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September 30, 2015

Pope Francis calls Rome’s mayor ‘pretend Catholic’ for supporting marriage equality

Nice of @Pontifex to wait until he was out of the U.S. to give his blunt opinion.

September 25, 2015

If only this were a gay wedding photo


Imagine His Holiness marrying a rabbi and an imam: "I now pronounce you married." No, it was just a lovely moment from today's interfaith service at the World Trade Center Memorial in lower Manhattan.

Marco Rubio explains it all for you

Rubio on ex-cons

This meme was shared by our friend Brian McNaught, who said, "I don't understand the reasoning here."

That's alright, Brian. His friends Smith and Wesson will be glad to explain it to you.

Where are Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit officers? Redeployed.

David Mariner makes an excellent point. Meanwhile, the Blade reports on the transfer of Officer Justin Markiewicz from GLLU to the Sixth Police District.

September 24, 2015

A gay Muslim filmmaker goes inside the Hajj

The Soft Bigotry of Ben Carson

Another excellent commentary by Charles Blow.

Pope: ‘Basis of marriage’ being called into question

Pope Francis said in his remarks to a joint meeting of Congress today:

Yet I cannot hide my concern for the family, which is threatened, perhaps as never before, from within and without. Fundamental relationships are being called into question, as is the very basis of marriage and the family.

Your Holiness, my family is of value and is not a threat to anyone else's. Your church has denigrated our love and fought our civil rights and protections every step of the way. Please tell your brother bishops to stop it.

Cardinal turns down invitation to attend Dignity Mass

Mother Church is not that into you.

The Trouble with Stonewall: Roland Emmerich’s latest disaster movie

Randy Shulman's blistering review of Stonewall. Below, Brian T. Carney's review for the Blade.

Gay theology pioneer John McNeill dies


Gay theology pioneer Fr. John McNeill has died. New Ways Ministry reports:

New Ways Ministry is greatly saddened at learning of the passing of John McNeill, the first Catholic theologian to critique and challenge the magisterium’s condemnation of same-gender sexual relationships. At the same time, we are deeply grateful to God for the courageous witness and ministry of this prophet, who never lost his faith or his courage despite being severely penalized and ostracized by the Vatican.

John McNeill’s landmark 1976 book, The Church and the Homosexual, was the first Catholic theological work to dispute the official Catholic moral prohibition of same-gender sexual activity and relationships. A Jesuit priest at the time, McNeill was also a licensed psychotherapist who also held a doctorate in theology. IN the book, he used arguments from both the human sciences and the Catholic scholarly tradition to point out that the prohibition was pastorally harmful and theologically incorrect.

Rest in peace, Fr. McNeill.

Pope Francis Enters House Chamber and Gives Only Handshake to John Kerry


Blessed are the peacemakers.

September 23, 2015

Appeasing the Ignorati


My column this week looks at how the GOP is sinking in brainlessness and bile. Here's an excerpt:

Any sufficiently shameless and ambitious politician knows that a smoothly delivered fabrication on live television impresses millions more than will read the next day's refutations. Take Carly Fiorina (please), the never-quite-senator from California with her bag of imaginary business triumphs, whose numbers shot up after her well-delivered zingers at last week's Republican presidential debate.

Never mind that repeated investigations of Benghazi have turned up no sinister actions by Hillary Clinton. Never mind that several state investigations have turned up no wrongdoing by Planned Parenthood. Carly has to appease the Ignorati (as I dub the right-wing base), so she touts a nonexistent fetus-harvesting video. Just as her $40 million golden parachute cushioned the impact of being sacked by Hewlett Packard, her bump in the polls softened the blow of being called a liar.

The facts don't matter any more. Donald Trump pushes a discredited link between vaccines and autism. Mike Huckabee says the Dred Scott decision remains in effect despite the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment. Ben Carson says no Muslim should be president, ignoring the Constitution's Article VI prohibition against religious tests for public office. Marco Rubio dubiously claims North Korea has the capacity to hit America with a nuclear weapon. Jeb Bush says, "My brother kept us safe," as if 9/11 never happened. Bobby Jindal (in the "undercard" debate) raises the specter of an influx of terrorists by falsely saying Obama wants to "short-circuit the vetting process" for Syrian refugees. If one lie flops, you move on to the next.

Read the whole thing here.

September 22, 2015

Ex-Hedge Funder Buys Rights To AIDS Drug, Raises Price 5,455 Percent

This self-satisfied young man needs to be on the lookout for falling pianos, speeding buses, and elevator cars that are not there. Somewhere, one of them has his name on it.

Trans woman live tweets abuse by TSA at Orlando Airport

Bravo to this woman. TSA's behavior is unacceptable.

Fox News Corners Huckabee On 'Very Qualified' Eric Fanning

As the article notes, "Huckabee is the one who made the biggest deal, and the most news about it." Yes. And that is typical of those who are most aggrieved by advances for LGBT equality. What Huckabee is effectively demanding is a return to the closet--a total erasure of gay people. He does this while making excuses for an incestuous rapist (Dugger). His toxic mixture of mendacity and self-righteousness makes him resemble Christ's tormentors more than Christ.

New Nepal constitution includes LGBT-specific protections

September 21, 2015

David Cameron did WHAT to a dead pig's head!?

If you think you're having a bad week....

Fox's Kilmeade: Pope Francis in the 'Wrong Country,' Should 'Stay Home'

Utterly classless from one of the stupidest people on cable news. It is revealing of the mindset of someone like Kilmeade that even a conservative religious leader like Pope Francis is anathema because he disagrees with Kilmeade on something. I have my disagreements with the Pontiff, but he is a decent man and I am happy to welcome him to America.

Reza Aslan on xenophobia and Muslim-bashing in GOP

#AssistedDying: a missed opportunity in Britain; a chance to be seized in California

Viola Davis wins Best Actress Emmy

Congrats to Viola Davis for making it across the line, and for putting her historic win in context.

U.S. military allowing child rape by Afghan officials on American bases


NYT reports:

In his last phone call home, Lance Cpl. Gregory Buckley Jr. told his father what was troubling him: From his bunk in southern Afghanistan, he could hear Afghan police officers sexually abusing boys they had brought to the base.

“At night we can hear them screaming, but we’re not allowed to do anything about it,” the Marine’s father, Gregory Buckley Sr., recalled his son telling him before he was shot to death at the base in 2012. He urged his son to tell his superiors. “My son said that his officers told him to look the other way because it’s their culture.”

Here is the Times editorial condemning the American policy of looking the other way on the child rape occurring on American bases. The Times editors are right: this is unacceptable. It is outrageous beyond words, and it is a crime.

A Dangerous Pope

I agree with Tim Rosenberger. As I wrote in my review of the papal exhortation "Evangelii Gaudium" for Metro Weekly in December 2013:

Despite the Catholic Church’s many historical crimes, I support those who seek to engage @Pontifex on LGBT and women’s issues. But they should enter with their eyes open, and not be tempted by his manifest charms into committing what we might call the sin of wishful thinking.

Scott Walker quits presidential race

If you wonder why I say "Good riddance!" to Scott Walker, watch him below from earlier this year, comparing ISIS to teachers union protesters.

North Carolina bar faces national backlash after owner throws gay couple out

A ‘desperate’ Huckabee blasted by military group for dissing Obama’s Sec of Army nominee

Prince William speaks out publicly against homophobic & transphobic bullying

Good for His Highness.

Sea turtles hatching

NYT: portraits of the LGBTI community on Instagram

September 18, 2015

8 national anthems Brits could sing instead of 'God Save the Queen'

My choice would be "Jerusalem," with lyrics by William Blake. Below is its performance by the congregation at the Royal Wedding.

House votes to strip Planned Parenthood of federal funding

The battle is on.

Obama nominates openly gay man to lead Army

Congrats and good luck to Eric Fanning.

White House irritates Vatican with LGBT guests at Pope Francis visit

Well don't I just need a fresh hanky I can sob into.

September 17, 2015

The Spectator: When will Labour move against Corbyn?

If the reactions I am getting from American leftists are any indication, Labour will not budge because (to use an American reference) any criticism of Corbyn makes you the reincarnation of Joe McCarthy. This is the Manichaeism of the Left: someone is either a saint or a devil, so if you criticize him in any way you are calling him a devil, and they are delighted by his unflinching radical views so he must be a saint. If you are committed to actually getting things done, as I am, you are the worst kind of sellout. This obstinate attitude, so contemptuous of any kind of pragmatism, is self-sabotage. But they refuse to see it. So Labour falls. British liberals committed to creating change by engaging the machinery of government will have to look elsewhere.

Refuting Donald Trump's falsehoods on vaccines

Carly Fiorina's lurid, lying rant on Planned Parenthood

Vox reporter Sarah Kliff refutes lurid Fiorina description of Planned Parenthood video: "Either Fiorina hasn't watched the Planned Parenthood videos or she is knowingly misrepresenting the footage. Because what she says happens in the Planned Parenthood videos simply does not exist."

Two photos from Texas

In one photo, racist idiocy taken to new lows. In the other, white kids with guns is apparently no problem.

September 16, 2015

President Obama invites clock-making teen to White House

I love you, Mr. President. #IStandWithAhmed

Schumer and Cardin object to new Republican Iran measure

With Schumer and Cardin opposing McConnell's machinations, and a deadline of Thursday for congressional action, the Iran deal looks secure. The Republicans ought to be doing their jobs and keeping the American government operating, but since Obama's first day in office they have placed thwarting him ahead of all else. This is moral treason, and when she is hauled before Congress again next month, former Secretary of State Clinton should let them have it with both barrels. In the meantime, the Nobel committee should announce the recipient(s) of the Peace Prize by Oct. 9.

September 15, 2015

Cornel West endorses Bernie Sanders

Well I'm sure this will solve all of Bernie's problems.