May 31, 2005

"Anyone Who Ever Disagrees With Me is a Homophobe!"

Andrew Sullivan:

Even Glenn Reynolds is now forced to concede that the accumulation of evidence is "non-hysterical", (i.e. written by a heterosexual male)...
How was it, I wonder, that anyone ever got the idea that Andrew Sullivan could be hysterical?

UPDATE (June 1, 4:25 PM): Downtown Lad writes in the comments below:

I would say the real "hysterical" people includes you and your blog readers, who are incapable of reading a blog that offers another opinion.

Anyone who runs around saying that the world is coming to an end, solely because two guys want to get married, should clearly be classified as "hysterical".

And that would include you, not Sullivan.

What on Earth is he talking about? I'm for gay marriage, and I've read Sullivan almost daily since before 9/11. I can sort of understand being too lazy to enter "gay marriage" into the search field at the left before making assumptions about my views on the topic, but this very post should put paid to the notion that I'm among those (the comments, thanks to the Insta-Link this morning, are full of them) who've given up on Andrew. How could I have responded to his blog if I weren't reading it?

I like Andrew. He's always been nice to me-- he's linked to my stuff a few times, and he was quite cordial when we met at a function in DC recently. I still find him worthwhile reading even though I think he's lost his way on some issues. But ascribing some kind of veiled anti-gay bigotry to Glenn Reynolds is just nuts.

Posted by John Tabin at May 31, 2005 11:14 PM
Comments

I've noticed the less than usual rigor of Andrew Sullivan's thinking lately (as have we all) and I've tried to make some sort of peace with him through e-mail (he keep answering, so something's happening). But the question I and many former fans must ask is what do we do now? Do we just ignore him because we disagree and we think he's lost his way? Do we engage him and try (I'm sure unsuccessfully) to get him back to his former usually right self? I don't know. I have the questions but no answers yet.

Posted by: Roger Fraley at June 1, 2005 09:25 AM

Andrew who?

Posted by: Stuart at June 1, 2005 09:39 AM

Sadly Sullivan has become his own worst enemy. I think his silliness and name-calling does his cause much more harm than he realizes.

Got here via your Instalaunch, like your blog. :)

Posted by: Dwilkers at June 1, 2005 09:39 AM

Namecalling is a sure sign of one of two things:

An intelligent mind which realizes it is losing the argument; or

A lazy mind no longer willing to engage the argument.

Seems to me the accusation of homophobia is approaching comparisons to Hitler as a discussion stopper.

Posted by: BD at June 1, 2005 09:45 AM

Hell, I used to donate to his web site when he was more coherent. His descent into obsession over gay marriage, gay marriage, and more gay marriage, colored his writing until it was unreadable.

Too bad, the man has insights.

Posted by: Fred Jenson at June 1, 2005 09:45 AM

The guy is full of himself and always has been. He is atypical of the self-important exported Brit who considers himself intellectually superior and more capable to discuss both American military and political policy as if he was somehow privy to it all. I doubt he even has a clue as to military organization, training and above all discipline. He comes at his thoughts on everything from a CW perspective that is both faulty and unconvincing to those of us who have ribbons on our chests and chevrons on our sleeves.

Posted by: Jack is Back! at June 1, 2005 09:48 AM

Andrew Sullivan is a rainmaker. Unfortunately, his mom never taught him to come in out of the rain. So he's spending his well-earned blog capital to invent a newer, better umbrella.

(Hey! That second sentence had three consecutuve prepositions in it! Cool. Want to see a sentence end in five consecutive prepositions? Here goes: Why did you bring the book that I didn't want to be read to out of up for?)

Posted by: -Ed. at June 1, 2005 09:53 AM

I used to read Sullivan daily. His unique frame of reference was refreshing, and I also donated to his site once.

Haven't read him since he went 'round the bend about a year ago.

Posted by: Idly Awed at June 1, 2005 09:55 AM

Even some of us (well, me) who favored gay marriage have been driven into indifference by his focusing on every last issue through that particular lens.

Posted by: RPD at June 1, 2005 09:56 AM

I agree with Andrew on most topics, including the ones that are most important to him (gay marriage, the war on terror, gay marriage) but I've found him unreadable for the last year.

I'd wonder if he's slipping toward HIV dementia - but asking the question would, of course, make me a bigoted homophobe. The fact that I'm gay, out and comfortable about it would make me a self hating bigoted homophobe.

Posted by: Richard Thompson at June 1, 2005 10:00 AM

I got into the blog world by reading Andrew daily. Even though I disagreed with him on gay marriage, I was happy to benefit from his insight and creative thoughts, and used to dontate to his site.

He's been off the deep end for almost a year now, his blog is unreadable, and he is now irrelevant.

Posted by: Phil at June 1, 2005 10:02 AM

Like many, I used to read his blog daily. Quit reading his blog totally close to a year ago for the reasons mentioned by many here.

And what is sad is that he once had a cogent blog dealing with many conservative/liberal issues. It has become a mono-themed blog that has committed the worst sin possible for any blog... it has become boring.

Posted by: David at June 1, 2005 10:06 AM

I know exactly when it happened.

The summer of 2004, Andrew went to Provincetown for his summer vacation and came back a changed man. It was a remarkable and, for me, disturbing change that seemed to happen overnight.

I don't know what happened up in Provincetown to change his personality and rationality for the worse, but it certainly did happen....

Posted by: politicaobscura at June 1, 2005 10:07 AM

I, too, was a big Sully fan. Funny how so many of us found him becoming unreadable in early 2004. Suddenly he seemed to do a 180 on the biggest issues, and turned into a hysterical (yes, hysterical) Bush-hater over gay marriage. ("Hysterical" is a adjective derived from the Latin word for womb and has always been used as an all-purpose put-down of women.)

Portraying all who disagree with him as homophobes is akin to Jackson supporters portraying all who deride his pedophilia as rascists. It's simple-minded and intellectually vacant. I expect it of Jackson supporters but not of someone of Sullivan's intellect.

John, nice blog.

Posted by: Peg C. at June 1, 2005 10:12 AM

Mid-life crisis? Frustration blew a mental fuse? Had you all fooled before? Punishment from God? :-)

He poofed into an a**hole. It's the default for middle age men. Going through it myself. I just don't have a loyal following that frets about it. Not much fun for anyone. He's practicing his God given free-will. Wish him the best at it.

Posted by: Huggy at June 1, 2005 10:28 AM

It's sad, I used to love his writing, and he gave my blog its first big link. Can't read him anymore, for all the reasons mentioned here. He's become the rich man's David Brock.

Posted by: Crank at June 1, 2005 10:35 AM

My God, it's true! There were intimations leading up to it, but it was during his August 2004 vacation that my favorite blogger (to whom, in his earliest days, I sent along a hundred bucks) underwent a metamorphosis so profound that I found myself scouring the National Enquirer et al. for weeks after, searching for reports of recent UFO sightings on the Cape, unusual solar activity, dog-cat cohabitation, anything that could explain the shift in him from perspicuity, reason and passion to unreason, delusion and passion. What was weird about the emergence of the New Andrew was just how awful it felt--like someone had died. Which is rather embarassing and pathetic to admit, but there it is. Which leads me to an amusing thought. Wouldn't it be funny if someone started a blog along the lines of a support group for ex-Sullivans fans?

Posted by: Chris M at June 1, 2005 10:42 AM

I've had an e-mail exchange with Andrew abou this, and to be quite honest, he does have (IMHO) somewhat of a point, though poking Glenn with that point is (Again, IMO) misdirected. He relates that the word "hysterical," because of its gender-specific roots, is being used to marginalize strong or impassioned arguements from gay men, similar to how (he claims) it used to be used against women ("Aww, you;re just being hysterical, honey!"). I'd like to think that we have moved beyond the point of being careful over what words we use with who, but I guess not.

Posted by: Steve at June 1, 2005 10:43 AM

I'm 50 and have my own blog, (http://elgintyrell.com/) I only wish people would go to it and complain about me, or gasp, even agree with me. I know where Andrew is coming from even if I disagree with his direction. But, even Andrew should agree with this, it's a free market system on the web and if you don't like it, don't read it.

Posted by: Esbiem at June 1, 2005 10:44 AM

So basically Sullivan decided that he couldn't support Bush a year ago, when Bush went an anti-gay tirade by supporting an amendment that would make gays second class citizens.

And for actually having a spine, everyone on this thread stopped reading him and decided to call him "hysterical" and saying that he has "AIDS Related Dementia".

And you really think you're not homophobes?

Give me a break. When is the last time you called a straight, heterosexual male "hysterical"?

Go to any conservative blog, and you will see them classify every gay male who makes a valid point as "hysterical".

Sullivan is 100% correct. But you are too blinded by your hatred of gay people to see that. Your loss.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:58 AM

To echo several earlier comments, I used to read Andrew religiously, he was one of the first blogs I read, he compromised himself and his logic with the gay marriage thing, and then went completely off the deep end. I gave him one last chance when he got back from vacation last September, and then he echoed the MSM reaction to the Swift Boats issues, showing his complete partisanship, and I haven't bothered since.

Posted by: Ridolph at June 1, 2005 11:00 AM

I too was a fan of Andrew's blog and a Bush-voting supporter of gay marriage (the WoT is just much more important to me, and I'm straight...) When the gay marriage lobby (or one of it's most visible spokesmen) seeks to demonize and marginalize voices like Glenn Reynolds (their heterosexual allies), they are doing irrepairable harm to their cause. Honestly, it's starting to become so annoying that I've lost what little passion I had for the issue and have become ambivalent again.

Posted by: Brent at June 1, 2005 11:07 AM

I would say the real "hysterical" people includes you and your blog readers, who are incapable of reading a blog that offers another opinion.

Anyone who runs around saying that the world is coming to an end, solely because two guys want to get married, should clearly be classified as "hysterical".

And that would include you, not Sullivan.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 11:08 AM

Downtown Lad:

>>Give me a break. When is the last time you called a straight, heterosexual male "hysterical"?

Anytime Larry O'Donnell and Chris Matthews open their mouths...

Posted by: Rich at June 1, 2005 11:11 AM

Dowtown Lad,

I find it ironic that you choose as a moniker a term close to one Andrew took umbrage too also ("excitable boy"). That aside, Andrew asked the same question, only applied to Insty instead of the word in general ( I use the word hysterical all the time, male, female, doesn't matter). Things besides Andrew Glenn Reynolds has called hysterical:

Big Media (several times)
Republicans in the Schiavo debacle
Republicans calling for a "war on the judiciary"
Nick Coleman (Star-Tribune OpEd dude)

The list goes on. I think we're having a "niggardly" moment here. Like I said above, some may use the word in a derogatory fashion, but that doesn't mean the word shouldn't be used at all, or with special provisios.

Posted by: Steve at June 1, 2005 11:13 AM

Few are his equal in expressing an intellectually rigorous defense of classic conservatism. He's just not doing much of that anymore. Andrew's commentary and focus changed after Bush came out for the constitutional amendment over gay marriage. Whatever you think about gay marriage (full disclosure: Sullivan's arguements moved me from reflexively "anti" to refectively "pro") Bush's cynical attempt, knowing it would never pass, to cement the far right by messing with the constitution was perhaps the lowest point of his campaign. I think that has colored all of Andrew's commentary since, focusing him on attacking this administration. I'm glad Bush won and I think Sullivan is over the top on torture and now boringly repetitive on gay marriage. Still though he's disapointed me, I'll keep reading him to help keep my own perspective honest.

Posted by: stack at June 1, 2005 11:13 AM

I began reading Andrew Sullivan for his sharp analysis of the New York Times and BBC news reporting. He never seemed like a dogmatic conservative, just a thoughtful person who wanted to give both sides a fair shake. In 2003 and early 2004, I think conservatives felt a common cause with Sullivan because of similar sentiments about the war on terror and media bias.

I'm not sure it's fair to think of Sullivan as a Boromir, one of the (conservative) fellowship who was tempted by the (gay wedding) Ring. Although I do not share his zeal for the gay marriage issue and it has made me less likely to visit his blog, I respect his independent vision.

Posted by: Rich T at June 1, 2005 11:15 AM

It's certainly possible that 'hysterical' was meant by Glenn as an insult, but I think he held his fire for a good while. Sullivan published a silly letter from a reader doing a statistical analysis of what Glenn _should_ be blogging about and I think that was the final straw for the Instaman.

As for when Sullivan went round the bend -- he seems to have (somehow) convinced himself that Bush was secretly in favor of gay marraige. He was probably the only person in the country to beleive that, but when Bush made it clear it wasn't true, Sullivan flipped.

Posted by: Ted at June 1, 2005 11:17 AM

Steve - Any time I read a conservative blog and Sullivan's name comes up, it is almost always preceded by "hysterical". As a gay person myself, I notice this, because when people respond to me they call me "hysterical" too.

It gets very old after a while. And the intent of those who do it is quite apparent - as a slur against gay people.

But I guess I'm being "hysterical" for pointing that out.

Whatever. In reality, the only people who are getting "hysterical" are those who don't like having their homophobia pointed out to them.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 11:24 AM

It's interesting to read that I'm one among many that turned away from Andrew Sullivan in '04. Prior to that, I appreciated his insights, but his increasing shrillness just turned me off.

Posted by: Paul in NJ at June 1, 2005 11:26 AM

Obviously Reynolds was using Sullivan's sexuality against him with that word choice. It was juvenile and insulting. Sullivan's been more than patient in his responses. That Reynolds would press the issue shows just how clueless he is.

Posted by: SamAm at June 1, 2005 11:26 AM

Give me a break. When is the last time you called a straight, heterosexual male "hysterical"?

Yesterday. Of Oliver Willis.

Go to any conservative blog, and you will see them classify every gay male who makes a valid point as "hysterical".

If by "valid" you actually mean "defined by its hysteria and shrillness, and incongruency to previous positions without a great deal of explanation for the changing of those positions," Then yes, I guess you're right.

Andrew went 180 in 2k4, and for months never even bothered to explain why. If he has since, I've not read it because I stopped reading.


Sullivan is 100% correct. But you are too blinded by your hatred of gay people to see that. Your loss.

I think you AND Sullivan need to get over it. Its not about his homosexuality. It's about him. He (not us) is the one making his homosexuality the single dimension of his existence, not us. So when we reject him for his positions, he interprets it as a rejection of his homosexuality, because that is all that exists in his mind. The end result is that we can't engage him without being tarred as devils. And if you can't engage a thing, you must then ignore it.

And Andrew is getting ignored.

Posted by: forvrin at June 1, 2005 11:27 AM

Downtown Lad,

As I said to Andrew in our e-mail exchange, I understand the sensitivity to the term, and the word's origins, I just don't think Glenn *in particular* deserves to be smeared as a homophobe for using it. I just hink Glenn likes the word "hysterical" - he uses it very often.

I'm sorry, but I can't paint everyone that uses the term "hysterical" with the broad brush of homophobia based on the actions of the few.

Posted by: Steve at June 1, 2005 11:31 AM

Steve - You have a point. But do you really think Glenn is that clueless that Sullivan is tarred as "hysterical" by almost every conservative blogger every time his name is mentioned?

Sully has not been "hysterical" on the discussions of torture. I've actually found his writing on that subject to be some of the most enlightening stuff on the blogosphere.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 11:33 AM

After demonstrating, daily, how out of touch and wrong-headed Kerry and the Democratic establishment was on the war on terror, obviously the most important issue of the day, he goes and votes for the guy. Now, if he just admitted why he did it (because gay marriage is more important to him than fighting terrorism, democratization of the middle east, etc.), I would understand. After all, the Republican party is not "gay-friendly", and most people vote their own interests anyway. Instead, he took a page out of the MSM playbook and decided to invoke Abu Ghraib almost daily, in order to justify his decision to support John Kerry. Because he has such a vested interest in seeing gay marriage succeed, I no longer trust him to be fair or even-handed regarding events that could impact it, which unfortunately includes anything that could affect the popularity of the two parties.

Posted by: Gertrude at June 1, 2005 11:33 AM

Attacking Glenn Reynolds as a bigot and Bush apparatchik is not a convincing way to build up your credibility, or foster faith in your judgment.

Posted by: Ken B at June 1, 2005 11:50 AM

Dowtown Lad - I have no idea what level of cluelesness Glenn maintains WRT what conservative bloggers are referring to Andrew as. If he's like me, he sees the word hysterical, and thinks "overly emotional" or "excessively impassioned" or "shrill" (all of which have female connotations or history to them, now that I look at them more closely) with no gender or sexual connotation attached. Until Andrew pointed out to me how it could be an insult to a gay man, I never saw it as such when I read it. Simple as that.

As to whether or not Andrew has been hysterical (I'm not insulting him!!!) on the topic of toture, well, you and I might differ in our opinions, but hey, that's OK.

Posted by: Steve at June 1, 2005 11:52 AM

Um, the reason everyone refers to Sullivan as "hysterical" is not that he's gay, but that he tends to swing wildly in his conclusions and writes in an over-the-top, emotional voice. His unabashedly passionate style and big picture perspective are what attracted me to his blog, which I first started reading just post-9/11, because he was among the first creating context for the event and the nascent GWOT. In fact, he was the first pundit to call for action against Iraq, as I recall.

What I wasn't prepared for was how quickly and wildly he would swing against everything he'd said for years. After pounding on the primacy of the GWOT again and again -- and skewering the Dems for putting other issues in front of it -- he pulled the bizarre 180 noted by many above. And it wasn't just the drastic change in position, it was the vehemence with which he did it, and the intellectually dishonest stunts (like the de rigeur playing of the homophobe card). Remember when he was "outed" as having written in a gay magazine article that he could never vote for Bush, while he was playing coy and pretending to be honestly weighing the candidates on his blog?

I never agreed with everything Sullivan had to say, but I used to think his analysis was driven by his honest, passionate feelings about the issues. Now it seems his analysis is 100% driven by his passionate feeling about one issue.

Posted by: Dan at June 1, 2005 11:57 AM

I knew sane Andrew only briefly, just before his 2004 Summer of Discombobulation.

However, I have seen parallel behavior among people I know. Generally in my experience this kind of metamophosis is attributable to attending some kind of immersive seminar (lib or con) where they're taught why they're an oppressed victim and therefore self-righteously entitled to disregard logic and reason in favor of emotional, counterfactual, and (yes) hysterical arguments. Deprogramming people from such experiences with factual information (when even possible) is difficult, exhausting, and generally involves a lot of aggrieved yelling on their part.

Posted by: TallDave at June 1, 2005 12:02 PM

I am a straight man who is a vigorous supporter of Gay Marriage.

Sullivan's site was largely responsible for getting me into bloggers in the first place, as he was for many others I personally know as well. Sullivan also is where I first learned of Instapundit, which has become my most-visited blog. I have had a great respect for Andrew Sullivan and his intellectual rigor.

How disappointing then, when he blew his top last year. I don't even visit his blog anymore, except on very rare occasions. This is not because I now "disagree" with him - I read many blogs I "disagree" with. It is because Sullivan has become frothingly incoherent where he was once one of the most logical writers in the blogosphere.

It got really bad for me when I saw his reaction to the conventions last year. He was lapping the Dem convention up, acting as if their salesmanship was some sort of sincere "change of heart", and that their convention words were somehow the antidote to their past and continued actions. It was an incredible display of wishful thinking completely clouding a man's common sense. Frankly, it was embarassing.

Likewise, at the Republican convention, Sullivan's common sense and guardedness over political convention salesmanship miraculously returned. Where he was hopeful and accepting of the Dem's rhetoric, he was disdainful and suspicious of anything coming out of the mouths of Republicans.

He's no longer fair and logical. He now is a spiteful, shrieking anti-Bush shill - his emotion has won out over his logic.

It's fine to be anti-Bush on certain issues. I certainly am. But Sullivan's "gotcha", twisting tone of late plays like more of a Kos than of a Glenn Reynold's. Reynolds also has no love for Bush on certain issues, but he hasn't sold the entire farm because of one bad cow. He is consistently Libertarian where Sullivan is just consistently anti-Bush.

And you know something must be up when the usually-calm Glenn Reynolds feels compelled to engage in an utter smackdown against another blogger like he recently did against Sullivan. It was uncharacteristically brutal, if still restrained.

Glenn Reynolds is the Mr. Miyagi of the blogosphere, usually quite serenely content to hold his ground and let attacks roll right off his back. In this case, however, Sullivan was the Cobra Kai Sensei of the blogosphere, John Kreese - knuckles bloodied with senseless rage. Reynolds seemed poised to go for the kill, but decided to just "honk" his nose instead. Sullivan, like Kreese, had already humiliated himself enough, and Reynold's Miyagi left him bleeding on the pavement and walked away.

The conventions were a clear indication of how far afield Sullivan has gone. I hope he returns to his former greatness, but he literally doesn't even seem like the same man anymore.

Posted by: David at June 1, 2005 12:06 PM

Hahahaha - it's hilarious that Downtown Lad is the only one supporting Andrew. DL is also the only other blog (beside Andrew's) that I've deleted from my favorites because their content got so one-sided and hysterical. I'm another self-loathing gay homophobe, I guess.

Posted by: tim at June 1, 2005 12:14 PM


Could anybody explain to me the appeal of the pre-2003 Sullivan? I never got it, really.

Instapundit would shower praises and links upon the guy, and when I clicked on the link to read Sullivan's post, it was pretty nondescript. Not to mention when he tried to do military or geopolitical analysis, my oh my.

Posted by: Anonymous at June 1, 2005 12:30 PM

No Tim - It's because you only like to hear people who echo your views. I'm pretty proud of the fact that the commenters on my blog range across the political spectrum from far-right to far-left and everyone can get along.

That's fine and dandy that you're unwilling to have your views challenged. It must also make you a rather boring fellow to hang around if you can't handle a proper intellectual debate.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 12:39 PM

I'm thinking that a lot of people stopped reading A. Sullivan last year. A shrill, monochromatic writing style is alright once in awhile, but as a steady diet its just literary junk food without the benefit of an interesting taste. His site was deleted from my favorites list late last year when I realized that I never really visited anymore. I suspect that many, many, others have done the same. Its a pity because I miss the old A. Sullivan.

Posted by: Rockeye at June 1, 2005 12:43 PM

Sorry, but anyone that posts:

"Go to any conservative blog, and you will see them classify every gay male who makes a valid point as "hysterical"."

and

"I would say the real "hysterical" people includes you and your blog readers, who are incapable of reading a blog that offers another opinion."

cannot then honestly lay claim to the 'reasonable respecter of other's opinions' mantle.

Posted by: Dwilkers at June 1, 2005 12:52 PM

Count me in the used-to-read-Andrew camp as a straight, pro-gay-marriage female. Actually, given the 'looming theocracy' sky-is-falling hysteria (yes, hysteria he was engaging in for awhile there, add non-Christian to that list. I like the man, but he's far too given to fixation and extremes for me to trust his judgement.

Posted by: Achillea at June 1, 2005 12:57 PM

I used to read Andrew and found his insight engaging. He now writes to a different audience.

Posted by: TYoung at June 1, 2005 01:00 PM

Just wanted to add my $0.02 to those who used to be donating Sullivan fans, but have tuned him out. I have to agree that in the last year or two, he really has gotten "hysterical", i.e., emotional with terrible logic. I started noticing about 15 months ago. I tried to engage with him (rationally) on e-mail a couple times, to no avail. I gave up on him about 8 months ago, when I noticed he was clearly more interested in posturing and denouncing on the so-called "torture issue" than in actually persuading (or respectfully educating) those who don't see it the same way as him. Call me YET ANOTHER self-loathing gay homophobe :-)

Posted by: Jeff at June 1, 2005 01:08 PM

Obviously I'm coming to this discussion late (man there have been alot of posts on this topic!) but I it's apparent to me that Andrew has let a legitimate beef with Bush (i.e., the President's anti-gay marriage amendment) color his thinking on other issues. I think that Andrew had to swallow alot of abuse from many on the left in supporting Bush and felt betrayed when the Bush Administration came out and actively supported the amendment. We can argue about whether or not he should have been surprised but that is not the point. I can understand Andrew's suspicion as to the constant use of 'hysterical' to describe his writing (for reasons already discussed above), but given that it was coming from Glenn Reynolds I think he made a mistake in assigning any homophobic motives (Glenn has been supportive of gay equality). It is unfortunate that Andrew's usually brilliant analysis has been affected by his deep attachment to one issue (though who can honestly blame him for such passion?) and I hope he regains some perpective soon.
I've donated to his site, he's convinced me of the neccessity (indeed, the moral obligation) this country has to treat it's gay citizens fairly, and I continue to read him still (though admittedly with less of the zeal I used to.)
Here's hoping for a return of the "grounded" Andrew...

Posted by: CJ at June 1, 2005 01:18 PM

"Downtown Lad" writes:

"Go to any conservative blog, and you will see them classify every gay male who makes a valid point as "hysterical". Sullivan is 100% correct. But you are too blinded by your hatred of gay people to see that. Your loss."

To paraphrase:

"ALL conservatives who diss Andy are homophobes motivated by HATE! I so, so WIN the arguement, baby!!!!!!!"

This type of "reasoning" would be funnier if it weren't so damned common.


Posted by: Tadfield at June 1, 2005 01:44 PM

Yuh, after several years I quit reading Sully last year some time. Just couldn't handle wading through a lot of aggrieved writing to get to the good stuff (when there was good stuff). I have been in favor of civil unions for years, and would be willing to support gay marriage under many circumstances. However, I really, really despise those who would attempt to limit word choice in such an arbitrary fashion (and thus stifle any chance of debate) and those who resort to ad hominems in any event.

These would both appear to be attempts to win by force that which cannot be gained by reason.

This is what it has come to, and DL is following the lead. What a shame.

Posted by: JorgXMcKie at June 1, 2005 02:08 PM

As is the case with so many of the posters above, Sullivan lost my attention almost a year ago when he appeared to have gone off the deep end on the gay marriage issue. Between that and the Abu Graib photo/torture allegations he's become a two-trick pony...and incredibly tiresome.

Sadly, there's just too much out there that's more interesting and more relevant than anything he's writing. A shame, really, as I used to really enjoy his insights.

Posted by: 2yellowdogs at June 1, 2005 02:12 PM

JorgXmcKie - Who's limiting word choice? Not me. Just pointing out that if you choose to refer to all gay people as "hysterical", or "shrill", etc., and never use those characteristics for straight people, well we're going to point it out.

Do you honestly expect us to just sit there and take your abuse when you dish it out to us? Um - sorry, no dice.

If you're going to throw dirt at people, be prepared to take it return.

When you call people "hysterical" it just shows that you're completely incapable of having a valid argument. If you disagree with Sullivan's position on torture, don't call it "hysterical", just point out why he's wrong. Since you resort to name-calling, I can only assume you can't.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 03:44 PM

To paraphrase Tadfield:

"All gays should be locked up in concentration camps and killed."

Hey - If Tadfield can make moronic leaps of logic about me, then I can do the same about him.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 03:48 PM

By the way, here is just one example of the hundreds of conservative bloggers who, rather than debate Sullivan on the merits, choose to attack him with anti-gay stereotypes.

"A man prone to twitchy excitability, shrill hyperbole, embarassingly emotional language, or frequent hysterical outbursts." - Ace of Spades
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/043989.php

Just one example amongst thousands.

Like those statements really would have been made if Andrew Sullivan had been straight? Give me a break.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 03:55 PM

Oh please, Downtown lad. There isn't a single anti-gay stereotype in what you quoted. (I say this as someone who has been on the receiving end of many anti-gay stereotypes.)

Posted by: jeff at June 1, 2005 04:15 PM

P.S. and I should have added, of course, that although "twitchy excitability", "shrill hyperbole", etc. (all descriptions I've seen used of other, straight commentators) are to a large extent in the eye of the beholder, I must agree with a great feeling of sadness that they apply to Andrew. (the "new Andrew" of the last 12-15 months)

Posted by: jeff at June 1, 2005 04:18 PM

Is Carville Gay?

Because he gets called hysterical a lot.

Posted by: forvrin at June 1, 2005 04:20 PM

Sticks and stones, folks sticks and stones, thay are just words. It is YOUR choice how you take them. Get 0ver it.

Posted by: Jack at June 1, 2005 04:25 PM

Those aren't anti-gay stereotypes??? You're joking, right?

Sure - you can use shrill and excitable and hysterical when talking about straight men. But you hardly ever see it, do you? And when you do see it, I guarantee the intent is to malign their manhood. No - it's commonly used against women and gay men.

The problem is not with the word "hysterical". And Sullivan has never said as much. The problem is when people refuse to address a position on its merits, and instead dismiss the entire argument by calling the author "hysterical".

THAT'S what's insulting.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 04:30 PM

Forvrin - Why do I find more than SIX times as many entries on Google for "Andrew Sullivan hysterical" than I do for "James Carville hysterical"???

And Carville is a hell of a lot more excitable than Andrew Sullivan.

You've just proved my point. Thank you.

If you replace "hysterical" with "shrill" you get the same lopsided results. The same with "excitable".

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 04:37 PM

Jack - I'm using "words" to refute an argument.

That is allowed, isn't it?

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 04:38 PM

Well then I will agree to disagree IF you will be "hysterical".

Posted by: Jack at June 1, 2005 04:40 PM

Downtown Lad
My last post WAS a joke-- I hope you got that.

Jack - I'm using "words" to refute an argument.

That is allowed, isn't it?---If i said no is that ok?

Posted by: Jack at June 1, 2005 04:56 PM

No worries Jack. I'm not bothered when people throw words at me. Heck - I've been known to throw them back quite a bit.

I really don't think Sullivan gets bothered by all of this stuff. He's been called much worse. When he's on TV, he's anything but "hysterical". In fact, he's your typical restrained British person, the exact opposite of hysterical. Sullivan knows that and is smart enough to recognize latent anti-gay attitudes by straight people when he sees them.

My hypothesis is that many of his conservative readers got "hysterical" when they found out Sully was endorsing Kerry, and mistakingly assumed that it was Sullivan's writing style that was hysterical, rather than their own.

I went through the same thought process that Sully did. I was a big Bush supporter. But when Bush came out for a Constitutional Amendment for gay marriage, I was extremely disappointed in Bush, and yes, my opinion of Bush dropped immensely. I'm still conservative on most issues, but I feel no obligation to stand up for a President who insists on treating me like a second-class citizen.

That's not hysterical. That's called having respect for yourself.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 05:03 PM

I operate on the hypothesis that Sullivan is now as he always was, and that the short time in which he seemed cogent was a temporary condition designed to establish himself within the blogosphere.

In any case his rantings are irrelevant, the only influence he exercises is on the ears pressed to the echo chamber of the MSM of which his opinions are already legion.

No self respecting homophobe is going to be influenced by his hysterical arguments, and many people who are ambivalent in a Libertarian sense will come to sense his position the vanguard of more government interference/control, and will then oppose his position.

The sad fact of the matter is, homosexuality is not self perpetuating at anything above a miniscule percentage of the population. Therefore they must recruit to increase thier numbers, and this is where they find thier opposition, and why they must develop false terms such as homophobe.

I would vote for gay marriage today, with the caveate that if the gay marriages have a divorce rate of above 79% within 10 years of inactment, it be repealed. Otherwise we will have to spend decades if not centuries before the folly becomes so apparent that the practice is returned to its position on the shelf of taboos that it has so recently departed.

Posted by: Joel Mackey at June 1, 2005 05:43 PM

Perhaps Sullivan is writing for a different audience now (post 2004). Perhaps that audience is actually larger and perhaps he is raking in more donations now than he was when his style was non-"hysterical."

I once heard Rush Limbaugh answer a caller who asked, more or less, "How do I get a job like yours?" Rush's answer, paraphrasing, was: "First, you have to know what business I'm in. Hint: it's not the news business." He never actually said, "I'm in the entertainment business," but you could almost hear him biting his tongue to keep from saying it. Most of his audience thinks he's a pundit, not an entertainer, you see, and it would be bad for business to clue them in.

Rush is an entertainer. That's why he's so shrill (it's more entertaining) and that's why he's so rich. Once upon a time (circa 1989) Rush's show was a lot more intelligent -- and his audience was a lot smaller. I'm pretty sure Rush's changes to his show were deliberate.

Perhaps Andrew has simply decided to move in the shriller/richer direction himself.

Posted by: Steve at June 1, 2005 05:46 PM

Gays recruit Joel? You realize that by repeating that slander, you are exposing yourself for the neo-Nazi that you are.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 05:50 PM

John - Sorry if I misinterpreted your position on gay marriage. Hadn't encountered your blog before today.

But you have to admit, 90% of conservative bloggers ARE running hysterically saying that the world will end if two dudes get married. James Dobson himself said it will be the "end of civilization" and I haven't seen one conservative blogger discredit him yet.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 05:55 PM

Here's Dobson's quote on gay marriage:

"It will destroy marriage. It will destroy the Earth."

Hysterical?

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 06:05 PM

Is it the seventies again, and am I back in the lit department at State U? I have heard this whole hysterical argument before, and how many people who use the term are intentionally invoking its greek root? Puhleeze!

And how does turning on the war on terror follow from disagreeing on Gay Marriage with the president? Puhleeze again.

I think what most people miss was his clear thinking on the WOT. Andy-one-note needs to be de-programmed somehow. (not out of being gay, but out of seeking victimhood) Of course, it probably doesn't hurt his pageviews to criticize the puppy blender either.

Posted by: moptop at June 1, 2005 07:02 PM

>Here's Dobson's quote on gay marriage:

>"It will destroy marriage. It will destroy the Earth."

>Hysterical?

Absolutely hysterical.

And Sullivan did get a bit hysterical last year. I don't dislike him for it -- it's just that his writing became harder to read, what with having to filter out the emotion to get to the heart of the matter.

The cries for an anti-gay amendment were/are hysterical, and Sullivan's response was understandable.

Can't comment on what others blog, since I haven't read or, I'm sure, even heard of them. I can, though, second the comment that Reynolds calls a lot of things hysterical.

That a homophobic twist to the word exists doesn't surprise me. There are all kinds of dopes, but not everyone who uses the word is a dope.

Posted by: bobo at June 1, 2005 07:50 PM

Do all you self-styled PC enforcers find the phrase "Jumping the Shark" freighted with homophobic overtones?

Well tough luck, because that's what happened to Andrew Sullivan, right after his summer vacation in 2004. He jumped the shark.

It's a shame, too, because he was a kind of "Instapundit of the Left", a cool-headed moderate with an unmistakable yet muted bias in the spirit of Glenn Reynolds. (Joe Gandelman is also a good read, but is more companion than counterpoint to Instapundit.)

Jeff Jarvis could serve as Sullivan's successor, I guess, but I admit to preferring classic Sullivan.

Posted by: Sharkwatch at June 1, 2005 08:06 PM

I read Instapundit, and I definitely think there was some latent anti-gay stereotyping going on there. Glenn was probably not even aware of it. And I'm well aware that Glenn is almost as good as they come when it comes to straight people being positive towards gays.

Let's face it, the vast majority of this country, I reckon at least 85% of the population, are at minimum somewhat uncomfortable around gay people (from my experience). So it's got to be expected that there is a vast amount of gay stereotyping that goes on. How can it not, when the most common schoolyard taunt is to call someone a fag, or to say "that's so gay" when describing something in a negative manner.

I highly doubt Sullivan is offended by this. I'm not. I encounter it every day, including from friends and family. But it is latent, it's there, and Sullivan is very subtly pointing it out. What's wrong with that?

And I'm really interested in seeing any evidence that Sullivan is now anti-war. Anti-torture yes. But anti-war, no way. Since when did they become synonymous?

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 08:25 PM

Who's the one being p.c. Sharkwatch? Sullivan who's subtly pointing out there there might be some gay stereotyping going on, or you who's saying that Sullivan should never be able to point that out?

The people I hear screaming the loudest are those on the right when somebody calls them a bigot.

Let's face it - the vast amount of censorship now comes from the Right. Last time I checked, it was the right who was trying to stop any books that present gay people in a positive light from being made available in libraries.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 08:33 PM

I rarely read Sullivan, and have not done so for some time, so my comments are based solely on the comments of others.

Suppose Sullivan had said simply, "I have agreed with and still agree with most of what Bush has done. However, the issue of gay marriage is vitally important to me and I will not be voting for him". Suppose his further comments had stayed at that level - sane disagreement. No reasonable person could describe that as less than "understandable".

But from what I gather Sullivan has apparently gone way beyond that. Was there some kind of confrontation or intervention at P-town? (That's sheer speculation on my part.)

Ken Layne similarly went crazy over Zell Miller's speech at the Republican convention, calling him a racist. Maybe that was code for "traitor to the Democratic Party", but it doesn't sound partisan or give the lie to the Democrats' supposed ideal of tolerance for dissent.

Posted by: Jim C. at June 1, 2005 08:42 PM

"Gays recruit Joel? You realize that by repeating that slander, you are exposing yourself for the neo-Nazi that you are."

You do realize that in making that accusation, which has absolutely no connection with neo-Nazism, you show yourself to, in fact be, hysterical?

Posted by: Paul at June 1, 2005 08:53 PM

Hysterical Paul??? No - And if you go around saying that gays "recruit" as well - I'll gladly call you a neo-nazi, and I would hope that the vast majority of the population would back me up.

Just how exactly do they "recruit" Paul? Please tell me. I'd really like to know. I'd be even more interested in knowing who "recruited" me to become gay, because I don't recall such an incident. I was gay well before I ever met a gay person (not until college).

The slanderous implication, of course, is that "gays" recruit people via child molestation, which is a disgusting charge. It's a charge that is propagated by people such as Paul Cameron who wish to have all gays exterminated.

The Nazi comparisons are just. I can only assume you are one of them too.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 09:20 PM

Where did I voice support for the idea that gays recruit? All I pointed out was that calling such an idea "neo-Nazi" was hysterical. It also cheapens valid comparisons to neo-Nazism.

"The Nazi comparisons are just. I can only assume you are one of them too."

Hate the bastards actually. But since you're insistent on saying that it is just, why don't you back it up? Prove how such an idea makes one a neo-Nazi.

Oh, and it is poor form to go leave comment spam on my blog.

Posted by: Paul at June 1, 2005 09:30 PM

Glenn also called Ben Stein hysterical today for Stein's defense of Nixon.

Is Ben Stein gay?

Posted by: Jon Thompson at June 1, 2005 10:04 PM

Let's see Paul, how does saying that "Jewish people make matzoh out of Arab blood" make one neo-nazi as well??? I assume that's a question that you ask as well. Because it's just as rediculous in saying that only way that people become gay is because they were "recruited" by other gays, i.e. molested.

When Arabs make slander statements about the blood matzoh against Jews, they do it for one reason, to create more hatred against Jews and to dehumanize them. It's disgusting.

It's the exact same tactic when the religious right spread lies against gay people.

And the Nazi comparsions are not apt. The attitude of the religious right towards gays mirrors the attitude of the Nazis towards Jews. Here are some vivid examples:

http://www.hatecrime.org/subpages/hatespeech/hate.html

I stand by my statement about you, because you obviously endorse this hatred.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:08 PM

Jon - I think Glenn is obviously covering his tracks.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:11 PM

Care to defend this statement Paul:

"For the sake of our children and society, we must OPPOSE the spread of homosexual activity! Just as we must oppose murder, stealing, and adultery! Since homosexuals cannot reproduce, the only way for them to 'breed' is to RECRUIT! And who are their targets for recruitment? Children!" - American Family Association direct mail letter

http://www.hatecrime.org/subpages/hatespeech/afa.html

If that's not a statement that aims to demonize gay people, then I don't know what is.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:16 PM

"Let's see Paul, how does saying that "Jewish people make matzoh out of Arab blood" make one neo-nazi as well???"

In and of itself, no. It merely means that they partake of the old blood libel. It is not a belief characteristic of neo-Nazism, though some neo-Nazis may hold it.

"When Arabs make slander statements about the blood matzoh against Jews, they do it for one reason, to create more hatred against Jews and to dehumanize them. It's disgusting."

So they are anti-Semites. That doesn't mean that they are neo-Nazis.

"It's the exact same tactic when the religious right spread lies against gay people."

And I assume that it is the exact same tactic, and thus by your own standards grounds for denunciation of you as a neo-Nazi, when you characterize the entire "religious right" by the statements of a few?

"And the Nazi comparsions are not apt. The attitude of the religious right towards gays mirrors the attitude of the Nazis towards Jews. Here are some vivid examples:"

I believe you meant "are apt". As for the examples, most of them are by fringe groups/people and rejected by those who make up the "religious right"

"I stand by my statement about you, because you obviously endorse this hatred."

Really? Prove it. Where do I support this hatred?

Posted by: Paul at June 1, 2005 10:17 PM

And it's statements such as the above by the AFA that are 1000 times more offensive than use of the word "hysterical". Which is why I'll repeat my assertion that I doubt Sullivan was all that bothered by Glenn's statement. He was just make a subtle, albeit legitimate, jab at him. But statements by those such as the American Family Association are downright dangerous if not evil in their intent.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:19 PM

Paul - by defending the "recruit" slander you are supporting hatred. If you claim that you are not defending this, but just splitting hairs by saying that there is a difference between neo-nazism and those who tend to demonize and dehumanize gay people, then I think you should clarify yourself.

Is it acceptable to say that the only way people become gay is by being "recruited" by other gay people?

Yes or No?

By the way - these are not "fringe" groups. James Dobson is a frequent guest of George Bush. The American Family Association has millions of members. As does the Family Research Council. Pat Robertson and Jerry Fallwell of tens of millions of followers. Most of the people on the link below are not "fringe". They are very much the mainstream of the Republican party. And that's scary.

http://www.hatecrime.org/subpages/hatespeech/hate.html

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:24 PM

Good grief.

It is like being back at college again. This whole thread is crap. It involves a bunch of people that have no anti-gay feelings defending themselves from a "victim." I am sure there are some people posting here who would choose to discriminate against gay people, but I bet that most of us support full gay marriage rights as this thread was exploded by an instalaunch. I am one of them. I have several gay friends. If they were ever hysterical about something I would describe them as hysterical, and it would have absolutely nothing to do with them being homosexual.

Sorry downtown lad, but this whole attack of yours is perfectly described by the word hysterical. I didn't even know this was somehow anti-gay until I read this sorry thread. You are using this attack to avoid an obvious point: Sullivan lost it about a year ago in a hysterical display. Nobody has screamed Abu Ghraib! more hysterically than him. He is using it in a hysterical fassion to tar the administration. Almost every post on the WOT on his website has been a hysterical diatribe about torture torture torture paroting un-named sources the media digs up and going off hysterically about how our reputation as a country is destroyed. It was a total 180 degree turn from his earlier paradigm. In a word his transformation was seen as hysterical, a reaction to an unrelated issue that mattered a lot to him. I disagreed with the president's stand on gay marriage bitterly. It did not change my view of the WOT, Iraq, Afghanistan, Abu Ghraib, or any of the other COMPLETELY SEPERATE issues. The administration as a whole has served this country well.

Sullivan lost the argument. You are losing this one. You are both reacting hysterically. It is impossible to discuss issues honestly when you have to constantly worry about the other side hysterically calling you a homophobe or racist or bigot or nazi or mysoginist because you used a word that you had no idea had such conotations.

Hopefully you are an otherwise intellectually honest debater and I have just finished reading some of your posts on your blog. I wish you well on your 1 year out anniversary. As soon as the "greatest generation" dies off being gay wont be nearly as difficult as it is now. Hopefully those born today wont have to go through what you did.

Posted by: Collin at June 1, 2005 10:32 PM

I thought I was the only one! I, too, had my initiation to the blogosphere through AS back in early 2002. I donated. I bought the books he recommended. Participated in the reviews. I'm for gay marriage and is as liberal socially as any New Yorker. My motto is live and let live. I've learned so much from Andrew! I continued to check in religiously even after he announced he's taking a sabbatical until this fall, hoping for tidbits of insights that I used to long to read. I prayed that some R&R would bring back the AS that was my guiding light for a couple of years. But last month, I finally deleted his link from my favorites. It felt like cutting off a friend in need. I'm already totally convinced gays should be able do everything heterosexuals are allowed to do. So there's nothing else for me to learn from AS. But I do thank him for teaching me so much in such a short a time.

Posted by: peter at June 1, 2005 10:34 PM

Collin - You're just the example who proves the point.

Rather than debate with facts, you simply choose to engage in ad hominen attacks by calling me "hysterical".

Thanks for proving my point!

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:43 PM

And Collin - I guess 22 Iraqis who were killed by Americans in captivity is just being "hysterical".

Again - glad I don't have to defend this crap.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 10:45 PM

And thus, Downtown Lad's performance in this thread comes full circle by pulling a Sullivan and crying about something Iraq-related in order to distract from the fact that he has no actual argument. Congrats, chap, you've been taught well.

Posted by: PW at June 1, 2005 11:08 PM

PW - I've presented dozens of arguments. You're the one who presented none, except for claiming that 22 deaths equals zero evidence.

Care to explain those 22 deaths to the families of the victims? We have zero evidence that they were actually guilty of any crime. But oh well, they're dead because we tortured them. C'est la vie. Or should I say C'est la mort?

Like I've said - I'm glad I can think for myself and don't have to defend this crap. You can defend torture and people like Paul Cameron to your hearts content. It doesn't speak very well for your character though, now does it.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 1, 2005 11:16 PM

First point

'Rather than debate with facts, you simply choose to engage in ad hominen attacks by calling me "hysterical".'

If I described you as a hysterical person then yes, that would be ad hominem. I however described your posts, descriptions of torture, and ad hominem attacks on people using the word homophobe as hysterical. Thanks for the irony.

"Care to explain those 22 deaths to the families of the victims? We have zero evidence that they were actually guilty of any crime. But oh well, they're dead because we tortured them. C'est la vie. Or should I say C'est la mort?"

Boggle?

I guess we go in circles and talk past each other. I am not defending these 22 deaths that have no link or sourcing or verification I might add.(hard to count it as evidence as such.) It is sad that people die. Considering the fact that many of these people were captured in a war and the faint possibility that some of them were probably shot before they were captured as they were captured in a war doesn't mitigate the fact that I would rather they didn't die... to some extent... OK I actually think the world would be much better of if a lot of them died.

But as long as they are in captivity I don't think they should be beaten to death. They wont rat out their friends if they are dead and beating them serves no purpose at that point. You seem to refer to some place where nobody dies in captivity. Considering the sheer number of people we have in captivity over there some people are going to die just out of pure probability, and if the number is 22 that is amazingly low.

It seems hysterical to get our of sorts and paint the entire Iraqi operation as a wash because 22 people died in captivity. Is this not an accurate description of your posts or will you incorrectly lable this ad hominem "hystericalism" again as if you don't understand the term?

Posted by: Collin at June 1, 2005 11:46 PM

I guess I'm being "hysterical" by posting this picture:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/06/200px-AbuGhraibScandalGraner55.jpg

Or take this little story from the NY Times:
At the interrogators' behest, a guard tried to force the young man to his knees. But his legs, which had been pummeled by guards for several days, could no longer bend. An interrogator told Mr. Dilawar that he could see a doctor after they finished with him. When he was finally sent back to his cell, though, the guards were instructed only to chain the prisoner back to the ceiling.

"Leave him up," one of the guards quoted Specialist Claus as saying.

Several hours passed before an emergency room doctor finally saw Mr. Dilawar. By then he was dead, his body beginning to stiffen.

http://downtownlad.blogspot.com/2005/05/just-some-innocent-fraternity-pranks.html

Again, I'm really glad I don't have to defend this stuff.

And now you falsely accuse me (and Sullivan) of calling the entire Iraqi operation a wash. Wrong. I completely support the war on Terror (as does Sullivan). We just don't support tactics that are rightly described as criminal. We're supposed to be better than them.

Again, I can provide you all the evidence you want. But its pointless, because you'll choose to ignore it because I'm gay and I'm being "hysterical". Do you dismiss all of your gay "friends" like that too? I can only assume so.

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 2, 2005 12:16 AM

I am done with this thread. I've made my point. If you have the guts to debate a gay man, then please visit my blog.

Downtown Lad

Posted by: Downtown Lad at June 2, 2005 12:21 AM

Could anybody explain to me the appeal of the pre-2003 Sullivan? I never got it, really.

He had an interesting perspective, occasional insights into events, and he wrote well- it might not be to your taste, but I enjoyed it, for a while... but when 50% of the content was about gay marriage, and the other 50% was about how Abu Ghraib had disillusioned him about the whole 'liberation of Iraq/establishing democracy in the middle east', well, it got old fast. I already knew where Sullivan stood on gay marriage, and what he was saying about Iraq was basically the same thing the rest of the media was saying.

Why visit a site when it is not interesting or informative?

Posted by: rosignol at June 2, 2005 02:20 AM

Downtown Lad - Andrew Sullivan is prone to rhetorical hysterics. That's a simple statement of fact.

Torture and abuse of detainees is morally repugnant. That's another statement of fact.

Both things can be true. It's a complex world.

Posted by: Knemon at June 2, 2005 02:35 AM

Downtown lad. Yeah, you do really good. Show the world that everybody is homophobic, beginning with the owner of this blog and everybody else who supports gay marriage. yes! Only practicing homosexuals with HIV are allowed to talk about the subject. All of the rest are a bunch of fascist homophobes who should just drop dead and STFU. I'm all with you here.

Posted by: Pete at June 2, 2005 03:18 AM

My dog is a homophobe as evidenced by his shrieking barks at the sight of a light footed male homo-sapien.

Posted by: Kai Kaapro at June 2, 2005 12:55 PM

Downtown Lad said:

"... I definitely think there was some latent anti-gay stereotyping going on there. Glenn was probably not even aware of it.

How Stalinist Show-trialish. Now all that's left is for Glenn to sign the confession so that we can pack him and his family off to Kolyma.

That's the pernicious thing about ThoughtCrime -- since one can commit it completely unawares, the only recourse is to refrain from speaking out entirely for fear of offending and provoking an hysterical chuckle backlash.

Thus do loathesome queer hucksters like DTL and Sully attempt to proscribe debate and evade scrutiny.

Oops, I used the word "out" -- is that on the proscribed list, too? Whaddaya gonna do, DTL, hit me with your purse?

Speaking of loathesome, so is DTL's invocation of Naziism. It cheapens the Holocaust to compare the systematic extermination of helpless millions to a domestic polical debate in which the aggrieved minority has recourse to courts and state legislatures. Like I need another one, but that's reason enough never to darken his silly blog.

--furious

Posted by: furious_a at June 2, 2005 04:04 PM

Downtown Lad,

I think you make logical leaps and use inflammatory statements as rhetorical devices to shout down debate.

The above statement is Neo-Nazi code for calling you hysterical. But I mean that as in hysterically funny, as well as hysterical in an emotional sense.

You can call me a racist, homophobic, sadistic, misoginistic, neo-nazi, who is this centuries equivalent of a gulag warden. I welcome your rape of the english language, as it shows you for what you are, as well as renders useless words which used to mean something about 20 years ago.

I do not fear reasoned debate with any man, the worst that can happen is that I learn something.
I fear I have no time to partake in a discourse with you though, as you have demonstrated a lack of ability to comprehend the written word, either intentionally or through lack of education. I suspect the former.


Have a Nice Day.

Posted by: Joel Mackey at June 2, 2005 04:12 PM

Wow. Debating gay men is tough. So are the straw men they put up as "evidence."

"I am done with this thread. I've made my point. If you have the guts to debate a gay man, then please visit my blog."

This is so juvenile. Can I describe your actions as such? Or are there conotations of being child-like and taking your ball home after losing that make me a homophobe?

For the love of pete...

Posted by: Collin at June 2, 2005 09:09 PM

I think there is some latent paranoid schitzophrenia going on with Downtown Lad that he isn't even aware of that clearly explains why he finds homophobes everywhere he looks.

What? What?

Posted by: Sharkwatch at June 4, 2005 09:53 PM