All parties, no matter how rip-roaringly fun, must eventually come to an end. Hardly any of them get a newspaper obituary. But Washington Post's Monica Hesse was on hand to offer a parting toast to the "Guerrilla Queer Bar", wherein gay and lesbian revelers would "invade" a "straight bar" to dance and drink the night away, all in the name of promoting "tolerance" of alternative lifestyles.
Alas, lamented Hesse in her April 6 story, "[a]fter five years, 43 bars, 48 events, and at least one instance of a guy whipping his shirt off and gyrating to Madonna in front of confused Georgetown University parents, it was time for a beloved gay and lesbian institution to end."
What Hesse failed to mention anywhere in her 23-paragraph article is her previous attendance at said "guerrilla" events, conducted in a non-journalistic capacity. Hesse is second-from-left in the picture above, taken at one such bar outing from 2004, and included in a Post story by Fritz Hahn.
San Francisco Chronicle columnist Mark Morford always seems to be trying really hard to be the left-wing atheist equivalent of Ann Coulter. His Friday column seems designed to shock and appall traditional Catholics on the occasion of Pope Benedict's apparently unforgivable statement that condoms don't help with the AIDS epidemic. (He makes no attempt to square his argument with the Harvard research scientist who wrote "The Pope May Be Right" in The Washington Post.)
His headline? "Pope, extra ribbed: Benedict says condoms make AIDS worse; God recoils in shame." This is an odd headline for a man who really doesn't believe in a god, at least not one that he can't get caught in his zipper. He began:
What sort of wretched deity is this? What sort of tormented, clenched God must you believe in to cause you to openly promote ignorance and death for the sake of power and ideology and fear -- always, always a deep fear -- of love and sex and basic human connection?
Attention middle-aged women: keep your young sons at home because your best friend might just want to date them.
That’s right. TV Land is set to premiere a new reality show on April 15 based on a 40-year old single mother of four who wants to find a younger man, “Bachelor” style.
“The Cougar” will feature 20 single men vying to be the soul mate of a woman twice their age. The field will be narrowed down through various weekly challenges. The men attempt to avoid the “kiss of death” from cougar “Stacey,” which signals their elimination from the show.
"Iowa Gives Gay Marriage a Thumbs Up," trumpets the front page teaser headline on ABCNews.com. But, the subhead explains, it was "Iowa's Supreme Court" not the people via their legislature or direct referendum that opened the door to same-sex marriage by finding the state's ban on the ceremony "violates [the state] Constitution."
The accompanying photo illustration (shown at right) depicts two (presumably) masculine, wedding-band-sporting left hands embracing. In the background is a long, unfurled rainbow flag, held aloft by marchers in a parade.
The story itself was filed by Amy Lorentzen of the Associated Press. Lorentzen jumped quickly into the jubilant reaction of gay marriage activists, but found no space for comment from traditional values advocates in her 18-paragraph story.
More than 230,000 people have signed the online petition at NotreDameScandal.com calling on the South Bend, Ind., Catholic university to rescind its commencement invitation to NARAL Pro-Choice America-endorsed, Freedom of Choice Act-supporting President Barack Obama.
But that fact is left out of yesterday's "Faith & Reason" blog at USAToday.com.
Instead, religion reporter Cathy Lynn Grossman goes out of her way to skew the controversy in Obama's favor, quoting Catholic clerics Bishop Robert Lynch and retired San Francisco archbishop John A. Quinn, who are chagrined with what they consider the angry tone of the Notre Dame protest.
In her April 1 blog post, Bonnie Erbe, contributing editor to U.S. News and World Report and host of PBS' "To the Contrary," gave that advice to pregnant moms who are wondering how to raise a child on a strained budget.
It wasn't a tasteless April Fool's Day joke. She's serious.
Erbe keyed her argument around the situation of an unwed, pregnant mother of three who walked an hour to a medical center to abort her wanted pregnancy after her boyfriend lost his job. This mother was featured in a March 25 Associated Press article about the increased demand for contraception and abortions in these uncertain economic times. She called the mother's choice "a good decision."
In Erbe's world, it is "sad" the woman had to walk to the center because she didn't have the bus fare, "terrible that her boyfriend lost his job," and "heart-wrenching that she fell to tears in the doctor's office." As for the abortion itself, she wrote:
But in the long run, can we not agree that an unwed couple's decision not to bring a fourth child into the world when they are having trouble feeding themselves and three children is no tragedy? It's actually a fact-based, rational decision that in the end benefits the three children they already have and society as well.
"Forget about bringing the troops home Iraq - we need to get the troops home from World War II," Maher said. "Can anybody tell me why in 2009, we still have more than 50,000 troops in Germany and 30,000 in Japan? At some point these people are going to have to learn to rape themselves."
If you watch MSNBC's "Hardball," you really have to scratch your head and wonder what host Chris Matthews is thinking when he opens his mouth sometimes.
On the March 30 broadcast of "Hardball," Matthews, MSNBC political analyst Pat Buchanan and Newsweek's Howard Fineman were discussing what they perceived to be a rift between former GOP vice-presidential candidate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her running mate, former GOP presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. based on McCain's unwillingness to commit to supporting Palin as a presidential candidate in 2012. (h/t Breitbart.tv)
Update (March 31, 18:42 EDT): This blog post was mentioned on the "Grapevine" segment on FNC's "Special Report with Bret Baier." Video added at 13:00 EDT on April 1, 2009.[audio available here]
A contributing editor of a major weekly news magazine pens a newspaper op-ed defending a controversial decision by a prominent Catholic university. Said editor's son is a marketing executive for said Catholic institution, but neither the editor nor the newspaper disclose the fact to readers.
If the popular FAIL blog dealt with journalistic missteps, this would surely make the cut.
Can a child be accused of child pornography? Could a child then be formally charged and convicted of it? These are the questions raised by the disturbing new trend called "sexting," teenagers sending nude or semi-nude pictures around on their cell phones. In some jurisdictions, prosecutors are playing hardball, threatening that students caught with naughty pictures could face jail time and being registered as sex offenders. At a minimum, prosecutors are demanding a 10-hour rehab program.
Does this offense seem too casual to justify throwing the legal book at children? Consider that it’s undeniable that if Johnny was a day or two over 18 and was sending around these images, he’d be treated as a sicko – with prison time a real possibility.
A major pharmaceutical company lobbies to require that children be given a vaccine. Parents should be made aware of any problems resulting from the vaccine, right? Not according to a recent Washington Post article.
Rob Stein’s March 26 article about the Gardasil vaccine debate failed to include any references to the several documented cases of health problems and even death that resulted from the vaccinations. His two-page article highlighted the tone of the Gardasil debate, reflecting the impact on young girls’ sex lives and the potential use for a male vaccine. But Stein barely touched on the concerns of critics that the vaccine actually caused health issues for young women.
The Gardasil vaccine is a series of three shots offered to young women to significantly lower their risk of contracting the Human Papillomavirus (HPV), which can cause cervical cancer. Stein noted that “Critics worried that vaccinating children would send a subtle signal that their parents assumed they would become sexually active and that it would give youngsters a false sense of security.” True enough, but critics are also worried that this miracle vaccine may come with its own set of problems.
In an emotional six page narrative, Oprah’s magazine “comes out” in favor of lesbianism.
Barack Obama. Eckhart Tolle. Dr. Phil. With the Midas touch, Oprah Winfrey turned these men to gold. Her recommendations have rocketed a variety of books – from centuries-old literary classics to New Age drivel – onto the bestseller lists. Now, in the latest issue of “O” magazine, she’s trying her hand at mainstreaming lesbianism.
The issue of homosexuality and the homosexual lifestyle is still a subject fraught with controversy and strong opinions on both sides. But with help from a lengthy, one-sided narrative about the wonderful world of lesbian love, the unparalleled power of Oprah Winfrey will surely bring the debate to a satisfactory conclusion.
“Why Women are Leaving Men for Other Women,” by Mary A Fischer in the April issue of “O” unambiguously promotes an attractive lesbian lifestyle. Fischer glowingly profiled three gay couples, along with glamorous television stars, and cited research to back up her claim that many women are leaving men for lesbian lovers. She posited that the lesbian lifestyle is good for women’s sexual and emotional health, children, and families. Without a single dissenting voice, the article is nothing short of lesbian propaganda.
Here’s another dispatch where one-sided ideological labeling helps underline the liberal argument that they are merely for "science," while the conservatives are all about ideology. Associated Press reporter Larry Neumeister announced: "The Food and Drug Administration let politics cloud its judgment when it denied teenage girls over-the-counter access to the Plan B morning-after pill, a federal judge said Monday as he ordered the FDA to let 17-year-olds obtain the medication."
Neumeister did not seem to consider that making high doses of contraceptive medicines available to high-school juniors is in part a social decision about child sexual activity without parental consent. The liberals in the case were not labeled. While the AP writer made room in his story for conservatives, they were labeled repeatedly:
– "The morning-after pill is a source of tension for social conservatives who held great sway in the Bush administration and who believe the pill is tantamount to abortion."
– "The FDA said it is reviewing the judge's decision. Women's groups said it's unlikely that the Obama administration would appeal. Social conservatives decried the ruling."
– "The conservative Family Research Council said the judge's decision bowed to ideological pressure from the left."
A leading HIV researcher -- and self-described liberal -- defends what the pope has said recently about condoms and AIDS.
I won't hold my breath for the secular mainstream media to notice, but that's what Christianity Today magazine reported on March 20 with its publication of an e-mail interview between deputy managing editor Tim Morgan and the director of Harvard's AIDS Prevention Research Project, Edward C. Green:
[Morgan]: Is Pope Benedict being criticized unfairly for his comments about HIV and condoms?
[Dr. Green]: This is hard for a liberal like me to admit, but yes, it's unfair because in fact, the best evidence we have supports his comments — at least his major comments, the ones I have seen.
Green went on to say that, at least as far as African countries are concerned, Pope Benedict is correct that condom promotion doesn't lessen the AIDS problem (emphases mine):
The "Faith & Reason" blogger lamented that "[s]ummer meeting season looms for many of the nation's leading Protestant denominations and that means the culture warriors are manning the battle stations on sexuality issues." Of course there are two sides to the culture war on sexual ethics in American Protestant Christianity, but Grossman's conclusion made clear her complaint was mostly, if not entirely, with conservatives, who stand on the defensive end of assaults by liberal Christians:
How would it affect your life, your spirituality, if the gay couple next door were married by a pastor, priest or rabbi? If your church were served by gay and straight people? Can you share a pew with someone who sees these issues differently?
And that's where Grossman is off the mark. These fights over gay, lesbian, and transgendered clergy are not by and large about the laity praying in the pews but about the higher moral standards on sex expected for the clergy.
Rock stars are rarely controversial for acting like rock stars. A decadent lifestyle of sex, drugs, and alcohol abuse are the expected menu. In our upside-down popular culture, rock stars create controversy only when they advocate an alternative lifestyle – when they wear purity rings and abstain from sex until marriage.
Some dream of being rock stars just for the selfish fantasy of organizing an assembly line of casual sex partners. In the minds of those with no moral brake on their sex drive, rock stars favoring abstinence are wasting a national resource, akin to monks pledging a vow of poverty while living inside a gold mine.
Last September, the Disney-boosted teen rockers known as the Jonas Brothers were a rich target for mockery at the MTV Video Music Awards for their purity rings. The emcee, a British comedian named Russell Brand, sneered that the Jonas Brothers were "a little bit ungrateful because they could have sex with any woman they want. That is like Superman deciding not to fly and go everywhere on a bus." Tee-hee, and all that.
Journalists -- starting with Time's Amy Sullivan, the former Tom Daschle aide -- strenously tried to suggest Barack Obama would not be a politician of the libertine left, and could even make a bold play for Bible-quoting evangelical voters. But as the Obama administration kicks into gear, it's getting obvious that the libertine-left side is winning. Reporters just won't call them that. See two recent AP stories.
Devlin Barrett reported that Attorney General Eric Holder is dialing back attempts to raid marijuana distributors where states have medical-marijuana exceptions to their drug laws. Barrett didn't find or identify anyone or anything with a liberal ideology in the story, and never quoted an opponent of marijuana legalization. Pleased libertines were presented in neutral tones:
Kris Hermes, a spokesman for national medical marijuana advocacy group Americans for Safe Access, said he welcomed Holder's perspective. "It signals a new direction and a more reasonable and sensible direction on medical marijuana policy," he said.
Time magazine's Jeff "The pope's a Scrooge" Israely is at it again, lecturing Benedict XVI on his "inflammatory rhetoric."
Israely joins CNN's Jack Cafferty, Washington Post/Newsweek's "On Faith", and PBS's Bonnie Erbe in the bash-Benedict choir's latest oratorio. His March 19 article evaluated the pontiff's recent comments on condoms and HIV/AIDS as "candor over P.R.", lamenting Benedict's word choice and seeming lack of concern about how liberal secular media outlets parse his statements (emphases mine):
Amidst the outrage and consternation lies the question: Why? If we already know the basic tenets of church teaching — not to mention the extent of the AIDS epidemic and disproportionate ignorance about condom use in Africa — why did the Pope say what he said, when and where he said it? What do this and other recent episodes tell us about how the modern papacy operates at that unique nexus where philosophy meets public relations? And why, nearly four years into his reign, does this hyper articulate and well-versed Pope continue to see his attempts at mass communication blow up in his face?
Hell hath no fury like a feminist writer directing a hissy fit at the pope.
Bonnie Erbe -- the US News & World Report contributing editor and PBS "To the Contrary" host who argued that Bristol Palin is more "mature" than her abstinence education-advocating mother -- finds the pope "horrifically ignorant" when it comes to HIV/AIDS.
What exactly did the pontiff say that set Erbe off? Try, "AIDS cannot be overcome by the distribution of condoms," hardly a controversial, implausible statement, but one that, to Erbe, showed the pope has "no sympathy" for women in Africa.
He may not have healed the planet and made the oceans recede yet, but Barack Obama has definitely brought sexy back for some fawning lefty writers. Just check out these headlines: “Have the Obamas Spawned a Sex Frenzy?” and “How long has it been since a first couple seemed to want each other?”
The American left – particularly women writers on the American left – have conjured up the idea that the relationship between President Barack Obama and his wife is somehow novel. Stacy Schiff of New York Magazine writes “…only now are we discovering what a functioning marriage between equals actually looks like.”
Seriously? The marriage between Barack and Michelle is the best and most recent example she can come up with? Schiff is obviously smitten, but before she reached for her smelling salts, she did manage a swipe at the Bush administration.
CNN’s Zain Verjee couldn’t seem to find any health care “experts” who agreed with Pope Benedict XVI during a report on Tuesday’s Situation Room about the “political firestorm” the pontiff apparently set off during his first visit to Africa. Verjee not only cited unnamed “experts” who disagreed with the pope’s statement that the distribution of condoms on the continent “increases the problem” of HIV/AIDS instead of helping it, but also found “some priests and nuns working with AIDS victims in Africa question the church’s anti-condom policy.”
Anchor Wolf Blitzer introduced the correspondent’s report, hyping how “Pope Benedict XVI is facing a condom controversy right now. That may be last thing he needs on his first tour of Africa, [which is] struggling to cope with a massive AIDS epidemic.” Verjee continued in this vein: “Pope Benedict XVI set off another political firestorm, even before he landed in Africa, saying condoms could make the HIV/AIDS crisis worse. He told reporters, ‘It’s a tragedy, but you can’t resolve with it the distribution of condoms. On the contrary, it increases the problem.’
In a respectful and compassionate manner, Nightline’s March 12 broadcast of the “Faith Matters” series brought to light a group of reformed prostitutes who have turned to religion and who are helping other women leave the destructive life of a Vegas prostitute.
Hookers for Jesus is a group started by former prostitute Annie Lobert who hit rock bottom with a cocaine overdose, and decided to leave the prostitute lifestyle when, as she put it, God changed her life. ABC reporter Neal Karlinsky graciously told her story and the story of other women who have found hope through Lobert’s ministry and the church of Pastor Benny Perez.
“Along with a pair of volunteers from a nearby church, [the women are] on the streets looking for prostitutes with one goal in mind: to save them,” Karlinsky said. “We keep our cameras at a distance as they hand out gift bags filled with bibles.” Karlinsky interviewed Lobert about her former life as a hooker. “But Annie Lobert isn't exactly your average missionary,” he said. “Before she was a so called ‘hooker for Jesus,’ Lobert was to put delicately, a hooker. Starting as a teenager, she sold her body through escort services, websites and on the streets of Las Vegas for 11 years.”
[Update: Erbe appears to be factually inaccurate, to say the least. Reader Tim Lindell passed on an L.A. Times article from last year noting that in a 2006 debate, Palin called herself "pro-contraception" and added that "kids who may not hear about it at home should hear about it in other avenues."]
With the writing style and gravitas worthy of a high school newspaper columnist, PBS "To the Contrary" host and US News & World Report columnist Bonnie Erbe slammed Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in her March 12 column, pitting her against her daughter Bristol who "displays a lot more personal maturity and decision-making ability than her mother" as evidenced by the breaking off of her engagement with boyfriend Levi Johnston.
Although Erbe is not a relationship expert or couples therapist, she plays one on the Internet (emphases mine):
[T]he youthful pair never looked like a loving couple. They looked like what they were: two sexually active teens who happened to "hook up" but had nothing beyond that in common. Besides, who wants to marry the son of a woman who's brought up on drug charges?
CNN correspondent Randi Kaye gushed over the “dynamic duo” of Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton, whom she heralded as “a powerful duo -- a duo women want on their side.” The two first ladies had made a joint appearance at President Obama’s announcement of the new White House Council for Women and Girls, and Kaye’s report, which aired on Wednesday’s Anderson Cooper 360, made it seem like it was the best thing since sliced bread. Kaye saved her most laudatory language for the two at the conclusion of her report: “Today was a good day to be a woman.”
Host Anderson Cooper introduced Kaye’s segment by labeling the two first ladies as “two of the most visible champions, perhaps, of women’s rights in the country.” A graphic accompanying Cooper on-screen proclaimed the “dynamic duo” of Obama and Clinton. During the rest of the report, another graphic applauded the “Obama-Clinton power duo.”
Family Guy – talk about a misnomer. The animated Fox television series crossed sexual, moral and religious boundaries on Sunday evening when it aired content inappropriate for its young target audience.
The controversial material was not limited to one subject, or isolated in a single scene. Images of gay men kissing, a baby eating semen, physical abuse, sexual touching and a half naked male were just a few of the disturbing images viewers were treated to in the March 8 episode.
The Parents Television Council has issued a press release regarding the indecent content. Tim Winter, President of the PTC has alerted the Federal Communications Commission to the controversial content aired at 8:00pm CT, during the so-called family hour.
CMI's Matt Philbin discussed Tattoo Barbie in his latest column:
We can be sure she's not the first of her generation to mark her 50th birthday by getting tattoos. After all, the cultivation of youth-obsessed narcissism and bad taste is a Baby Boomer hallmark (see Clinton, Bill). But "Totally Stylin' Tattoos Barbie" is no less disturbing for being a product of her generation.
Mattel is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the bubbly blonde franchise with an update - tattoos for her and her young owners. Of course, temporary tattoos have been a staple "secret toy surprise" in cereal boxes and candy for decades. But only in the ‘90s did real ink cease to be liberty souvenirs for sailors and become unisex accessories. Tattoos are now a ubiquitous sign of rebellious conformity for men, and often a statement of Tila Tequila aspirations for women.
Be careful when channel surfing; you might get an eyeful of advertisements for pay-per-view porn. But where is the mainstream media's warning to parents and concerned customers?
According to a March 9 article on adage.com, cable and satellite providers such as Comcast and DirecTV, are picking up their effort to boost sales through adult entertainment and the advertisements are expected to appear on more "male-heavy channels such as ESPN and Spike TV." Though the spots may run in the early morning hours of 2 a.m. to 6 a.m., the mainstream media has largely failed to report this news.
ABC and CNN, two reputable news sources, have done their part in promoting a “study” that posits conservatives are the nation’s biggest consumers of online pornography. Problem is, many think the study is full of holes and fuzzy math. ABC and CNN bought it: hook, line and sinker.
“Porn in the USA: Conservatives are biggest consumers” is a New Scientistarticle by Ewen Callaway that alleges that those who reside in “red” states, typically associated with support of the GOP, purchase more pornography than those in “blue” states. He cites a nationwide study that analyzed credit card receipts from a “popular online adult entertainment provider” in various states.
"Villaraigosa affair may not be one to remember," prophesied the July 7, 2007 headline in the L.A. Times. A year and a half later, the Associated Press danced around the Democratic Los Angeles mayor's adulterous liaison with a Spanish-language reporter assigned to the city hall beat.
From today's story on his March 3 re-election accessed at CBSNews.com (emphases mine), notice how the AP pulls its punches, euphemizing the adulterous affair in the 12th paragraph of the story:
The mayor of Los Angeles easily won re-election after a bumpy first term in the nation's second-largest city, fueling speculation that he will be among contenders next year to succeed Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the first Hispanic mayor in more than a century, was rewarded Tuesday with a second, four-year trip to City Hall despite an uneven first term that saw the breakup of his marriage and the defeat of his signature plan to reform city schools.
Just how little is the sanctity of marriage and fidelity revered by the mainstream media?
Consider the following astounding statement made today by "CNN Saturday Morning News" host T. J. Holmes:
Unfortunately, you know, people have to stop cheating in this recession. But given the recession, people are being forced to improvise a little bit more as they're looking for a little variety out there in their lives.
Unfortunately? Mightn't a decline in adultery be a hidden benefit during this economic downtown?
Apparently not (video embedded below the fold with full transcript):