Friday, March 03, 2006

That's sooooo hetero...


To learn how to act on this issue click here

Update: This blog has the original anti-games flyer that was circulated around Crystal Lake.
Pretty typical stereotyping and bigotry. If you get a minute, definitely read the Mchenry County Blog for more information on the issue.

Crystal Lake Park District steps us for all of us heterosexual Chicagoans who hate the idea of people who don't share our sexual orientation playing sports.

I wonder what they mean on their homepage when they say We need your help to keep our parks and facilities safe!

According to the Trib, there were several arguments that were leveled against the games:
1) Commissioner David Phelps, who joined Scott Breeden in opposition, said he believes that the Gay Games are more about politics than athletics.

"I do not believe the Crystal Lake Park District should be a vehicle for the promotion of an agenda," he said.


Basically, Phelps is using the old, "Why are the people whose rights we are pissing on making such a big deal about it?" But let's hear him out, he's saying that political causes have no place in sports.

This is a fallacial argument for two reasons:
A) It's anti-democratic. As we've discussed before, being a contributing citizen is not an occasional foray into a voting booth.

B) It's completely and utterly impossible. Have these people ever actually been on a park district sports team? Shouldn't they know that it is one of the most vocally, politically opposed venues against people of minority sexual orientation? The group that is introducing politics into sports are the majority who throughout history have excluded or bullied skilled athletes because of their race, sexual orientation and gender. Sure, the explicit barriers have come down, but read the stories of any of the post-career out-of-the-closet pro athletes and it should be abundantly clear the homophobic forces they faced.

2)
Crystal Lake resident Scott Spencer told the Park Board that homosexuality is "contrary and detrimental" to traditional family values. Saying that view doesn't make him a bigot, he added: "Let me point out what my prejudice is toward: my wife, my children, my grandchildren and the sanctity of the home."

This is another tired, old argument. It's the idea that somehow the sanctity of a family is buried firmly in the sexual equipment of its members. It's the idea that some people's families are worthless and worthy of less rights because of the absence of a penis or a vagina in the relationship. People have different definitions of bigotry. Would Scott Spencer think this statement was bigoted?

"White privilege is contrary and detrimental to traditional family values. This doesn't make me a bigot. My prejudice is toward my wife, my children, my grandchildren and the sanctity of the home. That's why I think we should kill all of these crackers who have been oppressing my wife, my children, my grandchildren and violating the sanctity of our home for so long."

I'm sorry, being a prejudiced prick violates the sanctity of my home a lot more than some gay people rowing boats.

So we get no new logical insights to justify this blatent prejudice, just more of the same excuses for hate.

We should note that there were courageous folks in Crystal Lake who spoke in favor of the Gay Games. According to the Trib, Reverend Dan Larson of the Unitarian Church was vocal in that, "Everyone has a right to row their boat." Two of the four present commisioners voted in favor of allowing the games, and
Park District Director Kirk Reimer described the majority of the feedback regarding the event to be positive.

H
e called some of the correspondence "ugly." And that made him wonder if there would be problems at the rowing competition caused by people opposed to the Gay Games. "Based on some of the e-mails and phone calls I've gotten, it could get ugly," he said.

So in the end, the "ugly", bigoted crowd has carried the day.


What should we do about this?
Well, the two commissioners who voted against the proposal can be contacted here:

Scott Breeden, commissioner
Phone: (815) 455-3471
Dave Phelps, commissioner
Phone: (815) 455-6389

If you want to support the other member's decision, you can reach them here:

Candy Reedy, commissioner
Phone: (815) 455-2531
Michael Zellmann, commissioner
Phone: (815) 788-0887

And the absent member was:
Jerry Sullivan, president
Phone: (815) 459-7649

Or email them here: cdunham@crystallakeparks.org

Remember, be civil. We want to make people empathize with our cause, not make them think we are jackasses. Sadly, when we are talking about stereotyping, people tend to remember the worst of the lot.


2 Comments:

Blogger Cal Skinner said...

Did you see the Sunday activism I found on Route 14?

11:28 PM  
Blogger xian said...

Yeah, hilarious. The human race is a big garden with many flowers, huh?

Don't know if you'll come back here, but political differences aside--you do a great job with your blog. I learned a lot more from browsing it than I did from the mainstream media's coverage.

11:58 AM  

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