Barney Frank: ‘I Will Confess That I Left My Purse at Home’

Frank

Rep. Barney Frank discussed Obama's accomplishments with Chris Matthews highlighting the recent repeal of the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy and what it will do to diminish prejudice. Matthews nearly loses it as Barney injects a bit of sarcasm into the conversation.

Said Frank:

"I was reading the comments — a young Marine 18 years old – who said 'well I'm against this because we're macho. We're Marines. And gay men are girly. Now, I will confess that I left my purse at home….uh, and I'm sorry that I didn't live up to his prediction. Giving gay and lesbian people a chance to show, in the most important and challenging thing you can do in America, that we really are like everybody else except for our choices about what we do in intimate moments – that's a very important breakthrough."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP



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Frank: U.S. Not Ready for Gay President

BARNEY FRANK 20100521 X390 (GETTY) | ADVOCATE.COMCongressman Barney Frank said that discriminatory laws like DOMA prove that America is not yet ready for a gay president.
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News: San Francisco, Mark Wahlberg, Barney Frank, FOX News

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Frank Rich Bashes The Smithsonian Over Censorship

In a piece titled "Gay Bashing at the Smithsonian," Frank Rich writes about the institution's censorship of David Wojnarowicz' piece "A Fire in My Belly," which was quickly (and baffingly) yanked from an exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery a few weeks ago:

Like many of its antecedents, the war over Wojnarowicz is a completely manufactured piece of theater. What triggered the abrupt uproar was an incendiary Nov. 29 post on a conservative Web site. The post was immediately and opportunistically seized upon by William Donohue, of the so-called Catholic League, a right-wing publicity mill with no official or financial connection to the Catholic Church.

W Donohue is best known for defending Mel Gibson’s anti-Semitism by declaring that “Hollywood is controlled by Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular.” A perennial critic of all news media except Fox, he has also accused The Times of anti-Catholicism because it investigated the church pedophilia scandal. Donohue maintains the church doesn’t have a “pedophilia crisis” but a “homosexual crisis.” Such is the bully that the Smithsonian surrendered to without a fight.

Donohue’s tactic was to label the 11-second ants-and-crucifix sequence as “anti-Christian” hate speech. “The irony,” wrote the Washington Post art critic, Blake Gopnik, is that the video is merely a tepid variation on the centuries-old tradition of artists using images of Christ, many of them “hideously grisly,” to speak of mankind’s suffering. Those images are staples of all museums — even in Washington, where gory 17th-century sculptures of Christ were featured in a recent show of Spanish sacred art at the National Gallery.

But of course Donohue was just using his “religious” objections as a perfunctory cover for the homophobia actually driving his complaint. The truth popped out of the closet as Donohue expanded his indictment to “pornographic images of gay men.” His Republican Congressional allies got into the act. Eric Cantor called for the entire exhibit to be shut down and threatened to maim the Smithsonian’s taxpayer funding come January. (The exhibit was entirely funded by private donors, but such facts don’t matter in culture wars.) Jack Kingston, of the House Appropriations Committee, rattled off his own list of exaggerated gay outrages in “Hide/Seek,” from “Ellen DeGeneres grabbing her breasts” to “naked brothers kissing.”

It took only hours after Donohue’s initial battle cry for the video to be yanked. “The decision wasn’t caving in,” the museum’s director, Martin E. Sullivan, told reporters. Of course it was. The Smithsonian, in its own official statement, rationalized its censorship by saying that Wojnarowicz’s video “generated a strong response from the public.” That’s nonsense. There wasn’t a strong response from the public — there was no response. As the museum’s own publicist told the press, the National Portrait Gallery hadn’t received a single complaint about “A Fire in the Belly” from the exhibit’s opening day, Oct. 30, until a full month later, when a “public” that hadn’t seen the exhibit was mobilized by Donohue to blast the museum by phone and e-mail.

In response to th Smithsonian's outrageous censhorship, several museums and galleries across the United States have decided to showcase Wojnarowicz' video, including as the New Museum in NYC and CB1 Gallery in Los Angeles.


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Frank Rich on ‘gay bashing’ in DC

Frank Rich looks at the gay bashing underway in DC. He addresses the controversy at the National Portrait Gallery over the removal of David Wojnarowicz’s work “A Fire in My Belly.” It was back to the 80s for the Smithsonian. But, Rich brilliantly explains how this is part of a bigger pattern of homophobia that’s alive and well in the nation’s Capitol:

It still seems an unwritten rule in establishment Washington that homophobia is at most a misdemeanor. By this code, the Smithsonian’s surrender is no big deal; let the art world do its little protests. This attitude explains why the ever more absurd excuses concocted by John McCain for almost single-handedly thwarting the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” are rarely called out for what they are — “bigotry disguised as prudence,” in the apt phrase of Slate’s military affairs columnist, Fred Kaplan. Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council has been granted serious and sometimes unchallenged credence as a moral arbiter not just by Rupert Murdoch’s outlets but by CNN, MSNBC and The Post’s “On Faith” Web site even as he cites junk science to declare that “homosexuality poses a risk to children” and that being gay leads to being a child molester.

It’s partly to counteract the hate speech of persistent bullies like Donohue and Perkins that the Seattle-based author and activist Dan Savage created his “It Gets Better” campaign in which gay adults (and some non-gay leaders, including President Obama) make videos urging at-risk teens to realize that they are not alone. But even this humanitarian effort is controversial and suspect in some Beltway quarters: G.O.P. politicians and conservative pundits have yet to participate even though most of the recent and well-publicized suicides by gay teens have occurred in Republican Congressional districts, including those of party leaders like Michele Bachmann, Mike Pence and Kevin McCarthy.

Has it gotten better since AIDS decimated a generation of gay men? In San Francisco, certainly. But when America’s signature cultural institution can be so easily bullied by bigots, it’s another indicator that the angels Keith Haring saw on his death bed have not landed in Washington just yet.

Not yet. For GOPers, it’s blatant homophobia (or for the Lindsey Graham types, it’s internalized homophobia.) I also think for many Democrats (including top White House staffers like Emanuel and Messina), it’s political homophobia.




AMERICAblog Gay

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Rep. Barney Frank On House Democrats’ Rejection Of Obama’s Tax Compromise

Joe. My. God.

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News: Juan Williams, eBay, Bob Guccione, Glee, Barney Frank

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Frank Padavan (R-NY 11th): A history of ‘I don’t’ in face of obvious ‘I dos’

Screen Shot 2010-10-15 At 5.50.40 Pm2010: New York state senator Frank Padavan is one of the most anti-marriage equality lawmakers in Albany. He’s out-of-touch and woefully behind on this, a should-be-no-brainer issue that’s inevitably going to go the way of equality, holding a position on this civil marriage matter that not only violates the deserved rights of gay New Yorkers, but also thumbs its nose at the demands of the 14th Amendment. Gays and their ring fingers are the hot nuptial issue of the day — Padavan is a firm no.

Well now, if you’ll indulge me, I’d like to take you on a journey back in time. Picture it: February of 1974. Patty Hearst’s story is gripping a pre-bicentennial nation. “The Way We Were” is a hit on the pop charts. Cher has just divorced Sonny Bono. And a 39-year-old Frank Padavan has been in the state Senate for a little over a year, when another kind of marriage bill comes before him. The big marriage issue back then? Whether or not gender discrimination should be removed from the state’s alimony laws, so that the post-divorce provisions are based on ability to pay and other situational realities, not penis possession. The New York senate is tasked with casting a vote.

Now, it sounds bizarre to modern ears that this sort of thing was even up for debate. That’s probably because in 1979, the Supreme Court weighed in on this matter in the legendary case of Orr v. Orr, which determined once and for all that wives-only laws violated Equal Protection (duh!). Since we’ve all lived in three decades of an America that’s been free of this form of marital (or post-marital) discrimination, we’ve just come to accept it as the norm. It’s just such an obviously fair thing.

And the thing is? It was also pretty damn obvious to the majority of the New York State Senate in 1974. In fact, when the matter was presented to that Watergate era body, fifty-five of them had the foresight to see the way history was headed and the fortitude to beat the court to the punch. Only three senators did not: John J. Marchi of Staten Island (R). E. Schermerhorn of Orange County (R). And…

…wait for it, wait for it…

…FRANK PADAVAN of QUEENS (R):

Screen Shot 2010-10-15 At 5.09.26 Pm

Then. Now. Why?

District 11 New Yorkers of 2010: You have another option. His name is Tony Avella. He supports marriage equality. Give him a fair look.

All New Yorkers of 2041: Yes, this gay marriage thing was seriously a conversation we had to have in this state in the year 2010. I know, right?!




Good As You

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Barney Frank Accuses Limbaugh Of ‘Vicious, Homophobic’ Attack, Helping Republican Opponent

Franklimbaugh

Barney Frank has had enough of Rush Limbaugh. Though Limbaugh frequently takes shots at the openly gay Massachusetts representative, Frank insists Limbaugh's latest antics crossed the proverbial line.

It all began last week, when Limbaugh referred to Frank, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, as the "banking queen" and played the song "My Boy Lollypop," with bonus slurping sounds, while discussing the incumbent Democrat, who's up for reelection.

Frank found the entire thing offensive, and told MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell last night that the incident qualifies as a "vicious" and "homophobic" attack, one that's designed to help Frank's opponent:

[Limbaugh] just launched this very, even for him, vicious, homophobic attack.

My opponent, the Republican, Sean Bielat, who‘s running against me, told “The Wall Street Journal,” before they told me today, that he raised a lot of money from out of state.  He was very explicit earlier this year.  He said if I can‘t get help out of state I can‘t win this thing.  He‘s helped by the right wing media, by Hannity and Limbaugh, by FOX News.

Frank's campaign reiterated their collective displeasure today by calling Limbaugh's actions "disgusting" and "revolting."

Watch Frank's remarks, AFTER THE JUMP.



The Limbaugh-related discussion starts at the 4:55 mark.


Towleroad News #gay

—  John Wright

Rush Limbaugh Revels in Attacks on Barney Frank

It’s clear that Rush Limbaugh isn’t a big fan of openly gay Rep. Barney Frank.  In fact, the right-wing radio host has for years played the song “my boy lollypop” whenever referring to the Congressman.  On yesterday’s edition of his nationally syndicated show, Limbaugh bragged about his continued use of the offensive song as well as calling Frank the “banking queen” due to his position as Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.

Take a listen to Limbaugh’s outrageous attacks:
Rush Limbaugh Attacks Barney Frank


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  John Wright