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Mailbag: Griem's ignorance belongs in the closet

August 19, 2010

Well, perennial hatemonger Bryan Griem has managed to sink to a new low in his latest homophobic rantings ("In Theory: Reactions to Prop. 8 court ruling," Aug.14).

Griem now is actively arguing that homosexuals should be forced back into the closet and away from "thinking society." This is an insult not just to gays and lesbians and their children, but to the millions of "thinkers" who believe that all Americans should have constitutional rights.

Griem also makes the stunningly ignorant "argument" that gays and lesbians shouldn't have rights because the Constitution doesn't expressly grant those rights. Griem smugly notes that the Constitution "doesn't say that men may marry men or women may marry women."


True, but the Constitution also doesn't say that men may marry women, or that women could marry men. Nor does the Constitution expressly say that ignorance-based homophobia can't be spewed in the pages of an ostensibly respectable newspaper. The Constitution grants rights that may not be identified until centuries later, but that does not mean those rights (including the rights of interracial couples to wed) don't exist.

The irony is that the latest homophobic diatribe by Griem (like that of his partner in intolerance, Jon Barta) provides further evidence that U.S. District Court Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker's lengthy, thoughtful opinion was correct. Griem's frequent anti-Christian, venomous, hateful screeds are powerful examples of the animus, and self-righteous belief that heterosexuals are inherently "better" than gays and lesbians, that the conservative U.S. Supreme Court has already held cannot justify a discriminatory law.

In the end, though, Griem is only partially to blame. The issues before the court were different from the issues addressed by the Bible. For this newspaper to ask clergy to opine on a 136-page ruling that dealt with important issues of constitutional law and decades of jurisprudence would be like asking someone who only speaks French to opine on a book written in Farsi.

Even if Griem had more than the tenuous grasp on scripture he has displayed in the past, he is not a lawyer, has undoubtedly not bothered to read Walker's decision, and is incapable of offering any insight into the constitutional issues in play.

Griem can believe whatever he wants as a matter of religious faith, but that doesn't mean he gets to abuse the United States Constitution to take rights away from others — regardless of how desperately he apparently wishes he could.

Thank God — literally — for judges like Vaughn Walker, who recognize the extent to which innocent families deserve, and need, protection from people like Bryan Griem.

Brian K. Brookey

La Crescenta

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