An incident happened last week at Northampton's Smith College that attracted little media attention but perhaps should have. Ryan Sorba, author of an unreleased but already controversial book titled The Born Gay Hoax attempted to give a speech presumably based on his belief that homosexuality is not determined primarily by genetics.
Speaking for myself, I definitely have the sense of having been gay my whole life. If it is a "lifestyle choice" then it was one I made too early in life to be conscious of. But what exactly Sorba's theory is was not possible to ascertain because angry mobs of chanting protesters made it impossible for him to speak.
I didn't attend the event. The person who alerted me to it, as well as to a site with some photos and videos of the incident, was local writer and photographer Ben Duffy, whom some of you may remember as an occasional contributor to this website. He sent me the following email:
Tom , I thought that you might want to take a look at these pictures and videos. They are astounding.
I've noticed from your blog that you seem to harbor a hatred toward the so-called "religious Right", due to the fact that they think that your sexual behavior is immoral. Well, I do too.
In any case, you're still free to do it. Here's the BIG LIE of the homosexual lobby--that they just want to secure the freedom of two consenting adults to do what they want to do behind closed doors. In fact, that is NOT the case. What they want is for everyone to approve of it, nay--to CELEBRATE it.
The educational system is their vehicle. They'll get right down there in the elementary school if they need to.
I remembered once how you mention the supposedly "anti-gay" Mike Huckabee, and how you remembered a time when Republicans just wanted to stay out of your bedroom. Well guess what--we still do. Even Mike Huckabee approves of Lawrence v. Texas, the 2003 Supreme Court case that found a RIGHT to Sodomy in the Constitution. Mike Huckabee is in no way suggesting that cops should be running around, breaking down doors and arresting homosexuals in their acts of indecency. He just wants the right to SAY that it is indecent.
And that's the freedom that is in jeopardy in the United States today. Frankly, the "gay rights movement"-- aka the homosexual lobby, aka the sodomy gestapo--is the greatest threat to our freedoms today. They will silence anyone who gets in their way. If this video doesn't convince you, just Google Tyler Chase Harper. Or look into the San Diego and Providence firefighters who have been forced to march in Gay Pride Parades. OR look at the Christian activists who were arrested at the Philadelphia gay pride parade for engaging in peaceful protest. Or the way that the homosexual lobby shut down Catholic Charities of Boston because they refused to put children in the unhealthy environment of homosexual parents.
If I were a bumper sticker person, I'd have one made that says "homosexuals stole my right to vote". I don't buy this bullshit that we can't vote on gay marriage because it is a "civil right". Voting is a civil right, gay "marriage" is a judicial fabrication. What happened here on June 15, 2007 was tyrannical. That was the day that the government stopped working for us and we started working for the government. Honestly, I have never seen such a dishonest circumvention of democracy in my life.
Homosexuals are not the victims. Homosexuals are the aggressors. Their rights are not in jeopardy, but the rest of ours are.
Sheesh, it's a good thing I don't require my friends to agree with me on every issue! Actually I don't argue with people who try to tell me my queerness is immoral. I just say:
That said, Ben Duffy is a good person to raise the issue of censorship on campus. In this famous video, Duffy is shown, back when he was a UMass student, futilely attempting to control an angry mob that shut down a talk by conservative commentator Mike Adams. The video, which I filmed, attracted national attention and to date has received over 11,000 hits.
That is not however the most popular video I ever made. That would be The Amherst Ant War which has received over 28,000 hits and counting.
Anyway, if the past is any guide, Sorba's book is just a lot of word games designed to make hatred and ignorance seem respectable. But that's beside the point. Any attack on any public speaker, regardless of what they are saying, is an attack on the free speech rights of every member of the community. If anyone is shouted down into silence, then anyone who has anything to say is at risk of censorship. Always it is the speech we find most offensive that we must fight most vigorously to defend. That those values are not respected on today's college campuses, where the leaders of our future are being trained, is more than sad. It's frightening.
To its credit, the president of Smith College released a public statement expressing regret over the incident, which is more than UMass did over the Adams affair. But we obviously still have a ways to go to restore open thought and freedom of speech to our institutions of higher learning.
To see a detailed account, complete with amazing videos, of the unfortunate events at Smith, CLICK HERE.
Meanwhile, the Valley Press Club held it's annual roast in Springfield the other night. I didn't go to that either, but Bill Dusty did and filed a report on his website. Here is a picture he took of attendees Mike Dobbs, who keeps a foot in both old and new media with his gig with The Reminder and his multiple blogs, with Jim Polito, the former TV40 dude who now has a new gig in the Worcester area.
What was unique about this roast was that for the first time it was made known through the inter-media grapevine (more efficient in its own way than the Associated Press) that local bloggers would not be unwelcome if they attended. That's a far cry from the days of old, when the roasts were very elite affairs where only true insiders attended and Dave Starr always had a table in front for skits such as local reformers Bob and Karen Powell being ridiculed as "trailer trash."
To read all about the current event and see some pics of who was there CLICK HERE.