Showing posts with label A&E Network. Show all posts
Showing posts with label A&E Network. Show all posts

Friday, December 20, 2013

Sully Weighs In

Andrew Sullivan has weighed in on the Phil Robertson flap with his usual fantastic insight. This is a fascinating glimpse into the fundamentalist mind.

You’ll notice that, for the fundamentalist, all sin – when it comes down to it - starts with sex. This sexual obsession, as the Pope has rightly diagnosed it, is a mark of neurotic fundamentalism in Islam and Judaism as well as Christianity. And if all sin is rooted in sex, then the homosexual becomes the most depraved and evil individual in the cosmos. So you get this classic statement about sin: “Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there.”

The reason for this has to do with their own hangups about sex. They are actually the ones obsessed with it, not the ones with which they act as God's personal judges. It makes sense when you think about it because without the threat of hellfire they would lose control of themselves and do God knows what.

This emphasis is absolutely not orthodox Christianity. There is nothing primary about sexual sin as such in Christian doctrine. It sure can be powerfully sinful – but it’s not where sin starts. And to posit gay people as the true source of all moral corruption is to use eliminationist rhetoric and demonizing logic to soften up a small minority of people for exclusion, marginalization and, at some point, violence. 

Indeed. To gauge whether or not this is a valid point, simply read the Bible. Compare what sort of emphasis is given to sex as opposed to helping out your fellow man or loving one another despite human failings. 

He simply assumes that all men must be heterosexual, and that making themselves have sex with another man must be so horrifying it mystifies him. It isn’t logical if it were a choice for a straight guy. But it isn’t. All we’re seeing here is the effect of cultural isolation. The only thing I find objectionable about it – and it is objectionable – is the reduction of gay people and our relationships to sex acts. Mr Robertson would not be happy – indeed, rightly be extremely offended – if I reduced his entire family life and marriage to sex with a vagina.

For the fundamentalist, being gay is all about the sex because that's what they are obsessed with...likely because they themselves desire it so much in some way or another. I wonder how many of them have ever thought about the gay people who live and love together in many other ways besides sex. They probably aren't friends with any gay people so, as is usually the case, they are simply ignorant.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

How Did We Miss This Part?

More on the Phil Robertson flap...

In addition to his comments about homosexuality, Robertson also spoke about race and growing up in Louisiana before the civil rights era. "I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once," he told GQ. "Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I'm with the blacks, because we're white trash. We're going across the field. ... They're singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, 'I tell you what: These doggone white people' -- not a word! "Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues," GQ quoted Robertson as saying.

Ah, antebellum myths..

Once Again, The Adolescents

Dean Obeidallah put up a great piece after I had put up my take on the Phil Robertson flap. Much better points than I made...

Attention conservatives: you have the right to hate any group you want. Blacks, gays, Muslims, Jews, other sects of Christians, whoever you like. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court has noted numerous times that the First Amendment guarantees “freedom of thought” in addition to freedoms such as religion and expression. Consequently, you can think as many hateful thoughts as you choose. 

But here’s the thing: if you voice those hateful views publicly, you will be held accountable. That’s called personal responsibility. You would think people on the right would be familiar with that concept since they idolize Ronald Reagan, who famously said, “It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”

And words as well. But adolescents don't get this reality.

More good things...

The First Amendment does not provide you immunity. It simply means that the government can’t prevent you from expressing yourself. But once you say something, you will be called to answer for it. This is the same reason Alec Baldwin was fired last month from his MSNBC show for making gay slurs. (Despite claims from the right, Alec Baldwin was indeed criticized publicly by GLADD for his comments.) And it’s the same reason Martin Bashir was pushed out at MSNBC for his horrible comments about Sarah Palin.

Interesting to read of Palin's reaction...

Never one to miss a chance for publicity, Sarah Palin posted on Facebook: “Free speech is an endangered species. Those ‘intolerants’ hatin’ and taking on the Duck Dynasty patriarch for voicing his personal opinion are taking on all of us.” (Only Palin could claim that a person who has just voiced intolerant comments like Robertson is being attacked by “intolerants.”) Of course, when Martin Bashir made despicable comments about Palin, she didn’t defend him by saying, “Free speech is an endangered species.” Nope, instead she slammed Bashir’s comments as being “vile” and “evil.” And officials at Palin’s political action committee demanded that MSNBC punish Bashir.

Again, adolescent...will they ever grow up?

I would like an answer to Obeidallah's question about the Right and their obsession with other people's anuses. Anyone?

Grounded Duck

I knew it wouldn't be long before one of the stars of A&E's Duck Dynasty spouted off some redneck bullshit about the gays. One of the show's stars, Phil Robertson, apparently didn't get the memo that we live in a tolerant society now and recognize that the Bible is wrong about some things, including homosexuality.

In an interview with GQ, Robertson said. "It seems like, to me, a vagina - as a man - would be more desirable than a man's anus. That's just me. I'm just thinking: There's more there! She's got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I'm saying? But hey, sin: It's not logical, my man. It's just not logical." Asked what, in his mind, is sinful, Robertson replied: "Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men."

Right, because having sex with an animal is the same as two consenting adults...sheesh. A&E has suspended Robertson indefinitely as a result of these comments.

As expected, the right wing media industrial complex has rushed to his defense, citing "freedom of speech." The conundrum for them, however, is that corporations (see: Worship Immediately, no assembly required) are private entities and are free to hire and fire people based on their views. Now, if they suspended Robertson because he was white or heterosexual, then they might have cause for complaint. Or if they refused to provide him with service because he was a man, then we'd definitely have a civil rights violation on our hands. As it stands now, thought, the cries of freedom being taken away are full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

I wonder if Robertson believes that women should be subservient to men as this directive is mentioned far more often than homsexuality...