Political Incorrectness


benham-brothersHGTV was planning to air a new show about fixing up houses for families in need, Flip It Forward.  It was being hosted by twin brothers, David and Jason Benham, who have made a career of flipping houses.  But the network decided to cancel the show after Right Wing Watch reported that the Benham twins do not agree with homosexuality, and have even led protests outside of abortion clinics.  Initially HGTV said they were “currently in the process of reviewing all information about the Benhams,” and then they issued a tweet declaring that they would not move forward with the series.

While Right Wing did not call on HGTV to cancel the show, it appears that HGTV caved to the small amount of public pressure they received based on Right Wing Watch’s report. Shame on HGTV for not having the internal fortitude to stand up to the public pressure and say, “We understand that a large number of people do not agree with the personal views of David and Jason Benham, and we respect that. However, Flip It Forward is not a show about the Benham brothers’ personal views.  It’s a show about helping financially-challenged families get their dream home.  The Benham brothers’ experience in flipping houses makes them well-qualified to host this show, so we will continue to air the show with them as hosts.  HGTV’s employment of the Benham brothers is not an endorsement of their views, but we believe people have a right to their own moral opinions, and that those of us who disagree have a responsibility to extend tolerance to those we disagree with.  We believe a civilized, tolerant society must give space for people to believe and act according to their convictions, and do not agree with those who think anyone who doesn’t agree with them is not deserving of gainful employment.  We can do better that as a society, and at HGTV, we are doing better than that.  For those who find the Benham’s views distasteful, we would ask that you extend the same tolerance to them that you want extended to those who share your point of view. We ask that you set aside your personal differences with the Benham’s personal views, and allow yourself to enjoy and celebrate their work to help our mutual neighbors.”  That’s the press release you’ll never see, but one that would be cheered by the vast majority of citizens, and I would suspect, the vast number of HGTV viewership.

The Benham brothers have responded graciously (see here and here).

Remember when they asked us, “How is same-sex marriage going to affect you?”  This is how.

 

Brendan EichEarlier in the week it was reported that three of of Mozilla’s (the people who make the Firefox browser) board members resigned when Mozilla co-founder, Brendan Eich, was appointed as CEO of the company.  Why?  Because Eich gave $1,000 to support California’s Proposition 8 in 2008, a ballot initiative that sought to define marriage as an institution exclusive to male-female pairings.  His appointment as CEO so irked the dating site, OkCupid, that users attempting to login to the site received this message: “Hello there, Mozilla Firefox user. Pardon this interruption of your OkCupid experience. Mozilla’s new CEO, Brendan Eich, is an opponent of equal rights for gay couples. We would therefore prefer that our users not use Mozilla software to access OkCupid.”

Now, it’s being reported that Eich has “resigned.”  Surely he wasn’t tired of the job yet.

Apparently some in the gay rights movement think that those who think natural marriage is the only valid form of marriage don’t deserve a job. As Todd Starnes writes, “Why not demand that those who oppose gay marriage relinquish the right to own property? Why not take away their right to vote? Why not take away their children? Why not just throw them in jail? Why not force them to work in chain gangs? Why not call for public floggings? Or better yet, let’s just strap them down on gurneys, stick a needle in their arm and rid the world of these intolerant anti-gay bigots once and for all.”This is the face of liberal tolerance.  Where is the uproar?

Credit: CBS

Credit: CBS

Another cake maker, this time in Colorado, was sued for refusing to provide a cake for a same-sex wedding celebration.  Judge Robert N. Spencer ruled that Jack Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop discriminated against the couple based on their sexual orientation, and would be fined in the future if he ever refused to provide a cake to another same-sex couple again. He wrote, “At first blush, it may seem reasonable that a private business should be able to refuse service to anyone it chooses.  This view, however, fails to take into account the cost to society and the hurt caused to persons who are denied service simply because of who they are.”  So the law can force a man to violate his conscience just so someone else’s feelings don’t get hurt?  What about Jack Phillips’ feelings?  Should the law protect him from feeling bullied by the government?  Surely his feelings are hurt at the prospect of having to close his business.  I don’t see his feelings being taken into consideration.  And finally, Jack Philips is not denying them service “because of who they are,” but because of what they are doing.  It’s not as if Jack Phillips refuses to make birthday cakes for people who are gay.  He is refusing to provide a cake that will be used to celebrate an action that he considers immoral.  There is a big difference.  But I don’t expect the law to recognize such distinctions anymore.

Just more of the same.

Gender Identity ConfusionWe hear more and more about gender identity confusion these days.  Gender identity confusion is when a person thinks s/he is the gender opposite of their biology: a man who believes he is a female trapped in a man’s body, or a woman who believes she is a male trapped in a woman’s body.  Rather than considering this as a mental disorder in need treatment, however, today’s proffered solution is to perform a sex-change operation so that one’s body will match their perceived gender.  I am persuaded that this solution to the problem is wrong-headed.

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conscience violateIn recent days, I’ve reported on a florist who was sued for not providing flowers for a same-sex wedding, a baker who was sued for not providing a cake for a same-sex wedding, and a wedding photographer who lost a case in New Mexico’s Supreme Court because she would not photograph a same-sex wedding.  Many who support same-sex marriage applaud this phenomena, reasoning that people should not be allowed to discriminate against same-sex couples.  But what about personal liberty?  What about the liberty to follow one’s conscience in these matters?  Why is it ok to require people to violate their conscience, or lose their livelihood?

Can you imagine the outcry if a homosexual printer was forced by the government to either print anti-homosexual propaganda, or get out of the printing industry?  What if a homosexual filmmaker was sued for refusing to direct a film arguing that homosexuality was immoral or harmful, and forced to either direct the film or find a new line of work?  What if a screenplay writer who was also an anti-gun activist was forced to write a script for a movie promoting the use of firearms?  Would this be acceptable?  No!   No one should be forced by the government to lend their services to projects or events they believe to be immoral, and which run contrary to their conscience.  Yet this is exactly what the government is requiring of its citizens when it comes to same-sex marriage, and many same-sex marriage advocates are applauding this.  If you support people being forced by law to violate their conscience, don’t be surprised if one day the government forces you to violate your conscience as well.  It’s ironic that those who argue for more liberty in the case of same-sex marriage are willing to take liberties away from those who disagree.

“Although feminism purports to raise the value and status of women, it actually deconstructs femininity, treating it as an illusion or even an aberration.  The male chauvinist of the past identified women as unique and different, but then treated femininity as a lesser thing than masculinity.  The feminist of today, rather than celebrating femininity as a thing of equal worth, dismisses it as a bourgeois construction.  Far from championing femininity as a beautiful, God-created gift, the feminist absorbs femininity into a hyper-masculine world of competition, struggle, and ideology.” – Louis Markos, “Just Brilliant!: Three Things only a PhD Can Believe,” Salvo, Issue 24, Spring 2013, page 16.

An Oregon bakery, Sweet Cakes by Melissa, has been sued by a lesbian couple for refusing to provide a cake for their same-sex wedding.  And now, some of the “tolerance-demanding-but-not-tolerance-giving” pro-homosexual citizens are dishing out heaps of intolerance against the business as well. They have been demonstrating outside of their shop, and threatening to shut down other vendors who work with Sweet Cakes by Melissa. As a result of these tactics, Sweet Cakes by Melissa saw a 50% drop in their business, and have been forced to close their shop and start working out of their home.

No, of course this won’t affect anyone. Carry on. Just remember, tolerance is a one-way street on this issue, and if you aren’t driving with the flow of traffic, prepare for the consequences.

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