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Saturday, November 15, 2003

More on the Lesbians are Violent Theory by Mitch Berg

from the comment thread on Mitch's blog:

A week or more ago, I commented:

Mitch, I missed the defense of your citations until today. I did respond to this on my blog. Am I going to waste my time reading Renzetti? No - domestic violence really isn't an issue I'm interested in.

It still isn't very honest or ethical to continue using that citation - which you say is an error - on your post about Lucy's. There is some ethics in correcting bad information.

To which Mitch responds about a week later:

Well, now that this has died down a bit:

Eva: I DON'T CARE how violent lesbians are. In my PERSONAL, ANECDOTAL experience, and in the bit of Renzetti that I absorbed back when hatred of Renzetti was ds rigeur among gay activists, there are some violent lesbians out there; no more proportionately than gay straights, certainly, but when they ("they" meaning violent people of any orientation) get together and start drinking, violence increases and things like common-sense and rationality drop off sharply. Which was my point in the original thread - which you've managed to pound into oblivion during three weeks (!) of this gawdforsaken ranting!

EY: Hey, that's true for anyone. Get a bunch of drunks together - and sometimes there are bar fights. Your original statement on the St Paul
list said this:

There is dispute on this point, but lesbians seem to be statistically at least as disposed to violence as any other group, and some would say more so. This has been my experience. This is not a knock on lesbians - but there does seem to be a physically aggressive streak among a sizeable minority.

Then you back it up with this:

  • Gays and lesbians seem to be no less prone to domestic violence
    [this source says what Mitch says it does]
  • A wide variety of sources echo the notion that lesbians are, at the very least, no less violent than straight males. [this one goes to a footnote which doesn't say what you claim it does - the article talks about domestic
    violence in Gay and Lesbian relationships]
  • That violence among lesbians has some different precursors than violence among straights - but then, violence is violence, right?
    [cursory look - this seems to say what Mitch says it does]
  • Claire Renzetti's Violence in gay and lesbian domestic partnerships (New York: Harrington Park Press, 1996) claimed to find a higher statistical incidence of violence among lesbian couples than among straights or gay male couples.
    [haven't read or heard of this book before Mitch mentioned it.]

And if you were upfront enough to say that the footnote was "inadvertendent" in your blog comments, why not be upfront enough to put the correction in your blog entry? Inquiring Minds want to know.

Mitch continues:
Rusty: You seem to take gross offense to my saying "Rusty, whoever he is" - as if I should have researched you before I wrote anything. Jeez, uncork it; it was a flippant observation about a poster who (to be honest) hadn't impressed me much. I have met Tom Swift. I don't agree with everything he says - he may have different views on gays than I do (not that I'd know from his enemies' fevered rantings, which the proceedings on this blog only hint at - you'd think he killed someone, from the rhetoric he seems to draw). I voted for him, because he HAS done this community an invaluable service by exposing some of the low-level, venial corruption and mutual back-scratching between the School Board and groups like "Progressive Minnesota". I don't know enough about the issue that put him in local gay groups' crosshairs - the "Out For Equity" fracas - to comment, so I won't.

EY: Actually, Swift was the author of a flyer that showed Al Oertwig's advertisement in Lavender, and added a comment about the "homosexual
agenda". Al Oertwig is openly gay, and serves on the school board. Swift was clearly trying to make his homosexuality an issue, rather than the issue that should be debated - and that is whether he should serve on the St Paul School Board. Obviously, the voters in St Paul rejected Swift's
bigoted appeal. In fact, Swift's flyer just served to help Oertwig raise money for his campaign - which to me seems to be the best way to use such flyers.

As far as the concerns Swift raised about Progressive Minnesota and their role in School Board races - and the money they got from the SPPS (even though it was a "private" grant) - I thank Swift for raising those concerns also. If Swift would have run on that, without trying to pander to anti-gay bigotry, I'd have voted for him also if I lived in St Paul.

About a year or so back, Swift got on the Minneapolis Issues list and posted about a "Loring Men and Boys" yahoo group that was supposedly representative of the gay community in Minneapolis. Somehow he missed the "Minneapolis Married and Looking" yahoogroup in the same group category.

Swift's own words on the St Paul Issues list clearly show him to be rather obscessed with anti-gay attitudes. It's nothing I've said about him - just his own words.

Mitch continues:
On the other hand, Rusty, I have never met you. Judging only by your style of writing, I'd say you live in your mother's basement and sit endlessly at your computer, honing your "I can insult you worse than you can insult me, ha ha, hee hee" style of writing for 15 hours a day. No, I don't know that for a fact - just an observation. You may be wonderfully fine, functional, rational human being - but your first impression with me - the owner of this site, lest you wonder - was a very poor one.

(Note to the audience: I fully expect Eva or Rusty to carefully excise context-free pieces from this omment to continue this endlessly-recursive argument).

EY: Actually, no, the complete post was taken - and I respond point by point. A link is given to the original so people can read for themselves.

Mitch continues:

Mr. Howe - I'm "off the mark" exactly how (so to speak)? In asking for people to reserve their judgement about the goings-on in the bar? In calling Eva "grossly unethical" for crossposting my private email address to a dozen other groups (note that my spam count has gone WAY up since this thread started)? Help me out here.

And, Rusty - cowardice has nothing to do with being glad this thread fell off the bottom of my blog. Unlike most of you, I don't LIVE for this kind of mindless rhubarb. I've read Eva's blog, and some of the USAQ mailing list traffic; it's all about dissecting the finest points of the most meaningless arguments with Yeshiva-like zeal...

..and to what end? To me, none! I have two kids to raise, a job to do,
Mitch Berg

EY: lolol....

To add some more comments go here.

Seems like he wants this to start up again.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

FRC Claims Whitehouse Letter to MCC a Fluke

From the FRC's daily bleating......

White House Congratulates 'Gay Church'?

Much ado is being made in Washington today about the White House's apparent gaffe in sending a letter to the Metropolitan Community Church in Los Angeles, congratulating it for its 35th anniversary. The MCC is one of the largest homosexual church organizations in the country, and has openly criticized the president's policies on same-sex "marriage" and several other social issues. The president's letter was apparently sent just as we were marking "Marriage Protection Week" back in October.

Today I spoke with the White House about this matter. While on its face this looks troubling, it appears to have been a form letter which does not reflect the previously stated views of the administration on the issue of marriage. We look forward to the White House's official response.

EY: MCC's Press Release about this talks about the irony of the letter. Somehow I doubt the President will officially withdraw the sentiments of the letter he wrote to MCC.

Federal Marriage Amendment Redrafted

It's a full employment bill for lawyers via Andrew Sullivan.

Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this constitution or the constitution of any state, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups. Neither the federal government nor any state shall predicate benefits, privileges, rights, or immunities on the existence, recognition, or presumption of sexual conduct or relationships.

And Sullivan comments:

It's a far more direct attack on marriage than anything that has yet been invented by the social right's opponents. The real problem with civil unions or domestic partnerships is that they provide an easy way-station for straight couples other than marriage. They don't demand the same kind of responsibility and commitment that marriage entails, and thus they weaken the important role of marriage in contributing to social stability. That's why I've long proposed cutting through the entire domestic partnership racket (I'd happily abolish all of it) and including gays in marriage, period - as the most conservative measure available.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Why does the Bigoted TVC Provide a Hitlist for NIH Grant Audits?

The San Francisco Chronicle covers the story.

Controversial AIDS grants under review
Conservatives accused of providing 'hit list'

EY: Subtitle would more accurately be: Bigots accused of providing 'hit list'

I wrote to a Log Cabin Republicans List:

Why are lists provided by the TVC determining which NIH grants get audited? I appended this article.

A House Staff Member responded:

I wanted to clarify with you that I do not believe that the list of studies compiled by the Traditional Values Coalition represents wasteful spending by NIH. I believe most of these studies appear to be sound (I have not reviewed them closely enough to make a definite opinion but few raised any eyebrows from a quick glance). NIH is right to make research on HIV and at risk behaviors and communities a priority for research. I personally believe greater emphasis needs to be placed on research and development of improved AIDS drugs that are more affordable, have easier regimens to comply with taking, have fewer side affects and that stay ahead of drug resistance. I have expressed concerns that many HIV studies do not actually evaluate HIV/STD rates of the participants being studied but rely too heavily on self reported behavior. Also I believe it is important that all studies have high ethical standards.

As for TVC, attached is a letter expelling them from working with
conservative members of Congress

You probably do not know this, but I was a staff co-author of the original prescription drug re-importation law that then-HHS Secretary Donna Shalala refused to enact. The TVC effort against the bill approved by the House earlier this year was disingenuous, to be as kind as I can be. RU-486 is even not available in Canada. This tactic had nothing to do with "traditional values," unless you consider greed to be a traditional value. Please see the attached letter.

I hope this clarifies any confusion you may have about my opinions on these subjects.

Where are Gays and Lesbians Against Immoral Lifestyles when you Need Them?

from the USA Queers Egroup.

Letter from bisexual guy to yahoo porngroup. Interesting description of what he and presumably others need. Here it is with sex details omitted:

I hope you understand that there are a lot of us who are bi and married. We can't risk having nude male pics showing up in our mailboxes. In my case, if she
found out my wife would divorce my cadaver!

We do thoroughly enjoy viewing the pics posted in the Photo and File sections, though.

While I won't tell you what not to do, please consider the extreme discretion required by this large married portion of your membership. Thank you and stay well.

EY: Then Rusty Morris responds:

You do so often find such interesting things...i'm still working on the Boogie, this one is a little
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Here comes the Preacher!

And what does one think of, say about, or the moral implications of a "group" of people who have no qualms about ASKING another group of people to JOIN THEM in deception, lies, and covert activity with abandon and glee and on a regular basis as if it is accepted and understood?

Who then does one blame for allowing, capitulating, encouraging or tolerating such blatant and obvious behavior. Tell me why this guys WIFE is less deserving of honesty, truth, and a dependence on the Gay community to help HER as opposed to helping her CHEATING lying sexual predator of a husband.

Why is the Gay community automatically thought of as a safe haven for immoral activity and those who seek to engage in it, hurt their "Loved ones", cheat, lie, spread it like the flu, and will cover for, hide, and enable such behavior and such people.

Why should not instead, his wife expect decent people with the moral fiber only slightly more than a weasel to send her an email that says "YOUR HUSBAND IS A CHEATING HOMOSEXUAL, CHECK IT OUT, AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM THE POSSIBLE CONSEQUENCES, This is PUBLIC SERVICE announcement by a Gay person who believes YOU , his wife, has the right to know who and what you are sleeping with and we DO NOT WANT HIM USING AND PREYING ON OUR COMMUNITY ANDS YOURS."

Since when is it the Gay communities responsibility to make your CLOSET a satisfying, comfortable and easy to live PLACE! Since when is it assumed that we think this is OK....oh yeah ... i forgot it's the GLBT sure we are all immoral "do it if it feels good" deviants who will welcome a closet case married "bisexual" whore into our midst with all the open armed political correctness we can PUKE out of our shell-shocked complacent mouths, and faithfully stand up and join with him in a campaign to deceive another human being who trusts him. We will faithfully assist him in hurting and betraying and possibly even killing this Heterosexual Female upon which he preys. We will stand by him and turn our heads and "it's none of our business" because afterall what are we anyway who are we, just a buch of deviant homos, to judge....just deviant queers who have sex with same sex partners. Homosexuals cannot be moral or consider their culture anything but a bathhouse sex party...that is afterall what DEFINES being a homosexual is sex, sex, sex, sex, sex.

So knowing all of this, I guess the DUDE is right, and he has ever reason to think it is ok, and acceptable, and wanted, and "just a neat thing to do" to ASSUME, REQUEST and even DEMAND that the "gay community" assist him, cover for him and his lie against his wife, allow ourselves to be used as a sexual hunting ground and demand NOTHING in return. Afterall we have no morals, no reason to think ourselves moral, no reason to stand up and fight such a perception.

Did it really sink in? you really understand that these people assume and ask you to freely participate in a LIE and you do it without thinking? And you then wonder why the "fundies" have such convincing arguments "sometimes". Who do you think his WIFE will vote for if she found out....found out the gay community assisted in the deception against her, endangering her, and making her life a fraud. I doubt very seriously she'd be apt to stand up for US in the voting booth...we are after all nothing but her husbands actions, his co conspirators, and his comfort makers.


EY: They don't call him "Razormouth" for nothing.

On this one, I agree with Rusty. Folks like this give the gay community a bad name - same folks who are coming to Loring Park in Minneapolis trying to buy male prostitutes - and some are the creeps who will pay higher for unprotected sex.

Monday, November 10, 2003

Edwards on Gay Marriage

MR. RUSSERT: Governor Dean may have a difference with you on the issue of civil unions for gay couples. This is The Nation magazine. “Edwards’ campaign says”­”though he endorses gay adoption he has reservations about civil unions for gays and lesbians and would leave decisions on this matter to the states. His press secretary noted, ‘It’s an issue he thinks the country­and North Carolina­is not ready for.’” Why not?
SEN. EDWARDS: I think that the issue of civil unions is one that should be decided by individual states. I think that’s the natural way that that decision would be made. Having said that, I think it’s also very important for the president of the United States to make clear that everybody who lives in this country is entitled to equality, including gays and lesbians and those involved in committed gay and lesbian relationships, which means we should have partnership benefits. It means we should end discrimination in the workplace, which we still have not done. We should do something about ­I think that just made reference to it­something about our adoption law, something about our immigration laws. I think the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy of the military is something that clearly needs to be revisited with our military leaders. Now, I think it’s important for us to make clear to people in this country that we welcome all of them.
MR. RUSSERT: If a gay couple goes to Canada and is married legally and returns to the United States, should that marriage be honored here?
SEN. EDWARDS: Again, I think this is a decision that has to be made on a state ­individual states have to make that decision and...
MR. RUSSERT: If you were governor of a state, would you be supportive of that?
SEN. EDWARDS: No, I would not.
MR. RUSSERT: You would not. Why?
SEN. EDWARDS: I would not. Because, well, first of all, you probably know this, I just went through my discussion of what rights I think need to be given to gays and lesbians, those in committed gay and lesbian relationships, but I don’t support gay marriage.
MR. RUSSERT: Should states also have the right to set laws on abortion or gun control? If you’re going to say for civil unions, why not abortion, why not gun control, allow states to make that decision?
SEN. EDWARDS: Because I think this is a different kind of issue. I think this is an issue that individual parts of the country have different perspectives on. And I think the logical thing to do is to allow the states
to do it, which I believe, by the way, is also Governor Dean’s position.
MR. RUSSERT: But don’t individual states have different views on abortion and gun control?
SEN. EDWARDS: Yeah, but there are some issues­and gun control as an example ­we have guns traveling across state lines. They contribute to crime or don’t contribute to crime depending on your perspective, and I think these are issues that ought to be dealt with at the national level.

EY: Tristan Blakeman commented on the USA Queers list:

well, that makes perfect sense. hell. we don't have queers traveling (or even permanently relocating) across state lines. no problem.

My comment: I hope that Russert asks similar questions of Bush. And with the same types of followups. Edwards answers on this seem rather tortured - which in general seems to be way most Democrats answer this question. It would be nice to see one of the Democratic Candidates talk about some of the real threats to the institution of marriage - and a high divorce rate should be at the top of the list.