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More hyperbole from IFI

Monday, Apr 23, 2007

I’ve been on the Illinois Family Institute’s e-mail list for quite some time now. Usually, I just chuckle at their hyperbolic press releases. I chuckled a little more than usual today, however, and thought I’d share it with you.

First, the bold-faced headline…

IFI E-Alert: Contact Your State Rep. Today About The “Homosexual/Shack-up Teachers Bill” - Ominous legislation will equate shack-up couples and homosexual partners with married spouses.

Now, the lede, which is fairly sedate…

HB 1331, sponsored by State Representative Julie Hamos (D-Evanston), amends the Illinois Pension Code, to allow a designated domestic partner to qualify as a surviving spouse for purposes of survivor and death benefits.

As amended, HB 1331 changes the Downstate Teacher Article of the Illinois Pension Code as well as the Chicago Teacher Article.

Scroll down a bit, however, and you’ll see this…

The assault on traditional American culture continues. This legislation, HB 1331, might as well be called the “Homosexual/Shack-up Teacher Bill”, as it most certainly will attract non-traditionalists and homosexual activists to Chicago classrooms. Make no mistake, this bill will be provide an incentive to draw non-traditional and homosexual activist teachers to come to Illinois schools.

Do you think this stuff works? If so, please explain it to me.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Way Northsider - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 10:00 am:

    It shouldn’t work but it does. If you believe the nonsense these people do of course a message like this will get you motivated to start contacting your state legislators or whatever. It’s silly and probably best deserves to be ignored.

  2. - HoosierDaddy - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 10:26 am:

    It works for their limited audience, and that’s what it’s intended to do. There’s a lot of internal communication in these lobby groups, right and left, that would sound pretty extreme to somebody in the middle…

  3. - HoosierDaddy - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 10:27 am:

    P.S. But wouldn’t you love to see the floor debate if somebody actually talked like that on the floor. Real ugly, real fast.

  4. - Sango Dem - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 10:37 am:

    …”this bill will be provide an incentive to draw non-traditional and homosexual activist teachers to come to Illinois schools.”

    This line makes me like the bill even more! We need more activists teaching in schools.

  5. - Little Egypt - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 10:56 am:

    It must be a slow news day, thankfully.

  6. - Squideshi - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 11:00 am:

    I hate to burst their bubble, but there are already a good number of gays working in our schools; so not having this benefit doesn’t logically keep them out.

  7. - Dooley Dudright - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 11:57 am:

    Oh, gimme a break.

    It’s estimated (or is it urban legend?) that (a) one out of ten human beings is homosexual and (b) 95% of America has sex before marriage.

    (And cohabitation is commonplace, no?)

    Excuuuuuse me, but — hyperbole-off-the-Richter-Scale like this does not comport with reality.

    The IFI’s hysteria aside — there IS an issue here. And it ain’t morality.

    It’s all about counting beans.

    Does Rep. Hamos (or anyone else) have a forecast about the impact this will have on our collectively frail (to be polite about it) pension systems?

    In other words, skip the moral judgments altogether.

    The more salient question is — do the actuaries think we can AFFORD bennies for significant others?

  8. - VanillaMan - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 12:19 pm:

    NO - this doesn’t work. Anyone claiming otherwise is just trying to look better by pointing at them.

    How long have we been seeing these stunts? You want to look like a credible thoughtful person so that your political position will also look credible and thoughtful?

    Then find an extremist group and claim they speak for everyone who opposes your political agenda.

    In today’s “gotcha gamesmenship”, PR stunts exposing crazy people is supposed to trump intelligent debate.

    We all know the game. We have been seeing it for an awfully long time, haven’t we?

    In this case, we have a bunch of crazies spouting off and looking foolish, and another bunch of crazies fingerpointing at them and claiming that anyone who disagrees are exactly the same.

    There are real reasons to discuss these issues intelligently. There are no reasons to use these political tactics to paint one side or another with a broad brush in order not to have that intelligent debate.

    No, I wouldn’t like to see anyone use the General Assembly floor to talk ugly and fast.

    No, whoever these nutjobs are, they are not believed by the majority. But by no means does that mean that “the majority” by default, supports the other side either.

    In today’s internet world and 24/7 news media, we have to not only ignor extremist groups, but also people who use these extremist groups and try to raise their own level of self righteousness.

  9. - Reddbyrd - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 1:38 pm:

    Bet that IFI group gets their palms all sweaty just writing the email and press releases. And then people start responding. Wow I bet their windows are all steamed up.

  10. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 1:39 pm:

    I’ve heard tens of thousands of gays have been lined up for years with their applications to teach in the Chicago Public Schools in hand, but the lack of same-sex partner benefits was keeping them back.

    Ha! We should be so lucky. The shortage of qualified teachers isn’t just a Chicago and Illinois problem, it’s a national epidemic.

    Does it work? Not according to the media’s reaction. The IFI got precious little coverage in 2006, despite the fact that they were busily boycotting the gay games, decrying Chicago’s Gay Pride Parade, and organizing a (failed) petition drive to get a gay marriage ban on the statewide ballot. In fact, they probably got more press about the failure of their petition drive than anything else the did.

  11. - techboy - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 2:24 pm:

    Well at least the teachers will dress nicer.

    Seriously, I know people so gullible that they would take such a press release from IFI as truth, in the absence or a contrary opinion. Goofy or silly, you need to answer every nutbar with the truth, not for your own sake, but for the sake of people less informed or aware that might be swayed in the abscence of a counterpoint.

  12. - PalosParkBob - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 2:33 pm:

    I agree with Dooley. It is the height of responsibility to be expanding benefits to “significant others” when you’re not even funding the excessive benfits the state’s giving now.

    What I’d like to see is someone on the floor stand up and explain where the money will be coming from to pay for these often flighty relationship benefits.

    Do we cut back on children’s reading programs and educational assistance to the learning disabled to pay for it?

    How about eliminating “member initiatives” entirely to fund it?

    Here’s a great idea. End all early retirements, end counting all increases in pension basis income above the COLA in the last five years before retirement, and exclude all supplementary income from pension calculations, such as coaching, sponsorship of organizations, and summer school teaching.

    Do that, and have each “significant other” sign a contract of financial responsibility for each other,meaning that they have the same legal responsibility towards their partner as a married couple, and you may be able to get me on board.

    I’m also on the IFI mailing list (as well as a lot of lefty outfits), and I really wish they’d get off this gay bashing thing. Most left wing, cost excessive legislation deserves to fail on its own merits. They don’t need the “homophobic” angle.

  13. - Democrat - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 3:14 pm:

    I work for the Dept of Corrections and you can cover a domestic partner on your insurance. But you can’t put a straight girlfriend on it.

  14. - Rich Miller - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 3:32 pm:

    “GAF,” one more post like that and you’re banned for life.

  15. - the Other Anonymous - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 4:14 pm:

    HoosierDaddy is right. We’ll continue to be subjected to this kind of garbage because there is a small group of people that support it with donations, etc.

    I think most of us reject this sort of rhetoric. But it’s interesting how some of it filters into seemingly reasonable political commentary. So, PalsoParkBob can talk about “flighty relationship benefits,” suggesting that gays can’t have real long term relationsips.

    I don’t think that most people opposed to extending the benefits of marriage to gays would want to be associated with IFI’s over the top rhetoric. Unfortunately, too many do believe in the prejudicial stereotypes that IFI sells.

  16. Pingback Quote of the Day « Illinois Reason - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 4:38 pm:

    […] Monday, April 23rd, 2007 in “Culture” Campaign, Illinois Review, Petey, Media by robnesvacil The Other Anonymous, over at Capitol Fax blog, says: Unfortunately, too many do believe in the prejudicial stereotypes that IFI sells. […]

  17. - 312 - Monday, Apr 23, 07 @ 6:35 pm:

    Unfortunately, it works — on sheep. There’s a lot of people/voters out there who can’t think for themselves, and this is how they get their rabid followers to come out in numbers.

    Worst part is that there’s so many HUGE issues out there the general public should be concerned about — electricity rates, GRT, etc. — but domestic partners are a great distraction from the big picture.


  18. - PalosParkBob - Tuesday, Apr 24, 07 @ 5:07 pm:

    Anonymous, my “flighty relatiionship” crack does not just apply to homosexuals. It apples to anyone, hetero or gay, who is unwilling to enter into a legal obligation for their “significant other”, but expects the taxpayers to take up that responsibility for them.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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