We Don’t Need No Water

Tweets like this weren’t funny even before this guy got elected to lead the country.

I’ll get some flak for saying this, but it isn’t disrespectful to burn the flag.

It is disrespectful to suggest that the rights of someone choosing to burn a piece of cloth should be tossed to the wind under a would-be despot’s say-so.


Yes. Exactly. Now, what I want to know is, how do you expect me to respect you when you scream louder, make more noise over that symbol than you do over the very rights it represents?

Get mad about the flag being burned.

But also get mad that hate crimes are up in the wake of our presidential election.

Get mad that the VP-elect thinks it’s okay to try to “convert” LGBT youth to be straight.

Get mad that the president-elect has made more time for his foreign business partners than taking intelligence briefings.

Hell, get mad that the president-elect is spending time on Twitter picking fights with reporters and actors and comedians and activists when there are far more important things going on.

Get mad that the same people so upset over this expression of free speech shrug their shoulders when asked about the surge of another unpopular expression of free speech — white supremacy.

Finally, get mad about a president-elect who openly talks of punishing citizens for an act that is protected by our nation’s constitution and legal precedent.

Then talk to me about how much that flag really represents.

Follow-up: You Keep Using That Word …

I’m getting some predictable flack over my use of the word “bigot” to describe those supporting Chick-fil-A and its anti-equality stance.

I take words very seriously — surprised? anyone? — so I spent some serious time thinking over this flack and pondering its merits. Certainly, a lot of that time was spent reading much of the back-and-forth that’s going on this week as others have used that same word in the same manner I used it.

I know some people are really very hurt to have a label like “bigot” appended to them when they express their views on a subject.

I get that. Words can sting. I do not ever take labeling lightly, and I abhor name-calling.


Please, for the benefit of the class, explain to me exactly how those who seek to deny equality to a group of people, based solely on the differences between that group and themselves, are exempt from the accurate application of precise terminology.

Understand, I am not asking for excuses. It doesn’t matter if your bigotry is rooted in your religion, your upbringing, or a dream you had last night.

Hating members of the LGBT community, and opposing their freedom, is bigotry.

If your feelings are hurt when I accurately call you a bigot, please, by all means, desist in your bigotry.

Eat More Tolerance

I didn’t grow up with Chick-fil-A, though I did grow up in the South.

The smallish town I’m from did not have — and still does not have — much in the way of restaurants, fast-food or otherwise … nor much in the way of shopping, entertainment, and a hundred other things that are not relevant at the moment.

This isn’t about my hometown.

This is about a sandwich.

A good sandwich. A fine sandwich. Hold the pickles.

A sandwich I have loved since at least my teens, when I would look forward to trips outside my hometown to places where this treat was attainable.

A sandwich I splurged on in college whenever the campus newspaper ran two-for-one coupons.

A sandwich I could afford in the days when I was a poor newspaper writer.

A sandwich I could rely upon in recent days amid the otherwise mediocre offerings of the cafeteria in my office building.

A sandwich I have given up.

Not that Chick-fil-A may notice, certainly not today, as some crowds are loyally observing “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day,” blithely indifferent  to — or worse, supportive of — the restaurant’s stance against gay marriage, a stance evidenced by its CEO’s statements and its history ($5 million and counting) of financial support for organizations that seek to block and roll back equal rights.

I recognize my decision may be insignificant — what difference do a few dollars make in a pile millions high?

May as well ask what difference one vote makes in a pile millions high, yet we are taught early and reminded constantly that “every vote counts.”

So I am voting NO on Chick-fil-A’s anti-equality stance.

Anti-equality stance.

Putting it that way is entirely too kind — let’s be honest here and use the proper term.


A deliberate choice to actively scorn and deny equality to a group of people based solely on the fact they are different is nothing else.


Bigotry whose adherents expect a pass by claiming it’s based on a religious principle.


A bigot hiding behind religion is still a bigot.

And a bigot who whines for freedom while actively seeking to deny freedom to others deserves no respect, no sympathy.

But, by all means, bigots, whine on.

Speech is every bit as free today as yesterday, and may it ever be so.

But the loveliest thing about free speech is that everyone gets it, and while the bigots freely speak, so shall enlightened minds.

And we will watch as this bigotry battles enlightenment in the marketplace of ideas, and, as every manner of bigotry before it, loses.

Maybe slowly, certainly painfully. But definitely.

History will march, and such petty, terrible injustices will be dust on the roadside.


If you’re seeing this on 1/18/12, well you’re pretty clever to highlight hidden text, now aren’t you?

If you’re seeing this after that date, that first line doesn’t make sense, as lastgreypoet.com is back to normal. But you probably know all about the Stop Online Piracy Act, and the Protect IP Act, and you did everything you could to let your Congress-critters know you oppose them.
You did oppose them, right?