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It Is Enough: An Open Letter to the Sick at Heart -- William Rivers Pitt

Society & Culture  (tags: abuse, activists, americans, children, culture, dishonesty, education, ethics, family, freedoms, gayrights, government, law, media, police, politics, religion, rights, society, women, violence )

- 2176 days ago -
Beat your fag boys, your butch girls, beat them into line in the name of God...but if you get caught doing it (or espousing it), wave it off as 'hyperbole,' quote holy Scripture to defend yourself, and compare yourself to Jesus --->

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Kit B (276)
Friday June 8, 2012, 1:35 pm
(Image: Jared Rodriguez / Truthout)

Stop me if you've heard this one before.

A holy man stands before his flock and says, "Dads, the second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give him a good punch. Ok? You are not going to act like that. You were made by God to be a male and you are going to be a male."

And then the pastor says, "And when your daughter starts acting too butch, you rein her in. And you say, 'Oh, no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play them to the glory of God. But sometimes you are going to act like a girl and walk like a girl and talk like a girl and smell like a girl, and that means you are going to be beautiful. You are going to be attractive. You are going to dress yourself up.'"

But here's the funny part: after that Pastor gets called out for his psychotic, virulent, hateful rhetoric, he says, "I was using hyperbole in an effort to communicate the importance of the gender distinctions that God created. In the context of the scripture, Mark, chapter 9, Jesus conjures up violent images as well, when he says, 'If your hand is causing you to sin, cut it off.' He's not speaking literally. He's speaking figuratively, using hyperbole to convey the importance of the offense."

Get it?

Beat your fag boys, your butch girls, beat them into line in the name of God...but if you get caught doing it (or espousing it), wave it off as 'hyperbole,' quote holy Scripture to defend yourself, and compare yourself to Jesus...and be sure to make it a non-apology apology by using phrases like "the importance of the offense," i.e. it is the limp-wrist son and the butch daughter who are actually offensive, and not the exhortation - delivered in church, mind you - to beat them because of who they are.

That happened in America not two weeks ago, and if you're fool enough to think the incident was a one-off, a fluke, an aberration, then all I can say to you, sir or ma'am, is good luck to you, good night, go back to sleep, and don't bother reading on from here.

That is a fair portion of modern Americana, right up there with Rockwell paintings, Saturday morning cartoons and the Statue of Liberty. I have lost count of the states in this union that are holding votes on who can get married, who can get birth control, who can get basic medical care and who can vote - or not - in this ongoing American experiment. It all boils down to some very simple questions: who is it legal to hate? Who can be banished from their basic American rights? Who is, and who is not?

They call it being 'conservative,' which sounds nice and safe.

Easy does it, right?

Except what these people are espousing and pursuing isn't conservative in the slightest, but instead is radical beyond the bounds of anything we've seen in this country to date, a defenestration of basic Constitutional rights. It is radical on a level shared by practitioners of a harsh seventh-century version of a particular religion you might have heard about once or know, the scary ones who condemn gay people, who think women are the fountain of all evil, and who think free expression and equality are the gateway to damnation and doom. You might have heard about people like this in the news, oh...somewhere over the last ten years.

Ah. Irony.

The so-called 'holy men' of modern American conservatism are not just a problem for average sinners like you and me. Take, for example, Richard Grennell, who was hired by the Romney campaign as it entered the general election, to be that campaign's national security spokesman, and who was subsequently fired not even 200 hours later...not because Grennell was less than able to man his post - as a former G.W. Bush official, he had enough DC street cred to get the job, if he was shameless enough to put it on his resume - but because he was openly gay.

By William Rivers Pitt - OpEd | Truthout |

Continue reading the article at Visit Site, and yes I do like this man's writing style.

Kit B (276)
Friday June 8, 2012, 1:46 pm

There are a couple of sad stories in this, one here we go again, America gets to play bully on a minority of the population. Hey, why not we do it so well, and we have so much practice that we just can't let that internal anger go to waste. I don't believe most people really care one bit about some ones sexual orientation, we just like having the power to attempt to control their lives. The second part of the ever unfolding story is that Americans use the same old arguments for each minority we beat-up. It's because the bible said so, or some version of laughable science says so, we just don't react with honesty. We don't turn that anger where it should be, on those who feed and nurture that part of ourselves that so easily leans toward dismissing a group of people just because we can. We like being bullies we like using any excuse to dismiss the feelings of others.

But...we also can be very good people, accepting and loving people, we just have to let that side of ourselves free. We have to do as we have done before, turn our collective backs on the voices of ugliness, don't let them lead the way, use your heart and your mind.

Aimee A (177)
Friday June 8, 2012, 2:47 pm
Thanks for posting!

Yvonne White (229)
Friday June 8, 2012, 4:08 pm
That reminds me of an old SOAP episode - Billy Crystal played the gay brother.. he was explaining he was gay to a lady from Texas, she claimed Texas had no "homos".. and when told about lesbians she asked if they were called "Homettes"..Another RepubliCON in denial. We should embrace our gays (okay, put some gloves on & shake hands at least!;).. American gays are the best on Earth!:) RepubliCONs are still trying to deny they exist, even as they try to lock theirs in the closet (especially those preacher/sinner/hey-sailor-new-in-town types!;)...

Kit B (276)
Friday June 8, 2012, 4:15 pm

She just HAD to be from Texas. Thanks Yvonne. Of course, any of the southern states will do, rampant homophobes and Islamophobes. To be fair they seem to come from all states these days. Cup of TEA anyone?

Craig Pittman (52)
Friday June 8, 2012, 7:25 pm
I read this, shake my head, and ask myself, "is this really 2012.

Kit B (276)
Friday June 8, 2012, 7:39 pm

Yep, Craig 2012 and the same old lies, the same old rhetoric still is being used and is still successful, for a while anyway. These are the same people that now will tell you they were on the right side of the Civil Rights movement. If so then, where does Civil Rights end...only when each person, regardless of race, color, creed or sexual orientation has the same rights as everyone. Civil Rights are Human Rights.

l L (1)
Friday June 8, 2012, 11:03 pm
Life is full of complexities isn't it kit? I don't agree with stuff like kill the fag or beat the lesbo.
I believe we should all respect each other enough to not do harm to the other person. ALL OF US.

WE should not have a license to rape anyone regardless of who you are and whose you are. I feel I am not sure, that the elders in these religions in all countries could ifthey love their people to make exceptions in their teachings that men would and should treat their females better. The religions shouldn't be that strict. i think it is in the elders hands.

Things are so complexed. You want to present a point of view but both sides will not hear you at all. I dread to see where this all is going to end up --Kit.
You look at the --nature of all sides and it looks like a no win situation-- that will end up with no winners....
A lot of times-- I noticed the one making the most noise against the other usually is in the closet themselves. We then find out later....

Robert B (60)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 8:17 am
Using an ancient book of myths written and rewritten by local tribal chiefs and warlords as a guide in our modern society is sheer madness. It would be wiser to use simple Love, Compassion and common sense. It really isn't that difficult to act like a decent person.

Terry King (113)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 8:24 am
Religious superstition is the root of all evil. It's not complex at all.

Past Member (0)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 9:53 am
the bible itself has come under a higher measure of truth, under the scrutiny of reason.. the books of the bible merely reflect the primitive ideas and questionable morals of the ancient people who wrote them. if there is some "context" in which the owning of slaves, the slaughter of infants and the butchery of innocent women and children is justified, bible believers have yet to define what it is. christians prefer to ignore the old testament's violence and instead focus their attention on the new testament. they will confidently point to the figure of jesus as their religion's supreme example of love, mercy and kindness, as their shining beacon of divine moral perfection-and as absolute proof of the the bible's divine origin. Luke 12:47, Luke 12:37, In Luke 16:13, nowhere in the new testament does jesus speak out against the institution of slavery, which pervaded the world during his time. Instead, jesus incorporates this barbaric practice into his parables. Luke 14:26, Jesus explains to his followers that "If any man come to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. matthew 10:35 this actually appears to be jesus' mission: "For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man's foes will be those of his own household." jesus' anti-family attitude even extends to his own mother. matthew 19:11, jesus encourages his disciples to castrate themselves: "not all men can receive this saying, but only those to whom it is given. for there are eunuchs who have been so from birth and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. he who is able to receive it, let him receive it." does this make any sense? jesus continually threatens eternal torment and suffering to those who have trouble with the idea that he is the son of a god. john 15:6, john 3:18, john 3:36, luke 12:9, luke 12:5, just to name a few passages christians may want to rationalize away these and countless other passages that demonstrate the bible's fallibility and immorality. they may insist that the words of jesus and god that support slavery, castration, torture, murder and hate are taken out of context. the problem, however, is that believers have taken the whole bible out of context. the bible is a confused jumble of tales and fables, geneologies, poems and proverbs that were written in a time of superstition, mythology, ignorance and savagery. the early church compiled these writings, edited them and foisted them on the world as the "Word of God" to justify its own existence. knowledge is not power its empowering lets be empowered to change.protect life, prosecute those that seek to destroy our shared home and our fellow beings
we are change
life in reality has value beyond measure
Peace and Love

Arielle S (313)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 10:01 am
An excellent article, albeit a sad one that we are as we are STILL. I recently read about the sterilization acts of the 30's - 32 states had them and while they were often called "voluntary", anybody with clout could have the "feeble-minded, the gay, the sexually "immoral", the not-so-smart, the poor sterilized "for the good of mankind". It was from US that Hitler got his crazy ideas... It doesn't seem that we've made a great deal of progress....

John B (185)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 10:37 am
Thanks Kit for posting Truth-out's article by Mr.William Rivers Pitt. The man has assessed the current political situation correctly. The GOP started this campaign of hate and disenfranchisement of people who don't believe as the fanatical religious right does. To be told you are wrong or that you are a second class citizen because of who you are, what you look like or what you believe (or not) is not what our Founding Fathers, and the women who encouraged and supported them, had in mine. Read and noted kit,thanks for another great news posting.

Kit B (276)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 4:40 pm

Thanks to everyone who left their own thoughts about this very important reflection of our society. For those who believe in a god, then ask your god why so much hate is spoken in his name?

The bible is obsessed with sex, any bible is obsessed with sex, a few eastern texts actually deal with sex in a more interesting way then condemnation.

Here we are in 2012, currently at our peak of scientific knowledge, just for now any way, and other than reproduction we really don't understand much about sex, it's motivations or all the chemicals involved in making it a wonderful experience.

Let's just live, enjoy what we can and allow others the same latitude.

Robert Hardy (68)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 8:03 pm
A little over the edge don't you think? History demonstrates a move to the center once elected so if Mitt is going to be the Mormon Nazi... lets deal with it when it comes.

Kit B (276)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 8:44 pm

Whoa, Robert! It is true that Mitt is a Mormon and I think a very sincere man in his religious beliefs. Though I would not jump for joy should he be elected, I think we should refrain from words like Nazi - why get into the same tea cup with the republicans who reserved that "nick-name" for Obama. Maybe democrats are too polite as Bill Maher says, but I sure don't want to get into a mud tossing contest like that. With Romney like Bush, it's the power behind that we need to look for and ultimately, should Romney be elected, worry about.

Suruna WTF (38)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 10:21 pm
I guess we're seeing a challenge as to just how much crap we'll take. How many ways we'll be attacked for just being human, in all our glorious diversity. Intolerance pushed to it's max. They go too far, and yet they still keep pushing. Do they expect us to go belly up? or break? [The supreme expletive] Them! They misjudge the response, they court revolution. Their idea that divide and conquer is a good strategy is based on an enormous flaw, because they are bringing us together. Very good for us, and about freakin' time. We, the abused and bullied, find a common voice. We may have a bit further to go before this is fact and reality, but they facilitate our progress to realize this goal. Myopic jackasses, they.

Power to the Clear Thinking People. Keep Occupy Alive in your hearts and actions.

Elizabeth L (4)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 11:21 pm
Great letter. I am so perplexed that any woman could vote for a party that has told her she is not worth paying the same rates as a man for the same job. That undermines her right to decisions about her own body and needs. That preaches hate and division. I cannot see any difference between these messages and the messages preached in the name of fundamentalist Islam.
Are the people of the USA going to fight for hard won rights or just let them slip away into history?

Kamila A (141)
Saturday June 9, 2012, 11:57 pm
Its amazing how insane the religions are, especially when they contradict their own teachings about loving everyone equally, that all are God's children. Religion divides, spirituality unites----which is more holy, seriously?

Patricia N (9)
Sunday June 10, 2012, 1:05 am
I gave up on religion when my grandmother said "the Catholics killed Christ" I knew right then that she had been brainwashed by some ignorant, uneducated preacher in her church. I loved her dearly and miss her still today after 40 years and in all ways she was a sweet and loving lady and it made me sick that someone had installed that in her head in the fundamentalist church she belonged to.

Judy C (97)
Sunday June 10, 2012, 2:31 am
There surely is a lot of homophobia and hate in the world, and I don't deny that ir's a big problem. However, I think that sometimes the Right Wing trot this issue out to distract from the fact that we are teetering on the edge of global collapse from wars, profiteering, rapacious corporations, environmental degradation, and the widening chasm between the 1% and the rest of us. It's so much simpler to worry about who is going to bed with whom, and the ignorant willingly bite the bait.

Joy Wong (103)
Sunday June 10, 2012, 5:01 am
Noted, thanks.

Kit B (276)
Sunday June 10, 2012, 10:59 am

Catholics killed Christ? How did they manage that? The Roman Catholic Church didn't even begin to organize before the first Council of Nicea in about 325CE.

Kynthia Rosgeal (5)
Tuesday June 12, 2012, 3:49 am
Kit, that was used as an example of stupid shit said in churches.

As a transsexual, I spent my first years, well, considered "normal" (I had to hide who I was - when I was in the Army it was an offense worthy of Leavenworth federal prison) I even had teenagers as my congregation in a baptist church. I left because some of the messages I was required to state were in conflict with my knowledge of the bible and the hypocrisy I showed when I said anything about gays (which I avoided strenuously only under duress).

Pastors adding their own bigotry and bias to their flocks is nothing new, just better covered in the news now.
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