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The Truth Exposed

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***SPOILER WARNING!***

For those of you Radical Right Wing Religious Right Extremeists, if you don't want to know about the secrets of the Religious Right then leave this thead now because the mysterious secrets of the Religious Right are about to be revealed.

If you don't want to know the truth behind the myths created by the Religious Right, then leave this thread now.---

The Sex Lies of the Religious Right
how conservatives distort the facts of life

By MARTY KLEIN
a sex education expert

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie-deliberate, contrived and dishonest--but the myth--persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."

--JOHN F. KENNEDY

They lie. When Jimmy Swaggart ranted at the cameras in his televangelical tent that sex education classes promoted incest, it was a lie. When Jerry Falwell told followers of his Good Time Gospel show that "homosexuals know they are going to die and they are going to take as many people with them as they can," it was a lie.

Breaking the third and ninth commandments is business as usual for members of the religious right. On their television stations, in school curricula, through their think tanks and in our national newspapers they lie about sex. They lie so big and loud and so often that many people assume they must be telling the truth.

At every opportunity these liars construct a false and defamatory image of sexuality. Pat Robertson says "oral sex is against nature." Anti-family-planning educator Father John McGoey tells a Human Life International Symposium that "there is absolutely nothing loving about sex. Lust is as destructive of love inside of marriage as it is outside." James Dobson, head of Focus on the Family, castigates "sex experts who say abstinence but mean anything goes." The American Family Association charges that school systems are "reshaping children's attitudes and behavior toward hedonism, heterosexual as well as homosexual."

Christian Coalition leader Ralph Reed can tell Ted Koppel on Nightline that "this is bestiality, pedophilia, child molestation. According to the Carnegie Mellon survey [of the Internet], one quarter of all the images involve the torture of women," and go unquestioned. Michael McManus, a conservative columnist who wrote an introduction to the Meese Commission Report, can use the same media moment to claim that "aberrant sex predominates. Sex between husband and wife can be beautiful. But that is not the image being pulled down by cyberspace users. What's sought are photos of deviant sex: women in bondage, being tortured. It is massively harmful." Never mind that a swift cruise on the Internet will refute such claims; most people aren't online. One has to ask: Whose sexual imagination is at work? What tortured thoughts go through their minds when they consider their own sex lives?

It's easy to refute the sex lies of the right using data from biology, medicine, criminology and developmental psychology. But the right doesn't use language to communicate facts about sex. Instead, it conveys emotions about sex--fear, hatred, self-disgust. Those emotions are far from what sex should and can be. Yet those emotions are shaping public policy.

Take Swaggart's idea that sex education encourages incest. Listen to the emotion behind his message: I am afraid of my own sexuality and that of my children. It is blame-shifting: An outside force creates incest. If the schools didn't do it, the devil will take the blame. Witness Bev Russell, a powerful member of the Christian Coalition, who began molesting his stepdaughter Susan Smith when she was 14 or 15. According to news reports, he would come home from putting up campaign posters for Pat Robertson to fondle her. Smith grew up with a warped set of sexual values--and drowned her two children in hope of keeping the love of a man. Her stepfather continued to have sex with her just months prior to the murders. Incest is a powerful, corrupt form of sex education.

Images offer an easy way out. But it wasn't an image that prompted Father Bruce Ritter (founder of Covenant House and a member of the Meese Commission) to reportedly fondle boys on couches, or that encouraged Jimmy Swaggart to hire prostitutes so he could look up their dresses. A sex expert discussing the birds and bees was not what drove Jim Bakker to climb on top of a young secretary in a hotel room at a religious conference. They do not explain the thousands of children who are molested by priests and pastors.

The religious right sees sexuality as an external force, a threat to rationality, authority, religion and marital fidelity. A devilishly clever energy, sex continually manifests itself in new ways. Fashion ads. Rap music. Sex education. Soft-core porn. Videos. Phone sex. Fully clothed cheerleaders at high school footbal games.

Once you believe sex is an outside force, you look for it everywhere-which is a textbook definition of paranoia. How else to explain the obsessive search for temptation that causes someone to find the letters SEX in a few frames of The Lion King, or the naked breast of a sunbather in a Where's Waldo puzzle?

Sometimes the obsessive fears of the right are comic: The American Family Association in Florida forced the passage of an ordinance banning nude sunbathing on a beach near Cape Canaveral with the explanation, "It will allow you and your family to walk without fear of being offended, or worse, physically attacked by nude or partially nude persons." Beware, beware of the naked man.

Clearly, the religious right and its cohorts are dreadfully frightened of their own eroticism. They struggle against their fleshly desires, but they cannot deny that their flesh desires. They may loathe their fantasies of legs, breasts and mouths, but they cannot banish the images. They preach that desire is weakness. And their own weakness terrifies them.

To overcome this emotional conflict they project their terror onto others: I'm not the bad one, you are. I'm not afraid of me, I'm afraid of you. Repelled by their own sexuality, they loathe and thus fear others' sexuality. And as a misplaced attempt to control their own eroticism,they try to control others'. That's how we get a Randall Terry telling peration Rescue supporters, "I want you to let a wave of intolerance wash over you. We are called by God to conquer this nation."

The key consequence of these lies is a personal and cultural environment of fear of sexuality, especially male sexuality. People learn to mistrust their eroticism, which leads to suffering, acting out, self-repression and the desire for salvation. Feeling the need to protect self, family and community, people turn to institutions (such as the church and conservative political organizations) that acknowledge this fear of sexuality. The resulting culture of fear and mistrust fits perfectly into the right's political-moral worldview. Satan already exists, as do temptation, the battle for good and evil, a theory of human guilt, an infallible instruction book and an angry, asexual god. The right can integrate any new sexual phenomenon (phone sex, cyberporn, etc.) into its existing model (temptation, immorality) and proposed solution (repression).

Most recently we have the Reverend Donald E. Wildmon charging that Calvin Klein ads are "child porn," and insisting that they be investigated by the Justice Department. Only a mind obsessed with sex could perceive child porn in images of fully clothed teenagers mostly doing nothing.

While the Calvin Klein ads may strike you as tasteless, creepy or simply hot, they are not sexual abuse or exploitation. Wildmon, however, demands that the Justice Department go through photographer Steven Meisel's files to see what else happened at the shooting of the commercials. Calvin Klein is the best thing that ever happened to the zealous and priggish Wildmon. The reverend wants the feds to go after every magazine that ran the print ads and go after every city that had the images plastered on the sides of its buses. Are you now or have you ever been aroused by a Calvin Klein ad? In all of the coverage of this issue only a handful of columnists had the courage to describe the crusade as nonsense. Child porn is a new form of redbaiting. Since no one can seem to be for child porn, no one will rise to defend the accused.

Wildmon is outraged by images of underwear---because those images focus attention on sexual anatomy. That which underwear conceals, it reveals. At some point, underwear ceases to be a tool of personal hygiene and becomes part of our erotic vocabulary. Cotton briefs become lingerie in sexual awakenings. And that is exactly what upsets Wildmon: He thinks, I must draw the line here, or I will lose control. He cannot admire, fantasize, express awe or warm his soul over nature's heat. If he had his way, Calvin Klein's penance would be to design underwear that could not be removed until the wearer was 21 and married.

And so Wildmon sponsors clinics for porn addicts--devoted to the notion that even the briefest exposure to sex leads inexorably down the path to debauchery. What others call sexual growth, or discovery, Wildmon views as a force of satanic proportions.

Wildmon's own approach to sex education is a comic book (distributed by the AFA) called God's Quiet Voice. In it, a young boy wrestles with the choice of looking at a classmate's collection of pinups. A pastor tells the boy, "Jesus would have been upset if you had looked at that magazine. We wouldn't want that, would we?"

The boy answers, "No way! I don't want to do anything to upset Jesus, 'cause he died on the cross to forgive me of my sins!"

This is an agonizingly simplistic view. Phyllis Schlafly, head of the Eagle Forum, says, "The facts of life can be told in 15 minutes." She also says, "Sex education is robbing children of their childhood." But the sex lies of the religious right are sex education. Imagine the brainwashing that led three 12-year-olds to write a letter to the Chicago Tribune that reads, "We watched The Lion King and unfortunately, we saw SEX spelled out in a cloud of dust. We can't believe Disney would do such a thing! Little kids watch this movie. Now you can't even watch a movie without being faced with pornography!" A spelling bee becomes pornography? No doubt these kids will grow up to be sexually healthy adults.

The right's picture of pure, nonerotic humans is a fantasy, a yearning for a simple, guilt-free existence without ambiguity or moral conflict. It idealizes this imaginary state and urges us to protect ourselves from any lust that might crawl across our virtue.

Having scared people about others' sexuality, the right promises to rectify the situation. It will take your fear seriously and tell you exactly what to do, feel and believe. It will press legislators to limit the sexual choices you can make. It will continue to find new instances of sexual danger and keep you informed of the ever-growing scourge. It will seek and destroy all temptation. This last is the most dangerous lie of all.

If the members of the religious right are unable to control themselves, should we let them control America?


---
SEX LIES REFUTED


---
LIE: "Condoms do not protect you from AIDS."

--MICHAEL SCHWARTZ, FREE CONGRESS FOUNDATION

FACT: Even the worst quality condom is "10,000 times better in terms of reducing exposure to HIV" than unprotected sex.

--DR. RONALD CAREY, FDA



---
LIE: "At first the girl (and guy) [who choose abortion] may feel relieved that they no longer have to worry about the responsibilities of parenthood. But in the long run, they will feel guilt, depression and anxiety... making it nearly impossible for her ever to forget the abortion."

--Sex Respect HIGH SCHOOL CURRICULUM

FACT: "A review of more than 250 studies of possible psychological effects of abortion by the U.S. Surgeon General and the American Psychological Association found that abortion does not cause short-term or long-term negative effects for the majority of women undergoing the procedure."

--Kinsey Institute New Report on Sex



---
LIE: "How do people become pedophiles? Usually, pornography walks you down that path until you get to the place where you've seen everything that a man and a woman can do together, and then you make that little jump over to perversions."

--JAMES DOBSON, FOCUS ON THE FAMILY

FACT: "The FBI has no evidence that pornography causes crimes. Pedophilia has absolutely nothing to do with adult pornography."

--FBI AGENT KEN LANNING



---
LIE: "Too much sex education too soon causes undue curiosity and obsession with sex."

--BEVERLY LA HAYE, CONCERNED WOMEN FOR AMERICA

FACT: After taking a Planned Parenthood-approved course, "teens were more likely to delay initiation of sexual intercourse; and when they did initiate it, they decreased their levels of unprotected sex by 40 percent."

--Family Planning Perspectives



---
LIE: "Gays and lesbians live perverted, twisted lives that feed upon the unsuspecting and the innocent, like our children."

--THE REVEREND LOU SHELDON TRADITIONAL VALUES COALITION (Sheldon produced a video, Gay Rights/Special Rights, that claims gays are 18 times more likely than straight people to be child molesters.)

FACT: "In this sample [of 352 evaluated children], a child's risk of being molested by his or her relative's heterosexual partner is more than 100 times greater than by someone who might be identified as being homosexual, lesbian or bisexual."

---C. JENNY ET AL., Pediatrics



---
LIE: "Sex education classes are like in-home sales parties for abortion."

--PHYLLIS SCHLAFLY

FACT: "Most sex education classes in the U.S. do not discuss abortion. In fact, in many states such discussion is prohibited."

--LESLIE KANTOR DIRECTOR, SEXUALITY INFORMATION AND EDUCATION COUNCIL OF THE U.S.



---
LIE: "Cyberporn is pervasive. Half of 8.5 million downloads involved child pornography and 83.5 percent of the images seen on Usenet, a part of the Internet, were pornographic."

--MICHAEL MCMANUS, COLUMNIST

FACT: According to the Carnegie Mellon study, pornographic image files represent three percent of all messages on the Usenet newsgroups. As for kid porn, the research found no images depicting hard-core sex acts with children.



---
LIE: "There is no way to have premarital sex without hurting someone."


---Sex Respect CURRICULUM

FACT: "The vast majority of Americans have intercourse before marriage. There is no evidence that this damages individuals or marriages."

--LESLIE KANTOR, SlECUS



---
LIE: "Feminism encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians."

--PAT ROBERTSON

FACT: Try consulting your nearest reality.




-------
May You Rest in Peace Matthew Shepard.
 


Posts: 1 | Posted: 1:19 PM on March 3, 2004 | IP
Father of a gay son

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Exactly the point I was making in Luckygal's thread. Lying, one of the frequent sins the Religious Right will do in their quest of "Christianizing the World". "Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord", do they follow this sacred verse?, absolutely not. Thanks for exposing these common lies.




 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 12:34 PM on March 24, 2004 | IP
CommentMan

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Exactly the point I was making in Luckygal's thread. Lying, one of the frequent sins the Religious Right will do in their quest of "Christianizing the World". "Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord", do they follow this sacred verse?, absolutely not. Thanks for exposing these common lies.


Yes, please educate us with your conspiracy theories.

 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 2:39 PM on March 24, 2004 | IP
ffaldo

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Quote from CommentMan at 4:11 PM on March 24, 2004 :
The Truth Exposed


He should rename himself "My Propaganda Exposed."


Facts speak louder than opinions.  Religion is a matter of opinon and belief not of fact.  

 


Posts: 73 | Posted: 02:23 AM on March 26, 2004 | IP
CommentMan

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Religion is a matter of opinon and belief not of fact.


Yes--and using your personal beliefs and emotions to say that your are homosexual beyond your control is also a matter of opinion.
 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 04:13 AM on March 26, 2004 | IP
Father of a gay son

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Quote from ffaldo at 02:23 AM on March 26, 2004 :
[b]Quote from CommentMan at 4:11

Facts speak louder than opinions.  Religion is a matter of opinon and belief not of fact.  



That's true ffaldo. I guess people like "Commentman" want to believe it's the sex education experts that are the true conpiracy makers (oh brother). "No everybody, run from sex interests like hell, it's bad for you!" Oh please, give me a break!


 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 12:23 PM on March 26, 2004 | IP
ffaldo

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Quote from CommentMan at 04:13 AM on March 26, 2004 :
Religion is a matter of opinon and belief not of fact.


Yes--and using your personal beliefs and emotions to say that your are homosexual beyond your control is also a matter of opinion.


When did I ever use personal beleifs and emotions to say that I was homosexual?

Do you have anything constructive to add?  All that you have pointed out were some measly fallacies.  

(Edited by ffaldo 3/26/2004 at 7:33 PM).
 


Posts: 73 | Posted: 7:28 PM on March 26, 2004 | IP
CommentMan

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Do you have anything constructive to add?  All that you have pointed out were some measly fallacies.


Actually it is quite a big fallacy. Notice that father of a gay son only references his son's personal feelings as proof he is gay beyond his control?
 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 7:53 PM on March 26, 2004 | IP
ffaldo

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Quote from CommentMan at 7:53 PM on March 26, 2004 :
Do you have anything constructive to add?  All that you have pointed out were some measly fallacies.


Actually it is quite a big fallacy. Notice that father of a gay son only references his son's personal feelings as proof he is gay beyond his control?


I went back through and read Father's comments and I agree.  Maybe he can clear his view up for us.

What needs to be shown is the environment in which he lived was the reason why his son chose to be gay.  At the same time he may show how the environment would have influenced his son in another way.  

Remember that this is where the psychological community gets most of their statistics; from real people.  Just as long as his views are not biased towards one side.
 


Posts: 73 | Posted: 10:32 PM on March 26, 2004 | IP
Father of a gay son

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Hi ffaldo,

In responce to what you say, the "environment" which Danny grew up in was a pleasent one. Usually we hear about "blame the parents" for the cause of a child's homosexuality because it it believed that the parents didn't treat their children right. My wife Teresa and I always have given love to Danny and our other kids Ryan, 4, and Chistina, 3. I never pysically abused Danny because I believe that is plain wrong. I don't believe that spanking is going to make kids learn without being told the real reason why they were disciplined. Say a child hits his younger sister and is told that he will get hit with a belt, what he's supposed to learn is that he shouldn't hit his sister because hitting hurts instead of "I'll be hit with a belt if I hit her". I prefer to use grounding as dicipline. One time Danny took my car without me knowing, and I told him he couln't go out with his two friends Brian and Gloria. But I did mention that Danny has broken down many times because he knows it is difficult to get around this world when people want him to "change" when he knows deep down inside if he could he would have already. Try telling a heterosexual to "change", can they do it or is it easier said than done? Go ahead and try to find out the answer. Danny was always doing well in school but sometimes kids knew that there was something different about him. He didn't share in conversations of some boys who talked about how cute some of the girls were in school. There were times when some boys would use the words "fag, faggot and fairy" to others and it didn't sit well with him because deep down it hurt him inside. He just coudn't deal with this and it would make him cry because it made him feel like he wasn't wanted in this world. Around the time when Danny came out to Teresa and I he admitted there were times when he did feel like killing himself, which scared us both because we knew we had a serious situation on hands. Danny got counseling from a school counselor and with her support he eventually become a little more acceptable of himself. He now spends time on the internet chatting with other gay kids his age on the internet but still hasn't found someone to be close to him. But Teresa and I let him know that no matter what even though he sometimes still breaks down that we love him very much and that we will be there to support him for the rest of his life.

Just one question ffaldo, you said the following in response to Commentman: "When did I ever use personal beleifs and emotions to say that I was homosexual?" I was just wondering, are you gay? Sorry, I don't mean any offense but I just ask because I don't know too much about you

 


Posts: 20 | Posted: 12:29 PM on March 29, 2004 | IP
Sol

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That whole thing was so much senseless, unproven, and at times completely untrue BS that I am simply at a loss for words.
 


Posts: 60 | Posted: 04:18 AM on January 9, 2005 | IP
justforfun000

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That whole thing was so much senseless, unproven, and at times completely untrue BS that I am simply at a loss for words.


It looked pretty sensible, proven and quite true to me, and it's also very easily verified.

In any case I see you parodied the other poster in reverse. Fair enough. Neither one of you is contributing anything to the discussion without showing WHY and HOW those points put forward are inaccurate.


 


Posts: 16 | Posted: 4:56 PM on January 11, 2005 | IP
    
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