Monday, April 27, 2015

Scott Lively Calls for Torches and Pitchforks ("Metaphorically", He Says)

Anti-LGBTQ activist Scott Lively is a notorious anti-LGBTQ activist, having promoted homophobia in the U.S. and abroad for years. His participation in a homophobic conference in Uganda shortly before the introduction of a draconian anti-gay bill earned him the ire of global LGBTQ advocates, not to mention a lawsuit from Sexual Minorities Uganda. Lively's bigotry earned him a nomination for Human Rights Watch's Homophobia Hall of Shame and an entry in the 2014 Human Rights Campaign report, Export of Hate. Lively's vitriol has always been offensive, but a recent commentary piece has revealed new depths to his hatred.

Right Wing Watch recently brought attention to a commentary piece by Scott Lively, which both BarbWire and WorldNetDaily published. In the commentary piece, Lively claims that the LGBTQ rights movement, corporate domination, and environmental threats are all machinations of evil "elites" who must be challenged through a popular uprising.

Lively begins by warning readers about President Obama's "imperial presidency" and America's alleged descent into "neo-feudalism". America's elites, he warns, have distracted citizens with polarizing social issues to distract them from their servitude. "What the elites most fear is authentic populism," he explained, lamenting that neither the Tea Party nor Occupy Wall Street grew into populist forces to be reckoned with.

With Lively, everything comes back to the supposed menace of LGBTQ rights. His bizarre rant accused the LGBTQ rights movement of being one of the elite's weapons against the "natural family".
"... For every knucklehead conservative who defends planet-killer Monsanto Corporation solely because conservatives are supposed to be "pro-business," there are two or three looney-lefties supporting the dismantling of the natural family because liberals are supposed to favor so-called "gay rights."

Hey Conservatives!  Can’t you see the difference between healthy capitalism and crony corporatism?

Hey Liberals!  Can’t you see that the elites wouldn’t so zealously implement anti-family Cultural Marxism if it didn’t serve THEIR interests and not yours?  Don’t you remember that Lenin called people like you "useful idiots?"
In a particularly bizarre passage of the commentary piece, Lively likened the struggle for LGBTQ equality with agro-business' affront to nature and public health. Environmental dangers and same-sex marriage both endanger our ecology, he insisted.
"The battle today is for marriage, the core of the natural family. Every human being on this planet will be harmed if the elites are allowed to destroy it by mutation. It is no different than Monsanto destroying natural foods or seeds by mutating their DNA, or Big Pharma destroying bodies by flooding the health industry with artificial, often poisonous "remedies." Our common paradigm in the grassroots for guiding society should be natural vs artificial across the board, including natural marriage and family: rejecting the counterfeit alternatives to the self-evident design of our ecology — and our physiology."
How does Lively propose that liberals and conservatives take back their biology and family life? Through a mass uprising, complete with torches and pitchforks. "The only way to deter the elites is with the threat of the mob. They need to see the pitchforks and torches to know they’ve gone too far and need to back down," he claimed.
"The natural family is the ecosystem of humanity! It must be preserved at all costs.

How?  By a populist uprising! The elites need to see the angry mob — liberals and conservatives together — surging through the streets, pitchforks and torches held aloft, ready to tear down Frankenstein’s castle with their bare hands if need be. For Christians it’s Jesus and the money-changers time! Making a whip of cords like He did with His own hands, and letting these arrogant puppet masters know we mean to use it (metaphorically speaking)."
Unless the populace rises up against the "elite" agenda of LGBTQ rights, America will descend into a dystopian Brave New World nightmare, Lively warned.
"That’s where we are today in America.  The elites want to eliminate the natural family to create a better class of serfs: state-bred children for the factories and the battlefield — easier to control, dulled by drugs and sexual promiscuity ... and bread and circuses."
As he struggled to make his intolerance appealing to both left-wing and right-wing readers, Lively was practically frothing with anger. In his anger, he failed to realize that his commentary piece would repulse more people than it would convert.

The language of his rant was revealing. According to Lively, sexual and gender diversity are existential threats to nature itself, engineered by elite overlords. In Lively's mind, the LGBTQ rights movement is a monster in "Frankenstein's castle" that must be destroyed with torches, pitchforks, and whips (!). In his imagination, LGBTQ persons are not everyday citizens struggling against oppression, but tools of "arrogant puppet masters" who must be humbled. By casting LGBTQ rights as the machinations of some scheming, nebulous "elite", Lively dehumanizes LGBTQ people as "other" and delegitimizes their calls for dignity.

This kind of hatred is dangerous. I don't care if Lively was speaking "metaphorically"; his violent metaphors suggest a visceral hatred of LGBTQs and a desire to scapegoat the LGBTQ community. When anti-LGBTQ activists claim that they "love" LGBTQ people, remember Lively's commentary piece, and the absence of love in it.


  1. And down, down the rabbit hole we go. Crazy!

    This type of speech really can be dangerous. I don't think all of his followers have the subtlety of thought to know or care when metaphor is being used (I'm elitist!!!). Of course, he is free to say what he wants, but it's terribly irresponsible.

    The only positive to something like this is that the crazier they get, maybe the more people they will repel.

    1. Michelle -- It's extremely irresponsible. Violent metaphors aren't harmless. If nothing else, though, Lively is showing his true colors again.

  2. While I agree with your assessment, I saw his conclusion to be a bit simpler:

    By saying that "the elites" are the ones to be pushing for the re-definition of marriage (whatever that means), he is concluding that real people - us underlings - are really not thinking about ramifications, and just following along as we're told.

    Scott Lively needs to get his arse into a crowd of real people. Those types of people who live their everyday lives, loving each other - or ignoring each other, letting everyone live as they see fit - and not caring about personal choices or lifestyles.

    That's MOST of us.

    1. Incongruous Circumspection -- Good point. He can't comprehend the fact that equality supporters might endorse LGBTQ rights out of their own free will, so there must be elite manipulation at work. This is what happens to people who live in a right-wing bubble.

  3. Scott Lively has some profound issues underlying his hatred. And torches and pitchforks are exactly what I would expect someone of his mentality to reach for first.

    1. Agi Tater -- That hatred runs deep. A man who travels the world promoting homophobia and who writes vicious screeds such as this must be drawing from a deep wellspring of hatred.

  4. As he struggled to make his intolerance appealing to both left-wing and right-wing readers, Lively was practically frothing with anger. In his anger, he failed to realize that his commentary piece would repulse more people than it would convert.

    It's an astonishing meltdown, and he's not alone among Christian Right leaders in descending into hysteria, only the most extreme among them in his rhetoric.

    It's panic and rage at the realization of impending defeat. We can expect two or three more months of screeching like this, as the Supreme Court decision approaches and then finally arrives.

    But there aren't any mobs ready to go into action with torches and pitchforks, nor poised to stage a "populist" uprising. In the 37 states where gay marriage has been made legal, mostly by court decisions, there has been no serious mass protest. The Livelys of America are holed up down in the bunker, having screaming panic attacks as defeat looms, frantically demanding action by armies that no longer exist except in their own heads.

    In June the Supreme Court will rule for gay marriage, and most of the country will shrug and go on with life. There won't be any mass uprising, with or without pitchforks. What the bitter-ender fanatics like Lively will do then, I hardly dare imagine. I hope they'll confine themselves to more of the same rhetoric, but gay people and liberals generally should keep their guard up for the first few weeks, though. The demonization displayed by Lively's ranting has scary implications.

    1. Infidel -- When the Supreme Court passes its decision on same-sex marriage, I expect to see Religious Right meltdowns left and right. Pop some popcorn, folks!

      I agree -- while there will be no mass uprisings, a few homophobes might do hateful things in the event of a pro-equality SCOTUS decision.


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