Wingnut of the Day

macdonald200I was going to post on Stormy, or the latest Carrie Prejean tantrum, but then Agi sent me something that earned the writer our Wingnut of the Day award.

This is Heather MacDonald. She is a John M. Olin fellow at the Manhattan Institute and contributing editor to something called City Journal. For those of you that don’t know, John M. Olin was a rich wingnut who funded a bunch of think tanks to pay lesser wingnuts – aka “fellows” – to write things that no sane person would pay them to write.  That, by the way, is more or less the definition of wingnut welfare.

Stand back – it gets ugly pretty fast:

The biggest social problem in the U.S. today is the crime and academic achievement gap between blacks and whites. The academic achievement gap (several grade levels and 200 SAT points (old system)) distorts our pedagogy, academic hiring and admissions, and employment standards in the public and private sectors (see the recent New Haven firefighters reverse discrimination case); it triggers huge and to date wholly ineffective government programs to try to close the gap (e.g., Head Start, No Child Left Behind).

My kingdom for an editor – especially that second sentence.

Of course, the problems of black people aren’t really what Heather is concerned about, as we learn three paragraphs in:

If the black illegitimacy rate were not nearly three times the rate of whites’, I would have few qualms about gay marriage. Or if someone can guarantee that widespread gay marriage would not further erode the expectation among blacks that marriage is the proper context for raising children, I would also not worry. But no one can make that guarantee.

I will repeat that:

If the black illegitimacy rate were not nearly three times the rate of whites’, I would have few qualms about gay marriage. Or if someone can guarantee that widespread gay marriage would not further erode the expectation among blacks that marriage is the proper context for raising children, I would also not worry. But no one can make that guarantee.

So what, exactly, is going on there?  If gay people are allowed to marry, fewer black people would get married and have children?  Fewer black women would marry their baby’s father because the sight of two dudes at the altar makes them squeemish?  Can somebody explain this to me?

Heather, of course, tries to justify her concern, but to no avail. She has a logical reason:

[Gay marriage] erases completely the significance that marriage is THE context in which the children of biological parents should be raised. And there are undoubtedly many other subtle meanings and effects of gay marriage that we cannot even imagine at the moment—which institutional shift is something that conservatives should be most attuned to.

and a visceral reason:

It is no secret that resistance to homosexuality is highest among the black population (though probably other ethnic minorities are close contenders). I fear that it will be harder than usual to persuade black men of the obligation to marry the mother of their children if the inevitable media saturation coverage associates marriage with homosexuals.

Translation: Treating gays as second class citizens is traditional.

Heather is a silly person.

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Logic: resistance to homosexuality is highest amongst those who don’t get married when they procreate, so if gays, who cannot procreate, get married, than even fewer blacks will get married when they procreate.

Maybe its just “if we let people get married who can’t procreate, then people who can procreate won’t get married.”

Why? Huh?

Is it like, blacks hate gays so much, that anything gays do, blacks won’t do? That gives me a great idea; all you gay guys, do me a favor, start listening to rap and hip hop, OK? Get big boomboxes and play it loud in the subway.

Thanks in advance.

Translation: Treating gays as second class citizens is traditional.

As is treating African Americans as children.

@Prommie: Dude, I will straight up blast some Public Enemy. Bass! How low can you go?
Although I’ve always preferred the clever samples of De La Soul or the jazz influences of the Digable Planets, PE made some very compelling music.

But let’s look at this in relation to other food fights of the day. (And no, the following isn’t a side-swipe at Fellow Debate Opponents.) Why the intellectual dishonesty? Why the bad faith? Why not call torture what it is? Why not stick with Gays Are Evil, which (per the Daily Show) is the beginning and end of that argument?

That’s the thing: These people don’t even have the courage of their own convictions.

No, to paraphrase her, if marriage is associated with homosexuals, then black men won’t want to get married.” Because, you know, people will tease them and call them faggot.

Whats sad is that this is that its a genuine concern, to some extent, probably 1% of the dumb. When I was the Atheist Warden of an Episcopal chruch parish, this exact line of reasoning was one of the most common reasons voiced by the members of my congregation as it blew up over the gay Bishop issue; the old blowhard bigots were, literally, really, afraid that their friends would all start saying “Oh, you go to that fag church.”

Oh My God, now I finally understand why they think it will undermine marriage, they are afraid people will call tham gay because they are married!

@nojo: The most evil in that regard are the conservative Roman Catholics; they will argue all over the place with the most amazing logic, but they will consistently refuse to simply state what they really believe, because they know that will turn people off.

This is just further evidence of my long held belief that right-wing think tanks are absurd jokes. They are to academia what the special Olympics are to the Olympics. Except that no one should be proud that their son or daughter was the best at what they did at the Manhattan Institute, because right-wing thinktanks aren’t about overcoming handicaps… they’re about refining them.

@Prommie: Well, what do you expect, they’re Jesuits.

they will consistently refuse to simply state what they really believe, because they know that will turn people off.

There’s the clue, and we could spend an afternoon unpacking it. I’ll allow for the need to address your audience (I didn’t understand Plato until a friend explained it in Philly street slang), but why not just say it? What’s to hide?

This is the perfect place to announce that my gay friends from OKC who got married in SF last summer became the proud fathers of twin boys 2 hours ago.
Suck it, Heather. Remember Carlin’s line about the only women against abortion being the ones no one would want to fuck anyway? I’m thinking it applies here, too.

O, for the simple days when ketchup was a vegetable.

@Mistress Cynica: Please extend my best wishes to them. They are entering a world of great reward.

Son of RML recently gave me an early Father’s Day present. He announced that he was going to dinner at a friend’s house the night were going to celebrate Mother’s Day early because I had to travel on May 10. I told him what I thought the right thing to do would be, while Mrs RML told him he could go just so we wouldn’t have a cranky teen at the table to ruin the t-bones, etc. I was crushed after he rode off on his bike (before it got stolen from grandma’s house). “Maybe it’s better not to feel a sense of family obligation,” I thought as I moved about the kitchen like a dead man. Ten minutes later he shows up, flush from the ride. “Did you really think I would miss the Mother’s Day dinner?” he said.

There is nothing like seeing the child you are raising do the right thing of his or her own volition, even at some sacrifice to themselves. I thanked him and told him how glad I was and that I loved him. I told him that it meant a lot to me that he came back because I did not want to be a part of a family that fell apart because of neglect. Renewed in spirit, I put together an excellent dinner capped off with family time and cards at the table.

Tell your friends that there’s a lot of mundane crap ahead like homework and chores, making lunch and cleaning up after they get sick in bed. Then there are the moments of great joy and accomplishment that mean more than perfect report cards or whatever.

I can’t get too worked up about this woman — she can’t possibly be influential at all. Who can take this kind of “reasoning” seriously, even if they can decipher the message of her “sentences”?

@Mistress Cynica: Yeehaw!

Heather cares so much about the black family that she’ll deny constitutional rights to gay people!?! Am I getting this right?

What’s your damage, Heather?

@Mistress Cynica: congrats!

@Pedonator: Wait a few minutes – I’ll give you one to get worked up about …

@Serolf Divad: Ivy League MBAs are the special olympians of the corporate world. The boardmembers of every corporation are an incestuous web, they know each other and protect their own, the mixture of arrogant incompetence is amazing, and nothing is ever their fault, I have seen, I have seen, an old Harvard crony shoehorned into a position for which they were completely unqualified, and over the course of the next year, as long-time members of the company’s upper management each went to the board and reported the utter and complete incompetence of Mr. Harvard MBA, each of them was shitcanned in turn by the BOD. Mr. incompetent was the Harvard roommate of one of the board members, you see.

@Mistress Cynica: That’s wonderful news, Auntie Cynica!
@redmanlaw: That’s an awesome story.

W/R/T this fucking moron, Heather. She says,

[Gay marriage] erases completely the significance that marriage is THE context in which the children of biological parents should be raised.

Well, if that’s the case, then using her logic we better outlaw all adoption. Because people making a family and raising children who don’t share their DNA will further erode the sanctity and true purpose of marriage.

@Pedonator: It’s up. She’s an old favorite. Unhinged.

@Prommie:

It is a well-known fact here at rat central that if you want to hit anything higher than Senior Manager you have to have that lovely piece of sheepskin from a university costing at least 50-grand-a -year in tuition/fees. State schools don’t cut it, and if the Master’s isn’t an MBA, fuggadabowtit.

If we keep teh gheys from getting married, instead poor black men will help raise their families, and then there won’t be a difference in test scores and we won’t need affirmative action any more.

Makes perfect sense, if you’re a fucking moran.

@WaltTrombone:

Is that the logic she’s using? To me it sounded more like:

(BLACKS BAD+GAYS BAD)+GAY MARRIAGE/OMG CHANGE! = A CHANCE TO BLOVIATE AND FEEL SUPERIOR

@Tommmcatt the Wet Sprocket:
Sounds like my employer which would be grand if the MBAs who joined the “dark” side were actually competent at what they do. It explains a lot why my employer is in Chapter 11.

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