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I’m not saying I’m certain that there aren’t mitigating factors in the mental stability of the defendant.  But we passed laws which protect rape victims from certain defenses.  Obviously accepting a mitigation defense based upon “unwanted sexual advances” allegedly made by the victim is to basically justify the killing of a homosexual.  Period.  We would not accept such a defense from a woman facing unwanted sexual advances from a man, no matter what her sexual preference and no matter how boorish the advances.

Seven jurors were willing to go there.

The abuse from his father should be admissible.  Other factors about his mental stability.  But the victims sexual advances, real or imagined, should not be deemed relevant to any mitigation defense.  My opinion.

Carol made the right decision.  The opposition was going to be considerably more aggressive than the Sohum opposition last time around, and there have been a few more revelations since then which do not put Banton in a favorable light.  While his fellow artists have signed pledges against homophobic lyrics he was talking about his endless “war” with homosexuals and actually denying that he signed the document (leading to much speculation as to who forged his signature).  If you haven’t done so, you can read about it in the thread below.

Addendum: Wow!  Check out the thread over at NCJ Blogthing!

Second addendum: The Times-Standard article isn’t bad, although it leaves a few things out including portions of the lyrics themselves for context, and that he continues to sing the song and profit from it to this day.  But again, the more fascinating read is the comments attached.

And nasty insults to the promoter or club owner, and apparently the latter’s family – uncalled for.

The same one he’s been vetoing since he came to office. Will they still have the numbers and will to pass it in 2011 when they’re more likely to have someone in office who won’t veto? It’s odd that the Democrats waited until a Republican was in office to start passing measure like this.

Found a great summary of the history of gay marriage politics in California.

Photo comes from the Michigan Daily.

The story speaks for itself.

It probably started out like any other serene, sunny, safely heterosexual day in the Bentonville Public Library. But the lives of some Bentonville, Ark., residents changed forever on that fateful day, after a wrong turn down the dark back alley of a card catalog led to a nefarious lesbian sex guide that would steal their innocence, stain them with the gay agenda and probably totally show them where the G-spot was. We can only begin to imagine the harrowing ordeal Earl Adams and his 14- and 16-year-old sons, Kyle and Ryan, went through after the boys discovered “The Whole Lesbian Sex Book” — an ordeal fraught with anatomical drawings and lesbian relationship advice at the hands, nay, lubed fists, of local lesbian author Felice Newman. Unfortunately, it’s an ordeal that resulted in the book’s removal and a threatened lawsuit for obscenity. Two weeks ago, “The Whole Lesbian Sex Book” was removed from the Bentonville library shelves at the e-mail request of Earl Adams, after his sons allegedly had found the sex guide while browsing for “military academy” reading materials. It no doubt took the boys hours of page-turning trauma in the stacks to fully register their horror — and we can only guess that once they learned about female ejaculation, the damage was done….

Plenty more if you hit the link. I suspect it’ll be the most used link of the week. Certainly it’s more interesting than the Reggae reads.

There’s a brief interview with the author of the egregious book which climaxes nicely as follows:

FN: Finally, here’s what I think: If there was one teenaged lesbian or bisexual girl in America who didn’t know there was a book about the sexual experiences she so desires, she knows now. Thank you, Fox News.

Cover photo source.

I ran/walked the Turkey Trot this morning. My son Asher couldn’t run the whole thing (5K in three loops around Old Town), but at least this year he didn’t ask me to carry him for any portion. It’s a nice event laced heavily with families. A good opportunity to earn food points.

I noticed that Gallagher’s liquor license has been suspended. Wasn’t that the location for Neely’s victory party in June? I’m sure somebody can rattle off some kind of cheap shot for all of our benefit.

Afterwards Asher and I went to breakfast at the Go-Fish restaurant over on the waterfront. Nice atmosphere. Decent food. Great prices.


I haven’t really paid much attention to the latest re the Klamath River dam opposition, but I did read the NCJ article. It’s a side point, but the following sentence about the new coalition keeps popping into my head.

“This is the first time I’ve come to the Red Lion [for a hearing] in years that the people didn’t say, `The Native Americans overfished with their gill nets,'” said (Willard) Carlson, who lives on Blue Creek, a tributary to the Klamath.

So, do they not use gill nets? The practice is illegal for everyone else, and the fishermen in my family have always complained about it – claiming that the Native fishermen send the net across the full width of the river not allowing salmon to spawn. It’s never occurred to me to question it. Does anybody have any insight?


The Sunnybrae Forest is a done deal. Congratulations to the three Marks!


Roger Ebert was once asked which review he would take back if he could. He responded that as a young man he reviewed The Graduate noting that the musical score was performed by a “forgettable folkish duo who would enjoy their moment of fame before sliding into obscurity.” (I think I have that quote right). Ouch. Then there was the SF Chronicle sportswriter who wrote that Bill Walsh’s 1981 decision to replace Steve DeBerg with Joe Montana as first stringer would send the 49ers back into the basement.

Well, this June 5 prediction from right wing talking head Noel Sheppard probably belongs in the club.

[T]he tea leaves are actually looking much redder than [the media] are asserting regardless of President Bush’s slumping poll numbers… Republicans have a marvelous win-win national strategy that is sure to resound with an overwhelming majority of conservatives and moderates who are expressing displeasure with their elected officials: “Vote Republican and not only do you prevent Nancy Pelosi from becoming Speaker of the House, but you will also be assisting in her termination as Minority Leader.”

I’m not buying into the “conservatism is dead” meme being posted on all the progressive blogs. Plenty of epitaphs have been written about liberalism over the past 26 years, but it’s not like the 15 to 30 percent of the voting population that represents either ideology simply disappear when they lose power. Still, I’d say there are an inordinate number of conservative thinkers who’ve fallen as out of touch with the political mainstream as liberals did during the Reagan era (Yes, we were out of touch, or in denial, of what was a popular rejection of some basic liberal notions. Maybe there wasn’t much we could do about it, but the 1984 landslide should not have come as a shock). Doesn’t bode well for them in 2008, and two years can pass very quickly.




Margaret Cho on joining the Board of Good Vibrations for free equipment and using homophobia against the Republicans.

“I’’m glad. It only took a couple of all-time gay scandals to turn it around. It was about time. It should have happened a lot sooner. Homophobia is something that worked in our favor this time. Americans are so homophobic. They realize that Republicans could be closet gays – –and so they don’’t want to vote Republican any more. That’s fine right now. If it works in our favor, it’s gotta be OK. Hopefully, it will lead to people understanding the queer culture more, and at least there’s been some shift in balance.” (Emphasis mine)

Actually, I think any such understanding was collateral damage. It is kind of interesting. Arguably our last two national elections have been decided to some degree by homophobia. Granted, it fell into the Democrats’ lap, but I wonder where the consultants are going to go with this in future campaigns.

I wonder if Cho was trying to be ironic.

On the Ed Schultz show, by Mike Rogers who outed Foley and others. Details here although it’ll be all over the news tonight. I personally don’t approve, not even when the object of outing has voted along with homophobes. The bottom line is that he is being attacked because he is gay (assuming the report is true). Heterosexual represenatives are just as wrong when they vote homophobicly, but they won’t pay the same price.

It’s what the bad guys do.

I had an argument about this one time, where a friend of mine asked me if I thought Roy Cohn “deserved” his privacy after what he’d done to other homosexuals. My response is along the lines of my response to neo-crusaders on the “terror war” when I argue against torture and for due process and they ask me whether I would expect the Islamic extremists to give me the same respect. It isn’t about what they would do. It’s about who we are.


Estelle has invited me on her show for further thoughts in theBuju Banton affair, although I’m starting to get burned out on the topic. We’ll try to broaden the discussion into areas of balancing freedom of speech with other considerations. I’ll be on, via phone from here in Ukiah, tonight at 7:00.

Of course, we’re dealing with a bit of a strawman here. I never said that Buju should be censored.

On her radio show yesterday morning, Agnes Potok denied any hypocrisy on her part in supporting Buju’s concert. She referenced a local play during the 1980s that she felt was good in some respects but contained negative stereotypes of Native Americans. She pointed out that she did not call for boycott, but rather dialogue.

I can’t just whether Agnes is being hypocritical. I give her the benefit of the doubt on her sincerity in both cases. But I don’t think there’s a basis for comparison. If Banton was promoting negative homosexual stereotypes, my reaction would have been much more subdued. Conversely, if the Mateel hosted a local play which encouraged teenagers to shoot Native Americans in the head, pour acid over their heads, and burn them alive, I am certain Agnes would be calling for more than dialogue. I certainly would be.

Meanwhile, on last night’s CLMP show (KMUD listeners are probably getting tired of my voice of late), our own Ron Davidson called in and tried to steer the topic from habeus corpus to Banton, accusing me of trying to deny people the right to self-defense, the premise being that the song is about self-defense against child molesters (Ron no doubt heard Banton’s handler speaking on KMUD last week). The problem is of course, the song makes no distinction between child molesters and homosexuals, although you could construe the final stanzas that way if you’re aware of the alleged background (“guy come near me, his skin’s gonna peel”). But that’s a stretch. The first stanza include the phrase “batty boy” which is generic for homosexual.

Lastly, an individual who does not wish to be named overheard a conversation among the band members on Friday night. There was no spirit of reconciliation in the discussion, but rather angry accusations of racism. The denial all around is overwhelming.

Anna Hamilton will also be on the topic tomorrow night – also at 7.

Well, at least he spoke for himself for once. No wonder his handlers are keeping him from the press.

Charming individual. Compassionate too.

From the above-linked blog:

Buju Banton is not a victim. No, that title goes to Brian Williamson, the Jamaican gay rights activist that was chopped into pieces with a machete for being gay. And it goes to Steve Harvey who was murdered in 2005 in Jamaica also for being gay. Victim is also the title used to describe 20-year-old Candice Williams and Phoebe Myrie, 22, who were found dumped in a pit with a burnt mattress and lesbian DVDs this year, allegedly for being lesbian.

A little perspective goes a long way.

Not if it’s based on Rastafarianism. And Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13. Sorry.

Well, I did it. I was alone for awhile, with a candle – a weird feeling to protest alone. It makes you feel awkward and…, well, oddly vulnerable. Talked to some kids and had some good conversations. One guy kept running by and blowing out my candle. Eventually I was joined by a couple of people. Someone else was up at the gate trying to hand out purple armbands. Pretty lame turnout compared to the ruckus on Thank Jah this morning, but it was short notice.

I was right last night. This is a generational thing.

Esteban, who protests each Friday at noon in Garberville, wanted to be there. He was going to try to talk Carol into getting us an audience with Banton. I don’t know that it would have accomplished much, but anyway Esteban was unable to make it due to familial obligations. Quite frankly, I don’t think I have a whole lot to say to the Banton anyways other than “stop being a dick.”

I wish I’d had time to get on the phone and coax more people out, but I had to cook tonight, and the kids needed some attention. I’ve never really been cut out for the activist role anyway.

Quite frankly I found the spokeswoman for Banton Estelle attempted to interview to be evasive, manipulative, and annoying. I really don’t want to hear about how “spiritual” Buju Banton is – Pat Robertson and Bin Laden are also spiritual. Nor do I care how great his music is. And I don’t think encouraging people to pour acid over homosexuals’ heads or burn them alive is in any way mitigated by the fact that he was motivated by some child molestation in the news. That he was 15 is mitigation, negated by the fact that he continues to sing it. Nor to I believe that his recent performances of the song are about telling us “where he came from.” Nowhere in her statement was there any indication that he feels badly about the song, nor its impact, nor any desire to reconcile with the people he’s hurt. And I’ve found nothing in any independent source to support her vague explanation of repudiation of the the song in 1992. I didn’t even hear any recognition from her that the lyrics are patently evil, mitigated by youth or not. And Amnesty International is not about to change their minds about the evidence against him in the bashing incident by coming to a concert and listening to his music.

Oh, and as I was listening to the full interview, Estelle took a call from Heather, Carol Bruno’s daughter. She claimed that Banton would not be making any apologies because he would face reprisals at home if he did so. Estelle saw fit not to report that, probably because it’s patently stupid. He’s not going to apologize because he hates homosexuals – plain and simple.

I’ll give Carol Bruno the benefit of the doubt that she was ignorant of all this when she booked him, and probably she heard from his attorneys after canceling the show. However, since yesterday I’m hearing that there have been incidents at Reggae on the River in recent years – such that organizers in one instance felt compelled to come onto the stage and apologize to gay and lesbian members of the audience. One person to whom I spoke said “it’s getting out of control.”

It’s a culture clash. I understand that some of these artists were raised with these bigotries. But we wouldn’t tolerate it from anybody else, and it certainly undermines the notion of “one love.”

Consider me seriously disillusioned.

Here are the lyric by the way.

Buju Banton – Boom Bye Bye
Boom bye bye

Boom [as in gun sound] goodbye, goodbye [as in we won’t be seeing you again, you’re dead]

Inna batty bwoy head
In a queer’s head

Rude bwoy no promote no nasty man
Rude boys don’t promote no queer men

Dem haffi dead
They have to die

Send fi di matic an
Send for the automatic [gun] and
Di Uzi instead
The Uzi instead

Shoot dem no come if we shot dem
Shoot them, don’t come if we shoot them [as in don’t come to help them]

Guy come near we
If a man comes near me
Then his skin must peel
Then his skin must peel [as in pour acid over him]

Burn him up bad like an old tire wheel
Burn him up badly, like you would burn an old tire wheel

I’m hearing through the grapevine that they were trying to get him to repudiate the song and make a public apology, but that’s apparently not going to happen.

I went to the People Productions site last night and the concert was clearly marked “cancelled.” Just went there and the cancelled sign is gone. My wife says that KHUM announced that Carol Bruno had received 500 calls from people who want the concert back on. They had their Friday night planned apparently, and that’s all that matters.

Meanwhile, Estelle let me hear her recorded interview with Buju’s campaign manager. Not one straight answer in about 20 minutes of conversation. I don’t want to scoop Estelle, so you can listen to the highlights tonight.

Next month at the Mateel, we’ll be booking David Duke and the Grand Wizards who’ll be playing a reggae version of Mammy’s Little Baby after reciting poetry based on the text of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Maybe we can get Kinky Friedman to open.

Is anybody going to picket the concert tonight?

Update: I’ll be there at just before 9 tonight. If anybody wants to join me, I’d appreciate the company. Bring candles. It’ll probably be too dark for signs.


February 2020
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