Behind the Iron Curtain part 24 – LGBTQ rights

These are my recollections of a life behind the iron curtain. I do not aim to give perfect and objective evaluation of anything, but to share my personal experiences and memories. It will explain why I just cannot get misty eyed over some ideas on the political left and why I loathe many ideas on the right.


I do not actually remember how much I was informed about these issues as a child before and after the fall of the Iron Curtain, but what I do remember is that my first encounter was not with an actual (known) homosexual person, but with a homophobic slur. The sad reality is, that Czechs were and to great extent still are very homophobic, or at least “I am not a homophobe, but…”, which is a distinction without difference.

However from legal standpoint Czechoslovak Socialist Republic was actually relatively progressive, or at least not less progressive than many western countries. Homosexuality was decriminalized in 1962, 5 years before the United Kingdom. And gender reassignment therapy and surgery, although with more than a few bureaucratic hurdles to jump through, were (and are) available and paid for from state health insurance.

Nevertheless, despite gay rights being on the left side of the political spectrum in current USA and most of western world, it was not so behind the Iron Curtain. As avid reader and a very curious child, I have read behind my parents’ back magazines for adults (as opposed to magazines for children), which even in the puritanical culture did contain some information about sex and sexuality. And on one such occasion I came across an article that mentioned a peculiar fact – whilst homosexual acts between consenting adults were decriminalized in ČSSR, this was not the case everywhere in the Eastern Bloc. In USSR, male homosexuality was still illegal and punishable by imprisonment. The rationale mentioned in the article was homophobic, patriarchal and misogynistic all at once, and I remember recognizing it as such even at the time, although of course I did not know those fancy words back then: “A woman’s weakness can be forgiven, but a soldier must control his urges.”

After the fall of the iron curtain this discrepancy between the two countries sadly progressed. Whilst Czech Republic slowly but steadily progresses towards more and more legal rights for LGBTQ people along with public opinion progressing as well, in Russian Federation the trend actually reversed after a brief period of attempted progress.

So to me this, together with before mentioned environmentalism, is another one of the issues that actually is not left or right and it is just a coincidence that it is considered so in current political climate in the west. But lets not forget that political left can be just as adept at finding rationalizations for the homophobia of their power base as political right currently is. Hate of the other can, unfortunately, be quite the unifying issue in all kinds of political context.

When Captain America comes to the aid of James Bond…

The day before yesterday (or yonderday as I’d like to call it because why, English, why), British supervillain extraordinaire Piers Morgan, armed with supreme stupidity, verbose bigotry and lots of poop to fling tweeted a pic of Daniel Craig doing one of those normal thing people do like taking the baby for a walk to play Pokémon Go. OK, I made up the Pokémon part, but apparently, an image of a dad doing dad things was really too much for poor Piers.

Oh 007.. (sic) not you as well?!!! #papoose #emasculatedBond

The tweet got picked up by Chris Captain America Evans who rightfully called out Morgan for his attempt to literally shame a man into not caring for his child.

You really have to be so uncertain of your own masculinity to concern yourself with how another man carries his child. Any man who wastes time quantifying masculinity is terrified on the inside.

And for once, go read the replies which are full of dads posting pics of them carrying their kids.

Ice Cream Saloons: A Place For Unchaperoned Women.

Ice cream parlor of L. C. Fish, Merced, Calif.

Ice cream parlor of L. C. Fish, Merced, Calif. Source.

…Throughout the 19th century, restaurants catered to a predominately male clientele. Much like taverns and gentlemen’s clubs, they were places where men went to socialize, discuss business, and otherwise escape the responsibilities of work and home. It was considered inappropriate for women to dine alone, and those who did were assumed to be prostitutes. Given this association, unescorted women were banned from most high-end restaurants and generally did not patronize taverns, chophouses, and other masculine haunts.

As American cities continued to expand, it became increasingly inconvenient for women to return home for midday meals. The growing demand for ladies’ lunch spots inspired the creation of an entirely new restaurant: the ice-cream saloon. At a time when respectable women were excluded from much of public life, these decadent eateries allowed women to dine alone without putting their bodies or reputations at risk.

[…]

The first ice cream saloons were humble cafes that served little more than ice cream, pastries, and oysters. As women became more comfortable eating out, they expanded into opulent, full-service restaurants with sophisticated menus that rivaled those at most other elite establishments. In 1850, a journalist described one ice cream saloon as offering “an extensive bill of fare … ice cream — oysters, stewed, fried and broiled; —broiled chickens, omelettes, sandwiches; boiled and poached eggs; broiled ham; beef-steak, coffee, chocolate, toast and butter.” According to the historian Paul Freeman, the 1862 menu of an ice cream saloon in New York ran a whopping 57 pages and featured mother of pearl detailing.

[…]

Although ice cream parlors had an air of dainty domesticity, they also developed more sultry reputations. At the time, they were one of the few places where both men and women could go unchaperoned. As a result, they became popular destinations for dates and other illicit rendezvous. “Did a young lady wish to enjoy the society of the lover whom ‘Papa’ had forbidden the house?” the New York Times wrote in 1866. “A meeting at Taylor’s was arranged, where soft words and loving looks served to atone for parental harshness, and aided the digestion of pickled oysters.”

Innocent young couples weren’t the only pairs tucked together in the velvet booths. During a trip to Taylor’s, one writer observed “a middle-aged man and woman in deep and earnest conversation. They are evidently man and wife—though not each others!” Moralists were also outraged by the presence of pimps, prostitutes, and women “who were not over particular with the company they kept.” These scandalous scenes prompted rumors of ice cream “drugged with passion-exciting Vanilla” that seduced virtuous women into taking “the first step…which leads to infamy.”

These charges did little to dissuade respectable women from patronizing ice cream saloons. In fact, their reputation as “a trysting ground for all sorts of lovers” may have made the saloons all the more enticing. According to the Times, Taylor’s “always maintained its popularity, in spite of (or perhaps because of) rumors that it afforded most elegant opportunities for meetings not entirely correct.”

Oh my, passion-exciting Vanilla! I have vanilla ice cream in my freezer, and I had no idea of the evil I was hosting. I’ll enjoy it all the more for that. You can read much more about the history of Ice Cream Saloons at Atlas Obscura.

Fairy Tale Art.

A wonderful site, full of enough fairy tale art to keep a person quite busy, sent along by rq: Art Passions. Fairy Tale art and artists encompass so very many styles, and the illustrations are crucial to the stories, they inflame the imagination, and illuminate the stories from within. In this particular case, serendipity strikes, as I brought home a book of short tales by Leigh Bardugo yesterday:

The first story, Ayama and the Thorn Wood, is a grand story which I enjoyed very much. I do have one noisy complaint however, and it has to do with the fairy tale art. In the story, Ayama is described thusly:

“Ayama was clumsy and apt to drop things. Her body was solid and flat-footed, short and round as a beer jug.”

Given this description, why in the fuckety fuck is Ayama drawn like this?:

This never should have gotten a pass from anyone, let alone the author. It is not a crime to depict characters correctly, and all girls do not need to be tall and thin with a teeny waist. FFS, seeing this sort of thing is infuriating, and it went a long way to souring a very good story. In the story, Ayama is strong, courageous, imaginative, and thoughtful. In the drawing, she’s just another generic pretty, skinny girl. That’s not doing anyone any favours. We all come in different shapes and sizes, and that’s a message all kids need. What they don’t need is yet another cookie cutter shape to try and stuff themselves into, regardless of fit.

The Antichrist Will Be…

Detail from Sermon and Deeds of the Antichrist, Luca Signorelli, San Brizio Chapel.

Detail from Sermon and Deeds of the Antichrist, Luca Signorelli, San Brizio Chapel.

The antichrist will be…a homosexual Jew! So sayeth idiot Rick Wiles.

…Wiles said that this sort of “apostasy” is a sign that the End Times are near and warned that the Antichrist “will be a homosexual Jew.”

“What is the spirit of antichrist?” Wiles said. “It is anybody or anything that denies that Jesus Christ came to earth as God in human flesh. That is antichrist. If you deny it, then you are antichrist. And the Jews and Judaism is antichrist. Any Jew that denies that Jesus Christ is the son of God in human flesh, then he is antichrist. Judaism is antichrist. Islam is antichrist. Hinduism, Buddhism, all those isms [are] antichrist because they deny the virgin birth of the son of God.”

Yeah, yeah, only christianity is right, but you all can’t fucking figure out which christianity is right, you all think your particular flavour is right, and the rest are wrong. Nothing new to see here, although I am surprised to see atheism given a pass. I guess we don’t count against all those other isms.

“I personally believe that the Man of Perdition, the one that you call Antichrist, I personally believe he will be a homosexual Jew,” Wiles added. “Watch out for global Zionism taking over this planet through artificial intelligence. There are two things that you cannot publicly criticize now; you cannot criticize the homosexual agenda and you cannot criticize Zionism. Those two are together. They’re driven by the same spirit. And what is coming is a global entity that is going to be Zionism and homosexuality and it’s going to be operated through artificial intelligence and it’s going to be policed through the most high-tech surveillance society that you can imagine. It will be a nightmare.”

Sigh. Seems to me that I see a hell of a lot of public criticism of all things queer; and worse, much bigoted railing and open hatred. Same goes for any and all things and people Jewish. I haven’t noticed the nazis shutting the fuck up lately, or just your garden variety bigots, who are well known for their fear and hatred of Jewish people. So much for that declaration. The christian agenda of attempting to usher in the ‘end times’ is hardly a secret, and you have to have those pesky Jewish people around for that to happen, but it sure doesn’t mean you have to like them, right, Mr. Wiles? As for that ushering in, shouldn’t that really be the business of that lazy ass god of yours?

As for your pretend “global entity”, no, that’s not going to happen, anymore than the terminator showing up at your door. As for high-tech surveillance societies, well, that’s most of the major players, and has been for a very long time. No one loves tech more than governments. That’s not to say that most of them are very good at it, they aren’t. Mostly, they all spend time trying to shift blame and cover up all the mass fuck ups. Surveillance is a fact of life anymore. Well, unless you’re a cop.

“Israel embraces homosexuality,” he continued. “They need to be told, ‘You’re sinners, you’re going to go to Hell, you need to repent, you need to call upon the name of Jesus!’”

I’m pretty sure all of Israel is not a hotbed of queerness, and I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of bigotry and disapproval there too, just like everywhere else.

RWW has the full story.

Christians In Prison: Pushing Anti-Transgender Policy.

Image from official notice changing Bureau of Prisons regulations dealing with transgender people.

Image from official notice changing Bureau of Prisons regulations dealing with transgender people.

Christians, even in prison, committed to doing evil shit and making sure other people are hurt.

In their complaint, the Christian inmates reportedly refer to the transgender women as “men,” in keeping with the Religious Right’s strategy, aggressively promoted by the Heritage Foundation’s Ryan Anderson, of refusing to acknowledge transgender identity and insisting that it is nothing more than a mental health problem. In a March article in the Witherspoon’s Public Discourse, Ryan quoted his mentor Robert George saying, “Changing sexes is a metaphysical impossibility because it is a biological impossibility.”

…The change “comes after four evangelical Christian women in a Texas prison sued in US District Court to challenge the Obama-era guidelines, and claimed sharing quarters with transgender women subjected them to dangerous conditions.” The Obama-era rules allowed flexibility for prison staff to make case-by-case determinations that considered the wishes of transgender inmates as well as management and security considerations. But, according to BuzzFeed, the new guidelines issued on Friday “instruct officials to ‘use biological sex as the initial determination for designation’ for screening, housing and offering programming services.”

Oh, you can just feel that christian hate, can’t you? I have to get myself together for chemo day tomorrow, and I have to say, I’d rather deal with chemo than with fucking christians. Ick. RWW has the full story.

Scott Lively: The Voice For Authentic Conservative Homosexuals.

All around repugnant, immoral, evil person, Scott Lively has a new shtick in his bid for governor of Massachusetts: he’s going to be the voice of all those nice, properly closeted, quiet, conservative queers, who understand that heterosexuality must remain dominant. Mr. Lively is doing his damnedest to come across as reasonable and tolerant. Not at all the same Scott Lively who once called for the execution of all queer folk, no, no. If you want to read his glurgetastic appeal to “authentic conservative homosexuals”, you can do that at Lively on “Gays”. If you’ve eaten today, you might want to wait a while. In the meantime:

“One of my goals here in this campaign is I want to establish sort of a profile of what an authentic conservative homosexual looks like,” Lively said, quickly making clear that this should not be construed to mean that he would consider “ever endorsing homosexuality, because it’s something condemned by God.”

Lively asserted that “authentically conservative” gay voters are nothing like “the gay progressives,” because the former place “an emphasis on personal privacy instead of gay pride parades cramming it down everybody’s throats.”

Lively said that gay rights activists today are part of a “radical cultural Marxist warfare” movement whereas the founders of the fight for gay rights were simply seeking “the right to be left alone,” which is something he is willing to support because “we should respect people’s right to be wrong, because in God’s perfect timing, he works with every person.”

This is a truly astonishing pile of shit. I don’t believe for one second that Lively has at all softened his views on queer people, he has been utterly virulent in his hate and condemnation of them for decades. He really wants that governorship though, and he’s obviously more than willing to lie his arse off in order to obtain said office. I sincerely hope the people of Massachusetts show Mr. Lively the curb.

Lively declared that as long as gay conservatives “agree that mainstream society should be—and must be—heterosexual,” then society should be willing to accommodate them, especially when faced with the threat that the “gay cultural supremacy being driven by the hard-left progressives” is creating an environment in which “the natural family may actually be facing extinction.”

That is not going to happen. If anything, climate change will get us first, but people are not going to stop breeding. The majority of people on this planet are hetero, and most of them either want or end up with children, and there’s a fucktonne of people on this planet.

“If the concept of male and female complementarity actually becomes criminalized, and that’s where this is headed,” Lively warned, “we’re going to face some really serious problems.”

No, that is NOT where we are headed, you melodramatic asshole. Some people are now learning about gender, and coming to understand it properly, and expanding on the rigid gender definitions which have defined, and often devastated generations of people. That’s not a threat to hetros in any way whatsoever. Family has become a much larger umbrella, to embrace all manner of configurations, and in many cases, extended families are coming back, which is a good thing, because there’s a lot of support in that. There are a whole lot of children out there who are in desperate need of homes, and assholes like you, Mr. Lively, would stop queer folk from providing those homes. It’s good to remember that you don’t actually care about any people outside of evangelical fringe, and all you want is the power to oppress.

RWW has the full story.

Wearing a MAGA hat is like being openly gay in 1950! Really!!1!

Gavin McInnes, leader of the Proud Boys, has decided that wearing a MAGA hat in New York City is the worst of the worst, persecution wise.

“Here in New York City, wearing a MAGA hat is like being openly gay in 1950, and I’m not exaggerating,” McInnes said on Tuesday’s episode of his CRTV program. “You will get your ass beat, you will not last at a bar in Harlem—we try it all the time and get booted out. There’s many bars that say, ‘You cannot openly be here.’ If you go into a bar wearing a MAGA hat, people start getting uncomfortable. The bartender will ask you to leave politely and people will yell at you on the street and spit on you.”

Perhaps you shouldn’t be trying to push your way into Harlem bars, idiot. There’s one big difference between quietly minding your own business and getting hassled and going looking to get hassled. And of course you’re exaggerating – just what would you know about anyone being openly gay in the 1950s? Or anyone closeted and living in constant fear of being outed? Shoving your way  into Harlem bars while sporting arrogant whiteness with a stupid cap on is in no way equivalent.

It must have occurred to the rather dim Mr. McInnes that associating himself and his cadre of idiots with gay men might be a bit off agenda, so he closed with this incredibly offensive tidbit:

“You’re treating us like pedophiles,” he added.

Because of course, you can’t mention gay men without making an association with pedophiles. For that alone, I’d certainly consider spitting on you, Mr. McInnes.

RWW has the story and video.

“If you join a gym, don’t join one with gay men in it.”

Over at Barbwire, Robert Oscar Lopez has an article up on how to be a Manly, testosterone laden STRAIGHT DUDE, complete with ten ‘tips’ for getting over that awful gay. There’s so much material (two dense pages), I’m just going to pull bits here and there, you can check the whole mess for yourself, and calling it a mess is a serious understatement. As well as all the lies of the “ex-gay” bullshit, there’s a serious misconception of just what a “straight man” is, too. There’s a full embrace of toxic masculinity, along with some incredible mistakes in that regard. Altogether, it’s terribly pathetic, a complete caricature of being a man, a cartoon construct filled with desperation.

I don’t have much more time before the law makes it illegal for me to share the ten tips I will share in this blog. So I better type quickly and give you ten tips on: how to go from gay to straight. I am speaking from some expertise, but mostly from my own experience. These tips will be helpful if you find yourself wanting to get out of the gay world but your goal is not celibacy.

Oh, I see the drama has not been forsaken. It will be illegal to talk about my desire to be a straight dude, oh no!!1!!

There are certain perks about being gay that you are going to miss. For instance, if you identify as gay, people pity you and give you less responsibility for being a jerk. You get to be a complete whore and have that called liberation. Sex is easy to get and commitments easy to flake out on.

It’s a bad start, painting the queer communities all over the world this way, like a bad ’80s movie. Cruuuuise, baybee! Anyone can be a jerk. Anyone can sleep around. Sex is not always easy to get. Anyone can be afraid of commitment. Unfortunately, Mr. Lopez is all about the stereotypes.

In the gay world, you may have competed from time to time for the attention of men with nice physiques; now, you will be fighting against men with even more well-developed physiques, trying to achieve victory over them in order to win for yourself a coveted prize: a virtuous and desirable wife.

Soon you will see how much harder life is for straight guys.

:Snortsputter: Sorry, almost choked on my tea there. Oh yes, let’s hear it for the poor, pathetic straight dudes. Their lives are so gosh darn hard, livin’ the status quo! Now maybe it’s just me, but I haven’t really noticed a tonne of straight dudes with even MORE well-developed physiques wandering about. Maybe it’s where I live, but there seems to be a preponderance of pot bellies.

Once you go straight, you may go years without sex; nobody wants to hear you cry about it. Once you find your woman, you can’t just blow off things she complains about. You have to sit and listen to her whine about stupid stuff for hours without laughing or rolling your eyes or getting snarky.

I’m not sure the sacrifice is worth this, and while Mr. Lopez goes on and on about the big prize of a wife, owning that there woman, he paints a picture of complete subjection to said woman, and you just have to take it, because that’s the price you pay. There’s not one bloody word about finding a partner, a friend, someone to share your life with love and care. And I have to say, no one is getting my damn snark. It’s all mine, and I’m not sacrificing for anyone.

Most importantly, once you go straight, nobody wants to hear you complain or talk about your problems. The minute you leave gay identity behind, you go from being a pitiable and pathetic victim to a grown man with the ability to solve his own problems. This means you cannot break down or become defeatist, and you cannot expect sympathy just for being you. When straight men threaten to kill themselves if people do not give them what they want, this is called abusive rather than the grounds for a hashtag campaign.

So…you’re saying straight men suck at being friends? All the gay people I know are not considered to be pitiable or pathetic by anyone, least of all themselves, and I’m afraid they get stuck with solving their own problems, just like everyone else, you stupid dipshit. Of course straight men can break down, they can become defeatist, and depressed, just as anyone can, and that calls for support and help, not that you’d offer any, Mr. Lopez. And more to the point, Mr. Lopez, it’s perfectly normal and alright for straight men to break down, feel defeatist, or become depressed. No man should feel like he cannot reach out for help or that men don’t deserve help. Keeping crap all bottled up is the reason why a lot of angry, straight, mostly white men end up going on mass killings. It’s horrible, evil, toxic bullshit that men are supposed to be silent sufferers, that “real” men don’t do this and don’t do that. It’s a shit attitude, and it’s harmful. People are people, and all people should be able to reach out when they are in need, with no stigma attached.

Perhaps the biggest transformation signifies the most important change: your sexual identity will no longer be based on what you want, but rather, what you give to a woman. You must abandon the practice of dwelling on whether you like this or are excited by that–the issue now is: what body do you have, and how can it give pleasure to others? You have a penis, which is the basic piece of equipment to bring happiness to a woman (though you must make sure that match is right). But from now on, the quest is not to gratify your penis, but rather to give pleasure to her with it. You will measure your sex life by how happy she is, how pleasured she feels, how much satisfaction she expresses.

Did you get that, women? All it takes to make you happy is a penis. I wonder if Mr. Lopez knows you can avail yourself of a wide variety of detachable penises, in varying degrees of softness/hardness, colour, and size? Some of those bad boys even have convenient lotion or lube inside. Others have happy time batteries. Oh my! Personally, I don’t want a partner who is obsessed with only one side of the sexual aspect of the relationship.

You need to get healthy, with a decent body mass and strength. You need to be financially stable. If you join a gym, don’t join one with gay men in it. Be around masculine men and pick up their mannerisms and humor. Do not listen to women who say they want sensitive men or an equal share of power in the household; women want leadership, strength, and guidance from men. You have to become a rock of fortitude, a source of security–for men, that is the love we give. And you have to be in good enough shape to make her body feel unbelievable pleasures she might have never imagined.

Just how does one avoid a gym with even one gay person in it? How would you know? I’m pretty sure going around and asking people if they’re some flavour of queer would get you promptly kicked out. Oh, and security is nice, but I prefer my partner to actually like and love me.

The manosphere may shock you (I mean sites like Roosh’s Return of Kings) with its misogyny and vulgarity. But you need to hear the thoughts of straight guys.

Those are not the thoughts of straight dudes, Mr. Lopez. Those are the thoughts of toxic assholes, who are not the least bit interested in finding a wife; they’re into the dark side of that whoredom business, using, abusing, and tossing. It’s all about notches. As for the thoughts of straight guys, well here’s the thing: you’re talking about a fucktonne of individuals, Mr. Lopez, and most of them are not represented by the toxic manosphere. You seem to buying into this notion that a manly man has to be a toxic, misogynistic asshole.  Straight dudes are not a  hive mind, or any other type of collective.

It will also educate you on how straight men deal with setbacks and frustration. You need to increase your masculinity and self-confidence before you start dating girls. In addition to spending your time online in these kinds of environments, you want to do activities that place you in contact with straight men, and do not confide in other guys everything you are dealing with. Part of being a man is not having to talk about everything in your head, and just listening to what other people do. If you want to be in a relationship with a woman, you need to become a man — the kind of person who can be stalwart, unflappable, strong, and reliable, someone with no problems or drama. Being around straight men will gradually help you get there.

Ah, the school of stiff upper lip and penis! You don’t need anymore than that, straight men!

In crass terms, when you become a woman’s sexual partner (husband), the sex life of the marriage will largely depend on your sexual performance. You will need strong abdominal muscles, gluteal muscles, arms, and legs. You want your woman to feel like a powerful animal has her in his power, who instead of crushing her is using his strength to lift her out of the doldrums of this world into a dreamworld of ecstasy and limitless wonder. For her, sex is a vacation like riding the jet skis in Jamaica. You are the stallion she will ride into glory. But to be that stallion, you need to be muscular, have high testosterone, and be fit.

I, uh, I oh gods…falls over laughing. I think Mr. Lopez may have been reading a tonne of bad bodice rippers. A good sex life is one in which all the performances count. If this is just about you, might as well toss the wife a nice detachable penis, and go back to masturbating.

Okay, that’s it for me. I can’t take anymore. I’m going to go clean instead. Yikes. You can read all two pages of compleat shit here.

Tennessee Republicans: War on Women.

Rep. Bill Dunn (AP/Getty/Photo Montage by Salon).

Rep. Bill Dunn (AP/Getty/Photo Montage by Salon).

Tennessee rethugs have come up with a new way to shame and oppress women, forcibly reminding all women that their only function in life is to be a silent vessel for babies.

Last week, the Republican-controlled Tennessee state Senate passed a bill to erect the “Tennessee Monument to Unborn Children, In Memory of the Victims of Abortion: Babies, Women, and Men” on the capitol grounds, near memorials to victims of slavery and the Holocaust. A similar bill has passed the state house, and it’s likely that the state’s Republican governor, Bill Haslam, will sign this legislation into law.

[…]

“Both of these monuments that are already here recognize that atrocities occurred because human beings were treated as less than human,” state Rep. Bill Dunn (R) said in March. “In both cases, the vulnerable and defenseless were subjected to the will of the powerful.”

“The taking of the life of a baby in the womb is related to this brand of inhumanity,” Dunn added.

[…]

It’s critical to understand that the intended “memorial” does not memorialize any actual people. Babies are not harmed by abortion, because babies only exist after a pregnancy is completed. Men are not victimized by abortion, because men do not have any rights over women’s bodies that can be violated. And women are not victims of abortion either, since it’s a process they choose for themselves and one that research suggests is generally the right decision for those who make it.

Tennessee Republicans are doing more than insulting women. They’re minimizing the seriousness of slavery and the Holocaust by suggesting that the millions of real victims of these atrocities are no more important than the imaginary victims of abortion.

The timing of this memorial to fake victims is noteworthy. This is all happening during an ongoing war over memorials to the Confederacy and the Ku Klux Klan, which Tennessee progressives have been trying to take down and Tennessee Republicans are trying to preserve.

There isn’t the least bit of subtlety in this latest move to stomp women back into their “proper place”. It’s disgusting and beyond wrong, and this is what conservatives, especially christian conservatives have come to, a complete caricature of lunatics running the asylum. In the year 2018, women are still viewed and treated as property, public and private, as well as mental simpletons who couldn’t possibly make decisions for themselves. This is the viewpoint of the regressive lunkheads in Tennessee, who will use any means to make sure women know they are property, and that it’s best left to men to decide what’s best for any given woman.

Amanda Marcotte at Salon has the full story.

Cheddar Gorgeous: Let’s Get Visible!

Trump in Drag, credit: Cheddar Gorgeous / Facebook.

Trump in Drag, credit: Cheddar Gorgeous / Facebook.

Oh, I would give so much to be a part of this, it sounds absolutely fabulous and it has the added bonus that it will make the Tiny Tyrant squirm all over.

Queen Elizabeth won’t the only queen greeting Donald Trump when he visits the U.K. in July.

A thousand people have signed onto a Facebook invitation for a drag-queen protest to greet the president in London on July 13. Another nearly 7,000 people are interested in attending.

Manchester drag performer Cheddar Gorgeous and four other performers have issued the call to all drag kings, queens, queers and our allies.

“Due to the appalling way the Trump administration has regarded the rights and welfare of the LGBTQI communities in the U.S., the idea of a Trump visit to the U.K. is unacceptable,” the invitation says.

“Let’s get visible, stand with our sisters, brothers and others in America.”

You can read much more at LGBTQ Nation, and The Guardian. Cheddar Gorgeous on Twitter.  I wish all the attendees the very best, and I hope there are going to a ton of photos.

The Book of Exposition: The Secrets of Oriental Sexuology.

15th Century erotica! Oh my. This looks to be very interesting, and I do plan on reading it. Unfortunately I can’t do that right away, the day before chemo is always a busy one.

A decade or so after the famed Orientalist Richard Burton translated Muhammad ibn Muhammad al-Nafzawi’s The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Delight (1886), an anonymous translator became the first to critically assess and introduce for Anglophone audiences another of the Middle East’s more controversial and enigmatic texts — Kitab al-Izah Fi’ilm al-Nikah b-it-Tamam w-al-Kamal, or The Book of Exposition — a collection of fifteenth-century erotica. Despite there being much dispute over the authorship of the work, from both Western and Middle Eastern scholars over the centuries, The Book of Exposition is nowadays credited to a fifteenth-century Egyptian polymath called Jalal ad’Din al-Suyuti (1445-1505). Although perhaps best known for his co-authorship of Tafsir al-Jalalayn (Tafsir of the Two Jalals), a classical Sunni exegesis of the Quran, al-Suyuti was also a prolific erotologist, writing at least twenty-three treatises on various aspects of the sexual arts.

The two dozen stories he presents in The Book of Exposition are an exploration of promiscuity and sexual taboos under the societal constraints of the Arab-Islamic world. In “The Strange Transformation that Befell a Certain Believer’s Prickle” a man is granted a “Night of Power” in which he is given three wishes to be fulfilled by Allah.

[…]

In his opening essay and commentary, An English Bohemian sets out to dispel Victorian attitudes to sexuality through the idolisation of the Oriental — setting up “Oriental Sexuology” as a mystical alternative for aspiring libertines/hedonists. He doesn’t just limit himself to the Orient in his examination of sexuality. He offers an insight into the sexual customs of other lands he claims to have travelled and researched extensively as a former practitioner of medicine: from Loango to the Aztecs, Paraguay to Samoa, Europe to Arabia. Despite his intentions, we perhaps end up learning more about Western attitudes to sex than the those of the non-European cultures he examines. His assertions, in their elevation of Orient over the Occident, appear to be motivated more by a desire to rebel against the prevailing establishment of his own culture than offering a nuanced picture of a foreign culture’s attitudes to sex.

You can read more at The Public Domain Review (the book is also available there), or go straight to the book here.

Sexual Normalcy?

Stonewall.uk.

Bryan Fischer is just about orgasmic over the ouster of the House Chaplain. It seems most people think it was over a prayer by Patrick Conroy, that the tax bill be fair, so Ryan said he was too political.  Anyroad, Mr. Fischer is just so damn excited:

“Here is a good news item for the day,” Fischer declared. “He is an out gay man, he’s married to a man—quote, end quote—so it was a shameful move to the put this guy in charge of the chaplaincy of the House in the first place.”

“This is a great win,” Fischer continued. “He’s pro-gay, he’s a homosexual guy that’s married to a homosexual guy. Big win, because Paul Ryan is not going to replace him with somebody who is going to have that kind of a left-leaning tilt. This is good news for the agenda of morality, especially sexual normalcy in the United States.”

There’s no such thing as sexual normalcy, Mr. Fischer. Missionary “for the baybees” Only is not official in any, it’s boring as fuck, and not everyone is interested in breeding. Mr. Fischer is providing yet another grand example of christian stupidity and inability to fact check anything. Oh no, much better to start spewing lies. I would have though that even someone like Mr. Fischer would know about the celibacy issue in the catholic church. I have no idea whatsoever of Patrick Conroy’s sexual orientation, but if he’s managed to stay celibate all these years, what in the fuck does it matter? He’s certainly not married to anyone. That’s kind of a no-no in catholicism. It took me about 4, 5 minutes to check stuff out, and it turns out the Patrick Conroy is pro-gay. I guess that’s not bad enough, no, better make up a bunch of shit instead. Fucking christians. I imagine they are in such a froth because Patrick Conroy came out and said sex is much more than breeding, oh no!

New Civil Rights Movements has a good article up about this mess. Bryan Fischer’s screeth is at RWW.