Friday, September 20, 2013

The Book of Matt: Matthew Shepard was not the victim of a hate crime

C-Fam reports that there is now confirmation of what many of us had heard or suspected. Matthew Shepard knew his killers, they were all into dealing and doing drugs (meth) and his murder had nothing to do with his homosexual orientation.

All along there were naysayers to the Shepard narrative. Social critic Camille Paglia wrote in Salon that Shepard had a taste for what is called “rough trade” and that he could have died from that. Detectives at the time suggested that he death was more than likely tied to drugs rather than his homosexuality. An ABC 20/20 segment several years later explored that possibility.

However, a new book out by award winning gay journalist Steven Jiminez goes much further than previous critics of the Shepard narrative. Jiminez went to Laramie many years ago to conduct interviews for a movie script about the life and death of Shepard. Almost immediately he began to hear stories about Shepard that had never been reported and that flatly contradict the notion that he was killed because he was gay.

In The Book of Matt reveals what townsfolk knew all along, that Shepard was very involved in the Laramie drug scene, may have been an occasional drug dealer himself, and even more importantly, he knew his killers. More than that, he and his killers had sex together.

One of the conceits of the dominant narrative was that Shepard did not know his killers, that his killers walked into the Fireside bar that night at 11:45 and somehow got a total stranger, Shepard, to leave with them 15 minutes later. According to the Jiminez book, Shepard knew his killers well. The book speculates that Shepard was killed because he had a new stash of methamphetamine and the killers wanted it. The book also reports that his main killer, Aaron McKinney, was on a five-day meth binge, a state given to maniacal violence.

The new book has been reported in the gay press and also in the conservative press but does not seem to have broken into the mainstream, not yet anyway. Things may change when the book is finally released on October 1. But the question remains, will this new story change in any way the dominant story that has aided the gay movement so well? If Matthew Shepard was killed strictly because of drugs by his sometime gay sex partner, what will that do to his martyr status in the gay community and in the larger world including at the United Nations?

Kudos to the author of this book, Stephen Jimenez, a man who is gay but who is nonetheless committed to the truth of this case. Here's some more info from the Amazon page for the Book of Matt:

Stephen Jimenez’s The Book of Matt: Hidden Truths About the Murder of Matthew Shepard is a compelling story of a journalist’s determination to ascertain why Matthew Shepard -- a gay University of Wyoming student -- was viciously killed in 1998. The story that had been told in the media, and to some extent in the courtroom, was that Shepard had made a pass at two strangers in a bar, who became outraged, took Shepard to a remote spot, bashed his head in, and left him affixed to a fence, to die. It was the anti-gay hate crime of the century, and while the rationale for including anti-gay attacks under hate crime law was clearly established long before the Shepard murder, his case became a symbol and rallying point for such legislation.

Jimenez, however, uncovered another story, one that was to some extent unappreciated at the time of the crime, but was also intentionally hidden for a variety of motivations. Among those motivations were fear, courtroom strategy, and the desire of media, activists, and others to believe the powerful story of a gay man being brutally killed for no other reason than he made an unwelcome pass at a man he happened to meet in a bar.

Shepard and his killer, Aaron McKinney, were not strangers after all. In fact Aaron McKinney was a bisexual, who had had sex with Shepard. And both were dealers of methamphetamine.

Jimenez makes a strong case that the unappreciated lesson of the Shepard murder is one about the dangers of methamphetamine. This book is a well-constructed narrative of a 13-year investigative quest by a talented author whose passion for uncovering the true story rings clear. Highly recommended.

Yes, hopefully this will get people talking about the strong connection between gay culture and the use of drugs, especially meth. But don't hold your breath for the voices in the mainstream media to spill anything other than the standard line that once gays stop being bullied they'll quit using drugs. Well, at least now there is a story of gays killing each other over drugs. This book will be hard to ignore; at least it will showcase how many lies the gay mafia is willing to tell.


A Nasty Note from Joel Salatin

You might remember this guy, Joel Salatin, as the self-righteous farmer quoted in Crunchy Cons who implied that you couldn't be a true Christian and work in the agriculture industry unless you did things his way, i.e., organic pigs, small, local and what-not. If readers of Crunchy Cons forget him I'm not surprised. His over-the-top statements just melt into the high-pitch background of scolding dogma which is the warp and woof of standard Crunchy Conservative judgmentalism. It seems to me like Salatin is vying to become the successor to the throne of Wendell Berry, although I'm not sure he's against electricity.

Here's the recent rant from Salatin in which the squeal goes up another octave. He's mainly reacting to a speech given by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack at a Democrat fund raiser in which Vilsack points out that 40% of the US Military comes from rural America even though rural America represents only 16% of the US population. This is horrible news to him as someone who wants to see more people entering the farming industry. Here's his reaction in his words:

Are you ready? Here’s his answer: although rural America only has 16 percent of the population, it gives 40 percent of the personnel to the military. Say what? You mean when it’s all said and done, at the end of the day, the bottom line–you know all the cliches–the whole reason for increasing farms is to provide cannon fodder for American imperial might. He said rural kids grow up with a sense of wanting to give something back, and if we lose that value system, we’ll lose our military might.

Emphasis mine, I don't know about you, but I'm not going to go up to a member of the military from rural America—Sergeant Theresa Vail, to use an example from recent news—and tell her she is "cannon fodder". First of all, she'd kick my ass in short order, but more importantly because I respect the US military more than any other government institution. Pew says I'm in the majority with regard to this opinion and my guess is Vilsack knew his statement would resonate well with at least 78% of the invitees in that room.

Is the "cannon fodder" remark just an off-the-cuff angry outburst of Salatin's which we can excuse? I don't think so. Aside from the fact that he put it into writing, he does so twice. Here's his second use of the term, again with my emphasis:

But to think that my agenda is key to building the American military–now that’s a cause for pause. I will redouble my efforts to help folks remember why we need more farmers. It’s not to provide cannon fodder for Wall Street imperialistic agendas. It’s to grow food that nourishes, land that’s aesthetically and aromatically sensually romantic, build soil, hydrate raped landscapes, and convert more solar energy into biomass than nature would in a static state.

Again, you have to think about what members of the military would think if you went up to them and told them they were "cannon fodder for Wall Street imperialistic agendas". Have you ever met people who have lost hands and arms in accidents of an agricultural nature? I have; but I will spare you the details. Suffice to say I'd rather have a 7.62x39 round in me than to undergo what some of them underwent. So—were they "cannon fodder" for the food industry? The people I'm talking about got hurt working for family farms, not huge agribusiness enterprises.

The piece gets sillier, nastier and more and more shrill until the last sentence, "Here’s to more healthy worms," squeaks out. Speaking these five words seems to be the perfect way to end this rant. I advise everyone to read it in its entirety to get a taste of how lunatic rage reads in print. My main takeaway is as long as these people continue to overstate their case with this fever pitch of poisonous rhetoric the world will be safe from their ideas. They blow their credibility whenever they speak in anger, which is to say practically every time they speak on a topic. There is nothing Christian about elevating the greatness of your profession and career choices above that of others. And let it be known that I have plenty of huge, healthy, organic earthworms in my backyard; thank you very much for your kind offer to take care of them.

Almost forgot about this tune

Green Haze by Elvis Hitler.

How could I forget about Elvis Hitler or Green Haze? I think what happens is my brain tries to clean itself out every once in awhile and attempts to toss memories of the thousands of songs like this one. Then I come storming in unshaven and wearing a wife-beater tank top, shouting, "What are you throwing that out for? Are you crazy? I need that stuff!" My brain gives in with a heavy sigh and says "Just go put it on your stupid blog and be done with it."

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Donald McClarey pwns Chipotle

Over at The American Catholic, Donald McClarey serves up several videos concerning Chipotle with this commentary.

Over the top and entertaining which is how I like commercials if I have to endure one. I like Mexican food but I have never liked Chipotle as the menu is too limited and their massive burritos leave me cold. Just as well, as those things weigh in at a 1000 calories, which makes their wholesomener than thou commercial hilarious. Yeah, we treat the animals we slaughter for your plate in a kinder and gentler fashion as we serve you their remains to make you obese!

Loved the second video. Much more likely to get me into Chipotle than the first and, no, I didn't download the Scarecrow app.

Not bad for a couple of (gay) white guys.

OK, color me slow. I just caught the "magic marker" reference. They always write on the foil with a Sharpie. Hilarious. I always get the burrito bowl when I go there. And, uh, a Modelo of Color, naturally.

Start day with awsome cat

22 million views... what?

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Pope Francis' Five Fingers of Prayer

You'll remember whom to pray for after you see this:

(Bigger version)

From Daily Meditations from Fr. Alfonse.   His daily posts are always interesting -- add his blog to your RSS feed.

Open Letter to America about American Exceptionalism

A Facebook friend writes:

Paul, I hope you can post this on your blog. It's my response to Rod Dreher's muted support for Vladimir Putin's op-ed in the New York Times about the Middle East and American Exceptionalism. No, I didn't write it but I'm getting sick of Dreher's poseurish tendencies, myself.

Here's the link he sent me. I'm not sure which post of Dreher's he is a responding to, but you guys might since you monitor his blog more. My friend might come over here and comment—he seems pretty incensed. It's very powerful and successful at conveying the truth. It is written by an Australian named Nick Adams, here's his website. Here's an excerpt:

Historically, you—the people of America—have been the most enterprising, market-oriented, individualistic, and averse to taxation and regulation. You have shown yourselves to be the least likely people in the world to look on the state as either the provider of benefits or the guarantor of equal outcomes.

Why is this? It’s simple. You fostered a state that allowed its citizens the widest latitude for creativity and innovation, where success gets rewarded without government approvals and bureaucratic interference. And where religious faith, aspiration and risk are embraced. You have your founders to thank.

When it is understood what America stands for, and the moral dimension to a smaller government is appreciated, it becomes not an economic question, but a moral question. For example, it’s why, per capita, you are the most charitable or philanthropic people on earth. The bigger the government, the worse the citizen.

You have a moral superiority. America is great because America is good.

See, you believe in equality of birth, but not equality of result. All humans are equal but all not nations and cultures are not. It’s why poor Mr. Putin is confused.

In sum, the American model has offered a greater chance for dignity, hope and happiness for more people than any other system of government has offered its own. But even its promise can be threatened by those that do not share these ideals, whether domestic or foreign sources. That’s why you have to be vigilant.

I'm sure a lot of the wordsmith intellectuals over at TAC are as much poseurs as Dreher on this topic even if his writing is ten times better. They think if America was a little more like Europe or Russia then they would be paid commensurately with their awesome brainpower rather than based on what they could actually produce. If I had my wish, all the people who thought this way would write for inconsequential web rags like TAC. Unfortunately many of them are teaching our kids in schools and universities—public AND private.

Monday, September 16, 2013

"Cautious restraint" versus "Voyeuristic intrusiveness"

I liked Bill Donohue's observations in comparing the media's treatment of Pope Francis and that of Pope Benedict. Excerpt:

There were 14 editorials on Pope Benedict XVI and 11 on Pope Francis. The difference can probably be chalked up to the familiarity of the former versus the unfamiliarity of the latter. But there were more similarities than dissimilarities.

Two segments of the population dominated the media’s interest in the two popes: homosexuals and women. In the 25 editorials, homosexuals were cited 13 times, and women 15. With the exception of a few editorials that gave faint praise to Pope Francis for not judging gays of goodwill, they were uniformly critical of the teachings of the Catholic Church on both subjects. Only two newspapers, USA Today and the Washington Post, did not mention either subject explicitly.

There is no other religion that is subjected to this kind of micro-scrutiny. The elite media react to Islam and Judaism with cautious restraint, and with voyeuristic intrusiveness to Catholicism. Yet when it comes to teachings on homosexuality and women, there is very little difference between the three monotheistic religions. Judaism is respected, Islam is feared, and Christianity—especially Catholicism—is loathed.

Of course one of my friends who I've blogged about is continuously sending me emails about how Pope Francis is pretty much the anti-Christ and Benedict is still the authentic Pope, though exiled by the gay mafia. The latest rumblings about relaxing celibacy mandates for the priests of the Latin Rite have him apoplectic. Personally, Pope Francis's style with the media reminds me of chasing parking lot gulls scrounging for old meat in back of the grocery store. It's amusing for the chaser and it keeps the gulls out of trouble for a bit.