July 31th, 2012 - In this episode, Dr. Chauntelle and Lydia Lee talk about Nadya "Octomom" Suleman at length. The discussion centers around Suleman's self-pleasure video, Home Alone; mischaracterizations of Suleman and Home Alone in the media; and tensions around Suleman's identity as a sex worker - given her recent forays into adult production and performance and subsequent dance and signing appearances, is she?
Dr. Chauntelle and Lydia also touch on free speech a la Chick-fil-A - should free speech also include unpopular and/or problematic speech? (yes) Further, is there only one "right way" to protest hateful, discriminatory actions? (no!) The ladies get a little silly discussing Willam Belli's hillarious Wilson Phillips parody "Chow Down (at Chick-fil-A)" and Dr. Chauntelle's trip to the Focus on the Family campus in Colorado.
And in case you haven't seen it yet, enjoy!
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I remember discussing the “Jesus Chicken” with Lydia a while back and have known about the company’s (strange) ethos for a while now (see http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2007/0723/080.html for starters).
The free speech approach taken when analyzing the Chik-Fil-A flap (which is, unfortunately, quickly becoming the only lens through which it will be viewed and understood) masks the more important issues.
One of these issues is the irrationality of religious zealotry. Dan Cathy and some of the groups who received money don’t take a “we disagree but live and let live” stance on homosexuality. They view it as deviant, criminal, unnatural and against “God’s law”. Homosexuals wouldn’t even wind up being “separate, but equal” if these groups successfully lobby and help enact legislation (because that’s what some of them are doing). And they want this legislation why: God’s law, God’s will. So, we have a very wealthy company, whose founder and sons are Baptists, contributing money to organizations that view a subset of humans as “less than” (or worse - “evil” and “predatory”), seek to enact legislation to enforce this view, and the foundation of their actions is God’s/Biblical lore.
Civil rights of homosexuals is the next issue lost in the kerfuffle. Chik-Fil-A donated to groups that actively oppose legal equality for homosexuals. Homosexuality doesn’t just “offend their sensibilities”. It is viewed as a threat to the Christian fabric of the United States (which, by the way, is a crock of shit). They want to make it legal to discriminate against a select group of citizens.
Yes, this event raises the question of free speech. Let’s add another, equally important question into the mix: How comfortable should we be with a large, private company whose business principles seek to reflect “God’s law” and whose actions (in the form of donations most certainly, and quite possibly in the form of employee discrimination) indicate that the company supports policies which not only infringe upon/deny basic rights and legal equality, but also give aid to organizations seeking to shape policy in ways that would lay the foundation for an establishment of religion in the United States?