Bryan Fischer, president of the American Family Association, has won the Anthony Comstock Award for Priggery again. The award, in memory of the famous man of morals, Anthony Comstock, salutes self-righteousness and superiority assumed without any basis by people whose true happiness comes from creating problems, pain, and suffering for others. Comstock (1844-1915) famously
began his moral crusade by complaining to his superior officers during the Civil War that other soldiers were using profane language. Naturally, there was no reason for the use of filthy language, considering that the troops were engaged in a filthy war in filthy surroundings, doing filthy things to filthy other men. Why would they even consider cursing?
The reason Fischer received the award is his moving statement on his radio program today declaring the fight against homosexuality to be the defining battle of our time. Notice that he doesn’t focus solely on same-sex marriage, but goes for the whole magillah. I’ll tell you it was a big surprise to me because I thought we had left the battle against homosexuality way behind us, like when most of the country said, “Yeah, so you’re gay. So???” But not for Fischer. It is his calling to drive all those gays back into the closet where they belong.
I admit it felt strangely empowering to have him put us all in the group he calls ‘Big Gay’, like we belong with Big Oil and Big Business. But maybe it’s just me, because Fischer says that every time Big Gay gains ground (say, like, when courts interpret the law against discrimination against us correctly) Jesus is forced “into retreat.” Wow, the strength we have! I had no idea that the lesbian and gay push for marriage equality was anti-Jesus, or anti-Yahweh, or anti-Mohammed. I thought it was a demand for the same rights that Comstock and Fischer enjoyed just by being born.
Fischer did say, though, that if the “forces of sexual normalcy” (can’t wait to see what their uniforms look like) prevailed, America would be returned to that “shining beacon of morality and decency for the entire world.” Whew! At least there’s a way out. But–there’s always a but–if the “forces of sexual deviancy” (now those will be some dynamite uniforms) prevail, “every part of our culture is going to be corrupted, it will be contaminated beyond repair, and America…will plunge the world into a moral abyss of darkness and depravity.” OMG! Really?
What is ironic in what these holier-than-thou reformers spew on the airways and in meetings around the country and beyond is that they’re right. If something doesn’t change, if people don’t fight the good fight, our culture will be degraded, it will be despoiled, and we will pitch headlong into a new dark age. But it’s not because of gays and lesbians’ existing in this country. It would be because of the narrow, sanctimonious, misguided moralistic views of crazy Christians like Bryan Fischer, who wouldn’t recognize Jesus if he came back and spoke to him directly.
See, here’s the thing. These religious fanatics would have us deny science, believe without proof of any kind, and leave the governing of our country up to them. As you can see by the breadth of legislation passed by members of the Tea Party, who embody this religious fanaticism, the country is essentially running in place. Oh, except for Obamacare, where people are getting insurance they couldn’t get before, and things like the Lily Ledbetter Act that empower women to demand the same pay as men for equal work. And the winding down of two unnecessary wars. Yeah, except for things like that, the far religious right has done shit-all in moving this country forward. I’m figuring that’s because they want to move this country backward and, at least for now, keeping it from moving at all is good enough.
Fischer and his ilk have got their linens in a lump because the world isn’t the same as the one they remember so fondly, when they ‘had it all’, so to say. When men could treat women as their property and take their marriage rights when and where they wanted them, when there weren’t many uppity blacks who didn’t know their place, when fags and dykes stayed as hidden as possible, when the poor were that way because they were lazy-that’s what he misses, and that’s what drives him to his extreme, unsupportable positions. He’s going to have a cow when the United States Supreme Court declares that the right to marry belongs to all Americans. But he has Plan B. I’m sure he’s already booked a flight to Uganda, where he can feel right at home.
Sorry he couldn’t be here in person to pick it up, but I am honored to present the Comstock Award to Bryan Fischer. (I hope he understands the symbolism.)