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Brian Brown’s Shocking, Ugly Response To His Marriage Debate With Dan Savage



The National Organization For Marriage late last night released a fundraising email loaded with shockingly offensive commentary about NOM President Brian Brown‘s dinner table marriage debate with noted LGBT author and activist Dan Savage. The email, a whopping 2525 words, uses hackneyed NOM tricks — like hate mongering, fear mongering, claims of religious and biblical superiority — and of course, ends with a fundraising plea, a pretty tacky exhibition of pure greed. Overall, Brown displays the fact that he’s unwilling to engage in true debate, consider anyone else’s position — and is a very bad guest.

Watch: Dan Savage Vs. Brian Brown — The Dinner Table Marriage Debate

“Let me pose a question to the Dan Savages of the world,” NOM President Brian Brown posits, dehumanizing his host as he fear-mongers to his supporters. “Once gay people were a powerless and defenseless minority.”

Now, you have organized, protested, and become powerful through the use of democratic freedoms and intellectual debate, a powerful cultural force in our time. What use do you intend to make of your power?

“Liberty when men act in groups is power,” as Edmund Burke said, and before we congratulate them, or they congratulate themselves, it behooves us to look at what use they intend to make of the growing cultural power.

[All bolding is Brian’s, not ours.]

What does Brian want his supporters to think we’re going to do with our “power”?

As an aside, here’s an excellent graphic, via Zack Ford at Think Progress, that addresses this very issue:

So, what are we going to do with this so-called power that the LGBT community supposedly has (which we don’t)? Get married. Raise families. Try to be happy, and live our lives.

In another breath, Brown states:

Dan Savage called us here at NOM liars. He thinks we are telling lies, because we say things he doesn’t believe.

“Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor’,” he told me. “I do believe NOM is in the bearing false witness business and routinely bears false witness against LGBT people.”

“NOM tends to do it through linking and surrogates,” he said, echoing the absurd arguments of Scott Rose and now also Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

NOM and its related businesses, like the Ruth Institute, have blatantly ignored truth and the law. And  yes, it is true that “NOM tends to do it through linking and surrogates,” as with the pastor who spoke at NOM’s anti-gay marriage rally, and said, as NOM officials stood by, not uttering a word in response to this statement, translated from Spanish:

“Gays are worthy of death.”

NOM did not issue a statement apologizing or refuting that statement. The only acknowledgment of it came fro  Maggie Gallagher, who wrote in the comments section of one of the many articles we published on the subject.

On that note, NOM certainly was quick to blame the LGBT community and the Southern Poverty Law Center for the Family Research Council shooting. NOM not once has come out to support our community or offer condolences — much less take any responsibility for contributing to a climate of hate  — when pastor after pastor after pastor has announced children who might seem to be gender non-conforming be “knocked” and beaten, that all gay people should be rounded up and put in pens, to “die out,” or that gay people are responsible for any one of a number of natural tragedies, like hurricanes and earthquakes.

Not. One. Peep. Courtesy of the folks at NOM, the National Organization For Marriage.

Meanwhile, often, sometimes daily, the anonymous “NOM staff” blogger(s) on the NOM Blog will publish excerpts of articles designed to attack the LGBT community, so NOM can claim it didn’t state those lies and half-truths and cherry-picked items, someone else did. Perhaps Brian should start actually reading the NOM blog?

We should note Brown mentions The New Civil Rights Movement’s own Scott Rose, who has written dozens of articles on NOM, and the Regnerus flawed anti-gay “parenting” study, which Brown brought up during his debate with Savage. Rose is responsible in large part for the actions taken by the University of Texas and the publisher of the Regnerus “study” that have led those associated with the Regnerus study to, as one reviewer employed by the publisher stated, call it “bullshit.”

Certain members of the gay community, embraced and endorsed by as powerful a voice as Dan Savage’s, are out trying to destroy a young scholar’s career—not debating and refuting his study, or accepting the challenge of coming up with random samples of gay parents raising children as Regnerus did—but trying to end his career because he published a study in a peer-reviewed journal—but Dan absurdly claimed that this attempted destruction of Prof. Regnerus’ career is our fault.

Well, that’s false. Regnerus’ peers and the LGBT community are trying to stop NOM, anti-gay organiztions, and hate groups from using a debunked and wildly flawed “study” that harms the entire LGBT community, the children we are raising, and empirical truth and facts. Regnerus’ career is not our focus, but he traded his reputation to advance his anti-gay agenda and his bank account, and that is unacceptable.

Sadly, the Regnerus study has now appeared in Supreme Court amicus briefs and a federal court judgment against a same-sex marriage case.

Almost the entire fundraising letter is skewed, fictional, divisive, attacking, offensive, and just plain ugly, but Brown couches it in religion so thinks that makes him right. It does not.

And he positions himself as the battling warrior hero, which is just plain dumb.

Comments like, “As I told Dan face to face,” “I went on to tell Dan in his own home,” and this gem:

I called for this debate with Dan Savage to show that I—with your support and help— that we would go anywhere to defend the principles that you and I hold dear.

Even into the Seattle, Washington home of a homosexual and his “husband,” right, Brian? Because that’s what you really wanted to say, isn’t it?

Jeremy Hooper at Good As You pointes to this passage from Brown’s email:

But leave it to the National Organization For Marriage, while thanking Dan for having him to his home, to pointedly downgrade Terry and Dan’s status:

Let me first begin by saying thank you to Dan Savage for the invitation to come to his home and the chance to meet his partner and his child.

Dan has since told the moderator, Mark Oppenheimer, that he regrets having the event at his home because his role as host interfered with his full prosecution of me (and through me, all NOM supporters):

“Playing host put me in this position of treating Brian Brown like a guest,” he said. “It was better in theory than in practice — it put me at a disadvantage during the debate, as the undertow of playing host resulted in my being more solicitous and considerate than I should’ve been. If I had it to do over again, I think I’d go with a hall.”

So I want to make sure and thank Dan Savage and his partner for opening their home to me.

And Hooper notes:

Probably not that big of deal to Brian, since his career is quite literally built around taking away certain kinds of Americans’ legal statuses. But surely a huge deal to Dan, Terry, and *their* son.

Perhaps we should just be thankful Brian didn’t go with colleague, associate, or Player #2.

Yes, overall, Brian Brown is a bad guest. But he’s also a bad citizen, working hard to jam down people’s throats his idea that marriage can only be the union of one man and one woman — not two men or two women — and making the LGBT community out to seem evil.

That not just bad public policy, that’s not just bad citizenship, that’s not just bad business practice, that’s just plain bad.

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‘Boldly Ignorant’ Ted Cruz Slammed by Retired NYPD Detective for His Suggestions to Protect Kids



Appearing on MSNBC’s “The Katie Phang Show,” a retired NYPD detective expressed disgust with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) over his attempts to dismiss the idea of new gun laws to protect children in schools and instead is insisting America needs to turn schools into fortresses.

In interviews and appearing at the NRA convention this weekend in Houston, Cruz has vociferously disregarded the easy availability of high-powered weapons and instead focused on a door that was left open at the elementary school where the shooting occurred.

After host Phang shared a clip of the Texas Republican making his case, she asked former law enforcement detective Marq Claxton his thoughts on what Cruz was proposing.

Calling the controversial senator “boldly ignorant,” he proceeded to rip Cruz’s proposal apart.

“Marq, I was a prosecutor for half my career, I never prosecuted somebody for leaving a door open. How absurd is this proposal by Ted Cruz that the solution is to make sure that we don’t have too many doors at our schools?” host Phang asked.

“Ted Cruz’s statements were boldly ignorant and dismissive of the clear obvious danger that is faced by so many people in society because of the prevalence of violence and gun violence in particular,” he replied. “It really shows just how so many political electeds lack the fortitude to move forward and do the right thing: save lives.”

“Instead of sloganeering, Mr. Cruz and his other elected colleagues really should be working on legislation that provides, or minimizes the risk of damage, and could quite possibly and probably save lives,” he continued. “That is some additional gun restrictions, some background checks, there are other things that are out there that will undoubtedly be effective and save lives, and prevent these gun violence deaths.”

Watch the segment below or at this link.


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‘Taking Us All for Fools’: Critics Decimate Greg Abbott’s Claims and Defense of His Actions in Wake of School Shooting



Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott in a press conference that left reporters frustrated defended his actions and insisted his earlier praise for law enforcement’s widely criticized response to the Uvalde school massacre was the result of being “misled.”

“I am livid about what happened,” Abbott declared, blaming others for his “recitation of what people in that room told me.”

Critics aren’t buying his claims.

Abbott, who’s in the middle of a heated re-election campaign, appeared extremely defensive when reporters asked him questions.

“Let’s be clear about one thing. None of the laws I signed this past session had any intersection with this crime at all,” Abbott told reporters when asked if he would call the legislature back for a special session, as The Texas Tribune’s Sewell Chan noted.

“No law that I signed allowed him to get a gun,” Abbott insisted.

“The answers fell pretty flat,” opined MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace, who noted the press event lasted just 36 minutes, less time than the police officers “stood outside and did nothing,” which was 47 minutes.

Abbott ended the press conference with many reporters almost begging him to take more questions. As the governor left one frustrated reporter was caught on a hot mic saying “unbelievable.”

Chan, who is the editor in chief of the Tribune, added on Twitter: “Abbott rejects background checks as a simplistic and ineffective fix. Wouldn’t have prevented Sutherland Springs and Santa Fe shootings, he says. Tries to turn focus to broken mental health system.”

Former FBI assistant director for counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi on MSNBC delivered a strong rebuke to Governor Abbott’s remarks.

“No amount of free flights, no amount of free caskets, no amount of mental health counseling is going to bring back any one of those murdered children,” Figliuzzi said, referring to Abbott’s announcement an anonymous donor is putting up  $175,000 for funeral expenses of those who were murdered in the shooting and said the state will pay for mental health treatment.

Abbott also insisted that since Texas became a state it’s been legal for 18-year-olds to buy long guns.

Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jaime was murdered in the Parkland school shooting, blasted Abbott:

And long guns of today, as Figliuzzi noted, are often semi-automatic “killing machines.”

“The governor seems completely unable to understand that he can easily make a distinction when you’re talking about whether an 18-year-old should buy an assault rifle or not. And all he cares about is a century of history in Texas on long guns. We didn’t have the AR-15 style assault weapons back then.  He can easily make a distinction and say, ‘you can go hunting, here are the rifles you can do, you can buy, you can possess – and here’s an assault-style rifle.'”

“If he thinks that people are stupid and unable to understand that there is a clear distinction between a killing machine and a hunting rifle, that he’s taking us all for fools.”


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‘I Apologize for Interrupting Your Press Conference’: Tearful Texas Democrat Urges Greg Abbott to ‘Do Something’ on Guns



The Texas Democratic State Senator who represents Uvalde stood up during Greg Abbott’s Friday afternoon press conference and almost begged the Republican Governor to “do something” about gun violence after Tuesday’s massacre at Robb Elementary School that took 21 lives.

Abbott was trying to place the blame for the school shooting on mental health despite the gunman having no documented issues, and told attendees, “we’re focusing our attention on the wrong thing.”

That was not good enough for Democratic State Senator Roland Gutierrez, who politely introduced himself and said, “I’m not making a political speech.”

“My colleagues are asking for a special session, you’re getting a letter tomorrow,” from the Senate Democratic Caucus.

“We’ve asked for gun control changes – I’m asking you now, bring us back in three weeks.”

Gutierrez grew emotional, sounding as if he was choking up, and added, “I apologize for interrupting your press conference about the needs of this community. I’ve been here for three days with all of these elected officials – this county judge has been working his ass off,” he continued.

“I don’t know how to express the loss of the families that I’ve talked to,” he added.

“You have to do something, man,” Gutierrez said, all but begging the governor to take action, and saying his “own colleagues are calling me and telling me this is enough.”


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