The Daily Agenda for Tuesday, September 13

Jim Burroway

September 13th, 2011

“You helped this happen.”

Jerry Falwell Blames Gays and Others For 9/11: 2001. The ashes were still smoldering at the site of the World Trade Center, the western facade of the Pentagon, and an abandoned strip mine in rural Pennsylvania. The relatives, friends and co-workers of three thousand dead were still grappling with their loss, and three hundred million Americans were still numb from shock. The search for victims had just barely begun, the search for heroes led to the first responders in New York and Washington, D.C. and the 33 brave passengers of United Airlines Flight 93, and the search for the guilty case a glare on Islamists extremists. At least that’s the reaction of normal people. For others obsessed with a wider net of enemies, that wasn’t enough. On Thursday, September 13, 2001, Jerry Falwell appeared on Pat Robertson’s 700 Club, and together they accused a wide assortment of enemies responsible for the worst tragedy to strike American soil since Pearl Harbor:

Falwell: What we saw on Tuesday, as terrible as it is, could be miniscule if in fact God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.

Robertson: Well Jerry, that’s my feeling. I think we’ve just seen the antechamber to terror. We haven’t even begun to see what they can do to the major population.

Falwell: The ACLU’s got to take a lot of blame for this.

Robertson: Oh, yes.

Falwell: And I know I’ll hear from them for this but throwing God out successfully with the help of the court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools… The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans and the abortionists and the feminists and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way — all of them who have tried to secularize America — I point the finger in their face and say, “you helped this happen.”

Robertson: Well I totally concur.

The next day, Falwell reportedly apologized in a phone call to CNN, but it wasn’t much of an apology. “I would never blame any human being except the terrorists, and if I left that impression with gays or lesbians or anyone else, I apologize,” he told CNN, before citing scripture to back up what he originally said. “I do believe, as a theologian, based upon many Scriptures and particularly Proverbs 14:23, which says ‘living by God’s principles promotes a nation to greatness, violating those principles brings a nation to shame,” he said.

If you know of something that belongs on the agenda, please send it here. PLEASE, don’t forget to include the basics: who, what, when, where, and URL (if available).

And feel free to consider this your open thread for the day. What’s happening in your world?


September 13th, 2011

I way too tired of gay rights being linked to abortion rights. I am gay. It was not my choice. Having an abortion is a choice. One which I don’t necessarily agree. I don’t believe in abortion as a means of birth control or sex selection.


September 13th, 2011

The right to be left alone, the right to privacy, the right to self-determination — all that covers a lot of ground. All human rights are connected.

There is no difference whatsoever between a gay man being denied what he can do with his body and when a woman is denied the right to decide what to do with her body.

This reality strengthens rights for all. Picking and choosing who gets to have inate human rights isn’t supporting human rights. If you don’t want an abortion, don’t have one, but don’t deny others the same sort of freedom which you presumably seek.

Perhaps part of your problem is your apparent complete lack of understanding of what abortion actually is for the vast majority of women?

Regardless, when a presumably gay man sits in judgment of anything only a woman can experience, my teeth itch. I feel the same when non-LGBT people sit in judgment of LGBT issues.

And I only wish there was a hell for Falwell to be rotting in, but I’ll take the reality of his just simply being gone, gone, gone, forever gone.

Ben in Atlanta

September 13th, 2011

…and not one single plane crashed into Christopher Street. Of course men won’t ask for directions. Let’s all chip in and buy God a GPS.

Over here; queer.

Timothy (TRiG)

September 13th, 2011

I like Snopes’ take on Falwell and Robertson.



September 13th, 2011

I can’t attend, but there’s a FREE Screening to This Is What Love In Action Looks Like in Brooklyn (NY) on 9/20 (next Tuesday):


September 13th, 2011

There is no difference whatsoever between a gay man being denied what he can do with his body and when a woman is denied the right to decide what to do with her body.

Yes there is: having an abortion takes away a human life, even if it’s only a *potential* life, while my deciding to engage in same-sex relations doesn’t. I’m sympathetic to most arguments about a person’s right to their own bodies until it involves someone else.


September 13th, 2011

Btw, with regards to Falwell this post is interesting to come across as I’m in the middle of reading Kevin Roose’s excellent book “The Unlikely Disciple”. He has some good insights into the man and the university he founded. Kind of a weird look at a world I’m glad not to be a part of.


September 13th, 2011

To justme, there should be no connection between gay rights and abortion, period. I don’t support abortion for sex selection and as a means of birth control. As for the right for a woman the right to do with her body as she wishes all falls apart when you consider that the fetus is a human being. What would you have to say if a test is found to determine if a child in the womb might become gay and women started to abort them? That day may come. I have a niece who couldn’t conceive, she went through everything to get pregnant.

San Diego Rob

September 15th, 2011

I love how the right blame 9/11 on the fact that we have “freedom” here and the religious right blames it on us.

How about this, it’s “your” fault! For making us a christian nation, for our stupid government policies that piss off everyone in the middle east, and for allowing Israel to do what ever it wants.

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