A Civil Rights Issue

Richard Cohen on the Rick Warren affair:

[Obama said] "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.

It is now clear that President-Elect Obama's choice of the Reverend Rick Warren to give the inaugural invocation has been an extremely divisive decision. Beyond the substantive issue, it was a political mistake. For this reason, it makes E.J. Dionne's take particularly strange in my view. More . . .

Dionne posits that Obama has deliberately enraged those who support gay and lesbian rights. He thinks there is a reason why:

Obama and Warren have helped each other in the past, and both know exactly what they're doing. . . . One need not be too pious about any of this. Both Warren and Obama are shrewd leaders who sense where the political winds are blowing.

He believes Warren's goal in this is the following:

An opening to Obama is the right move for this moment, and Warren appears to be genuinely interested in broadening evangelical Christianity's public agenda. In a recent interview with Steve Waldman of Beliefnet.com, Warren compared gay marriage to "an older guy marrying a child," and to "one guy having multiple wives and calling that marriage." But he also called upon evangelicals to be "the social change leaders in our society" engaged with "poverty and disease and charity and social justice and racial justice."

As Dionne describes it, Obama is willing to elevate Warren's anti-gay views in order to help Warren's "call" for evangelicals to be "engaged with 'poverty and disease and charity and social justice and racial justice.'" Of course even if this were true, it is problematic. what do we know of Warren's own engagement in "social justice?" We know he is an anti-gay bigot. We know he is virulently anti-choice. We know he is stridently anti-science. The upside on substantive issues of elevating Warren is not apparent to me.

Pols are pols and do what they do. So I doubt that Dionne's benign view of Obama's political motives is accurate. and of course we mean all pols. Jelani Cobb described a moment when Adlai Stevenson was an "inclusive pol":

In the name of national unity, the liberal Adlai Stevenson chose the segregationist John Sparkman as VP on the 1952 Democratic ticket. Black Democrats were rightfully furious. Unity is just as often a buzzword for those quiet periods where little changes.

Rick Warren's invitation is not as bad the Sparkman choice -- he's making a prayer, not policy. But it raises the memory of groups being left in the cold in the name of unity.

Stevenson lost in a landslide so his unity gesture was futile, as most are quite frankly. Dionne believes in them still:

Obama wants to encourage this move [by Warren], which would be good for him and good for progressive politics. Fear that Obama's analysis is exactly right is why so many conservatives are so angry with Warren for blessing the new president's inaugural.

Although I support same-sex marriage, I think that liberals should welcome Obama's success in causing so much consternation on the right. On balance, inviting Warren opens more doors than it closes.

Not only is this wrong I think, it is actually quite morally repulsive as well. The doors Dionne is willing to close involve the civil rights of gays and lesbians.

Dionne ends his column with some true silliness:

Yet liberals also need to come to terms with what it means to build a durable majority. Doing so requires not just easy gestures but hard ones. Here's a prayer that this one will be worth the risks it entails.

Dionne REALLY believes that Rick Warren leads us to the road of "durable majorities? What an idiotic thing to write. Perhaps the dumbest thing Dionne has ever written.

Speaking for me only

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    I must be living in bizzaro world (5.00 / 7) (#2)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:09:42 AM EST
    Since when does Cohen make sense and sound principled, and Dionne sound spineless?

    In any case, I'm happy to see that this "issue" is getting a full airing, and that the "serious people" are not in complete agreement. Bill Jelani Cobb doesn't count, but I think he is especially incisive.

    (Cohen's column would be better, BTW, if he chose a different pastor example: the right one is Donnie McClurkin).

    i too was stunned, (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by cpinva on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:56:21 AM EST
    Since when does Cohen make sense and sound principled, and Dionne sound spineless?

    not by dionne's spinelessness, that's a given, but by cohen. my conclusion, based on the available facts: this is not the richard cohen, but a "pod" person, placed here by an evil alien society, bent on taking over planet earth.

    prove me wrong!


    Via Digby (5.00 / 1) (#170)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:08:21 PM EST
    ....Every once in a while you'll see a hard core right winger who pushes funding for a particular health initiative because his granddaughter happens to get the disease or a mushmouthed centrist type who rails against police state tactics when his nephew is harassed by the cops.

    Today we have Richard Cohen with a column about Rick Warren's anti-gay bigotry, which I feel confident he wouldn't have written were it not for the fact that his much loved sister is gay.....[emphasis mine]



    I know what you mean Donald.... (5.00 / 2) (#198)
    by vml68 on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 09:19:39 AM EST
    I come from a very conservative Catholic family and was raised in the middle-east and asia, so the viewpoint that homosexuality is a sin was a normal one to me and one I shared.
    Going to college in the US got me comfortable with the concept of homosexuality but not to the point where I was supportive of gay marriage. Then my best friend told me she was a lesbian and that was enough to make me a firm advocate for gay marriage.
    I think for quite a few people finding out that their loved ones are gay is what gets them to see things a little more clearly.

    Huh? (none / 0) (#192)
    by squeaky on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 12:00:22 AM EST
    Your antipathy toward the man, which is rooted in other areas of disagreement with him, renders you clearly unqualified to pass such a personal judgment about him.

    Are you talking about me? Not sure that I have commented much on Cohen.  

    But obviously I agree with digby that Cohen is an idiot, who happens to have lots of empathy for his sister. Most likely they will spend Christmas together, at least in spirit.

    Timing is right.


    How do you have any kind (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:12:16 AM EST
    of "invocation" at all (an establishment of religion
    mistake in itself), and somehow dance around the brute fact that the desert tribal religious tradition has been gay bashing,in one form or another,for 2000 years?

    Expecting healing and reconciliation from that tradition is like expecting cobras to defang themselves. "The law" must be fulfilled.

    There are plenty of inclusive and inoffensive (5.00 / 7) (#5)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:14:38 AM EST
    religious leaders he could have chosen for this.

    When it comes to religion (5.00 / 5) (#15)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:28:52 AM EST
    in America, theres always going to some faction excluded and offended. Better to leave it in the churches and synogogues where those who wish can exercise their democratic right to partake or not partake.

    Well, I'm an atheist myself (5.00 / 4) (#22)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:32:09 AM EST
    but even from my point of view, they are not all equally bad. Obama could have made a choice that would have upset the fundamentalists instead of me.

    Im a gnostic agnostic (5.00 / 3) (#30)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:42:20 AM EST
    and to me the bottomline is that any form of govt meddling in, or promotion of, religion is a dangerous road to go down; for both religion AND govt.

    State religions (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by jondee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:46:54 AM EST
    always support the interests of the status quo and the ruling class. Always have, always will.

    Marriage should be between two loving individuals, (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by KeysDan on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:04:42 AM EST
    not between Church and State.  It should be banned.  Good example of such an ill-fated romance:  Czarist Russia and the Russian Orthodox Church were in each other's arms while riding together when their touring car  went off the cliff. Only one corpse could be resuscitated but It took over 75 years. Such star-crossed lovers never seem to learn.

    It's interesting that when you read (none / 0) (#47)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:12:58 AM EST
    the history of Russia and the church, the reasons why the Bolsheviks and their Communist heirs felt it imperative to cripple if not stamp out the church altogether becomes entirely understandable.

    Why (none / 0) (#54)
    by bocajeff on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:22:42 AM EST
    just between TWO individuals? Why can't someone have more than ONE spouse? What business is it of anyone what anyone else does?

    I don't care how many you have (5.00 / 1) (#176)
    by TimNCGuy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 06:54:38 PM EST
    as long as you aren't double dipping on the state and federal benefits that go with it.

    I don't know why but that model (5.00 / 1) (#191)
    by hairspray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:51:17 PM EST
    always seems to be between one man and at least several women.  And for some reason the women get younger and younger and the number of offspring multiply rapidly.  Soon there are too many people for one guy to take care of and you get the drift.  The fundamentalist Mormons around Hillsdale Utah are a rather classic example.  Somehow I think one to one is a more equal power sharing scenario and seems not to disenfranchise the women as the polygamous scenario does.  

    I believe the scenario (none / 0) (#197)
    by vml68 on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 09:03:27 AM EST
    of one man with more than one woman tends to be prevalent in the west. The one woman with multiple men is prevalent in Asia and some african tribes (I am ofcourse excluding the arab/predominantly islamic countries).

    You are right, (none / 0) (#59)
    by KeysDan on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:26:46 AM EST
    change that to "loving individuals".

    Non Sequitur (none / 0) (#66)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:49:58 AM EST
    And quite dishonest red herring in this discussion, imo.  You are restating Warrens bigoted position, surprised that you have not mentioned marrying children as well.

    I agree with Bocajeff and keysdan (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by vml68 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:25:58 PM EST
    As long as the relationship is between consenting adults (consenting and adults being the key words) I don't see what is wrong.
    There are plenty of cultures that practice polygamy.

    Comparing homosexuality to pedophilia and bestiality is crazy.


    Nonsense (5.00 / 3) (#76)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:37:36 PM EST
    The issue is not about changing US laws to allow polygamy, bestiality, or pedophilia, it is about equal protection clause. All americans are allowed to enter into a monogamous marriage, except gay people.

    If you think that being gay is a choice like polygamy, bestiality or pedophilia, so be it. YOu do not have any standing in this argument then.

    You are in 100% agreement with Warren's bigoted views.


    Take it easy.... (none / 0) (#80)
    by vml68 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:00:34 PM EST
    I did not say that homosexuality is a choice. Polygamy is. What I meant is that I don't see any reason to not allow polygamy. So when people say that if we allow gay marriage then we have to allow polygamy too, I say why not allow both. If the polygamy extends to only women/men in the relationship, I'm fine with that too!
    I draw the line at pedophilia and bestiality.

    Irrelevant (5.00 / 2) (#81)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:06:53 PM EST
    This thread is about civil rights, equal protections. If you want to lobby for polygamy, fine. Were it allowed under US law, and were gay people were excluded from entering into polygamous marriages, your point would be germane to this thread.

    Since polygamy is illegal in the US, your comment is either a non-sequitur, or an argument supporting Warren bigoted position.


    This thread is about civil rights (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by vml68 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:27:06 PM EST
    Yes it is. Though from reading the other posts I believe I am not the only one who has gone slightly of topic. I did not introduce the subject of polygamy, I was agreeing with the other two posters.
    As for your insistence that I am arguing Warren's bigoted positions, you are free to believe what you want. I certainly don't feel the need to justify myself to you.

    Not Arguing Warren's Point? (none / 0) (#90)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:41:53 PM EST
    Perhaps you are unaware of Warrens argument:

    Warren compared gay marriage to "an older guy marrying a child," and to "one guy having multiple wives and calling that marriage."

    Just a coincidence that you argue the same point?


    Of course.... (5.00 / 1) (#94)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:51:35 PM EST
    straight marriage, gay marriage, and polygamist marriage are comparable...there are all types of committed relationships.

    Warren has a problem with 2 of the 3...lovers of freedom should be just fine and dandy with all 3 as long as all parties are consenting.


    You might want to go back and read (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by vml68 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:03:42 PM EST
    my previous post where I stated that for people who make the argument that if gay marraige is allowed then so should polygamy, my answer is if that is a sticking point then allow both.

    I don't give a sh*t what connections/arguments Warren makes as long as he is not the person making the decisions on who should/should not be allowed to get married.
    It seems to me that you are hung up on the fact that (in your mind) I am equating gay marriage and polygamy (Warren's position) rather than the fact that I am in favor of both(NOT Warren's positon).

    And since I seem to be repeating myself over and over and you are doing the same, I'd like to put an end to this.


    it certainly is no (none / 0) (#113)
    by cpinva on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:30:03 PM EST
    coincidence that you're stupid enough to be sucked into it, you usually are.

    Just a coincidence that you argue the same point?

    warren's, and the rest of his ilk's, "point" is an easily dispatched red herring. always has been, always will be. where is it written in stone that polygamy (between consenting adults), is any less better a form of marriage, than between two consenting adults? take your time responding.

    simply put, the laws against polygamy are, as are most things, man made. as such, they can be unmade. it isn't a physical law of nature. the right to enter into a polygamous marriage is every bit as much of a civil right, as is the right to enter into a same-sex marriage.

    for myself, i'll pass on polygamy, i have enough trouble dealing with one live-in female. but i wouldn't deny that right to anyone else.


    Sucked In? (none / 0) (#122)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:37:59 PM EST
    No polygamy is just as much a red herring to this thread as it is to  Warren's argument. You are the one getting sucked in to off topic discussions.

    I'm surprised squeaky... (none / 0) (#86)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:23:13 PM EST
    It all ties together man...the same powers by which the state can forbid gay marriage, they can forbid polygamist marriage.

    It is all wrong and all an unnecessary tyranny.


    Yeah (5.00 / 2) (#103)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:17:37 PM EST
    Everyone should to be able to do as he or she pleases, but the issue of gay marriage has little to do with that subject. Most of the bigots argue along those lines in order to scare people using false equivalents. Not saying that you are a bigot but the fact that they do argue this way should give you cause to notice.

    Gay marriage has to do with equal rights. It is unconstitutional to allow heterosexuals one set of rights and not allow homosexuals the same rights. Nothing more, nothing less.

    If you want to argue that GBLT marriage is any different from heterosexual marriage, or that it harms our society in any way, so be it. We part ways on that.

    Poligamy, pedophillia, necrophilia, bestiality, etc, are red herrings in the scope of equal protection laws. No one is allowed to engage in those practices legally. It is an entirely different subject.


    I see what you're saying now squeaky.... (none / 0) (#116)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:31:34 PM EST
    and you are correct.  I'm arguing for greater liberty and equality under the law in general, not equal protection specifically.  I want the same for gays and polygamists that I want for my own hedonist arse...life, liberty, and happiness.

    And I don't get why polygamy would scare people.  Or why freedom scares people so, for that matter.  I'll never get it.


    Polygamy (none / 0) (#101)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:12:28 PM EST
    Fine but you should be required to designate one as the beneficiary. I don't see why someone should be able to collect three or thirty checks a month unless it's me!

    Sounds fair to me... (none / 0) (#105)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:19:04 PM EST
    maybe if we didn't base so many rights, benefits, and priveledges on whether or not you have a stupid piece of paper saying your "married", this wouldn't even be an issue.

    I must agree (none / 0) (#111)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:26:53 PM EST
    As a society we must protect those who are vulnerable, children and animals.  But if someone wants to have five wives, and he can find five women who agree to that arrangement, it should be legal as they are all consenting adults.  

    Fine (none / 0) (#118)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:34:03 PM EST
    But what does that have to do with equal protection? Nothing except a distraction and change of subject.

    Assisted suicide, legalizing all drugs, speeding, immigration laws,  etc are all things to argue for, but have little to do with equal rights.


    Although its not really on point (none / 0) (#87)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:26:32 PM EST
    I would love to see the argument that explains how a pedophile's attraction to children is his/her choice, but a gay person's attraction the same sex is not.

    As I'm pretty sure you wouldn't throw something like that around unless you were sure you could make the argument, I'd sure like to see it.

    Polygamy is obviously a choice, and bestiality is to icky to even rationally consider...


    I totally agree... (none / 0) (#85)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:21:05 PM EST
    we need to declare, once and for all, that whatever goes down between consenting adults is allowed as long as it does not victimize or unduly infringe on anothers right to same.

    In my book, thats how you define freedom.  Anything less is unacceptable.


    So if one person consents (none / 0) (#95)
    by starsandstripes on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:54:09 PM EST
    to being killed by another, it should be allowed?

    I'm just trying to understand the argument here? It doesn't seem as black and white as I had thought.


    As crazy as it sounds... (5.00 / 2) (#97)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:01:07 PM EST
    I'd say yes, assisted suicide should be legal.

    Why not?  If somebody is tired of living and wants help ending their life, and somebody is willing to help them...what right does society or the state have to stop them?


    Yes (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by TheRealFrank on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:11:25 AM EST
    There should be no religion at a presidential inauguration, period.

    Hello, separation of church and state? But, I suppose we can't expect anything from Obama on that front. He wanted to expand faith-based programs.

    I remember a poll which listed a number of things that would prevent people from voting for someone for president. The candidate being an atheist ranked higher than the candidate being gay..


    Good luck with that............. (none / 0) (#112)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:29:01 PM EST
    Most Americans want a President who believes in a higher power.  Most Americans think that a President needs all the help that he can get.  They want one hand on the bible and the other in the air when he takes that oath of office.  

    Yes, there are (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:22:29 PM EST
    many other leaders Obama could have chosen but he chose Warren.  Of course Obama knew the message he would be sending with this choice.  He went ahead and sent it to one and all.

    The comparisons to racism and segregation (5.00 / 5) (#6)
    by ricosuave on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:15:55 AM EST
    are right on the money.  Gay marriage bans should be constantly compared to miscegenation laws, and every time someone says something about an "durable majority" like Dionne does, he should be asked if the Republican's racist "Southern Strategy" is the model that they feel is best.

    The part about explaining Warren's reasons for approaching Obama are the worst.  Like we really need an explanation why a big-shot minister wants a relationship with politicians?  Dionne should be explaining why Obama's supposed bottom-up, community-led, you-are-in-control campaign's first official presidential activity will be to hand the microphone to the rich and powerful and not to someone more grass-rootsy and community-organizing-ish.

    Agree and Disagree (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:16:02 AM EST
    I agree that the idea, seemingly expressed by Dionne, that moves like this will have the effect of gaining the support among some evangelicals to a progressive platform, is completely silly.  And, of course, immoral to boot.

    However, from Obama's perpective, unfortunately, I don't think it was a political mistake.  Of coure I say this because I assume that a) Obama is not liberal and actively disapproves of liberal policies, and b) he understands that his success is dependent on being a media darling, and he rightly predicted that the media would approve of his choice of Warren.

    But did the media apporve of choosing (5.00 / 5) (#8)
    by tigercourse on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:19:00 AM EST
    Warren? The latest I heard was Gergen on CNN saying that Obama would have to do something to rectify this.

    That's the thing about Cohen's column (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:22:38 AM EST
    This is not being universally treated as a brilliant choice by the villagers.

    Well, even the Village (none / 0) (#20)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:30:58 AM EST
    is not always entirely in lockstep.  But, the majority are fine with this, and at the end of the day, people who continue to criticize in a few weeks will be told to STFU.

    And, my bet is that those in the Village who criticize this as being a political mistake by Obama will center on the solution that Obama needs to somehow get a better grip on his emotional, whiny gay base so that he can achieve his laudable post-partisan goals...or something to that effect.   Just watch.


    I think Obama is only getting (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:33:41 AM EST
    the rump base of the village on this one. That's why our political pressure can be effective.

    Just wait a few weeks (none / 0) (#26)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:36:49 AM EST
    if people try to bring this up close to or on inauguration day.  The contempt of the Villagers on any such words/actions will be sharp.

    That sounds like defeatism to me (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:39:35 AM EST
    I'd like to try and make something positive out of this, even if it turns out to be impossible at the end of the day.

    Well, I think of it more (5.00 / 3) (#31)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:42:47 AM EST
    as realism.  Recognizing that Obama is an obstacle, not an ally, to achieving full equal rights for gay people and women, and that the Village will provide cover for him because their worldviews are largely in synch, doesn't mean we can't keep fighting for those rights.

    But why? (none / 0) (#21)
    by Fabian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:32:09 AM EST
    The Villagers have made room for prominent religious leaders before.  What's so different about Rick Warren?

    (Is it too much to hope that The Village is learning to think of something other than its entitlements and privileges?)


    Because Warren is a bit of (5.00 / 2) (#52)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:20:01 AM EST
    a lightning rod, especially to the Village's many gay friends, colleagues and relatives.  This is one area the right wing is correct on when it yawps about "liberal media bias."  Media types, generally being educated and widely (if superficially) informed, hold pretty liberal social views.  They clearly did not expect Obama to do something like this right out of the gate, and my impression is that they're pretty uncomfortable with it.

    David Gergen is a pretty good indicator of the attitudes of a good chunk of the Village, moreso actually than Broder is these days.


    Better than the McClurkin response (none / 0) (#18)
    by Fabian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:29:37 AM EST
    Which seemed to be a concerted effort to sweep such unpleasantries under rug.

    There's a difference between primary contender and president elect.  Amazing what one can get away with in a contentious primary.


    Well, I think it's already (none / 0) (#28)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:39:55 AM EST
    clear that Obama is not going to do something to rectify this, and that the Village will ultimately be just fine with that.  

    Warren notwithstanding (5.00 / 6) (#13)
    by Lil on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:26:30 AM EST
    I am even more offended by listening to people describe themselves as "liberals" and then proceed to defend this decision, (heard on talk radio or written comments). The disclaimer is a variation of "some of my best friends are..."

    For the group who defend this in this way, I just want to say that this is shameful, IMO. People need to stop asking gays to just be patient, maybe next time, things are getting better, we have to bring the unenlightened along at a slower pace, etc.  This amounts to just sit in the back of the bus until more people get comfortable with you.

    Knowing that there are still bigots out there is one thing, but the self-described liberals who defend in this way are much more offensive to me. Stand up and be an ally!

    People will do anything to defend (5.00 / 1) (#115)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:31:28 PM EST
    Their choice.  Obama is the truth, the hope, and the way.  Anything that he does will be forgiven by his followers and by much of the press.  

    BTW, Thanks BTD. (none / 0) (#14)
    by Lil on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:28:50 AM EST
    Why Warren in particular? (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:30:44 AM EST
    As Dionne describes it, Obama is willing to elevate Warren's anti-gay views in order to help Warren's "call" for evangelicals to be "engaged with 'poverty and disease and charity and social justice and racial justice.'"

    Is Obama telling us that Rick Warren is the only minister with a large following in the country, or even the only "evangelical", whatever that means, that is engaged with ending poverty, disease, and social injustice?  Why does Warren have such a large following?  My guess is that his anti-gay, anti-woman, views are popular among his followers. Obama is trying to win over his followers and ignore that they are anti-gay? They sure aren't going to forget it.  

    Obama has been played here, and big time.

    Doesn't seem like it to me, not at all.

    I think Warren gets a lot more out of this deal (5.00 / 5) (#40)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:35:11 AM EST
    than Obama does.  Warren gets highly elevated status - now he is being talked of as 'the nation's pastor', when I never even heard of him before last summer. Obama get...what, exactly? A reputation as a conciliator?  He already had that. He is not going to get scads of evangelical votes if he does not adopt their viewpoints. Maybe that's the next step.

    With all due respect (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:24:58 AM EST
    just because you never heard of him before last summer doesn't mean he's suddenly risen from obscurity.  He's been a powerful and somewhat controversial rising force in the evangelical community for quite some time now.

    Read up on him.  His views on sexuality are IMHO odious, but he's a good deal less strident about them than, let's say, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, and he's been trying to get evangelicals to deemphasize those things and spend more time, attention and energy on issues of poverty and the environment.


    You are definitely right (none / 0) (#72)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:29:12 PM EST
    about that.  My never having heard of him does not mean he is not popular.

    But I don't think you get 'America's Pastor' status without some political juice.


    Not necessarily (5.00 / 5) (#67)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:51:39 AM EST
    I'm hardly an expert on this, but I do live and work in an area w/ a very high minority population. Whites, in fact, are a distinct minority at my job.

    And a stunning majority are evangelical and not so evangelical African Americans who do, in fact, hold similar views to Warren re: homosexuality.

    But Obama has their vote. He had it from the git-go. Nothing is going to change that.

    Furthermore, it's my experience (totally anecdotal, of course) that Obama never had the white evangelical vote, and he's not going to get it, unless things change radically w/i white evangelical churches - which simply isn't going to happen. They may have come to despise Bush, but others got their vote, or they abstained entirely from voting. The days of the gentle Jimmy Carter style evangelicals are pretty well gone.


    Of course! (5.00 / 1) (#117)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:32:13 PM EST
    There is very little downside for Rick Warren, and lots of publicity, book sales, etc.  

    Warren is not popular (none / 0) (#70)
    by MKS on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:20:41 PM EST
    because of his anti-gay, anti-woman views.  His popularity stems from a different source.  He has cultivated an image of being moderate and de-emphasizing abortion and gay rights....He needed to do this to thrive in California.

    The emphasis on his views of gay rights is probably not what he wanted.


    I'm the biggest cynic on the topic (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:35:07 PM EST
    of mega-churches you can find, so I defer to the more reasoned opinions here.

    If Warren ever does change his mind about gay rights and abortion, we can see how many followers he gains or loses.


    We don't even have to get them to... (5.00 / 4) (#100)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:09:42 PM EST
    change their minds, all we have to do is to get them to realize that they can't impose their views on the rest of us and limit the civil rights of others.  We need to convince them that one day maybe their kind will be on the receiving end of the tyranny of a new majority.

    That's what I had naively hoped Obama was up to with this thing...I'm realizing it's all about ensuring Democratic victories in upcoming elections by bringing in traditional Republican voters.  It's all about the power when you're talking about D's and R's...they don't give a sh*t about rights.  I should have my head examined for even entertaining the thought of anything else....self-delusion at work.


    Most white evangelicals already believe they're on the receiving end of tyranny and/or that their grabs for power are absolutely necessary because they have been so victimized by tyranny. Yea, yea, i know, withness recent years, etc., but they've developed an incredibly convoluted mindset in which 1. they're heady with the power of recent years, and 2. they've convinced themselves they're victims of tyranny that must be fought at all costs.

    Oh, yea, and that tyranny is at the hands of Lib Brools.

    At this point, the best that can be done is to marginalize them and work to deprogram the younger generations. They're not going to give up their power or their self-righteous, self-proclaimed victimization easily.


    No easy task.... (none / 0) (#125)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:43:06 PM EST
    to be sure, but I won't go so far as to call it impossible.

    I've been amazed at the common ground I've found with some extreme holy rollers.  Specifically on my stoop debating with the door to door Jehovahs...that aren't inherently evil people.

    We've gotta share space and a country with them...all we can do is try.


    Yikes (none / 0) (#140)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:56:44 PM EST
    Be careful with those Jehovah Witnesses. They'll be at your house every day if you're not careful.


    More important, Jehovah Witnesses aren't a part of this equation. They're considered basically Satanists by white evangelicals. No joke.

    As are Catholics and Muslims and .... ad infinitum.

    I'll bet you, there will be no turning the white evangelicals. We'll give it five years. $100. With interest. At current rates.


    I'm sure I could turn at least one:).... (none / 0) (#147)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:14:14 PM EST
    There are saintly evangelicals removing the shackles of their indoctrination as we speak, on college campuses and in big cities across America.

    You meet them on occasion out and about...kids who grew up going to bible camp becoming flaming liberals when they get to the NYU dorms:)


    The young'uns, yes (none / 0) (#151)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:19:39 PM EST
    But those entremched old farts? HA! They've been in hog heaven the past few years, and they're not about to give up their - um - Godliness.

    Their brains are totally twisted up in conspiracy theories and positively baroque justifications.


    Hear you.... (5.00 / 1) (#153)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:21:05 PM EST
    hard to teach old dogs of all stripes new tricks.

    Definitely not evil (none / 0) (#142)
    by CST on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:02:53 PM EST
    One thing I like about Jehovahs Witnesses, they don't think I'm going to hell (don't believe in hell).  And neither do I.

    They're rather fun (none / 0) (#154)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:24:31 PM EST
    I've tried every trick in the book to get rid of them, though, and it's nearly impossible.

    Not even my extremely large dogs did the trick. Of course, it probably didn't help that the scariest looking of the two, a perfectly gigantic black German Shepherd girl, is an affection monster, and practically opened the gate and led them right to the refrigerator.

    I finally learned to fling myself on the ground and crawl to the nearest high obstacle whenever they came calling.


    I'm a weirdo... (none / 0) (#157)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:43:56 PM EST
    I like when they come by...for the same reasons I like Talkleft so much...I get off on how people think.  The whackier the better:)

    I think I might have scared them away for good though...they haven't been around in awhile, unless they've been knocking when I'm not home.  Or they didn't take kindly to my offer to share a smoke while we shot the sh*t.


    ... started coming around.

    I told them I'm Jewish (I'm not, although some of my family is). Totally backfired - they were thrilled by this revelation.

    Then I told them I despised Bush and completely opposed Iraq. OMG, little did I know they hated Bush, too, and had their own reasons for opposing Iraq, although they were somewhat titillated by the idea of the prophecies revealed.

    Etc. etc.

    I think I finally claimed to be a Druid or something, at which point they simply had to have my phone number and began bringing around younger members of the congregation to help work on me.

    Hiding from them proved to be the only effective measure in the end. :D


    What Digby said (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by ruffian on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:49:03 AM EST
    What I resent most about the Warren selection is that Obama is contributing to this:

    From Digby, post called Coming Together:

    And it would be a mistake to underestimate the power of liberal hating as an organizing principle. The entire contemporary American political culture is based on it. Sadly for Coulter, that doesn't necessarily translate into Republican success. After all, establishment Democrats are giving them quite a run for their money. And with our new directive to be tolerant of the bigots who despise us and everything we stand for, we'll all soon be on exactly the same page and the country can come together in its mutual loathing for ... us. It could work.

    Another Straight White Male tells the Gays: STFU! (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by JoeCHI on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:00:24 AM EST
    Why am I not surprised that another straight, white, male is telling us gays to stop being such sissies?  

    And while we're pointing our gay, well-manicured fingers, let me point mine toward gay Obama-apologists like Sullivan and Ethridge and ask, "Self-loath much?"

    If Obama really wants to elevate a divisive bigot to lead The Nation in prayer, let him do it on the backs of his own family and community and invite a white-supremacist preacher, instead!

    That's what a real manly-man would do!  

    Yes, Obama is a disgusting sissy (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:56:01 AM EST
    The Dems always lose in the South, the votes that a white-supremacist preacher could garner!  Now that's some TRUE HONEST WITH INTEGRITY inclusiveness and aisle crossing!!!!!!!!  I can't believe what PANSY Obama is, it's gross!

    By the way, this is exactly what (5.00 / 9) (#50)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:14:46 AM EST
    DKos and other sites did on women's issues awhile back.  Women were supposed to STFU because Kos said he (as if he is some sort of God of the base) didn't care one whit about the prochoice issue and women all over the sphere were told to STFU.  I didn't stand for it then and I'm not standing for it now.  I will never argue for the center of the Democratic party to mimic the center of the Republican party.  Talk about no sense of self, talk about selling out and losing your way, talk about operating from fear instead of truth.  I swear to God if someone attempts to slap an MLK label on Obama again in my vicinity I'll be delivering the STFU along with a YOU WISH!

    You know (5.00 / 5) (#79)
    by ColumbiaDuck on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:58:48 PM EST
    I'm not opposed to compromise as a rule.  If I want 100% universal health care but can get 90%, I'll take 90% because it's still on the road to what I want.

    But basic rights are not something you can split down the middle.  I would have thought "seperate but equal" would have taught us that.  

    I'm guessing that some people feel pretty cavalier about bargaining with my rights because they know that theirs will never be in serious jeopardy (cough*dionne*cough).  So if the gays and women want to whine about rights, they should STFU.


    Good (none / 0) (#51)
    by starsandstripes on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:17:13 AM EST
    I was wondering what was up - the previous comment was so uncharacteristic of you. But it makes sense now.

    I need to use a snark tag more often (5.00 / 4) (#58)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:26:32 AM EST
    The posters comment though about building unity upon the backs of the gays hit THAT nerve.  I remember typing many many comments during the pie wars about how disgusting it was that folks thought you could build real dreams on the tears and toil and abuse of the rights of others.  I still carry the scars and it is okay. I'm a woman and I'm proud to carry those scars more so than if I could show off to you my unblemished skin.  If I don't fight that fight I'm the new slave.  If gays don't fight this fight, they are the new slave.  STFU is something that the slave master says.

    Thank you--and thank you to BTD and others (5.00 / 6) (#96)
    by kempis on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:56:55 PM EST
    who are carrying on the battle today. I typed myself hoarse yesterday and I needed to give myself a break for a bit today. I agree with every single word you've said, especially this:

    If gays don't fight this fight, they are the new slave.

    Again, I am horrified by the Obama-apologists who go absofrickinlutely berserk if you question Obama's judgment at all. They're the same ones who hated Hillary with a passion--and all she stood for in their eyes--and yet now that Barack is apparently cool with her, eh. Hillary? Yeah, she's cool--and will make a great Secretary of State. (I agree, but I got there by a very different route, one that involved respecting her talents and accomplishments all along.)

    Obama screwed this up--hugely. I'm all for working with Warren on AIDS and poverty and illiteracy--and I applaud his efforts on those issues--but Obama could have done that without honoring his theology of anti-GLBT kookiness.

    I am furious at the damned mainstream media, once again, for being an echo chamber for a PR-formulated meme: "Warren is America's Pastor!" Oh, the stories went, he's so cool and post-Falwell and expansive and inclusive. Bullsh*t. His church's views on homosexuality are are as repugnant as anything Falwell said. But Warren has been marketed as a Starbucks kinda preacher--and that has been mindlessly repeated.

    And I'm furious at the Obama camp for either not bothering to vet Warren's views on gay equality (a possibility, though disturbing if true)OR not caring--also disturbing.

    This should not have happened. It is inexcusable.

    The only thing we can hope for at this point is that Warren, who seems to have ambitions to become the next Billy Graham, may have a come-to-Jesus epiphany and declare his past stance on gay equality wrong. It's a possibility. After all, if he wants to be Billy Graham--spiritual adviser to presidents for the next 20 years or so--he is going to have to moderate his views on homosexuality. The young people, fortunately, are overwhelmingly in favor of gay equality. Warren operates by a marketing-research-driven philosophy and is apparently ambitious as all get-out, so it would not surprise me to see him do this.

    But he hasn't recanted his views yet. He's scrubbed as many as he can from his church's site, but that's not the same thing.

    So this is wrong. So wrong. And I am deeply insulted and hurt as a lesbian and as a human being. Obama's people can take those talking points they've tried to spin this disaster with and shove 'em.


    Great post (5.00 / 7) (#121)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:37:45 PM EST
    Of course Obama's team didn't choose Rick Warren by accident.  Warren's views are well known by nearly everyone on the democrat side of the aisle.  Obama simply didn't care about the message he was sending to gays with his choice.  His attitude seems to be that gays will vote democrat anyway, so who cares if they object.  Disgusting.  Insulting.  Mean.  

    This will probably sound completely (5.00 / 4) (#164)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:08:06 PM EST
    utterly selfish to some here, but what is this fascination in "schooling" Warren?  I'd rather spend my time and efforts in a soup kitchen helping someone who really needs the help dealing with Maslow's hierarchy of needs.  Isn't there some other well fed and groomed minister out there who needs less psychotherapy?  Why is it our job to "help" Warren with his ignorance and bigot problem?  Why can't I reward someone with a spotlight who has done the hard lifetime work of examining their own personal biases and finally GOT IT......we are all equal as human beings and all deserving of the same rights?

    I'm only advocating that people speak up (5.00 / 2) (#171)
    by kempis on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:19:05 PM EST
    It's up to him what he does with the information--and the outrage. My worry is that some are attempting to argue that the outrage is excessive and people should STFU. I hope people continue to voice their hurt and their indignation. It's important.

    Even though this has angered me A LOT (5.00 / 2) (#200)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 09:58:21 AM EST
    it has provided a canvas.  As a straight woman I spent a couple of years feeling shell shocked over how virally my rights came under the knife and judges passed muster.  It had been a long time since that type of female anger had needed to be expressed and heck, even within the time frame of my generation the majority of the hard work had already been done.  I have felt repeatedly violated these past 8 years and look forward to better days ahead.  It is time for an equal rights ammendment.  I spent seven years as a single mom working twice as hard for half as much.

    A Majority of what? (5.00 / 3) (#39)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:19:22 AM EST
    I found this really upsetting:

    Yet liberals also need to come to terms with what it means to build a durable majority.

    What will this majority look like? So, to maintain power, Democrat's have to deny woman's rights, gay rights and what else? If that's the direstion the party feels it needs to take, then the country does need to explore a third party system.

    And what's really bad (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by sallywally on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:01:53 PM EST
    is that this is not necessary. The country is behind inclusion - at least to the point of civil unions, isn't it?

    Yes.... (none / 0) (#43)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:47:31 AM EST
    maybe we should all become Libertarian voters...Libertarian philosophy demands nothing less than freedom and equality under the law for everybody.  Or form a new party combining the best of libertarian and liberal/progressive ideas.

    The question is, are we willing to sacrifice some of the big government liberalism we may like to form a new coalition of the pissed on and left out...I tell ya I'm down and have been down for sometime.  F*ck national health care and a jobs program, I just want liberty and equality...and if I die starving in a ditch so be it.  Who is with me?


    Who's offering national (5.00 / 3) (#44)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:52:24 AM EST

    Touche my friend.... (none / 0) (#64)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:40:27 AM EST

    Though maybe you agree that when your govt. and the two parties do nothing but piss on you, you realize what is most important...life, liberty, and happiness.  Glorious freedom and true equality in the eyes of the law.  The rest, even healthcare, is grazy...but there is no going without life, liberty, and happiness.

    It's what brought me from party-line brain-dead liberal to confused left-leaning character with libertarian tendencies....the simple question "what can I not live without?"


    Duh (none / 0) (#78)
    by ColumbiaDuck on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:55:55 PM EST
    Democrats have a majority right now.  But it is not "durable" according to the Village definition because it is comprised of gays, women, blacks, hispanics and other non-white men groups.  You can't have a "real" majority without the white guys.  duh



    If Obama HAD to choose a Christian (5.00 / 7) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:41:10 AM EST
    to do Warren's job instead of being "Lincolnesque" and going with a Universal Unitarian, why couldn't he have chosen from the many wonderful Episcopalian ministers out there that support civil rights for all human beings?

    Ha. Obama might have picked the (none / 0) (#73)
    by ThatOneVoter on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:29:35 PM EST
    prominent Nigerian Anglican bishop who believes in the death penalty for homosexuality.

    Why can't Obama lead on the issues of poverty (5.00 / 10) (#48)
    by Anne on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:13:14 AM EST
    and social justice, appealing to the belief that helping those less fortunate is the right thing to do, and do it without forming some sort of (truly unholy) alliance with someone whose charitable leanings do not - in any way, shape or form - make up for his and his followers' anti-gay, anti-choice, anti-stem cell agenda?  I mean, isn't that what real leadership is?  

    The Rick Warren situation gives me real pause when I consider that Obama seems committed to expanding the faith-based initiatives started by Bush; how much of this alliance between Obama and Warren is going to result in Saddleback Church being given federal dollars for these kinds of programs, and how many other regressive and repressive religious groups are also going to have their coffers plumped up with our money?

    Why should anyone should think that Obama's choice of Warren for the invocation, his reference to Warren as being one of his spiritual advisors, is evidence of Obama moving in a new spiritual direction, away from the divisiveness of Wright and Pfleger?  Why is no one asking why Obama is so comfortable with people like Wright and Pfleger and Warren if he doesn't share their views?  Where is his spiritual alliance with those who do not seek to discriminate and disenfranchise and subjugate?

    The whole thing just makes me very uneasy, and is doing nothing to help me keep an open, positive mind as we get closer to this new administration.  Now that Obama is beginning to make decisions about the shape and direction of his administration, we are getting a close and uncomfortable look at how he thinks and what he is willing to do - and I fear that the Rick Warren decision is not an outlier; it's looking more and more like it may be the tip of a very ugly iceberg.  

    If I ever want to cut to the chase (5.00 / 3) (#53)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:20:12 AM EST
    of Democratic party hipocrisy and get to the unmasked definitions of what is currently taking place, all I have to do is read here.  At least I'm only super ticked for a day though instead of slow drooling rage :)

    Gays need to demonstrate at inaugural invocation (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by Saul on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:27:09 AM EST
    Don't advertise it just do it during the invocation

    Opt-out on Obama (5.00 / 5) (#93)
    by WeHoDem on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:48:43 PM EST
    Here's what I'm doing in response to Mr. Obama's choosing Mr. Warren for his invocation: I've unsubscribed from all further Obama emails.

    This takes you to a page that asks the reason for unsubscribing which I simply put: Rick Warren

    Many of my friends have done the same thing, removing ourselves from Obama's massive donor list in protest over the elevation of a man with such hateful views to a place of honor at this historic event.

    I don't have a problem with Mr. Obama interacting with Mr. Warren; I believe inclusion is always better than exclusion, a belief that has only been strengthened after Prop. 8 stripped me of my rights. But what I object to is Mr. Warren's prominent place in such a solemn moment in history. There is NO WAY President-elect Obama would have had an anti-Semitic or anti-black bigot give his invocation.

    Frankly, I'm tired of politicians, especially Democrats, scoring political points of LGBT pain.


    Excellent idea (5.00 / 3) (#102)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:15:47 PM EST
    I just unsubscribed and put in Rick Warren for the reason.

    Ya know, reading your comment made me realize another action that should be taken. Requests for equal time for an anti-Semitic and anti-black bigots. Let's do some reaching out Mr Obama . . .


    Rick Warren strikes me as an egotist! (none / 0) (#193)
    by hairspray on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 12:11:42 AM EST
    Obama could have chosen a more humble person.  The swagger and swirl of these evangelicals is offensive and their bigotry is accepted. If Obama thinks he can sway this man he is really naive.

    How and where? (none / 0) (#61)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:32:33 AM EST
    How do they get the press coverage?  I want a split screen on CNN!

    You fake it. (none / 0) (#63)
    by Saul on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:36:33 AM EST
    You don't carry signs or advertise you go in as incognito.  Just like you are there to support Obama

    Can't agree (5.00 / 3) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:45:35 AM EST
    They don't need to sneak anywhere.  It is intolerable that gays would have to sneak anything anyplace deemed Democratic party territory in order to express that they are being abused!

    Saul is right...the demonstration (none / 0) (#77)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:50:41 PM EST
    should be stand and listen with your backs to the podium...facing the crowd and looking them in the eye.

    Throwing shoes... (5.00 / 3) (#107)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:22:27 PM EST
    seems to garner a lot of press attention.

    Imagine thousands of loafers and heels in the air at once!  That would be pretty damn cool.


    This cracks me up (5.00 / 1) (#139)
    by Cream City on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:55:52 PM EST
    Thanks!  And it inspires more ideas. . . .

    Nah...insulting, not practical (none / 0) (#145)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:10:46 PM EST
    and not effective.  Too aggressively physical.

    What would MLK do?


    He would have harnessed 200,000 or more (5.00 / 1) (#150)
    by Saul on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:18:48 PM EST
    gays and protested on the main mall like he did with his I have a dream protest.

    Yup....he would have (none / 0) (#174)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:36:45 PM EST
    organized a non-violent demonstration with as big a coalition as he could muster.  It might well have been a silent protest...no speech, to counter the speechiness of the occasion...just silent and disapproving witness to this betrayal.

    Not everything has to be a shouting match to be effective.


    Good point.... (none / 0) (#152)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:19:54 PM EST
    one heel hits Obama and its an attempted assasination cahrge and a long stint in the federal pen.  Then again...it usually takes good people of conscience going to jail to change things.

    My guess....MLK would sit with Warren and try to talk some sense into him.  If MLK would have supported gay marriage at all...he was a bible thumper, although my kind of bible thumper:)  Who knows...he might have held the same position as Obama...full rights and civil unions yes, marriage no.


    I asked what MLK would do (5.00 / 1) (#169)
    by oldpro on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:48:44 PM EST
    relative to a civil-rights protest...at least that was my intention.  Non-violent protest to send an effective message was his goal and I'm suggesting that gays learn from that.

    The other questions about MLK and Warren and their beliefs and ministries are not of interest or germane, IMHO.  That was then...this is now...believerpeople all have their own niches of orthodoxy and I care nothing for any of them.

    I care about their civil rights...and mine...and yours.


    "I care about civil rights..." (5.00 / 1) (#196)
    by kdog on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 07:55:53 AM EST
    That makes two of us...civil rights, human rights, equal rights, and my personal fav...inalienable rights.

    Sadly though...you really only have the ones you can defend.  If a hospital denies a gay couple visitation or decision-making rights, or an insurance company denies benefits to a gay couple...you simply can't take no for an answer...defend your rights, fight for your rights, non-violently if possible, but if that doesn't work, I say by any means possible.  I'm no pacifist.


    I know what I plan to do.... (none / 0) (#186)
    by MoveThatBus on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:17:12 PM EST
    keep my TV turned off.

    Obama is going to do whatever he wants to do, those who disagree be d*mned.

    But, once he loses his audience, he loses his power, doesn't he. He could find himself the most ignored POTUS in history. Focus on your state laws so all 50 states eventually show Obama they disagree with his federal opinions...and can do just fine without them.


    Warren can keep his church (5.00 / 4) (#74)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:30:09 PM EST
    I don't care if Warren or his church (or any church) sanctions a union between me and my partner of 25 yrs. I want the same financial and social security that any other American is entitled to. We've paid into the same system of social security and retirement funds that many do, Yet we can't benefit from any of it. We can even be denied visitation rights in a hospital.

    As far as tolerance goes, there are very few families in this country that aren't touched by homosexuality. Whether it be a family member, relative or co-worker. If you are a "good Christian" how can you sit back and condone this discrimination? Or worse still, be a noted preacher and demonizes it? If this is what "their God" demands, I don't any part of them anyway.

    But I do expect more from a Democratic President.

    One day before Warren's Inaugural (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by KeysDan on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:11:38 PM EST
    invocation, he will be a keynote speaker at the Martin Luther King  Jr. Annual Ceremonial Service at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta (according to the Huff Post, via an Orange County paper). What a choice to celebrate civil rights.

    Yeah, I saw that (5.00 / 3) (#92)
    by sj on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:44:51 PM EST
    And the efforts to legitimize the choice of Warren not only continue but expand.  I wonder whose bright idea this was.

    Warren's keynote appearance at the King Day service is listed in a schedule of events on the King Center Web site, but it was not immediately clear when he was invited.

    emphasis mine.  hmmm...  I wonder when it will become clear.  My guess is after the inauguration, if ever.  Obama will do what Obama wants, and uproar be d*mned.  This is a surprise?


    you are a zealous advocate (5.00 / 3) (#84)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:19:57 PM EST
    For the civil rights of others. Excellent.

    Sad and disturbing (5.00 / 3) (#91)
    by rghojai on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:43:57 PM EST
    People in this thread and others have been far more eloquent and thoughtful than I could muster, but it is troubling that a Democratic president would do this, much as, given what Obama's said and done, it's not terribly surprising. I am ever happier that I voted Green.

    Contact 1st openly lesbian Congresswoman (5.00 / 1) (#143)
    by Cream City on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:04:14 PM EST
    and let her know what you think about her agreeing, as announced today, to be one of 15 "co-chairs" of Obama's inaugural committee.

    I am so disappointed in Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin for this, after the insult of Obama honoring Warren.  She could have attempted an explanation, at the least -- not that there is any explanation acceptable to me.  

    Not another cent in contributions to her campaigns, either.  It's the Nu Dem economic plan to push us to save our money.  And it sure is working for me; I'm down to quite a shortlist of pols worthy of my help for them to win office again.  

    So.... (none / 0) (#148)
    by ColumbiaDuck on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:17:38 PM EST
    an anti-gay bigot gets fifteen minutes or so of live nationwide tv and a lesbian congresswoman gets...?  what?  a position on a totally meaningless committee as an honorary co-chair?  her name on some programs?  

    sounds about right.


    Huh, sounds wrong to me (none / 0) (#158)
    by Cream City on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:46:35 PM EST
    in the context of all that Baldwin has said and claimed to be about, all these years.  

    You know Obama is WAY off when (5.00 / 2) (#156)
    by pluege on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:43:27 PM EST
    he's driven Richard Cohen to making sense, really, really good and perfect sense. Cohen is exactly right. Obama is exactly wrong in this instance.

    what about other positions (5.00 / 1) (#177)
    by TimNCGuy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 07:16:17 PM EST
    This Warren issue keeps getting reported as if it is only related to gay marriage.  It is as if they want people to believe that Warren supports OTHER rights for gays.  And, we should just get over the "marriage" issue for right now.  I don't believe it myself.  Does anyone know what Warren's positions are on:

    Civil Unions with full federal and state benefits which would require the repeal of DOMA?

    Repealing DADT

    Fully inclusive ENDA

    Gay Adoption

    Inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in civil rights legislation

    Inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in Hate Crimes legislation

    If Warren doesn't support ANY OF THESE, do you suppose we could work to get the word out to the media that it isn't just an issue of marriage, Warren doesn't support ANY RIGHTS for gays.

    In fact I heard today that Warren just thinks gays should abstain from sex altogether.  Even if homosexuality is proven to be biological, he still thinks gays should just NOT have sex.  I guess it's that pedophilia comparison again.  You know pedophilia is biological and we expect them to control themselves.  I guess Warren thinks gays should do the same.

    It's certainly possible that Obama is trying (none / 0) (#1)
    by tigercourse on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:08:47 AM EST
    to push Warren's more benign version of Evangelical Christianity. He is after all better then the Dobson's and Falwell's of the world. I think Obama honestly did not think/care about Warren's views on equal rights or choice.

    I honestly believe that this Warren affair will turn into a net positive. It might generate the kind of pressure that would be neccessary to get Obama and the Congress behind going after DADT, DOMA, etc, something that I figured they were going to put off "indefinitely". Perhaps if they have angry supporters pushing them right out of the gate, they won't just put it on the way back burner.

    I hope that's right (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:11:48 AM EST
    All this shouting is starting to work I think (5.00 / 4) (#9)
    by CST on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:20:42 AM EST
    Warren pulled the "anti-gay" language off his website.

    If nothing else, this is making people angry enough to speak up about it and force the conversation.

    I'd still much rather boot Warren.  I think this was a terrible call by Obama, I just really hope it forces his hand in the other direction legislatively.  But that will only happen if everyone keeps shouting.  We need to be louder than all the fundies.


    So the toothpaste (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by ricosuave on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:58:55 AM EST
    is back in the tube!  Warren is no longer anti-gay because he took it off his website.  That's like going back in time and erasing your mistake!

    What? (5.00 / 4) (#37)
    by CST on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:06:44 AM EST
    No, of course not.

    My point was, all the shouting is making them uncomfortable.  They don't feel like it is in their best interest to be pronouncing their bigotry to the world.  I think that is a good thing.  I don't think Warren has personally changed a bit.


    I'll take the honest bigot... (5.00 / 2) (#89)
    by Dadler on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:32:02 PM EST
    ...over the bigot in sheep's clothing any day.  Truth in advertising.  Or proselytizing.

    Net positive? (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by ricosuave on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:23:44 AM EST
    Can we count it as a net positive if this increases Warren's donations, he uses them to build a bigger church, and the construction business that provides helps the local economy?

    And when Obama pushes off DADT, DOMA, and all the other acronyms, until after the economic crisis we will say it is a net positive because if we had opened those cans of worms in the congress then republicans would have caused some real havoc, and it is better to wait until Obama builds the majority stronger.

    And then when Obama revamps and extends the faith-based initiaitives we will say that it is a net positive because, even though they are religious groups that may exclude non-christians and gays, they do some positive stuff.

    And then it will be 2012.


    I did say "might". Here's what I mean. (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by tigercourse on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:28:59 AM EST
    I'm pretty sure Obama and Congress had very little intention of doing much to promote equal rights before the Warren affair. But if Warren angers enough supporters, there may be enough pressure on the politians.

    You have to weigh that pie-in-the-sky possibility (5.00 / 3) (#29)
    by ricosuave on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:41:06 AM EST
    against the legitimacy that Obama has just given Warren and his ideas.  Obama has basically said with this choice that anti-gay, anti-abortion, anti-science is a perfectly legitimate stance to have.  If I am a legislator, I read "I can insert anti-abortion legislation into bills and they will not be automatically vetoed" or, more directly, "Obama will be willing to bargain for what he wants by allowing republican victories on these issues."

    But if Warren angers enough supporters, there may be enough pressure on the politians.

    Angering your supporters just makes angry supporters.  If there were enough pressure (or even understanding of his supporters) this would never have seen the light of day (unless someone discussed it with Blagojevich, of course).


    YUP. Angry supporters are still supporters (5.00 / 5) (#124)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:41:56 PM EST
    Obama doesn't care if gays are angry, he'll still get their votes.  He's playing the odds and taking gays for granted.  

    Nothing knew here, same ol' politic garbage we've come to expect from so many in our party.


    Benign? (5.00 / 3) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:46:25 AM EST
    Warren as benign?  I'd hate to see malignant......that must be instant death instead of a prolonged painful suffering encouraging and followed by a youthful death, which is related to a benign disease process????????

    He might come off as nicer (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:23:16 AM EST
    Wareren may be better than Dobson or some of them because he does scream and rant. However his religous doctrine is just as hard line. There's nothing in his teaching that offers any opening for compromise. Abortion, gay rights, evolution are etched in stone. So where's the dialogue?

    Oy. What is this now, OpenLeft? (none / 0) (#12)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:25:58 AM EST
    What kind of comment is this?  Warren is better than Dobson?  Why?  Obama didn't think or care about Warren's views on equal rights or choice?  That sentense accomplishes the miraculous feat of calling Obama an idiot and immoral at the same time.  We know the former isn't true; the latter may be true, but if so I'd commit to it and rewrite the sentence.

    As for your second paragraph, I for one have no patience with this kind of poor political analysis, not this week.  Obama has moved the Overton window to the right.  He sensend that the Village is fine with the current Versailles (i.e. talk about gay rights, but accept a middle ground where nothing changes, while making anti-gay bigot religious figures respectable and giving them a presidential stamp of approval).  He has made his point, approved by the Village, that gay rights and women's rights are not political powerful interests, at least for the foreseeable future.  The analysis made by tigercourse is the exact opposite of truth.


    What do you make of Richard Cohen's (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:29:32 AM EST
    column, then? The village is no unanimous about this.

    See my comment below. (none / 0) (#24)
    by dk on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:33:13 AM EST
    Even the Village has dissenters now and then, but that doesn't mean much, IMHO.

    I'd like to point out that I'm no Obama fan. (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by tigercourse on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:32:48 AM EST
    I'm kind of the last person to play apologist. My first point was that Obama and the Democratic party was basically lying about their earlier intentions to help push for equality. I just think that with enough lasting pressure from the gay and "progressive" community, something positive can come out of this.

    Gee, don't we always say that? (5.00 / 3) (#128)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:45:09 PM EST
    Don't we always hope that 'something good will come from all this', with "all this" being so many things that we want.  That hope keeps us supporting them, just as Obama knows.  

    Let us know when that happens.  

    Sorry, I just don't see it.   Color me pessimistic.  Actions speak MUCH louder than words and so far Obama's actions have ALL been on the wrong side of progressives.  


    The legacy of Harvey Milk (none / 0) (#49)
    by rise hillary rise on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:13:39 AM EST
    is so apparent in Cohen's column. he's one of those writers I happily ignore, but this issue has become personal to him.
    It's awfully hard to hate and demonize gay people when you have one in your own family-particularly if that person has the most stable, long-lived happiest "marriage" in said family.  

    I thought the same thing (none / 0) (#56)
    by Democratic Cat on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:23:45 AM EST
    I wondered if he would have written the same column had it not been for his sister. I usually dismiss Cohen, but here he made sense to me.

    (Great movie, BTW.)


    Thats what it took... (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by kdog on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:34:31 AM EST
    for Barry Goldwater to realize the errs of his beliefs...a gay loved one.

    you are a zealous advocate (none / 0) (#83)
    by oculus on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:19:57 PM EST
    For the civil rights of others. Excellent.

    Juan Cole (none / 0) (#99)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:05:44 PM EST
    lays out the upside:

    He [Warren] has identified 5 major problems he wants to address:

    Spiritual emptiness, corrupt leadership, disease pandemics, dire poverty, and illiteracy. He wants to do job creation and job training. He wants to wipe out malaria in the areas where it is still active. He is convinced that religious congregations are the only set of organizations on earth that can successfully combat these ills. And he is entirely willing actively and directly to cooperate with mosques to get the job done.

    Warren, in short, is a representative of the turn of some evangelicals to a social gospel. Since evangelicalism is a global movement and very interested in mission, his social gospel not surprisingly becomes a global social gospel. He is active in South Africa, Rwanda and more recently Uganda.

    In opinion polls, evangelicals are by far the most bigoted Americans versus Muslims. But that sentiment derives from theological competition (and competition for souls). Once a pastor turns, as Warren did, to a social gospel, then he has social goals to accomplish, and he needs all the help he can get. A social gospel creates a field of practical ecumenism.

    In addition, having met the man, he seems to believe Warren is educable on his bigoted aspects, and that education is better done through engagement than through condemnation.

    That doesn't mean he should have been picked for the invocation though. I think that was a bad miscalculation on Obama's part. Some grumbling from the left would have been one thing, and maybe even considered useful by him, but the storm this has caused instead is I'm sure not what he wanted or expected, and is not helpful for anything constructive. It's just hardening positions and building anger on all sides.

    "a bad miscalculation"?! (5.00 / 2) (#106)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:19:28 PM EST
    "Some grumbling from the left would have been one thing . . ."

    "the storm this has caused instead is I'm sure not what he wanted or expected"



    "Not What He Wanted or Expected" (5.00 / 4) (#120)
    by mudlark on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:37:06 PM EST
    "the storm this has caused instead is I'm sure not what he wanted or expected"

    You have to wonder how Obama could not have wanted this or expected it. We lost marriage rights here in California on the day Obama was elected president, with many Obama followers supporting Prop. 8. We protested loudly. Then Obama turns around and taps Warren, a vocal Prop 8 supporter. How could he think we wouldn't be furious? Is his stereotype that gays and lesbians are passive little self-loathing wimps who won't fight back?

    It boggles my mind. It has to be purposeful, but it is so hateful that it really sets me back on my heels, even though I voted Green party because it was clear to me from the beginning that he was no friend of lesbians and gays.

    By the way, I hope Melissa Etheridge and her partner don't have the mistaken impression that they get to speak for the gay and lesbian community. She's a rock star. She is not a gay leader to me at all.


    I haven't been able to fully figure (5.00 / 2) (#132)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:48:36 PM EST
    it out. And my expectations were low! I saw early on how he regarded gender (non-existent pretty much), choice and LGBT, etc, but this is a bit beyond the pale.

    Looks like another 4yrs with "God" spending too much time in the WH. Or at least that's part of the message I'm getting.


    You Forgot This Part (5.00 / 3) (#109)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:23:21 PM EST
    Warren also talked about the increasing rudeness and rancor of public life in the United States, and urged greater civility and willingness to work with people across the spectrum of opinion. He said, "We can disagree without being disagreeable."


    But just a gentle reminder to Warren that saying for Melissa Etheridge to be married to Tammy Lynn Michaels is equivalent to pedophilia or incest is not actually very civil or nice or humane.

    Gentle reminder??  Bigoted hypocrite is more like it.


    Same words Obama used (5.00 / 3) (#114)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:30:40 PM EST
    "We can disagree without being disagreeable."

    Straw man (5.00 / 2) (#131)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:48:19 PM EST
    Did you read Cole's full (none / 0) (#137)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:55:03 PM EST
    argument before saying that? I just gave the most central point from it. The rest of the context he gives is important to what he's saying.

    That is, it's not about (none / 0) (#141)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:01:21 PM EST
    domestic issues (like his position on gay rights) as it is for international consumption, and to raise the status of an evangelical leader who's working with Muslims instead of demonizing them.

    If that's what Cole thinks, (5.00 / 1) (#144)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:05:01 PM EST
    then he's clearly oblivious to domestic American political issues. Maybe he should pick up an American newspaper sometime.

    I do not think he is as stupid and narrow-sighted as you apparently do. I just think he's reflexively defending Obama.


    I don't know (none / 0) (#146)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:12:27 PM EST
    Was he a hardcore Obama supporter? I don't read him very often.

    Anyway, aside from that, I think what he says about Warren as leading a change against demonizing Muslims is significant, and is the area of concern for Cole, so it's hardly surprising that that's the angle he takes on it.


    Not Hard Core (none / 0) (#155)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:26:11 PM EST
    But he was for Obama. More to the point Warren's agenda, and how he imagines the bigger picture regarding Obama, and Cole's agenda have overlap.

    Cole's biggest agenda is equal rights and acceptance for Muslim's.
    He sees Warren mission as moving that agenda along.


    And to be quite cynical (none / 0) (#160)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:48:40 PM EST
    about it, gays have plenty of prominent defenders of their civil rights domestically - even Richard Cohen is now moved to speak up in no uncertain terms. Muslims? Not so much.

    Seems to me that in the USA (5.00 / 1) (#166)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:19:26 PM EST
    there has to be at least one person who could speak up for the acceptance/rights of Muslims WITHOUT being a bigot towards other Americans. Ya think, maybe, just maybe? Methinks there might be 1 or 2 right here in NYC . . . .

    I see a difference... (none / 0) (#165)
    by huzzlewhat on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:15:05 PM EST
    In that Muslims are at least seen to have civil rights to defend. For example, Muslims have the right to marry. Straight Muslims, anyway.

    Rights To Defend? (none / 0) (#167)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:28:25 PM EST
    Yes, I am sure that those Muslims swept off the street and sent to some prison in Egypt are right now arguing about their civil rights, in between waterboarding sessions.

    First off it is not a competition, and second have you been asleep for the last 8 years?


    Actually (none / 0) (#168)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 04:36:46 PM EST
    Looking through the archive he seemed pretty even handed, progressive minded and anti GOP. He defended both Hillary and Obama from what he saw as smears and wrong headed policy pronouncements.

    For instance he pointed out that Pakistan polling was 40% for Hillary as opposed to 14% for Obama because Obama made a threat about bombing Pakistan, which was a bad idea. Any that anyone who thought it strange that a Muslim country would be open to a woman leader has obviously not been paying attention.

    He also crititicized Hillary for her remark about obliterating Iran.


    Then again (none / 0) (#184)
    by lilburro on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:43:48 PM EST
    assassinating the President of Iran is fine and dandy.

    Not Sure What You Mean (none / 0) (#189)
    by squeaky on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:39:59 PM EST
    assassinating the President of Iran is fine and dandy.

    Do you mean BushCo? Who is saying that?


    Bah (none / 0) (#110)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:26:23 PM EST
    Social gospel has always been a part of the equation. It simply got drowned out by the, erm, social agenda-ists - ? - of recent years.

    In fact, what I've seen that's happened is much of the social agenda of the far right has crept into the rhetoric of social gospel.

    Oh, and, btw, hi, Alien Abductee!


    Hi yourself (none / 0) (#127)
    by Alien Abductee on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:43:38 PM EST
    Long time no see.

    I really think all this comes down to this one point JC makes: he is entirely willing actively and directly to cooperate with mosques internationally.

    I also keep thinking about something one of Obama's co-workers said about his time as a Chicago community organizer - that they'd never seen anyone with such a talent for finding the right sore point to poke at to catalyze organization apparently spontaneously. It's the key to Alinsky's methodology. Who would have thought, for instance, Richard Cohen would ever write a column like that...


    Hmm (none / 0) (#133)
    by The Poster Formerly Known as cookiebear on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:49:16 PM EST
    Interesting - and a possibility. Time will tell.

    It's only a prayer (none / 0) (#119)
    by Ronacrone on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:35:30 PM EST
    I know this is going to cause an earthquake...but so what if Obama chose Warren for the Inaugural Invocation?  It is a symbolic gesture to the millions of citizens who are not enlightened about civil rights for gays or other minorities.  They are still American citizens and in the spirit of reconciliation, they will get a miniscule, symbolic and in my mind meaningless place in the inaugural.It shows that PE Obama is willing to hear various points of view--including POV's that are repugnant.  He did not suggest that Warren work in his administration, but asked him only to give one short prayer. This gesture does not necessarily indicate that Obama will work against gay rights.  I think it means that Obama is recognizing the people who worked against him--sort of a "no foul no harm" gesture to bring more into the tent.  Gays will do harm to their cause by throwing public tantrums and making this out to be more than it is.  I usually am blogging for legalizing gay marriage, but this time I feel the need to just say, "Chill."

    "Throwing Public Tantrums" (5.00 / 5) (#126)
    by mudlark on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:43:18 PM EST
    Your post is beyond offensive, Ronacrone. I am 50 years old. My partner turned 60 yesterday. We have made a life together for 20 years and as far as the courts are concerned we have no relationship. No legal protections, no pension rights, health care rights, legal rights as we age together. And you use the phrase "public tantrum?"

    I am so angered and offended by your hideous comment that I will leave others to respond to it.
    Because what I would really like to say to you would be deleted.


    Bleh (5.00 / 6) (#129)
    by andgarden on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:45:36 PM EST
    If there's a "spirit of reconciliation" what exactly is being reconciled? Has Warren changed his mind about anything?

    The next time you get your rights stripped, I'll be sure to lecture you about throwing a "tantrum."


    So true (5.00 / 5) (#134)
    by ColumbiaDuck on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:50:51 PM EST
    And I look forward to when Obama chooses David Duke to lead the Marine Corps band or Louis Farrakhan to do the benediction.  I mean, they might hold some repugnant views vis a vis segregation and the holocaust, but we don't have to be disagreeable.  And think what a bone this would throw to their base!  

    He's giving a platform to a bigot and tacitly telling the bigots of the world that they can continue their bigotry and still have a seat at the table.  It is wrong.  


    Never David Duke, (5.00 / 2) (#138)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:55:23 PM EST
    But Farrakhan, yes.  Like gays, Obama won't mind throwing Jews under the bus, knowing that he also has a lock on their votes.  

    Oh my gosh (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:53:35 PM EST
    So Obama cares more about Evangelicals who will NEVER vote for him than he does for gays who did?!  WOW!!!!  That is quite a message, coming from our new President, a real, hard, thumb to the eye for gays.  

    This makes me sad.  Makes me even sadder to think that gays will continue to support Obama and vote for him again in 4 years.  Clearly Obama is counting on that support, regardless.  He clearly thinks that he can insult gays, trample right over them, and continue to have their support.  I suspect that gays won't be the only group that gets such treatment from our new President.  He thinks he's bullet proof, and he probably is.  The press will protect him from the likes of us "radicals".  


    Order up more buses, but fast (5.00 / 4) (#159)
    by Cream City on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:48:15 PM EST
    as there's going to be a lot more busunderers soon -- and some of 'em were such fools that I hope they end up under a different undercarriage.

    I shouldn't do this, but I will, (5.00 / 10) (#163)
    by Anne on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 03:58:25 PM EST
    because it's the right thing to do.

    So what if Obama chose Warren?  If it's such a minor thing, why stop with Warren?  Where's David Duke?  Louis Farrakhan?  Where's the head of the Aryan Brotherhood?

    Those millions of unenlightened citizens do not need a representative of backward-thinking, repressive points of view to speak to them; they do not need proof that their point of view is acceptable, even if what Warren says in his invocation is generic and plain-vanilla.  There is nothing Warren will say on Inauguration Day that will enlighten anyone, but his appearance will legitimize his views for the simple fact that Obama has asked him to deliver what amounts to a national prayer.  That has "Seal of Approval" all over it.

    I would be curious to know if you would have advised the black community to "chill" and not throw "public tantrums" back when they were fighting for their civil rights.  Should women have just remained quiet and not thrown any public tantrums about not having the right to vote and being treated as chattel?

    I think Obama has proved that he is very comfortable being in the company of people whose views he says - when challenged - he finds repugnant, but someone is going to have to explain to me why that is - why he is so open to the most divisive and regressive points of view, because it makes no sense to me.  Why does he seem to spend more time courting that element than he does actually working for those issues he claims to be so committed to?  

    And where is the proof that Obama's open ears and open mind have moved these people to better positions and led them to reject their repugnant views?  That there are no examples of Obama converting the unenlightened, I would have to assume that there will be no converting Warren, either, and people like you are kidding yourselves.

    All I can tell you is that if Obama is going to be boosting Warren's fortunes as "America's Pastor," and if Obama considers Warren to be a spiritual advisor, we are not headed in a direction I want to be going.

    Which was what I was afraid of all along.


    I would feel better ... (5.00 / 1) (#172)
    by ColumbiaDuck on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:22:47 PM EST
    about Obama's "open ears" if I felt they truly were open.  However, I remember his unwillingness to have his picture taken with Gavin Newsom and it seems to me that perhaps the "open ears" thing is only used to chastise the DFHs rather than actually bring people together.

    (aside from the fact that some views are simply irreconcilable and "open ears" aren't going to make gays go halfsies with bigots.)


    If Obama's "open ears" are really open (5.00 / 2) (#173)
    by nycstray on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:28:33 PM EST
    I find all the STFU even more interesting. What are they afraid he might hear . . . .  ;)

    Why didn't that tell us something? (none / 0) (#179)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:04:49 PM EST
    Open ears? (none / 0) (#180)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:22:17 PM EST
    Big ears do not mean open ears.  Perhaps we have confused the former with the later.

    I don't think (5.00 / 2) (#175)
    by lentinel on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 05:41:59 PM EST
    that Obama finds the views of Warren to be all that repugnant.

    We have all been told how brilliant Obama is.

    All I can judge is his behavior.
    He just seems stupid.

    His open-tent defense was pathetic.
    Face it. He just likes the guy.
    Maybe he and Warren will tie the knot.


    EXACTLY! Why didn't we believe him? (5.00 / 1) (#178)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:03:32 PM EST
    Why would we think anything else?  Obama said over and over that he didn't support gay marriage.  He went to Warren's church twice.  African Americans supported Prop 8 by 70%.  Gay Black men are most often on the DL because being gay is not supported by the Black community.  Obama's minister of 20+ years, Reverend Wright, is opposed to gay marriage.

    Obama told us how he felt, told us who he was, told he us he didn't support gay marriage.  My question is, why didn't we believe him?  


    Sheesh (5.00 / 1) (#182)
    by starsandstripes on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:31:51 PM EST
    don't you know that when Obama says/does something regressive, it's only to fool the conservatives so he can get elected so that he can actually get his progressive agenda rolling once he's actually in office.

    Wait...he's already elected.

    (If I had a dime for everytime I heard this excuse...)


    We're fools (5.00 / 1) (#188)
    by BrassTacks on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 10:33:36 PM EST
    When people tell you who they are, believe them.  

    Why do we democrats fall for this stuff, EVERY. DARN. TIME.?

    We're self delusional to keep projecting onto our candidates things that are NOT there.  


    I believed him. (none / 0) (#181)
    by lentinel on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:24:11 PM EST
    I didn't vote for him.

    Facts (none / 0) (#185)
    by liberalone on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:53:22 PM EST
    While much of what you are saying about black people and their views on homosexuality is true, you are completely wrong about Wright.  Trinity and the UCC denomination has been supportive of gay marriage or civil unions for quite some time.  (Check the Washington Blade:  http://www.washingtonblade.com/thelatest/thelatest.cfm?blog_id=17266)

    So, I guess we are down to just blaming black people in general and Obama specifically.  Oh yeah, I forgot about those danged religious zealots.


    Obama (none / 0) (#194)
    by JThomas on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 12:55:37 AM EST
    had the same exact stance on gay marriage as Hillary and John Edwards.

    He supports civil unions and full equal rights that attach to marriage.

    He made it clear he was against Prop 8.

    Those are facts. He also said he disagreed with Warren on gay issues.

    He is not president yet. Scorn him if you want, he is not going to be any less determined to strive toward fairness in treatment of the gay community. Belittle him, hate him..he is still going to work for your rights. Blame him for Prop, blame him for all the mis-treatment over the years...he will not be deterred. He may not get there in his first year, or two years but he will get there. If he fails, well, you have written him off already anyway so you will not be disapointed,I guess.


    Obama says a lot (none / 0) (#199)
    by starsandstripes on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 09:51:13 AM EST
    but his actions prove otherwise. I didn't see Hillary or Edwards associate themselves with the likes of Donnie McClurkin or Rick Warren - at least not giving them place of honour in their campaigning. I didn't see Hillary shy away from giving interviews with the gay media. I didn't see Hillary refuse a photo-op with Gavin Newsom. Chelsea Clinton went and asked for the gay vote in PA when she went gay bar-hopping with Rendell. I didn't see anyone from the Obama campaign even ask for the gay vote.

    He supports civil unions and full equal rights that attach to marriage.
    But still thinks it's his place to say that his religion doesn't allow him to support gay marriage. I don't care what his religion tells him - it's not my religion and it's not up for discussion on the national platform. (Which is another gripe - does he have to rub god and religion in our faces at every step?)

    He made it clear he was against Prop 8.
    Yet he didn't do much to refute the commercials in California that used his words to support Prop. 8 - why would he? It would do more harm to him than he would have liked.

    He also said he disagreed with Warren on gay issues.
    Yet he thought to elevate the man who is known for his incendiary remarks concerning gay rights (and women, but that's not the topic here) and make him "America's Pastor." The message here (whether true or not) is he's on board with Warren's ideology and Obama's no fool not to get that.

    Sure - Obama uses the word gay in every speech. With him it's all talk. His actions show that he has very little respect for the gay community or at least he couldn't be bothered with their issues.

    I will believe that Obama is for working for anyone's rights other than what are his when I see it. The man has done nothing to show me he will so far, and I have no reason to believe that till it actually happens. It's not the question of writing Obama off, it's the question of never having been convinced to start with.

    (Speaking for me only. I have no idea how the person you responded to feels).


    "Scorn him, belittle him, hate him... (none / 0) (#201)
    by vml68 on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 10:03:40 AM EST
    blame him, he is still going to work for your rights, he will not be deterred"......Rejoice, for Jesus is our new President!

    I believed him! (none / 0) (#187)
    by mexboy on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 09:42:47 PM EST
    I didn't vote for him.

    "There is nothing Warren will say" (none / 0) (#183)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 08:38:42 PM EST
    There is nothing Warren will say on Inauguration Day that will enlighten anyone
    Are you sure about that?

    "Chill" ??? (5.00 / 2) (#195)
    by kimsaw on Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 06:46:42 AM EST
     The new leader of the next generation, promotes discrimination by selecting Warren as his religious emissary to the world and everyone should just chill.  This is simply Obama using politics to ingratiate himself with Americans who are dazzled by the popular evangelical. Another pastor with a BIG CHURCH. It's not like Obama is adverse to using religion to capture his constituency. It's not like you really know what Obama truly believes. Be damned of how offended the Gay Community is.

    Obama bases his politics on the political wind not on a foundational ideology. His greatness lies in how best he sells himself to the masses. He uses every avenue with the finesse of an ad campaign. Yes that's what pols do, but Obama dismisses the importance of committed beliefs to sway with what's "in" in People and on Oprah. It's our own fault too many of us ignore that its happening.  Neither the left or right are strong enough to gain a majority so the blurring of principles allows Obama to seep through with what's popular, not what's right. Obama knows exactly what he's doing. Obama's choice of Warren is no different than Obama ignoring the bigotry of the Rev. Wright for 20 years.  It serves his purpose, it's  not about the difference between right and wrong.

    The American people elected Obama in the same way they elected Bush they ignored the bottom line. They never really examined who the candidate was.
    I'm an American but I voted for neither. I'm all about compromise, but there is compromise and then there is selling out your principles. After two years of getting to know Obama he's still not telling us what he believes. He's being compared to Lincoln, Kennedy and of course using the Clintons and their staff to harness  a false mantel of change. He's riding on Lincoln's train, and using Lincoln's bible. Is that a new leader of a new era, or a politician climbing on the backs of others? Obama is a politician who likens himself to greatness without really doing anything to deserve such distinction. Winning is one thing but producing after the fact is another. I pray that he does lead America well. I don't want to discount what the potential is, but I do draw the line at constantly doing the opposite of what's right when doing what's right is called for.  Obama first test of leadership  was selecting the message he needed to send. It's ironic that it goes to his judgment and how the choice of Warren sent the wrong message.  


    Sheesh (none / 0) (#130)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 02:47:41 PM EST
    If you are not keeping up with the conversation, you really cannot participate in it.

    Your comment is simply ignorant of the discussion.

    I won't comment on the substance in that I did in a post yesterday.


    E.J. Dionne Jr.'s Reverse Psychology (none / 0) (#202)
    by AnthonyLook on Thu Dec 25, 2008 at 04:02:42 PM EST
    Spin can sport a new lipstick shade; but oink, oink, oink is still the resounding result of it.
    The gay community must know take solace from the rights indignation over Dione's convoluted reasoning. Dionne is just another apologist justifying Obama's selection of Warren; like Biden, or Etheridge, or the equally gay racist black preachers lining up defending the Warren choice.
    The gay community isn't buying it; bottom line, if Warren doesn't retract his gay racist hate speech, if he doesn't apologize for his past indiscretions, if he doesn't minister to his flock which he has filled with hate and ask them to acknowledge the errors of hate speech; then there is no silver lining, no other point of view, no other perspective.
    E.J. Dionne,