May 10th, 2012
Ten years ago, objection to same-sex marriage was – for most people – genuine. It may have generated from nothing other than unfamiliarity, mild prejudice, or just confusion, but for the most part it was not contrived or cynical or pandering.
Change is difficult and humans seem to have a blind instinct to defend “how things are supposed to be”. Considering that friends can have red-in-the-face, top of your lungs “discussions” about whether landing on “Free Parking” is supposed to pay out the money collected from “Chance” cards in Monopoly, it should be no surprise that decent people objected to changing what marriage “is supposed to be”.
But that was ten years ago. And despite the blustering of the professionally indignant defenders of (their own) religious freedom, the horizon is clear and the future is no mystery. Equality is coming, not on little cats feet like the fog, but galloping at breakneck speed. And there’s a good reason why.
Gay marriage was new. And odd. And a contradiction to what the terms were understood to be. It was like chocolate cereal or raw fish or women wearing slacks or smart phones. It just took getting used to.
But once the “new” wares off, real objections have to be considered. I won’t eat coco-puffs, but sushi isn’t so bad and after years of dragging my feet, I finally discovered that I can’t live without an iPhone.
And, as we all know, there aren’t many valid objections to same-sex marriage. Either you believe that the instinctive fears about drastically changing society have merit (that we just haven’t yet discovered) or you don’t. And as more people came to know gay folks, these concerns seem less likely.
Which brings me to my point: Mitt Romney doesn’t believe that letting gay people marry will harm society – or certainly not more than other things he puts up with. And he is fully aware that his views harm gay people and are unfair, unconstitutional, and a violation of the American ideal. He knows that. Other than a few truly insane people (Hello, Lew), they all do. They just don’t think that hedonistic sinners who defy God and social convention should have any claim on fairness, constitutionality, and the American ideal.
And furthermore, they know that the American public has little tolerance right now for blatant homophobia (other than, perhaps, in North Carolina). While ten years ago it might have been acceptable to laugh at the homos playing house, now that doesn’t fly. And the truth probably is that a huge chunk of politicians who vote against the American principles of equality couldn’t care less if gay people marry. They are just selling a product and pandering to a (rapidly shrinking) base.
But until yesterday, those who oppose equality had the perfect out. They didn’t have to look bad. They didn’t have to seem unreasonable. They didn’t have to appear to be motivated by less-than-admirable prejudices.
They could just say (and I know you all are as sick of hearing it as I am), “I don’t think people should be stopped from visiting loved ones in the hospital, but I don’t support gay marriage. My position is the same as President Obama’s.”
Not any more, it isn’t, Bubba. Not any more.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.