The Hypocrisy of Ruben Diaz

New York State Senator Rubén Díaz, Sr. is the lone Democrat against marriage equality right now.

The Village Voice‘s Steven Thrasher just had this jaw-dropping interview with him:

All right, let me ask you about this. You believe marriage is between one man and one woman, yes?

Yes [laughing] So? Why are you asking me this? You know that, you know what I believe. Why are you calling me? Marriage is between a man and a woman.

But you yourself have been married twice, and are divorced.

Yes. So?

So do you believe it is alright to be divorced?

No. Divorce is wrong. Gay marriage is wrong.

You think you are wrong, then?

When I got divorced, I was wrong, yes. Why are you asking me this?

But you believe that gay marriage is wrong and divorce is wrong, but that you should be allowed to get divorced and remarried, and gay people shouldn’t be able to marry at all.

When I got divorced, it was wrong, but marriage is between a man and a woman.

So is being divorced OK with your religion?

No, it is not OK. Gay marriage is still wrong. This is what I believe.

Wow.

Diaz must be incredibly flexible to do all those mental gymnastics.

I love this comment at Joe. My. God.:

So apparantly marriage is actually between one man and a succession of women.


  • http://reedbraden.com Reed Braden

    I hope I’m not out of line in saying this, but I’ve long been a proponent of re-defining that dreaded word “faggot”. It meant sticks, then poor people, then old women, then–for some reason–cigarettes, now it means gay people. I say we should redefine the word once more to mean “people who are actively anti-gay and homophobic who cannot justify their rabid, shrill, and strident screeds”. It’s doubly effective, because since the word “faggot” currently means homosexual, the “new faggots” will also have to deal with the emotional stress of being labelled with a word that used to mean gay.

    In that light, Ruben Diaz is a huuuuge, flaming, twinkle-toed faggot… and nothing about him is fabulous.

  • Steve

    In Britain it can still mean “cigarette”

    Diaz is a vile human being. His whole act is deeply disturbing. He is both a minister and a senator and can’t just keep the two apart. Never mind that he shouldn’t have been elected (or even put on a list) in the first place, when asked about it, he said “I am the church and the state”. WTF?! How can he get away with crap like that?

  • BrianE

    I think I got this – he’s right, and wrong, whereas gay marriage is just wrong, so he’s right, right?

  • T-Rex

    That picture is funny. It looks like the people around him are annoyed at him and his lame, circular argument and they’re just waiting for him to shut up and sit down. What a tool.

  • Jade

    Wow… that was quite the horrible, confusing, offensive interview. But thank you, Hemant, for posting so often on gay marriage issues. As a gay atheist, I definitely appreciate it. :-)

  • JD

    When is he going to try to criminalize divorce? He says it’s wrong, and that he was wrong to ever get a divorce, so shouldn’t he be in jail?

  • Dark Jaguar

    Did you notice the dodge in directly answering the question on whether he thinks divorce should be legally allowed? Yeah I think we all did.

    This guy’s never going to actually change his mind on this, that’s clear. It’s pathetic that the vote would rest on him. Let’s find some more republicans to try and turn, this guy’s a dead end.

  • http://www.erink.smugmug.com Erin Kohlenberg

    He was just wrong about the first wife. that isn’t really wrong. at least he doesn’t think marriage is between one man and several women at the same time, just one at a time. sheesh. what an idiot.

  • Larry Meredith

    next ask him if he would like to make divorce illegal.

  • Michael

    Just to clarify as a Brit, a fag is a cigarette, a faggot is a meat pie. Both things that you enjoy with your mouth but I digress.

    The best argument for the etymology of the homophobic slur is a 16th century word meaning old woman, in a derogatory sense. Kinda like how people use “Bitch” today.

  • http://k0ks3nw4i.blogspot.com James

    It’s fag for cigarette in Malaysia. Faggot is a gay slur which we imported from the US.

    I read that excerpt and I simply don’t get it: Why hasn’t Senator Rubén Díaz’s head exploded yet?

  • http://nathandst.blogspot.com Nathan DST aka LucienBlack

    I do wish the interviewer had just flat out asked “Do you think divorce should be illegal, since you believe its morally wrong?” The question is implied, but is not directly asked. The move to questions about the wife and ex-wife being on payroll at the same time seems to have muddied the water a bit.

  • Darwin’s Dagger

    He never said that gay marriage is criminal, only that it should not be legal i.e. a legally sanctioned union. He seems pretty consistent in his beliefs to me. He admits that divorce is wrong and that his own divorce was wrong. And even though he is divorced he would probably support efforts to make divorce illegal. He’s a gigantic theist moron, but I don’t see any gymnastics or hypocrisy (he condemns divorce, he condemns his own divorce) in his statements.

  • Tom Bourque

    Can we make dubious distinctions of what is considered wrong, wrong?

  • http://estevancarlos.com estevan

    The question should’ve been, does he think he should’ve been legally allowed to divorce and whether other should be allowed?

  • http://www.bluefrogdesignstudios.com/thebluefrogsays/ The Big Blue Frog

    Joe.My.God actually hit the nail on the head. “Traditional” marriage, historically speaking, is one man married to as many women as he can financially support.

  • Chris aka "Happy Cat"

    And even though he is divorced he would probably support efforts to make divorce illegal. He’s a gigantic theist moron, but I don’t see any gymnastics or hypocrisy (he condemns divorce, he condemns his own divorce) in his statements.

    Please show me where this asshat has indicated he’s in favor of making divorce illegal. The implication of the questions he is being asked are obvious. He said both marriage equality and divorce are wrong while never saying they should both be illegal when he could easily have done so. He knows he is being a hypocrite in his application of his own standards. It’s easy to condemn something after you’ve already done the deed. The moral high ground comes from not doing it in the first place if it’s wrong in your own eyes.

    That and the way he continues to repeat his biased views instead of defending them and explaining a rational reason for the double standard in the interview constitute his gymnastics.

    It’s like he’s saying “Yes, but I don’t need to explain why I did something that is wrong and still support its legality because gay marriage is just wrong. Oh, did I mention gay marriage is wrong?”

    It’s a tangled mess of intellectual dishonesty and hypocrisy.

  • Trace

    ugh.

  • Annie

    I just gotta say, there is nothing more juvenile than when someone says, “Yea, so?” Ticks me off every time.

  • Claudia

    It’s pretty simple:

    1. Sins that I have no interest in –> Illegal!
    2. Sins that I may want to do some day –>Legal!

    He’s only holding the same position that the entire Catholic church holds. Same sex marriage should be illegal because it’s a sin and we’re going to shut up about divorce because it’s one thing to deny rights to a small minority, and quite another to try to do that to a majority. Picking on the weaker victim i.e bullying, pure and simple.

  • Chris aka “Happy Cat”

    Isn’t this the guy that said “I am the the church AND the state.”

    My jaw dropped, literally.

  • TiltedHorizon

    WOW. I had to read that twice, I could not digest all the ‘stupid’ in a single pass. The way the religious fight this you would think our earthly laws extended to heaven.

    God: “Well, Adam & Steve…. I normally don’t let you guys in but since you were allowed to marry…. welcome to heaven.”

    What the hell do they really think they are protecting?

  • Anonymous

    This is a NYS elected official who is also a Pentecostal minister. Imagine in this day and age having your policy decisions made by somebody who believes in speaking in tongues.

    Happy Cat, that was a really great interview by Juan Manuel Benitez. Here’s a transcript:

    http://www.pamshouseblend.com/diary/19358/guest-column-by-tony-varona-virulently-antigay-ny-state-senator-rev-rubén-d%C3%ADaz-grilled-on-ny1

  • http://religionsetspolitics.blogspot.com/ Joshua Zelinsky

    There are consistent positions that he could take here. He could, for example, argue that divorce is not as bad as gay marriage. Or he could argue that if one doesn’t allow divorces then the much worse sins of adultery and murder will be more likely. But, let’s be blunt: That would just be a marginally more sophisticated set of rationalizations for a position that hasn’t been arrived at in any way resembling a logical form, and this guy is an idiot, so he probably can’t come up with them anyways. The biggest sign of his stupidity is that he was interviewed by the Village Voice and didn’t expect to get asked this and have a ready answer? But it is possible that that’s not from stupidity but just general ignorance. It is possible possible that Díaz is just forty years out of date on everything and remembers when the Village Voice was thought to have an anti-gay bias, and doesn’t realize how much things have changed. Maybe someone should go let him know that there are more than 105 elements on periodic table now, and the Soviet Union has fallen.

  • Tigerboy

    Regarding the etymology of the word “faggot,” it was always my understanding that a faggot was originally a “tied bundle of sticks” used as a fire starter, in other words, kindling wood. These bundles of sticks were passed out to villagers who would use them to ignite the fires of those being “burned at the stake,” that is, faggots (kindling wood) were the collective tool by which punishment of evil-doers was meted out. Later, this led to a slang term for a cigarette, being a small bundle of leaves that will burn, can kill, and was thought by some to reveal the user to be a person of low character. This may have been tongue-in-cheek, like calling cigarettes “coffin nails.” It’s dark humor. What is LESS humorous is that this word for “kindling wood” also morphed into an identifier of homosexuals. Homosexuals were seen as so inherently evil and sinful, they were destined to “kindle the fires of Hell.” That is the derivation of this word that describes bundles of sticks, cigarettes, and homosexuals. They were all seen as fodder for the fires of sin! Faggot is a nasty word. It is filthy with connotations of religious judgement, sin, and retribution.

  • http://hoverFrog.wordpress.com hoverfrog

    When gay marriage is finally made legal will he still think that divorce is wrong? What about gay divorce? Maybe the two wrongs will make a right in his mind.

  • Stogoe

    he’s right, and wrong, whereas gay marriage is just wrong, so he’s right, right?

    Two wrongs don’t make a right, but three rights make a left.

  • doglovingirl

    I was going to say:

    “He’s not engaging in mental gymnastics. It’s easy. He wants to continue doing whatever he wants (marrying, divorcing). But he wants to PREVENT others from marrying/divorcing because he disapproves of them. So one is merely wrong, while the other is illegal. End of thought process.”

    But as usual, Claudia said it earlier, and better. :-)

    Hypocrite! (Diaz, not Claudia.) ;-)

  • Michael

    Well, Tigerboy, I’m sure it’s related, but most of the people who were burned at the stake were old women, from the 16th century onward which is coincidentally when “fagot” meaning old woman was first recorded.

    Given that “old woman” to this day is used to refer to what Mr Schwarzenegger reputedly refers to as “wimpy girly men” (for instance here) it seems far more likely that the slur we are discussing is simply insulting the manhood of men who don’t go for women.

    Not that this makes it any less offensive of course. All insults had less-insulting meanings before they were insults.


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