do anything besies announce its gay and they don’t bat an eyelid over the fact that, in a Star Wars game, starships filled with hundreds or even thousands of people get blown out of the sky on a regular basis. There’s also the little fact that you can have a high Dark Side score by committing questionable acts.
This is what I love about anyone spinning like a top over something like a gay character in a game somehow corrupting the youth. Said critics never seem to be worried about the MASS MURDER going on in video games. It might be the sci-fi aspect, and it’s not like people didn’t complain about killing and guns in games like Grand Theft Auto. But add sex to the equation?
It’s like yelling Frau Blücher. Somewhere, a horse is going to bray.
On the other hand, it’s comforting to believe in something that has no basis in reality. It’s yours. It’s personal. Conspiracy theorists work this way. They see themselves at the center of some unimaginable tangle of powerful beings and organizations that can somehow control everything from the political landscape, to the progress of technology, and yet cannot catch these desktop detectives as they unravel the web of deceit.
And yet you and I are much too smart for that, right?
How different is superstitious thinking from fanatical religious thinking? Not that far off. We had people who believed, who genuinely believed, the world was going to end last month. Some people, even if not religious themselves, will cross themselves before entering a Catholic church, just in case. My sister refuses to shuffle cards a certain way when we play poker because it will disrupt her card-ma.
Yes, “card-ma.” Her word, I swear to Bob.
I have a Dungeons and Dragons player who insists her dice rolls don’t count if the die touches an object before it comes to a standstill. While I don’t think she really believes it, she insists that touching another object throws her off. In fact, gamers are finicky when it comes to their dice. Some dice are just “lucky.” Of course, gaming dice aren’t tested for balance like casino dice, so there very well might be lucky and unlucky dice.
Everyone’s done these sorts of things, and I tend to laugh when I see them or hear about them.
I believe in chance and choice. I believe there are things I can and cannot control. The things I cannot control are the events that are beyond my grasp, the choices others make, and the totality of existence. I can’t tell lightning where to strike. I can’t make others think what I want them to think. I can’t luck out and hope a publisher sees my work online and offers me a contract.
I can, however, choose to not stand out during a lightning storm while wearing a tin foil hat. I can learn how to put together a coherent argument and make my point as persuasively as possible. I can make my work the best possible and look for ways to advertise and get the word out.
There is nothing that says charms, spells, or even good luck rituals work for us, and yet so many of us really do cling to these beliefs. I know someone’s going to fire back with, “But that’s the die I used when I slew the vampire king! It’s lucky!” or “I was wearing this shirt when I met the love of my life. It’s my lucky shirt.”
Well, show me the study where we discovered luck. Show me equations. Prove to me that our lives and random events around said lives are controlled by invisible force fields and I’ll eat my words!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go do laundry and make sure I have my gaming shirt for this Saturday. When I wear my Star Wars shirt, I KILL!
And finally, I have to say that while I’ve never heard of or tried this beer, this commercial alone makes me want to do it. it’s over the top, obviously conscious of its own absurdity, but it owns it like a boss. Enjoy, and I’ll see you Friday.
I’ve fought the good fight here on Randomology. I’ve battled the nitwits and the stupid, the racist and the close-minded. I’ve pushed back against those who would hijack education, the Constitution, and twist the idea of progress into something awful. I’ve ranted against those who likewise hijack religion in the name of ratings or fame.
But when you go after Sesame Street, you better believe I will FUCK YOU UP. I grew up with Sesame Street. Sesame Street helped me learn English. I loved the Muppets growing up, and if you grow balls big enough to go after Jim Henson and this pure, fun, educational part of my childhood, I will personally rip your spleen out through your knee.
Behold the wisdom of going after puppets. No, really. Just watch the video and see how these guys can see the Mongol-like invasion of progressivism in… Elmo teaching kids letters.
Now, maybe you watched the video, but maybe you didn’t. That’s fine. Let me go over a few of the more… interesting points they try to make regarding Sesame Street and the media in general.
0:36-0:51 Sesame Street was created to cater to poor black and Hispanic children who didn’t have reading material at home.
…And? What’s wrong with originally catering to sections of the population that traditionally lag behind in education? I would think this is a good thing. Blacks and Hispanics usually lag behind in education, and this isn’t a stereotype. Research throughout the years have shown this. This is due to a number of reasons, everything from inadequate resources to troubled home life.
And yes, I myself am Hispanic, and while I didn’t have these kinds of problems, the show helped me.
0:51-1:26 Sesame Street’s website tells parents to use gender-neutral nouns, give dolls to boys and trucks to girls, and just this year, an openly gay boy was crowned prom queen in a school in Virginia, so this is a “direct assault on this country’s moral foundation.”
Okay, this string of accusations has three parts, so let’s go through each individually.
First of all, using gender-neutral pronouns isn’t some subversion of morality. It’s the inevitable result of both genders being equal. Do these two clowns have something against equality? Even MLA and APA handbooks say you should use gender-neutral nouns. However, this being Fox, I doubt they’d know the standards of journalism.
Second of all, could someone please tell me where on the Sesame Street website these evolutionary throwbacks found that little piece of information?
And third of all, this thing with a gay man being voted prom queen? How exactly does Sesame Street link back to this? This is really the point of the clip where the discussion goes into generalities and strawmen, but let’s pretend that this has nothing to do with Sesame Street. Let’s say they’re just outraged that the media in general is saying that a gay man can be prom queen.
I guess these are the kinds of people who would also be upset over two lesbians going to prom. The school voted and the kid won. Fair and square. And it was an affirmation that the student body embraced this young man’s decision. Just watching him and how proud he was of his friends and family speaks volumes.
1:37-2:14 “The values of young people today scare me because we’re robbing them at earlier and earlier ages of their childhood. They know more. They do more.” Our shows used to be more wholesome, and parents aren’t monitoring what their kids are watching.
The children! They invoked the children!
And if you too would like to know how you can tell people to stop using children as a shield for their own ignorance, just click here.
So many things wrong here… What, exactly, is Sesame Street taking from our children? Just read that quote again. The panel is actually mad that children are LEARNING. That’s right. They don’t want children learning things like reading and math or about other cultures. God forbid little Timmy learns that in Mexico, they use a lot of spices and have different kinds of limes.
As for the whole “wholesome” shows thing… as much as I loved I Love Lucy and similar programming… Lucy smoked while she was pregnant. Everyone smoked. Aside from Ricky, name another visible, independent minority. Please. Show me the episodes where they addressed things like racism, inequality, and the rights of women. Show me when the Cleavers had to deal with an unwanted pregnancy.
And don’t even get me started on The Honeymooners.
Yeah, the shows were “wholesome,” and I’ll admit they were funnier than half the crap on TV right now, but don’t hold them up as ethical and moral beacons.
2:15-2:26- Artists are liberal, and artists make these shows, so…
Now, our former Miss America got cut off, but if you listen carefully, it sounded like she was going to make a case for “Artists make and write these shows, artists are liberal, and therefore, since we know liberals are evil, these shows are evil.”
I got news for you, Spray Tan. Artists made those shows you and the Right-Wing Brigade were pushing up a few minutes ago. Yeah, artists tend to be more liberal and open minded. We have to be.
But the politics or personality of the artist have no merit on the aesthetics of the art itself. Let me put it another way.
I hate Michael Bay. The guy is a diva who is full of himself and can’t take the blame for his own mistakes. On the other hand, The Rock happens to be one of my favorite 90’s action movies. Not surprising, since Bay made it before he apparently replaced his blood with pure testosterone and diesel fuel. Likewise, H. P. Lovecraft created tales of morbid and alien terror, yet he was an unapologetic racist. On their own, though, the stories created an entire sub-genre: Lovecraftian horror.
Oh, and may I just say that, when you want in-depth commentary on the state of the media, education, and child psychology, your first choice for a panelist should ALWAYS be a former Miss America, right?
2:27-2:54 If you look at tyrannies, the first thing they do is go after the family and religion. Then, government can become the family and religion.
Again, this has nothing to do with Sesame Street, but let’s ignore that.
How is the media going after family and religion? Can we get examples? Specific shows and incidents? No. All we get are generalizations. The fact is that if you want to make the case for the media destroying families and religion, it’s not because television is preaching against it. It’s more likely that parents aren’t paying attention or being involved with their kids. Religion does not address the issues it needs to address.
I would never raise a child just on Sesame Street, or any other show or book. That’s called bad parenting, so stop blaming the television for parents not doing their job.
2:54-3:15 Liberals think they’re so great, that their morality is so good, and they want to spread their message. They don’t even teach the basics in school like reading, writing, and math! They don’t even use their own money to get their message out.
Yeah, we like to think we’re right. We want to get our message out. So does the right. This is really just Hannity mad that liberals have the balls to say what they believe. I’m serious. He’s just ranting that the Left has the gall to try and spread its message as though it’s some instant thought-converter.
And Hannity, how much of YOUR money do you spend to get your message out? How much does Beck spend? Beck was crying about this Israel trip of his costing a few million dollars even though he is worth $80 million. Even if he spent only 10 million dollars, he could fly more than 2,000 people there for free.
The rest of the video is just ranting against how liberals supposedly don’t have their own charities, how there’s apparently between rich liberals and the American elite that involves some weird word-play on Hannity’s part, and Sesame Street is never mentioned again.
There are legitimate concerns about children’s programming. I know this, but at least make a substantial argument. I’m very protective of Sesame Street because it really did play a big part in my childhood, although seeing the raging liberal that I am today, I may have proven the panel’s point.
Sesame Street is one of the best educational tools for young children. Combine it with good parenting, and kids get a lesson at home they might not otherwise get. It’s a great tool for learning English for foreign-born kids, and it’s evolved throughout the years to show a more multi-cultural, open society.
And if anyone goes after Sesame Street, Oscar, Gonzo, or any of the Muppets without some actual justification, I will go after them with extreme violence. Napalm may be involved.
Hey, you! You're making me question my beliefs! Stop it!
April 27, 2011
It was bound to happen.
The Right Wing has officially jumped into Orwellian territory. Remember that plot point in 1984 wherein the Party would use phrases like “Freedom is Slavery” and “War is Peace”? The idea was that having the population believe two mutually exclusive ideas would create such a dissonance that more mundane lies would be much more easily accepted. It is the willingness to believe something that cannot be true by its very nature that would make the population easier to control.
The argument goes something like this. Say you believe that homosexuality is an abomination in the eyes of God. By making same-sex marriage legal and otherwise embracing the homosexual community as normal members of society with the same rights and freedoms as everyone else, the government is encroaching on your moral fiber by making something you believe is a sin acceptable.
I’m really hoping you see where this plan falls apart.
They want to push to make things illegal because they are against their own morality, a morality that is quite clearly based on religious belief. But they’re not phrasing it like that. They’re phrasing it to somehow mean that we, as a collective, are outraged.
So… in order to protect speech, religion, and the right to love each other, you must take those rights away from others who believe, say, and love what you will not. After all, having worked with gays and having lived next door to one for three years clearly affected my ability to be attracted to women.
Okay, I‘m being snippy. The specific example they go for is that if a doctor against abortion is asked to perform one, he will have to comply. This is clearly an assault on his morality, right?
Well, if he didn’t want to deal with this, he shouldn’t have made choices to put himself in this position.
So, if I am offended that Republicans are against gay rights, immigrants, and a woman’s right to choose, can I deny to help students at TAMIU who identify themselves as Republicans and write papers on conservative opinions? I’d be helping the ideological opposition spread its message, and I just couldn’t live with that.
Without actually claiming and admitting that this course of action is about fundamentalist Christian morality trying to weasel its way into our legal system, they’ve set themselves up for failure. A small part of me wants for this to get taken up just so the Right sees the whole thing blow up in its face like liberal-hearted claymore.
If you live in Tennessee, you will no longer be able to say “gay.” More specifically, schools won’t be able to address homosexual issues. Way to go, Tennessee. It’s not like gay teens were already marginalized, right?
And speaking of awesome things that don’t have anything to do with this, a new photo of Spiderman’s new costume (with battle damage) for the reboot film was released. The best part, we can now confirm the mechanical web-shooters are real. Even though it’s not the exact costume from the comics, I really like it.
And finally, Alessandra Torresani and some more geeks star in this wonderfully tongue-in-cheek video, “Tonight I’m Frakking You.” Can you name every character, reference, and actor by the end? Don’t think so. Anyway, enjoy the slave Leia outfit, female Ghostbusters, and in-jokes out the butt. See you Friday!
The Meat-Wearing One released a new song, “Judas,” that she sings as Mary Magdalene. The lyrics are found here, and you can hear the song by clicking the video below.
Let me start by saying that I cannot listen to this song more than three times because the music’s just… ear-splittingly horrible.
But let’s look at the lyrics for a second. It’s basically a love song to Judas Iscariot. Okay. Weirder things have been done in the name of art. And who was Judas Iscariot? Why, he was only the man responsible for the greatest betrayal in all of Christian teaching! He kissed our Lord Jesus Christ and sentenced him to death. How DARE she sing a song, as a harlot no less, to the man who killed Jesus?
Well, it’s more complicated than that.
If you believe that Jesus was prophesized to die, that his death was needed to save the world, then I propose that Judas was nothing more than a patsy. Judas was framed. Think about it. If this had to happen, if there was no way to avoid it, then he had no say in the matter and was therefore a victim just like Christ. Anyone would have fit the bill. In that sense, the lyrics touch upon the subject by having Mary Magdalene forgive Judas and apparently love him.
That’s not enough for some people. Cue Right Wing hysteria and outrage:
Oh, the number of things that are wrong with that statement… But first, let me wash off after those last ten pseudo-pervy moments…
Lady Gaga does not have a problem with religion. As was stated in the interview, she’s exploring her own religious background. She’s not going after Muslims, as Donohue suggested, because she’s not deconstructing Islam. It’s the same reason I’m making Charcoal Streets a deconstruction of Hispanic Christian beliefs. That’s my background. I’m not about to use European mythology because, frankly, I’m only about one-eight French.
And someone else already cornered the faerie novel.
Donohue then laments that, while Gaga has talent, she’s part of a pattern of artists that seem to go after religion. Why, oh, why, won’t the artists leave him alone?!
Maybe it’s because, again, WE LIVE IN JESUS LAND. Look, I have my qualms with religion in general. And yes, I guess some of the things I say in Charcoal Streets could be applied to organized belief, but I’m targeting Christianity (and I can’t believe I’m writing this) much like Lady Gaga is looking at religion in her song.
It gets even better when Donohue says that Christians don’t enjoy the protection of Muslims because Muslims will react violently if you mock or criticize their religion. Well, yes and no. While I concede that a lot, if not most, Muslims would be offended by something as supposedly innocent as an image of the Prophet, and I’ve explained why that’s actually a really stupid belief, that’s not the point. Just because members of another religion are willing to behead people for the slightest religious offense does not mean that ALL religions are off-limits.
Furthermore, the belief that artists don’t need to criticize religion really misses the point. It’s movie Imperial Stormtrooper-like accuracy. Of course artists need to go there. Hell, I LIVE there. Artists, as John Lennon said, point a mirror to society. That’s our job. If you don’t like what you see, close your eyes and be happy in the darkness.
You can’t lament that radical Muslims will kill you for criticism, then turn around and say you wish you had that kind of protection. You can’t lament that radical Islam has no tolerance, then complain that someone is looking at your religion through an artistic lens. This sums up the Right Wing’s stance to a T.
“Critique anything you want except my own beliefs and stances.”
Also… “You hang out with Bill Donohue, I’ll buy you a beer, honey, and maybe we can straighten you out.” Did anyone else feel dirty after hearing that? Like, “stepped in gum and had to clean it off with my fingernails” dirty?
Anyway, let’s get some links up in!
Just in time for Easter, check out the latest blog from the Cheezeburger network… Sketchy Bunnies!
And finally, Weird Al is one of my personal heroes. He takes pop culture apart and gives us back comedy gold. It looks like Lady Gaga didn’t like his newest parody and so didn’t give him permission to use it… but she finally said yes! Take a listen to “Perform This Way,” which takes a few swipes the Gaga, but it’s all in good fun. Have a good Easter weekend and I’ll see you Monday.
Just TRY to find anyone willing to stand in front of twenty or thirty children and speak for 8 hours a day.
March 23, 2011
Teachers have been getting a bad rap for years. I’ve already outlined how educators don’t get the kind of pay people think they do, but there’s another reason it’s easy to blame teachers for failing education and make them scapegoats for everything from union trouble to state budgets.
We’ve set up a system where teachers are unfairly judged and given expectations no person could possibly match.
If police were held to the standards of teachers, we would fire them after five years if their respective districts didn’t lower crime. Fresh out of the academy, these police would be required to make sure crime dropped by significant levels. Their tools to make sure communities don’t eat each other?
Drills. They would teach people what to do in an emergency, so, when the time comes, they know a few options that are limited to standard responses. Police would not really patrol or investigate. They would go around and make sure everyone knew the drills and, if anyone didn’t, that citizen would be arrested for endangering the community.
Police would host seminars and workshops to make sure everyone knows the proper responses to fire, shootings, and car accidents and that’s it. People would complain that there are many more emergencies than these and a set of general, adaptive skills would be more beneficial than just practicing the equivalent of stage directions, but the police would have none of that.
Teachers have to teach students in order to pass mandated testing. The mandated curriculum leaves little for actual critical thinking skills, questions, or improvisation. This is what people mean when they say “teaching to the test.”
How long did you remember the information in a test after you took it?
If doctors were held to the standards of teachers, every doctor would be mandated to treat twenty to forty patients a day. Doctors would have one year to make sure each patient met certain guidelines: cholesterol, body fat, and blood pressure. These doctors would have to make sure their patients all had the appropriate levels of these three things, and we would declare said patients healthy at the end of that year.
But, the doctors would cry out, these are not proper indicators of health! There are so many other variables that must be taken into consideration-
And they would be hushed because, say the hospital administrators, after that year, that patient is no longer your responsibility. These are the standards we’ll use, and you will stick to them.
The doctors would cry out that the patients have red meat, smoke, drink, and don’t exercise and only really work at health and act healthy during check-ups. And the hospital administrators would get after the doctors for the health habits of patients at home.
Teachers can teach as much as they want, give homework and encouragement, but students are ultimately responsible for studying and preparing themselves. It’s a two-way street. Teachers “give bad grades” like doctors give “negative prognoses.”
If the military were held to the same standard as teachers, they would be given a very specific timetable for all major operations. Wars would last no more than a few months and, at the end of that time, whether done or not, the military would pull out of a foreign country. All goals would have to be achieved, and if the military failed, they would be reprimanded and defunded until they got it right or were all fired and replaced with fresh new recruits.
And, in order to balance the budget, soldiers would have to buy their own ammunition. Sailors would need to purchase their own life jackets. Marines would need to buy scopes for their own sniper rifles.
Teachers face penalties if they don’t live up to expectations, but the penalties schools receive for unsatisfactory testing end up crippling the school and make it harder to teach as classes swell and funding disappears. Many educators have to buy their own supplies, out of pocket, to have a proper class.
Am I saying teachers are not to blame for any of the educational problems in this country? Of course not. Teachers have to live up to their end of the bargain. But as we cut benefits, pay, time, and force teachers to become little more than machines to spit out test answers for students in a curriculum that bears no relation to real life, we have to ask ourselves…
If we think of teachers as nothing but babysitters, why do we heap all these duties and responsibilities on them? And if they’re not teachers, but mentors and guides, why do we make it so hard for them to do their job?