Disqualification

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Memo to George W. Bush: HOW DO YOU KEEP SURPRISING ME?

I simply cannot get any more cynical. I've maxed out the meter. I know, and have known, that given the opportunity, President Bush will find the single least appropriate person to nominate for any given position in his government. Director of FEMA? Horse show judge! Guy in charge of family planning? Anti-birth-control wackjob. Head of the Consumer Product Safety Commission? Someone from the manufacturing industry. It's like every day is crazy opposite day.

But that son of a bitch still managed to surprise me with his pick for Surgeon General. Because when my brain tries to think of the worst possible characteristics of a surgeon general, my brain, unlike Dubya's, still works logically. I think of things that are the opposite of doctors. Like interior decorators who specialize in Feng Shui, or a retired five-star general. You know, 'cause Bush may not realize it's not actually a military post.

I would not, under any circumstances, have thought of Kentucky cardiologist James Holsinger, but he is, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the worst possible choice for surgeon general.

You see, Holsinger is a Methodist. Which is not an automatic disqualification. But he's a very active Methodist, one of nine members of the United Methodist Church's Judicial Council. Which sounds really ominous, but again, not an automatic DQ. He even started his own congregation, Hope Springs Community Church. Now, that's REALLY churchy, but it's Bush, so what are you gonna do?

Hope Springs Community Church offers religious counseling to people with problems. You know, people with drug addiction. People with alcoholism. Oh, and GAY PEOPLE.

George W. Bush's surgeon general nominee runs an ex-gay ministry. That's got to set some kind of record for FUCKING APPALLING. Someone call Guinness and check. I have a huge list of things people in the ex-gay movement should be disqualified from, and becoming the surgeon general of the US just jumped to #3, right behind "running ex-gay ministries" at #2, and "residing on planet Earth" at #1.

Here's what the man who wants to be the top doctor in America has to say about homosexuality. "We see that as an issue not of orientation but of lifestyle. We have people who seek to walk out of that lifestyle."

Yeah, well, what a DOCTOR would tell them, what someone trained to do no harm and committed to helping their fellow man would tell them, is that it's not a fucking lifestyle that you walk out of. There's no "THIS WAY TO THE EGRESS" sign in beautiful downtown Gayland. And anyone who says there is one is a religious nutjob who's not fit to breathe my fucking atmosphere, much less tell me not to eat at Taco Bell.

Let me get this straight. Jocelyn Elders was UNFIT to be Surgeon General, and was forced to resign, because she told an AIDS conference that masturbation was part of human sexuality, and maybe if we taught people about that, it would be a good thing. That gets everyone in an uproar. That forces her to resign from the post.

But it's perfectly OK for Holsinger to tell gay Methodists that if they just spend some time at Hope Springs, that their spring will sprung for the opposite sex after some counseling. That their craving for cock is no different than a craving for coke. That being gay is a lifestyle, that being gay means you can't be pastors or join the Methodist church. And that's just dandy?

I'm going to be watching these confirmation hearings VERY closely. The ex-gay minister is going to have to get through a Democratic congress, and if they can't stop Captain Lifestyle Choice, they're every bit as useless as we feared they'd be.

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