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…”
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Posts for June, 2014

Google Docs Celebrates Pride

Jim Burroway

June 26th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 7.34.16 AM

Google Docs is celebrating pride with an Easter Egg in the spreadsheet app. Just go to Google Docs, create a new spreadsheet, and type P, R, I, D, and E in the first five cells in the top row. For the nerd in all of us.

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 7.29.50 AM

Dear commenter…

Timothy Kincaid

June 1st, 2014

Dear commenter who keeps posting to threads that are years old saying things like

discussion on the topic of this paragraph at this place at this blog, I
have read all that, so now me also commenting at
this place.|
I am sure this piece of writing has touched all the internet users, its really really pleasant post
on building up new blog.|
Wow, this paragraph is pleasant, my sister is analyzing such things, thus
I am going to tell her.|
Saved as a favorite, I love your blog!|
Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you

I have a sneaking suspicion that you are a computer. We don’t accepts comments from computers. And deleting the dozen or so that slip by our filtering software each day is a hassle and annoyance.

Just thought you should know.

Go vote

Timothy Kincaid

March 18th, 2014

Something called Ranker allows participants to post things which are then ranked by vote. The wacky folks at World Net Daily were pushing to get WND ‘ranked’ by this arbitrary polling silliness and, for fun, several gay websites have joined.

I just included Box Turtle Bulletin in the mix. Have yourself a little fun and go join the ranking.

Duck Dynasty’s War on Christmas

Timothy Kincaid

February 5th, 2014

I haven’t had much time to post lately (still don’t), but I thought I’d share with you this little item I saw at the clearance shelf at Bed, Bath and Beyond. It looks like Duck Dynasty didn’t realize that their core audience wouldn’t appreciate a ‘War on Christmas’ cup.

A gendered shopping story

Timothy Kincaid

December 10th, 2013

On Saturday I had a toy drive party to attend, so I found myself at Target trying to find something that would appeal to any kid, even those not economically positioned to have seen the latest Hollywood blockbusters. I was in the Disney princess aisle when I heard a young woman behind me squeal and gush over the Ariel princess dress.

“But do you think we’re cementing her gender identity?” asked the young lady with whom she was shopping. I knew immediately that we were family.

They equivocated a bit over the right gift to give the family they had “adopted” and about whom they knew nothing but age and size. But then the first girl found the Ariel wig, an cranberry-red thing that nearly every four year old girl (and a few four year old boys) would find irresistible.

“I want this for myself”, she announced with dreams gleaming in the eyes of her inner child.

And as I grabbed a Cinderella dress and glided off to the unfamiliar world of 2013 boy toys, I heard her girlfriend mutter, “I think we’ll find use for that later”.

Report on Tony Perkin’s impact on General Mills

Timothy Kincaid

September 15th, 2013

It has been barely three days since I brought you the glorious news that media darling Tony Perkins had lent all of his prestige and influence to bringing General Mills to its knees. And I can now report on the tremendous response from good family-supporting people from across this great nation’s fruited plain.

Yes, in the brief moment since last Friday, the Dump General Mills signatory list has shot through the roof. In a mere 70-some hours, good wholesome people have rushed en masse to the site to add their name, promising that they too will “look for substitutes that I can purchase”. Today I can tell you, though I am humbled to do so, that the National Organization for Marriage’s project has grown to 26488 Signatures. Yes, dozens of people, a stunning total of 41 new dedicated souls have made that anonymous commitment.

And Tony Perkins should feel gratified that he has truly contributed. And though he is but doing what he knows is best, surely in a quiet moment he must be buoyed by the knowledge that his word alone can drive tens of people to join him in his battle for a more godly nation.

So supporters of traditional biblical marriage, take heart. While General Mills’ annual revenues are roughly seventeen billion dollars, and though the company’s sales are up some 7.5% from a year ago, just think, if each and every signatory ‘looks for a substitute’ for their Betty Crocker Devil’s Food Cake Mix, if each and every signatory ‘looks for a substitute’ to their Pillsbury rolls, why in no time General Mills may feel it on their bottom line.

Good news for Australia

Timothy Kincaid

September 12th, 2013

Supporters of marriage equality in Australia may be a bit down after last week’s election put Liberal Party leader Tony Abbott into power (in Australia, the Liberal Party is the more conservative of the two largest parties). While Labor leader Paul Kevin Rudd had promised to hold a vote on marriage equality within 100 days if reelected, Abbott has been a staunch opponent of equality under the law.

But there is good news. A positive omen. A promise of better times.

Because on their NOMblog, Brian Brown from the National Organization for Marriage (theirs, not yours) has this to say:

“Sank Like a Stone” — that’s how same-sex marriage faired (sic) in Australia this past week.

Australia held elections for Prime Minister the other day, but it was as much a referendum on whether the Aussies would redefine marriage or not. Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd nailed his hopes of winning to a promise of introducing legislation to redefine marriage within the first 100 days of returning to office.

As was reported, the pro-marriage platform of the former Prime Minister “sank beneath the waves” of the pro-marriage majority down under.

You may remember I had traveled to Australia in August for the World Congress of Families, and I could not be happier for the friends I made on that trip and our pro-marriage and family allies there.

It’s a great victory for marriage, and a win worth celebrating across the globe. It also serves as a reminder that when people are given the right to vote on marriage, they invariably vote to preserve the true and intrinsic nature of marriage as an institution binding one man to one woman for life in order to love and care for one another and for any children born of their union.

To cement this great victory, the people of Australia should insist on the right to a national referendum to preserve marriage. That’s the best way to capitalize on the momentum of the victory, and only an amendment will protect marriage from the unceasing efforts of gay-’marriage’ activists and the politicians who rely on them for support. It’s the only way to ensure that the people — and not politicians or judges — control the definition of marriage in Australia.

Okay, let’s ignore for a moment the fact that the election was most certainly not a referendum on marriage, with 57% of voters saying that the candidates’ positions on marriage were “not important at all” to their vote. And let’s not giggle too loudly about NOM’s call for a public referendum on an issue which has the support of two-thirds of voters. Instead let’s look at what this means on a grand cosmic scale.

When NOM starts gloating, something magical happens. It’s an omen more accurate than pig entrails, astrological forecasts, and Pat Robertson’s Hurricane Watch combined. When NOM is on your side, you are certain to lose.

Look at Maine and Minnesota in November. Look at the New York elections this week. Look at France!!

Ah yes, NOM is joyous. And this is good news indeed.

Finally it’s ironic, don’t you think

Timothy Kincaid

July 17th, 2013

Finally, someone has fixed Alanis Morissette’s song, Isn’t it Ironic, in which she goes on and on listing things that, while unfortunate, are not at all ironic.

Yes, I know this has nothing to do with the usual theme of this site, but I know many of you who love language will appreciate this.

Though, to Alanis’ defense, I did once hear Alanis play at a gay event where she changed one lyric on her own and make it a smidge closer to irony: “It’s meeting the man of my dreams, and then meeting his beautiful husband”.

OMG! If You Never Watch Another Video, You Have To See This

Jim Burroway

July 9th, 2013

Thanks Homer.

Nomian fingers

Timothy Kincaid

June 24th, 2013

Ah, the National Organization for Marriage (theirs, not yours) is an ever flowing font of amusing silliness. And seldom do they entertain more than when they try for visual illustration.

Often it’s stock imagery. Sometimes it’s downright fraudulent, pretending to be one thing when it’s truly the opposite. And sometimes it’s unintentional irony.

Take, for example, this picture they presented to illustrate their usual claptrap about the importance of “one man one woman” marriage. In this instance they are arguing that while race is irrelevant to marriage, gender is all important.

Cute, huh? A bit simplistic and lacking in meaning, but cute.

Except they just weren’t paying attention. It doesn’t take more than a quick glance to see that this particular finger marriage is not only of the same race, they are of the same gender. This isn’t a ‘one man finger, one woman finger’ marriage, it’s two women fingers, with the lesbian on the right opting for a more masculine look.

Oklahoma Infant Chooses Homosexuality

Jim Burroway

May 30th, 2013

So explains The Onion:

…“My selection of a sexual preference was the product of a great deal of self-reflection,” said the newly homosexual infant, who added that he reached his decision completely on his own and was not influenced by his genetic makeup or any circumstances beyond his control. “If my sexuality means I get bullied at school, or that I end up feeling unloved and shunned for my entire life, or that I don’t receive equal protection under the law, then obviously that will be my own fault.”

Reynolds reportedly acknowledged that heterosexuality would have had some benefits, such as the universal right to marriage, the ability to adopt children without fear of scrutiny, and the feeling of being validated by his religion. However, the 16-week-old infant said that, in the end, he had decided to identify with a small minority that lacks many basic rights.

“Who knows? Maybe I’ll even change my mind at some point,” said Reynolds, explaining that he can, at any time, freely choose whom he is attracted to. “If I wake up one day and don’t want to be gay anymore, then I can just switch to being heterosexual, easy as that.”

“After all, it’s not like I’m stuck with this decision for the rest of my life,” Reynolds added.

A tale from Oz

Timothy Kincaid

April 27th, 2013


The Marvelous Land of Oz was the first of many sequels L Frank Baum wrote based on the characters he introduced in his masterpiece. The 1904 story tells the tale of a boy named Tip and his adventures in Oz with the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and other characters he met along the way.

The Emerald City is conquered in turn by two opposing armies of girls, as Glenda seeks to find Princess Ozma, who was hidden away by the Wizard when he stole the throne from her father.

But at the end, before the Tin Woodman and the Scarecrow go off to never again be parted, a most amazing discovery is made:

“Yes,” said the old Witch, nodding her head; “that is the Princess Ozma—the child brought to me by the Wizard who stole her father’s throne. That is the rightful ruler of the Emerald City!” and she pointed her long bony finger straight at the boy.”

“I!” cried Tip, in amazement. “Why, I’m no Princess Ozma—I’m not a girl!”

Glinda smiled, and going to Tip she took his small brown hand within her dainty white one.

“You are not a girl just now” said she, gently, “because Mombi transformed you into a boy. But you were born a girl, and also a Princess; so you must resume your proper form, that you may become Queen of the Emerald City.”

“Oh, let Jinjur be the Queen!” exclaimed Tip, ready to cry. “I want to stay a boy, and travel with the Scarecrow and the Tin Woodman, and the Woggle-Bug, and Jack—yes! and my friend the Saw-Horse—and the Gump! I don’t want to be a girl!”

“Never mind, old chap,” said the Tin Woodman, soothingly; “it don’t hurt to be a girl, I’m told; and we will all remain your faithful friends just the same. And, to be honest with you, I’ve always considered girls nicer than boys.”

“They’re just as nice, anyway,” added the Scarecrow, patting Tip affectionately upon the head.

“And they are equally good students,” proclaimed the Woggle-Bug. “I should like to become your tutor, when you are transformed into a girl again.”

“But—see here!” said Jack Pumpkinhead, with a gasp: “if you become a girl, you can’t be my dear father any more!”

“No,” answered Tip, laughing in spite of his anxiety. “and I shall not be sorry to escape the relationship.” Then he added, hesitatingly, as he turned to Glinda: “I might try it for awhile,-just to see how it seems, you know. But if I don’t like being a girl you must promise to change me into a boy again.”

“Really,” said the Sorceress, “that is beyond my magic. I never deal in transformations, for they are not honest, and no respectable sorceress likes to make things appear to be what they are not. Only unscrupulous witches use the art, and therefore I must ask Mombi to effect your release from her charm, and restore you to your proper form. It will be the last opportunity she will have to practice magic.”

“Now that the truth about Princes Ozma had been discovered, Mombi did not care what became of Tip; but she feared Glinda’s anger, and the boy generously promised to provide for Mombi in her old age if he became the ruler of the Emerald City. So the Witch consented to effect the transformation, and preparations for the event were at once made.”

“Glinda ordered her own royal couch to be placed in the center of the tent. It was piled high with cushions covered with rose-colored silk, and from a golden railing above hung many folds of pink gossamer, completely concealing the interior of the couch.

The first act of the Witch was to make the boy drink a potion which quickly sent him into a deep and dreamless sleep. Then the Tin Woodman and the Woggle-Bug bore him gently to the couch, placed him upon the soft cushions, and drew the gossamer hangings to shut him from all earthly view.”

“The Witch squatted upon the ground and kindled a tiny fire of dried herbs, which she drew from her bosom. When the blaze shot up and burned clearly old Mombi scattered a handful of magical powder over the fire, which straightway gave off a rich violet vapor, filling all the tent with its fragrance and forcing the Saw-Horse to sneeze—although he had been warned to keep quiet.”

“Then, while the others watched her curiously, the hag chanted a rhythmical verse in words which no one understood, and bent her lean body seven times back and forth over the fire. And now the incantation seemed complete, for the Witch stood upright and cried the one word “Yeowa!” in a loud voice.

The vapor floated away; the atmosphere became, clear again; a whiff of fresh air filled the tent, and the pink curtains of the couch trembled slightly, as if stirred from within.”

“Glinda walked to the canopy and parted the silken hangings. Then she bent over the cushions, reached out her hand, and from the couch arose the form of a young girl, fresh and beautiful as a May morning. Her eyes sparkled as two diamonds, and her lips were tinted like a tourmaline. All adown her back floated tresses of ruddy gold, with a slender jeweled circlet confining them at the brow. Her robes of silken gauze floated around her like a cloud, and dainty satin slippers shod her feet.”

“At this exquisite vision Tip’s old comrades stared in wonder for the space of a full minute, and then every head bent low in honest admiration of the lovely Princess Ozma. The girl herself cast one look into Glinda’s bright face, which glowed with pleasure and satisfaction, and then turned upon the others. Speaking the words with sweet diffidence, she said:

“I hope none of you will care less for me than you did before. I’m just the same Tip, you know; only—only—”

“Only you’re different!” said the Pumpkinhead; and everyone thought it was the wisest speech he had ever made.”

Have a magical weekend.

Headline of the Day

Jim Burroway

March 18th, 2013

From comedian/satirist Andy Borowitz:

Portman Inspires Other Republicans to Stop Speaking to Their Children

Another Reason To Oppose Gay Marriage

Jim Burroway

March 4th, 2013

“Help keep straight couples from getting divorced and hating their children.”

Sweet sayings

Timothy Kincaid

February 13th, 2013

The Atlantic has a cute story about the sayings that Necco’s Sweethearts have taken off the candy over their nearly 150 years. This is the illustration:

Which was all nice and fine until I saw this one.

Yeah, I know what it is supposed to say, but really? Really? C’mon, it’s tough enough being 49 and single this week.

Gravity light

Timothy Kincaid

January 2nd, 2013

We seldom venture far from stories with some relevance to the gay community. But sometimes you run across something that seems to bring tremendous advantage to a huge number of people and is so obvious that you wonder why its not been thought of before. So, from that perspective, I want to pass on an idea that combines LED technology with grandfather clock mechanics and results in gravity powered light that can replace dangerous and hazardous kerosene or other fuel-based lighting for the roughly 1.5 billion people who do not have electricity, the GravityLight.

The developers are giving the initial 1,000 unit production to African villages in 2013 and are seeking R&D funds to make a cheaper model which they hope could be purchased by villagers in Africa for less than $5. So for about the cost of three months worth of fuel, they could get a long-life, maintenance-cost-free alternative to the kerosene lamp.

Test your skills: catch the errors in this USNews article, win a prize

Timothy Kincaid

December 12th, 2012

It’s rare that I read an article so inaccurate – so horribly insanely pound your head on the wall and eventually just laugh your ass off inaccurate – that it becomes a work of art in its own right. Brad Bannon writing in the US News has such an article.

If it weren’t so earnest, I’d think it was satire. I’ll copy it in its entirety, assuming that it will change (normally I would never quote an entire article; fair use rules don’t generally stretch that far. But as I expect some revisions to be made it is necessary for the competition).

Special bonus points for who can catch the most errors.

Why the Supreme Court Will Rule in Favor of Gay Marriage

The justices read the election returns, or so goes the legal proverb about the Supreme Court. In this case they might have also looked at the Election Day national exit poll which showed that a plurality (49 percent to 46 percent) of voters favored gay marriage. Maine, Washington, and Maryland became the first states where voters legalized gay marriage themselves.

Friday, the Supreme Court decided to hear two cases on gay marriage. The first case comes from Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of appeals sitting in San Francisco. This case concerns the constitutionality of Proposition 8, a voter initiative in California that banned gay marriage. The other case is from the Second U.S. Court of Appeals in New York City. This case focuses on the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, known as DOMA, which became federal law in 1995.

The opponents of Prop 8 believe the law is unconstitutional because the ban treats gay couples unfairly, which is a violation of the Equal Protection clause in the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. The Equal Protection clause states, “Nor shall any state… deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” The defenders of Prop 8 believe that the federal government doesn’t have the constitutional power to interfere with the state ban because the Constitution does not give the feds the power to regulate marriage. Under the 10th Amendment, powers that the federal government doesn’t have are reserved for the states.

Many observers believe that the Court will overrule the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal law that went into effect in 1996. DOMA expressly states that the United States government does not recognize the legality of gay marriage. In the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals, the plaintiff Edith Windsor, a widow legally married to another woman argues that DOMA violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment because the Internal Revenue Service sanctions more favorable tax rules for heterosexual couples than it does for same sex couples. The Justice Department under President Obama feels DOMA is unconstitutional and has declined to defend the law. Former Attorney General John Ashcroft who represents the supporters of DOMA argues that the Supreme Court should be hesitant overruling a law approved by the other two branches of the United States government.

Even though both cases concern gay marriage, the issues for each differ. In the Prop 8 case, nullification of the California law would effectively nullify the state laws in 41 states that ban gay marriages. If the court nullifies DOMA, the ruling would only apply in the states that permit gay marriage and would give the gay married couples in those states the same kind of tax and healthcare benefits under federal law that heterosexual couples enjoy. It would be easier politically for the court to nullify a federal law that is relevant in a few states than it would be to end state laws in 41 states. But the nullification of both the state and federal statutes is the only way to ensure the freedom that all Americans should enjoy without the government poking into their personal lives.

The prospects for giving gay couples equal rights under the law are there. On the Supreme Court, there are obvious blocks of four liberal and four conservative justices. The ninth justice, Anthony Kennedy is the swing vote. Supporters of gay marriage note that in Lawrence v. Texas in 2003, Justice Kennedy ruled to nullify a state law which discriminated against gay couples. If Kennedy and the four liberal justices rule that DOMA is unconstitutional, the court will do what it did in the Lawrence case which is to give gay couples the same rights that heterosexual couples enjoy.

Support for gay marriage will only grow over time. Demography and history suggest that it is just a matter of time until gay Americans can shake off the stigma of second class citizenship.

Thomas Jefferson believed that political equality was an unstoppable force in a democracy. History supports Jefferson’s theory. In 1896, most Americans accepted send class citizenship for blacks as the natural order of things. So did the U.S. Supreme Court which ruled that year that the agency that ran the trolley cars in New Orleans did not violate the equal protection clause when it arrested a black person, Homer Plessy for riding in a car reserved for whites. By 1954, the public turned against segregation and so did the Supreme Court in Brown et al v. the Topeka Kansas Board of Education. In Brown, the court ruled that Linda Brown, a black elementary school student, had the constitutional right to attend the all white school in her neighborhood. The Equal Protection clause in the 14th Amendment didn’t change between 1896 and 1954 but the justices and public attitudes did.

The ruling in Brown paved the way to blacks to start the long journey from second to first class citizenship. It took blacks years for black Americans to enjoy their right to equal protection under the law. Hopefully, Edith Wilson will enjoy her day in the sun like Linda Brown. Conservatives and Republicans can slow the train of freedom but they can’t stop it.

In their book, Millennial Makeover, Morley Winograd and Mike Haas noted that a large majority of adult Americans under 30 years of age were very supportive of gay marriage while seniors strongly opposed the idea. So it’s just a matter of time until gay Americans shake the shackle of second class citizenship.

UPDATE: What do you win? Whoever catches the most errors wins BTB crap!!

Yes we sell logo crap – or, more exactly, Cafe Press sells fine quality products with a BTB Logo. We don’t push it on you, but it’s there for those who want to proudly show your local coffee klatch, your gym buddies, or your nosy neighbors that you read the musings of Jim and Rob and the gang (you have permission to pretend that you skip right over mine).

So if you win, I will buy you your choice of: a BTB Mousepad, a BTB large mug (I have them, they are great coffee cups), or (drumroll please) a BTB tote bag which is great for trips to the beach or slogging home groceries from environmentally conscious overpriced organic-only co-op neighborhood hippy-chick avocado stands (don’t mock – they make the best guacamole).

One week from today, I’ll announce the winner (which should be pretty damn obvious anyway).

Some things change, some things stay the same

Timothy Kincaid

December 11th, 2012

In an article in the Guardian about the proposed marriage bill in Britain, I see the inevitable here. Give it a decade and this will be common:

Richard and Mary Smith, an elderly couple wrapped up tightly against the bitter wind, were happy to pause on their way to have coffee to bemoan the state of school discipline, and speak of their fears about crime and poor parenting. But “as far as gay couples living together and getting married, that’s their choice”, Richard said.

Which will be followed by “but those lesbians don’t raise their kids right anymore! They used to be polite, but now they run all over my lawn!”

Pat Robertson is a heretic, a blasphemer, perhaps the Anti-Christ

Timothy Kincaid

December 10th, 2012

From James Gurney’s charming children’s book Dinotopia, which has nothing to do with Pat Robertson or young earth creationists.

From our dear dear friends at the American Family Association:

On a broadcast of The 700 Club late last month, Pat Robertson disputed the belief that the earth is about 6,000 years old, suggesting billions instead.

“I know people will probably try to lynch me when I say this,” he stated, “but Bishop Ussher — God bless him — wasn’t inspired by the Lord when he said it all took 6,000 years. It just didn’t …. There was a time that [dinosaurs] were on the earth and it was before the time of the Bible. So don’t try to cover it up and make like everything was 6,000 years. That’s not the Bible.”

Well! I declare!

Can’t he read the simple English in which the Bible was written? It’s right there in black and white, to be taken literally and exactly!

My oh my!

But not to worry:

Moreover, the AIG researcher notes that Robertson’s claim that dinosaurs existed before biblical times is illogical, because there is no pre-biblical time; the Bible starts with the creation of the world.

Nuff said.

Happy … um … something

Timothy Kincaid

December 7th, 2012

This summer I found this lovely item in HomeGoods which I’m sure would come in handy while celebrating, oh, something or other.

Or, as my friend Dan Rosen told me on Saturday, “This year has gone by so fast. It’s almost Hannukah and I haven’t even started putting up my Christmas decorations.”

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