The Year In Gay Bashing: It’s Republican World, 2015 In Review, Chapter Six
When Republicans find a group of people they consider “different” or can paint as “different”, they pounce. Skin tone, nationality, religion, gender, and gender preference are all are fair game in Republican World. Anything they can use to rile up the emotions and unfounded fears of their base is, in their view, fair game. They take it and put it into their schoolyard bully approach to “debate”. It’s the art of meanness and it gets them where they want to go. It’s also a useful tool of distraction form far more important issues. It can get naïve voters to vote against their own interests, time and time again. They won’t even know they’re being played.
This loudmouth, bullying approach to public discourse may be best exemplified by people with names like Trumpf, Christie, Issa, Gowdy, Walker, or any one of the knuckle-dragging Hate Radio talkers and FOX “News” personalities.
In recent election cycles, Republicans, most notably led by strategist Karl Rove, have used the Republican dislike for gay people to drive their haters to the polls. All sorts of anti-LGBT propositions have been placed on ballots in numerous states while cartoonish phony Christians bitch about cartoon characters that they either think or wish to be gay. Who knows what psychology is at play when some jackass of a preacher starts screaming from the rooftops that Teletubbies are gay, that Spongebob Squarepants is really Spongebob Gaypants, and most recently, that Dumbledore from Harry Potter is gay.
The latter example, from the Harry Potter stories, is the most interesting in that it was confirmed by the creator of the stories back in late 2007 and that confirmation was met with a comparative ho-hum. Anti-gay stances by hateful southern-based companies like Hobby Lobby and Chick-fil-A aside, the hate the gays thing just isn’t working for Republicans quite as well as it used to. They’ll have to go on to something else like they always have.
Too many people know, like, love, work with, and respect LGBT people and, in a Republican worst nightmare kind of way, it’s all just fine. This is especially true of young voters, even the Republican ones. What’s a party to do?
Well, if you are an old fart Republican you can always double and triple down, even quadruple down on your hate for all Muslims and hope that that works. But, some Republicans are going to go down fighting on about “The Gay.” Here are a couple of the way, way too many examples from 2015:
1. The Marriage Equality Battle- The United States Supreme Court ruled in June that it was perfectly OK for two people of the same sex to marry. Sure, there are still plenty of republicans bellowing about the threat of people marrying sheep but I suspect that that is just the stuff of their hidden desires and dreams. I’m talkin’ ‘bout you, Louis Gohmert.
There’s also the tired cliché of marriage equality being a threat to “normal marriage” or what is euphemistically called “the sanctity of marriage”. Personally, my wife and I have been married for over 33 years and neither of us feel that our marriage is threatened by any of the gay couples we know. Sorry, Reince.
But, try telling that to Rev. Mike Huckabee of FOX “News” and, currently a candidate for his party’s nomination for President. He thinks we should ignore the laws of the land. The Supreme Court has no authority in his miniscule Republican World mind.
Here’s he is. Gotta be the 2015 Award winner for sheer idiocy in gay hate. Here he is, attaching himself to Kim Davis and her 15 minutes of “fame” like the political huckstering parasite that he is.
Damn. Gonna need some big straightjackets. Huckabee is willing to go to jail for his insanity. Make. My. Day.
2. Indiana Governor Mike Pence- Republicans like to talk about preserving freedoms; you know, like the freedom to discriminate, the right to refuse service, however you want to word it. Putting citizens in little boxes so it can be made easier to discriminate just makes a repug happy.
The new law in this instance was SB101, the grandly named “Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA)” as if such freedoms had once existed but had been taken away. Nope, it’s a law designed to expand the freedom of bigots to be bigots. The law reflects the kind of attitude Lester Maddox had back in 1960s Georgia when he refused to serve African-Americans at his restaurant.
Think of the RFRA as an anti-political correctness law. For Republicans, bitching about PC has become all the rage. It’s like they all have some sort of mind virus. Well, just as their incessant bitching about PC is due to the fact that they want to feel free to shout the n-word every 30 seconds, laws like the RFRA are designed to not just allow them to say what they want without consequence, laws like this are designed to allow Republicans to do whatever they want to our neighbors, our friends, our co-workers, whomever they damn well please.
So, there was Indiana Governor Mike Pence, for instance, back in June. There he sat at his big manly desk, surrounded by a bevy of top virulent homophobes as he signed the RFRA, his state’s pro-discrimination “religious liberty” law. The hate-filled anti-gay lunatics that literally had Pence’s back included Curt Smith who equates being gay with bestiality, which says more about him, really. The great Micah Clark was there. He still says, now well into the 21st century, that homosexuality is a treatable mental disorder. Then there’s Eric Miller who falsely claimed that if same-sex marriage passed, anti-gay preachers might be arrested.
When Republicans use the phrase “religious liberty”, it’s like a get out of jail free card. They talk about society being too permissive yet, there they are, trying to use “religious liberty” as permission to hurt others. It comes from the same republican mindset that gave us “stand your ground” laws. “I have a right to shoot you if I perceive you as a threat, even if I have to run after you” or “I have a right to deny you equal treatment under the law if I don’t agree with who you are.” Laws like these enable people to take action and then just say the magic words.
The now infamous Pastor Kevin Swanson, who recently welcomed leading homophobes “Ted” Cruz, Bobby Jindal (You really do have to wonder if Jindal, the governor of Louisiana, has ever been to Mardi Gras), and Rev. Mike Huckabee (once and future Fox “News” host) to his stage at his “religious liberty” convention, even manages to actually combine the concepts of “religious liberty” and “stand your ground”. He thinks, out loud, no less, that gay people should be executed. He preaches this as he waves his bible and prances from one side of his stage to the other, sounding more like a Muslim terrorist than anything else.
Howie and I both posted about this Indiana fiasco back in June. Back then, I noted that Republicans from “Jeb” Bush to “Ted” Cruz to Marco Rubio all joined hands in claiming that Indiana’s pro-discrimination law has nothing to do with republican attitudes towards our fellow LGBT citizens. Nope. No hate here! Who, us?
By the way, until the hell broke loose over the Indiana law, Mike Pence was so sure that he had a good chance to be the Vice Presidential nominee of his party next year. Maybe he does, in Republican World. After all, he’s got the bigot box checked.
3. Would you attend a gay wedding?- In 2015, we heard a lot of sad, tiny-minded denizens of Republican World say they wouldn’t attend a gay wedding and certainly wouldn’t bake a cake for a gay wedding. One day, back in April, Marco Rubio was asked if he would attend a gay wedding. Surprisingly, he magnanimously said that, yes, he would. This admission, sadly, made big news. It was a shocker. Will it cost him his chance at the nomination? It will certainly cost him some votes. In Republican World, what Rubio said was one of those profiles in courage moments. At least, he didn’t say he’d bake the cake. That would have ended his career right there.
This whole thing makes me wonder how other Republikooks might try to one-up Rubio. I’m making a few predictions of headlines we can expect to see. Here they are, fresh from Noah’s World. It’s only fair, and I’m always fair.
1. “Ted” Cruz- I would attend a gay wedding as long as the couple aren’t the same sex and it doesn’t lead to a guy marrying his dog or goat. You know how it goes.
2. Steve King- What if both guys have calves the size of cantaloupes? What if they are Muslims? The whole idea is preposterous!
3. Rand Paul- I would smoke tons of pot but only for medical purposes and go but only after I write myself a prescription. Oh, wait, isn’t a prescription a regulation? Also, the couple would have to have a license. Oh crap, that’s a regulation, too. Can I get there without using an Interstate? Can I fly there without my flight being subject to FAA regulating? Maybe it’s best if I just stay home and lock myself in a padded cell. But what about my personal freedom? What’s this jacket with the buckles in the back. Hey, these buckles are regulating me!
4. Chris Christie- I would bake a very large cake but it might not make it to the reception.
5. Ben Carson- I’ll attend a gay wedding if and when Chick-fil-A caters it. I’ll bring some rice from the pyramids.
6. Mike Huckabee- If the voices I hear in my head that I mistake for Jesus, tell me to go, I will go.
7. Lindsay Graham- I’ll attend a gay wedding if my pal McCain ever gets the nerve to propose to me.
8. Michele Bachmann- I kinda already did attend a gay wedding.
9. Bill-O- As long as the couple are both white, right, male, and over 70, I would consider it. I will be fair. I will be fair. We are always fair on The Factor.
10. Scott Walker- I guess I would go to a gay wedding if the Koch brothers gave me permission, but, I sure hope it’s not in my state. Also, rest assured, I will make it extremely difficult for them to vote!