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04/19/2007


Republicans: Sexual Harassment Does Not Exist

HermanCainSmilesSlate's Dahlia Lithwick has a hilarious article up on the new nature of sexual harrassment denialism, which depends less on defending the accused ("So-and-so didn't sexually harass anybody because So-and-so is a good and honorable person!") than on imagining the offense out of existence ("So-and-so couldn't have sexually harassed anybody, because the whole concept of sexual harassment is the invention of a conspiracy of humorless biddies out to castrate successful men and take their money!") The article's all about the legion of Herman Cain defenders who've sprung up in the three weeks since we first caught wind of his alleged history of harassment. Below, find the remarkable collection of quotes Lithwick has compiled to illustrate her point. They paint a pretty bleak picture of the right's stance on gender relations in this allegedly enlightened anno Domini, 2011.

Road John Derbyshire, National Review: "Is there anyone who thinks sexual harassment is a real thing? Is there anyone who doesn’t know it's all a lawyers' ramp, like 'racial discrimination'? You pay a girl a compliment nowadays, she runs off and gets lawyered up."

Road Laura Ingraham, The Laura Ingraham Show: "We have seen this movie before and we know how it ends. It always ends up being an employee who can’t perform or who under-performs and is looking for a little green."

Road Kurt Schlichter, New York Post: " ... the only things you need to file a lawsuit are the filing fee and a printer. Facts are optional. … Where sexual-harassment law once protected women from being forced to be the playthings of crude lechers, it’s been transformed to enforcing a prim puritanism that drains the humor and humanity from the workplace."

Road Sen. Rand Paul, quoted at Politico: "There are people now who hesitate to tell a joke to a woman in the workplace, any kind of joke, because it could be interpreted incorrectly."

Road Rep. Steve King, quoted at Slate: "It's a terrible concept to define an action by the perception of the perceived victim."

Road Ex-Sen. Fred Thompson, National Review: "These alleged victims and their lawyers -- no matter what they may say publicly -- are champing at the bit to come forward for their day in the limelight and the inevitable book deal."

Incredible, isn't it? Apart from the plain inhumanity of accusing strangers of dastardly selfishness, sans evidence, because they happen to accuse a beloved public figure of something nasty, the right's wagon-rallying around Herman Cain reveals an extraordinary lack of logical rigor. Taken to its conclusion, it imagines out of existence any misbehavior by anyone, so long as that someone is someone they like. There's no whistle-blowing that couldn't, in theory, be ascribed to some selfish motive or misunderstanding. For example: You could say that Fred Thompson doesn't really think Cain's accusers are selfish money-grubbers; that he's only claiming so because he wants to enhance his profile by commenting loudly on a hot-button issue. But you shouldn't. Because there's just not enough evidence either way.


News: Dolphin, Elton John, Wales, Chrome Browser, Michael Phelps

road.jpg John McCain's anti-gay marriage message from 2006.

Birthroad.jpg Dolphin birth photographed.

road.jpg Elton John lashes out at boozy singer Lily Allen: "I could snort you under the table."

road.jpg Focus on the Family's James Dobson on Sarah Palin: “A lot of people were praying, and I believe Sarah Palin is God’s answer...They should be commended once again for not just talking about their pro-life and pro-family values, but living them out even in the midst of trying circumstances."

road.jpg Virginia Republican delegation axes Minnesota handbook because it contained six pages for gays and lesbians.

road.jpg Kiefer Sutherland shows some skin in Malibu.

road.jpg French police place gay groups under surveillance ahead of Pope's visit: " Eager to avoid a repeat of the condom shower that greeted the Pope in Sydney, Australia, in July, certain gay activist groups such as Act Up are being closely watched in the run-up to the visit. In addition, because of threats to the Pope made in May 2007 by the terrorist network al-Qaeda and the recent terrorist attacks in Algeria, French security officers will be placed on maximum alert during his stay in Paris and the pilgrimage site of Lourdes."

road.jpg Rev. Lou Sheldon: Turnout will decide California same-sex marriage initiative. Group launches "Traditional Marriage Crusade".

road.jpg So was the reason Fred Thompson and George W. Bush danced around the specific word "torture" in their speeches last night when referring to McCain because "if [Bush] describes what was done to McCain as torture, he has incriminated himself for war crimes?"

Chromeroad.jpg Have you seen Google's new Chrome browser? The NYT David Pogue says it has serious potential. Google Chrome end user license agreement says that Google owns everything you create while using the browser - "By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services." Brin: Why we're launching it.

road.jpg Massachusetts sees economic boost from out-of-state same-sex marriage decisions there and in New York: "The recent changes have prompted a flood of gay New Yorkers coming to Massachusetts to get married -- and that seems to have made same-sex marriage big business for the Bay State. There are no firm figures on how many gays from New York have come here to marry in the few weeks since the law took effect. But anecdotal evidence suggests the numbers are huge and likely to grow."

road.jpg Gay festival in Cambridge, England hit by homophobic slashers?

Palinroad.jpg Sarah Palin to address Republican Convention tonight...

road.jpg Olympian Michael Phelps not only has an Entouragehe's set to appear on the show.

road.jpg Time Out Chicago talks to Milk writer Dustin Lance Black.

road.jpg Georgia priest hit with threat note tacked to door.

road.jpg Gay cleric on shortlist to become Bishop of Bangor, Wales: "Canon Jeffrey John, who entered into a civil partnership with his long-term partner, the Rev Grant Holmes, in 2006, is currently the dean of St Albans and is a Welsh speaker - making him an ideal candidate for the job. Earlier this year, the Archbishop of Wales, Dr Barry Morgan, said he would support the election of a gay bishop, despite opposition among conservative Anglicans. At last month's Lambeth conference, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, asked liberals not to exacerbate tensions by consecrating gay clergy. A conservative cleric, Bishop David Anderson, from the Convocation of Anglicans in North America, wrote that the Church in Wales was likely to ignore Williams' requests."

road.jpg THE DAY AFTER PEACE: Jude Law announces documentary about Afghanistan.


News: Tina Turner, Galveston, Matt Foreman, Best Buy

road.jpg Gays and lesbians in Washington state ask for divorce rights: "Supporters of the legislation unveiled Tuesday say it seeks to provide financial security for same-sex couples by establishing community property rights, probate protections and joint responsibility for debts. Murray, who is one of a handful of openly gay lawmakers in Olympia, say gays and lesbians seek not only the protections, 'but we are also asking for the responsibilities that go to marriage.' Senate Bill 6716 and House Bill 3104 also would provide domestic partners end-of-life rights, nursing-home visitation, veterans benefits and spousal testimonial privileges that married couples enjoy."

Bestbuyroad.jpg Best Buy quickly takes advantage of Heath Ledger's death: "A small sign, created by the company’s finest 1998-era laser printer, informs its customers that they should 'Remember a Great Actor Through Great Performances', tastefully suggesting that customers — who may not have even been aware of his passing — grieve the only way they know how: By reliving the romantic hijinx that is 10 Things I Hate About You."

road.jpg Tina Turner and Béyonce to duet at the Grammys.

road.jpg Matt Foreman to resign from National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, to lead Gay & Lesbian Program at the Evelyn & Walter Haas, Jr. Fund: "I will always love the Task Force, our work, our board, and our staff. Having served for 18 years as the executive director at three LGBT organizations, I’m incredibly privileged to be able to continue to work in and for the movement in a new role at the Haas, Jr. Fund. I have no doubt that the Task Force will continue to be the uncompromising progressive voice of the LGBT movement and to thrive and help lead our community to complete equality.”

road.jpg Republican Fred Thompson drops presidential bid: "Today I have withdrawn my candidacy for President of the United States. I hope that my country and my party have benefited from our having made this effort. Jeri and I will always be grateful for the encouragement and friendship of so many wonderful people."

Trueblueroad.jpg Madonna, Marilyn Monroe, and Shakira team up for Super Bowl commercial.

road.jpg In new online game, user assumes role of presidential candidates and then shoots his or her opponents in the halls of the White House: ". While the ammo is paintball, the game on the highly trafficked miniclip.com site allows kids to train a rifle scope on six presidential aspirants and squeeze off a hail of shots (which are accompanied with a rat-a-tat sound). The game, 'Presidential Paintball,' features six candidates in the crosshairs: Barack Obama; Hillary Clinton; John Edwards; Mitt Romney; John McCain; and Rudy Giuliani (it seems the game was developed before the ascension of Mike Huckabee). If a candidate wins a head-to-head confrontation, he/she advances to a new shootout, which occurs in various White House settings, including outside the Oval Office."

road.jpg Brad Renfro had a son nobody knew about.

road.jpg Galveston, Texas opens LGBT visitors center.

Beckhamroad.jpg David Beckham makes UNICEF trip to Sierra Leone.

road.jpg New poll reveals attitudes toward gay people and sex in Britain: "18 percent of those surveyed consider gay relationships are always wrong, while 32 percent see homosexual sex as always or mostly wrong. Moreover, four in 10 people (42 percent) think gay male couples are not as capable of being good parents as heterosexual ones -- although three in 10 (31 percent) believe they are."

road.jpg Sydney lawmakers begin dealing with the homophobic violence issue that plagues their city: “We’re not blaming any specific person for this, but violence is obviously a complex issue and we need to be using all opportunities to raise it. It’s got to be policies on the ground. Clearly the local council needs to work with police, but there’s a real role for it in changing what that entertainment precinct is used for. It’s quite a different place during the evening than during the day time. We support the measures to bring back the shops people need – fruit and veg, butcher, etc."


Obama and Huckabee Take Nation's First Caucus in Iowa

Iowaprimary

Democrat Barack Obama and Republican Mike Huckabee won their respective races in the Iowa caucuses Thursday night, leaving leftover candidates from both parties either scrambling for their next move or on their way out. Senator Hillary Clinton and John Edwards came within a percentage point of one another in the race for second place on the Democratic side, with Edwards edging out Clinton by a hair.

On the Republican side, second-place winner Mitt Romney was not even close, leaving a wide-open opportunity for John McCain in New Hampshire next week, where his support has risen in recent weeks.

The numbers came in like this: " Mr. Huckabee won with 34.4 percent of the delegate support, after 86 percent of precincts had reported. Mr. Romney had 25.4 percent, former Senator Fred D. Thompson of Tennessee had 13.4 percent and Senator John McCain of Arizona had 13.2 percent. On the Democratic side, with 100 percent of precincts reporting, Mr. Obama had 37.6 percent of the delegate support, Mr. Edwards 29.8 percent and Mrs. Clinton had 29.5 percent. Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico was fourth, at 2.11 percent."

Other details:

road.jpg Massive turnout bad omen for the GOP.
road.jpg Chris Dodd, Joe Biden drop out of Democratic race...
road.jpg Keith Olbermann declares that Mike Gravel has dropped out of the race, and Gravel demands a retraction!
road.jpg Thompson finishes in near-tie for third with John McCain...
road.jpg McCain reacted from New Hampshire: "I think that the lesson of this election is that, one, you can't buy an election in Iowa; and, two, that negative campaigns don't work. They don't work there, and they don't work here in New Hampshire."
road.jpg Giuliani vows to fight on after poor showing.
road.jpg Independents go for Obama and Ron Paul.

Check out what the candidates had to say (Clips of ALL THE SPEECHES) about their respective wins and losses, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Obama and Huckabee Take Nation's First Caucus in Iowa" »


Towleroad Guide to the Tube #198

FRED THOMPSON: The GOP creature's latest "no amnesty" ad.

MIKE HUCKABEE: The lifelong hunter takes a different approcah to securing the border — Chuck Norris' fist.

JOE BIDEN: The Dem candidate's post-debate mash-up. What he said.

AMY WINEHOUSE: She's not a presidential candidate, nor could she be because she's not very good at hiding her bad behavior.

Check out our previous guides to the Tube here


News: Facebook Bust, Brian Paddick, Equus, Slava Mogutin

road.jpg Some students at Notre Dame donning "Gay? Go to Hell" T-shirts.

Fairy_2road.jpg Bank intern busted by boss after "something came up at home" excuse for his day off was later revealed on his Facebook profile. He does make a cute fairy though.

road.jpg Alabama gay activist Ken Baker dies at 50: "Unity United Church of Christ recently awarded Baker the Crystal Cross for his advocacy work. He was recognized specifically for his role in starting Equality Alabama and Communities of Faith for Full Inclusion. 'He's sure going to be missed around here,' said longtime friend and colleague Lynn Shaw, who is a past president of the Montgomery Chapter of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). 'I just can't believe how everyone's going to go on and function because he was involved in so many things.' Baker, who was gay, was known as a quiet, humble man who was creative and determined in his efforts to promote gay and lesbian rights."

road.jpg Board of Education in Jefferson County in Kentucky recommends expanding harassment and employment policies to protect gay and lesbian employees, although transgender people are left behind for now: "We decided to include sexual orientation at this time, but decided to hold off on making a decision about transgender because, as of right now, gender identification is both a new and broad definition."

Dickinsonroad.jpg Janice Dickinson has joined the cast of the UK's I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here and nature is turning her into a savage: "I'm going to stab her in the middle of the night and take hers. You think I'm kidding? I'll eat her tits. I'll fry up those big old boobs."

road.jpg Politicos nervous about upcoming "tell-all" book from former gay London top cop Brian Paddick to be released one month before critical election. Paddick: "You will be very surprised by some of the things in it, I can assure you."

Equusroad.jpg Lily Allen's brother Alfie steps into Daniel Radcliffe's role in Equus.

road.jpg Inside photographer Slava Mogutin's New York City go-go diary (warning: NSFW).

road.jpg Fred Thompson to be endorsed by right-to-life, same-sex marriage foes in Iowa: "He drew an enthusiastic response from his audience when he praised the U.S. health care system and said: 'Let's not let the federal government mess that up.' The crowd also applauded when he brought up gay marriage and said: 'Whether marriage is between a man and a woman -- I thought that was decided a few thousand years ago!'"

road.jpg Hugh Jackman's back at his favorite activity: getting naked at the beach.

road.jpg Australian football club supporter mocked after receiving "gay" tattoo. Perhaps he should commisserate with the Dumbledore daddy.

road.jpg North Carolina "ex-gay" minister proclaiming his success: "To follow christ and to say no to my behavior of homosexuality, um I really felt like I could live life differently that that's what God wanted, he wanted me to pursue him, not pursue men. So people can say, you can't change and I say yes you can." See ya at the next public park sex sting!

road.jpg Gender Issues Analyst Melissa Fryrear of Focus on the Family continues to claim that all gay people have been sexually violated. (via pam's house blend)


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