Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Gay-Hating Baptists Coming to Maryland

The Westboro Baptist Church, of Topeka, Kansas, describes themselves as an "Old School (or, Primitive) Baptist Church. In short, we adhere to the teachings of the Bible, preach against all form of sin ( e.g., fornication, adultery, sodomy), and insist that the doctrines of grace be taught publicly to all men." Their web site has a good amount of information about Calvinism, explaining the precepts of the Baptist faith, including stuff I never knew before.

Pastor Fred Phelps and his congregation will be in Maryland next week, the 27th through the 29th, protesting in Annapolis and Baltimore.

They'll be in Annapolis, because, as they say:
US Naval Academy King George Street and Randall Street The Naval Academy at Annapolis has some fags that graduated from their institution - they formed themselves a group (fags are one group-forming bunch; they group therefore they are. Think Power of the Dog, Psalm 22 and see the Epic Adventure to St. Petersburg, FL for Team 1 on this web page to flesh that out) called USNA OUT - how cute. They are going to make the US Military bow down and kiss their fag butts! Picket information

Uh, I don't know what that means, maybe I need to start going to church on Sundays again, just to understand this lingo.

Then to Baltimore, where they'll stop at Loyola College, because:
The Director of the Laramie Project at Loyola College begged us to come and picket - so being the friendly, cooperative souls that we are, we agreed. The Laramie Project is a tacky piece of melodrama made by fags and for fags. It is designed to assist in the effort to corrupt this nation and anger the Lord your God. This generation of perverts hate their children and are determined to raise them for the devil and send them straight to hell! You have turned the country over to the fags, now they are coming home in body bags! America is doomed!

Having accomplished that, they will head across town to protest the Catholic church:
Besides being the largest Pedophile Machine in the world, the Catholics are a bunch of idolaters. With absolutely NO authority AT ALL, these freaks worship Mary. If Mary were here today, she would stand with us on this picket line and tell you each and every one that you are going STRAIGHT to hell and there is NOTHING you can do about it!

Then, I suppose, a short meeting with Don Dwyer, sign a few petitions for the CRC, and on to the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, which happens to be on Druid Hill Avenue.
A Druid was a priest among the ancient pagan Celts. A member of an order of priests who appear in Welsh and Irish legend as sorcerers. Now that makes the address of this Witch Coven just perfect! Listen up perverts - V Gene Robinson HAS A WIFE; he sloughed her off and his children so he could have sex with a man! What is wrong with you people? Have you no fear of God? 1Ti 3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; God will require this bit of rebellion at your hands when he drop kicks your filthy backsides into hell!

While they're in Baltimore, they figure they'd better protest some people who are the wrong kind of Baptist:
Let us speak of the "Free Will" Baptists. These liars are as free as a frog in a snake?s belly! There can only be one sovereign will that prevails in a moral universe. In this universe, that will is God's! Daniel 4:34-37 ?And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation: And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? At the same time my reason returned unto me; and for the glory of my kingdom, mine honour and brightness returned unto me; and my counsellors and my lords sought unto me; and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added unto me. Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.? Further, you freaks - the Lord Jesus Christ said if you have a free will add one cubit to your stature! Otherwise SHUT UP about your ?free will.?

Um, did you get that? I think I must have missed something.

Then they'll protest another Episcopal Church:
Bishop John Spong is a filthy pervert that spends his days and the position of authority that comes with being an Episcopal bishop trying to pervert this generation single-handedly. He teaches a doctrine of devils that it is OK to be gay. Everyone that puts one cent into the Episcopal monster is going to give an account in the Day of Judgment.

Their web site says that then they'll go to Catholic Cathedral of Mary our Queen, but it doesn't say anything terrible about that church, so I don't really think they'll be going there. I mean, I'm usually tired after a day of teaching the doctrines of grace, aren't you?

Go see their web site: GodHatesFags.com. Look around a little, and then let's talk. The question: should we take these guys seriously? The other question: can we afford not to?

More questions: Is this a different variety of gay-hating from our local Montgomery County groups, or is it just a matter of degree? The Westboro group badmouths the "free will" Baptists -- would somebody tell me something: do these other Baptists hate gay people as much, more, or less than the Westboro group? How about Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, James Dobson, Donald Wildmon -- where do they fit into this, theologically?

My tendency is to think of these guys as total nutcases, but then ... some of this sounds mighty familiar, from our comments sections, for instance. Are Fred Phelps and his group caricatures of Baptist hatred, or are they spokesmen for it?

90 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Go see their web site: GodHatesFags.com. Look around a little, and then let's talk. The question: should we take these guys seriously? The other question: can we afford not to?"

Well, these guys seem to help the gay advocacy movement so if you mean: Will they hurt TTF's cause?- not a chance. If anything they help you.

Maybe you should send them your manual from the GLAAD P.R. seminar. These guys need all the help they can get.

January 25, 2006 10:27 AM  
Anonymous Tish said...

Interesting that they plan to go to an A. M. E. church in Maryland and rant about an Episcopal bishop in New Hampshire.

The African Methodist Episcopal Church has no affiliation with the Anglican or Episcopal Church. The AME church was founded by people of African descent, the church's theological heritage is Methodist, and its governance is Episcopal; that is, the church's leaders are its bishops. It is a proudly independent denomination.

But then, I am not surprized that Phelps hasn't done his homework. He's too busy finding people to harrass.

January 25, 2006 10:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

By the way, somewhere in this week's maze of comments, I think Cilly put a quote from that Dwyer guy. You guys have repeatedly quoted him as saying he wants to incite the hatred of gays. In this quote, Cilly must have slipped, but it said he wants to incite the hatred of gay advocacy groups. That's a little different. Which is the real quote?

January 25, 2006 10:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Then, I suppose, a short meeting with Don Dwyer, sign a few petitions for the CRC,"

From what I've seen, I don't think they'd approve of CRC.

CRC supports compassion and tolerance for those trapped in a gay lifestyle, so these guys probably hate CRC too.

January 25, 2006 10:40 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

By the way, somewhere in this week's maze of comments, I think Cilly put a quote from that Dwyer guy. You guys have repeatedly quoted him as saying he wants to incite the hatred of gays. In this quote, Cilly must have slipped, but it said he wants to incite the hatred of gay advocacy groups. That's a little different. Which is the real quote?

Here's the transcript and an audio file of Dwyer's speech so you can read along as you listen:

http://www.teachthefacts.org/CRCHateFest/DwyerHateFest.html

Christine

January 25, 2006 11:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, Cilly. Now that I read that I don't have as negative a view of that guy. He clearly said he is spreading hate of the homosexual activist. He then says this:

"Do you realize that the homosexual agenda, not homosexuals, but the agenda is a cultural predator?"

I guess you need to read everything and not trust the TTF propaganda machine.

January 25, 2006 11:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymous said,CRC supports compassion and tolerance for those trapped in a gay lifestyle, so these guys probably hate CRC too.



Now anon we all know the difference betweeen lifestyle and orientation. We all know CRC thinks lifestyle and promotes people are trapped in homosexual choices...but do you think non bigots think that?

Of course not..but then again you are here to seek attention as a bigot.

January 25, 2006 12:22 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

TTF has had the full transcript and audio file posted on our website for months. Why does the CRC feel the need to hide their own speakers' presentation from the public?

To make your life easier, the comment you said was buried is now unburied for you here. Have you got any more comments about it?

"cillygoose said...
I think you missed my point, Christine. Jim was saying the Board had to change the rules to keep the opponents from "disrupting" the process. I was just saying that didn't happen before so why would it now? A process to achieve a predetermined result is a little pointless anyway. The whole problem here is that MCPS is trying to follow the letter of the law while subverting it's purpose.

What "didn't happen before" is that opponents didn't disrupt the process before by filing a lawsuit to stop pilot testing of any CAC-approved and BOE-unanimously-approved curriculum. Perhaps the Board felt these rules would prevent another lawsuit disruption. Ensuring another such disruption does not occur is in the best interest of MCPS students because the BOE should spend its funds on educating the students rather than being forced to fend off histrionic lawsuits. The only "predetermined result" sought is to end up with a CAC- and BOE-approved curriculum so it can be field tested, reassessed, improved if necessary, and implemented. In the meantime, our students must limp along with an outdated health education.

Another thing that "didn't happen before" is the tape recording of CAC meetings. Both CRC's and PFOX's representatives taped these meetings as the now rescinded revisions were made. (Peter Sprigg continued this practice; he brought two tape recording machines to tape the first meeting of the new CAC.) Some health education curriculum revision opponents who sat on the now disbanded CAC have said their suggestions were not properly addressed at those meetings and yet to date, these suers refuse to make audio files and corresponding transcripts of their tapes of the CAC meetings available to the public. As a result, we are all left to wonder why these tapes, which supposedly corroborate their claims of mistreatment at CAC meetings, have not been publicized. Let us hear for ourselves.

The fact still remains that the suers got a smaller CAC in their victorious settlement while claiming there are not enough opportunities for community members to have input in the process. If CRS wanted more community members to have input about the curriculum, why did they negotiate a settlement agreement that reduced membership on the committee?

""Well, Dr. Wertsch was a little loose with the facts. Playing to the audience."

Like Sprigg, Knight, Kerns, and Dwyer stuck to the facts and didn't play to the audience last March? Oh that's precious, Man. For those of us who attended both events, there was no contest between which was loosest with the facts and who played to their audience."

I mean, it's sad. The officer of a group that's called "Teach the Facts" is accused of being a little "loose" with the facts and the only defense she offers is "they did it too".


Oops, Man. You apparently missed the fact that recently (Jan. 12, 2006, at 11:40 AM) I reminded our readers that Dr. Wertsch presented the findings of numerous studies about sexuality at the Teachthefacts.org educational forum last September. He discussed studies of humans which show differences in the interstitial nuclei of the anterior hypothalamus and cochlear functioning between heterosexuals and homosexuals. He noted twin studies which show increased incidents of same-sex attraction within familles. Dr. Wertsch noted that there are animal studies which have documented 450 different species that exhibit same-sex mating behaviors and 10% of Canadian geese nests with same sex pairs. (I wonder which "gay activists" converted these animals to adopt a "gay lifestyle" by pushing the "gay agenda.") It is your apparent misunderstanding of the scientific method that allows you to ignore all data that doesn't fit with your preconceived notions of human sexuality.

BTW, I found another quote about the first pheromone study: "Sandra Witelson, an expert on brain anatomy and sexual orientation at the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada, who was not part of the Swedish research team, commented: "It is one more piece of evidence ... that is showing that sexual orientation is not all learned." She said the findings clearly show a biological involvement in sexual orientation." http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_caus6.htm

"Scott Davenport, a gay man who attended the CRC hatefest, said he felt like a Jew in Nazi Germany."

This is classic propaganda from the gay advocacy groups.


If you say so. I defer to your expertise in propaganda.

Scott Davenport is an MCPS parent. Are you? Many MCPS parents attended the CRC's March 2005 meeting to learn what they had to say about the new sex ed curriculum. We were all shocked to find a program that had very little to do with the revised MCPS curriculum and very much to do with James Dobson's desire to foment fear of GLBT people so certain political types can use it to divide and conquer this great nation. Only two CRC speakers addressed the curriculum specifics while the other four lamented gay "lifestyles" and "agendas."

State Delegate Don Dwyer of Anne Arundel County capped it all off for the CRC's March 2005 program when he boasted (emphasis mine), "...I’ve been accused of spreading hate and fear among the churches throughout the State of Maryland. Guilty as charged. I am spreading hate and fear. I am spreading the hate of the homosexual activist and I’m spreading my fear of what’s going to happen to this great state and our great nation..." Statements like this didn't make the GLBT audience members feel welcome.

Well, again, Wertch's presentation failed to qualify, in any way, things that peer-reviewed papers qualify.

Well, again, Dr. Wetch's presentation pulled together numerous peer-reviewed studies of human sexuality research from the poineering studies of Indiana University's Alfred Kinsey to new millenium studies of neurological responses, twins, families, and animals. All these studies indicate that genetic factors likely influence many facets of human sexuality. How many scientific research papers have you peer-reviewed? Where did you study medicine and human sexuality? I don't really expect answers but pose these questions to illustrate why I conclude that Dr. Wertsch's expertise in the areas of peer review and human sexuality research far outweighs yours.

There is bias afoot in the mainstream scientific community.

That's your opinion and you are entitled to it. It is my opinion that you have a bias against GLBT people.

That CRC tried to clarify their position when they disagreed with a speaker and you didn't is to their credit.

It's "to their credit" that I didn't disagree with Dr. Wertsch? And just how did they try "to clarify their position?" Did they, for example, "clarify" that they did not intend to help Don Dwyer with his stated goal of "spreading hate and fear... throughout the State of Maryland?" And while we are on this topic of spreading hate and fear, has anyone noticed the recent increase in hate crimes in Montgomery County? Here it is, a year after CRC started their public campaign of intolerance to prevent the inclusion of information about GLBT people in our health education curriculum and now we have African American churches and schools, menorah displays, and Gay Straight Alliance posters in Churchill High School vandalized with messages of hate. So what is it this time: coincidence or a "100% correlation?"

There's no need for any TTF.org members to clarify anything Dr. Wertsch, the Chairman of the American Medical Association's Advisory Committee on GLBT Matters said. He said nothing hateful. Instead, he presented a wide collection of historical and current research, clearly and concisely.

I don't know that "most experts in the field have concluded that sexual orientation is not a choice,".

Rather than having me cut and paste a long section here, I urge you to check out: http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_prof.htm This is an online resource last updated in 2001 entitled "What do professional groups, researchers and studies say about homosexuality." It provides statements by many professional medical and mental health organizations whose members constitute "most experts in the field."

""CRC wants to keep the sex-ed curriculum in its current state"
I said this in response to Jim's assertion we want to move the clock back."


You said "CRC wants to keep the sex-ed curriculum in its current state" and that's true. Jim's assertion that CRCers want to move the clock back is also true. MCPS students have been forced to learn from a sex ed curriculum that was originally written in the early 1990s. The belief that outdated and inaccurate information should be presented to our kids in health class is one of the CRCs biggest problems. They want to keep, for example, "Hope Is Not A Method," a film produced in 1992 (14 years ago). This film includes information about contraceptives that are longer available on the market. Why do you and the CRC want our teenagers to get outdated and useless information like that? Many of us wonder what kind of parents want to misinform their own teenagers about how to protect themselves from unplanned pregnancy and STDs.

"The new research is inconclusive. If we want to teach kids about that, fine."

In your opinion "the new research is inconclusive." Any single study is often inconclusive. It's the totality of the many avenues of research, for example, from brain structures to brain functions to brain reactions to twin and to animal studies, that help us reach conclusions to determine if hypotheses are supported or not. Dr. Wertsch's presentation at the TTF.org educational forum showed a preponderance of evidence pointing to a genetic influence on sexual orientation.

Here's an interesting fact for you to ponder. The only elected official to attend the CRC's meeting in March 2005 was Mr. Dwyer, a State Delegate from Anne Arundel County. No elected officials attended the CRC's November 2005 public meeting. In contrast, the keynote speaker at Teachthefacts.org's educational forum on September 25, 2005, was Ana Sol Guttierez, a Maryland State Delegate from Montgomery County and a former President of the MCPS Board of Education. In addition, Teachthefacts.org's educational forum was attended by former President and current member of the Montgomery County Council Steve Silverman, former President and Vice President of the Montgomery County Council Ike Leggett, State Senator Sharon Grosfeld, State Delegate Anne Kaiser, and State Delegate Rich Madaleno.

January 23, 2006 3:27 PM"

Christine

January 25, 2006 12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did as you suggested, Jim, and looked around the website. I don't what these guys think they gain by their use of such shocking language. There are some truths in there though. Here's a 20/20 story I hadn't heard of that they provided a link to:

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=277685&page=1

January 25, 2006 12:40 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Anon,

I, for one, am tired of the old Christian canard of "hating the sin but loving the sinner." This Dwyer quote is simply a riff on that.

I don't believe them, or you, when you say it. I don't trust you, and I am insulted by it.

January 25, 2006 1:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon,

"I, for one, am tired of the old Christian canard of "hating the sin but loving the sinner." This Dwyer quote is simply a riff on that.

I don't believe them, or you, when you say it. I don't trust you, and I am insulted by it."

You know, Dana, love is an action. When they say that (and I usually think its a little over the top, too), I think they mean they wish you well.

And the problem is our different view of "well". You probably think wishing you well means indulging you. To me, though, that is indifference.

If you accept for a minute that conservative Christians believe that homosexuals are going to hell and they need to repent, wouldn't be irresponsible for them not to warn them or try to prevent others from following the same path? It certainly would be much easier to say, "who cares what they do?"

You might also want to consider for a moment that hate is not the opposite of love- indifference is.

January 25, 2006 1:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Officers Discharged Under Gay Policy
Troops Dismissed Often Expensive to Train
By LOLITA C. BALDOR, AP

WASHINGTON (Jan. 25) - Hundreds of officers and health care professionals have been discharged in the past 10 years under the Pentagon's policy on gays, a loss that while relatively small in numbers involves troops who are expensive for the military to educate and train.

The 350 or so affected are a tiny fraction of the 1.4 million members of the uniformed services and about 3.5 percent of the more than 10,000 people discharged under the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy since its inception in 1994.

But many were military school graduates or service members who went to medical school at the taxpayers' expense -- troops not as easily replaced by a nation at war that is struggling to fill its enlistment quotas.

"You don't just go out on the street tomorrow and pluck someone from the general population who has an Air Force education, someone trained as a physician, someone who bleeds Air Force blue, who is willing to serve, and that you can put in Iraq tomorrow," said Beth Schissel, who graduated from the Air Force Academy in 1989 and went on to medical school.

Schissel was forced out of the military after she acknowledged that she was gay.

According to figures compiled by the Pentagon and released by the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military, Schissel is one of 244 medical and health professionals discharged from 1994 through 2003 under the policy that allows gays and lesbians to serve as long as they abstain from homosexual activity and do not disclose their sexual orientation. Congress approved the policy in 1993.

There were 137 officers discharged during that period. The database compiled by the Pentagon does not include names, but it appears that about 30 of the medical personnel who were discharged may also be included in the list of officers.

The center -- a research unit of the Institute for Social, Behavioral & Economic Research of the University of California -- promotes analysis of the issue of gays in the military.

"These discharges comprise a very small percentage of the total and should be viewed in that context," said Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke, a Pentagon spokeswoman. She added that troops discharged under the law can continue to serve their country by becoming a private military contractor or working for other federal agencies.

Opponents of the policy on gays acknowledge that the number of those discharged is small. But they say the policy exacerbates a shortage of medical specialists in the military when they are needed the most.

Late last year Army officials acknowledged in a congressional hearing that they are seeing shortfalls in key medical specialties.

"What advantage is the military getting by firing brain surgeons at the very time our wounded soldiers aren't receiving the medical care they need?" said Aaron Belkin, associate professor of political science at the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Overall, the number of discharges has gone down in recent years.

"When we're at war, commanders know that gay personnel are just as important as any other personnel," said Nathaniel Frank, senior research fellow at the Center. He said that in some instances commanders knew someone in their unit was gay but ignored it.

The overall discharges peaked in 2000 and 2001, on the heels of the 1999 murder of Pfc. Barry Winchell, who was bludgeoned to death by a fellow soldier at Fort Campbell, Ky., who believed Winchell was gay. About one-sixth of the discharges in 2001 were at that base.

Officials did not provide estimates on the cost of a military education or one for medical personnel. However, according to the private American Medical Student Association, average annual tuition and fees at public and private U.S. medical schools in 2002 were $14,577 and $30,960, respectively.

Early last year the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, estimated it cost the Pentagon nearly $200 million to recruit and train replacements for the nearly 9,500 troops that had to leave the military because of the policy. The losses included hundreds of highly skilled troops, including translators, between 1994 through 2003.

Opponents of the policy are backing legislation in the House sponsored by Rep. Marty Meehan, D-Mass., that would repeal the law. But that bill -- with 107 co-sponsors -- is considered a longshot in the Republican-controlled House."

January 25, 2006 2:03 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Anon,

I'm really sorry, but you have to get over your Christian self-centeredness.

I don't believe any Christian wishes me well when they say things like that. Yes, they believe I'm going to hell, but they show zero respect for me because they refuse to accept that I don't believe in their hell, or any hell for that matter, nor do I want their solicitous input in my life.

It is reasons such as this that we have the separation of church and state. No one, not a Christian or anyone else, has any business trying to save me, convert me, or disrespect my choice of belief or non-belief.

And the opposite of love is hate. Christian indifference would be a lot closer to love than their meddling is. It would be a sign of respect. It's one of the principles upon which this country works -- "t'aint nobody's business what I do (or believe)."

January 25, 2006 2:18 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Ah, we're at war, so gays are as useful as straights, as long as they can perform brain surgery. The Bush administration disgusts me. I had actually considered volunteering to go to Iraq when I read about all the eye injuries being suffered by the troops because Rumsfeld thought adequate eye protection was unnecessary. Somebody got that taken care of, thankfully.

January 25, 2006 2:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It is reasons such as this that we have the separation of church and state. No one, not a Christian or anyone else, has any business trying to save me, convert me, or disrespect my choice of belief or non-belief."

Everybody has the right to try to save you, convert you or disrespect you. It's got absolutely nothing to do with church and state. You've become so confused by your rhetoric that you now think you have the right to only hear what you want to hear.

January 25, 2006 2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And the opposite of love is hate. Christian indifference would be a lot closer to love than their meddling is. It would be a sign of respect. It's one of the principles upon which this country works -- "t'aint nobody's business what I do (or believe).""

You're wrong and if you really respected people, you'd let them take off their selt belt.

January 25, 2006 2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don na ask and Don na tell:


Michael Jackson Spotted in Robe and Veil
By HASAN JAMALI, AP

MANAMA, Bahrain (Jan. 25) - Pop star Michael Jackson was spotted shopping in a Bahrain mall on Wednesday, hiding his face behind a veil and donning a black robe traditionally worn by women in the Gulf.

The entertainer with three children, apparently his own, who also had their faces covered by dark scarves. An unidentified woman accompanied them.

The pop star, who seems to be settling in the Persian Gulf, was seen leaving Marina Mall in the Bahrain capital, holding a child by the hand. On the way out a back door, he shook hands with security guards.

The woman - also dressed in the black robe called an abaya, jeans and a scarf that partially covered her face - had the two other children. All three children were wrapped in black scarves and wore yellow shirts and sweatpants or khakis without robes.

Since his June acquittal on child molestation charges in California, Jackson has made several trips to Bahrain as a guest of Sheik Abdullah bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the son of Bahrain's king. He reportedly was negotiating a position as a consultant with a Bahrain-based company that plans to set up theme parks and music academies in the Middle East.

On the mall outing, Jackson wore an abaya, pants, a white shirt and men's shoes. His head and face were wrapped in a black veil and he also wore black gloves.

The veil, abaya and gloves were of a style typically worn by conservative Bahraini women.

The woman asked photographers to respect their privacy and told them they were scaring the children before they left in a white car with darkened windows.

AAJ Holdings Ltd., owned by Ahmed Abu Bakr Janahi, said it wants to hire the 47-year-old Jackson to give advice on setting up entertainment businesses. He reportedly is building a home in Bahrain, an island nation in the Persian Gulf linked to Saudi Arabia by a bridge.

In November, Jackson stirred controversy in the United Arab Emirates by entering the ladies room in a shopping mall. His publicist said Jackson, who arrived in Dubai as the guest of a champion rally driver, did not understand the Arabic sign on the door and left the bathroom when he realized his mistake.

But local newspapers reported that the performer was applying makeup in the woman's toilets in a Dubai mall. Jackson's host, Mohammed bin Sulayem, dismissed the story as rumor.

January 25, 2006 3:35 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Anon,

The only people interested in "saving, converting and disrespecting" in this country are fundamentalist Christians. Why not try to forcibly convert me, while you're at it? Waterboarding is now legal. Care to try?

And take off your seat belt, for all I care.

January 25, 2006 3:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Why not try to forcibly convert me, while you're at it?"

It's unscriptural.

January 25, 2006 3:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Waterboarding is now legal. Care to try?"

This is not going to be in the new curriculum, is it?

January 25, 2006 3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not to try and get anything productive to happen, but does anyone know of any attempts to counterprotest this group when they come to spread their hate?

I was recently informed of this, and I would very much like to show them that they are opposed.

January 25, 2006 4:52 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon-who-wants-to-protest: are you the same Anon, or a different one, from the one who's been trolling here? I will interpret your question very differently, depending.

JimK

January 25, 2006 5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My apologies: I am a different one. I simply have no Blogger account, so I have not logged in.

I have previous knowledge of Phelps (his whole Matthew Shepard crusade), and will be helping with a local performance of The Laramie Project in a few months. Ever since learning of him, he has boiled my blood, so the opportunity to make a presence is quite attractive.

Sorry for the confusion.


- Alex

January 25, 2006 5:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alex

Did you check out the ABC News link I posted in the comments today? The Matthew Shepard story was apparently a hoax. He was killed by a drug-crazed lunatic that he already knew. There's a guy who is claiming to have had sex with the killer. The killer and Shephard had been seen parting together many times before. The gay persecution angle was made up by some of the gays in the community- and gobbled up by the media.

Obviously a big tragedy but the lesson is more connected to meth craze in the community than gay persecution.

January 25, 2006 5:36 PM  
Anonymous Indignant in MD said...

Anon, that lie is pure bullshit, and you should be ashamed of yourself for using something like that to promote your ideological agenda.

Just shameful.

January 25, 2006 5:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate to bring this up but a full day after I requested that Jim disclose what advice his group got from their root group, GLAAD, and no information has been forthcoming.

I haven't ridden Jim to hard for it because he's obviously embarassed about the whole thing. Maybe some of you others who went to the meeting should help him save face and reveal the plan.

You might as well let it out now. Later this year, this will be a hot topic and reporters won't quit til they get their story. Tell us now and it won't look so bad. Remember how humiliated you felt last May when you lost the court case? You wouldn't want all those old feelings to come back again.

January 25, 2006 5:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anon, that lie is pure bullshit, and you should be ashamed of yourself for using something like that to promote your ideological agenda.

Just shameful."

You're saying ABC News lied?

January 25, 2006 5:44 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, you're an idiot. Look, here's what GLAAD showed us:

http://www.glaad.org/programs/index.php

It came right to the top of a Google search, no problem. You want to make TTF into some deep dark conspiracy. You're a moron, and, especially if I find out you're the same Anon who just wrote that junk about Matthew Shepard, I'm about to start deleting your idiocy.

JimK

January 25, 2006 5:47 PM  
Anonymous Indignant in MD said...

You're saying ABC News lied?

Yes, no doubt.

http://www.matthewshepard.org/involved_2020.html

January 25, 2006 5:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Indignant in MD said...
Anon, that lie is pure bullshit, and you should be ashamed of yourself for using something like that to promote your ideological agenda.

Just shameful."

You know, Jim asked us to look at the site and this was one of the links I saw. I find this group's name offensive and wasn't inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt but the story comes from a reputable news source- ABC, the target of anti-gay boycotts.

Again, did they lie, to your knowledge?

January 25, 2006 5:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Indignant in MD said...
You're saying ABC News lied?

Yes, no doubt."

I read this link you provided. It seemed a little confused. I understand that the killers may lack credibility but they have nothing to gain by changing the story. What was all that talk about a plea bargain?

The problem here is your source has a conflict of interest. This foundation makes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on this cause, largely exploiting the Shephard story. Do you have a retraction from ABC or any other more credible source?

January 25, 2006 6:14 PM  
Blogger Alex K. said...

These guys protested at funerals.

It's just obscene and extremely rude.

End of story.

What's there to discuss?

These people are heartless, arrogant idiots. Nothing more to it.

January 25, 2006 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Indignant in MD said...

your source has a conflict of interest

Anon, you are the one with a conflict of interest. The people who put up this web site are the guy's family. You can call that a conflict of interest, if it promotes your ugly viewpoint, but I call it "thicker than water."

I take it we'll be seeing you with the God Hates Fags crowd in Baltimore and Annapolis?

January 25, 2006 7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hateful anon will be leading the "Anti-Gay Brigade" where all the hatefilled bigots belong.

freebird

January 25, 2006 7:42 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Alex

From the emails I've seen, it sounds like people don't want to risk creating a violent scene with a counter-demonstration. I believe some religious leaders may be planning to make a statement, but it sounds like most people are planning to stay away from these events.

JimK

January 25, 2006 9:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okie dokie. I can't find anything, but I've seen somewhere that apparently almost every one of his appearances involves a counter demonstration at some point.

Alright. Maybe I'll get to see a real live crazy nutjob protest when we do the Laramie Project. Still want to see one :).

Alrighty then. Thanks a bunch.


- Alex

January 25, 2006 9:35 PM  
Blogger digger said...

When he came to the millenium march, we all walked by and sang "Jesus loves me." It was fun.

Robert

January 26, 2006 7:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anon, you are the one with a conflict of interest. The people who put up this web site are the guy's family. You can call that a conflict of interest, if it promotes your ugly viewpoint, but I call it "thicker than water.""

Indignant:

You're engaging in a bunch of circular logic. Unless you have so independent source, I'd say the ABC story is true.

The refutation on the Foundation site is not really substantive. It's true that Shephard's mother is the President of the Foundation. She takes a large salary in that role and makes more money giving speeches about gay-bashing across the country. Even if she didn't, a mother isn't exactly the most objective source. Chris McCray's mother thinks it's maryland's fault that her son didn't do his homework.

False media reports are big news these days so I'm sure if ABC news had said something false it would be all over the media.

I always thought the Shephard story was heart-breaking. Until Jim directed me to this site, I had no idea that there was more to the story. I don't countenance this group's shockingly rude language, but it looks like they have a point with this Shephard case.

January 26, 2006 9:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"From the emails I've seen, it sounds like people don't want to risk creating a violent scene with a counter-demonstration. I believe some religious leaders may be planning to make a statement, but it sounds like most people are planning to stay away from these events."

Is there any history of violence with this group or is this just idle speculation? You guys should thank the group for coming. They are their own worst enemy and may even win you a few votes in some upcoming battles. (although probably not, legislators don't go with their feelings- even, disgust; there are more important things- like money).

January 26, 2006 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"When he came to the millenium march, we all walked by and sang "Jesus loves me." It was fun.

Robert"

Was there any violence, Robert?

January 26, 2006 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, did you guys see the Post this morning?

They say Virginia's apparently going to stay in the mainstream because the constitutional amendment to prevent a gay version of marriage is sailing onto an upcoming referendum.

Then they say the Dems in Maryland are trying to block a gay version of marriage from becoming legal below the Mason-Dixon line.

Then they say heartland Dems are hesitating to vote against an anti-abortion Supreme Court nominee who has been endorsed by both the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal.

I'm glad you guys told me the tide has turned against conservatives because you'd never know it from reading the right-wing press coverage in the Post.

January 26, 2006 10:10 AM  
Anonymous Tish said...

I'd like to point out that the Westboro Baptist Church does not represent any church's position but their own. Their behavior should not be used to judge any other Baptist church.

The Phelps crew (the church members are mostly Rev. Phelps's relatives) are essentially professional protesters. They know the rules and they stick to them, confining themselves to doing emotional and intellectual violence. There have been many many instances of counter protests and I do not know of any that have erupted into physical violence.

I think that local officials are always concerned that the Westboro message will infuriate someone so much that a violent reaction is possible. Given that these people are now picketing the funerals of service men and women who have been killed in the middle east, that is a very reasonable fear. I certainly wouldn't feel safe standing at the entrance to the U. S. Naval Academy carrying a sign that says, "God Hates America."

In Annapolis, the Human Relations Commission is not planning a counter protest, but a clergy press conference will be held before the Westboro demonstration, and a leafleting program will be held the day after.

I know people other than Robert who have had fun protesting Westboro. A friend of mine wore an angel costume to block Westboro and their signs from view outside a theater where "Laramie Project" was being performed. He had fun and he had a good learning experience in civil demonstration.

January 26, 2006 10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the informative post, Tish. I'd never heard of this group until Jim brought them up. Can't believe they think they would ever get a positive reaction from anyone with their tactics and rhetoric.

You know, Jim tries to characterize opponents of the rejected curriculum as wackos and nuts. He scours the landscape of the continental United States trying to find examples. It's notable how far he has to go find a small group that qualifies.

January 26, 2006 10:51 AM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Jim hasn't had to go very far, Anon. You're all right here, the few of you.

You still haven't answered his question, though. How different are you and Retta and Michelle from the Phelpses and Dobsons of this world, other than tactically speaking? Do you feel in your hearts as they all do, and you're just more diplomatic (though compared to Phelps that's not difficult. It's a typical Republican tactic, and a very effective one at that -- amplify the extremists to make the slightly less extreme seem moderate)?

January 26, 2006 11:11 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

"I'd never heard of this group until Jim brought them up."

Reverend Phelps' clan has been disrupting funerals for more than a decade.

"People have hoped for years that the obsessively anti-gay protesters would go away. Yet the Phelps clan travels the country, and even overseas, to protest anything it deems not hostile enough to homosexuality. (The Kansas City Star, and the funerals of former employees, have been picketed at times.)

Most recently, the peculiar Phelps logic has shifted the pickets to funerals of Americans killed in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Phelps’ church says the deaths are the penance of a nation too accommodating of homosexuality or, alternatively, that the deaths of U.S. servicemen and woman are divine retaliation for a small bomb that caused about $1,800 damage in 1995 outside the Topeka home of one of Phelps’ daughters.

Legislators in two states are pushing laws to bar protests at funerals. At least one Tennessee county has adopted a resolution to keep picketers away from mourners.

That has triggered warnings of a First Amendment showdown. While Phelps family’s message strikes many people as offensive (one of their signs reads “Thank God For Dead Soldiers”), it is decidedly political.

In 1995, a federal judge threw out a Kansas law that prohibited picketing outside funerals because it was too vague. With Phelps in mind, legislators quickly adopted a law specifically barring pickets an hour before and two hours after a funeral. (Missouri has no law regulating picketing at funerals.)"

http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/news/13087184.htm

This excerpt is from one of the 109,000 articles that came up when I googled for "Phelps family, military funerals, protests"

Christine

January 26, 2006 11:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You still haven't answered his question, though. How different are you and Retta and Michelle from the Phelpses and Dobsons of this world, other than tactically speaking?"

I don't think I've been asked this question before. You seem to assume me and Retta and Michelle are some unified bunch and want to juxtapose our unified views against the views of others. It's an incorrect assumption and you'll have ask those two about their views.

As for me, I don't recall ever hearing anything that Dobson said that I disagree with and I think highly of him. Still, obviously, I wouldn't say I agree with anyone completely so if you got a particular idea in mind, ask it. If you think he's a wacko and a nut, I disagree.

As for this group that Jim has dug up, I don't know much about them so you'd have to ask me point by point. From what I've seen, I think they seem strangely gleeful that gays are going to hell or that sinners get whats coming to them. Makes me wonder if they agree with Christian doctrine that all are sinners and will someday stand before God.

They also seem to overemphasize homosexuality's importance. All bible-believing Christians would consider homosexuality a sin but I've never understood why it would be considered so much more horrible than say ignoring the needs of the homeless or lying on your mortgage application. These people seem to consider homosexuality the ultimate sin.

You may think those that oppose the homosexual agenda are nuts (although, personally, I think you've been advised by GLAAD to pursue this thought constantly) but the truth is we represent the mainstream as attested to by the state politicians currently lining up on both sides of the Potomac to make sure not to be seen supporting the gay agenda. If nut or wacko has any meaning, TTF fits the definition. I post comments here and I feel like Oliver Douglas.

January 26, 2006 11:56 AM  
Blogger digger said...

At the millenium march they were surrounded by police, as was also the case at a Capital Pride parade they crashed once too. Ast that event there was a hubbub where all the police ran up, but I missed what happened.

Westboro and Phelps are extreme, and of course don't represent all but a very few Christians. But when people say that gays are recruiting youth, or talk as Falwell does about consuming semen and feces (I've heard this at Fairfax School Board meetings), it really isn't that different. There really are a fair number of people out there who hate lgbt people. I remember my pastor once speaking wistfully about stoning in response to same-gender sexuality, and speculating that the anti-christ may be gay. Certainly PFOX at one point took the position that gays couldn't be christians. Whatever the outcome of civil rights and sex ed battles, some things won't change.

Robert

January 26, 2006 12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Yet, for the most part, Brokeback's rise as a rich source of hilarity has been a positive sign, according to Neil Guiliano, president of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. "When a person or a piece of artistic work reaches a certain level of acceptability, it's OK to joke about it. The whole buzz is this is a great movie."

Besides, as Clinton observes, "I don't think gays are so precious that a few homophobic jokes can take us down."

And, on the plus side, "I see great drag shows coming this year. Just imagine 'Climb Every Brokeback Mountain.'"

Keep this is mind over the next week or so.

January 26, 2006 12:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But when people say that gays are recruiting youth,"

Can we say that you want to encourage kids that are already gay? What about questioning kids, what do gays think? Gays don't care if anyone else is like them?

"or talk as Falwell does about consuming semen and feces"

Aren't both of these, especially the first, common practices among gays?

"(I've heard this at Fairfax School Board meetings), it really isn't that different."

actually, it is

"There really are a fair number of people out there who hate lgbt people."

Hate defined: anyone who doesn't completely support the gay agenda.

"I remember my pastor once speaking wistfully about stoning in response to same-gender sexuality,"

"Speaking wistfully"...are you saying he supported the idea?

"and speculating that the anti-christ may be gay."

Some people think this because prophecy says the anti-christ won't be married. "May be" is not much of an implication though.

"Certainly PFOX at one point took the position that gays couldn't be christians."

You can't actively support Christianity and homosexuality. They're mutually exclusive.

"Whatever the outcome of civil rights and sex ed battles, some things won't change."

That's what I've been trying to tell these guys. They think the tide has changed.

January 26, 2006 12:41 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

>"and speculating that the anti-christ may be gay."

Some people think this because prophecy says the anti-christ won't be married. "May be" is not much of an implication though.<

Oh, I didn't know it was considered opinion that Jesus was gay.

January 26, 2006 1:02 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

>You can't actively support Christianity and homosexuality. They're mutually exclusive.<

And you're an idiot, with zero knowledge of history and understanding of human affairs. Sometimes you just boggle my mind.

January 26, 2006 1:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

">You can't actively support Christianity and homosexuality. They're mutually exclusive.<

And you're an idiot, with zero knowledge of history and understanding of human affairs. Sometimes you just boggle my mind."

Glad we can occasionally get your mental juices flowing. Could you elaborate?

January 26, 2006 2:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 26, 2006 2:11 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Work on that spelling, Anon.

JimK

January 26, 2006 2:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thought I got it by you, Jim. An was insult for an insult. I'll sent it directly.

January 26, 2006 2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Oh, I didn't know it was considered opinion that Jesus was gay."

According to Da Vinci Code, a sophisticated work by an erudite scholar, he wasn't. Which person whose name starts with D-A-N are you going to believe, Brown or Byers?

January 26, 2006 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...

Here's a 20/20 story I hadn't heard of that they provided a link to:

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=277685&page=1"

Clever move PeteAnon, but I ain't buying it.

Did you thank your pal Tony for taking down your 12-03-04 article from his website?

Good thing that Google caches these things for us.

http://tinyurl.com/893y6

Full Disclosure

January 26, 2006 3:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although I think highly of Peter and his association, I'm not him and I'm not a regular readers of his website. Thanks for the link though. It had a pretty good synopsis of the ABC News story so here it is:

"The ABC report indicated that Shepard met his killers in a bar, where Shepard (a user of methamphetamine) asked for a ride home because he was drunk, then offered his eventual killer Aaron McKinney (a dealer) sex in exchange for drugs. Some witnesses told the network that Shepard and McKinney were already acquainted through the drug culture, and that McKinney himself was bisexual. Although McKinney himself denied both of those points in his own interview with ABC, Shepard's proposition to McKinney would make more sense if both were true. However, McKinney and his accomplice Russell Henderson decided to rob Shepard instead. The brutality of the beating that McKinney gave Shepard was because McKinney was coming down off a five-day drug high--not because of any anti-homosexual rage.

The new evidence does not make Shepard's murder any less heinous (and FRC was one of the first groups to condemn it). All violent crimes should be vigorously prosecuted and punished, regardless of their motivation--without giving special protections to some victims of violence over other victims. But we should question a pro-homosexual movement that relies on mythology rather than truth to argue its case."

Has anyone yet found an objective and credible source which refutes the ABC News story?

January 26, 2006 3:18 PM  
Blogger digger said...

Anonymous said:

"or talk as Falwell does about consuming semen and feces"

Aren't both of these, especially the first, common practices among gays?

Dear friend: you speak again as though you were gay, or know a ton of gay people with whom you've had intimate discussions. I don't think you are, and I don't think you have. This is what people mean by prejudice: making pejorative generalizations about people without enough information to justify those generalizations. Making gross generalizations about people may not be hate, but it is certainly very unkind; things like that encourage hate.

About recruiting youth: some gay adults support gay youth, but most are very wary about any involvement or hint of involvement with anything to do with youth. We've all heard the (hate-filled) comments about recruitment, and the even more dangerous statements about child-molesting. It turns out to be difficult to get volunteers for youth events, and most adult organizations (even activist organizations), at least in Virginia, will not meet with youth (some will contribute money to youth prgrams, though, and scholarships are popular). The reality is that gay adults have been frightended or insulted enough that the support for gay youth is limited (this extends even to stopping blatant harassment in school hallways).

Anonymous, you just don't know enough about gay people. The invitation to dinner still stands. My email is rrigbyjr@yahoo.com.

Do me a personal favor; don't be sarcistic in response to my posts. It hurts my feelings.

Robert

January 26, 2006 3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perfect illustration of spin:

"Although McKinney himself denied both of those points in his own interview with ABC, Shepard's proposition to McKinney would make more sense if both were true."

FD

January 26, 2006 3:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

digger said:
"or talk as Falwell does about consuming semen and feces"


Anonymous said:
"Aren't both of these, especially the first, common practices among gays?"


You'd be surprised. On the whole, I would expect gays to be more unlikely to consume semen due to their vigilance of STIs. Consuming feces is an uncommon practice, but there are homosexuals and heterosexuals that choose to practise it. Frequency of such acts haven't been measured, and any assumption would be ignorant. As digger has just mentioned, inform youself first before making generalisations.

January 26, 2006 3:45 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

So, Anon, tell me how I insulted you. I admit I called you an idiot. Why? because of this quote: "You can't actively support Christianity and homosexuality. They're mutually exclusive."

Where do you come off saying that? Are you the Pope? Don't you yet realize that there are Christians on this blog, and a very large majority in Montgomery County, who do just that. Where do you come off dictating such nonsense?

And then you think you're somehow cute by calling me by a man's name? That there is somehow a moral equivalence here?

January 26, 2006 7:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Dear friend: you speak again as though you were gay, or know a ton of gay people with whom you've had intimate discussions. I don't think you are, and I don't think you have. This is what people mean by prejudice: making pejorative generalizations about people without enough information to justify those generalizations. Making gross generalizations about people may not be hate, but it is certainly very unkind; things like that encourage hate."

Robert,

I asked if it was true or not, and also implied that I thought it was so I don't see what the complaint is. I left myself open to correction, and I don't think you corrected me.
I also didn't think the idea that homosexuals practice oral and anal sex was a trade secret.
I have known a number of gays over the years, especially when I was younger, but we didn't talk much about sexual practices. I do read and surf the net quite a bit. You can find a lot.

"About recruiting youth: some gay adults support gay youth, but most are very wary about any involvement or hint of involvement with anything to do with youth. We've all heard the (hate-filled) comments about recruitment, and the even more dangerous statements about child-molesting. It turns out to be difficult to get volunteers for youth events, and most adult organizations (even activist organizations), at least in Virginia, will not meet with youth (some will contribute money to youth prgrams, though, and scholarships are popular). The reality is that gay adults have been frightended or insulted enough that the support for gay youth is limited (this extends even to stopping blatant harassment in school hallways)."

That's probably for the best. Any kid should be protected from any kind of harassment. But these clubs in schools now that are centered around sexual orientation are not healthy.

"Anonymous, you just don't know enough about gay people. The invitation to dinner still stands. My email is rrigbyjr@yahoo.com."

I'll probably skip the get together. I was considering it but I googled you and find you're not just another gay guy but quite politically active. No offense, but I don't really trust political types. Might send you an e-mail sometime though.

"Do me a personal favor; don't be sarcistic in response to my posts. It hurts my feelings."

You'll probably think I'm being sarcastic but if you want to convince me that gays are just like everyone else, I wouldn't say something like that. It sounds gay.

January 26, 2006 8:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You'd be surprised. On the whole, I would expect gays to be more unlikely to consume semen due to their vigilance of STIs. Consuming feces is an uncommon practice, but there are homosexuals and heterosexuals that choose to practise it. Frequency of such acts haven't been measured, and any assumption would be ignorant. As digger has just mentioned, inform youself first before making generalisations."

I didn't make a generalization. I asked a question based on Robert's complaint about a generalization. Actually, there have been some studies showing that the commitment of gays to preventing STIs is waning. They (and, of course, not every single one) consider safe sex to be not as high-quality an experience as unsafe sex. They prefer going what they call "bareback".

I also asked if these practices were common- not universal. Robert, who to my knowledge is the only male homosexual who contributes here, did not answer the question.

January 26, 2006 8:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So, Anon, tell me how I insulted you."

When you make a blasphemous remark about Jesus Christ, I take umbrage. My religious beliefs are centered around a personal relationship with Christ.

January 26, 2006 8:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Perfect illustration of spin:

"Although McKinney himself denied both of those points in his own interview with ABC, Shepard's proposition to McKinney would make more sense if both were true."

FD"

There were other witnesses that said McKinney was bisexual. One said he had sex with him. Obviously, someone doing a life sentence in prison would deny it.

January 26, 2006 8:55 PM  
Blogger andrear said...

Anon- anyone who can even attempt to support Phelps in any way as you seem to have done cannot be a decent person. Of course, the anon comments are so numerous- Idon't know what you claim to stand for. Surely you aren't the person who claims to love God and be a Christian.

Not only do I think Phelps and his family (his "church") are bad people- they represent the real evil in this world. I don't believe in Satan as the evil in our world- just in people who choose to hate and do evil and bring up their children to do the same.

January 26, 2006 9:10 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

I am fairly certain that all the folks I know at CRC would also think protesting at a funeral was, to use Alex's words, "incredibly tacky".

So we are all in agreement.

Completely off subject, but I have to ask Jim if he has read Michael Crichton's latest book, "state of fear" - I think Dana had some statement before about global warming. This has a fascinating discussion (and brings quite the conservative/liberal perspective to boot).

January 26, 2006 9:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"anyone who can even attempt to support Phelps in any way as you seem to have done cannot be a decent person"

In what way have I "even" attempted to support this guy?

Being directed to the site from your pal, Jim, I found something from a link on his site that seems to be notable but it really had nothing at all to do with his group. It was from a reputable national news organization. And there has been no refutation of what it says here. Are you who can't refute it part of the evil, too? How about ABC News? Are they part of the real evil? It's pretty obvious there is little concern for facts at this ironically named organization.

Of course, the reason Jim put up this site belonging to some rude, insensitive lunatic is somehow to associate him with CRC- you're just finishing up the strategy. That's transparent to anyone who has or will read this.

Jim searched the country and found one lonely nut with a small band of followers, who it now turns out are mostly family members, to try to prove his case that his opponents are nuts. That he had to go so far and found so little is telling.

January 26, 2006 9:53 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Hi Theresa.

No I haven't read Crichton's latest book, but I have read that he argues that global warming is some kind of political scare tactic or something ... right? As a subscriber to Science, I can tell you that the people who study the topic don't feel that way, but whatever, he's a novelist, not a scientist (though I believe he is an MD, isn't he?).

On a tangent, I will humbly note that his previous novel, Prey, was largely based on my research, combined with some nanotechnology concepts.

JimK

January 26, 2006 9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Completely off subject, but I have to ask Jim if he has read Michael Crichton's latest book, "state of fear" -"

Watch out, Theresa. Jim has accused Crichton of stealing his ideas- don't get him started.

The point MC makes about advocacy groups which will do anything to perpetuate their cause is certainly relevant here, though. People who run those organizations don't want their problems solved. They'd be out of business and out of jobs.

January 26, 2006 9:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"No I haven't read Crichton's latest book, but I have read that he argues that global warming is some kind of political scare tactic or something ... right? As a subscriber to Science, I can tell you that the people who study the topic don't feel that way, but whatever, he's a novelist, not a scientist (though I believe he is an MD, isn't he?)."

Actually, his point is not that global warming hasn't taken place. His point is that there is no proof that it is caused by fossil fuels being burned and discharged. He provides lots of stats and studies and scientists who back him up.

January 26, 2006 10:02 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

OK, whatever, like I said, I didn't read it.

And -- I never said Crichton "stole" my ideas. I would never say that, and don't appreciate your lying about it. Crichton cited me in his reference section, which is more than most novelists would do.

JimK

January 26, 2006 10:07 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

BTW, I see in Google searches that I did mention Crichton once back in May, and once in September. I apologize for repeating myself, didn't mean to sound like I was bragging or anything.

JimK

January 26, 2006 10:18 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Two points, Anon. One, since I'm not a Christian any comments I make about Jesus cannot be considered blasphemous. He's just another Jewish guy to me, though a very wise one.

You mentioned the antichrist possibly being gay because he wasn't married, and I repeated back to you the conventional wisdom that Jesus wasn't married. I inferred he might have been gay. I don't have a problem with that; he hung around with a lot of women which wasn't socially acceptable in those days, and if he didn't have heterosexual relationships, then, well . . . And he also didn't condemn homosexuality at all, which is more to the point.

But it was then you who mentioned "The Da Vinci Code" (I may be the only perosn in this country who hasn't read it) to suggest he actually was married. So, which is it? And would it not be blasphemous for YOU to suggest he had heterosex?

The more important point here is the mess you create when you talk about personal religions when dealing with public policy. Accusing me of blasphemy makes you sound just like a mullah in Afghanistan.

January 26, 2006 11:09 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Anon,

You know another amazing thing about you guys is that you politicize everything -- nothing is safe from the lens of your victimological perspective.

Would it really hurt you to admit that the overwhelming scientific consensus supports the human contribution to global warming? How does that affect your religious perspective? Aren't Christians supposed to be stewards of the earth?

When you go to a physician, do you check to make sure she's not a Harvard grad? Do you question the politics of those who make your insulin, or the religious background of the EKG technicians or the makers of digoxin?

You sound just like a cultist who is in need of a little deprogramming. The only thing we seem to agree upon is that Fred Phelps is beyond the pale. Now that's progress.

January 26, 2006 11:28 PM  
Blogger Theresa said...

Jim -
Yes I remember you had mentioned "Prey" - that was why I was curious if you had read "state of fear".

My daughter was writing a paper for her highschool class pretty much echoing what Dana just said - global warming is well known, well accepted, etc.

Anyway, the book essentially questions that whole idea - points out that the only part of Antartica (sp) melting is the peninsula which is like only 2% and the other 98% is getting colder and thicker. And that though CO2 is definitely increasing, it is not nearly as clear that the temperature is. Graph after graph where it shows the temperature being the same for years in various parts of Europe. Noticeable increases not consistent and much less than predicted 10 years ago - and a lot of warming due to the urban factor (ie, densely populated cities are clearly going to be warmer). And different ways to interpret the data depending on how many years you go back.. if you go all the way back to 1820 it actually levels out as opposed to if you start in the 1900's, etc.

So, I asked my husband who worked on designing the computer systems for EOSDIS (the NASA satellite system tracking all the weather data) and he said that the scientists he worked with said some studies show the earth might be getting trending toward the next ICE age and in that case any global warming might slow that down...

The book cites study after study (and Crichton states the footnotes are acccurate - I suspect the graphs are too) and talks about how the media twists the data. I had really never thought of it as a political issue.

The whole thing was fascinating and I definitely saw some parallels in this book and our discussions....ie, how studies and data can be presented in different ways depending on the bias of the person researching the information and their expectations.

Which is why I was very curious to see if Jim had read this one.

January 27, 2006 12:18 AM  
Blogger JimK said...

Climate, especially climate on the global scale scale, presents a chaotic time series. The question is whether there is a trend in the time series, and that is a very difficult kind of question to answer. Because we are sampling over a short time, it is necessary to interpret by making inferences about causal relationships within the system, and there is a lot of ambiguity in the interpretation, including the fact that nature has mechanisms for correcting a lot of anomalies without outside influence.

There are people with business interests in the answer to that question. For instance, if we are making the earth's climate inhospitable through pollution, then it may be advisable for manufacturers to clean up their emissions in order to try to undo the damage and reverse the trend. That would be expensive in the short run, and so those same manufacturers oppose the idea and "hope" the time series is not indicating global warming.

And that's the wrong way to interpret the data.

I can't think of who has an economic interest in mistakenly believing that there is a disastrous warming trend, but the point is, it's not a political question but a scientific one. Yet our government has purged evidence of global warming from online data sets ... not a good sign, in my eyes.

JimK

January 27, 2006 6:58 AM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Ah, Theresa, welcome back.

I don't recall if I ever received the information you said you'd be sending me several weeks ago when you last appeared. No matter.

I find it curious that you picked up a novel by an author known for scary medical stories, and find it "fascinating." Because it fits right wing talking points and what you believe is a wedge into the sceince of human sexual development.

Have you ever picked up a copy of Science or Nature and read stories there about climate change and found them fascinating as well? How about articles about human sexual development? Have you read either of the books I've been hawking here, by Rudacille and Roughgarden? Real science, unlike Chrichton, and fascinating as well. But contrary to your morality, so you ignore it.

Jim has repeatedly pointed out to the scientifically illiterate that real sceince is messy, especially chaotic science. We do the best we can, we try to keep aware of our assumptions and biases and we then act. We don't take positions because they fit our political or economic persuasions.

I would bet you don't want to believe in climate change (whether it leads to increased or decreased temperatures, on average -- both are possible) because you would then feel guilty about driving an SUV. That our oil addiction favors the Cheneys of the world is of no interest to you, nor that the folks with whom we're supposedly in an infinite war on terror control most of that commodity.

How about your encouraging your compatriots to take the scenario seriously, and use it to promote energy independence in this country? Would that be such a bad thing? It might actually help the economy, even if it squeezes George's pals. My gosh, even some oil companies (BP, Shell) accept the consensus scenario on warming.

But the reason you even mentioned global warming is because it allowed you to try to sneak in this line: "I definitely saw some parallels in this book and our discussions....ie, how studies and data can be presented in different ways depending on the bias of the person researching the information and their expectations."

How true. We even have fraud in science on occasion. But we have fraud from the reactionaries on a daily basis, starting with Paul Cameron and his bogus material which is then spread by Fox News and the Dobsonites.

You have yet to provide one iota of data that contradicts the hypothesis that sexual identity and orientation are innate and not a matter of conscious choice. That the science of sexual development is young is no secret; that your folks do everything in your power to prevent further research is no secret, either; nor that the self-righteous religious moralists have nothing to contradict it with except scriptural verses.

January 27, 2006 7:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Crichton cited me in his reference section, which is more than most novelists would do."

Jim

This is pretty cool. My apologies for my remark. I read both books and, actually liked "Prey" better.

His remarks about the global warming issue are appropos. I'm generally an environmentalist and I also would like to see us completely replace fossil fuels with some other form of energy-
still, truth is truth. I remember, when I was a kid, most of these alarmists were trying to convince us that we were on the verge of a new Ice Age. There are indeed those who make money off perpetuating the global warming- fossil fuel connection.

By the way, Crichton also mentioned in the forward to one of his Jurassic Park books that evolution is only a theory.

January 27, 2006 9:00 AM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Yes, Anon, we've been through this so many times already. Evolution is "only" a theory in the scientific sense supported by decades of data, no contradictory evidence, and the tools to help project into the future. Your religious beliefs are nothing more than a delusion, supported by no evidence, and used by you, though not by all, to harrass, shame and discriminate.

I'm glad you care about the environment. I don't know who those alarmists were that you mention, but the thousands of climate scientists who make up the consensus today are just doing their jobs. Does that make them "alarmist"? Does preparing for an avian flu pandemic make one an "alarmist," with the implication being that the science is bogus? If I tell you that as a diabetic you will suffer horribly, in all probability, if you keep up with your sedentary lifestyle, poor nutrition and lack of medical care, am I being an alarmist? Or am I simply doing my job, and showing some humanity?

If this admisnistration didn't despise science and facts, and chose instead to be a member of the world community instead of a pariah, climatologists wouldn't have to be "alarmist."

January 27, 2006 10:45 AM  
Blogger digger said...

Anonymous said:

You'll probably think I'm being sarcastic but if you want to convince me that gays are just like everyone else, I wouldn't say something like that. It sounds gay.

Dear friend anonymous:

I'm certainly not trying to convince you that gay people are like everyone else (Vive la Difference!). I don't mind sounding gay; I'm as queer as a
3-dollar bill.

My point about sarcasm is that among strangers it is always deliberately hurtful, and we shouldn't use it in that way.

The offer to get together is sincere, and still stands. Peace in the world is increased when people with differences come together and find common ground.

Take care.

Robert

January 27, 2006 2:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous:
"I didn't make a generalization. I asked a question based on Robert's complaint about a generalization. Actually, there have been some studies showing that the commitment of gays to preventing STIs is waning. They (and, of course, not every single one) consider safe sex to be not as high-quality an experience as unsafe sex. They prefer going what they call 'bareback'."


Regardless, gay people on the whole do tend to be more careful when it comes safer sex, and I'm sure you can figure out why. I'd be interested in reading these studies if you could provide links to them (assuming they're online). Both homosexuals and heterosexuals can consider safer sex less enjoyable than unprotected sex -- a lot do, and they always have. The only problem I have with some of your posts is that they tend to always focus on homosexuals only; your implications are negative.

January 27, 2006 3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said:

You'll probably think I'm being sarcastic but if you want to convince me that gays are just like everyone else, I wouldn't say something like that. It sounds gay.

Dear friend anonymous:

I'm certainly not trying to convince you that gay people are like everyone else (Vive la Difference!). I don't mind sounding gay; I'm as queer as a
3-dollar bill.

My point about sarcasm is that among strangers it is always deliberately hurtful, and we shouldn't use it in that way.

The offer to get together is sincere, and still stands. Peace in the world is increased when people with differences come together and find common ground.

Take care.

Robert"

Thanks for the civility, Robert. You should join the conversation more. Take it easy.

January 27, 2006 3:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Regardless, gay people on the whole do tend to be more careful when it comes safer sex, and I'm sure you can figure out why. I'd be interested in reading these studies if you could provide links to them (assuming they're online). Both homosexuals and heterosexuals can consider safer sex less enjoyable than unprotected sex -- a lot do, and they always have. The only problem I have with some of your posts is that they tend to always focus on homosexuals only; your implications are negative."

What a nice person. I read these studies in general daily browsing of news. I'll see if I can dig them up.

January 27, 2006 3:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey all. This is Alex from above.

Anyway, I ended up heading to Loyola College on Friday night to make a presence. It turns out that about 10 others (mostly Loyola students) were there as well, with signs and all that jazz.

Anyway, Phelps and his clan never showed up. Speaking with some others, it turns out they never showed up at the Naval Academy of the courthouse either.

So we stood there with signs for a while, making a presence against hate, and we got a lot of honks and thumbs-up, and all that good, supportive stuff.

I dunno if they showed up on Saturday at all, but it's good to see that they were not there Friday.


- Alex

January 29, 2006 3:43 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Thanks for showing up, Alex.

January 29, 2006 5:28 PM  
Blogger digger said...

Alex.

Thanks for coming out and making the effort.

Robert

January 31, 2006 2:30 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

Dear Alex,

Thanks for showing up to counterdemonstrate against the Phelps family. I'm glad they didn't show up.

Could you please let us know when and where the local production of the Laramie Project you are helping with will be shown? I'm sure many of our readers would like to go see it.

Thanks,

Christine

February 02, 2006 8:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Could you please let us know when and where the local production of the Laramie Project you are helping with will be shown? I'm sure many of our readers would like to go see it."

Yes, please. We'll get a special brochure printed up to pass out at the door.

February 02, 2006 1:46 PM  

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