09 January, 2012

Propaganda: Gentle Reader Series: #8 3 easy steps to writing your own propaganda

Gentle readers,

I thought this would be the perfect time to take a breather from the Clowes’ article and to provide you with my “3 Easy Steps to Writing Your own Anti-Gay Propaganda” (Satire Alert).

Let me begin by saying that it is crucial for us to have a constant supply of fresh anti-gay propaganda on the internet. Why? Well…because stuff like Mr. Clowes’ propaganda gets “worn out” fairly quickly when “strident pro-homosexual activists” like me begin debunking it. Don’t be worried if you do not have an academic degree like Mr. Clowes. Academic credentials help, but they are by no means essential.

STEP 1 – Begin your propaganda piece by appealing to a strong negative emotion. There are really only 3 basic negative emotions to choose from, but they can all be tailoured to a number of themes. Here are the 3 basic emotions and some suggested anti-gay themes for you to choose from:

1. Fear – Fear of homos recruiting your children (in or out of the womb); Fear of homos destroying society, marriage, or the traditional family; Fear of homos attacking your religion; Fear of homos destabilizing the country; Fear of homos asking you out on a date; Fear of homos corrupting the courts by creating activist judges; etc.. Almost anything about homos can be feared, so just let your imagination run wild.

2. Disgust or loathing – The tried and true theme is homo sex (it is a real crowd pleaser). It is 100% icky and perverse and you can dwell on it endlessly. Be sure to frequently mention anal penetration, feces, scat, S&M, bondage, role playing, promiscuity, anal warts, gay bowl disease, gerbils etc… The list is really endless, but one word of caution – never ever mention that straight people do these things too. Keep it focused on those disgusting gay men – give the lesbos a pass…their sex is either titillating or boring depending on your audience. Don’t forget that pedophilia is also a great button to push for maximum “disgust”.

3. Anger – Best to use lots of words like: militant homosexualist; strident homosexual activist; strenuous objections. Phrases like “forcing their lifestyle down our throats”, “homosexual agenda”, or “same-sex attraction disorder” are also good. You can pretty much build up a head of steam about any theme: from pedophilia to pandemic AIDS, to economic ruin. Word of caution: never ever talk about homos as ordinary human beings with all the frailties and virtues of their fellow human beings. Keep it abstract and generalized for maximum impact. If you ever focus on a single one of them, make sure it is the most depraved example of a human being you can find.

Remember – when it comes to strong negative emotions, never be afraid to combine them. They work well in threesomes.

STEP 2: Support your strong negative emotional appeal(s) with lots of “facts”. Use tons of footnotes and references. More is always better. There are two basic challenges with “facts” however:

a) The challenge of choosing the right kind of “facts” for your intended audience. For example, if you are appealing to fellow believers you can never go wrong with scripture, church documents, or quotes from church hierarchy, or theologians. JP2 and BXVI are a rich source of material. If, however, you are appealing to a more general audience, I would strongly counsel you to use “scientific facts”. Nothing is as legitimating as science in our culture.
b) The challenge of finding “facts” for your intended audience. The good news is there is simply no end of “facts” provided you are not looking for the truth. Remember, you are not writing a scholarly article to defend a well reasoned thesis or theory. You are writing something that can be quickly copied and pasted into an online argument to shut down your opposition. It will take them days or even weeks to prove you wrong. By then, you will have waltzed off smugly into the ether. Some good sources of “scientific facts” are: studies from STD clinics; studies of incarcerated pedophiles; studies about the mentally ill, studies about HIV/AIDS (never use ones from sub-Saharan Africa as there are too many straights in those). Never be afraid to sprinkle in some discredited sources (e.g. NARTH or Dr. Paul Cameron) among the legitimate (but out of context studies). The discredited studies are not peer reviewed, but they are the juiciest. Just be cautious about using too many as someone may quickly debunk your arguments if they show your sources are severely biased. Lastly, you can comb articles in the gay press for statements made by real live gay activists. Some of them say some pretty silly stuff. Just make sure you set them up as representative of the entire LGBT community. Be creative. Never worry about context or balance and you will do just fine.

STEP 3: Conclude with “love”. Never openly hate the homos. Hate the sin and always “love” the sinner. Always refer to their behavior or lifestyle, and deny their so-called orientation. Tell your audience that true charity means telling homos the “truth”. Tell them the church believes they are intrinsically disordered, but you would never advocate “unjust discrimination”. Never ever define what kind of discrimination against homos that you regard as “just”. Be totally impervious to the hypocrisy and irony of your words. Pray for them, or at least say that you do.

Like anything, writing good anti-gay propaganda requires practice. Start by test driving your ideas at church socials (if people frown on it you are either in the wrong congregation or in the wrong denomination), and work your way up to family gatherings and public meetings. Encourage others and never be afraid to ask for help from such experts like Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, LifeSite News, Catholic Insight, or the CCCB.

Good luck and be prolific!

Cheers...Martin

11 comments:

  1. At the moment there is some of this kind of propaganda circulating among certain Catholic Bloggers (not you Father).
    They feel the need to play God and more than justified to beat +Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, with this particular stick.

    Thank goodness that we sinners, have these charitable men of spotless character, true Saints in the making walking among us to show us the way!
    We are all God's children, Christ hates the sin but not the sinner and maybe we should all ponder on that one.
    I have enjoyed your Gentle Reader series Father,
    Blessings and prayers,
    Ann.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Ann

    What has Archbishop Vincent Nichols said or done that has been the catalyst for the propaganda? I'm not familiar with the story.

    Cheers
    Paul

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ann: Thank you for seeing that I am running this series for a good reason and with good intent. It is important to learn the lessons Martin is teaching when it comes to understanding how propaganda is different from truth telling.

    As I stated at the beginning, I do not share Martin's convictions and beliefs. I believe in the truth of the Catholic proposition when judging what is considered 'right or wrong' conduct. It need not be justified through the agencies of propaganda to make its case.

    I do accept though that there is merit in Martin's assessment of the proper way to approach Dr. Clowe's research. I have not researched the subject as deeply as Martin has, but the evidence as he presents it is quite convincing to me. If indeed he is correct, then Catholics should avoid drinking from a tainted source lest we render what we offer unpalatable to others.

    I appreciate Martin's efforts because if he's right, he has done us a good service. If he's wrong, he has put his argument clearly and with references into the public sphere where it can be critiqued by others. Aside from the point Michael has raised that achieving a doctorate in civil engineering demonstrates that someone is capable of organizing and correctly analyzing research data - thereby potentially kicking the pins out from under a major element of Martin's argument: his disqualification of Clowe's expertise to interpret social science data and research. He will have committed the logical fallacy of 'poisoning the well'. This remains to be seen though as no one has taken up Michael's point yet. I hope either Martin or others will as my plate is too full to study the issue myself.

    Finally, thank you for framing the issue in truly Christian term when you speak the language of forgiveness and love. That is the only paradigm that Jesus told us to use everywhere we encounter others - no matter what they say or do. We are speaking here about what is right or wrong. I trust we all accept and understand that it is not an issue of legal or not. Pierre Trudeau, when he was justice minister, was right when he said that 'the government has no place in the bedrooms of the nation.' It's still true today throughout the West. There are sanctuaries of privacy where the state has no right to violate. In the bedroom of consenting adults is surely at the top of that list. What is done there can only be judged by God alone. No one on earth has the right to judge anyone by how they choose to behave in the privacy of their bedroom.

    Fr. Tim

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Ann

    Careful now. You've just engaged in Step 3 of the creation of anti-gay propaganda. Martin sees right through statements like this.
    (We are all God's children, Christ hates the sin but not the sinner)

    "STEP 3: Conclude with “love”. Never openly hate the homos. Hate the sin and always “love” the sinner."

    Apparently any Christian that views homosexual acts as sinful HATES gays. We can assume Jesus hated them as well.

    Cheers
    Paul

    ReplyDelete
  5. Paul: Isn't the trick to remain faithful to the fullness of Christ's teachings? Are we, as people who claim to be is disciples, not called to live both chastely and with 'caritas' for all? Isn't it possible to express and explain the sexual theology of the Church without injuring others who do not agree with our beliefs.

    I don't have the sense that Martin is demanding our permission to live his life as he chooses. He objects to questionable arguments that he believes attacks his rights to self autonomy. He has no trouble with a differences of belief so long as one party does not impose their beliefs on another.

    (Martin: If I am misrepresenting you, please correct me.)

    Fr. Tim

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi Tim

    I was merely demonstrated the silliness of Martin's claim that people claiming to "love the sinner but hate the sin" are simply masking the hater that they really are. If my sarcasm wasn't apparent in my quip about Jesus hating gays then I sincerely apologize for that remark. You need emoticons on this blog. He clearly loves everyone and desires their redemption no matter what sins we've committed. I definitely count myself among the sinners and despite what Martin may claim, I do love gay people (many I count as my friends) but I don't believe their homosexuality is in step with God's plan for human sexuality and stand by the Churches teachings on the matter.
    Martins insistence on labelling me or anyone for that matter that doesn't fall in line with his pro homosexual worldview as Hitler incarnate is a bit nauseating but its a tactic that has worked well for the gay movement. It reeks of the very propaganda he's preaching against. I see his insistence and outrage that I apologize for expressing concern about the welfare of children with gay couples was nothing more than an attempt to bully me for daring to question homosexual marriage. Certainly the statistics where their to make the case in the article I shared and Martins lengthy rebuttal (propaganda?) requires some background checking of its own. I certainly wouldn't take it at face value. For one thing he mentioned Kingsley's findings being irrelevant and said a wiki search would have easily demonstrated that to the author. Ironically this is what it says on Wiki about the very issue Martin brought up:

    Jones wrote that Kinsey's sexual activity influenced his work, that he over-represented prisoners and prostitutes, classified some single people as "married",[25] and that he included a disproportionate number of homosexual men, particularly from Indiana, in his sample, which may have distorted his studies.[13][14] It has also been pointed out he omitted African Americans in his research.[26] Bullough explains that the data was later re-processed, excluding prisoners and data derived from an exclusively gay sample, and the results indicate that it does not appear to have skewed the data. Kinsey had over-represented people who were homosexual, but Bullough considers this may have been because this was stigmatized and needed to be understood.[13][14] It was Paul Gebhard, in the 1970s, who removed all suspect data (e.g., pertaining to prisoners and similar respondents), and recalculated significant sets of figures against results given by "100 percent" groups. He Found Only Slight Differences Between The Original And Updated Figures.[27]

    So apparently his findings were found to be sound even with the suspect data removed from the sample. Either Martin didn't read this or perhaps he's spinning some propaganda of his own?

    Cheers
    Paul

    ReplyDelete
  7. Paul you write:

    “I do love gay people (many I count as my friends) but I don't believe their homosexuality is in step with God's plan for human sexuality and stand by the Churches teachings on the matter.”

    I do not find your above statement to be very credible if you also hold to your earlier view where you stated that: “If the statistics like this are true it would seem to indicate there is a huge statistical risk of sexual abuse for a boy living with male homosexual partners (Nov. 28, 2011).” Since you cited Mr. Clowes’ article in support of that statement, I can only surmise that you continue to believe that homosexual men represent a clear danger to male children. How can you “love” and “befriend” gays while at the same time apparently believing them to be a real threat to children? If I believed someone was a pedophile, or a sexual exploiter of children, then I would have a great deal of difficulty counting them as “my friend”. You must have a very odd notion of what it means to befriend someone. Do you often befriend people who you regard as pedophiles and sexual exploiters of children? Do you invite them into your home and grant them unsupervised access to your children or the children of others?

    Conversely, if I were a gay man and I knew you held such inaccurate views about gay men, then I am not sure I could regard you as a “friend”. Is friendship not a two way street where each friend knows the heart and mind of the other? Do friends not tell each other the truth, even when it is sometimes a hard truth? How do your gay male friends react when you tell them that you possess knowledge that they represent an inordinate risk to children – especially boys?

    Your statement simply does not compute, and it is eerily similar to what we hear bigots of all types say about their subjects of scorn as justification for those views.

    You then write: “…I apologize for expressing concern about the welfare of children with gay couples was nothing more than an attempt to bully me for daring to question homosexual marriage.”

    Here is yet another non-apology from Paul on the fitness of homosexuals to be parents. You did far more then simply express your concern for the welfare of children, you stated that gay men represent a real threat of harm to children, and you cited the incredible claims of Mr. Clowe’s article (which I have shown to be a clear cut case of grey to black propaganda) in support of that claim. You would now have us believe that because I challenged both your claim, and your so-called “evidence”, that I am bullying you. So…in your mind anyone who provides a rational and thorough challenge to anti-gay bigotry is a “bully”? Yes Paul, you are a victim of bullying. You should be allowed to spout whatever vile accusations you care to make against LGBT folks, and all of us should simply shut up and stand by. How very uppity of me to dare challenging you. How gracious of you to make that point.

    Lastly, you then quote Wikipedia in defense of Alfred Kinsey’s work. You forgot to include this statement:

    “It was later revealed that Kinsey used data from a single paedophile and presented it as being from various sources. Bullough suggests this was in order to avoid revealing it was from a single source.”

    For anyone interested in the entire Wikipedia article, this is where Paul did his very selective cutting and pasting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Kinsey#cite_note-26

    Are you now suggesting that you think Kinsey’s 64 year old research is applicable to gay men in every way today? Do you also support his contention that 10% of the population is gay or lesbian? Do you also support all of his other sexual theories? Or do you just endorse those aspects of his work that confirm your anti-gay biases?

    As I have written previously Paul, your dissembling and dishonest responses on this topic demonstrate your real character and motives.

    Cheers…Martin

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  8. Hi folks,

    For any of you trained in the social sciences, I know that you are well aware that one cannot simply cherry pick research findings that agree with one's pre-existing biases.

    If you have a social science background, you will know that you cannot simply ignore contrary evidence. You need to examine all evidence and attempt to provide a framework that deals with the spectrum of findings.

    You will notice three things about Mr. Clowes' article:

    a) it draws invalid conclusions from legitimate research;
    b) it never attempts to deal with positive findings that demonstrate the fitness of homosexuals to act as parents
    c) it offers no credible framework for discussing any contrary evidence

    It is important to understand that there is not merely an absence of credible evidence supporting Mr. Clowes' claims, but there is also a growing body of research that actually refutes his claims.

    For anyone interested, here is a link to some interesting material produced by the American Psychological Association:

    http://www.apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/parenting.aspx

    Please note that this is peer reviewed material, and that the researchers who have written it are subject matter experts in the field (unlike Renew America and Mr. Clowes).

    Cheers...Martin

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Martin

    YOU SAY...

    Lastly, you then quote Wikipedia in defense of Alfred Kinsey’s work. You forgot to include this statement:

    “It was later revealed that Kinsey used data from a single paedophile and presented it as being from various sources. Bullough suggests this was in order to avoid revealing it was from a single source.”

    AND YOU EXCLUDED THIS LINE DOWN FARTHER

    The Kinsey Institute wrote that the data on children in tables 31–34 came from one man's journal (started in 1917) and that the events concerned predated the Kinsey Reports.

    Is this not saying that the data from the single pedophile incident was never part of the Kinsey Reports?

    Cheers
    Paul

    ReplyDelete
  10. Paul:

    You note that Gebhard has re-evaluated Kinsey’s data to remove suspect data and that the results of Kinsey’s findings are more or less accurate.

    I have some follow up questions:

    • Can you link us to Gebhard’s actual work?
    • Can you confirm that Gebhard’s analysis includes the tables used by Clowes in his reference to Kinsey’s work?
    • Can you tell us how Gebhard’s analysis would correct for self selection bias? Recall that Kinsey’s critics note two deficiencies with his work: a) his sampling techniques (which Gebhard’s work apparently corrects for); and b) the self selection bias among test subjects.

    You have failed to answer any of my other questions, namely:

    • Are you now suggesting that you think Kinsey’s 64 year old research is applicable to gay men in every way today?
    • Do you also support his contention that 10% of the population is gay or lesbian? Do you also support all of his other sexual theories?
    • Do you only endorse those aspects of Kinsey’s work that confirm your anti-gay biases?

    My original criticism of Clowes’ use of the Kinsey research data remains intact. I have noted that Kinsey’s critics have noted severe limitations in how it was collected and the reliability of same. It seems Gebhard has recognized this and tried to correct for one of the deficiencies. My point remains that Clowe’s is not being very transparent in using this data without also disclosing the limitations.

    Additionally, when you decided to reference Clowes’ research in the first place, how did you account for its many inconsistencies and apparent misrepresentations? Was this the first anti-gay article you came across and since it confirmed your anti-gay biases you decided to use it? What basis did you use for discounting positive findings that contradicted Clowes’ anti-gay claims?

    Unlike you, I have provided readers with a link to the entire Wikipedia article so that they could reference everything in context. My intention was not to leave anything out, but to highlight the apparent fact that you were again cherry picking data which you thought would be most beneficial to your point of view.

    Lastly...you have no comment on the apparent lack of consistency on your various statements? No defence of your victimhood status?

    Cheers…Martin

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi Martin

    You put countless questions in every reply so something has to give. Unfortunately I have to work for a living so writing a 10 page response to answer your multitude of questions isn't going to happen. Sorry. I'll try deal with whats most important.


    YOU SAY THIS...
    You note that Gebhard has re-evaluated Kinsey’s data to remove suspect data and that the results of Kinsey’s findings are more or less accurate.

    WELL THAT IS WHAT WAS STATED ON WIKIPEDIA, WHICH I'D ASSUME YOU'D SITE AS A CREDIBLE SOURCE OF INFO SINCE YOU'RE SOURCING IT YOURSELF. IN FACT YOU BERATED CLOWES FOR NOT USING IT TO LEARN ABOUT KINSEY.

    I have some follow up questions:

    • Can you link us to Gebhard’s actual work?
    • Can you confirm that Gebhard’s analysis includes the tables used by Clowes in his reference to Kinsey’s work?
    • Can you tell us how Gebhard’s analysis would correct for self selection bias? Recall that Kinsey’s critics note two deficiencies with his work: a) his sampling techniques (which Gebhard’s work apparently corrects for); and b) the self selection bias among test subjects.

    THE ANSWER IS NO TO ALL OF THE ABOVE BUT WOULD YOU HAVE US BELIEVE YOU"VE DONE THE SAME LEVEL OF RESEARCH WITH EVERY STATEMENT YOU'VE PRESENTED FROM SOURCES?
    DID YOU CONFIRM THE DATA CLOWES SITED WAS IN FACT PULLED FROM THE SINGLE PEDOPHILE STUDY YOU ALEGE DISCREDITS THE DATA?

    You have failed to answer any of my other questions, namely:

    • Are you now suggesting that you think Kinsey’s 64 year old research is applicable to gay men in every way today?

    NO. ACTUALLY I DON"T DISAGREE WITH YOU THAT THERE ARE ISSUES WITH KINSEY'S WORK NOR DOES CLOWES WHO CLEARLY STATES IN HIS REFERENCES AT THE BOTTOM. WHAT IS CURIOUS ABOUT IT HOWEVER IS THAT ALTHOUGH KINSEY WAS HOMOSEXUAL HIMSELF, MUCH OF HIS FINDINGS ARE NOT FAVOURABLE TO HOMOSEXUALS. IT WOULD CERTAINLY BE HARD TO TAR HIM WITH ANTI GAY BIAS.

    • Do you also support his contention that 10% of the population is gay or lesbian? Do you also support all of his other sexual theories?

    NO, NUMEROUS RECENT STUDIES PUT IT LOWER AND I'M NOT AWARE OF HIS OTHER THEORIES TO COMMENT.

    • Do you only endorse those aspects of Kinsey’s work that confirm your anti-gay biases?

    I CAN'T SAY I ENDORSE ANY OF HIS WORK BUT THATS NOT TO SAY THAT ALL OF HIS FINDINGS ARE WRONG EITHER. HIS FINDINGS COULD VERY WELL BE IN ERROR BUT MY CONCERNS DON'T ARISE SOLELY FROM KINSEY'S DATA. HIS IS JUST A SMALL SAMPLE OF WHAT WAS PRESENTED AND IT IS CURIOUS COMING FROM A GAY RESEARCHER.


    Cheers
    Paul

    ReplyDelete

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