Faith and Freedom Coalition Founder Ralph Reed and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow had a heated exchange on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday.
When Maddow claimed that same-sex marriage opponents are "arguing in favor of discrimination," Reed strongly objected and eventually asked if Barack Obama was "a bigot 14 months ago" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
RACHEL MADDOW: You know, Justice--
RALPH REED: But, David--
RACHEL MADDOW: --Kennedy addressed that issue specifically in his ruling.
DAVID GREGORY: He talked about children as well.
RACHEL MADDOW: He says that by denying marriage rights to same-sex couples who have kids, you're humiliating and demeaning those kids by denying their families equal protection under the law by the parents who are raising them and who love them and who make their family. So we can put it in the interests of children, but I think that cuts both ways. And I think the ruling cuts against that argument.
I mean, gay people exist. There's nothing we can do in public policy that makes more or us exist or less of us exist. And you guys have been arguing for a generation that public policy ought to essentially demean gay people as a way of expressing disapproval of the fact that we exist. But you don't make any less of us exist. You just are arguing in favor of discrimination. And more discrimination doesn't make straight people's--
RALPH REED: I can't--
RACHEL MADDOW: lives any better.
RALPH REED: David, I really can't let that go. I mean, this suggestion that because somebody wants to affirm the institution of marriage that they're ipso facto intolerant? By that argument, Barack Obama was intolerant 14 months ago. By that argument, 342 members of the House, 85 members of the Senate (including, by the way, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, Pat Leahy) who all voted for this law, and Bill Clinton who signed it into law, were intolerant and motivated by an animus and a hatred for gays.
RACHEL MADDOW: They've all changed their mind on it.
RALPH REED: Now wait a minute-- this is--
RACHEL MADDOW: All of them.
RALPH REED: But we're talking about when they-- Obama was 14 months ago. Was he a bigot 14 months ago?
RACHEL MADDOW: Nobody's calling anybody a bigot.
Nobody's calling anybody a bigot? Really?
Maddow must not have been listening to herself when she said, "You just are arguing in favor of discrimination. And more discrimination doesn't make straight people's lives any better."
People that argue for discrimination are of course bigots.
Maddow doesn't seem to get that; Reed did:
RALPH REED: Was Hillary Clinton a bigot when she suggested that--
DAVID GREGORY: But wait a minute, just because--
RACHEL MADDOW: You’re the only one--
RALPH REED: --but to suggest that you are--
MICHAEL ERIC DYSON: --ideological divide here.
RALPH REED: --motivated by hatred for somebody else because you believe that the foundation enculturating and socializing institution of western civilization is something to be protected--
MICHAEL ERIC DYSON: Can I tell you this-- I gotta tell you this-- the same argument was made--
RALPH REED: --is intolerance itself.
Yes, it is fascinating how all these liberal media members complaining about intolerance don't recognize their own.