God bless Google's ad targeting algorithm. May 10, 2003 6:35 AM   Subscribe

Alongside the gay wedding and anti-homophobia ads lured into the seductive clutches of the Mark Foley story, there sits an ad for Texas Congressional candidate Randy Neugebauer, a "committed pro-family, pro-life conservative who has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ." God bless Google's ad targeting algorithm.
posted by rcade to Bugs at 6:35 AM (112 comments total)

Check out the title tag on Neugebauer's website. I have to say, I'm randy for Congress too. Aren't we all?
posted by rusty at 7:26 AM on May 10, 2003


Why must Randy Neugebauer always talk about fucking all the time?
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 9:20 AM on May 10, 2003


I'm no Google Ad expert, but doesn't it work on a purchased keyword system? I mean, didn't Randy's campaign specifically purchase some keyword (or combination of keywords) that appeared in the Mark Foley post (for example, "Gay" and "Congress")?
posted by jonson at 10:26 AM on May 10, 2003


I have to say, I'm randy for Congress too. Aren't we all?

I almost fell out of my chair.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 1:27 PM on May 10, 2003


I wonder if Neugebauer is a CHRISTIAN FUNDAMENTALISTâ„¢

(trademark 2003, property of bureaustyle, used without consent)
posted by dhoyt at 1:39 PM on May 10, 2003


When you link Randy's site that way (through pagead.googlesyndication.com), are you using up his google ad impressions?

And if so, that would be wrong, but *high five*.
posted by RJ Reynolds at 2:54 PM on May 10, 2003


I didn't realize I had done that, but the answer is probably yes.
posted by rcade at 4:49 PM on May 10, 2003


Just a word to the wise-you reap what you sow....
(now what the heck is it you did? Clueless minds want to know.)
posted by konolia at 5:29 PM on May 10, 2003


People pay per click for Google ads, so yes, every click on your link probably costs him with the way you linked it, rcade.

His cost per click would largely depend on the particular keyword and competition. I have some clients that pay between .65 to 1.05 per click for business to business type services. They could probably pay less, but this rate seems to keep them at the top of the ad queue.
posted by madamjujujive at 5:43 PM on May 10, 2003


What I did was link to a special Google link that leads to Randy for Congress instead of the real URL. Since Google is likey to be charging him per link, I've cost the guy money that he could've spent on more mistargeted online ads (perhaps we'll see Randy again in the next furry erotica, Star Trek slash fiction, or balloon fetish discussion). It wasn't intentional. If Randy is reading this, I'm sorry. If it's any consolation, I loved your work in NewsRadio and Office Space.
posted by rcade at 5:53 PM on May 10, 2003


While that ad is intresting, in the same article I get this disturbing ad:

Regeneration Books
Christian help for sexual healing Change is possible.


Which contains a section on "Dealing with Homosexuality".

It makes me extremely sad to see this ad on Metafilter.
posted by betaray at 7:24 PM on May 10, 2003


I see that your ad has been disapproved for content that is 'Hate/Anti.' Google policy does not permit the advertisement of websites that contain "language that advocates against an individual, group, or organization."

At this time, Google policy does not permit the advertisement of "Hate/anti" on our website.

Is it just me, or is Regeneration Books clearly "anti-gay?" Doesn't it advocate against individuals? Or a group of individuals? Or the secret, evil gay organization whose operatives turn innocent children homosexual?
posted by gramcracker at 7:52 PM on May 10, 2003


It makes me extremely sad to see this ad on Metafilter.

At least it will be appropriately mocked and messed with.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 7:52 PM on May 10, 2003


It makes me extremely sad to see this ad on Metafilter.

It makes me extremely sad to see any ad on MetaFilter. It also makes me extremely sad to read all the anti-Christian and left-wing propaganda on MetaFilter.

It makes me extremely happy that I can purchase my own big brother Google text ad to promote any old thing I like, and that friends, is my prayer for you.
posted by hama7 at 8:01 PM on May 10, 2003


This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually gay people out there that would genuinely prefer to be heterosexual. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own sexual destiny.
posted by konolia at 9:02 PM on May 10, 2003


are you saying that Regeneration Books, which provides "Christian help for sexual healing Change," wants to empower people to direct their own sexual destiny?
posted by mcsweetie at 9:13 PM on May 10, 2003


It makes me extremely sad to see any ad on MetaFilter.

What are you, some kind of commie? Capitalism is a rising tide that lifts all boats.
posted by rcade at 9:14 PM on May 10, 2003


The sad part is that there's gay people out there who are told there's something wrong with the way they naturally are, and that they'll only be happy if they change their very being.
posted by gramcracker at 9:18 PM on May 10, 2003


Capitalism is a rising tide that lifts all boats.

You are correct. And actually, I have found several sites that I wouldn't have seen otherwise thanks to the new Google ads. I guess it's just an aesthetic thing. At least they don't flash, blink, or spew pop-ups, but give them time.
posted by hama7 at 9:36 PM on May 10, 2003


that friends, is my prayer for you.

can we use up hama7's prayers the same way as google clicks?

hey, hama7, over here! i'm a communist that eats babies. pray for me!

(maybe that way we can exhaust the secret cache of prayer points he's been saving up for the next election - then he'll be powerless to prevent gay socialists from seizing control...)
posted by andrew cooke at 9:49 PM on May 10, 2003


"Please join our team today and allow me to represent you in the spirit of Ronald Reagan and under the leadership of President George W. Bush in Washington, D.C."

Spirit? I didn't know he was dead yet, nor a saint.
posted by skallas at 10:06 PM on May 10, 2003


Capitalism is a rising tide that lifts all boats.

You know, except them folks as can't afford boats. But they're probably commies anyway.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:25 PM on May 10, 2003


I eat babies, too. But I assume that's common knowledge by now.

mmmmm..... babies....
posted by kaibutsu at 10:39 PM on May 10, 2003


whats wrong with being happy ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:15 AM on May 11, 2003


But they're probably commies anyway.

Terrorists.
posted by rcade at 6:07 AM on May 11, 2003


hmm. let's try a few more:

This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually black people out there that would genuinely prefer to be white. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own racial destiny.

This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually male people out there that would genuinely prefer to be female. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own gender destiny.

This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually poor people out there that would genuinely prefer to be rich. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own financial destiny.

This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually dog people out there that would genuinely prefer to be cat people. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own pet-related destiny.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 9:14 AM on May 11, 2003


hama&: I know we've crossed swords before, and this is not supposed to be a troll, but are there any limits to free speech for you? For example, would it be ok to have 'hate jew' text-ads if one googled for, or had a MeFi thread on the topic of, either 'anti-semitism' or 'Zionism'?

BTW, I know what you are saying: free speech means I can place a text-ad proposing tolerance for all, as much as a bigot could do the opposite.

PS: this is MetaTalk - where's the anti-Christian left-wing comment in this site?
posted by dash_slot- at 9:39 AM on May 11, 2003


hama7
posted by dash_slot- at 9:40 AM on May 11, 2003


the irony is that the challenge of being homosexual has little or nothing to do with sexuality and almost everything to do with groups like Regeneration Books.
posted by mcsweetie at 9:46 AM on May 11, 2003


Matt :

#1-Arguably, Michael Jackson.

#2- Ever heard of transexuals?

#3-Most everybody I know.

#4-Obviously they have Seen The Light.


By the way, I choose to be a monogamous heterosexual. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
posted by konolia at 9:49 AM on May 11, 2003


Mcsweetie-if I can deal with people thinking I am a prude, surely they can deal with people who think homosexuality is wrong. You can't please everybody.
posted by konolia at 9:51 AM on May 11, 2003


konolia: the analogy works only if people assault, kill, & deny you, your partner & your children rights "for being a prude" - do they?

These are not just thoughts (everyone has them...), they are actions.
posted by dash_slot- at 9:58 AM on May 11, 2003


By the way, I choose to be a monogamous heterosexual.

Oh, thank God. Here I was thinking all you monogs were born that way.
posted by WolfDaddy at 10:10 AM on May 11, 2003


Well, a REAL Christian wouldn't do any of the above to a gay person (except for the marriage thing*).

As for the rest, people who would do any of that are just evil. Dragging "Christianity" into it just adds to the buttheadedness of it all.)

(*Argue with God about that one. Leave me out of it.)
posted by konolia at 10:10 AM on May 11, 2003


konolia, people (REAL Christians too!) do those things every day to those of us in America who are gay and lesbian...In fact, they feel empowered to act that way because of the hateful language they hear in churches and from religious AND secular leaders all over this country. It's a pity that you can't see that.
posted by amberglow at 10:34 AM on May 11, 2003


This may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually gay people out there that would genuinely prefer to be heterosexual. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own sexual destiny.

That you should be free to decide for yourself how you feel about your sexuality is why people who judge you for it -- who create a society that decides for you -- should be disempowered to do so.

Imagine if there were a part of society that claimed it was immoral to be a woman. Imagine, moreover, that as a consequence, some women wished they were men. Would that make it a good thing for the people who created the situation in the first place to offer women help dealing with their "problem"?
posted by mattpfeff at 10:39 AM on May 11, 2003


Amberglow,(o crap I promised myself to leave this thread alone-crapcrapcrap)-anyone who would assault/kill another human is wicked. I don't care what the heck they think they are or what they call themselves. There is NO EXCUSE for it. Period.
posted by konolia at 10:40 AM on May 11, 2003


I agree with you, konolia--it's just that this wickedness has the seal of approval, not only of some of our elected leaders, but some of our reverends, preachers, priests, imams, and rabbis too. You can disassociate yourself from those people, but when they are speaking from pulpits, or on TV as representatives of a faith, blanket statements like yours are not based in fact.

I think that if discrimination and violence against any of us who share this earth isn't an issue for you, perhaps your faith isn't guiding your actions. Love and respect (and trying to make this world a better place for all) is usually part of all faiths, at least in my understanding.

(also, Matt had a very good point, above...i'd love to see a serious response to it.)
posted by amberglow at 10:53 AM on May 11, 2003


blanket statements like yours are not based in fact.

As far as Jesus is concerned it is. Reference the Bible story about the woman caught in adultery.
posted by konolia at 11:03 AM on May 11, 2003


*deletes draft post about Jesus's silence on homosexuality in overwhelming sense of futility*
posted by dash_slot- at 11:28 AM on May 11, 2003


there are actually gay people out there that would genuinely prefer to be heterosexual.

Only because then they wouldn't have to deal with the consequences of rampant anti-gay prejudice, IMO.
posted by sennoma at 11:34 AM on May 11, 2003


this may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually plastic members out there that would genuinely prefer to be mefi members. What is so sad about having resources out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own web-related destiny.
posted by quonsar at 12:21 PM on May 11, 2003


Imagine if there were a part of society that claimed it was immoral to be a woman. Imagine, moreover, that as a consequence, some women wished they were men. Would that make it a good thing for the people who created the situation in the first place to offer women help dealing with their "problem"?

konolia: Dragging "Christianity" into it just adds to the buttheadedness of it all.

You know, it's funny you should say that, knowing that the bigots, mysogonists, homophobes, and racists are so often chomping at the bit to drag Christianity into their muck. Might be hard to believe, but if the God camp were better neighbors and less interested in decrying other people's beliefs and heritage based on obscure and poorly translated passages from the bible, they probably wouldn't be losing quite so many liberal souls... And while I'm sure you think that such people are 'bad Christians' to be ignored, their fellow Christians don't seem to be doing shit to reign them in.
posted by kaibutsu at 12:57 PM on May 11, 2003


Matt had a very good point, above...i'd love to see a serious response to it.

he did? isn't "it's not sentence structure but what the words mean that's important" kind of obvious. or was the point something else? i mean there's lots of noun-verb-noun sentences, but they don't all mean the same thing, or have the same moral implications, or relate to society in the same way, or....

semantics, not syntax.
posted by andrew cooke at 3:37 PM on May 11, 2003


konolia, people (REAL Christians too!) do those things every day to those of us in America who are gay and lesbian..
No, REAL Christians do not do these things - just because someone claims to be a Christian does not make them one.
posted by dg at 4:20 PM on May 11, 2003


Murderous dictators aren't REAL communists.

Child molestors aren't REAL priests.

SARS-infected monkeys aren't REAL monkeys.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 4:55 PM on May 11, 2003


Okay, I get the idea. Everyone has a right to an opinion except people who love Jesus and gays who would rather be straight.

Boy, I'm in the mood for a pancake. With maple syrup.
posted by konolia at 5:30 PM on May 11, 2003


Hey konolia, I completely agree with you. I think you should stick to your guns and not give up on this one.

Aren't Christians supposed to love their neighbours, turn the other cheek, love all of humanity, etc etc? As far as I'm concerned, and this is my interpretation of how most religions are, Christianity, true Christianity preaches love, not hate; tolerance, not bigotry; growth versus decrepitude. Anyone who practices any true religion should be practicing on loving those around them despite, if not because of the differences that exist among us, which ultimately aren't all that different when it gets down to it.

Any priest, preacher, imam, rabbi, who preaches bigotry in any form whatsoever needs to really examine who and what their god really stands for, and then ask themselves if they really have the right to make any interpretations of "God's word", much less speak for "God".
posted by ashbury at 5:59 PM on May 11, 2003


this may come as a complete shock to you folks, but there are actually people in the mood for pancakes out there that would genuinely prefer to be in the mood for ponies. What is so sad about having maple syrup out there to assist such individuals? Surely they have the right to direct their own condiment destiny?
posted by quonsar at 6:04 PM on May 11, 2003


For example, would it be ok to have 'hate jew' text-ads if one googled for, or had a MeFi thread on the topic of, either 'anti-semitism' or 'Zionism'?

Well, I'd like to see what would happen. If the hypothetical "Zionist" thread included Palestinian text ads, I'd be willing to bet they'd be just that, but it's specious to compare advocation of racist/religious violence and a pro-family congressional candidate, although I'm sure the are plenty of MetaFilter members who will shrilly decry religion (especially Christianity, strangely) as the "opiate of the masses", and who have a reflexive adversarial pitchfork-and-torch-wielding mob mentality when it comes to conservatives of any stripe. Anyway, if you know that you don't agree with the guy, by all means, please refrain from clicking his link.

The concept of "hate speech/crime/ etc" is ridiculous in its thought-police speculation of intent, its preferential prejudice, and is just an extension of the nanny state. Free speech is protected as long as it does not advocate violent crime, as far as I know. I wonder about people reading this from places where the same concept of free speech does not exist.

this is MetaTalk - where's the anti-Christian left-wing comment in this site?

Right in the sneering disdain in the title of this post: "committed pro-family, pro-life conservative who has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ." God bless Google's ad targeting algorithm.

Among Matt's analogies:

I've never heard of a case where a person can genetically change races because of early childhood trauma, abuse, or parental role models.

The transsexual analogy might be the most compelling, where behavior is possibly determined by natural chromosomal formation, but I've yet to see definitive proof that this is always the case, or even sometimes the case, but it is one that makes sense.

Poor people become rich. Rich people become poor. I have just an inkling that sexual behavior is slightly different than the ability to earn money, or one's preference for canine or feline pets. Some people believe it can be controlled, some don't.

If we were searching for facts, this discussion would have ended long ago. But these are opinions, and as they say, everybody has one.

Well said, ashbury.
posted by hama7 at 6:18 PM on May 11, 2003


there are actually dog people out there that would genuinely prefer to be cat people

Muffy can help with that, just as soon as she climbs out.
posted by Shane at 6:23 PM on May 11, 2003


there are actually dog people out there that would genuinely prefer to be cat people

Those people deserve our pity.
posted by timeistight at 7:00 PM on May 11, 2003


but it's specious to compare advocation of racist/religious violence and a pro-family congressional candidate

Thanks for the reminder, hama7. I keep forgetting that the gays are anti-family.

Keep up the political rhetoric. It's quite becoming.
posted by gramcracker at 7:08 PM on May 11, 2003


Note to all "real christians" do something about the ones who commit bigotry in your name, please. Put down the persecution complex and pick up the phone and start organizing or do something to get rid of tele-evangelists and other prominent christian figures who seem to stand for all those things you have decried as being un-Christian.

I like most people I know who are Christians, I just think that as a group they should be a bit more selective about whom they let speak in their name.
posted by Space Coyote at 7:24 PM on May 11, 2003


the same concept of free speech does not exist

Minor point : the concept exists everywhere. The level of agreement and respect for the concept is what is variable.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:32 PM on May 11, 2003


I just think that as a group they should be a bit more selective about whom they let speak in their name.

if only jesus had done that in the first place...
posted by quonsar at 7:36 PM on May 11, 2003


ashbury hit the nail square on the head with his comment and said what I was thinking much more thoroughly. The concept of Christianity is, by definition, mutually exclusive with the concept of hating anyone, much less targeting specific groups based on perceived differences in behaviour.
posted by dg at 7:59 PM on May 11, 2003


I like most people I know who are Christians Americans, I just think that as a group they should be a bit more selective about whom they let speak in their name.

YMMV, of course.
posted by Ufez Jones at 8:05 PM on May 11, 2003


The concept of Christianity is, by definition, mutually exclusive with the concept of hating anyone, much less targeting specific groups based on perceived differences in behaviour.

The concept is, yes, and that's what seems to trip everybody up: Christianity is a great ideal, but hardly anyone in history, and especially a very low percentage of those who have been running it, has lived up to it. So excusing so-called Christian gay-bashers by saying "they're not really Christians" doesn't wash. The question at hand is not whether they meet the standard - almost no one does! - it's what the institution says and does about the problem. By and large, it seems to say "go to it, boys. The more beatings they get, the sooner they'll come around asking for Regeneration Books!"

On preview, after finding that this fails to significantly advance it, just reread Ignatius J. Reilly's last post again.
posted by soyjoy at 8:27 PM on May 11, 2003


I'm curious...is there really such a thing as an anti-family group? can't think of anyone really working to put this whole family thing to bed.
posted by mcsweetie at 11:00 PM on May 11, 2003


This dichotomy between between the principles of a faith and its practice, I think, is because the working structure of most philosophies/religions is chiefly social and ultimately political. Most people seem to adopt beliefs to suit their social preferences instead of vice-versa, and when this is true, how one practices his philosophy has little to do with the philosophy itself, and everything to do with group dicta. Essentially, the group becomes the philosophy, and the larger the group, the more powerful it is as a political entity. Which is why evangelism is so important, and why birth control is condemned by the Catholic church; it's all about the numbers and political power.

We should not be surprised that most religions persecute homosexuality: homosexuals are a minority; their offspring will not swell the numbers of the congregation; addressing "the homosexual problem" is titillating; homosexuals provide a safe and reliable constituency of "the other" whom one can hate and harass with impunity. Bread and circuses.
posted by taz at 11:42 PM on May 11, 2003


mcsweetie-I think the child-free are an anti-family group, at least in how so many people apply 'family' to mean 'children.' In the generic, 'people getting married' they aren't anti-family.
posted by stoneegg21 at 1:46 AM on May 12, 2003


right on, taz.

I read an essay some time ago by a woman who grew up under British rule - I'm afraid I can't remember the title, though I might be able to find it. Essentially, everyone on the island hated the way the British abused their power, teaching more about British culture and history than their own, oppressing villagers by force and economics, and really just carrying out all the worst kinds of colonialism. And the author took this hatred of her oppressors, and realized that were the tables turned, the situation would be just the same: millions of people under the yoke of a colonial empire on the other side of the Atlantic.

It's the prisoner-warden problem, but on the level of national politics. Reversing the situation obviously isn't the solution: look at Israel. We have to do something with deeper consequences.

I despair for humanity on a near-daily basis. The problem is that people don't want to learn. They want easy solutions to the tune of, "[insert Other here] is [evil, immoral, inhuman, or dangerous], and needs to be dealt with." The problem isn't human nature: once you decide not to oppress anyone, under any circumstances, then you find yourself stepping more carefully, and ready to listen if you engage in some oppressive behavior you weren't aware of. (It was less than a year ago that I realized that 'gyp' is a racist verb.) But, of course, people don't want to learn. So long as their group is on top, there's no reason not to take full advantage of the situation and whip the hell out of the guys on the bottom. Noone wonders what might happen to their grandchildren, if ever the tables are turned. Noone stops to look at their hatred and wonder if it is really a positive thing.

"Hatred." Now there's a word. It isn't what you might think it is, for all its fiery glory. Often it wears the mask of "tough love;" there is little difference between lynching a nigger to keep those blacks in their place (hate) and hitting a woman for acting up ('tough love'). Hate is not about blinding flashes of wrath. Hate is about power and control. Look at the neo-nazis, who so often rally under the cause of "White Power." Look at the post-Civil War forced segregation, which, without much wrath, kept American blacks under a level of tight control.

The goal here isn't to end the plight of oppressed peoples, such as American homosexuals. The goal is to end oppression, period, and there's a big, big contingent dead set on making this an impossible dream. It might seem to be true, but the only obstacle, so far as I can see, is in our minds.

If you haven't been bothered to think about this kind of thing before, either because you've never been exposed to it, or because kaibutsu is a flaming liberal whose words can only corrupt, I've a couple of exercises for you.

Imagine your own face in your mind. Now start assigning attributes to it, and ask yourself if you could somehow be the same person you are now if you had those attributes. Try words like 'woman', 'disabled', 'poor', 'criminal', 'immigrant', 'black', 'Jewish', 'homosexual', and 'racist.' Do these labels fundamentally alter a person? Why does one label, like 'homosexual' change a person's status and not another? Is claiming the superiority of heterosexuality any different than claiming the superiority of Aryans? If not, I suggest you go and look up some of the scientific and sociological arguments of the Nazis.

Try walking a mile in the shoes of someone inferior to yourself. For example, if homosexuality is wrong in your eyes, that would be a good place to start. What would you be like if you were gay? What if the gays were in the position of greater power: would you pretend to be homosexual in order to avoid persecution?

The opposite of hatred is compassion, which, at its root means, "To suffer with." Ask yourself how gays suffer, marginalized, scrutinized, moralized, and often beaten. Ask yourself if you would want to endure similar pains. This is the root of compassion. The plants that sprout from this root are care, generosity, and love.

This is what Christ meant by 'Do unto others,' and what so many Christians can't seem to understand.
posted by kaibutsu at 2:46 AM on May 12, 2003


I think the child-free are an anti-family group

Help, I'm being oppressed. Come and see the violence inherent in the system!

Actually though (and I point this out because it may not have crossed your mind), at least some of the "child-free" just don't want kids. Or can't have them.

And I don't want to pick on you particularly, but it seems (at least to me) that this silly "not X == anti X" fallacy is actually the root cause of nearly all of our prejudices.

I'm just saying ...
posted by walrus at 3:02 AM on May 12, 2003


The concept of "hate speech/crime/ etc" is ridiculous in its thought-police speculation of intent, its preferential prejudice, and is just an extension of the nanny state.

Yes, it is ridiculous. But the intent behind it is not. The quest is to eliminate hate, but our society, always more willing to legislate than educate, has decided that anti-hate laws are the way to finish this quest. It is a route doomed to failure, in my opinion, as hate is broader in scope than feelings over race, gender, or sexual preference, and, in my opinon, infects many parts of the system that the laws are a part of. But eliminating hatred is a good and mighty goal, since all of the worst things in the world have their roots in hatred. Even most 'bad' things, too. (The tobacco industry comes to mind.) You can't eliminate hate in a state predisposed to dispense hate on its people. But since most people aren't into the idea of rewriting most of the American governmental system, we're stuck looking for solutions in the bass ackwards systems we've got.
posted by kaibutsu at 3:55 AM on May 12, 2003


judas said he was a christian, didnt he ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:52 AM on May 12, 2003


The problem is that people don't want to learn.

Red flag. The problem is that people disagree. Let's just leave educational pedantry, proselytizing enlightenment, and re-education out of it, shall we?

Is claiming the superiority of heterosexuality any different than claiming the superiority of Aryans?

Well, nobody has mentioned "superiority", but a quick glance at the world may indeed display the effectiveness of procreation.

The quest is to eliminate hate

Gosh, I hope not. The mind is free to do as it will, and people are free to think what they wish, and say what they feel thanks to things like the Constitution, which protects freedom of speech, no matter who disagrees. The task to eliminate love would be as fruitless, but no less nightmarish. How about the task of eliminating 'slight dislike' or perhaps 'irritated but slightly rewarding reluctant acceptance', or 'indulgence of grating condescension'? Come on. The legislation of thought crime is a colossal blunder, in that it takes into account not the action, but the supposed intention. I think I saw a movie about it.

But since most people aren't into the idea of rewriting most of the American governmental system, we're stuck looking for solutions in the bass ackwards systems we've got.

You mean the "bass ackwards" system that's the worst in the world, except for all the other ones on the planet? I think it's just splendid, thanks, but feel free to disagree.
posted by hama7 at 5:17 AM on May 12, 2003


My Victor Hugo costume pinches at the crotch.
And my Ayn Rand peignoir is too diaphanous.
MeTa looks better in casual wear.

posted by Opus Dark at 5:46 AM on May 12, 2003


Red flag. The problem is that people disagree. Let's just leave educational pedantry, proselytizing enlightenment, and re-education out of it, shall we?

Please, hama7. You seriously think most homophobes' or racists' opinions honestly come from an educated perspective? Most people that hate group X are grossly ignorant of X, only know what they know from media stereotypes, and what other ignorant people tell them about group X. I don't know how you can weigh two people's perspectives equally, when one person is educated about the situation, and the other is ignorant--and not willing to learn, listen, or experience.

Take two people person that hates sushi. (I love it.) All their lives, they've always cringed--gross! Raw Fish!--but one of them has tried it, the other hasn't. Now, whose opinion has more weight? I think, the guy that's tried it. I'm not saying that the other person isn't entitled to his or her own opinion, I just don't think you can validate that opnion as strongly. It's much easier in my mind, to say "I guess we disagree" with the person that has tried sushi, than it is to say it to the person who's never even given it a chance.
posted by gramcracker at 6:01 AM on May 12, 2003


Anyway, if you know that you don't agree with the guy, by all means, please refrain from clicking his link.

They're traumatized by the fact that people with opposing opinions exist, their beliefs are so precious and delicate. Pull yourself together people it's a damned campaign ad. If thats enough to get you all in a tizzy, maybe you should refrain from political discussion entirely.
posted by jonmc at 6:20 AM on May 12, 2003


How about the task of eliminating 'slight dislike' or perhaps 'irritated but slightly rewarding reluctant acceptance', or 'indulgence of grating condescension'? Come on. The legislation of thought crime is a colossal blunder, in that it takes into account not the action, but the supposed intention.

I think you're missing my points, so I'll spell them out again.

1) We are using different definitions of hate. Yours is something close to 'extreme dislike,' while mine (and that of hate-crimes legislators) rests on the psychology of oppression. I think the demon hate that you and your authors seem to be talking about is a thin disguise so that you won't have to think about the other definition. I am down-on-my-knees pleading with you to take a look at this other concept.

2) I completely agree that "The legislation of thought crime is a colossal blunder". Why? Because there should be better ways to deal with these things than legislation. The legal system is designed to take that which is undesirable in society and put it in a deep, dark hole far from where anyone will have to think about it ever again. This is wrong. It is not true that society is not responsible for its criminals. Locking them away is no way to learn from our errors, and no way to help the person who has been so afflicted as to carry out a crime.

3) Further clarification: The idea is not to lock people up for thinking bad things. The idea is to eliminate a deep-reaching and pervasive system of thought that is arguably responsible for every case of genocide and massive social injustice known to mankind. Imagine there were a Thing which caused people to take up arms and kill their neighbors, and tell me with a straight face that it would be a bad idea to eliminate such a Thing. I do not think that those who commit crimes of hate are neccesarily responsible for their actions. But identifying and deprogramming those most afflicted is an important step to take. "American History X" is a film about a particular strain of the hate and programming I am talking about.
posted by kaibutsu at 6:30 AM on May 12, 2003


hama7, you're missing kaibutsu's point. He isn't necessarily attacking the government but more the social systems that run it, of which everybody is part. If people change how they think, so too does the government change how it behaves in a given circumstance.

The quest is to eliminate hate

Gosh, I hope not. The mind is free to do as it will, and people are free to think what they wish, and say what they feel thanks to things like the Constitution, which protects freedom of speech, no matter who disagrees. The task to eliminate love would be as fruitless, but no less nightmarish.


Why fruitless? In essence, if you can teach a person how to love instead of hate, then there is one less person spreading hate around, isn't there? Isn't that the point (at least partly) of living? To become a better person and to help those around you become better people? If you take a defeatist attitude such as yours (and despite how you often come across, I don't think you do) then you've let the forces of tyranny and destruction take over without a shot fired (I don't like talking in terms of good vs. evil - it sounds so Star Wars).

Don't you think that eliminating hate is a worthwhile cause? I think the kind of hate being talked about here is one that you dislike as well -- bigotry, racism, fear of otherness, intolerance to ideas other than those of the majority, the root causes of war. These things are very much worth trying to eliminate, IMO.

Your much-loved Constitution does not permit you to think what you like, it allows you to speak your thoughts. It's not a subtle difference.

For the most part, hama7, I agree with you, believe it or not. I don't think the legislation of thought crime is a good thing either, and freedom of speech is one of, if not the most important and inalienable rights human beings have.

I have a question that I'd like to ask everyone: would the world be better or worse if hate and intolerance were for the most part non-existent?
posted by ashbury at 6:30 AM on May 12, 2003


Actually though (and I point this out because it may not have crossed your mind), at least some of the "child-free" just don't want kids. Or can't have them.

walrus - "child-free" is a self-identification, not an auto-label for those who don't have kids. See this from the New York Times Magazine, and this series of articles from the past week in Salon.
posted by PrinceValium at 6:50 AM on May 12, 2003


Can I clarify a few things?

#1-The Biblical definition of Christianity is one who has made Jesus Lord. Jesus did not come to condemn anyone (again, see the story of the woman caught in adultery) but He DID tell her to go and sin no more.

#2-According to the Bible homosexuality and lesbianism are sin. But so is lying, adultery, fornication, drunkenness, stealing(including what happened with Enron), fits of rage, etc, etc. If a person is totally without sin, let them throw stones. Only problem is no one on Earth fits or could ever fit that category.

#3-Anyone who beats up or kills a gay person should not expect to inherit the Kingdom of God.

#4-I went to my senior prom with a gay person. Don't call me a homophobe.

Again, just because something is sitting in a garage, it may not necessarily be a car. I may not be able to prevent evil people from calling themselves Christians, but God knows the difference-reference the parable of the wheat and the tares.

Now can I have my pancake? On second thought, a pony does sound nice.
posted by konolia at 6:52 AM on May 12, 2003


According to the Bible homosexuality and lesbianism are sin.

This is actually a matter of intense debate, and there are Biblical scholars who make a compelling case that there is nothing in the Bible saying that homosexuality is a sin.

As for some of your other points ("*Argue with God about that one. Leave me out of it," for example), you really can't expect other people to take something that's written in the Bible as a fact. Scholars agree that the gospels were written many years after Christ's death, and no one can say for certain that the story about Christ and the adulteress (for example) is factual.

If you make statements implying that you know what God thinks, then you can't say "leave me out of it." You're using your interpretation of a text that only has authority for the faithful. Don't be so disingenuous as to say that it's not your own argument.

I went to my senior prom with a gay person. Don't call me a homophobe.

Anyone who supports the ex-gay movement is a homophobe. You don't get a whole lifetime of cover because of a prom date.
posted by anapestic at 7:06 AM on May 12, 2003


Thanks for the clarification, PrinceValium. I don't hate kids: just don't feel any biological imperative to reproduce, and have other fish to fry. Now, if people would only stop redefining the language whilst I'm in the process of trying to use it ...
posted by walrus at 7:17 AM on May 12, 2003


Anyone who supports the ex-gay movement is a homophobe.

yeah! way to call a spade! just like any sorry sumbitch who attends the funeral of a gay person wants to see them all  dead!
posted by quonsar at 7:48 AM on May 12, 2003


yeah! way to call a spade! just like any sorry sumbitch who attends the funeral of a gay person wants to see them all dead!

Do you actually know anything about the ex-gay movement, quonsar, or are you just pissing for the sake of pissing? Your analogy is weak. If someone went to the funeral of a gay person to cheer that that person had died, then I might draw that conclusion. Your analogy is weak, but it's a nice attempt at a straw man.

The ex-gay movement thrives on shame and loathing. They get converts by trying to convince gays of their own essential wickedness. They could not exist without homophobia.
posted by anapestic at 7:57 AM on May 12, 2003


and how exactly do you expect matt to fix this ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:13 AM on May 12, 2003


anapestic, quonsar's analogy was indeed silly, but your previous statement was also way too broad. There are many people who support the ex-gay movement because of sincere beliefs in the potential for human happiness, and through a lack of access to all of the facts behind the movement. I prefer to believe that konolia is one of these people. If you had said "Anyone who supports the ex-gay movement is playing into homophobia," I could go along with that, but your formulation seems unnecessarily reductive.
posted by soyjoy at 8:19 AM on May 12, 2003


Does "World Peace and Universal Brotherhood" fall under "Ponies," then?
posted by kaibutsu at 8:22 AM on May 12, 2003


If you had said "Anyone who supports the ex-gay movement is playing into homophobia," I could go along with that, but your formulation seems unnecessarily reductive.

Have you read their literature? I have, when some well-meaning former in-law sent it to me. It's pretty horrific.

The farthest I can go is "Anyone who supports the ex-gay movement is either a homophobe or so ignorant about the reality of the movement as to be irresponsible for voicing an opinion." And I think even that's a stretch. It's hard to support the ex-gay movement without some belief that gay people would be better off as heterosexuals. It's hard to believe that without believing that there's something wrong with being gay. And even if you were able to make that leap, you'd still be supporting a movement that does a great deal of harm and no demonstrable good. Supporting a movement that attempts to teach gays that they're bad people and that increases their suffering is homophobic, even if you're foolish enough to do it with good intentions.
posted by anapestic at 8:42 AM on May 12, 2003


May I ask why we arguing for someone, whom we can't make an argument for?
posted by thomcatspike at 8:59 AM on May 12, 2003


...why we are...arrghhhhhhhhhh
posted by thomcatspike at 9:07 AM on May 12, 2003


"You're using your interpretation of a text that only has authority for the faithful." - anapestic

thank you, thank you, thank you. thank you.
posted by fillsthepews at 9:33 AM on May 12, 2003


#2-According to the Bible homosexuality and lesbianism are sin. But so is lying, adultery, fornication, drunkenness, stealing(including what happened with Enron), fits of rage, etc, etc. If a person is totally without sin, let them throw stones. Only problem is no one on Earth fits or could ever fit that category.

I get it now--it's that some sins are worth preaching about, while others aren't? or is it that some sins you should use as fundraising tools, or perhaps to get media attention? or maybe it's that demonizing certain groups of people is a long-established practice of Christianity, so is seen to be ok?

Also, if no one on Earth fits the category of being without sin, why are prominent Christians continually throwing stones, both literal and physical, when it comes to gays and lesbians? They're certainly not doing it to adulterers, or liars.
posted by amberglow at 10:16 AM on May 12, 2003


Do you actually know anything about the ex-gay movement, quonsar, or are you just pissing for the sake of pissing? Your analogy is weak.

hee! and they say *I'm* slow on the uptake.
posted by quonsar at 10:22 AM on May 12, 2003


why are prominent Christians continually throwing stones, both literal and physical, when it comes to gays and lesbians? They're certainly not doing it to adulterers, or liars

guess which they are, ambie!
posted by quonsar at 10:24 AM on May 12, 2003


If no one is without sin, and those without sin shouldn't throw stones, doesn't this mean that -- on the subject of other people's lifestyles -- all Christians should permanently shut the hell up?

Really konolia, by your standards (which don't sound remotely unreasonable, by the way, we just differ in how we would apply them) ANY TIME a Christian offers Christianity as a critique of the personal practices of another person, they are speaking out of turn, right?
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 11:12 AM on May 12, 2003


Christianity is a great ideal, but hardly anyone in history, and especially a very low percentage of those who have been running it, has lived up to it.

Which is the whole freakin' point.

But that means that konolia shouldn't really be able to get away with saying that Christian homophobes aren't "really" Christian -- sure they are, just as Christian soldiers and gluttons and thieves are "really" Christians too. They aren't very good ones, maybe, but the whole point of that unpleasantness on the hill was that nobody is. Violent homophobes may be the crazy cousins that we don't like to talk about, but they're still in the family.

#3-Anyone who beats up or kills a gay person should not expect to inherit the Kingdom of God.

Surely you don't believe that. That would mean that my fists are stronger than Christ's blood, or that the Cross is powerless in the face of my violence.

(except for the marriage thing*)

That might be a good enough reason to not perform gay marriages in your church, but what business is it of yours what private contracts people enter into? A civil marriage is only a boring set of contracts, set into one package to make it more convenient. There's nothing of God in it. If one homosexual wants to assign another homosexual power of attorney, rights over medical treatment in case of incapacitation, custody of children in the event of death, an interest in his property (in a community-property state, anyway), and the other legal changes that are civil marriage, what the hell business is it of yours?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:49 AM on May 12, 2003


They're certainly not doing it to adulterers, or liars.

Well, they need to be. At least last week MY pastor preached about anger-which stepped on the toes of everyone in the church including me.

I only expect Christians to act like christians-especially since it takes the power of God to do it. If someone is not a Christian, I don't hold them to my standards. That would be hypocritical. I do think that this life-and the next-would be better if they were, but free will dictates that THEY are the one to make the choice and no one else.

I do believe it is my Christian duty and privilege to treat everyone with kindness. There are lots of folks I am very fond of who don't share my beliefs. I think they are wrong, they think I am wrong. Meanwhile I am tired of waiting for that pancake-so make it a waffle.
posted by konolia at 12:01 PM on May 12, 2003


I think konolia is expressing his beliefs well in this thread; I wouldn't accuse him of waffling...
posted by wendell at 12:12 PM on May 12, 2003


that's good wendell, because accusing him of waffling would certainly piss her off. no maple syrup for you.
posted by quonsar at 12:41 PM on May 12, 2003


I'm not sure what all the fuss is about, considering that the concepts of "God" & "Jesus" are simply theoretical constructs devised thousands of years ago by human beings who needed to invent an ideology explaining their existence, eventually "evolving" to its present-day status as a crutch for the weak, frightened, unhappy or intellectually agoraphobic. Ultimately the focus of modern-day Christianity seems more like a convenient (often delusional) platform by which to justify one's actions (i.e. persecuting people) than to bring people together or illuminate anyone on the notion of Existence.

Sometimes "God" asks people to do crazy things.

Anyway, what were we pretending to talk about?
posted by dhoyt at 1:03 PM on May 12, 2003


God said to Abraham…
posted by timeistight at 1:10 PM on May 12, 2003


/me wonders how the Christian God fits into the multiverse.

Coz, you know, infinity implies that everyone's right. No, everyone's wrong. All the time.
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:35 PM on May 12, 2003


Actually, WolfDaddy, it implies that God is right all the time, and that God is wrong all the time. But then God is God. The rest of us just have to deal with random chance of possibility. Within the idea of an infinite universe of infinite possibilities, it is possible that some or many of those possibles NEVER happen. Tricky shit, that multiverse idea ...
posted by Wulfgar! at 2:40 PM on May 12, 2003


So, somewhere in the Universe, there is a MetaFilter where all the links are great, the discussion is thought-provoking, charming and polite and CNN is not considered a major source of threads?

*begins work on teleportation device*
posted by dg at 3:13 PM on May 12, 2003


Don't go dg. This is the best of all possible MetaFilters.
posted by timeistight at 3:46 PM on May 12, 2003


Surely you don't believe that. That would mean that my fists are stronger than Christ's blood, or that the Cross is powerless in the face of my violence.

This is kinda devolving into the whole "Kill and pillage all you like so long as you accept Christ as your savior" argument. Which, given the 'do unto others' line, is something I expect wasn't really intended. I'm no Christian theologian, of course, but I think there's something to be said for the idea of accepting Christ into your HEART, rather than just your words. After all, remember that Christ is the son of God and that God is The Word; Christ is genetically half techings. It is easy to talk the talk, but if your actions are hateful, then I imagine its difficult to be walking the walk. Unless, of course, in the social experience of hate, our Christian leadership has found an escape clause from God's compact.
posted by kaibutsu at 3:50 PM on May 12, 2003


This is the best of all possible MetaFilters
*sob*
posted by dg at 4:03 PM on May 12, 2003


This is the best of all possible MetaFilters

Wait. I thought we were all supposed to be longing for the golden years of MeFi, circa 2001?
posted by gramcracker at 4:21 PM on May 12, 2003


/me wonders how the Christian God fits into the multiverse.

That's poor imagination. He's right over there ... just behind the purple unicorn universe ...
posted by walrus at 3:18 AM on May 13, 2003


let him who is without sin make the next comment.......

(ive always wanted to say that !)
posted by sgt.serenity at 3:44 AM on May 13, 2003


There will never be any tickets for the Celtic game, Sarge.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 4:04 AM on May 13, 2003


Meanwhile...
posted by soyjoy at 7:04 AM on May 13, 2003


Is claiming the superiority of heterosexuality any different than claiming the superiority of Aryans?

Well, nobody has mentioned "superiority", but a quick glance at the world may indeed display the effectiveness of procreation.


I agree with hama7 totally on this one. And since the world is too full, half of you are required to become homosexuals immediately.

Good thinking, hama7.
posted by Space Coyote at 7:16 AM on May 13, 2003


migs , you wound me , you brute ! et tu migsy?
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:10 AM on May 13, 2003


ps half of me is required to become homosexual ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 11:34 AM on May 13, 2003


which half, sgt? : >
posted by amberglow at 2:31 PM on May 13, 2003


sgt.serenity is only half a man already, so he might have some problems there.
posted by dg at 3:30 PM on May 13, 2003


you however, seem to have had no difficulty.
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:13 PM on May 13, 2003


« Older HTML Formatting   |   zipcode query pony wanted Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments