“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.

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Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act

PFLAG’s online newsroom issued a news release on October 22 which I happened to catch in an email. A new bill passed by Congress appears to be a milestone in defining equal protection for the LGBT community. I’ve posted an excerpt below. Read the full article at the PFLAG site.

PFLAG National celebrated success in a decade-long fight on Thursday, October 22, when the Senate passed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act. The groundbreaking bill includes sexual orientation and gender identity as protected categories in federal law, the first time these groups have been afforded such protection. President Obama has repeatedly and publically announced his support for the bill and is expected to sign it in the following days.

The history of the hate crimes prevention act goes back more than two decades, to 1989 when Congress passed the Hates Crimes Statistics Act, which required law enforcement to collect data on crimes motivated by prejudice based on race, religion, sexual orientation, or ethnicity. This legislation built the foundation for the current hate crimes prevention law. In 1997, in response to a wave of murders and arsons directed at LGBT individuals, President Bill Clinton called a White House Summit on Hate Crimes, where the Hate Crimes Prevention Act we know today was crafted.

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Miss USA Contestant Flunks Gay Marriage Question

When Carrie Prejean was asked for her views on gay marriage in the Miss USA beauty pageant, she answered that she believes marriage is “between a man and a woman”. 

Prejean is currently Miss California. She was the acknowledged  frontrunner in the USA pageant – until that question. The question was asked by pageant judge Perez Hilton, said to be a “celebrity blogger”. Read about it in the BBC post if you haven’t already.

To be honest, my first reaction was, “serves her right.”

Hilton said he had been “floored” by Ms Prejean’s answer, which, he said, “alienated millions of gay and lesbian Americans, their families and their supporters”.

He told ABC News: “She lost it because of that question. She was definitely the front-runner before that.”

Just a minute here … how is that supposed to work? Supposing her answer to the same question had been “I’m definitely for it” — and the judge had been an evangelical religious fundamentalist? Are the social and political views of a beauty content contestant even relevant? How would you react  if  the first question pitched to you in a job interview was, “who did you vote for in 2008?”

To her credit, Prejean answered honestly. The country is still divided almost 50%-50% on this issue; it’s not as if  the Holocaust denial of Iran’s Ahmadinejad was on the table.

Gays and lesbians will ultimately win on this equal rights issue. But not that way.

I don’t give a hoot for beauty contests in the first place. I tend to agree with those who say they’re demeaning because they reinforce negative sexual stereotypes.

But what do you think about dragging social and political issues into such contests?

Should Prejean’s win or loss have hung on this one question? Was Hilton fair to set her up for this question, and then nail her when he didn’t agree with her position? Should such questions be asked at all?

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Heard on the News …

Recently, KCBS reported that the Church of Latter Day Saints, the Utah Folks, are urging members to work to support the California ballot initiative to ban same-sex marriage. Just when the Mormons rode out their own bigamy scandal, and surfed the crest of a tide of tolerance and popularity with Mitt Romney’s (unsuccessful) bid for the Presidential nomination – they had to go screw it all up by meddling in the political affairs of another state. While many evangelical sects still officially disapprove of what they fancy to be GLBT “lifestyles”, most younger members are vastly more concerned with actually important issues on the economy, the war, energy policy and global warming. Demonizing gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders has lost much of its appeal. Leave it to Salt Lake City to try to revive throwback politics.

Today, Supreme Court Justice Scalia finally did something I approve of, instantly putting me in the dog-house with half of the nation. In a strictly limited ruling overturning an absolute ban on firearm ownership in Washington, D.C. (even for home defense), Scalia led the court to the first constitutional affirmation of the Second Amendment. What I want to know: why does the Scalia court affirm the constitutional right to “keep and bear arms” for individuals (not just a militia), while insisting that any state that feels like it can violate the Bill of Rights by denying to all GLBT individuals the same rights guaranteed to all other citizens?

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GLAAD Alert

GLAAD Alert: NEW REPORT TAKES A COMPREHENSIVE LOOK AT GAY LIVES, ISSUES:

The Kaiser Family Foundation has released an authoritative, comprehensive survey of the lives and issues of lesbians, gays and bisexuals. Both GLBT and general populations are surveyed.

We have republished this GLAAD Alert in full, but it contains a link to the KFF site where you can see the full surveys in PDF form for yourself, and or send links to friends and family. The numbers are impressive. Check it out.

* Three-quarters of the general public support laws to protect gays and lesbians from prejudice and discrimination in employment (76%) and housing (74%). Large majorities also support other benefits for LGB partners, including inheritance rights (73%), employer-provided health insurance (70%) and social security benefits (68%).

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Insensitive Bastard

Jerry FalwellInsensitive Bastard: If it seems it’s been quiet in La Parola lately, it’s because we’ve been arguing for freedom on broader fronts.

Here at Summitlake.com, we are still in deep shock over the horrible, horrible terrorist attacks on the eastern seaboard. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t kept our eyes and ears open.

If you thought La Parola has always been a little too – well – polite, stiff and formal, you’d better read our remarks on the latest outrageous utterances of the Rev. Jerry Falwell. We chose not to post them here, but (following an increasing pattern), to give them the broadest possible exposure on What’s New, one of the most heavily trafficked pages at Summitlake.com.

Read Insensitive Bastard,in 2001 , on the Front Page of the whole Summitlake.com site, now, rescued from Archives and reproduced below.

Please take care. These are trying times. Hugs and such.

Insensitive Bastard

Gustav Niebuhr, New York Times Friday, September 14, 2001

The Rev. Jerry Falwell said yesterday that the American Civil Liberties Union, along with abortion providers, gay rights proponents and federal courts that had banned school prayer and legalized abortion, had so weakened the United States spiritually that the nation was left exposed to Tuesday’s terrorist attacks.

The conservative Baptist minister said that “the ACLU’s got to take a lot of blame for this,” according to a partial transcript of televised remarks he made on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson’s religious program.

In the transcript, distributed by the liberal organization People for the American Way, Falwell described the ACLU as “throwing God out successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools.” Referring to the terrorist attacks, he said he would point a figurative finger at those “who have tried to secularize America” and say: “You helped this happen.”

As if the unthinkably horrible events of this week have not stressed Americans to the limit, once again, the Rev. Falwell has seized upon the moment to demonize those who do not pay homage and tithe to his particular cult, those who defend individual rights, and those who simply happen to be different.

Once again, the Rev. Falwell has gone beyond the pale. He is a disgrace to organized religions, a disgrace to all thinking peoples, and a disgrace to his homeland and birthright, whatever that may be.

Summitlake.com invites thinking readers to compare Falwell to other religious fanatics: Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, the late Ayatollah Khomeini. Our challenge is to find substantive differences, if any, beyond those denied to Falwell merely because they are still prohibited by the laws of our land.

We further invite those who have the opportunity to do so, to speak out vociferously against all such agenda-laden divisiveness, and to repudiate Falwell’s verbal defecation upon the Bill of Rights. If there is to be finger-pointing, we should be looking at the parents who dropped this monster upon the fertile soil of the United States of America. Small wonder that he is opposed to abortion.

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“Dr. Laura”

GLAAD ALERT: Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s TV Show To Be Sponsored by Proctor & Gamble. Read this alert for news of a bad blunder on P&G’s part. If you like, there is a very convenient link to Proctor & Gamble’s feedback web page. NOTE: thanks to thoughtful national feedback, Proctor and Gamble and several other advertisers dropped sponsorship of Dr. Laura less than a week after this posting.

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