Showing posts with label Coming Out. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Coming Out. Show all posts

Friday, January 21, 2011

Catholic Church Unveils 12-Step Program for Homosexual Addiction and So Much More

     It was really only a matter of time.  When I was a priest/seminarian, I was formed to believe that my (homo)sexuality was an addiction and prescribed so many "more natural" ways to "deal with" my "depraved" nature that was a "gift" from a loving god.

     The Catholic Diocese in Colorado Springs has adopted a 12-step program that offers "support" for homosexuals.  Despite striking similarities to Alcoholics Anonymous's 12-step program for recovering addicts, proponents claim that the program is less about therapy than it is about support for people experiencing homosexual thoughts that they consider "a burden."
     Sure it is.  And it has nothing to do with a closeted clergy projecting their own crap onto the rest of the world.

     Here are the actual Twelve Steps as reported in The Huffington Post via The Gazette (and my comments):

      1. We admitted that we were powerless over homosexuality and our lives had become unmanageable.

     When I was parked at the edge of a frozen river with the plan of driving on the ice until it broke and I died, I admitted that I was powerless against Catholicism.

     2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

     So, I guess, those of us who are out of the closet are obviously insane.  

     3.  We made a decision to turn our will and our lives to the care of God as we understood Him.

    Clarification: as Holy Disfunctional Mother church taught us to understand "Him" [sic].

     4.  We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

     As a gay Catholic, my greatest was going to hell because god made me gay.  

     5. We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

     Exact nature?  According to Catholic teachings, their god makes people gay.  How can one's exact god-given nature be wrong?  Unless your god's a vindictive ass hole.

     6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of our character.


     7. We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.

     Pray away the gay.  And you'll soon discover that nothing fails like prayer.

     8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make direct amends to them all.

     Someone, who claims to have been injured by someone else's homosexuality, is the person who needs to be making amends for their bigotry.

     9. We made the direct amends to such people whenever possible except when to do so would injure them or others.

     I'm still waiting for Father Mustache and those who covered his tracks to apologize.  But maybe their apology would hurt me too much.

     10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

     Yes, just as Pope Benedict XVI, the Slapping Pope, has promptly admitted his wrongdoings in the sexual abuse scandals.

     11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for the knowledge of God's Will for us and the power to carry it out.

     "Conscious contact"?  I guess that is in opposition to the unconscious contact that being gay implies.  

     12. Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to others and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

     So I guess that makes Rev. Larry Brennan, diocesan director of priest formation, who defended this program to the paper a liar, for The Gazette quoted him: “It’s not about therapy and not about activism.”  Yes, and the Catholic money, DVDs, and pamphlets that support the suppression of gay rights is totally not about activism either.

     And for those of you who just can't stop harping about the penile focus of the Catholic Church , don't worry.  The Gazette reports:
     A 12-step program for lesbians may also be created if there is demand for it, Brennan said.
    Fight on, my feminist lesbian sisters! 

Friday, December 31, 2010

Dan Savage on Sex, Religion, Bullying & His Catholic Seminary Experience

     If you don't have time for the whole interview, the first four minutes covers Savage's Catholic seminary experience, his moving beyond the beliefs and shame of that faith, and an incredibly honest priest (there are some) that surprised him when he came out.  Also, around minute twenty the conversation again turns to religion, including biblical violence against homosexuals.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Closeted Crist & Out Ashburn on Homo-Mehlman & Same Sex Marriage Bans


     In the wake of former RNC chairman Ken Mehlman's coming out party, other gay Republican politicians are making their voices heard.  Of course, there's quite a disparity between those in and out of the closet.  (Those of you who watch the fair and balanced news rhetoric on FOX wouldn't know anything about this story.)


     Outgoing California State Senator Roy Ashburn, who came out only after getting caught with a boy-toy in a government-owned vehicle after getting wasted at a gay bar (MWM. GOP. DWI. LGBT. OMG.), said the following to On Top Magazine in response Mehlman's post-anti-gay-Republican-career coming out party:
     “I'm pleased for him,” Ashburn said, “because knowing what I've been through in trying to keep a secret for so many years and in trying to hide my secret, doing things that were hurtful to gay people, coming to the realization that you can actually admit who you truly are, and to stop the hiding and the actions around that which are hurtful … I mean that's a big breakthrough and I'm happy for him.”
     Then Roy took it one step further:
     “I would argue that the Republican party, because of the principles underlying Republicanism, really is the party that should be championing equal rights for gay people, for all people." 
     Roy, I'm not holding my breathalyser.  There are still more self-hating closeted Republican politicians in office and positions of power far greater than outgoing state senator that are doing far greater harm than which you and a handful of other openly gay Republicans could ever atone.

Image from Wonkette
     For example, take Florida Governor and U.S. Senate candidate Charlie Crist.  Here's what this well-groomed governor had to say to Ed Henry on CNN's State of the Union:
ED HENRY, HOST: You have previously said in your gubernatorial campaign, you supported a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Now that you're trying to occupy the political center, are you still in favor of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage?
CRIST: I feel the same way, yes, because I feel that marriage is a sacred institution, if you will. But I do believe in tolerance. I'm a live and let live kind of guy, and while I feel that way about marriage, I think if partners want to have the opportunity to live together, I don't have a problem with that...
HENRY: But governor, doesn't it sounds like you having it both ways [Jesus Crist!] by saying live and let live, but I also support a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. If it's live and let live, why would you ban same-sex marriage?
CRIST: Well, everything is in a matter of degree, Ed, and when it becomes to the institution of marriage, I believe that it is between a man and a woman, it's just how I feel.
     Sorry, Charlie, but our constitution isn't based upon feelings.  Courts rule on findings of fact and conclusions of law, not on how one group feels the rest of the country feels or should feel.

     Perhaps, Charlie the Crist, needs to brush up on his civics, by reading the federal court's decision that California Proposition 8 was unconstitutional.  In it, he would find the eighty findings of fact and additional conclusions of law that form the spine of the court's ruling, not feelings.

     On the other hand, David Blankenhorn and Kenneth Miller, the only two witness produced by the Yes on 8 proponents, gave testimony that did not hold up in court.  The Yes on 8 proponents did such a miserable job that the court found "the opinions of Blankenhorn to be unreliable and entitled to essentially no weight in court" and Miller's to be "entitled to little weight."

     Those of us fighting for marriage equality are thankful that the federal court's decision was not based upon an opinion-poll-election and political commercials overflowing with false witness, but was instead based upon the facts and testimony of the plaintiff's seventeen witnesses.

     Basing rules and laws on opinions and feelings might work in church, but they don't hold up in a court of law.

     Charlie Crist is a disgrace to the gay community.  It's time he follows Mehlman and Ashburn's lead by forsaking his homophobic, bigoted feelings.  Come out, for Crist's sake!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Ken Mehlman Outs How Republicans Used Hatred of Gays to Get Bush Reelected

     Ken Mehlman, former manager of the Bush/Cheney 2004 campaign and former chairman of the Republican National Committee in 2006, has come out of the closet.  This is no big news.

     What's so tragic about Mehlman's news is that while he was in a position of Republican power, he lead the successful charge for anti-gay marriage rights amendments in eleven states.  He now admits that he and the Bush/Cheney campaign stoked homophobia and inspired hatred for gays as a strategy to bring out the conservative vote and get Bush reelected.  

     It's no wonder that Republicans are gathering in Washington DC today to reclaim the civil rights movement from minorities, protesting Muslim American's right to worship in Manhattan, and trying to remove Iowa's supreme court justices.  The midterm elections are months away.  Hate sells and it gets Republicans elected.  Dog bless America.

     The Advocate recently interviewed Mehlman about his role in anti-gay rights politics under Bush.  Here's a snippet:
     There’s a lot of gays and lesbians and other people who are still angry about the 2004 election and the fact that that those 11 amendments were on the ballot. Is there anything that you would like to say about that in particular?
     Look, I have a lot of friends who ask questions and who are angry about it. I understand that folks are angry, I don’t know that you can change the past. As I’ve said, one thing I regret a lot is the fact that I wasn’t in the position I am today where I was comfortable with this part of my life, where I was able to be an advocate against that [strategy] and able to be someone who argued against it. I can’t change that – it is something I wish I could and I can only try to be helpful in the future.
     Mehlman is an example of what is so tragic about the movement for LGBT civil rights: the shame and self-loathing of closeted gays, especially those in politics and religion, is often used as a motivation to attack honest LGBT persons, their families, and their civil rights.  I agree with Dan Savage (see the embedded video below).  Mehlman needs to do more than one gay-friendly fundraiser to make up for the damage of his past homophobia.  His hateful legacy lives on in eleven states and Bush's reelection.

     Here's Keith Olbermann's report on Mehlman's admission that Christian Republican's strategy in election time is to inspire hatred towards certain groups in order to bring out the conservative vote, including the winning of Ohio, and thus the presidency,  in 2004.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Anti-Gay Lutheran Pastor Tom Brock Is Secretly Gay and Attends Catholic Twelve Step Program to Control the Gay

     For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light.  --Attributed to Jesus of Nazareth, Luke 8:17
     Another Christian leader, known for his anti-gay preaching and politics, has been outed.
     Tom Brock, Senior Pastor of Hope Lutheran Church in North Minneapolis, is secretly a member of the Catholic Church's Courage Apostolate, which helps homosexuals to "move beyond the confines of the homosexual identity to a more complete one in Christ" by using the "Twelve Steps of Courage" to overcome their "addictive" sexual urges.

     Does "complete" in Christ include persecuting honest gays and blaming them for the evils of the world?  It does in Brock's case.

     John Townsend in Lavender Magazine writes:
     He[Brock] is known for his denunciation of homosexuality and GLBT rights on hid dailty KKMS AM 980 radio program, The Pastor's Study.  His video series lambastes with outrage the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) for progressive attitudes toward women's reproductive rights, racial equality, ecological stewardship--worst of all in his view, openly gay or lesbian pastors having the right to minster if they are in a committed monogamous relationship with a member of the same sex.
     When a tornado touched down near the ELCA’s national assembly last year, on the same day it voted to allow the ordination of openly gay clergy in committed relationships, Brock claimed it was a sign of God’s wrath.
     The Lavender Magazine article reports another of Brock's gaytanic portents:
     Brock, who finds omens in any number of things, noted that what he calls the ELCA "sex statement" passed by 66.6 percent--a reference to 666...The actual vote was 559 to 451.
     Let's see.  559 + 451 = 1010.  555/1010 = 55.3%.   Apparently, Brock needs twelve steps to better math skills.

     At one of the meetings, Brock, dressed in a "tight fitting, short-sleeve shirt that accentuated biceps and triceps more ripped than the month before" reported having a "sexual breakdown" while attending a clergy meeting in Slovakia.  Lavender reports:
     Brock admitted, "I fell into temptation.  I was weak.  That place has this really, really weird, demonic energy. I just got weak, and I had been so good for a long time...There's a lot of gypsies there...They're toothless, filthy; they smell, stink; and the gypsies are trained in how to pick your pocket."
     To break the tension of  admitting his sexual sins in Slovakia, Brock spoke of a side trip to Hitler's Eagle's Nest retreat, after which a fellow Courage attendee made a comment about the Nazis loving Richard Wagner and intoned "Flight of the Valkyries," to which Brock rose his hand and conducted.  I guess in this particular Courage chapter, it's better to be a Nazi than gay.
     Later on, Brock told of a Catholic priest...who recently officiated the funeral of a man who had lived with a longtime same-sex partner.  Brock questioned the rightness of this situation, pointing out if he were in the priest's shoes, he would have been reluctant to conduct the funeral.
     Yes, because those, who live in the dark, should judge those living in the light.  Wait a minute. I don't think that's what Brock's Jesus had in mind with the whole lampstand parable.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Republican Sen. Roy Ashburn Talks Gay, on Life in and out of the Closet

     The Los Angeles Times has a telling interview with Senator Roy Ashburn, in which the conservative Republican discusses what it was like living a hypocritical life in the closet and how thankful he is that he was exposed and can now live honestly as a gay man.  

     Here are a few excerpts from the Times interview that reveal the fear and societal pressure that forces so many LGBT persons to hide the truth of their being:
     At some point, you must have realized a public career was incompatible with being open about your sexual preferences.
     Something happened that I guess caused me to realize that. When I was in sixth grade, the police had a raid in the sand dunes [near San Luis Obispo] and a bunch of gay men were arrested, probably charged with indecent activity. That sticks in my mind — the publicity and the shame around it. One of my teachers was one of the people. The talk among the kids, the talk among the adults, the talk in the community, the press — at that time the choice was pretty clear: If you were gay and open, it was a life of shame, ridicule, innuendo about molesting and perversion. It was a dark life. Given that choice of whether you come out or whether you're in secret, I mean, there really wasn't a choice.
     You worked for members of Congress, then were elected to public office yourself from Kern County. Were your sexual preferences in the back of your mind, or did you just go about your business?
     The answer is both yes and no. I was married and had children. And I had a career and a passion. I also had a huge secret. But given my circumstances and my responsibilities, it wasn't an overwhelming issue for me. The desires were always there, but my focus was primarily on — well, pretty selfishly — on me and my career and my family.
     A lot of people, gay or straight, are probably wondering why you voted even against issues like insurance coverage for same-sex partners.
     The best I can do is to say that I was hiding. I was so in terror I could not allow any attention to come my way. So any measure that had to do with the subject of sexual orientation was an automatic "no" vote. I was paralyzed by this fear, and so I voted without even looking at the content. The purpose of government is to protect the rights of people under the law, regardless of our skin color, national origin, our height, our weight, our sexual orientation. This is a nation predicated on the belief that there is no discrimination on those characteristics, and so my vote denied people equal treatment, and I'm truly sorry for that.
     Thankfully, Roy, you've come a long way.  It takes many of us years to get over the trauma and violence conditioning of childhood that forced us to live shamefully in the closet.  I'm happy to hear you've finally escaped.  

     Apology accepted.  Now go out there and use whatever clout you have left to support and pass legislation that will undo the damage of the anti-gay laws that your shame, fear, and self-serving closet once fueled.  

     As for the anti-gay laws that have been passed around this nation, I can only wonder how many votes were passed in favor of discrimination by men and women, who didn't even read the laws for fear that they might be seen as homosexual or weak in their Christian faith.  How many California citizens voted in favor of Proposition 8, stripping marriage rights from homosexual couples, because they were ashamed of themselves or because a closeted cleric, fueled by his own self-hatred and preservation, ordered they vote against the gays?

     To vote blindly against a piece of civil rights legislation  in a nation where all are supposedly created equal has to be one of the biggest hypocrisies a politician or citizen can commit.  Thank you, Roy Ashburn, for being the first politician that I know of to admit the sickness at the center of having a system of government where people are allowed to vote on whether minorities have equal civil rights.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Catholic Gaydar, Weeding Gays Out of Seminary or Helping them through?


     During my last year of seminary, a professor informed my Theology of Ministry class that there was an ultra-conservative theology being floated around Rome by then-Ratzinger, now-Pope Benedict, that espoused the theological claim that homosexual men could not properly stand in person of Jesus and thus failed to imitate his celibate sacrifice.  Ratzinger claimed gay men were so intrinsically disordered and gay sex so depraved that giving up evil gay sex for good holy celibacy was not a sacrifice, but a necessity.  Therefore, gay men could not imitate Jesus' straight celibacy and gays could not be validly ordained priests in the Catholic Church.

     When my professor asked the nearly twenty of us what we thought of that train of thought, nobody answered.  Nobody moved.  Everyone sat frightened, worried that if he spoke, he would be labeled a depraved sodomite.

     A few months later in January 2002, the sexual abuse scandal in Boston hit the papers.  Again, gays were the scapegoats, constantly being equated with pedophiles and blamed for the evils of the church.

     A few months later, after I was ordained a priest, Ratzinger's gays-can't-be-validly-ordained-priests theology was floated around Rome in document form.  The U.S. bishops went nuts, frightened by the prospect of all their gay priests suddenly being removed from ministry.

     I got depressed, knowing that my days were numbered in the priesthood.  Any day the powers that be could throw me out on the street with nothing, because I was gay and my sacrifices, the love and intimacy that I had given up to serve the people of my parish, had been deemed worthless, meaningless.  I had offered up to god in sacrifice a possible relationship with a close friend that I'd fallen madly in love with.  My heart was broken and bleeding, and Cardinal Ratzinger's brood of homophobic ladder-climbers were saying that gays couldn't sacrifice.  They had no clue.

     The bishops managed to keep the document from being promulgated, but Months after Ratzinger's rise to the Papal throne in 2005, Pope Benedict released a document that barred gay men from being admitted to the seminary.  Thankfully, I had already left the priesthood, for matters of conscience, justice, truth, and dignity.

     Father Sweeney said the new rules were not the order of battle for a witch hunt. “We do not say that homosexuals are bad people,” he said. “And sure, homosexuals have been good priests.  But it has to do with our view of marriage,” he said. “A priest can only give his life to the church in the sense that a man gives his life to a female spouse. A homosexual man cannot have the same relationship. It’s not about condemning anybody. It’s about our world view.”
     The gays-can't-properly-image-Jesus theology of Ratzinger is now mainstream, which means those espousing it will claim that it was always part of church teaching.  Why aren't gay priests leaving in droves?

     Here are some of the priestly job interview questions:
     “When was the last time you had sex?” all candidates for the seminary are asked. (The preferred answer: not for three years or more.)  “What kind of sexual experiences have you had?” is another common question.
     I was asked these questions by my future director of seminarians, when I was alone in his rectory and after I'd been pumped full of liquor.  I was also asked, "The director of seminarians in Peoria sleeps with his seminarians, what do you think of that?"
     “Do you like pornography?”  Depending on the replies, and the results of standardized psychological tests, the interview may proceed into deeper waters: “Do you like children?” and “Do you like children more than you like people your own age?”
     Early on in my interactions with said director of seminarians, I was told that having been a victim of sexual abuse might disqualify my from becoming a priest.  In 1995, the church was still operating under the assumptions and myths that those abused would automatically become abusers and that gays were pedophiles.  What projection!
     It is part of a soul-baring obstacle course prospective seminarians are forced to run in the aftermath of a sexual abuse crisis that church leaders have decided to confront, in part, by scrubbing their academies of potential molesters, according to church officials and psychologists who screen candidates in New York and the rest of the country. 
     Of course, they are focusing on gays.
     But many of the questions are also aimed at another, equally sensitive mission: deciding whether gay applicants should be denied admission under complex recent guidelines from the Vatican that do not explicitly bar all gay candidates but would exclude most of them, even some who are celibate. 
     Scientific studies have found no link between sexual orientation and abuse, and the church is careful to describe its two initiatives as more or less separate. One top adviser to American seminaries characterized them as “two circles that might overlap here and there.”  
     That doesn't make any sense.  Any person who knows simple geometry knows that if two circles overlap, they overlap once.  They can't overlap "here and there."  It's called a Venn Diagram.  Not only does the church disregard science, but also grade school math.
     Still, since the abuse crisis erupted in 2002, curtailing the entry of gay men into the priesthood has become one the church’s highest priorities. [Right up there with saving souls.]
Venn Diagram via LiberatedMind.com 
     They will fail.  The church is a culture based upon secrecy.  From the confessional to the Vatican's secret "historical" archives, from the bishops' second set of (secret) files kept on each priest that were exposed in sexual abuse lawsuits, to spiritual direction, and from seminary formation to the oaths priests sign before ordination, the church's clerical operates on secrecy.

     Priests are adept at manipulating the system to keep things on the down low.  Whenever a conversation goes somewhere that a priest wants to keep confidential, the Sacrament of Reconciliation or spiritual direction is initiated.  Thus, the conversation becomes privileged and protected under the seal of the confessional.  In these privileged conversations, seasoned priests form naive priests and eager seminarians to manipulate the system.  I learned, by example, that this is best done when it's just the director of seminarians and a college boy, sitting in front of a fireplace, after-dinner liquors in hand, following two or three cocktails (Real priests drink scotch.), dinner, and a couple bottles of wine, with Father's bedroom door cracked open, just in case.

     This was how I was prepared for my interviews with psychologists and the seminary board before I was accepted by my diocese for seminary.  I was told by the director of seminarians, who was a canon lawyer, to flat out lie if asked directly about being gay.

     Truth is relative in Catholic clerical culture.  I was told it's only lying if the person asking for the information has a right to the information. We can all see how this seed of "wisdom" has played out in the sexual abuse/rape scandal.
     Msgr. Stephen Rossetti, a psychologist at Catholic University who has screened seminarians and once headed a treatment center for abusive priests, said the screening could be “very intrusive.” But he added, “We are looking for two basic qualities: the absence of pathology and the presence of health.”
     I'm not the "expert" that Rossetti is, but also having spent time in a treatment center for priests, nuns, religious, and ministers damaged by the church, I would venture to say this: the entire church system is ill and pathological.  It's based on fear, control, masks, and lies; not truth.  

Venn Diagram via HadNews.com
     Pathological people will seek out a pathological system.  Catholic gays are conditioned to believe they are pathological, so what better place to turn for redemption and acceptance than the celibate pathological priesthood?

     When I was ordained a Catholic priest in 2002, the vast majority of the guys in seminary were gay.  I estimate 80-85%.   The exact number is impossible to know, because no one could be publicly honest, even if he was celibate. Furthermore, the truth of one's orientation was "privileged" information that others had no right to, so lying about one's orientation was as automatic as one's gestures during Mass.

     Since coming out of the closet and leaving the priesthood, I've heard numerous accounts of others leaving because they are gay and stories about those who stay, slowly drinking themselves to death, or having sexual relations on the side, while publicly condemning gays. Combined, these stories number about 25 as confirmed gay, one confirmed bisexual, and only two confirmed straight guys (one who left to get married, one who's having an affair).  Any diocese that claims to have no gay priests or seminarians is lying.
     In the densely populated Diocese of Brooklyn, officials are confident of their results in one respect. “We have no gay men in our seminary at this time,” said Dr. Robert Palumbo, a psychologist who has screened seminary candidates at the diocese’s Cathedral Seminary Residence in Douglaston, Queens, for 10 years. “I’m pretty sure of it.” Whether that reflects rigorous vetting or the reluctance of gay men to apply, he could not say. “I’m just reporting what is,” he said.
     Sorry to break it to you "Doctor" Palumbo, but you're just reporting what they want you to see.  You've been punked.

     Pope Ratzinger's document barring gay men from seminary is a sham, a political distraction meant to take the heat off of the true sins of dysfunctional mother church.  Closeted priests (like Ratzinger) form seminarians to work the system and teach them how to answer questions about sexuality so that one passes as straight.  Ratzinger knows this happens.  The bishops know this happens. Those is power want gays to keep getting ordained, because manipulating the closet is a time-tested method of control.  Bully the fearful gays into obedience.  It's all part of the clerical caste system.

     Sadly, gay Catholics will continue entering the priesthood in droves, because when someone believes that their god is calling them to something holy, the rest is just detail.
Venn Diagram via me.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Ted Haggard to Open Inclusive Church that Discriminates Against Gay Marriage

     "Ex-gay" pastor and former president of the National Association of Evangelicals Ted Haggard, who is best known for his fall from grace in a gay-prostitute-drug scandal, has announced that he's starting a new church.  This time he's doing it right.  The church community will be inclusive and nonjudgmental.

     TPM reports (with my comments interspersed):
     He [Haggard] said that his new church -- St. James Church in Colorado Springs -- will welcome everyone, including those who are "gay, straight, bi, tall, short, whether you're an addict, a recovering addict, or you have an addict in your family."
     Okay.  That sounds good so far. 
     Referring to the scandal as "the crash," Haggard noted that since it happened, "I don't judge people anymore."
     Fantastic.  He's learned, but is this too good to believe? 
     However, he did emphasize that there will be no gay marriages performed in his church, because "God's ideal plan for a marriage is the union of a man and a woman."
     Okay.  There's the Ted Haggard of old.  Once again telling honest gays what his god says they can and cannot do.  A traditional marriage is between one supposedly recovered gay drug addict and one woman.
     Haggard added that it's also "God's ideal that all of us have our weight under control," but that doesn't always happen.
     Does that mean that homo-Haggard is on a gay diet?  We all know how that worked for him before.  It's only a matter of time before he binges again.


Image from Necessary Therapy.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Republican Mark Kirk Lied About Military Service and He's Gay

     Representative Mark Kirk (Republican, Congregationalist, of Illinois) is having a rough go as of late.  He's hoping to win President Obama's vacant Senate seat, but like some of his Republican family values proponents, Kirk's duplicitous ways are being exposed.

     First of all, Kirk's lied about his military service.  Last week it was his false claims of winning he "Intelligence Officer of the Year" Award.  This week it's his lie about being the only member of Congress to have served in Operation Iraqi Freedom, when he, in fact, never served in Iraq, but was stateside.  For more details, see the Huffingtion Post or watch the embedded video below.

    Secondly, there is the issue of Kirk's closet.  Last week, he voted against the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell in the House, but he himself is and was a closeted gay military man.  Following the leads of two independent male sources, who've both had sex with Kirk, Mike Rodgers of the politician-outing BlogActive decided it was time to out Hypocrite Kirk.

     In an effort to move the base in the Illinois Senate race, Kirk decided to tack right and that means throwing the gays (like him) under the bus. And once he voted that way, the phone began to ring. Not one or two, or three but 5 separate individuals contacted me about the now divorced Mr. Kirk. (Mr. and Mrs. Kirk were married from 2001 to 2009, the marriage produced no children.)  Within hours of the DADT repeal vote I was contacted by two people who knew Kirk from his college days.
     "In law school in DC everyone knew Mark was gay," the first source told me. I explained that the information was intriguing, it would not be enough to go on. He continued, "But I had sex with him a number of times." Well, now we're onto something I thought. "Could someone verify for me that you knew Kirk and went to school with him?" I asked. "Yes" was the swift reply. "Could you recall personal details about Kirk that others may not know?" "Yes," he said. And he did.
     The next source claimed to have gone to undergraduate school with Kirk. I asked for proof that he and Kirk were in school together and once that was shared with me, I met with the source. The source introduced me to a man who had also been friends with Kirk in college. They both shared with me their interactions with Kirk, including one sexual in nature. The source who claimed to have sex with Kirk described personal details about the House, um, er, "member." The description was the same as the first source.
     And in DC, Kirk wasn't all THAT closeted. You see Mark Kirk told me he was gay. Before I had BlogActive, I had a life in Washington...It was early 2004 when I was at a social gathering on Capitol Hill...It was at that party that I met Mark Kirk. I was introduced to him by the person I came with and at the time did not realize he was a member of the House. As my friend walked away, Kirk asked me if the man who introduced us was "single or attached." When I said that he had a partner, Kirk replied disappointingly, "oh, well." 
      Rep. Mark Kirk is a hypocrite and a liar.  He is a disgrace to the military uniform that he wears and a disgrace to LGBT Americans.

     Rachel Maddow covers Kirk's mounting military lies (which were used in Kirk's campaign ads) and Republican, Mormon Senator Orrin Hatch's hypocritical reneging of his call for persons, who lie about their military records to be fined and/or imprisoned.

Image from Towleroad.

Friday, May 14, 2010

George Rekers Sing-Along and News Update, He's Suing and He's Completely Heterosexual

     Anti-gay "expert" and Baptist pastor Dr. George Rekers is completely heterosexual.  Forget the fact that he hired Lucien from rentboy.com to lift his baggage and massage his anus, including mutual touching, and that there's a contract that proves this.  Forget the fact that there are pictures.  Rekers is still claiming that he is straight and he going to sue...somebody.

     Matthew Staver of Liberty Counsel has offered to represent Rekers in his quest to sue the media for reporting on Rekers' hypocrisy.  Protecting Rekers is important to Stavers and the anti-gay Christian lobby, because Rekers pseudo-research has been quoted in Stavers court cases arguing against same sex marriage in California and against adoption by LGBT persons in Florida.  Rachel Maddow reports in the first video below:


Here's the fun song of the day: "George Rekers Is Completely Heterosexual" by Roy Zimmerman

Glory, how he blew ya!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

George Rekers' Rentboy, Lucien, Reveals the Details of their Contract, Anti-Gay "Star " Expert Rekers Still in Denial

     "Lucien," the male escort of anti-gay activist and Baptist minister George Alan Rekers, spoke to CNN's Randi Kaye in an interview last night, confirming Rev. Rekers hypocrisy and lies.  Rekers still claims that "Lucien" was hired only to carry his bags and that he didn't know "Lucien" was rented from rentboy.com.  

     In the embedded video below, "Lucien" reveals the contract that he had with Rekers, which agreed to much more than just bag carrying.  Also, NARTH and the Family Research Council have released statements distancing themselves from Rekers.  

     It appears these conservative Christian organizations have passed judgement on Rekers.  His lies, denial, and ex-gay therapy can't save him from the truth: he is a member of what he referred to as a "deviant segment of society."  As if, the mustache hadn't been giving him away.

     Also, Equality Florida reports that Rekers was paid $120,000 by Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum to serve as a "star" witness to defend Florida's anti-gay adoption bill.  Those are your tax dollars at work, Florida.  How's that for the separation of church and state.  He's definitely a "star" witness now.

Here's the "Lucien" interview, from last night's Anderson Cooper 360.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

George Alan Rekers, Top Anti-Gay & Christian Activist, Goes Down in Gay "Escort" Scandal

    George Alan Rekers, Baptist minister, who is an anti-gay "scholar," NARTH board member, and founding member of the hate group, the Family Research Council, was caught in Miami returning from a ten day trip to Europe with a gay call-boy.  Welcome to the world of Ted Haggard, Larry Craig, and Roy Ashburn, good Christian George.

     (NARTH=National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality.  So, maybe Rekers was just "researching" his online rental.)

     The pictures on the Rentboy.com profile show a shirtless young man with delicate features, guileless eyes, and sun-kissed, hairless skin. The profile touts his "smooth, sweet, tight ass" and "perfectly built 8 inch cock (uncut)" and explains he is "sensual," "wild," and "up for anything" — as long you ask first. And as long as you pay.
     On April 13, the "rent boy" (whom we'll call Lucien) arrived at Miami International Airport on Iberian Airlines Flight 6123, after a ten-day, fully subsidized trip to Europe. He was soon followed out of customs by an old man with an atavistic mustache and a desperate blond comb-over, pushing an overburdened baggage cart.
     That man was George Alan Rekers, of North Miami — the callboy's client and, as it happens, one of America's most prominent anti-gay activists. Rekers, a Baptist minister who is a leading scholar for the Christian right, left the terminal with his gay escort, looking a bit discomfited when a picture of the two was snapped with a hot-pink digital camera.
     Reached by New Times before a trip to Bermuda, Rekers said he learned Lucien was a prostitute only midway through their vacation. "I had surgery," Rekers said, "and I can't lift luggage. That's why I hired him." (Medical problems didn't stop him from pushing the tottering baggage cart through MIA.)
     Yet Rekers wouldn't deny he met his slender, blond escort at Rentboy.com...Lucien confirmed it.
     Rekers has been one of the leading ex-gay therapy voices of the past three decades.  He works closely with James Dobson, who is known for his homophobia and Gospel According to Hate.  Rekers has been outspoken in opposition to gay rights and with such vehemence that now has been explained.  

     Rekers is a disjointed, closeted, and shame-filled gay himself.  It gets very difficult condemning yourself continuously throughout the decades.  Sadly, this kind of shame produces compartmentalization, denial, and loathing that leads to very dangerous and sometimes criminal behavior. (See the Catholic Church for examples.)

     The Miami News Times dug deeper and found what could possibly be a criminal scandal buried in the Rekers debacle:
     As a favor to Rekers, Lucien recently removed any wanton sexual descriptors from his Rentboy profile. Though he does admit Rekers "likes younger guys to hang out with," Lucien is protective of his erstwhile client. He describes Rekers primarily as a family man — one whose passion for oppressing homosexuals is dwarfed by his desire to help children. "You don't understand how much this guy honestly cares about taking care of kids," he says.
     Indeed, much of Rekers's activism over the past three decades — beginning with his 1983 book, Shaping Your Child's Sexual Identity — has been devoted to improving children's lives by educating them, protecting them from their own budding sexualities, and keeping them safe from gay adoptions — as he did by testifying as an expert witness in favor of gay adoption bans in both Arkansas and Florida.
     Well, it's a good thing Rekers isn't gay himself. Lucien tells us that Rekers frequently takes in foster children and that four years ago he adopted a 16-year-old boy. We found the boy, who is now Lucien's age, on Facebook. He declined to be interviewed.
     The priests, scout masters, and doctors who sexually abuse are always the ones who groom their communities to believe that they have such passion for helping kids.  Who knows what Rekers' does in his closets, but all the hints are there.
Image Credits:


Rekers by Towleroad

Rekers and Lucien by New York Daily News

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Archbishop Myers Opposes Discussion of Gay Marriage at Seton Hall

     Seton Hall University is a major Catholic university. In a diverse and collaborative environment it focuses on academic and ethical development. Seton Hall students are prepared to be leaders in their professional and community lives in a global society and are challenged by outstanding faculty, an evolving technologically advanced setting and values-centered curricula.
     That is Seton Hall University's Misson Statement as approved by the Seton Hall University Board of Regents, Thursday, June 6, 1996.

     The English word university comes from the Latin word universitas, which means "the whole , total; the universe, the world."  A university is meant to provide a universal education, in other words, teaching the academic whole.

     In an attempt to do this, Seton Hall University has scheduled a course on same sex marriage for the fall academic semester, which university officials say is "designed to explore the controversial issue without advocating for either side."

     An academic exploration of one of the major civil rights debates facing the current generation of university students sounds reasonable, right?  That sounds like a university trying to prepare its students to be professional and community leaders in a "global society," where they will have to be able to work in a "diverse and collaberative environment" while maintaining their own values, right?  It's just Seton Hall living up to its mission statement, right?

     Wrong.  According to Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark, New Jersey, the course, by its very nature of exploring the reality that there are two sides to the same sex marriage equality argument, violates Catholic teaching that marriage is between a man and a woman.  NJ.com reports Meyers' words:
     "This proposed course seeks to promote as legitimate a train of thought that is contrary to what the Church teaches. As a result, the course is not in synch with Catholic teaching," Myers said. "Consequently, the board of trustees of Seton Hall have asked the board of regents to investigate the matter of this proposed course and to take whatever action is required under the law to protect the Catholicity of this university."
     Therefore, according to Myers' logic, anything that is not "in synch" with his version of Catholic teaching cannot be taught.  That would mean, no courses on women's liberation (especially in the church), no courses on the science or psychology of human sexuality (that don't teach only about unprotected vaginal sex that results in an ejaculation inside of the woman), and no classes on Church history that mention the philosophical and theological viewpoints that are viewed as valid by the Arians, Nestorians, Marcians, Donatists, Eastern Orthodox, Protestants, Old Catholics, New American Catholics, or any heresy or schism in the history of Christianity.  Basically, Myers is calling for a style of learning that only teaches one view of the universe and humanity (the Vatican is at the center of the universe).

     If this is the way Catholic institutions are supposed to teach, then why do they call themselves universities? They are anything but universal.  Sticking your head in the ground is no way to teach a generation how to interact in a viable way with a global society.

     As for Myers' ability to shut down the class, NJ.com reports:  
     As archbishop, Myers does not have the authority to cancel a class. But the conservative archbishop serves as chairman of Seton Hall’s board of trustees and president of the school’s board of regents, the governing body that oversees academic issues.
     Larry Robinson, Seton Hall’s vice provost, said the course was approved by both the political science department and the dean’s office.
     The "Official Voice of Seton Hall University," the Setonian, reports associate professor W. King Mott and the program of Women and Gender Studies's academic reasons for offering the course:
     The class is not an advocacy course, according to Mott. Rather, it teaches the issue of gay marriage from an academic perspective. “It is one thing to say ‘I am for or against gay marriage,’” Mott said. “It’s another to actually understand the issue.”
     The course will teach various cultural perspectives of marriage, such as Eurocentric and Asian views, Mott said.  The course will also include an analysis of the contemporary political situation regarding gay marriage, such as Proposition 8 in California. Additionally, it will include a look at which states allow and prohibit gay marriage and what that means, Mott said.  Finally, students taking the course will write an analysis on gay marriage from a perspective they choose after they have been educated on the issue...Mott said he hopes his students will have the ability to form an educated opinion after taking the class, regardless if it is for or against the issue.  “I hope my students gain an appreciation and respect for disinterested analysis that can be used to formulate an informed opinion,” Mott said.
     Forming an informed opinion via disinterested analysis, now that's a frightening goal for Catholic universities, indeed.  Of what is Archbishop Myers, author of Space Vulture, so afraid?  That his Catholic students might actually form their brains and consciences, be able to articulate themselves intelligently, and possibly come to disagree with the church?  If this is the case, then Myers and the Catholic Church have already lost the debate.

     I, for one, think it's fantastic that Catholic "universities" would not offer courses on marriage equality and that they don't teach about the academic, philosophical, theological, scientific, psychological, etc. views and facts that contradict Catholic teachings.  There's no better way for the Catholic Church to dumb itself out of an argument than by not understanding the other side.  Look at how well it worked with Galileo, women, liberation theologians, Darwin, Kinsey, victims of sexual abuse by beloved Catholic clergy, etc. etc.

     Let them keep forming their flock in ignorance.  This only strengthens the reality that, to rest of the world, the Catholic Church is an archaic, outdated, superstitious, and self-serving political and financial monster that needs to take its place in the halls of Ra, Isis, Osiris, Mithras, Zeus, Venus, and the other gods, who've faded into myth, and rightly so.

     One might ask, why is Archbishop John Myers so adamant that gay rights not be academically analyzed in his universities.  Well, an old lawsuit provides a compelling reason.  Archbishop John Myers is gay.

     The suit, now pending in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, was filed on December 13 by Bob Hoatson—a 53-year-old New Jersey priest considered a stalwart ally among survivors of sexual abuse by clergy. Hoatson, the now-suspended chaplain for Catholic Charities in Newark, is suing Egan and nine other Catholic officials and institutions, claiming a pattern of "retaliation and harassment" that began after Hoatson alleged a cover-up of clergy abuse in New York and started helping victims.
     But that's not all his lawsuit claims. Halfway through the 44-page complaint, the priest-turned-advocate drops a bomb on the cardinal: He alleges that Egan is "actively homosexual," and that he has "personal knowledge of this." His suit names two other top Catholic clerics in the region as actively gay—Albany bishop Howard Hubbard and Newark archbishop John Myers.
     There's no better reason for a closeted Catholic cleric to be against gay rights than to justify his own compartmentalized life.  How do I know this?  Because I used to do the same thing.
Image Credits:
Seton Hall Pirates logo by SportsLogos.net
Archbishop John J. Myers in Cassock by NJ.com 
Seton Hall Catholic Cheerleader Values by CollegeHoops.net
Archbishop John J. Myers Alien Science Fiction Writer by NJ.com
Seton Hall Basketball Gay Moment by Syracuse.com
Cover of and Authors of Space Vulture by SpaceVulture.com