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Mar 07 2013

Turns Out Lech Walesa is a Bigoted Asshole

I find it rather sad that Lech Walesa, the Polish union leader who provided such a profile in courage in standing up to the Soviet Union in the 1980s and later became Poland’s first democratic president, turns out to be a religious bigot who thinks gay people should be treated as second class citizens.

Walesa said in a television interview on Friday that he believed gay people had no right to sit on the front benches in parliament and, if there at all, should sit in the back “or even behind a wall”.

“They have to know that they are a minority and adjust to smaller things, and not rise to the greatest heights,” he told the private broadcaster TVN during a discussion of gay rights. “A minority should not impose itself on the majority.”

Funny, we hear that same language from American bigots, that gays are “imposing themselves” on Christians by, you know, existing and thinking that they’re human beings with equal rights and stuff.

10 comments

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  1. 1
    Gretchen

    They have to know that they are a minority and adjust to smaller things, and not rise to the greatest heights

    Because….why? Otherwise, they might end up as president?

  2. 2
    Akira MacKenzie

    You’re surprised? Given how much the Cat-lick Church supported Walesa’s movement?

  3. 3
    Randomfactor

    They can sit in the back with the trade unionists. Nobody spoke up when they came for the trade unionists either.

  4. 4
    richardelguru

    Yup Akira, one of the less pleasing aspects of the fall of Communism is the rise of (apparently really evil, twisted) religion in the region.

  5. 5
    DaveL

    “They have to know that they are a minority and adjust to smaller things, and not rise to the greatest heights,”

    Why does that sound familiar? Oh, yes, I remember now:

    Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Messenger have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection.

    The Quran, Surah 9:29

  6. 6
    k_machine

    “A minority should not impose itself on the majority.”
    Like the Polish minority shouldn’t have imposed independence from the Soviet majority?

  7. 7
    steve oberski

    @richardelguru

    It never went away, and it’s hard to imagine that it became any more evil and twisted than it already and always was.

    Collusion between Catholic clergy and the former secret-police is well documented, for example Bishop Stanislaw Wielgus, archbishop of Warsaw, who resigned in 2007 after admitting his ties to Poland’s secret police.

    Cardinal Jozef Glemp, “primate” of Poland at the time put the proportion of colluding priests at 15 percent and more objective observers put the figure much higher.

    Similarities to the church’s handling of the child rape cover up are noted.

    Pope John Paul II “heroic” anti-Communist stance was nothing but a media ploy to allow the church to insert itself as a privileged player into post communist Poland and as can be seen it was very successful.

    As a result the anti-semitism, homophobia and misogyny that are the hallmarks of the RCC slumbered on for a 50 year interregnum and then erupted anew as if they had never gone away.

  8. 8
    Ariel

    Here are a few remarks from Poland.

    Akira

    You’re surprised? Given how much the Cat-lick Church supported Walesa’s movement?

    It’s true that the Catholic Church supported Walesa’s movement. And it’s also true that for many of us who still vividly remember communism the expression “Catholic” has some good connotations: for quite a while the church played the role of the only legal opposition in our country. If for no other reason, then at least for this one it was attractive to many people, including the atheists. By a similar token, for those of us who remember communism the expression “right wing” provokes good associations (“oh, there are these wonderful countries in the West where they have fairies, elves, McDonald’s and – hold your breath, that’s the most unbelievable part! – they have real right wing politicians!”) So Akira, I will reverse your question: are you surprised? Given what the leftist did to our country?

    richardelguru

    one of the less pleasing aspects of the fall of Communism is the rise of (apparently really evil, twisted) religion in the region.


    But now the Church has grave problems and that’s the real context of Walesa’s remark. In the last general election the secularists won many places in our parliament (e.g. now we have a transgendered person and a leader of a gay movement in the parliament). Some mainstream politicians, so fond of showing themselves in churches on TV, reacted immediately and started to make advances to the secular electorate. And the Polish internet is full of anger against the Church – anger which sometimes degenerates into a very ugly hate. That’s the context. I think you are incorrect to interpret Walesa’s remark as the evidence of the rise of religion. I’m afraid also that we are going to have tons of nastiness from both sides in the future.

  9. 9
    frankniddy

    Ariel, I don’t think you can rightly expect civility from people who being told that they are less than people, who are being told that they should be second-class citizens. There is far less justification for the nastiness on the part of right-wing Catholics. Anyone who is threatened by the mere existence of someone who isn’t exactly a carbon copy of them is nothing but a delicate, wilting little flower.

  10. 10
    erichoug

    Meh, I am a bet disappointed too having admired the man as well. But, it only goes to show that even our heroes are just people. Gullible, stupid, ignorant and hopeless people.

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