Have you heard the one about the gay teen concentration camp?

In Tenessee, they don’t bother to beat the shit out of gay teens and leave them for dead on fences.

No, at the hideously named Love In Action camp they just outsource the killing to the gay teens themselves. Quoth the head of the “conversion camp”:

“I would rather you commit suicide than have you leave Love In Action wanting to return to the gay lifestyle. In a physical death you could still have a spiritual resurrection; whereas, returning to homosexuality you are yielding yourself to a spiritual death from which there is no recovery.”

Think about that every time you hear Bush talk about the Culture of Life. The fundagelical puppetmasters who got him elected wave around their pretty talking points, but they have raised up in this land of Cult of Death around those they scapegoat for power and profit. When will we tear it down?

I wish evil on few people. But the people who say things like that, and the self-righteous fucks who turn their children over to such idiots deserve the very worst this world has to offer. This world and the next one, come to think of it.

Seriously, don’t read that last link unless you want to be sitting at your desk at work sobbing with rage. Though “Zack’s” case has become a cause celebre, nothing could ever heal what has been done to him. And despite an investigation, the state of Tennessee isn’t taking any action to regulate this or other gay-teen gulags.

Update: The complete rules of the LIA(r) program are here, and they are seriously so fucked up that it’s a wonder that every single “client” doesn’t kill themselves. If ever there were a doubt that the “ex-gay movement” is a cult, this should settle the argument. LIA exhibits the unintentional hilarity shared by all cults:

6. No television viewing, going to movies, or reading/watching/listening to secular media of any kind, anywhere within the clients and the parent’s/guardian’s control. This includes listening to classical or instrumental music that is not expressly Christian (Beethoven, Bach, etc. are not considered Christian). The only exception to the media policy is the weekly movie.

Oh, and the camp is run by “ex-gays” who I’m guessing are the most twisted individuals this side of a pretzel factory. Running a camp like this, where the “clients” aren’t allowed to talk to anyone but their family–and then never about the program–must be a great way to secretly indulge their sadistic pedophiliac urges. Running one of these camps must be even better than being a Roman Catholic priest!

Gary gets us linked on Slate!

Scroll down to the bottom of the page:

In the year 2056: Bloggers are gushing about the Onion’s 2056 edition. Favorite headlines include, “Million Robot March Attended by Exactly 1,000,000 Robots” and “Government May Restrict Use of Genetically Modified Farmers.”

“I think the future’s gonna be A-OK after all! USA! USA!” writes X-Ray Spex’s Will Pfeifer. “With stories like ‘Final Installment of Frogger Trilogy Poised To Sweep Oscars’, ‘Halliburton Wins Bid To Rebuild Midwest’, and ‘Kansas Outlaws Teaching of the Unified Field Theory in Schools’, the 22 June 2056 edition of The Onion reads like nothing has changed in fifty years,” observes Famous and Non-Famous Strangers’ Gary.

No hyphen, though, Slate friends. Kthx.

“Masturbands” and other freakishness


After church one day, Dunbar, Power and I sit on a bench and lean back in the sun and watch Sunday morning stroll by. “Cleavage everywhere,” notes Dunbar, not disapprovingly. Power holds up his right hand. Wrapped around his wrist, in a figure eight, is a black plastic bracelet. “This,” he says, “is a ‘masturband.’ ” One of their friends at college — Pepperdine University — came up with the idea. As long as you stay pure — resist jerking off — you can wear your masturband. Give in, and off it goes, a scarlet letter in reverse. No masturband? No one wants to shake your hand. “It started with just four of us,” says Dunbar. “Then there were, like, twenty guys wearing them. And girls too. The more people that wore them, the more people knew, the more reason you had to refrain.” Dunbar even told his mother. He lasted the longest. “Eight and a half months,” he says. I notice he’s not wearing one now. He’s not embarrassed. Sexuality, he believes, is not a private matter.

Want to feel a little better? Read “Take it to Karl”

Liberal troops and vets now have a place to talk about Karl Rove and they’re pissed. If W and his attack dog Rove manage to lose the allegiance of the armed forces, which Repubs have enjoyed since Korea, it will be the greatest favor they could ever do the Democrats. It was not only a terrible tactical miscalculation to call liberals traitors–it was a strategic “tell” that telegraphs the incredible weakness of Bush’s position. It is bad enough that his approval ratings are steadily below 50%–among independents, only 17% approve of his performance, one point lower than Democrats! It’s only the Ostrich-like Repubs, with their 84% rubber-stamp-fetish approval rating, who are propping Bush up. When the saner conservatives start snapping out of their trances and speaking up, like Sen. Chuck Hagel did this week (speaking, btw, to the VFW!), it’s going to get hilariously ugly for Bush.

One wonders what his approval ratings are among active-duty military folks and their families. Every soldier in Iraq must know by now, even those who refuse to admit it, that they are sweating and bleeding and dying in the desert for a Big Lie. Neither they nor their parents nor their spouses nor their children are likely to forget a lesson learned so poignantly any time soon.

My advice– hammer every last Republican you know with these numbers, the Rove slur, and anything else you’ve got. With their triumphalism in tatters, they are closer to seeing reason than at any time since 9/11 shoved them to the reactionary right. That sound you hear when the Repubs scream from the rafters about the “Liberals”? That’s just the sound of the might pendulum of public opinion Dopplering fiercely leftward! Payback is a bitch, Karl.

Seattle Quake in the news

Neither Jay nor I have been playing much rugby this year, due to being too busy at work to commit to the training schedule. But I hope to get back into it again for the fall season. Although given the fact that the team has advanced by leaps and bounds this year, including winning its first Divisional game, I doubt I’d get much time on the pitch these days! The Seattle Times has a great article on the Quake, and how it’s earned respect within the division while being an ambassador for gay men into the straight world of rugby. Good on ya, Quake, and happy Pride to all!

“There was definitely that stigma from (other players) and from clubs as a whole,” says Dan Smith of division rival Budd Bay, a predominantly straight team in Olympia. “They didn’t want to give them too much respect: ‘Come on, man, this is a gay team.’ Saying they weren’t as good as everyone else.”

The Quake has defused misunderstanding with a common love of the game, and its progress on the pitch has shown that a team can build “ruggers” from scratch and play with anyone, gay or straight. That’s what team founders had set out to prove — that people who aren’t typically exposed to rugby’s world of mauls and scrums can be coached to win.

Quake plays rugby

Tim Taylor’s Dream Neighborhood

Tool aficionados might be particularly interested in living in a John Deere-branded housing development. From the article: “[T]he John Deere link should amount to a stamp of approval for people who care about having a beautifully landscaped yard from the day they move in.” Is that all? It seems to me more like an appeal to those who want to operate the power equipment that may (or may not) produce the beautifully landscaped yard. Developers could create a neighboring DeWalt subdivision, and then the two homeowners’ associations could fight to prevent the construction of low-rent Black & Decker tract homes further down the road.

This co-branding effort makes more sense to me than the recent Catholic-Ferrari incident, but maybe I’m just not Italian enough to understand. (Also, Ferrari’s Formula 1 team gave Pope John Paul II a replica of their car back in January.) I know it’s not really branding, but it still seems like effort is being made to associate the two.

What co-branded housing would I buy? Maybe a Chimay loft in Pioneer Square? An REI house in Wallingford? (Perhaps without the Eddie Bauer SUV.) An iPod condo in Belltown? A KEXP apartment near South Lake Union? (Why isn’t Paul doing this already? Studio-sized globules could be added to the existing Experience Music Project—who’d notice?)

Advice for rich, famous stupid people

I’m neither rich nor famous. However, I not stupid either, and so I therefore feel qualified to offer this advice to those that have achieved the trifecta (of which, it seems, there are legion). My advice is this. If you’re in a high-profile job, say, a DJ on a radio station, where the whole world including your wife can hear you, don’t go dissing your wife on air. Say, by telling some young floozy how you’re ready to leave your wife for her. Your wife might not like that. She might go and sell your Lotus on eBay for a dollar.

That’s my advice.