Box Turtle Bulletin

Box Turtle BulletinNews, analysis and fact-checking of anti-gay rhetoric
“Now you must raise your children up in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife…”
This article can be found at:
Latest Posts

Posts for September, 2010

A Wackadoodle extravaganza

Timothy Kincaid

September 7th, 2010

In times past it hasn’t been always easy to distinguish between the garden variety of conservative activist, and the wackadoodles. You had to pay attention; both held conservative positions, but some did so because of logic or principles or tradition or even hesitancy towards change while others came across as obsessed, irrational, or frankly (in some cases) insane.

For example a conservative may oppose President Obama’s healthcare policies, but yet not believe that the President really was born in Kenya. He may favor controlled immigration policies without thinking that Hispanics are seeking to take over the Southwest and make it part of Mexico. She may oppose marriage equality and yet not declare that opposing the rights of gay people is the last best hope of saving Western Civilization from utter and immediate destruction.

But lately its becoming ever easier to distinguish between conservatives and raving loons on the right (and, yes, the left has their raving loons as well). In a somewhat unexpected move the conservatives and the wackadoodles seem to be sorting themselves out for our convenience and gay rights seems to be the determining factor.

Some conservatives have either dropped or repackaged their positions on gay issues, now stating objections to nomenclature or timing rather than just displaying animus towards gay people in general. Now it isn’t gay people serving in the military that is concerning, but just waiting for reports and analysis and opinions. It isn’t gay couples that are destroying society, but just the words used to describe them. Policies may not have moved significantly for all (but certainly have for some) but the language and the attitude has markedly changed.

Even gay and gay-supportive Republicans are not enemies seeking to destroy from within, but good Republicans with whom we disagree on some issues. In fact, rather than be RINOs, they may even be wives of Republican Presidents or nominees.

But while some conservatives have had a change of heart (or figured out which way the wind is blowing), others have abandoned all pretense of reasonableness and have run shrieking into crazyville. They see those who have moderated their position as traitors, and with each new act of treason they lash out at their newfound enemies and band closer with the purists, the true conservatives… oh what am I saying… the raging loons.

And now, in a display of what can only be seen as total meltdown, the wackadoodles have now broken from CPAC, the convention of very conservative ideologues, to form their very own extra-special-uber-conservative convention, the Taking America Back National Conference sponsored by World Net Daily. And I certainly hope there are enough red noses and clown shoes to go around.

Not just anyone is quite wackadoodle enough for this convention. They booted Ann Coulter for daring to speak to GOProud – a very conservative gay group which endorses politicians that Log Cabin would never get near. Although I think GOProud verges on loony themselves, they have Teh Gey!!

You see, hating Teh Gey is a very very important distinction for this wackadoodle extravaganza, and they aren’t going to forgive anyone who does it by half. To get a sense of WND’s purpose and criteria,

WND’s “Taking America Back National Conference” in Miami, Sept. 16-18, was conceived and organized, in part, because of the conservative movement’s capitulation to the radical homosexual agenda:

* The Conservative Political Action Conference welcomed GOProud as a co-sponsor of the largest annual gathering of conservatives this year. CPAC has already gleefully announced the return of GOProud as a sponsor next year – even though GOProud’s inclusion cost the conference Sarah Palin and other top-notch speakers and some long-time co-sponsors.

* The executive director of CPAC is actively promoting GOProud’s “Homocon” conference in New York later this month.

* Conservative leader Grover Norquist, founder of Americans for Tax Reform, serves on the board of GOProud.

* One of the most well-established conservative media companies in America is run by a homosexual activist.

* Conservative celebrity Glenn Beck announced on Fox News that he doesn’t believe same-sex marriage will hurt America.

* Conservative celebrity Ann Coulter agreed to deliver the keynote speech to GOProud’s “Homocon” event in New York later this month – an engagement being shamelessly exploited by the group as further affirmation of its conservative bona fides.

While all of this was happening, there was no more than an undercurrent of conservative protest.

And why is this important? Remember that whole Western Civilization thing I mentioned? I wasn’t kidding.

Because I don’t believe there is any development that could more quickly destroy America’s ability to remain a self-governing society and the very fabric of western civilization than the tacit acceptance of [pro-gay] ideas – ideas that are steamrolling over our political and media culture.

There is no compromising with radical ideas like this. They need to be soundly rejected, repudiated, exposed and discarded.

Yes, my friends, there is a growing separation between the conservatives and the true-blue wackadoodles. And they are ever so gracious as to let us know exactly where they stand. True most conservatives are not going to start championing our rights any time soon, but as this divide grows I believe that we will find fewer and fewer rational conservatives willing to be seen as part of the coalition of birthers and the conspiracy theorists and the wild-eyed loons.

In addition to the WND staff and few obscure politicians, the wackadoodle extravaganza includes:

Michele Bachmann – US House of Representatives
Alan Keyes – political gadfly and onetime presidential candidate
Tom Tancredo – Former Congressman and illegal immigrant opponent
Chuck Missler – Koinonia House (post-prison) Ministry
Rusty Humphries – The Rusty Humphries Show
Matt Barber – Liberty Counsel
Gary DeMar – American Vision
Michael Farris – Home School Legal Defense Association
Robert Knight – Coral Ridge Ministries
Jerry Newcombe – Coral Ridge Ministries
William Federer – American Minute
William Murray – Religious Freedom Coalition
Doug Giles – Clash Radio
Gary Cass – Christian Anti-Defamation Commission
Judith Reisman – Freud revisionist
Victoria Jackson – Conservative Activist/Celebrity
RC Sproul, Jr. – Biblical Economics
Tim Daughtry – Patriot Coaching
Floyd Brown – ExposeObama.com
Mark Graham – First Founders Financial

And that, my friends, is a whole lotta crazy. I wonder if Brian Brown is going to join them.

What are anti-gays on?

Timothy Kincaid

November 17th, 2009

rick scarboroughYesterday a collection of the nation’s most obnoxious anti-gay activists showed up in Washington DC to have a showdown with the government. They were there to defy the new law criminalizing preaching against homosexuality and to be arrested for preaching the gospel. (Christian Post)

Conservative pastors rallied outside the Justice Department on Monday to test the limits of the newly expanded hate crimes law.

Calling the new law – which broadens the definition of federal hate crimes to include attacks based on sexual orientation and gender identity – a clear threat to religious liberty, the group sought to defend their freedom to proclaim biblical truths.

They were certain that preaching against homosexuality is now illegal. And they were there to be martyrs for their faith.

But there were no arrests. No one had to join the Apostle Paul and Martin Luther King by writing from the jail cell to proclaim God’s glorious truth.

Police were present, just as they are at all such public demonstrations. But, as Dana Milbank of the Washington Post noted they had better things to do:

Anything other than sex “between a male and his wedded wife,” announced the Rev. Paul Blair, “is a perversion, and the Bible says that homosexuality is in fact an abomination.”

No arrest was made.

The Rev. Rick Scarborough, quoting Scripture, listed “homosexual offenders” along with thieves, drunkards, swindlers and idolators as those unwelcome in the kingdom of God. “To fail to call homosexuals to repent of their sin and come to Jesus is the highest form of cowardice and sin,” he said.

No charges were filed.

“Had people listened to our plea, there would be tens of thousands of people who had not died of a dreaded disease,” contributed the Rev. Jim Garlow. “This breaks our heart to see people die of AIDS.”

No hands were cuffed. In fact, the few cops in attendance were paying no attention to the speakers, instead talking among themselves and checking their BlackBerrys.

And, indeed, the cops were not interested because no crime was being committed. The Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act does not infringe on religious liberty or ban preaching against homosexuality or anything else they fear. The only time a minister need fear the law is if he is actively instigating violent attacks on gay people.

But this reality is wasted on these activists. Even though their bait drew no bite, they remain convinced that Christianity is being criminalized. (Citizenlink)

Gary Cass, president and CEO of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, said pastors who preach from the Bible could be held accountable if someone hears their sermon and then commits a crime against a gay-identified individual.

“It puts the burden on the minister to have to read the minds of the people that are listening to him and be able to predict the future,” he said. “It has a very chilling effect on the minister’s speech, because the safest thing is to just say nothing.”

And Janet Folger trumpeted her warning on WorldNetDaily

janet folger

Unfortunately, it’s too late for our freedom of speech, as so-called “hate crimes” legislation already passed Congress and was signed by Barack Obama into law as a part of the defense budget. That is why I stood with pastors like Rick Scarborough of Vision America, Mat Staver and Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel, Oklahoma Pastor Paul Blair, San Diego Pastor Jim Garlow, Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, Bishop Earl Jackson of Stand America, and others on the steps of the Department of Justice yesterday afternoon speaking out against the law that has already laid the foundation for the Criminalization of Christianity, as I warned about in my book by that same title.

It can be difficult to understand exactly why these activists ignore the opinions of legal scholars who assure them that no such arrests will be made. It is odd that Christian voices calling for reason are ignored. It seems incomprehensible that a simple reading of the Constitution and the language of the law itself (which specifically excludes anti-gay preaching and teaching) would not assuage their fears.

But then something began to seem familiar.

You see, I’ve tried to have a conversation with a crystal methamphetamine addict who hadn’t slept in days. He explained why there was tinfoil over the windows and even the shower vent. He was worried that there might be a man hiding behind the stereo which was flush with the wall. Even though on a conscious level he knew and could sheepishly admit that his fears were baseless, the meth in his system compelled a paranoia which he simply could not ignore.

With him, there was a logical reason to explain his irrational thinking. It was chemically induced.

But why are these anti-gay activists convinced, against all evidence to the contrary, that preaching against homosexuality is now illegal? How do we explain their irrational thinking and baseless paranoia?

Surely they aren’t all meth-heads.

Right?

Christian Groups Defend Abusive Ex-Gay “Exorcism”

Jim Burroway

June 26th, 2009

This video documents severe abuse, pure and simple:

It shows church members standing the youth on his feet by holding him under his arms, and people shouting as organ music plays. “Come out of his belly,” someone commands. “It’s in the belly — push.” Later, the teenager is back on the floor, breathing heavily. Then he’s coughing and apparently vomiting into a bag. “Get another bag,” a participant says. “Make sure you have your gloves.”

YouTube Preview Image

Manifested Glory Ministries in Bridgeport, Connecticut, posted a twenty-minute video on YouTube, but took it down amid mounting criticism of its abuse of the sixteen-year-old boy. (Other copies of that video are now available on YouTube.) This sort of abuse is not that uncommon:

It’s nearly impossible to say how often similar exercises occur in churches nationwide. But Kamora Herrington, who runs a mentoring program at True Colors and has worked with the youth, said she believes it’s fairly common. “This happens all the time,” she said. “This is not isolated.”

Robin McHaelin, executive director of True Colors, an advocacy group for gay youths, said her organization is aware of five cases in recent years in which youths in her program were threatened with exorcism.

At least one Christian dominionist group, Gary Cass’ Christian Anti-Defamation Commission pulls the religious exemption card — along with the race card — on this abuse, saying  that no church should be “maligned” for abusing teens. Exodus International gave its classic non-condemning response:

Exodus International, a Christian group that believes gays can become straight through prayer and counseling, does not advocate the church’s approach, said Jeff Buchanan, director of church equipping.

There are a lot of things I don’t “advocate” either, but that’s a very far cry from condemning that which is clearly in the wrong. This really shouldn’t be difficult, but then I thought that about Exodus’ refusal to address their board member’s active association with a known Holocaust revisionist and hate-group leader Scott Lively. There was a time, believe it or not, when Exodus was able to provide a measure of responsibility on those areas which were obviously dangerous and abusive, but those times appear to be long gone.

Update: According to Rod 2.0: “A minister and trusted source of Rod 2.0 reports the 16-year-old boy no longer attends the church and has found an LGBT ‘inclusive and affirming’ church.”

Support For Same-Sex Marriage Is Like Catching Cooties

Jim Burroway

June 4th, 2009

A recent Gallup poll found that when people personally know someone who is gay or lesbian, they are much more likely to support same-sex marriage than those who don’t. For us, that means one thing: come out, come out wherever you are.

But for our opponents, it means something very different. For Gary Cass at the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, it means urging his followers to avoid LGBT people at all costs. He says former vice president Dick Cheney’s support for same-sex unions “is likely … a result of the fact that he is the father of an open, practicing lesbian.” Cass continues:

Who you allow into your life, and especially that of your children, really matters. The Apostle Paul said it this way, “Don’t be deceived: Bad company corrupts good morals (1 Cor.15:33, NASB).

…You are who you associate with.

While we must associate with the lost because we care about their eternal souls, we cannot approve of their sin. In fact, to do so is the most unloving thing you can do. Even our families associations can become an idol if they are not encouraging you to follow Christ.

…Be very careful out there in the world. Remember, “Don’t be deceived; Bad company corrupts good morals.”

[Hat tip: Right Wing Watch]

LaBarbera Award: Gary Cass

Jim Burroway

January 17th, 2009

We’ve talked about Gary Cass before. He’s the Christian Reconstructionist who has a computer keyboard he calls the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission. He’s put out another doozy of a press release, warning parents that — gasp! — President-elect Barack Obama’s Inauguration will be among the “most perverted in history”:

Barack Obama’s inauguration will have the dubious distinction of being the most perverted in our nation’s history. Obama is not being subtle about either. One of America’s most radical and destructive homosexual activists, “Bishop” Vickie Eugene Robinson of New Hampshire, in official inaugural activities will be offering the invocation at the Lincoln Memorial.

Oh dear, and the “perversion” doesn’t end there. There’s the parade:

To ensure no one misses the perversion, the Inaugural parade will include a homosexual marching band with their rainbow flags flying proud with millions of our nation’s children watching. This is the same band that proudly advertises that it will march in the homosexual Southern Decadence parade, known for its vulgarity and lewd acts in public.

This is where His Pornstachiness lets his fantasies get the better of him:

“In order to be consistent in using this kind of reasoning, Obama ought to have a stripper lead off the inaugural parade followed by the Hell’s Angel’s Motorcycle Drill Team followed by the Crips Precision Handgun Corp. and the Transvestite Fashion Police. Just because something exists in society does not mean it is good and is to be paraded in front of everyone, especially children,” said Dr. Cass.

Christian Reconstructionist Decries “Christian Bashing”

Jim Burroway

January 5th, 2009

Speaking of crying “persecution!”, the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, a.k.a. Christian Reconstructionist Gary Cass, has released a press statement outlining what they call the top ten examples of “Christian bashing” for 2008. Here are Cass’s and his porn-stache’s top ten:

10: Jack Black Musical Video
9: Bill Maher Gratuitously Attacks Pope
8: ESPN Anchor Dana Jacobson’s “F— Jesus” Remark
7: Minnesota University Professor Desecrates Communion
6: “Religulous” the movie
5: Chaplains Fired for Praying in Jesus’ Name
4: Colorado Law Criminalizes the Bible
3: Barack Obama Defames Christianity
2: Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin Is Attacked

Okay, it’s mostly jokes, legitimate political commentary, distortions of legal moves and comments — that is what he calls “Christian bashing.” But you see, under Cass’s Reconstructionist America, none of this would be allowed. And what comes in at number one?

#1: Radical Homosexuals Assault Prop 8 Marriage Supporters in California

During and after the November campaign stories flooded in of pro-Prop 8 signs being taken, people verbally and physically assaulted, church property and private automobiles vandalized, and person’s jobs and pastor’s lives threatened simply for exercising their right to campaign and vote in support of traditional marriage.

While all acts of violence and vandalism are deplorable, Cass is taking the time-honored tactic of taking small, isolated incidents and treating them as if they are a part of a nationwide orgy of violence. Official statistics, however, paint a very different picture. According to the FBI, hate crimes against gays and lesbians continued to increase in 2007, contradicting the overall trend of fewer hate crimes since 2006. Crimes based on sexual orientation very nearly tied those based on religion for second place:

Hate Crime Offenses, 2006 Hate Crime Offenses, 2007
Race 4,737 52% 4,724 52%
Religion 1,597 18% 1,477 16%
Sexual Orientation 1,415 16% 1,460 16%
Ethnicity 1,233 14% 1,256 14%
Disability 94 1% 82 <1%
TOTAL 9,080 100%* 9,006 100%*
Totals don’t add up due to additional
multi-category hate crime offenses.
Percentages don’t add to 100%
due to rounding errors.

But as we noted earlier, hate crimes based on sexual orientation continue to be the most violent by far. Attacks based on sexual orientation are much more likely to be physically violent than in any other category:

Total Hate Crime Offenses, 2007 Violent Crimes, percentage of total
Race 4,724 1,471 31%
Religion 1,477 126 9%
Sexual Orientation 1,460 695 48%
Ethnicity 1,256 497 40%
Disability 82 21 26%
TOTAL 9,006 2,810 31%
Violent crimes include:
Murder and non-negligent manslaughter,
forcible rape, aggravated assault
and simple assault.

As so-called “Christians” continue to shed their crocodile tears over minor albeit deplorable incidents, real people are dying. But so far, so-called “Christian” leaders have still remained silent. It has been nearly a year since Lawrence King’s brutal shooting, and nobody from Focus On the Family, as just one example, has yet to offer a single comment on his death. Even though they know they ought to.

If Christian leaders want to be taken seriously, they should lead by example, and decry the real bashing taking place in America, not the phoney hysteria Cass is trying to whip up. He claims that “Every day in America serious Christians face increasing hostility at work, school, and in the culture because they stand for their faith and values.” And gays aren’t? When’s the last time you heard of a Christian in America being gang raped because of a sticker on her car?

Prop 8: The Musical

Jim Burroway

December 6th, 2008

In case you haven’t seen it, here’s a musical number by Marc Shaiman, featuring Jack Black and Neil Patrick Harris:

According to the New York Times:

On Nov. 18, Mr. Shaiman recalled, he sat down at his piano in his home in Los Angeles and wrote “Prop 8.” On Nov. 19 and 20 he cast the video, recruiting Jack Black to play a particularly flippant Jesus Christ and Adam Shankman (the director and choreographer of the “Hairspray” movie musical) to direct it. The video was shot in one day at a magic store in Santa Monica, and mixed and edited after the Thanksgiving holiday at a pace that Mr. Shaiman found astounding. “It’s like ‘Saturday Night Live,’ only without the money,” he said. “But also without the restrictions.”

At least one humor-challenged Christian group headed by Gary Cass, noted Christian Reconstructionist and former head of D. James Kennedy’s now-defunct Center for Reclaiming America for Christ, has demanded an apology.