Monday, July 23, 2012

The Slow Demise of the Ex-Gay Hoax

Until recently, our Montgomery County school district was sending home flyers from PFOX, a small group of people who try to pretend that there are thousands or even millions of "ex-gays" out there, people who have gone from gay to straight. It is a hoax, and one with the potential to hurt vulnerable people. PFOX tries to convince schoolchildren that being attracted to people of your own sex doesn't mean you're gay. Uh huh.

It is a weird and creepy way to attack LGBT people, and it is somewhat effective because if you say "ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay ex-gay" enough times, pretty soon people who don't know any better will start thinking that there are "ex-gays," and that the world could be a more orderly and easy-to-understand place if those obstinate gay people would just stop being gay.

They'll only believe it for a while, though, and eventually they're going to need to see an actual "ex-gay" person, and not one of the same old ones that do it for a living. And so over time the whole PR movement has lost steam.

Anthony Venn-Brown, a former evangelical minister and founder of the Australian group Ambassadors and Bridge Builders International, has written a nice clear summary of the state of the situation. He focuses on the breakdown of Australian "ex-gay" groups, saying that two-thirds of them have disbanded.
Exodus International, the make a wish foundation for self-loathing homosexuals, is in crisis.

It began with Alan Chambers, director of 'ex-gay' ministries umbrella organisation Exodus, honest admission to a gay Christian conference in January that 99.9% of people he'd met had never actually changed their sexual orientation. Eleven ministries defected and some evangelical leaders called for Chambers resignation.

In April this year, Dr Robert Spitzer renounced his often 'ex-gay' quoted study that sexual orientation change is possible and apologized to the gay community.

Last month Exodus issued an official statement that it no longer supports reparative therapy. "In the past, we've been aligned with organizations that believe feelings can completely change, temptations can completely go away. We now believe that's an unrealistic and unhealthy expectation that can cause a lot of damage.", Chambers said in an interview.

And at the opening address at the Exodus conference last week Chambers, in very contrite and sober tones, burst the bubble for many attendees admitting that Exodus had it wrong on many levels. Nearly Two Thirds of 'Ex-gay' Ministries Disappeared
It will be interesting to see how long PFOX can hold on.

I'm skipping a part about Australia.
The evolution of the 'ex-gay' message

There has been a progressive white-anting of the Exodus 'change is possible' message. Initially, the Exodus message was simply God can do a miracle and freedom from homosexuality comes if you pray hard enough or have a demon cast out of you. The magic wand approach. That was phase one. When this clearly was not successful for people, ministries moved into a more therapeutic model endeavouring to bring people to a place of healing for their 'sexual and relational brokenness'. The term 'reparative therapy' was created was created at this time. Heterosexuality was still the goal.

The most recent phase has been to admit that those with 'unwanted same sex attraction' would experience a life long struggle. It will never go away, or as one Australian 'ex-gay' leader amusingly put it to a seeker of straightness, 'you will always walk with a limp'. Not much hope in that message, is there? Especially to those wanting so desperately to be 'normal' and accepted.

While we are talking about strange terms. What's with this ridiculous term 'unwanted same sex attraction' or sometimes abbreviated USSA? This term began to gain popularity during phase three in the 90's. I believe this was introduced for two reasons. Firstly, to distance people from the increasingly popular scientific term 'sexual orientation' and secondly to disconnect people from a gay identity and the shame loaded word homosexual. Playing semantics doesn't change the reality though. It's not an attraction honey it's an orientation. It's in your brain wiring and hormones. It's not just a thought/temptation in the mind it's who you are and unwanted because you fear rejection of others and God if you accept it. I might have unwanted left-handedness but it doesn't change the fact that I am.

In 2000, the most prominent 'ex-gay' organisation in the UK, Courage, run by Jeremy Marks, walked away from Exodus and became gay affirming. The same thing happened with New Directions Ministries, run by Wendy Gritter, in Canada in 2009.
The "ex-gay" hoax rationalizes hatred of gay people by asserting that their sexual orientation is a choice, and that they could change at any time if they would only follow the steps offered by one-or-another religious or pseudopsychological group. It offers sad hope to young gays and lesbians who realize that their orientation is likely to subject them to a lifetime of harassment and rejection by their religion and their peers, maybe even by their god. It is simple and pure wishful thinking, though; you are what you are, and once you accept yourself you will find that others accept you, too.

53 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

1. Forgotten is the fact, the gold standard in human existence is heterosexuality. Whether you believe it or not.
2. No intelligent person can say with certainty how homosexuality evolves. Even the scientific community disagree. It is a combination of factors. Nowhere do they say it is hard wired or a result of hormones. What hormones? Where in the brain is this so called hard wire taking place? If the brain is so called "hard wired" for this and how come one's thinking can be changed about alcoholism and pornography? Doesn't mean one is not tempted to slide back to those feelings!
3. Feelings change Have you ever "falling in love" with someone early in your life and then they break up with you? Do you lose your feelings for him/her? How did you feel when you saw that person later in life? Did your feelings change or were they different?
4. Those that do not believe or mock the goodness and ability of God to do anything will be doomed.
5. There are a lot of behaviors that are rejected by others. Loving our brothers and sisters means not just telling them what they want to hear, but telling them that what they are doing will harm them.

July 23, 2012 12:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the definition of an ex-gay is not "one who is never attracted to someone of the same gender again"

it is "one who develops the capacity for a fulfilling life-long monogamous sexual relationship with someone of a different gender"

only relationships that have the representation of both genders qualify as marriage and sexual activity should be reserved for marriage

it is weird and creepy way to call sexual mores hatred

even if it were wrong, it would be a stretch to say someone is hated because he is given credit for self-control

it also seems a concession that homosexuality is undesirable when one says it must be seen as involuntary to be acceptable

July 23, 2012 1:19 PM  
Anonymous David S. Fishback said...

I hesitate to spend time and effort responding to Anon's rants, but I'd just point out a couple of things.

First, he/she says that "Loving our brothers and sistents means. . . telling theym that what they are doing will harm them." Our course, he/she does not explain how a loving, committed gay couple could be harming themeselves by buidling a life together.

Second, he/she says that "it also seems a concession that homosexuality if undesirable when one says it must be seen as involuntary to be acceptable." Not at all. It is simply a statement of fact. To the extent that some people (both straight and gay) tend to be intolerant of things that are unusual, knowing that sexual orientation is not chosen helps such people overcome their prejudices.

In any event, as long as behavior is within the Golden Rule (which adds up to being kind and considerate of others), what what may be "acceptable" or a "gold standard," as Anon asserts earlier, is different for different people in different situations.

Let's take height, something else we can't control. I am shorter than average. My shortness is a great advantage when I am flying on an airplane or traveling on a bus -- my legs are not cramped; a tall person is at a disadvantage on the same plane or bus. On the other hand, my shortness was a great disadvantage when I played basketball; the same tall person who was disadvantaged on the airplane or bus would be advantaged on the basketball court. Who is more "acceptable." the tall person or me? To ask that question is to show how silly the question is.

July 23, 2012 2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems funny that TTF is against homosexual change to heterosexual, but is for body mutilation change to "correct" faulty thinking. Go figure.

July 23, 2012 3:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hesitate to spend time and effort responding to David's rants, but he did slip in one little inanity that should be addressed

he quickly babbles that to say homosexuality is involuntary is simply a statement of fact

you are free to have the opinion that this is, on some level, a fact but it doesn't qualify as an empirical one in our universe, as it is completely unverifiable

aren't you a little embarassed now, David?

look what else David blathered:

he/she does not explain how a loving, committed gay couple could be harming themeselves by buidling a life together

well, David, that would be risky because few homosexuals practice monogamy and the odds are not ever in your favor

July 23, 2012 4:12 PM  
Anonymous cock-a-doodle-doo said...

"how could a loving, committed gay couple could be harming themeselves by buidling a life together"

"themeselves" would probably be fine if they just stuck to life "buidling"

lots of heterosexuals do that with friends of the same gender, lifelong buddies and pals

the harm comes if they get warped and start having sexual attraction to each other

then, they can do a great deal of mental and physical harm to "themeselves"

of course even that could theoretically be safe if David were to go into the bedroom with them and monitor their activities, making sure they stuck to safe activities, carried in a precise manner, and didn't get carried away

and, then, strap a cam to their head and watch everything they do to make sure they don't follow their nature (do they have a choice?) and engage in random and repetitive promiscuity

then, this type of deviance would be perfectly safe

does that happen often?

July 23, 2012 7:10 PM  
Anonymous slapped silly said...

sometimes I wonder if people who are obsessed with attacking ex-gays are really secretly ex-gay themselves and just trying to convince themselves that they are not really ex-gay

it makes sense

these people who constantly attack the idea that anyone could be ex-gay are just self-loathing ex-gays trying to convince themselves that there is no such thing so that, then, they can't be

psychology, man, it's complicated

even people with a PhD in it don't understand it

July 23, 2012 8:44 PM  
Anonymous blah blah blah said...

"of course even that could theoretically be safe if David were to go into the bedroom with them and monitor their activities, making sure they stuck to safe activities, carried out in a precise manner, and that they didn't get carried away

and, then, strap a cam to their head and watch everything they do, everywhere they go to make sure they don't follow their nature (do they have a choice?) and engage in random and repetitive promiscuity"

I never thought of that

I guess David's right

homosexuality would be perfectly if someone like David could monitor and control the actual activity taking place and somehow make sure the arrangement woud remain monogamous

learn something new every day!!

July 23, 2012 9:23 PM  
Anonymous remember, safety first said...

I think Ronald Reagan said it best in his famous speech on preventing AIDS:

trust, but verify !!

July 23, 2012 9:30 PM  
Anonymous aliobaba said...

"some people (both straight and gay) tend to be intolerant of things that are unusual"

true

but some people, very reasonable, are intolerant of falsehoods

such as the idea that homosexuality and heterosexuality are equivalent

July 23, 2012 9:38 PM  
Blogger Anthony Venn-Brown said...

thanks for posting my article

July 23, 2012 11:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ride, Sally, Ride!

"Sally Ride's death after a seventeen-month battle with pancreatic cancer has brought to light a less-reported fact about the first American woman in space: her long-time relationship with female partner Tam O'Shaughnessy.

An official statement from Sally Ride Science named O'Shaughnessy as the 61-year-old Ride's partner of 27 years."


Jim Henson must be smiling down at his daughter for her public support of diversity and inclusiveness and for standing up to those who don't.

"The Jim Henson Company has celebrated and embraced diversity and inclusiveness for over fifty years and we have notified Chick-Fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future endeavors. Lisa Henson, our CEO is personally a strong supporter of gay marriage and has directed us to donate the payment we received from Chick-Fil-A to GLAAD. (http://www.glaad.org/)

With this, The Jim Henson Company joins the ranks of Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, who has vowed to block Chick-fil-A from opening a restaurant in the city, office star Ed Helms who tweeted that the chain had "lost a loyal fan," and the countless individuals who have taken to social media to voice disapproval, including those planning a National Same Sex Kiss Day on August 3, in condemning the Chick-Fil-A's CEO's opposition to same sex marriage."

July 24, 2012 7:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do not remember being one of the countless girls who flipped on the television on June 18, 1983 to watch Dr. Sally Ride become the first US woman and youngest US astronaut into space. I did not catch the astronaut bug until the Challenger tragedy, but I quickly made up for lost time. Dr. Ride was my first lesson in acknowledging those who came before.

I have heard it said that if Sally Ride had waited for a role model, there would have never been a Sally Ride. This saying (I cannot find this being attributed to anyone specific) is usually said in the context of negating the idea that girls need role models. That idea is just ridiculous. Dr. Ride was an amazing and unique person. The fact is that she was stronger than most because we needed her to be our role model.

Her NYTimes obituary outlines the immense patience Dr. Ride possessed during the media hype preceding her historic flight.

“Would spaceflight affect her reproductive organs? Did she plan to have children? Would she wear a bra or makeup in space? Did she cry on the job? How would she deal with menstruation in space?”

Would her purse match her shoes?

The CBS News reporter Diane Sawyer asked her to demonstrate a newly installed privacy curtain around the shuttle’s toilet. On “The Tonight Show,” Johnny Carson joked that the shuttle flight would be delayed because Dr. Ride had to find a purse to match her shoes.

Very few people could withstand that type of ridicule and nonsense with such grace.

Dr. Ride did not believe in this saying as she embraced her status as a role model. She launched “Sally Ride Science” in 2001, wrote children’s books about space and held space carnivals around the country. She knew that many girls need someone to show them that girls can do math, science, engineering, and reach beyond the stars. Dr. Ride did not want to be alone in her achievements. She wanted others to follow.

Influenced girls for 30 years

She was so strong and influential to girls for almost 30 years. Yet she did not always believe engineering was in her future. Dr. Ride flirted with the idea of becoming a professional tennis player. In fact, Billie Jean King urged her to so. For once, I am glad someone did not listen to her. This is important for girls to know. You do not always know your path. Keep doors open, listen to your heart and, if possible, follow your passion.

When cancer took Dr. Ride from us, she was not done being a role model. In her obituary, she included her partner of 27 years. Yes, the first woman from the USA in space was a lesbian. One of our national heroes was gay. Even in death she continues to teach us.

Thank you, Dr. Ride. For everything.


http://www.care2.com/causes/sally-ride-one-former-little-girls-memories.html#ixzz21XPFzAfV

July 24, 2012 7:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

opposing the redefinition of marriage to include relationships without the representation of all genders is now being portrayed as so heinous a position that all people who think this must be banned from society and not allowed to sell and trade?

the truth is, in a land where this redefinition of marriage has been rejected by voters every time it's been put on a ballot, that gay agenda advocates will suffer much more if this becomes a war of boycotts

hope you don't mind if we now boycott every business that supports the redefinition of marriage

that would pretty much shut gays out of commerce in our country

when you boycott a business because its owner holds the same position as the majority of Americans, don't be surprised by the coming backlash

Obama, who hasn't a clue what to do with an economy that is rapidly deteriorating, will not win in November and all your fun will be over

as for me, I'm planning to eat a Chik-fil-a every day this week

July 24, 2012 7:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chic-Fil-A defender Jonathan Merritt, who had two high-profile anti-gay articles published this week, has been outed publicly: Jonathan Merritt: Come Out

July 24, 2012 7:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow!

among the majority of Americans who agree with the CEO, one of them happens to be gay

big deal

explain again why gays have to support the redefinition of marriage

can't someone be gay and still not think it is appropriate to redefine marriage?

TTF's vision of homosexuality seems to be very controlling

July 24, 2012 7:28 AM  
Anonymous svelte_brunette said...

Anonymous asserted:

“1. Forgotten is the fact, the gold standard in human existence is heterosexuality. Whether you believe it or not.”

Thank you for informing us of this Anon, as I was not aware of it. I’ve been looking through NIST website (National Institute of Standards and Technology) and I can’t seem to find this “gold standard.” How is exactly is human sexuality measured? Do they use atomic clocks, lasers, or gold weights? It’s important that we get this right, after all, the bible says that using the wrong measures is an abomination. It also says that shepherds and Egyptians that eat bread with Hebrews are abominations, but I don’t think that applies in this case.

“2. No intelligent person can say with certainty how homosexuality evolves. Even the scientific community disagree. It is a combination of factors.”

Yet despite this uncertainty, and even the fact that Alan Chambers “director of 'ex-gay' ministries umbrella organisation (sic) Exodus, honest admission to a gay Christian conference in January that 99.9% of people he'd met had never actually changed their sexual orientation,” we have Anonomi insisting on a regular basis that people can change from being gay to heterosexual. Somehow this remaining 0.1% is “proof” that people can change.

They blithely ignore the fact that any therapeutic method with a known 99.9% failure rate would never be approved, sold, or practiced in any country with any kind of medical and ethical standards. Numerous studies on placebos (sugar pills) have shown them to be effective treatment in 30 to 70% of procedures in everything ranging from knee surgery to cancer symptoms. Given this little factoid, one has to wonder if anyone has tried slapping a “Gay-B-Gone” sticker on a bottle of sugar pills, prescribed them, and checked to see if they cured anyone of their gayness.

The other thing one has to ask with a 99.9% failure rate is: “What if we try doing the EXACT OPPOSITE of what we are doing now, and see if that works?” After all, there is hardly room to do any worse, and even if they only achieve a *1%* success rate with the new method, it’s still TEN TIMES BETTER than what they were doing.

We really shouldn’t be surprised that the failure rate of “reparative therapy” is so high though. After all, most of the people promoting, advocating, and practicing it have theology degrees, not medical degrees. In some countries, religious practitioners who also perform medical services are called “witch doctors,” and no one in the west is really surprised when their medical “cures” don’t really work.

“4. Those that do not believe or mock the goodness and ability of God to do anything will be doomed.”

Relax Anon, nobody here is mocking God. I thought it would have been pretty obvious that, at least on some occasions, the Anons were being mocked, but perhaps that needs to be made more obvious. Should I change my handle to “Anonymous mockery about to ensue” – would that be helpful?

July 24, 2012 10:08 AM  
Anonymous svelte_brunette said...

“5. There are a lot of behaviors that are rejected by others. Loving our brothers and sisters means not just telling them what they want to hear, but telling them that what they are doing will harm them.”

Funny, I’ve had all sorts of Christians call me derogatory names, assault me on a couple of occasions, conflate me with pedophiles and philanderers, tell me my condition was like alcoholism or drug addiction, and of course on numerous occasions implied or stated that I’m insane. Somehow this never came across to me as “love” from a brother or sister.

I guess I just don’t understand Christian love. After all, I’ve never done illegal drugs (not even a puff of marijuana), only consume alcohol on a fairly infrequent basis (once or twice a month tops, with a 2 drink maximum), I’ve never cheated on any one, or taken unseemly liberties with a child. Yet I am accused of this or conflated with these activities on a regular basis. I have also been required to go through a number of psychological examinations, all of which showed I’m quite lucid, capable, and sane.

If this is what “Loving our brothers and sisters means,” please stop loving me, I can’t take it anymore. I’ve had enough Christian love for a lifetime.

Thank you very much.

Have nice day,

Cynthia

July 24, 2012 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.westernjournalism.com/colorado-shooter-active-with-occupy-wall-street/

Colorado massacre shooter was an occupy wall street member.
think we will see this on the national news, even though they incorrectly tried to tie the tea party to them (they had the wrong guy, 53 year old with the same name)....

who wants to be not one mainstream media outlet will report this.

July 24, 2012 10:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I’ve been looking through NIST website (National Institute of Standards and Technology) and I can’t seem to find this “gold standard.” How is exactly is human sexuality measured? Do they use atomic clocks, lasers, or gold weights?"

spoken like a true materialist socialist

if the government can't quantify and certify something, it's just not happening

just for the sake of disclosure, syncho psycho, the anon you are responding to is not the usual

not that he/she didn't make any good points, just letting you know so you won't be confused

I mean, any more than usual

July 24, 2012 11:37 AM  
Anonymous call a duck a duck said...

why, whatever do you mean?

what in the world could syncho psycho the materialist socialist (SPTMS) be confused about?

SPTMS only can accept Christian morality if SPTMS has an empirical measurement available

yet, at some point SPTMS decided to be a different gender than empirical evidence would suggest

isn't that a little inconsistent?

July 24, 2012 12:18 PM  
Anonymous Obama will lose said...

He took office at a time when the U.S. economy was on its worst slide in 75 years, but pushed policies using borrowed money that were more meant to preserve government jobs than broadly help the private sector where the great majority of Americans work, ensuring the jobs crisis continued.

He railed against the heavy spending and big deficits of his predecessor, but blithely backed budgets that had triple the deficits ever seen in American history.

He promised a smart, sweeping overhaul of the U.S. health care system, but ended up giving us a Byzantine mess promoted to the public with myths: that offering subsidized care to tens of millions of people would save money; that people would keep their own doctors; that access to care wouldn’t change; and that rationing would never happen.

He promised a more sophisticated approach to the economy than that of his predecessor, but had so little common sense that his health law actually gave businesses a big financial incentive to discontinue providing health insurance to their employees.

He offered hosannas to genius entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs in his prepared remarks, but when speaking off the cuff betrayed his faculty-lounge view of the world, saying of businesspeople, “if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.”

He swore to bring overdue oversight and honest accounting to the corporate world, but made flagrantly dishonest claims about General Motors paying back its government loans that would have triggered a criminal fraud investigation in the private sector.

He promised to set a high new standard for ethics in the White House, but used a baffling claim of executive privilege to shield his embattled attorney general from the repercussions of a cover-up involving the death of a federal law enforcement officer.

He denounced his predecessor for permitting harsh interrogation tactics with suspected terrorists, but once in office somehow concluded that a better, more moral approach would just be to use drones to assassinate such suspects without getting any information from them.

He presented himself as a shrewd student of Washington politics, but once in office displayed a counterproductive standoffishness to many Democratic lawmakers eager to embrace him, never developing the broad range of personal relationships that often mark a successful presidency.

He ran as a unifying force who would bring in a new era of civility and racial healing to Washington, but once in office embraced ugly, Chicago-style political hardball that saw nothing wrong with his supporters’ loathsome practice of depicting opposition to his policies as being driven by racism.

He constantly offered praise for the wisdom and insights of the American public, but reacted to the broad discontent over Obamacare, high unemployment and vast deficits by saying it was a failure of his administration to properly explain its glorious record to a confused populace – not a predictable reaction to his struggles and ineffectiveness.

And in December 2011 – at a time in which one-quarter of American adults who wanted full-time work couldn’t find it, after a year in which the federal deficit was a staggering $1.3 trillion – here was what Barack Obama had to say for himself in a CBS interview: “I would put our legislative and foreign policy accomplishments in our first two years against any president, with the possible exceptions of Johnson, FDR and Lincoln.”

Unbelievable. If self-reverence were a crime, our current president would be facing a life sentence. For the good of America, let’s pray we have someone else in charge of the federal government come Jan. 20, 2013.

July 24, 2012 12:27 PM  
Anonymous incoming tide said...

Mike Huckabee, the former governor of Arkansas and presidential candidate, has had enough of what he called the "vicious hate speech and intolerant bigotry" aimed at Chick-fil-A.

On his Facebook page, Huckabee announced that Aug. 1 will be "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day," a day on which he is encouraging people to patronize the fast food chain.

The former presidential candidate is upset that the fast food chicken chain has been the target of criticism in the wake of Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy's saying last week that his company supports "the biblical definition of the family unit."

The National Organization for Marriage, a group organized to oppose same-sex marriage, called him a "corporate hero for marriage," while others were quick to condemn his comments.

Boston Mayor Thomas Menino even went so far as to tell the Boston Herald that "Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston."

And on Friday, the Jim Henson Company, the group behind "The Muppets" and "Fraggle Rock," released a statement saying it has "notified Chick-fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future endeavors." Still, Jim Henson's "Creature Shop" toys are currently available in the company's kid's meals.

Huckabee further explained the purpose of his pro-Chick-fil-A campaign on his Facebook Page:

The goal is simple: Let's affirm a business that operates on Christian principles and whose executives are willing to take a stand for the Godly values we espouse by simply showing up and eating at Chick Fil-A on Wednesday, August 1. Too often, those on the left make corporate statements to show support for same sex marriage, abortion, or profanity, but if Christians affirm traditional values, we're considered homophobic, fundamentalists, hate-mongers, and intolerant.

State Sen. Dan Patrick (R-Texas) and the group Concerned Women for America have also promoted the event, which is not affiliated with Chick-fil-A.

So far, more than 80,000 people have signed up to participate in the event.

July 24, 2012 1:04 PM  
Anonymous huck finn said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 24, 2012 1:47 PM  
Anonymous cynco's a pyscho said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 24, 2012 1:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

who wants to be [sic] not one mainstream media outlet will report this.

What difference does it make if the shooter was OWS or Tea Party?

What more mainstream media outlets should be covering are stories about the survivors with NO HEALTH INSURANCE in hospitals right now trying to recover from their heinous wounds from an easily purchasable assault weapon. It's harder to buy Sudafed than an assault weapon with 100-bullet ammo clips in 2012.

Let Them Live: Wounded And Pregnant, An Aurora Family Without Health Coverage

"Caleb and Katie Medley, from the Facebook page soliciting donations for their medical care

In the wake of yet another well-armed madman killing and maiming innocent Americans, we are again rediscovering the malign influence of the NRA (correctly described by Alan Berlow as the criminals’ lobby). But the political salience of the Aurora tragedy extends beyond the usually sterile argument over gun control.

Among the casualties there happens to be a young family whose plight illustrates another hotly debated national disgrace: the absence of universal health coverage.

In the audience that night sat Caleb Medley and his very pregnant wife Katie, who had come out for the first showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” in Aurora. Like many expecting couples, they were enjoying a last small fling, bracing for the months to come when date nights at the movies would no longer be possible. Caleb is an aspiring comedian who has worked at Wal-mart and Target, while Katie is studying to become a veterinary technician. Within a few days, the high-school sweethearts anticipated the birth of a boy, already named Hugo.

When the shooting began, Katie and her unborn son escaped, but a round hit Caleb in the head; he lost an eye and suffered some brain damage. Currently in a medically induced coma, he will remain in intensive care for at least two weeks – and in hospital for much longer. If he recovers, his hospital expenses could come to as much as $2 million, according to CBS News, which broke their story.

Added to that will be the costs of his wife’s pregnancy – unexpected but welcomed by Caleb and Katie as “a blessing” — and the delivery of their baby....

July 24, 2012 1:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...A low-wage retail employee and a student at a technical school, young and working-class. Of course, they have no health insurance. They are the people that Obamacare was designed to help, the people whose troubles are ignored daily in the national media unless they happen to draw attention in a spectacular disaster — and now they are collateral damage in a system that has denied coverage to millions of people in one of the world’s wealthiest countries while other nations routinely protect all of their citizens.

The president’s health care reforms will be realized too late to help the Medley family, whose future is likely to be ruined, even if Caleb recovers, by the enormous costs they will now incur. Their distress recalls the awful and revealing moment during the Republican primary debate in Tampa, FL last September, when members of the “conservative” Tea Party audience cried “let him die” about a hypothetical young man who falls catastrophically ill without health insurance.

Above the catcalls of the crowd, Ron Paul tried to sugarcoat this bestiality by saying the best way to care for such individuals is through private charity — which as he knows very well has neither the scale nor the organization to assist the millions of uninsured in America today. Until we establish a fully civilized health care system, however, charity is ironically the only way to help a family like the Medleys – which is why their friends have set up a website to collect donations on their behalf.

DON'T LET HIM DIE!

DONATE here.

They have raised about $15,000 so far. I hope they raise $2 million or more. Let every donation serve as a fitting rebuke to the Tea Party mentality that would let a young father like Caleb Medley – and any other innocent victim unlucky enough to lack health insurance – simply suffer the consequences alone. And let every donation demonstrate what “family values” should truly mean in a decent country, where no family is left undefended against cruel circumstance."

July 24, 2012 1:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seventy-three thousand and counting sign this PETITION TO BAN ASSAULT WEAPONS while Anon's President Huckabee plans big chicken eating party.

July 24, 2012 2:10 PM  
Anonymous Obama will turn to a bat for Halloween said...

oh, August 1 will be a big day at Chik-fil-A's across the heartland

and everyone with any sense knows that if a few other patrons had had weapons last Thursday in Aurora that several more people would be alive today

when you outlaw weapons, you see, only nuts and outlaws will have them

just like last Thursday

btw, if Obama does win, what are the chances the Democratic Party turns from Mensheviks into Bolsheviks?

he has promised Vlad "the Impaler" Putin that he will be more flexible

is that some gay term?

July 24, 2012 3:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"when you outlaw weapons, you see, only nuts and outlaws will have them"

Really! And what happens when you outlaw murder?

July 24, 2012 4:05 PM  
Anonymous there's no easy way to be free said...

murder is a crime per se, under natural law

owning a weapon is not

violence is more abundant in our society because we don't teach our children clearly about it

we have allowed any use of force to be termed as violence

violence is the use of force to violate the rights of another

sometimes, force is necessary to defend against violence

btw, murder of unborn children is currently tolerated in our society

let's start by outlawing that

July 24, 2012 5:32 PM  
Anonymous teenage wasteland said...

"when you outlaw weapons, you see, only nuts and outlaws will have them"

actually, the Bolsheviks of the second Obama administration will also have them

July 24, 2012 5:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

latest poll of likely voters still shows Romney with a one point lead

whenever Obama campaigns against something, it helps that something

he spent three times as money on ads and was whizzing around the country instead of working on the economy

he's what's known in vegas as a cooler

July 24, 2012 11:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh really? Does your poll have a name, is it posted on a website somewhere so we can see what it says unspun by you?

Here's a poll that has a name and is posted on-line for all to see:

NBC/WSJ poll: Negative campaign takes toll on candidates; Obama up six points

After weeks of furious attacks on the campaign trail, as well as millions of dollars in hard-hitting television ads, the increasingly negative tone of the election has taken a toll on President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney, according to the new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

Both presidential candidates have seen their “very negative” ratings increase to all-time highs in the poll. And Romney’s overall favorable/unfavorable score remains a net negative – a trait no other modern presumptive GOP presidential nominee (whether Bob Dole, George W. Bush or John McCain) has shared.

What’s more, pluralities say that what they’ve seen, heard and read about the two candidates in recent weeks has given them less favorable impressions of each man.

Indeed, the percentages signaling a less favorable impression about these candidates – especially at this point in the race – are greater than what the NBC/WSJ poll showed in the 2004 and 2008 presidential contests.

“This is not characteristic … for July,” says Republican pollster Bill McInturff, who conducted this survey with Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart.

“These are numbers you usually see in October.”
“It does speak to the growing polarization of the campaign,” McInturff adds.

The horserace remains tight

In the presidential horserace, Obama leads Romney by six percentage points among registered voters, 49 percent to 43 percent.

That’s a slight change – within the margin of error – from last month’s poll, which showed Obama ahead by three points, 47 percent to 44 percent.

Read the full poll here (.pdf)

In a smaller sample of registered voters living in 12 battleground states (Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin), the incumbent president’s lead over Romney is eight points, 49 to 41, which is essentially unchanged from June.

But among high-interest voters across the country – those indicating a “9” or “10” in interest on a 10-point scale – Romney edges Obama by two points, 48 percent to 46 percent.

What remains remarkable about this presidential contest, according to the NBC/WSJ pollsters, is how stable it has been, despite everything that has occurred in the past month.

For example: The U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding Obama’s health care overhaul; the June jobs report, which showed that just 80,000 jobs were created last month; and the daily campaign attacks and counterattacks (including snipes over Obama’s business views, Romney’s unreleased tax returns, and the Republican’s time at Bain Capital).
“So much has happened, and so little has changed,” says Hart, the Democratic pollster.

Negative views on the rise

But what did change was an increase in negative views about both Obama and Romney. The president’s favorable/unfavorable score in the poll is 49 percent to 43 percent, a slight change from June when it was 47 percent to 38 percent.

Moreover, 33 percent view Obama very positively, while 32 percent view him very negatively – which is his highest “very negative” number in poll.
By comparison, Romney’s overall favorable/unfavorable score is 35 percent to 40 percent, with 24 percent viewing him “very” negatively – also his highest mark here.

In fact, Romney would be the first GOP presumptive presidential nominee since 1996 to head into his nominating convention with a net-negative favorable/unfavorable score....

July 25, 2012 7:58 AM  
Anonymous svelte_brunette said...

Anon blathered:

“spoken like a true materialist socialist

if the government can't quantify and certify something, it's just not happening”

I hate to burst your bubble Anon, but most people don’t believe something just because some anonymous dude posted it to the internet. I realize that undermines your whole modus operandi, but hey, you’ve gotta deal with reality sometime. I’m sure you won’t let that stop you from posting though.

When it comes to measuring things, NIST is world renowned. Many other countries depend on the standards they develop and maintain. Scientific progress depends on the most accurate standards available, and they probably have all of them. It’s probably one of the best investments (besides PBS) that our tax money goes to.


“just for the sake of disclosure, syncho psycho, the anon you are responding to is not the usual”


Thank you, Captain Obvious for your overtly obvious observation.


There were a number of clues that pointed to this conclusion, starting from the very first letter, which is why I took it easy on the guy. Allow me to list them for you:

1: The first letter of his post was capitalized. This occurs because of the use of a “shift” key. Something you have yet to master.

2: His (or her) sentences had a slightly greater variety than the repetitive, worn out, present tense, anti-gay declaratives you churn out like an obsessive compulsive with Turret’s syndrome.

3: He (or she) actually punctuated his sentences with question marks and periods. Again, a skill you have yet to master.

4: In several places he (or she) collected several sentences together in a paragraph like form. Again, a skill you have yet to master.

5: Assuming he had no help writing the post, he (or she) has proven his ability to count to five.


“not that he/she didn't make any good points, just letting you know so you won't be confused”

Apparently you were confused Anon, probably because I referred to the other poster as Anonomous. Allow me to clarify a couple of items for you:

1: I refer to people by the names they apply to their post.

2: In cases where people do not fill in the “OpenID” or “Name/URL” field when they post, the only other choice is “Anonymous”

3: When multiple people post as “Anonymous,” names that other users might invent are rather arbitrary, and not necessarily helpful to identifying the “Anonymous” poster. Of course, obscuring identity is just what the “Anonymous” selection is for.

4: In case you haven’t figured it out, my last post was mostly directed at the “other” Anonymous, and this one is directed at you, Anonymous.

5: You can avoid confusion in the future by clicking in the little circle next to “Name / URL” and typing in a “nom de plume” (nickname) that we may refer to you by. That way, you won’t get confused when I have to refer to someone else as “Anonymous.”

Have a nice day,

Cynthia

July 25, 2012 10:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I hate to burst your bubble Anon, but most people don’t believe something just because some anonymous dude posted it to the internet"

never suggested they should

that doesn't mean you only believe things that are empirically measured

"When it comes to measuring things, NIST is world renowned"

moral standards is not their arena, obviously

"Thank you, Captain Obvious for your overtly obvious observation"

well, you could have just stated so, or said nothing at all, but the thirty lines to address may indicate some mental instability

as was said before, empirical evidence would have indicated that you were a different gender than you now claim to be

right?

July 25, 2012 1:15 PM  
Anonymous Diogenes said...

Well, Anonymous...you have finally explained what is wrong with the institution of marriage, as practiced by at least 50% of the heterosexuals who say they believe in the "sanctity of marriage":

"well, David, that would be risky because few homosexuals practice monogamy and the odds are not ever in your favor"

Of course...we all know that heterosexuals ALWAYS practice monogamy...just look at the divorce statistics for proof of that!

July 25, 2012 1:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, there is a tendency toward, at least, a limit of one affair at a time with heterosexuals

homsexuals practice widespread and random and repetitive promiscuity

it's why AIDS is so disproportionately present in the same gender attraction deviance population

July 25, 2012 2:10 PM  
Anonymous Teaching more facts said...

there is a tendency toward, at least, a limit of one affair at a time with heterosexuals

You think so do you? What a coincidence that just yesterday, the UK's Daily Star reported:

MAN HAS PENIS STOLEN BY MASKED INTRUDERS AFTER ALLEGED AFFAIRS

"A MAN is recovering in hospital after four men broke into his flat and cut off his penis.

Police are hunting the masked intruders, who are thought to have acted over accusations that their victim was engaged in affairs with local women.

The 41-year-old told cops he had been asleep when the men burst into his bedroom around 4am.

"They put something over my head and pulled down my trousers and then they ran off. I was so shocked I didn't feel a thing - then I saw I was bleeding and my penis was gone," he said.

Although emergency workers searched for the severed organ, they failed to locate it and believe it was taken away by the attackers.

The victim, Fei Lin, a rural migrant worker in the eastern Chinese village of Nigiao, denies the alleged affairs."


that's why AIDS is so disproportionately present in the same gender attraction deviance population

You think so do you? Here's what the CDC has to say about the rate of HIV/AIDS in half of the population of the homosexuals in the US:

Fact Sheet: HIV/AIDS among Women Who Have Sex With Women

To date, there are no confirmed cases of female-to-female sexual transmission of HIV in the United States database.

Also, the CDC reports most American women become infected with HIV/AIDS through high-risk heterosexual behavior:

"For women living with a diagnosis of HIV infection, the most common methods of transmission were high-risk heterosexual contact and injection drug use....

...Most women are infected with HIV through heterosexual sex. Some women become infected because they may be unaware of a male partner’s risk factors for HIV infection or have a lack of HIV knowledge and lower perception of risk.
Relationship dynamics also play a role. For example, some women may not insist on condom use because they fear that their partner will physically abuse or leave them.

Both unprotected vaginal and anal sex pose a risk for HIV transmission. Unprotected anal sex presents an even greater risk for HIV transmission for women than unprotected vaginal sex.

Women who have experienced sexual abuse may be more likely than women with no abuse history to use drugs as a coping mechanism, have difficulty refusing unwanted sex, exchange sex for drugs, or engage in high-risk sexual activities.

Injection drug and other substance use increase HIV risk through sharing injection equipment contaminated with HIV or engaging in high-risk behaviors, such as unprotected sex, when under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The presence of some sexually transmitted diseases greatly increases the likelihood of acquiring or transmitting HIV. Rates of gonorrhea and syphilis are higher among women of color than among white women.

Socioeconomic issues associated with poverty, including limited access to high-quality health care; the exchange of sex for drugs, money, or to meet other needs; and higher levels of substance use can directly or indirectly increase HIV risk factors."

July 25, 2012 4:01 PM  
Anonymous Robert said...

Sally Ride's partner of 27 years can not receive survivor benefits.

Something is wrong with this.

rrjr

July 26, 2012 7:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

no, Robert, there's soemthing right with that

they weren't married

now stop acting wacky and get outta here, knucklehead

July 27, 2012 1:51 PM  
Anonymous Robert said...

You don't see what's wrong? Are you really that hardhearted?

July 27, 2012 9:22 PM  
Anonymous svelte_brunette said...

Anon asserted:


“that doesn't mean you only believe things that are empirically measured”

No, it doesn’t. I can believe things that I’ve witnessed first hand, and learn from history about what to expect when persons or groups of people find themselves in particular situations – at least with some statistical propensity.

Believing in things that are not empirically measured can lead to believing in a whole lot of interesting things, like unicorns, palm reading, UFOs, alien abductions, psychokinesis, wizards and witches, snarglewumpfs, mermaids, and many un-provable aspects of religion.

The most dangerous of these of course is religion. Unfortunately, history has shown us that the religious beliefs held by some have given them some kind of “moral authority” to burn “heretics” at the stake, as well as witches, even though there was no empirical evidence that they actually were witches.

Unfortunately assorted Christian sects still believe in “possession” by “evil spirits” and “demonic possession,” – and they don’t just “cast them out” the easy way like they did in the Sara Palin video, they go a LOT further:

http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/more-damage-from-religion-persecution-of-witches-by-african-christians/

Unfortunately, many children and young people have died because of these non-empirically measured beliefs. Don’t even get me started on the Crusades, Palestinians vs. Jews, Protestants vs. Catholics in Ireland, and the Christian slaughter of “godless,” “heathen,” and “pagan savages” in the New World – after they stole their gold or land.

July 28, 2012 12:37 PM  
Anonymous svelte_brunette said...

Anon noted:

“moral standards is not their arena, obviously”

One just has to look back through history to see that moral standards change over time and cultures. NIST measures things that don’t change.

It used to be that slavery was a perfectly acceptable business for aspiring white, Christian businessmen to engage in. Obviously, that has changed over the centuries. These days, slavery is mostly limited to heterosexual men forcing women and children to be sex slaves.

Stoning adulterers was also morally acceptable, in spite of the fact that punishment came from the same text that includes a commandment of “Thou shalt not kill.” I have yet to see that satisfactorily justified. In some cultures, “stoning to death” is still an acceptable punishment for a variety of offenses. A couple of years ago, a video hit YouTube about a young girl who was stoned to death because she was seeing a guy from the “wrong” religious sect.

Unfortunately, there is a tendency for some of faith to use their religious beliefs a “proof” of some kind of “moral superiority.” Despite having no empirical evidence, it leads them to conclude it is perfectly acceptable to kill someone for their supposed “moral offence.” Religion has also been known to give people the moral justification to fly planes into large buildings, and hide known pedophiles from the police.

If you’re going to choose non-empirical things to believe in, you should be very careful about what you choose. It’s why I’m still holding out on string theory.

Anon complained:

“well, you could have just stated so, or said nothing at all, but the thirty lines to address may indicate some mental instability”

And pass up the opportunity for some more of that witty repartee you seem to enjoy so much? I don’t think so.




Anon asked:

“as was said before, empirical evidence would have indicated that you were a different gender than you now claim to be

right?”


You should know that I keep what I post to the Intertubes in a couple of Word documents, so I can easily go back and check what I wrote. I’ve got nearly 700 pages of text at this point, and I searched for a variety of strings where it might indicate I now “claim to be” a “different gender.”

There were several posts where I indicated that I am a “transwoman” or, more specifically, a “male to female transsexual,” but most people don’t particularly consider these “a gender.” If they do, I can provide empirical evidence in the form of a surgeon’s letter indicating that I had a sex change operation, and that I am indeed, a male to female transsexual. I didn’t think there was any real question about that though. In a couple of places I also refer to various aspects of “male to female” transition, which might come close. However, I could not find a place where I explicitly “claim to be a gender.”

If you have empirical evidence to the contrary, feel free to present it.

Have a nice day,

Cynthia

July 28, 2012 12:38 PM  
Anonymous chik-fil-a rocks said...

"You don't see what's wrong? Are you really that hardhearted?"

it's not wrong at all

everyone Ride knew or like isn't entitled to government compensation

survivor benefits are limited to married couples, as they should be

what is the argument for taxpayers to pay money to someone's sexual partners when they die? so they can afford to travel and meet a new sexual partner?

my guess is the individual is not suffering economic hardship

July 28, 2012 2:08 PM  
Anonymous Robert said...

Hardhearted.

July 28, 2012 8:16 PM  
Anonymous chik-fil-A rocks said...

you've yet to explain why you think that, Robo

you can still think, can't you?

July 30, 2012 6:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"No, it doesn’t. I can believe things that I’ve witnessed first hand, and learn from history about what to expect when persons or groups of people find themselves in particular situations – at least with some statistical propensity.

Believing in things that are not empirically measured can lead to believing in a whole lot of interesting things, like unicorns, palm reading, UFOs, alien abductions, psychokinesis, wizards and witches, snarglewumpfs, mermaids, and many un-provable aspects of religion."

interesting.

let's remember that this conversation began with psyncho dismissing the idea of moral standards because they aren't listed by NIST.

psyncho has now confirmed that LBGTs reject the very concept of moral standards, placing them in the category of unicorns and mermaids

"The most dangerous of these of course is religion. Unfortunately, history has shown us that the religious beliefs held by some have given them some kind of “moral authority” to burn “heretics” at the stake, as well as witches, even though there was no empirical evidence that they actually were witches."

yes, that has happened on rare occasions in history but not rare is the murderous result of the rule of materialist atheists, such as Stalin and Mao

"Unfortunately assorted Christian sects still believe in “possession” by “evil spirits” and “demonic possession,” – and they don’t just “cast them out” the easy way like they did in the Sara Palin video, they go a LOT further:"

such things are rare in societies with a Christian heritage but in other areas everyone believes in such things because they've seen it

"Unfortunately, many children and young people have died because of these non-empirically measured beliefs."

Stalin and Mao

"One just has to look back through history to see that moral standards change over time and cultures. NIST measures things that don’t change."

is that the end of your argument or is there something else?

"It used to be that slavery was a perfectly acceptable business for aspiring white, Christian businessmen to engage in."

actually, throughout history, whites have enslaved whites, blacks have enslaved blacks, et al

why the obsession with how bad whites are?

this is getting boring

down to the end

"There were several posts where I indicated that I am a “transwoman” or, more specifically, a “male to female transsexual,” but most people don’t particularly consider these “a gender.” If they do, I can provide empirical evidence in the form of a surgeon’s letter indicating that I had a sex change operation, and that I am indeed, a male to female transsexual."

trans get surgery to alter their anatomy by claiming they are actually a different gender than their anatomy indicates

there is no empirical evidence of this

amazing then that so many of them are materialists in every other sense

July 30, 2012 6:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, it's like anon can just say "Stalin and Mao" and rational discussion becomes irrelevant.

July 30, 2012 7:07 AM  
Anonymous chik-fil-A rocks!! said...

didn't think I needed to elaborate about such well-known history

well, I guess I give TTFers too much credit

you occasionally run into someone who says isolated incidents throughout history, such as witch-burning, prove that religion is a negative force for society

but any such incidents are amoeba-ized by the mass slaughter perpetrated in the name of atheism by people like Stalin and Mao

in a Christian society, there is restraint on the behavior of even the most corrupt dictator

in a society that has abandoned belief in God, there is no restraint remaining

July 30, 2012 2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, religious leaders are the best - the leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran are doing a great job!

July 30, 2012 2:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, you have a point

I'm not a supporter of Islam and Judeo-Christianity is the best foundation for any society

still, as bad as they are, (and Iran is not the worst place, btw), they are benevolent wonders compared to the atheist-based societies

want to live without hearing about religious beliefs?

go to North Korea

July 30, 2012 3:09 PM  
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