Franklin Countys First News

Politics & Other Mistakes: Strike down the heathen

“There is no basis in nature for a right to sodomy,” Michael Heath told the Associated Press in March.

Al Diamon

I assume monkeys, dogs and other animals known to engage in this practice will take note and reform their perverted ways.

But considering the source, probably not.

You may remember Heath as the ousted executive director of the Christian Civic League of Maine. He’s now one of the founders of a political action committee called No Special Rights and is campaigning against the same-sex marriage referendum on the November ballot.

Except he doesn’t often refer to it as same-sex marriage or marriage equality or even homosexual marriage. Heath prefers to call it “sodomy-based marriage.”

“Sodomy” is the term used since the Middle Ages by puritans to label those varieties of sex they found objectionable. Which, with puritans, happened to be almost all of them. At one time or another, the word has been applied not only to anal intercourse, but also to everything from bestiality to mutual masturbation. In addition, a lot of god-fearing straight couples might be surprised to learn sodomy is generally defined as including any form of oral sex.

By the way, the word that puritans use as a euphemism for sex acts that meet with their approval is “love.” Which must be sort of confusing for folks who think that’s how they feel about their kids, their pussy cats or beer.

But back to Heath. He’s decided that those opposing the same-sex marriage initiative are a bunch of politically correct wimps, who want to run a campaign based on praising traditional values while ignoring what he calls on his blog the “sexual permissiveness agenda.” In an op-ed in the Bangor Daily News last month, he wrote, “Pro-family organizations in Maine are not defending marriage with this message. They are planning for defeat.”

Heath’s strategy is not merely to prevent gay men and lesbians from engaging in wedlock – and those other things they do. He wants to create a “God-honoring marriage culture” in which government has no role in deciding who can get hitched. That authority would be vested solely in churches. Which is odd, because there are plenty of churches in Maine that would be happy to marry same-sex couples.

Perhaps, Heath hasn’t thought this thing through quite as thoroughly as he should have.

Anyway, in the Heath alternative universe, there’d be no unseemly lust allowed. And anyone wanting a divorce would be told they should have thought of that before they said “I do,” because there wouldn’t be any way short of death to break that bond. As for Maine’s civil rights law that bans discrimination against people because of sexual orientation, Heath’s blog entries give the impression he may not be entirely in favor of retaining it.

“The so-called ‘gay’ movement is rooted in sorcery,” he wrote, “and it is a child of the devil, and an enemy of everything that is right.”

Which sort of hints at Heath’s real agenda. He doesn’t just want to defeat same-sex marriage. What he really wants is to roll back legal protections for gays and lesbians in the areas of employment, housing, credit and public accommodation. If you think I’m exaggerating, consider this. In his op-ed, he claimed that if the November referendum is successful, gay rights activists will “drag caterers and photographers into court for refusing to participate in same-sex marriage ceremonies.”

For the record, caters and photographers fall under the public accommodation section of the current statute. They’re already prohibited from discriminating against potential customers because of, among other things, their sexual orientation. If the new law wins approval at the polls, it changes nothing in that regard.

Heath’s extreme stands on matters of sex aren’t new. It’s just that since he was eased out of his position at the civic league, he’s been less constrained in expressing them. In 2009, the last time the same-sex marriage issue was on the ballot, he was forced by more politically astute anti-gay crusaders, including members of the league board, to keep quiet, for fear his homophobic rants would alienate swing voters. Heath reluctantly did as he was told, but has obviously regretted it ever since – even though his side won.

This year, he’s not going to be muffled by what one of his online friends termed the “nicer than Jesus crowd.” Heath is going to say anything he likes, and what he likes the most is to claim the real issue in this campaign is homosexuality. He brags on his blog of his fearlessness in referring to his opponents as “perverted.” He terms the views espoused by a veteran gay rights activist as “queer nonsense.” And he aims to keep horny heterosexuals in line by reminding them that “sex outside of marriage is sin, and that it must be penalized.”

Supporters of marriage equality are going to love having Heath back in the game.

Did I say “love”?

I didn’t mean it that way.

 I’d … er … like it if you emailed me at Just as friends. No weirdos, please.

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15 Responses »

  1. "behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister sodom: pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters. neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy." (ezekiel 16:49)

  2. Go Heath!! Ya got my vote.

  3. Thank God for Mr. Heath. Finally someone telling it like it is.

  4. Life is too short. Live and let live.

  5. Michael Heath is a judgmental voyeur. For some reason, he seems to have an obsession with what adults do in the bedroom and spends much of his time considering, judging and campaigning about other people's intimate relationships. If he wants to ensure the sanctity of marriage, why doesn't he rail against divorce? I find his preoccupation with others' sex lives disturbing. Am I alone here?

  6. Let's remember that Mike Heath isn't running for public office, and what he thinks or says about the ballot question doesn't matter. Every time this issue comes up, someone steps forward and appoints himself the leader of something or other, and the media love this--it gives them someone to quote, or to make fun of; and it gives the self-appointed leader an excuse to solicit funds. But it has very little to do with the voters, who already know what they think.

    In 2009 Mark Mutty appointed himself to this role (or maybe the bishop of Portland appointed him, but the voters didn't), and he talked as if the future of marriage in Maine depended on him and his mostly imaginary organization. The position he advocated won at the polls, but not because of Mark Mutty. I don't know of a single person whose mind or vote was changed by anything Mutty said or did. The position won because most Maine voters thought "marriage" meant the union of a man and a woman. If they still think that, they will vote the same way, regardless of what Heath says or does.

  7. "Love" your writing Al! The gay people I know are all calm, nice people that make much better neighbors than a bunch of shrill bigots. Mr. Heath may be surprised when he gets rejected at the pearly gates, looks past Saint Peter and sees the very people he hated sitting idle on the grass eating bread.

  8. "Therefore, God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity. And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God handed them over to their undiscerning mind to do what is improper." Romans 1:26-28 (

    "Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God." 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (

    "But I say to you, everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart." Matthew 5:28 (

    "But I say to you, whoever divorces his wife (unless the marriage is unlawful) causes her to commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery." Matthew 5:32 (

    Love the sinner, hate the sin... but sin is still sin.

  9. Jonboy - while that's got to be one of the most beautiful Bible quotations I'd never read before, surely you know that quoting the Bible to habitual casters of the first stone is futile, as they'll just find another passage from this most self-contradictory of books to contradict yours.

  10. Nice writing style, by the way!

    I suspect you are absolutely right that the groups running the campaign Heath calls wimpy are more annoyed by Heath than those supporting gay marriage. Heath makes Christianity look unloving, judgmental and intolerant. That does NOT describe most Christians I know. He makes is seem like those opposing gay marriage are fringe elements that no independent thinker would want to associate with. He appears to be a caricature of what the "yes" side wants people to think opponents of gay marriage are all like. I support gay marriage, but can understand those who see marriage traditions as not including same sex unions. I cannot understand people like Health, but at least his actions are self-marginalizing.

    Also, looking at Jonboy's quote from Ezekiel we should be worried -- "Sodomy" as described there sounds like the American economic system!

  11. Will M. : Only boy prostitutes? Not girl prostitutes? I think that's a violation of Maine's anti-discrimination laws, too.'

  12. The reference to "boy prostitutes" may just be of concern to the reel non fishing anti Sodomites

    ........................everything legal in your creel?

  13. "Homophobia is more pronounced in individuals with an unacknowledged attraction to the same sex and who grew up with authoritarian parents who forbade such desires, a series of psychology studies demonstrates."

  14. "there is no basis in nature for a right to sodomy."

    well, technically, there is no basis in nature for a right to *anything.* even the practice of your religion and the freedom of speech. if we want to look to nature for a *precedent,* however, we will certainly find her a much stronger advocate for those dreaded acts you refer to as "sodomy" than we ever will for concepts such as marriage, monogamy, or even polite discourse. "rights" are agreed upon by way of social contract, codified by organized government, and protected by measures set out by a vigilant populace. mr. heath's opinions are moot.

    many years ago i attended a lecture mr. heath was invited to give at the university. i listened actively and respectfully to what was meant to be a argument for the "sanctity" of "traditional marriage," but what amounted to no more than a baffling power-point on art history. mr. heath will certainly be no more successful rooting his arguments in naturalism.

    @mr. martin: "sin is still sin." --not so when we, as rational entities capable of reason and logic, choose to make our own laws and discard, where we find it unnecessary to our survival, the antiquated thinking of hebrew tribes living in the desert 3000 years ago. sin is relative--but hate is still hate.

  15. What happened to forgive everyone and let God judge?