Tuesday, November 24, 2009

One News Now readers revolt against Matt Barber's attack on 10-year-old

Earlier today, I talked about an article in today's edition of the American Family Association's One News Now.

The article was about a 10-year-old child in Arkansas who has refused to say the Pledge of Allegiance because he doesn't agree that there is liberty and justice for all; specifically he feels that lgbts aren't treated fairly in this country.

Leave it to One News Now to publish a one-sided article featuring comments from whatever religious right figurehead who happens to be available.

In this case, the figurehead happened to be the Liberty Counsel's Matt Barber who spouted the usual "the homsexuals are trying to indoctrinate children" hokum:

Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel believes the boy has been "utterly manipulated and exploited by adult moral relativists who are indirectly using him and other children as political pawns in the burgeoning culture war that is reaching a boil."

Barber further finds that "it's really a testament to the level of success that liberal and secular and homosexual activist propagandists in Hollywood and in our public schools and in much of our elitist establishment organizations have enjoyed."

The lesson this incident sends, according to Barber, is that it is time for parents to responsibly teach their children the correct, Christian message concerning homosexuality.

Here where the story gets bizarre. Apparently Barber's comments have not gone over well with some One News Now readers.

The article itself received a 2 out of 5 rating (and this is from the site where some of the wildest commentaries and articles about such subjects as lgbts in general and President Obama have received 4.5 to 5 ratings) and some of the comments are interesting.

Granted, there are a few which say the following:

Good article - Matt Barber got it right! A child that age only knows what he has been told by the adults in his life. The "massive, Hollywood-homosexual indoctrination machine" is opperating just as it intends to do, and we see the evidence all around us.

While the boy has every right to decline to say these words, there is nothing wrong with upholding the ideals of "liberty and justice for all," even if not fully achieved. In this instance the boy is obviously being spoon-fed unconventional, made-up liberal rights. Why didn’t he speak about liberty & justice for the 1.2 million who are violently aborted ever year in USA? The Declaration of Independences upholds life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness (virtue), but does not say anything about a right to have sexual relations with people of the same sex, which is not the apples-to-apples equivalent of natural marriage that is available to all adults.

If he chooses to not pledge then he can do so outside of the classroom. Obvious exploitation by ignorant minds.

However for now (One News Now could choose to add or eliminate comments), a lot of the comments are in favor of the child standing up for his beliefs:

If he were refraining from saying the pledge because he wasn't allowed to pray in school, you all would be hailing him as a hero. Why is this different? Taking a stand is as American as baseball.

Those that mention the children only know what they have been told, what about all those kids in attendance at these Tea Party events this past summer holding up signs opposing this or that. What were they told?

Equal rights means they can do the same as heterosexuals, which is true. Special rights means they want something different, like marry someone of the same sex. No one is telling them they cannot marry, just not each other. I know homosexual activists will not agree, but let's at least call it what it is, which is special rights or different rights.

As a fifth grader, I knew that gays and lesbians don't have the same rights as straight couples. Just because he's young doesn't mean he can't form an opinion of HIS OWN. I applaud Will Phillips for standing up for his beliefs. He has freedom of speech, which gives him the right to speak his views. The Supreme Court has ruled that Freedom of Speech includes symbolic speech, such as not speaking at all, or not saying the pledge.

I teach in a public school and implore kids to stand as a sign of respect for our country. The vast majority do. Rarely, do the seated give any excuse other than "I don't want to" or "I'm tired" or "You can't make me." While I might not agree with this kid - I think that his aim here is a bit misguided - I doubt that he is the result of some massive, Hollywood-homosexual indoctrination machine. I think he's just a little kid in Alabama who wants to take a stand against injustices in his country. If you scream "indoctrination" every time a kid is outspoken on an issue, we'll get it back every time a kid stands up for Christian values. Loosen up, Barber.

I have a hard time understanding what it is that is Christian about Matt Barber. I saw the interview of the kid, he was not being manipulated and seemed quite educated. It simply wasn't the education Matt Barber likes. Good job on providing the link so people can watch and decide for themselves.

It could be just wishful thinking on my part but it seems to me that Barber's comments has crossed a line that many readers of this supposed Christian publication wished he didn't.

Editor's note - Here is another, much more positive perspective of the situation.

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Matt Barber picks on a 10-year-old and other Tuesday midday news briefs

Matt Barber: The Arbiter of All That Is Right - Matt Barber picks on a 10-year-old child. Gotta love those Christian values.

Jenkins gets full custody - Box Turtle Bulletin provides more detail on the Janet Jenkins/Lisa Miller custody case, including a timeline. It's an excellent source of information.

Was that praying or preying, Wendster? - More lies, more distortions from Concerned Women for America.

Bangor student holds same-sex marriage rally - More reasons to love the young folks.

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Lesbian mother wins custody case against 'ex-gay' former partner

Via Truthwinsout.org and the Rutland Herald in Vermont comes this story:

A Rutland Family Court judge ordered a first-of-its kind parent custody change Friday in a child-visitation dispute involving a Virginia woman and her former lesbian partner who lives in Fair Haven.

In a 21-page order, Judge William Cohen granted sole custody of 7-year-old Isabella Miller to her nonbiological but court-recognized parent, Janet Jenkins.

Jenkins and her former partner — and Isabella's biological mother — Lisa Miller, who renounced homosexuality after the couple split in 2003, have been in and out of courtrooms in Vermont and Virginia for years arguing over visitation rights.

. . . After finding Miller in contempt of court earlier this year for denying Jenkins access to Isabella, Cohen said he decided the only way to ensure the child equal access to both parents was to switch custody.

Watch out for the religious right barrage of nonsense to come crashing down regarding this case. It has been their cause celebre for a long time.

Despite how they will spin it, there are a few facts that I am sure the religious right will not tell anyone about this situation.

I covered these facts here and here.

When they were a couple, Miller and Jenkins decided to raise Isabella together.

When they split,  Miller agreed to let Jenkins have visitation rights. Jenkins was even paying child support.

Miller refused to allow Jenkins to have unsupervised time with Isabella claiming that Jenkins was harming Isabella. The Virginia Child Protective Services investigated and found the charges to be false.

Unfortunately the case is not over yet. Matt Staver of the Liberty Counsel will appeal the case on two fronts:

. . . appealing Cohen's decision to the Vermont Supreme Court while continuing a battle in the Virginia Court of Appeals regarding the state's authority to enforce Vermont orders that conflict with Virginia's laws.

In other words, expect to see and read more lies about this case from Staver and company.

My hope is that despite all of this, the best thing is done for little Isabella.

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A quick look into the Sarah Palin camp of supporters

Not necessarily an lgbt issue per se, but trust me when I say that all things are connected. Just how many of these lovely folks are pro-lgbt? I was just waiting on at least one of them to start spouting off about "traditional marriage is under attack."

Editor's note - Forgive the bleeding of the video into the sidebars. Apparently my blog is acting strange this morning.

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