50 Shades of The ‘Gospel Coalition’

Crazy Jane Talks With The Gospel Coalition

I met Thabiti Anyabwile
And much said he and I.
‘Those breasts are flat and fallen now,
Those veins must soon be dry;
Live in a heavenly mansion,
Not in some foul sty.’

‘Fair and foul are near of kin,
And fair needs foul,’ I cried.
‘My friends are gone, but that’s a truth
Nor grave nor bed denied,
Learned in bodily lowliness
And in the heart’s pride.

‘A woman can be proud and stiff
When on love intent;
But Love has pitched his mansion in
The place of excrement;
For nothing can be sole or whole
That has not been rent.’

Apart from the first line, that’s actually “Crazy Jane Talks With the Bishop,” by W.B. Yeats.

“The bishop” in Yeats’ poem felt an almost physical revulsion at the idea of sex or of women or of bodies. He finds all those things icky. And he assumes that anything he finds icky must be wicked.

The Rev. Thabiti Anyabwile. (Photo courtesy of HotCalvinistDirtyTalk.com.)

That same puckered revulsion is the basis of Thabiti Anyabwile’s entire argument against gay people. He imagines what gays and lesbians may do together in private, savoring every lurid detail. And then he suggests that other people’s private acts are somehow more shameful than his public fascination with other people’s private acts.

Reciprocity calls for a response to Anyabwile’s post in which someone describes his sex life in the same kind of detached, contextless graphic detail he attempts in his description of gay sex. Such a description would, of course, prompt an ick-response from anyone who read it (probably including Anyabwile himself, and certainly including Mrs. Anyabwile). It would, at least, if it were as clumsily body-phobic as Anyabwile’s own attempt to write about other people’s sex — which reads like excerpts from the World’s Most Awkward Sexter.

Anyabwile’s third-rate attempt at writing porn isn’t repulsive because of the acts he attempts — and fails — to describe (or to spell).

It’s repulsive because he’s a creepy, creepy, creepy voyeur. Thabiti Anyabwile is a peeper, a trench-coated figure lurking in the hedges outside other people’s windows.

His insistence that he staunchly disapproves of the private behavior he can’t keep himself from ogling only makes him more creepy, not less.

“What they’re doing in there is just wrong,” he mutters, straining to peek between the blinds. “I’ve been watching them from right here in the bushes for months now, and what they’re doing with one another is just disgusting.”

The man needs help. Until he gets it, warn the children to avoid this creepy, creepy man.



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  • histrogeek

    It’s a reminder that traveling porn movies into the 50s and 60s were billed often shown with some disapproving scold telling the men who came to see them about moral corruption of drugs, alcohol, communism, evolution, or whatever. It let the guys have their fun while pretending to everyone else that this was deeply serious moral stuff.

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

    It also reminds me of how “Perversion for Profit” took a very long time displaying all that evil nasty awful porn you totally need to watch out for and keep your kids away from.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    How else can the Righteous Church Ladies get their porn fix and still be Respectable?

  • banancat

    This is pretty much the reason Twilight is so popular now, except that instead of church ladies, it’s middle-class teenage good girls who are expected to be asexual until 25. They can ogle attractive men and their hand-wringing fathers can pretend it’s just about flighty teenage girls loving the angst and drama, because their precious babies would never consider a man physically attractive.

  • Carstonio

    I know of at least one radio show that played sound bites from that film and from “Boys Beware” to laugh at the attitudes. Sort of how “Reefer Madness” was seen as camp after only a generation.

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




  • FearlessSon
  • http://kingdomofsharks.wordpress.com/ D Johnston

    It’s still true within some of these subcultures. Someone pointed that out regarding those safe movie guide websites – someone watches all of these films, even the ones that obviously weren’t going to get an okay. It’s possible that these people are the only ones in their local groups that will ever see any of this stuff. Hell of a privilege, isn’t it?

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    …And amazingly, those people generally DON’T become Satan-abusing, baby-snorting drug-worshippers. I guess they’re just made of superior stuff to us mere proles….

  • Baby_Raptor

    His descriptions were *so* not graphic. I wanted to offer truly graphic ones in the comments, but I doubt that would have gone over well.

  • http://kingdomofsharks.wordpress.com/ D Johnston

    That, and none of them are gay exclusive. He described (in the most opaque terms possible) the following acts: anal intercourse, fellatio, cunnilingus, consensual frottage, the use of sex toys. Aside from frottage (which is analogous to intercrurial sex), all of these are things that hetero couples can and do perform.

    If he really thinks he can gross people into turning against gay marriage, he’s going to have to get a lot more creative (and possibly subscribe to some special interest websites).

  • Lunch Meat

    Oh, please do.

  • Baby_Raptor

    The problem with that is, I’m a vagina owner, so my “icky sex” experience is lesbian, where he seemed to really only be freaking out about male-on-male sex. I don’t think describing two women having sex would gross his male readers out anywhere near as much as he wants it to…

  • Abby Normal

    Does this guy not know that the average heterosexual couple having sex looks much ickier in real life than the average movie sex scene (I.e.: attractive body parts filmed through a blue filter over a Kenny G soundtrack)?

  • AnonaMiss

    It is physically impossible for anyone doing anything to become less icky with a Kenny G soundtrack.

  • http://kingdomofsharks.wordpress.com/ D Johnston

    True, but Kenny G can sure make anything more bland.

  • Oswald Carnes

    He’s the anti-spice.

  • Alix

    …now I’m picturing the Old Spice Guy and his mirror universe counterpart.

  • themunck

    “Liberal lobbyists”. “A french scientist”. Seriously, mate. Use names, or at least give me some indication of why you’re not.

  • FearlessSon

    Maybe he uses those as archetypes in sexual roleplay?

    “Okay, I’ll be the liberal lobbyist, and you go get changed into the French scientist outfit.”

    For someone like him, I can think of fewer things with such dirty appeal.

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

    “Okay, I’ll be the liberal lobbyist, and you go get changed into the French scientist outfit.”

    Take me now.

  • AnonaMiss

    You’re a French scientist. You need to do ze accent.

  • auroramere

    French. Scientist. Outfit.
    Short black cutaway lab coat edged in stiff white lace, white camisole, black goggles, and white bloomers under a pair of black cargo shorts (for equipment).

  • phranckeaufile

    Shut up and take my money!

  • Julie

    Maybe he’s not really interested in the sexual activities of others so much as he’s using his imagination to have a bit of a fantasy in the only way that is not proscribed by his personal worldview.

  • Oswald Carnes

    This reminds me of the time a grocery store cashier asked me if I wanted my toilet paper in a bag separate from the food I was buying, even though I didn’t really have enough stuff to warrant two bags. I said no, why would I? and she told me that some people get really icked out by having their newly purchased and wrapped toilet paper in the same bag as their newly purchased and wrapped food. I thought then what I’m thinking now: some people have really deep problems that I am happy not to have.

  • http://kingdomofsharks.wordpress.com/ D Johnston

    I’ve known a few people who refuse to handle toilet paper outside of a bathroom because they consider it “dirty.” On the other hand, I’ve lived in places where they sell toilet paper on the street, as though it were snack food or fake watches.

    It’s a funny world, and we’re a funny species.

  • Carstonio

    To be fair, I know people who believe that flushing results in spraying of contaminated water onto other surfaces of the bathroom.

  • wowed
  • MarkTemporis

    On the other hand, like a whole lot of other gross stuff, it didn’t hurt you before you knew about it, did it?

  • Oswald Carnes

    My mother refused to write the words “toilet paper” on her shopping lists. It was always “T.T.” for toilet tissue.

  • Panda Rosa

    Ever notice how it’s always called “bathroom tissue” in the commercials? To this day I still can give myself the giggles by repeating the one catch-phrase, “It doesn’t feel like (stage whisper) TOILET PAPER!”
    Anybody here miss Mr. Whipple?

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    I miss Cornholio.
    (Which is the first thing I think of when I see the words “Bath Tissue”…)

  • myeck waters

    When those ads were running, I thought “Mr. Whipple” was a euphemism for…something or other.

  • Jamoche

    I saw a commercial a couple of days ago that called it “bog paper”. I’m in the United States, and this wasn’t on BBCAmerica or any other channel where they might expect viewers to get it. They had British accents but it was one of the US brands.

  • dr ngo

    At my college football games, bored spectators could (and did) launch rolls of toilet paper from the higher seats to the lower ones, and the track if they could reach it, unrolling as it went (much like “TP”ing a house or tree, as performed by fraternity boys). The administration objected, of course. The cheerleaders, who provoked and encouraged such actions, responded by averring that by becoming a festive article, rather than one defined by the bathroom, “TP” had become “YP”: Yell Paper.

    (IIRC that was the year that our head cheerleader was Terry Gilliam, later of Monty Python fame.)

  • Angelia Sparrow

    Only reason to do that is if you have frozen food that might melt a little. (TP is not always wrapped tightly) But frozen should be bagged separately anyway.

  • G.G.

    Between growing up on a farm and working as an EMT, there isn’t much that can get to me, I’m glad I don’t go though life with the delicate victorian sensibilities so many people seem to have.

  • http://www.lambpower.com/ Steve Dawson

    Spending 2 weeks in ICU after major surgery will also strip you of any modest pretenses that you might have had. In one way or another it all gets displayed.

  • Jenny Islander

    I have with my own eyeballs seen signed comments from people who want breastfeeding mothers to hide in the place where other people defecate because in their opinion breastfeeding is a form of excretion of waste. Others insist that breastfeeding is a sexual display, so any woman whose baby will not stay tamely under a large blanket while eating must not take her baby out unweaned. And then there are the people who think that breastfeeding beyond (put arbitrary age here) is an act of private sexual gratification–child sexual abuse!

    As I said to one of them, “Massaging your neurosis is not my responsibility.”

    Yes, some people have really deep problems that I am happy not to have.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    in their opinion breastfeeding is a form of excretion of waste

    Huh. No. Know what is, though? Exhaling.

    “Please hold your breath for the duration of your stay.”

  • Baby_Raptor

    I have my personal issues with breastfeeding, but…Excretion of waste? Into a baby’s mouth?

    That said, I really don’t understand why women throw such a fit about being asked to keep a blanket over the baby and their chest. And the majority of the responses I get to this come down to “Because I said so.”

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    My son would stop eating if I put a blanket over his head while eating when he was a baby. I wasn’t about to play dominance games along the lines of “you’ll eat because I say so, young man! I don’t care if you’re unhappy with the blanket!” with my baby when he was only a few months old. I also had trouble letting down for a pump, so I couldn’t use a bottle.

  • Jenny Islander

    My oldest baby thought her lightweight nursing cover (a hemmed flannel sheet) was the most awesome toy ever. Flippity flappity flash! :D

  • Katie

    Several reasons. A) A lot of babies really, really don’t like to be covered up while nursing. B) Most women find that the easiest way to nurse is to lift up their shirt, and the shirt and the baby’s head keeps anything except perhaps a bit of their side from being visible, except for perhaps during the approximately 30 seconds it takes the baby to latch on. C) It takes a lot longer to get a baby to latch on under a blanket. D) Since people don’t normally hold babies under a blanket, doing so serves only to call attention to the fact that nursing is going on.* E) It isn’t unusual for nursing mothers to stop thinking of their breasts (at least when being used in a baby feeding context) as sexual.

    *Anecdata-I have nursed 4 children (one is still currently nursing) and the ONE time I’ve gotten shit about it was with my oldest, when I was sitting on a bench at a grocery store, him and my chest totally under a blanket.

  • Jenny Islander

    Even easier, if climate and figure are suitable: Wear a low-necked shirt or a shirt that closes with snaps or large buttons (to operate one-handed) over a tank with a built-in shelf bra. Move aside shirt, pull down top of tank on one side while moving kid into position, latch on kid, move shirt strategically to hide any slippage, and chances are nobody will notice.

  • Alix

    …And from my perspective, I fail to see why breasts need covering up. XD But I also think the same thing about genitals, too, so I’m probably on the fringe here.

  • Panda Rosa

    Well, male genitals would be prone to mosquito bites and sunburn, which would not be much fun.

  • Alix

    Oh, sure, there are practical uses for clothing. I’m fond of wearing clothes all over when going outside, for example, for the weather rarely cooperates with me and I sunburn like whoa.

    I just don’t see why we consider that some body parts need to be hidden by default, though. (I mean, I understand the sociocultural forces behind clothing. But it’s cultural, not strictly logical.)

  • Panda Rosa

    Trust me, there’s some bodies you really don’t want to see. Proof: just go down to your neighborhood Walmart and look at the various people shopping there. Now imagine them, all of them, NAKED.

  • Alix

    Ha, I doubt anybody really wants to see me naked, either. XD

    But on a more serious note, I’m not sure aesthetics is really a good reason. That’s uncomfortably close to the thought process that wants me to stay indoors at all time, because I’m fat and “nobody wants to see that shit.”

  • Panda Rosa

    We’re two of a kind, then.

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

    I’m very thin and I think my body is disgusting — because I’m very thin. I’d trade you for some substance.

  • Alix

    I’m actually reasonably comfortable with my body type, though I have some other issues with my body. (Mostly of the “wait, that’s my body?” type.) It’s hard, though, when everybody acts like there’s something objectively wrong with how I look.

    It makes me want to kick people.

    (Most frustrating? The people who think that seeing a fat person exercise is especially disgusting – but then feel free to rag on fat people for not working out 24/7 until the fat’s all gone.)

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

    I actually prefer a little plush on people. I hate looking like I’m anorexic, especially when I don’t even remotely eat like that — I’ll easily chow through 3000 or more calories on an average day, but my weight never fluctuates by more than 5 pounds. I’d happily take on another hundred pounds if I could, but it’s probably as hard for me to gain wait as it is for someone to lose it, and there is no healthy way of hurrying along the process…

  • Alix

    After I hit my current weight, I never fluctuate much either. Given that my grandma has the exact same body type, and we both eat very healthy and exercise (family history of diabetes and other things makes us especially health-conscious), I’m pretty firmly in the camp that this is genetic. (It seems like most people have a natural set point, actually.)

    I was really skinny until I went to college. I wore the same clothes through high school that I owned in 5th/6th grade – but for various reasons (i.e. my asshole of a father, coupled with sheer absentmindedness) I didn’t eat much.

    When I did start making sure I ate right, I gained weight rapidly until I hit my current weight and stabilized. It was … quite an adjustment. XD Fortunately, it was coupled with such a feeling of well-being that I was honestly happier fat – I had energy! I was stronger! I had more stamina! I wasn’t always sleepy and brain-fogged!

    So I basically think people insisting folks need to fit into some narrow range to be healthy are full of crap. XD

    (As for attractiveness, for me, I tend to find bodies in general fun to look at, especially when in motion. People sitting really still, esp. if they’re staring, kind of freak me out, though.)

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

    You can have all my extra.

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

    (Most frustrating? The people who think that seeing a fat person
    exercise is especially disgusting – but then feel free to rag on fat
    people for not working out 24/7 until the fat’s all gone.)

    Oh yes. So much this.

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

    In all honesty, I find the sight of really obese people (I mean +300 lbs.) to be highly unpleasant. My solution? I don’t ogle them. Problem solved.

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

    Life drawing classes are a great way to get over the “OMG people who aren’t models/actors are naked!” thing.

  • anonym

    a guy at my husband’s office had an unfortunate…accident when walking out of his bathroom naked. Cats like *any and all* dangly things.

  • Jen K

    In some cases it’s about support and comfort more than covering.

  • Alix

    Very true! Which falls under what I was talking about elsewhere, about clothing often serving practical purposes, and that, to my mind, being a legitimate reason for clothes. (Not the only one, though – style and pleasure are also legit.)

    I mean more the idea that these parts must be covered because they’re breasts, whatever, as if there’s something particularly naughty about them.

  • banancat

    I have OCD so I can almost see that, but even I don’t have that specific issue so it seems pretty extreme. We humans have been known to act disgusted by things that we logically know are safe, such as a sterilized cockroach put into a drink or fudge shaped like poop, but unused toilet paper is pretty innocuous.

  • Baby_Raptor

    That…makes no sense. It’s clean toilet paper, and wrapped, and the food is wrapped, and…Wat.

  • dpolicar

    My favorite demonstration of this sort of thing is: take a clean glass. Spit into it. Drink the saliva.

    A sensible species would have no problem with this… after all, it just came out of my mouth!

    Many people just can’t bring themselves to do it.

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

    To be fair, some of us have things in our saliva that we don’t necessarily want back in our bodies — that would defeat the purpose of having ejected it.

  • Carstonio

    His insistence that he staunchly disapproves of the private behavior he can’t keep himself from ogling only makes him more creepy, not less.

    That tactic has been used for decades by writers of “exposé” books. There was one in the 1950s that had lurid stories of politicians and bureaucrats in D.C. seeking teenage boys as lovers. I had assumed that most readers were either closeted gays or people who wanted to feel self-righteous.

    I’ve been skeptical of the claim that most homophobes are self-hating gays, because it sounds like an attempt at a moral victory over persecutors. But that inference sounds more reasonable for “professional” homophobes like Anyabwile, the ones who are in front of audiences all the time pounding away.

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

    Given the recent revelations of people like George “family wrecker” Rekers, Larry “wide stance” Craig, and on and on and on, I’m going to say anyone who gets that actively involved in QUILTBAG-phobic activities…? Yeah, they’re totally hiding something.

  • Carstonio

    Sure, but my point is that the ordinary homophobe’s motivation is probably different from someone who makes a career of publicly denouncing homosexuality, like Rekers or Craig.

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

    The point is, the louder any homophobe doth protest too much, the louder they’re shouting that they’re actually closeted.

  • Carstonio

    That’s why I suspect a different motive for homophobes who don’t protest at all. Or for those whose protesting amounts to, say, momentary grumbling whenever they channel-surf and see Ellen DeGeneres.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    In Eighties Christianese, the name was “Ellen Degenerate”.

  • The_L1985

    My father still says “Gross” when a commercial comes on that has Ellen in it.

    My response is, “I don’t see her doing anything nasty in this commercial at all.” :)

  • christopher_y

    I wouldn’t see anything nasty if it was a film of her having sex with her wife either, mind you. Although I’m not anxious to see that, I wouldn’t classify it as “nasty”.

  • MarkTemporis

    Courtesy Rush Limbaugh, IIRC. And, according to Ellen, some classmates when she was in third grade.

  • http://thatbeerguy.blogspot.com Chris Doggett

    I’ve argued here and elsewhere that homophobes often engage in a form of projection. They imagine homosexuals (gay men, usually) view and treat the objects of their sexual attentions the same way that the homophobe views and treats women, and the homophobe fears being viewed and treated the way they view and treat women.

    The “gay people can’t shower with straight people” argument is a good example. These men are deeply uncomfortable with the idea of someone ogling at them the way they ogle women. Professional homophobes simply package and sell this projection.

  • Carstonio

    Yes, and that type of projection is distinct from the self-hate of a Craig or a Rekers, although it’s possible that many homophobes have both. The projection is really about gender hierarchy.

  • dr ngo

    “Pounding away” in front of an audience? Geez, now I’m creeped out.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    I’ve been skeptical of the claim that most homophobes are self-hating gays, because it sounds like an attempt at a moral victory over persecutors. But that inference sounds more reasonable for “professional” homophobes like Anyabwile, the ones who are in front of audiences all the time pounding away.
    That sounds more like someone trying to self-treat in secret, with a side of “I have X Problem, so All of You MUST have the same X Problem.” Compounded with Christianese Celebrity Syndrome — the Mighty Christian CELEBRITY Culture Warrior or CELEBRITY Gigachurch Pastor/Author cannot be seen to have any flaw whatsoever. Absolute Perfection as a minimum. So they self-treat in secret, yelling their affirmations to themselves in public.
    Like CELEBRITY Evangelist (and recovering alcoholic) Billy Sunday a century ago, whose Gospel had little mention of Christ but a lot of Denouncing Demon Rum.
    Like CELEBRITY talk-radio mouth Rush Limbaugh, Number-One Fanboy of the War on Drugs while trying to kick a secret Oxycontin addiction.
    Like CELEBRITY Preacher Ted Haggard, who denounced Homosexuals from the pulpit until he got caught with a male prostie.

  • Carstonio

    That’s what I meant by self-hating. It’s been suggested that many closeted gays who entered the priesthood or military a generation ago were trying to cure themselves.

  • JP

    As a queer person myself, I feel deeply uncomfortable with the assumptions and allegations on the part of straight allies that vocal homophobes *must* be closeted queers themselves. Please understand the implications of that assertion. It means there aren’t really any straight people who hate us that much. It means queers are the only people who are truly persecuting queers.

    Believe me – that’s not the case. There are *plenty* of straight people who have all sorts of reasons to loathe us. There are some in my family. I haven’t spoken to my parents in years because of their hatred of what and who I am, and their views aren’t substantially different than Anyabwile’s. (I’ll add that no one seems to believe that transphobes are actually closeted trans* people, so I’m not sure what the disconnect is.)

    The upshot is, as intuitive as it may feel to believe that only someone who experiences same-sex attraction could be that obsessed with it, that belief makes a lot of us in the LGBTQ community feel even worse than we already do. Partly because it makes us seem like we’re devouring our own, and partly because we know from experience that it simply isn’t true.

  • Carstonio

    From my reading, no one here is assuming that vocal homophobes “must” be self-hating gays. My own point was not about merely vocal ones but people who make a career out of denouncing gays. There have been so many examples of professional homophobes who have turned out to be gay, like Craig and Haggard and Rekers, that this motivation deserves serious consideration. I agree that we shouldn’t automatically assume it – Maggie Gallagher’s motivation is quite different yet equally personal.

    For Gallagher, gay people are the enemy only insofar as their desire to marry is yet another attack on Marriage: Like no-fault divorce, the welfare state and the normalization of single parenting, same-sex marriage challenges the idea that every child should be with its biological mother and father.

    I’ve said many times that people like Gallagher are mistaken about the latter. They’re wrongly assuming that people get married specifically to have children, or that same-sex couples will automatically pursue parenthood upon marrying – something we can’t assume even for opposite-sex couples. I don’t know how many same-sex couples adopt or have outside biological assistance, but i doubt that the percentage is as high as for opposite-sex couples who become parents. NOM comes close to suggesting that same-sex marriage leads to straight parents turning gay and abandoning their families.

  • dpolicar

    NOM comes close to suggesting that same-sex marriage leads to straight parents turning gay and abandoning their families

    Not just same-sex marriage; the argument is typically that the general cultural acceptability of queer folk has this effect.

    Because, y’know, if queer life isn’t constantly punished then fewer people will choose to live a straight life, and the important thing is that everyone either choose to live a straight life or be destroyed.

  • JP

    Carstonio, I’ve posted various versions of my remarks above on multiple conversations surrounding the Gospel Coalition piece, not just here, because I’ve seen people say over and over again that, “Oh, Anyabwile must be gay.” And I don’t think people who say it understand what that sounds like to many queer folks. It sounds like they’re saying straight people aren’t capable of that level of hatred. And not only is that untrue, it’s another example of the avoidance of responsibility I too often see from people who do not identify as queer, even those who may identify as LGBTQ allies. (For what it’s worth, I sometimes hear the same allegations from within the queer community, and it makes me cringe just as much. We *all* need to think through our rhetoric and consider the implications of it, lest we end up shooting ourselves in the collective foot.)

    I’m not sure, either, that it’s better to target “people who make a career out of denouncing gays” than vocal homophobes in general as likely to be gay themselves. I understand that there have been high-profile cases where such denouncers turned out to experience same- sex attraction (whether they identify as gay or not is a different story). But we remember those instances because they’re the exception, rather than the rule.

    They’re also something to be mourned. People who turn their gnawing, internalized self-hatred outwards as well as inwards are casualties of homophobic stigma just as surely as any other queer person suffering oppression. That stuff doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It’s part and parcel of living in a queerphobic society; the messages we receive from a very early age shape us, regardless of identity or orientation, and often against our will. If Pastor Anyabwile, or anyone else serving as a mouthpiece for the kind of hateful filth he’s expressed, does turn out to be gay, then I will mourn for him. Because no one who hasn’t experienced the level of stigma it takes to inculcate that kind of self-hatred could begin to understand the kind of hell he’s been living in his whole life.

  • Carstonio

    “It sounds like they’re saying straight people aren’t capable of that level of hatred.” And I would strongly disagree with that characterization of straights. My point is that a high level of hatred might require a deeply personal issue, sort of like the last juror in “12 Angry Men.”

    And yes, people like Ted Haggard are ultimately sad cases because of their self-loathing. I might be more sympathetic if they hadn’t made it their life’s work to drag others into their personal hells. They’ve actually encouraged other LGBT folks to loathe themselves. I would like to see Haggard and others make amends by speaking for marriage equality.

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

    I’d go further and say it’s not those who make it a career per se, it’s the ones who seem obsessed over certain aspects of it, suggesting that they constantly think about it and it drives many of their decisions.

  • Guest

    Taking a step back from the argument at hand:

    May I suggest that when someone says “Hi! As a member of the minority group you ostensibly seek to support and help with this discussion, I need to tell you that when you make X rhetoric gambit, I find that hurtful to me as a member of this group”…

    Other participants please consider

    1. NOT doubling down on X rhetorical gambit or defending the gambit as not hurtful (thus denying the experience that someone just shared with you, from one human being to another, right here)…


    2. Replying with something along the lines of: “I didn’t realize X rhetorical gambit could be hurtful that way. I’m sorry that my use of X rhetorical gambit hurt you. I’ll remember that X rhetorical gambit might hurt people and consider that from now on to guide my decision whether or not to bring it up.”

    (Assuming, of course, that you regret causing harm to the very people you ostensibly mean to support and help in this discussion and would like to avoid hurting those people in the future– i.e., that you mean it.)

  • Carstonio

    I agree in principle, and you would have an excellent point if in fact I was making X rhetorical gambit. I was instead criticizing that gambit and making gambit Y instead. JP mistook my gambit for X, for understandable reasons. When I attempted to clarify the distinction, JP still argued as if I were making gambit X. That could be my fault for not making Y clear enough, and I apologize. I was confused because I don’t remember any other Slacktivites arguing for X either. I’m reminded of how some atheists wrongly assume that all religious people are fundamentalists.

  • dpolicar

    For my own part, I’m fond of the meme that homophobes and other soi-disant crusaders for sexual purity are queer and closeted… not necessarily gay, but experiencing some departure from what they think of as “normal” sexuality that they’re ashamed of, and projecting their rejection of their own sexuality onto the rest of the world.

    That said, I certainly agree that it’s not universally true.

    Mostly, I like the meme because it’s really effective at subverting the prevailing “I’ll condemn you to ensure that I am beyond reproach” meme. I endorse establishing the convention that obsessively condemning others’ lifestyles invites skeptical scrutiny of one’s own.

    But I do see your point about “devouring our own.”

  • JP

    I agree that obsessive and public condemnation invites
    scrutiny. But why assume that queerness must be at the root of it? Of all the scandals I can recall involving religious figures prone to homophobic rants- and believe me, I can recall a fair few- I remember far more incidents of heterosexual indiscretions, and occasionally pedophilia. As I said above in my reply to Carstonio, we remember the queer indiscretions because they’re unusual and ironic, not because they’re ubiquitous. And beyond that, it just doesn’t give me any satisfaction to see a high-profile homophobe caught in one. It makes me deeply sad and painfully reflective. I don’t know, the further I get from 40, the harder it is for me to engage in meaningful schadenfreude. (Cue “September Song” playing in the background…)

  • dpolicar

    Late August mornings still can make me feel that way.

    > why assume that queerness must be at the root of it?

    Obsessive and public condemnation of queer sexuality invites skeptical scrutiny of the condemner’s own sexuality. Obsessive and public condemnation of tax fraud invites skeptical scrutiny of the condemner’s own taxes. Etc.

    And, sure, high-profile queer folk getting caught in sexual scandals makes me uncomfortable too, as do analogous stereotype-reinforcing events for any of my tribes (Jews getting caught in shady financial dealings, tech nerds going nuts and killing people, etc.).

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

    When there is a sizable body of anecdotal evidence that shows that the men in anti-QUILTBAG movements have a long and storied history of seeking out same-sex sexual contact…

    I’ll goddamn well call a spade a spade.

    And I’m a QUILTBAG person, too, PS.

  • Vermic

    Anyabwile is that guy in the joke who calls his wife over and says, “Look at that shameless neighbor of ours, strutting around the house naked! It’s disgraceful!” And his wife peers out the window and says “I don’t see anything.” And the husband says “Well, of course you can’t see anything, you’re not using these binoculars!”

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

    Kind of reminds me of how some people are all like EW GAY PEOPLE BUTTSEX.

    And then they turn around and have anal sex with their girlfriend, and offer up all kinds of rationalizations for why their particular version of it is special and non-icky.

  • Lectorel

    People like that make me want to sit them down with a powerpoint of
    descriptions of heterosexual sex, from the PoV of an Ace who finds sex
    disgusting. See how they like it.

  • banancat

    Even for the many of us who have no interest in anal, it’s fairly common to have sex during menstruation. I mean, it’s completely subjective and I don’t think putting your dick in blood is quite as gross as putting it in a butt, but it’s still kinda icky just like the rest of hetero sex, or any sex, including masturbation.

  • Jen K

    Or, y’know, Hannelore from Questionable Content.


  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    According to the online Dictionary of Urban Slang, oral/anal sex to preserve technical virginity is called “The Christian Side Hug”.

  • The_L1985

    I’ve heard it called “saddlebacking.”

    But the “Christian Side Hug” did not originate as an anal sex term… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sa0EtdtPi8w

  • FearlessSon

    Ah, the loophole. (NSFW)

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I’ve heard homophobic rants which claim that no straight people actually like anal, but rather they have been duped into doing it by the Evil Gay Agenda in order to trick them into either inuring them to the idea of anal sex (so that they will not have the knee-jerk homomphobia the ranter claims to be good and natural), or as a gateway drug to turning them gay, depending on what flavor of homophobic rant it is.

  • Lori

    I read a book once were a women is scandalized by the fact that her neighbor is walking around in his kitchen naked. She gets all a-twitter and hunts around for his phone number so she can call him and tell him how scandalous his behavior is and blah, blah, pearl-clutch, blah. When she finally gets him on the phone the guy takes the wind right out of her sails by pointing out that the only place from which his kitchen nakedness was visible was her kitchen window and all she needed to do to protect her delicate sensibilities was close her curtains instead of standing there staring at him while fumbling for the phone.

  • Shay Guy

    “Look at that disgusting display.”
    “Yes, sir!”

  • Patter

    Dude reminds me of Lenny Bruce interview in the New Yorker:

    “Bruce described a courtroom scene (and plugged in his own form of bleeping):

    ‘And then I dug something: they sort of liked saying blah-blah-blah. Even the bailiff:

    The Bailiff: What’d he say?
    The Judge : He said blah-blah-blah.
    Lenny Bruce: They were yelling it in the courtroom!
    Everyone: Goddamn, it’s good to say blah-blah-blah!'”

  • Panda Rosa

    Of course there is the famed quote regarding the famed Samuel Johnson, who had written The Dictionary Of The English Language; he was approached by two proper elderly ladies who wanted thank him “for leaving all those vulgar, filthy words out of your excellent book.”
    “Ah,” the great man must have replied with a smile, “then you must have been looking for them!”

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

    Completely off topic: Anyone planning on going to NebrasKon by any chance?

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

    Let us take a moment for some levity. Online, I found a picture of a cat named Kirk Cameron. Note the prayer-like posture he takes when sleeping. :P

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

    That’s precious. Slacktivist community needs moar kittehs.

  • FearlessSon

    This reminds me of some evolutionary psychology bullshit some homophobes use called “The Wisdom of Repugnance.” The basic gist is that revulsion serves an evolutionary function, warding us away from say, playing with spiders or eating feces. We find those things disgusting and do not do them, and we are spared some danger by doing so. It follows then that if someone finds something repugnant, they must have some sound evolutionary reason for that repugnance. Therefor, if someone finds gay sex disgusting, there must be something dangerous and wrong about gay sex.

    Of course it is a load of tripe, falling to the correlation equals causality fallacy, along with the subjectivity of repugnance itself, and the appeal to nature fallacy.

  • Alix

    Evo psych drives me batty. I don’t know that I’ve ever run across any evo psych stuff that actually accounts for culture.

  • FearlessSon

    Most of the people who promote it are just looking for rationalizations anyway. Like the “I’m a man, I can’t help being a douchebag to women,” types.

  • Susan_G1

    How, essentially, are Anyabwile and Mark Driscoll different, except one says “yuck” and the other says “yummm.”