Tuesday, November 4, 2008

West Coast GayKK

There are certain people in this world that we can all agree are infallible. Mother Teresa. Martin Luther King. Mahatma Ghandi. Now imagine making a film which depicts these people as bullies and burglars. You could no easier kick a puppy or strangle sunshine. Yet, for the California Courage Campaign, stooping so low is all in a days work. In a brazen attempt to smear the LDS church for its support of Proposition 8 in California, the Kalifornia Kourage Kampaign has begun airing an ad which depicts LDS missionaries invading and burglarizing the home of a lesbian couple to "take away their rights". It shows them barging in, rummaging through their home (including the underwear drawer) and tearing up the couples marriage license. No seriously. See the ad for yourself here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q28UwAyzUkE.

Apparently, after making this movie, the Kalifornia Kourage Kampaign hopes to branch out with ads depicting Nuns lynching homosexuals and Jewish Rabbis bombing a gay pride parade.

While you may not agree with LDS beliefs or even their methods, it is difficult to find fault with Mormon Missionaries. These are young men and women who put their entire lives on hold and leave behind their families for two years just so they can help others. Yet because they happen to represent a contrarian viewpoint, the West Coast KKK has no problem blatantly misrepresenting them. Hitler's propaganda master Leni Riefenstahl may be dead but his spirit lives on.

Regardless of how you vote on Proposition 8, we can all agree that the lies and outright misrepresentation of the LDS church depicted in this ad cross the line. Could you image John McCain producing an anti-Obama ad that showed two black men barging into the home of a white couple and stealing their rights? No one, on either side of the political spectrum could defend such an ad. Not only does this blatantly anti-Mormon ad propagate lies and encourage hate, but it does nothing to advance the public dialogue on the issue at hand. Even if you do not support Proposition 8, tell me, what good can possibly come of this ad? How can a group that pretends to support equality and tolerance create something so inherently unfair and intolerant?

I think it is time we unleashed the fury of all the Average Joel readers (both of them) and email Rick Jacobs, (rjacobs@couragecampaign.org) founder of the Kalifornia Kourage Kampaign to let him know how we feel. The First Amendment gives them the right to say what ever they want. It also gives us the right to respond.


Shane and Loni said...

That commercial is awful and degrading! But hey, last I checked, Prop 8 pass passing! Yeah!

Rachel said...

I just showed my friend the video, and he thought it was an SNL sketch. I find it hard to view it as offensive because its so ridiculously over the top that I can't take it seriously. They are also a rather radical "progressive" group. But I acknowledge that perhaps not all viewers would take it the same way, and I do not believe that it makes sense to fight discrimination with discrimination. (Regardless of whether Prop 8 is discriminatory - I'm actually agreeing with you on a small point here, no need to argue the bigger issue :) )

oh, also, no one is infallible.

boymystere said...

As a gay man, its so hard because we are getting information from SOOO many places and its hard to know specifically WHO is against us and or WHO we need to send our message to. I understand that a lot of people believe that a traditional family is the best and most appropriate family for raising children, but it is so hard because as a gay man, I can never have this "best" or "most aprropriate" family. I will never love a woman as a wife (unless I'm trying to smuggle a foreign girlfriend into the country hehee....) , the only way that I can EVER have that love between another person is with a guy. I ONLY want to have that relationship with a guy. I ONLY want to marry a guy. When there are things like civil unions, while they do afford most of the same rights, what it does do is create something different from what everyone else has. And when it is different it instills a bit of shame into it... whether you think so or not. Just for the fact that it is different and something that I cannot have creates inequality. It creates a majority vote stating that the majority has marriage, the "normal" marriage, and the minority can have their own "different" union. I can't help but feel saddened by the separate but equal sound of it all. Because even if all of the rights are given to civil unions as much as they are to marriages, I can't help but feel within the conotation, "different", there is the feeling that my love is different than yours. Marriage is just a bond between two loving people who want to commit their lives to each other. Why does it have to be between a man and a woman? Because its always been that way? Change is the driving force of the world. Because its tradition? Tradition is just the past. Its like holding onto the moral values of the 1800's just because they stay the same. Because the Bible says so? The Bible does not govern my life. I'm a buddhist. That book does not play a role in my life. And I understand that you have your religious freedoms. You are entitled to believe what you want to believe. Thank America and the constitution for that! But by voting on it, you are enforcing your church's beliefs onto me. If the church or God has a problem with me being gay or having an untraditional family or a gay marriage, let God judge me when I am up knocking on the pearly gates. Let God judge me. But in that second when you are marking your vote, you have decided to play God. You have decided to enact what you think God's will is onto me. God isn't doing that. You are. What would Jesus do? Would he condemn my marriage? Or would he show me only love?

Yes I know that not all of the members of the LDS Church put money towards Yes on Prop 8, but many of them did. And many of the church members were urged to be very active in this campaign. And while they do have religious freedom, and can feel however they want to feel, but once there is a vote involved, the lines between church and state become VERY blurry. When is it religious freedom and when is it church and state mixing together? Not only that, but the Yes campaign had MILLIONS of dollars pouring in from OUT of STATE... specifically Utah. Now while I don't know the exact religion of each donor coming from Utah, I can make a pretty accurate assumption. The last thing that I want these protests to become is Gays against the Mormons. Its wrong. 2 wrongs don't make a right. Its just hard because despite how incredibly nice and wonderful the members of the Mormon church are, I know that they have incredibly strong traditional family values. I know they excommunicate anyone who is gay. I think that we just wanted to send a message to them by protesting their temple is that what they are doing is affecting my life, our lives. We wanted to tell them that what they are doing is playing God. We wanted to tell them that THAT BOOK is NOT ALWAYS right. We want to tell them that Love is GOOD in ALL ITS FORMS. Gays are not an abomination. I am not an abomination. No one will ever convince me otherwise. I am perfect just the way I am. I think its hard also because we can't protest the Catholic church as easily. We can't really get a message to the Vatican as easily as we can get a message to Utah. It's a scapegoat, and in that idea its wrong. I just wish that the religious movement here can learn to feel happiness towards another human being instead of condemning them for loving and wanting to dedicate their love in marriage. I had a TON of mormon friends in high school. You guys were always so friendly, and always good people, but you could never get past the gay thing. Why can't you just let go of some of that anger and righteousness and feel happiness for another's happiness, for another person's celebration in finding THE person they want to spend rest of their lives with? You can't help but smile when you're truly celebrating another person's love and happiness. I am truly sorry that this is looking like Gays against Mormons. It's wrong. But the Church is making a statement, and for me it is VERY personal.