Saturday, March 10, 2012


Banana Slander

That inanely grinning goober in the poorly shot video, sitting next to the mental midget claiming that the banana he is holding is "the atheist's nightmare," is, of course, Kirk Cameron.

Cameron has just revealed that there is another subject on which is as ignorant as evolution and logic ... the Constitution.

Cameron went on "Piers Morgan Tonight" (and just how stupid did he have to be to think that would turn out well?) to plug his mockumentary, "Monumental," a David Bartonish paean to the purported "Christian roots" of America, but got chivvied, instead, into talking about gay marriage. Predictably, he said things like this:

Marriage is almost as old as dirt, and it was defined in the Garden between Adam and Eve. One man, one woman for life till death do you part. ...

I think that [gay marriage is] unnatural. I think that it's detrimental, and ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization. ...

[Asked what he would say to one of his sons if he told him he was gay:] I wouldn't say 'That's great, son, as long as you're happy.' I'm going to say, There are all sorts of issues we need to wrestle through in our life. Just because you feel one way doesn't mean we should act on everything we feel.
Setting aside all those "holy" people in the Bible ... Abraham, Jacob, David, Solomon ... who didn't quite get the message that it was one man, one woman, Cameron was apparently surprised that there was pushback. Now Cameron has enlisted the equally logic-challenged WingNutDaily to publish his whine:

"I believe that freedom of speech and freedom of religion go hand-in-hand in America," he continues. "I should be able to express moral views on social issues – especially those that have been the underpinning of Western civilization for 2,000 years – without being slandered, accused of hate speech and told from those who preach 'tolerance' that I need to either bend my beliefs to their moral standards or be silent when I'm in the public square.
No, no, Kirk [holding up the Constitution and showing how it is perfectly created to be read ... by literate people at least], here's how the free speech thingie works! You get to go into "the public square" and say whatever you want and then other people are equally free to use the public square to say what they want to say about what you said. See how simple it is!

Now, it is true that nobody has the right to slander or libel (collectively known as defamation) others. But defamation requires a statement of fact about another which is untrue. Statements of opinion, such as the one that holds that loving gay and lesbian people who want the same sort of commitment as heterosexuals enjoy are somehow detrimental and destructive to society, are absolutely protected by the free speech provision of the Constitution.

So lets look at the "firestorm of criticism" (as WingNutDaily puts it) that poor Kirk had to endure:

Alan Thicke: "I'll address kirk's comments as soon as I recover from rush limbaugh's... I'm getting him some new books. The Old Testament simply can't be expected to explain everything."

Craig Ferguson: "Rush makes me ashamed to be a middleaged white man and Kirk Cameron makes me ashamed to be a failed actor. We don't all think like that NoH8."

Jesse Tyler Ferguson: "The only unnatural thing about me being gay is that I had a crush on Kirk Cameron until about 24 hours ago."

Debra Messing: "I want to thank Piers Morgan for his response to what he wud say to HIS child if (s)he came out: 'Great, as long as you're happy.'"

Roseanne: "Kirk or kurt or whatever Cameron is an accomplice to murder with his hate speech. So is rick warren. Their peers r killing gays in Uganda."

Dave Holmes: "Remember yesterday afternoon, when Kirk Cameron's views were none of our concern? Let's restore America to that golden age." [Okay, that was my favorite!]

Michael Showalter: "Idea for movie: Human Centipede 3 starring Kirk Cameron and Rush Limbaugh."

Martha Plimpton: "The word 'equality' shows up too much in our founding documents for anyone to pretend it's not the American way. #usethe19th #equalitynow."
And a few more:

"It's a very closed-minded, very homophobic view point," said Modern Family's Jesse Tyler Ferguson. "It's also surprising coming from someone who was probably brought up in the business among many gay people. It's just very sad."

"He was a such a cute little boy," said Jane Lynch, who played anti-gay activist Maggie Gallagher in the play. "He was a such a little sweetheart."
Now, I have to admit that "cute little boy" comment was pretty vicious but, all-in-all, it's rather mild. Even GLAAD, which might have the most right to be upset, only said:

"In this interview, Kirk Cameron sounds even more dated than his 1980s TV character," said Herndon Graddick, Senior Director of Programs at GLAAD.

"Cameron is out of step with a growing majority of Americans ... with an increasing number of states recognizing marriage equality, Americans are seeing that marriage is about committed couples who want to make a lifelong promise to take care of and be responsible for each other and that gay and lesbian couples need equal security and legal protections. That's not 'redefining' anything."
As far as Roseanne's opinion that what Cameron said amounts to "hate speech," it's just that ... opinion.

The closest thing to a statement of fact in the whole bunch was Craig Ferguson calling Cameron (along with himself) "a failed actor."

Besides the obviously intended humor (also constitutionally protected) and the fact that what constitutes a "failed actor" is a matter of opinion, in every defamation case "truth is a perfect defense."


P.S.: Just in case anyone might think that throwing around the "hate speech" charge is restricted to the godless supporters of (ewh!) homosexuality, here's William Donohue's comment on the open letter by the Freedom From Religion Foundation that was published as a full-page ad in today’s New York Times:

Not a single Catholic who reads this ad will be impelled to leave the Church. That is not the issue (Catholicism, unlike many other religions, is actually growing in the U.S., and worldwide). The issue is the increase in hate speech directed at Catholics.
So much for learning how to debate these things with "greater love and respect," eh, Kirk?

There are days when even I hate speech.
Oh, and I should say I really liked John Scalzi's take on Cameron:

You’re entitled to your stupid, petty, awful, hateful bigoted opinion. Everyone else is entitled to call it exactly what it is.
Donovan whinging about hate speech is just an example of what I call 'right wing inversion'. It's the way folk like Donovan call it 'hate speech' when someone complains about speech promoting hatred of gays. Or when Republicans whose budget proposals would balloon the federal deficit claim that they are the deficit hawks. Or when AGW denialists claim that scientists are 'politicizing' science when they point out the reality of AGW. And, of course, we've long seen that in creationist guff about evolution or 'Darwinism' being a religion.

Right wingers are stuck in 2nd grade where 'No, I'm not. You are.' is cogent argument and 'I am rubber, you are glue, what bonces off me, sticks to you' is the height of wit.
Bwahahahhaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Whenever people go on about "biblical marriage" I generally bring up polygyny . . . thanks for doing the same.

-- pew sitter
Biblical morality starts with an unmarried couple having unprotected sex. Their (technically) bastard offspring then must have committed incest on a fairly extensive scale to propagate the human race. As has been pointed out, polygamy was practiced in later times without any apparent divine objection.

The ten commandments recognized by Christianity are at least an attempt to establish a moral code for believers (even if the majority of them are now arguably unconstitutional) yet even they display an odd sense of proportion. Taking the Lord's name in vain, making graven images and coveting the neighbor's ox are all specifically banned yet there is nary a mention of rape or child abuse.

It's doesn't stop there. Committing adultery and being a rebellious child can get you the death penalty while committing what we would now call crimes against humanity on a massive sale against a defeated enemy are cool.

Yet out of all this, Cameron and his ilk obsess about same-sex relationships? I mean, seriously?

Great play has been made with the symbology of the banana but there is a scene from movie which (unintentionally) provides a much more apt metaphor.

There is a series of British comedy movies made in the '50s and '60s, known collectively as the "Carry On" films. One of them, Carry On, Cleo was made as a response to the overblown Richard Burton/Elizabeth Taylor epic Cleopatra.

In Carry On, Cleo an Ancient Briton is captued by the Romans but winds up as a Roman soldier. At one point he's offered a banana which he's never seen before. Another Roman, seeing he's unsure how it is eaten, tells him he has to take the peel off. The Ancient Briton duly peels the banana, throws away the fruit and eats the peel.

For me, that simple gag is a metaphor for what Cameron and his kind have done with their faith. They've absorbed the superficial trappings of the religion and thrown away the core values such as compassion, charity and humility. They truly are banana believers.
Well done, Ian.
Michael Showalter: "Idea for movie: Human Centipede 3 starring Kirk Cameron and Rush Limbaugh."

Problem would be deciding what end to sew to what. Often what comes out of their mouths is fouler than what comes out the other end.
Waaaay off topic, but there's a new species of catshark!
@Troy Britain:

Good point. What we need is a few more of the Cameron/Limbaugh ilk so they can form a human centipede circle. Fittingly, it would mirror the closed system of BS that right wingers already live in. Sadly there is no shortage of folk to fill out the circle.
Waaaay off topic, but there's a new species of catshark!

I knew about that. The real question is how many scratches dogsharks have now.
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