News | Oklahoma | Sally Kern

An Update on the Anti-Gay Sally Kern Saga

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Last Friday I posted the secretly-taped diatribe against homosexuality which Oklahoma State Representative Sally Kern thought she was delivering to no more than 50 people. It has become a viral YouTube phenomenon. Kern's bigoted rant against gays and copies of it have been viewed well over half a million times. I've reposted the audio as well as a statement Kern released defending herself AFTER THE JUMP, in case you want to get angry again.

Here's an update on the Kern story.

On Monday, the Dallas News reported that Kern had received over 3,000 emails and hundreds of telephone calls, some containing death threats.

Said Kern, who is the wife of a Baptist minister (which explains a lot): "I was talking about an agenda. I was not talking about individuals. They have the right to choose that lifestyle. They do not have the right to force it down our throat. I have never said hate speech against anybody. I would never do that."

Tulsa World reported the number of emails Kern had received at 5,000: "Most of the communications were critical, and several contained language that Kern said she has never heard before. The lawmaker related some of the e-mails to Republican caucus members in a closed meeting Monday. She later said the group gave her a standing ovation."

Kern believes she has the first amendment right to defame an entire group of people. Said Kern, in her statement released yesterday: "To put this simply: As a Christian I believe homosexuality is not moral. Obviously, you have the right as an American to choose that lifestyle, but I also have the right to express my views, and my fellow Oklahomans have the right to debate these issues."

Laura Belmonte, president of the Tulsa group Oklahomans for Equality, responded to that defense: "'I find it particularly interesting that she (Kern) is invoking freedom of speech for these remarks,' Belmonte said, noting that Kern sponsored a bill a few years ago to restrict access to library books that might contain gay or les bian themes or information."

Kern has vowed not to apologize.

Yesterday, GLAAD called on the media to hold Kern accountable for her remarks.

Said GLAAD President Neil Giuliano: "This type of hateful and defamatory language from our public officials is completely unacceptable. GLAAD calls on its members and allies to stand together to hold elected officials like Kern, pledged to serve all the people, accountable for promoting hatred and bigotry. Media have a responsibility to cover Kern's ugly remarks, not only to hold her accountable for her misinformed, inaccurate claims about gay and lesbian people, but also to bring to light the anti-gay attitudes and beliefs that are still all too common in our country, Kern's hateful assertions highlight the need for media to examine how the anti-gay attitudes of elected officials impact their diverse constituencies."

Listen to the infamous audio clip and read the statement Kern issued yesterday, AFTER THE JUMP...


***STATEMENT FROM SALLY KERN***

OKLAHOMA CITY - State Rep. Sally Kern (R-Oklahoma City) issued the following statement today in response to the criticisms of homosexual activists who have objected to a recent speech she gave on their efforts to promote their agenda at both the federal and state level.

"To put this simply, as a Christian I believe homosexuality is not moral. Obviously, you have the right as an American to choose that lifestyle, but I also have the right to express my views and my fellow Oklahomans have the right to debate these issues.

"In recent years homosexual activists have begun to aggressively promote their agenda through the political process, often providing substantial financing to candidates who agree with their views, including many running for state legislative races. National publications such as Time, The Atlantic and USA Today have noted that trend. That is their right, just as it is my right to voice opposition to their agenda, which I have been asked to do at several public forums in recent months. That's what democracy is all about. It appears some homosexual activists believe only one group is allowed a voice in this debate. I disagree.

"A vigorous debate on an issue is not 'hate speech' - it's free speech. I have made clear my opposition to the agenda of homosexual activists, but I have never endorsed or supported any hateful action targeting individuals on the other side of this debate and never will. The fact that many gay rights activists claim anyone opposing their agenda is engaging in 'hate speech' says more about them than me.
"Most Oklahomans are socially conservative and believe marriage is a sacred institution, the union of one man and one woman, and that the traditional family is worth protecting and preserving. When I campaigned for office, I promised my constituents to stand up for those values, and I do not apologize for keeping my word."

***END OF STATEMENT***

Capitol Address:
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd. Room 332
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 557-7348.

District Address:
2713 Sterling Ave.,
Oklahoma City, OK 73127.

Email: sallykern@okhouse.gov or srkern@cox.net

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Comments

  1. Someone needs a hug.

    Posted by: brad | Mar 11, 2008 8:39:31 AM


  2. It's almost sad that this story might have legs, because it's this kind of thing that unites the haters and makes them feel justified and reinforced. Death threats in particular, and probably some provocative language she's sure to cite, will only help her cause. The best response would be to ignore it, but for that to work, all media would have to ignore it. Once the story gets picked up and gets a life of its own, we must begin to take sides. Sad.

    Posted by: brad | Mar 11, 2008 8:44:56 AM


  3. She does have a First Amendment right to say whatever she wants about whatever group she chooses to demean. Because the First Amendment allows her to say the hateful things she said in that recording, we now know exactly what kind of hater she is.

    Posted by: peterparker | Mar 11, 2008 9:06:26 AM


  4. I don't know about you, Brad. I took my side long before this.

    Posted by: Andrew | Mar 11, 2008 9:11:13 AM


  5. By the way...if you want to exercise YOUR First Amendment rights, you can write Oklahoma Representative Sally Kern at the following addresses:

    2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Room 332, Oklahoma City, OK 73105 (Capitol Address)

    or

    2713 Sterling Avenue, Oklahoma City, OK 73127 (District Address)

    Posted by: peterparker | Mar 11, 2008 9:14:48 AM


  6. The best way to address this is to start a campaign to unseat her in the next election. Not sending death threats.

    Posted by: Cadence | Mar 11, 2008 9:18:24 AM


  7. Those wearing shoulder pads should not throw stones

    Posted by: daveynyc | Mar 11, 2008 9:20:11 AM


  8. But it's hard for us not to look. Ms. Kern has entered stage right; a world stage, far different from her rightwing closet. That kind of hate speech may receive standing ovations inside her tiny world. I believe she will be condemned outside, and rightly so. She has been caught standing before the whole youtube world with her sanctimonious skirt below her knees. What an ugly sight!

    Posted by: Wayne | Mar 11, 2008 9:23:09 AM


  9. I sent her an email yesterday containing to messages of violence or cursing but simply letting her know that words have power and it is only because of Christians like her that people find it justified to shoot and kill a 15 year old like Lawrence King in California. I asked her if she and her fellow congregants prayed for his soul or were they too busy patting themselves on their backs about how the world is minus one less immoral homosexual? There is nothing Christian about what she said, nor as a public servant does she have the right to promote hate. I can only hope her constituency is as angry as the rest of America seems to be.

    Oh I also copied the Speaker of the House in OK as well as the Vice Chair for the Social committee that she chairs in hopes that they can at least take her off a committee regarding social values since clearly she has no regard for any values other than her own.

    Posted by: Britton | Mar 11, 2008 9:32:15 AM


  10. As one who grew up in a smallish town in Oklahoma but has since moved away, her words don't really surprise me in the least. Her attitudes are the norm for a great number of people there, and sadly there are plenty of people all over the country who still agree with her I'm sure.

    I'm far more surprised and amused by the outcry that this is stirring up. I'm happy that so many are outraged by what she said, but I'm also shocked that so many seem like they've never heard such opinions before.

    I agree that threats of any kind are absolutely counterproductive here. The antigay crowd is amazingly good at believing they are the victims. No matter how you might reason with them, if one person loses their temper, we will be labeled the aggressors with an evil agenda.

    I'm just elated that someone with her views is seen as the extremist now, and not our side anymore. What a difference a decade makes.

    Posted by: Michael | Mar 11, 2008 9:35:30 AM


  11. Obviously doesn't have a homosexual hairdresser.

    Posted by: homer | Mar 11, 2008 9:36:24 AM


  12. She looks rather lesbionic, doesn't she? (in that prison-matron-meets-catholic-nun kind of way)

    Posted by: Jeff | Mar 11, 2008 9:48:10 AM


  13. While I don't agree at all with Kerns, I will say good for her for not apologizing. I would rather be confronted face to face with someone's ideological differences than for them have the old, "Of course I am not a bigot, my hairdresser is gay." attitude.
    And, I am a big believer that when you firmly belief something, and obviously we live in a country where people hold vastly different beliefs, stick to your guns. I believe one should make apologies for their beliefs. And, public apologies to save face just show you are a coward.
    Would those advancing the "gay agenda" apologize to some super church after they protest their teachings? No. She was saying what she really felt and frankly what the people who elected her to represent their views believe.
    The bigger question is if these people realize that if we were 60 years in the past they would be saying this about black people. And, we know none of them would touch that line of thinking publicly with a ten foot pole.

    Posted by: Christopher | Mar 11, 2008 9:54:14 AM


  14. SHE'S GOT HER HEAD IN THE SAND FOR A REASON THAT WE'LL SOMEDAY KNOW.

    Posted by: BRIAN | Mar 11, 2008 9:57:54 AM


  15. Have you not noticed that "outing" these people, wither it is homophobia or waterboarding, doesn't make them back down or see the light. They dig in and become more convinced of the "rightness" of their actions?

    The Nazis thought they were doing good as well.

    It is good though to expose them for what they are.

    Posted by: protogenes | Mar 11, 2008 10:06:59 AM


  16. Cadence

    exactly

    Everybody should donate to whoever her challenger is in the next election

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | Mar 11, 2008 10:29:59 AM


  17. You can never get these people to explicate exactly what they mean when they say "but the shouldn't be allowed to cram their sexuality down our throats" or "special rights".

    Here's what they mean: gay people don't have a right to exist, be visible, or have a voice. They simply wish we did not exist. And given the opportunity, they would use the powers of government to at minimum, marginalize us back into the closet. Some of the more radical haters, given the power, would have us jailed or killed.

    It's all very simple. But people with views like this woman are never confronted with the logical conclusions to what they say. Anyway, they would back off of them as soon as they realized they are making an ass of themselves publicly. And out would pop the traditional veneer of Christian compassion that we all know is fake.

    Posted by: Andrew K | Mar 11, 2008 10:52:32 AM


  18. I'm too busy living my dangerous "lifestyle" to take much notice of this wacko. Besides,according to her I only have a couple years left before I die, so I'm having unsafe sex with every man in sight, taking lots of drugs and recruiting young boys in schoolyards while I can.

    Don't worry, I'll send out a memo in order for everyone to update your homosexual agendas.

    It's all about fear and ignorance. She's just a symptom with a soapbox.

    Posted by: johnny | Mar 11, 2008 10:57:26 AM


  19. Michael: Nice to see another ex-Okie in here. I agree with you.

    Jimmyboyo: Right on. We absolutely MUST get this woman out of office at the next possible opportunity, even if it's by sending a check to (gulp) a moderate republican. (Ick.)

    AndrewK: Absolutely right.

    Keep the screws on this woman... don't let the passage of time make us complacent. We must get her out of office.

    Posted by: The Milkman | Mar 11, 2008 10:59:01 AM


  20. Death threats are not the way to go, she needs to be educated and told, that her Bible isn't 100% right in 2008, since her faith is also one that fought against civil rights for blacks and, that hate is not an option, and, nor is she in the seat to judge. Vote her out, but, somehow, I doubt if this will work as many in that neck of the woods agree with her. They are nothing but the Taliban for Jesus with their hateful wrong take on the Bible.

    Posted by: Sebastian | Mar 11, 2008 11:00:12 AM


  21. I've just sent her a relatively respectful email making the argument that comparing homosexuals to terrorists is indeed hate speech and not "vigorous debate". I think everyone should do the same. But here among friends I'd like to just be mean: I'm glad her little pea brain doesn't see itself for what it is - a provincial, fat-cell-heavy vessel of hate-mongering blather on the edge of extinction. Otherwise, she wouldn't be a useful tool for illustrating ignorance and hate.

    Posted by: john | Mar 11, 2008 11:11:31 AM


  22. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, her husband is wearing her bloomers while trolling for strange piece on Craig's List.

    Sad old bitch troll from hell doesn't deserve one bare millisecond of our fabulous regard. Trust, brethren and sisteren, the universe is giving her shade back in spades.

    Posted by: Princess Superstar | Mar 11, 2008 11:13:08 AM


  23. Actually, the saddest part of this story is the fact that it appears her son Jesse is gay and was caught cruising public restrooms and arrested for "oral sodomy" among other things in 1989. If it is true, can you imagine what a tortured life this man must have lived? When asked about her son at a press conference she is reported to have replied, "I don't know. He never told me or his father that he was." Can you blame him?

    Posted by: jtg | Mar 11, 2008 11:26:35 AM


  24. It would appear that Sally Kern's personal email address is:

    sRkern@cox.net

    Some poor guy named Steve Kern has been getting a boatload of her mail.

    Posted by: hill_w | Mar 11, 2008 11:30:20 AM


  25. The milkman

    Yepp

    Just $1 each from a bunch of us gays can end up being a lot of money for a challanger.

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | Mar 11, 2008 11:38:01 AM


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