Pharyngula

Roy Ashburn outs himself

Roy Ashburn, California legislator, opponent of gay equality, unwilling to even recognize gay rights activists, has admitted at the age of 55 that he is gay.

That is so sad. To live a half-century in denial, to be so steeped in self-loathing that you build a career on stamping down people just like yourself, and to only now wake up and confront the truth…assuming he lives into his 70s, that’s an admission that two thirds to three quarters of your life was spent living a lie.

This one life is all you’ve got, Roy. Live it by being true to yourself.

Comments

  1. #1 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    I wonder when this country will get over its homophobia. I expect there will be major progress in my lifetime, but I’m still amazed that it’s still so problematic. I hope that Roy will remain in office and get re-elected as an open homosexual just to show that being gay doesn’t have to destroy his career. Of course he will have to stop all his anti-gay rhetoric, reverse his stance on gay rights, and preferably completely reverse all of his political positions.

  2. #2 Celtic_Evolution
    March 9, 2010

    Ashburn made the statement that his anti-gay voting record was due to voting the way his constituents wanted, and was not his own “internal conflict”.

    Which is sort of interesting to me. Let’s assume he now lives his life as an openly gay man and decided to remain in office. Would his voting record necessarily change? And frankly (and this is the more interesting question for me), should it? If he truly has been voting the will of his constituents (and considering that he’s been re-elected so often one must assume that according to the voters he is), what is his ethical and civic responsibility on matters of gay legislation? Does he vote for what’s proper and right, and for his own personal conscience even if it’s clearly not the will of the majority of his constituents?

    I know what I would do (the proper and humane action of according gays the same rights as everyone else, constituents be damned) , but then again, I may not be suited for public office. I’d be interested to know what others think…

  3. #3 Givesgoodemail
    March 9, 2010

    Remember–the rule of thumb is that if a closet type campaigns vigorously to deny gays full civil and legal rights (including marriage), you out them at the first opportunity.

  4. #4 greg.bourke0
    March 9, 2010

    less self loathing than convenient hypocrisy. He made a good living out of it. He was outed by his DUI not by any change of heart.

  5. #5 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 9, 2010

    Well he’s not only sad, but he’s a self loathing intellectually lazy ass.

    He’s said he’s going to continue to vote anti-gay because that’s what his constituents want.

  6. #6 Day
    March 9, 2010

    Crazy, but I’m getting deja vu of some sorts, this isn’t the first time this has happened is it? a conservative opposed to gay rights, turning out to be gay? if not, then maybe there’s a correlation :D , I know I know, correlation =/= causation.

  7. #7 Orson Zedd
    March 9, 2010

    This surprises me about as much as the sun rising.

  8. #8 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Remember–the rule of thumb is that if a closet type campaigns vigorously to deny gays full civil and legal rights (including marriage), you out them at the first opportunity.

    Yup.

    And, for folks who were in the know but kept this information secret (Including those who slept with the dude), well those Uncle Marys aren’t doing us any favors either. They’re collaborating with someone actively harming us, protecting him. And the news media folks who were in the know actively kept relevant information from the public….at least from the gay public. We should be able to shun individuals like this should they attempt to enter the community while actively doing harm to it. (Time for his closet keepers to reread Queer in America)

  9. #9 nixscripter
    March 9, 2010

    I guess this means no one knew; otherwise, he would have been hit with the Frank rule.

  10. #10 nixscripter
    March 9, 2010

    (Whoops, Givesgoodemail beat me to it. Read before you post…)

  11. #11 stereodax
    March 9, 2010

    Who would have guessed? *sigh*
    Another case of Haggard’s Law!

  12. #12 Michelle R
    March 9, 2010

    Wow… That poor guy. How much time must he have spent hating himself? Saying he’s a monster? That must be terrible.

  13. #13 Tronzu
    March 9, 2010

    PZ, you are GROSSLY MISINFORMED.

    After admitting he was gay he said he is going to continue to keep up his perfect anti-gay voting record.

  14. #14 Celtic_Evolution
    March 9, 2010

    PZ, you are GROSSLY MISINFORMED.

    After admitting he was gay he said he is going to continue to keep up his perfect anti-gay voting record.

    Where did PZ say otherwise?

  15. #15 Tronzu
    March 9, 2010

    Also, Ashburn was 15-years-old in 1969-Stonewall Riots.

    He has no excuses.

  16. #16 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    @Celtic_Evolution –

    Would his voting record necessarily change? And frankly (and this is the more interesting question for me), should it?

    Yes, it should change because it is wrong. But no, it probably won’t. The issue of whether a representative should vote the way his constituents tell him to or should make his own decisions believing that his constituents trust him to have good judgment is always an interesting one, and I think both sides are right. In this case though he was lying to his constituents about who he was, and therefore the judgment they trusted him to exercise is at odds with who he really is. Speaking purely as a democratic exercise I think he may be misrepresenting his constituents if he votes differently. On the other hand, I always like to equate the struggle for gay rights with the black civil rights movement, and who in this day and age would argue that a politician who changed his mind and supported civil rights was wrong?

  17. #17 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    @Tronzu – I think I’m the only one who has suggested that this might lead to a change in his votes, and it was purely wishful thinking.

  18. #18 Tronzu
    March 9, 2010

    Can’t you people fucking read before posting?!

    He already said he is going to keep voting against anything gay.

    He is fucking disgusting!

  19. #19 negentropyeater
    March 9, 2010

    Outrage, in theatres May 8

    Academy Award nominated filmmaker Kirby Dick (This Film Is Not Yet Rated) delivers a searing indictment of the hypocrisy of closeted politicians who actively campaign against the LGBT community they covertly belong to. OUTRAGE boldly reveals the hidden lives of some of our nation?s most powerful policymakers, details the harm they’ve inflicted on millions of Americans, and examines the media’s complicity in keeping their secrets.

    btw, Charlie Crist, from two threads down, is also in there.

  20. #20 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 9, 2010

    Academy Award nominated filmmaker Kirby Dick (This Film Is Not Yet Rated) delivers a searing indictment of the hypocrisy of closeted politicians who actively campaign against the LGBT community they covertly belong to. OUTRAGE boldly reveals the hidden lives of some of our nation?s most powerful policymakers, details the harm they’ve inflicted on millions of Americans, and examines the media’s complicity in keeping their secrets.

    Wasn’t that already released?

    I feel like I saw something on HBO that mirrors that?

  21. #21 emote_control
    March 9, 2010

    So, how many of these dickheads do we have to see come out or get forced out of the closet before we presume every Republican to be gay until proven straight?

    Republican anti-gay hate is just externalized self-loathing, and this really needs to be turned into a talking point. Why aren’t the Democrats capitalizing on this? The gay community provides a lot of monetary support to the Democratic party, and the Republicans are always spewing gay hate. If the Democrats started to suggest that whenever a Republican voiced opposition to gay rights that the Republican was overcompensating for his “wide stance,” then it might shame them into shutting the hell up and letting gay rights legislation pass.

    At the very least, the pundits, bloggers, and commentators could be spreading that idea.

  22. #22 nonsensemachine
    March 9, 2010

    His reasoning wasn’t denial but rather he believes his job is to pander to his gaybashing constituents rather than standing up for what is right. I forget why that was better.

  23. #23 Celtic_Evolution
    March 9, 2010

    Can’t you people fucking read before posting?!

    He already said he is going to keep voting against anything gay.

    He is fucking disgusting!

    Tronzu… take a deep breath…

    Now, who the hell are you yelling at and why?

  24. #24 negentropyeater
    March 9, 2010

    Wasn’t that already released?

    Sorry, forgot the “2009″ after May 8th

  25. #25 Peter Ashby
    March 9, 2010

    The argument that he was voting for what his constituents wanted is a copout. The art of leadership, and he is a leader as well as a representative involves taking those you lead on a journey to a better place. The answer to his conflict was to work on his constituents to show them that they are wrong on this issue. Then if they throw you out you find some people who are WORTH being represented by you.

    It’s the not even trying that is so sad and spineless.

  26. #26 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 9, 2010

    I feel like I saw something on HBO that mirrors that?

    Yep

    Well worth a watch.

  27. #27 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    @emote-control – Because many Democrats are still afraid to support gay rights. Witness Obama’s weaseling over the issue of gay marriage during the campaign. I can see Barney Frank saying just what you suggest though. In fact, I want to move to Massachusetts just to have Barney Frank represent me.

  28. #28 Matt Penfold
    March 9, 2010

    MAJeff,

    I am interested in your use of the term “Uncle Mary”.

    Its meaning is clear from the context, but I would love to know where the term comes from.

  29. #29 Celtic_Evolution
    March 9, 2010

    The argument that he was voting for what his constituents wanted is a copout.

    Well… if you’re addressing my post at #2 it wasn’t an argument, it was a question.

    The art of leadership, and he is a leader as well as a representative involves taking those you lead on a journey to a better place. The answer to his conflict was to work on his constituents to show them that they are wrong on this issue.

    And that’s exactly the sort of response I was looking for… well written, and I couldn’t agree more.

  30. #30 Zeno
    March 9, 2010

    Roy Ashburn is in the last year of his term-limited tenure in the state senate. He’s simply running out the clock and is not eligible to appear again on a ballot for state legislative office. When confronted on previous occasions, he always dismissed the rumors about his being gay. With nothing more to lose, he’s decided to ‘fess up and pretend that his job was merely to vote the irrational fears of his constituency.

    My parents live in his district. I wonder if Ashburn will be a topic of conversation at the next family gathering. Dad will not want to talk about it, I’m sure.

  31. #31 tsg
    March 9, 2010

    This would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic.

  32. #32 Matt Penfold
    March 9, 2010

    Peter Ashby is right. Politicians have a duty not to pander to the baser instincts of their electorate.

    If the electorate wants to lock up every convicted criminal it is the politicians job to explain to them why simply locking people up does little to prevent crime.

    A democracy does not involve simply carrying out the wishes of the majority.

  33. #33 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    I am interested in your use of the term “Uncle Mary”.
    Its meaning is clear from the context, but I would love to know where the term comes from.

    My own version of “Uncle Tom.” There are a couple of other types of terms in circulation (that I can’t remember at the moment). I’m not sure if I made it up or heard it somewhere, but it’s been my favorite term for those folks–you know, the Log Cabin types–for a very long time.

  34. #34 Matt Penfold
    March 9, 2010

    My own version of “Uncle Tom.” There are a couple of other types of terms in circulation (that I can’t remember at the moment). I’m not sure if I made it up or heard it somewhere, but it’s been my favorite term for those folks–you know, the Log Cabin types–for a very long time.

    Thanks. It is a rather apt term.

  35. #35 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    I use “Mary” because of it’s camp history.

  36. #36 phoenixwoman
    March 9, 2010

    The guy gets the Billy James Hargis Award, that’s for sure.

    Aside from being yet another gay politician forced out of the closet in a very embarrassing way, I just wanted to comment on how differently these situations unfold depending on the political party of the person being outed.

    For example: Barney Frank’s about the only Democratic pol who wasn’t forced out of office when he was outed. Contrast that with New Jersey governor Jim McGreevey, who in 2004 wound up losing his job along with his marriage, over an alleged affair with someone on the state payroll. This is especially notable because even as the evening TV news shows were all about thunderously denouncing McGreevey, there was another politician who was accused of having his male lover on the public payroll, Republican congressman David Dreier. Yet Dreier never lost his job over being outed. In fact, the closest Dreier came to paying any kind of political price for this is by being denied the chance to replace Tom DeLay as House majority leader in 2005; the official pretext was because the very conservative Dreier was a “moderate”, but it was understood by everyone that “moderate” was code for “gay”.

  37. #37 negentropyeater
    March 9, 2010

    Zeno,

    With nothing more to lose, he’s decided to ‘fess up and pretend that his job was merely to vote the irrational fears of his constituency.

    He does say in the interview on KERN radio that he was planning to run for congress, but this event (the DUI and the now public information of where he was comming from and what he was doing) forced him to OUT himself and changed his plans to run for congress.

    btw what a moronic faith-head that interviewer ! “I love you Roy”

    And as usual, the “please pray for me” line. As if that’s gonna change anything.

  38. #38 https://me.yahoo.com/a/R0la1ARkwM3lgGAZGwRMCYtiGcqPkw--#cbe4e
    March 9, 2010

    Save your pity. He still stands behind his anti gay legislative history and intends to continue campaigning and legislating against gay rights. The man deserves only to be booted form office as soon as his term is up.

  39. #39 Walton, Extra Special Dumpling of Awesome
    March 9, 2010

    This is an interesting ethical question: should he reverse his voting record, despite the fact that he claims, with some basis, to be “representing” the anti-gay views of his constituents? I think he should, and I will explain why.

    I personally don’t believe in the notion of “representative democracy”, as such. Don’t get me wrong: I do support a constitutional system in which public officials are elected and can be voted out of office. But I don’t subscribe to the notion that an elected official can ever really “represent” his constituents in any meaningful or coherent way.

    How can any single person “represent” a large, heterogeneous group of several hundred thousand people, with wildly divergent views and interests, who are united only by the chance fact of living in the same area? Ashburn cannot hope to “represent” all of his constituents, and clearly, like most legislators, he isn’t trying to do so; rather, he’s “representing”, at best, the opinions of the majority who voted for him. Indeed, it’s hard to see how any legislator could do otherwise, unless he or she were to vote sometimes on one side of an issue and sometimes on another, in proportion to the spread of opinion among his or her constituents (which would be manifestly ridiculous).

    The incoherence of “representative democracy” is illustrated by the fact that different countries use radically different electoral systems and divide up voters in radically different ways, while all claiming to be “representative” in some sense. In some countries, legislators represent parties who are allocated seats in proportion to their support among the voters; in others, they represent arbitrary geographical areas; in others, they represent ethnic, cultural or religious communities (as in New Zealand, Fiji or Northern Ireland). It’s also complicated by some people’s insistence that legislators should be “representative” of the personal traits of their constituents, therefore arguing that, say, 50% of each legislature should be composed of women, and that ethnic minorities should be “represented” in proportion to their numbers.

    As such, we can see that there is no consensus on what “representation”, in the context of elected officials, really means; and it’s hard to see how it can be said to mean anything at all. With this in mind, Ashburn should abandon the silly notion that he has any responsibility at all to “represent” the beliefs of a bare majority of people who happen by chance to live in an arbitrary geographical area. Instead, he should do the morally right thing and support gay rights. He might well not get re-elected, but he might at least be able to do some good during the remainder of his term in office.

  40. #40 SQB
    March 9, 2010

    I am interested in your use of the term “Uncle Mary”.

    My own version of “Uncle Tom.”

    I propose “Uncle Chris”. It’s meaning should be obvious, but perhaps it’s a bit too much of an honour for mr. Mooney.

  41. #41 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    @SQB – I’m confused, are you suggesting that Chris Mooney is a closeted homosexual?

  42. #42 Peter G.
    March 9, 2010

    The louder they gay bash the deeper the closet.

  43. #43 Gyeong Hwa Pak, Tai Dam lum Pun
    March 9, 2010

    This one life is all you’ve got, Roy. Live it by being true to yourself.

    That’s the problem isn’t it? These people are promised an eternity of pleasure with their vain god in the afterlife if they deny what they are in their current life. That’s how they justify their homophobia. (assuming they are religious)

    Well, it’s good then that he was outed so embarrasingly. (as opposed to my outing which was largely uneventful.)

  44. #44 Stephen Wells
    March 9, 2010

    Did he ever explain _why_ he agreed to represent the views of people who are fundamentally opposed to the existence of people like him?

    Oh, right. The money.

  45. #45 SQB
    March 9, 2010

    Pretending to be pro-science but pandering to theists?

  46. #46 Gus Snarp
    March 9, 2010

    @SQB – OK, so “Uncle Tom” is to African Americans as “Uncle Mary” is to homosexuals as “Uncle Chris” is to scientists.

  47. #47 rob
    March 9, 2010

    did anyone read why he came out?

    apparently he was caught drunk driving after leaving a gay bar.

    so he supports anti-gay laws, but is gay.

    i guess he supports DUI legislation too.

    i wonder what other laws he “supports.”

    tax evasion? murder? rape? pedophaelia?

  48. #48 tsg
    March 9, 2010

    I am interested in your use of the term “Uncle Mary”.

    Its meaning is clear from the context, but I would love to know where the term comes from.

    Not MaJeff, but it seems to be derived from this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncle_Tom

  49. #49 Momo
    March 9, 2010

    Classic Religious conservative fuck stick! This really brightened up my day.

  50. #50 gr8hands
    March 9, 2010

    It’s clear that he only chooses to represent the homophobic constituents of his district. Certainly there are gay constituents (we are everywhere).

  51. #51 sudomabinusri
    March 9, 2010

    Having lived for more than a quarter of a century in Senator Ashburn’s district, I can say with certainty that not all of his constituents agree with his homophobic voting record. So that excuse is just bullshit. But y’all knew that already.

  52. #52 Roger
    March 9, 2010

    I don’t feel one whit sorry for him. He locked himself into a hell of his own making, and was caught virtually with his pants down. His “coming out” wasn’t an act of bravery–it was the end result of a lifetime of cowardice. If he intends to keep voting against himself and the rest of us, I wish him nothing but misery for the rest of his putrid, pathetic life.

  53. #53 Randomfactor
    March 9, 2010

    Oddly enough, they hated Ashburn around here before it turned out he was in the closet. He cast the deciding vote *FOR* the California budget last year, crossing the GOP establishment. (Or being their sacrificial lamb, since it was becoming clear to me the public was getting fed up over the deadlock.)

    He wouldn’t have been elected or re-elected here in Bakersfield without taking his “family-friendly” stances, but he didn’t have to climb up on the stages at their mini-Nuremberg rallies.

    (I’ve known Ashburn as an acquaintance for 25 years–knew he was a jerk but didn’t suspect he was gay.

  54. #54 Moggie
    March 9, 2010

    If he feels he has to represent the wishes of a majority of his constituents, perhaps he should reflect on what I hope a majority think about anyone who puts lives at risk by driving under the influence.

  55. #55 Eidolon
    March 9, 2010

    The issue of representation is an interesting one. Franklin was no fan of direct democracy and one of the real hazards of a democracy is the tyranny of the majority.

    What seems to be lacking in this case, as well as in many others is a willingness to place job security (theirs) over making a stand for what is right. It seems pathetic when Ashburn is so spineless and wants to keep his job so badly that he is willing to say “Hey folks, I’ll keep right on supporting your bigotry if you’ll just PLEASE let me keep my job”. How he can look in the mirror is a puzzlement.

  56. #56 Qwerty
    March 9, 2010

    At least he admitted it while Larry Craig and Ted Haggard still think they are straight.

  57. #57 SteveM
    March 9, 2010

    re Celtic_Evolution @2:

    Does he vote for what’s proper and right, and for his own personal conscience even if it’s clearly not the will of the majority of his constituents?

    I have always liked this quote from Edmund Burke (highlighted in the musical 1776):

    “Your representative owes you,
    not his industry only, but his judgment;
    and he betrays, instead of serving you,
    if he sacrifices it to your opinion.”

  58. #58 https://me.yahoo.com/a/SaqGVG0xvJEQVwURVamS3DTCdvov0BLhXK1jOsYPPJQ-#b4893
    March 9, 2010

    I don’t mean to minimize the self-loathing aspect of this story, but the fact is, he was caught driving drunk, with a BAC of .14%, nearly twice the legal limit in CA. I’m pretty sure that California state employees can be fired for DUIs while they’re driving State vehicles.

    If it was me, I’d have already been suspended.

    It is a waste of a life, for sure. I’m just happy he didn’t waste someone else’s life while failing to drive straight.

    (Sorry. Someone had to say it.)

    As far as voting according to his constituents’ desires, you can only take that so far. His district is very conservative. I’d bet a sizable percentage of his base, if not the majority of it, believes Obama was born in Kenya. So if the majority of his constituents believe the State senate should pass a resolution calling for Obama’s resignation, should Ashburn follow those wishes?

    I personally do not think so. This is especially true when it comes to cases of outright bigoted discrimination.

    MikeM

  59. #59 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    He is a collaborator. No pity for one such as him. The reactionaries he represented will deny him. And I think it makes no difference that he admitted his homosexuality when he was caught, he has already done his damage.

  60. #60 truthspeaker
    March 9, 2010

    Yeah, the fact that he was using a state vehicle to drive to gay bars, and then driving it drunk, just adds an extral level of arrogance into the mix.

  61. #61 Celtic_Evolution
    March 9, 2010

    I have always liked this quote from Edmund Burke (highlighted in the musical 1776):

    “Your representative owes you,
    not his industry only, but his judgment;
    and he betrays, instead of serving you,
    if he sacrifices it to your opinion.”

    Excellent.

  62. #62 Fred The Hun
    March 9, 2010

    Hmm, am I the only one who thinks that his current constituency might no longer want to be represented by him? Should be interesting to watch that play out.

  63. #63 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Fred, you said that only three comments after my own.

  64. #64 Sili
    March 9, 2010

    I don’t recall now if it was Dan Savage or one of his commenters who said in response to this, that journos &c should make a habit of asking people, who’re so viciously homophobic as this, if they’re gay themselves.

  65. #65 03presserkun
    March 9, 2010

    Ashburn sounds like a rotten apple, but part of his experience is similar to mine.

    I’m 57 years old. I came out to myself at 49.

    I didn’t make a career out of gay-bashing, didn’t publicly nor privately denounce homosexuals.

    It is, indeed, sad to have lived a lie for so long.

    My self-deception was “lovingly” prepared for me by family, friends, and community: I grew up in the Bible belt in the 50s and 60s, firmly entrenched in Southern Baptist fundagelicanism.

    I worked my way through and out of it. It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14.

    Yes, sad. But I’m out now, an ex-Christian, and glad, free, and at peace.

    At least I’m living life on my terms, my way.

  66. #66 Brownian, OM
    March 9, 2010

    03presserkun, you just made me tear up at my desk. All the best for you and I hope the years you have left are the best of your life.

  67. #67 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    03presserkun, do not insult yourself by comparing your experience to Ashburn. It appears that he was voting against LGBT rights at the same time he was getting his action. And he said he will continue to keep voting the same way.

    It is sad that you were closeted for so long, the same can be said for thousands, maybe millions. (I was one, I did not come out to myself until I was in my mid twenties.) But you did not make sure there was a system that kept harming LGBT people. You are a much better person that Roy Ashburn can ever hope to be.

  68. #68 tsg
    March 9, 2010

    I personally don’t believe in the notion of “representative democracy”, as such.

    I’m going to quibble with your word choice only because I think it is important. The US is a representative republic, not a democracy. Those representatives are democratically elected. The fundamental difference being that the representatives are chosen based on the number of people who think they will serve them best, not to represent the majority (or even plurality) opinion. Ideally, the representative is chosen because he is an expert of sorts, the same way we hire doctors, plumbers, etc. to do the things we either don’t have the time or knowledge to do ourselves.

    How can any single person “represent” a large, heterogeneous group of several hundred thousand people, with wildly divergent views and interests, who are united only by the chance fact of living in the same area?

    Divergent interests does not necessarily mean conflicting interests. It is entirely possible to address the issues that concern a heterogeneous population as long as there isn’t a large overlap where they conflict.

    Ashburn cannot hope to “represent” all of his constituents, and clearly, like most legislators, he isn’t trying to do so; rather, he’s “representing”, at best, the opinions of the majority who voted for him. Indeed, it’s hard to see how any legislator could do otherwise, unless he or she were to vote sometimes on one side of an issue and sometimes on another, in proportion to the spread of opinion among his or her constituents (which would be manifestly ridiculous).

    What a good representative should do is what’s best for the society, not necessarily what the majority thinks is best. With gay rights, for example, even if the majority thinks gays should not be allowed to marry, it doesn’t harm them if they do. They may object to it, even find it distasteful, but it doesn’t affect them otherwise. A good representative would represent the gays in his district by promoting and voting for their rights and telling the majority who disagree to go scratch. Vote me out if you think I’m doing such a bad job. How are your roads, schools and taxes, by the way?

    Unfortunately what really happens is that everybody is an expert, including (even especially) the uninformed. Instead of realizing that others are better equipped to make those decisions and choosing their representatives based on that ability, they choose representatives based on one or two issues they feel the strongest about, even if they’re wrong.

  69. #69 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    I’m 57 years old. I came out to myself at 49…It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14…But I’m out now, an ex-Christian, and glad, free, and at peace. -03presserkun

    I’m very happy for you. They don’t make it easy to be gay or atheist, do they? I’m very glad you shared that with us.

  70. #70 davem
    March 9, 2010

    Huh! PZ missed the most important news on the BCC site:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/8071865.stm

    Family see Jesus in marmite cap.

  71. #71 chuckgoecke
    March 9, 2010

    The Urban dictionary does not have an entry for “Uncle Mary” but I saw it defined somewhere else. I submitted it as a new word for them with the following definition:
    A gay man who works against the causes of the LGBT community, usually a politician.
    Example:
    That California Senator caught DUI while leaving a Gay Bar is a sad Uncle Mary.
    Tags:
    log cabin republican, closeted gay, larry craig, roy ashburn, ted haggard, mark foley

  72. #72 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    03presserkun @ 65:

    I worked my way through and out of it. It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14.

    Yes, sad. But I’m out now, an ex-Christian, and glad, free, and at peace.

    At least I’m living life on my terms, my way.

    A long, hard road for you. I hope your life is filled with happiness every day now.

  73. #73 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    chuckgoecke, is there a story behind your NSFW TypePad avatar?

  74. #74 scooterKPFT
    March 9, 2010

    # 65

    I worked my way through and out of it. It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14.

    Pretty much the same for me, and breeders in general.

    It get’s worse.

    You’re 49, you’re just a few years before the abyss, after which not even you would fuck you.

    This is typical of the human experience. By the time you figure it out, it’s passed you by.

    I used to recommend suicide, but that was when I ran the suicide implement website and did a lot of spamming and cashed in on the ‘painless’ craze.

    I blew all the money since.

    If you want to invest, I’ll talk to you about how fucked up, or recovering or enlightened you are.

    I take Pay Pal

  75. #75 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    scooter @ 74:

    You’re 49

    03presserkun clearly stated his age as 57. You might want to work on that whole reading thing.

  76. #76 chuckgoecke
    March 9, 2010

    aratina,
    No story, not really me, I don’t own a laptop, but the sentiment, that’s what counts. You should see my avatar over on RD.net

  77. #77 Carlie
    March 9, 2010

    I thought scooter was already banned? Should be after that one.

    03presserkun, I’m also a former Southern Baptist from the Bible belt although a couple of decades after you, so I have an inkling of the type of environment you had to go through. I’m very happy that you’ve found yourself and managed to shake off the worst of your upbringing.

  78. #78 Flex
    March 9, 2010

    As an elected official I have one thing to say to Roy Ashburn:

    Your constituents are not the people who elected you, but ALL the people in your municipality.

    If you, or any other elected official, think any differently, if you think that because you got a majority of votes in an election you are beholden to those voters views, you are not doing your job properly.

  79. #79 truthspeaker
    March 9, 2010

    A good representative would represent the gays in his district by promoting and voting for their rights and telling the majority who disagree to go scratch. Vote me out if you think I’m doing such a bad job. How are your roads, schools and taxes, by the way?

    Howard Dean did something like that with civil unions in Vermont (after the state Supreme Court forced his hand), and got re-elected.

  80. #80 Walton, Extra Special Dumpling of Awesome
    March 9, 2010

    What a good representative should do is what’s best for the society, not necessarily what the majority thinks is best. With gay rights, for example, even if the majority thinks gays should not be allowed to marry, it doesn’t harm them if they do. They may object to it, even find it distasteful, but it doesn’t affect them otherwise.

    Yes, I totally agree – but I don’t see in what sense this constitutes “representation”. I suppose it possibly does in the same sense that a lawyer “represents” his or her client – but even then, the lawyer does ultimately have to respect the client’s wishes, even when the lawyer thinks that the client is acting against his or her own best interests.

    I agree with you that in a free society, the majority should not be able to take away the rights of the minority. But I think the only practical way to prevent them doing this is to have guarantees of constitutional rights, enforced by an active, independent, non-elected judiciary. This is borne out by the fact that the greatest force for good in US political history is the Supreme Court.

    I agree with you that there are many situations in which government should do what is right, rather than what the majority wants. But I don’t see why we need to pretend that this is, in some convoluted sense, “representative democracy”. It isn’t – because true representative democracy would be a really bad idea.

  81. #81 scooterKPFT
    March 9, 2010

    Caine # 75

    It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14.

    So that’s 49, and 03presserkun has been sexually adjusted for another eight years afterward, and is now 57, my bad.

    This puts him firmly eight years ahead of most of the savagely oppresse4d randoms that I run into every day, so it’s worse than I thought.

    I thought this was solved when we banned gays from the Navy, so there was more for us.

  82. #82 Shadow
    March 9, 2010

    “Uncle Mary” = “Queersling”?

  83. #83 Flex
    March 9, 2010

    Walton @80,

    Representation, as I see it, does not mean that have to respect the wishes of the majority of the population which elected you.

    It means you represent all the citizens in your district, including those who didn’t elect you.

  84. #84 Xenithrys
    March 9, 2010

    @70: Family see Jesus in marmite cap.
    It looks more like Billy Connolly to me.

  85. #85 KOPD
    March 9, 2010

    @70

    I think it looks more like the girl in The Ring. How the hell people get off thinking that something looks like somebody who was never photographed or painted by any eye witnesses is way beyond me. And it’s always him and his mom. Never a John the Baptist sighting, or Moses, or Joseph. How about an Abraham sighting? Oh, and I’ve noticed that Mary only appears to Catholics. That’s preaching to the choir. If they want to increase their coffers, start appearing to Muslims, Hindus and atheists. Gee, it’s like people only see what they already believe…….

  86. #86 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    The Urban dictionary does not have an entry for “Uncle Mary” but I saw it defined somewhere else. I submitted it as a new word for them with the following definition:
    A gay man who works against the causes of the LGBT community, usually a politician.

    Oh, how fun. A term (I think that maybe) I created may actually be “hip” or something. I’m feeling so *jazz hands* JUST JACK! *jazz hands*

  87. #87 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    I worked my way through and out of it. It took me 35 years, starting when I was 14.
    Yes, sad. But I’m out now, an ex-Christian, and glad, free, and at peace.
    At least I’m living life on my terms, my way.

    Welcome to living….work the shit out of it. Make the most of what time, energy, joy, etc. you have.

  88. #88 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Oh, how fun. A term (I think that maybe) I created may actually be “hip” or something. I’m feeling so *jazz hands* JUST JACK! *jazz hands*

    You can take the flamboyant fag out of the east coast but you cannot take the east coast out of the flamboyant fag.

    Now I need to come up with a term that ends up in the Urban Dictionary.

  89. #89 tsg
    March 9, 2010

    Yes, I totally agree – but I don’t see in what sense this constitutes “representation”. I suppose it possibly does in the same sense that a lawyer “represents” his or her client – but even then, the lawyer does ultimately have to respect the client’s wishes, even when the lawyer thinks that the client is acting against his or her own best interests.

    The elected representative should “represent” his constituents by looking out for their best interests, even if they don’t know what they are. The analogy to a lawyer doesn’t really hold up: the representative has several thousand clients, many of whom would choose to harm some of the others for their own gain. He has no obligation to respect the wishes of those who aren’t acting in society’s best interest.

    I agree with you that there are many situations in which government should do what is right, rather than what the majority wants. But I don’t see why we need to pretend that this is, in some convoluted sense, “representative democracy”. It isn’t – because true representative democracy would be a really bad idea.

    Which is why I specifically took issue with the term “representative democracy”. It is a bad idea, and that’s why we don’t have it.

  90. #90 Eurus
    March 9, 2010

    There’s a helluva lot of hypocrisy on this blog and in this forum, from the top (Myers) on down.
    How sad, as one of you might say.
    Okay, okay, I’m not really broken up about the state of your lost souls. Maybe I should be, but somehow I can’t get worked up about it. So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

  91. #91 Gyeong Hwa Pak, Tai Dam lum Pun
    March 9, 2010

    03presserkun I’m glad you’re out. It’s never too late. Sometimes I think things would be different if I had come out earlier, but each person has their pace.

    You can take the flamboyant fag out of the east coast but you cannot take the east coast out of the flamboyant fag.

    ? o_0 ! oh wait -_- damn I don’t get it.
    Sometimes I feel like I’m the least immersed in gay culture of other gay people I know.

  92. #92 KOPD
    March 9, 2010

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    No. Bigotry and Christianity are perfectly compatible.

  93. #93 Kamaka
    March 9, 2010

    Yes I’m a Hypocrite @ 90

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Why would we care?

    Not too many around here buy into your “little soul” fairytale.

  94. #94 Gyeong Hwa Pak, Tai Dam lum Pun
    March 9, 2010

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    No. It just shows you are a stupid, bigot with nothing relevant to say and so in love with an evil non-existent deity that you think you’re better than other people, when clearly you can’t even grasp that the Bible is full of inconsistency and fiction.

  95. #95 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Gyeong Hwa Pak, the MA in MAJeff stands for Massachusetts. He lived in Boston for a long time. Last year, he moved to North Dakota in order to take a teaching position. (Psst… Don’t tell anyone but he is originally from Iowa.) So it is not a gay culture thing, just a Pharyngula in joke.

    Eurus, I much rather be a lost soul than to spend time with people like you. And, please, explain why it is wrong to treat LGBT people as social equals?

  96. #96 Carlie
    March 9, 2010

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Yes. Jesus would not approve. Does that make you happy?

  97. #97 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Don’t tell anyone but he is originally from Iowa

    Only born there, elementary school, and undergrad. High school and masters degree (and continuing presence of parents) in Minnesota. I’m a Midwestern boy who’s always been a bit more east coast, but still found New Englanders unpardonably rude.

  98. #98 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    MAJeff, you truly are a conflicted person!

  99. #99 MAJeff, OM
    March 9, 2010

    but fun….and a really good cook.

  100. #100 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    <Ralphie>*pointing at Eurus* He believes in souls.</Ralphie>

    <Nelson>Ha-ha!</Nelson>

  101. #101 Kamaka
    March 9, 2010

    Yow!

    I’ve shrunk!

  102. #102 Bob L
    March 9, 2010

    Eurus @ “There’s a helluva lot of hypocrisy on this blog and in this forum, from the top (Myers) on down.”

    I am intrigued Eurus. I know am utterly evil for being a god mocking atheist but how am I being extra special EVIL here? Come on Eurus, speak TRUTH to our un-belief based power. You know you want to.

  103. #103 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    Eurus @ 90:

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Tsk tsk, you made Jesus cry. Yes, it makes you a hypocrite, however, that by far is not the only reason. Go thump your bible, perhaps you’ll make Jesus come and that will make up for causing him to cry.

  104. #104 otrame
    March 9, 2010

    Okay, okay, I’m not really broken up about the state of your lost souls. Maybe I should be, but somehow I can’t get worked up about it. So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Look, I know it’s bad to feed the trolls. I know it and I do it anyway.

    Eurus, Jesus dined with publicans and sinners (Matthew, IIRC), but all you can think to do is come here and be ugly at us. Excellent example of typical “Bible-believing” Christian behavior. If you really are a Christian (lots who say they are really just enjoy the holier than thou part) then maybe you need to think a little bit about what Jesus would say about your behavior, both for yourself and for the bad light it puts on Him.

  105. #105 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    Eurus blathered:

    ugly little souls

    Speaking of souls, do you happen to have evidence of them?

  106. #106 bunnycatcher
    March 9, 2010

    I’m 57 years old. I came out to myself at 49.

    Not me! still hiding in the closet where it’s safe. Coming out would be too disruptive but I applaud your courage. Peace

  107. #107 'Tis Himself, OM
    March 9, 2010

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Not only a hypocrite, it makes you an asshole.

  108. #108 Benjamin Geiger
    March 9, 2010

    Bob L:

    No, no, no. You’ve got it backward.

    Eurus is trying to speak power to truth.

  109. #109 echidna
    March 9, 2010

    Eurus handwaved:

    There’s a helluva lot of hypocrisy on this blog and in this forum, from the top (Myers) on down.< \blockquote>

    Really? Examples please? And do you have evidence of the existence of souls, not to mention the size and appearance of them?

    /trollfeeding.

  110. #110 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    echidna @ 109:

    And do you have evidence of the existence of souls

    I asked for that evidence too. Looks like trollstian isn’t going to come back and provide it.

  111. #111 tsg
    March 9, 2010

    Eurus the drive-by troll spewed before running away:

    There’s a helluva lot of hypocrisy on this blog and in this forum, from the top (Myers) on down.

    That’s funny, coming from a Christian.

    How sad, as one of you might say.

    I’m tearing up just thinking about it, but only because I’m laughing so hard…

    Okay, okay, I’m not really broken up about the state of your lost souls.

    My what now? Is that like an aura or something?

    Maybe I should be, but somehow I can’t get worked up about it.

    I can see. You cared so little about our “lost souls” that you came all the way here just to tell us how little you care. I mean, of all the things you could not care about, this is the one you chose to focus your apathy on. That’s some big time not caring, that is. It takes real effort to care that little.

    So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Nope, just typically Christian. What, are we supposed to be upset that you, a gawd-fearing, babble-bleeving Christian doesn’t care about the state of our imaginary things you made up? I can’t tell you how upset I am. Because I’m not. The scale has yet to be invented that could measure my indifference to that remark. But you go ahead and keep thinking it’s an insult. I’ll try to remember to be offended next time.

    Feel the Love! *shakes fist* Feel it!

  112. #112 george.wiman
    March 9, 2010

    and to only now wake up and confront the truth?assuming he lives into his 70s, that’s an admission that two thirds to three quarters of your life was spent living a lie.

    I can relate. I studied for the ministry in college, helped found a church, baptized people. The sense of loss and regret when my faith collapsed and I became an atheist was devastating, for a while.

    Not the loss of the faith I regret – good riddance to it – but the loss of the years and irreplaceable opportunities. Trying to make the most of what’s left though.

    He did say he hoped he could find some peace. Perhaps when the full implications hit him and he gets used to the idea, he will. Just so some “ex-gay” ministry doesn’t get hold of him and try to drag him back into the bucket.

  113. #113 DLC
    March 10, 2010

    From self-loathing closeted gay to self-loathing openly gay. hey, in another decade or three he may wind up where Barney Frank is now.
    Or suicide.
    Or maybe he’ll go to Jesus Camp and Be Healed of his Sins.
    The good news is, California’s term limit laws mean he will be unable to inflict himself on the citizens of the Golden State, from that position, at least. I could think of other positions he could occupy, but I’m trying to be polite.

    Eurus : you keep using this word “Hypocrite”. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  114. #114 Ye Olde Blacksmith
    March 10, 2010

    @70: Family see Jesus in marmite cap.
    It is quite obviously Graham Chapman (ala Monty Python) reaching back to us from the beyond. Anyone who says otherwise is, simply, deluded.

    @65: 03presserkun
    Your post makes me glad and sad. Sad you were forced to hide for so long and glad your past it.

    @OP: Roy Ashburn
    I?m having difficulties trying to express my disgust for this guy so I will just say ?ASSHAT!?. How?s that for rational discourse? :-)

  115. #115 MadScientist
    March 10, 2010

    It is really sad that he become so repressed by the society that he lives in that he loathes himself so much as to denigrate other homosexuals. Hopefully he will be much happier with himself, learn to enjoy life, and improve his dress sense.

  116. #116 MadScientist
    March 10, 2010

    @Peter Ashby: On top of all that, elected officials are meant to act for the benefit of their constituents – and very frequently that means ignoring what the majority want and voting for what you believe to be right. Democracy is not about whoever has the largest gang gets their way. People get to elect people to represent them (not people who will do as the populace please) – and many good people have been voted out for doing the right thing. Some excellent presidents have been reviled for acting in the interests of the nation rather than acting on behalf of any specific special interest group. For elected officials to believe that they must always vote as their constituents wish demeans our system of government.

  117. #117 Rorschach
    March 10, 2010

    @ 73,

    chuckgoecke, is there a story behind your NSFW TypePad avatar?

    That pic’s just teh awesum !!!

    *Homer Simpson voice*
    Hmmmmm, Femdom !!
    ;)

  118. #118 shonny
    March 10, 2010

    Posted by: davem Author Profile Page | March 9, 2010 3:09 PM

    Huh! PZ missed the most important news on the BCC site:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/8071865.stm

    Family see Jesus in marmite cap.

    Unnecessary after the Chasers finding this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9cyJ8nqU7ds

  119. #119 karinvermooten
    March 10, 2010

    #2 comment wrote:
    Ashburn made the statement that his anti-gay voting record was due to voting the way his constituents wanted.

    Is it normal in politics that people who got elected vote against their own wishes??
    Is it normal that someone runs for office on issues he himself is not behind?
    Should someone hide his own visions in order to get elected??
    Can you trust someone that says what his voters wants to hear but doesn’t believe it??

  120. #120 Sioux Laris
    March 10, 2010

    #90 If you really are a “Christian” you are a fine example of why I, after decades of taking people as they are, now assume that I’m dealing with a lying, crazy asshole as soon as they allude without reason to a belief in Christ.

    Disgusting creeps, all. And how well they have pulled down the image of ordinary, basically (or very) decent traditional Christians! They’ve destroyed the image of Jesus Christ as well as Bin Laden has that of Islam.

  121. #121 FrankT
    March 10, 2010

    I just want to lend support to the term “Queersling”. It’s obvious what it means and is nicely insulting at the same time.

    Shadow wins many internets.

  122. #122 Ing
    March 10, 2010

    So if he was in Uganda would he throw himself in an oven?

  123. #123 Flex
    March 10, 2010

    #119 Karinvermooten asks, “Is it normal that someone runs for office on issues he himself is not behind?”

    Your four questions are good ones. The short answer to them is; no, it’s not normal, but it does happen.

    There is a difference between running for office and performing the duties of the office. A difference which, from my perspective, an increasing number of politicians are losing sight of.

    When running for office you have to convince more people to vote for you than for your opponent.

    The job, however, as clearly pointed out in other comments above, is not about representing the voters who elected you, but all the citizens in your district. Including those whom they may personally find repugnant. Which is, as I see it, at the root of the trope of “politicians always lie”.

    Of course, many politicians are not so introspective and most of them believe that their own prejudices and beliefs reflect the opinion of their constituents. Which I don’t think as hubris, but as simply human nature. Generally speaking, we all feel that our own prejudices and beliefs are those of the general population.

    As I indicated above, politicians seem to be blurring the differences between the task of running for office and performing the duties of the office. To the point where they end up like Roy Ashburn, with the feeling that they have to appease the people who voted for him simply because he convinced them to vote for him.

    I use the term appeasement deliberately because that’s what you do with tyrants and bullies who have power over you. Appeasement can be useful provided there is a longer-term strategy to reduce a tyrant’s power, but usually it’s a strategy of fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Politicians who practice appeasement are no longer working for the good of their constituents, but for the tyrants who threaten them with removal from office.

    I think you also underestimate the power of rationalization. Roy Ashburn has stated that he will still support anti-gay legislation. He may claim that it’s because that’s what his voters want, but if he is term-limited anyway, there is no compelling reason for him to vote that way. He will be doing so because he has internally rationalized that anti-gay legislation is the right thing.

    So even if Roy Ashburn had originally not been behind the issues he ran under, he is now. Personally, I suspect he has always been a self-loathing man.

  124. #124 KOPD
    March 10, 2010

    tsg @111
    Focused apathy. I like that. I hadn’t even picked up on it.

  125. #125 Ing
    March 10, 2010

    Roy Ashburn is full of shit. He has an obligation to serve his constituency. All of em. He is not obligated nor right in pushing racist legislation because the Klan voted strongly for him. He doesn’t have to push gay legislation but he is ethically unsound for pushing legislation that not only hurts but targets some of his constituency.

  126. #126 frog, Inc.
    March 10, 2010

    We forgot how deeply, deeply irrational — and basically impervious to reason — this issue is.

    I was reading one of Orwell’s essays on Dali — trying to put together Dali’s technical skill, with his personal and artistic creepiness. At one point Orwell is discussing Dali’s necrophilia and his plain evil — either as a fantasy or reality.

    “It is not given to any one person to have all the vices, and Dali also boasts that he is not homosexual, but otherwise he seems to have as good an outfit of perversions as anyone could wish for. [paragraph break] However, his most notable characteristic is his necrophilia.”

    Now, Orwell was as about as a committed and rational democratic socialist as imaginable — but in 1944 paralleling “perversion” “homosexuality” and “necrophilia” seemed perfectly natural (and thoughtless) to him.

    1944 wasn’t a long time ago culturally. Even the most thoughtful, rational, and egalitarian people were simply thoughtless and reactionary about this issue.

    For most people over say 30 years old, and for many under, this is still a completely irrational issue. Sanity here is still new and fragile.

  127. #127 Angel Kaida
    March 10, 2010

    Something I thought about this morning, and note that I am sleep-deprived so it might be completely stupid, sorry: How many of these hypocritical anti-gay shitheads are actually gay, as opposed to bisexual? I mean, they’re equally hypocritical no matter what, but – could the assumption that these people are gay because they have same-sex sexual partners be a reflection of bi invisibility? Like, Haggard: presumably he has sex with his wife, right? And he thinks he’s been cured now? Both of those things could reflect a very deep closet and some very strong denial, but isn’t it also possible that he’s also attracted to women – and hence, bisexual?

  128. #128 aratina cage
    March 10, 2010

    How many of these hypocritical anti-gay shitheads are actually gay, as opposed to bisexual? I mean, they’re equally hypocritical no matter what, but – could the assumption that these people are gay because they have same-sex sexual partners be a reflection of bi invisibility? Like, Haggard: presumably he has sex with his wife, right? And he thinks he’s been cured now? Both of those things could reflect a very deep closet and some very strong denial, but isn’t it also possible that he’s also attracted to women – and hence, bisexual?

    Roy actually said he is gay when he could have said bisexual, so we’ll have to take his word for it. But for people like Ted Haggard, it is less clear. The one thing I would say to all this is that having sex with a person of the opposite sex does not necessarily make one straight or bi and likewise having sex with a person of the same sex does not make one gay or bi. Ted has significantly more societal, community, and family pressure to say he is straight and not bi or gay.

  129. #129 Angel Kaida
    March 10, 2010

    I agree with what you’ve said, aratina, but the place where I’m struggling most is with the “taking their word for it” thing. That tends to be where I draw my lines – for instance, if someone says she’s a lesbian but she also is attracted to men, I tend to take her at her word, partly because the categorizations are inherently fuzzy and partly because I get that it has to do with self-identification. But in the case of closeted politicians, especially closeted homophobes, I tend to be less sure for several reasons, the foremost being that if they are already homophobes, I have very little faith in their cultural knowledge of LGBT identities.

  130. #130 Angel Kaida
    March 10, 2010

    Sorry, I said I agreed with aratina and then proceeded to take issue with something she said. Specificity fail, on my part. I meant that I agreed with the part about having sex with someone of the same sex not making you gay/lesbian/bisexual and having sex with someone of the opposite sex not making you straight or bisexual.

  131. #131 Liam
    March 10, 2010

    I’m not sure if any one has mentioned this yet but I will.
    The queer community works extremely hard to be present. Things are of course easier now, as there were many battles to keep businesses open and bars/restaurants availabe.

    ANYONE! Who Opposes homosexuality should not be able to take advantage of all that is available. Especially if they are a closested homo. It’s just not cool.

    He should have is membership revoked.

  132. #132 aratina cage
    March 10, 2010

    Don’t worry about it, Angel Kaida. I understood and agree with you in #129. I’ve just known several women and men who came out as gay and bi in their mid 40s (some with multiple children and grandchildren) to know that the prior relationship with a person of the opposite sex doesn’t really signify their true feelings of sexual attraction that they had never allowed to be expressed openly before.

  133. #133 Roger
    March 10, 2010

    Okay, okay, I’m not really broken up about the state of your lost souls. Maybe I should be, but somehow I can’t get worked up about it. So does the fact that I don’t care about your ugly little souls make me, a Bible-believing Christian, a hypocrite?

    Actually, that does make you a hypocrite, you backwards, trolling fuckwit.

  134. #134 lenoxuss
    March 11, 2010

    I have a feeling that if you asked Ashburn if he was bi, he might wonder “What does this person mean, am I buy? Do I buy what?” That may be why he’s calling himself gay. Not that it isn’t possible that he truly is gay, obviously, but his vocabulary on the subject is almost certainly rather limited.

    On the cute new baby troll in the room? Apart from the fact that Jesus might not approve of his bigoted attitude (as has been noted by others ? though it depends on which Jesus we’re talking about), Eurus is being much less hypocritical than many Christians. By definition, if atheists justly go to Hell, then we are very, very evil people, period.

    By contrast, the novel Only Begotten Daughter has Jesus caring for sufferers in Hell, in defiance of both his father and Satan. (Okay, I’ll admit my connections in plugging that book: its author is my daddy.)

  135. #135 John Morales
    March 11, 2010

    lenoxuss, link fail.

    I take it you meant Only Begotten Daughter.

    (I have not read it.)

  136. #136 Walton, Janine's Hero
    March 11, 2010

    Yeah… as someone said on the other thread:

    Third, I suspect that the vast majority of people are fundamentally bisexual and there are outliers of homo and heterosexuality, like any bell curve. Social pressures interfere with the expression of this, of course.

    In the end, human sexuality is complex and diverse, and I don’t know why there’s so much social pressure to fit oneself into discrete categories of “straight” and “gay”. And I also think there’s a distinction between physical attraction and romantic or emotional attraction; the two often coincide, but they don’t always have to have the same parameters.

  137. #137 Darreth
    March 11, 2010

    It’s only a matter of time before Charlie Crist (R) from FL is fully outed. He’s already been proven to be gay but hasn’t been caught red-handed yet.

  138. #138 Walton, Janine's Hero
    March 11, 2010

    It’s only a matter of time before Charlie Crist (R) from FL is fully outed. He’s already been proven to be gay but hasn’t been caught red-handed yet.

    On a related note, I really dislike the idea that people should try to “out” or “catch” closeted gay or bisexual politicians. If they want to keep their sexuality private, for whatever reason, that is their business. It is not something the public is entitled to know.

    This applies even if the politician in question supports homophobic policies. Supporting discrimination against gay people is equally wrong whether the politician in question is himself straight or gay. The politician’s own sexuality shouldn’t make any difference to this. Everyone, whether straight, gay or bisexual, should support gay rights. And in opposing homophobia, we should focus on the issues, not on the homophobes’ personal traits. I don’t care whether Roy Ashburn has been a hypocrite for all these years; that’s entirely a personal matter. What I care about is the actual outcome of the policies he has supported – and that outcome would have been exactly the same if he were straight.

  139. #139 Matt Penfold
    March 11, 2010

    On a related note, I really dislike the idea that people should try to “out” or “catch” closeted gay or bisexual politicians. If they want to keep their sexuality private, for whatever reason, that is their business. It is not something the public is entitled to know.

    The public is entitled to know if a politician is dishonest.

  140. #140 Walton, Janine's Hero
    March 11, 2010

    The public is entitled to know if a politician is dishonest.

    About some things, yes. About sexuality, no. I honestly don’t see how a politician’s sexuality has any effect whatsoever on the public. Politicians, like the rest of us, are entitled to keep their private lives private, as long as it doesn’t harm other people or affect their ability to do their job.

    If a politician opposes gay rights, he or she should be condemned. Homophobic discriminatory policies do damage people’s lives, and should be opposed. But they are equally damaging whether the politicians voting for them are straight or closeted gay. If a law is bad, then we should criticise it for being a bad law; the sexuality of the legislators who enacted it is IMO entirely irrelevant.

  141. #141 Matt Penfold
    March 11, 2010

    About some things, yes. About sexuality, no. I honestly don’t see how a politician’s sexuality has any effect whatsoever on the public. Politicians, like the rest of us, are entitled to keep their private lives private, as long as it doesn’t harm other people or affect their ability to do their job.

    They are entitled to keep their private lives private if they in fact keep them private. A common trait amongst politicians who spout anti-gay rhetoric is making a great deal of how important their families are to them. Once a politician has done that then they loose some rights to privacy with regards their private life. You cannot use aspects of your private life to appeal to voters, and then cry foul when other aspects of your private life you want kept secret come to light.

  142. #142 Walton, Janine's Hero
    March 11, 2010

    They are entitled to keep their private lives private if they in fact keep them private. A common trait amongst politicians who spout anti-gay rhetoric is making a great deal of how important their families are to them. Once a politician has done that then they loose some rights to privacy with regards their private life. You cannot use aspects of your private life to appeal to voters, and then cry foul when other aspects of your private life you want kept secret come to light.

    Fair enough – in cases like that, I see your point.

    But I still don’t think people should actively try to “catch” a politician and “out” him as gay in order to make a political point. Publicising it if it comes to light accidentally is another matter; I wouldn’t condemn the media or blogs for spreading the news of Ashburn’s or Haggard’s outing. But I dislike campaigns of deliberate “outing”, of the kind that Stonewall used to organise in the UK.

  143. #143 chuckgoecke
    March 11, 2010

    I guess its “official”, I got email from Urban dictionary:

    Urban Dictionary – Uncle Mary was published?
    From: noreply@urbandictionary.com
    Sent: Thu 3/11/10 12:34 AM
    To: chuckgoecke@hotmail.com

    Thanks for your definition of Uncle Mary!

    Editors reviewed your entry and have decided to publish it on urbandictionary.com.

    It should appear on this page in the next few days:
    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Uncle%20Mary

    Urban Dictionary

    —–

    Uncle Mary

    A gay person, who may or may not be out, and actively works against the interests of the LBGT community. Like an Uncle Tom for the gays, he will go along with the conservative right wing rather than growing a pair and standing up for himself and others like him. Exhibiting high self deception, he’s acting overly anti-gay to avert suspicion that he is gay. Often applied to a politician.

    By voting against every gay friendly piece of legislation he could, Larry Craig outed himself as Uncle Mary.

    The California State Senator caught driving while intoxicated when leaving a gay bar with a male passenger, Roy Ashburn, is a sad Uncle Mary.

  144. #144 Colin
    March 11, 2010

    I’m too tired to skim through all the comments for a second time, so I can’t remember who wrote it…

    That aside word queersling gets my vote!

    Best word of my week!

  145. #145 Colin
    March 11, 2010

    I meant, in #144, “that aside, the word queersling gets my vote”

    Oops.

  146. #146 Colin
    March 11, 2010

    Ha ha. “Queersling” sounds like “quisling” but it also sounds like a piece of bondage equipment. :)

  147. #147 Shadow
    March 11, 2010

    Colin:

    I intended queersling to be a fusion of queer and quisling — the other interpretation, I think, would be hyphenated.

  148. #148 deriamis
    March 11, 2010

    @Celtic_Evolution:

    Would his voting record necessarily change? And frankly (and this is the more interesting question for me), should it?

    This brings up Plato’s point about the ability of the common masses to govern and his argument for a ruling aristocracy. Why do we elect people to vote for us if we aren’t also giving them some ability to determine what should be right for us? On the flip side, should the will of the people override the will of the publican?

    For some reason, we have stopped electing people with a strong foundation in philosophy. There was a time when actual arguments were made for and against a proposition in government. Now it’s just an overblown popularity contest steeped in the mistaken notion of absolute majority rule.

  149. #149 Je craque
    March 13, 2010

    Whenever I hear about these sorts of things, I have to wonder who they’re actually fucking, and why the gay community hasn’t sent out massive circulation emails about these dudes in order to orchestrate some serious Lysistrata treatment.

    Then again, lots of women still fuck sexists, so go figure.

  150. #150 Knockgoats
    March 13, 2010

    Third, I suspect that the vast majority of people are fundamentally bisexual – Walton quoting “someone”

    Which thread was that on, Walton? Any grounds given for this suspicion? Any intimation what “fundamentally” means in this context?

  151. #151 SC OM
    March 13, 2010

    Knockgoats, it was here:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2010/03/stop_using_the_lens_of_your_pr.php#comment-2340377

    I was going to ask if anyone had any data. Even went and looked at some pictures of Rachel Weisz. Still straight.
    :)

    (I thought RickR’s response was funny.)

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