Off on One

Warning: I’m really annoyed. This post is probably unfit for children and, well, most adults.

This article in the Washington Post is making my blood boil. First of all, it’s reporting that the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services, has ordered the words gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender be removed from the title of a talk about preventing suicide in the GLBT community—an important issue, as gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered people are two to three times as likely to kill themselves than average.

This is totally fucking infuriating, for what I assume are obvious reasons (you know, bigotry-driven censorship, that kind of thing), and Pam and BlondeSense have excellent coverage, which I highly recommend.

Now here’s the other thing that has me going apeshit. The WaPo article opens with this:
A federal agency's efforts to remove the words "gay," "lesbian," "bisexual" and "transgender" from the program of a federally funded conference on suicide prevention have inspired scores of experts in mental health to flood the agency with angry e-mails.

"It is incredible, the venom from these people," said Mark Weber, a spokesman for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the agency within the Department of Health and Human Services that is funding the conference and told presenters they should remove the words from the title of a talk.

"My boss is being called a Nazi," Weber said, referring to SAMHSA Administrator Charles G. Curie, whom President Bush appointed in 2001 to run the $3.2 billion agency.
WHAT THE FUCK? You’ve got to be fucking kidding me! A conference that is geared toward preventing suicides in a community is being required to omit the four words that describe what the conference is about—you know, the words that will actually inform GLBT community members who might be at risk for suicide that there’s help to be found—because the administration doesn’t like those words (read: doesn’t like those people) and issues a thinly veiled threat to withhold their funding if they don’t comply with the change. But that isn’t the main point of the story. No. The main point is that these fucking assholes who clearly don’t give a shit whether every single member of the GLBT community offs themselves are being persecuted. The federally-funded bigots are getting angry emails, and that’s the motherfucking lead of the story. Unbelievable. Not to mention that fuckwits like Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh go around calling liberals traitors and jihadists and all kinds of fucked-up shit every day of the fucking week, and I don’t see that making headlines in the tossing WaPo.

You know what the headline of this piece of shit article is? “Request to Edit Title of Talk On Gays, Suicide Stirs Ire.” Subhead: “HHS Is Being Accused of Marginalization.”

How about “Request to Edit Title of Talk On Gays, Suicide Indicative of Continuing Attacks on GLBT Community by Administration.” Subhead: “HHS Is Practicing Bigotry.”

How about “Request to Edit Title of Talk on Gays, Suicide Risks Increasing Suicides Due to Misinformation.” Subhead: “HHS Not Concerned About Health of Gays”

How about “Request to Edit Title of Talk on Gays, Suicide Intolerably Prejudiced.” Subhead: “Blogger Goes Berserk.”

It’s complete bullshit that this story was framed so as to make the administration the victim of intolerance, right from the fucking headline. If only those gays weren’t so touchy, this wouldn’t even be a story. It’s the ire that makes the headline; not the underlying bigotry that induced it. By the time you get through reading about the ire, the incredible venom, and the fascist prick getting (apparently somehow unfairly) called a Nazi, does it even matter what people are mad about, or is the important thing that they’re clearly being unfair to the poor old Bush administration, who was only trying to whitewash any reference to gays out of a talk designed to possibly help save their lives? Do the calm and reasonable representatives of the conference have any chance to be heard fairly after the introduction identifying those who object as “venomous”?

Fucking WaPo wankers.

Let’s face it—these assholes deserve angry emails from mental health experts, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered people, and anyone with a goddamn brain. It’s such a ridiculous situation that how angry people are in response to it is so not the story. The story is that this is another example of the Bush administration’s attacks on the GLBT community, another example of their strong-arming a group that doesn’t bend to their agenda, another bloody example of craven ideological posturing in pursuit of a radical social agenda that seeks to disenfranchise anyone who isn’t straight, white, and rich.

And if all that isn’t enough, this paragraph slips in with nary the written equivalent of a raised eyebrow from the author:
The title rewrite was one of several requested changes. Another was to add a session on faith-based suicide prevention, said Weber, who said he believes the brouhaha is all a misunderstanding.
A session on faith-based suicide prevention for the GLBT community?! Is this administration on fucking crack?! Yeah, I can imagine that a person who’s heard his or her whole life that the Bible says they’re going to hell is really going to warm to getting a faith-based solution shoved down their fucking throats. It’s not like being told you’re hellbound because of who you choose to love might possibly be a contributing factor to the increased suicide rates in the GLBT community or anything. But the wisdom of this is not questioned; instead the sentence is completed with administration reassurances that it’s all a misunderstanding.

Yeah, it’s a misunderstanding all right—the same “misunderstanding” that plagues every objective, policy, and maneuver of this cold-hearted administration: that they are the only people who fucking matter in this country. That everyone else is expendable, and everyone else’s wants and needs and lives places a distant second to the advancement of their horseshit agenda.

And it’s a “misunderstanding” on the part of the Washington Post, who have forgotten that their role is to truthfully inform, and thereby protect, the public, not twist stories until the perpetrator of hate and political opportunism has become the victim.

“Objectively” reported news, slanted so as to favor the administration and discredit those who have legitimate complaint with the issue being reported, is propaganda, pure and simple. And the more stories we read like this, where we don’t call it for the crap that it is, the more they get away with.

And a final note to the Bushies: You really ought to do everything you can to prevent suicide in the GLBT community. Otherwise, who will you have to pick on in ’08? Ya pricks.

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