Monday, November 30, 2009

C Street and Uganda's Homosexual Death Penalty

On tonight's Rachel Maddow Show, Rachel's first guest was Dan Rather, fresh back from Afghanistan. Her second guest was Jeff Sharlet, author of The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power, talking about connections of The (C Street) Family and other American evangelicals to the proposed Ugandan death penalty law for homosexuality, which would also imprison anyone who knowingly failed to report a homosexual to the police. Specifically, Pastor Rick Warren (of the Saddleback Church and of the Obama Inauguration ceremony) and Senator James Inhofe (R–OK) have strong ties to Ugandan politics, but have pointedly refused to denounce the proposed law.

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If you missed the live broadcast or the first repeat, you still have one more shot, in about an hour, at 2 a.m. Eastern/11 p.m. Pacific on MSNBC. (The whole show is top-notch TRMS.) Failing that, you can watch the clip here above (courtesy of, and check back here for my expanded comments tomorrow. Rachel also covered several other issues, like Tiger Woods' failure to speak out against the sex trade in Dubai, despite his familiarity with the financially troubled emirate, perhaps because of his financial dealings there.

It's quite simple: advocating the death penalty for homosexuality is so abhorrent that no member of civilized society can stand idly by without at the very least condemning the proposal. President Obama said that he would be a tireless advocate for LGBT rights but yet he failed to speak out against Maine's Question 1; will he also stand idly by when it's not LGBT marriages at stake but their lives? In particular, Kenya shares Uganda's largest border, so it's not unreasonable to think that a well-crafted comment from President Obama, as both Kenya's "favorite grandson" and a sincere Christian, would have some influence. But certainly people with strong ties to Uganda itself must speak out publicly and unequivocally.

Am I right in recalling that The Family held up as role models, not only Hitler and Stalin, but also Idi Amin? Those were all people whom God had "anointed" to have power over the ignorant and unworthy. I'll have to double check with Jeff Sharlet's book and/or past TRMS clips, but I think they did. A bit of digging, and then more to say tomorrow....

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Monday, November 16, 2009

Colbert's WØRD on Same-Sex Couples

On tonight's Colbert Report (Comedy Central), Stephen Colbert used his "THE WØRD" segment to talk about "Skeletons in the Closet": the rights we should or should not give to gay couples. The full transcript and embedded video follow below the fold.

Colbert Report, 2009-11-16, ©Comedy Central

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Nation, life is full of little ironies, none greater than the fact that God decreed that gays must never marry but then made them such great wedding planners. Gays, I believe thou hast been punk'd. But homosexuals just won't give up trying to create a nightmare future where they live in committed, loving relationships. And they don't care who it hurts, folks. Look no further than Washington, D.C., where, if a same-sex marriage law passes as expected, the Catholic Church has announced that it will be "unable to continue the social service programs" it runs for the city, including shelters that serve "one third of Washington's homeless people." I mean, they have no choice: after all, Jesus said, "If you wish to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor ... unless a couple of dudes register at the Pottery Barn, in which case fuck the poor" ... in bed. (That is my own translation from the Aramaic.)

Now, either these gays are too selfish to see that they're ruining God's commandment to be charitable, or that's part of their plan. You see, gays ruin everything sacred. Just look what Michelangelo did to the Sistine Chapel! They'll never scrub that stuff off.

Well, now they're comin' after the most sacred human act of all, and it brings us to tonight's WØRD: Skeletons in the Closet

Folks, last year Mark Goldberg, a Rhode Island resident and confirmed homosexual —
  • Skeletons in the Closet
(We have confirmed that, right? Okay, good.) — was kept from claiming the body of his partner, even though the two had been together for 17 years and were married in Connecticut.
  • Check
Not only was he not allowed to claim the body, he couldn't put an obituary in the paper — although that might just be because there aren't any newspapers left in Rhode Island.
  • Mafia Wraps Fish in Laptops
So of course the left-wing legislature decided to grant gays "special rights," like "the right to claim the bodies of — and make funeral arrangements for — their loved ones."
  • [The Providence Journal online, 2009-11-11, by Katherine Gregg]
Typical activist legislature, legislating through legislation.
  • How a Bill Becomes Bill & Gary
Thank God Rhode Island Governor Donald Carcieri (R) vetoed the bill, calling it "A disturbing trend ... of the incremental erosion of the principles surrounding traditional marriage." [2009-11-10]
  • [photo of Carcieri]
Exactly! The gays are always trying to steal the best parts of marriage — you know, like claiming the body of your spouse. This is an assault on marriage from beyond the grave.
  • Getting Fat Together
They're like gay zombies. They start with marriage, but what they really want is to change our minds. That's right: these gay zombies want our brai-ains. Governor Carcieri knows this is even more important than the sanctity of marriage.
  • The Sanctity of Buryage
You're married for — what? — if you're lucky, 50 years. You're dead for eternity.
  • And Talking to Jennifer Love Hewitt
Well, folks, I say God did not intend for death to be between a man and another man. Death is between one man and one very hungry worm.
  • Lost Page of "The Very Hungry Caterpillar"
Now, let's suppose that one day — God forbid! — the governor dies. How is he supposed to rest in peace, knowing that, a couple of plots over, two dudes are being gay-dead?
  • Gives New Meaning to Headstone
Remember, folks: Jesus said, "What is bound on earth is bound in Heaven." If we bury them gay together down here, they're gonna be gayin' it up in the afterlife. That's not Heaven! Heaven is singing in a choir, in a flowing white robe, playin' the harp — you know, "guy stuff"!
  • Don't Ask How the Gates Got Pearly
And the governor — and folks, I believe that the governor might not be going far enough. If we really want to protect the sanctity of traditional decomposing, it might be time to bar gays from having funerals. Now hear me out, hear me out: I am not a monster. I am in favor of civil end-of-life ceremonies.
  • Eulogy Delivered by DMV Clerk
It's just like a funeral, except, legally, you don't have to bring a covered dish. And instead of defiling our traditional graveyards, gay people can have their own same-sex cemeteries. We'll call them "same-eteries."
  • Totally R.I.P.-ped
All the governor and I are saying is that we shouldn't have to watch these people flaunt their alternative deathstyle. So, no open caskets, and no viewing of the gay deceased, because if gay couples are going to die in accordance with their present legal standing, they need to be dead the same way we want them to live: invisibly. And that's the WØRD.
  • Skeletons in the Closet

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Daily Show on KSM Trial, Giuliani, Geraldo

On tonight's Daily Show, Jon Stewart and Samantha Bee took on the decision to try 9/11 "mastermind" Khalid Shaikh Mohammed in the ordinary civilian court system, and specifically the flip-flop of New York City Mayor turned Presidential Candidate Rudy Giuliani and the frightening dangers to the American public posed by this trial. A full transcript follows, with embedded video link.

2009-11-16 Daily Show with Jon Stewart, segment #1, "Law & Order: KSM," ©2009 Comedy Central

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Jon Stewart: Our top story tonight, a long-awaited development in our War on Terror:
After 8 years of delay, those allegedly responsible for the attacks of September 11th will finally face justice. — U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, 2009-11-13
Stewart: [Jon celebrates] Yes! Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the self-professed mastermind of 9/11 and his four back-up douche bags, the Terror-ettes, are finally gonna face American justice. Ooh! How do you think we're gonna do it? I'm torn between "Seacrest crushes them in Times Square under the New Year's Eve ball" or "We wrap old Fella up here, we wrap him in bacon and deep-fry him at a state fair while Lee Greenwood stabs him in the face."
Holder: They will be brought to New York — to New York — to answer for their alleged crimes in a courthouse just blocks away from where the Twin Towers once stood.
Stewart: Oh. I guess you could go that route, too. So, we're gonna go with "living up to our nation's highest ideals"; yeah, I was hopin' we were gonna go a little more Old Testament, quite frankly. A little more Tarantino, if you will. But I recognize we must strike a balance between the Rule of Law and my emotional need for what I like to call "street justice." And then, of course, there is the third equally valid consideration: Aaaaaah!!!
Brian Kilmeade, Fox News: Can you imagine here, where New York City is still a terror target, and then you bring the mastermind of 9/11 here??

MSNBC: Will a trial put the Big Apple at greater risk?

Fox News: Do you really think it is possible that they might get off??

Frank Gaffney (fmr. Asst. Sec. of Defense), on Fox News: They use our prisons as incubators.

Karl Rove: This is the biggest recruiting opportunity provided to Al Qaeda in decades.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R–SC): It would be the biggest mistake we could possibly make, in my view, since 9/11.

Gretchen Carlson: These five characters are coming to the United States of America!

CNN Newsroom: What happens if he's acquitted??
Stewart: Yeah! "What happens if he's acquitted?" Then they'd have to let him out onto the streets of New York. And I get what I originally wanted! [crowd cheers] [falsetto voice with beer bottles hanging off two of his fingers:] "Khalid Shaikh Mohammed! Khalid Shaikh Mohammed! Come out and pla-a-ay!"

[graphic: Law & Order: KSM]

Stewart: But former New York City mayor and Nine-Elevenologist Rudy Giuliani felt that a criminal trial would be a mistake:
We're kinda granting his wish. His wish was to be brought to New York. — 2009-11-15
Stewart: Hey, just be happy his wish was to come to New York and be tried as a mass murderer — I mean, the guy coulda wished to do anything. I mean, if we were granting wishes. I mean, he could've wished to meet the Rolling Stones, or he could've wished for infinite wishes — I mean, all I'm sayin' is, Mastermind, my ass! The guy's a fuckin' idiot!

Although when the 20th hijacker, Zacarias Moussaoui, was tried during the Bush Administration, Mayor Giuliani was slightly more forgiving:
America is dedicated to the Rule of Law. [...] and maybe, just maybe, it will occur to some people [who] maybe have an open mind, that we're not the demon that we're portrayed as in this radical world. — 2006-05-03, on Hannity & Colmes, Fox News
Stewart: Mmm, Old Giuliani, I guess you have a point. Can anyone refute that?
Basically, in this particular case, we're reaching out to give terrorists a benefit that is unnecessary. — 2009-11-15, ABC This Week
Stewart: He's got a point. Why should we give this guy rights??
I think there is value in demonstrating to people what America is like, that we can have these kind of emotional disagreements, but then there's the Law, and we're gonna follow it. — 2006-05-03, MSNBC
Stewart: I just don't know which Giuliani to believe!! I guess it's gonna come down to the lightning round.
We are a free society. We have respect for people's rights. — 2006-05-03, on MSNBC

This seems to be an over-concern with the rights of terrorists. —2009-11-15, Fox News Sunday

This is the system that we have for justice. — 2006-05-03, MSNBC

We generally don't bring people back to the scene of the crime for justice. — 2009-11-15, Fox News Sunday

It demonstrated that the legal system that we have, that it works to be fair. Even if we disagree. — 2006-05-03, MSNBC

The Obama Administration is repeating the mistake of history. — 2009-11-15, CNN, State of the Union
Stewart: Asdrheofnasehjflk! I guess Giuliani from 2006 is saying that the Rule of Law is something either you have or you don't. You can't cover up the lack of Rule of Law with some thin strands of principle that you pull, almost comically, over giant barren areas of ... (It was a ... it was a bald joke.) For more on the Khalid Shaikh Mohammed trial, we are joined by Senior Judicial Correspondent Samantha Bee. Samantha, thank you so much for being here. This is unbelievable.

Samantha Bee: Yes.

Stewart: In your mind, watching trials — good idea, to try Khalid Shaikh Mohammed in New York?

Bee: Uh, no. No.

Stewart: So, you feel the judicial system cannot handle it?

Bee: Oh, no. No. The courts will be fine. They've tried worse.

Stewart: You fear, then, for the safety of New Yorkers?

Bee: Okay, of New Yorkers?? Listen: those guards aren't there to protect us from Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. So....

Stewart: Right, I see; it's the other ...

Bee: Yeah.

Stewart: If you trust the courts, and you trust that we'll be safe, then why shouldn't we do the trial?

Bee: Okay, Jon, because I don't trust the media. They lose their shit during trials that don't matter. They are not ready for this. Okay, this is how they reacted to a Paris Hilton DUI [news footage from 2007-06-26].

Stewart: Well, maybe they learned a lesson. Maybe they won't get so obsessive.

Bee: Yes, I imagine they would want to keep themselves flexible, because you never know when you'll have to drop everything to follow a balloon that may or may not have a boy in it. [crowd cheers]

Stewart: I mean, with the security at the trial and different regulations for KSM, maybe the media won't even get much access, and that'll slow them down.

Bee: Yeah, well, "from your lips to the E! Channel's ears." God knows, "access" didn't stop their nightly re-enactments of the Michael Jackson trial [footage from 2005-06-13]. I hope you like fake beards and bad acting. And then, of course, the trial puts us at risk for the two words that no God-fearing American ever wants to hear.

Stewart: Uh, "boner cancer"?

Bee: No, "Nancy Grace."

Stewart: [shudders in horror]

Bee: Yes. Yes.

Stewart: [loud whisper] I heard she gives people boner cancer.

Bee: Mmm-hmm. That's how they advertise her.

Stewart: That's what I heard.

Bee: That is how they advertise her now.
[clips of Nancy Grace, Fox News]

2006-04-06: Finger pointed at Duke's elite lacrosse team ...

2006-05-02: I don't think they want a lie-detector test because they're afraid they won't pass a lie-detector test.

2006-04-10: If these guys assaulted this lady, and then ejaculated into a towel ...

2006-04-06: The oral swabbing ...

2006-04-14: Vaginal trauma ...

2006-04-06: Anal bruising and tearing ...

2006-04-10: Question: was it sperm?
Stewart: Umm, at least this case won't have any sperm.

Bee: Oh, no! Nancy Grace will find some; it's what she does! And we can't even look forward to this trial ending, because then comes the reporting of the verdict.

Stewart: Oh, God. Are you thinking about —

Bee: Yeah. Yeah.
2004-03-05, CNBC:

Okay, Count 4, Martha [Stewart] is — that is — I'm sorry, on Count 3, is Guilty. That is ...

It's Guilty, Michael.

I'm sorry. Guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty.



Count 1 —

[Count] 8, Guilty.

Okay, all charges for Martha Stewart — I apologize, the confusion out here is immense.
Bee: Okay, the media's wheels came off because a famous lady who makes tarts would be gone for 6 months to a fancy ladies' prison.

Stewart: Well, at the very least, the KSM trial hasn't started, so —

Bee: Ohhh, Jon. The madness has already begun.
Gretchen Carlson: Let's say he's convicted and he ends up in our prison, and he infiltrates his thought process — which is already happening in U.S. prisons — to lure more people behind bars, and they get out and they do nasty things.

Geraldo Rivera: I think that is a fear that is absolutely unfounded.

Carlson: This case could be tossed out for technicalities, because of torture.

Geraldo: Frankly, I think that is a preposterous and irresponsible — and with all due respect to Frank — I think that people put their politics ahead of their common sense when it comes to terrorism.
Bee: Yes! That's right. Geraldo Rivera is now the voice of Reason. [crowd cheers]

Stewart: May God have mercy upon our souls. Thank you, Sam Bee; we'll be right back.

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