Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Via Truth Wins Out: Dan Savage vs. Brian Brown?

Posted May 8th, 2012 by John M. Becker
As Evan mentioned last week, Brian Brown of the National Organization for Marriage Discrimination challenged Dan Savage to a duel in a revealing moment of compensatory bravado. Brown’s challenge, written in a breathless blog post, came in response to a speech Savage made last month to attendees at a high school journalism convention in which he said that the Bible contains “bull***t. . . about gay people.” He noted (correctly) that Christianity’s holy book is chock full of authoritative pronouncements on a plethora of other topics (shellfish, dinner, farming, menstruation, virginity, masturbation. . .) that are emphatically rejected by every person, Christian or otherwise, living in the 21st century as opposed to the Stone Age. Savage also accurately pointed out that turning to the Bible for questions of morality is a dubious exercise at best, due to the fact that the Bible is “a radically pro-slavery document” that “got the easiest moral question that humanity has ever faced wrong.”
Savage’s point — just in case it isn’t already abundantly obvious — is that it’s absurd to suggest that the Bible is infallible on the issue of homosexuality when it is so demonstrably fallible on a host of other issues. And he made that point, without disrespecting or slandering any religion, by simply describing what the Bible actually says.
According to Brown, though, accurately describing what the Bible says is tantamount to bullying. And he won’t stand for it:
Let me lay down a public challenge to Dan Savage right here and now: You want to savage the Bible? Christian morality? Traditional marriage? Pope Benedict? I’m here, you name the time and the place and let’s see what a big man you are in a debate with someone who can talk back. It’s easy to make high-school girls cry by picking on them. Let’s pick on someone our own size!
. . . I’m here, any time, any place you name, Dan Savage. You will find out out how venal and ridiculous your views of these things are if you dare to accept a challenge.
So yeah. Brown is man, hear him roar. Blah blah blah. Incidentally, if you’re currently unoccupied and have a couple minutes to spare, read Brown’s post in its entirety. It’s rather entertaining — what starts off as an indignant letter to NOM’s “marriage supporters” ends up reading, by the time the screed concludes, like a half-hearted mélange of great moments in presidential speeches: “With charity towards all, with malice towards none, we will fight for the right, as God gives us the power to see what’s right. God bless you and may God bless America.” I can’t tell if Brownie intended to re-purpose Lincoln’s Second Inaugural or deliver the State of the Union Address. . .
But anyway, lo and behold, last Friday Savage responded. His message to Brown? It’s on.
I will name the time and the place, per your offer, as soon as possible. Looking forward to it, NOMnuts.
Color me thrilled. As an LGBT activist and media-consuming American, I’ve seen a lot of both Dan Savage and Brian Brown on TV, YouTube, and the like. As such, I’m more than a little surprised that Brown challenged Savage in the first place, since I’m willing to bet NOM’s Bigot-in-Chief would get his you-know-what handed to him in any serious debate. Perhaps Brown, too, recognizes this: as of this writing, he’s made nary a peep in public about Savage accepting his offer. Stay tuned, folks; we’ll see what develops.
Oh, and in case either Dan or Brian happen to be reading: consider this my formal request for two front-row seats. I don’t want to miss a thing.

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Via JMG: Gay Author Maurice Sendak Dies At Age 83

Where The Wild Things Are author Maurice Sendak has died at the age of 85.
Roundly praised, intermittently censored and occasionally eaten, Mr. Sendak’s books were essential ingredients of childhood for the generation born after 1960 or thereabouts, and in turn for their children. He was known in particular for more than a dozen picture books he wrote and illustrated himself, most famously “Where the Wild Things Are,” which was simultaneously genre-breaking and career-making when it was published by Harper & Row in 1963.
I don't think I ever actually read Sendak's most famed book, but I recall there being a indoor playground and restaurant based on it at San Francisco's ill-fated Metreon complex.

RELATED: Sendak came out publicly three years ago.
Was there anything he had never been asked? He paused for a few moments and answered, “Well, that I’m gay.” “I just didn’t think it was anybody’s business,” Mr. Sendak added. He lived with Eugene Glynn, a psychoanalyst, for 50 years before Dr. Glynn’s death in May 2007. He never told his parents: “All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.”

Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Today's Gallup Poll

Gallup reports:
Fifty percent of Americans believe same-sex marriages should be recognized by law as valid, with the same rights as traditional marriages -- down slightly from 53% last year, but marking only the second time in Gallup's history of tracking this question that at least half of Americans have supported legal same-sex marriage. Forty-eight percent say such marriages should not be legal.

Reposted from Joe

Via Gay Politics Report:

Via Gay Politics Report:

  • Despite Biden remarks, White House doesn’t budge on marriage
    Reporters yesterday hammered White House spokesman Jay Carney over President Barack Obama’s position on marriage equality a day after Vice President Joe Biden unexpectedly said he’s comfortable with same-sex couples marrying. Biden’s office later said the vice president’s official position still mirrored Obama's, leading the White House press corps Monday to repeatedly ask Carney to explain Obama’s position more fully. The press corps' questions about marriage equality took up nearly half the daily briefing. Carney referred reporters to Obama’s record on LGBT issues and his oft-repeated answer that the president was still evolving on the issue of marriage rights, an answer Obama himself first uttered in 2010. National Public Radio (5/8), The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (5/6), Metro Weekly (Washington, D.C.)/Poliglot (5/7), Washington Blade (5/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Education secretary says he supports marriage equality: Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said Tuesday morning he supports the rights of same-sex couples to marry, becoming the latest Obama administration official to publicly break with the president over the issue. Housing Secretary Shaun Donovan has also said he backs marriage rights for gays and lesbians. Advocate.com (5/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Are some Obama donors closing their wallets?: Several major political givers who are upset with President Barack Obama’s refusal to sign an executive order banning LGBT employment bias among federal contractors have reportedly suspended their fundraising efforts for his re-election bid despite his overall record on LGBT issues, according to this article. The Washington Post/The Plum Line (5/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Via JMG: VIDEO: It Could Happen To You

Andy Towle writes: Shane Bitney Crone has marked the one-year anniversary of his boyfriend of six years, Tom Bridegroom, with a devastating video, It could happen to you, chronicling what happened to him after Tom's sudden death. If there's anyone in your life who doesn't understand the familial rejection, the institutional discrimination, and the bias that gay couples face every day, here's one man's account.

reposted from Joe

Via JMG: WorldPride To Honor Hillary Clinton

No doubt in recognition of her historic speech to the United Nations, WorldPride London has announced that Hillary Clinton will be the recipient of their World LGBT Award. Pink News UK reports:
Clinton, who is married to former US President Bill Clinton, will be honoured at a star-studded black-tie fundraiser preceding WorldPride 2012 on 5 July. The gala evening is in aid of Pride London’s new Solidarity Fund, which supports organisation within the Commonwealth that work with and for LGBT people to tackle homophobia and transphobia. Also to be honoured, with the “International Community Award”, is ILGA – the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association. Founded in 1978, ILGA brings together more than 750 LGBTI groups from around the world.
RELATED: WorldPride has previously been held Rome (2000) and Jerusalem (2006). After WorldPride Toronto in 2014, the event will take place on a five-year cycle. (Tipped by JMG reader Huntington)

Reposted from Joe

Via GayBahai.net:

Mother28 Collapse posted:

I recently resigned from the Baha'i Faith from my letter of resignation I said:

This is the post I referred to above:

"I always believed that the Faith would eventually consider science and the rigorous study of society, however it is clear from the activities of the Faith around the world that the Faith will not change its policy regarding marriage equality, the flexibility of gender roles, or gender identity. I have found it particularly disappointing that a Faith I once embraced has supported hate groups against homosexuals and that Baha'i Counselors have in international forums promoted corrective therapy for LBGTQ members that has been condemned in the medical community as abusive, harmful and ineffective."

this was the straw that broke my back, I don't want a religion in my life that is not tolerant and in alignment with science.


Via Towleroad:

'Where the Wild Things Are' Author Maurice Sendak is Dead at 83

SendakMaurice Sendak, the gay author of iconic children's books like Where the Wild Things Are and In the Night Kitchen, has died at 83.
The cause was complications from a recent stroke, said Michael di Capua, his longtime editor.

Sendak came out of the closet publicly in 2008 in an interview with the New York Times:

"Was there anything he had never been asked? He paused for a few moments and answered, 'Well, that I’m gay...I just didn’t think it was anybody’s business,' Mr. Sendak added. He lived with Eugene Glynn, a psychoanalyst, for 50 years before Dr. Glynn’s death in May 2007. He never told his parents: 'All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.' Children protect their parents, Mr. Sendak said. It was like the time he had a heart attack at 39. His mother was dying from cancer in the hospital, and he decided to keep the news to himself, something he now regrets. A gay artist in New York is not exactly uncommon, but Mr. Sendak said that the idea of a gay man writing children books would have hurt his career when he was in his 20s and 30s."

Sendak recently appeared in two genius interviews with Stephen Colbert. If you missed them, makes sure to take a look HERE and HERE.

Posted May. 8,2012 at 8:32 AM EST by Andy Towle in Books, Deaths, MAurice Sendak, News

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma

Tricycle Daily Dharma May 8, 2012

Saving Yourself from Anger


When you give in to aversion and anger, it’s as though, having decided to kill someone by throwing him into a river, you wrap your arms around his neck, jump into the water with him, and you both drown. In destroying your enemy, you destroy yourself as well.
- Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche, "Putting Down the Arrow"
Read the entire article in the Tricycle Wisdom Collection