June 2008 Archives

A Primer On Evolution - Parts Three, Four, & Five genre: Hip-Gnosis

The following three videos are the second segment in a series designed to provide the basics behind the theory of evolution. The first segment can be found here.

I introduced this segment to provide readers with a factual understanding of the arguments that comprise the theory of evolution and serve to dispel the numerous assertions made by creationists. All too often, those supporting intelligent design (the newly packaged creationism) attempt to provide oversimplified examples designed to undermine evolution. While this video series is clearly more complex than the creationist's contrivances, it has the benefit of being fact based.

How Evolution Works - Part Three: DNA

How Evolution Works - Part Four: Mutations

How Evolution Works - Part Five: Natural Selection

Tagged as: Bible, Creationism, Evolution, Faith, Intelligent Design, Religion, Science, Theory Of Evolution

Daniel DiRito | June 30, 2008 | 10:42 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Spiral Up - Nathan's Story genre: Video-Philes

The following video is a trailer for a documentary titled, Spiral Up. The film's release date has yet to be established. The film was the idea of Scott Seskind, a social worker at a nursing home in Boulder where Nathan, the subject of the documentary (who also has Huntington's Disease) lives.

I first met Scott over a year ago when I responded to his Craigslist ad in search of a videographer. When I first spoke to Scott, he expressed his interest in making the film. Once we began filming, it was evident that Nathan was a remarkable person and it was also obvious why Scott had chosen to make the documentary.

Since then, we've been meeting, primarily on the weekends, and spending time filming Scott's conversations with Nathan and some of the other patients who know him at the nursing home.

While it can be said that we're documenting Nathan's battle with his disease...the real purpose, since the outset, has been to document his amazing spirit. You'll note in the trailer that Scott has pondered his motivations for making the film. Trust me when I say that he needn't do so...and anyone who takes the time to see Spiral Up will quickly realize that Nathan's story needed to be told.

In addition to posting the trailer here, I've featured it above in the "Front & Center" curtain section of Thought Theater. I hope you'll take the time to watch the trailer and tell others to stop by and do the same.

Tagged as: Boe Kennedy, Documentary, Film, Huntington's Disease, Nathan, Scott Seskind, Spiral Up, Trailer

Daniel DiRito | June 28, 2008 | 4:59 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Spiral Up genre: Front and Center

Daniel DiRito | June 28, 2008 | 4:49 PM | link | Comments (1)
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Missionary Positions: XXXChurch.Com Tackles Porn genre: Hip-Gnosis & Uncivil Unions

While I frequently criticize religion and those who have used it as a vehicle for their own self-interest, every now and then I've come across some people of faith who are actually willing to take an honest look at people and then set out to make a difference. The following documentary, Missionary Positions, is about two such Christian ministers who started xxxchurch.com to assist Christians who are addicted to pornography. I wrote about their ministry in the past in a piece titled, Icebergs And Identities: What Lies Beneath?

Before proceeding I want to offer one caveat. I respect these guys for addressing an issue that is prevalent in society...as well as in many of those who are affiliated with religion. On the other hand, I'm not sure that the approach they employ will produce the intended outcome since I don't necessarily think that immersing oneself in religion actually puts a halt to this or any other addiction. I say as much because we're all aware of the many ministers who have succumbed to any number of carnal obsessions and fallen from grace.

In fact, part of the problem, as I've outline in the posting mentioned above, is that religion frequently seeks to cast sex as sin, ignoring the fact that it is an integral part of our human identity. In my opinion, the goal shouldn't be to extinguish pornography; it ought to be to encourage and educate our children that sex is a healthy component of human behavior and, when channeled properly, it should and will enhance our relationships.

Until we abandon the sex as sin construct, everything that is negatively associated with sex and porn will continue to propagate. I relate the pornography problem to the notion of, "you can pay me now or pay me later". When we cease stifling sex education in our schools and begin to encourage our children to incorporate their sexuality into a healthy identity, we will begin to disarm the power of pornography.

By the way, while pornography is the subject of this documentary, it is, for the most part, tastefully presented. The video is just over 71 minutes in length.

Tagged as: Craig Gross, Mike Foster, Pornography, Religion, Sex, Sex Education, Sexuality

Daniel DiRito | June 28, 2008 | 2:26 PM | link | Comments (7)
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Focus On The Family Attacks Tim Gill's Activism genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

Did you know that Tim Gill is a homosexual activist who operates under the radar as a stealth politico intent on changing the political landscape and adding the scalps of God fearing Christians to his belt? This latest video offering from Focus on the Family's Turn Signal has to be one of their most transparent attempts to pander to their followers by portraying gay activism as a sinister effort to undermine conservative family values.

As I watched this video, I couldn't help but think back to my days in commercial real estate. OK, I'm sure you're wondering how in the hell is this related to the FOF video? Stay with me. After spending fourteen years in the business, I honed my skills at spotting tenants who were manipulative and on the precipice of having financial problems. One of the tell-tale signals was a sudden surge in complaints about their space...the AC wasn't working right, the janitorial staff was doing a lousy job, the tenant next door was too loud, and on and on.

Generally speaking, the strategy was to go on the offensive and portray oneself as a victim in anticipation of lacking the wherewithal to pay the rent or fulfill the remaining term of one's lease. When I first started in the business, these tenants had me standing on my head trying to please them, but over time I realized that more often than not, their complaints had nothing to do with me or the service our company was providing. It was simply the strategy of a cash strapped tenant to create mitigating circumstances for the moment when they were unable to pay rent...and their ultimate goal usually included being let out of their lease.

That brings me back to Focus on the Family and this video segment. First, Focus on the Family is far from bankrupt; having total receipts in excess of 140 million dollars each of the last three years. However, when one looks more closely, the arm of the organization that funds political activities, Focus Action, has seen a steady decline in revenues over the last three years.

In 2005, total receipts were just over 25 million with 6.84 million coming from direct public support...in 2006, total receipts were 15.16 million with 6.75 million coming from direct public support...and in 2007 total receipts were 9.8 million with 5.16 coming from direct public support.

Again, this is still a healthy amount of money and I'm not inferring that Focus Action is financially unsound. The point I'm making is that this video reminds me of the strategic smokescreens I witnessed in commercial real estate. In other words, the message to the followers (benefactors) is that the big bad gay bogeyman, who has a boat load of cash, is surreptitiously bankrolling the defeat of countless Christian conservatives, and unless the folks at FOF ante up, it's only going to get worse.

The powers that be at Focus know that the best way to milk the cash cow is to yank the collective chain of the misinformed minions...and nothing works better than questioning the veracity of the enemy while portraying oneself as the righteous victim. Look at the language they utilize in describing Gill and his efforts...flying under the radar...stacking the deck...he targeted 70 conservative candidates...here's how it works...his wealthy homosexual activist friends...control his image...what this man is up to. Clearly the goal is to make the viewer aware of Gill wealth...but even more importantly to make the viewer believe that he is deceptive and manipulative.

The truth of the matter is that Gill is a well-known figure on the political front and as an activist for the LGBT community. His activities are routinely reported in Colorado and in the national media and his organization is visible and accessible. Unlike James Dobson, Gill doesn't seek the spotlight. The truth of the matter is that reflects more on Dobson's motivations and modus operandi than upon Gill's. I suspect that's an irritation to Dobson's ego and all the more reason to vilify Gill.

The point I'm making is that men like Dobson are always aware of their waning influence and wherewithal...and that leads them to strike out like a cat backed into a corner. I could be wrong, but given Dobson's recent attacks on Barack Obama, his certain awareness that many in the religious community may vote Democratic in November, and the growing shift in the causes of interest to many up and coming religious leaders (causes of little interest to establishment evangelicals like poverty and climate change), I suspect he feels his kingdom is being threatened.

Then again, I would think a man of Dobson's faith would be focused on the blessings of the afterlife he so frequently espouses. In the end, it isn't that difficult to identify and understand the relevant contrasts and distinctive differences between Tim Gill and James Dobson. It's sure funny how actions speak louder than words, isn't is?

Tagged as: Activism, Climate Change, Focus Action, Focus on the Family, Gill Action, Gill Foundation, James Dobson, LGBT, Religion, Same-Sex Marriage, Tim Gill

Daniel DiRito | June 28, 2008 | 10:14 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Craig & Vitter Take "New Stance" To Affirm Marriage genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

Apparently the best medicine for wing nuts who put their putters where they don't belong is to sponsor a constitutional amendment to protect marriage...since it's clear they didn't value the ones they were in.

Page One Q reports that Larry Craig, the wide stance toilet stall tap dancer, and David Vitter, the Christian commissar of clandestine call girl get-togethers, have joined together with other stalwart senators (not in a bathroom stall, mind you) to introduce the measure.

From Page One Q:

Two United States Senators implicated in extramarital sexual activity have named themselves as co-sponsors of S. J. RES. 43, dubbed the Marriage Protection Amendment. If ratified, the bill would amend the United States Constitution to state that marriage "shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman."

Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID), who was arrested June 11, 2007 on charges of lewd conduct in a Minneapolis airport terminal, is co-sponsoring the amendment along with Sen. David Vitter (R-LA).

I'm baffled by the logic these two senators are employing in putting their sullied signatures on an amendment designed to protect marriage from the homos. I just don't get how defining marriage to be between one man and one woman is going to help when these two and so many others already have major problems keeping count.

You see, for years, many of the marriages...between one man and one woman...have ended because one of the parties messed with the math...and the secretary, and the hooker, and the intern, and the guy in the next bathroom stall...if you know what I mean.

As I've tried to get my head around the benefits of Craig and Vitter sponsoring this amendment, I could only come up with one plausible explanation. They know that all you have to do to win the favor of the rabidly anti-gay constituents they represent is to keep feeding them the red meat they thrive upon. In other words, to hell with hypocrisy...the gays are coming...and we can't have that.

Rather than spend any more time attempting to understand the minds of these men or the constituents who support them, I think the following graphic will suffice.

CraigAndVitter.jpg

Tagged as: Adultery, David Vitter, Humor, Hypocrisy, Larry Craig, Marriage, Marriage Amendment, Same-Sex Marriage, U.S. Constitution

Daniel DiRito | June 27, 2008 | 10:41 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Overruled! - Lamda Legal Documentary On Lawrence v. Texas genre: Gaylingual

On June 26, 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Lawrence v. Texas. In that ruling, the sodomy laws still in existence in 13 states were overturned, homosexual sex was no longer criminalized in America, and homosexuals were finally brought into the protections of the constitution. The ruling was sweeping, overturning the prior 1986 case, Bowers v. Hardwick, which had ruled that sexual privacy was not protected by the constitution.

The following documentary, Overruled!, produced by Lamda Legal, chronicles the events surrounding the case, the legal issues that confronted the homosexual community as a result of the existing sodomy laws, the challenges confronting the legal team, and the eventual ruling from the United States Supreme Court.

The case and the ruling may well be the most significant event in the history of gay rights and this video is a worthwhile recounting of that historic case. The video premiered online yesterday and it runs just under twenty minutes. If you would like to order a copy of the video, you can do so here.

Tagged as: Bowers v. Hardwick, Gay Rights, Lamda Legal, Lawrence v. Texas, LGBT, Sodomy, U.S. Supreme Court

Daniel DiRito | June 27, 2008 | 9:50 PM | link | Comments (1)
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More On That Plan For A Theocracy...How About Anarchy? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak & Six Degrees of Speculation

Anarchy.jpg

Take a look at the following video and tell me you can't imagine that extreme religious groups in America could ever trigger the same sectarian strife that currently plagues the Middle East. I don't think the thought is that far fetched...and I'm convinced that the evidence supports the contention that ideological intransigence has led some religious leaders in the United States to the precipice of promoting acts of anarchy.

The gist of this video and many of the sermons that are being delivered in churches around the country is that the Bible is the only valid law. Further, the inference is that it is acceptable to ignore the laws of the nation when they conflict with God's law. What remains to be seen is the level of resistance that these religious zealots are willing to promote.

To understand how this movement evolved, one need look no further than the last seven years of the Bush presidency. By example, George Bush has given license to those who would elect to undermine or ignore established law in favor of divine guidance. Not only did Bush argue that his actions in office were the result of consultation with a higher being, he has frequently entertained and endorsed the notion that the court system is flawed and continues to engage in inappropriate "judicial activism."

Yes, he has grudgingly accepted the rulings of the courts...but not without willingly pressing the limits and challenging the conventional wisdom. These actions have established a growing sense of righteous infallibility amongst the faithful and their inclination for divinely driven defiance is palpable. My concern is how far the people his actions have enabled are willing to go should upcoming elections and rulings meet with their disapproval.

I realize what I'm positing may seem far fetched, but if one listens to the rumblings that are percolating in the evangelical community...inclusive of this video and James Dobson's current assault on Barack Obama...one begins to see a pattern of rejecting the authority of the government...especially if it continues to move in directions that do not uphold doctrine.

The reality of the matter is that evangelicals are still a formidable constituency that has shown a propensity to act in unison. Should that monolithic mentality be applied to the initiation of acts of anarchy, we could well witness the type of unrest that typified the Vietnam War era.

The fact that the last seven years have provided evangelicals a taste of the kind of kingdom they've long envisioned only exacerbates the potential for civil disobedience...and far worse. Toss in their beliefs about the end of days and the rapture and a worst case scenario isn't that much of a stretch. In fact, I suspect there are those who would view acts of anarchy as part and parcel of a preordained plan spelled out in the Bible.

While most Americans are preoccupied with the events taking place in the Middle East and the broader concept of the "war on terror", there is a growing body of evidence that suggests we need look no further than the confines of our own country to understand the dangers of ideological intransigence.

Let me be clear, I'm not predicting that anarchy is inevitable. On the other hand, I am signaling a warning that we're approaching a tumultuous transitional period. Unless we're mindful of the dangers of this smoldering mind set, we're at risk of being burned by the flames of fanaticism.

Tagged as: Anarchy, Bible, End Of Days, Evangelical, Extremism, Fundamentalism, George Bush, Judicial Activism, Judicial Authority, LGBT, Literalism, Rapture, Religion, Same-Sex Marriage, Taliban, Theocracy

Daniel DiRito | June 26, 2008 | 6:40 PM | link | Comments (4)
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Creationism & Cross Burning: The Painful Path To Theocracy? genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

An Ohio science teacher seems to think that his Christian beliefs grant him the authority to support creationism while undermining the theory of evolution, to disregard the scientific evidence of the age of the earth and the universe, and to brand his students with the image of a cross (see video below). After years of complaints about the teacher's inappropriate insertion of his religious ideology, the cross burning incident has finally led the school board to terminate him.

From The Columbus Dispatch:

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio -- Supporters of John Freshwater stood in a parking lot yesterday asking God to inspire the school board to make the right decision.

Three hours later, the board announced that it intends to fire Freshwater, an eighth-grade science teacher.

Freshwater preached his Christian beliefs about how the world began, discredited evolution and didn't teach the required science curriculum, the board says. He was told to stop teaching creationism and intelligent design, but he continued to do so, an investigation found.

Complaints about Freshwater's teachings were made by teachers and people in the community for at least 11 years, a school administrator told consultants. Freshwater has taught eighth-grade science in the district for 21 years.

In April, the school board hired HR On Call Inc. to investigate Freshwater, four months after the parents of a child in his class said he had burned a cross into the child's arm, causing swelling and blistering.

From The Columbus Dispatch:

Freshwater told investigators the marks were X's, not crosses. But all of the students interviewed in the investigation reported being branded with crosses. The investigation report includes a photo of one student's arm with a long vertical line and a short horizontal line running through it.

A teacher who worked in Freshwater's classroom last year also reported to investigators that Freshwater told his class that homosexuality is a sin.

Freshwater's friend Dave Daubenmire defended him.

"With the exception of the cross-burning episode. ... I believe John Freshwater is teaching the values of the parents in the Mount Vernon school district," he said.

"Do you think there are other teachers in the public classroom that are trying to drive their opinions in the classroom?" Daubenmire asked. "I don't care who you are. You cannot separate your value system from your teaching."

Look, Mr. Freshwater is entitled to his own beliefs. Unfortunately, like so many other Christians, he feels compelled to impose those beliefs on others. Even worse, he appears determined to allow his Biblical beliefs to overshadow his role as a teacher of established and credible science. If Freshwater wants to teach theology, then he shouldn't be doing so in a science class.

I took note of the remarks of his friend, Dave Daubenmire, in defending Freshwater's actions as consistent with the values of parents in the school district. Unfortunately, a science education has nothing to do with teaching religious doctrine...regardless of how many parents share Freshwater's beliefs. Frankly, the actions of Freshwater and his supporters demonstrates the confrontational strategy being embraced by more and more Christians. Sadly, their beliefs are so rigid and intransigent that nothing short of teaching directly from the Bible is satisfactory.

Take a look at how the Christian media reports the story.

From WorldNetDaily:

But a spokesman for Freshwater, Dave Daubenmire, downplayed the parents' accusations and called the investigation one-sided, with "old trumped-up charges brought back to the table."

Daubenmire insisted to WND that the "cross branding" was nothing of the sort. He characterized it as a science experiment Freshwater had been doing for 21 years in which he made X marks, not crosses, on the students' skin with a Tesa Coil to demonstrate electrical current.

Daubenmire pointed out experts have affirmed the experiment causes no injury to students.

Daubenmire argued that the accusations about teaching intelligent design or creationism date back to 2003, when Freshwater was challenging students to "clinically analyze evolution."

Just after the accusing family hired an attorney, school officials told Freshwater he had to remove all religious items from his classroom, including a personal Bible he had on his desk.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court, says, "Mr. Freshwater advised his students that although he is forced to teach from the textbooks, the teachings are wrong or not proven according to the Bible."

As WND reported, Freshwater took down the Christian items but refused to remove his Bible, which he has kept on his desk for 18 years.

Daubenmire, of Pass The Salt Ministries and Minutemen United, explained to WND at the time that Freshwater had not used the Bible in his interaction with students. But he said the teacher also believed he should not forfeit his constitutional rights just because of his occupation.

So were supposed to view Mr. Daubenmire as an impartial witness...regardless of his religious affiliations? Additionally, aren't we being asked to see Mr. Freshwater as a victim...a man who has had his constitutional rights abridged? Never mind that the separation of church and state prohibits the activities he insists on incorporating in his role as an educator.

The truth of the matter is that a number of Christians are convinced they are engaged in a war which means they are required to challenge and confront any and all aspects of culture and society that are in conflict with their beliefs. I'm convinced that this faction is constantly looking for opportunities to overturn existing laws and impose legislation that is consistent with their interpretations of the Bible.

Take a look at Mr. Daubenmire's profile.

From NewsWithViews:

Radically born-again in 1987, I was honored that the Lord had called me to the fight. Although a pew-sitting, selfish Christian, I learned quickly that if we were to turn back the hand of the oppressor, sitting in the pew and praying for God's grace would not be enough. As I had shared with our teams over the years, it was time to take what we had learned to the field. No battle, no victory.

After twenty-five years in the system, the Lord had other plans for me. I walked away from coaching football, my teaching career and cozy retirement benefits and gave my life to "coaching the church". Lord knows the church needs it. We started Pass the Salt Ministries and will travel wherever we find a listening ear and a open pulpit.

Using a local radio show I began to cry-out for Christian men who were willing to stand and fight. Out of this cry came Minutemen United a band of like-minded Christian brothers and sisters who are not afraid to take our faith to the streets. Over the past five years we have:

Successfully battled entry level pornography in Meijers Department stores.

Fought for the 10 Commandment displays in Ohio.

Journeyed to Alabama and defended Judge Roy Moore and the Rock.

Helped get Ohio's Marriage amendment on the ballot.

Spent a week in Fla. Defending Terri Schiavo.

Kept a steady presence at our local abortion clinic.

Passed out "Living Water" bottles at Columbus' Gay Pride parade.

From Pass The Salt:

PASS THE SALT was formed to encourage the Body of Christ to step into the cultural war. "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood..." PASS THE SALT is convinced that God has given the Body a window of opportunity to take our culture back.

PASS THE SALT is committed to bringing together the body of Christ across denominational, racial, and economical borders to demonstrate to America the power of Biblical unity. Our vision is to unite, organize, and mobilize the Army of God to be SALT and Light as stated in MATTHEW 5:12.

Now really, are we to conclude that the relationship between Daubenmire and Freshwater has nothing to do with their desire to push a particular agenda? I suspect that this situation is a calculated assault designed to garner the attention of other religious minded individuals that are sympathetic to the notion that Christians are being victimized.

I'm of the opinion that this effort is far more organized than one might expect. I'll offer two examples to support that possibility. First, there is a concerted effort underway to have churches violate the requirements of their tax exempt status this coming election by making specific candidate endorsements. The purpose of this effort is to establish the grounds under which they can assert that their first amendment rights are being violated. The goal is to remove the prohibitions contained in the notion of separation of church and state.

Second, I've taken note of the rhetoric being offered by James Dobson and his minions at Focus on the Family in response to a speech given by Barack Obama in 2006. Specifically, Tom Minnery makes a concerted effort to argue that America is a "Christian nation"...a phrase that is being aggressively pushed by many of those associated with the religious right. Minnery goes on to argue that religious doctrine is an effective tool with which to direct society and that it is the inherent principle underlying the establishment of this country. The goal of this argument is to further blur the lines between church and state until we reach the point where religion is accepted as the a priori foundation for our system of governance.

Here's some quotations from the discussion between Dobson and Minnery on the radio broadcast that suggest as much.

From Lavender Newswire:

Minnery: "I mean, read what George Washington said about that: "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports." That's our first president."

Minnery: "Our second president, John Adams, said: "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."

From NPR:

For 18 minutes, Dobson excoriated Obama for his political stands -- especially Obama's belief that a politician must take into account a variety of views on moral issues.

"Now that is a fruitcake interpretation of the Constitution," Dobson said. "This is why we have elections. To support what we believe to be wise and moral. We don't have to go to the lowest common denominator of morality, which is what he is suggesting."

Again, I contend that the goal is to reach the point at which the accepted constitutional interpretation is that religious ideology can and should be directly applied to all aspects of government. In the end, the goal is to suggest that any limitation on religious expression as it relates to government is a violation of freedom of speech and expression. The calculation assumes that since a large majority of Americans are Christians, they would be amenable to enacting religiously inspired legislation by majority rule.

The only remaining obstacle would be the court system...and one would have to live in a bubble to have missed the deliberate effort to portray the judiciary in a bad light. If these ideologues can convince the public that the judiciary must be bound by majority rule...and that any ruling inconsistent with that construct can and should be invalidated as an act of judicial activism...they will have succeeded in establishing a virtual theocracy. In such an environment, minority rights (Dobson cleverly describes them as the lowest common denominator) would be disregarded whenever they failed to meet the acceptable religious standards of the majority.

In the end, they seek to effect the rejection of a secular society that affords the same rights to all people regardless of religious beliefs...or the lack thereof. While they currently avoid calling for the government to apply Biblically defined punitive actions against those who violate their brand of religious ideology (homosexuality is wrong but they allow it so long as it is never viewed as acceptable moral behavior or granted any legislative legitimization), there is little reason to believe that they wouldn't seek to roll back the rights already granted as well as impose prohibitions (reinstating sodomy laws).

I personally believe that if these zealots were to ever attain the power they seek, they would soon begin to impose punitive measures...arguing that a Christian nation cannot succeed if it fails to uphold and enforce the accepted ideology. Further, they would feel justified in carrying out such actions and dissent would be stifled as little more than a blatant display of blasphemy.

In the end, those who look at the Taliban and Sharia Law as the embodiment of theocratic tyranny would be well served to consider the similarities found in all those who promote an intransigent ideology. Truth be told, there is a fine line between the concept of "live and let live" and its incorrigible opposite, "live this way or die".

Tagged as: Barack Obama, Bible, Carbon Dating, Christian, Church & State, Courts, Creationism, Dave Daubenmire, Evangelical, Evolution, Focus On The Family, Intelligent Design, James Dobson, John Freshwater, Judiciary, LGBT, Morality, Mount Vernon Middle School, Pass The Salt, Religion, Same-Sex Marriage, Theocracy, Tom Minnery, U.S. Constitution, Values

Daniel DiRito | June 26, 2008 | 10:47 AM | link | Comments (2)
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"King Karl" Holds Court...Calls Obama Arrogant genre: Polispeak

There's something amusing about Karl Rove appearing on Fox News with Bill O'Reilly to tell viewers that Barack Obama is arrogant. Perhaps I'm wrong, but this seems like a classic example of projection on the part of one of the most arrogant politicos in the business. As I listened to the examples Rove offered, it became even more apparent that this was little more than vintage bloviating on the part of Karl Rove.

When I hear Karl Rove accusing Barack Obama of arrogance (video below), I can't help but think back to the 2006 election and his famous eleventh hour prediction...the one where he informed the press that he had "THE math" and all they had was access to the silly polls that the public gets to see.

From NPR:

[Mr. Rove's first response below is responding to a question about public polls and analysis predicting a Republican loss in November.]

KARL ROVE: I see several things; first, unlike the general public, I'm allowed to see the polls on the individual races and after all this does come down to individual contests between individual candidates. Second of all, I see the individual spending reports and contribution reports. For example at the end of August in 30 of the most competitive races in the country, the house races, the Republicans had 33 million cash on hand and Democrats had just over 14 million.

SIEGEL: We are in the home stretch though and many would consider you on the optimistic end of realism about...

ROVE: Not that you would exhibit a bias, you just making a comment.

SIEGEL: I'm looking at all the same polls that you are looking at.

ROVE: No, you are not. I'm looking at 68 polls a week for candidates for the US House and US Senate, and Governor and you may be looking at 4-5 public polls a week that talk attitudes nationally.

SIEGEL: I don't want to have you to call races...

ROVE: I'm looking at all of these Robert and adding them up. I add up to a Republican Senate and Republican House. You may end up with a different math but you are entitled to your math and I'm entitled to THE math.

SIEGEL: I don't know if we're entitled to a different math but your...

ROVE: I said THE math.

Sorry to break the bad news to ya, Karl...but the GOP lost the Senate and the House in 2006, you lost your job as Bush's brain, and it turned out that your brand of scorched earth politics may have set in motion the collapse of the GOP coalition. That seems like a rather drastic fall from your perch as "the architect". As a matter of fact, it may be fair to suggest that your house of cards simply couldn't withstand the pressure being created by your endless blow-hard bravado.

UPDATE:

Maureen Dowd has more on Karl Rove's remarks here:

More Phony Myths

Tagged as: 2006 Election, 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Bill O'Reilly, George Bush, GOP, Karl Rove

Daniel DiRito | June 25, 2008 | 2:12 PM | link | Comments (0)
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The John McCain LGBT Pride Message...Missing In Action genre: Gaylingual & Polispeak

There are those in the LGBT community that have questioned Barack Obama's commitment to the enactment of full equality...including the right to marry. Generally speaking, Obama supports the bulk of legislation favored by the LGBT community though the Illinois Senator has voiced his preference for civil unions rather than marriage. That particular position has understandably garnered Obama a fair amount of criticism.

While it's reasonable to push Senator Obama to support same-sex marriage, LGBT voters would be unwise to conclude that John McCain is a reasonable alternative. The following video provides an overview of the Arizona Senator's position on the issues most important to the LGBT community. McCain is clearly opposed to those measures that would do the most to insure LGBT equality and that puts him in line with George Bush. He's simply not an acceptable choice.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Adoption, Barack Obama, ENDA, Gay, John McCain, LGBT, Same-Sex Marriage

Daniel DiRito | June 25, 2008 | 12:13 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Donald Wildmon & AFA: Obsessed With Heinz Homo Mayo? genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis

For those of us that may be under the misconception that the religious wing nuts are capable of demonstrating some measure of restraint in their assault on the LGBT community, it's time to think again. Truth be told, I suspect many of these people feel they are entitled to meet out whatever punishment their "Holy Bible" would allow.

Last week, I published a posting that included the new gay friendly Heinz Deli Mayo ad being launched in the UK. Well, the American Family Association (AFA) launched a phone and email assault on Heinz and got the company to pull the ad after it ran for only a week. Apparently the AFA thinks they have a vested interest in the families in the UK and what they watch on television. Here's some excerpts from the AFA action alert:

I thought you might be interested in seeing the Heinz ad featuring a homosexual family and two homosexuals kissing.

The ad features a "homosexual family," referring to one of the men as "Mom."

We suggest you forward this to all your family and friends letting them know of the push for homosexual marriage by Heinz. This ad is currently running in England, but no doubt can be expected in the U.S. soon. It is the kind of ad which we can expect to see in California as they prepare to vote on homosexual marriage. Homosexual marriage is illegal in England.

Take Action

Send an email letter to Heinz.

Make a phone call to Heinz. Their corporate headquarters' phone number is 412-456-5700 and their toll-free number is 800-255-5750.

Oh yes, this is undoubtedly an evil homosexual family...one that includes a New York Deli worker (BTW, he was called "mum", not mom...but AFA members might not get what that means) and his British husband and child...and if that isn't bad enough...they're headed to California to get married...and their poor child will be put through the humiliation of being the ring bearer...and then they'll serve sandwiches slathered with that sinful looking Heinz Deli Mayo at their reception...and then they'll move back to the UK and force same-sex marriage on unsuspecting Brits!

OK, at what point do we call these people what they are...raving lunatics who are obsessed with making all things gay the object of their every waking moment. Honestly, I can't help but think that men like Donald Wildmon, the founder and chairman of AFA are closet queers. What amazes me is his apparent belief that gays have any interest in him or his twisted followers.

Trust me Donny boy, I don't know a single gay person that would give you the time of day...let alone seek to convert you and yours. At the same time, I have no doubt that you know where all the gay bookstores are located, where you can find a gay prostitute, and where you can live out your gay fantasies online. After all, we know you're leading the effort to ban porn at the Marriott. No doubt you took it upon yourself to order up several flicks to have proof of the smut they're selling...just like watching that nasty show Swingtown, eh? If you need help locating anything else sinful, I can hook you up with a boat load of fallen preachers who have the inside track on every seedy situation you can imagine.

Anyway, those who are interested in contacting Heinz and offering another perspective on the Deli Mayo ad, here's some options in addition to the phone numbers noted above:

email to:

pressoffice@uk.hjheinz.com with copy to butlerc@amvbbdo.com, Ted.Smyth@us.hjheinz.com, Nigel.Dickie@uk.hjheinz.com and Consumer.Contact@uk.hjheinz.com

or sign the petition here:

Heinz Petition

Tagged as: American Family Association, Donald Wildmon, Gay, Gay Kiss, Heinz, Heinz Deli Mayo, Homosexuality, LGBT, Religion, Religious Right

Daniel DiRito | June 25, 2008 | 10:28 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Focus On The Family Attacks Obama's 2006 Renewal Speech genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

Anyone seeking to understand the essential fundamentals underlying the 2008 election would be well served to review the following videos. The first five comprise a speech given by Senator Barack Obama in 2006 to the liberal Christian group, Call To Renewal.

The final video is the first of three videos being released by Focus On The Family in response to the Obama speech. Today, in addition to the videos, James Dobson, the head of FOF, used his radio address to accuse Obama of distorting the Bible. I will update this posting to include the final two videos once they have been posted on the FOF site.

Generally speaking, Obama offers a reasoned explanation of the problems we face when religious ideology becomes the source of intransigent sectarian strife. Obama's speech is simply a thoughtful recognition of the shortcomings that can accompany the promotion of any one particular religious ideology...especially when done at the detriment of the beliefs held by other segments of society...be they religious or not.

Senator Obama's remarks accurately demonstrate an awareness of the pitfalls that resulted from George Bush's inclination to broadly impose his narrow evangelical beliefs...and his effort to rally like minded members of the electorate to assist him in that endeavor. At the same time, Senator Obama's remarks are clearly not an attempt to alter the beliefs of any particular party.

His observations simply explain the impracticality of imposing a narrowly defined religious agenda...as well as illustrate our government's constitutional imperative to abstain from siding with any particular religious ideology. Hence Obama concludes that the role of government is to also refrain from rejecting any particular religious beliefs and therefore inadvertently or intentionally preventing some individuals from practicing their chosen beliefs.

Perhaps this push back from Focus on the Family and other religious organizations is a realization that voters may be ready to restore a level of separation of church and state that hasn't been observed since the GOP leadership sought a political alliance premised upon a promise to enact a narrow set of religious principles. What voters may be concluding is exactly what Senator Obama, in 2006, warned might happen should sectarian strife dictate, dominate, or destroy the basic construct of representative government.

Simply put, I believe that Dobson and his ilk don't like the fact that voters may view Senator Obama as a champion for that basic concept...a concept that is again mindful of the need for the preservation of religious freedom but also the promise of freedom from religious persecution.

In other words, government grants members of the electorate the leeway to live according to their chosen beliefs while voters accept that the role of our elected officials must also include championing minority beliefs in accordance with their constitutional directives. That level of impartiality is simply not consistent with the goals of groups like Focus on the Family and politicians who fail to embrace their specific agenda become the object of this type of ill-conceived ire.

In the end, I believe that a majority of voters are anxious to restore the equitable government neutrality that made this country so appealing and so inviting. Doing so is the only way to insure that all of us will continue to have the freedom to hold the beliefs we cherish.

Barack Obama - 2006 Call To Renewal Speech (Part One)

Barack Obama - 2006 Call To Renewal Speech (Part Two)

Barack Obama - 2006 Call To Renewal Speech (Part Three)

Barack Obama - 2006 Call To Renewal Speech (Part Four)

Barack Obama - 2006 Call To Renewal Speech (Part Five)

Focus On The Family's Criticism Of The Speech (Part One)

UPDATE: Focus On The Family Criticism Of The Speech (Part Two)

UPDATE II: Focus On The Family Criticism Of The Speech (Part Three)

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Equality, Focus On The Family, Freedom, Government, James Dobson, Religion

Daniel DiRito | June 24, 2008 | 8:35 PM | link | Comments (1)
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George Carlin: 05/12/37 - 06/22/08 genre: Do Not Resuscitate & Happy Remembrances

George Carlin died on Sunday. He was one of a kind and the comic world can never replace him. I've included some notable quotations below. However, they are only a small sampling since virtually every line he uttered was worth noting.

I thought the video below was worth posting. It contains excerpts of Carlin discussing death during a couple of his shows. It was one of the many sensitive subjects that Carlin wasn't afraid to tackle. I can only hope that his insights brought him comfort during his final days.

I'm sure I'll be watching more of his many performances in the coming days in the hopes of absorbing more of his many insightful observations.

George Carlin Quotations:

"I have as much authority as the Pope, I just don't have as many people who believe it."

"Inside every cynical person, there is a disappointed idealist"

"By and large, language is a tool for concealing the truth"

"When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day?"

"If it's true that our species is alone in the universe, then I'd have to say the universe aimed rather low and settled for very little"

"Death is caused by swallowing small amounts of saliva over a long period of time."

"There's no present. There's only the immediate future and the recent past."

"I was thinking about how people seem to read the Bible a whole lot more as they get older; then it dawned on me...they're cramming for their final exam."

"I'm completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. My idea is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death."

"You know the good part about all those executions in Texas? Fewer Texans."

"If churches want to play the game of politics, let them pay admission like everyone else."

"The two big mistakes were the belief in a sky god -- that there's a man in the sky with 10 things he doesn't want you to do and you'll burn for a long time if you do them -- and private property, which I think is at the core of our failure as a species. That's the source of my indignations, my dissatisfactions, however it comes out on the stage. I feel betrayed by the people I'm part of, these creatures, these magnificent creatures."

"I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately."

Tagged as: Comedian, Death, George Carlin, Humor

Daniel DiRito | June 24, 2008 | 5:53 PM | link | Comments (0)
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The Onion: "Supremes" Think Death Penalty Is Totally Badass genre: Do Not Resuscitate & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

The Supreme Court recently took up the question of whether lethal injection was an acceptable means of enforcing the death penalty. In the following video, The Onion has a little fun with the topic.

Suffice it to say that this Onion segment suggests that the Supreme Court is made up of some "totally badass" justices.

NOTE: The video contains some language that may not be suitable for children or the office.

Tagged as: Anthony Kennedy, Comedy, Death Penalty, Ginsberg, Humor, John Roberts, Lethal Injection, Sam Alito, Scalia, Supreme Court, The Onion

Daniel DiRito | June 24, 2008 | 5:10 PM | link | Comments (0)
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"Pride" And "The Fierce Urgency Of Now" genre: Gaylingual

Pride. What is pride? On Sunday in a number of major metropolitan areas pride included a parade for those who believe being LGBT is worth acknowledging and celebrating. For others, pride events on Sunday were shameful events attended by...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Gay, Gay Rights, Homosexuality, LGBT, Pride, Religion

Daniel DiRito | June 24, 2008 | 1:57 PM | link | Comments (0)
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A Review Of The Many Holes In The Holy Bible genre: Hip-Gnosis

These two videos are a compilation of contradictions that can be found in the Bible. The interesting thing about these videos is that they were compiled by Muslims who want to undermine the Bible while promoting the Qur'an as...

Tagged as: Allah, Bible, God, Islam, Jesus, Literalism, Muhammad, Quran, Religion

Daniel DiRito | June 21, 2008 | 10:03 AM | link | Comments (1)
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Mika - Lollipop & Billy Brown genre: Gaylingual & Tuned Out & Uncivil Unions & Video-Philes

Mika, born in Lebanon and currently living in London, doesn't get a lot of mainstream attention in the States. I've included two of his videos below. The first is for the song, Lollipop, an infectious upbeat tune with a...

Tagged as: Billy Brown, Grace Kelly, Happy Endings, LGBT, Lollipop, Mika, Music, Relationships, Stuck In The Middle

Daniel DiRito | June 19, 2008 | 12:20 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Has Mo Rocca Found The Michelle Obama "Whitey" Tape? genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

What can I say? Just when I thought Mo Rocca had lost his comic mojo, he posts this "Do Not Drink Coffee While Watching" video. This is one of Mo Rocca's best offerings on the underbelly of the 2008...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Humor, Michelle Obama, Mo Rocca, Whitey

Daniel DiRito | June 19, 2008 | 10:49 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Is Something Fishy At Focus On The Family? genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Uncivil Unions

The folks at Focus on the Family are out with another video in opposition to same-sex marriage. It's consistent with the new strategy being adopted by religious groups to portray themselves as victims. The gist of their message is...

Tagged as: California, Evangelical, Exodus, Focus On The Family, Gay, James Dobson, LGBT, PFOX, Religion, Same-Sex Marriage, Stuart Shepard, TruthWinsOut.org

Daniel DiRito | June 18, 2008 | 8:54 PM | link | Comments (2)
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Pastor Hagee Misrepresents "Thoroughly Modern Women" genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak & Uncivil Unions

If you listen to Pastor John Hagee, modern women are little more than sinful secular caricatures of all he would deem wrong with the fictional women portrayed on Sex & The City. In fact, he sets out to portray...

Tagged as: Cindy McCain, Feminism, God, Hillary Clinton, John Hagee, Michelle Obama, Misogyny, Modernity, Religion, Secularism, Sexism, Values, Women, Women's Rights

Daniel DiRito | June 18, 2008 | 12:57 PM | link | Comments (0)
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The Colbert Report: Ken Miller On Intelligent Design Advocates genre: Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

Stephen Colbert speaks with Kenneth Miller on the subject of evolution and the efforts of creationists to adapt their strategies to have intelligent design taught in science classes as a plausible alternative. As Miller notes, while creationists lack any...

Tagged as: Bible, Carbon Dating, Creationism, Dinosaurs, Fossil Record, Humor, Intelligent Design, Kenneth Miller, Noah's Arc, Stephen Colbert, The Colbert Report

Daniel DiRito | June 18, 2008 | 10:43 AM | link | Comments (3)
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Heinz Deli Mayo Advertisement: "Mum's" The Word genre: Gaylingual & Uncivil Unions

The following video is a new advertisement being run by Heinz in the UK. The ad, designed to promote it's Deli Mayo, is delivered with a different take on a typical morning in most homes...where mom is preparing school...

Tagged as: Gay, Heinz, Humor, LGBT, Tolerance

Daniel DiRito | June 18, 2008 | 9:52 AM | link | Comments (1)
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The Daily Show: On Gay Marriage In California genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

You had to know The Daily Show would cover the start of same-sex marriage in California. Jon Stewart starts off by noting that California still exists...and then he wonders why God is taking it out on the Midwest. Of...

Tagged as: California, Gay, Humor, Jon Stewart, LGBT, Same-Sex Marriage, Supreme Court, The Daily Show

Daniel DiRito | June 18, 2008 | 9:09 AM | link | Comments (0)
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2:30 Report: A Look At Late Night Christian Programs genre: Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

The 2:30 Report was a former segment on the Australian television program, The Chaser's Report On Everything. In the following video clip, they look at religious programs on late night television. What I like about this clip is the...

Tagged as: Charity, Evangelists, Healing, Humor, Religion, Televangelists, Television

Daniel DiRito | June 17, 2008 | 6:33 PM | link | Comments (1)
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Focus On The Family Launches Second Attack On Obama genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

It looks like the folks at Focus On The Family have decided to be an active participant in the GOP effort to cast Barack Obama as an unacceptable presidential candidate. The following video is the second salvo of their...

Tagged as: Barack Obama, California, DOMA, ENDA, Focus On The Family, GOP, James Dobson, LGBT, Religion, Same-Sex Marriage, Tax Exempt, Turn Signal

Daniel DiRito | June 17, 2008 | 2:11 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Is Your Child Really A Pagan? Take The Test Here genre: Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

I just love Christian websites. They provide so much inspiration...for tongue-in-cheek sarcasm. I think I hit the mother lode today. The following questionnaire is intended as a tool for parents to insure that their children haven't become pagans or...

Tagged as: Bible, Christianity, Demons, Devil, Faith, God, Heaven, Homosexuality, Humor, Islam, Jesus, LGBT, Muslim, Paganism, Reincarnation, Religion, Sarcasm, Satan

Daniel DiRito | June 17, 2008 | 11:27 AM | link | Comments (1)
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Poll: Bush Near Bottom - Tough Guy Image Hurt U.S. Reputation genre: Polispeak

If one reads and reviews enough polls, one can begin to piece together an understanding of the factors that determine the public's perceptions of the politicians who are the focus of these surveys. A new poll designed to measure the...

Tagged as: Autocracy, Cowboy Diplomacy, Democracy, George W. Bush, Hugo Chavez, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Vladimir Putin, World Politics

Daniel DiRito | June 16, 2008 | 5:56 PM | link | Comments (0)
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John McCain Revealed: The Unborn, Gay Marriage, & Health Care genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak & Uncivil Unions

John McCain would like independents, moderates, Reagan Democrats, and Hillary Clinton supporters to think of him as a maverick who doesn't march in lockstep with George Bush and his right wing ideology. The problem is that John McCain is...

Tagged as: Abortion, California, Catholics, George Bush, Health Care, Insurance Premiums, John McCain, LGBT, Massachusetts, Pro-Life, Right To Choose, Roe v. Wade, Same-Sex Marriage, Supreme Court, U.S. Constitution, Women's Rights

Daniel DiRito | June 16, 2008 | 2:24 PM | link | Comments (0)
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GOP Superstar Bobby Jindal: Exorcist And Creationist Buffoon? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

Many within the GOP are touting Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal as a possible running mate for John McCain...calling him a rising superstar in the party. Unfortunately, this rising star is also in favor of teaching creationism (intelligent design) alongside...

Tagged as: Bobby Jindal, Creationism, Evolution, Exorcism, GOP, Intelligent Design, John McCain, Louisiana, Religion, Science, Scientific Method

Daniel DiRito | June 16, 2008 | 8:41 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Religion: The Antidote To Science & Critical Thought genre: Hip-Gnosis

In the following video, the folks at Focus On The Family are touting the passage of a bill, The Louisiana Science Education Act, in the Louisiana state legislature that will "allow" science teachers to "promote critical thinking about scientific...

Tagged as: Bible, Creationism, Darwin, Education, Evolution, Focus On The Family, God, Intelligent Design, Religion, Science

Daniel DiRito | June 14, 2008 | 8:37 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Right Wing Ralphie: Fighting For The Unmarried Status Of Gays genre: Gaylingual & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

Sometimes the most effective means to combat the flawed argument of one's opposition is to make their argument for them...in order to highlight just how absurd it is. In the following video, "Right Wing Ralphie" offers to help unsuspecting...

Tagged as: Ballot Initiative, California, Cartoon, LGBT, Religion, Right Wing, Same-Sex Marriage, Supreme Court

Daniel DiRito | June 14, 2008 | 8:04 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Matt Barber: Unmasking The Brokeback Mountain Opera Agenda? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

Nothing remotely gay is immune from the attacks of the rabid right. With each and every event that has a connection to homosexuality, the wing nuts launch into their tirade that the "militant homosexual agenda" is alive and well...and...

Tagged as: Annie Proulx, Brokeback Mountain, Charles Wuorinen, Concerned Women For America, CWFA, Gay, Gerard Mortier, LGBT, Madam Butterfly, Matt Barber, New York, Opera, Pagliacci, Religion, Religious Right

Daniel DiRito | June 12, 2008 | 1:03 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Donna Summer On David Letterman - Stamp Your Feet genre: Tuned Out & Video-Philes

Despite Donna Summers unfortunate labeling as anti-gay back in the early 80's, she is undoubtedly an iconic figure in shaping the trajectory of the gay music scene. Summers has long denied the accusation that appeared in a New York...

Tagged as: Bad Girl, David Letterman, Donna Summer, Gay, LGBT, Music, Stamp Your Feet, The Late Show

Daniel DiRito | June 12, 2008 | 10:23 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Fox News: Leading The Obama Smear Campaign? genre: Polispeak & Six Degrees of Speculation & Video-Philes

Fox News likes to pretend that their reporting is fair and balanced. Unfortunately, the more they fear that the Democrats might defeat their beloved GOP, the more they exhibit their bias and serve as a shill for the party....

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Baby Mama, Barack Obama, E.D. Hill, Fox News, GOP, Megyn Kelly, Michelle Malkin, Michelle Obama, Pound, Racism, Reverend Wright, Swiftboating

Daniel DiRito | June 11, 2008 | 9:23 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Innocence Lost: The Path From Purity To Pragmatism genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak & Uncivil Unions

Many Americans like to look at Europe as an example of the moral decay we can expect if we continue to alter our values and ignore our long standing Christian principles. Implicit in this belief, amongst many on the...

Tagged as: Bible, Europe, Evangelical, France, God, History, Honor Killing, Innocence, Islam, Judeo-Christian, Koran, Misogyny, Morality, Muslim, Purity, Religion, Secularism, Sexuality, Tolerance, Values, Virginity

Daniel DiRito | June 11, 2008 | 11:11 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Reasons To Vote Republican? Yea, Right! genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

If you have any doubts about voting Democratic this November, you might want to watch this video. Instead of telling you why to vote for the Democrats, this video lists a number of reasons why a person might want...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, GOP, Republican, Sarcasm, Satire

Daniel DiRito | June 10, 2008 | 11:08 PM | link | Comments (0)
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The Real John McCain: A Visit To The McCain Women's Clinic genre: Little Red Ribbon-Hood & Polispeak

If you think John McCain is a moderate and a pragmatist, you may not realize the degree to which his voting record tells us just the opposite. When it's time to vote, John McCain has voted with George Bush...

Tagged as: Abortion, Abstinence, Brave New Films, Choice, Contraception, George Bush, John McCain, Judicial Appointments, Religion, RIght Wing, Roe v. Wade, Sex, Sex Education, Supreme Court, Women's Issues

Daniel DiRito | June 10, 2008 | 9:40 PM | link | Comments (1)
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WHO Updates AIDS Model - Guess Who Attaches Moral Judgement? genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Little Red Ribbon-Hood & Uncivil Unions

The inclination to view natural disasters and disease as signs of God's wrath remains a frightening demonstration of the dangers of religious dogma. Time and again, a vocal group of religious leaders attribute these tragedies to the morality of...

Tagged as: Africa, AIDS, Family Research Council, Gay, HIV, LGBT, Morality, Religion, Sexual Orientation, Sexuality, Sexually Transmitted Disease, STD, World Health Organization

Daniel DiRito | June 10, 2008 | 2:56 PM | link | Comments (0)
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You Decide: Is The Bible Repulsive? genre: Hip-Gnosis

All too often the Bible is used to selectively support the preferred ideology of various religious groups. Unfortunately, this "pick and choose" approach undermines the validity of the religion it is used to bolster and it also helps to...

Tagged as: Bible, Death, Faith, Fear, God, Ideology, Leviticus, Mortality, Religion, Slavery, Ten Commandments

Daniel DiRito | June 10, 2008 | 12:52 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Tuesday Tunes: Cyndi Lauper & The Brighton Port Authority genre: Tuned Out

The following videos are unrelated except for the fact that I've posted them together. The first video is Into The Nightlife, a new offering by Cyndi Lauper from her latest CD, Bring Ya To The Brink. Lauper doesn't get...

Tagged as: Cyndi Lauper, David Byrne, Dizzee Rascal, Fat Boy Slim, Into The Nightlife, Music, The Brighton Port Authority, Toe Jam

Daniel DiRito | June 10, 2008 | 11:47 AM | link | Comments (0)
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700 Club: Blacks Who Vote Democratic Will Be Punished By God? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak

In the following video clip, former 700 Club co-host Ben Kinchlow tells Pat Robertson that African Americans who vote for a party that supports "evil deeds" are partaking in those deeds and God will judge them accordingly. Robertson concludes...

Tagged as: 700 Club, Abortion, Affirmative Action, Ben Kinchlow, Black Yellowdogs, Climate Change, Democratic Party, Evangelicals, Global Warming, God, GOP, Pat Robertson, Religion, Republican Party, Same-Sex Marriage, Taxation, Universal Health Care

Daniel DiRito | June 9, 2008 | 8:48 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Bill Maher: Religulous Movie Trailer genre: Hip-Gnosis & Tongue-In-Cheek

The following video is the trailer for Bill Maher's new documentary, Religulous. Anyone who has watched Maher over the years will know that he isn't a religious person and he has a penchant for poking fun at those who...

Tagged as: Bill Maher, Comedy, Faith, God, Humor, Religion, Religulous

Daniel DiRito | June 8, 2008 | 10:36 AM | link | Comments (4)
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CBS's "Schwing-Town" Has AFA All Hot And Bothered genre: Hip-Gnosis

The religious loons never cease to amaze me. Following Froday's premiere of the new CBS show, Swingtown, the American Family Association is leading the charge to get the program banned from local CBS affiliates on the grounds that it...

Tagged as: AFA, American Family Association, Bible, CBS, Drugs, Faith, God, Marriott, Morality, Religion, Sex, Sexuality, Swingtown, Values

Daniel DiRito | June 7, 2008 | 11:50 AM | link | Comments (1)
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Mad TV: Sluts & The City genre: Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

Now that the Sex & The City movie is in theaters, I thought it would be fun to revisit Mad TV's treatment of the HBO hit. The title of the skit should serve as fair warning of what you...

Tagged as: Comedy, HBO, Humor, Mad TV, Sex & The City

Daniel DiRito | June 7, 2008 | 10:26 AM | link | Comments (4)
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The Bush Legacy: A Bad Case Of "ED" Or A Royal Screwing? genre: Econ-Recon & Just Jihad & Polispeak

Today, President Bush, in the following video clip, tells us that we face "turbulence in the housing market and slow growth for our overall economy". At the same time, the number of U.S. homeowners in foreclosure or delinquent on...

Tagged as: Deficit, Dick Cheney, Dow Jones, Economy, Energy Policy, Foreclosures, George W. Bush, Iraq, Oil Dependency, Outsourcing, Recession, Sub-Prime Mortgage Crisis, Tax Cuts, Unemployment

Daniel DiRito | June 6, 2008 | 1:31 PM | link | Comments (1)
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The Daily Show: Kristen Schaal Takes On Media Sexism genre: Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

In the following video, Kristen Schaal points out the many instances of sexism that was directed towards Hillary Clinton. My favorite moment is when Kristen asks, "Who is that guy?" following right wing loon Laura Ingram's comment that we...

Tagged as: Comedy, Hillary Clinton, Humor, Jon Stewart, Kristen Schaal, Laura Ingram, Media Bias, Misogyny, Sexism, The Daily SHow, Tucker Carlson

Daniel DiRito | June 6, 2008 | 11:31 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Tickets To Eternity On Sale For Three Easy Payments Of $19.99? genre: Polispeak

If you're not familiar with Newsmax, suffice it to say that it is a right leaning internet site...one that routinely spouts Republican talking points. I signed up for their email alerts a couple years ago and while I rarely...

Tagged as: Barack Obama, God Guns & Gays, GOP, Heaven, Newsmax, Rapture, Religion, Republican, WorldNetDaily

Daniel DiRito | June 5, 2008 | 3:43 PM | link | Comments (1)
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Signorile To Hillary Supporters: Don't Be Stupid genre: Gaylingual & Polispeak

I'm baffled. I want to know what Barack Obama did to so many of the Hillary supporters such that they would choose to vote for John McCain in November rather than vote for the candidate that obviously has their...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Discrimination, Equality, Gay Rights, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, LGBT, Michelangelo Signorile, Misogyny, Race, Women's Rights

Daniel DiRito | June 5, 2008 | 12:08 PM | link | Comments (2)
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Focus On The Family Launches First Attack On Obama genre: Econ-Recon & Hip-Gnosis

When you really study the mindset of religious conservatives, one of their primary motivation is making sure they hold onto their money and that means they rarely ever connect taxation with the notion that the government serves as a...

Tagged as: Barack Obama, Conservative, Focus On The Family, James Dobson, Liberal, Religion, Tax Exempt, Theocracy, Welfare

Daniel DiRito | June 5, 2008 | 10:30 AM | link | Comments (1)
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Faith Vs. Science: Is The Devil In The Details? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Little Red Ribbon-Hood & Polispeak

Have you ever asked yourself what America and the world would look like if the abstinence-only advocating...intelligent design demanding...religious right had the power to enact the legislation they preferred? I don't know about you, but the thought of this...

Tagged as: Abstinence-Only, Bible, CDC, Cervical Cancer, Condoms, Contraception, Creationism, Darwin, Discovery Institute, Education, Evolution, Faith, Fossil Record, God, HPV, Intelligent Design, Religion, Science, Scientific Method, Sex, Sex Education, Sexuality, STD's, Teen Pregnancy

Daniel DiRito | June 4, 2008 | 3:21 PM | link | Comments (1)
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Gay Marriage: 63% Say It's A Private Choice; CA Court Rejects Stay genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis & Uncivil Unions

Good news on the gay marriage front from a newly released survey and from the California Supreme Court. A new USA Today Gallup Poll suggests that a large majority of Americans believe that the choice to marry someone of...

Tagged as: Bigotry, California, Faith, Gallup, Gay, Gay Marriage, LGBT, Rapture, Religion, Religious Right, Same-Sex Marriage, Supreme Court, USA Today

Daniel DiRito | June 4, 2008 | 1:05 PM | link | Comments (2)
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Democratic Party Politics: An Exercise In Speculation genre: Polispeak & Six Degrees of Speculation

I'd like to take a moment to offer some emerging speculation on my part. First, let me state that I've intentionally chosen to limit my participation in the animosity that has typified the Democratic primary between Clinton and Obama...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton, Terry McAuliffe, Vice President

Daniel DiRito | June 3, 2008 | 6:08 PM | link | Comments (3)
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Ex-Gay Group To Converge On Orlando During Gay Days genre: Gaylingual & Hip-Gnosis

Call me a conspiracy theorist today. Why? Well the skeptic in me is having a hard time believing that it makes sense to hold a meeting of Love Won Out (the Focus On The Family organization that claims to...

Tagged as: Ex-Gay, Focus On The Family, Gay, James Dobson, LGBT, Love Won Out, Peter LaBarbera, Reparative Therapy

Daniel DiRito | June 3, 2008 | 3:50 PM | link | Comments (1)
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Steve Paikin Panel Discussion - Is Faith Inevitable? genre: Do Not Resuscitate & Hip-Gnosis & Video-Philes

The following video clips comprise a recent Steve Paikin program on Canadian television during which a panel discusses faith and the many beliefs people hold regarding the benefits of having faith. On the contrary, the panel looks at whether...

Tagged as: Death, Faith, God, Mortality, Religion, Science, Steve Paikin, Terror Management Theory

Daniel DiRito | June 3, 2008 | 12:30 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Craig Ferguson Spoofs Sex & The City genre: Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

I've yet to see the new Sex & The CIty movie though I've seen the trailer numerous times on network television. Last night, Craig Ferguson offered the following spoof of the trailer...and I have to say that I'm still...

Tagged as: Craig Ferguson, Humor, Kim Cattrall, Late Late Show, Prince Charles, Samantha, Sex & The City

Daniel DiRito | June 3, 2008 | 11:46 AM | link | Comments (0)
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Voters To McCain: Lose The Bush Cowboy Diplomacy genre: Just Jihad & Polispeak

John McCain likes to ridicule Barack Obama's belief that we should meet with the leaders of nations we consider to be our adversaries. A new Gallup poll might have John McCain rethinking this rhetoric. If the polling is accurate, it...

Tagged as: Barack Obama, Cowboy Diplomacy, Gallup Poll, George Bush, Iran, Iraq, Islam, John McCain, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Daniel DiRito | June 2, 2008 | 6:00 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Marilyn Monroe Would Have Been 82 Years Old Today genre: Happy Remembrances

Tagged as: JFK, Marilyn Monroe, Norma Jean Baker, Norma Jean Mortenson, RFK

Daniel DiRito | June 1, 2008 | 8:53 AM | link | Comments (0)
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