Bil Browning

Unfortunate

Filed By Bil Browning | April 04, 2007 3:29 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Site News
Tags: blogwhoring, homophobic behavior, Kenn Gividen, Libertarians, Mike Kole

It's not very often that I remove a blog from the blogroll for something other than inactivity. Unfortunately, today is not the case. I'm removing Kenn Gividen's blog after a reader pointed out the homophobic posts on his front page. The former Libertarian candidate for governor shares insights like this clip from his top post: Gay marriage deadlier than smoking

  • The gay agenda is dangerous

    Encouraging young people to explore the behavioral options is an invitation to an early grave.

  • Insurance

    If accepted, lawmakers may sympathize with insurance companies who view the gay lifestyle as a liability more serious than smoking or skydiving.

  • Exit counseling

    Programs to help gays abandon homosexuality will be seen as important life-saving efforts.


Other posts try to "debunk" Richard Florida's "The Rise of the Creative Class" (although he refers to him as George Florida) or, my favorite, immigrants are to blame for increases in HIV infections and cocaine abuse in Sweden. I'm surprised that gays and lesbians weren't involved somehow.

I am, however, happy to say that I'm making a substitution. Somehow I neglected to add Mike Kole's blog Kole Hard Facts of Life to the blogroll - even though he's guest posted here on bilerico! D'oh! Mike was the Libertarian candidate for Secretary of State in the last election and I know he defends our rights. I've added his site and encourage all of you to check it out. He posts frequently and is an all around nice guy. If you came to any of the grassroots meetings, you probably saw him there.

So consider this a primary election. And I just voted out the incumbent.


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Gary Welsh | April 4, 2007 8:20 PM

Bil,

I've been quite surprised by Kenn's obsession of late with "anti-gay" news. Most Libertarians do not share his views. That may explain his recent departure from the party. I'm still trying to make sense of his sudden shift. Maybe the next time he runs for office he's hoping to have the blessings of Eric Miller. Who knows. It is disturbing though.

Posted on my blog this morning...

"People should have the right to live their lives however they choose, providing they hurt no one else. They may eat themselves to death, smoke themselves to death or endulge in other harmful lifestyles. Taxpayers have no obligation to straighten them out.

"However, believing in human rights does not presume we must retreat to ignorance concerning the effects of behavior."

Dot one: I believe in human rights.
Dot two: Gays are humans.

Connect the dots.


Kenn, Connect these dots. You're quoting Kirk Cameron as a doctor. He's not. He's a child actor from Growing Pains who's turned televangelist. You also quote Paul Cameron who has been debunked so many times it's not even funny. He lost his license, was thrown out of the American Psychological Association, and condemned by the American Sociological Association. Now, ask yourself what a shrink has to do to get thrown out of the APA... According to the APA it was for "violation of the Preamble to the Ethical Principles of Psychologists" - in other words, he lied and invented statistics to support his own principles of discrimination. The ASA went so far as to issue a statement that reads "Dr. Paul Cameron has consistently misinterpreted and misrepresented sociological research on sexuality, homosexuality, and lesbianism" and noted that "Dr. Paul Cameron has repeatedly campaigned for the abrogation of the civil rights of lesbians and gay men, substantiating his call on the basis of his distorted interpretation of this research."

In your post you use offensive stereotypes about the LGBT community (Remember when all Jews were rich? Yeah, now it's gays. Thanks for that.) and say that being gay "is an invitation to an early grave."

I don't need to connect any dots, Kenn. Your words speak loudly for you. If this is your suggestion that you believe in gay rights, I'd hate to see something you actually, oh, I don't know, oppose.

God bless it, you beat me to it again, Bil!

Ditto on what Bil said. Also, Kenn, if you want to see how easy it is to manipulate statistics, then read Jim Burroway's The Heterosexual Agenda. I mean, maybe you were just fooled by the scientific powerhouse known as the Camerons. Or maybe you're just seeing what you want to.

Bil,

I appreciate your thoughts.

Please note the above average earnings of gay men is often touted by the gay community and is not stereotyping.

If the statement "married heterosexual men died at a median age of 74 while the 561 partnered gays died at an average age of 51" is a fact, why not publish it?

? Kenn

I just read this clown's blog for the first time. Why was he ever on the blogroll to begin with?

Jeff Newman | April 4, 2007 10:50 PM

This is the comment I just posted on Gividen's blog:

Kenn, something else you need to know:

Cameron did not present and was not on the agenda at the Eastern Psychological Association Convention in Philadelphia. He was neither a registered speaker nor a member of the convention faculty.

His "statistics" were based on obituaries Cameron found in the gay press. That's pretty scientific don't you think?

The man is a discredited charlatan of the highest order, and you have presented his material as though it were credible. Given that you can be so easily duped, what on earth would make us believe you are fit for public office?

Kenn - You don't publish it because it's definitely not a fact. I can write that heterosexuals live on average to age 40 while everyone else lives to 80 because straights have bad diets and don't exercise because they're too busy having sex in public, but that doesn't make it a fact. It just means that it's written down, which is about as much as anyone can say for anything that Paul Cameron writes.

And about the incomes, like, yeah, I'll give you that some queers like to perpetuate that myth because it makes them feel good. I just posted about that earlier today. But just because a certain group says something about itself again doesn't make it true. Just like I could sit in front of MTV and see music videos by heterosexual men about beating up women and treating them like sex objects, but that doesn't mean that every straight man is doing that.

And if you want to know more about straight vs. gay incomes, check out this from the Task Force.

That gays earn high incomes is no slight.

It's a fact.

If you'll note on my blog the phrase "earn 38 percent" links to this news story from AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE:

http://www.freenewmexican.com/news/38365.html

? Kenn

Jeff Newman | April 5, 2007 8:03 AM

Alex, you're engaged in dialogue with a guy who thinks that Dr. Paul Cameron is a legitimate scientist, that Cameron's gay-obsessed Family Research Institute is a legitimate scientific research orginazation, and who believes that Cameron was tossed out of the American Psychological Association because the APA embraces "the gay agenda."

I was engaged in a comment dialogue with him on his site and bailed--it's not worth it. People who believe like he does don't respond to evidence no matter how high you pile it up. They just come back at you with easily de-bunkable stuff and you find yourself just beating your head against the wall. I'm over it.

Just goes to show that it isn't just straight people who are biggoted.

So much for engaging in a free exchange of ideas?

Kevin, Kenn was originally added because he asked to exchange links. I went and checked out his site and it had the usual Libertarian talking points, but nothing homophobic. Most Indiana bloggers added him when he came on the scene. He's still linked to by Taking Down Words and Advance Indiana, for example.

Jeff Newman | April 5, 2007 10:53 AM

Once again, the far right displays their reasoning skills. Point out that they've written a piece that was based on a "study" that was put together by a discredited hack who has been literally kicked out of the mainstream scientific community, and their response is we're bigots who oppose the free exchange of ideas.

People who put together scientific studies are not supposed to have an agenda, and these people have an agenda, even Gividen admits it!

I would consider a study that claimed to be scientific and was done by a gay rights activist (and certainly one who had been kicked out of all of the mainstream organizations!) to be equally flawed.

News just in from Taking Down Words: Kenn just got himself removed from that site too.

Jeff Newman | April 5, 2007 11:30 AM

Buh-bye.

It's slow here at work during spring break week, can you tell? HA

I was just surfing through Gividen's blog trying to discern what was different between his alleged libertarianism and the rantings of the right-wing noise machine.

I couldn't really tell much difference.

Ellen Andersen | April 5, 2007 9:52 PM

Hey, Jeff? Are you really suggesting that because I advocate on behalf of gay rights, I can't do credible academic work in the area? I occasionally get this kind of response to my work from staunch opponents of gay rights, but I hadn't heard it from anyone else before...

Jeff Newman | April 6, 2007 8:55 AM

Hi Ellen! No, after I thought about it I wished I hadn't posted that comment (or at the very least I should have elaborated).

If you get down to it, the fact that Cameron is a sham didn't necessarily cause his study to be flawed. Had he used sound sampling techniques and issued his findings based on that, the fact that he is extremely biased wouldn't really matter.

The problem, of course, was his methodology--obituaries from gay publications? Please! For one, gay publications only publish obits for prominent people. Not to mention his "study" would have to assume that all of the people in the obits for his "straight" data were, in fact, straight, which of course is not true.

I do think the fact that you are an advocate puts your work in a position of heavy scrutiny, but if you can demonstrate that you have used sound sampling and solid statistical analysis (which you have always done without fail), then your work speaks for itself.

Upon further thought, Gividen was right when he nailed me for attacking the researchers instead of the research itself. The fact that the research is so outrageously flawed is the real issue.

I did think it was fair to point out that the Camerons are rabidly anti-gay, that they are guilty of consistently publishing anti-gay stuff based on transparently un-sound science, and that they have been completely shut out of the mainstream scientific community.

So to further elaborate, IF your credentials were questionable (and in your case they are absolutely impeccable), AND you have on obvious bias, then the work would have to be suspect even if I agreed with the findings.

If this was a long-winded way of offering an apology for the slight, I'll cut to the chase now and humbly and sincerely offer that apology. I didn't get it right the first time.

Ellen Andersen | April 7, 2007 2:23 PM

No worries, Jeff. The relationship between scholarship and advocacy is actually one I've been contemplating a lot lately (in fact, I'm presenting on it at a conference next week.) It's reasonable to wonder whether folks who advocate for a position can present "objective" research on that issue. Ultimately, though, I would argue that (almost) all social science researchers end up with positions on the subjects they research. The only difference is whether those positions are known to others....

A central aspect of the scientific method is that the premises and assumptions behind a research project must be reported and the method laid out in sufficient detail that the study can be replicated by others. THAT'S the key check on researcher bias. I feel comfortable that the work I do will hold up under questioning. It's clear that Paul Cameron's work, on the other hand, does not.

Gividen's obsession is truly shocking. This libertarian blog not only debunked his nunbers but repudiated him fully. And like others here I can not find what makes him a libertarian. His blog reads like something from the lunatic Religious Right not from libertarian circles. The Libertarian Party has to do better than this -- it used to do better than this sort of candidate. You can read the full essay on him at freestudents.blogspot.com. I am really humiliated, as a libertarian, to have to deal with people like this claiming the libertarian mantle.