Monday, April 30, 2012

Irony Lost on Dan Savage as He Bullies Christians (Now with Nearly Non-Apology Apology and More Comments)

The Bible. We’ll just talk about the Bible for a second. People often point out that they can’t help it — they can’t help with the anti-gay bullying, because it says right there in Leviticus, it says right there in Timothy, it says right there in Romans, that being gay is wrong.

We can learn to ignore the bull**** in the Bible about gay people. The same way, the same way we have learned to ignore the bull**** in the Bible about shellfish, about slavery, about dinner, about farming, about menstruation, about virginity, about masturbation. We ignore bull**** in the Bible about all sorts of things. The Bible is a radically pro-slavery document. Slave owners waved Bibles over their heads during the Civil War and justified it. The shortest book in the New Testament is a letter from Paul to a Christian slave owner about owning his Christian slave. And Paul doesn’t say “Christians don’t own people.” Paul talks about how Christians own people.

We ignore what the Bible says about slavery, because the Bible got slavery wrong. Tim — uh, Sam Harris, in A Letter To A Christian Nation, points out that the Bible got the easiest moral question that humanity has ever faced wrong. Slavery. What’re the odds that the Bible got something as complicated as human sexuality wrong? One hundred percent.

The Bible says that if your daughter’s not a virgin on her wedding night — if a woman isn’t a virgin on her wedding night, she shall be dragged to her father’s doorstep and stoned to death. Callista Gingrich lives. And there is no effort to amend state constitutions to make it legal to stone women to death on their wedding night if they’re not virgins. At least not yet. We don’t know where the GOP is going these days.

People are dying because people can’t clear this one last hurdle. They can’t get past this one last thing in the Bible about homosexuality.

Um, one other thing I wanna talk about is — [chuckles] — so, you can tell the Bible guys in the hall that they can come back now, because I’m done beating up the Bible. It’s funny, as someone who’s on the receiving end of beatings that are justified by the Bible, how pansy-a**ed some people react when you push back.

I apologize if I hurt anyone’s feelings. But. I have a right to defend myself. And to point out the hypocrisy of people who justify anti-gay bigotry by pointing to the Bible, and insisting we must live by the code of Leviticus on this one issue and no other.
~ Gay Activist Dan Savage, founder of "It Gets Better," speaking to a group of journalism students in Seattle. After the Bible slam, a group of Christian teenagers walked out, so he insulted them further. Quote from

He had the bully pulpit, if you would say so, so to speak. And, basically, this is their way to say, you know what? I’m going to take a stand. And, frankly, it took a lot of guts and these students that you see there that are walking out, I mean, it occurs to me as I see this video, is this is what we teach kids to do when they’re being bullied to walk away. That’s what they did.
~ Rick Tuttle, teacher who gave his journalism students permission to walk out on Dan Savage, quoted Here

The man is just trying for a job with MSNBC.
~ comment by Russell on The Christian Post

...We want to make our point very clear: While as a journalist it’s important to be able to listen to speech that offends you, these students and advisers had simply reached their tolerance level for what they were willing to hear.
~ National Scholastic Press Association which sponsored the conference where Savage was speaking, quoted Here

Apology from Dan Savage in The Stranger:
I would like to apologize for describing that walk out as a pansy-a**ed move. I wasn't calling the handful of students who left pansies (2800+ students, most of them Christian, stayed and listened), just the walk-out itself. But that's a distinction without a difference—kinda like when religious conservatives tells their gay friends that they "love the sinner, hate the sin." They're often shocked when their gay friends get upset because, hey, they were making a distinction between the person (lovable!) and the person's actions (not so much!). But gay people feel insulted by "love the sinner, hate the sin" because it is insulting. Likewise, my use of "pansy-a**ed" was insulting, it was name-calling, and it was wrong. And I apologize for saying it.

As for what I said about the Bible...

A smart Christian friend involved politics writes: "In America today you just can't refer, even tangentially, to someone's religion as 'bull****.' You should apologize for using that word."

I didn't call anyone's religion bull****. I did say that there is bull****—"untrue words or ideas"—in the Bible. That is being spun as an attack on Christianity. Which is bull****… which is untrue. I was not attacking the faith in which I was raised. I was attacking the argument that gay people must be discriminated against—and anti-bullying programs that address anti-gay bullying should be blocked (or exceptions should be made for bullying "motivated by faith")—because it says right there in the Bible that being gay is wrong. Yet the same people who make that claim choose to ignore what the Bible has to say about a great deal else. I did not attack Christianity. I attacked hypocrisy. My remarks can only be read as an attack on all Christians if you believe that all Christians are hypocrites. Which I don't believe.
~ Read More HERE

If the students had been disruptive & heckling him, I can see that. But no, they were there for a student conference, the key note topic was how to cover bullying in their school papers, not debating over whether the Bible is "bull ****" or not. He wasn't being persecuted at all. In fact, since he had the stage, I'd say he was the one in control (not to mention, the adult in the room). The kids simply did the only thing they could do, vote with their feet.
~ comment by WolverineDG on Democratic Underground.

Not news: Dan Savage talks vulgar and bullies student audience.
News: Dan Savage was paid to teach against bullying.
Addressing a national conference of high-school journalists, Savage was calling the Bible bull**** repeatedly. Students started to leave. So he called them pansyasses. When the adult presenter calls 17-year-old students names isn't that bullying?
~ Ron Hebron on Sound Politics

Mr. Savage: 1) Pick on someone your own age. To rant like you did to HS kids is not acceptable. 2) It's unfortanate that people of many beliefs, Christian, Muslim, Druids, whatever, don't act in accordance to the teachings of the belief. It's the individuals issue not the belief systems. 3) You don't have sufficeint knowledge to cooment on the bible. Get some education, learn from someone who understands that teachings, not what they want to believe or have the bible say Hope things work out for you.
~ comment from Wayne Gebhardt, Eastern Washington University, from Seattle Post Intelligencer

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