Main | Thursday, January 24, 2013

Christianists Attack Dear Abby

Beloved advice columnist Pauline Phillips, whose Dear Abby was the first place many of us read positive mentions of gay people, passed away last week at the age of 94.  Today Christianist and anti-gay World Magazine republished a 2008 "study" which concludes that Phillips dispensed "dangerous advice" on the issue of sexual morality.  The study only examined Dear Abby columns from 2007, long after Phillips's daughter had taken over.
According to the study, 36 columns addressed infidelity. Only 10 of those suggested breaking off an affair, or not getting into an affair in the first place. Abby even appears to condone adultery, as well as homosexual adultery. When "Confused in Illinois" wrote to Abby saying she had no interest in sexual relations with her husband because she was involved in a "passionate sexual relationship" with a female friend, Abby told her to "look at the bright side. At least you now finally understand what has been missing [in marriage]." The study also found Abby does not encourage sexually active teens to stop having sex, finds homosexuality morally acceptable, endorses same-sex marriage, and is permissive and perhaps even amused by traditionally objectionable sexual behavior such as cross-dressing. CMI concludes Dear Abby has dished out bad advice in more than 1,000 newspapers worldwide for well over 30 years. That tradition has only intensified since Jeanne Phillips took up her mother's metaphorical pen.
That 2008 study was the work of the Media Research Center, whose founder and president Brent Bozell appeared on Fox News in December 2011 to declare that President Obama looks like a "skinny ghetto crackhead."

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