There Should Be No 'Punishment' Phase When a Culture War Ends

Let's not with the "eye for an eye," hmm?credit: washington_area_spark / photo on flickrDozens of supporters of gay marriage, including many noted journalists and scholars, have signed on to a statement today calling for an end to the kind of public outrage that haunted ex-Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich when people discovered he once donated money to the opposing side.

The full statement is posted at Real Clear Politics, and the signatories include many names recognizable here at Reason: Jonathan Rauch, Paypal's Peter Thiel, Eugene and Sasha Volokh (and other contributors to The Volokh Conspiracy), Andrew Sullivan, Charles Murray, Reason Contributing Editor Cathy Young. The letter calls for advocacy and debate, but an end to retributive responses to those who have opposed (or still oppose) same-sex marriage recognition. In the section titled "Disagreement Should Not Be Punished," they argue:

We prefer debate that is respectful, but we cannot enforce good manners. We must have the strength to accept that some people think misguidedly and harmfully about us. But we must also acknowledge that disagreement is not, itself, harm or hate.

As a viewpoint, opposition to gay marriage is not a punishable offense. It can be expressed hatefully, but it can also be expressed respectfully. We strongly believe that opposition to same-sex marriage is wrong, but the consequence of holding a wrong opinion should not be the loss of a job. Inflicting such consequences on others is sadly ironic in light of our movement's hard-won victory over a social order in which LGBT people were fired, harassed, and socially marginalized for holding unorthodox opinions.

During the debate over whether what happened to Eich was appropriate—and very frequently in the debate on recognizing gay marriage itself—supporters of how the conflict ended with Eich stepping down invoked interracial marriage. Would we have supported Eich if he was opposed to interracial marriage? How is opposing same-sex marriage different from opposing interracial marriage? Indeed, the issue was immediately raised in the comment thread after signatory Dale Carpenter posted an excerpt at The Volokh Conspiracy. Should a CEO opposed to interracial marriage be immune from any sort of consequences from such a position?

Since the laws against interracial marriage were struck down so many years ago, it's appropriate to respond: Who, actually, was punished for being on the wrong side of that debate? Did people who opposed race-mixing lose their jobs for supporting the wrong candidates? Can anybody point to CEOs who were fired back in the '60s or '70s for supporting some racist candidate somewhere? I have done a bit of a stab at trying to track down any info that such outcomes happened, but that would seem to take a lot more time than I have as a blogger.

To the extent that those particular civil rights battles ended, I don't recall there being a punishment phase afterward. The battles were certainly punishment enough. Those people on the wrong side—and there were millions of them—didn't go anywhere. They continued on with their lives under new laws and probably most of them eventually came around on the issue, or at least kept it to themselves. Winning a culture war isn't like winning an actual war. You're not stopping an invasion (or initiating one). When the war is over, the participants are still around and they still have to negotiate a way to live together. That realization is why the end of a culture war simply can't have some sort of Nuremberg Trials. There isn't an equivalent. You have to live next door to people who may have extremely different views from yours. Sometimes, those views were actually the majority view at one point. If you try to initiate a punishment phase, why would your opponents then agree to stop fighting and accept your victory?

Nobody who knows the history of the gay movement in the United States should countenance people being punished by their employers for the way they express themselves, unless they value revenge more than liberty (some probably do, sadly). The conclusion of the letter notes:

LGBT Americans can and do demand to be treated fairly. But we also recognize that absolute agreement on any issue does not exist. Franklin Kameny, one of America's earliest and greatest gay-rights proponents, lost his job in 1957 because he was gay. Just as some now celebrate Eich's departure as simply reflecting market demands, the government justified the firing of gay people because of "the possible embarrassment to, and loss of public confidence in...the Federal civil service." Kameny devoted his life to fighting back. He was both tireless and confrontational in his advocacy of equality, but he never tried to silence or punish his adversaries.

Now that we are entering a new season in the debate that Frank Kameny helped to open, it is important to live up to the standard he set. Like him, we place our confidence in persuasion, not punishment. We believe it is the only truly secure path to equal rights.

The tragedy was not that this sort of workplace treatment happened to gays and lesbians (or that it still happens). It was that it happened to anybody at all.

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  • Austrian Anarchy||

    More licenses means less equality, and less liberty. Not more.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Give it up. They don't want to hear it.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Stop keeping me down, maaaaaaan!

  • Paul.||

    More licenses means less equality, and less liberty. Not more.

    There are only 334 licenses for freedom.

  • Calidissident||

    Does this apply to all licenses? For example, the government shouldn't be giving out business licenses, but given that they do, is it really the pro-liberty position to make them as restrictive as possible?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Good Lord.

    is it really the pro-liberty position to make them as restrictive as possible?

    No, the liberty position is to make them as extinct as possible.

  • Winston||

    You Know Who Else said the government should be abolished but first we must make sure the state is as big as possible and hand out free shit to everyone?

  • Paul.||

    Noam Chomsky.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Lenin (happy birthday), Stalin, Hitler, Mao, and Rod Holt?

  • Sevo||

    "Lenin (happy birthday),"

    So Earth Day is that mass murderer's birthday? How appropriate!

  • Seamus||

    It's also Immanuel Kant's birthday, so make of that what you will.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    It was no accident that it turned out that way.

  • Calidissident||

    Yeah, because thinking that the state granting marriage licenses to all couples instead of just heterosexual couples, even though ideally marriage licenses would not exist at all is totally the same as advocating that we make the state as big as possible and hand out free shit to everyone.

    Fuck off.

  • Winston||

    You are arguing in favor of making government bigger and making sure everyone gets free shit though?

  • Calidissident||

    I would argue that governments issuing licenses, but restricting them is a bigger expansion of government than issuing them with little to no restrictions, because the former is intended to control behavior. Again, if we apply this logic to business licenses, is someone who advocates permissive issuance of business licenses, given that they do exist, a shill for big government?

  • Winston||

    Is business licences really the best comparison? Can people legally operate businesses without business licences? Can unmarried couples cohabitate?

    And since your argument is that since unmarried couples don't get certain privileges than gay marriage is discriminatory then you are arguing that since the government hands out free shit they might as well hand it out to everyone.

    I would argue that governments issuing licenses, but restricting them is a bigger expansion of government than issuing them with little to no restrictions, because the former is intended to control behavior.

    So by this logic more entitlement programs are reducing the size of government? And you wonder why I made the communist comparison...

  • Calidissident||

    "Is business licences really the best comparison? Can people legally operate businesses without business licences? Can unmarried couples cohabitate?"

    Did Austrian Anarchy specify what type of licenses he was talking about? I must have missed that. Furthermore, while marriage licenses do grant legal privileges that shouldn't exist (though it's not like getting a marriage license = a million dollars in welfare a year, or something like that), they also do protect certain negative rights. Such as sponsoring a spouse in immigration proceedings, not being compelled to testify in court, reduced taxes (depending on the couple's situation), and various stuff related to inheritance, medical issues, etc. (the latter things can be addressed without a marriage license, but courts and other entities have at times ignored personal wishes due to the absence of a license).

    "And since your argument is that since unmarried couples don't get certain privileges than gay marriage is discriminatory"

    I agree that any state marriage licensing scheme is discriminatory, and I would like to see them abolished. That doesn't mean they are all equally bad, or that I can't support something like gay marriage as an improvement over the status quo.

    If there was a law proposed (ignoring Constitutional blockades) that would ban marriage licenses for interracial couples, would you support that law? I don't see how you couldn't, under your logic.

  • ||

    they also do protect certain negative rights.

    Not a single thing you listed following this sentence was a negative right. Even if you consider immigration a natural right, special preference in immigration over others based on whom you are fucking is most certainly not a protection of that right - it's a bastardization of the right for everyone else. Everything else you mentioned is a privilege for binding your relationship to the state. You don't have a negative right to pay lower taxes than your neighbor because he's single, or to avoid going to jail for refusing to testify in court while your neighbor goes up on contempt charges. You might want to at least glance at the wiki entry for negative rights before you go defining them into nothingness.

  • Calidissident||

    "So by this logic more entitlement programs are reducing the size of government?"

    How the fuck did you make this leap? Again, the state uses licensing to control and influence behavior. That is the expansion of government. It still exists with gay marriage, which is why I support ending licenses, but by making them less restrictive, the state's control of personal behavior is lessened. Some of the first marriage license programs were created to prevent interracial marriage - was eliminating those restrictions an expansion of government?

  • Winston||

    The State uses other things beyond licensing to control and influence behavior, you know. Should the state expand them? You do know the reason so many anarchists and communists end up supporting big government is thatas long as a government program exists it should be as non-discriminatory as possible?

    Also in Reason magazine Mike Godwin defended Obamacare:

    Yes, a truly libertarian system would allow everyone to opt out, including emergency rooms that could opt out of caring for an insurance-free deadbeat who crawls in after a car crash. Given that health care in the U.S. doesn't work that way - we require virtually all American emergency rooms to provide care regardless of ability to pay - a truly universal system is the best option for maximizing health-care efficiencies. And if we can preserve some aspects of competition among insurers (which Obamacare, mimicking the health-care plan proposed by the GOP to counter Bill Clinton's efforts at health-care reform, attempts to do), that's all to the good.

    But there's an even stronger libertarian argument for Obamacare. Namely, it frees more Americans to take better jobs without worrying about losing the health care plan they had in their old jobs. Worker mobility is one of the things that reliably fuels free enterprise, and workers will be more mobile under Obamacare than they would be under Romney's semi-dismantled version of it.

  • Calidissident||

    "For example, the government shouldn't be giving out business licenses, but given that they do,"

    "No, the liberty position is to make them as extinct as possible."

    Apparently you have zero reading comprehension ability.

  • Winston||

    What will happen to the opponents of bathroom equality?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    They should be equal, and separate.

  • Paul.||

    You know who else wanted society to be equal but separate?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    FDR?

  • Brian D||

    Woodrow Wilson?

  • John C. Randolph||

    Woodrow Wilson?

    Oh, wait. He only cared about separate.

    -jcr

  • PapayaSF||

    Good for these people. This is an issue of civility and (yes) "diversity" that a lot of liberals (and some libertarians) do not understand.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    On one hand, I don't like the idea of employers policing their employees political views and was thus disturbed by Eich's firing.

    On the other hand, what of all the homosexuals who lost jobs during the "punishment phase" at the beginning of the culture war? None of the people on Eich's side seem the slightest bit worried about their difficulties.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    The Spartans in "300" lost their jobs for reasons unrelated to their buggery.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    So firing Eich is like a form of negative reparation and karma put on the opponents of same-sex marriage?

    Not sure if it's moral to go down that route.

  • Dweebston||

    Gorramit, beaten to it.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    No, just that it's hard to feel that bad for Eich when he's now getting a taste of his own medicine.

    My sense of justice is in conflict with my sense of vengence here. Even if I guess justice ought to win out in the end, I'm not going to be very happy about it.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    It would be a taste of his own medicine if he personally discriminated against gay employees by firing them or not promoting them.

    There have been no allegations by anyone and that he has.

  • PapayaSF||

    Exactly, GMSM.

  • Winston||

    Yes letting your sense of vengeance override your sense of justice has always worked out well.

  • R C Dean||

    The only kind of justice that would be served by firing someone for opposing gay marriage, entirely in their private life, would be "social" justice.

    And you know what we think about that around here.

  • ||

    And you know what we think about that around here.

    It's doubleplusgood?

  • Dweebston||

    Did Eich's firing help pay reparations, then?

  • ||

    This is the dumbest statement I've seen today. You want tit for tat? You really think that's going to end well? You want Eich to be fired even though he probably never personally fired a gay person (I'm guessing) for being gay?

    Collective guilting and collective punishment are the refuge of the scumbag. Fuck you.

  • John||

    ^^THIS^^

  • Paul.||

    You want tit for tat?

    Just tit, thank you.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    You want Eich to be fired

    "On one hand, I don't like the idea of employers policing their employees political views and was thus disturbed by Eich's firing."

    I don't want him fired. But I don't really feel all that bad that he was on a emotional level, as opposed to a rational concern about the broader social implications.

  • trshmnster the terrible||

    But I don't really feel all that bad that he was on a emotional level

    Nor do I, given that I've never met the guy. However, the broader social implications are what evoke the emotional response in me. Targeting people's jobs for something that they did that was completely unrelated to the job is a damn large step towards gulags.

  • Redmanfms||

    I don't want him fired. But I don't really feel all that bad that he was on a emotional level, as opposed to a rational concern about the broader social implications.

    So more of the, "I only sort of hold this position, but not really" having your cake and eating social justice bullshit from you that we didn't miss when you were gone.

    You really are a fucking weasel.

  • R C Dean||

    what of all the homosexuals who lost jobs during the "punishment phase" at the beginning of the culture war?

    Oh, so you want an endless cycle of bitterness, recrimination and retribution. Noted.

  • JW||

    Oh, so you want an endless cycle of bitterness, recrimination and retribution.

    Well, they did want the right to marry. That's packaged right in.

  • Paul.||

    It makes for good reality TV.

  • PapayaSF||

    None of the people on Eich's side seem the slightest bit worried about their difficulties.

    Not true. At least one liberal at Slate (IIRC) pointed out that the "he makes coworkers uncomfortable" argument was exactly the excuse used to fire gays in the past.

  • Seamus||

    So when the war against McCarthyism was won, and people what that meant is not that people would no longer lose their jobs for having unpopular political beliefs. It meant that they should not lose their jobs for having *particular* unpopular beliefs. Firing people for having contributed money to McCarthy, for example, would be just hunky-dory.

  • Seamus||

    Strike "and people" in the first line of my 7:43 pm post.

  • Redmanfms||

    On the other hand, what of all the homosexuals who lost jobs during the "punishment phase" at the beginning of the culture war? None of the people on Eich's side seem the slightest bit worried about their difficulties.

    So, because bad things once happened to people (decades ago) we now must punish other people.... Uh, why?

    You know, your absence in the last quarter of 2013 first couple months of 2014 was much enjoyed by nearly everybody. The last thing we need is two Blue Tulpas concern trolling us with stupid shit like this.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    We prefer debate that is respectful, but we cannot enforce good manners.

    As long as it's not enforced by law or public institution, I think there's definitely a place for consequences to a person for their actions. If the market gives me two choices of products to consume, I have no problem using as one of my criteria whether or not I think someone associated with one product has been an a-hole.

    Having said that, open debate can only strengthen a good position, so more power to them in their push for amnesty for incorrect thinkers.

  • Overt||

    While you have every right to hold a company accountable for its employees having disagreeable personal opinions, the point from the letter writers is that it isn't going to solve the problems you want solved.

    We are seeing the creation of an environment where peoples' political views will be vetted before they can be hired. This cycle will not end well.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Personally, I can't see wanting to take away from private employers any criteria they wish for choosing workers. But I don't begrudge anyone trying to convince business owners - or consumers - otherwise.

  • Overt||

    I don't think anyone is arguing to "take away" anything. They are urging people to moderate their behavior. They are urging it because 1) they believe a punitive atmosphere that chills speech/political-participation to be wrong morally and (most importantly) 2) that for those looking to create a "better world", a punitive environment is the sure way to keep this war going for far longer than is necessary.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I don't disagree, however I am more pro-business than anti-culture war. Meaning, a business must foremost do what's best for itself, and avoiding controversy (unless controversy somehow helps the bottom line) is a must.

    My point was that these writers can try to get people to change their attitudes toward boycott and censure, but people are gonna do what they're gonna do. Business shouldn't take that chance.

  • LiveFreeOrDiet||

    I just wish people would stop calling things "war" that are not war. I had to inform a neighbor who started talking "no justice, no peace" that I believe people when they threaten me, and if I could see him he was in range.

  • PapayaSF||

    We are seeing the creation of an environment where peoples' political views will be vetted before they can be hired. This cycle will not end well.

    More than that: if approving of SSM is a requirement, many (most?) sincere Christians and Muslims cannot be CEOs. So it's, in effect, a religious test.

  • Paul.||

    Having said that, open debate can only strengthen a good position, so more power to them in their push for amnesty for incorrect thinkers

    Dianne Feinstein will get no such amnesty from me.

  • Dweebston||

    There is no room for debate, differences of opinion, or freedom of conscience in the Tolerance Party.

  • ||

    If you try to initiate a punishment phase, why would your opponents then agree to stop fighting and accept your victory?

    This is absolutely spot on, Scott. Because if punishment phases start becoming a thing, people will not give up without violence. KULTUR WAR bullshit has historically been able to resolve itself peacefully because there is no punishment. One "side" loses, they accept it, and most of them just move on, and that's that. If the winners start punishing the losers, including things like causing them to lose their livelihood, this will not only chill the speech of those who need to keep their jobs (or whatever), it will cause people to fight all the harder, up to and including violence.

    The people who call for revenge are filled with hate and that's not going to work out well for anyone. They need to just be glad they won and leave it at that.

  • Paul.||

    This is a tolerant, open-minded blog, Episiarch. That means there's no place for you here.

  • ||

    I know that now, Paul.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    But the tolerant side doesn't do purges. I read it in the account of Stalin's alleged purges on Marxists.Org. They are scholarly over there that lot.

  • ||

    Can you do something else besides whining about the other TEAM?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    No reason to be defensive, or is there?

  • ||

    Defensive of what? I'm not interested in your cries of "but but the other TEAM!!!", because anyone is capable of this, and the point is to express why it's a terrible idea, not to go TEAM.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    (nobody tell him I was being sarcastic of Marxists.Org and let's see how far this goes)

  • ||

    (nobody tell him he seems to have utterly missed my point and let's see how stupid he can get)

  • Brandon||

    AA, you seem to have missed Epi's point. You really did seem to go into a "but the other team!!!" thing there, calling it the tolerant side and all. Oh, sorry Epi, I may have let it slip.

  • ||

    KULTUR WAR bullshit has historically been able to resolve itself peacefully because there is no punishment.

    Yeah, that's an enormous crock of fucking shit though. The '64 CRA made it illegal to be a bigot and have a livelihood. The prospect of having to tangle with the guys with badges on their shirts and guns on their hips overrode principled bigotry for most. But make no mistake, the punitive consequences and prospect of violence for not falling in line had a lot to do with it. To say there hasn't been a punishment phase is a joke.

    The exact same thing is happening and will continue to happen with this issue and whatever the next culture war issue may be. The people with the ikcy viewpoints will shut the fuck up and sit the fuck down like they're told, and then 50 years from now we can all look back and marvel at how peacefully it all turned out.

  • Paul.||

    If you can't put your enemies in front of the firing squad after the revolution, why bother with the revolution?

  • fish||

    For the chicks!

  • JW||

    Look, can we settle for a thumb and finger 'L' on the forehead? We can at least taunt the revolutionary losers, right?

  • JW||

    This is welcome news, but I remain unconvinced that many of the hoi polloi will sign on. The temptation from the visceral thrill of seeing their political enemies punished will be tough to flush from the system.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    So what's the queer equivalent reparation of 40 acres and a mule?

  • JW||

    Seriously? Most of the gay guys I know have a much better life than I do, not to mention assloads of disposable income, and only their little ol' selves to spend it on.

    If anyone's getting a mule, it's me.

  • Overt||

    If anyone's getting a mule, it's me.

    That will require much, much more work in marriage legislation. We haven't even dealt with polygamy yet.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Nobody goes to jail for polygamy except Mormons. Poly-homosexuals get a total pass.

  • JW||

    You keep your damn, dirty hands off'a mah Mrs. Beasley.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    Most of the gay guys I know have a much better life than I do, not to mention assloads of disposable income

    I don't think it's disposable income their asses are loaded with...

  • Swiss Servator, Käse, Käse!||

    I was wondering if anyone was going to hit that nice slow pitch over the plate...

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    So what's the queer equivalent reparation of 40 acres and a mule?

  • Winston||

    A complete copy of the 1954 A Star is Born and the Judy Garland Show?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Autographed posters of Judy Garland AND Marilyn Monroe?

  • Juice||

    According to Andrew Dice Clay it's 10% off Vaseline.

  • Joe Huffman||

    While I agree that people shouldn't lose their jobs for having different political beliefs there are limits to "There Should Be No 'Punishment' Phase When a Culture War Ends". For example, in the 1950's it might have been impossible to get a conviction in some jurisdictions for someone that participated in a lynching of someone with dark colored skin. But 20 years later the culture had changed such that a conviction was possible. And punishing the guilty at that time for a crime of that nature should be considered perfectly acceptable.

    I believe there are similar crimes being committed today which result in the deaths of people that will someday be prosecutable even if there is zero chance of it today.

  • R C Dean||

    Fer fuck's sake, Joe. Nobody is saying there should be amnesty for actual crimes.

    Be careful not to leave that red herring in the sun. They start stinking in no time.

  • JW||

    If you read Joe's blog post, he's all for the collectivization of political crimes, for having the temerity in believing something differently.

    Yep, they'll all get a fair hearing and a quick hanging.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Not necessarily in that order.

  • Sevo||

    Joe, you SF'd the link, so it's hard to tell what you're referring to.

  • Brandon||

    Worked for me.

  • Brandon||

    You don't seem to understand the difference between advocating and conspiracy.

    Oh. Nevermind. Reading further, you're just an idiot.

    This is a very clear logical path to prosecuting anti-gun people. Those that object to this logic either don’t regard being able to keep and bear arms as a “real right” or they are being logically inconsistent with those limits to free speech in existing law.

    Right, those are the only two possible reasons for someone to disagree with you about prosecuting people for speech you disagree with. Rational people call that kind of drastic overstatement a "Straw man," Joe. It is a common logical fallacy relied on by those who cannot defend their positions in an objective, rational manner.

  • R C Dean||

    I'm very glad to see some kind of public pushback on this.

    What I don't see on that list is anyone, aside from possibly Andrew Sullivan, who I would call a marquee gay activist leader type. IOW, the people who can make this stop have yet to say they want it stop. And until they do, it won't.

    Step 1 is the statement of principles. If that doesn't get results, I hope the signatories are willing to move on to step 2: calling out by name the activists and groups who are out for blood, and saying in clear, simple, unqualified sentences that what they are doing is wrong, and they are forfeiting any claim to moral superiority or support.

  • Paul.||

    What I don't see on that list is anyone, aside from possibly Andrew Sullivan, who I would call a marquee gay activist leader type. IOW, the people who can make this stop have yet to say they want it stop. And until they do, it won't.

    Yeah, I'm wondering how long it'll take before someone dismisses the whole petition as a Koch stunt.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    It's hard to get a chanting, threatening mob out into the streets with a platform of moderation.

  • Paul.||

    Hey hey, ho ho, retribution against our political enemies and opponents on specific issues has got to go!

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "Two, four, six, eight, it's time to be moder-ate!"

    "What do we want?" "Civil discourse!" "When do we want it?" "Right the *&^% now!"

    "I find it hard to write all the nuances of my position on this poster with magic marker, so I'll just say Power to the People, man!"

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Ah, the Girondins are getting reservations about some of the excesses of the Jacobins.

    "We need to carry out this radical revolution in a more pragmatic, more moderate manner, respecting the principles of open debate and..." SLICE!

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "I don't recall there being a punishment phase [after the Civil Rights era]. The battles were certainly punishment enough. Those people on the wrong side—and there were millions of them—didn't go anywhere. They continued on with their lives under new laws and probably most of them eventually came around on the issue, or at least kept it to themselves."

    True, the actual segregationists, white-supremacists and hood-wearers were treated with remarkable patience and tolerance, as Rev. King would have wanted, after their defeat. George Wallace stayed governor, Robert Byrd stayed in the Senate, Senator Fulbright had a scholarship named after him. They managed to land on their feet.

    Not so the unfortunates who were considered fair game in the crusade against "institutionalized racism" - but that's another story.

  • R C Dean||

    True, the actual segregationists, white-supremacists and hood-wearers were treated with remarkable patience and tolerance

    So much tolerance, in fact, that the folks they had oppressed started voting for them as a bloc.

  • R C Dean||

    George Wallace (D) stayed governor, Robert Byrd (D) stayed in the Senate, Senator Fulbright (D) had a scholarship named after him.

  • Skip||

    The punishment phase is the only thing lefties give a crap about this stuff in the first place.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    The "fairness and tolerance" rhetoric is just the preliminary, "come back to my apartment to see my etchings" crap. The real point is the screwing.

  • Winston||

    No kidding. If it suits them to become anti-gay again they will. Remember the old Commie stuff about how gays are evil fascist rich people that want to literally screw the working man?

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "Russian Communist Group Says Elton John’s Outfits Are ‘Homosexual Propaganda’...

    "... local party leader Mikhail Abramyan recommends the 66-year-old singer to wear the knee-length kaftan, knee-high leather boots, and a fur hat."

    http://lifedaily.net/russian-c.....ropaganda/

  • PapayaSF||

    That outfit sounds gay.

  • fish||

    That outfit sounds gay.

    Way to "low key" it.....that outfit sounds fabulous!

  • Dweebston||

    Why would we even cast cultural shifts in terms of winning or losing? One side prevails, certainly, but there exists no battle line, only loosely defined contingents drafted by historical incidence rather than active demagoguery. The opposition freely changes sides—in fact, both sides aspire to convert the other from foe to friend. The campaign involves years of effort reversing decades (or centuries) of social consensus, but once either side becomes violent, the insurgency (those hoping to change minds) has utterly lost.

    And most importantly, it’s a battle over the consciences of individuals, and that’s the sort of fight that pits man against himself. It’s futile to beat people into beating themselves up, as grievance-mob politicking does. Most people will resist.

  • Brandon||

    We seem to be in an era of unprecedented navel-gazing.

  • R C Dean||

    only loosely defined contingents drafted by historical incidence rather than active demagoguery

    You gotta be kidding me. You think the Culture War isn't expressed mainly through demagoguery?

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/demagogue

  • Dweebston||

    Not the modern "culture war" crap, I meant the persistent ignorance that culture warriors style themselves fighting against. It's the hand-me-down bigotries from a less tolerant era.

    All I'm saying is that there are few battle lines against which the social-justice types can pitch themselves. They're fighting against a latent mindset, not demagogues.

  • R C Dean||

    You're still losing me.

    (a) Modern culture warriors are, right now, today, demagogues. They play on ignorance and fear of the "other" regardless of which side they are on.

    (b) Modern culture warriors seem to have no trouble finding battle lines. Hell, they manufacture them out of thin air if need be.

    (c) I don't even quite know what it means to fight a "latent" "mindset", but I'm pretty sure that's not what the micromanaging little proggy jackboots are doing, given their consistent demands for money, legal remedies, and punishment.

  • Dweebston||

    I rushed to collate my thoughts before leaving work, and obviously made a hash of it. Doesn't help that I'm treating culture warrior and social justice warrior as interchangeable terms for proggy leftists, which is confusing.

    In short (since I'm sitting in class now), I was trying to get at the idea that treating people with hostility and contempt for inherited bigotries will not change hearts or minds, which presumably is the point. The aggrandizing language, like winning or losing, bothers me--tolerance shouldn't be a political battle. It is, of course, because nothing isn't too sacred to be spoiled by party politics, but it shouldn't be. Grievance politicking merely increases the inertia against cultural shifts.

  • Homple||

    Seriously, what did you expect of a movement made up of catty leftists?Libertarian faith in the goodness of human nature is as naive as that of progressives. Just because the movement was whooping for a conjured right didn't mean they would play nice once they got what they wanted.

  • Winston||

    Delusions that by supporting the progs in the culture wars the progs will stop calling libertarians a bunch of reactionary racists?

  • np||

    You want tit for tat?

    Yes. Bring on the battle arenas. After all, it wasn't so long ago pistol dueling was an honorable way of settling disputes. I don't see a problem resorting to violence so long as the parties involved agree to it.

    We'd have a market for proxy warriors and quick grudge match betting.
    In a free market and free society, you're still gonna have a culture war one way or another, so you might as well profit from it.

  • harleyrider1778||

    Who says its over. A new President and congress will simply outlaw it again under another definition. Knocking down DOMA didn't end anything it just made the argument go on longer. The political pendulum swings wide and its about to swing wildly to the right!

    People are fed up with the green commie/socialists/regulating/freedom stealing prohibitionists loaded with nothing but JUNK SCIENCE FOR THEIR SMOKING BANS and all the green BS........The science and medicine of the world has been so destroyed by these Nazis a complete abandonment is the only way to instill public trust in law,government,science and especially the public health Nazis who have outlawed smoking based upon total JUNK SCIENCE even with respect to direct smoking claims were absolutely no proof exists of anything to a disease outcome..............

  • harleyrider1778||

    Judge doesnt accept statistical studies as proof of LC causation!

    It was McTear V Imperial Tobacco. Here is the URL for both my summary and the Judge’s ‘opinion’ (aka ‘decision’):

    http://boltonsmokersclub.wordp.....-analysis/

    (2.14) Prof Sir Richard Doll, Mr Gareth Davies (CEO of ITL). Prof James Friend and
    Prof Gerad Hastings gave oral evidence at a meeting of the Health Committee in
    2000. This event was brought up during the present action as putative evidence that
    ITL had admitted that smoking caused various diseases. Although this section is quite
    long and detailed, I think that we can miss it out. Essentially, for various reasons, Doll
    said that ITL admitted it, but Davies said that ITL had only agreed that smoking might
    cause diseases, but ITL did not know. ITL did not contest the public health messages.
    (2.62) ITL then had the chance to tell the Judge about what it did when the suspicion
    arose of a connection between lung cancer and smoking. Researchers had attempted
    to cause lung cancer in animals from tobacco smoke, without success. It was right,
    therefore, for ITL to ‘withhold judgement’ as to whether or not tobacco smoke caused
    lung cancer.

  • harleyrider1778||

    [9.10] In any event, the pursuer has failed to prove individual causation.
    Epidemiology cannot be used to establish causation in any individual case, and the
    use of statistics applicable to the general population to determine the likelihood of
    causation in an individual is fallacious. Given that there are possible causes of lung
    cancer other than cigarette smoking, and given that lung cancer can occur in a nonsmoker,
    it is not possible to determine in any individual case whether but for an
    individual’s cigarette smoking he probably would not have contracted lung cancer
    (paras.[6.172] to [6.185]).
    [9.11] In any event there was no lack of reasonable care on the part of ITL at any
    point at which Mr McTear consumed their products, and the pursuer’s negligence
    case fails. There is no breach of a duty of care on the part of a manufacturer, if a
    consumer of the manufacturer’s product is harmed by the product, but the consumer
    knew of the product’s potential for causing harm prior to consumption of it. The
    individual is well enough served if he is given such information as a normally
    intelligent person would include in his assessment of how he wishes to conduct his
    life, thus putting him in the position of making an informed choice (paras.[7.167] to
    [7.181]).

  • jdgalt||

    That depends very much on what the "culture warriors" did. Certainly anyone who helped enforce laws that put people in prison for gay sex belongs in prison himself.

    And that especially goes for the War on Drugs, which has (if you add up the years of prison time) chewed up and destroyed more lives than the Nazi Holocaust. There certainly need to be a very thorough set of Nuremberg Trials once *it* finally ends.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    For what crime?

  • Tony||

    Cry me a fucking reservoir about workplace treatment, libertarians. Maybe homophobic CEOs should unionize to gain leverage.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    No one is arguing that the government should have intervened in the Mozilla case.

    But just because Mozilla had the legal ability to do something does not make it a good idea.

  • ||

    Keep the social ostracism at a slow simmer lest you scare away potential supporters. Once you've obtained the few more necessary legal victories, social ostracism won't be necessary because legal ostracism will provide the same function with a handy layer of separation so that you don't look like an asshole.

  • gary47290||

    Let's see. The anti-Gay side became increasingly mean and nasty, and haven't started the least amount of basic human courtesy even though they have lost.

    Their scorched earth policy against GLBT Americans, whether family law, hospital visits, non-discrimination, repeal of now-unenforcable sodomy laws, rabid and hate-filled opposition to even the mildest of equality, denial of our basic humanity for years?

    They do not deserve respect. They need to be utterly destroyed.

  • Azathoth!!||

    Globally, it's not at all clear that the "anti-gay"* side has lost. There are numerous large nations that outlaw homosexuality completely or that have a culture that allows attacks on gays.

    Even in the places where it appears the "anti-gay'* side has lost the reality is that often, courts have taken the decision out of the hands of the people, imposing upon them a stance they do not agree with.

    The GLBTQ(etc.) community has got to acknowledge that they are a tiny minority of the global population--and much of that population would not shed a tear if they were all dead.

    Heterosexuals can always make more.

    Being sore winners is not a good stance for people whose existence relies on the good will of society.

  • gary47290||

    Heteros also make new Gays and Lesbians.

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