'Mindless Christian Lemmings' Columnist Uses Obscenity to Bash Conservatives, Christians … and NASCAR Fans

How does San Francisco Chronicle columnist Mark Morford identify an “elitist?”  An affinity for “strap on devices,” “swallowing instead of spitting” and a preference for anal sex, among other things.  Loathing the Bible is on the list too.

Morford, who regularly trashes conservatives and Christians, smeared evangelicals in a column on dumb American kids last October:  “…and if you think the hordes of easily terrified, mindless fundamentalist evangelical Christian lemmings have been bad for the soul of this country, just wait.”  His September 12 column, 'Are you an elitist? 18 revealing ways to know for sure' makes that attack look like a walk in the park.

Morford, according to Wikipedia, is renowned for his “deeply satiric social commentary … often featuring some of the most direct, pointed, and arguably one-sided anti-conservative language found in any major newspaper in the country.” If Morford were a conservative, his bigoted rants would be denounced as hate speech. 

Wikipedia notes that in addition to spewing bile in his columns, Morford teaches yoga classes.  Yoga doesn't seem to be doing him much good.

Such a writer probably feels right at home in the liberal enclave of San Francisco.  But even in America's most morally addled big city, how can such obscene references pass muster with the editors of a major American newspaper?  Maybe the editors at the Chronicle find the following funny, not offensive.  Consider these highlights from Morford's list of 18 criteria:

6. The impressive dimensions of the strap-on system in your dresser would make your average Alaskan redneck hockey player scream in horror even as it openly titillated a dozen Republican senators from Colorado Springs to Idaho, though it would probably still get you arrested in Alabama.

7. You know what a strap-on is. In a good way.

14. You prefer spirituality to religion, fluid self-determinism to Biblical dogma, premium sake to sacramental wine, devising new sins instead of merely indulging the old ones, swallowing instead of spitting, back door to front, Shakti to Mary, and floating instead of kneeling.

18. Your most treasured pieces of writing don't feature Muggles, Hobbits, glossy centerfolds of Dale Earnhardt Jr., dogs named Marley, or an angry and omnipotent patriarch who demands unquestioning subservience and strict adherence to often cruel, arbitrary laws of behavior from on high, who forsakeths thou for months and years at a time and never writes or calls and then suddenly reappears without warning only to rain down hellfire and frogs and locusts and totally inconvenient plagues on everyone, and never even apologizes. And then you're supposed to feel all guilty? For like, 2,000 years? Whatever.


Morford is an Obama supporter, another of his markers for “elitists”:

8. Barack Obama's oratory power, strength of character, and subtle understanding of complicated issues have actually served to dissolve a venerable portion of the acidic pessimism that's been eating into your very soul for eight solid years, causing you to actually begin to believe that maybe, just maybe, nuanced intellectual acumen and the nearly bankrupt American experiment do not necessarily have to be mutually exclusive. Only elitist snobs know what "venerable" means. Or "acumen." Or "you."

So, here's a question.  The Associated Press reports that at campaign stops in Nevada yesterday, Obama told his supporters that they were his “ambassadors.”  He said, “You guys are the ones who can make the case.”  Are Morford's lewd sexual references and Christian-bashing the kind of case Obama had in mind?

According to Wikipedia, “Morford has twice won first place in the online segment of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' annual contest.”  If Morford represents the best American journalism has to offer, it's no wonder the industry is in crisis.

Kristen Fyfe is senior writer at the Culture and Media Institute, a division of the Media Research Center.