Tuesday's election results showed that 52 percent of Maryland voters bought the "fairness" argument those proponents of the state's same-sex marriage law used.
That was the percentage who voted for Question 6, the referendum that allowed the same-sex marriage law the Maryland legislature passed earlier this year to stand. Opponents of the law managed to get enough signatures on a petition to take the matter to referendum, but during the campaign it was hard to find a pro-Question 6 ad that didn't have the "f" word -- "fairness" -- in it.
Now it becomes my sad duty to inform those Marylanders who voted for Question 6 that this wasn't about "fairness" at all, but about overhauling the institution of marriage -- and society -- in such a radical way that we might not recognize either in the future.
The overhaul started long before Question 6 got on the ballot, and long before the Maryland legislature passed the law legalizing same-sex marriage earlier this year. The catchphrase of Question 6 supporters -- "marriage equality" -- might have fooled many into thinking that the law merely allows gay and lesbian couples to marry. But it does far more.
As I've written before, there is no longer a gay and lesbian rights movement. There is now what is called the lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender -- LGBT -- movement, and it's expanding.
The May 18 edition of the Huffington Post contained an article with this title, one that shows where the institution of marriage will soon be headed: "Should Groups Like Asexuals and the Polyamorous Be Included Under The Queer Umbrella?"
For the uninitiated, "polyamorous" people are defined as "those interested in relationships of one type or another with more than one partner." In any true, genuine sense, "marriage equality" would have to accommodate the polyamorous. On the Showtime television network, there is indeed a show titled "Polyamory: Married & Dating." There is at least one website dedicated to New York City's gay-lesbian-bisexual-transgender-polyamorist community. ...
Oyster Stats show surprising tidbits on a range of topics using data we've accumulated from our hotel coverage and site traffic. Our goal is not to provide scientific data but to provide interesting directional insights about travel trends. Here is some whimsy from the election cycle.
Once the presidential debates started the countdown to Election Day, the country's political fever was in earnest, with everyone getting all hot and bothered, and understandably so. As Election Day approached, voters were left questioning their parties and searching for proof that the person they planned to vote for would be the best suited for the job. Well, we at Oyster.com couldn't guarantee THAT, but we DID collect some interesting evidence that may have you looking at the election - and particularly your fellow voters - in a new light. Check out our findings:
-FINDING: SWING STATE RESIDENTS ARE SWINGERS.
It may come as a surprise to you that those who live in the most indecisive states are also the most likely to decide to dabble in a swing-tastic lifestyle - or it may not. After all, the more options, the better! In our research, we found that a significantly larger percentage of Oyster.com viewers residing in the swing states were checking out hotels on our site that encourage open relationships - such as Desire Resort & Spa Los Cabos, Desire Resort & Spa Riviera Maya and Temptation Resort & Spa Cancun - than viewers in the red and blue states. So, OK fine, we understand that this may not mean that swing state residents are ACTUALLY more likely to be swingers. But it at least means that they're more likely to have it on their minds!
Page views per person: 12 (among indecisives), 6 (blue states, or Democrats), 3.5 (red states, or Republican)
Percentage of web page traffic to swinger hotels: 0.092 percent (indecisives), 0.028 percent (red and blue combined)
-FINDING: REPUBLICANS ARE CLOSET NUDISTS. ...
Read more here: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2012/11/06/2756702/unscientific-vacation-stats-show.html#storylink=cpy
The Coquitlam RCMP officer whose online fetish photos were made public is suing for breach of privacy and defamation.
Cpl. James Charles Brown is suing Vancouver lawyer Cameron Ward, New Westminster resident Grant Wakefield and two unidentified people listed as John and Jane Doe, who are said to be known to Wakefield.
In the suit, filed in BC Supreme Court last week, Brown is claiming an unspecified amount in general, special, aggravated and punitive damages for "substantial and persisting injury to the plaintiff's reputation, injury to his pride and self-confidence, and severe emotional distress."
The lawsuit alleges Wakefield set up false profiles to gain access to the members-only fetish website Fetlife, where he then copied photos of Brown and transcripts of online conversations. Wakefield sent the material to the media as well as Ward, constituting an unlawful breach of Brown's privacy, according to the suit.
The photos included several of Brown engaged in various "consensual acts" as well as staged images of a woman being abducted, hog-tied and sexually assaulted that were only later found not to include Brown.
What followed were at least 10 instances of defamatory expression published in the Vancouver Sun newspaper, various online blogs and via Twitter, all of which were caused by the defendants, claims Brown.
The lawsuit states that in mid-July, the defendants published, or caused to be published, several Twitter messages stating or implying that Brown is corrupt, was connected to William Pickton and attended the illegal drinking establishment on the Pickton property known as "Piggie's Palace."
At about the same time, the suit alleges, the defendants published comments in an online article that indicate Brown has used blackmail to keep his job as an RCMP officer and has hired lawyers to intimidate witnesses and silence the media.
The lawsuit also claims the defamation continued with a lengthy letter sent to several media outlets in August in which the defendants, claiming to have a background working with the RCMP and CSIS, state that Brown has a violent history that includes the sexual assault of a young woman. It also says Brown has published hundreds of sexually explicit photos online under the name "Kilted Knight," some of which "break obscenity laws." ...
A Coquitlam RCMP officer pictured in bondage images that were made public this summer claims the man who uncovered the photos and a well-known Vancouver lawyer have defamed him.
Cpl. James Charles Brown filed a notice of civil claim in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver Thursday, naming Grant Wakefield and A. Cameron Ward as defendants, along with two unnamed people.
In March of this year, Wakefield became aware of photos of Brown on a website called Fetlife, featuring Brown in sexual poses. According to the civil claim, Wakefield allegedly made two fake accounts on the website, befriended Brown and copied photos, postings, transcripts of online conversations and other personal material. Wakefield passed on that information to the RCMP.
Wakefield’s actions were an unlawful breach of Brown’s privacy, the suit alleges. The RCMP launched a Code of Conduct investigation shortly after learning about the photos.
It is also alleged that Wakefield defamed Brown through the media.
The claim alleges that Wakefield made false and malicious statements in a comment on an online article, an email to the writer of the article, tweets and posts on the Re-Sergeance Alliance blog. The claim says the comments are understood to imply that Brown is corrupt and somehow tied to serial killer Robert Pickton.
The claim states that Brown’s involvement in the Pickton case was limited to two occasions in 1999.
In July of that year Brown passed on the name of a person who claimed to have information about Pickton to a member of the Vancouver Police Department.
In August and September 1999, he spent six or 10 shifts conducting surveillance of Pickton.
Police are investigating Wakefield for criminal defamation.
As for Ward, he is accused of publishing three blog posts in August and October in “an effort to cause maximum embarrassment and damage” to Brown. The posts call Brown a “sexual sadist” and talk about his alleged ties to Pickton.
The lawsuit calls the posts false, malicious and defamatory.
“The defendants, or one or more of them, have been guilty of reprehensible, insulting, high-handed, spiteful, malicious and oppressive conduct,” the suit alleges. ...
UCLA researchers recently published the results of a study that provides initial analysis of the concept of hypersexual disorder. Hypersexual disorder is a proposed diagnosis that may be included in a section of APA’s forthcoming DSM-5 that is reserved for conditions that require further research. Hypersexual disorder is little more than a watered-down concept that emerged from the pop psychology term sex addiction, but has foregone all of the moralizing and subjective terms embedded in sex addiction, describing what is predominantly a problematic pattern of frequent sexual behaviors, where individuals “feel out of control.” Because the concept of sex addiction is intrinsically flawed, and consistently rejected by science and the medical establishment, the bare bones concept of hypersexual disorder is a last ditch effort to create a diagnosis. The media has seized this recent study as evidence that sex addiction is real, and everyone from Dr. Drew to the Huffington Post have claimed that it vindicates the concept of sex addiction. But, this study proves nothing about sex addiction, and in fact offers evidence that even the limited concept of hypersexual disorder is a socially-biased and flawed concept.
The study was not in fact a true test of whether hypersexual disorder is a valid diagnostic concept, but merely whether the diagnostic criteria of this proposed diagnosis could be used consistently and accurately by clinicians. This study is only a preliminary effort to evaluate whether the criteria as proposed could be used – not whether this is a real, independent and truly valid disorder.
The only thing this study demonstrates about the diagnosis of hypersexual disorder is that the criteria can be used consistently if you are trying to create a diagnosis where even “normal” sexual behaviors can be a disorder, if someone is troubled by them, or of they trouble those around them. This used to be the case for the term "nymphomaniac," which Kinsey said was simply someone having more sex than the therapist. Now, instead of targeting women who liked sex as much as men, the new "hypersexual disorder" seems to target men who have more sex than the average man, or that's what this latest study shows.
Hypersexual disorder overwhelmingly targets males, in its criteria, and in the demographics of people diagnosed with the disorder. 95% of the hypersexual disorder group were male, compared to only around 60% of comparison groups. This makes it very clear that what is being targeted is not sexual problems, but socially-unacceptable sexual behaviors of males. Further, the males in the hypersexual group tend to be wealthy – half of the males with hypersexual disorder in this study make over $80,000 a year, compared to only 35% in the other groups. The proposed diagnosis is potentially creating a disorder to explain the problematic behavior of a privileged group. If a similar diagnosis pathologized poor African-American males, this would be clear evidence of bias and the effects of social stigma and discrimination, NOT a disorder in the men themselves. In other words, this pattern of findings suggests that the problems identified in hypersexual disorder may reflect the effects of social forces on different groups, NOT a mental disorder in these individuals.
More than three times as many of the participants with hypersexual disorder were gay or bisexual men, compared to the other groups in this study. This is not trivial. Hypersexual disorder already pathologizes male sexuality, and the heightened sexuality of gay and bi males suffers this attack even further. Hypersexual disorder turns being a gay or bisexual male into a disease. In the 70’s, being gay stopped being an illness. This disorder proposes to put it back. There are numerous groups who will use this medical support to attack homosexuality: Utah Senate candidate Jeremy Friedbaum is one example, who believes that homosexuality is a disease of sex addiction, and needs to be cured. ...
“As a City Councillor, it’s a revenue generator for the community center, and we’re continually asking our community centers to be more enterprising. So as long as it’s legal, which obviously S&M is, I don’t have a problem with it." ...
The RCMP inappropriately used its resources to investigate one of its informants, according to a complaint filed Tuesday by the B.C. Civil Liberties Association.
The association sent a letter to the Commission for Public Complaints against the RCMP asking for a probe into the Mounties’ actions, to be conducted by an outside agency.
The association’s move follows an order from B.C. Provincial Court Judge Peder Gulbransen unsealing the information provided to obtain the warrant to search the home of Grant Wakefield.
In March, Wakefield gave police information about the personal activities of Sgt. James Brown.
That information included an account that Wakefield said was given to him by a young woman who said she met with Brown over lunch after connecting through an online dating site.
She claimed they discussed sexual fantasies in his police car and he told her about websites where he could be contacted.
After looking at the sites — which featured bondage, dominance, sadism and masochism — Wakefield forwarded some photos of Brown from the sites to the Coquitlam RCMP.
The RCMP then began a Code of Conduct investigation. That probe is now complete and a final package is being assembled, which will be sent to the commanding officer for review and any decisions on discipline.
The media got wind of the story in July and published the photos. Soon after, an article was posted online criticizing the media for misidentifying Brown in some photos.
Someone commented, making negative allegations about Brown. The person also emailed the author of the article, making similar allegations. Around the same time, someone opened a Twitter account and posted more comments.
Police are investigating whether these comments are defamatory libel and allege that Wakefield was the source. ...