Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas everyone!

We've got 2 out of our 3 kids home. The only thing that could make this Christmas any happier for us would be getting our "Peace Corps Son" home from Ukraine as well. But he is happy and healthy and available by skype so that will have to do until he can come home this summer.

Have a wonderful Christmas and may 2009 be a good start to getting our country back on track.

Seething Mom

PS Doesn't it feel like January 20th can't get here fast enough? Saying good bye to George W. Bush is going to be one good bye I am going to relish. Share

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Party's Off

Dear President-elect Obama,

I have tried really, really hard to accept that you have your reasons for choosing Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at your inauguration. And I suppose I'm finally having some success since there have been a few days in which I almost make it through the entire day without feeling like I've been kicked in the gut when I think about Mr. Warren playing such a prominent role in your inauguration. But try as I will, I don't think I can ever view your choice of this man as anything but a callous and horrible mistake.

Don't get me wrong, I think your desire to reach out to those who did not vote for you is very noble, but giving a seat at the table to the very people who've had prominent seats at the Bush administration's table for 8 long, miserable years was just too much for me to bear. It confirmed for me that you truly do not understand how deep the wounds that Rick Warren and his fellow evangelicals have inflicted on so many people are.

Yes, yes, I know. You say we have to agree to disagree. But Mr. Obama do you understand what you are asking me to do? You are asking me, a mother of a gay son, to stand by while you bestow this great honor on a man who hates my child because of who he is, not who he chooses to be, but who he is. You are asking me to look the other way when this man compares a gay marriage to pedophilia and incest. You are asking me to find common ground with a man who believes my son does not deserve the same rights his own children have and take for granted. You are asking me to look the other way when you dignify a man whose life's mission has been to deny basic dignity to gays and lesbians, one of them my son.

You are asking me to disagree with Rick Warren without being disagreeable. So let me ask you this, what if someone asked you to disagree without being disagreeable with a man who has dedicated a good part of his life to singling out one of your precious daughters as evil and unworthy of the same basic rights as everyone else? Would you be able to do it?

I believe Richard Cohen put it best when he wrote in his column today:

I can understand Obama's desire to embrace constituencies that have rejected him. Evangelicals are in that category and Warren is an important evangelical leader with whom, Obama said, "we're not going to agree on every single issue." He went on to say, "We can disagree without being disagreeable and then focus on those things that we hold in common as Americans." Sounds nice.

But what we do not "hold in common" is the dehumanization of homosexuals. What we do not hold in common is the belief that gays are perverts who have chosen their sexual orientation on some sort of whim. What we do not hold in common is the exaltation of ignorance that has led and will lead to discrimination and violence.

Finally, what we do not hold in common is the categorization of a civil rights issue -- the rights of gays to be treated equally -- as some sort of cranky cultural difference. For that we need moral leadership, which, on this occasion, Obama has failed to provide. For some people, that's nothing to celebrate.

The party's off.


"If we must have an officiating priest, surely we can do better than this vulgar huckster."

Tell us what you really think Christopher:

...if the speaker says that heaven is a real place but that you will not get there if you are Jewish, or that Mormonism is a cult and a false religion but that other churches and faiths are the genuine article, then you know that the bigot has spoken. That's all in a day's work for the wonderful world of the American evangelical community, and one wishes them all the best of luck in their energetic fundraising and their happy-clappy Sunday "Churchianity" mega-feel-good fiestas. However, do we want these weirdos and creeps officiating in any capacity at the inauguration of the next president of the United States?

Via Andrew

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Hope, Respect, Tolerance, Dignity, and ...

Many thanks to AMERICAblog for the advance look at the Official Program for President-elect Obama's inauguration. Share

The Mom Song

Hitting a lighter note and taking a brief break from seething, I present to you a tribute to moms. This really brought back the memories. Dang I miss it!


Saturday, December 20, 2008

There is simply no explanation other than pure unadulterated hate

I cannot wrap my arms around the unbelievable cruelty of the Religious Right. They have shown their hand with this next move in their quest to crush any semblance of equality or dignity in California's gay and lesbian community. And it confirms for me (what I already knew) that it was never about the Sanctity of Marriage, because if it had been, these sanctimonious frauds would have gone after what really truly destroys marriage, divorce, instead of gays and lesbians. And if protecting the institution of marriage was really their goal, they would started their enormous task of ending divorce not in California, but in the states with the highest divorce rate: the Bible-belt states. But alas, they've exposed their true motivations and it certainly has nothing to do with their concern for the very sorry state of heterosexual marriage, and everything to do with the pure unadulterated hate within their stone-cold shriveled hearts:

The sponsors of Proposition 8 on Friday argued for the first time that the court should undo the marriages of the estimated 18,000 same-sex couples who exchanged vows before voters banned gay marriage at the ballot box last month.

The Yes on 8 campaign filed a brief telling the court that because the new law holds that only marriages between a man and a woman are recognized or valid in California, the state can no longer recognize the existing same-sex unions.

"Proposition 8's brevity is matched by its clarity. There are no conditional clauses, exceptions, exemptions or exclusions," reads the brief co-written by Kenneth Starr, dean of Pepperdine University's law school and the former independent counsel who investigated President Bill Clinton.

May names like James Dobson, Rick Warren, and Tony Perkins (to name just a few) be forever enshrined in history books as the notorious, hate-filled bigots they are. Share

Thursday, December 18, 2008

More on Barack Obama's reasons for choosing Rick Warren to deliver the inaugural invocation

If you have not already, stop over at Pam's for a complete list of the official "Obama talking points" relating to the Rick Warren choice. She also provides some freepi reactions over the Rick Warren choice as well. But I would advise you to read those at your own risk. For me, it was more than I could bear.

It seems to me that one of the "official" talking points justifying Obama's decision to have Rick Warren deliver the invocation is especially ironic:

As he's said again and again, the President-elect is committed to bringing together all sides of the faith discussion in search of common ground. That's the only way we'll be able to unite this country with the resolve and common purpose necessary to solve the challenges we face.

Well I'd say President-elect Obama's choice of Rick Warren has certainly resonated with a segment of people whose common ground is that they believe gays and lesbians to be evil. These are the only people that seem to be delighted with President-elect Obama's choice of Rick Warren. But to get an idea of just how happy Mr. Obama has made this group of people, he will have to trudge knee-deep into the swamp to see just who believes this Rick Warren choice gives them common ground with him. Here's a sampling of the celebratory responses: (Pam has a more complete listing if you are up to it):

LOL the homo's are taking a right beating lately. This is just great, what is it ah yes change we can believe in have you got that homo's? change you never thought LOL

Honestly now. Is there anyone abominable sodomites are not "furious" with?

Touchy fags.

we can watch the radical left and homo's get all their knickers in a twist

Trannies claim to be women trapped in men's bodies or vice-versa. IMHO, the entire LBGT "community" are a bunch of brown-shirts trapped in rainbow attire.

I LOVE IT! Nothing so much pleases me as seeing the queerly beloved get angry at Rick Warren over his endorsement of Proposition 8! BRING IT ON!!!

"Furious" and "fierce" are two more words that now belong exclusively to the "gay" emotional typology.

great isn't it to see these homo's get done over, the idiots actually thought he was going to give them marriage right off the bat. maybe they never heard Biden or knew in the black community or the area of chicago homo's are not well received. Not only that but did they take no notice of the church he went to for 20 years

So His Majesty is telling the gays to bite him. Sweet.

So after a long night of fitful sleep and a lot of talking myself down from a complete emotional meltdown. I have decided to step back, take a deep breath, and take a wait and see attitude. I don't really have any other choice. I simply cannot live any longer with the seething rage that has been eating at my heart and soul for so many years. I know Barack Obama is never going to please everyone and I knew from the onset that he was going to reach out to those who hold different views from him. But I guess I just wasn't prepared to see him reach out to those who are so entrenched in their own self-righteousness and beliefs that they will never ever change their views. And Rick Warren falls into that category. He is the antithesis of everything Mr. Obama claims to represent.

I won't be watching the invocation, I draw the line there. I simply cannot bear to watch Rick Warren, a man who has spent so much of his valuable resources and power to take away rights and create a whole class of "others", one of them my son while using the same Bible he'll probably be holding on inauguration day to justify it all. Share

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Rick Warren???????????? Oh please dear God no

President-elect Barack Obama chose Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at his inauguration???? I am speechless. I am devastated. I feel like I have been stabbed in the heart. And I feel like a world-class idiot fool.

I was actually stupid enough to think that Barack Obama was going to be different and be a president to everyone. I actually thought I was finally going to be able to let go of the seething rage that has been eating me alive for eight long years. I was actually stupid enough to believe that Barack Obama was going to give hateful homophobes like James Dobson (and don't kid yourself, Rick Warren is just as hateful as Dobson, he's just got a better, more moderate way of delivering the hate) their pink slips, take away their bullhorns, and dismantle their bully pulpits. In fact I actually dared to believe that my son had a fairly good chance of being treated with the same dignity and respect that every other American has come to expect and take for granted.

But I was so damn wrong. And I am such a fool. And there is no sense continuing to blather on and on. I am just too devastated, disappointed, and crushed to even care anymore.

I guess the "Yes We Can" bullshit only applies to those who meet the Religious Right standards of normal. Share

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Catholic rebellion?

There is an article online over at the Guardian - Comment is free titled "A Catholic rebellion?", And I'd be lying if I didn't admit that my heart actually skipped a beat or two just trying to imagine what that title could possibly mean. So it was quite exciting to read the article and find that there indeed may be some "rebellion", at least by Catholic Church standards, going on across the pond. Nothing huge (yet) mind you, but at least it's something.

And I say, HALLELUJAH! Better late than never.

Apparently a "Pastoral Leaflet" has been distributed by the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales entitled: "What is life like if you or someone in your family is gay or lesbian in their sexual orientation? ... and what can your parish family do to make a difference?"

Oh. My. God! My eyes started stinging with a few tears. Why the hell couldn't something like this happen over here in the U.S.? WHY??? What a concept - a church that actually serves as a refuge to families going through painful and agonizing times, rather than being one of the main sources of all the pain and agony the family is going through.

The article goes on to say:

Unusual for an official Catholic publication, it acknowledges the "oppression" suffered by homosexuals:

As a group that has suffered more than its share of oppression and contempt, the homosexual community has a particular claim on the concern of the church.

Indeed, the leaflet includes a disarmingly honest admission of the role played by the Catholic church in the victimisation and marginalisation of lesbian and gay people. It quotes comments received from lay Catholics during its Listening Day survey:

The continual message from the church is that homosexuality is so, so dreadful. Our gay son just hasn't stood a chance … My brother is gay; the church has been very intolerant of him.

This frank admission of past failings is brave and honourable, as is the suggestion that Catholics should "express appreciation for the gifts that homosexual Catholics bring to their faith community".

Exuding love, compassion and empathy, the leaflet goes on to advise priests and parishioners:

Try not to assume that everyone is heterosexual ... Avoid stereotyping and condemning ... Remember that homophobic jokes and asides can be cruel and hurtful; a careless word can mean another experience of rejection and pain.

My gosh, if this compassion for gays thingee catches on, it would truly be an answer to so many Catholics' prayers. I know I would have given anything to know my Church was there for me and my husband back when we were struggling to come to grips with the news that our son was gay. But sadly, I am not very hopeful that we are going to see any big changes in the Church's attitude towards gays and lesbians any time soon. The hate and homophobia runs way too deep in the Catholic Church, starting with the guy at the top, a man who is so homophobic he opposes a measure calling on governments around the world to decriminalize homosexuality — including countries which impose the death penalty on gays. So I am not going to get my hopes up. Something tells me there are going to be some heads rolling over there in England and Wales.

I just wonder what the punishment is going to be for daring to show gays and lesbians compassion and love, but I guess that will depend on whether the infraction is considered a mortal sin or a venial sin. Maybe we can ask Father Joseph Illo. Something tells me he'd have no problem classifying such a hideous act a mortal sin. Share

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Another reminder just how deep the homophobia and hatred goes

Oh my, just when it looked like the Religious Loonies could not get any loonier, they manage to do just that. I am simply amazed at how deep the hatred for gays and lesbians goes.

I think John at AMERICAblog puts it best:

It's always so cute when you poke a religious right Republican and find out just how much of a freak these people really are. Just another example of the fine bedfellows the Mormon bigots have thrown their lot with. Someone in Utah clearly has a master plan to trash any good will the Mormons have left. And it's working.


Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Revisiting my reasons for starting this blog

It feels like an eternity since that day when an email from one of the Jesuit Universities to which my middle son was applying landed in my inbox and profoundly changed my life and redirected my energies in ways I never anticipated.

It was about 6 years ago when I learned, quite by accident, that one of my three children was gay and living his life consumed with self-loathing and fear of discovery. It was about 6 years ago when I learned that he actually thought that we, his mom and dad, would stop loving him because he was gay. It was about 6 years ago when I realized that he had every reason to be so consumed by that fear, since it didn't take me long to learn that thousands of children are indeed thrown to the streets like trash when their parents learn their child is gay. And it was about 6 years ago when a seething anger was ignited deep within my soul when I discovered that many of those children discarded by their families were rejected because of the hate and ignorance preached at the pulpit of their families' churches in the name of God.

But probably the hardest thing in the world was reading my son's high school essay for the first time and realizing that I had failed at one of the most basic duties a parent has: being there for him when he needed me most. And I will never be able to let that fact stop haunting me. Nor will I ever forgive all of those homophobic churches and organizations responsible for him believing that he was unworthy of our love because he was gay. And I will go to my grave cursing those churches and organizations for causing so much agony, so much heartbreak, and so much devastation to the very entity they claim to want to protect: the family.

I sat down tonight and re-read my son's essay. And the pain is every bit as intense as it was all those years ago when I first read it for the first time. But this time I don't have to hurt for my son, he is ok. But now I hurt for all those gay and lesbian children whose parents will reject them, for their struggle to be ok will be much harder. And most of all I grieve for all those children who will end their lives because they are too fragile to survive their parent's rejection, for they will never know that it can be ok for them too.

An excerpt from my son's essay:

I feel alone. I am alone. No one knows about my secret because I have lied to everyone in my life for so long that it only seems natural to keep it hidden.

I am a hypocrite. I am a liar. And I am superficial. When the subject of homosexuality comes up around my friends or people that I know, I bash it right alongside with them. Most of the time I bring up the issue of homosexuality just to put it down. I began to actually despise homosexuals to the point that I hated all gay people, regardless of who they were. I began to drive myself crazy. I examined every movement I made and I examined every word that came out of my mouth with the utmost scrutiny to make sure that it was as straight sounding and acting as possible. The fear of discovery consumed me. I COULD NOT LET MYSELF BE GAY!

The GOP and GOD

About 2 weeks ago Kathleen Parker wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post titled Giving Up On God. It was for me the Cliff Notes version of why I bristle and swallow hard to keep the bile from coming up my throat any time I hear words like Conservative Values, Family Values, Chrisitan Values, Moral Values, etc. coming out of the sanctimonious mouths of pompous, hypocritical Republicans, a list of names so long I lack the time, the space, or the stomach to list here in this post.

So if by some remote chance you have not read the article in its entirety, please do, it's that good. But here are a few of the juicier excerpts:

As Republicans sort out the reasons for their defeat, they likely will overlook or dismiss the gorilla in the pulpit.

Three little letters, great big problem: G-O-D.

I'm bathing in holy water as I type.

To be more specific, the evangelical, right-wing, oogedy-boogedy branch of the GOP is what ails the erstwhile conservative party and will continue to afflict and marginalize its constituents if reckoning doesn't soon cometh.

Simply put: Armband religion is killing the Republican Party. And, the truth -- as long as we're setting ourselves free -- is that if one were to eavesdrop on private conversations among the party intelligentsia, one would hear precisely that.


So it has been for the Grand Old Party since the 1980s or so, as it has become increasingly beholden to an element that used to be relegated to wooden crates on street corners.

Short break as writer ties blindfold and smokes her last cigarette.

Which is to say, the GOP has surrendered its high ground to its lowest brows. In the process, the party has alienated its non-base constituents, including other people of faith (those who prefer a more private approach to worship), as well as secularists and conservative-leaning Democrats who otherwise might be tempted to cross the aisle.


It isn't that culture doesn't matter. It does. But preaching to the choir produces no converts. And shifting demographics suggest that the Republican Party -- and conservatism with it -- eventually will die out unless religion is returned to the privacy of one's heart where it belongs.

Religious conservatives become defensive at any suggestion that they've had something to do with the GOP's erosion...


Suffice it to say, the Republican Party is largely comprised of white, married Christians. Anyone watching the two conventions last summer can't have missed the stark differences: One party was brimming with energy, youth and diversity; the other felt like an annual Depends sales meeting.

With the exception of Miss Alaska, of course.


Great article and Great big act of bravery on the part of Kathleen Parker. She may have been writing in jest when she wrote, "Short break as writer ties blindfold and smokes her last cigarette.", but she wasn't too far off the mark. She knew she was setting herself up for a landslide of vicious attacks. And she has indeed been the target of many attacks, not surprisingly from the very people who claim to be good "Christians" like James Dobson:

So, Kathleen Parker has determined that getting rid of social conservatives and shelving the values they fight for is the solution to what ails the Republican Party (“Giving Up on God,” Nov. 19). Isn’t that a little like Benedict Arnold handing George Washington a battle plan to win the Revolution?

Whatever she once was, Ms. Parker is certainly not a conservative anymore, having apparently realized it’s a lot easier to be popular among your journalistic peers when your keyboard tilts to the left. She writes that “armband religion” — those of us who “wear our faith on our sleeve,” I suppose, or is it meant to compare socially conservative Christians to Nazis? — is “killing the Republican Party.” Lest readers miss the point, she literally spells it out. The GOP’s big problem? G-O-D.


So it is at this point I feel a great debt of gratitude for doing what most of us could not do since we do not consider ourselves "Conservatives". It really did need to come from someone "inside" the party. But sadly, it came at great expense to one of the few principled Conservatives left in the party.

Thank you Kathleen for stepping out and saying publicly what most don't have the courage to say. It needed to be said. Share

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Marriage ban supporters demand apology for Prop 8 musical starring Jack Black

Wow! Up is down, black is white, and the religious bullies that spent millions of dollars and untold man hours to strip marriage rights and dignity from thousands of gay and lesbian Californians are now claiming to be the victims and demanding an apology!

Am I missing something here? I feel like I am living in an alternate universe.

What could possibly have turned these gay-bashing street thugs into boo-hooing little wimps screaming for mommy? Well you'll never believe it. A low-budget video that they claim "mocks" them. (I posted about the video here)

Well BOO frickin HOO! These thin-skinned boobs deserve a hell of a lot more than mocking (although mocking is a good start).

My complete state of disbelief at this latest turn of events has rendered me speechless, so without further comment, I present to you their pathetic demand for an apology:

In a short video posted on entitled, "Prop 8 The Musical," an all star cast of Hollywood celebrities perform a low budget musical farce that defames Christ, mocks Christians and distorts the teaching of the Bible.

"Jack Black should remember from his days at Hebrew School that homosexual acts aren't funny and are roundly condemned in the Bible," said Dr. Gary Cass, of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission. "Appearing as a sarcastic, rotund Christ, Black distorts the Bible and condones shameful, homosexual acts. Associating Christ with perverse activity is an affront to all people of faith, especially Christians. Apparently Black and company find it hilarious to falsely accuse Christians while they intentionally distort the Bible. Black ought to apologize."

And while we are on the subject of the video, here is Keith Olberman interviewing Jack Black and the musical stars of the Prop 8 musical on Countdown:


Friday, December 05, 2008

"That's so gay" is not OK

So how long before we see the usual suspects get their panties in a collective twist over this:

The Ad Council and GLSEN have teamed up for a campaign, ThinkB4YouSpeak, intended to educate young people about homophobic language and its consequences. To that end, they've enlisted Wanda Sykes and Hillary Duff to appear in two PSAs that draw attention to the phrase "that's so gay" and its interpretations.

The ads are below, check them out. I'm not sure how much they will help with the problem they are intended to solve. But I'd be willing to bet the farm on the problems they will cause with homophobic organizations like Focus on the Family, which far prefer that our gay and lesbian youth remain targets of bullying and harrasment rather than be treated with the same respect their straight counterparts receive.

Afterall, what better way is there to keep children that don't meet the Focus on the Family standards for normal invisible than to keep them closeted and in fear of getting the snot beat out of them?


Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Bless me father for I have sinned and my last confession was ...

So the Rev. Joseph Illo, a Roman Catholic Priest in Modesto, California is dealing with a problem of massive proportions. In fact so massive he is sending out letters to all his parishioners, ordering those who have gone astray to get to confession asap {video here}:

A Roman Catholic priest has told parishioners they should confess if they voted for Barack Obama because the president-elect supports abortion.

The Rev. Joseph Illo says his parishioners at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Modesto shouldn't risk losing their "state of grace" by receiving communion sacrilegiously. He delivered the message in a Nov. 21 letter and during mass.

In an interview this week with the Modesto Bee, Illo says he sent the letter because Catholic teaching requires that people go to confession when they commit a mortal sin.

Wow, vote for Obama and you earn a mortal sin. That is some other kind of serious crazy.

Well Father Illo, here is my confession:

Bless me father for I have sinned. My last confession was so many years ago, I can't even give you a date. Suffice it to say it was right around the same time I vowed never, ever to walk through the doors of a church that has so lost its own way that it actually believes it can call my son intrinsically evil and objectively disordered while turning a blind eye to the true evil that went on for decades within its own walls.

But since I am supposed to be confessing my sins, let me throw a few at you.

Forgive me for voting for George W. Bush, a man who has been responsible for so much death, torture, suffering, and destruction he should burn in hell right alongside all the priests who either abused innoncent children or chose to protect the abuser rather than the victims.

Forgive me for having to work everyday to keep from hating with every fiber of my soul that little tiny man at the top of the Catholic Empire who dares to continue to demonize gays and lesbians and incite hatred and cruelty towards them, while foolishly thinking he has moral high ground left under his own gucci-clad feet to preach morality to others.

Forgive me for believing that there is nothing worse than a person with any kind of power (like a priest or a Pope) who is so filled with self-loathing and disgust for who he is that he spends his entire life and position of power making those who accept themselves for who they are miserable, and then using God to justify the hate and cruelty.

Forgive me for feeling nothing but contempt and disgust for a Church who has decided to enter into politics and dictate its political preferences to its followers through threats, coercion, and moral force.

Forgive me for believing that the Catholic Church's hatred for gays and lesbians (God's children mind you) is so blindingly evil that it cannot see how horrific its decision is "to oppose a proposed U.N. resolution calling on governments worldwide to de-criminalize homosexuality", a crime that in some countries results in the death penalty.

Forgive me for hoping that the Catholic Church continues to expose itself for what it is, a hate-filled, political, power-hungry organization that has lost its way and deserves the disdain that is increasingly being thrown its way. Share

The story of prop 8 Hollywood style

Via Andrew

See more Jack Black videos at Funny or Die