Nigel Campbell's picture

Anderson Cooper Demolishes Arizona State Senator Over Anti-Gay Legislation

We've gotta know--do they prep these people before these interviews or are they simply beyond help? 

Anderson Cooper demolished Arizona state Senator and gubernatorial candidate Al Melvin while discussing Arizona's anti-gay, "religious protections" bill on Anderson Cooper 360 on Monday night.

Melvin came on to defend the legislation, arguing that it's not discriminatory and is merely meant to protect religious freedom. Anderson quickly cuts through the B.S. 

Check out Parts 1 and 2 below. (It's kind of like an SNL sketch except we're not laughing.)


(H/T: The Gaily Grind)


im backing with anderson cooper cuz it doesnt matter if u r gay straight or bi its a freedom 

u can do whatever u want

I can see an award winning Saturday Night Live skit in this interview.

Today's Miami Herald had an editorial by Leonard Pitts asking that we start printing "Boycott Arizona" T shirts. After every paragraph it read: 

Boycott Arizona

He's not gay but he knows blatant discrimination when he sees it.

Anderson Cooper just made a huge ASS out of himself. We pontificate that oppressed people take on the characteristics of their oppressors. As an African American I feel that that's what's happening with the gay community as it did in the past with African Americans. Forcing someone to side with you on your struggle is NOT the way to get new converts. I felt Anderson Cooper's attitude was waaaay out of line. I'm actually VERY disappointed with him. Just like WE expect people to respect our lifestyle we have to respect other's as well. We don't have to respect a person's veiws but we need to respect the person. I believe that most gays make being gay the nucleus of their existence and we someone offends the gay part of them their whole world falls apart and they become aggressive like AC just did. Darkness cannot drive out darkness. Being a hateful gay person is NOT the way to defeat homophobia. That "angry person" mentality doesn't get you very far. 

Okay Drama Queen you can get over yourself and it anytime

Please explain which of Anderson Cooper's questions was unfair. 

The Senator said no one wants to discriminate and no one is being discriminated against, so the law was by the Senator's own admission useless.  Reporters SHOULD call vacuous gasbags on their vacuous gasbaggery, and when they get more vacuous gasbaggery as a defence, they should point out how useless the gasbaggery is.

Stefan you have not disclosed whether or not you are gay. Why would you make comments along the line you have chosen if you are gay. The calling card you have presented is that you are AA. AA's have full rights under the law so your point of view as an AA is from a persopective that missed the goal of this interview. If you are indeed gay, and oppressed by the laws in this nation, than speak from here. If you are an unconsciously gay resentful AA, then move to Nigeria or Uganda and join in the spiritually bankrupt actions of those countries. Anderson Cooper gave a tour de force of intelligent debate against a numb skull poilician who is following the rules of a religion that is morally bankrupt.

Well African-American rights are a hell of a lot more important than gay rights. And I make the same statement to my OWN people as far as lashing out and attacking. I don't have to recite over a bull horn whether I'm gay or not. It's inconsequential. Respect should be mutual. The gays support AC because he's fighting for the GAY struggle. But when BLACKS exhibit OUR version of THIS level of aggression we are ANGRY BLACK FOLKS. I don't agree with attacking in ANY way. The "senator" NEVER said there has NEVER been oppression in his state. He said he doesn't know anyone that DOES oppress. There is a difference. Anderson was to hell bent on 'destroying' this guy that he didn't even pay attention to that detail. Everyone doesn't have to agree with one being gay to respect them. Anderson tried to "set him up" like the "senator" said. I agree. It wasn't a good look. I don't expect very many people to agree with me and I respect your opinion. 

Why does you being black trump people being gay? It sounds like you have some resentment toward gay people. EVERYONE DESERVES THE SAME RIGHTS!!!! Whether you're black or white, gay, straight or bi, everyone is equal. I don't appreciate the tone you took about being black is more important. Sounds to me like you're the one insecure about your own race.

You heard it here, folks, black people are more important than gay people.

 I believe that most gays make being gay the nucleus of their existence and we someone offends the gay part of them their whole world falls apart

You could have said that about african americans during the civil rights movement. 

Jacob you're an idiot. Being BLACK IS the nucleus of a black person's existence ESPECIALLY during the time of the civil rights movement. Gay is considered a 'moral deficiency. Being black you were considered to be like cattle. Gay NEVER went through THAT. I have plenty where this comes from. Let's not  comment anymore.  Don't you DARE try to equate the gay struggle for "equality" the same as the African-American struggle. Totally different. 

You sir, are not only missing the point but you are basing your statement from the fact that you have equal rights. The point being made is that they are fighting for "religious freedom" yet the law itself is directed toward homosexual rights. If the bill was for "religious freedom" we could refuse services to women who are divorced or pregnant while unwed because it's spoken out against in the BIBLE. Do you see that happening? No, it will be used to oppress. I'm like everyone to remember the Black Panthers, ANGRY black people, funny how that had a huge effect. And yet you claim being the "angry person" doesn't work. 

No discrimination in Arizona.  No gays in Sochi.  What a wonderful world we live in!  BS

Bravo, Mr. Cooper. As an elected representative of ALL people within the state of Arizona, I don't think it is unreasonable to be able to fully explain and provide straight forward, direct answers regarding a bill that you support. Every single question posed by Mr. Cooper was, indeed, sensible and valid; yet, the inability of the Senator to even answer "yes" or "no" in the spotlight is very disturbing. Why? Because within each of us is an innate sense of what is right - minus, of course, extreme psychological issues. From my perspective, it appears that the good Senator must realize this on some level; so, why this poorly defensible farce? The bill is exactly what it was meant to be and is continuously being exposed as: a blatant, desperate, final attempt to discriminate against  gays and lesbians under the pretext of religious freedom. Whether Democrat, Republican, Independent, etc., each representative is obligated by the duties of his/her office to answer for decisions that are made with regards to ALL of the people he/she claim to represent and be held accountable for those decisions. It is an office of dignity, honor, respect, sincerity, honesty, compassion, and integrity ... or so it is suppose to be. It is a high standard; an effective and productive office for the compassionate and enlightened individual. If you believe in the "traditional" patriarchal sanctity of marriage, then your sole obligation, your only responsibility is for you and your spouse to keep your vows in the eyes of God and man. Your vow, your responsibility, your obligation, your choice based on your belief.

Curious: if true religion is to love your neighbor as yourself and care for the widows and orphans, I dare to imagine what this world would look like if "Christian" men, women, and institutions spent all of this wasted effort, time, money, etc. to carry out this charge rather than promote fear over the loss of control and the challenge of the often illogical "religious status quo" .... hmmm, to follow the example of Jesus who addressed very real, earthly and spiritual needs of the people and said "no" to the status quo of his age and was vindicated; funny, that. I see just as much of the Christ consciousness - if not, more - in those who don't even profess to be Christian than I often see demonstrated by those in the mainstream who do profess his name.

Truth. Each of these representatives need to be held accountable for the laws they are trying to pass. They don't even realize that we see through their BS. I think this interview was very influential in the governor's decision to veto the bill. Good job Mr Anderson Cooper.

There needs to be an IQ test to be a state legislator. This guy is simply not very bright.

As someone who is both religious and pro gay rights, all I can say is ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

This was the most embarrassing, unacceptable, pathetic, cringe-worthy, hypocritical, question-dodging, hateful, idiotic, senseless, corrupt waste of time I have had the displeasure to see in a while. I am furious -- this senator is a joke in every way possible, and I hope more people see this video and realize that. Anderson asked very sensible questions, and Melvin acted offended that he might actually have to explain the law he's attempting to back. How presumptuous?!? And this man wants to be a Governor. Anderson Cooper was a true professional for maintaining his reserve.

wow this guy doesnt even have an IDEA as to what HE said YES to with this stupid idiotic law.

Listening to that man talk makes me want to rip my head off. Way to dodge every single question aimed at you and respond with absolute political bull shit. All my faith in this country's government is so far gone.

I bet he's gay. Often, the most anti gay politicians are secretly gay themselves..

OMG, this senator needs to go live in the backwoods where his mentality belongs! What an idiot.

Typical idiot using religion and politics to push his personal agenda, protect his own prejudice and own insecurities.  Arizona needs to worry about their illegal immigrant population, not their gay popupation.  Just another dumb old fart who lives in the 1940's and needs to get the hell out of office.  Come on Arizona, step into modern society. You wont discriminate against unwed mothers, whom Jesus spoke against, yet, you will discriminate against gays which Jesus NEVER even mentions,   Pathetic morons. 

Thank you Anderson Cooper for addressing this for exactly what it is.

WHAT A FRICKING IDIOT!!!!!!!!   The people of Arizona voted him into his position?  Does he and the other politicians, that voted and passed this bill, have their heads buried so far up Their A$$ to the point they have no clue to what is going on daily in their state?  NO DISCRIMINATION OF ANY KIND  IN ARIZONA? REALLY?  Religion is not under attack!!!!!!  It is simply the fact that after centuries of oppression based on religious organizations that people have said enough is enough and started fighting back. It is ok for religion to discriminate against whomever it wants without any repercussions? But Religion has an issue when people fight back against that discrimination?  Really?  You cant have your cake and eat it too!!!!!!    And PLEASE DO NOT GIVE ME THAT 'TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE CRAP".  The 'traditional marriage" has changed so many time over the centuries.  Also, let me make this very clear; RELIGION DOES NOT HOLD THE MONOPOLY ON MARRIAGE!!!!! IT NEVER DID.!!!!!!!!  Marriages were performed long before religion came about. Are you that far out of touch with reality?  You have the right to believe as you wish under Amendment 2 of the Constitution of the United States but you do not have the right to force that belief on others.  This new bill, if not vetoed, will cost Arizona to lose it's number one standing for attracting business to that state.  IF you are hearing that businesses in your state are against this bill why are you ignoring them? This bill could cost Arizona future Business and Income that could help the economy of Arizona. This bill has opened the proverbial Pandora's box.  By passing this bill as a preemptive measure to prevent any discrimination towards religious belief, this bill has now given leeway to other religions outside the Christian Faith to discriminate against Christians.  The One thing you claimed you were protecting.  To assume that none of this would happen is purely ludicrous.  To continue to believe that it will never happen is just outright insanity.  A war on religion?  If there is, religion has instigated it against itself.

You are damned spot on sir...damn spot on. It's a thinly veiled BS bill I agree with all that u said.

Stupid people!!! 

Get over it people are people even you ass hole!

Stupid people!!! 

Get over it people are people even you ass hole!

Who is this dumbass?  How do people like this live with themselves?    

Religious freedom protection?  I don't know of any priest, minister, rabbi, or other religious person who is authorized to officiate at a wedding being forced to officiate at a wedding where the people didn't hold to that religion or meet the criteria for inter-faith marriage.  This bill is aimed at same sex marriage and the only people forced to officiate such a ceremony would be a public official who is bound by their oath of office to uphold the laws of the State.   Those are civil ceremonies and not religious ones.  So what religious freedom is Arizona trying to protect.  As far as a commercial transaction, all I can say is Money is Money and if I want to make a living then I don't care what religious belief a person has or what race, or sexual orientation.  I would be there to provide a commercial service for a price and I would set the price.

They should've taken notes on what happened when KS politicians tried to pull this same stunt.   It didn't go over well...what a waste of time and energy.  Discrimination against anyone is WRONG.

Arizona won't be getting my money either from tourism or product!

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