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Posted by BuffyTheFundieSlayer in Religion/Theology
Mon Oct 24th 2011, 07:01 PM
Non-religious nations have higher quality of life

Misinformation and facts about secularism and religion

Criminal Behavior:

Citing four different studies, Zuckerman states: "Murder rates are actually lower in more secular nations and higher in more religious nations where belief in God is widespread." He also states: "Of the top 50 safest cities in the world, nearly all are in relatively non-religious countries."


Marriage and Family:

Zuckerman cites a 1999 Barna study that finds that atheists and agnostics actually have lower divorce rates than religious Americans.


Altruism: Secular nations such as those in Scandinavia donate the most money and supportive aid, per capita, to poorer nations. Zuckerman also reports that two studies show that, during the Holocaust, "the more secular people were, the more likely they were to rescue and help persecuted Jews."

Outlooks and Values: Zuckerman, citing numerous studies, shows that atheists and agnostics, when compared to religious people, are actually less likely to be nationalistic, racist, anti-Semitic, dogmatic, ethnocentric, and authoritarian. Secularism also correlates to higher education levels. Atheists and other secular people are also much more likely to support women's rights and gender equality, as well as gay and lesbian rights. Religious individuals are more likely to support government use of torture.


Cross-National Correlations of Quantifiable Societal Health with Popular Religiosity and Secularism in the Prosperous Democracies


few hundred years ago rates of homicide were astronomical in Christian Europe and the American colonies (Beeghley; R. Lane). In all secular developed democracies a centuries long-term trend has seen homicide rates drop to historical lows (Figure 2). The especially low rates in the more Catholic European states are statistical noise due to yearly fluctuations incidental to this sample, and are not consistently present in other similar tabulations (Barcley and Tavares). Despite a significant decline from a recent peak in the 1980s (Rosenfeld), the U.S. is the only prosperous democracy that retains high homicide rates, making it a strong outlier in this regard (Beeghley; Doyle, 2000). Similarly, theistic Portugal also has rates of homicides well above the secular developed democracy norm...

Although the late twentieth century STD epidemic has been curtailed in all prosperous democracies (Aral and Holmes; Panchaud et al.), rates of adolescent gonorrhea infection remain six to three hundred times higher in the U.S. than in less theistic, pro-evolution secular developed democracies (Figure 6). At all ages levels are higher in the U.S., albeit by less dramatic amounts. The U.S. also suffers from uniquely high adolescent and adult syphilis infection rates, which are starting to rise again as the microbe’s resistance increases (Figure 7). The two main curable STDs have been nearly eliminated in strongly secular Scandinavia. Increasing adolescent abortion rates show positive correlation with increasing belief and worship of a creator, and negative correlation with increasing non-theism and acceptance of evolution; again rates are uniquely high in the U.S. (Figure 8). Claims that secular cultures aggravate abortion rates (John Paul II) are therefore contradicted by the quantitative data....


In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy, and abortion in the prosperous democracies (Figures 1-9). The most theistic prosperous democracy, the U.S., is exceptional, but not in the manner Franklin predicted. The United States is almost always the most dysfunctional of the developed democracies, sometimes spectacularly so, and almost always scores poorly. The view of the U.S. as a “shining city on the hill” to the rest of the world is falsified when it comes to basic measures of societal health. Youth suicide is an exception to the general trend because there is not a significant relationship between it and religious or secular factors. No democracy is known to have combined strong religiosity and popular denial of evolution with high rates of societal health...


...The least theistic secular developed democracies such as Japan, France, and Scandinavia have been most successful in these regards. The non-religious, pro-evolution democracies contradict the dictum that a society cannot enjoy good conditions unless most citizens ardently believe in a moral creator. The widely held fear that a Godless citizenry must experience societal disaster is therefore refuted. Contradicting these conclusions requires demonstrating a positive link between theism and societal conditions in the first world with a similarly large body of data - a doubtful possibility in view of the observable trends.


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Posted by BuffyTheFundieSlayer in GLBT
Mon Mar 03rd 2008, 02:17 PM
Although this would get wider viewing in another forum I'm posting it here because, frankly, I'm too weary of the vitriol elsewhere. It was born of the countless times I and other LGBT people heard the refrain "one issue voter" whenever we said we were/were not voting for Candidate X over his/her stance on a particular LGBT related issue. Too many people fail to realize just how significant and far-reaching LGBT issues actually are, and how, in fact, LGBT issues are not a single issue at all. (Since this is my own work I've included more than the usual four paragraphs, but the full text and hyperlinks are available at the link below.)

“One Issue Voters”

More than once when a L, G, B and/or T individual has stated that they are or are not voting for a particular politician because of his/her stance on some LGBT policy the cry goes out, “How can you be such a One Issue Voter?”. Of course it’s usually the case that the individual is not voting solely because of the politician’s stance on the LGBT policy, but also because of other issues as well and is mentioning only the LGBT issue at the time. But, that aside, it’s important for everybody to realize that LGBT concerns are in no way “one issue”, so voting based on them can in no way make a person a “One Issue Voter”. Allow me to break it down for you.


Marriage in and of itself is not one issue as it provides couples so many rights and carries so many responsibilities. It also affects any children the couples may have, thereby having broader scope than just the couple themselves. However it is largely unavailable to same-sex couples.

Same-sex couples are currently allowed to legally marry in only one state, Massachusetts. Although they are granted the same rights and benefits as other married couples under state law, they are not granted any of the more than 1100 rights and responsibilities granted to married couples by the federal government. Furthermore, their marriages are not recognized as legal outside of MA, so if they travel to another state or move their rights are in jeopardy.

Five states, CA, CT, NH, NJ, and VT, offer Civil Unions/Domestic Partnerships for same-sex couples. These unions offer ostensibly identical benefits and obligations to those of civil marriage in their states, but again none of the federal benefits of marriage. However it has been discovered repeatedly that the DPs/CUs fall short of their promises as they don’t actually provide the benefits they are supposed to. Employers, agencies, families and others have worked to avoid providing benefits to same-sex couples under DPs/CUs claiming that they’re not obligated to do so as the unions are not marriages. Hence the need for same-sex couples to have federally recognized legal marriage rather than the Colored Only drinking fountain of the 21st century known as DPs/CUs.



Adoption is another way that LGBT individuals are often denied the rights their straight peers are afforded. Ten states and DC allow “second parent adoption”, the process by which a partner in a same-sex couple can adopt his/her partner’s biological child without terminating the parental rights of the biological parent.


However even if the child is the biological child of an LGBT parent, there are potential difficulties. While there is substantial, legitimate, peer-studied research to indicate LGBT parents are every bit as effective and fit as other parents, they must face constant criticism and bigotry. However opponents have used faulty, distorted and outright fabricated research to make the claim that children raised by LGBT parents are at risk in various ways. Furthermore the biases of judges, social-service workers and others who make decisions about child custody can result in children being taken away from their LGBT parents based not on the actual fitness of the parent, but on their sexual orientation/gender identity.


GLBT individuals can legally be denied housing based on their sexual orientation/gender identity in most states. To date there are approximately thirteen states and numerous cities that ban housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and some include gender identity. However there is currently no federal law that does so. Therefore GLBT individuals do not have the same protections under the law in this area that other Americans currently do.


Thanks to President Bill Clinton, federal civilian LGBT employees enjoy protection from discrimination. But private-sector LGBTs are not so lucky. While twenty states, DC and 140 cities have banned discrimination against employees based on sexual orientation (some including gender identity) others still allow employers to fire, or refuse to hire, people for being LGBT. And, of course, even where anti-discrimination laws exist religious organizations and employers run by religious organizations are exempt from them.

ENDA, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, would ban discrimination against LGBT people on a nationwide basis. After numerous attempts it went through both the House and the Senate last Autumn, albeit without protections for Transgender individuals. It seems that the bigots couldn’t be convinced that they were worthy of such protections so they were dropped from the bill. It sits now in limbo, waiting for President Bush to sign or, more likely, to veto it.

Hate-Crimes Protection

32 states and DC have statutes that provide stronger penalties for those who engage in bias motivated crimes against people based on sexual orientation. 11 have protections for people based on gender identity. Only 16 are required, however, to collect statistics on these crimes, allowing for much valuable data to be lost.

Currently no federal legislation exists for prosecution or data collection of bias motivated crimes against LGBT people. In 2007 the Matthew Shepard Act, named for the young gay man brutally murdered in 1998, was introduced to Congress. The bill made it through the Senate, but not the House. LGBT people remain without federal hate-crimes protection and will do so indefinitely.

Military Service


Previously the military simply banned gay/bisexual people from serving. When Bill Clinton took office in 1993 he had promised to allow gay people to serve openly. The resultant backlash from military leaders and the right-wing forced him to implement a compromise, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, more commonly known as DADT. Gays could ostensibly serve in the military as long as they didn’t disclose their orientation, and the military couldn’t ask. While meant as a compromise, the policy has since led to more problems than it solved as it became very much a witch-hunt.

Between 1994 and 2005 there were 11,082 service-members discharged under DADT at a cost of approximately $200 million to the United States. Myriad polls have shown that the public favors allowing gay people to serve openly. Nonetheless military leaders remain staunchly in favor of DADT and it has been upheld in federal court five times.

In Conclusion

Marriage, employment, housing, partner benefits, health care decisions, inheritance rights, our families, hate-crimes protection, military service and so much more. Far from being “one issue”, these far reaching issues affect every aspect of our lives, and some can even put our lives in the balance.

So please realize that we are never “one issue voters”, even if it appears that we are. Things are much more complex and substantial than they seem on the surface.

Full Article with Links
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If you’re a Clinton supporter, you look at Obama and see no “there” there.

If you’re an Obama supporter, nothing gets your goat like a Clinton supporter saying Obama is all style and no substance.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you ask Obama supporters to show you Obama’s substance.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you tell Clinton supporters that Obama is a “blank screen” onto which you’re supposed to project all your own hopes and dreams.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, the “blank screen” line just means there’s no “there” there.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you get angry when the Clinton supporters dismiss the “blank screen” concept.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you ask the Obama supporters to explain, in their own words, what Obama intends to actually do.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you direct all Clinton supporters to Obama’s Web site, to read somebody else’s words — and then complain that nobody reads Obama’s Web site.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’ve combed through Obama’s Web site, repeatedly, and find no “there” there.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, Obama’s entire campaign smacks of a preachy, religious tent revival.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you rail against religious or “cult” comparisons — while you refuse to discuss issues and policies, instead following your “Camp Obama” leader’s directive to share only “personal conversion stories.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you hate using such a heavily-loaded word as “cult,” but you’re extremely uneasy about the many ways in which the Obama supporters resemble the followers of… well… sorry to say it, but… yes… Jim Jones.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you take extreme umbrage at being branded “cult-like” — but you have to consult Wikipedia to find out who Jim Jones was.

If you’re an Obama supporter, once you find out who Jim Jones was, you suddenly understand what “drinking the Kool-Aid” means, and you’re positively aghast anyone would aim that Jonestown allusion at you.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you want to scream at the Obama supporters: “What do you think everybody meant about ‘drinking the Kool-Aid’ in reference to the Bush administration all these years?!” And then you go bang your head against the nearest doorjamb until the pain stops.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you revile Bill Clinton — and by extension, Hillary — for signing NAFTA.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you think signing NAFTA was one of Bill’s worst mistakes — but you remember that 1) Obama was for NAFTA before he was against it, and 2) Obama actually wants to expand NAFTA.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’re still stunned that Bill Clinton was impeached over lying about a lousy blow job, yet all attempts to impeach George W. Bush, a bona fide war criminal, have failed.

If you’re an Obama supporter, Bill Clinton deserved to be impeached for lying about a lousy blow job, but you don’t support impeaching Bush or even Cheney, because Obama told you that he doesn’t support it, explaining that “you reserve impeachment for grave, grave breeches, and intentional breeches of the president’s authority” — which means that Bill’s lousy blow job is a far more “grave, grave breech” than anything Bush or Cheney has ever done.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remember when former U.S. ambassador Joe Wilson risked everything to blow the lid off BushCo’s “yellowcake” lie and expose the treasonous, criminal betrayal of his wife, CIA operative Valerie Plame — which not only endangered her life, but endangered national security.

If you’re an Obama supporter, Joe Wilson is a paid Hillary operative, and Valerie Plame is a ditzy blonde who needed her husband to bail her out of an embarrassing situation.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you think Paul Krugman is a brilliant economist and fine political commentator, whose progressive perspective has remained consistent since the early 1990s.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you think Paul Krugman is an inbred knuckledrugger too stupid to balance his own checkbook.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’ve always thought Peggy Noonan was a bitter, nasty, right-wing hack, and your opinion has never changed.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you never realized how wise and erudite Peggy Noonan really was, until late January of 2008, when she ripped both Clintons up one side and down the other.

If you’re an Obama supporter, your newfound admiration of Peggy Noonan ended less than a month after it began, when Noonan published an op/ed critical of Barack and Michelle Obama.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, nothing Peggy Noonan writes surprises you, since Noonan was a speechwriter for Ronald Reagan, after all, and— by the way, speaking of Ronald Reagan…

If you’re an Obama supporter, you agree with Obama’s praise of “that sense of dynamism and entrepreneurship” Ronald Reagan employed in curbing “all the excesses of the 1960s and 1970s.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know that the “excesses of the 1960s and 1970s” Reagan’s right-wing backlash was targeting included the civil rights movement, the anti-Vietnam war movement, the women’s liberation movement, the gay liberation movement, the consumer-protection movement, and the environmental movement. For starters.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you cry, “That’s not what he meant by ‘excesses of the 1960s and 1970s’!” but when pressed to explain what he did mean by “excesses of the 1960s and 1970s,” you start to mumble something about “fiscal excesses,” but stop mid-sentence when you realize that Reagan was a union-busting tax cutter who gutted the middle class and racked up the largest federal deficit in U.S. history.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you can’t comprehend how Michelle Obama’s remark, “For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback,” could possibly be perceived as a dismissal of every American achievement of the past 25 years.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you wonder, as Sasha Issenberg put it, “So what did Michelle Obama think of the United States before her husband decided he wanted to run the place?”

If you’re an Obama supporter, you’re quick to correct the quote; what she really said was “For the first time in my adult lifetime, I’m really proud of my country, not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you don’t see how the addition of the word “really” changes the meaning — especially since both quotes are correct, as she made them in two different speeches on the same day.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you respond that no one can possibly understand what Michelle Obama really meant unless you’re black, because America has yet to earn the pride of a minority that has been oppressed, demonized, and dehumanized throughout the entirety of America’s 232-year history.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, and you’re gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, you wonder how you manage to find plenty of things to make you proud of America while remaining oppressed, demonized, and dehumanized throughout the entirety of America’s 232-year history.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you also wonder how Obama supporters can keep claiming that Barack Obama “transcends race,” when they keep using lines like “You can’t understand what Michelle Obama really meant unless you’re black.”

If you’re an Obama supporter, you’ve been demanding Clinton release her tax returns, right damn now!

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’re not allowed to wonder why public access to Michelle Obama’s 1985 sociology thesis has been “Restricted until November 5, 2008.”

If you’re an Obama supporter, you’re quick to point out that Hillary Clinton’s 1969 thesis was sealed in the early days of Bill Clinton’s presidency, in 1993.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remember that too — and you also remember the way the Clintons were raked over the coals for it.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you remind the Clinton supporters that Michelle Obama’s thesis is irrelevant — Michelle isn’t running for president.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remind the Obama supporters that Hillary Clinton wasn’t running for president in 1993, either.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you know Obama is going to take the general election in a landslide — just look at how he’s knocked Hillary flat on her butt in 24 state primary races already!

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know that Obama wins caucuses and open primaries (in which registered Republicans and in some cases even unregistered voters) can vote for whoever they want, while Clinton wins closed primaries. (Obama has won eleven caucuses, five open primaries, and eight closed primaries — while Clinton has won nine closed primaries, three open primaries, and one caucus.)

If you’re an Obama supporter, you snark at Clinton supporters because they’re essentially saying: “Some states don’t count.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know that Republicans who “cross over” to vote for the weaker Democrat in open Democratic primaries — like the Heritage Foundation’s Robert Bluey — are not an anomaly.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you scoff at Clinton supporters who just can’t believe that Obama is accomplishing exactly what he said he was going to do: convert Republicans and Independents to the Democratic Party.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’re stunned by how deeply in denial the Obama supporters are about the Republicans’ long tradition of gaming the system.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you just don’t believe the Republicans are that smart, or that organized.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you wonder if the Obama supporters have even the first clue about the real meaning of “Rovian tactics.”

If you’re an Obama supporter, you’re convinced that Obama’s healthcare plan will give every American the same health-insurance coverage Obama himself enjoys.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know Obama’s plan is a mandate for 15 million uninsured American children — and nobody else.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you rail against Clinton’s healthcare plan because you think it involves “wage garnishment.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you ask Obama supporters if they think Social Security (a.k.a. FICA) deductions are a form of “wage garnishment,” too.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you point out the vast unfairness of Clinton’s healthcare plan, as it will “penalize” childless Americans who have to pay for the coverage of somebody else’s kids.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you point out — again — that Obama’s plan is a mandate for 15 million uninsured American children, and nobody else — which means childless people will be paying for the coverage of somebody else’s kids.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you’re stuck for an answer to this one, especially as the Clinton supporters turn to the next logical question: “Do Obama supporters complain just as loudly about their taxes paying for ’somebody else’s kids’ to attend public school, too — or would they prefer school vouchers?”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’d never in a million years dream of attributing any of Obama’s negative campaign tactics or unlikeable personal characteristics to the fact that he’s black — that would be a truly despicable, racist thing to do.

If you’re an Obama supporter, there’s a strong chance you attribute everything you hate about Hillary Clinton to the idea that she’s having her period, or she’s not having her period, or she’s past having her period — all of which makes her “unhinged,” “hysterical,” “shrill,” “screeching,” a “harpy,” a “shrew,” a “bitch,” a “nag,” a “virago,” “weepy,” “emotionally unbalanced,” “losing it,” “cracking up,” “like your ex-wife yelling at you,” “an angry schoolmarm,” “insane,” subject to “mood swings,” “bipolar,” having “Mommy Moments,” having a “case of the vapors,” “on the rag,” and “in need of a Midol” — or, as Obama himself so slyly put it, “the claws come out” and she “launches attacks” … “periodically when she’s feeling down.”

If you’re an Obama supporter, you know it’s not your place to judge whether or not anyone is a “true Christian” — but you’re well within your rights to judge whether or not anyone is a “true Democrat.”

If you’re a Clinton supporter, the familiar strains of “You’re either with us or you’re against us” sends a chill down your spine.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you wax poetic over the way Obama is going to unite all Americans.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you tremble when you think of the last presidential candidate who billed himself as “a uniter, not a divider.”

If you’re an Obama supporter, “unity” means: Vilify, marginalize, ostracize, and ridicule Hillary Clinton and her supporters — while “reaching out” to Republicans; gloat like a soccer hooligan over Obama’s popularity; and tell Clinton supporters Obama doesn’t need their support, their donations, or their votes.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you can’t understand why Clinton supporters respond with: “OK, then win without us in November. Good luck.”

Yes, it looks like we’re going to have a Part 3!

Commence the pile-on. It will provide more material for part #3, and perhaps even part #4.

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If you’re an Obama supporter, you know Clinton has too much “baggage” to win the general election.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know Clinton has successfully fought off the Republican attack machine for the past 16 years, and there’s nothing new to throw at her that will stick.

If you’re an Obama supporter, asking how Obama will deflect right-wing attacks (such as questioning his “Muslim family ties” or dealings with Tony Rezko) during the general election campaign is good strategy.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, asking how Obama will deflect right-wing attacks (such as questioning his “Muslim family ties” or dealings with Tony Rezko) means you’re just a paid Hillary shill and/or “concern troll” trying to smear Obama.

If you’re an Obama supporter, suggesting that Latinos are not voting for Obama because “Latinos hate blacks” is a valid observation.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, noticing that African-Americans are voting overwhelmingly for Obama is racist.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you hate Hillary for her pro-Iraq War Resolution vote, and remind everyone within earshot that Obama never voted in favor of the IWR.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remind everyone within earshot that Obama was not a Senator at the time of the IWR, and thus no one knows how he might have voted (especially when you consider his votes to continue funding the war ever since), but you get drowned out by the Obama supporters reminding everyone within earshot that Obama never voted in favor of the IWR.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you don’t like the fact that Clinton voted to authorize the Iraq War, but you realize that 76 other Senators, many with far more liberal leanings than Clinton, were duped into a “Yea” vote by the Bush administration’s lies.

If you’re an Obama supporter, Hillary started the Iraq War all by herself.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you remember than Barack supported John Kerry in his 2004 run for the White House, and you think this is fine, because both are solid, anti-war Democrats.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remember that Kerry voted the same way Clinton did on the 2002 Iraq War Resolution.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you cheer Obama’s plan to start withdrawing troops from Iraq within 16 months after taking office.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, nobody listens when you mention Clinton’s plan to start withdrawing troops from Iraq within 60 days after taking office.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you know you can’t reasonably assume that Hillary is going to bring all the best things about her husband’s eight years of peace and prosperity to the table — you may be getting a “twofer,” but ultimately, it’s Hillary running, not Bill.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you know Hillary is going to bring all the worst things about her husband’s eight years of — well, you can’t remember what was so bad about the Clinton years, except for the Monica Lewinsky scandal, but you’re sure there’s plenty of bad stuff that will carry over into a Hillary Clinton administration.

If you’re an Obama supporter, it’s time for those old, out-of-touch, irrelevant Baby Boomers — in fact, it’s time for everyone over the age of 45 — to get the hell out of the way and hand the reins over to the youth of America.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, of any age, you suddenly become irrelevant the moment you remind the Obama supporters that Obama himself is 46 years old, which makes him a Baby Boomer, too.

If you’re an Obama supporter, 54-year-old Robert F. Kennedy is an out-of-touch Baby Boomer (he did, after all, endorse Clinton).

If you’re an Obama supporter, 50-year-old Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg is a savvy, intelligent American (she did, after all, endorse Obama).

If you’re an Obama supporter, you use to revere 80-year-old poet laureate and living American treasure Maya Angelou — until she endorsed Clinton, which suddenly made her old, out of touch, and irrelevant.

If you’re an Obama supporter, 76-year-old Ted Kennedy is neither old, nor out of touch, nor irrelevant, because he endorsed Barack Obama.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you stand behind Obama for demanding that Don Imus and John Tanner be fired from their respective jobs for making racist remarks.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you have no right to demand that Obama fire rabidly anti-gay “ex-gay” preacher Donnie McClurkin — who demonizes gay and lesbian Americans as child killers — hired to emcee an Obama fundraiser chock-full of homophobes.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you agree that marriage equality for same-sex couples is a decision that should be left to the states.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you wonder how Obama can use the same “states’ rights” argument against same-sex marriage that was used against his own parents’ interracial marriage (which wasn’t recognized in a handful of states at the time they were married).

If you’re an Obama supporter, you echo Obama’s repeated mantra of “post-partisan unity,” and agree wholeheartedly that it’s time to “reach out” to Republicans because we can’t get anything done if we’re not all working together.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, pointing out that Obama pits minority groups within the Democratic Party against one another in order to score votes and donations from the larger and more powerful group is just wrong. And racist.

If you’re an Obama supporter, you insist that Obama has not interjected religion into this campaign.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you want to know how Obama can justify his refusal to support same-sex marriage equality based on his own religious beliefs — as well as the religious beliefs of Dick Cheney, “and over 2,000 religious leaders”.

If you’re an Obama supporter, anyone who won’t sign a loyalty oath to vote for Obama in the general election is a traitor to the Democratic Party.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you’re not allowed to take issue with Michelle Obama’s reluctance to support Hillary Clinton if she wins the Democratic nomination.

If you’re a Clinton supporter, you remember how quoting passages from a speech by British Labor party leader Neil Kinnock, and “forgetting” to attribute those passages to Kinnock, cost Joe Biden the 1988 Democratic nomination.

If you’re an Obama supporter, plagiarizing a key portion of Deval Patrick’s 2006 campaign speech is a non-issue.

Stay tuned for Part 2. There’s just so much more, presenting it all at once would result in the longest blog entry in the history of the Web.


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It's even harmful to those who aren't forced into the "conversion" programs. It promotes the notion that being gay is wrong/sinful/perverted/etc. It causes people to harbor hatred and resentment towards gay people. In turn those people can and do act in ways that harm gay people. They may verbally and/or physically abuse them or even kill them.

LGBT people who have that notion--that being gay is evil--may take that teaching to heart. They internalize it and suffer psychological/spiritual harm from it, particularly if they are religious and hear a lot of it at church. This can result in them suffering mental illnesses like depression or PTSD and even turning to drug use to cope with the pain. Suicide is not uncommon as an extreme end result of the pain inflicted by the dogma of the "Ex-Gay" movement.

Furthermore the "Ex-Gay" movement does everything in its power to prevent LGBT-rights legislation from being passed. It also works to get passed legislation that harms LGBT people, such as constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage, laws that prevent gay people from adopting children, laws to prevent school children from even hearing that LGBTs exist and so on.

It's a hateful and harmful movement, and worst of all they try to claim they're acting out of love.

Some good sites that expose the Ex-Gay movement are: / / /

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Spending time with voters is a good dodge, especially since debates and talking issues aren't your strong suit. Tom Watson calls it Obama's Rose Garden strategy.

Everyone knows Barack Obama and his team have run an impressive campaign. However, for quite a while something else is floating to the top of the message, and it isn't issues or answers. Oprah used it in South Carolina saying, "I do believe he's the one." Ben Smith entitled his post: Messianic rhetoric infuses Obama rallies. That was just the beginning. Inspiration is one thing. But the messianic language amidst the political reality reveals a fraud. The right-wing language and imagery of "Harry and Louise," demonizing Hillary and mandates, which is how we'll get to universal health care. The Exelon story revealing Obama telling tall tales to Iowans about legislation that passed when it didn't, with the truth being he actually rewrote that same legislation, for which he self-lauded himself for passing, for his Big Nuke contributor. Contrast this with Obama attacking the prosperity presidency of Bill Clinton, while praising Republicans for having the ideas of the last 10-15 years, and you've got quite a confused political message. I'm not sure if I'm looking at a politician, a preacher, or a charlatan. Or maybe they're all rolled up into one.

And yet there was something just a wee bit creepy about the mass messianism — "We are the ones we've been waiting for" — of the Super Tuesday speech and the recent turn of the Obama campaign. "This time can be different because this campaign for the presidency of the United States of America is different. It's different not because of me. It's different because of you." That is not just maddeningly vague but also disingenuous: the campaign is entirely about Obama and his ability to inspire. Rather than focusing on any specific issue or cause — other than an amorphous desire for change — the message is becoming dangerously self-referential. The Obama campaign all too often is about how wonderful the Obama campaign is. ... ..

... .. Unless, of course, the next new thing turns out to be a mirage.

Inspiration vs. Substance, Joe Klein


Obama supporter Kathleen Geier writes that she's "getting increasingly weirded out by some of Obama's supporters. On listservs I'm on, some people who should know better – hard-bitten, not-so-young cynics, even – are gushing about Barack…

Describing various encounters with Obama supporters, she writes, "Excuse me, but this sounds more like a cult than a political campaign. The language used here is the language of evangelical Christianity – the Obama volunteers speak of 'coming to Obama' in the same way born-again Christians talk about 'coming to Jesus.' ... ..

And Obama Wept

James Wolcott had this to say:

"So spurn me, I voted for Hillary. ... Perhaps it's my atheism at work but I found myself increasingly wary of and resistant to the salvational fervor of the Obama campaign, the idealistic zeal divorced from any particular policy or cause and chariot-driven by pure euphoria. I can picture President Hillary in the White House dealing with a recalcitrant Republican faction; I can't picture President Obama in the same role because his summons to history and call to hope seems to transcend legislative maneuvers and horse-trading; his charisma is on a more ethereal plane, and I don't look to politics for transcendence and self-certification."


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This is a wonderful blog post from Atheist Revolution. Being a gaytheist I couldn't agree with the author more.

Remember Don Imus? How about George "Macaca" Allen? Try to imagine what would happen if video got out in which one of the Presidential candidates used the dreaded "n-word." That campaign would be over in an instant. Why? Because that type of bigotry would not be tolerated and would be accepted by an overwhelming majority of the American people as grounds for disqualification. Unfortunately, other types of bigotry are not only accepted but are actually an important strategic component of many Republican campaigns. I long for the day when anti-gay and anti-atheist bigotry will disqualify a candidate as quickly as racism.


Overt bigotry directed at African Americans is not tolerated from Presidential candidates and other high-profile politicians. We saw a powerful example of this in Allen's case. More subtle forms of this bigotry generate predictable outrage from well-organized African American groups, but will not necessarily lead to disqualification if the politician can successfully deny of distance him or herself from them. The Bush campaign's assault on John McCain during the 2000 South Carolina primary comes to mind.

And yet, bigotry directed at the secular and GLBT communities is not only acceptable but appears to be an intentional part (some would even say a central part) in the campaign strategies of many Republicans.


Mitt Romney linked religion and freedom and demonstrated his ignorance of the Constitution in a prominent speech. The implication, clear to those who watched or read the speech was that atheists did not deserve the same sort of freedoms reserved for religious Americans. Romney's anti-atheist bigotry was clearly on display. Again, this did not end up being the huge story it should have been. This strikes me as quite revealing about how the mainstream media views atheists.

And here in 2008, we have Mike Huckabee calling for a Christian theocracy, denying evolution (video), and comparing homosexuality to bestiality. He has a long track record of theocratic statements, so this does not appear to involve a recent strategy. Where is the media outrage? Here we have a man running for President who actually opposes the very Constitution he would be asked to defend! From the manner in which the mainstream media has covered him, I'd have to conclude that they either agree or are so afraid to engage in what could be perceived as criticism of Christian extremism that they refuse to expose this important story.


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Now do you have the slightest clue how we LGBTs have been feeling--particularly for the past +/- four months ?

Every single election cycle we get told in one way or another to STFU lest we "lose the election" for the Dems. We get told that our issues are just not important enough, or are just too divisive, or whatever the excuse dujour is. And when we protest we get told to "get over it". Then there's, "you're a minority so we certainly can't cater to you" and the ever popular, "what are you going to do--vote Republican?".

And then there's that whole McClurkin et. al. mess. And we have been told repeatedly to "get over it". Should we tell black people to "get over" their complaints of racism?

Has anyone read any LGBT blogs lately? Does anybody care to? Or are we just a bunch of uppity queers who only become important when our votes are needed?

Maybe we should stay home from the polls.
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Posted by BuffyTheFundieSlayer in GLBT
Fri Jan 11th 2008, 12:23 AM
I'm posting this here because it would turn GD or GDP into a . I came across it on Jasmyne Cannick

I just love listening to our people talk sometimes, especially our elders.

The topic of conversation today between a group of Senator Barack Obama won Iowa.

And I quote:

"That Oprah really helped Obama. You know them white people in Iowa love them some Oprah. They listen to everything she says."

Classic. I'm not disagreeing with them, I just thought it was a simple answer to a question that didn't need polls or analysts, just the life experience from a group of grandmothers who simply called it like they saw it. And that my friends is that.


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Amancio Corrales

Chanelle Pickett

Danny Overstreet

Jason Gage

Michael Sandy

Oh yeah, they can't. They were all murdered by homophobic/transphobic bigots.

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When Don Imus used racial slurs in his radio program Barack Obama called for him to be fired.

When Voting Section Chief John Tanner made remarks Obama considered "erroneous, offensive, and dangerous" Obama called for Tanner to be fired.

When Donnie McClurkin, during a fundraiser concert for the Obama campaign, said that homosexuality is something bad from which God can deliver people Obama said nothing.

The message? People who engage in racism must be silenced, but people who engage in homophobia can be given a microphone on behalf of presidential candidates. Nice double standard.

Don't ever tell us to "give it a rest". It is a big deal. It's our lives.
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I’m (among other things) liberal, atheist, lesbian, spiritual, vegetarian. I was a Christian from age eight to somewhere in my 29th year. I’ve studied Psychology and Sociology formally and many other subjects informally. For 20 years I worked in Human Services, mostly with adults who have developmental disabilities and adults who have mental illnesses, but also with homeless families. I contribute what I can to organized charities such as America’s Second Harvest, The Humane Society of the US and Doctors Without Borders as well as to “non-organized charities” (so to speak). In short, I try to do good to and for people.

I also refuse to force, either by proselytization or by any other means, other people to live by my beliefs (or lack thereof). For example, I am a vegetarian but I would never demand others become vegetarians nor would I even advocate that they do so. I am an atheist, but I would never try to convince others to give up their belief in god(s) or demand legislation that prohibited religion. I wish to be free to live my life so long as I don’t cause harm to others, and I’ll leave others to be free so long as they don’t cause harm to me. If it harm no one, do as ye will.

For the purposes of the next argument, this graphic will represent me and a hypothetical woman I might want to marry in the future:

My partner and I want to get Married. Yes, I said Married. We don’t want to get Civil-Unioned or Domestic-Partnered, regardless of infinite promises that said bondings will provide the same rights and obligations as Marriage. New Jersey and Vermont experiments with CU/DP prove, once again, that “Separate but Equal” simply isn’t. Legal Marriage provides more than 1,000 federal benefitsthat no state-based CP/DP can provide, nor can state-by-state Marriage. We need a federally recognized and supported Marriage, just like heterosexual couples have.

Now this picture represents Family X:

Mom and dad of Family X state that they are Christians . They oppose the right of me and my partner to have a federally recognized Marriage because according to their deeply held religious beliefs homosexuality is wrong. In fact, to them I am on par with murderers, thieves, child abusers and drug addicts because I love a woman rather than a man. Nothing I am, stand for or do overcomes the fact that I am a lesbian. I am an “abomination” in their eyes. They voted for the Constitutional ban on same-sex marriage in their state, and they consistently vote for politicians who oppose equal rights for LGBT people.

Now here is my question, and it is a simple one:

Why does Family X feel they have the right to force me, my partner, and millions of others like us, to live according to the dictates of their religion?

If same-sex marriage became legal tomorrow, those opposed would not be forced to marry someone of the same sex. Churches opposed to same-sex marriage would not be required to marry same-sex couples just as they’re not required to marry couples of faiths other than their own. Nobody’s deeply held religious beliefs would be constrained in any way by providing equal marriage rights to gay, lesbian and bisexual Americans.

Even my Democratic politicans feel the need to pander to those who want to keep me from having equal marriage rights, or (worse yet) agree that I don’t deserve equal marriage rights. So I ask again, and hope for some logical answers:

Why does Family X feel they have the right to force me, my partner, and millions of others like us, to live according to the dictates of their religion?

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For once I truly believed in a candidate rather than merely choosing the best thing out of a fetid mess. I had a candidate with whom I agreed all of the core issues and most of the minor ones. I didn't give a damn about the "unelectable" label people had tagged him with, I was going to vote for him anyway. But then Dennis put his backing behind Obama--that made me recoil. Now I am again looking for a candidate, albeit one I'll have to "settle" for.

Originally while I wasn't here nor there on Obama he was likable enough. His refusal to wear the ubiquitous flag lapel pin even made me cheer. (Screw faux patriotism!)

But when he began his intense pandering to the evangelicals I began to get uncomfortable and take a harder look at him and I started to dislike what I saw. Then came the Embrace the Homophobes concert tour and the poo really hit the fan. Obama's hypocrisy really came to light then.

Obama has twice called for the firing of white men who made racist remarks (Don Imus, John Tanner). Yet he held a public campaign fundraiser that included 5 virulent homophobes, one of whom gave a 30-minute anti-gay sermon at the event. Where is the disconnect? Why is racism so evil yet homophobia acceptable? Is it because the homophobia was necessary (in his mind) to win the votes away from Hillary Clinton?

I do not trust Barack Obama. He is an empty suit coated in pretty slogans. He panders to religious bigots and will throw under the bus whomever he has to in order to win. He denounces bigotry against black people while engaging in bigotry against LGBTs. I couldn't vote for him even while holding my nose.

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Just two weeks out from the first presidential caucus and primary, the gay vote in Iowa and New Hampshire is not reliably behind any one candidate. Contributions to Democrats in the nation’s gayest zip codes appear to give Hillary Clinton a significant edge over Barack Obama and John Edwards. And a pre-selected internet population of lesbian, gay and bisexual consumers nationally shows Clinton with a hefty lead. But interviews with gay voters in Iowa and New Hampshire paint a different picture -- one that looks more muddled and more like that of mainstream voters in those key early states.


A look at the four latest polls in New Hampshire show that as of Dec. 13, Clinton had only a three-point lead over Obama, with a margin of error of plus or minus three points. Edwards is in third, 12 points behind Obama. In Iowa, the average of five polls, as of Dec. 17, shows Obama three points ahead of Clinton with a three-point margin of error. And Clinton has only a two-point lead over Edwards. Interviews with gay activists in both states suggest the gay voting block is equally diffuse.


"GLBT folks are divided up more this year than in any other," says Rettig, an observation that was echoed time and again by activists in both states. "We have three openly out elected officials here in Johnson County. One is with Clinton, one with Obama, and one, I’m unsure. I know GLBT folks with (Bill) Richardson."


"We aren’t a tight-knit group; we’re very large, diverse, and influential," says Buckley. And, noting that a diverse voting bloc increases pressure on candidates to answer questions on gay issues more completely, Buckley adds, "It’s the best thing that we are."

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