Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Big Games in a Big Tent

Larry the Archpundit noticed that the gay-obsessed Illinois Family Institute are upset that Chicago is hosting the Gay Games VII but taking a pass on the Republican National Convention.

While the piece is generally the type of journalism we've come to expect from the IFI -- i.e. IFI "reporter" Peter LaBarbera quotes IFI "Executive Director" Peter LaBarbera -- one of LaBarbera's complaints about the Gay Games stood out:

The Chicago "Gay Games" face an additional challenge of competing with an alternate homosexual athletic contest in Montreal, also in July, called the "Out Games." The two homosexual sporting events are recruiting from the same pool of athletes, and the Out Games just landed world renown lesbian tennis star Martina Navratilova to open their competition.
Yes, you read it right -- The Illinois Family Institute's Peter LaBarbera is concerned about Chicago's Gay Games because it may not be able to attract enough homosexual athletes!

But Mr. LaBarbera shouldn't worry -- one doesn't have to be gay to compete in the Gay Games:
The Gay Games are open to anyone. There are no qualifying events, no minimum or maximum requirements, and no mandatory affiliations. The Games are built on the founding principles of Participation, Inclusion, and Personal Best, and promote a supportive environment, free from bigotry, where participants achieve success by their own measure. ***

[N]early 50,000 individuals of different races, genders, sexual orientations, national origin, physical and athletic abilities, health statuses, ages, religious and socio-economic backgrounds have come together from around the world in the spirit of Participation, Inclusion and Personal Best.
So even if you are a straight as Abraham Lincoln -- or as gay as Abraham Lincoln -- you are welcome at Chicago's Gay Games.

Alas, the same could not be said of the Republican National Convention.

Cross-posted at the So-Called "Austin Mayor" blog.

41 comments:

Abraham Lincoln 2:38 PM  

Hey, I was in pretty good shape back then.

Cal Skinner 3:23 PM  

The gay rowing event wants to come to Crystal Lake, as I write on McHenryCountyBlog.com today.

Bill Baar 3:44 PM  

Oak Park High School had to reshuffle summer school to accomadate the Gay Games. There were some letters to the Editor in the Wed Journal protesting that schedule change.

I don't know how you can say Gays aren't welcome at the RNC... I guessing they'll be plenty. As much as any cross section of America.

It's just I don't think Republican Gays quite as preoccupied melding their politics and sexuality and advertizing the sex.

And I don't know how you even can figure out who's Gay or not without having Gays toss their sexuality in your face...

...like with the Gay games.

Which I think is most peoples problem with it.

Not a big problem though... I know plenty in Oak Park counting the dollars they hope the Gay Olympics will bring in... Village hard up for revenue ever since they drove the car dealers out...

Bill Baar 3:53 PM  

The other weird thing about the Democrats on Gay Marriage is they're against it.

Cegelis, Scott, and Duckworth all come out against same sex marriage suggesting maybe they'd be ok with something neither here-nor-there like "civil unions" which sounds like something lawyers make up.

Marriage isn't a right. It's something licensed by the state. You can't just marry anyone.

But I don't have a problem with same sex marriage and if it's really marriage, let's call it that...

...I'm not certain the rest of the country is there yet...

But it's getting there... the Democrats will be stuck trying to make everyone happy with civil unions and that just sounds likd a dodge to me.

Jewish Democrat,  3:57 PM  

There'll be gays at the GOP convention, but I think something like 75% of gays consider themselves Democrats, which is coincidentally similar to the percentage of Jews who consider themselves Democrats.

And of course, there's nothing wrong with gays throwing their sexuality in your face. Straights do it whenever they talk about their spouse.

Larry Horse 3:59 PM  

Yeah, although the national Democratic position is that gay marriage should be left up to the states, which I agree with. Then again I also believe that abortion and gun control and drug laws should be left up to the states, but the national Democrats by and large disagree with the first one of those three, somewhat disagree with the second, and join the GOP in disagreeing with the 3rd point.

Bill Baar 4:02 PM  

Here's a good comment on the conservative case for gay marriage written in response to this post of mine from way back.

You look at the "outing" movement agains Gay Conservatives and it tells you something about the standards at work here... who's throwing what at whom and the level of class shown on this issue.

I'd link examples but their well known and I'd just feel like I'm participating myself.

Cheeseman,  4:11 PM  

Andrew Sullivan has wrote wonderfully on the Conservative case for gay marriage. What has always sickened me is that so many of my fellow pro-Lifers are seeking to impose their religion on society rather than just merely believing in the right to life like I do. I.e., a lot of the strongest pro-Lifers are sadly also the strongest anti-marriage and anti-contraception people out there (I say anti-marriage, because being anti-gay marriage is being anti-marriage, whether you like it or not).

I've always held that being pro-Life is meaningless if you're also anti-Liberty and anti-Pursuit of Happiness, which sadly does describe most of the pro-Life people who for twisted reasons seem to think that Pro-Life and Anti-Marriage are two sides of the same coin.

Cheeseman,  4:14 PM  

Moreso, being against gay marriage is in no way conservative. Wanting the government to deny marriage to people of the same sex is the EXACT same mindset as a big government liberal, who wants to use the government to control how people live. You frankly can't be a real conservative and oppose gay marriage. And there are A LOT of fake conservatives out there (especially our Commander-in-Chief.

Anonymous,  4:15 PM  

*sits back, opens a cherry coke and waits for the closet gay LaBarbera to start fighting back*

Bill Baar 4:53 PM  

This topic sets me off because it just shows how the left's gone so badly right-wing.

They'll argue for same sex marriage in America and totally ignore a place like Iran where the government routinely hangs gays and claim Bush and Cheney are saber-rattling when confronting Iran e.g. this comment to me on SoapBlog Chicago,

Iran is already a democracy. You just don't like who they elected.

Nick Cohen's written on these weird, tragic split that's destroyed Liberalism in The Guardian writing about Iranian dissident Maryam Namaize,

Namazie is on the right side of the great intellectual struggle of our time between incompatible versions of liberalism. One follows the fine and necessary principle of tolerance, but ends up having to tolerate the oppression of women, say, or gays in foreign cultures while opposing misogyny and homophobia in its own. (Or 'liberalism for the liberals and cannibalism for the cannibals!' as philosopher Martin Hollis elegantly described the hypocrisy of the manoeuvre.) The alternative is to support universal human rights and believe that if the oppression of women is wrong, it is wrong everywhere.

The gulf between the two is unbridgeable. Although the argument is rarely put as baldly as I made it above, you can see it breaking out everywhere across the liberal-left. Trade union leaders stormed out of the anti-war movement when they discovered its leadership had nothing to say about the trade unionists who were demanding workers' rights in Iraq and being tortured and murdered by the 'insurgents' for their presumption.


George Bush and the Republican Party have a stronger stand on Universal Rights. Gays in Iran fight an existential stuggle --marriage the least of their concerns-- and they stand a better chance for freedom with George Bush's America then they will with the sinster alliance between the isolationists among the Dean-Left and Buchanen-Right which would send them to the hangmen in the name of non intervention and Orwell's cruel pacifism.

Anonymous,  5:42 PM  

Lets let the Catholic Priests have their own game. Lets be fair. DW

Anonymous,  7:31 PM  

\\\\George Bush and the Republican Party have a stronger stand on Universal Rights.\\\\

Nothing undermines Universal Rights like the tax-cut driven Bush Debt that is funded by borrowing from the Chinese Central Bank.

By exposing the United States to the coercion of the world\\\'s largest totalitarian government, the Bush administration has weakened the U.S. and strengthened the Chinese Communists. When the Chinese government decides to tighten the vice, the U.S. will be left with little choice but to go along to get along -- or go to war with the most populace nation in the planet\\\'s history.

And you should feel foolish claiming that the GOP is better for gays than the Democrats. The entire national campaign in 2004 was based on a GOTV plan built on a foundation of anti-gay legislation. Although it may be awkward to face that fact now that the election is over, it was not denied by the Republicans at the time. To claim otherwise is embarrassing.

Bill Baar 8:40 PM  

Not as embarressing as Kerry repeating over and over she's a Lesbian... that's the kind of creepy, low-level, opportunistic stuff the Democratic Candidate was at...

Some people think marriage should be between a man and a women. Some people think that should be constitutionalized before judges decide otherwise.

That's not oppression or persecution of Gays... to say so, and then seek appeasement of people who brutally execute gays is a little much.

Bill Baar 9:03 PM  

Some one get at those Gay Games and recognizes this execution of two kids by Iranian thugs that George Bush correctly calls an axis of evil; is a bigger threat to human liberty then anything from IFI -- then I'm with them. I bet IFI would join them too.

But if the reality of these executions can't get you past our petty American politics it's just rot; like Neweek devoting a whole issue to Cheney hunting.

I posted this by British Gay Activist Pater Tatchell on the Kane County Democrats web page... they deleted it.

We are witnessing one of the greatest betrayals by the left since so-called left-wingers backed the Hitler-Stalin pact and opposed the war against Nazi fascism. Today, the pseudo-left reveals its shameless hypocrisy and its wholesale abandonment of humanitarian values. While it deplores the 7/7 terrorist attack on London, only last year it welcomed to the UK the Muslim cleric, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who endorses the suicide bombing of innocent civilians. These same right-wing leftists back the so-called 'resistance' in Iraq. This 'resistance' uses terrorism against civilians as its modus operandi - stooping to the massacre of dozens of Iraqi children in order kill a few US soldiers. Terrorism is not socialism; it is the tactic of fascism. But much of the left doesn't care. Never mind what the Iraqi people want, it wants the US and UK out of Iraq at any price, including the abandonment of Iraqi socialists, trade unionists, democrats and feminists. If the fake left gets its way, the ex-Baathists and Islamic fundamentalists could easily seize power, leading to Iranian-style clerical fascism and a bloodbath. I used to be proud to call myself a leftist. Now I feel shame. Much of the left no longer stands for the values of universal human rights and international socialism.

There are still a handful of leftist who realize George Bush and the republican party have become the greatest hope left for anyone committed to real struggle for human freedom.

Angry Patriot,  9:58 PM  

You're right, Bush called Iran part of the axis of evil. But he hasn't done squat for the gay Iranians or any other Iranian being oppressed since he's been in power, and it looks more and more like Iran will have nukes before it's all said and done. George Bush is all talk, even when it comes to Iraq. If we had someone with any sense of reality as President or SecDef, there would be no insurgency now as we would have sent in 500K troops to make sure that there is law and order and not looting and terrorism. There can be no democracy without order as even a high schooler could tell you, but the upper echelons of the administration and Pentagon failed to realize this.

Bush is all talk. Bill, you're a bright guy, and it's sad to see that you fallen for his meaningless rhetoric. If you want to support freedom around the world, the best thing you can do is to write a check to John McCain, one of the few intelligent patriots who actually has some moral fiber in Washington.

Angry Patriot,  10:00 PM  

I agree with you that Bush is the best hope right now for world freedom simply because he happens to be President, just as Kerry would be the best hope for world freedom if he had won. But that's the only way that the quote you posted can make sense.

Bill Baar 7:09 AM  

Angry Patriot: How about the United States is the best hope right now for world freedom?

Anonymous,  8:22 AM  

Anon 5:42...thanks for bring up the Priest crisis, see what happens when homosexuals are allowed in the seminary.

So-Called Austin Mayor 9:41 AM  

Anon 8:22,

The Church hierarchy repeatedly failed to report criminal sexual assult to the authorities. You can blame the criminal behavior on homosexuality or celibacy or whatever, but the blame for not turning those sexual predators over to the police -- and for hiding those criminals by shuffling them to new parishes/victims -- falls squarely on the shoulders of church leadership.

Bill Baar 9:53 AM  

Church scandel has nothing to do with this... St Peters in Geneva had a priest go to prison over relations with a teen girl...
Protestant Church same problem a few years back.. those are issues of oversight of anyone with responsiblity for our kids.

angelus,  11:31 AM  

cheeseman - wondering, can a real conservative be for the rights of free people to associate with whomever they choose without fines from the government? Can free landlords rent to whomever they choose or reject whomever they choose for whichever reason they choose? Business owners? Or would the government have to step in and infringe upon these people's rights if it does not measure up to your moral standards? Honest questions.

Angry Patriot,  11:51 AM  

Right, Bill, that's what I meant, they would be the best hope for world freedom as the leaders of the United States. And I agree, there are some on the far left who just plain hate the US, and those people are scum. But Bush is nothing more than empty rhetoric and it's a shame that we don't have a President who actually is willing to do the hard work necessary to bring more freedom to the world. Oh well, we've only got less than 3 more years of the man who will go down in history as one of the worst 2 term Presidents along with Grant and Nixon.

angelus,  12:02 PM  

angry patriot - I'd be happy for a president who just brought more freedom to America. He is, after all, the president of America. We can't be the baby sitters of the world. We would be best off to follow the advice of Washington's farewell address.

angelus,  12:19 PM  

Oh well, we've only got less than 3 more years of the man who will go down in history as one of the worst 2 term Presidents along with Grant and Nixon.

I'd have to put, in the last 100 years alone, with Bush and Grant and Nixon, Wilson and both Roosevelt's in terms of destroying the Republic our Founding Father's envisioned. You could also throw Johnson in there as well.

angelus,  12:58 PM  

George Bush and the Republican Party have a stronger stand on Universal Rights. Gays in Iran fight an existential stuggle --marriage the least of their concerns-- and they stand a better chance for freedom with George Bush's America then they will with the sinster alliance between the isolationists among the Dean-Left and Buchanen-Right which would send them to the hangmen in the name of non intervention and Orwell's cruel pacifism.

There's been an estimated 100,000+ civilians killed in this interventionist war. This is better for civilians than our staying out? How about just give isolationism a little, just a little try before setting it up as a bogeyman? Why last out at a non-existent bogetman like "isolationism" that has had zero influence in the last 60 years? Is it because the current foreign policy is failing and the critics are being proven right?

Protectionists from Lincoln to Coolidge gave us the highest standard of living on earth. If you're angry over our current state of affairs, you can't blame protectionists or isolationists. Their fingerprints are nowhere to be seen on this mess.

So, is it worth the bloody slaughter of thousands of innocents to see that gays have the right to marry in Iran? Is it worth all the American blood and treasure? Hardly.

Anonymous,  12:58 PM  

Would Johnson be considered a two term President? Hmm...

angelus,  1:08 PM  

Wasn't he a VP like Cheney as far as doing lots of policy work and not just being a figurehead? Didn't he still have good control over the Senate while VP? Unsure.

angelus,  1:12 PM  

It was about a term and a half I'd say, so maybe not qualifying as two terms? Unsure.

Bill Baar 1:21 PM  

Angelus,

The alternative is Kerry's war of last resort. We wait, until war the only option, we're left with a war of anniliation; just as we waged against German and Japanese cities.

That's the real cruelty of pacifism. It's the wholesale slaughter of people we'll engage in when that's our only option left.

I never said America couldn't be a fearsome power once roused. We've done it before. My uncle one of the first Americans into Nagasaki and his job was to shake down the sailors returning to their ship and remove the bones of the dead they had collected as souviners. He returned them to the Japanese for burial.

The mayor of Hiroshima wrote Saddam before the first Gulf War on the grave dangers of under estimating the United States.

The current Mayor ought to write the Mullahs now and convey the message because invasion is a poor option for us, and if the targeted strikes don't work, there are only poor choices for Iranian people save revolution. We should be formenting it now.

angelus,  1:34 PM  

We weren't attacked by the Japanese or the Islamo-crazies because of isolationism. Pacifism can be said to be the result of why we are being invaded by millions from Mexico and being attacked by the Mexican military on a regular basis.

angelus,  1:36 PM  

Pacifism can be said to be the result of why we are being invaded by millions from Mexico and being attacked by the Mexican military on a regular basis.

That should say "reason", not "result".

angelus,  1:39 PM  

Kerry didn't really disagree with Bush on the war, either. He had a "secret plan" that he would reveal after elected. There is no real disagreement between the parties on foreign policy. If Bush would have appointed a Democrat, say Sam Nunn, instead of Paul Bremer to be viceroy he never would have heard another word about it. The Democrat's only objection is that they aren't getting a piece of the action. They aren't opposed to intervention. See the slaughter of the Serbs for example. They cheered that on.

ArchPundit 12:25 AM  

===George Bush and the Republican Party have a stronger stand on Universal Rights. Gays in Iran fight an existential stuggle --marriage the least of their concerns-- and they stand a better chance for freedom with George Bush's America then they will with the sinster alliance between the isolationists among the Dean-Left and Buchanen-Right which would send them to the hangmen in the name of non intervention and Orwell's cruel pacifism.

How is the so called "Dean Left" isolationist? I'm really baffled by this--if you go far enough on the left you can find isolationists, but how is a pro-free trade, pro-Bosnia intervention, pro-Kosov intervention, pro-first Iraq war guy isolationist?

If you haven't figured it out yet, Dean was right about the Iraq War. There wasn't strong evidence of weapons of mass destruction and thus, the threat was contained. Or did we just make a case to invade for freedom? And if so, why wasn't Saudi Arabia or Burma ahead of them? I'm trying to get the decision calculus down on which countries are bad enough to invade for human rights reasons. How do we decide between Iraq or Saudi or Burma or UAE?

Don't pretend George Bush is some sort of hero of democracy. He's sucked up to the Saudi's, The Turkmenistans who receive US AID money, The Haitian Dictators we put in power, and the Uzbeks. He's for Democracy when it's convenient at best.

Or take the UAE--according to Freedom House they are a 6 and not free:
http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0930918.html

Yet, we are happy to have a state run enterprise run our ports. That's standing up for democracy, isn't it!

He's ignored one of the great genocides in the Sudan.

Suggesting he has some strong record on human rights is ridiculous.

We don't invade Saudi Arabia, we are good friends with them. We don't invade Turmenistan, we sign trade agreements, we don't invade UAE, we help their state run enterprises.

It's a little frustrating to those of us who have supported and been active in human rights work with Amnesty International and other groups that all of a sudden people think they are great humanitarians because they invaded two countries that were repressive, but continue to support dictators around the world. Even better, this President appears to be so incompetent we are likely to see Iraq turn into a Hobbsian nightmare. The number of free countries hasn't changed significantly since the early 1990s. If democracy is Bush's big foreign policy push, he's not doing too well.

Angry Patriot,  1:29 AM  

Bush wasn't wrong for going into Iraq. There were good enough reasons to do so. He was wrong because he mismanaged the war in the way that only an idiot or someone who really doesn't care could. Archpundit is right though that if he really cared about democracy, he wouldn't be so chummy with the Saudis.

Bush is no friend of freedom, and if you think he is, ypu're either dumb or ignorant.

Bill Baar 6:55 AM  

Archpundit said,

How is the so called "Dean Left" isolationist? I'm really baffled by this--if you go far enough on the left you can find isolationists, but how is a pro-free trade, pro-Bosnia intervention, pro-Kosov intervention, pro-first Iraq war guy isolationist?

He changed. As has the party. That's why I voted for Gore in 2000 --the Dems were pro-Bosnia, pro-Kosov in a tragically laggard way and barbarically dropped the ball for Africans in Rhuwanda.

But they at leasted tried to sound internationalists.

That changed though... the Dems abandonded the fight so I went with Bush in 2004.

Watch the next convention though... this will be the fight for the party's soul I believe the isolationists will win. In fact I believe this will kill the Dems all together and a new Isolationist-Protectionists-Green-Pat-Buchanen-America-Firster Party will emerge.

Now, when you consider Clinton's strictly symbolic strikes against Afganistan, the Bush Rumsfeld strategy and management of the War Bin Laden declared under Clinton's term has been startlingly effective.

But it's going to take a generation to clean up the mess in the middle east. If Bush is doing something wrong, it's not preping the country for the long haul.

Finally, the only place a Gay Arab can safely visit a Gay bar at the moment, is in Isreal...

...give Bush a chance and they'll be Gay bars throughout the middle east.

Ponder that please and noting this,

Chatting with a 21-year-old Palestinian man in a gay bar in Tel Aviv was the most interesting moment of my summer vacation.

There isn't much social interaction between Arabs and Jews these days because of the ongoing terrorist war against Israel, but the gay scene is a little bit different.

Why do Arab and Jewish homosexuals mix in Tel Aviv? Because Israel is the only country in the Middle East where homosexuals can live in freedom.


A homosexual's best option for living anywhere in the world in Freedom lies with the United States, President Bush, and the Republican Party.

ArchPundit 11:41 AM  

Disagreeing with going to war in Iraq doesn't make one an isolationist. Other than that issue, you can't point to an issue where Democrats are isolationists--in fact, Democrats believe in multinational regimes and cooperation over the bilateral model this administration prefers. That is inherently not an isolationist position.

==Now, when you consider Clinton's strictly symbolic strikes against Afganistan, the Bush Rumsfeld strategy and management of the War Bin Laden declared under Clinton's term has been startlingly effective.

How has it been effective? We are bogged down in a country that wasn't involved with Al Qaeda. And bin Laden is still walking around making tapes.

The Bush Rumsfeld strategy was to find something to bomb and unfortunately Afghanistan didn't have good targets.

ArchPundit 11:43 AM  

===A homosexual's best option for living anywhere in the world in Freedom lies with the United States, President Bush, and the Republican Party.

Funny, but many European Countries and Candada are far better in protecting the civil rights of gays and lesbians while George Bush is attempting to limit those freedoms.

Bill Baar 12:13 PM  

Arch,

I remember when the left argued marriage was bondage and servitutde, hardly an inalienable right.

It best left as is, a contract between people best licensed and regulated by the local gov.

Check The Economist, of Feb 11, 2006, page 28 on American isolationist sentiment. I think the Dems will propose a Muscular Isolationism as suggested here by The Officers Club. That's what I see coming.

Now, would a Gay rather be married and unemployed in scloretic Europe, or prosperous and unmarried --but in a committed relationship with their own contract-- somewhere in Bush-America's Sun Belt?

ArchPundit 3:16 PM  

===I remember when the left argued marriage was bondage and servitutde, hardly an inalienable right.


"The Left" Here's the problem Bill, you think of everyone left as center as one giant homogenous blob when it isn't. Has someone on the left made that argument--sure, but it was never a part of mainstream Democratic politics for sure.

===Check The Economist, of Feb 11, 2006, page 28 on American isolationist sentiment

It's nothing new--the American public has always had a significant strain of isolationist thought--it's simple and easy to parrot and it plays well to the crowd. The difference is that elites see issues that are too important to be left to mass ideology and lead instead of follow opinion on the matter. There are many in the labor movement who would like to pull us out of trade agreements or at least stop new ones, but they aren't generally isolationist because they need products to be sold elsewhere.

The strongest and loudest nativist arguments are from the likes of Tancredo, Oberweis, Buchanan, Schlafly, and others on the right. That doesn't encompass all conservatives or all Republicans as many Republicans and conservatives are pushing for reasonable immigration policies and they don't want to pull back from the world. However, that element on the right is a lot more influential in policy circles than say Indymedia types on the left.

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