Here are all the fantastically amazing Meet the Anti-Gay Lobby entries!

A dating website in China is claiming that over 80% of Chinese people born after 1980 “don’t disapprove of homosexuality.” I didn’t not hesitate to not withhold this story, since I wasn’t not unsure if the methodology wasn’t unsound, but the results definitely don’t not appear to not be discouraging!

Meet The Anti-Gay Lobby: Margaret Somerville

November 6th, 2009

It's time again for...

Who’d have thought one could make a career out of being scared of change and gay people? In this exciting series of slaptacular mini-bios, we take a look at the very special, terrified folk who are lobbying against your rights.

Name: Margaret Somerville

Butchified Name: Marg

Favourite Food: Anything painstakingly prepared by an obedient wife over a vintage 50s electric stove

Actual quote: “It’s a big mistake to think marriage is really about two adults’ public commitment to each other and a declaration of their love.”

Margaret Somerville reacts to a gay wedding card at the Hallmark store.

Margaret Somerville reacts to a gay wedding card at the Hallmark store.

What she does: Margaret currently teaches a seminar on torts (not to be confused with tortes, which are much, much tastier) at the law department of McGill university, but is much better known for preparing rich, flaky, anti-gay testimony to go. Margaret has not only testified against same-sex marriage here in Canada, but regularly travels abroad acting as an expert witness to try and stop gay marriage in strange and foreign lands. Margaret calls herself an ethicist, heading the Centre for Medicine, Ethnics, and Law—which she created.

Harshest Reality Check: It’s a three-way tie! In 2006, Margaret’s nomination for the Order of Canada was rejected because she was deemed “too controversial.” Later, Ryerson University went on record to say they regret giving her an honorary degree. The real kicker, though, has to be the complete dismissal of her testimony before the Iowa District Court. After travelling all the way to Iowa to testify against same-sex marriage, the courts had this to say about Somerville and two of her colleagues at McGill:

The Court concludes that these individuals are not qualified to testify as experts regarding the issues in this matter. [...] Though these experts desire to make statements regarding gender, results of same-sex marriage on children and the universal definition of marriage, they do not appear to possess expertise in relevant fields such as sociology, child development, psychology or psychiatry. Ms. Somerville specifically eschews empirical research and methods of logical reasoning in favor of “moral intuition.” She has no training in empirical research and admits having no knowledge of existing social science research relevant to this case. She concedes that her views do not reflect the mainstream views of other ethicists.

Oh, burn!

Party invitation index: Hmm… I’d give her an 8, just to see how an ethicist does at a game of Scruples after a few drinks.

(A special hat tip goes to Dr.Dawg over at Dawg’s blog for alerting me to Somerville’s involvement and subsequent amusing thrashing at Iowa’s courts.)

Meet The Anti-Gay Lobby: Brian Rushfeldt

June 15th, 2009

Who’d have thought one could make an entire career out of being scared of change and gay people? In Part I of a new series of slaptacular mini-bios, we take a look at the very special, terrified folk who are lobbying against your rights.

Name: Brian Rushfeldt

Gayified Name: Bri

Works For: Canada Family Action Coalition

Favourite Colour: Whichever ones aren’t in the Pride Flag.

Actual quote: “It’s interesting that they would have chosen Alberta to film [Brokeback Mountain] in. I think that was a deliberate move on the part of some of the homosexual activists and some of the directors from corrupt, immoral Hollywood.”

Brian Rushfeldt reacts to a Pride flag fluttering in the breeze.

Brian Rushfeldt reacts to a Pride flag fluttering in the breeze.

What he does: Rushfeldt is a former Bible college dean and air traffic controller. He’s now the executive director of the Canada Family Action Coalition, which has lobbied against (among other things) same-sex marriage, tax credits for gay-themed films, and the adding of sexual orientation to the list of minorities protected by hate crimes. Brian was instrumental in legislation that forces teachers to require parental permission before acknowledging the existence of gay marriage in classrooms.

Craziest Moment: Brian led a boycott of the NHL for licensing the Toronto Maple Leafs logo for use in the film Breakfast with Scot, an adorable family comedy that features a gay hockey player and his partner who becomes the unexpected guardian of an 11-year old orphan. “The most disturbing aspect,” Brian said of the film “is that an 11-year old boy is being promoted as a poster child for gay sex.” The boycott of Canada’s national pastime wasn’t very popular.

Party invitation index: A neutral 5. While not an intentionally interesting guest addition, Brian’s air traffic controller skills would not only come in handy helping your other guests manoeuvre into tight parking spaces, but also likely make him an excellent charades partner.