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Dan Savage to Tony Perkins: If Homosexuality is a Choice, Choose Me — VIDEO


Dan Savage ran into Keith Olbermann at The Book of Mormon, which resulted in this absorbing segment on Countdown, in which Dan talks at length about The Book of Mormon, religion and homosexuality, Rick Santorum and the theater of anti-gay politics, and the closet.

Dan even offers his body up to the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins, so Perkins can demonstrate once and for all his theory that homosexuality is something one can choose.


In related news, Dan wore an "evolve already" pin to yesterday's White House reception.

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  1. Thanks for dressing up, Dan Savage.

    Posted by: tcw | Jun 30, 2011 8:14:56 AM

  2. "religious malpractice" I need to use that term now. I liked the segment

    Posted by: Joe | Jun 30, 2011 8:29:36 AM

  3. I'm pretty sure Mr. Savage realizes that a sex columnist in a suit is kind of perverted.

    Posted by: La Garza | Jun 30, 2011 8:40:23 AM

  4. i just love Dan Savage...could listen to him all day...

    Posted by: dave | Jun 30, 2011 8:43:38 AM

  5. I'm not sure Dan appreciates the psychological depths of delusion. Yes: Many, if not most, anti-gay people are themselves bisexual or gay, but plenty of them truly don't know it, or at least their fear of it is so rooted, so embedded, that they retain no functional recognition of it – even despite, indeed, engaging in acts to the contrary. The George Rekers and Larry Craigs of the world are not consciously obfuscating their inborn orientation. Their delusion is simply so deep, that they are blind to a hypocrisy so vivid to the rest of the world.

    Posted by: rascal | Jun 30, 2011 8:53:40 AM

  6. Dan, I love ya, but...how many times can you throw out "faggot" in one interview? Jeesh! I get it you "own" the word and take away its power, but it is just a little jarring to hear.

    Posted by: Desi | Jun 30, 2011 8:56:54 AM

  7. I love both these guys!!

    Posted by: The Iron Orchard | Jun 30, 2011 9:09:48 AM

  8. If being gay was a choice, would it be a bad one?

    Posted by: borut | Jun 30, 2011 10:08:27 AM

  9. I swear Dan Savage is excellent/ articulate / knows his subject well...uses precise wording,and pinpoints easily......he's OUR Harvey Milk of the 21st century.

    Posted by: Gay American | Jun 30, 2011 10:09:05 AM

  10. Fantastic interview. A lot more subdued than I was expecting which is a good thing.

    It's strange though- no matter who endorses it or says it's a must-see musical of epic proportions I just can't get myself enthusiastic about The Book Of Mormon. I know it's silly-but the second I hear that its satire is tempered by a subtext of acceptance and endearment for the religion I'm turned right off. I know that it's necessary to do so in order to not simply look like an extremist kind of portrayal but I honestly am sick of even the smallest legitimacy given to these cults-in-religions-clothing.

    Sure Mormons aren't ALL bad and some of them do good things- but is that because of their religion or in spite of it? My belief is that those Mormons who do good things would have done them if they had been Jewish, Muslim, Catholic, or Atheist. And to claim "see? Mormons are good people too!" is a disengenuous conclusion to draw from these people.

    Posted by: AedanCRoberts | Jun 30, 2011 10:16:19 AM

  11. That shirt hurts my eyes. Maybe just a solid black tee next time, Dan?

    Posted by: Lindsay | Jun 30, 2011 10:27:19 AM

  12. Excellent interview. DS has done a lot and especially for young gays.

    Posted by: Matt26 | Jun 30, 2011 10:28:46 AM

  13. Male same-sex behavior among dolphins and bonobo chimpanzees approaches 100%. I'm glad that Dan Savage turned Tony Perkins's argument on its head. If it's really an "on-off" switch that you can toggle back and forth, then Tony Perkins needs to flick the switch in the other direction, just to prove his point. Even if Tony Perkins makes that porn flick and proves his point, choices about how people live their lives are protected by the U.S. Constitution, the best example being freedom of religion. Beyond that, a porn movie featuring Dan Savage and Tony Perkins would be the blockbuster hit of the century.

    Posted by: Phil | Jun 30, 2011 11:06:38 AM

  14. hm...what's in the picture over Keith's right shoulder.....(top left screen corner).....?!?

    Posted by: Jeff | Jun 30, 2011 11:57:01 AM

  15. Can I pretend to be a straight homophobe who believes gay is a choice just so I can sleep with Dan Savage?

    Posted by: Kevin_BGFH | Jun 30, 2011 12:05:19 PM

  16. Phil - but WHOM would Bottom? LOL

    Posted by: Gay American | Jun 30, 2011 12:27:54 PM

  17. @aedancroberts -
    I would encourage you put aside your concerns see the play. It's not really an acceptance or endorsement of the religion per se. It's not "we're gonna bash them for 2 hours, then say they're wonderful people just because they're Mormom". It's a bit more subtle than that. It's sort of an endorsement of faith (of any kind) and spirituality regardless of the idiosyncrasies of the particular religion.

    It was extremely well done.

    Posted by: Alan | Jun 30, 2011 12:38:19 PM

  18. I really do think Dan Savage is one of the best, if not THE best, spokespeople the gay community has. Besides being tremendously well informed on the issues, one of the things that makes him great is his utter lack of squeamishness about sex. His attitude is, "You want to talk about butt-sex? Fine, let's talk about it. What do you want to know?" That's a powerful weapon because it immediately neutralizes a common anti-gay tactic, to exploit the "ick factor" many straight people feel about gay sex. If you avoid the topic, refuse to "go there," they spin it as shame. Dan gives them none of that.

    One odd thing about this interview- Keith Olbermann's body language. He spends the middle part of the interview with his arms wrapped around himself in a very defensive way. I noticed it in another clip from his new show too. I'm not trying to draw any conclusions from it or trump up an accusation that deep down he's homophobic, just that it looks awkward and unprofessional and he needs to be aware of it.

    Posted by: Codswallop | Jun 30, 2011 12:46:01 PM

  19. So Keith Olbermann is still letting Dan Savage indulge in his juvenile antics on camera? That's a good reason for me not to watch his new TV show. The Savage sycopnancy in this thread is really quite nauseating, but I've come to expect it at Towleroad.

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Jun 30, 2011 1:24:48 PM

  20. Yes, Stuffed Animal, because that's all Towleroad does, All Dan Savage, All The Time! When you come here, you have no choice but to read praising articles of him, as that is all they post! And the worst part is how they literally FORCE you to read it! I needed to get in the shower, but until I finished the article, I JUST COULDN'T MOVE! I wonder how they make me do that?

    Posted by: MirrorMan | Jun 30, 2011 1:39:03 PM

  21. Yeah well, we who appreciate informed opinion were waiting for the "I hate Dan Savage" whiners to show up too so I guess we're even.

    Just as a matter of curiosity, who do you think IS a good spokesperson? Whenever someone complains about Savage they never suggest another "voice" of the community who does a better job. Frankly it reeks of sour grapes since the underlying assumption seems to be that the complainers themselves think they can do better.

    Posted by: Codswallop | Jun 30, 2011 2:11:14 PM

  22. SISTER MARY IGNATIUS was 32 years ago, Dan. Time passes.

    This is one of the best interviews I've ever seen. Thanks for sharing this. Savage is my hero, someone give the man the Nobel Prize.

    Posted by: Abel | Jun 30, 2011 2:48:17 PM

  23. Keith Olbermann is a human being, with all the faults and issues that implies. His intellectual self is not necessarily his emotional self, no matter how liberal he is. Look at the struggles we gay folk have in coming to terms with the crap society rains down on us.

    Mr. Olbermann wraps his arms around himself directly after Dan says "butt sex." (@ about 14:14.) Not every guest says "butt sex." Dan is a wonderful spokesperson, and a provocateur. Bravo Dan!

    Posted by: Dave in Bosron | Jun 30, 2011 2:49:10 PM

  24. Dan was on his game in this interview. He's sharp, funny, perceptive, and so charming. I wish him well and I'm glad he's on our side.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Jun 30, 2011 2:49:53 PM

  25. Dan Savage is the best

    Posted by: jaragon | Jun 30, 2011 6:13:36 PM

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