“Gay Marriage Polls Not Yet Reflected In Votes”

From David Crary on Huffington Post:

NEW YORK — Poll after poll shows public support for same-sex marriage steadily increasing, to the point where it’s now a majority viewpoint. Yet in all 32 states where gay marriage has been on the ballot, voters have rejected it. … For now, however, there remains a gap between the national polling results and the way states have voted. It’s a paradox with multiple explanations, from political geography to the likelihood that some conflicted voters tell pollsters one thing and then vote differently.

My comment:

“Still not with you people yet, but thinking about doing the right thing.” We’ve seen all this before with the civil rights movement, and then again with women’s rights. “Yes, we’re in favor of liberty and equality, but not just now, and not next door. But we’ll let you know.”

“Though the mills of God grind slowly, yet they grind exceeding small; Though with patience stands He waiting, with exactness grinds He all.” I think that about sums it up.

495 total views, no views today

Excerpted Huffington Post Comments

I’ve recently become active in the Huffington Post registered comment community. Summitlake.com readers may find in my comments some good talking points and “intellectual ammunition” on a number of currently topical issues. I’ve mostly commented on news about the dangerous Santorum, the growing extremist religious right political movements, gay issues, women’s reproductive rights, and other recent news show-stoppers. Boldface subtitles are the titles of the HuffPost article being commented upon.

Alexander Forbes’s Comments

Dear America: You Have a Gay Problem
Commented Mar 15, 2012 at 00:50:57 in Canada
“Of course you have a right to your opinion, and we have a right to disagree, as you say. The issue is that statutory law is being used to deprive certain minorities of certain basic rights afforded all other classes of Americans (which you may call huge collections of individuals, or just ‘groups’). The most likely remedy would be the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment, but, if you read the text; you’ll see it enumerates what the _States_may not abridge, which of course many states are doing anyway. Hence the push to ban Same-Sex Marriage on the federal level. Constitutional protections deal imperfectly with issues the founding fathers never heard of or anticipated. Many of your all-caps arguments are found in the Libertarian Party Platform. Sounds like your heart is in the right place even if you don’t understand “gay,” anyway.”

Social Justice: Is Marriage Equality a Civil Right?
Commented Mar 15, 2012 at 00:08:43 in Religion
“Outstanding! Thank you! Marriage equality is a civil right and should be protected under the “equal protection” 14th Amendment.”

British Lesbians Denied Valentine’s Rose By Waitress Because They Were Not A ‘Real Couple’
Commented Mar 11, 2012 at 01:18:21 in Gay Voices
“Boo Boo Bob is right; the establishment should have been called out. But, you know, that establishment wasn’t hiring ‘real’ waitresses.”

Chick-Fil-A Speaks Out On Viral Controversial Employment ‘Flyer’ (VIDEO)
Commented Mar 11, 2012 at 00:47:03 in Gay Voices
“Thanks, and you’ve raised great points in the thread too. I was “no preference” in the army, and I was never asked about religion or sexual preference in any of many careers between 1964 and 2009. “4F” draft status could be awarded for flat feet, bad eyesight or disability, not just homosexuality. But you are correct that, empirically, many employers still had covert interest in personal info that was none of their business, and rumor was often as dangerous as confirmation.”

Chick-Fil-A Speaks Out On Viral Controversial Employment ‘Flyer’ (VIDEO)
Commented Mar 10, 2012 at 23:41:19 in Gay Voices
“I’m not counting on it. I read the whole thread and researched this on Kos’ 2007 article (most links broken) and elsewhere. I don’t think I could eat at a place with a name like that anyway. I’m not even religious, but being Christian isn’t on trial here. Practicing discrimination – or trying to enact it into statute – is. The franchisee question seems legit to me until a pervasive pattern of actual discriminatory behavior is shown.”

Chick-Fil-A Speaks Out On Viral Controversial Employment ‘Flyer’ (VIDEO)
Commented Mar 10, 2012 at 22:52:27 in Gay Voices
“Wikipedia has more current info, in more detail, than you’ll find in standard paper references, AND its articles are usually better footnoted. It’s NOT a substitute for doing your own research; your teachers are right. See what you can find on “social conservatism” in Webster’s or Britannica, and then check Wikipedia. Excerpt: “Social conservatism is a form of authoritarianism often associated with the position that the national government, or the state, should have a greater role in the social and moral affairs of its citizens, generally supporting whatever it sees as morally correct choices and discouraging or outright forbidding those it considers morally wrong ones.”” Continue reading

823 total views, no views today

Church vs. State: Religious Freedom vs. Freedom of Speech

Just when we thought the HHS “Contraceptive Kerfuffle” was resolved! So-called “social conservatives” from the religious right are attempting to hijack the issue from the Catholic Bishops to put a two-pronged political and religious spin on it. This followup article continues our February 7 story “Contraception: Controversial Health Care Mandate” in Commentary. Read our latest followup on church vs. state, also in Commentary.

445 total views, 2 views today

Rhetoric 101

New Article, Rhetoric 101: Smoke and Mirrors and the Gay Marriage “debate”: Protecting Yourself from Time-Honored Fallacies. Recently, my favorite Astronomy forum “Cloudy Nights” hosted a Gay Marriage topic: “should we allow gay marriage?”

The thread was an unmitigated disaster. By all accounts a similar debate on Astromart was even uglier, but this one quickly degenerated into defamatory conduct, name-calling and personal attacks. I came home from vacation to discover no one from the GLBT comnmunity was represented in the thread. To me it appeared that the heterosexual community was arguing both sides of the topic as a spectator sport.

I “came out” on the thread to make sure everyone was able to associate the topic with a flesh and blood name and face and real human cares and concerns. I managed about four carefully composed posts before the proprietors deleted the whole thread in despair and inposed a permanent ban on sex, politics and religion. The whole experience was unsatisfactory for everyone, and I almost left the membership for good.

Personally, I would never go to an Astronomy forum for that kind of topic. Moreover, I condemn the whole idea that our civil rights are debatable — despite the fact that is precisely what is happening across the whole nation. What happened here?

What I saw was that (a) the level of debate on that thread was of low quality and no one had the training to control or moderate it; (b) the most objectionable aspects of the thread were assertions that could be stopped cold when anyone challenged them as basic rhetorical fallacies, and (c) the religious gay-bashers were losing good-guy points, but my side was losing votes in the US House and Senate. The other side risks loss of face. We risk continued loss of basic civil rights that we have never had in the first place. The debate and the stakes here are unfairly lopsided.

I wrote “Rhetoric 101” as a primer to help make sure thinking Americans remember their basic debating principles. Right now, few Americans mind being seen as anti-gay, but almost no one wants to be caught red-handed in sleazy debating tricks that were first codified over 2,000 years ago. Do pick up this topic and have yourself a good read.

867 total views, 1 views today

The “Log Cabin” Thing

The “Log Cabin” Thing: Dignity and first-class seating: In a letter to a friend, we answer the question, “tell me about this ‘log cabin’ Republican thing.” While intending no offense to individual gay Republicans, we called it as we see it, and believe us, “working within the party” ain’t a pretty sight. If you find yourself with strong opinion on this topic one way or the other, by all means drop us a line.

338 total views, no views today

“Ask Alex”

Ask Alex bannerIn which we tackle the really tough issues and some that are not so tough. Sometimes flippant, sometimes introspective, always concerned that being gay in twentieth-century America has to be such a big deal by contrivance and artificiality, or (some say), by demonizing conspiracy. Here are our answers to commonplace questions from and about our communities, family, identity, and living a gay life in an un-gay world. Copyright 1996. New page browser: Ask Alex – Gay FAQ’s and Fancies

354 total views, no views today