Thursday, June 30, 2011

Civil Rights Law or LGBT Pandering Act?

Bethlehem's "Civil Rights Law" will be adopted again this Friday in Bethlehem. City Council wants more applause this time.

My Patch column about it, in which I talk about gerbils crawling around my ass and question the need, ignited one hell of a shitstorm.

Jon Geeting:

"The equation of homosexuality with bestiality here is beyond the pale. This is the sort of thing I'd expect to hear from somebody who has only ever heard about gay people on Howard Stern."

That must be where I got the idea.
Daryl Nerl:

"Bernie, I think your interpretation of what the Human Relations Commission can do is overly broad and, dare I say, borders on fear-mongering."

Who the hell says, "dare I say?" Seriously.

Christopher Cocca:

"Jon, thanks for such a thoughtful, measured, and clear response."

And boring, too.

At Keystone Pravda, I'm no better than Rick Santorum, and might even be a "true bigot."


"Why does anyone even bother with Bernie O’Hare? He proved long ago he’s little more than a cranky windbag with a blog."

Another fan.

Julieann Wozniak

"Islam and homophobia are the last socially acceptable refuges for douchebags and bigots. They can’t credibly strut around with their arms in the air bellowing 'white power!' so we get this."

Yep, I just burned a few crosses last night.

Actually, my brother Mike (pictured above) is the real bigot. He goes to church twice a week and has some goofy religious scruples about homosexuality. He was called a "knuckledragger" for expressing his honest religious convictions.

I have no religious scruples against homosexuality. My main objection is that the law is both unnecessary and will fail in Court.

Here's why it will be enacted ... again. The LGBT crowd not only vote, but are havy campaign contributors. Johnny Casino is going to need all the help he can get in his next bid for office, be it local or federal.

But do you think that Bethlehem officials really give a shit about the LGBT community? If they did, they would have authorized benefits for same sex partners.

It's all about the votes. Take it from an almost true bigot.


Senator Bob Casey said...

My dad has been betrayed by the betrayers

Anonymous said...

Nice work, Bernie. Now watch your ass.

Jon Geeting said...

Why is the law unnecessary?

Also, it doesn't matter if the elected officials personally care. The only thing that matters is in politics is whether the politicians are scared of the people who do care.

Anonymous said...

Keep your deep thoughts in Brooklyn where you live Geeting!

John Galt said...

Group rights are not straightforwardly human rights because they are group differentiated rather than universal to all people just by virtue of being human. Individual rights are rights held by individual people regardless of their group membership or lack thereof. Group rights have historically been used to infringe upon individual rights.

Among the most commonly discussed individual rights are the right to free speech, freedom of religion, the right to due process and equal protection of the law. These and other individual rights are guaranteed by our Constitution.

Libertarianism is a political philosophy that upholds individual liberty, especially freedom of expression and action. Libertarianism includes diverse beliefs, all advocating minimization of the state and sharing the goal of maximizing individual liberty and freedom. Individual freedoms are believed to be given by God to all persons and can never be given by one individual to another. Most people who consider themselves libertarian would agree that government which governs least governs best.

Progressivism is a political attitude favoring or advocating changes or reform through governmental action. Opposes traditional individual freedoms and favors more radical streams of socialism, communism, and anarchism. Most people who consider themselves progressives would agree that government know best and morality should be legislated; as well as a belief that the group is more important than the individual.

Rising Sun said...

John Galt,

Would we really agree with that? Have you asked us? I think not sir.

Anonymous said...

Excellent points made here. Bernie, even though you're a disbarred cross-burning windbag (as stated by you), you clearly have a legal background. The clear rationale that you laid out is exactly how a lawyer should think.

Very pragmatic. Will this hold up in court?

If it won't, and it clearly will not, then the only reason to do it is because the politicians will be happy to be seen as the saviors of the LGBT community by defending a challenge in court, even as they lose that challenge.

They can be seen as the saviors of the cause without actually doing giving same sex benefits.

Just like everything else in government...a big news story, lots of publicity and no substance.

Anonymous said...

John,you say group rights have been historically used to infringe upon individual rights.well then how does that mesh with the ancient greeks who began democracy and civility by their standards of rules and regulations?

Anonymous said...

@ John Geeting: The equation of homosexuality with bestiality here is beyond the pale. This is the sort of thing I'd expect to hear from somebody who has only ever heard about gay people on Howard Stern.

You are an asshole, do you even listen to stern, you dimwitted fool? Stern has been more of an advocate for gays than any other person on the radio or media.

Stop talking about things you know nothing about you dimwitted fool

Anonymous said...

Jon Geeting
Gender: Male
Astrological Sign: Libra
Industry: Non-Profit
Occupation: Records Manager
Location: Brooklyn/Bethlehem : New York/Pennsylvania : United States

About Me

26 year old Pennsylvanian man living in Brooklyn, NY. I work in the philanthropic sector, focusing on human rights and good government issues. In my spare time, I enjoy writing music, playing in bands, cycling, and of course, political blogging and advocacy.

zorn said...


so you are a fag

Bernie O'Hare said...

Zorn, please grow up.

John Galt said...

Anonymous said...
John,you say group rights have been historically used to infringe upon individual rights.well then how does that mesh with the ancient greeks who began democracy and civility by their standards of rules and regulations?

11:35 AM

We don't live in a Democracy, we live in a Representative Republic.

Anonymous said...

This Galt dude, does a logic jump from Progressivism means more government control means anarchy.

I dare say i think the good John Galt needs to re-read his Glenn Beck primer!

Anonymous said...

Geeting, Jonathan

Records Coordinator(clerk)

Human Resources and Facilities Management

John Galt said...

Anonymous said...
This Galt dude, does a logic jump from Progressivism means more government control means anarchy.

I dare say i think the good John Galt needs to re-read his Glenn Beck primer!

12:03 AM

They use anarchy to destroy the social system which is in place. By using tactics such as riots, disruption of services, and overwhelming the system. Once the system collapses they then put a socialist or communist government in place.

Ayn Rand said...

John Galt is right on the money in his posts. As to the matter of these laws, they are insane. What is truly happening here. We are passing laws to stop discrimination against homosexuals. In the process we want to stop those who believe the Bible, homosexuality is an abomination, and in so doing we stifle their beliefs and ability to speak. This law will not stop the thinking of the bigots. They will simply stop expressing their beliefs. So in reality the homosexual community will have stopped the free speech of those who oppose that life style and the homosexual desire to have homosexual practices in our schools. As to additional practices, how can anyone conceivably believe we will not see additional perversions in the land. Can you say Sodom and Gamorrah?

Anonymous said...

Dear City Council:

How about you pay attention to me? What about my needs?


The Bethlehem Budget

Zorn said...

anon 4:21

The elitist union council only pays attention to what will bet them re-elected. They treat every body in bethlum as fools. Rid yourself of the greedy union pig teachers and get real business people on council. Run wee willy out, run 16 years of the problen donchez out, axe dolan,wake up belinski, chunk their solicitor

Anonymous said...

Galt and Chris, We are a nation of laws not of men, gay or straight. The bible is not law. That is that.

You are free to read the Bible, you are free to revere the Bible, you are free to worship the Bible. You cannot substitute the Bible for the law.

You can pretend to know what the founding fathers thought all you want but it is what they wrote that matters. The law is the law.

I hate some laws but I would rather have a nation of hated laws than live in the nitwit theocracy you Bachman teabaggers promote.

The only people stifling rights are you extremist Christian fascists.

Anonymous said...

anon 12:19, a voice of reason in a wilderness of nonsense.

Thank you

BHA said...

Well stated, 12:19 AM


The law is the law.

The bible is not law.

You cannot substitute the Bible, or any other religious document or doctrine, for the law.

This applies to Gay or Straight, Democrat or Republican or Other, Theist or Athiest.

Anonymous said...

So you both follow every single law?

If you say yes you're lying.

Chris Miller said...

Anonymous 12:19
I don't know why you believe I am Ayn Rand. While I admire her on a number of things, I have noted on numerous occassions that I do not post as anonymous as you opt to do.
We have good laws and bad laws. This resolution in Bethlehem and elsewhere plays right into the hands of the progressives who want to stiffle free speech. It also plays into their policy to divide us into a wide variety of groups. We have been dumb enough to do just that while they conntiune to sit in the seats of power.
Allow me to point out that we are a nation built on the Judeo-Christion ethic. Thus the Founders, who supported morals and religion, turned to things in the Bible, Ten Commandments and more, in making laws. They believed that when we were no longer a moral nation we would collapse. This is why they supported religion in our schools, something that began to fall apart in the 1960's. There are those who believe that the homosexual life style is an abomination and that there is an agenda on the part of that community to see this spread across the land. The way to do this is to stifle those who would speak out against it. That is then a policy that promotes the stifling of free speech under the First Amendment. Benjamin Franklin stated that Freedom of Speech was the most importatn God given right we had for with it you could win back all the others. I agree with Ben
Personally I don't care if you are a homosexual or a heterosexual. But when you attempt to stop me or anyone else from speaking out, I am reminded of the Nazi era "first they came for the Jews"... then they came for me and no one was there to help me. This law/resolution puts another noose around Freedom of Speech.
Galt and Rand keep up the good work. There are a lot of fans out here

Anonymous said...

The nation was built on precepts that included the Code of Hammurabi, the classical thinking of the Greeks and tenants from religious sources.

The Constitution does not identify specific Judeo-Christian principles as such, it does mention God. It does mention a creator. It does not say follow the Bible it says follow the law.

It does not mention Jesus Christ nor does it promote any religion, it protects the right of individuals to practice their

If you went to Church today and discussed or preached or screamed that homosexualism is "spreading" across America fine, it is protected speech. If you claim that you will not serve a person in your restaurant because they are homosexual you may have violated their constitutional rights.

Quotes by some of those around at the founding of the nation are convenient when pulled out of your ass to try and prove a point.

The only real facts are what are in the law. If the "founding fathers", who were mere mortals as Ben Franklin was want to remind these fellows time and again, wanted folks to follow the Bible and Christ they would have put it in the Constitution, they didn't.

Hell, muslims I know acknowledge God. What does that prove vis-a vi Christian principles. In the 1770's in Europe and most of the world god was seen as the creator and most people accepted that. Even so, many agnostics, including Franklin, accepted the principles of morality taught in religion but refused to specifically write it into the Constitution.

You may have been a history teacher but I am glad neither I nor my children were taught by you. Read a book or watch a show that is not affiliated with Fox and Limbaugh.

You folks are as scary than any Islamofascists out there.

Less Holier than Thou,Ayn!!

John Galt said...

Freedom of speech only applies to the guarantee that government cannot and will not take away your right to speak freely about almost any subject you want.

If you come into my house and start saying the "N word" or call someone a derogatory term, I will ask you to shut up and if you don't I will tell you to leave. That is not guaranteed speech under the constitution because I am not the government. That is why you can be fired from a job for cursing at customers, that is why people get fired for posting negative information about their employer, that is why you can't scream 'fire' in a movie theater, that is why you can't defame someone's character, etc. Because private entities are not the government they can make internal rules.

And as far as the Judeo-Christian basis for America and our laws you don’t have to go very far to know the truth:

Washington's Farewell Address 1796 "The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle".

It is obvious that you speak of things which you know not or comprehend little of.

Benjamin Franklin said...

“Those who desire to give up freedom in order to gain security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.”

Albert Einstein said...

“Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.”

Thomas Jefferson said...

“The will of the people is the only legitimate foundation of any government, and to protect its free expression should be our first object.”

Thomas Jefferson said...

“Under the law of nature, all men are born free, every one comes into the world with a right to his own person, which includes the liberty of moving and using it at his own will. This is what is called personal liberty, and is given him by the Author”

Chris Miller said...

Holier then thou
You just might want to go back and check that Code of Hammurabi. Among other things I guess you could make a good case for the development forms for insurance companies. While the Founders certainly were aware of Hammurabi and the Greeks I would suggest they did not lean heavily toward them. With Greece it was obvious in that Greece leaned toward democracy and the Founders recognized the danger in that form of government because it would evolve into rule by the majority or as it is better known, mob rule. One of the outstanding points of a Republic is that along with a belief in the majority a Republic emphasizes the need to protect the voice of the minority.I truly doubt that Hammurabi's code does that. The fact that we have a Republic is the very reason we have the resolution issue going on in the city of Bethlehem.
I agree with you that the Constitution adheres to following the law but where did the laws come from? Were they made out of whole cloth or did the Ten Commandments play a role in that they cover, thou shall not steal, commit adultery, not murder, not lie, not covet. And Exodus 20 is only one spot in the Bible. In addition to that the Founders added their own thoughts and ideas and thus the need to read their thoughts on morals and religion. Suggest you look at "The 5000 Year Leap" These men would not have put the Bible into the Constitution because they did not want the folks to come to the conculsion that there could be a national religion something that Jefferson feared. What he did not fear was the people establising their religion in the states. In fact Jefferson praised the fact that the various religious groups in Charlottesville used the local court house, a government building, as the church. Could you see that today? As for Franklin being an agnostic I would suggest that he is more the Unitarian. Check his Five Principles of "all sound religion" He starts with "I believe in one God the Creator of the Universe" He beieved the Creator revealed a code of morality that established the difference between right and wrong and people were happier with the code i.e. people were happier when they knew what was right and wrong. He believed that the Creator would hold men responsible for how they treated one another. He believe that mankind lived beyond this life. And he believed that in the next life mankind are judged for their conduct in this one. Now did all this stuff belong in the Constitution. No it does not because we are dealing with a personal issue, religion. But it did allow him and others to state their positions on religion and issues like the need to be moral and that religion goes hand and hand. This would carry over to other issues in the Constitution, other documents and how society would operate. Franklin' Sam Adams and others believed that Franklin's Five Principles were found in all religions and here is the kicker, could be taught without being offensive to any sect or denomination. WOW!! Does this mean that we might want to consider these universal principles of religion and have prayer in school and rotate items from the various religious works during the school year, the Bible, the Koran, the Talmud, etc. Could we say a prayer in the same religions? Would that bring us closer together as a nation that encourages and welcomes immigration. If we undestood one another would it benefit America? I know I'm just a scary old history teacher but let me suggest that you give it some thought. I don't want to see anyone stifled with the exception of those who would harm this nation. But we have been on a constant path of self destruction way to long and this new law is once again going to separate us as people and our political leaders will have won another battle against us.

Anonymous said...
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Bernie O'Hare said...

I don't mind you disagreeing with Chris or anyone else, but be civil about it. You are anonymous, and I will not allow slurs and name calling. Be civil and you can say whatever you want.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Bernie O'Hare said...

When you learn how to comment without name-calling, your comments will be welcome.