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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Meanwhile in Texas: "American Taliban" Isn't Hyperbole Anymore

Posted by on Tue, Mar 2, 2010 at 1:31 PM


Some very scary shit is going down in Texas. Scarier than usual. "Repent Amarillo" is a rabid group of religious nuts—homegrown religious extremists of the conservative Christian variety—and they're not just going after the gays.

At first, the swinger community was mystified by the attention. On the 60-some hours of surveillance footage the Meads have, a swinger can be heard telling a Repent member that the swingers haven’t done anything to bother them.“You’re going to hell, and it bothers me,” Grisham responds. “What bothers me is you’re going to hell.”

Perhaps the most insidious tactic Repent uses is trying to destroy the reputation of the swingers. In Amarillo, people can be ostracized over a whiff of impropriety. On one tape, Grisham directs followers to get the license-plate numbers in the Route 66 parking lot. “A new couple can be here three or four hours,” says Mac. “Whenever they leave, the Repent Amarillo group will call them by first and last name, know where they live, know where they work, just within a very few hours.”

Randall Sammons says he was fired from his job of 13 years in August after his boss learned Sammons was a swinger from another employee, a Repent member. He believes he’s now as good as blacklisted in Amarillo. “I’m screwed at finding a job,” Sammons says. Russell Grisham, David’s 20-year-old son who has a conviction on his record for hacking the computer system at his high school, has posted the names, photos and workplaces of swingers on the Internet, including one man whose wife works for a school district. (“Family-wise, it will kill both of us,” the man says.) In at least two instances, Repent members called swingers’ employers.

Having successfully harassed a local and very discreet group for heterosexual swingers out of existence, Repent Amarillo's "warriors" are now planning to go after...

1. Gay pride events.
2. Earth worship events such as “Earth Day”
3. Pro-abortion events or places such as Planned Parenthood
4. Breast cancer events such as “Race for the Cure” to illuminate the link between abortion and breast cancer.
5. Opening day of public schools to reach out to students.
6. Spring break events.
7. Demonically based concerts.
8. Halloween events.
9. Other events that may arise that the ministry feels called to confront.

They're also going after churches they believe to be insufficiently Christian (Episcopalians, Christian Scientists, Unitarians), palm readers, people who practice witchcraft, and anything and everything that might create a "demonic stronghold" in Amarillo. And they're not just threatening to pray for people: Repent Amarillo's "actions" include prayer, according to Repent Amarillo's website, "but [also] may involve more aggressive use of soldiers and prayer warriors." Check out the group's locked-and-loaded website. (Please note: Repent Amarillo's website "is not designed for non-Christians," or the wrong kinds of Christians, so don't look long lest you defile the group's website with your eyes and turn into a pillar of salt.)

Hello? Moderate and liberal Christians? In Texas and elsewhere? Now might be a good time to speak the fuck up. Maybe you could spit out a few press releases, organize a massive, anti-Phelps-style counter-protest, and come to the defense of the people and churches and artists and businesses being menaced by your co-religionists. This calls for something above and beyond mewling in comments threads on liberal blogs about how "we're not all like that." Don't tell us, tell them.

The very least you can do is to join this Facebook group. More info and links at How To Have Sex In Texas.


Comments (150) RSS

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Cato the Younger Younger 1
Dan, Can I look at the website and jack off to it? Or would that defile the website? Or should I mail them my cum rag afterwards?
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on March 2, 2010 at 1:31 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 2
And what's even more insidious is these Religious groups CAN'T be touched as Federal law protects them from discrimination and hate crimes. Plus they don't pay taxes of any kind. Sweet!
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on March 2, 2010 at 1:39 PM · Report this
Hernandez 3
This isn't just a time for "moderate and liberal Christians" to speak up, it's a time for every sane person in this country to speak up. We cannot tolerate this behavior in our country. This is not Saudi fucking Arabia.
Posted by Hernandez on March 2, 2010 at 1:46 PM · Report this
Although it's a drastic strategy, sounds like folks should just up and move out of town. Seriously. Leave these nut-jobs with no one left but each other to practice their moral litmus-tests on. I can pretty much guarantee if that were to happen they'd be on each other's throats like pit bulls on an infant in about a week.
Posted by COMTE on March 2, 2010 at 1:48 PM · Report this
angelguts 5
People always ask me why I moved away from that hell hole (amarillo). Form now on I will direct them to the nuclear powered ignorance and downright fuckwittedness that is the locked-and-loaded amarillo web site. This represents the militant hypocrisy that overwhelms the texas panhandle.
Posted by angelguts on March 2, 2010 at 1:49 PM · Report this
AmyC 6
Any West Wing fans out there? This makes me think of the pilot episode, where the President kicks the fat asses of the religious right out of the White House for not denouncing the criminal acts of other religious fucknuts like those described here. It was supremely satisfying to see even a fictional president call them on it, but it makes me sad that no real live moderate-to-liberal Christians take the responsibility seriously.
Posted by AmyC on March 2, 2010 at 1:51 PM · Report this
Sick fucking Christianity. If you expect other Christians who are "moderate" forget it. It's a sick, twisted religion and it uses hate and murder. It always has and it always will. But someone should sue the fuck out of them instead of whining about how they've ruined their lives.
Posted by Christianity is Evil on March 2, 2010 at 1:52 PM · Report this
holy shit.

Posted by Jessica Bessica on March 2, 2010 at 1:53 PM · Report this
No, Dan. Look, I choose to be active on social justice issues where my more liberal attitudes differ from conservative Christians because those issues are important, not because I'm responsible for their behavior or views. ALL people need to act and speak out because those issues matter, not because you incorrectly imagine certain of those among us are answerable for the behavior of others whose beliefs bear little to no resemblance to our own.
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 1:53 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 10
Remember, in this state (WA) you have privacy rights, and people can't record audio and video without your express permission.

Other than public figures, but being on SLOG doesn't make you one ...
Posted by Will in Seattle on March 2, 2010 at 1:55 PM · Report this
Andrew Cole 11
They're also going after coffeehouses. There are 806 of them in town, and they're trying to shut them all down because "artists and counter-culture types" hang out there.

Jumped up Jesus on the cross.
Posted by Andrew Cole on March 2, 2010 at 1:56 PM · Report this
Sir Vic 12
Would Vegas even give odds on the leader of this group having a closet packed with skeletons? Classic projection going on there.
Posted by Sir Vic on March 2, 2010 at 1:57 PM · Report this
I wonder if my church would fall into to the "false idol" category or the "compromised churches" category? I'm thinking the latter, because we are discernibly Christian, even though we read the Bible in context (which means not necessarily literally); we believe intellect, science, and faith can peacefully coexist; and we welcome and value all (and our denomination officially OK'd allowing gay clergy to be partnered and allowing clergy to choose to perform public blessing ceremonies for same sex couples).

Seriously, though...I live in Louisiana. I've seen religious insanity up close and personal. I live down the street from the ruins of Jimmy Swaggart's empire. But Texas...Texas has hold on a whole 'nother breed of nuts.

And the problem with Christians in the moderate-to-progressive/liberal category is that we are scared to death to rock the boat. We tend to think that the zealots will wear themselves out and just go away. And we are afraid to speak harsh words to those who cast all followers of Jesus in a negative light.

But is that What Jesus Would Do (to ask the cliched question)? The Gospels are full of stories of Jesus criticizing zealots, rebuking the Pharisees, and otherwise speaking the truth. Why can't we?

For my part, while I may not be the type to lead a movement, I've started speaking out in little ways. I took a couple of people in my congregation to task this weekend for some horrible, racist things they said about immigrants - in the presence of a member of the congregation who they know is an immigrant! I may not be able to take on hatred, narrow-mindedness, and hypocracy on a grand scale, but I can do it my little corner of the world.

If only more of my left-of-center brothers and sisters would do likewise...
Posted by Sheryl on March 2, 2010 at 1:58 PM · Report this
Moderate Christians are and have been for 40 years, to big of whimps to stand up to the crazies associated with them. From "I Found It" to Reagan, The 700 Club whackos to our own local crazies like Mark Driscol, Casey Treat and Ken Hutcherson. It's past time for the majority of Christians in the middle to disassociate themselves from the whacked out fringe of their religion. But they won't do this, because they consider anyone who says they are born again as brothers and sisters in Christ.

It's great to see The Stranger and other mainstream pubs calling them out. Keep it up. And let's see more light shined on Mars Hill and Christian Faith Center while you're at it - you don't need to go to Texas to find radical right wing Christianity that is ready to oppress our society.
Posted by Meinert on March 2, 2010 at 2:01 PM · Report this
I don't get it. Is God riding in the helicopter? And why are Christians using a pentacle as a religious symbol?

American Protestants and Evangelicals, I've officially given up on you. You do not know how to play with others. Fail.
Posted by Nation on March 2, 2010 at 2:02 PM · Report this
Rotten666 16
Just turn the tables on em. I'm sure the leadership of the group includes a couple of cocksuckers, maybe some sodomites, a panty sniffer or two, bdsm enthusiasts, etc. One or two embarrassing public reveals should nip this group in the bud.

Get off your collective ass, Amarillo, and get to work.
Posted by Rotten666 on March 2, 2010 at 2:04 PM · Report this
@13 - good for you. Maybe while you are examining the actions of your church family you should start to wonder why these folks who supposedly have a close relationship with God and Jesus act and believe in ways completely contrary to what you believe is the moral way to act. Maybe you get your morality from reason, and not from God. Just maybe. Think about it. Christians aren't necessarily good people. Maybe that's because there is nothing real about the religion (or any religion for that matter).
Posted by Meinert on March 2, 2010 at 2:05 PM · Report this
Enigma 18
@9 When the Islamic Taliban hijaked 4 planes on 9/11 the moderate and liberal Muslim groups of the country stood up and said, "That is not the religion we practice or preach." Of course, not a lot of people listened, because Islam isn't the majority here and their numbers weren't great.
If a Christian group starts terrorizing people of different worldviews because the Bible tells them so, it is the responsibility of liberal and moderate Christians to say, "That is not the religion we practice or preach."
The reason these wingnuts get the attention they do is because they are screaming at the top of their lungs for it. You need to shut them up by screaming louder.
It's not fair when one small group makes the majority look stupid, but it happens to every group. The outsiders then judge the group by how the majority reacts- do you give silent consent or loud disapproval?
Posted by Enigma on March 2, 2010 at 2:09 PM · Report this
@17 - You are absolutely right. One of the first things my I can remember my parents teaching me is that good people come in all colors, shapes, sizes, religions, etc., and so do bad people.

And while I'm not going to get into a faith/reason debate - because I can't convince people who don't believe that there is anything to believe in, and they can't convince me that there isn't (that's why they call it faith), I will agree with you that my moral code very likely is a product of both faith and reason. For me, they go hand-in-hand and can't be separated.
Posted by Sheryl on March 2, 2010 at 2:11 PM · Report this
@9 -"If a Christian group starts terrorizing people of different worldviews because the Bible tells them so"

IF? The Christians have been doing this for centuries, and it continues today. One example is Ken Hutcherson's ties to violently anti gay Orthodox groups who have attacked gay pride marches. It's why the FBI has been watching Hutcherson.
Posted by Meinert on March 2, 2010 at 2:13 PM · Report this
angelguts 21
This has nothing to do with religion. It has everything to do with male power fantasy gone wildly wrong.
Posted by angelguts on March 2, 2010 at 2:16 PM · Report this
Hernandez 22
@21 and history shows us that religion is the perfect avenue to express male power fantasies.
Posted by Hernandez on March 2, 2010 at 2:19 PM · Report this
No, 18, it's not their responsibility, any more than it was the responsibility of those Muslim groups. They weren't responsible for the ignorance of people who tried to tie them to other groups they weren't associated with, and neither am I. My church is active on social justice and environmental issues, etc. because it's important to our beliefs, not because we're Pat Robertson's keepers.
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 2:22 PM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 24
Hey, where's our resident "Obama the nazi socialist" troll and Loveschild?

Shouldn't they be here to defend the actions of Repent Amarillo? They've been advocating the moral stance behind the RA idiots for quite a while now.

Come out! Come out! Wherever you are! These folks are putting into action your thoughts & attitudes. Stop being cowards & defend RA.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on March 2, 2010 at 2:22 PM · Report this
balderdash 25
Ugh. More fucking lunatics from the same part of the country that brought you the Minutemen.

I really wish Texas would stop embarrassing me.

Of course if you buy into their weird doctrine of salvation in the least, what they're doing is perfectly consistent. This is the problem with tolerating religious nonsense in the first place; once you accept its basic axioms, you will always have people who will simply extrapolate out the entirely logical consequences of those axioms. If you really believe that life is transitory and hell is real and eternal, then you do have a moral responsibility to save people.

"Moderate" and "liberal" don't apply to religion. They only apply to people. You can't moderate or liberalize religion for people who are fucking nuts like these clowns. You can only use the law to keep them in check. In this case, what they're doing is six different kinds of harassment and malicious slander, and someone really needs to press charges.
Posted by balderdash on March 2, 2010 at 2:26 PM · Report this
Posted by Heather on March 2, 2010 at 2:32 PM · Report this
Dee 27
According to the latest post at 'Amarillo Citizens Against Repent Amarillo' ( the cops are being complete dicks about it (i.e., doing nothing). Great, that's just what the people need.
Posted by Dee on March 2, 2010 at 2:35 PM · Report this
who cares what I call myself 28
Hey, couldn't kids use their website map to find "sexually oriented businesses"? Who will think of the children?
Posted by who cares what I call myself on March 2, 2010 at 2:35 PM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 29

Listen, if you go into a strip club, it doesn't matter if you claim you're only there for the quality of the drinks: People are still going to think you're gonna be stuffing greasy bills into a g-string.

So you "claim" you're into social justice & environmental issues. Sure. Great. Well, you still worship a God that has no problem w/ torture, or war, or genocide. How many wars have been fought in the name of the Buddha? I'll answer that one & tell you NONE. The number of wars fought in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ is too many to mention. (And please don't give me any "Jimmy did it too!" excuses & mention Islam, okay?)

It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you ignore the oceans of blood spilled for your god, and do nothing about the continuing horrors that are perpetuated by Christianity, no amount of your goody-goody guilt-abating actions will make a bit of difference.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on March 2, 2010 at 2:36 PM · Report this
switzerblog 30
@18, that's a nice out you've given yourself. Enjoy being lumped into one big umbrella with these folks! If you want Christians to be viewed as a merciful and socially conscious lot, you have a responsibility *to yourself* to speak up loudly and often against people like this. As has been pointed out here, your occasional actions on social justice are not noticed because these people are louder and more visible than you. *You* have to change that. And there is only one way.

Look at it this way. Say you live in a house with your extended family. You're not responsible for your fuckwit of a cousin, right? But if he continually climbed up on the roof and pissed on the neighbors every time they had a barbecue, you'd A: make him knock it the fuck off and B: make every effort to assure your neighbors that he doesn't represent your family and you're doing everything you can to prevent a repeat (including maybe kicking him out - a hint the church might take for the Repent Amarillo peeps). It's the same dealio. These people live in your house, like it or not, and they are pissing on your neighbor's barbecue. Do something about it.
Posted by switzerblog on March 2, 2010 at 2:40 PM · Report this
switzerblog 31
Dammit, that comment was for @23. Sorry, @18.
Posted by switzerblog on March 2, 2010 at 2:41 PM · Report this
#23 - before you get too hepped up on the "peaceful" buddhists, you may want to read "Zen at War" by Brian Victoria. Japanese leaders had very little problem turning so-called "Imperial-Way Buddhism" into a vehicle for rabid emperor-worship and support of something that would be called fascism in any western country. Remember, "kamikaze" means "divine wind", not "secular wind". And did you know that the first elected president of Sri Lanka was assassinated by a buddhist "priest"? The history of that poor country illustrates very well the fact that eastern religions are hardly immune to the extremism we tend to identify with certain strains of islam and Xtianity.
Posted by catsnbanjos on March 2, 2010 at 2:45 PM · Report this
Oh 29, I love it when liberal non-Christians decide to agree with Southern Baptists about who god is and what Christianity is about when telling liberal Christians what's what. Also, make up your mind, I'm either ignoring things and doing nothing or taking goody-goody action, but you can't have it both ways.
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 2:45 PM · Report this
Gaby 34
They have some 24 hour phone numbers posted on their website. I suggest calling those numbers and testing them on their scripture.

- Find out if they wear fabric blends.
- Do they treat their bodies as temples of Christ? Not if they're eating McDonald's they're not!
- How about shellfish?
- Have they hurt anyone?
- Did any of them fall down the stairs while pregnant?
- Ever covet anything? How about your neighbors flat screen?

Call them in the middle of the night, call them at 5am, call them whenever you want to call them! What the hell? It's TOLL FREE!

John 13:34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another."

Do a little bible research and then we'll see how they stand up in the eyes of God!

Jesus NEVER caused anyone hurt, pain, or suffering. Jesus never got anyone fired from their job. Jesus never ridiculed people. Jesus hung out with the prostitutes and the thieves! Jesus loved them, and spoke kindly to and of them.

Here are just some examples of love in the bible, that you can use 'against' them.

Matthew 5:44 "But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you...

Matthew 19:19 "... 'love your neighbor as yourself..."

Romans 12:10 "Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves."
Posted by Gaby on March 2, 2010 at 2:48 PM · Report this
Sigh..... this is so depressing - what a horrid group. Hopefully they will implode like most nut case organizations do. I am just glad to be moving to Australia by the end of the year and leave all these whack jobs behind.
Posted by Andrewl on March 2, 2010 at 2:49 PM · Report this
30, I don't act on social justice issues to earn some kind of PR points or liberal cred for my religious community, I do it because there's a need, just like everyone else should. What is it about acting on issues because they're important that's so hard to understand?
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 2:50 PM · Report this
Enigma 37
@29 and 30. Thanks, exactly what I was trying to say.
I am a pagan, I understand there are stupid teenagers out there that do stupid things and try to say, "I'm pagan, so if you call me out you're being repressive." When I see these stories, you're damn right I'm gonna be loud and clear telling everyone I know that these are stupid kids doing stupid things, and it doesn't represent the majority of pagans out there. Because if I don't, then those people that know nothing of paganism are gonna use these stupid kids as models of all pagans.
It's the same on the Christian side. The reason so many people are leaving the Church is because they don't want to be lumped into association with stupid kids like the 'Repent Amarillo' group. The stupider Christians looks, the worse it is in the long run for Christianity.
@23 You don't have to be Pat Robinson's keeper. But the longer you keep quiet, the less people will listen to you when you do valid social work.
Posted by Enigma on March 2, 2010 at 2:50 PM · Report this
Reverend Tap 38
@23: If you refuse to take on that responsibility, you don't get to get upset or act surprised when you get tarred with the same brush as the extremists. Your choice.
Posted by Reverend Tap on March 2, 2010 at 2:53 PM · Report this
@36 Imagine the "need" if abortion is outlawed.
Posted by Fuck Religion! on March 2, 2010 at 2:54 PM · Report this
@30 - The problem with the "kicking them out" idea is that they pretty much already are out. This group does not belong to a particular denomination like Catholics or Presbyterians or whatever, so there is not kind of quasi-judicial internal action the rest of Christendom can take against them.

But you are right. Those of us who call ourselves Christian and think people like Repent Amarillo are in the wrong have to start speaking up loudly against them. And we have to be louder than them, which is a real challenge given the tactics they use (and that I hope we wouldn't resort to). But, and this may be either naivete or the fact that I belong to a pretty liberal congregation talking, I have to believe that Christians who believe in a gospel of love and peace far outnumber those who preach hatred and intolerance. We should be able to out-loud them with sheer numbers. Unfortunately, complacency has a strong foothold.
Posted by Sheryl on March 2, 2010 at 2:55 PM · Report this
No 37, people who want to lump me in with Pat Robertson are responsible for their own ignorance. If I decide to officially state my distance from them, that's my choice, but it is not my responsibility. The responsibility I have to act on social justice is the same human responsibility we all have. This is not high school, and the work that I do isn't about what people think of me.
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 2:57 PM · Report this
Dee 42
@12: (from…)

"Why they do it: Saved through an epiphany

David Grisham said he led a dissolute life before he was saved.

"I am an open book in that area", he said. "Now, there are some things I won't discuss because I'm not very proud of them and they're between me and God."

He said he was sexually irresponsible, committing fornication and adultery and drunkenness. He is on his fourth marriage, but the other three were before he was saved and it will stick, he said, 'Till we're dead or raptured. I prefer rapture."
Posted by Dee on March 2, 2010 at 3:00 PM · Report this
Really, 38? Not willing to be responsible for conservative Christians means I can't disagree with being assigned responsibility for conservative Christians? Really?
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 3:00 PM · Report this
Dougsf 44
Can we get Janet Reno on this?
Posted by Dougsf on March 2, 2010 at 3:06 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 45
@44 - that's DJ Janet Reno to you ... she retired.
Posted by Will in Seattle on March 2, 2010 at 3:09 PM · Report this
@30 & 37 etc

Telling a group of people that, "If you don't renounce these people right now we're going to assume you support them!" is pretty much the definition of baiting. Basically, you set some ridiculous standard that "good" Christians (or liberal leftists or whoever) have to satisfy in order to prove that they're really the good kind and not the bad kind. It'd be sort of like saying that gay men who don't protest NAMBLA loudly enough shall forever be considered child molesters themselves.

So, while not a Christian myself, let me just take this opportunity to say, "Fuck, you," to Dan Savage, whose protestations against NAMBLA have never been strong enough for my tastes, and who would clearly be more vocal in his protests if he were not secretly sympathetic to the appetites of child molesters. Not to mention, of course, all the mothers who have failed to renounce Susan Smith, the politicians who have failed to renounce George W. Bush, the Muslims who have failed to renounce 9/11 and so on. Your failure to protest against the bigoted stereotypes of your detractors clearly proves that your enemies are right about you, and have been all along.

See also, "On the Waterfront"
Posted by Judah on March 2, 2010 at 3:17 PM · Report this
Sounds like people are being punished for living in Texas. I see nothing wrong with this.
Posted by Nick on March 2, 2010 at 3:26 PM · Report this
Timrrr 48
Can't we just get Texas to secede already? Please???
Would the rest of us really miss it if it did?
Posted by Timrrr on March 2, 2010 at 3:27 PM · Report this
Hernandez 49
OK, so now Cienna has posted about a church group that is trying to help rehabilitate felons in the Central District. IMO, that is a nice example of something good and positive that a group of Christians are doing, ostensibly compelled by their beliefs.


I doubt that they will get even a small fraction of the attention (from non-Christians) for doing something good that the Repent Amarillo group is getting for doing something bad. Now you tell me, is that the fault of moderate/liberal Christians? If so, how?
Posted by Hernandez on March 2, 2010 at 3:31 PM · Report this
venomlash 50
@47: Yeah, but it's not like some people have a choice. Plenty of people didn't decide to live in Texas; they were just born there! Being Texan isn't a lifestyle choice, it's an identity, part of who people are.
Posted by venomlash on March 2, 2010 at 3:38 PM · Report this
This reminds me of the quote from the Holocaust that I can't remember exactly, but it goes "First they came for the Jews, then they came for the X, then they came for the X, then they came for me."

How horrible for the people targeted by this group. Of course, it's Texas, so I doubt the authorities are getting too hot and bothered about this clear-cut case of harassment. Try this in Jersey, and well, um, never mind. No one here's THAT crazy, even if it is a polluted, overpopulated shithole. I think it's stories like this that keep things like MTV's Jersey Shore from driving me out of the state.
Posted by JrzWrld on March 2, 2010 at 3:39 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 52
eventually they'll cross the line with the majority of Amarillans, and it will be Girolamo Savonarolesque.

That or they'll terrorize them into submission, but i bet the feds step in 1st - it ain't the Bush years.
Posted by Max Solomon on March 2, 2010 at 3:41 PM · Report this
samktg 53
@51, I believe this is the quote you were thinking of:

They came for the Communists, and I didn't object - For I wasn't a Communist;
They came for the Socialists, and I didn't object - For I wasn't a Socialist;
They came for the labor leaders, and I didn't object - For I wasn't a labor leader;
They came for the Jews, and I didn't object - For I wasn't a Jew;
Then they came for me - And there was no one left to object.
-Martin Niemoller
Posted by samktg on March 2, 2010 at 3:44 PM · Report this
Chris in Vancouver WA 54
@ 24 - Yeah, where's that BRAVE Christian soldier Loveschild to defend her brothers and sisters in Christ? Maybe not so brave? Maybe...a total coward?
Posted by Chris in Vancouver WA on March 2, 2010 at 3:46 PM · Report this
samktg 55
@24 & 54 - I was wondering the exact same thing.
Posted by samktg on March 2, 2010 at 4:03 PM · Report this
Ugh, comparing all Christians to these fuckwits is like comparing all leftists to Mao or Stalin. Yes, Christianity has a bloody history, just like every other fucking belief system or political ideology on the planet because people suck.

By the way did none of you "Why aren't Christians speaking out against this" people notice that they've got certain denominations like the Episcopal Church, The Unitarians, and Christian Scientists on their shit list precisely because those denominations to speak out quite vocally against this sort of thing? Guess not...
Posted by read the article on March 2, 2010 at 4:11 PM · Report this
These guys at Repent Amarillo really want to hear from you. They have their contact info right on the website:

Pastor David:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

BigJohn 24 Hour Prayer:
Telephone: +1 (806) 853-PRAY
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

Team Line:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 hours A Day

Tech Support :
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0124 Hours: 9:00 AM-11:00 PM
Posted by Bluejay Banana on March 2, 2010 at 4:15 PM · Report this
These guys at Repent Amarillo really want to hear from you. They have their contact info right on the website:

Pastor David:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

BigJohn 24 Hour Prayer:
Telephone: +1 (806) 853-PRAY
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

Team Line:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 hours A Day

Tech Support :
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0124 Hours: 9:00 AM-11:00 PM
Posted by Bluejay Banana on March 2, 2010 at 4:16 PM · Report this
Womyn2me 59
I have never more wanted to go to Gay Pride in Amarillo TExas. Who's with me for a road trip?????
Posted by Womyn2me http://http:\\ on March 2, 2010 at 4:22 PM · Report this
#9, If these psychos succeed in completely hijacking your religion, you will wish you had said something.

Unless of course you expect that god will smite his more loathsome followers.
Posted by lqtm on March 2, 2010 at 4:23 PM · Report this
You're right, 60, all of the social justice work that I do and that my church does is insignificant if I don't dignify ignorant assumptions linking me to the Christian Right with some kind of official dissociation.
Posted by amazonvera on March 2, 2010 at 4:31 PM · Report this
@50 And I legitimately pity minors who live in Texas, and anything awful that happens to them is unfair. But once you hit 18, it's in your power to get the hell out. People just have to make a value judgment, and if you decide to live in Texas, then you choose to live surrounded by racist sexist homophobic religious fanatics.
Posted by Nick on March 2, 2010 at 4:35 PM · Report this
keshmeshi 63
He is on his fourth marriage, but the other three were before he was saved and it will stick, he said, 'Till we're dead or raptured. I prefer rapture."

But, according to Jesus, this guy is committing adultery every time he fucks his fourth wife. It doesn't matter if he's repented for his past bad acts.
Posted by keshmeshi on March 2, 2010 at 4:46 PM · Report this
kim in portland 64

Seeing as my denomination is on their list, I am not surprised. I can't attend the only church that has individuals both clergy and lay that speak out? Or the only denomination whose clergy get arrested for standing up. I can't be the only one speaking out, in my circle Robertson, Driscol, Warren, etc. and their company are spoken out against and addressed. Heck, that is why I changed churches, because I was not taken seriously at the previous one and I wasn't going to stand by and watch them bring an ex-gay program in. (Enough of a stink was made and the program was dropped.)

I know I, without malice, offend some individuals and have lost relationships due to my outspoken mouth. And, that I offend individuals here, who don't agree with me. Still I can't be quiet. If I am quiet then I have consented. And, I have to live with myself.

Ps. Keep up the work, Sheryl @ 13.
Posted by kim in portland on March 2, 2010 at 5:09 PM · Report this
balderdash 65
Man, how come authoritarian dickbags are always cowards?

You don't see these people coming to a hotbed of liberal sin like Seattle and picking on a community that wouldn't give a good goddamn if they, say, exposed my terrible secret life as a bisexual nonmonogamous atheist evolutionist whatever-else-I-am-ist.

They have to victimize people they can actually harm, people who live in communities that'll condemn them. They can't take on a real challenge. Fucking jackals.
Posted by balderdash on March 2, 2010 at 5:14 PM · Report this
balderdash 66
Oops, I'll amend that: they're ALMOST always cowards. There are of course the true crazies - the brave ones, I guess? - like the Westboro Baptist Church. Say what you will about Phelps' folk (there's plenty to say and none of it good), but you can't fault them for staying home and quietly picking on the town outcasts. They set themselves a challenge, insane and hateful as it is.
Posted by balderdash on March 2, 2010 at 5:18 PM · Report this
If they want to play at their little harassment, let the fuckwits have it.

I say the good people of Amarillo ought to ALL spend time at the places these assholes despise. Park their cars at the nearest coffee house, gay bar, abortion clinic, swingers club, bar (in general), wtf ever. Have it so that damn near everyone is there, and they can't sort out the "omg, sinners!" from everyone else. If everyone's doing it, they can't stigmatize and harass anyone.
Posted by JudT on March 2, 2010 at 6:23 PM · Report this
Ride That Bullet Train To Vegas 68
These kind of groups get a lot of notoriety but eventually burn themselves out because they're fringe groups and don't speak to the majority of the people in the community. And, like most Christians who are incredibly pushy about their beliefs, they have something hidden in their closet (so to speak). That doesn't mean people shouldn't speak out about them, but I wouldn't be too worried about them taking over Amarillo.
Posted by Ride That Bullet Train To Vegas on March 2, 2010 at 6:42 PM · Report this
@58- "BigJohn"...seriously?
Posted by dwight moody on March 2, 2010 at 7:15 PM · Report this
Gosh, what's the fuss?
They just want to civilly confront swingers...
Posted by subtle on March 2, 2010 at 7:31 PM · Report this
venomlash 71
@70: Why do swingers need to be confronted? Why do these people feel the need to violate the privacy of others?
Posted by venomlash on March 2, 2010 at 7:51 PM · Report this
Vampireseal 72
God, I thought South Carolina was wacko enough, it seems like Utah and Texas have it beat when it comes to religious weirdos. There was a lot of reasons why I left S. Carolina, but I'll definitely say that the increasing disturbing fundamentalism was a big reason I left. I lived in a tiny, tiny town that somehow managed to house the KKK and the John Birch Society.

Somehow all these societies and fundamentalist Christianity go together and bleed over into each other.

On another note, when I glossed over this blog's titles, I thought it said "Repent Armadillo". What did armadillos ever do to anyone?
Posted by Vampireseal on March 2, 2010 at 7:57 PM · Report this
SecretBYUBottomBoy 73
I can't believe they aren't attacking the mormons and their crazy temple ceremonies full of blood oaths. Or naked washings and annointings.
Posted by SecretBYUBottomBoy on March 2, 2010 at 8:20 PM · Report this
Until Dan decides to speak the fuck up about homosexuals who adopt boys to have sex with them and rent them out to other homosexuals to have sex with them we must assume that Dan and all homosexuals are OK with homosexuals who adopt boys to have sex with them and rent them out to other homosexuals to have sex with them.…

This calls for something above and beyond mewling in comments threads on liberal blogs about how "we're not all like that" and "I hope he goes to prison".
Posted by . on March 2, 2010 at 8:24 PM · Report this
Why do people who signed the R-71 petition need to be confronted? Why do these people feel the need to violate the privacy of others?
Posted by Limbed on March 2, 2010 at 8:26 PM · Report this
@69 -- Yes, seriously, "Big John". He seems to be the surliest of the bunch -- but I sincerely recommend calling all of them. Most entertaining :)

Pastor David:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

BigJohn 24 Hour Prayer:
Telephone: +1 (806) 853-PRAY
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

Team Line:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 hours A Day

Tech Support :
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0124 Hours: 9:00 AM-11:00 PM
Posted by Bluejay Banana on March 2, 2010 at 8:35 PM · Report this
How did they know about the group if it was discreet? Did a swinger repent and become an "ex-swinger"?
Posted by sadini on March 2, 2010 at 8:53 PM · Report this
venomlash 78
@75: The people who signed the petition put themselves into the public eye by attaching their name to a political (and therefore public) initiative. Their voluntary and public announcement of their views means that their privacy is not violated insofar as revealing that they attached their names to the petition.
The swingers' actions were not only perfectly legal but also part of their own private lives. They signed no petitions, made no public statements, and took no political action. They have a right to privacy.
Try to keep up with me, okay, Alleged?
Posted by venomlash on March 2, 2010 at 8:54 PM · Report this
“You’re going to hell, and it bothers me,” Grisham responds. “What bothers me is you’re going to hell.”

If I'm going to Hell, isn't that my business? OK, no, I guess you have a Christian duty to try to save my soul. And if you were acting like that's what you wanted to do, I'd be annoyed, but I might cut you some slack. But these efforts don't seem directed at salvation at all. The goal seems to be to make people miserable right here on Earth. It's almost like you don't really believe I'm going to Hell -- but you think I should. So since you don't trust God to do it, you take it upon yourself. Not very Christian of you, is it?
Posted by Nemo on March 2, 2010 at 9:59 PM · Report this
Greg 80
You're absolutely wrong, Dan. This isn't a job for liberal Christians. This is a job for the FBI.
Posted by Greg on March 2, 2010 at 10:53 PM · Report this
I think this is a bigger problem than just harassment. Did anyone else notice that the banner says Army of God? The Army of God are a Christian Terrorist group who've committed numerous murders, and attempted car bombings and suicide bombings of abortion clinics and federal buildings.
Posted by CJK on March 3, 2010 at 12:07 AM · Report this
@80 FTW.
Posted by Judah on March 3, 2010 at 12:37 AM · Report this
78 it seems a lot of fuss over a little civil confrontation...
Posted by Privacy on March 3, 2010 at 6:07 AM · Report this
We should all be very afraid - and make our voices heard. Help us out Dan - how do we effectively make a difference here? Emails to Texas governor and other politicos ... to the Feds? How do we get the media to report this group as the terrorists that they are?!
Posted by peace 2 you on March 3, 2010 at 9:56 AM · Report this
We must all get on the comments threads on liberal blogs and mewl about how "we're not all like that" and "I hope he goes to prison".
Posted by Mindie on March 3, 2010 at 10:43 AM · Report this
"You're absolutely wrong, Dan. This isn't a job for liberal Christians. This is a job for the FBI."

Ah, such sweet naivete. Amarillo law enforcement are WELL aware of the problem, but Texas authorities aren't taking the side of swingers over Christians. So far the line is that Repent Amarillo haven't broken the law, and that they have a right to free speech. Are the federal authorities going to really swoop down to defend swingers in BF nowhere? I seriously doubt it.
Posted by ATX on March 3, 2010 at 12:40 PM · Report this
"Emails to Texas governor and other politicos"


Well if it makes the armchair internet activists feel better, sure go for it. It won't do squat though.
Posted by ATX on March 3, 2010 at 12:46 PM · Report this
I'd hate burst your bubble, but crazy religious folks like these are actually pretty common in Australia, as well.
Posted by ElPolloDiablo on March 3, 2010 at 1:01 PM · Report this
Okay I'll stop being funny and try to give some advice:

People are saying "call/email Repent Amarillo" and I honestly believe that would be the best thing that ever happened to them. They'd love nothing more than to be under siege by a bunch of "sexual deviants."

If people want to make a difference, they should call the Potter County's Sheriff Department and complain to them for allowing abuse and harassment against people who engage in alternative lifestyles. If you read the original story where this issue was first broke by Forrest Wilder at the Texas Observer, you'll see that the Sheriff's Department enabled the activities against the swingers by Repent Amarillo:…
Posted by ATX on March 3, 2010 at 1:03 PM · Report this
I would recommend not visiting their website (to jerk off or otherwise). I got a malware warning, and it appears whoever coded it left it wide open to SQL injection attacks.

Instead, contact the US Army and tell them someone is using their logo and imagery without permission.
Posted by truthspeaker on March 3, 2010 at 1:42 PM · Report this
be sure to give the Sheriff's office your full address, phone, etc.
that will save the Army of God some legwork....
Posted by you naive girls are soooo precious on March 3, 2010 at 2:39 PM · Report this
Clever_Innuendo 92
LOL. They stole my religious symbol and made it into a filthy, militant Christian thing! I want my pentacle back!

And Texas is a sad, sad, sad place. I have lived here in Texas for 9 years now, and I've seen my fair share of nut jobs. It's like they are specifically bred here. I've lived in Central Texas, North Texas, and now, far west Texas (El Paso), and whackjobs abound.

I tried to escape Texas once, but it totally blew up in my face, since all my family lives here, and I couldn't find a job where I went, so I ended up having to crawl back here. Meh. :(
Posted by Clever_Innuendo on March 3, 2010 at 3:15 PM · Report this
venomlash 93
@92: At least move to the Austin area, if you can, I guess. Good luck holding out!
Posted by venomlash on March 3, 2010 at 3:30 PM · Report this
Oh joys. I get up online and find that my old Hometown (where I still have family, including a daughter and two grandkids) has been almost taken over by crazies. Joys and yummies.

I've got to come up there soon and I'm a Wiccan (read: witch) and I imagine that they will be very happy to use me as an example if they can find me. Joys.

And, hey, 92, you're in the wrong spot. There are LOTS of us pagans in Texas. DFW, Killeen, Austin, Houston, and Corpus all have groups who are getting together and welcoming newcomers. Not all Texans are wackos.
Posted by charlayne on March 3, 2010 at 7:30 PM · Report this
For more information about Repent Amarillo/ Raven Ministries, please go to www.repentamarillo.NET or sign up as a fan on Facebook: Amarillo Citizens Against Repent Amarillo.…

We have been dealing with this small group of 7 or so people for over 1 year. The group consists of David Grisham (a security guard at a Nuclear Bomb making place), Tracy Grisham (his 4th wife), Russell Grisham (his 20 yr old son who lives at home with his wife, because he has a deferred adjudication for HACKING into the local school district), Angie Grisham (Russell's wife), Big John Leinen (a 24-25 yr old who says that he has been in the Crips and does not mind going back to jail), Mark Shelton (another 20 something), and Todd Bohn (whose brother is the head of Raven Ministries that calls itself a non-profit, but is not signed up with the IRS).

Please go these sights to gain more understanding and to get links to other sources about this group.

Thank you for your support.
Posted by Info Giver on March 3, 2010 at 7:35 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 96
Why, oh why, must some of us liberals (and I'm looking at you here, Dan) decry stuff like this as "scary"? It's bullshit, if you'll pardon my French, and a cause for righteous anger.

Gather 'round Catalina's withered knee while I tell you a story, dearies: I was raised Catholic in a town where Catholics were regarded as "not christian" (I miss those days, because rank-and-file Catholics tended not to be self-righteous jerks back then) and my older sister went to Catholic school. The school was on a curve of a busy road, and my dad quite reasonably thought that the city should put up a school warning sign with flashing light, and wrote a letter to the editor of the paper expressing that thought.

Certain Christians went quite apoplectic by that: We got many late night phone calls about the "fucking Catholics" and even vague threats to mow my sister down with a car. We got nasty stuff in the mail about the pope, and we got a vandalized garage door, and a broken car window.

My mom - who was not from there - was quite reasonably freaked out, but my Dad - who was very much from there - got mad. He didn't do anything stupid, but he stood his ground, and got appointed to the library board, where he was a strong advocate for open access and a wide selection of books. He then ran, and quite improbably, got elected to the public school board (the Catholic school had shut down by then, probably because no one who went there could spell - just asck my sistar) where he became a notorious liberal voice - or at least notoriously liberal for that place, at that time.

My point is that my dad, who was not a particularly courageous man (and he'd be the first to tell you that, and I'd be the first to tell you I follow firmly in his footsteps) quietly stood up against the kind of crap that the Repent Amarillo freaks are doing. He didn't stand in front of a tank or stare down the barrel of a gun, but he would never talk about how "scary" his opponents were, either - even though they were intimidating, in that way that bullies have. He was the sort of example that I wish more liberals would follow these days. We need to stop imagining ourselves as Liza in "Cabaret" and standing up to this sort of crap.
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay on March 3, 2010 at 10:46 PM · Report this
A True Soldier in Christ 97
“You’re going to hell, and it bothers me,” Grisham responds. “What bothers me is you’re going to hell.”
"If I'm going to Hell, isn't that my business? OK, no, I guess you have a Christian duty to try to save my soul. "

you know what this reminds me of?? The Inquisitions... torture to get them to repent and then death is acceptable as long as we save their souls, right?

I am a Christian and sad to say that there are days when I meet people on the street that wear it like a badge to get someone to trust them so they can rip that person off... I am so sick of all the bickering and whining about this and that and no one even really cares what Christianity is really about. There is no need to "fight fire with fire", that isn't what Christ taught and no, I can't quote scripture to anyone I just know that I have faith in my relationship with God.

To each their own, I have my beliefs and other people have theirs. If you want to see what I think is a really good response to all of this, here you go;

The Room ...

In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room. There were no distinguishing features except for the one wall covered with small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endlessly in either direction, had very different headings.

As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read "Girls I Have Liked." I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names written on each one.

And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was. This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every moment, big and small, in a detail my memory couldn't match.

A sense of wonder and curiosity, coupled with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening files and exploring their content. Some brought joy and sweet memories; others a sense of shame and regret so intense that I would look over my shoulder to see if anyone was watching. A file named "Friends" was next to one marked "Friends I Have Betrayed".

The titles ranged from the mundane to the outright weird. "Books I Have Read," "Lies I Have Told," "Comfort I Have Given," "Jokes I Have Laughed At." Some were almost hilarious in their exactness: "Things I've Yelled At My Brothers." Others I couldn't laugh at: "Things I Have Done In My Anger," "Things I Have Muttered Under My Breath At My Parents." I never ceased to be surprised by the contents. Often there were many more cards than I expected. Sometimes fewer than I hoped.

I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of the life I had lived. Could it be possible that I had the time in my years to write each of these thousands or even millions of cards? But each card confirmed this truth. Each was written in my own handwriting. Each signed with my signature.

When I pulled out the file marked "Songs I Have Listened To," I realized the files grew to contain their contents. The cards were packed tightly, and yet after two or three yards, I hadn't found the end of the file. I shut it, shamed, not so much by the quality of music, but more by the vast amount of time I knew that file represented. When I came to a file marked "Lustful Thoughts," I felt a chill run through my body. I pulled the file out only an inch, not willing to test its size, and drew out a card. I shuddered at its detailed content. I felt sick to think that such a moment had been recorded.

An almost animal rage broke on me. One thought dominated my mind: "No one must ever see these cards! No one must ever see this room! I have to destroy them!" In insane frenzy I yanked the file out. Its size didn't mattered now. I had to empty it and burn the cards. But as I took it at one end and began pounding it on the floor, I could not dislodge a single card. I became desperate and pulled out a card, only to find it as strong as steel when I tried to tear it.

Defeated and utterly helpless, I returned the file to its slot. Leaning my forehead against the wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh. And then I saw it. The title bore "People I Have Shared With About My Belief In Jesus." The handle was brighter than those around it, newer, almost unused. I pulled on its handle and a small box fell into my hands. I could count the cards it contained on one hand.

And then the tears came. I began to weep. Sobs so deep that the hurt started in my stomach and shook through me. I fell on my knees and cried. I cried out of shame, from the overwhelming shame of it all. The rows of file shelves swirled in my tear-filled eyes. No one must ever, ever know of this room. I must lock it up and hide the key. But then as I pushed away the tears, I saw Him. No, please not Him. Not here. Oh, anyone but Jesus.

I watched helplessly as He began to open the files and read the cards. I couldn't bear to watch His response. And in the moments I could bring myself to look at His face, I saw a sorrow deeper than my own. He seemed to intuitively go to the worst boxes. Why did He have to read every one?

Finally He turned and looked at me from across the room. He looked at me with pity in His eyes. But this was a pity that didn't anger me. I dropped my head, covered my face with my hands and began to cry again. He walked over and put His arm around me. He could have said so many things. But He didn't say a word. He just cried with me.

Then He got up and walked back to the wall of files. Starting at one end of the room, He took out a file and, one by one, began to sign His name over mine on each card.

"No!" I shouted rushing to Him. All I could find to say was "No, no," as I pulled the card from Him. His name shouldn't be on these cards. But there it was, written in red so rich, so dark, so alive. The name of Jesus covered mine. It was written with His blood. He gently took the card back. He smiled a sad smile and began to sign the cards. I don't think I'll ever understand how He did it so quickly, but the next instant it seemed I heard Him close the last file and walk back to my side. He placed His hand on my shoulder and said, "It is finished!"

I stood up, and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on its door. There were still cards to be written.

By Joshua Harris. Originally published in New Attitude Magazine © Copyright New Attitude 1995

The funny thing about what Christ taught is that Love and Fear/Hate can't coexist in the same place and if you fill your heart with Love, (and who cares what they say or do) there isn't a single thing that can be done to you (think being crucified here) that can't be forgiven... and besides, when was the last time you saw a hater not lose their mind when being loved for their "sin"

Kill 'em with kindness :)
Posted by A True Soldier in Christ on March 4, 2010 at 12:26 AM · Report this
doesurmindglow 98
Okay, so I tried to visit their website, but it appears someone may have killed it for the time being with a DoS (or DoSesque) attack.

I guess what now I might need to ask is: who's engaging in the old-fashioned Ecotopian cyberwarfare? Anyone? Perhaps from another board? Perhaps it's a slashdot, that Dan's post merely overloaded the idiots with traffic?

Either way, it sounds like these "Repent Amarillo" guys are stupid, hateful and cultish dumbfucks; but be that as it may, they do have the right to freedom of speech on the internet as much as any other assholes. That way, at least, we know what they're saying (or trying to say), so that we also use the internet to point out how they're being hateful and cultish dumbfucks.

I guess all I'm asking is we put our cyberguns away and let well-articulated arguments like Dan's suffice, if the relevant person even exists and can even hear me... there's no need to go all internet wild west on this bitch. It should be obvious it's dramatically more effective to defeat ignorance by responding rather than silencing. When you respond, other, totally unrelated people who might be persuaded to hateful ideas are able to reconsider the error of their ways in the process.

Anywho, I'll check it in the morning to see if it's back up. Thanks for the bizarre, scary, but fascinating update, Dan!
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 3:05 AM · Report this
doesurmindglow 99
PS. This hilarious/scary video is on their MySpace, for those interested:

Haha, it's like they've simplified the beauty of the entire philosophical complexity in the human condition down to a bad Dungeons-and-Dragons episode. Oh well...
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 3:23 AM · Report this
Who would imagine hate filled bigots could get you fired and even blacklisted?
Posted by Scott Eckern on March 4, 2010 at 5:27 AM · Report this
maybe in a backward intolerant prejudiced place like Texas but this could Never happen in, say, California...
Posted by Richard Raddon on March 4, 2010 at 5:30 AM · Report this
emote_control 102
I support the actions of Repent Amarillo, because it does so much to damage the reputation of Christianity. We don't need less of these idiots. We need more of them. Embarrassments that will drive people away from religion, when they see what religion can (and often does) lead to. Secular organizations should loudly and aggressively challenge RA, to demonstrate that we're not only not going to put up with that shit, but also that we're better than the milquetoast Christians who don't want to stand up to them because they're afraid of rocking the boat.
Posted by emote_control on March 4, 2010 at 7:19 AM · Report this
If they're identifying people through their license plates, they're probably violating state laws, and should be investigated. That's not supposed to be accessible to the public, and these folks aren't entitled to know it.
Posted by former plains resident on March 4, 2010 at 8:49 AM · Report this
re: #95, so what you're saying is that they're like the Phelps Klan, but more violent and with access to nuclear materials.
Posted by pch1013 on March 4, 2010 at 9:39 AM · Report this
103, they probably have a member working for the DMV and illegally taking information of those car owners. Remember, "christians" believe they're above the law.
Posted by on March 4, 2010 at 11:56 AM · Report this
doesurmindglow 106
Oops. Disregard my previous comment. Site's back up as of this morning. Love the warfare map (, it's a quick-and-handy guide to the nightlife in case you find yourself in Amarillo.

I printed it off for next time I'm Texas. I can't wait to check out the Peace Farm ("pagan peace movement headquarters") and Wat Lao Buddharam ("false god") and, if I have time, the Music Box ("sells witchcraft items and drug paraphenalia [sic]"). For more reasonable Christians, it also provides a handy reference to the "Compromised Church's (also [sic])".
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 1:47 PM · Report this
I have a little unease over "renounce these wackos or I'll think you're one of them."

But at the same time, I guess my response to that is this:

From the outside, you look like them. You use their rhetoric, you speak their language, you carry the same symbols. It's not my responsibility to clear your name and investigate the differences between you so that I can correctly categorize the eleventy different varieties of Christian. It's not that I have some *right* to think all Christians are the same. It's just that people are *going* to, no matter how much it bothers you.

You can't stop people from looking at the common symbols, language, and culture, and making an association. And if that association bothers you, then make it as clear as you can how different you are from them, because you can bet your bippy the Repent Amarillo folks are not going to; your reputation is useful to them as cover. They have a vested interest in being considered mainstream Christians, in insinuating that the Bible really teaches and Christians really believe what they say. Repudiate them for USING you, if for no other reason. They're not just damaging your reputation, they're stealing it for their own uses.

I don't get all high-dudgeon when someone can't tell whether I'm a Wiccan, a Heathen, a plain old pagan, or a Satanist, and when someone does something really stupid in the name of witchcraft I step up and say, "Hey, I'm a witch and that was really stupid, K?" When someone says, "I had a bad experience with a pagan," I say, "I'm really sorry. That person was acting wrong."

It may not be my job to make sure everyone understands I'm not 'one of those pagans', but it's certainly a smart decision if I want to be taken seriously and if I want others of my faith to be.
Posted by HappyBadger on March 4, 2010 at 1:56 PM · Report this
Sigh. Things like this make me want to pack up all my crap and move to another state. Not all of Texas is whacko like Amarillo, but there's enough to make me cringe at times.
Posted by who?jackBurtonMe! on March 4, 2010 at 3:00 PM · Report this
best idea yet...@judT #67
I say the good people of Amarillo ought to ALL spend time at the places these assholes despise. Park their cars at the nearest coffee house, gay bar, abortion clinic, swingers club, bar (in general), wtf ever.

easiest way for the townspeople to take back their town. If they want it that is, and if any of the persecuted folks there have any true friends.
Posted by Beth on March 4, 2010 at 4:53 PM · Report this
LEE. 110
@100, 101

that's cute that you're having a little conversation with yourself. I do that too only not on blogs. also, I think it's pretty funny how you're grasping at straws in this thread just to stay contrary when you know deep down inside what these people are doing is repulsive and un-American. would it kill you to just admit it?
Posted by LEE. on March 4, 2010 at 4:57 PM · Report this
doesurmindglow 111

The bigger deal might be more their sheer stupidity than their repulsive un-Americanism. I mean, I've looked at their website and I think that mostly these guys are getting off on playing religious crusader, and unfortunately, might be tempted into playing religious crusader with real guns n' ammo.

I can't tell if they're going for the Al-Qaeda type approach as much as they're just pretending to be cool while looking like stupid children to everyone else. At least, that's what I hope they're doing.
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 6:15 PM · Report this
repulsive comes in many flavors

there is no difference in the over the line behavior of these nuts and the over the line behavior of homosexuals who harass people for having opinions different from them.

they both claim absolute moral authority.

they both behave as if any tactic is justified against their enemies.

they both seek to get those they disapprove of fired and blacklisted.

self righteous hateful bigotry comes in many flavors.

Posted by Baskin Robbings on March 4, 2010 at 6:18 PM · Report this
samktg 113
Alleged (@112)

Who are these 'homosexuals who harass people for having opinions different from them'? What organization in the LGBTQ community behaves in the slightest like the Repent Amarillo group, which associates itself with the terrorist, yes terrorist, group Army of God?

Your post has an quite a sinister cadence to it, and its tone makes me think that you yourself are coming from a position of 'self righteous hateful bigotry' (as you put it) doubtless backed by some lines of Leviticus.
Posted by samktg on March 4, 2010 at 6:58 PM · Report this
I don't care what those nutbags call themselves.

I could call myself Pocahontas, but that wouldn't make me a Native American princess. Similarly, these assholes can call themselves Christians, speak the incantations, and wave around books and symbols all they want. That doesn't make anybody Christian.

If they're busy sowing discord, misery, strife and confusion, they're working for the forces of darkness (the devil/beelzebub/cthulhu/satan/whatever.) These are Satan's henchmen, no more, no less.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on March 4, 2010 at 7:26 PM · Report this
doesurmindglow 115
@112, 113:

Yeah, as far as I know, no one has ever been killed for being a homophobe. Many, many people have been killed for having the audacity to be born gay.

And unlike being a homophobe, you have no control over whether or not you're gay.

So it's not "bigotry" to discriminate against a homophobe, though I'm not sure I'd do it unless their personal homophobia specifically got in the way of the job (ie. I run a gay-friendly bar and I'm hiring bartenders).
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 7:35 PM · Report this
Rose DeCastile 116
Ugh...112, The difference is that religious lunatics have been literally killing queers for the last couple thousand years and continue to preach that we should be put to death (thanks "miss Beverly Hills).
Queer rights are not a philosophical debate open to discussion, there is no grey area. Saying that no you cannot disenfranchise me or put me to death because you think I'm a sinner does not make me a self righteous hateful bigot claiming absolute moral authority.
Posted by Rose DeCastile on March 4, 2010 at 7:48 PM · Report this
doesurmindglow 117

Well I think they're a debate open to discussion, but there's one side of that debate that's, in my opinion, clearly wrong. (Hint: It's the hateful bigot side.)

As to your other comments, you're forgetting that there was the Homophobe Genocide of 1987... oh wait, there wasn't.
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 4, 2010 at 8:52 PM · Report this
Is homosexual marriage a queer right?
Is homosexual marriage open to discussion?
Is there any grey area?
Should people who donated to Prop 8 be hounded from their jobs and blacklisted?
Are they lunatics?

YOU set the terms of the debate?
YOU decide what is open to discussion?
YOU decide what is a grey area?
People who disagree with YOU are lunatics...
funny- that sounds like a self righteous hateful bigot claiming absolute moral authority.

Is Obama a lunatic?
Is Elton John a homophobic bigot?
Should they be fired for not supporting homosexual marriage?

The fact is that a majority of people in each and every state that has voted oppose homosexual marriage.
You can call them all homophobic bigot hater lunatics if you wish,
you can proclaim that there is no room for discussion,
you can declare that there is no grey area-
and you can be a self righteous hateful bigot claiming absolute moral authority.
Posted by the Closed Liberal Mind on March 5, 2010 at 5:20 AM · Report this

It's not "bigotry" to discriminate against someone who disagrees with me.
They deserve to be discriminated against.
And I will discriminate against them.
But I am not a bigot...
Posted by David Duke on March 5, 2010 at 5:24 AM · Report this
Signed a R-71 petition?
Let's publisize that fact.
Post youir address.
Phone number.
Let's out you to your neighbors.
Confront you.
Make sure your employeer knows.

Let's try to destroy the reputation of the people who signed the petition...
Posted by Queer Army of god on March 5, 2010 at 5:29 AM · Report this
"Protests following the passage of California's Proposition 8, which defined marriage as between one man and one woman, made news headlines, but the Pacific Justice Institute reports a growing number of cases where those opposed to the ballot measure have taken out their anger more quietly: by harassing – and even firing – employees who voted for it.

PJI, a non-profit legal defense organization, is representing a San Francisco woman who was fired for voting for Proposition 8, but whose name remains confidential to protect her privacy and legal case.

"Californians have been shocked by the aggressiveness of radical homosexual activists who have ousted several individuals from their jobs and livelihoods based solely on their support for traditional marriage," states Brad Dacus, president of PJI, on the group's website. "These tactics of fear and intimidation in retaliation for supporting a lawful ballot measure are completely unacceptable."

PJI is also advising several others seeking settlements after they too were fired for supporting Proposition 8.

"Unfortunately, this is far from an isolated case,"
Posted by you're fired on March 5, 2010 at 5:55 AM · Report this
'Kevin Snider, chief counsel for PJI, told WND of a worker at a financial company who was asked before the November election how he would vote on the issue of homosexual marriage. The employee gave an evasive answer. Following the election, the employee was asked repeatedly how he voted.

When it was learned the employee had voted in favor of Proposition 8, he was written up for discrimination, Snider reports, and fired within a couple of days.

WND reported earlier of a pair of radio hosts who were fired because they questioned on air a local politician's call to boycott businesses that supported Prop. 8.

"I voiced my opinion," radio host Marshall Gilbert told WND. "I voted yes on Prop. 8, and I was fired over that."

While some employees have been fired outright, others have been harassed by fellow workers or risk losing their jobs because of protesters hounding their companies.

The Los Angeles Times reported the story of El Coyote, a coffee shop that became a target of protest after the manager's name was put on a blacklist for giving $100 to support Proposition 8. Mobs of protesters harassed El Coyote's customers until police in riot gear settled the crowd.

The once-thriving business, and now El Coyote's 89 employees, some of them openly homosexual, have had their hours cut and face layoffs.

Posted by you're fired too on March 5, 2010 at 5:58 AM · Report this
Advocates for homosexual marriage have even set up a website,, which lists hundreds of California residents, churches and businesses that donated money to the Proposition 8 campaign.

"I think there's certain types of jobs where there's more hostility than other places," Snider told WND. "I've had several college professors report harassment by their colleagues."

In one instance, Snider said, a professor took copies of threatening emails from his colleagues over his support of Prop. 8 to the lawyers in the college's human resources department. The professor alleged the emails clearly constituted hate speech, but his appeal was ignored.

Snider also told WND of Proposition 8 supporters who have suffered vandalism, physical violence and even attacks against family pets.

One report included a University of California student whose car was vandalized and who was beaten over her support of Prop. 8.

"We have fielded numerous requests for help related to the aftermath of Prop. 8, including alarming instances of intimidation," attorney Karen Milam, full-time director of PJI's Southern California office, commented on the organization's website. "We will continue to reach out to Prop. 8 supporters to ensure that threats and bullying do not undermine the democratic process."

Posted by beaten on March 5, 2010 at 6:01 AM · Report this
After donating to California's Proposition 8 campaign last year, Charles LiMandri began receiving some unexpected correspondence.

"I got about two dozen e-mails and hate phone calls," said Mr. LiMandri, who lives in San Diego. "They were calling me Nazi, homophobe, bigot. I tried to engage people once or twice - I said that Proposition 8 had nothing to do with being bigoted, it was about preserving marriage - but people don't want to engage on the issue."

As a lawyer, however, Mr. LiMandri knew what to do with the e-mails.

"I collected them and turned them in to the lawsuit," he said.

Those e-mails are now among hundreds of exhibits in a landmark case challenging California's campaign-finance reporting rules, which require the release of the names, addresses and employers of those who contribute $100 or more to ballot-measure committees.

The lawsuit argues that those who contribute to traditional-marriage initiatives should be exempt from having their names disclosed, citing the widespread harassment and intimidation of donors to the Proposition 8 campaign.

Intimidation tactics range from letters and e-mails to death threats.
Posted by harrassment on March 5, 2010 at 6:05 AM · Report this
Leading the effort is Californians Against Hate - whose Web site lists the names of people and organizations contributing to the Proposition 8 campaign. The list also gives addresses, phone numbers and Web site addresses.

The group also has organized a series of boycotts targeting donors.

Several Web sites use online maps to pinpoint the home or office locations of all known Proposition 8 donors.

Fred Karger, who launched Californians Against Hate in July, acknowledged that intimidation is part of the political strategy.

"One of my goals was to make it socially unacceptable to make donations ," Mr. Karger said. "I want them to think twice before writing that check."
Posted by sorry, no democracy for you... on March 5, 2010 at 6:08 AM · Report this
Call me stupid, but why is it snowing on their website? Does it snow in Amarillo? Or is there some symbolism that I'm missing. Fallout maybe?
Posted by Cheesehead on March 5, 2010 at 7:09 AM · Report this
"Repent Amarillo's "actions" include prayer, according to Repent Amarillo's website, "but [also] may involve more aggressive use of soldiers and prayer warriors."
"We plan to civilly confront the perverts and discuss their behavior" the website states.
Posted by catsup on March 5, 2010 at 7:24 AM · Report this
Leading the effort is Amarilloans Against Perversion - whose Web site lists the names of people and organizations contributing to perversion in Amarillo. The list also gives addresses, phone numbers and Web site addresses.

The group also has organized a series of boycotts targeting perverts.

Several Web sites use online maps to pinpoint the home or office locations of all known perverts.

Grisham, who launched Amarilloans Against Perversion, acknowledged that intimidation is part of the political strategy.

"One of my goals was to make it socially unacceptable to be a pervert ," Grisham said. "I want them to think twice before acting perverted...."
Posted by there is no grey area on March 5, 2010 at 7:41 AM · Report this
"....quite a sinister cadence to it"

what can I say?

I am a bad bad man...
Posted by ....Evil Rhythm.... on March 5, 2010 at 7:48 AM · Report this
I don't usually like to cite to Ayn Rand but an attitude like Dagney Taggert's, when she's confronted about her sex life is called for in situations like this. Shame requires two people. Granted, it won't help with the whole people getting fired thing, but I think standing up to them would do wonders.
Posted by Brian L on March 5, 2010 at 8:39 AM · Report this
I didn't think Taliban when I read this. Instead this came to mind:

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a communist

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak out for me

-Martin Niemöller
Posted by dang on March 5, 2010 at 10:21 AM · Report this
Sounds like a job for Janet Reno.
Posted by Big Dog on March 5, 2010 at 11:23 AM · Report this
The "christian soldier" theme is a sad misunderstanding of christian teaching that requires its followers to ignore the New Testament teachings of tolerance, kindness, and mercy that Jesus preached. The New Testament is what makes the christian religion "christian" (i.e. followers of Jesus Christ). It was Jesus message of forgiveness that created christianity. This message is the core.
Posted by heartfelt on March 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM · Report this
venomlash 134
@133: As a Jew, I feel offended. You make it sound like the Old Testament doesn't say that forgiveness is a good thing. Do you realize that there are ten whole days of every year where we are supposed to do little but pray and give and seek forgiveness from each other for wrongs committed over the year? Christianity did NOT invent forgiveness; watch what claims you make.
But yes, both the Old and New Testaments are vastly at odds with what these ass bastards are doing. And I do agree with the basic premise of what you said. Any way you slice it, they're usurping God's name.
Posted by venomlash on March 5, 2010 at 1:53 PM · Report this
Visit their web site at and leave them a message (

Or even better, call these douchebags on their PERSONAL phone numbers they posted on the site! (What idiots!)

Pastor David:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

BigJohn 24 Hour Prayer:
Telephone: +1 (806) 853-PRAY
Hours: 24 Hours A Day

Team Line:
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0128
Hours: 24 hours A Day

Tech Support :
Telephone: +1 (806) 553-0124 Hours: 9:00 AM-11:00 PM
Posted by plinx on March 5, 2010 at 1:54 PM · Report this
My question is what are the little flecks falling on the website? Ashes?
Posted by Josh_gill on March 5, 2010 at 2:51 PM · Report this
doesurmindglow 137

Yeah, I think so. I'm not really sure. It adds to the juvenile stupidity of the whole thing.

And speaking of juvenile stupidity:

@119, 121-125, others:

You can choose whether or not you are hateful. You don't get to choose if you're gay. There's no law that says I can't disagree with you and that I can't publicly vocalize my disagreement. Disagreeing with a person's hateful ideas enough that you wouldn't want to work with them is not bigotry. Now, disagreeing with "who they are," those elements they have no power to change, well, that's bigotry.

Conservatives often think being hateful entitles them to special protections just because they choose to be hateful. It's bullshit. Just stop being hateful if you don't want people to call you "hateful." It's not that hard. So quit whining. Or are you claiming that you were "born hateful"? Seriously?

Now, I personally don't think people should be fired for disagreeing with their bosses, or say, being a homophobe. Not because it's bigotry to fire them, just because it doesn't seem like a very nice thing for a boss to do. As a boss, I just don't feel it's my business what my employees' politics are. As long as they work hard and get the job done right, I generally could care less if they're a hateful bigot.

This comes with an important caveat: if, specifically, their choosing to engage in hateful bigotry is losing me customers, exposing me to litigation, or threatening my other employees, yeah, well, they're going to be fired for that. Sorry. You'd do the same if you ran a business. I'm not saying that person shouldn't be allowed to speak their mind in our society, just go speak it at another, "more tolerant" workplace that's willing to accept those financial risks. In many cases, these risks are why people who choose to be hateful bigots often get fired: their hate is a business liability. Sometimes, employers just can't run their business profitably if they have hateful bigots running around. Businesses exist to make a profit.

Other bosses feel that politics are part of the job description, and that's within their right. But I don't think that if someone is fired or called out for being hateful that they've been victims of "bigotry" or that their human rights have been trampled upon.

Have they? Explain why if you think so. Don't just assume everyone would think the same way as you; explain your position. Why does "being hateful" make you a member of a protected class? I've given you and others the courtesy of explaining mine.

And finally, there's also huge difference between being harassed and being killed. Have any homophobes been killed, to your knowledge? I mean, I'm not aware of any. It seems the fear is that those holding hateful views might be asked to explain and defend those hateful views to others, and really, they're too big of pussies to do that. Grow a pair and stand up for what you believe in. But it's not okay to hate someone and not expect that person to use their freedom of speech to ask you why.

On the other hand, I'm aware of plenty of homosexuals who have been killed for the crime of being born a certain way. Next time, they'll think twice before having those genes, I'm sure.
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 5, 2010 at 5:06 PM · Report this
NaFun 138

1. Sexually oriented businesses such as pornography shops, strip joints, and XXX-rated theaters.
2. Idolatry locations such as palm readers, false religions, and witchcraft. Many of the smaller missions listed above may be just prayer oriented missions for tearing down demonic strongholds or they may involve more aggressive use of soldiers and prayer warriors. Some other missions occasionally employed may be “undercover operations” where the groups show up together but are not publicly visible together to effect the outcome of a public meeting such as city commissioners meetings, etc.

This is why we need to do more than ridicule Ken Hutcherson, Mark Driscoll, et al. We need to vocally stand up to this Prayer Warrior shit.
Posted by NaFun on March 5, 2010 at 10:29 PM · Report this
i'm pro-science and i vote 139
What is this (and the teabaggers, the Palin worshippers, the christian reconstructionists) all leading up to anyway?

Domestic terrorism, then a crackdown on radical right-wing domestic terrorists, then some brutal responses toward the government for going 'big brother' on them, and a long civil war in this country of right wing terrorists against the government, liberals, homosexuals, minorities, non-Christians, hedons, etc etc.

Which will keep the right and left from uniting against the real problem in this country, corporatism. We remain divided so they can get away with their plundering
Posted by i'm pro-science and i vote on March 5, 2010 at 11:20 PM · Report this
i'm pro-science and i vote 140
Also, it seems this sort of thing is only going on with "christians" in the United States, and not other countries (right?).

Why is that?
Posted by i'm pro-science and i vote on March 5, 2010 at 11:27 PM · Report this
Oh, and, btw, I say all these businesses ought to band together and send out coupon books for the various bars, coffee shops, palm readers, whatever to people who show up on the lists of "Repent Amarillo." Turn that shit into a marketing tool.
Posted by JudT on March 6, 2010 at 10:48 PM · Report this
So businesses that operate in conservative communities where homosexual employees would cause them to lose customers can fire the homosexuals, right?
You'd do the same if you ran a business.
I'm not saying that person shouldn't be allowed to be a homosexual in our society, just go be homosexual at another, "more tolerant" workplace that's willing to accept those financial risks. In many cases, these risks are why homosexuals often get fired: their homosexuality is a business liability. Sometimes, employers just can't run their business profitably if they have homosexuals running around. Businesses exist to make a profit.
Posted by Pink Slips.....(omg- perfect!) on March 7, 2010 at 11:10 AM · Report this

You falsely equate opposing homosexual marriage with 'being hateful'.

Is Barack Obama a Hateful Bigoted Homophobe?
Is Elton John a Hateful Bigoted Homophobe?

It would be convenient if we could brand all opinions different from our own Hate that is Unworthy of Being Considered but it doesn't work that way in a democracy.

Perhaps you could take that schtick to Iran.
Posted by oh sorry- no democracy for you... on March 7, 2010 at 11:18 AM · Report this

we wonder how many homosexuals in America actually get killed for being homosexual.

now to be fair, we have to not count the ones who get drunk and proposition redneck homophobes in bars, or the ones who sexually harass and humiliate classmates, or the ones who wait until really charged awkward moments to reveal icky gender surprises- cause being stupid and obnoxious can get you killed also...

we wonder how the number would compare to the number of, say, Blacks who have been killed for being Black.
or even religion- being a member of an unpopular religion has gotten quite a few folks killed in this country.

what if we open it up a little- go international.

in the history of the world how many people have been killed for being Christian?
how many in just the past year across the world?

gosh, we wonder how many Christians were killed by homosexual Roman emperors?...
Posted by Martyr envy on March 7, 2010 at 11:26 AM · Report this

in fact, we wonder how many homosexuals have been killed by haters in Big Bad America compared to the number of homosexuals that have killed each other by dangerous preventable sexual behavior.

how many homosexuals met death from encounters in bathhouses, compared to redneck bars in Wyoming?

we wonder....

is willful irresponsible lethal sexual behavior a Hate Crime?

did you know that homosexual men are 34X as likely to get AIDS as average Americans?
are conservatives 'being hateful' giving all those homosexual men AIDS?
Posted by Conservative Homophobes should start wearing Condoms... on March 7, 2010 at 11:34 AM · Report this

and while we're counting dead bodies what if we compare the number of women who die from AIDS in America to the number of homosexuals killed by Hate Crimes.

cause if you follow the epidemiological trail back from that woman you won't go very far at all before you come to a selfish lying cheating downlow Homosexual.

should we tally how many people in America have been killed by selfish lying cheating downlow Homosexuals?

Posted by Death's little helpers on March 7, 2010 at 11:42 AM · Report this
venomlash 147
@142: If an employee was a flamer and making customers nervous, then it would be perfectly okay to fire him if he didn't tone it down. If someone's gay, but keeps it to himself, then he's not losing you customers. It's the same as with homophobes in accepting areas; if he keeps quiet and just does his job, then there's no reason to fire him, but if he pulls faces at men who look too fabulous for his taste, or refuses to serve gays, then you pink-slip his ass. It's all a matter of keeping your personal ideas from interfering with your work.

@143: It's funny that you say that, as there is no mention of marriage in comment #137 at all. What were you trying to say again?
Opposing gay marriage does not make someone a hateful bigot; opposing gay marriage because they think that gays are evil or immoral does. There are some understandable reasons (not incredibly valid, but understandable) for not letting gays and lesbians get married. Hateful bigots don't use those reasons; instead, they let loose about how "Teh Ghey" will be the end of us all. Pull that stick out of your ass.

@144: A lot fewer homosexuals have been killed because of their orientation than say, racial or religious minorities, sure. You know why? Gays make up a small portion of society. It's not because people don't pick on them, it's that there's fewer of them to pick on. Get your head out of your ass. Also, being stupid and obnoxious can get you killed, but if you're killed BECAUSE YOU'RE GAY, it's a hate crime, no exceptions.

@145: We've already rehashed this. Just to sum up:
Gay panic/hate crime killings are done with intent. Transmission of HIV, not so much; the vast majority of infection happens before the infecter knows that he has the virus. When people willingly transmit a fatal infection, it is murder and is prosecuted as such. Key word "willingly"; almost all the spread of HIV is due to the long incubation period of the virus.

@146: How would a woman catch HIV from a homosexual man? By the time gay men are having sex with other gay men, they tend to have stopped giving women the pickle-tickle. Face it; HIV got into this country through HETEROSEXUAL sex tourism, and spreads among straight people more or less independently of its spread among gays. Blaming AIDS on gays just because they're more likely to have it is like blaming black people for sickle-cell anemia.
Posted by venomlash on March 7, 2010 at 1:04 PM · Report this
doesurmindglow 148
Yeah, you pretty much nailed it, venomlash, well done, but I'm going to go ahead and flush out some details:

Oh, real clever. Your argument here would make sense if I agreed that being a hateful bigot was analogous to being homosexual, and therefore both should be protected from firing due to their homosexual/bigoted status. I don't. Being a homosexual is a quality you're born with, being a hateful bigot is something you can change. Therefore, there's nothing wrong with firing a hateful bigot.

On top of that, being a homosexual doesn't hurt anyone. Being a hateful bigot does. They're not the same and so cannot be treated the same way.

Your argument is, in fact, the exact same as the following: "Well, you Seattleite retard, if you're allowed to fire me for being racist, I should be allowed to fire you for being black." Clearly this is bullshit, as your being racist hurts people and is something you can do something about. My being black is neither a problem nor is it reversible.

I disagree with venomlash here. Being against gay marriage means you have hateful, bigoted views. It's possible, therefore, that Barack Obama and Elton John are hateful bigots toward gay people, but I'd have to know more about why they think gay marriage is a bad idea, and if you're even telling the truth. If it's because they think "marriage is between a man and a woman," then yeah, on this issue, they're hateful bigots.

If they think equality is not a pragmatic policy right now for political reasons, then it's not quite as bad; though it is still probably bigotry.

Finally, venomlash makes an added point: you can be a bigot without being a "hateful" bigot, I think. If you don't want equality because gays are evil or inhuman, you're a hateful bigot. If you don't want it because you know people won't like you if you do, you're probably just a bigot; you don't specifically hate a person for who they are.

I personally think if you kill someone for being Christian, it's also a hate crime. So yeah, the Roman emperors were hateful bigots. But I'm disturbed you read "Christian" when I said "hateful bigot." I don't think all Christians have to be hateful bigots (most are not); conversely, I don't think all hateful bigots are Christian. Being a hateful bigot has nothing to do with being a Christian, so the fact Roman emperors killed Christians for being Christians probably has nothing do to with the fact hateful bigots killed Matthew Shepard and Harvey Milk for being gay. Again, I'd have to know more about the circumstances.

You can have gay sex without getting or transmitting AIDS. Therefore, having gay sex does not hurt anyone if done responsibly, just as having straight sex does not hurt anyone if done responsibly.

If I were to agree with your argument, plenty of people would be guilty of a hate crime for engaging in straight behavior, ie. having sex with heterosexual partners. Furthermore, refer to venomlash's comments: when you kill a gay person for being gay, you mean to do it usually. When you transmit AIDS, it's far less likely you have that intent.

Yeah, this is a really stupid argument. Gays are not to blame for AIDS, just as they are not really to blame for other diseases their behaviors might cause or exacerbate, such as lung cancer, obesity, or streptococcus.

This obviously doesn't mean you shouldn't take precautions against AIDS, or that you shouldn't be held accountable if you were engaging in gay sex merely with the intention of spreading AIDS around. But these things are totally different issues than the mere status of being homosexual, which you're trying here to somehow disparage or criminalize on the basis of them.

Added issue:
This whole "liberals are intolerant of hateful bigots" argument is a dead-end, guys. Your fundamental premise is that being intolerant is a bad thing. If this is so, no one should ever be a hateful bigot. So even if you were to argue effectively that liberals have unjustified intolerance against hateful bigots, you still will have bought into the argument that being a hateful bigot is wrong, which, again, would mean the liberals were right.

It's not internally consistent for that reason: it uses a premise to justify a behavior that is, by definition, negated by that premise. I don't get it.
Posted by doesurmindglow on March 7, 2010 at 6:36 PM · Report this
"Hateful bigotry" is not a thing a person is, it's a thing a person does. Gay is a thing a person is.

It's sometimes not very nice to discriminate against a thing a person does, but it's totally different than discriminating against a thing a person is.

The former is an annoyance, something anyone can put up with, though perhaps irritating. The latter is moral injustice.
Posted by CHOOSING BIGOTRY DOESN'T GIVE YOU MORE RIGHTS on March 7, 2010 at 10:36 PM · Report this

“I really wish Texas would stop embarrassing me.”

And we wish you would stop using a radically fanatical group in a small West Texas town as a mold for all of Texas. Texas is a very big state my friend. Let me assure you, as a heavily tattooed, not so “typical” Texan Christian (that was born in and lived in Amarillo for 23 yrs), I am neither a lunatic Christian zealot, condemning all who dance, drink and alter their bodies, nor am I embarrassing you by way of a group other people’s actions and beliefs. You’re trying to fit a leer jet into and envelope, and I regret to inform you that the rest of us in Texas don’t fit in that envelope. And by the way, Minutemen was lovingly brought to you by the part of the country known as Utah by a company named Salty Pictures. Texas is South I’m afraid.

It’s the people’s attitude like yours that create intolerance and hate that are ruining humanity.
Posted by brigantia on March 11, 2010 at 5:43 AM · Report this

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