The Gospel According to Barack

Obamarama continues as explicated by the inimitable Kit Seelye:

“Senator Barack Obama is trying to tamp down a growing uproar over his plans to include a controversial gospel singer at a campaign concert this weekend in South Carolina and says he will feature an openly gay minister before the concert.
The Human Rights Campaign, the largest gay-rights organization in the country, says it appreciates the gesture but is still “disappointed” that the Obama campaign is giving a platform to someone it considers homophobic. The activists and many bloggers want the Obama campaign to bump the signer, Donnie McClurkin from the tour.
But in a phone call that just concluded, Mr. Obama told Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign, that he intended to keep Mr. McClurkin in the lineup. He is to appear Sunday in Columbia as part of a three-day gospel tour to help Mr. Obama reach out to black evangelicals.”

Doncha just love it? He’s going to “tamp down a growing uproar” by tossing us a few crumbs off the table (wasn’t there a book with that title?) in the form of an “openly gay minister” who’ll speak BEFORE the concert — thus not upsetting the delicate sensibilties of the Donnie McClurkin, Mary Mary and the other self-loathing closeted pieces of shit that are the main event.

“Mr. McClurkin, a black minister, says in an interview with The Chicago Tribune that he is being unfairly maligned and that his words and his ministry have been misconstrued.”

Very Bill O’Loufa.

“He has said he was raped by male relatives when he was a child and was gay for many years but is now straight. Gay rights activists say that Mr. McClurkin is homophobic and counsels that homosexuality is a curse that can be cured through prayer.”

Did he report said relatives (note the plural) to the police? Did the alleged incident(s) actually happen, or was this scenario (perfectly boilerplate re. the Fundie notion that gayness is the exclusive product of rape/seduction by sinister adults) manufactured out of whole cloth?

“Mr. Solmonese said in a statement tonight: ‘There is no gospel in Donnie McClurkin’s message for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and their allies. That’s a message that certainly doesn’t belong on any Presidential candidate’s stage.’ “

Except that in Barack Obama’s case it quite obviously does.

“He added that in his phone call with Mr. Obama, ‘I did thank thank him for announcing he would be adding an openly gay minister as part of the tour and for his willingness to call on religious leaders to open a dialogue about homophobia. We hope that Senator Obama will move forward and facilitate face to face meetings with religious leaders, like Rev. McClurkin, and the GLBT community to confront the issue of homophobia.’

Once again the self-appointed “leadership” of the LGBT community comes crawling on its hands and knees rather than standing-up with pride and anger to fight back!

See how it works? Obama invites a self-loathing closet queen and his homophobic allies to sing, after an openly gay minister says a few bland words. IOW “Both Sides” a represented — just like in a Mr. Sheri Annis “Media Notes” column in Pravda.

“The Tribune says that Mr. Obama and Mr. McClurkin met last month in California at a Obama fund-raising event held by Oprah Winfrey.”

You’ve got a LOT to answer for, bitch! And that’s the cue for Special Guest Bitch-Slapper Doug Ireland:

“If GLAAD wants to take credit for the thin, badly-researched, narrowly-focused “Oprah” episode on “Gay Around the World,” that says a lot about GLAAD. There was no mention at all on the “Oprah” show of how homosexuality is still criminalized in 85 countries (according to an ILGA survey of laws relating to homosexuality released earlier this year.) No mention of the fact that in nine of those countries, homosexuality is punishable by death. No mention — just weeks after Ahmadinejad’s incredible declaration that there were “no homosexuals” in Iran — of the massive campaign of persecution and mass arrests of homosexuals in Iran, one of the nine countries in which homosexuality is a capital crime. No mention of the enormous difficulties faced by persecuted gay and lesbian asylum seekers here in the U.S. and elsewhere. No mention of the routine murders of LGBT people in a host of countries in Central and Latin America and Africa (for example, not a word about the routine murder of lesbians in South Africa, a country in which Oprah has a particular interest and where she has sponsored a school with much media fanfare). No mention either of the systematic campaign of lethal “sexual cleansing” by Islamic death squads in Iraq unleashed since the U.S. occupation, in which there have already been documented cases of the murders of some 400 LGBT people — and that number is only the tip of the iceberg, as documenting these murders is difficult given the bloody civil war and the inescapable quotidian persecution of anyone thought to be gay — while the U.S. occupier (loath to alienate its theocratic allies) has failed to lift a finger to try to stop it. Didn’t GLAAD bother to point out to Oprah the particular responsibility of the U.S. for this slaughter of LGBT Iraqis? No mention of the appalling role of the Vatican and world-proselytizing fundamentalist Protestantism and Sharia-law enforcement in suffocating the human rights and self-expression of LGBT people and in crippling AIDS prevention. No mention of the suppression of LGBT organizing attempts and Pride parades in Russia and Eastern Europe. And the list goes on….And why was there no representative of any global LGBT rights work — someone from IGLHRC, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty, or ARC International, for example — who might have had a serious, knowledgable, broad overview of the topic. Organizational jealousy on GLAAD’s part, perhaps? Yes, the segment on Jamaica was good — but singling out Jamaica and India while failing to mention most of the rest of the world gave a very, very false impression of the reality around the globe (well, Algeria and Nigeria did get a one-sentence mention each in a filmed clip, but otherwise, nada.). Moreover, the lengthy interview with an incredibly wealthy Indian prince who came out — although he appears to be a quite decent chap who has dedicated his life to HIV prevention — is hardly representative of the lot of ordinary LGBT people on the sub-continent (and no mention of the arrests and jailings of HIV prevention workers in India for “promoting homosexuality,” either.) The interview with Amaechi, admirable as he may be, took up way too much time and was irrelevant to the show’s supposed theme (except for Amaechi’s Brit accent — but no mention of the U.K. Labour government’s pandering to the U.K. religious right on sex education or of its dreadful record on deporting gays back to prison and death in countries like Iran, Iraq, and elsewhere– even though there are a number of such deportation cases pending today). And the self-congratulatory tone of the comments by Oprah and by the grinning sub-editor from The Advocate regarding the status of LGBT people in the U.S. made no mention of the fact that there is still no federal law on the books protecting people from discrimination in employment — a rather remarkable omission, given the huge mobilization of the LGBT community these last weeks around the pending ENDA; no mention of the widespread escalation of the psychologically destructive (and often physically brutal) bullying in schools of anyone thought to be gay and of the widespread use of the epithet “fag” in schools, which produced (among other horrors) the Columbine massacre, no mention about how the political party currently in power in the White House (and with veto power in the Congress) rode to victory on a wave of homophobia and gay-bashing and routinely blocks pro-active legislation for LGBTers, etc. etc. I wouldn’t give the “Oprah” episode any better than a gentleman’s C as a grade for its reporting and the depth and knowledgability of its discussion. It’s typical of GLAAD’s willingness to celebrate any TV mention of anything gay, no matter how stereotypic, as a HUGE victory, and to be content with sub-standard reporting, for GLAAD to grab credit for the “Oprah” episode. But if they want the credit, they should have to swallow — and should certainly meditate on — the criticisms of the broadcast’s shallowness, too.”

Thus endeth the lesson.

THIS JUST IN!

Not as “Ex-Gay” As He Would Like Us To Believe.

4 Comments

  1. will fudger October 27, 2007 12:30 pm 

    Totally unrelated. I’m nine minutes older that god and reading a blog with white letters on a black background is akin to staring a an Elvis painting of velvet (ugh,yuck,boo and hiss. I have learned to overlook this in your blog as it’s one of my faves but when it’s done in all caps it just throws me to the carpet. Surely you and I where born in the same century so you can’t be a young whippersnapper that can stare at the sun endlessly so I’ve deduced that you don’t look at the finished product for long enough for the effect to take place. I realize that a dark background is tres ishy poo but a lighter one would be tres readable.

    Failing any adjustment, would you please have your good friend Elton send me some old specs in dark blue.

    will

  2. David E October 27, 2007 12:36 pm 

    Sorry dear. I’ll try to avoid caps in future. As for Elton, we haven’t spoken since his first (disastrous) marriage.

  3. stuffed animal October 30, 2007 3:22 pm 

    This is my first time visiting your blog. I like your sense of outrage; it’s what’s lacking in so much of the other online Gay commentary I read. My assessment of Barack Obama is that he’s like 90% of the other Straight Black men I’ve met: Scratch underneath the surface of him, and there’s deep-seated heterosexism there, bolstered by his personal sense of machismo. He’s OK with Gay people, as long as they don’t stand too close to him. In other words, LGBT equality will never be a priority for him.

    That interview with Donnie McClurkin’s ex-lover is really something! Don’t you get the feeling he’s telling the story of any number of Black male Gospel stars? The shameful attitude, the desire for sexual punishment, the role-playing . . . if I thought that’s what being Gay meant, I’d probably be vulnerable to “ex-Gay” rhetoric, too. Which isn’t an excuse for what he’s doing, of course, but now I understand where the pathology comes from. McClurkin is a prime example of the serious damage religious bigotry can do. That’s why I’m so committed to speaking out against it.

  4. stuffed animal October 30, 2007 3:34 pm 

    That interview with Donnie McClurkin’s ex-lover was really something! Didn’t you get the feeling he was telling the story of any number of closeted Black Gay Gospel stars? It was pathetic . . . the shameful attitude, the desire for sexual punishment, the role-playing, the denial of affection. If that’s what I thought being Gay was all about, I’d probably be vulnerable to “ex-Gay” rhetoric, too! Which isn’t to excuse what he’s doing, but it makes me understand the pathology that drives people like him. McClurkin is a prime example of what serious damage religious bigotry can do. That’s why I’m so committed to speaking out against it.

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