Archive for March, 2012

The National Organization for Marriage’s Racial Agenda: Research, Theory, and Assholes


2010 General Social Survey

Oh boy, Maggie Gallagher and her gaggle of closeted homophobes have really gotten themselves in spot of santorum! Turns out, somebody hacked their “playbook” revealing that their grand plan was to enlist THE BROWNS against THE HOMOS. SHHHHHHHH!!!!! Don’t tell anyone!!! But, the problem with THE BROWNS is that they aren’t always what you think, especially if you’re a clueless racist pig. I’m a bit perplexed that the NOM’s social scientific consultants at the National Institute for Marriage didn’t quite understand our recent paper on racial differences in support for same sex marriage.  Most egregiously, Maggie and her little boys completely missed the Latino issue. Like most, Slaggie assumes that since Latinos are Catholic (which many are, but a substantial proportion are not), that they will be opposed to legalizing marriage for all. But, both assumptions are wrong. First, many Latinos are secular or only nominally Christian (not even Catholic). Second, LIKE OTHER CATHOLICS, Latino Catholics are Pro Marriage! Gay, Straight, trans, whatever, you gotta have booze at the wedding, though. As you can see above, from 2010 data, Latin Americans are less likely to oppose same sex marriage than are Western Europeans. Asians are also pro-marriage, so forget your outreach to that group as well.

Opposition to Same Sex Marriage, 2004-2010 GSS

What I find most perplexing is that the NOM folk didn’t seem to get the trends we presented in our paper. Yes, we show that African Americans are more likely to be opposed to same sex marriage than are whites. However, we also show that this is entirely a function of ties to sectarian Christian groups and fundamentalist beliefs. And, we also show that the trend in African American public opinion mirrors that of whites. Indeed, tracked from 2004-2010, African Americans liberalize even more quickly than whites. Opposition dropped by 17% among African Americans (from 68% to 51%) and by 15% among whites (from 55% to 39%). Given the trend, it is safe to say that this year the GSS will find only a minority of African Americans are opposed to legalizing marriage for all, and support for same sex marriage may outdo opposition, as it does in the full sample.

But, the totally cool part is that these assholes somehow think that THE BROWNS will flock to them after far right wing conservative Christians have fucked them over consistently for more than two centuries. Sure, go ahead. Trust them. They’re your friends, not those dirty hippy people who welcomed civil rights and shit, I mean, those people are a bunch of homos!

Armed Black Men, Our Only Hope for Gun Control


Stand your ground, brothers!

Unfortunately, the latest incident of a brown person being shot by some racist wimp with a gun  has shifted the debate in the predictable direction of demanding severe punishment for the racist shooter, rather than focusing on the laws that enable racists everywhere to tote guns around and shoot people anytime they are scared or pissed off or drunk. Notably, the Dark Lord Krugman points out that this orientation is fully in line with the Prison Industrial Complex meme, who know that more guns means more crime and more people in the private prison system.  Anthea has a great take on the big picture, the United States is an exceptionally racist nation that tolerates and even facilitates the violent oppression of brown people.  Indeed, this exceptionalism is built into the Constitution in the 2nd Amendment—the right to carry arms anywhere so white people can shoot the browns. That’s what the founding fathers meant.

In the last thirty years (after the fallout died down from Ronny Raygun being shot by a mental patient who should have never had access to any weapons or ammunition–and could easily have been denied)  the gun nut lobby has been quite successful with completely ludicrous “gun laws” which enable psychopaths to wield and brandish weapons of mass killing with impunity. Of course, the Tennesse Legislator who was damn near successful in pimping a bill that would give bar-drunks the right to have a shot if they want to just got busted for being drunk while driving with a loaded gun in his car.  And even very prominent leaders of the gun nut movement have proved to be violent felons, willing to physically harm their own family and relish in killing strangers, particularly if they are brown.

Support for Gun laws by race: 2010 GSS

What is disturbing about the contemporary situation is that the NRA and the Gun Owners of America are winning, succeeding in passing more and more inane laws enabling dumbfuck rednecks to carry guns wherever, and have no responsibility for their dangerous hobby (at best). Yet, there is absolutely no reason why this is the case. The gun nuts are WAY overrated, and declining in long term influence. First, even among white people, who always get a boner about shooting the browns, 72% favor gun laws–and not laws that let you carry guns in bars…..African Americans, who suffer the brunt of gun violence, are even more supportive of regulation, as are people with other racial identifications—85% of whom favor regulation. Not only do the vast majority of white folk agree that their redneck brethren need to be regulated, but most Americans, even real WHITE Americans do not own guns.

Gun Ownership by Race: 2010 GSS

You see, the problem with gun ownership is that only a minority of whites, who want to shoot any black person wearing a hoodie, own guns. 36.5% of white households own a gun. While white racist gunowners think that underneath every hoodie is a Glock 9mm, in fact gun ownership is rare for African Americans, and only about 15% of households are prepared to defend against an assault from the 37% of the majority race seeking to shoot them. Asians and Latin Americans (or whatever “other” means in the GSS….) are even less likely the own guns, more than four times less likely than whites.  Gun ownership in the US has declined from 47% in 1973 to under 31% in 2010.

Despite the fact that most Americans don’t own guns and most Americans support gun regulation, the gun nuts have been winning public policy victories since the late 1980s, and that is after only a brief hiatus following Raygun getting shot by a nutcase. It is time to Repeal the Second Amendment, and to put serious teeth into gun regulation. Instead, what we’ve been doing is enabling people to murder, and now to get away with it, claiming that any scared-ass pussy with a gun can kill somebody and not get arrested—as long as the person you’re scared of has brown skin.

What we need is for every African American man to apply for a gun permit, a concealed carry, or to openly brandish weapons in public. Just like the Black Panthers did. People forget, but that is where they came from, and their primary original tactic was to follow cops while openly carrying weapons–which was permitted in the lax gun laws in California. If only that boy had had his gun, he wouldn’t have been killed, maybe, eh? And, if every black person was packing heat (instead of being outgunned way more than two to one), they might confront the oppressor! Until we see that happen, there will be no gun law changes. The Panthers had it down.

Santorum Spreads the Truth, while Krugman froths fiction


I told you Social Forces was a Trap!

The surge of Santorum in the South is causing academics to froth at the prospect of Santorum in the White House–as VP, at least. And, Santorum’s virulent opposition to education is well documented. Santorum argues that higher education is particularly damaging to faith, and that college undermines beliefs in the baby Jesus and how the virgin born white Catholic Jesus is the only way to avoid being sent to hell for masturbation and stuff. And, verily, it is true. Yet, evil Jewish Egghead Economist Paul Krugman (who definitely has horns, and a beard and is certainly a relation of Satan, if not an incarnation) claims in the evil New York Times that college does not undermine faith, and that SCIENCE supports this. The Dark Lord is usually right about everything, however in this case, he’s been mislead by Christianist pseudointellectualizing about the influence of education on religion.

Back when Social Forces was a real journal, a  sociologist used actual longitudinal data from parents and children followed over 17 years of the early life course to examine the impact of a variety of factors on religious beliefs,  participation, and affiliation.  It is important to realize how Christianist sociology misconstrues the relationships, pulling a bait and switch that the Dark Lord and other non-Christianists wouldn’t understand. Instead of examining how fundamentalist religious beliefs and sectarian religious affiliations influence education—and vice versa—they gravitate to church attendance—which has almost always been shown to have a positive correlation with social status in the United States. Further, any kid who can be made to attend church at an above average level when they are in high school, likely has nothing else to do but whatever it is told (and is therefore less likely than its peers to wind up pregnant living in a trailer, instead of in college). But, as the Frothy One spewed, college does indeed have a negative impact on beliefs about the veracity of the Bible—not just fundamentalism, the more education people get, the more likely they are to CHANGE their beliefs to a more skeptical position (god’s word, inspired by god, crock of stinking shit)—see Table 2 and Table 5. It is true that the total effect of education on religious participation is positive—because educated people are less likely to be working at the Wal Mart or Quicky Lube on Sunday morning–but education has a significant NEGATIVE indirect effect on religious participation (see Table 5), and in other work SOCIOLOGY shows that education increases rates of apostasy , and decreases the likelihood that apostasy is short-lived.

Indeed, Frothy could have gone further, because one of the strongest negative effects of educational factors on believing religious crap and belonging to religious groups is taking college preparatory coursework in high school. Religion makes you ignorant and uneducated, but if people are led to knowledge and become educated they tend to reject religion. Which is why conservative Christians (and Mormons, who are not really Christians, not that I care….) are opposed to all education.

Contraception, Fornication, and an Idiot Economist


Fornication rates for unmarried respondents 45 and under in the GSS by Religion

Some idiot economist at Rochester apparently hates contraception, women, and is too stupid to understand how insurance works. First, given our new national obsession with eliminating insurance coverage for contraception in preparation for making contraception illegal, we might want to consider how many Americans actually support the criminalization of contraception and how many Americans currently rely on contraception for the prevention of marital and nonmarital fertility. Second, we might want to think about something our idiot economist doesn’t understand, but our President does, regarding why it is completely stupid to even think that an insurance company would NOT cover contraception.

First, the vast majority of Americans of child-bearing risk use some form of contraception, and oral contraceptives are preferred by many. MARRIED people who don’t want any more kids or don’t want to conceive at a given time use contraception, and 41% of GSS respondents under the age of 50 are married—so a large plurality of demand for contraception comes from non-fornicators. Above, you can see rates of fornication among never married respondents by religious group. I supposed I could have thrown in the divorced and widowed, since they’re not supposed to have sex either, according to a gaggle of child molesters, Rick Santorum,  the Institute for American Values, and the National Marriage Project.  But, these are the hard core fornicators, who are evil because they are not married and have sex. Indeed, three fourths of unmarried Americans reported having had sex in the last year, contrary to the will of Jesus. Even 41% of  unmarried Mormons at risk for conception dropped their magic underwear and did it (63% of the unmarried who grew up Mormon managed to get laid).  Jews were the luckiest/most evil with 88% managing at least one bang in the last year.  And look, those liberal Protestants aren’t even fornicating as much as sectarians! And Baptists are the third most promiscuous group! Those awful sluts! Congratulations to the Catholics, who manage to be above average in their rates of fornication. So, virtually everyone of childbearing age needs contraception unless they want to conceive a child.

So, why is this even a controversy? The reason for Title X is the reality that poor people need contraception, and it’s good social policy to provide it. Unwanted children create a burden on families, communities, and the state—so enabling people to control their fertility is a benefit for everyone.  Landsburg’s taxes are LOWER because Title X reduces unwanted fertility among the poor. Of course, libertarian asshats like Landsburg would solve the problem by not helping families, and eliminating communities and the state. I wonder what his insurance is? He doesn’t seem to understand the difference between Title X and insurance, since Rush wasn’t insulting someone advocating for Title X. Insurance is what was being discussed regarding the for-profit Catholic hospitals and fundamentalist schools (non-profit my ass)  being required to hold policies for their employees and students. Remember how that tricky President of ours made the “compromise” that wasn’t really? Why did that work? Well, gee, you think maybe the insurance industry has a stake in making sure that all policyholders at risk for conception receive contraceptives? For that measly monthly outlay the insurance company won’t have to pay for prenatal care, fancy ultrasounds,  hospitalization, anesthetic, maybe surgery, or all manner of other expenses which accrue in a pregnancy. And, then they’d have another policy-holder who is costly for the first several years. Dipshit Economist doesn’t pay for a woman’s contraception; Dipshit pays LESS because well-contracepted women cost the insurance company less.  I’d like to see a panel of insurance industry actuaries set us straight on this. Sure, they would have loved Blunt (which is why their toadies in the Republican party voted for it in lockstep), which could have enabled them to deny coverage for all manner of things, but without the power to deny coverage to single parents, gays and lesbians, and whomever else they think morally unworthy for coverage (even though they pay their premiums….) any real actuary will tell you that contraception coverage is sound insurance policy.