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MurphTheSurf3 On June - 24 - 2014

Texas Gay

The Texas GOP platform has called for the support and renewal of the state anti-Sodomy law since 2003. Not this year. BUT, they are still anti-gay!

Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558 (2003), 6–3 ruling  struck down the sodomy law in Texas and, by extension, invalidated sodomy laws in thirteen other states, making same-sex sexual activity legal in every U.S. state and territory.

Texas, and nearly all of the other 13 state never formally repealed their laws in their legislatures although the statutes could not be enforced because of the SCOTUS ruling. Still, the legislature did not attempt to fix the law either. They were having it both ways. The law was on the books but the nasty federal government was keeping them from doing what they said was biblically-based righteousness.

The SCOTUS majority ruling of ruling rests on two points
The Texas “Homosexual Conduct” law criminalized sexual intimacy by same-sex couples, but not identical behavior by different-sex couples—violating the Fourteenth Amendment guarantee of equal protection of the laws.
The petitioners’ criminal convictions for adult consensual sexual intimacy in their home violated the principles of liberty and privacy protected by the Due Process Clause.

Rewriting the law to deal with these arguments is a formidable challenge. The Texas state legislature has acknowledged this BUT the legislators have had the cover of the party platform when challenged until now. Typically the GOP would call for the state to re-criminalize both sodomy and gay marriage in a nearly unanimous vote at the state convention held each Spring. (For an example see: http://www.rawstory.com/…)

Why? As in most states, even deeply Red ones, the general public’s acceptance that the tide on this issue has turned has led to compromise with so-called bedrock principles.

BUT, many Texas GOP still wanted cover in dealing with their most conservative constituents. Cue Rick Perry.

Speaking in San Francisco last week, Perry, who still has presidential dreams,  reiterated what he’d said in his 2008 book, On My Honor, stating, “I made the point of talking about alcoholism. I may have the genetic coding that I’m inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that. And I look at the homosexual issue the same way.”

In the same week the Texas GOP platform appeared to be following Perry’s line, treating homosexuality as a disease that, like alcoholism, needs treatment.

In doing this, the party as a whole and individual leaders in the party are doing what the GOP does so well. Having it both ways.

The new platform continues to oppose gay marriage and allowing gays to foster children. It opposes any laws that would give gays any kind of rights especially the right to marry. But now all of that is framed as an effort to be of Christian Assistance to those who are allegedly mentally unstable and addicted. A return to compassionate conservatism?

The platform still declares that homosexuality “is tearing at the moral fabric of the family,”  and gives full support to the importance of counseling, especially so-called reparative therapy, for those “seeking healing and wholeness from their homoexual lifestyle.”

As in so many other issues the GOP is caught between wide spread social trends and the views of a narrow, reactionary, and often fundamentalist core. The GOP is in a tense struggle to hold onto its religious conservatives. Dave Brat, the anti-gay, anti-choice, anti-immigration candidate who toppled House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Virginia) in a GOP primary last week, is a deadly reminder that what the GOP core wants is at odds with what most people want.

At the same time, GOP strategists, studying the demographics, know that their future lies with moderate GOPers, independents, and Blue Dog Democrats who aren’t anti-gay but just want their tax cuts.

So they’re trying out all kinds of things.

The Arizona “religious liberties” law vetoed by Gov. Jan Brewer earlier this year was an unsuccessful effort to cast the gay issue as a violation of religious liberty. Polling told the tale and Jan Brewer, who is not running for reelection, vetoed it. Perfect. The GOP legislature got to pass the law overwhelmingly and Brewer, who they say is now way too friendly with Democrats, knocked it back. Thus, when evangelicals in a meeting in AZ last week railed against the failure to pass the law, the GOP had a scapegoat.

Categories: Gay Rights, GOP, Relationships

Written by MurphTheSurf3

Proud to be an Independent Progressive. I am a progressive- a one time Eisenhower Republican who is now a Democrat. I live in a very RED STATE and am a community activist with a very BLUE AGENDA. Historian, and "Gentleman Farmer."

45 Responses so far.

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  1. PollyTics says:

    “The Texas GOP platform has called for the support and renewal of the state anti-Sodomy law since 2003”
    ==================================

    I would be curious to learn just how much the GOP is against “sodomy” as it applies to their own particular marriage or relationships…

  2. Pete Geller says:

    Don’t know if you or any others caught this comic rant by comedian Jamie Kilstein but he pretty much trashes any ‘religious’ arguments regarding morality, religion, marriage and having kids. Enjoy!

    http://www.upworthy.com/a-comedian-tears-apart-a-classic-anti-gay-argument-in-a-hilariously-vicious-3-minute-rant?c=ufb2

  3. sillylittleme says:

    Nice piece Murph!! As a person who was raised on the OT, I have the following to say. Jews got over this issue well over a decade ago. We have LGBT rabbis and cantors and we acknowledged gay marriages even as the “state” did not. If you have to take stuff from someone else’s book, then you don’t have an argument. And as we all know there is nary a mention of sexuality, of any variety, in Jesus’ teachings. Primarily, that is because there are certain laws that were set out ages ago that no longer apply, and if Jews can get past it so can all those who follow a Judeo-Christian philosophy. Excuse me, gotta cook some bacon… ;=}

  4. RSGmusic says:

    Hello friend, well written article and defines the GOP. It is one way the GOP does push away votes for them. Clouded in religion are the reasons they take this stance. Religions are very seldom wrong in the eyes of the followers. No compromise is at the heart of the right. The funny thing is Religion of any kind does not write civil laws in the USA biased to their religion. Well that is not true in the red states. The first amendment says it very similar to the approve. No compromise is the bias that the far right have trouble reading polls and making laws that will work in the USA. To say that family values are broken by being gay is not true. Being gay has been around since before the constitution. The world has not come to an end. In a sense the values they live by are equal of better. Gays have to explain both sides of the issue eventually. Human Nature and natural are seen in different lights. Natural is what you do. Human nature is written by citizens thru science, chemistry, physics and biology. The Far right Churches do not recognize science just what they interpret from the bible. These interpretations are subject to the opinion of who is reading it. The final point is that citizens on the far right do practice LGBT issue. So in the Supreme court if it is debated. Some conservatives who marry one way get all the rights under the constitution while other conservative get married another way by law and do not get all the rights of the other conservatives. Well there can not be two types of conservatives so LGBT marriages will be constitutional eventually in all the states.

    project on hold.

    prosper in long life Murph!!

    • MurphTheSurf3 says:

      The relationship between religion and political identity is crucial. You name it very well.

      The impact of religious association on the making of law is long established and, in the case of our own political union much discussed from its earliest times.

      We have long identified ourselves as a Judaeo-Christian culture but again, from the first, the Framers understood the freedom of religion also meant from from religion.

      The struggle to apply that in matters like this one goes on.

      • RSGmusic says:

        HI friend murph.

        Yes your post is true. I have defended the LGBT community since 1974 sometimes with bruises to prove it. Although i am not gay, i do support their total rights under the constitution. The others went home with more bruises and one separated shoulder.
        military tactic from my father and uncle the marine did work well and i was a golden gloves boxer from 12 to 14. Not great but good enough.

        Time has changed things although not enough, seems that far right religions gets in the way.

        Sayings from ( The Child or Nature )

        In times the reactions of others and Reading reactions is a since many have and cultivate. For in nature all things are not fair.

  5. cyndibru says:

    Plenty of “GOPers” and/or conservatives have known for a long time that gay people are born that way and have no problem acknowledging or admitting it. Unfortunately, the bible-thumping “moral majority” members of the party will always have their heads up their asses when it comes to this issue. As a conservative, I’m a lot more concerned that people, whether they are straight, gay, bi, transgendered, or whatever….form stable and committed relationships before they take on the responsibilities of having and raising children than I am with who does what to whom in the bedroom. Of course I favor gay marriage, just as I favor straight marriage as opposed to more casual types of relationships. I’ll never understand the mindset that marriage is just too much of a commitment, but hey, let’s have kids! That said, as long as you’re not asking me to pay for them, set up your family any way you like.

    • GreenChica says:

      Cyn--I wish that rational folks like you didn’t get drowned out by all the tea party shouting and hysteria that goes on in the GOP. I know this happens on the left as well but it seems to be careening out of control on the right. This country would be a lot more functional if we stopped demonizing each other. It’s a democracy. We have to find a way to compromise and live together. Extremists on both sides are worse than counter-productive. They are rotting our democracy. I haven’t read all your posts, I’m sure, so maybe you’ve addressed this, but I’m curious to know what you think of Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, and the activities of the Koch Brothers.

      • cyndibru says:

        Sure. I find Rush annoying, just as I find most radio “call-in” type shows annoying. If it’s anyone but a parrot calling in, the host talks (more like SHOUTS) over the caller. Basically, radio shows are entertainment, not sources for unbiased information. I’ve even heard Rush himself say that his job is to be an entertainer. I suspect he could be equally “entertaining” from the other political perspective as well if he chose to. He found a market and he tapped it well. Of course, so did Jerry Springer.

        I’m not a Fox News watcher either, at least from a political perspective. I really don’t watch TV news at all, unless I’m looking for something in particular at a specific time, like weather, or something on a big national story, or election results. I’d prefer to be spared the “analysis” and just given the facts, but that doesn’t seem possible on TV these days. If I do watch, it’s usually flipping between Fox, MSNBC, and CNN looking for who’s got what I’m specifically interested in at the moment. The political commentary I recognize for what it is. It’s totally biased on all 3 of those channels. I suppose if I HAVE to listen to it, I’d probably pick Fox just because the conservative point of view annoys me less than the liberal point of view, but just like I know the difference between actual evidence introduced in court versus attorney spin and smokescreen, I know the difference between a reported fact and political commentary/spin. That said, don’t like Hannity, O’Reilly, Matthews, Maddow, and a bunch of others, mostly because I find them grating on my nerves. I didn’t mind Brian Williams when he was on MSNBC, and I don’t mind Brit Hume on Fox.

        As for the Koch brothers, I don’t really care about them any more than I care about Bloomberg, Katzenberg, Steyer, Rove, etc. I live in Kentucky and there is more outside money from BOTH sides coming into our Senate race than money from inside the state. Both sides use everything they’re allowed to use by law. As long as there is ONE dark money PAC on the Dem side, they have no leg to stand on when it comes to criticizing the Koch brothers, as far as I’m concerned. It’s either ok across the board or it isn’t, and no fair complaining when the opposing side happens to be winning in the money race at the moment. I find it funny how politicians will lament the money in politics, but then run for office and suddenly, opting for just the public funds isn’t a palatable option even when the opponent is willing. For me, it either all comes out and we allow only public campaign funds, or it’s all in and anything goes. To me, it’s all just politics and everything I find hypocritical and distasteful about it. The only time people complain is when they think “the other side” is beating them at their own game. It’s amazing to me all the complaining since 2010 by the Dems about gerrymandering. It’s not new, it’s been going on for years and years, just like “ward politics” in big cities. I live in a state where historically until recently the Dems had control of both legislative houses and did LOTS of gerrymandering. I’m sure in other states the opposite was true. If you’ve ever done it, you can’t get mad when the other guy manages to do it bigger and better. Frankly, we should all go the way of California and do it with non-partisan commissions. And we should have public financing of elections, IMO. But until then, it’s politics as usual, and no one’s hands are clean.

        • “No one’s hands are clean…” While this may be true to an extent, I think some hands are much, much dirtier than others’.

          Democrats are actually trying to move this country forward. That can not honestly be said about republicans. When they spend the majority of their time trying to repeal the ACA (which has already benefited millions), continuing to conduct this Benghazi witch hunt, and now contemplating a lawsuit against the president, just how are they even remotely concerned about the well being of our country and it’s people?

          • cyndibru says:

            I think that’s why we have two main parties. There’s a lot of disagreement on what constitutes “moving forward” and who pays for it. Dirty is dirty, IMO. Whose hands are “dirtier” varies over time, and by location.

          • kesmarn says:

            KT, I agree. I’ve heard what I call the “But Ma! All the kids are doing it!” argument to justify political dirty tricks way too many times. There is a matter of degree. For example, people have said that unions put money into elections, so why shouldn’t the Koch brothers? But the fact is, when you total the contributions of the 10 largest unions in the country, it amounts to 1/14 of what the Kochs put in to trying to sway the outcome of the 2012 elections. Also — on the issue of gerrymandering. It isn’t a matter of “both sides do it.” I and my family (including parents and grandparents) have voted in the same area of Ohio for decades. Marcy Kaptur was our rep for over 30 years and the district boundary lines had been the same since long before she was elected. It wasn’t until 2010 that the GOP radically and ridiculously redrew lines all over the State of Ohio to virtually guarantee Repub victories for many years to come. I lost Marcy as my Rep and likely will never get her back again. I could vote Dem until the year 2100 and I would always be outnumbered because of the way the boundaries have been rigged.

            Two wrongs do not make a right.

            • cyndibru says:

              But that’s just it with the gerrymandering — I live somewhere where I was affected for years by Democrat gerrymandering. It took DECADES for the GOP to gain enough representation in my state to put a stop to it. It’s the same for other people in other states as well. So to us, it’s an absolutely hollow lament. This may be the first time YOU were affected, but I can assure you, BOTH sides do in fact do it.

            • kesmarn says:

              Ran out of room down there, Homie, but all I can say is I am totally with you on every point!

              :-)

            • Absolutely kes. So many people have been “convinced,” that both parties are the same. They’re both corrupt beyond all hope. I know that wasn’t exactly what Cyndi was saying, but I see it written and hear it said far too many times.

              Talk about creating apathy and extinguishing hope. The two parties are not the same, as you already know. President Obama is a remarkable man and has achieved some real landmark accomplishments, all in the face of fanatical opposition and even hatred.

              The dems have people like Marcy, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Al Franken….et al. Sure, there are those old school guys like Charlie Rangel and a few others, but even they have more concern for the American people than almost anybody I can think of on the other side.

        • GreenChica says:

          Thanks, Cynd. You make good points!

    • sherrybb says:

      Dang it, Cindy- why can’t you run for office? You always have been what i call ” one of the sane Republicans. ” there probably are more of you than we know. How do you deal with it when you are voting? Do you just go with the fiscal issues and ignore the other stuff you disagree with? ( not asking that sarcastically ok? ) I mean, I suspect you even believe that compromise is not a swear word? :)

      • cyndibru says:

        I could never run for office — I have a bad habit of telling it like it is and saying what I really think, and I find “political correctness” abhorrent. I’d never make it past the screening committee!

        When I am voting, I suspect I am like most people. You have to prioritize what is most important to you, because I know very few people who aren’t in conflict with SOME aspect of their political party. For me, the fiscal and personal responsibility issues are the most important.

        And sometimes your party just really nominates a stinker candidate. I actually voted for our Democratic governor, Beshear, twice. The first time he ran, because he supported legalizing casino gaming as opposed to our Republican governor at the time who did not.(and it was opposed by a lot of our down-state reps and senators of both parties because of their Baptist constituencies). To me, that was just a fiscal no-brainer as we were losing a lot of money to surrounding states. Plus, I didn’t think Fletcher had done a very good job overall and was doing some crazy stuff and there were ethics questions going on. It was the first time I voted for a Dem for a state or national office in a long time. I voted to re-elect him again for the same reasons, he still supported casino gaming, he did a better job for the state fiscally than Fletcher had done, and the Republican he was running against was the state senate majority leader who frankly was just an absolute ass.

        So while I do find most of the time I’m more in agreement with GOP fiscal policy, I’m not blind about it. The individuals running DO matter. For example, if I lived in South Carolina, I could NEVER have voted for Sanford after his nonsense.

        • sherrybb says:

          yet, the truth is, those qualities would make you the best candidate. You are not so locked into an ideology that you are blind, you call it like it is, instead of hem and haw and try to see which way the political winds are blowing. Imagine what our politicians could do if they could all set down their blind partisanship and simply do the thing that was best for the country. Not sure we ever had the majority of them doing that, but there were days when we had some doing that!

          ah, we can dream.

          • cyndibru says:

            We can dream! I think the electorate in general is the biggest part of the problem, rather than the politicians. They’re a reflection. If you don’t tell people what they WANT to hear, rather than what they NEED to hear, you don’t get elected.

    • MurphTheSurf3 says:

      Oh, if only more conservatives could draw the distinctions you have here….!!!!! bravo.

      You have hit the nail on the head. When people live in a formal, defined, contracted relationship….i.e. marriage they stand a much better chance of maintaining their commitments to each other, and to children in the environment.

      Let me ask you- I live in Missouri and I think there are many here who in their heart of hearts, standing on the Bible, foresquare with the Good Word regard homosexual life as the Sin of Cain, of Sodom, of Gomorrah….They are torn to pieces when “one of their own” is revealed to be “broken.”

      Is this not your experience as well? Still, many seem to adapt and become accepting…at least of the person in their family.

      The GOP, as organization, appears to regard gay-bashing less as belief, and more as tactic appealing to those in its base who do believe as a matter of principal.

      • cyndibru says:

        I have a particular distaste for literal interpretation of the Bible. I fail to understand how anyone with a semblance of an intellect can justify doing so. I freely admit that while I am nominally Catholic, I am a lousy “believer” if religious dogma is the criteria being used to judge. To me, reason and common sense preclude blind faith. In Biblical times, I would have been Doubting Thomas. I do believe in “God”, but I don’t presume to know what defines God. My suspicion is that the higher power in the universe lays more along metaphysical lines, far beyond our current human understanding, and religion is simply an attempt to frame that awareness that a majority of us have into something that gives comfort and structure to us rather than admitting we simply don’t know what lies beyond. We have glimpses.

        As for the GOP, I see it as more we’re “stuck” with these people, because they will of course naturally gravitate to the conservative end of the political spectrum. Do we like having their votes? Of course. Do we want them setting public policy? Of course not. It’s a very real problem. For me, I really dislike that wing of the party that wants to focus on controlling people’s lives through social issues. But I also dislike what I see as over-reach on the other side of the aisle that wants government controlling more aspects of people’s lives as well, and their ideas that it is ok and just for GOVERNMENT to take from one citizen to give to another. I have nothing against charity, I simply don’t believe it should be forced. They don’t call it religion, but in many ways it is.

        For me, one affects my personal pocketbook, the other doesn’t. Since I don’t feel personally financially responsible for anyone but me and my own family, I have a “live your life as you wish” philosophy until you start affecting me personally. I disagree with the desire to impose religious moral values as a matter of law, and I disagree with the desire to use law and government to hold me financially responsible for the “unfairness” and “financial inequality” of those whose personal circumstances I have nothing to do with.

    • Nirek says:

      Cyndi, I think you are a closet progressive. Or at least more progressive than you admit.

      • MurphTheSurf3 says:

        Teddy Roosevelt and Ike were progressive as well.

        • RSGmusic says:

          Yes Murph you are correct. there is a place where conservative and liberal meet. Both Ike and Roosevelt had this quality but in what mixture? You naturally be come conservative with your assets in old age ( will they last and at what life style). The thoughts stay liberal to deal with the younger generations.

          Compared to today’s conservatives both would be consider Democrats.

          IN music that point between the two is called FUSION. A central rhythm and key in the center around which the left lead instrument and the right lead instrument do two different themes.

        • Nirek says:

          Murph, they were both pretty decent people, too.
          I think Cyndi is a very decent person.

          • cyndibru says:

            Thank you. Philosophically, I may be “progressive” in many ways, but I don’t share what I see as the desire of many “progressives” to right the so-called wrongs of this world. Honestly, I probably see myself more as libertarian than anything else. I have no desire to tell anyone what to do, think, believe, or how to live their personal lives, but I also feel no responsibility to financially make up for the inequalities fate and/or choice has placed anyone in.

  6. MilesLong says:

    Let’s not be completely fooled, and especially disarmed, about the successes in Marriage Equality across the nation.

    Look how long it’s been since the major Civil Rights successes occurred, and just look at what kind of racist garbage crawled out from under rocks when the country elected and re-elected a half-Black Potus. {wink}

    Miles “I’ll Never Be Fooled Again” Long

  7. James Michael Brodie says:

    We are witnessing — and taking part in — the last days of one set of isms. The GOP is reduced to whiny platitudes aimed at appeasing an ever-shrinking base.

    The Republican slide toward Whig obscurity continues…

    • sillylittleme says:

      I totally agree. Look what happened yesterday with Thad Cochran’s win. The tea hats are all out of their minds today, screaming about how the Ds subterfuged the primary Funny, since I thought the tea party were the ones subterfuging the Rs. Like pulling taffy, it will eventually snap back into little tiny pieces… ;=}

    • MurphTheSurf3 says:

      I would like to think so but I worry about how deeply the GOP has dug in and the lengths to which they are willing to go to stop progress or even to drag the country backwards.

      In any case, if they are dying, they are not going quietly.

    • Beatlex says:

      Lets hope they hit the crest of the slope and slide like they are going over Niagara Falls in a barrel Jim

    • confuseddemocrat says:

      Do not underestimate the GOP. They have decided that the stoking of huge amounts of white resentment and fear, coupled with a smidgen of voter disenfranchisement and frustration (to breed apathy among democrats) will be enough to maintain power directly through control of the house and states and indirectly through hostage taking (government shutdowns).

      If anything, so far their plan has been shockingly successful.

      It is not the GOP that needs to change, it is the blue collar, low info white male voter who needs to wake up and realize he is voting for his own economic demise when he supports the GOP.

      • MurphTheSurf3 says:

        Prize Winning Paragraph:

        It is not the GOP that needs to change, it is the blue collar, low info white male voter who needs to wake up and realize he is voting for his own economic demise when he supports the GOP.

        I am with you. The GOP will not change. It must be changed and that will only occur if it is robbed of it $$$$ advantage, and its blind-eyed base.

        The blue collar low and no info voter is at the center of that blind based.

        Now the GOP in the House is going to sue the President for being President. No depths to which they will not dive.

      • MilesLong says:

        In the 2040’s all that becomes moot when whites become a minority in the United States…

        Miles “Can’t Wait” Long

      • James Michael Brodie says:

        No underestimation, my friend. Just history and numbers. They may win a battle or two more along the way, but their efforts are little more than a finger in a dam that is leaking all around them.

        The tide will wash them away unless they get smart and head for shore…

  8. pinkpantheroz says:

    “The platform still declares that homosexuality “is tearing at the moral fabric of the family,” and gives full support to the importance of counseling, especially so-called reparative therapy, for those “seeking healing and wholeness from their homoexual lifestyle.”” Really? I’d love to see the hard evidence that alternative lifestyles are tearing anythig. Being gay is genetic, so no ‘councelling”, or laws, for that matter is going to change anything. The poor GOP fundamentalistic taliban can only see the more openness of LGBT as an expansion of the ‘illness’, now that more have come out publicly. The proportion of gay to non-gay of the population probably hasn’t changed percentage wise. It is such a pity that St. Ron of Reagan let the Evangelical genie out of the bottle to have so much say on the poor gullible GOPTP sheep. Such narrow, blinkered reliance on some old book or other has damaged the US Democracy Ideal irreparably, in my opinion.

    Let Texas, by all means, try to reinstate those laws that catapult them back into the Middle Ages, so they can burn witches and stone adultere…… I think they better think it out again!

    • MurphTheSurf3 says:

      Science? You really want them to reply to your inquiry using experimentation, evidence, empirical observation when they have the WORD OF GOD as their foundation and their fortress…..Heathen!

      You get my point…and I think it is yours as well.

      It is not as if I believe the GOP leadership is full of fundamentalists but I do think they use the belief of the simple minded in this regard.

    • When I first read the news about Perry saying that being gay or alcoholic is a genetic predisposition, I thought to myself, wow, a GOPer admitting that gay people are born that way?

      Of course he went on to say that people should “choose,” not to engage in homosexual behavior. The sheer level of stupidity on this issue among the GOPers and baggers, is remarkable.

      Of course Perry is gearing up for another run at the white house, and is now donning glasses. I wonder if he thinks glasses will just make him LOOK smarter or if they will actually MAKE him smarter.

      “You can’t fix stupid!” Ron White

      • MurphTheSurf3 says:

        Born that way, and called upon by God to resist the sinful nature that God placed within them….WHAT THE FRICKFRACK!

        I have had this discussion with ministers here…they fall back on God’s way being mysterious OR they backtrack entirely claiming that being homosexual really is a choice after all…and to hell with folks like Perry.

        The glasses are from “nerds are us” -- what patent pandering.


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