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Light Blogging, “Voodoo” and the GOP

Although I love words, lately, I have been reluctant to use them, at least not in writing, so I expect blogging to be light for a few days. Perhaps this is because I have been up to my ears in reading (and writing) for class; I have also been busy with other obligations.

When I have had a moment to spare, I have been more introspective than expressive (so to speak). Perhaps some of my ideas will find their way into future posts. Class reading has also kept me thinking. One or our assigned books, Maya Deren’s, Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti , has helped open my eyes to a religion which I had once thought was little more than witchcraft, concerned largely with zombies and kewpie dolls — the focus of ridicule and horror movies.

As I learn that what we call “voodoo” is far more than a cult, I wonder at many things we misunderstand. In reading just a few pages of Deren’s book, we learn how the Voudoun religion developed when European colonists brought West Africans to Caribbean islands as slaves. Those enslaved people developed a new religion, mixing elements of their African spiritual heritage with the Christian tradition of their masters. A rich faith, as complex and nuanced as Christianity, Judaism or even the ancient Greek religion, resulted.

When I compare what the Voudoun religion really is to what I had thought just a month ago, I wonder if many on the Left see the GOP as I once saw (what most people call) “voodoo.” They define it not by what it is, but what others have portrayed it to be. We have, alas, learned about voodoo from those who wish to dismiss it as sorcery and witchcraft. Just as all too often, those on the left dismiss the GOP as a reactionary force. Both are wrong.

Much as I have come to appreciate the richness of the Voudoun tradition, I dare say I will not convert to this fascinating faith. By the same token, I would hope that those on the left would learn to appreciate the GOP for what it is — and not the caricature that its enemies have presented.

-Dan (AKA GayPatriotWest): GayPatriotWest@aol.com

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41 Comments

  1. When I compare what the Voudoun religion really is to what I had thought just a month ago, I wonder if many on the Left see the GOP as I once saw (what most people call) “voodoo.” They define it not by what it is, but what others have portrayed it to be.
    ===============================
    The GOP is not some rare, unusual commodity that people reference but do not know. It is an active malevolent force that many peopl have intimate knowledge of.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 15, 2005 @ 8:15 pm - November 15, 2005

  2. And you, Chandler, have just proven my point.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 15, 2005 @ 9:35 pm - November 15, 2005

  3. It proves that you choose to wear the blinders you have.
    And that is your point.

    Oh, forgive me, I was supposed to feel sorry for you again.

    So nice, so misunderstood.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 15, 2005 @ 11:08 pm - November 15, 2005

  4. And here I thought Voodoo was Reagan’s economic policy. At least, according to Bush the senior.

    Comment by Patrick (Gryph) — November 16, 2005 @ 12:23 am - November 16, 2005

  5. It was Trickle Down Economics.
    What they didn’t tell ya was that it was poverty trickling down.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 12:52 am - November 16, 2005

  6. Chandler, it’s unfortunate that, for all the time you spend on this blog, you haven’t arrived yet at the point of respecting our ideas.

    It’s one thing to disagree with us and offer a different view as Patrick (Gryph) often has, it’s quite another to call our party an “active malevolent force.” While I don’t think Democrats are “actively malevolent” (as you might put it), I disagree with their policies — which, for now, primarily amounts to disagreeing with rabid hatred of the president of the United States.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 16, 2005 @ 1:38 am - November 16, 2005

  7. I see a party that puts political operatives in the FDA to have politics override science.
    I see a party that puts political operatives in the EPA to have politics override science.
    I see a party that puts political operatives in FCC to have politics override economics and social norms.
    I see a party that has lost control of spending and is now reducing domestic social programs that were hard won and now sacrificed due to their poor management so that they get to defund the hated social programs under the guise of controlling spending.
    I see a party so intertwined with policy and fundraising that the government seems not to be run for citizens but for donors.
    The way I see it, that’s malevolent.

    Also, you keep mentioning all the time I spend here as if I might take the hint and leave. I, however, see myself here as an ongoing minority position. Without us, you would be surrounded by a bunch of bobble heads. Plus, your site hits would decrease. In a way, you need us.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 4:16 am - November 16, 2005

  8. Wow! From the man who caricatures the left over and over again! Wow.

    Comment by Joey — November 16, 2005 @ 5:36 am - November 16, 2005

  9. Check it out. Looks like Rick Santorum was onto something. Massachusetts legislature moving to soften bestiality law.

    http://www.weeklydig.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/article.view/issueID/29b91cce-ad93-4f50-8d61-19e8d1ff6f05/articleID/0a92192c-bbc2-4b91-a809-fe976ce265de/nodeID/4b1339d1-be3a-44a2-be8b-1484963a003a

    Comment by V the K — November 16, 2005 @ 5:56 am - November 16, 2005

  10. Chandler in #7, you look only at the flaws of our party. Should I describe the Democratic party only by looking at Barbara Boxer, Al Sharpton and the screams of Howard Dean?

    Oh, but your party did elect that man with no plan, but much vitriol as its chairman.

    Yes, my party has its flaws, but it also offer sound policies of a great variety of issues — some of which, alas, our president has neglected.

    Thanks for your comments, Chandler, because merely by chiming in, you prove many of my points about our critics.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 16, 2005 @ 12:45 pm - November 16, 2005

  11. Ok, Dan, if this is a gay patriot blog, tell me what great accomplishments have been made by conservatives, or your party, to make your lives better for being gay patriots. Do tell of all the great things that have been done for you as gay patriots that I am overlooking. Tell me only the positive because, as you have said, I only dwell on the negs.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 3:55 pm - November 16, 2005

  12. Let’s see, a brutal anti-gay regime in Afghanistan was overthrown. Iraq has a democracy. Tax cuts have stimulated the economy bringing us out of the recession the president inherited from Clinton and lack of regulation of pharmaceutical industries has led to treatments for AIDS.

    Private companies continue to lead the way in offering domestic partnership benefits. . . . And then, there’s a little thing called the fall of Communism. Gay people are freer now in eastern and central Europe than ever before. Thank you, Ronald Reagan!

    And I’ve hardly had time to think, being busy today. So look what I come up with on the fly. Imagine what else I could add if I had a moment!

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 16, 2005 @ 4:25 pm - November 16, 2005

  13. #12

    Say Chandler, what great things did your lord BJ do for us?

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — November 16, 2005 @ 4:31 pm - November 16, 2005

  14. #12 — You took the points right out of my mouth. I’d add that conservatives defend my second amendment right to defend myself and my family. Conservatives stood up to terrorists instead of appeasing them, making me and my family safer. Conservatives have also had some success in rolling back the predations of eco-Nazis and trial lawyers, both of whom would gladly take money out of my pocket to further their own wealth and self-satisfaction.

    Now, let’s look at the other side of the coin. What have liberals done for me? Well, with their help, the greedy teachers unions take my tax dollars, but oppose my freedom of school choice. Liberals fought against social security reform, thus ensuring that I’ll spend the rest of my working life shoveling 12.6% of my income into a system that will go bankrupt before I reach retirement age. Liberals have eroded my right to express my religious faith publicly. Liberals pushed through campaign finance reform, thus limiting my free speech rights. Meanwhile, sixties-era liberal entitlements pile onto the national debt, creating a crushing burden my kids will have to bear (albeit with considerable help from moderates and “conservatives.”)

    Comment by V the K — November 16, 2005 @ 5:17 pm - November 16, 2005

  15. You are cheating, boys. Those are things that help ALL citizens; the rising tides lift all boats theory. What I want are positive statements that are due to conservatives or Republicans that make your lives better as GAY patriots.

    As for BJ, the list of inclusive GLBT accomplishments are numerous.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 6:05 pm - November 16, 2005

  16. I don’t think it’s cheating, is it? If a person believes that certain policies are good and right and lifts all boats then it’s legitimate to think that more good is done for your little sail boat by people who promote those policies than is done by people attempting to lift one boat at a time.

    Or something like that. 🙂

    I know that I’m not impressed by the advocates of women’s issues, usually, because their solutions are things that I don’t think will actually help me. Not in the long run. I’m not all that excited about Republicans either, but certainly Libertarians don’t push women’s issues. I still think that some movement toward libertarian principles is a good thing for everyone.

    Comment by Synova — November 16, 2005 @ 6:19 pm - November 16, 2005

  17. Actually, I think of myself as an American first.

    I’ve recently come to the conclusion that the main difference between left and right is that leftists base their politics on their own self-interests, whereas those on the right think of politics in terms of what’s best for society as a whole.

    I think Andrew Sullivan is the best example. When his self-interest (gay marriage) became the most important political agenda, he abandoned his previous moderation and became, basically, the exact sort of deranged left-winger he had previously criticized.

    Comment by V the K — November 16, 2005 @ 6:28 pm - November 16, 2005

  18. Then synova and VtheK, I suggest that this blog rename itseld Just Another Group of Conservative Patriots. The gay part is meaningless.

    Or there is another possibility.

    If the like minded members of this august blog are not really gay but are men that have sex with men and the rest of their lives is in no relation to a “gay’ community, then rename thid blog Homosexual Patriot.

    Then I can understand that you have no ties to a “gay” community and simply want to be left alone to have homosex.

    That may be the grand conclusion I have made after reading so many posts here.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 6:59 pm - November 16, 2005

  19. Chandler, the simple answer to your comment in #15–in fighting for freedom. The less regulations on a corporation, the better it can offer benefits to its employees, including domestic partnership benefits.

    And like V in #17, I too think of myself as an American first. And GCB, it’s obvious now that you selectively read our blog as I have already identified (some of) my party’s accomplishments above (#12).

    Chandler, your comment in #20 is just plain silly. You know very well that I devote nearly two weeks of my summer volunteering for Outfest, a prominent institution in our community. Not to mention the time spent in planning for the fest. So, you know that I at least have ties to the community.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 16, 2005 @ 7:55 pm - November 16, 2005

  20. #18 — So, GCW, let me ask you, then. What right does the legislature have to criminalize what one does with one’s dog in the privacy of one’s own bedroom?

    Comment by V the K — November 16, 2005 @ 8:01 pm - November 16, 2005

  21. #20 I think that you’re offering false choices.

    Take the disconnect in the push for racial equality… on one hand we folks of Scandinavian decent (and other pale people) are told that everyone is equal, and on the other hand we’re told (not so much anymore but a few years ago, certainly) that black people are essentially different than white people… we can’t possibly understand what it’s like to be black so don’t even try.

    Gay rights, it seems to me, is saying “don’t marginalize us” and “we deserve the same rights as everyone” but then you seem to be saying “Gay people are different and need to separate themselves.” Not in so many words, I suppose, but by insisting that people point out efforts to specifically raise that little gay sail boat or else forget the gay part does seem to at least encourage the idea of being separate. When the goal is to *not* be separate but to be integrated, this really doesn’t make sense. Integration doesn’t mean losing our distinctions, but it does mean that those distinctions shouldn’t be allowed to separate us.

    I’ve explained this really poorly. 🙁

    Comment by Synova — November 16, 2005 @ 8:33 pm - November 16, 2005

  22. #21
    Dan,
    Granted, but plenty of the posters here are red staters that have no such thing as a gay community and are at a loss for a connection to something thaat doesn’t exist for them. There are blue staters that choose not to afiliate. It is for clarification that I said the term GAY is meaningless to some.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 10:43 pm - November 16, 2005

  23. And I repeat:

    What I want are positive statements that are due to conservatives or Republicans that make your lives better as GAY patriots not just American Patriots.

    What initiatives are gay positive?

    Health, education, welfare, any conservative agenda item that inproves your lives as GAY patriots.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 16, 2005 @ 10:58 pm - November 16, 2005

  24. Chandler, what a Democrat, you are. Your party asks for investigations and then discounts their results and keeps asking for investigations, not satisfied until they get the results they want. And you keep demanding that we address an issue that we have long since addressed.

    We have addressed your issues.

    But, let me repeat one thing similar to a comment V the K made earlier; most of us gay Republicans are Americans first. And what we see as good for America is good for gay America. This president led the effort to overthrow one of the most anti-gay (and anti-women) regimes on the planet. That America is more secure today than it was when the president took office makes my life better as a gay patriot.

    And there’s more.

    The GOP supports (or at least claims to support) the free market. Thanks to the free market, our pharmaceutical companies take risks and undertake research that doesn’t often promise results. Their research into treatments for AIDS has been quite successful and they have developed medications which treat the virus. Taking such medications — developed by private enterprise — many gay men afflicted with this virus are healthy and alive today.

    I happen to think that’s a good thing.

    I don’t support most of the issues on the agenda of HRC or NGLTF, issues which Log Cabin has basically “copy-catted” from them without wondering if they are consistent with the small-government philosophy of the GOP.

    My primary issue is freedom. And most of my concerns have little to do with my sexual orientation. As do most Republicans.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 17, 2005 @ 2:34 am - November 17, 2005

  25. This blog is ABOUT sexual orientation or it would be called Generic Patriot. You and Bruce use the title GAY Patriot. As both of you cling to the conservative agenda of the Republican Party I merely want any positive effect your party and your conservative agenda has had on GAY PEOPLE. You take refuge in the “this has done good for all Americans” argument and I have no quibble with the general good that may be credited to some parts of the curent administration BUT what makes this blog a proud GAY blog because of the policies of the conservative Republican agenda for Gay people? I am waiting for the gay reasons that the Gay Patriots are happy with their conservative choices.

    I do not consider the free market the exclusive arena of Republicans.
    And don’t tell me what you don’t support. I am looking for the positive reasons for a gay person to be a GAY conservative Patriot.

    Waiting.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 17, 2005 @ 4:15 am - November 17, 2005

  26. It’s a difference in philosophy, really. Some people want to live in a gay ghetto where everything exists to create a gay comfort zone. Some people feel more comfortable in a more diverse mainstream environment.

    Also, philosophically, some people think the gay community is better off if both political parties support policies that are good for people of gay. They choose to work within the less overtly gay-friendly party to try to make that happen. Other people align themselves with the party that gives more lip service to the gay agenda, and declare themselves bitter enemies of the other party.

    I don’t really fit into either camp, but that’s how I see it.

    Comment by V the K — November 17, 2005 @ 5:37 am - November 17, 2005

  27. some people think the gay community is better off if both political parties support policies that are good for people of gay.
    ================
    VtheK,
    That is true. But what are those policies that are supported by both political parties that are good for “people of gay”? I know of many initiatives that are supported by individuals on both sides, and I know of many issues supported by us liberals, but then I am still waiting for anyone to tell me of a positive gay issue that has been pushed by the Republican party and their conservative agenda. I do not doubt that the Republican Party is better for having gay people in it but I have yet to understand the benefits a person derives from being a gay conservative in the Republican Party.

    And irrespective of one’s environment, gay ghetto or gay out of a ghetto, I need to know the good things the conservative Republican Party has done to inprove the quality of life for GAY Patriots.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 17, 2005 @ 12:17 pm - November 17, 2005

  28. I don’t belong to a political party. I see my personal contentment as a personal responsibility, not one tied to any specific political agenda. This opens me up to taking a broader policy perspective, i.e., “what’s best for everybody?”

    Comment by V the K — November 17, 2005 @ 12:32 pm - November 17, 2005

  29. Chandler, #27, this blog belongs to Bruce and me. Not to you. It is about what we want it to be about. We have blogged on gay issues, on conservative issues, on social issues and on cinema issues. You obviously seem to enjoy our blog since you spend so much time here.

    Given such interest and our growing number of daily hits, we’ll keep up with our diverse array of posts.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 17, 2005 @ 1:07 pm - November 17, 2005

  30. Does this concept that discussion on this forum should be limited to topics that relate directly to the gay community apply to both sides? Because it seems like the lefties on the board spend an awful lot of time bashing Bush on issues that have nothing to do with the gay community, like the war.

    Comment by V the K — November 17, 2005 @ 3:24 pm - November 17, 2005

  31. Chandler, #27, this blog belongs to Bruce and me. Not to you. It is about what we want it to be about.
    ================================
    Dan,
    You keep reiterating the obvious.

    It is just that I have a difficult time understanding why a blog entitled Gay Patriot could make such a big deal about being Gay and conservative when all I am asking is for some information that verifies the validity of the title.

    If this blog is about what you say it is, then there must be some positive reason for the Gay part to be important. Otherwise it is baseless. However, if you could give me, which hasn’t happened up to this time, examples of why someone should be both a conservative Republican and Gay because of the positive effects the conservative Republican agenda has on me as a gay person, I will most certainly reconsider.

    And Dan, stay away from the tantrums.
    Gay Republicans make bad drama queens.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 17, 2005 @ 6:07 pm - November 17, 2005

  32. Bob,
    Aside from waiting for examples of positive gay effects the conservative Republicans have made for us, I have been thinking that there needs to be a paradigm shift. I think is has to do with nomenclature.

    Just as there are Jews who would rather be called Jewish, I think that there should be a category for kinda like, kinda not like gays who should be rightly labled Gayish. If this were Gayish Patriot, I would have no qualms withe the inherent cognitive dissonance.

    So many of the contributors here are appalled by the Gay agenda that calling them Gayish seems perfectly understandable.

    Gayish Patriots

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 17, 2005 @ 9:27 pm - November 17, 2005

  33. Just as there are Jews who would rather be called Jewish, I think that there should be a category for kinda like, kinda not like gays who should be rightly labled Gayish

    So “Jewish” is just Jew Lite? That’s insulting.

    It’s also stupid. Swedes who refer to themselves as Swedish are “kinda like, kinda not” Swedes.

    Comment by John — November 18, 2005 @ 1:02 am - November 18, 2005

  34. Joe,
    You nailed it.
    There has to be an expansion of the word Gay just like the examples you gave.

    Thank you.

    Are you Gay or Gayish?

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 18, 2005 @ 1:14 am - November 18, 2005

  35. oops, John……

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 18, 2005 @ 1:14 am - November 18, 2005

  36. Not sure what to make of our critics here. They seem to believe gay conservatives don’t identify as gay.

    Hmmm.. . .

    I will be shortly attending a meeting of Hollywood conservatives and will once again identify myself as a gay man as I have at all such gatherings. And only the straight guys seem to care, being grateful that a guy as handsome as myself won’t be any competition for the single women there.

    Comment by Dan (AKA GayPatriotWest) — November 18, 2005 @ 2:53 am - November 18, 2005

  37. Actually, what the gay Democrats want is examples of pandering. You simply have to understand their values system.

    For example, they excuse DOMA and DADT because Clinton showed up to an HRC dinner. They excuse antigay state constitutional amendments because John Kerry said gays are born gay.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — November 19, 2005 @ 12:14 pm - November 19, 2005

  38. No, thirty, I just want examples of pro active issues supported by conservatives and the Republican party. I wonder why people would support groups that do not support them.

    Simply that.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 20, 2005 @ 3:31 am - November 20, 2005

  39. If you present yourself as a conservative Wiccan Pro-Bush New Age Warlock in Hollywood nobody would bat an eye. You see, it’s about other peoples inclusion and commitment to diversity and not about you. Sorry Westie.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 20, 2005 @ 3:35 am - November 20, 2005

  40. Hmm, so, I never said it was just about me. I have no clue what you’re trying to say in #39. Your second sentence seems to ignore the playfulness in my comment #37.

    Just another sign of our critics failing to see humor.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 20, 2005 @ 5:00 am - November 20, 2005

  41. #39
    And you seem to ignore the playfulness in my comments.

    Not a surprise.

    Comment by chandler in hollywood — November 20, 2005 @ 11:31 am - November 20, 2005

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