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Paladino Declares War On Gays Amid Anti-Gay Hate Crimes, Coming Out Day

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Carl Paladino, the Tea Party-supported GOP candidate for governor of New York state, just one day before National Coming Out Day, spoke to several Orthodox Jewish organizations and attacked gay men and lesbians, the same day that eight members of a Bronx street gang were arraigned for anti-gay hate crimes including kidnapping, sodomy and robbery. Saying, “I don’t want [children] to be brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid or successful option. It isn’t,” Paladino went on to use gays to attack Andrew Cuomo, his Democratic opponent, saying, “I didn’t march in the gay parade parade this year — the gay pride parade this year. My opponent did. And that’s not the example that we should be showing our children, certainly not in our schools.”

There is no mistaking Paladino’s timing or intent. News of the anti-gay hate crimes, in which nine men are accused of stripping, beating, and sodomizing with a toilet plunger handle a seventeen-year old boy, and torturing another teen and then a thirty-year old man, have swept the nation. The gang leader of the nine men was accused in court yesterday of asking each of his victims before brutally beating them, “Is it true that you’re a fag?” His speeches also came one day before National Coming Out Day, an important event for the LGBTQ community, especially this year, after as many as ten gay, questioning, or perceived to be gay male teens were literally bullied to death in the month of September.

Paladino’s attacks on Sunday also included the statement, “I just think my children, and your children, will be much better off, and much more successful getting married and raising a family.” One line drawing particular scorn from gay rights groups, “There is nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual. that is not how God created us,” was not spoken at the events.

Blogger Joe.My.God. reports on the author of Paladino’s prepared remarks. He writes, “It turns out that yesterday’s anti-gay speech by teabagger loon Carl Paladino was actually written by Rabbinical Alliance leader Rabbi Yehuda Levin, whose repulsive attacks on LGBT people have long been quoted on this blog.”

Paladino’s hate speech comes just three days after he aired a three-minute commercial in upstate New York that still has voters puzzled. After Paladino focused the gubernatorial race on his unsubstantiated claims that Cuomo had had an affair, Paladino, who himself fathered a daughter out of wedlock, said the race should be about the issues. In that same three-minute ad, Paladino then went on to mention Cuomo’s so-called love life, stating Cuomo’s “prowess is legendary.”

Empire State Pride Agenda, New York’s largest gay rights advocacy group, released this statement condemning Paladino’s speeches.

“In the wake of the hate crimes sweeping New York State, including the sickening abuse and torture experienced by three young men in the Bronx last weekend, and the rash of LGBT youth taking their own lives all across our country, it is unfathomable that Carl Paladino could espouse the homophobic position that the lives of gay New Yorkers are not as valid as his.  Law abiding, tax-paying LGBT New Yorkers, and parents of LGBT children, should not have to worry that their governor will be siding with those who feel we are less than, that we are second class citizens living less valid lives than our neighbors.  Apparently, Carl Paladino is fine with schools teaching that sentiment as well, and believes that to teach otherwise is brainwashing.  Fortunately, what Carl Paladino calls brainwashing most New Yorkers call getting along.

“Will every New Yorker who fails to meet Carl Paladino’s personal morality code have to worry about being deemed invalid? Our extraordinary diversity is part of what makes New York great, and we will all need to work together to address the challenges we face in the coming years. This will be far harder if New Yorkers are divided or distracted by a governor and a government who are making judgments about whether or not some law abiding citizens are leading ‘valid lives.’”

Unwilling to backpeddle or apologize, Paladino then made the morning talk show rounds today. Via Huffington Post:

On “Good Morning America,” host George Stephanopoulos asked Paldino whether he believes “homosexuality is a choice.” “I’ve had difficulty with that,” he replied. “My nephew tells me he didn’t have that choice, and I believe it’s a very very difficult life for a young person. I believe that young people should not necessarily be exposed to that, without a really really mature background first so they can learn to do with it. It’s a very difficult thing, and I sensitize with it, totally.”

Paladino also dismissed concerns that his comments may have appeared insensitive at a time when the public’s attention has been drawn to LGBT suicides nationwide and brutal anti-gay hate crimes in New York.

“No, I think my comments were directed at the confusion people have had over this issue,” he said. “I wanted to clearly distinguish that my feelings about homosexuality were no different from those of the Catholic church. I’m a Catholic. … I only have one problem with homosexuality and that’s their desire to be married. And beyond that, I don’t have a problem whatsoever.”

On the morning shows, Paladino expressed his disgust with gay pride parades, saying on NBC that young people shouldn’t be exposed to watching “a couple of grown men grind against each other.” “I don’t think that’s proper,” he added. “I think it’s disgusting.”

It is important to note that Paladino made these remarks to religious organizations, stated his religion, and, to top it off, dubbed himself, “religious values candidate.”

Carl Paladino should remember that New York’s LGBTQ community, one of the largest in the country, is highly-influential, votes, and leads many of the industries that power New York.

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Trump Jr. Winds Up in Felony Poaching Scandal in Utah After Killing a Bear Baited With Pastries: Report

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Second-generation New York real estate heir Donald Trump, Jr. is caught up in yet another hunting scandal.

Utah hunting guide Wade Lemon is facing five years in prison for baiting a bear that was killed by Trump, Jr. on May 18, 2018, The Salt Lake Tribune reported Saturday.

But the New York developer may not have been familiar enough with western hunting to know about the felony poaching.

“Trump Jr. is not named in a recent filing against Lemon, but the DNR confirmed his identity as the person named in the felony complaint as Lemon’s “client” on the hunt. Prosecutors have indicated there was no evidence showing Trump Jr. would have known about the alleged baiting that went on during the hunt,” the newspaper reported. “Without naming Trump Jr., Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings said the hunter in the case ‘was actually a victim and a now a possible witness in a fraudulent scheme to lead the hunter to believe it was actually a legitimate Wild West hunting situation.'”

Trump, Jr. posted pictures of his hunting trip to Instagram.

“On Sept. 3, 2020, The Utah Investigative Journalism Project requested files on closed investigations against Wade Lemon Hunting. The DNR provided files on cases dating back to 2009 except for the case on the 2018 Trump Jr. hunt. DNR had decided to reopen that case and denied the records request, stating the release would interfere with the now ‘open’ investigation,” the newspaper reported. “DNR turned the case over to the Utah Attorney General’s Office. Utah Attorney General Reyes has close ties to Trump, having campaigned for him and even flying to Nevada to investigate the election results after Trump’s defeat at the polls and signed on to a lawsuit claiming ‘unlawful election results.’ The Attorney General’s Office reinvestigated the case for months, then handed it off to the Davis County Attorney’s Office to screen for filing of charges.”

Trump, Jr.’s guided hunting trip resulted in kills of a black bear and mountain lion.

“Charging documents allege Lemon’s outfitters illegally used bait on the bear shot by Trump Jr. According to the document, a witness identified Lemon and his employees during the hunt in May 2018 and was able to identify Lemon over radio traffic, giving instructions to his employees,” the newspaper reported. “The illegal bait, ‘a pile of grain, oil and pastries’ was discovered with a trail camera pointed right on it with ‘WLH’ (for Wade Lemon Hunting) written on the side and with Lemon’s own telephone number, according to court documents. The charging documents also include evidence from a subordinate confirming Lemon had him place the bait in the location several weeks before the hunt.”

The guide Trump, Jr. hired for his hunt has been investigated before.

“Hunting guides who cater to the wealthy elite have a lot at stake in ensuring successful hunts. These companies employ hunters to scout woods, deserts, mountains and plains for the biggest game, to ensure these high-profile clients have the highest chance for a successful hunt. According to DNR, Wade Lemon Hunting has been investigated eight times for allegedly breaking the law to ensure a successful hunt, though he was not charged with a felony until Tuesday,” the newspaper explained.

The vast majority of game taken in America is from hunters who do not require a hired guide.

The former president’s eldest son has previously had scandals over killing an elephant in Africa, killing an endangered sheep in Mongolia, and killing pregnant prairie dogs in Montana.

 

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Adam Schiff Prosecutes the Case Against Ginni Thomas on MSNBC After ‘Stunning’ Revelations

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The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee offered a brutal analysis after a bombshell new report on efforts by Ginni Thomas seeking to overturn the 2020 presidential election.

“Virginia ‘Ginni’ Thomas, the conservative activist and wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, pressed Arizona lawmakers after the 2020 election to set aside Joe Biden’s popular-vote victory and choose “a clean slate of Electors,” according to emails obtained by The Washington Post. The emails, sent by Ginni Thomas to a pair of lawmakers on Nov. 9, 2020, argued that legislators needed to intervene because the vote had been marred by fraud,” the newspaper reported.

MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace interviewed Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) for analysis.

Schiff, a former federal prosecutor who was the impeachment manager during Trump’s first trial and is a member of the House Select Committee Investigating the Jan. 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol, was asked by Wallace if the select committee would interview Ginni Thomas.

IN OTHER NEWS: GOP finds new scapegoat for baby formula outrage

“There are several stunning things to me about what is publicly known and has been revealed about Ginni Thomas. Here, she is weighing in with state legislators in Arizona, seeking to get them to essentially send a bogus slate of electors, that didn’t represent who won the popular election in Arizona,” Schiff said.

He referenced legal proceedings over the subpoena of “coup memo” author John Eastman.

“And you know, the judge in California, Judge Carter and the case involving Eastman, this lawyer, describes what the former president was involved in as a criminal conspiracy.”

“That was a conspiracy to interfere with the joint session, to defraud people, and here you have the wife of a Supreme Court justice engaged in a parallel effort to get Arizona to improperly cast aside the votes of millions,” he charged. “And also to add to it, her husband, on the Supreme Court, writing a dissent in a case, arguing providing records to Congress that might have revealed those same emails.”

READ MORE: The Buffalo shooter had a toothache — an extremism expert explains the bizarre reason it matters

“That conflict of interest just screams at you,” Schiff said.

Watch the segment below or at this link.

 

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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‘Fear-Driven Alliance’: Conservative Explains Why Far-Right CPAC ‘Opportunists’ and ‘Paranoids’ Are Meeting in Hungary

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The rise of authoritarianism and fascism growing within the Republican Party was discussed by the opening panel on MSNBC’s “The Reidout” on Friday.

Host Joy Reid noted how the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is being held in Hungary this year, which is ruled by strongman Viktor Orbán.

“They have elections, of a sort, but also hamper voters’ abilities to make informed choices and heavily control the outcome that the elections are essentially a show,” she explained. “These are the autocratic dreams of a far-right leader obsessed with solidifying a Christian monoculture and who, in 2014, declared his intention to build an illiberal new state citing China, Russia and Turkey as role models. Flash forward to today where CPAC, the once conservative gathering that is now simply a cesspool of the far-right running amok, is holding its conference in Budapest.”

For analysis, Reid interviewed conservative writer Tom Nichols.

Nichols warned “there is a nihilistic, fear-driven alliance here with a group of opportunists, and I want to get back to this issue of about Hungary, the really dangerous thing here is that some of these people believe very deeply in — in some of this stuff and yet others, and I would say people like [Tucker] Carlson and Matt Schlapp and some of the other people capering about in Budapest, don’t believe in any of this and don’t believe in anything of this other than the extension of their own personal power and wealth.

“And when you have this coalition of shallow, empty opportunists along with with a group of paranoids, basically, then you have a really dangerous movement because each side has to keep upping the ante to kind of justify why they are doing the things they are doing,” he explained.

“A lot of this is an act, but the problem is you then paint yourself into a corner… You have to start actually trying to put forward policies and carry things out that, that make you look as if you believe the things that you’re doing. And then after a while, whether it’s an act or its opportunism is no longer relevant: You have become the thing you’ve been prancing about and pretending to be,” he explained.

Watch the segment below or at this link.

 

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