A gay magazine opposes the administration’s attack on anti-gay laws in other countries; brands intiative as “racist” and “colonialist”

This is one more indication of the Left shooting itself in the foot by trying to adhere to woke principles that conflict with even more important woke principles. In this case we have Out magazine, a respected voice in the LGBTQ community, going after the Trump administration’s campaign to decriminalize homosexuality in the many countries—especially Islamic ones—where it’s still a crime to be gay or practice homosexuality.

Now clearly the Trump administration hasn’t been too friendly to the LGBTQ community, but neither has it seriously demonized them—apart from its ban on transgender people in the military. And this initiative may just be a way to get back at Muslim countries, especially Iran, where homosexuality is a capital crime. Further, as we know, Trump detests Iran and scuttled our nuclear deal with it. But so what? If there’s a Trumpian initiative to decriminalize homosexuality in many countries, including Iran, that’s a GOOD thing. The gay community should support it.

But Out magazine doesn’t: they call the plan racist and colonialist. Click on the screenshot below to read it. The upshot is that the magazine would apparently rather see gay people die than say anything good about a plan from the Trump administration. And that is reprehensible.

Here’s one excerpt that gives the tenor of the article:

The truth is, this is part of an old colonialist handbook. In her essay, “Can the Subaltern Speak?” postcolonial theorist Gayatri Spivak coined the term “White men saving brown women from brown men” to describe the racist, paternalistic process by which colonizing powers would decry the way men in power treated oppressed groups, like women, to justify attacking them. Spivak was referencing the British colonial agenda in India. But Grennell’s attack might be a case of white men trying to save brown gay men from brown straight men, to the same end.

There are several signs that this decision is denoted in a colonial sense of paternalism rather than any true altruism. According to the report, the decriminalization campaign is set to begin in Berlin where LGBTQ+ activists from across Europe will meet to hatch a plan that is “mostly concentrated in the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean.”

That sentence alone should set off several alarm bells. First of all, the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean are huge geopolitical entities. Attitudes toward gay people differ greatly among countries and regions within those entities and attempting to gather a room of European activists on how to deal with queer issues in those regions is the definition of paternalism.

In other words, the administration should do nothing. But, as I’ve said before, even a blind pig can find an acorn, and gay rights is a honking big acorn. Remember that if you’re a gay man in Iran and get caught practicing homosexuality, you either get executed or must undergo gender reassignment surgery: a cynical way to pretend that gay men are really women—even when they’re just gay men.

In fact, the whole plan doesn’t appear to be from Trump, but from one of his officials, who happens to be gay:

The most telling detail of NBC News’ report is that his plan centers homophobic violence in Iran, who NBC News calls the administration’s “top geopolitical foe.” The plan has reportedly been spearheaded by the U.S. ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, who is also the administration’s top-ranked gay official, in response to news that a young gay man was hanged in Iran recently. Grenell has had his eyes on Iran for some time and just a week ago, he was trying to get several European nations to pass sanctions on Iran, unrelated to the country’s stance on homosexuality, to no avail.

The good news that the readers of Out aren’t having this ridiculous stand, as evidenced by the comments. Here are several:

 

And there’s some pushback at the site Harry’s Place (“TDS” is “Trump Derangement Syndrome”):

Now I don’t know what Harry’s politics are, and I don’t much care, for he has a reasonable response to the Out stupidity. Here’s an excerpt:

The Out columnist explains:

There are several signs that this decision is denoted in a colonial sense of paternalism rather than any true altruism. According to the report, the decriminalization campaign is set to begin in Berlin where LGBTQ+ activists from across Europe will meet to hatch a plan that is “mostly concentrated in the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean.”

That sentence alone should set off several alarm bells. First of all, the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean are huge geopolitical entities. Attitudes toward gay people differ greatly among countries and regions within those entities and attempting to gather a room of European activists on how to deal with queer issues in those regions is the definition of paternalism.

Gosh! Could the simpler explanation simply be that the criminalisation of homosexuality is principly [sic] concentrated in these regions? Apart from these countries and pockets of Eastern Europe, most of the world is on a liberalising trajectory, and throughout most of the West, gay equality has been essentially achieved.

Is it not also ironic that these Left-wing useful idiots don’t seem to mind encouraging ‘paternalistic’ pressure being applied on Israel, or Middle Eastern countries perceived to be US-allies, like Saudi Arabia? Then ‘paternalism’ is just fine. Have you ever heard anyone on the Left, or a Liberal, complaining about international pressure on South Africa to end its racial policies in the 1980s? No. But apparently putting pressure on an African or Middle Eastern country to not arrest, imprison and execute gay people is a Right-wing project to driven by racism.

This reaction is not surprising. The Left has traditionally cried ‘racism’ when gay people attempt to assert their rights against a background of violent homophobia committed by black or Muslim people, even though the victims are almost entirely gay-black and gay-Muslim people. Who can forget the counter attack against Peter Tatchell by former London Mayor Ken Livingstone when Tatchell criticised for his decision to embrace Islamist cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi, or the op-eds in the press when gay groups opposed murderously violent lyrics by Jamaican singers like Buju Banton, all insinuating a racist motive?

But this is next-level madness: opposing an initiative aimed at ending the criminalisation, imprisonment and execution of gay people sponsored by the Office of the President of the United States, simply because that president is Donald Trump, and the countries in the spotlight are the Idiot Left’s imaginary allies against “Imperialism”, is a shameful new low.

We’re used to “next-level madness” now, as we see the Authoritarian Left excuse terrorism if it’s against Israel, excuse homophobia if it’s practiced by Muslims, and excuse misogyny and anti-Semitism if it’s practiced by the Nation of Islam. Yes, there are clashes among levels in the hierarchy of oppression, but what’s right in these cases is clear.

Such is the polarization of America, and now the mutual hatred of Right and Left has gotten to the point where neither side can recognize anything decent about the other. Now I bow to nobody in detesting Trump and all he stands for, but it looks like someone in his administration is on the right side of morality—and history. And yes, the Right’s hatred of the Left is just as strong, or maybe even stronger. But if we don’t recognize that some people on the other side can ever stand for simple human decency, how will we ever have any bipartisanship in our government?

 

112 Comments

  1. Ken Kukec
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    It’s one thing to use the cudgel of gay rights to flog an enemy (where it is unlikely to do any good). It would be another to put pressure on a supposed “ally” like Saudi Arabia, which has an equally abysmal record on LBGTQ rights (and on human rights more generally).

    I’m glad to see this long-overdue campaign, or any campaign promoting human rights anywhere in the world. But the Trump administration’s move here strikes me as nearly as cynical as when Stalin used to take the US to task for its record on civil rights, all the while starving millions of his countrymen to death with his five-year plans.

    • BJ
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

      I can’t believe I’m reading a post in this very thread saying we shouldn’t support a single Trump policy, no matter how good, and another saying that a good policy (even when that policy apparently didn’t come from Trump himself, but from someone else in his administration) must be motivated by what motivated the propaganda of Stalin while he murdered tens of millions of his own citizens.

      No, I don’t think TDS is going away any time soon.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

        Cynical propaganda is cynical propaganda, BJ. Let me know when Trump, who has yet to meet a despot he won’t suck up to — take your pick: Erdoğan, Xi, Putin, Jong-un, MBS, Duterte, etc. — takes a principled stand in favor of human rights with any ally (a country, that is, with whom the US might have some actual moral suasion), and I’ll happily give him even more credit than I did here.

        • rustybrown
          Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:51 am | Permalink

          As I pointed out below, he just did. You are now free to happily give him credit…

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

        If it was clear that Trump is pro-LGBTQ and that this was just part of his well-thought-out plan to push for human rights, I would be behind it. If it doesn’t fit Trump’s agenda at all, I’m leery of supporting it because it may end up looking like I support his true agenda, whatever that turns out to be. Just because the stopped clock is right twice a day doesn’t mean I want to buy it.

        • Taz
          Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

          – Trump should eat shit and die.
          – I support this initiative.

          It’s really not that hard.

    • BJ
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

      Sorry, that wasn’t meant to be a reply to you, but a general post. Obviously, only one of those things applies to your comment.

    • rustybrown
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

      You seem to be implying that Saudi Arabia is somehow excluded in this global initiative. Can you provide evidence of this or can we assume that Saudi’s Arabia is in Trump’s spotlight as well?

      Also, I can’t help but point out the extreme TDS in your second paragraph, to paraphrase: “I support this long overdue initiative but because it’s Trump doing it I’m reminded of Stalin.”

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      I don’t care if it’s cynical propaganda if there’s a move towards making things better for LGBTQ people. This is not just the US, but a whole lot of countries getting together. Also, I think people are smart enough that they can look at the Trump regime as a whole and not suddenly start supporting it because of this one thing.

      This plan is clearly an ongoing initiative, and I hope and expect the US administration would continue to support it when Trump is out of office in 2020 (or sooner). Do we have to wait until Trump/the GOP is gone until the US starts supporting this initiative? That doesn’t make sense to me.

      The point is whatever the motives of Trump, things will hopefully improve for LGBTQ people in multiple countries around the world.

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

        Anything that actually improves the lot of the LGBT community of course has a practical goodness. Is it therefore wrong to call it out as cynical propaganda if it is? I don’t think so.

        • darrelle
          Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:17 am | Permalink

          1) Damn good to see you musical beef, how the heck have you been?

          2) I agree completely.

          • Posted February 22, 2019 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

            Howdy! I still read WEIT pretty regularly, but I seem to have lost my enthusiasm for commenting, at least in serious discussions. Lately I’ve been posting mostly jokes and sarcasm over at Friendly Atheist.

        • Heather Hastie
          Posted February 23, 2019 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

          No, it’s not wrong to call it out. In fact, I think it’s a duty to do so. It’s just that I feel like some are saying that the good part should be ignored because of the bad. I think we can acknowledge the good while recognizing the bad.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

        I agree. As I said above, I applaud any advance in LBGTQ rights, or other human rights, anywhere across the globe.

        But I’d have to see Trump push the initiative somewhere other than Iran before I’d accept his support for it as something other than a cynical ploy.

        • rustybrown
          Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

          Again, why do you see this as directed only towards Iran? Are you making that up? Genuinely curious. As far as I know this is a global initiative.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

            Did you read the article Jerry linked to, or the NBC News piece it cited as its source? Both make clear that Iran has been the focus of the Trump administration’s statements regarding this campaign.

            Donald Trump hasn’t the stones to criticize Saudi Arabia about anything, least of all its miserable human-rights record, nor even its coldblooded murder of a journalist for an American newspaper.

            • rustybrown
              Posted February 21, 2019 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

              Yes, I’ve looked at both pieces and still don’t see how the Trump initiative is excluding Saudi Arabia, as you implied. I see how those stories emphasize Iran and don’t mention the Saudis, but that’s an editorial slant that played perfectly into your bias.

              The fact is it’s quite plain the Trump initiative focuses on a global effort to decriminalize homosexuality and in no way excludes SA, as you imply. You’re spreading fake news. The initiative directly implicates SA because SA currently criminalizes homosexual behavior.

              • Ken Kukec
                Posted February 21, 2019 at 11:55 pm | Permalink

                Can you cite a single instance where Donald Trump has ever criticized the Saudis for their miserable human-rights record?

              • rustybrown
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 12:30 am | Permalink

                Yes. As I’ve just pointed out: Trump’s latest initiative. The subject of Jerry’s post you’re commenting on, remember? That would be criticizing countries, like SA, that criminalize homosexuality.

                This is getting tedious.

              • Ken Kukec
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

                What’s tedious here is your unwillingness to answer a simple question: Can you cite a specific instance where Donald Trump personally has called out Saudi Arabia by name for its horrific human-rights record?

                If you cannot, concede the point and move on; it would do your credibility less damage.

                Getting a straightforward answer out of you regarding Donald Trump is nearly as difficult as getting one from Kellyanne Conway or Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

              • rustybrown
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:49 am | Permalink

                Before you move the goalposts further maybe you should concede your original point that you were wrong in implying Trump’s global gay initiative excludes Saudi Arabia and focuses on Iran.

                I’ve already pointed out that the initiative is a direct rebuke to all countries that criminalize homosexual behavior, including Saudi’s Arabia.

                From the linked article:

                “Yet by using gay rights as a cudgel against Iran, the Trump administration risks exposing close U.S. allies who are also vulnerable on the issue and creating a new tension point with the one region where Trump has managed to strengthen U.S. ties: the Arab world. In Saudi Arabia, whose monarchy Trump has staunchly defended in the face of human rights allegations, homosexuality can be punishable by death”

        • Heather Hastie
          Posted February 23, 2019 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

          I’m not disagreeing with that part. You’re completely right there imo. My response to musical beef expresses my point a bit better.

    • eric
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

      Trump getting some cynical propaganda in exchange for fewer gays being killed and tortured in other countries strikes me as one step back, hundreds of steps forward.

      Yeah, he gets a benefit. Let him. It’s totally worth it. Consider it the equivalent of a useless porkbarrel rider being attached to a gay rights bill.

  2. Jenny Haniver
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    This reminds me of some feminists and cultural authoritarians, etc., who were “woke” before the word was associated with SJWs and who castigated those who wanted to eradicate female genital mutilation because, they argued, it was a cultural tradition in those societies and the West cannot impose its values on traditional societies. This view extends to defending arranged marriage, child brides, pedophilia, and I don’t know what else. I once had a proud feminist castigate me when I criticized the US government for aiding and abetting bacha bazi in Afghanistan — her defense: it’s their culture.

    Eons ago, I read an article about some ‘primitive’ tribe in Borneo that sacrificed the firstborn. True or some lurid colonialist fantasy, I don’t know; but if it is true, I’m sure there must people in the West who’d defend it on cultural grounds.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, you can’t say anything about another culture because it’s all relative (who are we to judge). And now we don’t just judge that culture, we judge our own – what colonial monsters you are for judging other cultures! I don’t know where this is all headed. My hope is that more and more will see how it’s all a dead end & abandon it.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

      +1 with bells on!

    • max blancke
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

      The FGM thing was one of the first things I thought of. When the Trump DOJ started actually attempting to prosecute FGM practitioners under existing laws, there was some pushback from the anti-Trump folks.

      I think there is really a kneejerk reaction to resist all of the administration’s actions, way out of proportion to any actual wrongs Trump has committed.

      I personally find his manner disagreeable, and don’t agree with all of his policies, but the rage he elicits seems bizarre to me. What we cannot know is whether the same people would be just as enraged at a democratic or independent president.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

      It is worthwhile to consider that had it not been for the white male colonialists Gayatri Spivak would have been roasted on the pyre of her husband.

      • Jenny Haniver
        Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

        Good point.

    • Posted February 22, 2019 at 4:40 am | Permalink

      Yep. I got taken to task by a number of super-woke anthropology friends for being anti FGM. Apparently this is just a cover for my hating brown people really. I’m starting to think that anthropology may not provide the best training in critical thinking.

    • Posted February 22, 2019 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      Agreed. While the Trump administration is hardly an “ally” (cough, cough, Mike Pence), the “woke” SJWs are just as hypocritical on this issue. Apparently black lives *don’t* matter to them, if we’re talking about, say, LGBT black people in the Caribbean.

      Politics makes strange bedfellows. But I still can’t get my head around the mindset that holds these double standards where something that’s (rightly) seen as horrible in the West somehow becomes above criticism in other cultures. Isn’t *that* racist?

  3. DrBrydon
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Jesus wept. . . .

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      Or rolled his eyes & hoped for the next great flood to start over.

  4. rustybrown
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    TDS has its own logic and its own morality so other moral or logical calculations are not only unnecessary, but hostile and unwelcome. TDS is hermetic and self-sustaining.

    • Jim Danielson
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

      I can’t help but notice the one comment:
      “Liberals aren’t human anymore.”

      Derangement has long been a problem on the right.

    • Jim Danielson
      Posted February 23, 2019 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      Speaking of derangement:

      Coast Guard Officer Plotted to Kill Democrats and Journalists

      Or the pipe bomber who targeted Trump’s enemies.

      Or two different people who attacked a pizza restaurant because right wing talking heads spread the deranged pizzagate conspiracy.

      There are so many more examples I could give.

      Or we could look at some of the many, many crazy conspiracies against Obama, starting with birtherism, started by, guess who, Donald Trump, or that Obama was going to put the right in FEMA concentration camps, or tried to take over Texas with the military.

      Or we could look at Trump’s actions and words, his egging his followers to attack people. His unwillingness to condemn neo Nazis. His constant lying. His attack of the free press as the enemy of the people. His meeting with Putin and North Korea without American witnesses. Again, I could give many, many more examples.

      Your ‘TDS’ doesn’t even begin to compare to the insanity seen in the right and Trump.

      • rustybrown
        Posted February 23, 2019 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

        The laundry list strikes again! LOL. Going back and forth in a “what about this?!” fashion doesn’t strike me as fun or productive. I’ll just point out the uptick of very real physical violence against conservatives and Trump supporters in the past couple years that have resulted in hospitalizations and maybe mention Micah Xavier Johnson’s Black Lives Matter inspired ambush assassination which left five police officers dead and nine wounded – a tally of actual victims far greater than all of the incidents you listed.

        • Posted February 23, 2019 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

          This ridiculous “what about this” back-and-forth is exactly what I was calling “unscientific”. Here you call this out and then give us one more for the road. It is a false argument style.

          • rustybrown
            Posted February 23, 2019 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

            I don’t think you’re making any sense. Is that scientific?

        • Jim Danielson
          Posted February 23, 2019 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

          It’s rather telling that you don’t even attempt to defend Trump and his antics, instead you push an empty talking point (TDS) with vague assertions and vague denials.

          • rustybrown
            Posted February 24, 2019 at 1:55 am | Permalink

            I don’t consider five dead police officers a “vague assertion”. I’m certain their orphaned kids don’t as well.

    • Jim Danielson
      Posted February 23, 2019 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      Last one I’ll mention, (of literally hundreds), arguably the most horrific and the one showing just how badly deranged and/or lacking of ethics some on the right have become:

      The Sandy Hook conspiracy.

      Right wingers accuse the parents of the Sandy Hook school massacre, (the slaughter of twenty children, six and seven years old), of making it all up so the government can take the right winger’s guns.

      Right wingers stalk and harass (online and in person) the grieving parents and families for YEARS. Some parents are assaulted by these deranged cretins.

      Right wing talking heads like Alex Jones use the conspiracy to gin up support, sell advertising, self promotion and to sell his own brand of survivalist supplies.

      • Jim Danielson
        Posted February 23, 2019 at 10:38 am | Permalink

        “…parents of the victims of the Sandy Hook school massacre…”

  5. merilee
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Trump has someone gay in his admin??

    • Mark R.
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

      I think it’s his diplomat to Germany. If so, he’s a white supremacist as well.

      • merilee
        Posted February 21, 2019 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

        Can’t have everything🙀

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

      I’m sure there are many more. We just won’t know about ’em until they get busted by an undercover cop on a morals rap for a taking a “wide stance” by a public men’s room or for drunkenly sending salacious texts to underage pages — you know, the usual Republican paths out of the closet.

      • rustybrown
        Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

        Meanwhile, Obama and Hillary both were vehemently against same sex marriage before it became politically expedient to pander.

        • Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

          So have you been pro same-sex marriage all your life? Or is it anti?

          • rustybrown
            Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

            Personally? Pro. Always.

            • Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

              So anyone who comes around to your position, likely did it for cynical reasons? I think a lot of people came around at roughly the same time. Sure, it was partly because everyone else was also doing it but isn’t that pretty much how big changes come about? Or, in your book, can one only legitimately change position by reasoning from first principles?

              • rustybrown
                Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

                “So anyone who comes around to your position, likely did it for cynical reasons?”

                Not at all. But in Barack and Hillary’s case I think it’s pretty obvious and blatant. Also was just responding Ken’s insinuation that gay hypocrisy is a Republican issue.

              • darrelle
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:26 am | Permalink

                So when someone else doubts Trump’s motives for doing something that will have some positive benefit it’s TDS but when you do precisely the same with respect to some politicians you don’t like it’s righteous?

              • Posted February 22, 2019 at 11:34 am | Permalink

                Darrelle, did you reply to the wrong person? I don’t think I’ve ever accused anyone of having TDS.

              • darrelle
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

                Sorry Paul, I should have specified that I was addressing Rustybrown. Pointless as that may be.

              • Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

                Thought as much and agree on the hopelessness.

              • rustybrown
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 9:01 am | Permalink

                Not sure I follow your logic here but I take things on a case by case basis.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

          Can you name a single Republican national office holder who’s ever come out of the closet voluntarily before or while holding office?

          • rustybrown
            Posted February 21, 2019 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

            No, for a couple of reasons. I’m not a Republican and I’m not into identity politics. Don’t know the answer to your question and couldn’t care less.I’m

            • rustybrown
              Posted February 21, 2019 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

              …drinking.

            • Ken Kukec
              Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

              Obama and Hillary and many other Democrats were slow to the cause of same-sex marriage — and I criticized all of them for it at the time. But none of them were ever anti-gay, which has been the GOP default position (and a plank in the Republican Party platform) ever since the notion of “gay rights” first came to the fore. That’s why most straight Republicans haven’t had to contend with hypocrisy on gay issues.

              The Republican hypocrisy on gay issues has come from gay Republicans themselves. Even now, a full half-century after Stonewall, no Republican aspiring to high elective office, or to a high administrative position in the Republican Party, dares come out of the closet. And at least a couple of Republican congressmen later revealed to be gay actually voted in favor of DOMA.

              Hell, just a few years ago CPAC excluded the gay Log Cabin Republicans from its annual soirée (the very same year it let back in the reactionary John Birch Society).

              • rustybrown
                Posted February 22, 2019 at 12:20 am | Permalink

                So neither Obama nor Hillary were anti-gay? Bullshit. At least in terms of the defining gay rights issue of their times (marriage). You should go back and read some articles.

                Also, as I said, I’m no Republican so don’t ask me to explain their past positions. I’ll denounce them along with you. But don’t pretend the Dems have always been pure on this issue. Currently, they’re cynically exploiting the LGBTQ crowd in the same way as they exploit every other marginal group.

    • Curtis
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      Trump appointed two gay judges – Mary Rowland and Patrick J. Bumatay.

    • Curtis
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      Trump appointed two gay judges – Mary Rowland and Patrick J. Bumatay.

  6. Mark R.
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    Slowly shakes head…

    I will add that Trump’s 2 SCOTUS picks are anti-LGBT and I’m sure the court will start taking up cases that weaken or strip gay rights. Many of his lower court appointees are also anti-LGBT. The transgender ban was shameful and stupid, but the real harm (imo) will be done by the anti-LGBT stacked courts.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

      The Court might be one vote away from throwing the nation into total disarray by overruling Obergefell v. Hodges. I don’t think Chief Justice Roberts would supply a fifth vote, but were Trump to get one more SCOTUS vacancy to go with Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Bart O’Kavanaugh …

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

        Pray to the non-existent gods that RBG lives long and prospers.

        • merilee
          Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

          I saw one woman declare that she’s put RBG on her organ-donor form for all her organs, if she’s (the woman) dead or alive.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

      I think this completely over the top and idiotic ‘virtue signaling’ by intersectional, ‘woke’ POMO’s does at least as much harm as nasty Neil and beer-soaked Brett can do.

  7. Posted February 21, 2019 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Even though I am deadly afraid of being labeled as a victim of TDS, there is something slimy about siding with the Trump administration just because they have done something small, perhaps accidentally, for the LGBT community. I can imagine a conversation wherein I admit this and the Trump supporter to my right says, “See? Trump does good things. You just don’t recognize them.” And this makes me regret bringing the subject up.

    Looking at this another way, Trump and his policies are so bad, and the need to rid ourselves of him so dire, we need to be against him in everything. Seriously. I don’t think we should give him an inch in 2020.

    • BJ
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      “Even though I am deadly afraid of being labeled as a victim of TDS, there is something slimy about siding with the Trump administration just because they have done something small, perhaps accidentally, for the LGBT community.”

      It’s not “siding with the Trump administration,” it’s simply admitting that it did something good. This is the same as Republicans who were so convinced that Obama was the antichrist that they refused to support any of his policies, no matter how reasonable or good for the country. So, this will be two administrations in a row where the other side refuses to support anything done by the President’s administration. We can keep going in circles like this, or we can end that cycle. But if Democrats want to do the same thing they decried Republicans for doing during Obama’s administration, I guess they’re welcome to it, and we’ll keep going round and round in this vicious circle until it tears everything apart.

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

        Motivations matter. Is it still something good if the real intent is to stick it to Iran?

        • Taz
          Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

          If the intent is to stick it to Iran about their horrendous anti-gay rights position, then yes, it is good.

          • Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

            Do you think that is a likely possibility?

            • Taz
              Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

              From NBC News:

              Although the decriminalization strategy is still being hashed out, officials say it’s likely to include working with
              global organizations like the United Nations, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, as well as other countries whose laws already allow for gay rights. Other U.S. embassies and diplomatic posts throughout Europe, including the U.S. Mission to the E.U., are involved, as is the State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor.

              I’m having a hard time seeing what’s wrong with this.

          • Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

            That it’s specifically about LGBT rights, I mean.

            • Taz
              Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

              I don’t care if it’s part of a broader strategy. It’s good in and of itself.

    • Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

      Looks like your fear has come true. You just labeled yourself. Comes pretty close to being a bigot.

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

        Don’t see how you make that argument but you are welcome to your opinion.

      • Posted February 21, 2019 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

        Let’s not engage in name-calling here, okay? Read the Roolz in the left margin.

    • eric
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

      I can imagine a conversation wherein I admit this and the Trump supporter to my right says, “See? Trump does good things. You just don’t recognize them.”

      To which you reply: “so what? Many bad people do good things. Many good people do bad things. My opinion of Trump as a horrible President is based on consideration of all of his actions, not just one of them.”

      • Kirbmarc
        Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:25 am | Permalink

        Yes. Richard Nixon created the EPA and supported environmentalism. That was an unambiguously good thing to do, even though it was a crooked, highly authoritarian president like Nixon who did it.

        His support for environmental concerns doesn’t outweigh his corruption, or his authoritarian attempts to undermine his rivals, or his cynical support of the “Southern Strategy” to appeal to white supremacists in the South.

        Similarly, this is a good initiative, even if it’s a crooked, authoritarian, bigoted president like Donald Trump doing it.

    • Posted February 22, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think it is a good idea to be against Trump administration in everything it does, including any good policies.
      I deliberately wrote “Trump administration” because I saw some reports that Trump himself showed surprise when journalists asked him about his pro-gay rights international policy.

      One of our worst governments started sound educational policies and got Bulgaria into NATO. Another one introduced a flat, low income tax that proved beneficial. Should I call bad decisions that apparently were good, and support their reversal? (It is another thing whether, considering the sum of both good and bad policies, I would vote for the parties behind these governments.)

      • Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

        I don’t want anything to do with an administration whose leader lies with virtually every breath. Any agreement with their policies would indicate some sort of normalcy and that his policies are worth debating. As far as I can see, the motivations behind his policies are so corrupt that the country just needs to get past this embarrassing episode in its history.

      • Filippo
        Posted February 23, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

        “One of our worst governments started sound educational policies and got Bulgaria into NATO.”

        Of course, that could never possibly, reasonably, predictably, provoke Russia, could it?

        • Posted February 24, 2019 at 6:54 am | Permalink

          Of course it couldn’t. Russia is “provoked” in exactly the opposite situation, that is, when its potential victims stay undefended. If Georgia and Ukraine were NATO members, Russia would think twice before attacking them and grabbing land.

          • Filippo
            Posted February 24, 2019 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

            Would you say the same in the case of the Cuban missile crisis?

            Is it your understanding that the U.S. reneged on a “gentlemen’s agreement” with Gorbachev, to the effect that the U.S. would not push for eastward expansion of NATO in exchange for the Soviet Union agreeing to the reunification of Germany?

            • Posted February 25, 2019 at 11:50 am | Permalink

              I know too little about the Cuban missile crisis to comment.

              As for the “gentlemen’s agreement”, it was kept as long as the Soviet Union existed. I think that the disappearance of one of the sides of this agreement automatically made it void. Anyway, my country and other Central and Eastern European countries have never signed it and so are not bound by this horrible, racist deal.

  8. Harrison
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    The outrage brigade constantly says that it’s the obligation of the privileged to use their privilege to shine a light on the underprivileged. This is the same behavior that is being called paternalism.

    Once again we see that there’s no consistent correct behavior. You can be vilified if you do something or if you do nothing. The point of the game is you always lose.

    Luckily there exist in the world genuine social activists who don’t care for this absurd game. They’re out to alleviate suffering in the world and any one of them is worth ten thousand of the grievance-mongers.

  9. Adam M.
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

    Is there any evidence that Trump is anti-gay? Perhaps he’s pro-LGB (or neutral) and only anti-T. A lot of laws and policies only apply to one or two of the LGBTQ letters, and it doesn’t make sense to me to lump them all together.

    It’s almost as silly as grouping copyright, trade secrets, patents, trademarks, etc. under the umbrella term “intellectual property” when the respective bodies of law have different histories and motivations, and little in common.

    • Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      His base is anti-gay and he knows it. As to what he truly believes, it probably depends on who he talked to last, whichever opinion he thinks would make him the most money, make him look the best, or some combination of them.

    • rustybrown
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

      Good observation. Trump is objectively the most pro gay President in US history.

  10. Jonathan Gallant
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

    Donald Trump has never stepped out of an upper story window of Trump Tower, from which we infer that he believes in gravity. Hence, all right-thinking (i.e., left-thinking) individuals should deny the existence of gravity. It is also clear the The Donald accepts modern (often called “Western”) medical science. It follows…etc. etc. etc.

    • Taz
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      “Some” modern medical science. He’s an anti-vaxxer.

  11. Filippo
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    sub

  12. Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    Okay, so Trump apparently helped those college basketball players avoid experiencing the Chinese jail system. And no matter what Mathew Rodriguez and the “postcolonial theorists” have to say, Trump is right on this one, too. So, yeah, a broken clock is right twice.

  13. pablo
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

    I don’t care if someone’s heart is pure, I only care about their actions.

  14. rustybrown
    Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    Again, why do you see this directed only towards Iran? Are you making that up? Genuinely curious. As far as I know this is a global initiative.

    • rustybrown
      Posted February 21, 2019 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

      Sorry, posted this in the wrong place initially. Thread above.

  15. Posted February 21, 2019 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

    A stopped clock is right twice a day, but that doesn’t mean flipping its hands will give you the right time.

    -Ryan

  16. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:17 am | Permalink

    I just see this as another totally cynical and transparent ploy by Trump.

    Does he really give a sh*t about gay (or anybody else’s) rights anywhere? I don’t believe it for a second.

    Will he grasp at anything that puts him on the ‘right’ side and he can use to belabour someone else? You betcha.

    Would he sell the gays down the river the split second it became advantageous for him to do so? Does anyone doubt it?

    I’m with Out magazine in thinking this smells fishy. If anyone there thinks it stems from deep and principled convictions there’s this bridge I’d like to sell you…

    cr

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:27 am | Permalink

      Oh, and I notice that this doesn’t seem to be a case of tRump doing anything for gays *in the US* where his authority runs. It’s just him belabouring other countries on their internal policies. Standard tRump hypocrisy.

      Wouldn’t this criticism seem a bit less cynical and opportunistic if tRump had walked the walk before he talked the talk?

      I eagerly await his upcoming attack on China for their dubious record on climate change…

      cr

    • Posted February 22, 2019 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

      To me, what you are describing is the standard behavior of a politician. However, I think accusing politicians in cynicism when they do something good is not productive, because it demotivates them to do good things. And what we need from a politician are not “deep and principled convictions” but good policies.

      What do you think should be done with respect to gay rights in the USA?

  17. Rory Carr
    Posted February 22, 2019 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Trump himself was apparently completely unaware that this was a policy of his administration until asked about by reporters, according to MSNBC.
    http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/trump-seems-unaware-his-plan-end-criminalization-homosexuality

    That should allow even the most ardent Trump hater to support the initiative, no?

  18. Kirbmarc
    Posted February 22, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    The bigger problem here is not Trump, but the tendencies in SOME (and I underline SOME) parts of the “woke” media to argue that criticism of islam is inherently racist.

    I’m sure Trump is cynically using a noble cause to attack his enemies. I’m sure he doesn’t actually give a shit about human rights (he’s shown this plenty of times).

    It’s even possible that some people wanted to do this independently of Trump, and the Trump administration just seized the day because some neocon strategist (likely John Bolton) sees this as a good chance as any to isolate Iran.

    And yes, it’s hypocritical to single out Iran when plenty of American allies (from the KSA to Qatar to Pakistan) have an appalling record on LGBT rights.

    But the right response to this, from a coherent progressive perspective, is to say that this is something that has to be done, even if it’s someone like Donald Trump spearheading it.

    I understand reservations about the motives of Trump and his cronies, and I understand some cynicism about how this will likely not work.

    What is very, very troubling to me about the “Out Magazine” article is the idea that if “western” countries criticize human rights violations in muslim theocracies that’s somehow racist and bigoted.

    That’s a terrible idea, and it leads to very dangerous ideas, like the assumption that all criticism of muslim bigoted and reactionary ideas, even in community of muslims who live in the “west”, is actually just bigotry and racism.

    The reason why this is such a terrible idea is that while we can’t do much beyond proclamations and slogans for LGBT people in muslim theocracies, we CAN and SHOULD do a lot to fight against bigoted and reactionary ideas in muslim communities in the “west”.

    This quote from “Out Magazine” is what I find most troubling:

    “The truth is, this is part of an old colonialist handbook. In her essay, “Can the Subaltern Speak?” postcolonial theorist Gayatri Spivak coined the term “White men saving brown women from brown men” to describe the racist, paternalistic process by which colonizing powers would decry the way men in power treated oppressed groups, like women, to justify attacking them. Spivak was referencing the British colonial agenda in India. But Grennell’s attack might be a case of white men trying to save brown gay men from brown straight men, to the same end.”

    Highly reactionary and bigoted religious groups like Nation of Islam, Hamas, Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood are more than eager to mask their authoritarian, bigoted ideas and insinuate themselves into progressive spaces by adopting the mantle of the “oppressed black/brown people” whose ideas are unimpeachable, because any criticism of their ideas is “racist” or “paternalistic” or “colonizing”.

    We’ve already seen how Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory, two Nation of Islam fans, have managed to get control of the “Women’s March” and use it for their reactionary agendas of whitewashing a homophobic, misogynistic, anti-semitic bigoted like Louis Farrakhan.

    The idea that bigotry and reactionary ideas in islam are only focused on because of “racism” or “Islamophobia” is at the basis of many excuses that several ostensibly progressive platforms give to their unwillingness to criticize islam.

    Islam IS a very reactionary, bigoted, homophobic and misogynistic religion, ESPECIALLY so in its fundamentalist, literalist flavor promoted by several oil-rich countries.

    Liberal muslims, LGBT muslims, ex-muslims are the first to bear the brunt of the bigoted nature of conservative/reactionary islam.

    A coherent progressive movement should be a place where conservative and reactionary ideas are criticized no matter their course.

    Articles like the “Out Magazine” one have a chilling effect over criticism of bigotry and reactionary ideas in islam, because reactionary muslim apologists use them to argue that all progressive criticism of islam is racism, and likely promoted by the alt-right or Trump fans.

    This leads to things like British universities trying to de-platform progressive critics of islam like Maryam Namazie, or American universities trying to de-platform Richard Dawkins for his criticism of islam, or some British progressives attacking Maajid Nawaz, a liberal muslim, for allegedly “abetting” right-wing bigotry for criticizing reactionaty and bigoted messages in islam.

    I despise Donald Trump and I’m certain this is just a cynical ploy for him. But if to oppose Trump we have to give credit to those who wish to suppress progressive criticism of islam, using the excuse of “racism” or “paternalism”, we’re only damaging progressivism itself.

  19. Posted February 22, 2019 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    There’s a version of this sort of complaint that I think is worth thinking about: namely when an *official* of a political enemy country speaks out on something it *sometimes* creates a danger for the very people it is nominally attempting to help, by letting the regime associate them with the enemy.

  20. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted February 22, 2019 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    Look, Mr Trump tells the truth or mostly the truth about 14% of the time (according to Politifact, less than any other politician). So is it unreasonable to suspect that about a comparable %-age of his actions are too?

    There are 2 things here that should not be confounded:
    1 – Mr Trump taking (for once) some positive action, which is regarded with a jaundiced eye by many.
    2 – The ridiculous intersectional, ‘woke’ POMO ideology which contends that the worst of human right abuses such as Suttee and FGM, or killing gays, should be justified because opposing them is somehow a ‘white male’, colonialist, paternalistic sin.

    No, it is not, about all of us aspire to a situation where their human rights are respected, and ‘brown’ and ‘black’ people are no exception. To think they should be subject to human rights abuses because of ‘culture’, is deeply racist, and (dare I say it?) paternalistic. It strongly reminds us of the ‘little people’ argument.

  21. dallos
    Posted February 23, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    “After penning a February 1 op-ed about the hanging in a top German newspaper, Bild, NBC News reports Grenell is heading a strategic effort to gather LGBTQ leaders and get them to fight Iran on behalf of LGBTQ rights, after months of placing “daily” pressure on European companies to adhere to anti-Iran sanctions. U.S. officials told NBC News, which broke the story on Tuesday, February 19, that Grenell had invited LGBTQ activists from around Europe to a dinner at which they would be invited to help plan a decriminalization push focused on the Middle East, Africa, and the Caribbean.”

    “Those LGBTQ activists invited to Grenell’s dinner should arrive at the strategy table armed with a healthy dose of skepticism. Not only does Grenell’s history of opposing Iran make the new effort seem like a smoke screen, but also the mission of the Trump administration writ large is in direct conflict with LGBTQ rights.”

    https://www.teenvogue.com/story/trumps-plan-to-decriminalize-homosexuality-is-not-at-all-what-it-seems

  22. Joseph O’Sullivan
    Posted February 23, 2019 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

    I’m late to the discussion. One thing no one has mentioned is that there were parts of the US where it was to be gay until 2003. The Supreme Court overruled Texas’ sodomy law after two men were convicted for having gay sex.

    Trump wasn’t overly interested in LGBTQ people either way. He wasn’t anti-gay but not a big supporter either. Trump is increasingly dependent on his small, but highly motivated base which is mostly evangelicals. His base is decidedly anti-LGBTQ. He is allowing people to go after LGBTQ rights as a sop to them.

    The effort to end the criminalization of LGBTQ people in other countries is an unvarnished good. Yes, the bigger picture is that Trump is a dumpster fire, including for LGBTQ rights in the US. We can acknowledge both. It’s like walking and chewing gum at the same time.

    We are can reject rage-driven partisanship, but the problem is that we have instead embraced it.

  23. Joseph O’Sullivan
    Posted February 23, 2019 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    Oops I though I typed ‘illegal to be gay’.


Post a Comment

Required fields are marked *
*
*

%d bloggers like this: