“I’m reading it from your book, dude.”

This interview with prominent ex-gayRichard Cohen is bound to get a lot of play in the coming weeks, and if you haven’t seen it, I gotta say it’s fairly epic. Maddow takes him apart. Watch his body language get twitchier by the minute. He definitelyneeds a hug by the end.

Side note: Last night @maddow live-twitter denizens (think Crack Van on estrogen) were primed for this like a pay-for-view boxing match. Watching it as it aired, though, I felt myself getting weirdly uncomfortable as Maddow pressed on toward the takedown. Now, this might get taken out of context but bear with me (we lesbians do like to process our stuff). In short, I first felt like she was taking it too personally, that it made her seem less credible. For the record, of course she did obviously show she took it personally but what I had to remind myself was that this wasbeside the point. One, because the show isn’t a straight (no pun intended) news show, it’s commentary. Two, and more importantly, what she charged Cohen with is – sadly – accurate.

I bring that up because I’ve had that reaction before, not just regarding GLBT issues in the media, but with respect to other instances where progressive or liberal views are brought forth in the mainstream, usually when countering someone like a Cohen, or a Palin, or a Bachmann. For me, it’s a sign of how, despite my conscious efforts otherwise, I’ve internalized the false framing regarding the primacy of balance. Note to self, Chuck Todd, David Gregory, and others: some shit is just inherently UNBALANCED. Keep that thought front and center as we move toward 2012 and more of the weird turn pro.

Uganda legislating to kill and imprison gays is unbalanced. The C Street Family tinkering with policy in Uganda and elsewhere abroad is unbalanced. Persisting in attempts to refute scientific fact with subjective belief is unbalanced.

p>I’m not going to delve too much into the underpinnings of the pray-the-gay-away and/or ex-gay movement, as I think they speak volumes all by themselves. However, something the ex- and prayed-away gays don’t like to focus on, and Maddow notably does here, and in the preceding interview, is thatit’s a big business. I do wonder whether Cohen et al would make this their life’s work if there wasn’t a percentage in it?

p align=”center” class=”asset asset-video” style=”margin: 0pt auto; display: block;”>http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640

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8 thoughts on ““I’m reading it from your book, dude.”

  1. mothra says:

    I watched the end of this and this guy was simply astounding. I actually salute Rachel for not just throwing down the book and hollering at the guy for being an insane fuck in total denial about his true self.
    I did rather enjoy how he evaded answering Rachel’s question about whether he had desire for men after he deciced to “quit” being gay. The answer was obviously yes, but he wouldn’t say it on teevee. Oh, no. I feel sorry for his poor wife. Jeez.

  2. pansypoo says:

    i feel sorry for his wife.

  3. spocko says:

    Wow. From a “debate” point of view I’m really curious how this would be scored.
    I really find this discussion interesting because I think about how this would be done by someone using Hannity techniques.
    I don’t like Hannity techniques but for his audience he ‘wins’ the conversation with everyone using all the techniques at his disposal including cutting the guy off and cutting his mike. That is the equivalent of throwing the keyboard up in the air.

  4. spocko says:

    oops I meant “throwing the chessboard up in the air.”

  5. virgotex says:

    so spocko, do you think Maddow was on the Hannity end of the scale or playing fair?

  6. montag says:

    I thought Maddow was pretty restrained. The first time the guy said, “that’s not in my book,” and it was, I would have said, “it’s the fourteenth word in the second paragraph on page 276, fuckwad.”
    But, that’s one more reason among many that I’m not on the teebee. 🙂

  7. spocko says:

    Virgotex. I think that she was fair. Hannity is never fair and he is also petty and mean. If you watch the episode where former Governor Jesse Ventura argued with him on torture you see Hannity at his most ‘fair’. He lost the argument but because he doesn’t want the crap kicked out of him he jokes about how he doesn’t know why he has him on the show, but “I like you anyway.” You see for Hannity the desire to be liked is very important. Especially, celebrities. I noticed this when he went on the Seder Garofolio show. We wanted Sam and Janeane to attack and destroy him but they didn’t and he went on the show because he liked the celebrity of Janeane. The right loves Hollywood even if they hate their politics. Because the left has all the real celebrities.
    The only way you will ever see Hannity lose is when he is outside his venue with someone who understands the games, knows the debate tactics and has the desire to humiliate Hannity so badly that Hannity leaves screaming. There aren’t a lot of people on the left who like to do that kind of thing and who Hannity would bother to go up against.
    Who could that be? Jon Stewart.
    Rachael is VERY concerned with being fair because she wants these idiots to come back or to have new idiots on. Like that jerk lobbyist, remember him?
    . Right wing hosts don’t care about fair. If they have the person on and don’t like them they just attack, insult and attack some more. If you fight back after you are off the show they attack you. This is one reason why I worked to take the argument with Talk radio people out side their control when possible.
    What I would have liked Maddow to do was to request that he actively started to work against the kill the gays bill and then check up to see if he was.
    This is something that I often want to do is to get them to say, “I’m so strongly against my work being used in this fashion I’ve actively written them and called them and told them that the information you quoted is in fact wrong and made up data.”

  8. Lex says:

    [[Note to self, Chuck Todd, David Gregory, and others: some shit is just inherently UNBALANCED.]]
    The facts have a well-known liberal bias.

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