Thursday, August 23, 2012

Fighting Talk

I don't much get into the blogging business of marriage equality - even though I am married to a man and our union is not recognized in our own state.

It's not that I do not care about the subject - I do,  I just assume others in the blogosphere can articulate some of the points better than I.  Also, I get my panties in a wad listening to the opposition prattle on with their lame arguments about the bible, man/woman, two parents per child rationale. 

Dan Savage (does he need an introduction here?) was challenged to a debate of ideas by Brian Brown from the National Organization of Marriage. It happened earlier this month at Dan Savage's house and moderated by a New York Times staffer - who happens to be Jewish and married.  While that last part might not seem important - it kind of is, as clearly Savage and Brown get into Old and New Testament discussions. 

While no one was declared a "winner", these are two folks who wouldn't accept that the other "won" anything. In a way, except for actually sitting down together, face to face, there was never going to be a victor. 

I do applaud both of them for sitting down together. Savage I could always see doing that, but Brown, not so much. 

In my mind, Savage wins, but you knew that.

I have a skewed view of the subject to begin with. But if you can sit through the hour (yes, an hour for you folks with short attention spans!) there are some good moments to watch - almost all of them Savage. 

Dan brings some logic to the debate as opposed to Brown to more or less just says "you're wrong" without some of the back-up that Savage brings to the table. Brown reverts mostly to a few tried and true arguments that have worked for his organization for so long. 

The first part, each has 10 minutes and it is a little tiring. Savage's five minute rebuttal is not bad, but you can see where Brown will take it on his five minutes...and he does. 

Around the 40-41 minute mark, you can actually see Brown start to froth at the mouth. Give the man a glass of water already. 

I took issue with the moderator at one point joining in on the "debate" but clearly taking Savage's side. Not that I'm not for that, but someone will cry "foul" over a non-neutral moderator. 

And while Savage is a smart man, well researched, well spoken, he had to know how Brown would react to the "facts" presented and did nothing to shut it down before Brown had a chance to respond. Brown, clearly cherry-picks certain things for facts and responses  - and as you might imagine, it all goes to crap with no one respecting the time allotted for the other.....and then it just becomes the same Hardball segments they are  on in separate studios talking over each other. 

....another fault of the moderator. 

I was hoping for a trouncing where something was made clear to the limited audience.  As of this writing, less than 400 people have viewed and it is only on YouTube.  But since there is a corresponding article on the NYT website, I expect that number to jump up somewhat. 

No one is changing anyone else's mind with this debate. The choirs have been preached to long ago.

Which I guess goes to this question:  has any public debate ever really changed your mind or opinion on something?

I can't think of once where that has happened with me. 

Song by: Everything but the Girl


anne marie in philly said...

just look at the body language at the table; dan is relaxed, whilst brian is angry and foaming. brian needs to crawl back under his rock.

I daresay when equality becomes federal law, brian's head will assplode! can't wait for that day!

Cubby said...

To answer your question, yes debates have influences me. No I cannot name dates and times. LOL

If a debate is on a subject with which I am unfamiliar and one debater presents facts while the other relies on "long-held beliefs and traditions", then guess what? I'm going with the facts.

rebecca said...

I was too distracted by savage's wall art to read the article when I saw it in the newspaper.