Thursday, December 02, 2004

Skippy(s) of the Day: Viacom and Gary Cass

The latest story on the liberal blogs is the refusal by CBS and UPN (both owned by Viacom) to air a commercial for the United Church of Christ. It is the start of a new ad campaign to let people know about the UCC's philosophy of acceptance. The following is the statement issued by CBS on it's decision:

"Because this commercial touches on the exclusion of gay couples and other minority groups by other individuals and organizations," reads an explanation from CBS, "and the fact the Executive Branch has recently proposed a Constitutional Amendment to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, this spot is unacceptable for broadcast on the [CBS and UPN] networks."
It's interesting to note the deliberate wording by Viacom. The Church and their commercial is stressing their view that Jesus believed in acceptance. The statement issued by CBS avoids the positive word "acceptance" or any variation thereof in lieu of linking the church to the negative word "exclusion". There's a mind process going on behind this statement that such infantile wordplay may actually end up tarnishing the church while defending the networks. However, none of this disguises the basic message of the company, which is: "Because the UCC is pointing out the bigotry of others, including the President, we are uncomfortable with this statement of truth and choose not to acknowledge it".

Don't give me any crap about the "liberal media" when this stuff is going on. In the same month that Viacom rejected a simple message of tolerance, the Washington Post accepted a bigoted message of falsehoods. The cultural trend that began with Dubya's campaign of so-called "values" is continuing and will only snowball in the next four years. Bush and company have said that all they want to do is ban gay marriage, but he has made homosexuality itself the issue for his supporters to focus on. He has knowingly empowered these people to finally act on their impulses to strike down and rub out people that make them uncomfortable. They will not be satisfied with keeping homosexuals out of positions as Arabic translators and Scout masters. They wish to make them a much larger pariah on the level of child molesters and rapists.

Which brings us to Gary Cass. In this news story, he voices his view that after Bush's anti-gay rights campaign, his supporters expect more than just a ban on gay marriage:

"Do you want to take your children to a National League baseball game for instance and have homosexuals showing affection to one another? I don't want my kids to see that," he said.
After reading this, you have to wonder what exactly he's getting at here. Is he advocating the rounding up of homosexuals and putting them into camps? Farfetched and absurd, though the venom in his words seem to indicate he may have fantasies to this end. However, a simple ban on gay marriage is not a ban on displays of homosexual affection. What he really wants is a cultural shunning of homosexuals so they become in all practical terms second-class citizens.

Cass goes on to say that God's wrath will be inflicted upon the nation if the government is seen as tolerant to homosexuals. When a victorious football player claims God's grace as the reason for his victory, I have to wonder at the intelligence of a man who thinks a supreme being really gives a rat's ass if the Podunk Hurricanes won their division or not. But just as a mind will actually believe that God wanted their team to win (and, consequently, wanted the other team of god-fearing Christians to lose) so will they believe that God will bless a nation and just as quickly damn a nation for the government's treatment of human beings as...well...human.

Beware anyone who views their own salvation in terms of the punishment and destruction of others. Such people believe strapping explosives to their body and killing a busload of people will send them straight to paradise. Republicans may find that analogy offensive, but I believe it fits. Cass's beliefs may not drive him to the lengths of a suicide bomber in Israel, but that's only because he wishes to fight as long as possible. Click on that link and read the article, and you'll see his passion for erasing homosexuals as equal to that of anyone fighting over the West Bank.

Postscript: After writing all this, I found a second story on how ABC and NBC have also refused to air the spots. ABC gives the reason that they do not "...accept paid advertising that espouses a particular religious doctrine", which is at least a reason that has some logic and validity. On the other hand, NBC states that it "...violates their policies against running ads that take positions on matters of public controversy", which is absolute nonsense. The commercial does not show the UCC ordaining the marriage of two homosexuals, but rather simply welcoming them into a church. Greeting someone is now controversial. If you think for a moment that the Republican attacks will stop at gay marriage, then you've got another thing coming.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't think that the strength of anti-gay voices within the conservative movement is as strong as you fear, Agent Moseley. Many conservative evangelicals will fight hard against gay rights (in various forms), but they are only one wing of the conservative movement. Among less religious conservatives, there is little enthusiasm for preventing the march of gay rights, and considerable support for gay marriage. Conservativism is often defined as standing athrawt history, yelling, "STOP!" Conservativism might slow the pace of change, but liberalism always -- always -- wins.

Gay rights advocates misstepped recently by pushing gay marriage hard. The pace of change has been too hard for conservatives to handle. I've heard a lot of conservatives say things like "Wait, it was only a few years ago that homosexuality was considered a psychiactric disorder, and now they want to legally marry?" Otherwise very tolerant conservatives felt that progress was moving much, much too quickly.

Liberals and gay rights advocates would be better served to embrace federalism in this matter. Pavlovian Conservatives start salivating at the word 'federalism' and would likely embrace letting individual states make decisions about gay marriage (which is why there was widespread conservative rejection of Bush's Federal Marriage Amendment). Homosexuals would get to marry immediately by moving to and residing in states that allow gay marriage. Eventually, as the liberalizing trend that has dominated American political thought for two hundred years would bring each state, over time, to embrace gay marriage. Cultural and demographic changes would make gay marriage in all fifty states an inevitablity, provided that we don't do something stupid like pass the FMA. -- David P.