Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Priceless: Gay Rights Activists Take Over Christian Right Hate-Fest in DC

I am known to frequent a website called

Alternet was established in 1998 in part (to quote their website) to confront the failures of corporate media, as well as the vitriol and disinformation of right wing media, especially "hate talk" media. AlterNet is a two-time winner of the "Webby Award" for Best Web Magazine, among others, and it pulls no punches as regards their raison d'être. Again, quoting their website, Alternet believes that media must have a higher purpose beyond the essential goal of keeping people informed. We insist on playing an active role in helping our community funnel its energy into change; an important & necessary mission when you consider that people like Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh & Glen Beck are blaring out their fear-mongering, Us-vs-Them hate talk nearly 24 hours a day.

Anyway, apparently a senior write for Alternet, Joshua Holland, writes in this recent Alternet article about a group of conservative Christian ministers who came to Washington DC recently to protest the expansion of the federal Hate Crimes law recently passed in Congress & signed by President Obama to include sexual orientation & gender identity. In his article, Holland references a Washington Post column by Dana Milbank about the happenings at this protest. Believe it or not, not only were they there to protest the law, they wanted to stand their & spew their lies & hate to prove the point that just by speaking the ugly things they believe they could be arrested. These people have always contended that allowing people like me to be protected from hate crimes meant that people like them could no longer freely speak their minds about the "threat" people like me represent to decent upstanding Americans (like them, supposedly), and to society in general.

So sure of their belief that they would now be legally muzzled if they dare speak out against the homosexual threat that they came to the nation's capital in hopes of being arrested, so as to claim that--as a representative of the "Christian Anti-Defamation Commission"--"we'd have standing to challenge the law."

But sadly (for them), not one person was arrested. They stood there on their Godly soap box speaking their alleged minds, and the few police officers that were there let them practice their freedom of speech unencumbered, of course. As Holland wrote, To run afoul of the new law, you need to "plan or prepare for an act of physical violence" or "incite an imminent act of physical violence." The same stipulations apply if you're speaking about people of color, disabled persons, or virtually any other group of Americans...including people of faith.

For me, the best part of this story is that the man the conservative Christian ministers hired to set up audio equipment for their little get-together had taken the money they paid him for his work at the event & donated to gay rights activists. The AV guy also waited until after the ministers were done & then--before taking it all down--he allowed the gay activists to use the same podium & the same sound system to practice their right to free speech, too!

After one of the ministers asked the AV guy if they were paying for the time "the homosexuals" were using (which they weren't, of course), he turned to one of the gay activists & asked "You guys gonna help us pay for the microphones?"

Holland writes that The gay activist smiled. "God," he said, "works in mysterious ways."

Amen, brother! :-)

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