Shouting back at hate speech is a moral obligation

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee proves yet again that the 1980s buzz-phrase “politically correct” still exists only as a disingenuous qualifier to preface an expression of palpable bigotry. It’s just a slightly broader way of saying, “I’m not a racist, but …”

After warning his radio audience last Monday that he was about to say something not “politically correct,” Huckabee said:

“Can someone explain to me why it is that we tiptoe around a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet in their so-called ‘holiest days,'” Huckabee said. “You know, if you’ve kept up with the Middle East, you know that the most likely time to have an uprising of rock throwing and rioting comes on the day of prayer on Friday. So the Muslims will go to the mosque, and they will have their day of prayer, and they come out of there like uncorked animals — throwing rocks and burning cars.”

Animals.” Huckabee’s word — a word that is literally dehumanizing. Mike Huckabee doesn’t want you to think he’s a bigot. He just wants you to know that he sees himself as superior to more than a billion people whom he regards as sub-human. Huckabee thinks it would be unfair for you to twist that into making him out to be a bigot.

A better Arkansan, William Lindsey, responds to Huckabee’s remarks:

That’s what hate speech is. It’s an attempt to hook onto visceral, unexamined prejudices that lurk inside the minds of many people in a particular society, as they deal with and think about a particular group of people.

It’s an attempt to hook onto those visceral, unexamined prejudices by telling adroit, carefully massaged lies that appear to present accurate information about a whole group of human beings, by isolating the behavior of some members of that group and focusing on it as if that behavior is typical of every member of the group.

… The ultimate goal of this kind of adroit lying is, of course, to dehumanize the targeted group, and to make that targeted group susceptible to abuse and violence. Selecting a minority group out for obsessive hostile focus, lying about it, and suggesting that it should be defined according to the behavior of some of its least admirable members: this is, in and of itself, already a form of violence.

This is related to the point John Shore made last month in a post titled “Anti-gay Christianity claims another life“:

Bullies bully because they feel empowered to do so. And why do bullies in America feel particularly empowered to victimize gay people?

If you’re wondering about the answer to that question, you’re only pretending to. Because you know why. We all do. American bullies feel empowered to freely hound, denigrate, and beat-up LGBT people because they live in a country historically and culturally defined by, and everywhere infused with, Christianity. And the ubiquitous “traditional values” brand of Christianity … has long and very actively taught that being gay is a reprehensible moral abomination, an offense against God so foul that divine justice demands that in the afterlife gay people be punished by spending eternity having the living flesh burned off their bones.

Every American bully who victimizes gay people does so confident, at one level or another, that he or she is furthering the cause of God — just like the pastor up the street, or the pastor on the radio, or the pastor on TV, or the pastor at the head of any of the infinite number of Christian “ministries” that trades in the hectoring of gay people.

This is why it’s important to shout back at the pastor up the street, or at the pastor on the radio — even if that pastor is also a former governor. If their voices go unchallenged — unanswered, unquestioned, unmocked — then we allow them to empower bullies and to make marginal minorities “susceptible to abuse and violence.”

“Christ Driving the Money Changers from the Temple,” Victor Hammer (1942)

Their claim to have some kind of moral authority does not derive from the strength of their arguments. Their arguments are flimsy, fragile falsehoods. Nor does their claim to authority derive from their strength of character. Their character is reprehensible.

They wield moral authority because they assert it — because they claim it by divine right like the kings of old. But just like with those kings, divine right isn’t the true source of their authority. That authority comes from the voluntary consent of others — from our willingness to bow and submit without question.

That consent can be withdrawn. It is our right, it is our duty, to withdraw it. And thereby, also, to withdraw from the bullies their misplaced confidence that they are furthering the cause of God.

This is why I’m not concerned with or convinced by the perpetual fretting of the Tone Police and the Very Nice People who worry about “negativity” and who urge us to approach every disagreement with sweetness and light and the spirit of gentle Jesus meek and mild. It’s OK to disagree, they say, but not to rock the boat. Look at Mike Huckabee, they say, see how sweetly he smiles? See how cheerfully avuncular he seems (even while dismissing a sixth of the world as “animals”)? See how gentle and gentlemanly he seems (even when he’s comparing being gay to necrophilia or equating environmentalists with pornographers)? Why can’t we be more like that instead of always harping on criticism and negativity?

But there’s nothing nice, sweet, meek, gentle or polite about allowing moral impostors to bless violence and to sanction bigotry. Failing to condemn the hate speech of Huckabee and other bigots has nothing to do with kindness. The kindest thing one can do in response to such speech is to respond as aggressively as you can — to refute, rebut, reject and ridicule it with whatever microphone you can find. Anything less than that just serves to reinforce the lie that these folks represent some recognizable, decent, legitimate form of morality.

They do not. To allow them to continue their charade would be unjust. It would also, therefore, be unkind — to them as well as to their ever-growing roster of victims.

 

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  • Matri

    I’d like to tell those assholes: “See how friendly and cheerfully that shark is smiling at you, all covered in blood and treading water? Why can’t you be calm and happy like that shark?”

    *sighs* It’s been a long, stressful, and not-cheery day for me.

  • aunursa

    Shouting back at hate speech is a moral obligation

    By all means, shout back in response to speech that you find offensive. Fight bad speech with more speech.

    But do not shout back during a speech that a promotes message you find offensive with the intention of preventing others from hearing the message. That would violate the spirit of the First Amendment. Otherwise, you will not be in a position to complain when another heckler issues a veto on your speech.

  • http://www.aeryllou.tumblr.com/ Aeryl

    The First Amendment says the GOVERNMENT cannot censor your speech. It says nothing about you not being allowed to yell over others with a harmful message.

  • aunursa

    Yes, that’s I said it would violate the spirit of the First Amendment.

    If you can decide that another person’s message is so harmful that you must prevent other people from hearing it, then your opponents can decide that your message is so harmful that others must not be allowed to hear you.

  • Seraph4377

    Except that that’s what they already do, plus threats, harassment and occasionally violence, so there’s really no downside.

    Honestly, Aunursa, the way you immediately broke in with something that Fred wasn’t even hinting at, you were pretty transparent. You might as well come right out and say “Hey, that’s not fair! You liberals are supposed to fight with both hands tied behind your back!”

  • aunursa

    I am saying that’s wrong regardless of who is doing it. When you try to silence your opponent, then you come across as the bad guy — even if your message is right and your opponent is wrong. Fight bad speech with more speech.

  • Seraph4377

    Spare me. We’re not fooled by your ass-covering disclaimers any more than we’re fooled by Huckabee’s. If you’re advising liberals how to behave, then we’re best served doing the exact opposite.

    Stick to the Left Behind comment threads. That’s the only place you have anything but negative credibility.

  • EdinburghEye

    When you try to ensure the bad guys are heard and their victims are silenced, you come across as the ally of the bad guys.

  • Veleda_k

    Isn’t it convenient that the “it’s bad no matter who does it” crowd only crawl out of the woodwork after the victims start fighting back? (Or when they think the victims might be fighting back.)

    I’ve seen this time and time again. Whatever these types claim, the condemnation only starts after the oppressed groups speak up. It’s quite telling.

  • Michael Pullmann

    Shouting back at them is more speech.

  • general_apathy

    Fight bad speech with more speech.

    One might almost say… shout back?

  • Lori

    Nobody was prevented from hearing the Huckster’s nonpology. Some people opted not to boost the signal strength of a statement with no credibility.

  • dpolicar

    Are you in general equating what Fred is suggesting with censorship? If so, can you clarify how you arrive at that equation?

    Or are you simply saying that censorship is a bad thing, without explicitly suggesting that anyone has actually suggested censorship?

  • http://talkingtocrows.tumblr.com/ VMtheCoyote

    For what it’s worth, this isn’t “Aunursa Comes Up With A Way To Silence Victims,” it’s a term we learned in First Amendment 201: the “heckler’s veto.” It was one of those things where our prof told us speech was absolutely allowed, but it’s better to allow them to use their freedom of speech, then react with your own. ‘Course, that’s assuming you have the ability to react with your own, which most of us don’t, especially not the victims of such hate speech – which goes back to another part of First Amendment 201, which covered the theory that denying people access to a platform or medium for their message (even because of monetary lack) is restricting their freedom of speech/press.

    Personally, I think the best reaction is what Fred’s talked about before – singing them down. Next time Brother Jed comes to campus to tell us all we’re going to hell, I’m going to see if I can get a handful of folks to start something like that.

  • dpolicar

    I basically agree with what you’re saying, but I can’t quite figure out how it relates to my question to aunursa. Would you mind unpacking that further?

  • http://talkingtocrows.tumblr.com/ VMtheCoyote

    Ah, I suppose your comment was the wrong one to reply to – it was more of a general response to the people going “Aunursa shut up, why are you trying to silence the victims?” Because that’s a misunderstanding of the point, I think.

    And the “heckler’s veto” does, in a way, work towards silencing a message, if not actually censoring it. I think we sometimes confuse “silence” with “censor,” or equate the two, and that might be the confusion here.

  • dpolicar

    Ah, OK. If you didn’t actually mean to respond to what I said, that helps explain my confusion.

    I can’t really speak to whether unspecified other commenters are missing the point, especially when I’m not sure whose point they’re missing or what that point is, so I guess I’ll just leave that issue there.

    With respect to heckling being a form of silencing… so, just to be clear: on your account, is responding to hate speech as Fred suggests silencing the speakers? Is “singing them down” as you suggest above silencing them?

  • http://talkingtocrows.tumblr.com/ VMtheCoyote

    Not missing the point, exactly. I just… don’t think Aunursa is being as anti-victim as it comes off. It is a valid point that there’s a difference between countering someone’s speech and trying to silence it by out-shouting it. I don’t think either one is always the answer – if you’re at a political debate, for example, it makes more sense (usually) to let the one side speak, however abhorrent they may be, and then respond to their point. If you’re at a rally, and the lone speaker is urging the crowd to turn now and destroy the menace of Islam before they take over America, yeah, I’d vote for shouting/singing/otherwise silencing them by overwhelming the message with a better one.

  • dpolicar

    Well, again, I can’t speak for others.

    For my own part, what struck me as odd about aunursa’s comment (and yours, here) is that as far as I can tell, Fred wasn’t suggesting “trying to silence [someone’s speech] by out-shouting it.” He was suggesting that “it’s important to shout back at the pastor up the street, or at the pastor on the radio;” he wasn’t suggesting shutting down the church or the radio station.

    Shouting back at the pastor doesn’t silence the pastor. It merely allows my voice to be heard.

    So replying to Fred that trying to silence speech by out-shouting it is a bad practice seems… puzzling.

    At best, it’s a change of topic, which, well, OK. Y’all can talk about Godzilla and the best cheeses to use in omelettes if you like; that’s fine with me.

    At worst, it’s an attempt to covertly equate shouting back with silencing. I’m not OK with that. If aunursa means to (IMO illegitimately) equate the two, I at least want that equation to be overt rather than covert.

    Does that make sense?

    if you’re at a political debate, for example, it makes more sense (usually) to let the one side speak, however abhorrent they may be, and then respond to their point

    Sure; that kind of point-response turn-taking is kind of what a debate is. If we don’t do that, it’s no longer a debate, it’s something else.

    Similarly, at a folk-music concert it’s customary to frame political positions in musical form.

    Of course, nothing obligates me to restrict my political speech to debates, or folk-music concerts. It’s not even a particularly good idea.

  • http://talkingtocrows.tumblr.com/ VMtheCoyote

    Shouting back at the pastor doesn’t silence the pastor. It merely allows my voice to be heard.

    So replying to Fred that trying to silence speech by out-shouting it is a bad practice seems… puzzling.

    That’s fair, and definitely makes sense – you’re right that it doesn’t make sense to equate the two, and I have no way of knowing whether aunursa intended to do so, covertly or overtly. Which makes the objections rather more sensible, in hindsight.

  • stardreamer42

    This is a classic application of False Equivalence. You are claiming that there is no difference between suppressing speech that calls for mob violence against a group of people and suppressing speech which says that mob violence is unacceptable. And you’re wrong.

  • gary

    You conveiniently left out Huckabee’s statement that he was not talking about all Muslims. .

  • That’s Not Yogurt

    Damn some crackers are really stupid. Please note that I’m not talking about all crackers.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Like Chickin-in-a-Biskit. Tasty, but what a ridiculous name. Doesn’t even taste like chicken.

  • Michael Albright

    No, it tastes like “Chickin.”

  • http://accidental-historian.typepad.com/ Geds

    From Benen’s write up at Fred’s first link: “Huckabee later clarified that he did not mean to refer to all 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide. How nice.”

    That sounds to me like Huckabee was engaged in the standard non-retraction that always comes up when someone calls a bigot on his bigotry. Considering that the original statement was “Can someone explain to me why it is that we tiptoe around a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet in their so-called‘holiest days,” I am not at all willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. That’s a pretty broad brush he’s painting with.

  • Flying Squid with Goggles

    You know, if you’ve kept up with the Middle East, you know that the most likely time to have an uprising of rock throwing and rioting comes on the day of prayer on Friday. So the Muslims will go to the mosque, and they will have their day of prayer, and they come out of there like uncorked animals — throwing rocks and burning cars.

    “The Muslims” and “they” are clearly intended to be a large nebulous group in the last sentence above. I’m sure the next Bashir Ahmad or Sikh taxi driver in Seattle will be sure to thank Mr. Huckabee for his clarity.

    No, Huckabee has an obligation as a human, a public figure, and as a Christian to avoid exactly the sort of broad accusations of violence directed at some nebulous group in the quote above. Saying a minute later that he didn’t mean all Muslims isn’t enough to absolve him of his broad brush.

  • Flying Squid with Goggles

    Those links should be:

    Bashir Ahmad:
    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/hate-crime-victim-recovering-home-article-1.1204467

    and

    Sikh taxi driver in Seattle:
    http://www.seattlepi.com/local/article/Police-Anti-Muslim-bigot-beat-Sikh-cab-driver-3985421.php

    It happens all the time that muslims and non-muslims who are confused with muslims are attacked due to the perception and the public campaign to declare muslims as “violent animals.” Mr. Huckabee has contributed to this perception and to these attacks. He is morally obligated to do something to prevent this; but I won’t be holding my breath.

  • stardreamer42

    It happens all the time that muslims and non-muslims who are confused
    with muslims
    are attacked due to the perception and the public campaign
    to declare muslims as “violent animals.”

    The bolded bit is one of the things that keeps being missed. These people neither know nor care whether or not someone actually is a Muslim — having brown skin is enough to move them into “needs killing” territory. See also those who couldn’t believe that the Boston bomber was Muslim because he was white. Scratch an anti-Muslim bigot, find a racist.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    While this is true and extremely important (In addition to Boston, I’ll also note that anti-muslim bigots often target Sikhs but ignore Indonesians. Because Sikhs often look middle-eastern, and Indonesians don’t), far too often, when people point out “and non-muslims who are confused with muslims” they do it in a way that gives the impression that it’s somehow worse that a non-muslim is victimized, as if it would be less wrong if the anti-muslim bigot had targeted an actual muslim.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    “The Muslims” and “they” are clearly intended to be a large nebulous group in the last sentence above.

    Well, that’s the truth behind Huckabee’s faux-pology: “I swear, I didn’t mean real muslims who are human beings living in the world and following one of the world’s major religions; I was just using the term ‘muslim’ as a dog whistle to refer to a nebulous, frightening, nonspecific ‘other’! I’d have said “The Jews” instead if that was still socially acceptable! Promise!”

  • aunursa

    Interesting. The link from our host goes to Rachel Maddow‘s blog, in which she adds “Huckabee later clarified that he did not mean to refer to all 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide. How nice.” Maddow links to Huffington Post, which includes his clarification verbatem. HuffPo links to The Daily Caller, which includes the entire statement in context with audio.

    I know we’re not supposed to say anything unkind about Islam. I mean, it’s politically incorrect. I get that. But can someone explain to me why it is that we tiptoe around a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet in their so-called ‘holiest days.’ You know, if you’ve kept up with the Middle East, you know that the most likely time to have an uprising of rock throwing and rioting comes on the day of prayer on Friday. So the Muslims will go to the mosque, and they will have their day of prayer, and they come out of there like uncorked animals — throwing rocks and burning cars. You know, I’m just pointing out that for all of the demands that we’re supposed to be so very polite, and I’m not saying all Muslims are radical and I am not saying that all Muslims are violent. I’m not. But we as a government recognize that the most likely times for them to erupt in some type of terrorist activity, violent storming of an embassy, is on their holy days.

    You practically have to jump through hoops to get the whole picture.

  • Flying Squid with Goggles

    When someone says “X” and then says “I’m not saying X, believe me” you have three choices:

    1. Exhibit skepticism
    2. Believe the second statement, but not the first
    3. Ignore what’s being said

    Which have you chosen, and why?

  • aunursa

    I am not selecting any of the choices that you are offering me. Instead I will point out the following:

    When someone says that an opponent “sees himself as superior to more than a billion people whom he regards as sub-human” and quotes approvingly a statement that classifies his opponent’s speech as…

    lies that appear to present accurate information about a whole group of human beings, by isolating the behavior of some members of that group and focusing on it as if that behavior is typical of every member of the group.

    … but deliberately excludes a clarifying statement in which the opponent claims that he is not speaking about a whole group of human beings — then we the readers are unable to select any of those choices. We’re not even aware of those choices in the first place.

    That’s why you should always question a quote attributed to a person’s opponent without viewing the entire statement in context.

  • Flying Squid with Goggles

    Why do you believe Huckabee when he says he’s not saying what he just said? Doesn’t the proximity of those two contradictory statements in his show set off alarm bells for you?

  • Seraph4377

    An ass-covering disclaimer doesn’t fool anybody about what he really meant, no matter how much you or he may wish it.

    What exactly are you doing here, Aunursa? Are you coming into a discussion about a speech that may well get people killed (it’s of a genre that definitely has in the past) and playing the “Devil’s Advocate” and “Intellectual Exercise” games for the Lulz? Or are you just willing to twist and contort to any extent to relieve this man of responsibility for his hate just because he’s on your side of the aisle?

    Either way, you disgust me.

  • dpolicar

    you should always question a quote attributed to a person’s opponent without viewing the entire statement in context.

    You should do more than just question it. Having questioned it, you should decide what answer seems most plausible to you.

    Does it seem plausible to you that the part of the quote you bolded represents the main thrust of his point and other quotes you left unbolded (“a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet”, etc.) are just unfortunately worded tangents from which Fred and the rest of us are inferring more than is justified?

    Does it seem plausible to you that the part of the quote you bolded represents a CYA attempt?

    Or do you prefer not to answer questions, merely to ask them?

  • Lori

    You should do more than just question it. Having questioned it, you should decide what answer seems most plausible to you.

    Doing that, or at least doing that openly here, would require that aunursa come out from behind his distancing language and rule nannying and boundary enforcement and that’s not going to happen on any topic that is remotely political.

  • dpolicar

    That’s entirely possible.

    That said, I try not to have both sides of a conversation myself. If I’m having a conversation, I prefer to handle my side of it and let the other person handle their side of it.

    Conversely, if I can’t bring myself to do that (which I sometimes can’t) I try not to have the conversation at all.

    I don’t always succeed.

    That’s just something I’ve found works for me, though. Others’ mileage may vary.

  • Lori

    That said, I try not to have both sides of a conversation myself. If I’m
    having a conversation, I prefer to handle my side of it and let the
    other person handle their side of it.

    Yup. My point was the aunursa isn’t going to handle his side of this particular conversation. He never does. Expecting him to is just a recipe for frustration.

  • dpolicar

    (nods)

    That’s OK. It’s the Internet; nobody is obligated to reply to me, or to say what I expect them to say. I try not to hold on to such expectations.

    Thanks for the heads-up, though.

  • J_Enigma32

    The full quote doesn’t make it any better, thought. It goes from being a hateful quote to hateful word salad. It’s a goddamn game of semantics; I’m not saying all Muslims are violent, really, I’m not, I’m just calling Muslims (a non-specified amount) uncorked animals.

  • http://accidental-historian.typepad.com/ Geds

    The link from our host goes to Rachel Maddow’s blog, in which she
    adds “Huckabee later clarified that he did not mean to refer to all 1.6
    billion Muslims worldwide. How nice.”

    The writer of the bit was Steve Benen, who is the top writer over at Maddow’s Blog. Rachel herself never writes anything at said blog.

    I just bring that up because ever since I followed Benen from the Washington Monthly to the Maddow Blog (which also marked the first time I ever read said blog, I also don’t watch Maddow’s show, nor do I watch MSNBC, nor do I watch any cable news network), it’s always been easy to check the reading comprehension and attentiveness levels of the commentors simply by seeing who directly addresses Rachel Maddow in the comments on Benen’s posts.

    As such, congratulations, aunursa, you fail Reading Comprehension 101.

    So to that end, the bit the precedes the bolded part in your copy paste:

    So the Muslims will go to the mosque, and they will have their day of prayer, and they come out of there like uncorked animals — throwing rocks and burning cars. You know, I’m just pointing out that for all of the demands that we’re supposed to be so very polite, and I’m not saying all Muslims are radical and I am not saying that all Muslims are violent. I’m not.

    That’s actually even worse for Huck than what I originally assumed was a disingenuous walking back of a comment after being pushed on it. That’s a man who is saying that Muslim services make Muslims violent in a predictable, clockwork manner, and then directly contradicting himself in an obvious show of CYA doublespeak. And he’s tossing in some of the old trick of making sure everyone knows he’s not trying to be “politically correct” on top of it.

    So, really, all those gymnastics you pulled there simply proved the point even better than Steve Benen and Fred did at the outset. Mick Huckabee is a hateful ass.

  • Lori

    A lot of people seem not to get the fact that The Maddow Blog is a blog for the show, not the person.

  • themunck

    *coughs* It took me a while to realize that, at least.

  • Lori

    Part of the problem is the name. It should really be called The Maddow Show blog. Or to be strictly accurate The Rachel Maddow Show blog. This is a case where shorter and snappier is maybe not better.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    Would this be considered a fair statement?:

    “But can someone explain to me why it is that we tiptoe around a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet with their so-called ‘holiest symbols.’ You know, if you’ve kept up with the American South, you know that the most likely means to intimidate African Americans is with the cross. So the Christians get a big cross, and they will cover themselves in sheets which depict a bloody cross, and they come out of there like uncorked animals — burning the large cross on the lawn of an African American family. You know, I’m just pointing out that for all of the demands that we’re supposed to be so very polite, and I’m not saying all Christians are radical and I am not saying that all Chriatians are violent. I’m not. But we as a government recognize that the most likely means for them to erupt in some type of terrorist activity, lynchings and destruction of personal property, is with their holy symbols.”

  • http://algol.wordpress.com/ SororAyin

    That was brilliant. I’m speechless.

  • konrad_arflane

    Very nice. Does anybody know how lynchings were distributed over the days of the week?

  • teglet

    I seem to recall them being a weekend thing–have a picnic! bring the kids!–so there’s at least proximity to the Sabbath.

  • Hexep

    Bang. DEATHBLOW.

  • general_apathy

    *applause*

  • MarkTemporis

    The symbol is already a torture device, so it isn’t much of a leap.

    I remember discussing House Bolton from Game of Thrones and saying that having a flayed man as their sigil sort of spelled out I’M EVIL in big flaming capital letters. I mean, that’s totally fucked up — who the hell has a guy getting tortured as the symbol of their faction?

    Oh yeah…Christians.

  • Myrkin

    And now I wonder when we will get somebody saying in all seriousness, that Boltons were created purely to spite and mock Christians and this is another proof of Game of Thrones being satanic?

  • dpolicar

    Parke Godwin has a far-future novel… Masters of Solitude, I think… in which this particular horse dies early on and gets periodically whacked with a heavy stick.

  • MarkTemporis

    I see what you did there.

  • Lori

    If he actually wasn’t talking about all Muslims he would have phrased the original statement differently. His mealy-mouthed nonpology doesn’t change that and this is hardly the first time that Huchabee has engaged in hate speech. He hides behind the fact that he used to be a minister, and that down home Southern folksiness schtick of his, and a lot of bogus claims of persecution, but he’s a hate-monger.

  • Apocalypse Review

    Reminds me of how Fred or someone linked to that video in which Santorum really got into the rhythm of a nice fine old rant and then at the very last moment caught himself when he realized he was about to say “Ni—“.

    Also reminds me of the “blah people” half-assed attempt at retconning.

    Also, Pat Buchanan, for all that he has managed to claim he said “culture war”, his original words were “religious war”, and Al Franken has taken pains to point that out.

  • Mark Z.

    Oh. Which ones was he talking about? Did he use their names?

  • The_L1985

    “I don’t hate Muslims, BUT…”

    Huckabee needs to get his big “but”s out of everyone else’s business.

  • Baby_Raptor

    It doesn’t matter. Hate speech is hate speech, even if you’re only talking about some members of a group.

    If I said “People named Gary are hooting dickholes. They’re animals.” and then later hurriedly assured someone I didn’t mean *all* Garrys (Garries?) would you really see it as any different?

  • http://algol.wordpress.com/ SororAyin

    If our aim is to oppose an “army of hate,” we need to discriminate between the generals and the grunts. The two require a very different strategy.
    Let me tell you about Maxine Dietrich and her Joy of Satan Ministries (JoS). JoS is a Satanic organization (obviously!), but it is also a Neo-Nazi one. This is not immediately apparent from a casual reading of the JoS website. I mean, it can really take some digging to find the Nazi stuff. Dietrich uses the JoS as a means of recruiting young Satanists (mostly teenagers) to her particular brand of Neo-Nazi ideology. Some of these young people are quite horrified by Dietrich’s Neo-Nazi leanings and leave the JoS as soon as they learn about it. Some of them choose to stay, and I can understand why. The JoS is a tight-knit bunch that gives its members a sense of belonging, of family. I can see how it might be hard to leave all that behind. And after a while, many of these young people end up absorbing the Neo-Nazi ideology by a kind of osmosis. Sad really.
    Anyway, I went into this story to illustrate the difference between the leaders of hate-filled organizations and the recruits. I have no trouble treating Dietrich just as Fred says. She is a vile woman who uses the loneliness and alienation that many young people feel (especially practitioners of a minority religion) to recruit them to her own particular brand of hate. She is absolutely disgusting and needs to be shouted down at every available opportunity.
    This won’t work for her recruits, though. They are young people who have found a place to belong, many of them for the first time in their lives. I’ve met several JoS members on Facebook, and more than any other quality, they exhibit a sense of being damaged. I tread carefully with them. They’ve been shown a form of Satanism that gave them a sense of belonging but also taught them hate. Okay. I’m a Satanist myself. I’ll be accepting of them. I’ll offer friendship and gentleness. And if they’ll let me, I’ll show them a form of Satanism that does not define itself by hatred. It doesn’t always work. Some of them are too far gone, and are addicted to the hate. But, some of them are salvageable. I aspire to be there for as many of them as I can.

  • FearlessSon

    I have no trouble treating Dietrich just as Fred says. She is a vile woman who uses the loneliness and alienation that many young people feel (especially practitioners of a minority religion) to recruit them to her own particular brand of hate. She is absolutely disgusting and needs to be shouted down at every available opportunity.

    I would say the same about Mark Driscoll. The trouble with shouting down is that the people who need to be shouted down spend lots of time carefully cultivating a lot of voices around them which will shout with them in choir, and avoiding any situations in which their voices might not be the loudest in the room.

  • LL

    Some people disagree with you, Fred: 800-meter runner Nick Symmonds posted a blog in which he said that if he were in a race with a Russian athlete, “I will shake his hand, thank him for his country’s generous hospitality, and then, after kicking his (butt) in the race, silently dedicate the win to my gay and lesbian friends back home.”

    Silent dedications are the best kind.

    Also, following a hateful statement with, “But I don’t mean you people, the non-animal ones,” doesn’t really cancel out the hateful part. Non-stupid adults know this.

    Huckabee is like most politicians. He tries to have it both ways, signaling to his supporters that he’s down with their Muslim-hating, gay-hating agenda, then trying to “moderate” it with an insincere “I don’t mean everybody” statement. In the ad biz, we call that a disclaimer. The lawyers make us do it. We put it in small type at the very bottom, so we can say it’s on there and our asses are covered legally, but we know most people aren’t gonna read it, so it’s like it doesn’t really count. Huckabee’s “I don’t mean ALL Muslims” statement is the vocal equivalent of that small type disclaimer.

  • Eric Boersma

    I’d strongly disagree with the idea that silent dedications are the best kind. I would feel entirely the opposite, in truth.

  • Lori

    I’m pretty sure LL meant that to be in sarcasm font.

  • Eric Boersma

    Looking below, it appears that you were right. Mea culpa.

  • Emcee, cubed

    I really want to read a sarcasm tag on the “Silent dedications are the best kind” line, but having seen way too many people say things about how Symmonds’ statement is a perfectly appropriate response, the clarification would be helpful.

    Because Symmonds’ statement is a load of self-serving. cowardly bullshit, designed to make him look supportive without actually having to sacrifice or give anything of himself. (It also, if I’m not missing something, is purely hypothetical, since it is the Winter Olympics being held in Sochi, and running is a Summer Olympic event. So he isn’t actually going to be competing in Russia. I could be wrong, of course.)

  • LL

    Yes, I meant it sarcastically.

    Sorry, I forgot that the weapons-grade stupidity favored by Republicans, combined with their habit of never shutting up, plus the Facebook generation’s habit of typing whatever comes into their heads, has rendered sarcasm almost unrecognizable and/or indistinguishable from actual stupid statements.

    Not that I know this Symmonds guy is Republican, he probably hasn’t given it much thought at all, much like the stuff he writes publicly.

  • FearlessSon

    To be fair, communicating in a medium which allows neither voice modulation nor facial and gestural expression tends to hamstring the ability to bring sarcasm across. The more obvious you make it, the less likely someone will misinterpret in this context.

  • Emcee, cubed

    Thank you. I was pretty sure from knowing you on here that this was the case, but have run into too many seemingly intelligent people on Facebook and other places that are so totally misinformed or dismissive (which often comes from being misinformed) that I am no longer trusting my instincts.

  • konrad_arflane

    My very favourite disclaimer in advertising is the one in German TV ads for pharmaceutical products. They all carry a disclaimer at the end (presumably because it’s mandatory) saying “for information on risks and side effects please read the package inlay or ask your doctor or pharmacist”, which is both written on screen and read aloud – by someone who manages to say all the words in approximately one second. It’s *really* impressive.

  • The_L1985

    What’s really fun is the US disclaimers on erectile-dysfunction medication. Here are some choice bits:

    “Be sure you are healthy enough for sexual activity.”
    “Other serious side effects, such as [OMG THIS IS A POTENTIALLY-FATAL SIDE-EFFECT!] may occur.”

    All in a slow, calm, happy voice, as if all they were saying was, “It’s a bright, sunny day, and all is well.”

  • Lori

    Don’t forget “Contact your doctor if you have an erection lasting more than 4 hours.”

  • Jenny Islander

    On a lighter note, at least one of them has a listed side effect of “delayed lower back pain.”

    *snrx*

  • Emcee, cubed

    To give credit where credit is due: Symmonds decided not to stay silent (while he wasn’t competing in the Olympics, other competitions I know nothing about are also held there.)

  • Lori

    So, speaking of the issue of hate speech (and actions) and how to respond—Sochi.

    The IOC has a rule, rule 50, against making political statements at the games. They have announced that they will enforce Rule 50 against people who make pro-gay statements in protest of Russia’s politically driven anti-gay laws and human rights violations. The IOC is saying this at the same time it’s being forced to acknowledge that the “assurances” they received that anti-gay laws would not be enforced against people in the country for the games are not all that reassuring and are quite possibly total lies.

    http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/olympic-committee-threatens-punish-athletes-who-fight-gay-russians120813

    The last time we talked about this I said that I supported the intent of the Olympics, but was no longer sure that the reality of the games was worth it. I now feel a lot more sure that they’re not. The IOC can’t continue to place the Games in countries like Russia & China and then forbid people from speaking out about those countries’ polices. That’s support of undemocratic regimes disguised as neutrality.

    There may have been a time when the IOC did this sort of thing out of naivety, but claiming that at this point is just ridiculous. They are well aware of the effect of the choice of host country and the way being awarded the games is used by countries to bolster their credibility. When the IOC awards the games to a host city it’s making a political statement. There are reasons why the games were awarded to China and Russia and they’re largely political. Trying to pretend otherwise is pointless*.

    It is ridiculous for them to engage in that kind of politics and then forbid others from responding with statements of their own because that would sully the games. By playing this kind of double game the IOC makes itself at best a tool and at worst a champion of people like Putin. The problem is obviously that if they don’t enforce rule 50 the games will soon be nothing but an outright propaganda fest.

    Damned if you do, damned if you don’t = enough already. The games are no longer doing what they are intended to do and it’s time for them to end, or at least go on hiatus until we get our shit sufficiently together that this sort of thing won’t happen. They won’t because they’re making some powerful people a lot of money, but they should.

    *It’s also pointless to pretend that China and Russia are the only
    countries whose human rights records are at odds with the supposed
    spirit of the games.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam
  • Lori

    I can’t imagine that will hold up on appeal, but yeah, that judge is full of crap.

    Anyone who has friends, family, Facebook contacts, etc who are prone to whining that it’s mean and unfair to talk about the US having Christianists the same way some other countries have Islamists should bookmark this story for later use.

  • general_apathy

    I wonder if she even intended for it to hold up, or if she just wanted to shame the parents while being a dick to a baby.

  • Lori

    I wonder if she was hoping to shame the parents into not appealing at all.

    Just to be clear—I think it’s a stupid name, but in general we don’t police stupid names in this country. Within extremely broad boundaries parents get to name their kids. That’s true even if some judge thinks a name violates her religious notions.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    The only other time I can think of the court renaming a child was when some parents named their kid “Adolph Hitler Herman Goering [Lastname]”.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    I’m actually arguing with someone about that right now. That’s an obvious case where “extremely poor taste” is the best case scenario, but my concern is that if we were to establish legal precedents about acceptable and unacceptable names, we’d soon see people using the law to bully people into changing their names/names of their children.

  • Lori

    The court basically said that naming your kid after Nazis goes beyond dumb or poor taste and into a violation of the child’s welfare.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Yeah, and I’m generally agreed that this is the case — but I don’t care for the idea of committing it to legal precedent. Adolf Hitler is a bad name for a child. What about Adolf Hidel? Or just plain Adolf? Obviously that guy was sick and would probably pass his sickness down to his children if given a chance, but I don’t like the idea that policy is going to be dictated by what people like him try to do. I don’t exactly want to name my child Adolf Hitler, but I also don’t want some family deciding that naming my child Joseph is in reference to Joseph Goebbels and that I should name him Jerry instead.</random example>

  • Lori

    I think the courts would probably say that Adolf is right out no matter what the middle & last names are. I think they’d say the same about using last names of famous Nazis or other war criminals as first names, so something like Goebbels Green or Himmler Jones would be out. I think most other first names would be fine, even if they happen to be shared by an unsavory person, as would names that have white supremacist meaning to white supremacists, but not to the rest of the population. I’m thinking of those (thankfully now former) neo-Nazi twin singers, Linx & Lamb Whatevertheirlastnameis.

    I think US courts have generally been fairly reasonable about allowing people to name their kids what they chose to name them. That’s one of the reasons I feel confident that this most recent nonsense isn’t going to hold up on appeal.

  • MarkTemporis

    “Himmler Jones” sounds kind of cool. It’s got kind of a ring to it. IIRC “Adolf” was a fairly common German name up until Hitler, but after WWII the name practically vanished.

  • Lori

    I remember that case. In fact, I think there have been a couple cases of parents giving obviously Nazi/white supremacist names and having the court step in and change it. That’s because those names are considered essentially child endangerment though, not because the judge thinks God doesn’t like it.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    I darn sure hope it won’t hold up on appeal, because the whole thing is just disturbing. Bad enough to have a federal representative openly favoring Christianity in a court of law, but the whole business of a judge being able to choose your name?

    “I don’t like your name. It suggests… equal standing. I think you shall be called Drone 1. Your black friend? Oh, I have an even better name for his ilk.”

  • Michael Pullmann

    He’s not the Messiah. He’s a very naughty boy.

  • Hawker40

    “In accordance with the judge’s request, I have renamed my child to The True Christ [lastname].”

  • christopher_y

    And rightly so. “Messiah” (Mashiach) means “the annointed one”; the Greek translation of this is “Christos”, so you’re hardly even renaming him. Incidentally, Christos is a fairly common name among people of Greek extraction, so any judge who tried to get funny about that might find they had an issue on their hands.

  • Carstonio

    The decision should be struck down on First Amendment grounds. It’s not the government’s place to decide who has earned the title of Messiah, or even to say that such a title exists.

  • R Vogel

    I have spent much time being angry about Huckabee and hundreds of other dopes like him. In the end I have determined it is just not worth it. He is a politician, and he says things to court the legions of morons out there who think that way. The only solace I take is that the demographics of the world are changing and both Huckabee and most of those who think like him are dying out. They won’t ever completely disappear, ignorance will always exist, but they will be marginalized to the point of irrelevance. There is no point in shouting back because the people who buy into such nonsense are not those who could be convinced. In fact they will simply use your angry response to further cement their standing with that crowd. The best, and most effective, way to defeat a politician is not with direct opposition, but with irrelevance. They and their hillbilly constituency can move to the woods and prepare for the end of days. We can go on and make a more open, just, and verdant society.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Just how are we to go about making politicians irrelevant while making sure they don’t do too much damage in the meantime?

  • dpolicar

    You seem to be drawing a crisp line between “people who buy into such nonsense” (who cannot be convinced to give up bad stuff by our speech) and people who don’t (who do not require our speech to avoid bad stuff), such that the middle ground of people who are more likely to avoid bad stuff if we speak up about it simply doesn’t exist.

    Have I understood you correctly?

    If not, I apologize for misunderstanding.

    If so, I strongly disagree.

  • Lori

    Russia’s Interior Ministry, which controls the police force, confirmed Monday that the country’s controversial anti-gay law will be enforced during the Sochi 2014 Olympics.

    http://en.ria.ru/russia/20130812/182723811/Russia-Confirms-Anti-Gay-Law-Will-Be-Enforced-at-Olympics.html

    So, if Russian nutjobs decide that you have violated their deliberately incredibly vague law against promoting homosexuality to minors you will be arrested and pulled into Russia’s nightmarish “justice” system. If an athlete does or says anything to protest this bullshit, even something as simple as wearing a rainbow pin, the IOC has the right to invoke rule 50.

    If I was queen of the IOC I’d contact recent winter games host countries and see if any of them can get their facilities up and running in time to host again this coming winter. If so I’d move the games. If not I’d push the games out and select a new location and tell Putin he can blow it out his ear.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    I hear Vancouver is being considered, seeing as they’ve got a lot of the facilities still up.

  • Lori

    It would pretty much have to be Vancouver or Turin since those were the most recent. I have no idea if there is any way for Vancouver to get ready to do that again in less than 6 months, even if the facilities are mostly still available. That’s a huge task. I virtually positive that the games will go ahead in Sochi and most countries will send teams and I won’t watch a minute of it because we should not be handing Russia a gift right now.

  • Fanraeth

    George Takei has been circulating this petition to get the games moved to Vancouver. I doubt the IOC will listen to a bunch of people on the internet, but it’s worth a shot.

    http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/international-olympic-committee-ioc-relocate-the-2014-winter-games-to-vancouver-2

  • Carstonio
  • An ape

    We’re all animals. Humans are a type of animal. So, to be called an animal is not dehumanising, it’s taxonomically correct. Just don’t call me a plant or a fungus…

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Check your privilege. It’s easy to brush off being called an animal when you haven’t spent your entire life being treated as an inferior creature.

  • Veleda_k

    So, Huckabee is just a stickler for proper scientific nomenclature in his Islam-hating rants?

    Please. Calling a human being an animal is an insult. It was intended as an insult. What is it with these semantic games?

  • Lori

    You have to play the hand you’re dealt. When you’re trying to defend someone like Mike Huchabee semantic games are pretty much all you’ve got.

  • FearlessSon

    Yes, we are all animals, that is true. The problem Huckabee is having here is that his use of language suggests that those others are animals and by implication he and his listeners are not animals.

    This kind of artificial distinction which places the speaker on a higher innate moral level than those they are denigrating is where the bigotry lies.

  • Laurent Weppe

    When someone calls another human beings “animals”, it means that he wants to either:

    1. Treat these people like pets
    2. Treat these people like cattle
    3. Treat these people like vermin

  • dpolicar

    Which category covers the way we treat draft horses and guard dogs?

  • Lori

    Cattle—-valuable, and thus not vermin, but also not pets.

  • dpolicar

    OK.

    For my own part, I’m inclined to draw a distinction between animals we value for their labor, and animals we slaughter and eat, but I’m not sure it matters in this context.

  • Funkula

    I would argue that growing tasty meat is a form of labor, as is production of economically valuable products that can be harvested without killing the producer (eggs, milk, wool). I see why you would distinguish, but draft animals and working dogs (as well as production animals mentioned above) tend to be euthanized when their economic value is exhausted. In all cases the animal dies for economic reasons.

  • dpolicar

    Hm.

    That sounds like you’re suggesting I ought not draw a distinction between being cared for (if only temporarily) and used for labor on the one hand, and being killed and eaten on the other, because in both cases my eventual death is for economic reasons, and that’s the important thing.

    Have I misunderstood you?

  • Amaryllis

    Etymological note, from the almighty Wikipedia: ” ‘Cattle’ did not originate as the term for bovine animals. It was borrowed from Anglo-Norman catel, itself from Latin caput, head, and originally meant movable personal property, especially livestock of any kind, as opposed to real property (the land, which also included wild or small free-roaming animals such as chickens — they were sold as part of the land). The word is closely related to “chattel” (a unit of personal property) and “capital” in the economic sense.”

    So yes, from the owner’s viewpoint, the economic definition is the important one. From the cow’s viewpoint, I’m sure there’s a distinction; given the choice, better a dairy farm than a beef ranch.

    ETA: and if it must be a beef ranch, Ogden Nash considers the calf’s viewpoint (not really).

    Side note: I learned this broader definition from reading old novels, where Lord So-and-so is talking about his “cattle” and I had this vision of him driving a pair of resentful cows from his high-perch phaeton– oh, he means his horses, of course.

    Side 2 note: and then there’s kittle-cattle, meaning an unpredictable or difficult group of people. The Traditional Tune Archive quotes an old Scots poem with the refrain And womenfolk are kittle cattle, observing dryly that the meaning is not necessarily pejorative. Okay then. But saying that a category of people is difficult to manage rather implies that one has the right to manage them.

    (Also, the “mugger” of the title appears to be a traveling peddlar, from “mug” as drinking cup, not “mug” as assault-with-intent-to-rob.)

  • dpolicar

    Hm.

    I seem to get more and more confused the more people try to explain things today… I’m sorry for that.

    I don’t quite see how it follows from the etymology of “cattle” that economic distinctions are necessarily the important ones from the viewpoint of an animal’s owner, let alone that (as funkula seems to suggest) they ought to be the important distinctions from my viewpoint.

  • dpolicar

    Being taxonomically correct doesn’t mean it’s not dehumanizing.

    If you don’t already know this, I’m very sorry for that; I hope you find a source of remedial education that works for you.
    If you do already know this and are making this comment anyway, please go away.

  • FearlessSon

    “Can someone explain to me why it is that we tiptoe around a religion that promotes the most murderous mayhem on the planet in their so-called ‘holiest days.’”

    Remind me, Mister Huckabee, an alliance of believes of which religion once lead bloody crusades of conquest and attempted genocide into that region?

  • Amaryllis

    Well, both of them, actually.

    The conversion of much of the Middle East from an antique form of Christianity to Islam was not accomplished without a fair amount of bloodshed.

    Which is not to excuse the horrors of the Crusades, or to say that Islam is an inherently violent religion, or that Jihad then is an excuse for Huckabee’s words now.

  • FearlessSon

    True, but the central theme I was reaching toward stands: if you think you are morally better than someone else based on nothing more than your respective religions, then you are most probably wrong.

    He is in no position to assert a moral high ground of Christianity over Islam.

  • Nik Marina

    Since we’re talking about the Olympics in the comments… I always think of the 1968 Mexico City protest. This has to be one of the most civil protests ever. Smith and Carlos work black gloves on raised fists. They wore OPHR badges on their uniforms. And they didn’t wear shoes (and wore scarves and chains representing different things). They didn’t shout out at anyone, or call anyone names. They didn’t block any entrances. All they did was stand silently with symbols. And for that, they were excoriated back home by large segments of the country and the mainstream press. Sure, it was against Olympic rules (which curiously didn’t seem to apply to Nazi salutes at the 1936 Olympics), but as far as the potential range of protests go, it was a very civil (and a very powerful) one. But even though it was a very civil protest, that didn’t matter. Because no matter how civil you are when you point out racism or bigotry or misogyny, the powers that be will always try to fall back on rules of civility in order to stop you. And these rules will constantly change and move, so that the protesters are always the uncivil ones. Of course, the incivility of the bigots always gets a pass, because… well, just because. To be sure, protests should be effective, and it may be that a quieter protest is more effective than a loud one (it depends). But trying to make your fight against bigotry conform to some arbitrary and ever-changing standard of civility is a waste of time. So, I say yell at Huckabee. There are plenty of people will to talk nicely to him, so it’s not like we’re low on that front.

    On a side note, Australian Peter Norman’s participation in the 68 protest was even quieter. He helped Smith and Carlos with some planning beforehand, he wore an OPHR badge, and later on he spoke in the press in support of them. For that, he too was excoriated and basically booted from subsequent Olympics.

  • Carstonio

    Huckabee’s lament is a variant of “how come it’s okay to pick on Christians but not Muslims?” With “picked on” defined downward to include depriving Christian employers of the right to decide whether their employees should use contraception. An argument that’s made not by the employers themselves but by people who claim to be guardians of other people’s consciences.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Which Christian employer has forbidden its employees to use contraception?

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Hobby Lobby is the prominent example as they took it to court, but pretty much anyone who has objected to employee insurance covering birth control, which is extra terrible because birth control pills also treat a number of medical conditions in addition to their more common usage. When a person isn’t making enough money to afford a prescription without insurance coverage, your employer deciding whether or not your insurance can cover that is the same as your employer deciding whether or not you can use it.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Read the news a bit more closely. Hobby lobby only refuses to pay for 2 types of ‘birth control’ methods that can be classified as abortifacients. Here is a July 2013 news release:
    “The Green family, owners of Hobby Lobby, offer 16 types of contraceptives in their health care package, but they do not offer…abortifacients would violate their religious beliefs that life begins at conception. ‘To offer prescriptions that take life is not an option for us,’ said Green.”

    Looks to me like they are taking a stand for their sincerely held Christian beliefs. They do not inquire into the private lives of their employees and, from reports I have read, Hobby Lobby is a nice place to work.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    The birth control to which they object is not an abortifacient. Their argument is that this is irrelevant, that their faith interprets it as an abortifacient
    whether medical science does or not. This is invalid.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Some ob/gyns say the morning-after pill (which can actually be taken several days after) can cause a fertilized egg to abort; others are not so sure. Can we really be so cavalier about life that this is irrelevant? Their employees have 16 other methods from which to chose that will be covered by their insurance. So what’s the problem?

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Citations needed. The last several studies I’ve seen done on the Plan B pill were very clear on their results — including studies cited by Christianity Today. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2013/may/does-plan-b-cause-abortion.html
    As for the 16 other methods covered by their insurance policy, without knowing what those methods are, I can’t comment on them. Many other forms of temporary contraception are not as effective as the pill and offering to cover permanent sterilization techniques is less than helpful for the employee who doesn’t want permanent sterilization or can’t afford the service even with insurance (the last person I know who had one wound up paying about $2000 out of pocket even with insurance covering a lot of it).

  • nursecathy123cat

    Expert Admits Morning-After-Pill Causes Abortion
    Posted on February 25, 2013 by SBrinkmann
    After years of vehement denials from the abortion industry that the morning-after-pill can cause an abortion, a renowned authority on the drug says it can inhibit the implantation of a fertilized egg, thus producing an abortion.

    LifeSiteNews is reporting that the statement was made by Dr. James Trussell, Director of Princeton’s Office of Population Research, in an academic review of the drug coauthored with Dr. Elizabeth G. Raymond.

    “To make an informed choice, women must know that [emergency contraceptive pills] … prevent pregnancy primarily by delaying or inhibiting ovulation and inhibiting fertilization, but may at times inhibit implantation of a fertilized egg in the endometrium,” he writes.

    Trussel is a senior fellow at the Guttmacher Institute, a member of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s national medical committee, and a board member of the NARAL Pro-Choice America Foundation, and is a big supporter of its use.

    The statement is significant because it will certainly impact the ongoing debate about whether or not the drug causes an abortion.

    The bishops claim to have relied on a 2012 study in the journal Contraception that showed the drug was not an abortifacient. However, the study has been called into question because the lead author was discovered to have been an advisor to pharmaceutical companies that produce it.

    The possibility that the morning-after-pill can cause an abortion is the single greatest reason why it does not enjoy more widespread use.

    While insisting that women be informed of the risk the drug poses to a newly-conceived embryo, Trussell and Raymond go on to make the claim that this does not make the drug an abortifacient because medical authorities define pregnancy as beginning at implantation rather than conception.

    As LifeSite correctly points out, biological science does no such thing and has always affirmed that life begins at fertilization.

    © All Rights Reserved, Living His Life Abundantly®/Women of Grace® http://www.womenofgrace.com

    Posted in Breaking News, Pro Life | Tagged Dr. James Trussell, Plan B ShareThisSubscribe
    – See more at: http://www.womenofgrace.com/blog/?p=19658#sthash.j1EhqnSV.dpuf

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    The very next sentence, conveniently excised from that report, is thus: “However,
    women should also be informed that the best available evidence indicates that ECPs prevent pregnancy by mechanisms that do not involve interference with post-fertilization events.”

  • nursecathy123cat

    Quibble all you want (comparing breastfeeding to taking a pill?), there are enough sources to cast some doubt on the mechanism of Plan B. Why does it cause you guys so much anger? No one is being deprived of needed healthcare or contraception. I am going to assume it is the everlasting difference between the pro- and anti-abortion camps. One side views the unborn, no matter how small, to be life. The other does not. I’m not sure that chasm can ever be crossed.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    No one is being deprived of needed healthcare or contraception.
    No one you consider important enough to acknowledge, I suppose. For the rest of us, if only wishful thinking had such efficacy.

    I am going to assume it is the everlasting difference between the pro- and anti-abortion camps.

    You can assume that. It is untrue, but it wouldn’t be the first fact to be discounted in favor of ideology.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    No. One considers an adult woman to be a human being and therefore not to be subjewct to having her medical decisions second-guessed.

    I know that the unborn are life (Not people, but life). So are sperm and egg cells before fertilization. But no one gets to seize control of another human being’s body and force them to give up control of it to benefit someone else. No matter what. If women are human beings, then it does not fucking matter if the unborn are ‘life’ or even ‘people’, and it doesn’t fucking matter when life begins. You don’t get to enslave a woman against her will for the benefit of anyone, and you don’t get to override ahuman being’s private decisions as to how to address health concerns.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Did you REALLY mean to say “it doesn’t f*cking matter when life begins”?

    I would say for any Christian it certainly does matter when life begins. And once begun, a woman has a sacred duty to protect that life, no matter if it is inside or outside her body.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    So you would saythat a woman should be legally required to donate blood and internal organs to keep her child alive?

  • nursecathy123cat

    How did you make that jump? I was talking about abortion–the intentional ending of a life. Again, the chasm between pro- and anti-abortion people. In the end, we all have to answer to God.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Here is the jump: At what point does it stop, and why does it end with the woman herself? If a woman should be compelled to sacrifice her bodily integrity to sustain an unwanted pregnancy, shouldn’t everyone else have a stake in the welfare of the child? If my body is not my own, then how is anyone else’s their own either?

  • nursecathy123cat

    We all have sovereignty over our own bodies. I believe this includes that little body growing inside a pregnant woman. Aren’t we Christians tasked with fending off attacks on the helpless?

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    And yet this so often takes the form of forcing a 12 year old to bear the child of her rapist uncle, destroying any chance at a normal life for a child, traumatizing her and bringing a life into the world which will suffer for her inability to provide for it. That is siding with oppression against the helpless, doubling down on misery and calling it love. That is Antichrist.

  • nursecathy123cat

    What a tragic situation, no matter how often it occurs. My first concern would be to get that child into a safe environment and get that rapist into jail. Then consider what would be best for the 12 year old and her baby. No doubt, this is a fallen world.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    “What would be best” would be to abort her pregnancy before it does her irrevocable harm on both a physical and psychological level. I’ve seen this play out too many times, and the alternative is too often worse. Frequently, the girl is going to wind up living with her rapist and her pregnancy either compels him to murder her, or worse, it traps her in a situation wherein she cannot get away from him because he provides her with the only way she can take care of herself and a baby.

    Then there are doomed pregnancies — ectopic implantation and stillbirths which occur without a miscarriage to expel the dead tissues. Under abortion bans, because legislators are more interested in making a theological point than in actually saving lives, the removal of the fetus in these circumstances is not considered an exception to the rules and the only course of action is to let the mother die. “This is necessary,” they tell us.

    This is the pattern of the world. I do not conform to it.

  • nursecathy123cat

    As a maternity nurse for years, I saw several doomed pregnancies as you stated…ectopics and stillbirths. It was obvious that life was over. No fetal heartbeat, no growth, no pregnancy hormones. At that point, it IS just a matter of removing tissue from the woman’s body for both physical and psychological reasons. My job was to encourage and support them emotionally, along with physical nursing care. In what world do you live that blighted pregnancies must be allowed to continue?
    And actually, I have never condemned anyone who had an abortion. God forgives anything and it isn’t my job to judge someone’s past. But I cannot say that something is right when I believe it is wrong.
    As for the employer who won’t pay for the morning-after pill, I just don’t know. After reading more, it looks like the morning-after pill does not cause abortion of life most of the time. Tricky business.
    I wish you guys all the best and will pray for understanding and salvation for us all.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    As for the employer who won’t pay for the morning-after pill, I just
    don’t know. After reading more, it looks like the morning-after pill
    does not cause abortion of life most of the time. Tricky business.

    So now, you’re off playing semantic games with yourself about what does and does not constitute an abortion.

    I really, really, don’t get what the problem is with people like you. It’s like you think pregnancy is magic or something, and interfering with the magic is bad.

  • nursecathy123cat

    What semantic games? I am very clear on what abortion is. Are you?
    As for pregnancy being magic, well, it is awesome. And I believe it is wrong to interfere with it once it has begun.
    Is that clear enough for you?

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Then you know that an abortion is a medical procedure performed on a pregnant woman, not something you do to a fetus, and that even if the fetus is dead, it’s still an abortion?

  • nursecathy123cat

    Now who is playing semantic games? The objection is and always had been the taking of an existing life. If the fetus is dead, there is no life there. The pregnancy is over.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Yes, pregnancy’s a very profound thing, and yes, it’s an expression of the fact that we, as a species, are perpetuating our genome on this Earth.

    BUT–

    I don’t imbue it with the kind of magical-like properties that include the superstitious type of thinking that says once begin, you cannot halt it by human will and intervention.

    I also personally don’t give a damn what a woman takes or does not take to avoid a pregnancy or to end one at her discretion.

    Yes, I’m sure that some fraction of women probably go “oh, fuck a duck, I’m pregnant!” and abort with all the care one takes on buying scratch tickets, but really, use your logic.

    That fraction is so absurdly small as to be not worth worrying about. The mere fact that pregnancy is accorded cultural and societal importance implies that a woman considering an abortion would probably not make the decision frivolously. Even if she made it quickly, she would not be cavalier.

    So why don’t you save your moral outrage for something more of immediate importance, like the fact that the HPV vaccine is still not routinely administered, and if it were, would wipe out some forms of cancer?

  • nursecathy123cat

    HPV vaccine is a great idea.
    And I’m too tired for moral outrage these days. If that is what you are reading here, you may be the source.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Oh please, you’re all about the OMG ABORTION BAAAAAAAD.

    It’s written in the very post you made:

    “After reading more, it looks like the morning-after pill does not cause abortion of life most of the time. Tricky business.”

    There is no tricky business.

    There is only the fact that you apparently don’t like anything that has the whiff of OMGABORTION about it.

    But if you can rationalize to yourself that there is no ABORTIONPEARLCLUTCH then all is hunky-dory.

  • nursecathy123cat

    My, you ARE clever.
    Yes, I believe abortion is bad.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    In what world do you live that blighted pregnancies must be allowed to continue?

    A world in which women like Savita Halappanavar and
    the daughter of Rosa Hernandez have died. A world in which pregnancy is the leading cause of death for women between the ages of 15-19 and where even in the United States, over 500 women annually die in the process of carrying out pregnancy and more than a few die in the months or years afterward from lasting complications such as aggravated heart disease and anemia.

  • nursecathy123cat

    I did hear about that sad situation in Ireland. Hopefully the law has now been changed so that pregnancies that are obviously on the way out don’t linger and take the mother’s life too. I would point out that that is not how it’s done here. Lets not get started on the damage done by the Catholic Church. I have to end this discussion some time soon!

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    So you see nothing wrong with the fact that some 12 year olds are simply physically incapable of carrying a pregnancy to term?

    EDIT: Even if you remove the 12yo to a “safe environment” this above limitation doesn’t magically go away.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Oh, for the love of— *FACEPALMS*

    Your blatant attempt at rhetorical judo is as shameless as it is offensive.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    So… By “And once begun, a woman has a sacred duty to protect that life” you mean “A woman must sacrifice bodily integrity and be forced ot endure the torture of forced-childbirth. But once the baby’s out of the uterus, fuck that noise; a woman doesn’t have a duty to sacrifice her organs to keep it alive.”?

    THat seems pretty perverse. SO I guess you’re right, the chasm between pro- and anti-abortion people is that people who support the right to medical privacy care about human beings, while those who oppose safe and legal abortion only care about protecting clumps of undifferentiated cells.

    A wanted pregnancy is one of the most wonderful things that God in his infinite wisdom has put upon the earth. When a pregnancy is unwanted or doomed, it is the most abominable perversion, and ending it can be nothing but a blessing. I don’t know how you forced-birthers can be sociopathic enough to want to turn something wonderful like pregnancy into a form of torture by forcing it on people unwillingly.

    In the end, if we all have to answer to God, I plan to stand before Him and be able to proudly say that I never tried to enslave a woman, never tried to turn the miracle of life into a perverted kind of punishment, never tried to strip an adult human being of their basic freedom to control their own body. I plan to stand before God without the blood of torture victims on my hands.

    I guess you forced-birthers don’t mind that so much.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Good luck with that.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Context’s a bitch.

    Here’s the bit of that paragraph you quoted which was replaced by an elipsis (emphasis mine):

    all regular hormonal contraceptives such as the birth control pill, the implant Implanon, the vaginal ring NuvaRing, the Evra patch, and the injectable Depo-Provera, and even breastfeeding prevent pregnancy primarily by delaying or inhibiting ovulation and inhibiting fertilization, but may at times inhibit implantation of a fertilized egg in the endometrium. the same time, however,all women should be informed that the best available evidence is that the ability of levonorgestrel and ulipristal acetate ECPs to prevent pregnancy can be fully accounted for by mechanisms that do not involve interference with post-fertilization events

    .

    I assume that HobbyLobby will ask that they be exempt from covering women who ask to see a breastfeeding consultant after giving birth?

    Here’s another paragraph from the same paper:

    studies have shown histologic or biochemical alterations in the endometrium after treatment with the regimen, leading to the conclusion that combined ECPs may act by impairing endometrial receptivity to subsequent implantation of a fertilized egg. However, other more recent studies have found no such effects on the endometrium.

    Unfortunately for your friends at LifeSiteNews, Google Fucking Exists.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    No. It was conclusively proven in 2007 that morning-after pills can not prevent implantation (Not that this would be an abortion). Any OB/GYN who says otherwise is either negligent or lying.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    morning-after pills can not prevent implantation

    That’d make them pretty frickin’ useless, then, considering their stated purpose is to make sure a pregnancy after unprotected vaginal sex doesn’t happen.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    :p They prevent it a few steps before the implantation stage, not inhibit the implantation stage.

    Implantation no longer looks like a word.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    It would if conception happened immediately after vaginal sex. Conception happens hours-to-days after intercourse, and implantation takes place a couple of days after that.

    Emergency contraceptives prevent conception. They do not prevent implantation; it’s too late if conception already occurred. This isn’t news. It isn’t unclear. It isn’t debatable. It’s as close to an absolute fact as medical science gets.

    If you want to stop *implantation*, you can’t do it with a single dose of a drug taken during the critical time window between intercourse and implantation: there’s just not enough time to effect that kind of change to the uterus.

    To prevent implantation after fertilization you need to do something that screws with the whole cycle. Like breastfeeding.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Or at least, it’s too late for Plan B to do anything if fertilization has already occurred. The body itself is prone to foregoing implantation for reasons medical science is still trying to determine (I blame… hm… fraternities), and even if that occurs, around half of all pregnancies will end in miscarriage. So hey, it’s never a certain thing.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    They seem not to realize that they are being asked to pay for healthcare. Not to “offer prescriptions” to their employees. That would be the job of a pharmacy. It is literally no different than the way that they are required by law to give their employees money which they can use to buy things.

  • nursecathy123cat

    You are right. I would actually like to do away with health insurance altogether in favor of tax-exempt healthcare savings accounts. It would bring accountability home to the person who is incurring costs. We need to get rid of the notion that healthcare is free or somehow covered by someone else. But I digress…

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    How will that lead to something other than people not getting the healthcare they need?

    You’re full of shit if you think that real people consume healthcare services frivilously because they don’t experience their real cost.

    I would not have extra colonoscopies if they were free. I wouldn’t even have them if they paid me.

    And if you think that people should say “You know what, it’s not fiscally sound for me to have this lump looked at,” then fuck you.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Wow, Ross, I thought this was a Christian site. But I seem to have struck a nerve. And people most certainly do use healthcare frivolously. Have seen it multiple times. Moms bring kids to the ER for sore throats because it is convenient. Never mind that an ER visit is $300 compared to a pediatrician office visit of $75. Medicaid pays for it, so who cares? If that mom had a certain number of dollars set aside for healthcare, regardless if she earned it or if it were a government supplement program, she would be careful how it was spent, because it is finite. Just like the real world.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Wow, Ross, I thought this was a Christian site.

    It is a blog maintained by a Christian. Not all of the community are.

    And people most certainly do use healthcare frivolously. Have seen it multiple times. Moms bring kids to the ER for sore throats because it is convenient.

    “The problem is that this story of the healthy, cavalier, uninsured E.R. abuser is largely a myth. E.R. use by the uninsured is not wrecking
    health care.”

  • Shayna

    Moms bring kids to the ER for sore throats because it is convenient.

    If by ‘convenient’, you mean the only place open at 10pm on a Tuesday night when Mom gets off from work, then sure. Or maybe ‘convenient’ means the only place they can go because the pediatrician won’t take Medicaid patients. The ER can’t turn them away.

    Our health care system has some serious problems, but blaming those problems on the people who are getting shafted by the system is just low.

  • Baby_Raptor

    The fact that this blog is written by a Christian does not mean that all his readers are Christians. However, your indignation at having words you disapprove of said at you has been noticed.

    Now please join adulthood, where nobody gets upset over “bad” words.

    As to using healthcare “frivolously,” I’d kindly ask you to shut your mouth. You have no idea what circumstances those people are in. You have no right to judge them.

    People end up at the ER for “minor” things when they cannot get to a real doctor or don’t have real insurance. Nobody just goes to an ER for shits and giggles.

    But as long as you get to pretend you’re the bigger, more moral person, that’s all that matters right?

  • nursecathy123cat

    No one gets upset over “bad” words? That is what started this thread! Hate speech–bad words. What we say is a reflection of who we are and how we value the ones to whom we are speaking.
    I actually do have a good idea of what it is like to be poor, both personally and during years of working with people from all economic groups. Many many people need help and should get it. But it still isn’t free.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Hate speech and “bad words” aren’t the same thing at all. I’ll take an open-hearted potty-mouth over a polite bigot any day, thank you.

    And, as our host says, the polite bigots are more dangerous.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    By the way, I am calling you out as being a liar on this. If someone takes her kid to the ER instead of a pediatrician for a non-emergency, it’s because she’s got no insurance and can’t afford to have the kid treated, and the ER has to see her anyway. THe ER isn’t more convenient than going ot see a pediatrician, so no one chooses the ER over a pediatrician if they’ve got a free choice.

  • nursecathy123cat

    If you say so, Ross.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I assure you, we have single-payer in Canada and people don’t go around getting sick for the hell of it.

  • Baby_Raptor

    Cool. So those of us barely making enough money to pay our bills are still screwed.

    I guess this is where you tell me to pull myself up by my bootstraps and get a better job?

    I expected better from a damn *nurse.* You of all people should know exactly how bad people who don’t have healthcare have it.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Read again carefully. I did not say do away with healthcare. I said do away with healthcare insurance. Those insurance companies take a huge share of our healthcare dollars and give back as little as possible. And the “give back” is ironic since it was ours in the first place.
    Instead of insurance, your employer and your government subsidy program (if you qualify for one), and yourself (if you can afford it) deposit money into your healthcare account tax-free. It can be used for only healthcare. I bet you are smart enough to figure out how to spend it wisely. No shopping for a doctor who takes Medicaid. Instead, you can shop for a doctor or other practitioner who gives good care.
    This is not a new concept but the insurance industry has a stranglehold on healthcare and, I think, the media.
    I wish you the best.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    What good is it to have a healthcare account if you don’t have money to put into it? Why not simply implement a system that’s already been shown to work, like single-payer?

  • nursecathy123cat

    Single-payer has its drawbacks, but at this point it might be better than what we have. Unfortunately, it still supports the concept that healthcare is free. And it would be controlled by the government.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    As opposed ot it being controlled how God intended, by employers.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Unfortunately, it still supports the concept that healthcare is free.
    More accurately, what you mean is “It supports the concept that I am in any way obligated to pay to keep you alive and in relative health, which as a good Christian, I feel no obligation whatsoever to do. My money is far more important than my neighbor, just as Jesus intended.”

  • nursecathy123cat

    I meant exactly what I said.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Tommy Douglas, the first person in Canada to get into a position of political power who wanted to develop a single-payer insurance plan, used to be a preacher before he became a politician. X-D

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    And as I just said in IM, I consider single payer to be the most Christian method of health insurance possible, short of declaring money to no longer be a thing and to provide products and services for their own worth.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Here’s my health insurance: No co-pays, I can see any doctor I want, and I never have to worry about bankruptcy.

    All for the low, low, price of like 5 bucks out of my income tax, plus whatever I spend in sales taxes, when I do the math.

    It’s a bargain, all things considered.

  • nursecathy123cat

    That’s a bargain. What type of insurance is it? Wish we all had it.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    It’s called

    *whispers* British Columbia health insurance.

    owned and operated by

    wait for it

    The government of British Columbia

    which runs it as a single payer system.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Sounds wonderful. One question. If your $5 plus sales tax gets you $200 worth of health care, who pays for the rest of it?
    Like I said before, single payer may be better than what we have now but I do wonder about all the Canadians crossing the border for procedures here that they can’t get there in a timely manner. And here, they pay cash for it.
    I suspect that if you are young and healthy, single payer works very well for you. Later on, not so much.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Sounds wonderful. One question. If your $5 plus sales tax gets you $200 worth of health care, who pays for the rest of it?

    From 65 fellow citizens who only need $2 plus sales tax worth of healthcare. That’s how insurance works.

    but I do wonder about all the Canadians crossing the border for
    procedures here that they can’t get there in a timely manner. And here,
    they pay cash for it.

    You wonder about that? Let me put your mind at rest: no one does that except for the canadian ultra-rich.

    The reports of it are a myth made up by conservative politicians to undermine support for a sane form of healthcare.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    The whole wait lists thing is vastly overblown by domestic right-wing politicians and their compatriots in the USA.

    Progressive income taxes partially fund the health care system, so the wealthy pay more in proportion to their income than I do.

    And were I to make that kind of money and pay taxes – fair’s fair.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    I suspect that if you are young and healthy, single payer works very well for you. Later on, not so much.

    You’re wrong. My parents are American expatriates, and could move back to the U.S. if they wanted to (Canada does not force immigrants to renounce their previous citizenship). And they’ve had to have various medical procedures over the years. Like the vast majority of Canadians (according to Wikipedia), they are satisfied with our healthcare.

    Also, some parents and grandparents of friends of mine have had to have more serious medical procedures done, but not one of them has ever said, “Oh, if only I could cross the border for this!”

    For that matter, neither I nor my husband are as young or healthy as we used to be. But we’ve never had to choose between paying rent and seeing a doctor. I’ve been thanking my lucky stars that my folks moved up here before I was born.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Healthcare in Canada (and Britain, and Australia, and many other countries) is “free” and government-controlled in the same way that roads, police, schools, water purification, food inspection, and fire departments are “free” and government-controlled. And for much the same reasons — all these things are necessary for the public good, and it’s been demonstrated that private companies cannot be trusted to do them properly.

    If you have any arguments aside from those about what “drawbacks” single-payer has, I’d like to hear them.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Sorry for the delay getting back to you. I was traveling back home and getting settled.
    One of the best (and I hope most balanced) views of the pros and cons of Canadian healthcare is at http://www.ehow.com/about_pros-cons-canada_s-health-care.html. It seems to corroborate other sources. The main things that bother Canadians are: long waits for non-emergent procedures, tests and treatment; physicians’ earnings are limited, making it difficult for some to repay student loans, cover costs of doing business, and keep pace with the cost of living; and healthcare dollars are distributed by the government based on population. This means some rural citizens must travel long distances to get healthcare.
    So I hasten to add that American healthcare is not in great shape right now but we should be careful before leaping into something else. Whatever happens, I fear Obamacare is going to be a mess. We will just have to see it to believe it.

  • Baby_Raptor

    When the rest of us get the right to refuse to pay for things we’re against, the Christians can have the right to refuse to pay for things they dislike.

    Until then, it’s unfair and unconstitutional, I don’t care how you spin it.

  • arcseconds

    Well, this just goes to show further that Americans are a bunch of ignorant, racist, xenophobic, war-mongering dickheads who will stoop to any kind of sophistry to spout their vile nonsense without taking any responsibility for it. Other countries don’t start wars on dubious pretexts, set up shady pseudo-POW camps to hold people without evidence or think it’s a good thing that people can be shot for being black.

    Oh, by ‘Americans’ I don’t mean ‘all americans’. All I mean is that there’s at least there’s a small number of americans who collectively, on occasion, fulfill the above description. I don’t even mean to say that America starts wars on dubious pretexts. I just mean that there’s at least one other nation, aside the USA, that does not.

    Hey, this is fun! I can engage in all the anti-American rhetoric I like and so long as I phrase it in a way that it sounds like I’m talking about all Americans, but then ‘clarify’ that I’m only talking about ‘some’ (or even none), no-one can call me on it!

    I sure can’t see any problem with these rules!

    (I also get to connect with all my anti-American buddies with plausible deniability! Where are you, Müncher Kindl?)

  • Turcano
  • Caroll

    Would shouting back at hate speech extend to confederate flags that are flying on cars parked at the grocery store, and if so, what would “shouting back” consist of? Would it be displaying symbols of acceptance on my car? Would it be taking a picture of the confederate flag flying car and posting it on Facebook to ridicule it? (Keep in mind this happened in the mid-west, where confederate flags are almost never seen and are universally considered to be a symbol of racism.)

  • dpolicar

    Both of those seem to me like fine examples of shouting back at confederate flags flying on cars at the grocery store.

  • http://wonderwheels.blogspot.com/ Gregory Wonderwheel

    Digging out what’s hidden within the phrase “uncorked animals” would be an essay in itself. Huckabee is just an example of how ridiculous people can be and still get elected. We have to bear in mind that Huckabee and his fundamentalist brothers and sisters see themselves as being at war with evil incarnate. So to them, dehumanizing terminology is not only justified but required. This is the function of their “war propaganda” used against “the enemy”.

    It works like this: “But since propaganda is not and cannot be the necessity in itself, since its function, like the poster, consists in attracting the attention of the crowd, and not in educating those who are already educated or who are striving after education and knowledge, its effect for the most part must be aimed at the emotions and only to a very limited degree at the so-called intellect. All propaganda must be popular and its intellectual level must be adjusted to
    the most limited intelligence among those it is addressed to. Consequently, the
    greater the mass it is intended to reach, the lower its purely intellectual
    level will have to be.” This comes from Chapter 6 “War Propaganda” of Vol. 1 of Mein Kamf. The religious and political fundamentalists use this as their playbook.

  • pete dayton

    Oh wow! Look in the mirror – Clark, Lindsey and esp. Shore are guilty are guilty of their own definition of hate speech, lumping and stereotyping Christians of it. Come on!

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    That’s curious. Shore self-identifies as Christian, Lindsey identifies as a theologian who believes in God and spirituality, and Clark is a Baptist.

  • pete dayton

    That makes it even more puzzling because so does Huckabee!

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Yes, and?

  • Windshr

    How does one wind up here and not know that Fred is a Christian?

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    By assuming that anyone who criticizes Christians can’t possibly be Christian.

  • Veleda_k

    He’s not a Real True Christian.

  • nursecathy123cat

    Of course he should not have compared them to animals. But it is politically incorrect to point out the truth about Islam.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    By “pointing out the truth truth” you mean “conflating everyone who practices Islam with extremists and terrorists.”

  • Windshr

    Sure, if you want to be P.C. (e.g. honest) about it.

  • nursecathy123cat

    I mean the truth that their holy book advocates their killing anybody who isn’t one of them.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    So does the Bible, and yet the vast majority Jews, Christians and Muslims are peaceful.

  • Elvenfoot

    I dunno–he said they come out “like” animals. We say kids act like animals when they act crazy, and nobody gets mad about that. And frankly, when its understood as the figure of speech that it actually is, the man has a point.

    As far as withdrawing moral authority from a group you oppose, I don’t see how you can do that. You can disagree and try to sway people, but you can’t withdraw something you can’t assert for yourself. The other side can do that right back to you. In the end the only side that truly has the moral authority is the side that is God’s, and we still can only argue about which side that is. In the end the side that “wins” is the side that yells loudest and persuades the most people.

  • Veleda_k

    Oh goody, more stupid semantic games. Of course it’s a figure of speech. No one thinks that Huckabee is so divorced from reality that he believes Muslims are actually chickens or some such thing. It’s an insulting, dehumanizing figure of speech. And if the best defense you can come up with is “But we call children that!”, then you have a problem. (He wasn’t dehumanizing them! Just infantalizing them! That’s much better.)

    And, no, he doesn’t have a point. The man is pointless. But we knew that already.

  • Elvenfoot

    Ooh, struck a nerve. Figured I would. So when these people there go worship and then come out and murder and maim and destroy, the figure of speech isn’t accurate and fair? Did you hear about the 10-year-old girl who was murdered after leaving her Bible study? Do you remember 9/11? Do you hear about the many persecutions and other awful things they are guilty of? Of course the figure of speech doesn’t apply to all Muslims or even most of them, but to me the figure of speech is spot on, and he owes no apology. Nor do I. How dare you defend these people for the horrible, horrible things they do and then turn around and villainize someone who condemns them for it!!

  • Veleda_k

    Did you hear about Ku Klux Klan burning crosses on people’s lawns and all their murders? Do you remember when Scott Roeder murdered George Tiller? What about Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in the name of his Christian beliefs? It’s almost as if violence happens regardless of religious affiliation.

    In fact, I find it horrible offensive that you would bring up God in your previous post, when so many people have been tortured and killed in God’s name. How dare you do so! You sicken me, sir/mam! Good day to you!!

  • Winshr

    *Starts slow clap, after a few tense seconds the rest of the gymnasium joins in*

    For real though, what’s even the point of this nonsense? Why would you call an entire group of people animals or cherry pick instances of violence if you didn’t want to denigrate and other them? All this “Well, I call my dog an animal and she seems okay with it,” hand-wringing is painfully transparent.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    And let’s not forget Uganda wanting to make homosexuality punishable by death, or Russia, where the same exists de facto if not de juro

  • Veleda_k

    Oh, I could have gone on, but I decided to stick to the rule of three.

  • Victor

    I must confess that I still have not read the comments here and my only excuse is that after having commented at http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/2013/08/rainbows-may-seem-pretty-but-they-usually-occur-in-the-midst-of-a-storm/ and then after receiving Pan Patheos Digest, there were just too many stories to read and comment on so I decided to see what my old friend Fred Clark had to say concerning “Shouting back at Hate Speech Is a Moral Obligation”. He really is a great writer and until “Anti-gay Christianity claims another life“ even Victor, “I” mean……what the heck, I thought that he had turned a new leaf and that “IT” was all a mistake that he really had an agenda against anyone who truly won’t accept that SS marriage is ok for any human being and those who voice their opposition to “IT” are nothing more than full of hate and bigots and……..
    AND THAT’S ENOUGH sinner vic! YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO BE PUTTING DOWN MY FRIENDS WHO STILL LOVE ME HERE!
    Sorry Victor! “IT” won’t happen again!
    Go Figure folks. :)
    Peace


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