I love Barney Frank. He's the Maurice Sendak of the House of Representatives.
Good catch. Of course lying is like breathing to right-wing fanatics (the charitable might consider it not lying when the liar believes the lie, but I don't feel so charitable today).

Silvio Levy
Link to Franken clip doesn't work. :(
Al Franken is a badass muthafucka. He is the only politician I will unquestioningly and happily write checks to, even though he doesn't officially represent me.

And what are the chances any regular Fox host or guest would ever be able to pull off this?…
It's not a lie if you don't think it is? I'm afraid reality (fact, truth) seems to have little effect on people like this.
@1 And I'm so sad I didn't know how amazing Maurice Sendak was before I saw him on Colbert...and now he's gone! Alas.
I hope they have on a KKK skinhead the next MLK day or a Nazi skinhead the next Seder because you have to give both sides, right?
I'm glad Chris Matthews has Perkins on now, because Chris is clearly taking him out behind the woodshed. You can see in the piece that Matthews doesn't get to evade questioning, hell he looks panicked and on the defensive. I say let's have more of this!
While I think it would be interesting for the audience, I see very little chance of it changing Mr. Perkins and anyone who shares his views.

Mr. Perkins believes he is speaking "truth", To him he is not lying. Human capacity for self-delusion is huge. He is convinced that he has the facts and thousdands of studies proving him wrong will not make a difference. Mr. Perkins NEEDS to believe this. Not only does it butter his bread, but it is foundational to his belief system. Mr. Perkins brain will protect him from accepting contravening facts. His mind is locked and irrational, and his person is dependant upon believing he knows the "truth".
(Oops sorry, I meant Perkins doesn't get to evade questioning.)
Barney Frank is fucking awesome.
Perkins = asshole
Frank = amazing
Franklin = my hero

Why should he care about the 9th commandment? They're cherry-picking what they like and dislike in the bible already anyway, leading them to declare gay marriage a sin. A SIN! But adultery? Meh, not that big a deal.

Religion: It's whatever you want it to be!
Sorry, Frankin. Stupid autocorrect.
i hate that so many people can spew "studies show" with reference to the materials, and it's just held as fact. Where's the fact checking!?
Dammit, Dan, link to the studies THEMSELVES and not just newspaper articles summarizing them! Journalists very often make "creative" interpretations of the results (sometimes as "creative" as Mr. Perkins') without consulting the people who actually ran the study. Having the actual study right there is why Senator Franken was able to shut down Perkins so effectively--and one reason why he kicks ass. You too can kick ass like Al Franken.

Here is a public copy of the Journal of Marriage and Family study (Biblarz & Stacey, 2010):…

Here is the study from the Time article (Gartrell & Bos, 2010):…

(Forgive me for not using APA format.)

Barney Frank has been my representative for my entire life. We're gonna miss you, ol' Sabertooth.
Around the 9 minute mark, when Perkins asks why society recognizes marriage, the correct answer is 'orderly transfer of property', not the raising of children.
Franklin Graham is exactly right about one thing - changing laws concerning marriage will never change God's law. But this is where he and I differ...because he thinks this is a reason not to change laws, whereas my response is "Right, so what the fuck do you care, you creepy old wannamo?"
Breaking the Ninth Commandment? Sorry, Dan, but you KNOW the only one that matters is the Second: the one about the right to bear arms.
@6: There's a great documentary made on Sendak by Spike Jonze called "Tell Them Whatever You Want" which shows what a brilliant, tender, twisted, beautiful misanthrope he was. Check it.
I'm going to miss Barney big time when he retires. I hope he takes care of himself and lives long enough to see these bigots die away.
God, that Perkins is a slimy fuck.
And for those who still think homosexuality is (partly) a nurture thing:…
(ctrl+F for Swaab)
Makes you feel sorry for Tony Perkins children.
@ 7 - Excellent point.

I am so thoroughly tired of seeing these bigoted blowhard liars given 'equal time' over the airwaves... Enough already!!
Ninth? Dan, considering you were raised Catholic, I'd think you'd refer to this as the 8th Commandment. It was only during the Reformation that non-Catholics re-jiggered the 10 Commandments to make this number 9.
@20 Thanks!
@23 I just want to note that the article you linked says:
> As a result of Hooker's finding, the APA removed homosexuality from its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Psychological Disorders in 1973. >

But This American Life did a fantastic story on what really happened:…

The APA may want us to think that they were all scientific and serious and happy to change the DSM once the studies showed that gay people weren't sick. But in fact, actual gay psychiatrists took the brave step of inviting non-gay psychiatrists to a gay bar with them, to show them that gay people weren't crazy. Without their courage, the APA would not have changed its guidelines in 1973. Brave people make a difference, and their courage shouldn't be written out of the history books.
The adoption part was the most grotesque to me, in many ways. The reason kids go un-adopted in this country is that it's so hard to adopt, Perkins said. This was after he was called out on his charming first position, which was that every kid needing adoption in the US gets adopted--except for special-needs kids (so what's the problem?). The idea that it's easy to adopt overseas and hard to adopt in the US, and that if we would just de-regulate the adoption market here, and make it as easy as overseas adoption, all the straight married people would adopt all the US kids needing to be adopted is breathtakingly shallow and nuts. So, the existence of foster children in our country, at least those whom Perkins doesn't classify as "special needs," is the product of adoption red tape? On a slightly different point, I am a tiny bit bothered by the suggestion in Frank's position (he didn't say it this way, and I doubt very much that he means it, but the impression may have been conveyed) that it is only gay people who step up to the challenge of difficult adoptions, and the corollary implication that it is somehow fitting for gay couples or singles to be consigned to that responsibility. But at least Frank appears to give a shit about kids. Perkins, by contrast, makes Mitt Romney look compassionate.
Yes, Mr Savage is a parent, and yes, truth is important. But it is becoming increasingly unpleasant that so much of what is in play is being staked on parenting, and that the rights of those who are not now and who know they never will be parents are so tied to something other people are doing. A few studies make a thin reed, and I hate things being built in my name on statistics when I recall Sarah Harding telling Francis Urquhart that she can get him any numbers he likes.
Jesus, Perkins is so lame. . . what an ignorant piece of crap.

Tony Perkins: another fellow whose job would be a lot easier if he just fessed up and admitted "We just hate gays." No more cagey language, no more slippery defenses against the likes of Barney Frank. Nobody can tell you you're wrong if all you're saying is that you hate someone, after all.
That clip of Franken is a classic moment of awesomness that I can watch over and over again.
Marriage is about so many, many things; merging assets, inheritance, power of attorney, spousal privilege in the justice system etc. It's most of all about safety, protection in case of devastating events, and about the state recognizing your relationship as family, just as it recognizes parent-child and sibling relationships (through blood or adoption). You don't have to be married to raise a child, but in order to have the legal protection that marriage provides, you have to be married. Marriage as it exists today is not about love, monogamy or procreation, it's a legal contract that regulates legal rights, privileges, obligations and protection for the people who enter in to that contract, and the state has no business telling consenting adults who they can and cannot enter into such contract with. That is the only argument that should need to be made for marriage-equality, and anyone who is against marriage-equality must believe that homosexual people (or bisexual people in homosexual relationships) are not worthy of the same legal rights as people in heterosexual relationships, and should stand for that and not pretend that's not how they think or feel.
I like when Dan mentions the words Jesus and Mouth in the same sentence.
An even better suggestion for next time Chris Matthews has Tony Perkins on Hardball. Have Dan Savage on with him. That would be so much fun.
So, he deliberately twisted the results of a study... AND he claims that the Bible supports him in ways in which it does not...

He has transgressed against both science and religion.
Holy shit! I just found out that the bible (old testament) says that if a guy rapes a virgin he must marry her pay her dad and take care of her.

Btw i know this has nothing to do with this blog post but i just had to share what i just learned
You would think that if that were the primary purpose of marriage, that it would be the main theme of ceremonies.

I googled "Christian wedding ceremony" and found this page…

obviously not scripture, but perhaps representative.

Here is one sample "Pledge":

"____, do you take ____ to be your wedded (wife/husband), and in the presence of these witnesses do you vow that you will do everything in your power to make your love for (her/him) a growing part of your life? Will you continue to strengthen it from day to day and week to week with your best resources? Will you stand by (her/him) in sickness or in health, in poverty or in wealth, and will you shun all others and keep yourself to (her/him) alone as long as you both shall live?"

Hmm, no mention of children. Here is a model vow:
"In the name of Jesus, I ___ take you, ___, to be my (husband/wife), to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, for as long as we both shall live. This is my solemn vow."

Hm,, again, no mention of procreation. These actually seem to be about... love. That's weird.

Does anyone know if other a typical wedding ceremony, Christian or otherwise, specifies procreation? Does the priest ever say, "Go forth and multiply," or among the other questions, ask each partner, "Do you agree to make every attempt to bear forth children?"

If not, I think this is a pretty good, intuitive response to the argument people like perkins are making.
There are a shortage of children in the USA who need to be adopted? I think I just threw up.
@jude if procreation is ever brought up to you as a reason gays and lesbians can not marry ask them
Should women who are barren and men who have very low sperm counts be allowed to marry?
If the sactity of marriage is brought up just say
Kim kardashian
Nough said
@39, calm down. What you read was written about 3,000 years ago. However, "honor killings" are happening today in some countries, so close the Bible and look around at the world if you want to be shocked.
@33 There is a wonderful diary up at dkos today which touches on what you are saying. Link:….
After the passage of Amendment One in NC, the author's dad was later at his weekly men's Bible study, listening to the slurs and hate speech. The father at that point had an epiphany that this was not about religion or morals or anything else except hate. So I wonder for the Perkins and Gallaghers and their ilk, if perhaps trying to obfuscate their hate as love of God or family or whatever the hell they couch it as, might rather make their job much more difficult rather than easier. The honesty of hatred while also preaching the command to love would require such gross amounts of twisted speech that I'm not sure even they believe that they could pull it off. The lies (I think) are deliberate at least in part because they are simpler and easier..

I love the look on Minnery's face when Franken calls him out. And notice that he nods when Franken says he the committee shouldn't believe a word of his testimony. (Granted, that was probably an "oh shit, I've been caught in my twisted lie, so just nod your head" moment, but it was still priceless.")
@42 - the difficulty with that line of reasoning, however logical, is that people like Perkins, in this video, argue that "We make policy based on the rule, not the exception", and argue that the rule has been procreation, even if some people can't or choose not to.

I'm not saying this is a good argument, but it kind of works enough to confuse the issue. I'm suggesting we address that point by saying, "Oh, it's the rule? Then why isn't it ever even mentioned in wedding ceremonies? If it's such a foundational part of marriage, you'd think at least the priests and ministers would mention, but they don't!"
@43 honor killings are nothing new to me i have known about them for years but the fact the bible tells rapists to marry there victims is new to me. I know about female genital mutilation and how women are treated in other countries. People eat placenta. Some pills were made out of dead babies, yea the worlds a crazy place.
@jude you make a very good point. But when it comes down to it most people wont change there minds so whatever we say will go in one ear and out the other.... Actually it probably wouldnt even make it into the ear lol
@39: The rapist is obligated to marry his victim and take care of her, but the victim is not obligated to consent, and her father can also call a halt to it. If the marriage is called off by one or the other, the rapist still has to pay the (hefty, in those days) bride-price.
@39: That particular part of the bible isn't really anything other then a very ancient book of laws. Forcing the rapist to marry his victim was a form of justice in a world were that meant that no one else would ever want to marry her, and paying the bride-price was roughly equivalent to paying for damages. In our world it may seem insane but a lot of the law in the bible, actually makes a strange form of sense when you look at it from the cultural perspective of the time and place it was written in.
Jude @ 40-
The closest I've ever seen to any mention of children during a wedding service was at an RC marraige about 4 years ago where the couple were asked if they promised to love and care for "any children that God may send them". That phrasing, of course, includes adopted children and doesn't assume that the couple will themselves reproduce.

General thought on same-sex parenting- the studies on the matter highlight the parent's active involvement in and active commitment to their children's lives. Which is unsurprising, given that in the vast majority of cases same-sex parents have to actively work at becoming parents in the first place. They'll have had to think properly about it and jump through a number of hoops to become parents- not have an 'Ooops' moment when someone misses a period and a blue line appears (there will be exceptions to that, of course, but far fewer than for their straight counterparts). Which would mean... people who actively want to be parents turn out to be good parents, regardless of whether they're gay or straight? Sounds logical....

But that's just a side thought. Clearly, the 'It's bad for the children!' idea has been blown out of the water. Even if some people are trying to ignore that fact. Sigh.
@50: "The closest I've ever seen to any mention of children during a wedding service was at an RC marraige about 4 years ago"

Seconding that. At my first (RC) wedding, we vowed "To accept children as a gift from God." Which struck me less as an obligation to reproduce and more as a commitment not to have an abortion.
In the first part of that video (paraphrasing), the question is,"if your child were to come to you and say I'm gay" and Perkins answers, "not bloody likely, given the way I've raised them." He is answering truthfully. His Gay child would not come out to him, because theoretical gay child has been raised to know he would not be loved and supported in gaiety.

Nevertheless I am glad to see Mr. Frank and Mr. Hardballs tear up Mr. Perkins.
I wish they let Tony Perkins speak more and clarify his inconsistencies. Chris Matthews tried, but Frank kept interrupting. "Marriage is about procreation". "OKay, then why let infertile/old couple marry?". Then (this is key) WAIT FOR THE ANSWER. While it is fun to beat them up, pointing out inconsistencies is more helpful. There were so many opportunities to let Tony Perkins hang himself in that interview:

Perkins: "Allowing no-fault divorce has dramatically increased the divorce level". Follow up: Do you then support restricting divorce? Would you have prevented Newt Gingrich from getting divorced" (Wait for answer, and make him answer yes or no)

Perkins: "Studies show that children do better in a two parent environment". Follow up: "Please present the study that shows that. Has that study been peer reviewed? Does it specify mother/father, or does it say that two parents in a loving/stable household?

I loved the interaction between Franken and Thomas Minnery, and I think that is a much better way to do it than Barney Frank did. Just yelling doesn't make the other side listen. Forcing the other side to produce facts to support their position is the right way to go.

I agree with everything Barney Frank said, but the interview just came across as two sides shouting at each other. This was just preaching to the choir.
Oh No.....

Danny quoting "studies"

It always gets ugly.

Did you even read them?

" We don't have data yet on two men parenting..."

All the studies Danny loves to cite that gush on Lesbian parenting carry a corollary- that two male parent couples will be more dangerous to children than man-woman or two woman couples.

"an SPLW-designated Anti-Gay Hate Group™"?

cum on Danny-

don't hold back;

those are OFFICIALLY-designated Anti-Gay Hate Group™ !!!

preach it, sister!
Let us help you out there, Danny-

"The study Perkins alludes to is a 2010 Department of Health and Human Services study. And It didn't compare children raised by opposite-sex couples to children raised by same-sex couples. It compared children with two MARRIED OPPOSITE SEX parents in the home to children with single parents. "

That study didn't include any homosexual couples.

Danny's favorite Lesbian "study" is not.

It followed a teeny tiny sample (admitting that "Data on such families are sparse") of economically advantaged lesbians and compares it to the population as a whole.

Danny is, as usual, confusing Advocacy with Science.

And it only looked at Lesbians but Danny loves to extend it to all same sex couples.

Danny should stick to his MTV clown show and leave Science to adults.
Danny never mentions that the study also shows that the kids of Lesbian couples that split up,
which they did at rates much higher that heterosexuals-
(even the Special Lesbian Couples who have babies together)-
don't seem to care if their moms divorce.

The study actually shows that One Lesbian
is just as good a parent as Two Lesbians,
defeating the whole purpose of Danny's point.....

How Embarrassing for Our Little Danny™

"In addition, children in same-sex-parent families whose mothers ended up separating did as well as children in lesbian families in which the moms stayed together.

Read more:,8599,…;

Lying again, Danny?

Or just Ignorant...
This guy has kind of given up, he doesn't even believe his own bullshit anymore. And it's a delight to watch! More Tony squirming! More Tony squirming!
In addition to the mentions of accepting children (which I've now heard at non-RC ceremonies recently), sometimes they get to talkin' about Adam and Eve and how they were made for each other and should be fruitful and multiply.

But, yeah, even the craziest church weddings I've been to have focused more on the woman following the man around like a puppy and imploring the man not to hit that puppy.

And one of the most religious weddings I've been to recently was between a 48-year-old woman and 50-year-old man. Whadda think the chances of those two poppin' out a few crotch droppings are?
We know the statistics—that children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime; nine times more likely to drop out of schools and twenty times more likely to end up in prison. They are more likely to have behavioral problems, or run away from home, or become teenage parents themselves.
"Studies have shown—AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN—"

wait, Danny-
you only cited two studies
(both of which contradicted your assertion);
you are one AGAIN short.....
Oh, that Miss Tonette! How she DOES run on! But we know, old girl, what's in your heart of hearts. Someday soon your closet door will come crashing open and someone will be caught lifting your luggage. So save all those hate-dollars you're raking in, Miss Tonette. They won't last forever.
@63: Um, actually both articles he cited provided tentative support to his claim. Are you tripping out?
When Perkins is on, the show becomes Softball. Matthews sits on his ass while Perking lies to his audience. There is no science to his claims. It is MISINFORMATION. You would think that would be journalism 101 for that show -- do no harm. But no, we have to hear about imaginary science ever....single....fucking.....time.
I don't know why it bothers you when Perkins breaks the ninth commandment. The Ten Commandments are in the Old Testament, so Christians don't have to obey them.
Al Franken is fucking brilliant...simply by being doing his job really, really well - by listening acutely...and by being absolutely fair. I love this man!
So, by Tony's logic about the purpose of marriage, the only reason he married his wife was to have kids. He doesn't love her. Can you imagine how proposal speeches would sound if that was true? "I want to have kids, so will you marry me?"

It also seemed like Matthews was tearing into Perkins a bit himself.
Dear troll,

"We analyze findings from studies with designs that mitigate these problems by comparing 2-parent families with SAME OR DIFFERENT SEX coparents and single-mother with single-father families"
This is literally in the abstract of the first paper Dan was talking about. If you didn't even read that, well... I doubt that you even got to the part where male-male couples weren't "worse" than other couples.


"A total of 154 lesbian women in 84 families (70 birth mothers, 70 co-mothers, and 14 single mothers) enrolled in the study before it was closed to new participants in 1992"
Somehow, I don't think you understand the concept of statistical power. But N = 154 is a pretty damn solid number of participants.

The Studies that Dan Cited
Dear Tech Savvy at Risk Youth:

The Frank/Perkins video doesn't play on my (just purchased, so up to date) Android phone. Fortunately, I found the video on YouTube.


They really need to start challenging the "kids do best with a mom and a dad" boiler plate talking point that Republicans always talk about, because that talking point is created from comparing metrics of families with a single parent to metrics of families with two parents. Kids of unmarried parents who live together in long term relationships and kids of gay couples are almost indistinguishable in terms of educational performance, happiness etc, in every credible study that has been conducted by neutral third parties.

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