What She Said!

The next time some guy asks you where all the female bloggers are,
tell him What She Said!

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Live 8 - Make Poverty History

Live 8

Every day 50,000 people die of extreme poverty. Now, we have the power to end this tragedy -- not with our money, but with our voices. On July 6, leaders from the world's most powerful countries are gathering in Edinburgh, Scotland for the historic G8 Summit. They'll discuss plans to increase aid to poor countries, eliminate debts, make trade laws fair -- and, as a result, save millions of lives all over the world. But they'll only act if enough people tell them to. Visit AOLMusic.com now to learn more about Live 8, add your name to the Live 8 List: -- and find out how we can become the generation that makes poverty history.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

The Japan Times Online

The Japan Times Online :

"According to a report prepared by the International Committee of the Red Cross, titled 'Women and War' and based on two years of research from 1998 to 1999, approximately 80 percent of war victims are women and children. This is mainly because military conflicts now more commonly engulf towns and cities instead of only frontline areas.

There are many in this world for whom the ravages of war - including arson, looting, murder and rape -- are a way of life. These people have known little else than war all their lives, like their parents before them and their children (if they survive) after them. These generations of war face atrocities on a daily basis, and most of these go unnoticed by the rest of the world.
--snip--

While rape can be used to brutalize both sexes, it is usually committed against women during wartime -- males are usually killed or captured. Ongoing conflicts in many countries, including Palestine, Kashmir, Iraq, Afghanistan and Congo, have victims of war rapes running into the thousands.
--snip--

Rape is a more effective weapon of war than killing. Many victims say they would prefer death over life after being raped." [emphasis mine]

Read the whole article if you have the stomach for it.

I'm cross-posting this every damned place I can because I'm sick of people telling me that war affects men and women equally.

80% Women and Children. Only one in five is a man. War is a Woman's issue. Women's Rights Are Human Rights.

Ashcroft Gone, Justice Statues Disrobe, Let the Titties Loose!

Ashcroft Gone, Justice Statues Disrobe

Europe is laughing at us. AGAIN! Even a 5 year old knows that breasts are allowed in art. Statues, like the Spirit of Justice, are often partially or completely nude, and that's a beautiful thing.

Why do Christians hate breasts? Or do they hate Justice? Liberty? The Pursuit of Happiness, which, for many of us, would most definitely include breasts? I've got an answer and it's on the shelf in your local grocer. Baby formula.

America suffers from what I like to call Infantile Mammary Obsession. We didn't get enough as babies, so we don't know how to act like adults. See, Nature has Her reasons. Babies are intended to suckle at a soft, warm tit, not gnaw on a hard glass or plastic bottle with a cold, rubber nipple. At some point in the 50's (I'm guess-timating), it became passeĀ“ to feed your tots with tits. It was more modern, more sanitary, more au courant to use a bottle. Think of the convenience!

Unfortunately, this wasn't good for moms or babies. Mom needed that time with baby to help her body recouperate from giving birth, and it was important for them to bond during feeding. The baby received milk that was ideally suited for its body, which boosted its immune system and didn't cause allergies the way cow's milk and artificial formulas did. It was also unlikely Mom would over-feed the baby, since she couldn't really see how much the baby was injesting. It's one of nature's most beautiful symbiotic relationships. We thought we could improve on it, and we were wrong.

One thing no one took into account was that humans, like all mammals, have a neurological need for touch. Even if formula provided adequate nutrition, snuggling up to a glass bottle just doesn't give the same nurturing experience that breast feeding does. So what happens when a baby doesn't get what it needs? It forms either an aversion or an obsession with the stimulus. It becomes a source of tension, of shame, lust, embarrassment, hate, resentment, need, loss, or other pathology, rather than being viewed as a normal part of everyday life.

When you have a couple of generations of babies growing up without mother's milk, you get all kinds of bizarre behaviors. Men start restaurants like Hooters, and become obsessed with breast size. They spend money on pictures of breasts, give women money to show their breasts, have a freaking seizure if a woman dares to *gasp - breastfeed in public? How DARE she do what Nature intends? What "God" and Gerber hath replaced, let no man have to remember! (He can't have it - it's mine, it's mine, it's mine!)

It gets really sad when Infantile Mammary Obsession takes over a life. Like when a grown woman sues a tv station because a glimpse of a tit at the Superbowl traumatizes her; when TV studios spend thousands of dollars digitizing nipples out of the picture on a show where people are clearly tuning in for the T&A; and tragically, when a feeble-minded and repressed old codger spends $8000. on curtains to cover up a freakin' statue when he ought to be prosecuting hate crimes against gays and Pagans that his department is ignoring.

George Walker gave us two things with the appointment of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales- now we get the tits and an ass.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Women's Autonomy and Sexual Sovereignty Movements

I'm happy to announce that a new project near and dear to my heart went live tonight. It's two projects in one really - Women's Autonomy and Sexual Sovereignty. Pseudo-Adrienne of Alas, a blog is going to help me out with updates, and I'm open to others who might want to join in. I'm envisioning this as a loosely organized blogswarm that focuses on writing and calling politicians and media on the two issues.

Women's Autonomy is the best description I could come up with for a new wave of the women's movement. The tag line - The Third Wave just became a Tsunami - expresses the need for renewed energy feminists, and a deeper goal than just more opportunity and better pay. I want to see deep change in the way women are perceived. It's time for people to really "get it" - that women's rights ARE human rights, and we won't be an underclass when we are the majority. We are not property. We are people.

The second issue, Sexual Sovereignty, involves a change in the way sexuality is perceived in this culture. I'm fed up with kowtowing to regressive attitudes about sex. If someone wants to practice some bastardized version of 2,000 year old scripture, that's fine for them, but I live in the 21st century. The mores of ancient tribes don't work for us in this culture - or any other, for that matter. It overlaps a couple of issues.

Gay rights is an integral part of the change that needs to take place. We simply have no basis other than Judeo-Christian repression/oppression to dictate whom an adult may or may not marry.

Another aspect I hope we can shine some light on is the practice of allowing children to marry. We all hear horror stories about child brides in Africa and the Middle East, but most people aren't aware that it's happening in this country every day. Marriage is an awesome responsibility, and it makes no sense that people under 18 are allowed to marry. You can't sign a contract to rent a VCR at 18, so how are you supposed to be competent to make the most important decision of all? This is a particular problem in largely Mormon communities, where young girls are often forced into plural marriages with much older men. These marriages are illegal, of course, but law enforcement is following its tradition of turning a blind eye to sexual abuse of these young girls.

I propose that we demand an answer to the question of why we deserve less - less money, less safety, less power, less representation, and don't settle for answers of tradition or faith. If we see oppression, stop it short. If we see hypocrisy, call bullshit as loud as we can. When the people that are supposed to protect us don't do their jobs, scream like a banshee until their indifference and incompetence can not be ignored.

The blogosphere has amazing momentum going right now - let's make sure that at least half of that energy goes toward helping women. We've waited long enough, and this is not the time to take a back seat to "important shit". We are important. Our lives are important. We matter.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Technorati: Tag: TechnoratiBlogHer

From The-Goddess.org:

"

So Technorati is giving away a trip to BlogHer, and I really feel as if I ought to be there, so here's my entry. I'm supposed to talk about how blogging has affected my life.

Blogging has given me a great outlet for my ideas, and has introduced me to some marvelous people. The most important aspect of it, though, is that it eases some of the isolation I feel about having to live in Kentucky.

I lived on the East Coast for about 15 years, and most of my friends are there. I became ill several years ago, and my health makes it impossible for me to live on my own. My only support system is centered in Kentucky, so here I am. I have no local friends. There's nothing to do except for my solitary pursuits - painting, writing, reading, swimming - though most of the time I'm too sick to do any of those things.

Once every year or two I manage to take a trip to see friends, but that is becoming more difficult. I'd be able to make this trip this year, but who knows if I could do it another time? It may be a now or never situation.

I think I should be there because I've been relentless in advocating for women bloggers. I started the What She Said! site to help give Progressive Women a strong presence on the web. My own blog here, The Goddess is an unusual approach to political writing, which is strongly influenced by my background as a disabled, Native American, Pagan Feminist. I'm talking about Feminism, the politics of Religion and civil rights in strong, new, and sometimes militant terms. I want to be heard, and I want to hear more women's voices sing out in this blogosphere.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Brain degeneration at the Dept. of Agriculture - MSNBC.com

Brain degeneration at the Dept. of Agriculture - Hardball with Chris Matthews - MSNBC.com

Drop that Hamburger! David Shuster at MSNBC has a frightening post about what might be in that beef. As of now, there won't be any more purchased in my house.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Reply from Jeffrey Feldman of FrameShop and other comments

Jeffrey replies:

First off, thanks for the reply to my piece. It's great to get good feedback from bloggers who care very deeply about the issue.

I am concerned, though, that the readers of What She Said might inadvertantly be using my piece an opportunity to voice a position that has little to do with what I wrote. My piece is calling for a deeper understanding of what is actually written in Roe v. Wade, and the reactions seem to suggest that I am arguing against a woman's right to have an abortion. In fact, I am not arguing in any way against a woman's right to have an abortion. Quite the opposite. I am suggesting that the more people who understand what is written in Roe v. Wade, the more people a woman's right to have an abortion will be protected. My piece even links to the same copy of the ruling as linked on the main page of the What She Said blog.

The main point in 'Oh, Baby!' is that Americans do not know what Roe v. Wade says. The Blackmun opinion explicity states that it does not believe in a woman's unlimitedright to an abortion, but rather believes that abortion should be regulated and that the state has an interest--above and beyond women's rights--in protecting children.

Those two issues have resulted in widespread access to safe abortions in this country, available to women acting autonomously. True, this access and that autonomy has been curtailed in recent years. But I would argue that this is because of an attack on Blackmun's opinion and a diminising number of Americans who actually know what it says. Most Americans probably believe the view of Roe v. Wade put forth in the dissent by Justice White, which is a hateful piece of writing that completely misrepresents Blackmun's argument.

Now, I get the sense that What She Said readers are responding as if I am politically opposed to abortion or evern worse: as if, based on my essay, I am somehow against women's autonomy or equality. I am not nor have I ever been.

I invite everyone to take another look at the essay. Where I offer critique, it is only of the word 'choice'--the word only, not the idea of woman's autonomy or the importance of eliminating criminal statutes barring abortion. Although I introduce the idea of thinking about potential life, I do so because it helps to explain the logic of the court ruling. If Americans really understood how much Roe v. Wade discusses the value of protecting potential human life--the opponents of abortion and women's autonomy would be shouted back into their churches.

It is true, sadly, that Blackmun did not discuss the problem of unequal representation in our system of government--the persistent problem whereby women are excluded from our democratic system. But I don't think Blackmun impedes this discussion. And I think he would be the first to support those arguments as a citizen, even if he was not able to write them into the opinion on that particular case.

Please, take a second look at the essay because I think you will find that--with the exception of the missing point about autonomy--it makes a pretty sound argument, and that it actually puts forwarrd the case that needs to be made if we are going to protect women's access to safe abortions in this country.
By Jeffrey Feldman


Hi, Jeffrey-

I understood your article and its purpose. If I thought it had no merit, I wouldn't have linked to it. You gave a dispassionate analysis of the way Roe v. Wade is misrepresented, and you made an excellent argument regarding the fact that Republicans don't give a damn about children. It was very clear that you were not arguing against abortion rights.

My comment was prompted by the approach to the subject. Your blog is called FrameShop, so I infer that you are concerned with constructing arguments to counter the Republican frames which have been very successful in swaying people to support positions they don't really understand. What you didn't address, and what prompted my comment, is that this issue goes beyond whether or not a woman can have an abortion. It goes to whether or not women are people. We aren't talking about a political issue - we are talking about my uterus, and the fact that neither the Congress, nor any man, is authorized to negotiate the disposition of it. The only role of government in the matter should be to assure that my doctor is competent and the hospital up to standard. I am not the property of the state. I am a citizen of the state who is guaranteed a certain level of personal liberty that has so far not been acknowledged in our legal system.

I agree with you that we shouldn't call it choice. As I stated, if the alternative is death, there is no choice involved. I have a natural right to preserve my own life. Your article is otherwise excellent, and I hope people will follow the link I provided and read it - I just think it missed the autonomy issue.

***
Also in comments, Lee_J, a pro-choice man, asked the following:

Abortion opponents might argue that "since you concede that a fetus 'may constitute' life, if a woman chooses to engage in unprotected sexual intercourse, and becomes pregnant, she should take responsibility for her choice, and protect and preserve what 'may constitute' life. In such a case, abortion should not be a legal option.

This principal should also apply when protection fails, as the risk is omnipresent, known, and avoidable through abstinence to any woman or couple who does not wish to assume responsibilty for what 'may constitute' life".
How do you suggest I counter such an argument?


I would counter this by saying that I did not acknowledge that it may be life, but rather that others, enjoying freedom of religion, have the right to think that it is. I would further say that "ensoulment", as the Christians call it, cannot be proven. It is no more a valid argument than how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. (That was quite a controversy in the Church in the 1200's.) I prefer that my government stick with science in forming policy, and stay out of my business regarding medical decisions.

Science tells us that a human without a functioning brain is "brain dead" and their life can therefore legally be terminated should illness or injury create this condition. We know that the fetal brain is not fully functioning until around the 5th month, meaning that its brain is not yet funtional, therefore not a viable human being. Most abortions occur before 12 weeks, so while it may be human tissue, it is not a human. The only abortions that occur later in a pregnancy are prompted by a defect of the fetus, or risk to the life of the mother. As I stated, the actual life of the mother takes precedence over the fetus.

As for their Culture of Death, George W. Bush signed a law in Texas that allows life support to be removed if the family can't pay for it. That law was used to terminate the life of a child, in spite of the parents protests, right after Terri Schiavo died. Where were that child's protesters? Why didn't Tom Delay care about that? Why do they feel perfectly content to execute people who may be proven innocent by available technology? Again, an actual life is at stake. To put less value on the life of a prisoner than on an unborn entity is bizarre, and we need to say so. Don't kid yourself - abortion will be a capital crime if they get control of the courts as well as the legislature. They're already trying to get access to our medical records.

Let's not forget that Roy Moore has actually advocated the death penalty for homosexuals. Some respect for life - they want to execute people for consensual sex. (Exodus 20:13 Thou Shalt not Kill. Read your statue, Roy.) Need I also mention that they are defending the practice of torture, where prisoners are being killed with impunity during interrogations. The Republicans don't believe in life - they believe in lots of Catholic and Evangelical votes.

Many of the arguments the Radical Right is using these days are based in Christian doctrine. The irony of the situation is that their own actions belie their actual beliefs in those arguments. We need to point out their hypocrisy at every turn. A 5,000 pound monument of the 10 commandments , or a framed sheet of paper on which they are printed, is a graven image. If one actually reads the the Commandments we see that they say:


4Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
5Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; (Exodus Chapter 20)


So if they actually practiced the 10 Commandments there would be no argument. Such images are forbidden. So, do they believe in the Word or not? If they don't, why are they trying to force it on the rest of us? Why do so many churches, especially in the South, now display American flags? Idolatry is continually forbidden in scripture, yet a flag is an idolatrous image in the context of that religion. Nowhere in the Bible is abortion forbidden. It isn't even mentioned. So why are we arguing about that when they aren't following rules against idolatry? Abortion has always been a common practice. It only becomes an issue in cultures which regard women as property.

How many of the most homophobic politicians turn out to be living with same sex partners, or cruising gay bars and web sites? Mr. Ethics, Bill Bennett, is a gambling addict. Rush Limbaugh is a drug addict. Mr. Morality, Newt Gingrich is an adulterer. It goes on and on.

The Left needs to hammer these people on these issues. They aren't moral - they are liars, thieves and hypocrites. We're fighting the spread of Christian/Corporate Fascism - we can't be subtle in our approach. We can't keep "playing fair". We need to shake the Democrats into action before it's too late, if it isn't already.
***
As Pseudo-Adrienne said, men have the luxury of being detached from the subject. Don't expect me to be reasonable when you're talking about my body, and when the people talking loudest don't use reason at all.

Shakti suggested we call it reproductive sovereignty. I've been thinking we need to take a two pronged approach. First would be the Women's Autonomy Movement, which would be a continuation of feminism, emphasizing our right to our own bodies, medical decisions and to safety from rape, sexual abuse, assault, domestic abuse, slavery and war. The second would be the Sexual Sovereignty Movement that would assert that adults have a right to have sex as they choose, in accordance with their own beliefs. I'm sick of the Christian assumption that sex is bad and only for procreation. I'm a proud hedonist in a free country. I won't be limited by ideas from a book written by a tribe of hash-smokers a few thousand years ago that have nothing to do with my life. The government exists to make the trains run on time and keep the peace -- it has no place in my bedroom, or my doctor's office.

Happy Pride Week, y'all!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

FRAMESHOP: Frameshop: Oh, Baby!

Via Evan at Peek

This lengthy post was mentioned on Peek as a discussion of how Dems might reframe the abortion issue. As usual, the guys don't get it.

My Comments:

The missing element in your argument is autonomy. Women are autonomous beings. Free citizens in a Democracy. We are not incubators, and we still do not have representative input in government. No body of rich old white men has any business telling young women how to conduct their lives, period.

"Slave births" harm society as a whole by increasing the crime rate and placing an additional burden on social services but that's not the real issue, either. It's that my actual life takes precedence over what may or may not constitute life, and as an American citizen I am guaranteed the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Whether or not I choose to host a fetus has a dramatic and unchanging effect on my happines, and may impact my life. I agree that we need to stop calling it 'choice' - it is NOT a 'choice' if it is your only chance to survive.


Sunday, June 05, 2005

On Jeff Gannon and Homophobia.

Hey, Y'all-

Someone asked me in comments why I'm so "homophobic about Jeff Gannon". I'm seeing this a lot on the liberal blogs, so let's clarify this situation.

I'm not "homophobic" about anyone. I state clearly on my main blog, The Goddess.org that I am pansexual. My problem with Jeff Gannon is two- fold: Hypocrisy and bigotry. Gannon has been proven to be an active male prostitute, which wouldn't bother me if he hadn't been given unprecedented access to a pResident who allows less access than any other in recent memory. Such a person could never pass the requisite Secret Service investigation. It only took John Aravosis two days to get the documents on him, with no special resources at his disposal. We're talking receipts and explicit photos in active, on-line accounts. Nothing there to be disputed, no matter how they try to spin it.

Now, add to this that the Bush Administration is poisonously homophobic in its policies. They are trying to write discrimination into the Constitution - the one document that is supposed to be the standard of freedom and liberty. They have defended the rights of religious groups who take federal money (offensive in and of itself) to discriminate against gays. They are actively opposing social progress that would mean millions of people who have been treated as an underclass - a no-no in a plural society - to share equal rights with others who have previously enjoyed favored status. This makes it even stranger that a Male Prostitute would be given such free access to the pResident without appropriate documentation. My post below details the basis for homophobia. Methinks someone in the Administration doth protest far too much, and that we've only scratched the surface when it comes to closeted homosexuals in the Republican party participating in virulent anti-gay rights activities.

Now, let's look at young Jeff's credentials. He was writing for a Republican front masquerading as a news service, that went into business after he had access to the White House. He has no formal training in journalism, except attending a seminar designed to train Republican shills. Not working for a legitimate news source+not being trained or employed in journalism = not a journalist. Why was a non-journalist sitting with the White House press corps? Why was he called out by name, not only by Scott McClellan, but by George W. Bush himself?

So why does it matter that he's gay?
Because:

• he's an active shill for a party that is actively oppressing gays to buy votes from Christian extremists, who have stated that his type ought to be locked up or even executed (Former Judge Roy Moore, among others) and
• his "reports" have supported the anti-gay agenda of the Republicans.

That makes him a:

• Hypocrite - you can't campaign against gay rights while you're getting paid to fuck men. Sorry.
Liar - Journalists are supposed to search for and report the truth, not play "yes-man" for the politicians they cover.
Imposter - he's claiming to be something he demonstrably is NOT.
• Traitor - because he's working against his brothers and sisters in the LGBT community.
• Bigot - because he's spreading hate.
• Republican Administration Whore - which is the worst kind of whore to be. I have no problem with prostitution. I have a big problem with taking money to help people hurt me and the people I love.

Favoring Gannon makes the Bush Administration:

• Hypocrites - for hating gay rights but using gays when it helps them. If they really believed their own anti-gay propaganda, they wouldn't let this guy anywhere near the White House.
• Liars - for giving this guy access that is supposed to be reserved to actual Journalists.
• Imposters - because somebody in the White House is not what he claims to be.
• Traitors - because elected officials take an oath to uphold the Constitution, yet their actions undermine it at every turn.
• Bigots- because they would discriminate against us for the way we are born.
• Pimps - if they're benefitting from Gannon's illicit behavior, and
• Whoremongers -
if they're paying him or giving him special favors in exchange for his services, whatever those may be.

Mike at BlogActive.com and John at AMERICABlog.org have active campaigns to out gays who work against the communitiy's own interests. I support their efforts. To remain closeted is a personal choice that will be respected as long as it remains a personal issue, but when a person actively campaigns against equal rights for gays, whether for profit or influence, they become fair game. If you promote anti-gay legislation and get caught cruising gay chat lines, or frequenting gay clubs, your political choices have negated your right to privacy. You can't have it both ways anymore. You can't enjoy the benefits of the community while working to destroy it, or drive it underground. As W. would say "you're either with us, or against us." We didn't make the rules. He did.

I think adults should be able to live any way they choose. When you try to prevent me from living as I choose, you have a problem, and that problem is ME.

I hope that clears things up.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Let's talk about SEX...

There's a problem in this country, and even in this blogosphere and it's all about sex. More accurately, it's about lack of good information about sex. Everybody has a general idea of how it works, but the particulars are a little fuzzy to some of us. So let's address some of the problems that some people - ok, mostly men - seem to be having.

First, they complain about women bloggers talking about subjects that only affect women, like menstruation. Let me explain a little about this monthly event. Men and women both have the same hormones in their bodies. The balance of these hormones, specifically estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, are different in each gender, with testosterone being dominant in males and the other two being dominant in females. We all need all three in proper balance to be healthy. While male levels tend to be continual, women experience a monthly fluctuation that allows ovulation and then menstruation. We all know the stereotype of the hysterical, pre-menstrual bitch made famous in Midol commercials. What most people don't know is that when a woman is menstruating is when her hormonal balance most closely resembles that of a man. Think about that. Men are "menstrual" in their hormonal balance all the time. Funny, how nobody talks about that. If women are irrational, moody, irritable and even violent when their body chemistry mirrors that of men, would it be fair to say that men are always "on the rag" emotionally and behaviorally? Could that explain their higher propensity for violence, infidelity, inconsistent and even irrational behavior? I think it does. That's going to piss a lot of the guys off, but I get a little paranoid and overly-sensitive around my period, too, so I won't hold it against them.

Now, let's talk about female anatomy. There's this doctor from Kentucky (wouldn't you know it?!) who was appointed by the pResident to make decisions that affect things like the availabilty of emergency contraception. He's a gynecologist, so I guess our feckless leader assumed he'd know his stuff. Unfortunately for Dr. Hager's ex-wife, he didn't seem to know enough about women's "plumbing" to be able to tell her vagina from her ass. Hmmm. A doctor, you say? That's a little hard to believe. I know doctors don't usually know all that much about the law, but I also find it hard to believe that this guy didn't know that having sex with a woman unwilling or unable to consent to it is a crime. Sleeping is one of those states, so having sex with someone in her sleep usually means she didn't consent to it before hand. So Bush put a rapist in charge of our reproductive well-being. See what I mean about not knowing enough about sex?

On to the subject of breasts. We all have them, men and women alike, in various sizes and infinite variety. What a wonderful gift they are, and that's even before you consider the fact that some of them can feed babies! How cool is that? Breasts are not nasty or dirty, nor should seeing a breast unexpectedly, like at half time in the Super Bowl, ever be considered anything but a treat. Modesty is fine, but accidents happen and it is socially retarded to be offended by an honest mistake. It is absolutely unnatural and pathetic to object to a woman feeding a baby in public. That's what they're for, for Goddess' sake! Grow up! Europe is laughing at us!

Then there's this other guy, Rick Santorum. Poor Rick got up on the Senate floor and made an ass of himself by comparing gay sex to bestiality. I thought Catholic schools were supposed to provide a better education than public ones, but I guess I was wrong. Because two happy, healthy humans doing anything sexual is a beautiful thing. Having sex with a dog, which Rick seems to talk about a lot , is just creepy. Come to think of it, repeatedly talking about it is creepy, too. So how does a person equate something creepy and unnatural with a beautiful, healthy fuck? Frankly, I'm concerned for Ms. Santorum. Seems like one of them ought to know better, and if she does, I wish she'd fill him in. He's making the Senate look bad. The Europeans are laughing at us. Again.

Then we have Jerry Thacker, whom Bush appointed to the Presidential Advisory Board on HIV and AIDS. This guy is really confused. He thinks AIDS is a "gay plague" when, in fact, most new infections are in women and most of them are getting it from their husbands. He thinks condoms don't stop the spread of the virus - they DO. He thinks homosexuality is a choice - it isn't. He advocates abstinence education, which ironically increases the likelihood of of a young person engaging in high risk sexual activity. The saddest part of this is that the poor man has AIDS, which he claims he contracted from his wife, who got it from a transfusion. Unless there's something he's not telling us, no gay activity involved there. Attributing it to gay sex could be seen as homophobia.

Homophobia is a symptom of repressed homosexuality. People who are not gay really don't think that much about gay sex. It It just doesn't concern them so it's not "on their radar" unless they know someone who is openly gay. I say openly gay, because at least one in ten of us is homosexual according to statistics. I think that number is really low. My guess is that it's more like 3 or 4 out of ten, but I'm only basing that on my personal experience. I've always known a lot of gay people, whether they were out or not, and I think that people just assume someone is straight when that is not necessarily the case. Whatever the number, it is a statistical impossibility for you to get through life without homosexuals, and a statistical probability that someone in your family is gay. And as I had to inform a relative's wife recently, homosexuality does exist everywhere in the animal world. The New York Zoo even has two couples of gay penguins that are fairly well known. You could look it up! Now, it is natural for a person not to be concerned with sex that doesn't include them. It is NOT natural to despise normal sexual practices, and if one in ten people is doing something, that's a norm.

Homophobics hate themselves for having homosexual feelings that they have been taught to despise. It's sad that they have learned to hide their feelings, to feel compelled to live double lives, to deny their own natural instincts. It is tragic that they will often overcompensate by trying to harm or otherwise inhibit gay sexuality. It's as if they feel they could be straight if no other gays existed to tempt them. So they try to legislate against it, beat it down, kill it off in any way they can. Our culture finds lesbian sexuality titilating, so it doesn't carry quite the stigma that male homosexuality faces, but crimes against lesbians are on the rise as gays finally begin to enjoy a measure of social equality.

Homophobics want to believe that there is a "cure" for their urges. They think that they can choose to be straight, find God and be straight, get therapy and be straight, but those urges don't go away because they are inborn. That's when we see them lash out, or go to extremes. Show me a politician crusading against gay marriage and I'll show you someone cruising gay porn sites in his office late at night and hooking up with teenagers in parking lots. (You just can't make this stuff up.) When you hear a televangelist threaten violence against gays, or see a man going into great detail about gay sex and why it's wrong, or sick or like a man having sex with dog, be assured that you are looking at a closet case who will kill to keep his secret. It's only a matter of time before he gets caught cruising, has to make a tearful confession with his wife at his side, or is outed by a gay web site. Notice that no one has explained how Jeff Gannon got into the White House. Repeatedly. When no other members of the press were there. One wonders why the White House Press corps hasn't asked W. about this, him being such a macho, homophobic... oh. Never mind.