Saturday, April 11, 2015

199.3 - Clown Award: Kentucky governor Steve Beshear

Clown Award: Kentucky governor Steve Beshear

Now it's time for one of our regular features, the Clown Award, given as always for meritorious stupidity.

This week was a difficult one in this regard because Teh Stupid was on full display across the nation. So much so that this week I have to include two runners-up.

The second runner-up, receiving a squirting flower, is former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who said, appropriately enough on April Fools Day, that advocates for LGBT rights "won't stop" until there are no more churches and no more Christians in America, which means, quoting him, people "spreading ... the unabridged, unapologetic Gospel that is really God’s truth."

Which parenthetically, likely means in HuckleberryHound's mind that Catholics are in the clear. Because, you know, Christians.

Our first runner-up is New Jersey Assemblyman Jerry Green, who takes home the size 17 floppy shoes. This takes a bit of background. Dan Damon is 75 and a well-known blogger about local government in Plainfield, New Jersey. Recently he was arrested for public lewdness after police allegedly caught him performing oral sex on a 23-year-old man in a parked car. The day after the news came out, Green was attacking Plainfield Mayor Adrian Mapp for not removing Damon from the library board. (Parenthetically, all three men - Green, Damon, and Mapp  - are rival Democrats.)

Well, Green was "shocked" that people were taking the arrest "so lightly," even though it is in fact a low-level disorderly persons offense. "This is a 75-year-old man having sex with a 23-year-old man who happens to be a Latino," he said. Now, that last part is weird enough on its own and I'm not sure what it has to do with anything, but after that is when Green really goes off the rails. He said:
The mayor has yet to come out and say anything at all, which is totally shocking. It's not that he doesn't know that (Damon) has a sickness. I'm just hoping nobody gets killed or hurt and that somebody in the administration recognizes that this is a danger to society.

When Mapp lashed back in an op-ed saying he is "appalled" that Green "would consider being gay a ‘sickness,’ suggest that gay people are prone to committing violence and murder, and consider being gay as a ‘danger to society," Green responded by calling Mapp "a total idiot," "a total embarrassment to this community," "an opportunist," and "a backstabber" and referred to him "Mr. Mapp" because "I cant even call him Mayor Mapp."

Green also insisted that he had no need to apologize to anyone because "I was one of the first persons in the African American community to come out for the rights of the gay community ten years ago."

Yeah, and I bet some of your best friends are gay, aren't they? Even if they are sick, violent, and a danger to society.

After that, the winner better be good.

And it is. And it's not even so much for the bigotry as it is for the absolutely, unvarnished, laugh-out-loud inanity.

Steve Beshear
So the winner of the Big Red Nose this week is the Democratic governor of Kentucky, Steve Beshear.

After Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway refused to defend in court the state's ban on same-sex marriage, arguing that he would not defend discriminatory laws, Beshear's office hired an independent law firm to pursue the case.

Kentucky is part of the 6th federal circuit, and it was the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals that bucked the trend of court decisions and upheld bans on same sex marriage. It was that decision that promoted the Supreme Court to take up that matter of same-sex marriage, with oral arguments now scheduled for April 28.

Okay. On March 27, Beshear's attorneys filed their brief on his behalf on the case now before the Supreme Court.

In it, the lawyers argued that the ban on same-sex marriage does not discriminate against same-sex couples. Why? How? The brief said, and I am quoting,
Kentucky’s marriage laws treat homosexuals and heterosexuals the same and are facially neutral. Men and women, whether heterosexual or homosexual, are free to marry persons of the opposite sex under Kentucky law, and men and women, whether heterosexual or homosexual, cannot marry persons of the same sex under Kentucky law.
Get it?  You tell two gay guys who do want to marry each other that they can't but that's fine and dandy and not at all discriminatory because you tell two straight guys who don't want to marry each other that they can't, either.

The utter stupidity is painful to witness.

The Louisville Courier-Journal reminded readers that nearly 50 years ago, in the case Loving v. Virginia, the state of Virginia defended its ban on interracial marriage in much the same terms, saying that the ban was not discriminatory because whites could not marry blacks and blacks could not marry whites, so everyone was treated the same.

And I suppose a ban on nursing a baby in public is also non-discriminatory because both women and men are barred from doing so.

Or, as French novelist Anatole France put it back in 1894,
The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, or to steal bread.

People supporting LGBT rights are sometimes fond of recalling the bans on interracial marriage and saying to those who support bans on same-sex marriage to "think how you are going to look in 40 years." Apparently Steve Beshear and his crack legal team - who must be on crack - are not prepared to wait.

Gov. Steve Beshear: clown.

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