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September 26, 2004

The Sunday Papers, and other thoughts...

TODAY'S Washington Post--under the rubric "Young and Gay in Real America"--has a lengthy profile of Michael, a 17 year old gay teenager struggling to be true to his identity while growing up in the hostile surround of Oklahoma. It's a smart, sensitive piece--and ought to be forcefed to all those who don't understand the depth of gay anger at being scapegoated and turned into a political football by the Bush-Rove Republicans. Credit Anne Hull for the first-rate work....The homophobic electoral campaign by the American Taliban of the Christian Right--whom Karl Rove has moblized so effectively as his shock troops through the anti-gay Federal Marriage Amendment--is laid out in a chilling Associated Press dispatch this morning.

The problem of coping with a conservative environment when you're gay is, of course, hardly confined to the American heartland. Deutsche Welle 's English service yesterday ran a piece on "Being "Gay and Turkish in Germany" that describes a new billboard campaign to raise the awareness of the Berlin Turkish community about its gay children. The WashPost and Deutsche Welle pieces show that Michael in Oklahoma and Salim in Berlin have a great deal in common...

Carlos Fuentes, the Mexican novelist and diplomat, speaks to the American people in an acid Los Angels Times Op Ed piece entitled, "You Scare Us." Fuentes levels a judgement without appeal agaist the Bush White House:

"What is alarming about the Bush administration is its formal denunciation of the basic rules of international intercourse. With us or against us, President Bush declares starkly and simplistically. The U.S. acts according to its own interests, 'not those of an illusory international community,' asserts national security advisor Condoleezza Rice. Is it strange that many Latin Americans should see in these statements an aggressive denial of the only leverage we have in dealing with Washington: the rule of law, the balance obtained through diplomatic negotiation?" To read Fuentes' article, click here....

That there is another approach to fighting terrorism other than the Bush method that has so frightened Latin America is laid out in a sharp, long Charles Sennott piece in today's Boston Globe headlined, "Europe's Terror Fight Quiet, Unrelenting." The piece quotes a top Spanish anti-terrorist expert, Gustavo de Artuegui:

"For America to keep using the phrase 'war on terror' reflects a deep misunderstanding of the threat we face," said Aristegui, who has held postings in the Middle East and whose father, also a diplomat, was killed in Lebanon by Syrian shelling during the civil war.

"Calling what we face a 'war on terror,' " he added, "is a semantic trap that legitimizes a criminal element as a group worthy of being called an enemy in a conventional sense, and worthy of being a force with which we can engage in war. We need to have language that reflects the reality, and the reality is we need to close the faucet of good guys going into the pool of bad guys." Make sure you read the whole piece...

The New York Daily News explains why Bush has an 11 point lead in Ohio (according to the latest University of Cincinnati Ohio poll) in a good piece of reporting. Listen to the voices from the heartland in today's News piece if you want to know why Kerry is probably doomed....

TIME today has a photo essay, Parody as Protest, on the wonderful agit-prop street theater group Billionaires for Bush. These creative folks have gotten so much publicity for their biting antics they're probably more effective than a hundred Kerry TV spots--and the B's for B did it all on a budget of just $13,000....

Blogger A Tiny Revolution picked up my piece on Bill Gertz's dreadful new book of fiction masquerading as fact, "Treachery," and added some comments of his own that are spot on...

Posted by Direland at 07:27 AM | Permalink

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