Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Gay Rights=Incest Rights

Please do excuse the lack of blogging lately. Man, who knew blog traffic could slump so much from lack of posting (I think a lack of posting on other blogs I read has something to do with that too).

Anyway, I am out of my funk, I think, so that is good news. Thanks to the one anonymous commenter for the sage advice.

Now, on to the topic at hand. David Morrison has a post on his blog about an article from the Boston Globe that describes how a man is trying to use the overturning of the Lawrence v. Texas Supreme Court case to get him out of his incest conviction. It's not like this is a new argument. Conservatives have been arguing that this would happen since before Lawrence. And, if you follow the slippery slope philosophy, I guess this is a conceivable notion.

This opinion piece, though, is really nothing more than just that, opinion. It brings up the bogey man of the slippery slope, but does nothing to talk about the differences in this particular case and the Lawrence ruling. Most noteably, that the two biological siblings had conceived and reared 4 children together. One of the common arguments outlawing incest takes into account the possible genetic disorders that can arise from children born of close relatives. So, this case moves well beyond a right to privacy case and into one where other people are affected. Not to mention some interesting questions as to the relationship of the two involved. I will say that 8 and 5 years in maximum security prisons does seem a bit harsh, though.

Without the details of the case, I can't go into more detail, except that this "slippery slope" case starts in the middle of the alleged slope rather than at the top. The problem is, gay relationships and sex used to be the bottom of the slope--the recognition of our society's morals going to pot. The jumping point for that slope? Such terrible things as interracial marriage, women's rights, etc. etc. But, those people so opposed to gays now wouldn't dare look back at how opposed many of their forefathers were to these types of rules. The sky didn't fall, and it still won't, but people will continue to fear that it will until the very end.

In the end, the sodomy laws brought down by Lawrence were unfair, unequal, and extremely prejudicial. Anyone saying otherwise has got an agenda of his or her own. Luckily, even many conservatives are admitting that (although even there the tables have changed since Lawrence). The incest idea may be enough to rile up some people, but just because things are similar does not mean they are one in the same.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Lap Dances, Yea! Gay Marriage, Nay!

A new state law banning seminude lap dances at Missouri strip clubs was declared unconstitutional by a judge Friday, two days before it was to go into effect.

Apparently, two consenting adults who want to commit to one another pose a greater threat to the family than Candi and Tammee do. I'd be curious how the so-called groups who claim to protect the family will react to this ruling.

Will they claim the judge who made the ruling is an "activist judge", try to have him impeached and then try to get a state constitutional amendment banning lap dances in the State of Missouri?

Or, will they say nothing because a state constitutional amendment will interfere with an activity in which heterosexual males participate? Will a state constitutional amendment be viewed as yet another "liberty" taken away from patriotic, God-fearing, gun-toting, freedom-loving, yellow ribbon magnet-sticking Americans? After all, "Thar ain't nuttin in that consatu- connytu- constratu - aw hell, y'all know wut ah mean - thet says I caint go see them women dancin' nekked! Everbody knowed that dancin' been around since Biblical tahmes! Heck, based on that thar Intel'gint Dee-sign, that's almost 6000 years! Why, I'd bet me that thar was even dancers at that las' supper thang Jesus done."

Friday, August 26, 2005

More Personal Stuff

I was thinking the other day that I haven't written anything about my personal life in a while, so here goes.

I'm in my mid-twenties. I'm conflicted these days. Maybe it's that stupid quarter life crisis (honestly, how absurd is that?), but maybe it's not--who knows. Anyway, don't get me wrong. I enjoy having a job that pays well (and the money and stability that comes along with that). In college money was a big deal for me (making sure I had enough mostly). And while that is still important, I'm not in danger of overdrawing on my bank account anymore. Then there's being able to buy a house, get a car that isn't breaking down all the time and all of that good stuff. So, all that is well and good. I enjoy the responsibility that is post-college life, and the "freedoms" that are a part of that.

My problem has always been that I am a nostalgic person. So now here I am thinking about being younger. There really is something to be said for having fewer responsibilities. Going to school a few hours a day, going to work a couple more, and having the rest of the time to goof off with your friends and sleep in really isn't that bad of a deal. Sure I forget how much I detested writing endless papers or studying countless hours for tests or especially having that dread constantly in the back of my mind on Sundays that something was due in the coming week (I like not having that feeling any more, let me tell you), but still.

Anyway, maybe I'm being overly dramatic. The routine of spending 10 hours a day at work, followed by maybe 3 waking hours at home is just getting to me I guess. If anyone would like to help me become independently wealthy, shoot me an email, because I am definitely down. Ok, enough whining. I hope everyone has a good weekend!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Christian Assasins? Yikes!

I'm sure you have all heard by now about Pat Robertson's call for the assasination of the Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez. Utterly shocked is the best way I can sum up what I'm feeling at the moment. Let me first point out that, as much as we disagree with Chavez, and as much as he probably is not a good guy, he is the elected head of another country. Not a dictator- elected.

I mean, this guy is up for re-election next year. Wouldn't it have been a better idea (not to mention more moral and more legal) to just try to get him unelected? Pat really wants us to KILL someone when we haven't even tried to unseed him peacefully. What is this, the Crusades? Good Lord.

I would like to say that the local morning conservative talk show host that I listen to on my way to work, Pat Gray, was quick to speak out against this (although more than half of his callers defended Robertson). The White House and Dick Cheney were also quick to flee Robertson's side (they better look out though, apparently you don't want to make Pat mad. I mean, not only did he call for the assasination of a world leader, he also had his millions of followers pray for Supreme Court justices to retire from the court, and we all know what that means since most stay there until they get really sick or die).

While we are on that last link (here it is again if you missed it) listen to what he said back in 2003 about the Bush administration's call for the President of Liberia to step down, "We're undermining a Christian, Baptist president to bring in Muslim rebels to take over the country," said an outraged Robertson, a Bush supporter who has financial interests in Liberia. "How dare the president of the United States say to the duly elected president of another country, 'You've got to step down.'"

So, let's review. It is ok to call for the assasination of an elected President, but not ok for us to ask a President to step down? I'm sort of confused. Killing good; asking nicely, bad. Hmm.

Man oh man, what are we coming to? One question, how is this any better than the Muslim extremists calling for Bush's assasination? And this is not a hypothetical question.

Monday, August 22, 2005

I Thought Honesty Was the Best Policy

But apparently Focus on the Family doesn't agree. In their online newsletter, Focus claims that "recent reports highlight the truth that homosexuals can change their sexual orientation." Sounds like a pretty harmless claim, except for the fact that Focus fails to link to or cite just one such report. And, the only reports I have seen lately (most of which surround Love in Action and the extra media attention it has gotten for Exodus), have not claimed that anyone has changed their sexual orientation.

In fact, Focus mentions an appearance on The View by two of its Youth staff. The problem is that one of them is not gay and never has been, and the other one is gay, and admitted on the show to still struggling.

I think Focus is betting on the idea that their readers will just take their word at face value, without doing any investigation of their own. It seems odd though, because if Focus were interested in being upfront and forthcoming about these alleged studies, a simple source would be very easy to cite, and would give them at least some journalistic integrity.

If anyone can think of a recent report of full change by an ex-gay, feel free to let me know.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

If This is a Christian Message, We're All in Trouble!

Taken from the American Family Association website www.afa.net

"A federal judge has told an Ohio school district it can no longer bar a middle school student from wearing a t-shirt with a Christian message.

Judge George Smith has ruled that Sheridan Middle School in Thornville violated the constitutional rights of student James Nixon by prohibiting him from wearing a t-shirt bearing a quote from the Bible verse John 14:6. The front of the shirt reads: 'Jesus said, 'I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.' The back of the shirt contains the statements: 'Homosexuality is sin. Islam is a lie. Abortion is murder.'"

Could this be any more digusting? It is one thing to wear a shirt with a message like the one on the front of this student's shirt. I don't have a problem with someone expressing their religious beliefs. But the back of this t-shirt is just downright crude, offensive and bigoted. I know we don't have a Constitutional right not to be offended, but COME ON!

I really hope some kids at this junior high school start wearing shirts with the following messages:

* "Christians" Are Bigots.
* "Christians" Are Rednecks.
* Homosexuals Don't Kill People In The Name Of God.
* Hitler Was A Christian Too.
* Christianity: Convert Or We'll Kill You.
* Abortion Means Fewer "Christians".
* Rick Santorum Brought A Dead Fetus Home From The Hospital So That His Kids Could Touch It And Name It; And All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt!
* "Christians" Have Hi-Jacked Christianity!
* The Virgin Mary Is A Hottie!
* That Robe! That Beard! Sweetie, Jesus Needs To Be Queer-Eyed!

Why doesn't a story like the one at the American Family Association infuriate true Christians - people that can practice their religion and still show respect and love for other people. It is just so unfortunate that a small, small minority of zealots have decided to be the face of Christianity in America. Heck, when a Conservative like Judge Roberts warns Ronald Reagan about getting involved with Evangelical Christians, you know something is up.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Kanye West: One-Two-Step

The Advocate ran a very nice article online about Kanye West in which West calls for an end to homophobia in hip-hop and America in general. Kanye's message, "Not just hip-hop but America discriminates [against gay people]. And I want to come on TV and tell my rappers, tell my friends, 'Yo, stop it.'"

Great to see. This story really made me smile this morning.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The Day The World Went Queer

Last night, my partner and I, along with a friend of ours went to see a great way, way, way off-Broadway show called “The Day The World Went Queer”. It was one of 184 different shows being performed during the FringeNYC Propaganda Festival, which runs through August 28th.

The premise of this satirical musical comedy was that the lily-white town of Sanctityville legalized same-sex marriage because the gays seemed so nice and friendly and clean! What the residents of this pastoral little village didn’t realize was that the “homos” had come to town to launch an insidious attack and turn everyone queer.

The Donna Reed mom whose only concern is a clean floor becomes a biker dyke. The responsible dad becomes a leather daddy who no one wants because no one wants a daddy who’s a bottom. The rest of the town morphs into typical gay sterotypes. Only two residents don’t come under the spell – Susie and her boyfriend, Billy. It is up to them to save the town.

I won’t say any more just in case someone decides to see the show. What made this comedy so darn funny was how true it was. It played upon the fears that the Conservative Right has about homosexuals. They believe that by allowing same-sex marriage or even just equal rights for homosexuals, the world will become queer – families will disintergrate, boys will behave like girls, girls like boys, etc. etc. etc.

My friend Ali, a lesbian, recently told me a story about how her (male) friend’s girlfriend asked her if it was wise that she, Ali, purchased books like Heather Has Two Mommies for her (Ali’s) niece because wasn’t she afraid that she might turn the niece gay. Ali responded with: “What book did you read to make you heterosexual? I must have cut class that day.” The girlfriend apologized and realized that she had asked a really stupid question.

My personal belief is that the Conservative Right knows deep down inside that no one can be turned gay and that no one can be turned straight. They are just terrified that if gay men and women are treated as equals, then they will have no one left to blame for society’s ills. They can’t blame black people anymore. Heaven forbid they look at themselves and see what problems they are causing by pigeon-holing people into specific gender and sexual roles.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Ex-Gay According to the APA

The American Psychiatric Association has written an article for The Advocate online that deals with the term ex-gay.

It's a pretty clear-cut article about where they and all of the other major professional health and mental health organization in the country stand on the issue.

A couple of good clips:

"The most important fact about “reparative therapy,” also sometimes known as “conversion” therapy, is that it is based on an understanding of homosexuality that has been rejected by all the major health and mental health professions.

The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of Social Workers, together representing more than 477,000 health and mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder, and thus there is no need for a “cure.” "

"the idea that homosexuality is a mental disorder, or that the emergence of same-gender sexual desires among some adolescents is in any way abnormal or mentally unhealthy, has no support among health and mental health professional organizations."

"As these statements make clear, health and mental health professional organizations do not support efforts to change young people’s sexual orientation through “reparative therapy” and have raised serious concerns about its potential to do harm."

So, the APA and all of the others do not support change, are concerned about the possibility that trying to change can do harm, and are concerned that practicioners of conversion therapy, reparative therapy, or ex-gay types of organizations disseminate false or misleading information about gay people.

Sounds pretty clear to me. Somehow people like NARTH and Warren Throckmorton seem to find wiggle room in these types of statements though.

We're Not Anti-Gay, We Help AIDS Patients

In a really weird article I just read from Break Point, Chuck Colson actually says that speaking out against gays isn't hate speech because most AIDS hospices are run by Christians.

I'm not sure that statistic is even true. But, even if it is, I have a hard time believing that because some Christians run AIDS hospices, that allows them to speak against (and often very hatefully against) homosexuality.

Just the fact that he thinks helping AIDS patients equates to loving gays shows his bias pretty heavily. He equates AIDS with homosexuality without even hesitation.

Here is the full quote. See what you think for yourself, "So-called “hate speech”—that is, any criticism of the gay agenda—has been banned on many college campuses, so say the activists, because it will incite violence. But will it?
Come on, who is running most of the AIDS hospices in America? That’s right: It’s Christians. “Hate filled bigots”? Hardly."

I'm actually pretty stunned by this reasoning, and I'm surprised he thinks he has made a salient point.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

11 Reasons Why Homosexual Marriage Should Be Banned

I was kind of hoping to post something a little more in-depth, this being my first official posting and all. But that will come soon. So, in the meantime, have a chuckle with this...

  1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control.
  2. Heterosexual marriages are valid because they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can't legally get married because the world needs more children.
  3. Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.
  4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful, since Britney Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.
  5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; just like women are property, blacks can't marry whites, and divorce is illegal.
  6. Gay marriage should be decided by people not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.
  7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.
  8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.
  9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.
  10. 10. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why single parents are forbidden to raise children.
  11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven't adapted to cars or longer lifespans.

Monday, August 15, 2005

New Blogger- Watch Out!

I'm writing this entry to introduce a new blogger to Some Guys are Normal. Stojef, a frequent commenter over here, will be joining me as of today (well I guess as of yesterday technically). He'll be writing about the same general kind of stuff that I have been covering so far, unless he feels inclined to change things up a bit, which he is free to do.

So, say hi to Jeff. Hopefully this will also allow for more frequent postings on the blog, for your reading pleasure.

Also, I have been getting a lot of blog hits from searches for Donnie McClurkin. It has been several a day recently. I had no idea he was so popular.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Janet Fogler is Against Homosexuality, But Lying's Ok

In a press release, author Janet Fogler issues some "I told you so's" to her Christian followers. The release is nothing more than a ploy to advertise her speaking engagements, nothing new there.

The problem is, Ms. Fogler appears to not be in a close relationship with the truth. The press release quotes Fogler as saying:

"Everything that I said would happen IS happening right now. Look at the headlines from the last several weeks:

'Allstate fires employee for sharing his faith & his views on homosexuality.... AT HOME';

'Methodist Pastor in Virginia is suspended from the pulpit for his views on homosexuality';

'Red Cross fires employee because he won't celebrate Gay Pride Month';

'Massachusetts Dad arrested for protesting the teaching of homosexual curriculum to his KINDERGARTEN son!'"

But, running a quick search on the Allstate story and most especially the Red Cross story shows that the "headlines" aren't real. Yes, I realize she is talking about real stories, but in her attempt to make things seem worse than they are, Ms. Fogler has found it appropriate to reword the headlines without saying she has done so. Surely no one was fired for refusing to celebrate Gay Pride Month, but Ms. Fogler doesn't seem to care.

So, what's worse, distorting the truth, or being gay?

Exodus President Wins Award

Recently Charisma magazine named Alan Chambers, the President of Exodus as one of the top 30 emerging leaders in the American church. So, I suppose congratulations are in order. I'm sure he and his organization are both very proud.

In response to the award, Chambers said this, "It has been my privilege to be a part of the tremendous progress the evangelical church has made in demonstrating a more compassionate and truthful approach to those caught in homosexuality."

A nice sentiment, but I'm not sure I have felt the compassion from the evangelical church at large. Surely people like Chad Thompson, Randy Thomas, and maybe (maybe) even Alan Chambers have called for compassion to all gay people. But, Alan goes on to say what a pleasure it has been to work with James Dobson (yes, that Dr. Dobson). I'd hardly say he has been the new voice of compassion towards gays, but Alan Chambers has no qualms with Dobson's take on the issue. Plus, I don't think using recycled Paul Cameron statistics on the Exodus website is really doing much to treat gays more respectfully.

Maybe Alan and I have different opinions of what respect and compassion are. Or maybe he is just talking about respect and compassion for ex-gays. Actually, that's probably it. If anyone had used Dobson's words on gays and directed them towards Christians instead, I don't think Alan would be quite as friendly.

Maybe someone from Exodus could sit down and tell me how telling the world that gays are incapable of committed relationships, are drug users, abusers, etc. is really that compassionate. I'm always open for a letter.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Anti-Bush Equals Anti-American

So, if I understand things correctly, criticizing President Bush is un-American. If that's true, why is it ok to criticize President Clinton? Rush Limbaugh has called him fat, referred to his Presidential Library as the Library and Massage Parlour and so on. Somehow I don't think this type of slander started since he left office.

I personally think we should give all of our Presidents the benefit of the doubt and try to refrain from ad hominem attacks like this. Maybe only moderates think that way though."

On a completely separate note, this picture from PinkDome made me laugh outloud this morning. I've never seen something so absurd. Something about their witty take on politics really gets to me.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Exodus Doesn't Cure, But Can it Stop Gay Feelings

From what I can tell, Exodus has been claiming that it doesn't "cure" gay people for a while now. I know Randy Thomas has held to that as long as I have been speaking to him.

So, they don't cure gays, but do they help people stop their gay feelings? Do they help people become straight? This article from World Magazine implies that maybe they don't. The article mentions three Exodus folks, one of them being the President. None of them claim to no longer struggle with gay thoughts. One woman even admits that she has to "work to be physically attracted to her husband" and admitted to marrying a man she was not attracted to to avoid her homosexual attractions. Somehow I don't think this is the answer, but maybe that is just me.

I know some Exodus folks like Randy Thomas now claim to be completely straight, and I'd rather not doubt those claims. My interactions with Randy have been positive, and he seems like a nice guy.

But, if Exodus not only doesn't cure gays, but also doesn't help people stop having gay attractions, shouldn't they tell people that? When they have their ads "Questioning Homosexuality," the implication is simple--that these folks are no longer gay--that they no longer have gay attractions. I think Exodus should work to clear up that message. Surely marrying a man you are not attracted to is not truly "Questioning Homosexuality."

Monday, August 08, 2005

Faked Gay Statistics

I've complained more than a few times on this blog about some people in the religious right using patently absurd and disingenious statistics about gay people to prove how terrible gays are. My statement has always been that if being gay is a sin, let it be a sin. There's no need to make up numbers or regurgitate highly suspect studies or statistics to try to prove the morality of your point.

I found recently on Ex-Gay Watch that Jim Burroway has done an excellent job figuring out how some in the religious right actually get to some of their false statistics. It is definitely worth a read.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

John Roberts and Gays

I was listening to Rush Limbaugh today during lunch, and it appears that John Roberts, President Bush's Supreme Court nominee, helped overturn a law in California that would have prevented the state or local governments there from ever passing employment, housing and other non-discrimination protection laws for gay people. Basically, the law said that people should be allowed to discriminate against gays. John Roberts fought against this law pro bono. That is news I am happy to hear, and I applaud him.

Rush then went on to say that conservatives don't dislike gays, and they think what people do in their own homes was just fine. I appreciate the sentiment, but I'm not sure I believe it.

Rush is squarely against the Lawrence v. Texas case that overturned a law that made it illegal for gay people to have sex, even in their own homes. He even repeated how he thought Roberts' help in Colorado led to this decision and how bad that was.

So, if he thinks gays should be able to do what they want in their own homes, why does he think the Lawrence ruling was incorrect? Yes, I know people are going to bring it back to "judicial activism," but if their is a law on the books that goes squarely against your general beliefs (that people should be able to do as they please in their private lives), why not fight to overturn that law?

If the state and conservatives would have looked at the law and said, you know what, this law is unfair, and it goes against our principles, so let's overturn it, we wouldn't have to have had the courts tell them the law was unconstitutional in the first place. If Rush is being true when he says that private lives are private lives, he should have been on the forefront talking about how bad the original law in Lawrence really was, not blabbing about how judicial activists are taking over our courts and pretending that is why he was against the Lawrence decision.

Like I said, nice sentiment, but it's all just lipservice to me.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

California's Marriage Woes

So, a group called VoteYesMarriage.com is now suing California's Attorney General because they believe he has summarized their petition to ban gay marriage unfairly. Read what they had to say here.

I personally think he did a good job of saying what the petition will actually do, while they were the ones being untrue to its real scope.

Here is what they say:
"Lockyer completely ignores the chief points of the Voters’ Right to Protect Marriage Initiative. He omits how the proposed constitutional amendment would prohibit the abolishment of marriage, and leaves out how it would protect private organizations and businesses from being required to undermine or diminish marriage."


"Lockyer uses the word "elimination" when the whole issue is the protection of marriage..."

Now, to me this marriage ammendment isn't about the protection of marriage, it is about the elimination of domestic partner rights for gays. The only thing these guys at VoteYesMarriage claim won't be eliminated from current DP rights is hospital visititation. Everything else goes.

Sounds like elimination to me.

But, protection? If they were really trying to "protect marriage" maybe they would do away with divorce, or at least no-fault divorce. Maybe they would do away with sham marriages, common law marriages, and overnight marriages. Let's be honest, this has nothing to do with protection marriages, at least not on it's face. It will not immediately protect anything, but it will immediately eliminate current DP rights.

And what is this about protecting marriage from being abolished? Hi, chicken little, meet reality.

Then they go into some tangent about the law not requiring businesses to undermine marriage. Seriously, how are businesses currently required to undermine marriage?

"Hello, sir, I am a police officer, and I am arresting you for refusing to undermine marriage. That's the law around here. If you don't undermine marriage, you're going to jail."

I can't even take this. They end this little press release by calling the Attorney General a "Bay Area Liberal." What does that even mean? I guess that is like a Massachusetts Liberal. Uh oh. I probably shouldn't take these guys too seriously.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Conservatives, the New Liberals

Work is killing me right now. So much to do I don't know where to begin. So, I need a short break.

As I've said before, I listen to too much talk radio. Rush Limbaugh is who I listen to at lunch. I usually just get about 30 minutes of him, but it is enough to get me hyped up, usually not in a good way. Who knows what this is doing to my heart. Just kidding, luckily I am not old enough to worry about that yet.

Before I get started, I wanted to comment that yesterday he referred to an Asian man as an Oriental man. Real nice.

Anyway, my thought is that as much as Rush, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, and all of the others want to pretend that the liberals are getting figured out and are losing their grip on America because they are out of touch, it just isn't true. Democrats lost some big elections this last go around, but we sure are forgetting all too quickly how long they held power themselves. Decades went by with Democrats holding power in the House and/or Senate and a recent 2 term President comes to mind. No one was claiming a complete and total victory for the Democrats then. And, a 2% win in an election does not mean the American people are all Republican all of the sudden.

Of course, these guys are doing whatever they can to prove themselves and their own point of view right. Sometimes I wish there were some talk show hosts that were more middle of the road. So, when the right side claims that the White House shouldn't have to release documents about Judge Roberts and the left claims that the White House is hiding those records illegally, I can know who is lying and what people have done in the past. Right now, no one contextualizes anything historically unless it helps their case, and they leave out the parts that don't. How does the average person know what to think?

Ok, the real reason for this post. I am not a conservative (not a liberal either) for a few reasons. First, the conservatives of today would be considered liberals just 40 or 50 years ago and super liberals 100 years ago or so. Yet, they blame the liberals are the ones that are always changing their viewpoints. Second, the conservatives have made too many missteps for me to forgive. Being on the side of slavery, Jim Crow, prohibition, censorship, segregation, etc. isn't a good track record if you ask me. Whether these guys were Republicans or Democrats, they were still conservatives, and they were wrong. I'd rather just look at each issue as it comes along rather than being locked to some ideology. I will admit recently to having a softer spot in my hear for liberals, probably because none of them are telling me I am going to hell.