The Black Rod

The origin of the Usher of the Black Rod goes back to early fourteenth century England . Today, with no royal duties to perform, the Usher knocks on the doors of the House of Commons with the Black Rod at the start of Parliament to summon the members. The rod is a symbol for the authority of debate in the upper house. We of The Black Rod have adopted the symbol to knock some sense and the right questions into the heads of Legislators, pundits, and other opinion makers.

Name:
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

We are citizen journalists in Winnipeg. When not breaking exclusive stories, we analyze news coverage by the mainstream media and highlight bias, ignorance, incompetence, flawed logic, missed angles and, where warranted, good work. We serve as the only overall news monitors in the province of Manitoba. We do the same with politicians (who require even more monitoring.) EMAIL: black_rod_usher@yahoo.com

Monday, September 28, 2009

The. Most. Controversial. Black Rod. Ever.

For the first time ever, we need to issue a content warning. If you are easily upset by obscenity or descriptions of explicit sex acts, don't read on.

The witchhunt has started.

The first to be dragged to the stake is Stuart Murray, the newly announced Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. His crime? He's not pure enough for the homosexual lobby.

Detractors of the CMHR said from the beginning it was going to be a publicly funded tool to promote left-wing feminist/homosexual social engineering. Not so, insisted the museum's backers.

When reporting to the federal Heritage minister in 2008, Arni Thorsteinson, then-chairman of the federal advisory committee on the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, wrote: (All emphasis herein is ours)

“There was a concern among respondents in the web-based consultations and focus groups testing that the CMHR could be influenced by political activities, or special interest groups in a manner that could affect, or be perceived to affect, the integrity and balance of its exhibitions and programs.”

“The Board will need to not only ensure that it remains autonomous and free from influence, but also to be seen to be autonomous and free from influence.”

Well, here's the real-life litmus test on interference by special interest groups, and the response from the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is----dead silence.

The refusal to defend Stu Murray tells all you need to know about the influence certain special interests have with the board.

In January, Helen Kennedy, executive director the homosexual lobby group Egale Canada, sent an open letter to Patrick O'Reilly, Chief Operating Officer of the CMHR, which began:

Dear Mr. Patrick O’Reilly,
As one of the initial supporters of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights...Egale Canada is gravely concerned about the stark omission of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans (LGBT) and our allies’ history, achievements, and voices on your website and fact sheets and in your newsletters and other publications.

Obviously they didn't get the response they wanted. So when the appointment of Stu Murray was announced by the federal government, Egale decided to flex its muscle. They want Murray to crawl. And they're sending a message to Riley, Thorsteinson, Gail Asper and Stephen Harper---we call the shots, policy or no policy.

Already the museum executive has begun to kowtow to the homosexual lobby, as we'll explain later. In the meantime, they're leaving it to their surrogates like former Liberal MP John Harvard and former NDP attorney general Roland Penner to attack Murray, and anyone who comes out in support of him, in the editorial pages of the Winnipeg Free Press.

The attack on Murray appears to centre on his vote as leader of the Progressive Conservative Party in Manitoba against extending adoption rights to same-sex couples.

Since it's obvious you'll never see the other side of the argument in the CMHR or, we bet, in the Winnipeg Free Press (although we grant them permission to reprint this article in full) we decided to research it ourselves.

Proponents of the legislation said it was a natural extension of laws against discrimination based on sexual orientation, the newspeak term for, as former NDP cabinet minister Sidney Green put it in his own editorial page article, sexual gratification.

The Gay Report, published in 1979, was an 881 page compendium of pre-AIDS lesbian and gay male sexual attitudes and practices. 5,400 lesbians and gay men filled out a 16-page questionaire making it one of the largest surveys ever conducted of homosexual sex practices.

Among its findings:

99% engaged in oral sex;
91% had anal intercourse;
83% engaged in rimming; (licking the anus)
22% had done fisting;
23% admitted to participating in golden showers (peeing on another or being peed on);
76% admitted to public or group sex;
73% admitted having sex with boys (nineteen years old or younger)]
38% had partaken of sadomasochistic practices at least once
4% admitted to eating feces.
35% admitted to having had 100 or more different sexual partners

Debunking the Gay Report has become almost a cottage industry on the internet. Among the valid criticisms is that it was a survey similar to those that appear in magazines, and not a scientific poll; only about 1 percent of the surveys that were distributed were returned; and the bulk of respondents came from readers of Blueboy, a gay softporn magazine, which likely skewed the results towards the more extreme sex practices.

Since the AIDS epidemic, sex surveys of homosexuals have become commonplace among AIDS researchers.

There was a research study conducted between 2004 and 2007 by a team from the University of Windsor and the AIDS Committee of Toronto (ACT).

In one survey, data was collected from 922 "randomly recruited men" during Toronto Pride 2005. They completed a 73-item questionnaire about their sexual behavior and sexual activites in the previous six months.

54.7 percent reported having sex with a regular partner
26 percent said they were monogamous with their partner, although that's a flexible term because...
62 percent reported having a casual male partner and "significant numbers" of men reported having sex with casual and regular partners.
13.9 percent said they had sex without condoms (participating in the bareback scene)

"They reported having UAI (unprotected anal intercourse...ed) both with and without coming. BB men were significantly overrepresented in a specific set of social venues and they were more likely to have: (1) been sexually adventurous (e.g. fisting, SM, "party and play,"etc); (2) had five or more sexual partners in the previous six months."

Researchers conducted a separate survey of 34 men who reported having unprotected sex most or all of the time. The findings were hair-raising.

"SERO-SORTING
The men expressed concern about HIV transmission, despite their sexual practices. To manage their HIV many tried to sero-sort by dropping or looking for hints and cues, without directly asking about or disclosing HIV status. This was primarily because raising the topic of HIV status (positive or negative) with a potential sexual partner provoked strong feelings of anxiety, and caused concern about receiving a hostile response and possibly derailing an opportunity to have sex. This was especially the case for the HIV-positive men."


"HIV-positive men tended to presume that when a sexual partner did not bring up sero-status or did not introduce a condom, he was implying consent because he was HIV-positive or he accepted the risk being taken. These presumptions were especially attributed to quick-sex settings, such as baths, where a partner’s HIV status was often inferred based on his willingness to go along with unprotected sex. Men in the bareback circuit tended to share these presumptions."

"HIV-negative men were more likely to presume that when a sexual partner did not bring up sero-status or introduce a condom, he was HIV-negative."


"The men were also asked about the 1998 Supreme Court of Canada ruling in the Cuerrier case that stated people living with HIV have an obligation to disclose their sero-status to sexual partners..."

"Most felt that disclosure could be indirect, situational, or qualified and were concerned about the legal complications that could arise from ambiguous and subjective definitions of disclosure, and whether disclosure could actually heighten one’s vulnerability to legal problems. Some men rejected the obligation of HIV-positive people to disclose, on the grounds that sex is a shared responsibility in which both partners should take selfprotective measures. This latter perspective has been promoted by many AIDS service organizations (ASOs) for several decades and was also found to be consistent with the ideology of men in the bareback circuit."

The Ontario Men’s Survey in 2004 was a community project funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and GlaxoSmithKline Positive Action Program.

"AIDS service organizations and the people who organize and run community groups helped formulate the questions; gay dances, bars and bathhouses provided places where men could answer them. The goal was to find 5,000 men who would complete the questionnaire. That goal was met and surpassed" (with 5,080 men participating). Almost half (2428) of the participants were from Toronto.

SEXUAL ACTIVITIES WITH CASUAL MALE PARTNER(S) IN PAST 3 MONTHS
%
Deep kissing 77.8
Jerking off 77.6
Rimming 40.3
Sucking - condom 17.0
Sucking - no condom 80.3
Getting sucked - condom 14.4
Getting sucked - no condom 73.2
Fucking - condom 46.5
Fucking - no condom 21.0
Getting fucked - condom 34.5
Getting fucked - no condom 16.0

Number of casual sex partners in the
past 3 months
one 18%
2-4 46%
5-9 16%
10 or more 20%
Potentially risky activities with casual sex
partners without condoms
fucking 21%
getting fucked 16%

"The question: “In the past three months, when you have had sex with male casual partners, how often have you told each other of your HIV status?”
The answer: Not that often. Here’s how it breaks down:"
always disclosed status: 25%
sometimes disclosed status: 30%
never disclosed status: 45%

The ARGUS study was a 2005 Montreal gay sex survey conducted under the Canada, Quebec, and Montreal public health departments in which 1957 men filled out a self-administered questionnaire about their sex behaviours in the previous six months.

Among its findings:

9.2 percent practised fisting (defined as inserting all the fingers, a fist, or a forearm in the anus)
27.2 percent engaged in group sex
81 percent had one-night stands, including 34 percent who had six or more.
29.8 percent had unprotected anal intercourse with a partner without knowing if the person had HIV or not.
11.5 percent "intentionally" had unprotected anal sex with a casual male partner

But surveys are just unscientific snapshots. A better insight into the beliefs and behaviour of the homosexual community comes from their own official statements and policy stances.

Egale and other homosexual groups including Coalition for Lesbian and Gay Rights in Ontario (CLGRO) opposed raising the age of consent to 16 from 14.

In a brief to the Justice Committee. CLGRO stated:
"There is a widespread belief that older, predatory persons lure young people into homosexuality. This is coupled with a refusal to accept that younger persons are capable of seeking and do seek out consensual same-sex relationships with older persons and, in fact, may be the initiators of such relationships. In addition, contrary to popular belief, a relationship with an older person may not in fact be damaging for a young person."

Hilary Cook, who served as chair of Egale's legal committee for five years before taking a seat on the board of directors, said it was unrealistic to expect teens to have sex only with those their own age.

"That's not the queer youth reality."

Egale's biggest bugaboo is the law against having anal sex with children aged 16 and 17. But given the lackadaisical attitude (above) to unprotected anal sex by the highest risk group for AIDS in the country, it appears a very reasonable restriction to protect children.

The biggest insight into the homosexual culture came in the legal battle between Little Sisters Book and Art Emporium, a gay and lesbian bookstore in Vancouver. Canada Customs was continually seizing books the story was trying to import from the U.S. The bookstore owners went to court to prove Customs was discriminating against them on the basis of their sexual orientation.

The case wound up in the Supreme Court where during the lengthy trial (1999-2000) the bookstore owners and their supporters argued that homosexuals should get special treatment under the laws against pornography.

EGALE Canada in their argument to the court said that

"sexually explicit lesbian, gay and bisexual materials challenge the dominant cultural discourse. They resist the enforced invisibility of our marginalized communities and thereby reassure us that we are not alone in the world, despite the apparent hegemony of heterosexuality. They reduce our sense of isolation. They provide affirmation and validation of our sexual identities by normalizing and celebrating homo-and bi-sexual practices, which mainstream culture either ignores or condemns. In short, they help us feel good about ourselves in an otherwise hostile society."

LEAF argued in its intervenor documents that

"the equality rights of heterosexual women are also affected by the targeting of LGBT materials. These materials benefit heterosexual women because they may challenge sexism, compulsory heterosexuality and the dominant, heterosexist sexual representations which often portray 'normal' heterosexuality as men dominating women and women enjoying pain and degradation."

Here are just a few excerpts of the court's majority decision which further outline the sexual orientation argument:

Reasons for Judgment, BCSC, para. 128. AR Vol. I, p. 131.
Court File No: 26858

"First the appellants argue that the “harm-based” interpretation given to s. 163 of the Criminal Code in Butler, supra, does not apply to gay and lesbian erotica in the same way as it does to heterosexual erotica, or perhaps at all."

***
"The appellants, supported by the interveners LEAF and EGALE, contend that homosexual erotica plays an important role in providing a positive self-image to gays and lesbians, who may feel isolated and rejected in the heterosexual mainstream. Erotica provides a positive celebration of what it means to be gay or lesbian. As such, it is argued that sexual speech in the context of gay and lesbian culture is a core value and Butler cannot legitimately be applied to locate it at the fringes of s. 2(b) expression. Erotica, they contend, plays a different role in a gay and lesbian community than it does in a heterosexual community, and the Butler approach based, they say, on heterosexual norms, is oblivious to this fact. Gays and lesbians are defined by their sexuality and are therefore disproportionately vulnerable to sexual censorship."

****
" The intervener LEAF took the position that sado-masochism performs an emancipatory role in gay and lesbian culture and should therefore be judged by a different standard from that applicable to heterosexual culture."

(Lead counsel for LEAF in its intervention in Little Sisters was Karen Busby who teaches your children in the Faculty of Law at the University of Manitoba -- ed.)

****

"On the more specific issues, the appellants, and the interveners in their support, argue that in the context of the Customs legislation a “harm-based” approach which utilizes a single community standard across all regions and groups within society is insufficiently “contextual” or sensitive to specific circumstances to give effect to the equality rights of gays and lesbians."

****

"Portrayal of a dominatrix engaged in the non-violent degradation of an ostensibly willing sex slave is no less dehumanizing if the victim happens to be of the same sex, and no less (and no more) harmful in its reassurance to the viewer that the victim finds such conduct both normal and pleasurable. Parliament’s concern was with behavioural changes in the voyeur that are potentially harmful in ways or to an extent that the community is not prepared to tolerate. There is no reason to restrict that concern to the heterosexual community."

In short, the argument was that

- homosexual pornography is a core value of gay culture,

- laws against degrading pornography shouldn't apply to homosexual porn and

- sadomasochistic porn in a homosexual setting is positive and uplifting.

The Supreme Court didn't bite, and on that argument Little Sisters lost.

But back to the point. What does all this have to do with adoption by same sex couples?

We see that 30 years of sex surveys consistently record repugnant sex practices (rimming, fisting, peeing on partners as a sex act), widespread promiscuity, and a detestible attitude among a sizeable portion of the community (euphemistically called "sex adventurists") to having unprotected anal sex despite known risks of spreading HIV.

We see that they are upset at losing access to young teens (ages 14 and 15), and eager to gain access to older teens (ages 16 and 17 for anal sex) while insisting that children are old enough to make up their own minds about having sex with adults.

And we see them proclaim that sadomasochistic pornography showing homosexual men and women in pain and degradation is a core value of their culture.

This would be disturbing in the context of any family with children of their own.

But consider the idea of sending somebody else's children into this culture, and you see there is a valid argument for opposing adoption by same sex couples.

At the same time you can be certain you will never see this argument discussed within the walls of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights despite their pious claims to canvass all sides of controversial issues.

The CMHR has a 16-member content advisory committee. Three of those members are directly connected with LEAF, the pro-homo-porn intervenor in the Little Sisters case.

* Mary Eberts, a co-founder of LEAF;
* Natasha Bakkht, described as a member of the legal arm of the feminist movement, the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF); and
* Diana Majury, an active feminist for the past 30 years who has been involved in both the feminist National Association of Women and the Law and LEAF.

In his report to Ottawa, Arni Thorsteinson said the Content Advisory Committee "would work closely with CMHR staff for the purpose of ensuring that the Board and CMHR have the capacity and authority to acknowledge conflict, provide a balanced perspective and acknowledge and manage controversy. The members of the CAC should be chosen to play the role of advisors rather than advocates for special interest groups."

Oops. Somebody forgot to tell CAC member Jennifer Breakspear whose mini-bio says she "is a human rights activist working on human rights, and lesbian, gay, transgendered and bisexual rights (LGTB)."

Right after the attack on Stu Murray was launched in mid-month, Breakspear was quoted in xtra.ca ("Canada's online source for gay and lesbian news, features, editorials, reviews, events, and business listings").

"His voting record concerns me," says Jennifer Breakspear, the executive director of Vancouver's queer resource centre, Qmunity. She is also a member of the museum's content advisory committee, which is conducting public roundtables across Canada. "I look forward to meeting him and asking him about his record and where he stands now."

Is that a fact?

How, exactly does that jibe with the principle that "members of the CAC should be chosen to play the role of advisors rather than advocates for special interest groups"?

Oh, wait. When you have FVC (favoured victim status) you don't need to play be the rules, thank you very much.

After all, who's going to read her the rules? Stu Murray?

Or maybe COO Patrick O'Reilly?

You know, the same Patrick O'Reilly who was to be the keynote speaker at a fundraiser for the Vancouver resource centre run by Breakspear the same weekend she was threatening Stuart Murray?

Is kowtow/kow-tow one word, or two?

The irony of it all is that Stuart Murray wasn't hired for any experience in the field of "human rights." He has a much greater role to play with the CMHR, which is why Gail Asper and Arni Thorsteinson are shivering at the thought of losing him.

The day of his appointment, CBC television news carried 3 slightly different stories about his joining the museum. The most important one was the middle story, which ran at 5:30 p.m.

That was the story that explained Murray was brought on board to achieve one goal---to raise the $45 million the museum needs to fill its budget hole. He was hired for his expertise in fundraising, demonstrated by his stint working with the St. Boniface General Hospital.

What Stu Murray brings to the job is his connections to people with deep pockets--- to business, to industry, and to governments in Manitoba and elsewhere.

Human Rights activists are a dime a dozen.

Labels: ,

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home