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10/03/2007

Video: Brown makes us blue

by Jeremy Hooper

In Connecticut, there exists an outspoken anti-gay activist by the name of Brian Brown. This is Brian:

Our thoughts for B.B.:

- (01:00) It wouldn't seem to be conducive to your cause, Brian, to make comparisons between what might happen to anti-gay organizations who oppose gay marriage and Bob Jones University's disturbing ban on interracial dating (since lifted). Doing so only highlights the similarities between your current wrong-headed opinion, and this past one (which, like gay marriage bans, once had popular support).

- (02:16)Your assessment of the Catholic Church's Massachusetts adoption situation is quite disingenuous. You say that "the homosexual lobby" didn't care about religious beliefs or the great work of Catholic Charities, and that all they cared about is that the organization start adopting to same-sex couples. And you say that when the Catholics said no, there were no more adoptions for the Catholic Church. So you make it seem like the big bad gays shut down adoption for this particular organization. But the truth is that the Catholic Church CHOSE to shut down adoptions because they comply with a state non-discrimination law requiring that gays be allowed to adopt children! It's VERY SAD that this organization stopped doing the work it had been doing since 1903. However, they could have protected both the well-being of both children and gay adults and decided that maybe, just maybe, these gay people aren't as bad as they've made them out to be. Instead, they made the choice to shut their services down and keep their gay biases alive. DO NOT pin that on us!

- (02:43) As for the Knights of Columbus situation (Smith and Chymyshyn v. Knights of Columbus and Hauser and Lazar) -- The court actually decided that the Catholic-based organization COULD discriminate. They found that forcing them to rent their hall to a same-sex couple would force the Catholic organization to act against its religious beliefs. Their religious liberties were protected! However, they were fined a measly $1,000 because of the way they handled the situation. The court determined that the church could have helped the lesbian couple find an alternate venue rather than just drop them. So the only penance they ultimately suffered was for being impolite, not for "refusing to allow their hall to be used in a same-sex marriage ceremony"! [read the decision (pdf)]

- (02:52) Ake Green's name is actually pronounced like "Oh-key Grey-un," not like "Rake Mean"

- (03:07) Despite your team's suspicions about your constant presence in our minds, the truth is this whole gay marriage situation -- it's actually not all about you, Brian! Nobody is going to unfairly gun for any Christian organization practicing a form of Christianity that views gays unfavorably. Ironically, it is typically the pro-gay side that understands and supports freedoms (even for their opposition) more than anyone else! However, in situations where the church and state boundaries become muddied, the private becomes public, or religious freedom seems to unfairly trump civil liberties, you best believe that people are going to raise questions and even present a challenge. And in some cases where federal money and things of that nature are involved, the religious institutions might face what they'll consider to be a setback (just like some colleges are now forced to allow the military at job fairs, even though they the gay ban violates non-discrimination laws).

- (03:46) The argument that some say "sexual liberty should always trump religious liberty" is a complete straw man. No credible scholars are saying this. They are saying that religious liberty in this church-separated nation do not hold higher weight that all other freedoms! The religious right, despite their denials, want Christian law to rule the land! And again, if a state-supported body is practicing gay discrimination, then yes, they very well might have to answer to that! Unapologetically.

- (04:08) It's always tenuous to compare the possibility of American same-sex unions with those in other jurisdictions. American law and American freedoms are unique to this country.

- (05:16) No, Brian. People of gay-accepting faiths and backgrounds that do not wish to see church-state marriage will not agree with your logic. And yes, it is clearly your faith that is driving your reasoning. That's what needs to be admitted.

- (06:26) Mazel tov on the new kid!

- (06:48) Wait a minute -- you're really saying that your side is not getting out there and getting involved as much as "the other side"? Excuse me for a second. [HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!]

Sorry, where was I? Oh yea -- Brian, dude, your side is about 20 times larger and more well-fiannced than ours! You guys have a nationwide network of churches that you tap into for your endeavors. We, a rag tag bunch of varying faiths and backgrounds, cannot rally in the same ways. We try. And it would seem we have more heart, spirit, and creativity on our side. But don;t act like the "pro-family" side is politically detached! Especially not in this administration.

- (06:55) Basic human dignity involves equality for all citizens. You work day and night to oppose basic liberties for gay people, foisting your personal faith beliefs onto public discourse.

- (07:48) People are still fighting to be gay, thanks in large part to folks like yourself!

- (08:16) You think everyone else is living a lie simply because they are not living within the narrow truth boundaries that you have defined for society. And those who think the way that says "Gays are part of the spectrum of normalcy" are the ones you find out of touch. It's bizarre and sad that it is the divisive rhetoric that requires one to condemn the lives and loves of millions that you consider to be truthful, not the inclusive outlook that values non-judgment and peace.

- (09:34) You're right, Brian. And we will never stop standing up for the truth.

So in conclusion: You only feel that your "religious liberty is under fire," Brian, because you and your cohorts insist on throwing flames at gay folks. If you want to confine your religious liberty to where it belongs -- which is in your own life, your own churches, your own family, your own head, your own (non publicly-financed) religious groups and institutions, etc. -- then you have every right. But you are not going to be able to foist those religious freedoms onto everyone else!! And just like Bob Jones University ultimately lost its unrighteous fight, you guys are ultimately going to lose yours.

Religious Liberty Under Fire [GodTube]

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Your thoughts

Oh my, Brown is a piece of work isn't he. I almost hate to say this but I'm one of those people who would like to marginalize religion.

In the last century it has done more harm than good.

I can't wait for the RI hearings on Marriage Equality. I made it to the Senate hearings last year and I delivered a succinct message to the Judicial Committee.

Through an odd set of circumstances I ended up as a card carrying reverend even though I'm a flaming atheist.

This year I will get there early and get my name on the list so I can be called early. I plan to completely skewer the religious bigots that will come after me.

It's actually quite fun.

Posted by: Tony P | Oct 3, 2007 4:39:26 PM

His views are as out-of-sync as his video is.

Posted by: Mike | Oct 3, 2007 4:47:16 PM

You picked him apart like a Boll Weevil on an angora sweater Jeremy. Nice work.

Posted by: Franc | Oct 4, 2007 1:25:36 PM

what a fuckwit

Posted by: veeee | May 22, 2009 4:48:02 AM

bigot, homophobe & not worthy -- he's right!

oh ... and so tightly wound that he looks like he'll explode out of his button-down
closet caaaaaaaaaaaase
i wonder when his adolescent gay poetry will come out


Posted by: veeeeeee | May 22, 2009 4:53:45 AM

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