Saturday, December 29, 2007

Spain Investigates Clergymen Over Homophobia Claims

Spain Investigates Clergymen Over Homophobia Claims
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: December 28, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(Madrid) Two Spanish clergymen - one a Protestant evangelist, the other a Roman Catholic bishop - are under attack for alleged homophobia.

The Rev. Marcos Zapata, the head of an evangelical group that operates centers for troubled children in the Galicia region, recently held a seminar for parents titled: "How to Raise Heterosexual Children".

People who attended the speech say that Zapata called homosexuality an illness and an addiction, comparing it to alcoholism and drug abuse. He went on to say that that homosexuality could be "cured" through therapy.

Zapata said that in his own family he reinforces masculine roles for his two sons by watching professional wrestling.

He also told fathers to "hug your sons as much as you can, because if you don't, perhaps another man will".

The regional government said it has opened an investigation to determine if the speech violated Spanish law which bans hate speech against gays.

A Spanish national LGBT rights group said it may take Zapata to court on a charge of libeling gays.

Evangelical preachers, mostly trained in the US, have been making inroads in mostly Catholic Spain attracting a large number of followers.

Meanwhile, the Catholic bishop of the Canary island Tenerife is under fire for comparing homosexuality to pedophilia and drug addiction.

Bernardo Alvarez said in an interview that "homosexuality harms society, and we will pay for it."

The conservative bishop also claimed that many young people who are abused were themselves responsible.

Alvarez claimed that many minors seek out adults for sex.

"If one isn't careful, they could even provoke it," Alvarez said. "Sexuality is more complicated than one suspects."

Friday, December 21, 2007

Colbert Chosen AP Celebrity of the Year

Not since Johnny Carson has America had a late-night comedian make such an impact on how Americans think, interpret, and dissect the news of the day. Also, not since Gracie Allen's 1940 run for president has a celebrity with such high visibility made such an impact in a presidential race with their candidacy.

Americans wait with breathless anticipation for Colbert's "the Word", possibly the most well-written piece of political satire ever.

By JAKE COYLE, AP Entertainment Writer

While most TV characters remain boxed inside the frames of our sets, Stephen Colbert has routinely injected his on-screen persona into everything from the presidential race to ice cream.

In 2007, the mock pundit on Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report" exceeded the influence of most real pundits, orchestrating an ill-fated (and Doritos-sponsored) run for president and topping the best-seller lists with his book "I Am America (And So Can You!)."

Colbert failed to get onto the primary ballot in his home state of South Carolina, dooming his hopes for the White House. And his show went 0-for-4 at the Emmy Awards, including an especially painful loss to Barry Manilow.

But Colbert did win one honor: He was voted AP Celebrity of the Year by newspaper editors and broadcast producers who said Colbert had the biggest impact on pop culture in 2007.

He finished just a nudge above J.K. Rowling, who authored the final book in her enormously popular "Harry Potter" series. Finishing third was Al Gore, whose year included an Oscar, an Emmy, a Nobel Peace Prize and the global concert Live Earth.

Voting was otherwise spread out across many entertainers, including pop star Britney Spears, "Hannah Montana" star Miley Cyrus, rapper Kanye West, comedy director and producer Judd Apatow and country singer Kenny Chesney.

But it was the slight, bespectacled Colbert — his hair never ruffled, suits forever pressed — who dominated the year. Even from the relatively small stage of late-night cable TV, his satire spread into all corners of media and society — and for a few weeks made a mockery of the democratic system.

Colbert has declined interviews during the writers strike that has shuttered his show, but he told The Associated Press by e-mail:

"In receiving this award, I am pleased that I was chosen over two great spinners of fantasy — J.K. Rowling and Al Gore. It is truly an honor to be named the Associated Press' Celebrity of the Year. Best of all, this makes me the official front-runner for next year's Drug-Fueled Downward Spiral of the year. P.S. Look for my baby bump this spring!"

Julio Diaz, entertainment editor for the Pensacola News Journal, explained his vote for the faux newsman:

"Colbert is more than an entertainer, he's a force of nature," said Diaz. "He's influenced the way we look at the news and even the way we speak. Whenever a major news story breaks, one of my first thoughts is what Colbert's spin on the story will be."

Colbert began his year by facing off against his inspiration, Bill O'Reilly. In one afternoon, Colbert and the Fox News commentator traded guest appearances on each other's shows in an exchange Colbert called "a meeting of the guts."

The meeting had been anticipated since Colbert's 2005 debut of "The Report," a deadpan fun-house mirror held up to "The O'Reilly Factor" and other conservative news programs.

In early 2007, Colbert became the namesake of the new Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor "Americone Dream." This followed in a tradition of naming things after Colbert, like the mascot for the Saginaw Spirit, an Ontario Hockey League team, "Steagle Colbeagle the Eagle."

While taping an episode on June 27, Colbert fell and broke his wrist — a minor event for most, but weeks of fodder for Colbert. The following month, he unveiled a "wrist awareness" campaign in which he urged anyone famous to wear a "WristStrong" bracelet (similar to Lance Armstrong's "LiveStrong" bands).

Showcasing his extremely detail-centric sense of humor, Colbert said on a September show: "If (Alan) Greenspan can do for my bracelets what he did for secured short-term lending through federal repurchasing agreements — can you imagine how great that would be?"

But Colbert's main act would be the run-up to his White House campaign and his ensuing bid for the nation's highest office. While promoting his new book, Colbert appeared on news programs and wrote a guest column for The New York Times mocking the dance many candidates go through before officially declaring their candidacy.

Colbert eventually announced on his program on Oct. 16, where he made it clear he aimed to parody everything about image-sensitive political campaigns. He appeared beforehand on "The Daily Show" sitting on a bale of hay and drinking a beer to show that he was an Average Joe.

The 43-year-old comedian jokingly suggested his ticket could read "Colbert-Huckabee," referring to former Arkansas governor Republican Mike Huckabee. Huckabee had made several appearances on "The Report" (making him a "friend of the show"). Huckabee's candidacy was then something of a joke; now he has zoomed to the top of the polls.

Colbert's announcement set off dialogue across the political landscape about the legitimacy of his candidacy and how he might impact the primaries.

Wrote New York Times columnist David Carr: "It is Mr. Colbert's ability to both mimic and amplify the tics of political convention and play them back with just a little more topspin that makes his satire so discomfiting."

Colbert said he would run only in his native South Carolina, but after he applied to get his name on the state's Democratic primary ballot (the Republican fee was too high), party officials voted 13-3 to keep Colbert off, claiming he "serves to detract from the serious candidates."

Soon thereafter, Colbert announced that he was withdrawing: "Although I lost by the slimmest margin in presidential election history — only 10 votes — I have chosen not to put the country through another agonizing Supreme Court battle. It is time for this nation to heal."

Colbert's withdrawal may have been hastened by the Hollywood writers strike, which shut down production on "The Report" in early November. Comedy Central, which is owned by Viacom Inc., announced Thursday that both "The Report" and "The Daily Show" will return to the air on Jan. 7, with or without their writing staffs.

On his last episode of the year, Colbert said: "As you know, except for my 13 writers and production crew, I do this show single-handedly four nights a week. I'm also raising a family, promoting a book and, hey, two weeks ago I said, `Let's run for president.' I haven't gotten a wink since I blacked out talking to Tim Russert."

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Well Put

Quotes from the candidates

Unless Moses comes down with two stone tablets from Brokeback
Mountain to tell us something different, we need to keep that
understanding of marriage.

- Mike Huckabee

It's the acts, it's the various acts that people perform that
are sinful.

- Rudolph Giuliani on homosexuality

I don't want civil unions or gay marriage.

- Mitt Romney

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Political Cartoonists

You know, America's political cartoonists really are producing some of their best work in over a decade. It seems only natural, especially in these times of the most corruption anyone has seen so blatantly displayed in Washington since Watergate.

It's a shame the American public doesn't seem to notice. They're all too busy shopping at Wal*Mart and thinking it's just great...or trying to find ways to make enough money to afford the gas and electric bills this winter.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Variety of Toons

Something of a variety show collection of some recent fine works I found:

Monday, December 3, 2007


Thanks to Caleb.

1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control.

2. Heterosexual marriages are valid because they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can't legally get married because the world needs more children.

3. Obviously, gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if Gay marriage is allowed, since Britney Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.

5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are property, blacks can't marry whites, and divorce is illegal.

6. Gay marriage should be decided by people, not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.

7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country That's why we have only one religion in America.

8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

10. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why single parents are forbidden to raise children.

11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven't adapted to things like cars or longer lifespans.

12. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because a "separate but equal" institution is always constitutional. Separate schools for African-Americans worked just as well as separate marriages for gays and lesbians will.

A Letter to Dr. Laura

It's been circulated a lot, but always worth another read!

Dear Dr. Laura:

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have
learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as
many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle,
for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be
an abomination. ...End of debate. I do need some advice from you, however,
regarding some of the other specific laws and how to follow them.

1.. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a
pleasing odor for the Lord - Leviticus 1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They
claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

2.. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus
21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

3.. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her
period of menstrual cleanliness - Leviticus 15:19-24. The problem is, how do I
tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4.. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and
female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine
claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why
can't I own Canadians?

5.. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2
clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him

6.. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination
- Leviticus 11:10, is it a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't
agree. Can you settle this?

7.. Leviticus 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have
a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my
vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?

8.. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around
their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Leviticus 19:27. How
should they die?

9.. I know from Leviticus 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes
me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10.. My uncle has a farm. He violates Leviticus 19:19 by planting two
different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of
two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse
and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of
getting the whole town together to stone them? - Leviticus 24:10-16. Couldn't
we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people
who sleep with their in-laws? (Leviticus 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can
help. Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and

Your devoted disciple and adoring fan.

in defense of biblical marriage

With thanks to Caleb.

in defense of biblical marriage...funny

House of Representatives
February 25, 2004
Remarks by Representative Jim McDermott (D-WA)

Mr. Speaker,

The Presidential Prayer Team is currently urging us to: "Pray for the President as he
seeks wisdom on how to legally codify the definition of marriage. Pray that it will be
according to Biblical principles. With any forces insisting on variant definitions of
marriage, pray that God's Word and His standards will be honored by our government."
This is true..

A. Marriage shall consist of a union between one man and one or
more women. (Gen 29:17-28; II Sam 3:2-5)

B. Marriage shall not impede a man's right to take concubines in addition to his wife or
wives. (II Sam 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chron 11:21)

C. A marriage shall be considered valid only if the wife is a virgin. If the wife is not a
virgin, she shall be executed. (Deut 22:13-21)

D. Marriage of a believer and a non-believer shall be forbidden. (Gen 24:3; Num 25:1-9;
Ezra 9:12; Neh 10:30)

E. Since marriage is for life, neither this Constitution nor the constitution of any State,
nor any state or federal law, shall be construed to permit divorce. (Deut 22:19; Mark

F. If a married man dies without children, his brother shall marry the widow. If he refuses
to marry his brother's widow or deliberately does not give her children, he shall pay a fine
of one shoe and be otherwise punished in a manner to be determined by law. (Gen. 38:6-
10; Deut 25:5-10)

Finally, it says that since there is no law that can change things, divorce is not possible...

Think about it! Does this sound like the America that you want to live in? Do you think
that codifying marriage entirely on biblical principles is a good idea?

homophobia leads to these things...

Just something found on my friend Caleb's MySpace site:

homophobia leads to these things...

I am the boy who never finished high school, because I got called a fag everyday

I am the girl kicked out of her home because I confided in my mother that I am a lesbian.

I am the prostitute working the streets because nobody will hire a transsexual woman.

I am the sister who holds her gay brother tight through the painful, tear-filled nights.

We are the parents who buried our daughter long before her time.

I am the man who died alone in the hospital because they would not let my partner of twenty-seven years into the room.

I am the foster child who wakes up with nightmares of being taken away from the two fathers who are the only loving family I have ever had. I wish they could adopt me.

I am not one of the lucky ones. I killed myself just weeks before graduating high school. It was simply too much to bear.

We are the couple who had the realtor hang up on us when she found out we wanted to rent a one-bedroom for two men.

I am the person who never knows which bathroom I should use if I want to avoid getting the management called on me.

I am the mother who is not allowed to even visit the children I bore, nursed, and raised. The court says I am an unfit mother because I now live with another woman.

I am the domestic-violence survivor who found the support system grow suddenly cold and distant when they found out my abusive partner is also a woman.

I am the domestic-violence survivor who has no support system to turn to because I am male.

I am the father who has never hugged his son because I grew up afraid to show affection to other men.

I am the home-economics teacher who always wanted to teach gym until someone told me that only lesbians do that.

I am the woman who died when the EMTs stopped treating me as soon as they realized I was transsexual. (yes, this actually happened)

I am the person who feels guilty because I think I could be a much better person if I didnt have to always deal with society hating me.

I am the man who stopped attending church, not because I don't believe, but because they closed their doors to my kind.

I am the person who has to hide what this world needs most, love.

I am the person ashamed to tell my own friends im a lesbian, because they constantly make fun of them.

I am the boy tied to a fence, beaten to a bloody pulp and left to die because two straight men wanted to "teach me a lesson"

I am the person that cannot be him self in his house cause my parents are religious and in the bible it says that Adam is suppose to be with Eve not with Steve.