The otherwise-enlightened Mormon doctor was circulating the Nevada anti-gay marriage petition a few years ago. It has now cemented official bigotry into the Nevada Constitution.
Based on such recent evidence, a wide swath of dingbat Nevada voters could arguably support a properly worded initiative reinstituting slavery or removing womens’ right to vote, especially if supported with enough TV commercials selling the proposition.
I was tempted to ask my doctor-neighbor how he might treat non-heterosexual patients. I chose not to. At the time, he had two children with one on the way. He now has six and will most probably have several more.
The odds thus increasingly favor his siring a child or two that he and his lovely wife will birth into second-class citizenship. Then he’s going to have to re-evaluate how he wants his babies treated. The circle of fear can thus be broken.
This past week brought a story regarding recent nefarious activities of U.S. Catholic and Mormon churches, along with moonhowling preachers Pat Robertson and Rick Warren. They are funding front groups throughout Africa to promote bigotry against those of alternative procreative proclivity.
In recent years, such interests have pushed Uganda, which Winston Churchill once called “the pearl of Africa,” to make “aggravated homosexuality” a capital offense.
I wonder what constitutes non-aggravated homosexuality over there in pearlyland.
The Taliban, soon to return to power in Afghanistan, are again stoning men and women to death while funding their religious wars selling opium. I guess it’s OK to sell to the infidels if you follow your religion and don’t inhale. Back to the good old days of the 12th century.
For U.S. women, who comprise 53 percent of voters, the central political issue of 2012 is arguably birth control, not the economy. Back to the 19th century, ladies. Didn’t your mother teach you how to properly use aspirin?
As I explained to my doctor-neighbor, the remedy for so much that afflicts us lies in economic opportunity (and thus not in queer-bashing). We would have far less time to dwell on whom we hate if we were busy in the pursuit of a bright future.
I have said for years that executed Oklahoma City mass-murderer Timothy McVeigh might not have gotten into bomb manufacturing had he a good job waiting after he was mustered out of his beloved army.
Fear is a very sellable commodity. A Nevada politician stated the obvious: “People respond to threats.” Fear works.
And so we are surrounded by fear as a marketing tool. Fear of queers and criminals, blacks and browns, ragheads and potheads.
Former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyoming, famously groused that nothing gets through Congress unless it contains some combination of “fear, guilt, money and racism.”
Nazi leader Herman Goering once said “naturally, the common people don’t want war, but after all, it is the leaders of a country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag people along whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country,” Goering noted.
A friend placed a photo on my Facebook page last week, a stark black-and-white shot of huge letters painted on a tunnel wall: “Fear is a Liar.”
Which states in four words why we went to war in Iraq and escalated in Vietnam, among countless other depredations.
In the wake of the Aurora, Colo., massacre, Oscar-winning “Bowling for Columbine” director Michael Moore said, “We are an easily frightened people and it is easy to manipulate us with fear. What are we so afraid of that we need to have 300 million guns in our homes? Who do we think is going to hurt us? Why are most of these guns in white suburban and rural homes? Maybe we should fix our race problem and our poverty problem (again number one in the industrialized world) and then maybe there would be fewer frustrated, frightened, angry people reaching for the gun in the drawer. Maybe we would take better care of each other.”
Wise man George Carlin used to close his shows with the admonishment, “Take care of each other.”
We don’t seem to listen to wise people these days, opting instead for banalities like “common sense.”
Fear sells with lies and sells us out.
President Franklin Roosevelt famously said, “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.”
Alas and alack, fear still moves more mountains than faith.
One-liner of the year
“Never trust a politician who believes it should be harder to vote than to purchase 6,000 bullets off the Internet.” – From a Keith Knight cartoon about voter ID laws in the current Reno News & Review.
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Be well. Raise hell.
Andrew Barbano is a 43-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988. He can be contacted at email@example.com.