Slate’s Bad Religion Entry 8: “I may not like it, but I can’t claim gay relationships fit the Christian view of sexuality”

badReligion

The following piece is part 8 of a, thus far, 9 part dialogue between the author of Bad Religion, Ross Douthat and Slate.com’s William Saletan. The book is about on faith in American society.

Having just read part 8 from my Twitter feed, I found it rather interesting. It seems to set a tone for a more open and civil dialog over the often volatile divide between Christianity and homosexuality.

Because we live in a pluralistic society however, we still must demand our civil rights and social justice for LGBT people and all marginalized groups, regardless of anyone’s religious arguments to the contrary.

I am now off to read the rest of the series from the beginning, perhaps even the book as well.

Here is an excerpt of Bad Religion – Entry 8: I may not like it, but I can’t claim gay relationships fit the Christian view of sexuality”

If the Christian view of homosexuality were just grounded in a single passage in Leviticus and a single passage in the Pauline epistles, then the kind of modern reinterpretation you’re suggesting would be—well, not easy, exactly, but relatively plausible. What I try to suggest in Bad Religion, though, is that the problem runs deeper than this. The Christian view of gay sex is bound up in the Christian view of straight sex, which is rooted in the entirety of the biblical narrative, from the creation story in Genesis down through Jesus’ words in the New Testament. It’s a narrative in which human sexuality has a clear teleology—the reunification of the two equal-but-different halves of humanity (“male and female he created them … therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh …”), and the begetting of children within a context that’s intended be a kind of microcosm of humanity as a whole. Read more…

On BoingBoing.net: How Mitt Romney’s anti-gay billionaire backer tried to silence critics

Frank VanderSloot, Boing Boing, Robe Beschizza
BoingBoing.net

Billionaire anti-gay campaigner and Mitt Romney campaign co-finance chair Frank VanderSloot is whitewashing his tarnished image with a public relations campaign. After years of trying to silence journalists critical of him and his record, all that’s left to do is dodge the difficult questions.

After a recent scathing commentary from Salon’s Glenn Greenwald, echoed nationwide on MSNBC by “The Rachel Maddow Show, VanderSloot’s history of threatening critics was exposed. The game changed. But his efforts only highlight a long record of local campaigning whose dirty tricks and litigious tactics now deserve national attention….

Read the full story here: On Boing Boing

 

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Nails VanderSloot

Rachel Maddow, Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com, Jody May-Chang, Frank VanderSloot, Melaleuca, Mitt Romney,

From Idaho to Salon.com’s Glenn Greenwald to MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show

Tonight Rachel Maddow picked up Glenn Greenwald’s Salon.com story that broke last Friday.

Rachel did a brilliant job of describing just how Melaleuca’s CEO, Frank VanderSloot has used his power and wealth to silence his critics, like the bloggers at 43rd State Blues, The Idaho Agenda and recently my four year-old posts on my former blog PrideDEPOT.com.

Here is the video of that segment. If it does not load, you can find it HERE.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Here is the RAW transcript from the MSNBC website, with some minor corrections, of the VanderSloot portion of the segment:

…then there is Mitt Romney. naturally, he has a lot of billionaires. given who he is, he doesn’t need one. But Glenn Greenwald has been writing about an Idaho’s billionaire who is the financial co-chair. looks like an act of bravery for Glenn and Salon.com to publish anything about the gentleman.

Frank VanderSloot, lives in idaho, in addition to being the finance co-chair for the presidential campaign runs a company which sells all sort of household products. He has involved himself in a number of political causes in Idaho over the years, in what would seem to be a very high profile kind of way, but he has taken a very aggressive stance toward anybody reporting on his political involvements.

For example in 1999, Idaho Public Television planned to air a documentary how elementary school kids were being taught in school about issues of sexual orientation. Mr. VanderSloot led the opposition to the documentary being aired by paying for billboards to be put up railing against the documentary and warning lifestyle.

In 2005, a local newspaper called the “Post Register” ran an award-winning series about how the Boy Scouts organization tried to cover up abuse. The Salon.com revealed how a Mormon bishop knew of one scout leader’s pedophile history yet recommended him as a scout master.

Mr. VanderSloot responded to is that series in that local Idaho paper by taking out this full-page ad in the same paper, attacking the credibility of the reporter, and outing the reporter who broke the story, outing him as a, quote, homosexual.

That reporter, Peter Zuckerman, had not come out to his friends and neighbors in Idaho, yet, and according to his editor, after those full-page ads started running, strangers started ringing his bell at midnight and his partner of five years was fired from his job.

His rise to prominence has led other people to report on his political activity and raise questions about whether or not his politics, particularly on gay rights issues, are shared by the candidates that he supports.

A number of reporters who have raised those questions have very quickly found themselves to be targets of Mr. VanderSloot’s lawyers. In February, a blogger with the website called “The Idaho Agenda” wrote a piece titled, “Romney Receives Big Money from Idaho’s Not-So-Gay-Friendly Melaleuca Company.”

After publishing that piece, that blogger accused an accusatory letter and then he received a follow-up e-mail demanding compliance. When the blogger e-mailed back to say he was working on a response, the lawyer responded, we really need to address this issue today or else we will have to consider escalating this issue to a much more serious level.

Similarly, back in 2007, an independent journalist in Idaho authored a piece on Mr. VanderSloot’s support for Idaho’s current republican Senator, James Rich. She talked about Mr. VanderSloot’s involvement in that gay documentary that was to be aired on Idaho Public Television.

For that dip into true history, she, too, said she received a warning letter from Mr. VanderSloot’s lawyers accusing her of defamation. She also included the official photograph of VanderSloot taken from the Melaleuca’s website. And then she received a letter accusing her of copy right infringement for using the [photo].

After another website writing about Mr. VanderSloot, Melaleuca responded by obtaining an after-the-fact copyright certificate for the lawyer’s letter, then demanded that the hosting company remove the letter from the website on that website. Then they sued for having published the now copyrighted lawyer’s letter without their concept.

This is the national finance co-chair for the Mitt Romney for president campaign. And this is what we know about his activism, his political views, and his apparent strategy for dealing with people who report on him. But he also serves as a good general reminder, billionaires have always had a ton of weight to throw around in this country, going back to the days of the copper kings of Montana  right?

And they have always used that weight for all sorts of reasons. including, trying to shape what we are able to know about how exactly they throw their weight around. but now in this post – Citizens United world we are living in, these billionaires, who frankly have never been wanting for influence in the country in the first place, now in this post-citizens unite world, they are the one we’ve decided to also hand our elections over to. Because they needed that.

VanderSloot’s tactics get national scrutiny

Glenn Greenwald, Jody May-Chang, ACLU, Idaho, Salon.com

Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com contributor and Constitutional litigator, pulled out both barrels to take aim at the actions of Frank VanderSloot, CEO of Melaluca, Inc., and his legal team of attack dogs.

Greenwald, who was in Boise recently to speak at the annual Bill of Rights dinner sponsored by the ACLU in Idaho, took time to visit with me after his presentation to hear about the ongoing actions of VanderSloot against the LGBT community, free speech, and hounding by his legal team to silence his critics.

With the documentation I provided to him and the intense research he compiled on his own, he posted a blazing article on Salon.com that speaks to the heart of what Idaho bloggers, news organizations, and national media outlets have confronted when bullied by VanderSloot and his lawyers.

I would like to personally thank Glenn and Salon.com for their brilliant journalism and their willingness to stick their necks out in support of me and this vital issue so aggressively.

Their commitment to First Amendment and good journalism is the standard that all bloggers, journalists and media outlets should aspire too.

Journalist & Author Glenn Greenwood in Boise for ACLU Event

Glenn Greenwald, Jody May-Chang, ACLU, Idaho, Salon.com

Glenn Greenwald, prominent author, journalist, and political commentator from Salon.com is here in Boise tonight and will be the guest keynote speaker at the annual Bill of Rights diner for the ACLU of Idaho. I had the great honor and privilege to have sit down with him for a face-to-face interview earlier this morning. More on that later.

I am really looking forward to tonight. Glenn is a captivating and inspiring speaker and has done a tremendous job with his latest book, “Liberty and Justice for SOME, How the Law is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the Powerful.”

Back to the Future: Sean Hannity vs. Jody May-Chang TOMORROW on KCSB-FM Santa Barbara

Jody May-Chang, Sean Hannity, KCSB, Santa Barbara, Fox NewsHear the original 1989 live on-the air exchange between Jody May-Chang and Fox mouthpiece Sean Hannity that got Hannity kicked off the air at KCSB-FM Radio for his homophobic rants.

As part of KCSB’s 50th Anniversary of broadcasting, the Hannity vs. May-Chang exchange will be rebroadcast for the first time in 22 years!

This will be part of tomorrow’s LIVE CALL-IN broadcast of: ‘Revisiting Sean Hannity’, Thursday 12/22/11 10 am – 12 Noon on “50 Years of People Powered Radio” on KCSB-FM 91.9

Hannity and May-Chang both produced weekly shows at KCSB, the University of California at Santa Barbara radio station, as community members in the public affairs department. May-Chang hosted “Gay & Lesbian Perspectives,” a one-hour weekly news, information program. Hannity on the other hand hosted a ranting imitation of Rush Limbaugh type show called “The Pursuit of Happiness.”

May-Chang called in to Hannity’s show to dispute Hannity and his guest spreading misinformation and homophobia over the air. Hannity’s guest Gene Antonio, is the author of a propaganda book titled “The AIDS Cover-Up? The Real And Alarming Facts About AIDS.” – a book written to spread misinformation and hysteria about AIDS.

It was this very exchange that got Hannity kicked off the air at KCSB, and what Hannity subsequently used to bolster his career as a victim of the left and branding himself as the most controversial college radio talk show host in America.

PACIFIC TIME 10 am – Noon
MOUNTIN TIME 11 am – 1 pm

LIVE STREAMING HERE: http://www.kcsb.org

Call In # (805) 893-2424

If you miss it, a podcast will be posted later on http://may-chang.com