Gay rights is always a hotly contested issue, so let me state right off the bat that I am a straight white liberal who fully supports equal rights for all HUMANS. That’s what we all are, essentially – regardless of your skin or orientation, we are all human beings traversing this barren wasteland that we call Earth. By being humans, we all have a functioning brain, and with that comes the propensity to do great things.
However, some brains are more developed than others, and if you need concrete evidence of a poorly developed adult brain, look no further than Ryan Sorba.
Now, Sorba has made a name for himself by using the speech time that the CPAC graciously bestowed upon him to expand on some anecdote involving Glenn Beck mistaking him for “Jim the ACORN Guy” to bash CPAC for allowing a gay rights group to attend. He went off on a minute and a half tangent which essentially stated the usual conservative mantra when it comes to the issue: “Gays don’t deserve rights.” Obviously his argument was a bit more padded than that, but that’s essentially all he said.
The real story is what happened afterward. Andrew Sullivan, a writer for the Atlantic magazine, wrote an entry about Alex Knepper, an openly gay conservative’s conversation with Sorba after his speech. Sorba showed his true colors with this conversation. Read the conversation here before moving on: http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2010/02/a-conversation-with-ryan-sorba.html
The exchange starts in a tactful manner, until the prospect of Sorba’s harangue is mentioned. Now, one thing I do agree with is that being gay is a choice and not something you’re born with. However I believe in the freedom of choice as well, so it’s no big deal.
I have no idea where they were going with this:
“No, I’m gay. Do you think it’s a choice?”
“I think it’s the result of a complex process of social and environmental factors, but that it’s reversible.”
“So, like, why is it that over one hundred animals have been observed engaging in homosexual sex in nature?”
“Well, only 0.2% of animals are known to do that – ”
” – I mean, mammals, obviously, not ants, birds – ”
” – you know, animals masturbate, your dog humps your leg. Does your dog talk with a lisp?”
If I’m reading this right, Knepper is saying animals engaging in homosexual sex proves that it’s not a choice. My dog chooses to take a dump on my floor; my dog chooses when she wants to drag her fat hind end over to the food bowl. Know why some of them engage in homosexual sex? THEY DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY’RE DOING.
In the tirade, Sorba said that “civil rights are grounded in natural rights. Natural rights are grounded in human nature, human nature is a rational substance in relationship – the intelligible end of the reproductive act is reproduction.”
He’s basically saying that since natural rights are grounded in human nature, gay sex is wrong because you can’t reproduce. Human nature is to use your organs to procreate, not engage in same-sex sex. Who is he to say this? At least he isn’t using a Bible verse like a lot of other conservative Christians, I’ll give him that. He’s using a logical argument, and I can appreciate that.
However, I fail to see the logic in the statement that “homosexuality corrupts the youth and culture.” Whatever happened to “do your own thing?” How exactly does someone being homosexual corrupt anything? It’s all in your head. You want to know what corrupts the youth? Parents passing along intolerance and ignorance to their kids. Impressionable minds being suffocated for the parent’s opinions and nothing else is to be accepted.
Sorba says this in regards to Knepper’s supposed evidence that being gay is a choice: ” – you know, animals masturbate, your dog humps your leg. Does your dog talk with a lisp?” Hey nimrod, I have a slight lisp but I’m straight. In fact, from what I heard in the video, you have a slight lisp going on there yourself. I’ve also met many straight males that have lisps. Granted, I’ll never understand why gay males have to talk the way they do, but it’s part of their identity I guess.
Sorba mentions that sodomy is wrong, but Knepper says that the vast majority of married couples partake in sodomy. He asks Sorba if his girlfriend had ever given him oral sex. That is true. I don’t care how you feel about sodomy when you’re up at a podium spreading your bigotry – you can’t honestly say that you’ve never had, or ever turned down, oral sex. Get real.
Knepper also stated something else I agree with: “I think the government should just get out of the whole marriage business!” I would think that the government has had much bigger fish to fry than this over the years. I think of it this way – the Thomas Paine school of thought – we have no rights. What we have are privileges that can be taken away at any time without notice. That being said, what’s the hassle in giving gays the “right” to marry? Why does the government concern themselves with gay marriage so much?
I’ll tell you why – religion. Face it, folks, there is no barrier between church and state. Conservatives have Christian constituents to please. Christians make up a great deal of the population; you should get what I’m saying from there. They also let their own convictions get in the way, which to me is really stupid. You should be in the game of politics for all opinions and all beliefs, not just your own.
Let me succinctly revisit a question I asked earlier: What corruption do you stand endure by seeing a happy gay couple walk down the street? If any of you can give me a logical answer to that without some obscure quote from the Bible, I’d be more than happy to read it.
Anyway, back to the conversation. “I said something I don’t quite recall, and he mentioned something about how he could “take me on” physically if he needed to, to which I mentioned that his quick resort to force and threats said a lot about his political philosophy.”
I think this one had something to do with his girlfriend being present, because as rationally as he presented his argument in the speech, I wouldn’t expect to hear him threaten physical harm in a debate. Any time someone has to use a threat of physical force in a debate, it tells me two things: Their argument is obviously so weak that they have to make a last ditch effort to invoke fear in their opponent by way of threats, and they lose all credibility to me on the spot. Sorba knew that all he had was the backing of his own religious faith and some obscure biased philosophy – Knepper had logic on his side. While I don’t agree with EVERYTHING Knepper had to say, I do agree on a basic level that government needs to take its nose out of gay’s affairs, sodomy is something I’m sure every non-virgin adult male has taken part in, and gays don’t corrupt the culture – if anything, they expand it.
In the end, Sorba truly showed his ignorance by having to resort to threats in a healthy debate. Threats are used when a person has no other argument to rely on, and I’m happy to report that this time it was a complete failure.
Well played, Sorba. Well played. You had your minute of fame, but next time, as a suggestion, if you’re going to threaten someone – don’t use the excuse that a girl is around so you can’t do it. And get it on camera, so I can see you get the holy hell pulverized out of you. I could use a good weird story for my radio show.
I’d like to add lastly that Sorba is from the California Young Americans for Freedom. “Freedom?” You call your convictions liberating? Oh, you mean liberating yourself from the horrors and atrocities of gays. I get it now, thanks for clarifying.