In Ten or Twenty Years

A few years ago, as I was getting ready to attend a friend’s birthday party, I got a phone call that I wasn’t expecting. A guy I worked with in public safety, a good Christian with a strong family, had a major problem – his young teenage daughter told him she was a lesbian, and he discovered that she was being aggressively pursued by an adult woman who was undeterred by his warnings that his daughter was well below the age of consent. I apologized to my other friend and raced to my buddy’s house to find this woman standing on his front doorstep, in full PRIDE mode, reading him the riot act about how “love is love, you don’t get to tell your kid who she’s allowed to love!”

I lost it. Before I had even said hello, I rode right up on her six and unleashed on her. I started with, “what part of JAIL BAIT do you fail to understand?!?” From there I explained (at the top of my lungs, because it’s only fair the the neighbors hear the rebuke at nearly midnight) that the fact that he wanted to protect his 14-year-old from ANY predator, male or female, did not make him a hatemonger. I suppose hearing another obvious lesbian tear into her did the trick, because she all but ran away and they never heard from her again. I spent the next three hours talking to the teenager about how gays and lesbians can be just as predatory as straight people, she was too young for sexual activity at age 14, and she needed to give her parents time to adjust to her talking about being gay. It took a couple of weeks but she finally accepted the fact that her parents didn’t judge her for being gay – they only wanted to protect her. It was typical teenage angst for her to assume that her parents wanted this woman out of her life merely because it was a same-sex relationship.

Recently, a slightly similar situation unfolded, albeit without the creepy older woman yelling at the front door. Another public safety colleague, one of the toughest old grizzled men I know, called me in tears. I could hear yelling and screaming in the background. His 16-year old daughter told them all that she thought she might be a lesbian. They had always been against gay marriage and attended a church that regularly taught you should not consort with gay people. Her revelation had been a massive shock to them. The “outing,” as it were, had happened nearly a week prior – his wife and older daughter had called in the youth pastor and some of her friends from church to stage an intervention, and it was ending in disaster. He didn’t know what to do; all he knew was that he was about to lose his daughter and he couldn’t stand it.

I had just gotten off shift so I rushed to his house. I wasn’t sure what to expect. I have long been used to being the peacemaker, just not with people I know personally. Tossing a complete stranger off of a friend’s property is very different from pulling family members apart. I arrived to find the argument still in full swing – and the youth pastor was not helping at all. He was feeding the tension. I politely stopped all discussion and asked that everyone separate. EVERYONE. When the youth pastor objected (quite loudly), I asked him to leave. “The goal here is to make peace,” I said, “and you’re not helping that end. Please, go home.” I felt absolutely stunned that he left and my friend’s wife never blew up at me, because as soon as I told him to leave I fully expected her to.

I took my friend out to the back yard and let him unload. He told me about his daughter coming out, saying she wasn’t certain but she thought she was probably a lesbian. No, she didn’t have a girlfriend, but that could change at any moment. He didn’t think she had become sexually active. His wife had spent four days since not speaking to their younger daughter at all. His son was away at college and didn’t know what was going on, but he was about to, because someone had sent him several text messages just before the intervention. His older daughter had done nothing but get angry for the past four days. Nobody asked him about this intervention, but apparently his wife had roped the youth pastor and a handful of her friends from church into talking her into “gay rehab.” The situation rapidly spiraled out of control when the younger daughter refused to agree to it and the youth pastor started goading everyone to speak up and quoting scripture very loudly, as if he were preaching a sermon. As we talked, his son called him – without asking what was going on, his son told him, “kick those idiots out of the house right now or we’ll never see her again.”

Without hesitation, he turned to me and asked if I would talk to his family. I’ve never in my life had nervousness set in that suddenly – my heart skipped a beat and my breath caught in my throat. I managed to eek out a, “sure,” and in a fog followed him back inside. His wife was in her room. The older daughter was on the couch with their friends. The younger daughter was in her room, sobbing almost uncontrollably. I told my friend not to pick any fights and go sit in his study. I asked the friends to leave; they did protest, at which point I said, “I grew up in your culture. I went to private Christian school. I was even homeschooled for a little while. I know exactly what you’ve been taught and I know exactly what you’re trying to do here. It’s not helping. So when you all decide that it’s better to love your friend than judge her, feel free to come back. For now, go home.” One opened her mouth again but I pointed at the door and said, “OUT!” It was louder and more forceful than intended, but they did as I wanted. It felt so strange to once again be throwing perfect strangers out of a friend’s house, but it was the only way the peace would be kept.

The one thing that made things settle down almost immediately was the revelation that I’m a lesbian, but I’m conservative. They didn’t think such a creature existed. One of the things they had been most afraid of was how her politics would turn (which I couldn’t help but laugh at). Another of their big issues was, “what will our friends at church think?”

That last one threw me for a loop. I had heard that sort of thing before but had never encountered it personally (aside from my own personal fear after I came out). How could a parent so readily reject their own child because their church congregation may not approve?

There’s no excuse. I can possibly understand the fear that a child will be hurt, drastically change their politics, never have children, or even walk away from their faith…I do not and will never understand judgment from church being a reason. Sitting there listening to this teenager’s mother talk about how the church will never approve I had a very difficult time not lashing out at her. I allowed her to finish and then, as calmly and professionally as I could, let her know that their approval was not an acceptable reason to reject any member of her family. It wasn’t worth it. If you continue to allow that to be a deciding factor in your reaction, I explained, one day you would regret it and wish you had her back.

It didn’t fix everything. The idea was to get everyone to calm down and think, and that goal was achieved. I’ve talked to my friend and his daughter over the phone several times since then. I’ve tried to impress upon her the importance of respecting her parents even if she doesn’t agree with them or they’re flat wrong. I’ve tried to make sure she understands that 16 is not old enough to start having sex, and she needs to save that for adulthood – and the right person. I still feel inadequate to be in the role I find myself in, but I would rather they make the attempt than give up, which I feel like they all want to do sometimes.

It kills me to see so many families still being torn apart by an unwillingness to accept their children no matter what. Yet another friend recently let slip that a child in her care has come out and it isn’t going well. I hope that soon we won’t have to worry about this quite as much anymore.

Until then, I beg of everyone – ask yourself what you’ll think and feel ten years from now. If you disown your child when they come out, will you still be happy with that choice in ten or twenty years? Is losing face with your friends really worth it?

Check Your Privilege

Sierra Mannie, a senior at the University of Mississippi, penned an op/ed for her school newspaper called “Dear White Gays: Stop Stealing Black Female Culture.” It was just re-run on TIME Magazine’s website. I’m not sure if it’s in the print version or not. Mannie is described as a “rising senior majoring in Classics and English” at UM.

The article is absolute crap.

First she goes on a rant about how evil and privileged white culture is in the US, then she bemoans how black culture is usurped by said privileged whites. She gripes about how black people don’t feel safe around law enforcement, can’t have their own schools, and can’t voice their opinions without their “race going on trial”. That alone makes her opinion null and void; first, I have plenty of black friends who feel perfectly safe around law enforcement, particularly those who ARE law enforcement. The reason so many don’t feel safe is because black-on-black crime is so rampant. Second, who says you can’t have your own schools? You have BET. I haven’t met many black people who really care about their own schools. And, really? Voicing your opinion without your race going on trial? The only reason your race goes on trial is because YOU keep bringing it up. I really don’t care what color your skin is. What matters to me is that you keep calling me a privileged racist just because I’m white.

Then she starts in on white gay men. Oh, you have no idea just how horrible it is to this woman that black female culture is being “pillaged” by white gay men. She writes, “when you thought this pillaging couldn’t get any worse, extracurricular black activities get snatched up, too: our music, our dances, our slang, our clothing, our hairstyles. All of these things are rounded up, whitewashed and repackaged for your consumption. But here’s the shade — the non-black people who get to enjoy all of the fun things about blackness will never have to experience the ugliness of the black experience, systemic racism and the dangers of simply living while black.”

This woman has absolutely no clue about what it’s like to be gay, even now. She obviously doesn’t give a damn.

Let me ask you, Ms. Mannie…how many times did your parents ask you, “have you ever tried NOT being black?” Did they ever tell you that they would never accept your partner? Did they ever tell you that, because you’re black, you’re living in sin and going to hell? Did your church ever kick you out because you’re black? Have you ever been shamed to be black?

Let’s take it a step further. Have you ever been spit on? Threatened? Called racial slurs? I daresay you probably haven’t. My family had a hard time accepting the fact that I’m gay when I came out ten years ago. My church? I don’t dare show my face there. A guy who used to be my friend once threatened to kill me because he thought I was staring at his girlfriend (for the record, she wasn’t attractive, and I don’t stare). I’ve had protesters spit on me as I passed by despite not being a counter-protester. I’ve had other gay people tell me to kill myself, start fights with me, and threaten me very publicly because I’m politically conservative. How often have YOU ever had to deal with genuine hate? How often have you felt relief upon finding refuge with the very few people in society who are like you? When I was a kid, you didn’t dare come out of the closet. There was no such thing as a “gay-straight alliance” club at school. I would have been severely beaten if I’d acknowledged that I liked girls. When have you ever experienced that level of hatred?

I’m not like lipstick lesbians. It’s very obvious that I’m gay. You say I can hide it – no, I can’t. I am who I am. I couldn’t hide it even if I wanted to. I know a lot of gay men who can’t hide it. I’ve watched some of them take a lot of harassment for being openly gay. There is no more debate in general society about whether black people are just as human as white people. Is there still racism? Of course. People aren’t perfect. Today, however, racism is no longer socially acceptable. In fact, if you voice racist opinions against minorities in this country, you’re publicly shamed. Three police officers and one fire chief have all been either fired or shamed into resignation after discovery of membership in the KKK in the past month or two. Where is your acknowledgement of that?

Gay culture is usurped all the time. Will & Grace, The Fosters, Chicago Fire, Glee, The Real World, and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy have all exploited the gay culture (IMO, it started with The Real World). Next up we have GBF, or “Gay Best Friend”, coming out. Katy Perry launched herself into the spotlight with “I Kissed A Girl”. Hollywood and LA is forever trying to do little things in film, TV, and music to say, “look! We’re supportive! Don’t you love us?” Really? You think black female culture is the only culture that’s being repackaged and whitewashed for consumption in the general population? Please. Cry me a damned river.

You come off as angry, bitter, and racist yourself. I can buy a hack college paper printing this drivel, but TIME? For shame. You don’t have the faintest clue what it’s like to be gay. Get over yourself.

Fake It

About a month ago, an acquaintance emailed me about a hate crime in Lincoln, NE. His only commentary was, “when are you going to wise up?” That remark was followed by a link to a blog post about the attack, including photos that couldn’t be posted by major news outlets. According to the story, an unnamed 33-year-old woman was viciously attacked in her home as she slept by three masked men who stripped her naked, bound her hands and feet with zip-ties, carved homophobic slurs into her arm and her stomach, spray-painted similar slurs on the walls, poured gasoline on the floor and lit the house on fire.

As soon as I read the story, I smelled a stage act. I didn’t want to immediately post about it because there wasn’t much info in the news reports I was able to find. The spray-painted slurs were on the inside of the house, not the outside – in the basement, no less. The slurs cut into her skin were on her stomach and arm, places she can easily reach. I’ve studied the psychology of people who commit hate crimes, and none of that makes any sense.

A person who would go so far as to attack a person for their sexual orientation or their race or religion is doing so in an attempt to humiliate and intimidate that person AND all of the people in the vicinity who are associated with that person. When a hate crime involves defacing property, they’re trying to publicly identify that person as gay, lesbian, black, Hispanic, Jewish, whatever the bias may be against. They want everyone in the neighborhood to know what they see that person as being. When a hate crime involves arson, they’re usually trying to destroy evidence; whether it be DNA, footprints or blood spatter, there’s a purpose to trying to burn the home down and they make sure that the fire gets rolling (meaning they don’t just pour gasoline on the Formica in the kitchen and run away). Hate crimes rarely involve mutilation – that’s typically something that a jilted lover does when they’re killing the object of their affection, and it’s not usually superficial. It’s brutal.

If this were a genuine hate crime, any of these things could potentially have been done. All three together, and all very superficially? Extremely unlikely.

Today, it was announced that 33-year-old Charlie Rogers, formerly #33 for the Nebraska Cornhuskers women’s basketball team, was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of false reporting to the police. Among the evidence police released were inconsistent statements from the victim, gloves (with Rogers’ own DNA inside them – she told investigators they were not hers and were left by the perps), zip ties and a utility knife, and no blood on the bedspread where Rogers was allegedly attacked.

At first, Rogers didn’t want her name or face publicized. Then, when a handful of people questioned whether the attack might have been staged – it was never questioned by the MSM, and the major players in the conservative blogosphere still haven’t picked up on it – she suddenly decided to talk to the press. In the entire interview, I didn’t hear her talk about herself once. She makes statements about “my world” and feeling like “a pawn”, but she largely only talks about everyone else.

According to Lincoln police chief Jim Peschong, Rogers had written the following online: “So maybe I’m too idealistic but I believe way deep inside me that we can make things better for everyone. I will be a catalyst. I will do what it takes. I will. Watch me.” Beth Rigatuso, the president of Heartland Pride, said, “If in fact she did do this to herself, it points to a much larger issue of self-hatred. It doesn’t diminish the fact that hate crimes happen all the time all across the U.S.”

Rigatuso is wrong on both counts. This had nothing to do with self-hatred, and to claim that kind of thing is an enormous cop-out. She’s making excuses for Rogers’ behavior in the hopes of not having to accept responsibility, and the gay community should take some. She’s not the first to stage a hate crime or falsely claim a hate crime took place, yet the gay community, rather than calling these people out, pretend the incidents didn’t happen.

Joseph Baken claimed that he was attacked in the street outside a gay bar, even posted photos of his facial injuries – except he got the injuries while trying to do a back flip off of a curb outside the bar. Aimee Whitchurch and Christel Conklin called police over the words “kill the gay” being spray painted on their garage door and a noose being hung on their front door, but it was determined they did it themselves. Quinn Matney claimed that a complete stranger walked up to him on his college campus, said “here is a taste of hell”, called him a derogatory name and then branded him, leaving third- and fourth-degree burns on his hand – but he did it to himself. Ryan Grant Watson claimed he was attacked by a black man who called him a homophobic slur, but it was invented, too. Alexandra Pennell claimed that someone was stuffing anti-gay threat letters under her dorm room door at Central Connecticut State University, but that was also determined to be a hoax.

Rigatuso is correct – hate crimes do happen. Only it seems that these days there are far more fakes out there. We all know the stories of Mathew Shepard, Brandon Teena and Gwen Araujo, but here in the United States those stories are few and far between. In the interim, we’ve just had a major upheaval over comments made by Chick-Fil-A CFO Dan Cathy – I think that has a lot to do with this recent spate of staged anti-gay hate crimes. The purpose of these incidents, I think, is twofold: first, these are people who want attention. Second, they want to find some way, any way, to prove that we need to put a stop to these right-wing hatemongers.

They think if they have to fake it, the ends justify the means. The problem with that belief is that none of the people involved in beating, raping and killing Mathew Shepard, Brandon Teena and Gwen Araujo ever claimed to be Christians or right-wingers.

I’m at a loss as to how we’ve determined that Christians and conservatives are responsible for crimes committed largely by non-religious rednecks. I’m at even more of a loss to excuse the intolerance of the gay left; of the Quinn Matney incident, Jeff DeLuca said, “He still needs our support. It’s a different kind of support than we originally anticipated having to offer. He’s still a valued member of our community and we want to make sure his health, safety and peace of mind are at the forefront of what we’re doing for him.”

When was the last time a gay leftist was so compassionate to any conservative, let alone a gay conservative?

Chik-Fil-A: The Great Flap

If you’re listening to the hard left, you’d believe that the boycott of chicken chain Chick-Fil-A is working and the brand is being dealt an irreparable blow.

Unfortunately for them, this is pure fantasy. There’s a CFA restaurant right next to my loft, and these days the place is absolutely packed. The dining room is stuffed to the gills and the drive-thru line quickly wraps around the building. Every CFA in the country seems to be getting more business these days.

We all know what the kerfuffle is about. Dan Cathy, the company’s CEO and the son of founder S. Truett Cathy, recently said “guilty as charged” when asked by the Baptist Press if he supported traditional family values. He never specifically singled out gay marriage; he did single out divorce quite specifically, but the way things have gone you’d think Cathy held a forum in support of Fred Phelps and called for us all to be rounded up and herded into concentration camps.

Roseanne Barr said that everyone who eats at CFA deserves to get cancer. After then saying that people who feed their kids at CFA are guilty of child abuse, she went on another nazi-cursing tirade against the chain. Non-celebs went completely bats as well, commenting that CFA sandwiches are “deep fried in hate” and called traditional marriage “a sacred bond between two consenting bigots”.

The really frightening thing about all of this, however, is what elected government officials are doing now. It began with Boston mayor Thomas Menino declaring that CFA was banned from Boston and he would see to it that it was nearly impossible for the company to get proper permits to operate. As soon as he did that, actress Eliza Dushku promptly tweeted, “That’s right, B!” (Eliza, you’re breaking my heart here…I love Buffy the Vampire Slayer and SMG is still my celeb girl crush, but I once had a crush on you, too!) That was followed by Chicago Alderman Joe Moreno swearing to block CFA from opening a new restaurant in his district. Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel backed him up, saying that “Chick-Fil-A values are not Chicago values” (strange, since gay marriage is illegal in Illinois and nobody in Chicago politics has moved a finger to change that). San Francisco mayor Edwin Lee then tweeted that the nearest CFA restaurant was 40 miles away and “I strongly recommend that they not try to come any closer.” DC mayor Vincent Gray has now said that “I will not support #hatechicken”.

Calling them a bunch of lunatics is being too nice. They’re outright violating CFA’s First Amendment rights, and frighteningly so. Their reason is that they strongly disagree with Cathy’s beliefs, and they think that because they disagree and can claim that CFA discriminates because of Cathy’s beliefs they have the right to stop the chain from growing, opening new stores and creating more jobs. Our tax dollars hard at work.

First of all, let’s clear the air here: being against the legalization of gay marriage does NOT equal being anti-gay. It certainly does not deserve the title of “hatemonger.” I know a few gay people who don’t believe in legalizing gay marriage. That does not make them hatemongers, they simply want to live their lives in peace and not have to worry about who might be offended. Second, I routinely go to CFA. My item of habit is their grilled chicken sandwich deluxe. I have never, not once, EVER been discriminated against by any employee. In fact, most of them know me by name and chat with me while I’m waiting. They all know I’m gay and not a single one of them cares. CFA employees have frequently been the most gracious I’ve encountered.

Third, it is beyond comprehension that any government official would dare to infringe upon the rights of any person. What would these same people say if a conservative mayor forced a gay-owned-and-themed business out of their city because of religious objections to their beliefs and/or lifestyle? I can tell you now, they’d all be howling for the DOJ to investigate. It’s perfectly acceptable, though, when liberals want to do it.

Boycotting isn’t un-American, and none of us have claimed that it was (Fox News certainly hasn’t, and you’re lying through your teeth when you claim they have). If you want to personally boycott the place, that’s your right. You may not, however, tell them that they’re not allowed to open or expand in your city because of your disagreement with the owner. I will be the first to stand up for their rights, because if I sit back and let you violate their rights, then mine will be next.

Paul Babeu: I’m Gay

I try not to write about an issue immediately when it’s an emotional one. I’ve done it before and said things that I still regret.

Just a day and a half ago, though, Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu – an outspoken conservative and champion of immigration enforcement – came out as gay. He was forced to. This week, a “newspaper” known to Arizonans as a sensationalist rag called the Phoenix New Times printed a front-page story about a man known only as Jose who told a sordid tale of a scorned gay lover and the object of his affection, who apparently cheated. That lover was Paul Babeu. Pictures of the two together as well as text messages and screen shots of Babeu’s profile on a gay dating website – along with photos sent privately, not meant to ever be published – were added as proof that at least some of the allegations were true.

The problem is that one allegation reeks to high heaven – the most potentially damning of all, that Babeu personally threatened his ex with deportation if he ever said anything to the public about their relationship. It has been repeated so many times at this point that the media can’t even report it correctly.

The short version goes something like this: in 2006, Babeu and Jose met through online dating profiles. Jose wasn’t just a boyfriend – he also became an active volunteer for Babeu’s campaign, creating and maintaining the main website as well as accounts on Twitter and Facebook. At some point in 2010, Jose began to suspect that Babeu was cheating on him and set up a fake profile on a gay dating website to lure Babeu into telling the truth. Babeu sent photos of himself to a phantom named “Matt” – Jose incognito – photos of himself in his underwear and apparently of his erect genetalia. The photos were supposed to be private communication; they weren’t sent through major social media, they were sent through personal cell phones. Eventually Jose showed up at what was supposed to be the dinner liaison with Matt and Babeu realized he was caught.

Things only went downhill from there. Before all of that, Jose practically stalked Babeu. The very text messages meant to prove Jose’s story show that he showed up at Babeu’s house on multiple occasions and told Babeu he wouldn’t leave until he got home. Jose admitted to posting damaging comments on news stories about the Sheriff, even at one point saying point-blank that Babeu was gay and maintained a profile on a gay dating website. After the breakup, Jose was caught breaking into and posting on the Twitter and Facebook accounts, as well as setting up another website –, now defunct – to humiliate him.

Here’s where the story gets a little fuzzy.

Jose says that Babeu’s lawyer, Chris DeRose, demanded that he sign a non-disclosure statement and immediately hand over control of Babeu’s profiles on social networking sites as well as shut down the fake site and never breathe a word about the relationship in public again. That is at least partially true as evidenced by Babeu’s own release of the document. What cannot be proven is the accusation that DeRose, not Babeu himself, tried to tell Jose that his visa was expired and further disclosure could result in deportation.

In the PNT story, the writer says that Jose’s lawyer “confirmed” the story as legitimate. What I can’t understand is how that lawyer can possibly confirm the account since she wasn’t present for the conversation where the accusations allegedly took place. Jose didn’t retain his attorney until after the supposed threat was made. The attorney cannot confirm anything as far as I can tell, and no documentation proving the allegation has been provided.

The original article is outrageously one-sided. Plenty of known anti-Babeu and anti-enforcement figures are quoted, but not a single Babeu supporter is represented. All the writer says is that Babeu refused to comment. The writer also says that Jose decided to approach PNT to get his story of fear and intimidation out to the public…why PNT? Why not state or federal authorities? If there’s proof, such a threat would sound the death knell of Babeu’s time in politics because it could be criminal. Babeu, for his part, says that he had every confidence that Jose was here legally and never questioned his status and he brings up a very valid point: a Sheriff has no authority to deport anybody.

There’s another twist to the story: Monica Alonzo, the writer, has a long history of supporting pro-immigrant and other very liberal issues. She’s not exactly an unbiased source.

I knew for a long time that Babeu was probably gay. My gaydar is famous among my friends; I knew, even though I never would have said so, that he was likely gay from the beginning. I am happy that he has come out but the method used to bring it about wasn’t mere coercion. It was brute force that dragged him out and I don’t think it was anyone’s business. Am I disappointed that he cheated on his boyfriend? Sure. I’ve also been disappointed to hear of friends and relatives who have done far worse (including one who slept with a married man and felt no remorse). Babeu isn’t married and trying to carry on a fallacy of a relationship to hide his orientation. He simply chose not to be open about it. As much as I would like the gay conservatives serving silently in politics and public safety would come out, I also believe it is their right to keep it quiet.

I don’t believe that Babeu threatened his ex with deportation. I’m definitely not willing to condemn the man over private photos sent over private lines of communication that never should have been released. I find it reprehensible that Jose would find a way to try to ruin Babeu. After reading everything I could find, I’m close to certain that this is character assassination carried out by a jilted ex-lover who couldn’t get over it. I’ve been hurt, too, and I cannot imagine doing that to another person out of spite.

UPDATE: it’s important that I let the readers know that I do not personally know Paul Babeu and did not solicit a comment from his office; this is purely an opinion piece. That said, while I applaud the Sheriff for telling the truth, I do not expect him to become an activist for gay conservatives. Whether or not he does is up to him, and all of us here at will support whatever decision he makes. I only hope he will continue doing the exemplary job he has always done.

Becoming the Persecutors

The summer after my senior year in high school was my first summer in Phoenix. That summer, my church held an anti-gay workshop over a weekend led by Exodus International – the anti-gay ministry arm of Focus on the Family. During that workshop, gay rights activists held a protest on the sidewalk in front of my church. At the time, I was still in denial. I honestly believed I was straight. My friends and I all talked about how wrong this group was and how much we hoped they’d come in and listen, but we all agreed that as long as they were on public property they had a right to protest.

Most churches would agree with that. In fact, nearly all would in the same vain hope – that the protesters would hear what they’re teaching and have that come-to-Jesus moment that everyone in the church tries to drag everyone into. Turn the tables, though, and it’s a different story – gay leftists in this country cannot stand it when bible-thumping holy-rollers come into their territory and preach. They do it in significantly lower numbers, too, but none of that matters. In Philadelphia a few years ago, I had contact with one Christian activist group known as “Repent America” – borderline extremist, but at least their leader had a civil conversation with me, proving that he’s not a hatemonger – that was protesting outside the big gay pride festival. They were set upon by a literal mob and were told by police that they, not the real instigators, had to leave.

There was no conversation. All there was was anger, yelling, screaming, open hatred – all from a group that is supposed to be more tolerant than others.

I’ve seen the same thing in gay neighborhoods, including my hometown of Houston (Montrose) and my mother’s hometown, San Diego (Hillcrest). I’ve seen it outside Phoenix gay pride. The two biggest reasons that I stay away from gay pride festivals now are 1) the shock-factor attendees who like to prance around in their underwear or even topless (sorry, but seeing a transgendered woman walking around in a Utilikilt, topless, with electrical tape over “her” nipples just about scarred me for life), and 2) the vehemently anti-Christian attendees who threaten violence against the Christians standing outside to preach and hand out tracts.

I have said before that hypocrisy is an irritation that I do not suffer gladly. I have been a hypocrite before, and I was a complete idiot. I have also said before that I have no patience for gay leftists who claim the mantle of tolerant self-righteousness and yet cannot tolerate others. About one month ago, in Montrose – the gay neighborhood of Houston – two area preachers well-known for holding signs, preaching and blowing on a shofar (a ceremonial Jewish musical instrument made out of a ram’s horn) were accosted by police, manhandled, arrested and had their signs and shofar confiscated. This was after a previous encounter with police that was far less confrontational. I’m usually the first to stand up for the police, and the young officers who spoke with them the first time were very cordial, but the officers who came later were remarkably unprofessional.

This was AFTER a number of residents in the area complained that they shouldn’t be there because they weren’t wanted.

David Stokes and David Allen have been doing this for around two years and all of a sudden it has become an issue. Now, I can understand complaints about the shofar; that thing can be awfully loud and Houston does have noise ordinances as far as I know. First Amendment freedoms, however, cannot be infringed upon unless their words become threats, and they never have. I have relatives that live in Montrose and they don’t care for these two preachers. I heartily disagree with their message AND their method, but agree or disagree, I would still fight to my last breath for their right to stand on the corner of Westheimer and Montrose and speak their message. Defending their rights is no different than defending my own, and if I dared take their rights away, it would be the same as giving mine up.

Today the Harris County Attorney dropped all charges against the two preachers, citing a lack of evidence. The charges were displaying illegal signs and playing an illegal instrument. I’m not going to say that I hope they file a complaint against the police, because I can see arguments both ways, even though I disagree with the police in this case. I’m not going to say I welcome them back, because I do not agree with them. I AM going to say that the gay leftists and their supporters need to be as tolerant as they demand others be, or they become the persecutors they have long claimed Christians to be.

Teach Your Children The Limits

In my July post Put the Candles Out, I wrote about the murder of 15-year-old Lawrence King at the hands of 14-year-old classmate Brandon McInerney. In that piece I talked about what led up to the shooting; I said then and I still say there is no justification for what Brandon did. He should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. Something else I said at the time, however, was that Lawrence’s behavior was unacceptable. I had long since removed my personal email address from the website, but two liberals that I have known for a very long time sent me very hateful messages for what I said and severed all ties with me over that post. If they read what I’m about to write, they’ll be sending me death threats.

Yesterday, Tammy Bruce tweeted a news story from Denver about a seven-year-old boy named Bobby who essentially lives like a girl. He wants to join the Girl Scouts. His mother had apparently contacted the Girl Scouts about it and got a positive response – sure, bring him! We’re an inclusive organization, and if a child identifies as a girl, they can be a Girl Scout! Well, Mrs. Montoya took Bobby to the local troop only to be turned away by the troop mother, who said he couldn’t join because he “has boy parts”.

Okay…lemme speak from experience here.

When I was a kid, as far back as age five, I wanted to be a boy. My mother dressed me up in dresses and cute stuff but I wasn’t interested in girl stuff – He-Man and GI Joe were my heroes. Later I got heavily into Voltron and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. My sister started an impressive Barbie collection, but I was more interested in going to the shooting range with my dad. I traded baseball cards with my brother. I practiced hard pitching with my grandfather. I wanted to be a Boy Scout; in fact I wished, after my friend’s older brother did it, that I could become an Eagle Scout (but to this day a girl would not be accepted, and it should stay that way). I got into politics and philosophy, learned to play guitar when I was 10, and if allowed I never would have worn another dress in my entire life. When grunge became popular I stole my dad’s old combat boots and wore them to school with my slashed jeans (actually, I had to sneak them into school and change because if my mother saw what I was wearing she’d have had apoplexy). The worst that my parents can say about me as a kid was that I was more interested in music and recreational reading and writing than I was in doing schoolwork.

My mother went way too far on a lot of things, but the one thing I can say for certain that I’m glad she wouldn’t budge on was the fact that I was not a boy. She could have gone about it much differently, but I’m glad that she insisted that I wear a dress to church. I wouldn’t be caught dead in one now, but that’s beside the point. My mother knew what I was too young and dumb to realize: when you deviate a little bit from the norm, it’s rebellion; when you deviate too far from the norm, you’re an instant target. And when you’re a kid you really don’t know what you are or want to be.

I wanted to be a boy when I was a kid, but now that I’m an adult I like being a woman. Yes, I’m a lesbian. I like women (as long as they are also lesbians). I lost interest in changing my gender when I was in junior high school. While I wish my mother would have enforced the rules just a tad differently, I have to say that I’m glad she didn’t wantonly feed into the fact that I wanted to be a boy.

It is important to let a child explore and, to some degree, be who or what they want. It is far more important, however, to set limits on children. What this little boy and his mother do not realize is that just by dressing and acting like a girl, he’s made himself a huge target. By going on the evening news for a feature spot, however, they’ve made him a pariah. In the feature, he admits to being bullied. Do you think that’s going to get better or worse now? Parents will tell their kids to stay away from him at school. Kids at school will be more merciless than before. He’s not learning limits – if his mother doesn’t rein him in quickly, he’ll end up acting like Lawrence King, prancing around school in stiletto thigh-high boots and wearing makeup, flirting with boys in the hallway who are not of that orientation and don’t understand what’s going on. If he survives that, he’ll go on to learn the hard way that the real world of adults can be just as cruel, if not more so.

Childhood is definitely a time of exploration and questioning. It is also the best time to set limits and teach rules. Bobby doesn’t know what he wants or what he is just yet; the greatest injustice his mother can commit is to fail to teach him that the real world has expectations no matter who or what you are and if you don’t have some semblance of normalcy in your life, the world will eat you alive. It is very unhealthy to allow any child to live as the opposite gender. He is going to grow up being loved and accepted at home and not understanding why the kids at school can’t stand him – and you’ll never be able to explain it. He will, however, grow up and get over having a few rules in life.

Put The Candles Out

With cute shows like Glee on the airwaves to make gay seem chic, it has become surprising to most adults just how cruel kids are still being to each other. The problem with this is that bullying isn’t cute. The victim usually doesn’t have a small army of friends nearby (especially not ones on the football team) to come to their defense. I can’t stand that show because it never works that way in real life. I was VERY different, and I didn’t have anybody there to come to my defense. Girls particularly didn’t want to be around me, not with rumors flying about that I was a lesbian. I learned to watch my mouth because I knew it would get worse if I didn’t. Besides…a gay guy usually has a girlfriend or two with shoulders he can cry on. Who sticks up for the lesbians? It sure as hell ain’t the boys. I had it pretty rough as a kid. I was soundly beaten the one time I told a girl in the 6th grade that she was beautiful. I didn’t stop acting like a boy bent on being a rock star, but I kept my thoughts and feelings to myself because I knew it wasn’t normal.

On February 12, 2008, 14-year-old Brandon McInerney pulled a .22 pistol out of his bag in the middle of an English class and shot classmate Lawrence “Larry” King twice in the back of the head as the class worked on a WWII assignment. In the weeks leading up to the shooting, a lot happened. There was also a lot of history prior that is simply being ignored, and regardless of what King’s adoptive father Greg says, gay groups have made a crusade out of his murder. So have anti-gun groups.

Larry King started accessorizing like a girl when he was just ten years old. By the time he was 15 – the day of his death – he’d come to school wearing stilettos, knee-high pink boots, brightly-colored clothing, hair gelled into different styles, and enough makeup to put Elizabeth Taylor to shame. By the time he arrived at E.O Green Middle School, he was chasing other boys, openly expressing affection for them, and staring at boys in the locker room. He was tormented, but he didn’t make it easy. Here’s where I piss off every gay liberal on the planet.

Larry didn’t know how to control himself. Teachers didn’t know how to guide him. As a result, his classmates, for the most part, didn’t know quite what to do with him. His behavior was out of control, and no amount of bullying excused his reactions.

Newsweek did a surprising article on the incident in which they actually flirted with an unbiased opinion. They quoted his father as saying, “I think the gay-rights people want it to be a gay-rights issue, because it makes a poster child out of my son.” He doesn’t like the idea that Larry turned into a cause celebré overnight because of what happened.

I learned early on to not cross the boundaries with people. Every kid has to go to some extreme at some point; mine ended up being religion. I got into my religion in a huge way and wore it in neon lettering on my sleeve. Other kids go goth, emo, country, rap, metal, nerd…or gay. When I was a kid, nobody could get away with openly admitting to being gay. Things have come a long way, but they have a long way to go yet and we are openly lying to ourselves if we think kids are really capable of comprehending the issues involved.

If a 15-year-old boy sexually harassed a girl the way Larry is purported to have harassed Brian McInerney, he’d be disciplined harshly. The instant it came to light that the boy was asking her out, whispering “I love you” in the hall and claiming to have scratched her arm during sex, there would have been major meetings with the parents and the two would be separated immediately. If the boy then broke the new rules and asked that girl to be his valentine, he’d have been immediately suspended.

Why is it impossible to conceive of doing this when a boy acting out as a homosexual makes overtures to another boy?

Most of the teachers and executive staff apparently didn’t help. Some did try to formally complain about the lack of discipline concerning Larry, but they were told nothing could be done because of California state law that banned gender discrimination – including gender identity discrimination. Larry was allowed to continue wearing outrageous clothing, makeup and hair gelled to a bouffant because nobody wanted to stop the distracting behavior. Never mind that every kid in school talked about him constantly. The lesbian assistant principal reportedly encouraged him and stifled dissent among teachers who tired of his antics. Another teacher brought him a gift in the form of a green formal dress that Larry immediately ran to try on.

We’re talking about a group of junior highers. They don’t understand sexuality yet. They certainly don’t understand homosexuality, and because it isn’t the norm (get used to it, folks, it isn’t and never will be) it results in the sometimes-violent ostracizing of kids who display same-sex behaviors.

What Brandon McInerney did was reprehensible. He deserves to go to prison for the rest of his life for his actions. We cannot, however, make Larry a poster child when his behavior cannot be excused, either. He did blow kisses at straight boys. He told Brandon he loved him. Two days before his murder, he trotted onto the basketball court to ask Brandon to be his valentine in front of the whole school. None of that was okay. If we delude ourselves into believing that it was just harmless fun, that neither Larry nor Brandon should have been hurt, then we do a disservice both to gay and straight kids alike. Gay rights groups need to learn to stay within the same boundaries that everyone else operates in.

For once, we need to put the candles out and start really holding ourselves up to the same standard that we expect everyone else to live by.

Do the Right-Wing Spin

It irks me when liberals add their own spin to a piece of legislation to drum up emotional support for a cause. I receive newsletters from groups such as,, and a host of others – both left and right – so I can keep myself appraised of the pulse of both sides of the political debate. I see so much spin from the left that it almost makes me nauseous. However, I do also see it from the right – and because of how irritating it is when I see it from liberals, it absolutely infuriates me when fellow conservatives do it.

This morning I got a “partner” email from Public Advocate of the United States, an extremely social conservative, uber-right-wing organization, is calling on conservatives to fork over donations to help stop what they are calling the “Homosexual Classrooms Act.” That’s just their spun pet-name for it…it’s actually known as the Student Non-Discrimination Act, and PAUS is making some pretty obscene claims about the act.

Here is what they claim the Act will do, directly from the body of the email:

*** Require schools to teach appalling homosexual acts so “homosexual students” don’t feel “singled out” during already explicit sex-ed classes;

*** Spin impressionable students in a whirlwind of sexual confusion and misinformation, even peer pressure to “experiment” with the homosexual “lifestyle;”

*** Exempt homosexual students from punishment for propositioning, harassing, or even sexually assaulting their classmates, as part of their specially-protected right to “freedom of self-expression;”

*** Force private and even religious schools to teach a pro-homosexual curriculum and purge any reference to religion if a student claims it creates a “hostile learning environment” for homosexual students.

Here’s the rub: only one of those points has any truth to it at all, and that truth is miniscule. So much so that I am appalled that is supporting this “partner”.

The first three points are outright lies. I don’t appreciate being called a liar and I am careful about using the label unless I intend to accuse a person of deliberately misrepresenting the facts – or fabricating them entirely – in an effort to willfully mislead people to a false emotional conclusion. That’s exactly what PAUS is doing here, and as a gay person, I am beyond insulted. I am enraged.

If you go to the organization’s website (linked above), you see absolutely no distinction between different gay groups. There is no mention of the fact that there are gay conservatives out there who believe in family values, limited government and fiscal responsibility. We are simply referred to as “child perverting deviants”. The group was founded in 1981 by Eugene Delgaudio – and he’s been caught fabricating his talking points before.

But hard work is not enough. Items like mail, stamps, and even this email cost money.

That is why I ask you to make a generous donation after you complete the American Morality survey today.

One stormy night I drove to a mailshop hidden deep in a nearly deserted stand of warehouses. I’d heard something was up and wanted to see for myself.

As I rounded the final turn my eyes nearly popped. Tractor-trailers pulled up to loading docks, cars and vans everywhere and long-haired, earring-pierced men scurrying around running forklifts, inserters and huge printing presses.

Trembling with worry I went inside. It was worse than I ever imagined.

Row after row of boxes bulging with pro-homosexual petitions lined the walls, stacked to the ceiling.

My mind reeled as I realized hundreds, maybe thousands, more boxes were already loaded on the tractor-trailers. And still more petitions were flying off the press.

Suddenly a dark-haired man screeched, “Delgaudio what are you doing here?” Dozens of men began moving toward me. I’d been recognized.

As I retreated to my car, the man chortled, “This time Delgaudio we can’t lose.”

Driving away, my eyes filled with tears as I realized he might be right. This time the Radical Homosexuals could win.

You see, even though homosexuals are just 1% of the population, if every one sent a petition to Congress it would generate a tidal wave of two or three million petitions or more.

Hundreds of thousands of pro-homosexual petitions will soon flood Congress , and my friends in Congress tell me there’s virtually nothing on Capitol Hill from the tens of millions of Americans like you who oppose the radical Homosexual Agenda and the Gay Bill of Special Rights.

That was an exerpt of a very long fundraising letter sent out by Delgaudio’s group just one year ago – this wasn’t during the Clinton administration, this is the kind of garbage being mailed out today. There has never been anything like a “Gay Bill of Special Rights”. If there were, not one of the contributors on this site nor any member of GOProud would ever support such a thing.

Here’s the body of the bill he’s talking about. If you read all seven sections, you’ll find nothing about graphic homosexual sex acts being taught in sex-ed classes. You’ll see nothing about the introduction of lessons to experiment with the homosexual lifestyle, nor will you find anything remotely like it. You sure as hell won’t find a single word of law exempting GLBT students from punishment following claims of sexual harassment. In fact, the only grain of truth to any of these claims is the very last talking point. Delgaudio claims that private schools would be forced to take on these things, too. In fact, the only part of the entire bill that could possibly include private schools is a section that covers both public schools and “any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” That means any school in which students receive grants, loans or vouchers. A public school can refuse such things from the feds and bypass the whole mess.

Delgaudio also made an outrageous claim about the TSA after the agency released its hiring non-discrimination policy: “It’s the federal employee’s version of the Gay Bill of Special Rights… That means the next TSA official that gives you an ‘enhanced pat down’ could be a practicing homosexual secretly getting pleasure from your submission.” That’s not to mention the fact that the TSA official who pats me down might not be a straight man getting pleasure from feeling up my double-D rack. I suppose that would be perfectly acceptable to Delgaudio. Now, I don’t like the TSA and I think their powers to blatantly violate our Fourth Amendment rights are a travesty, but accusing them of all being gay? That’s not just a stretch. It’s absolute hysteria – the same kind that I point out in liberals when they claim that conservatives are all Nazis, bigots and hatemongers.

For the record, gay conservatives – like all conservatives – disagree with this legislation. We disagree with any overreaching federal power grab, and that’s all this bill is. It was defeated last year and will hopefully be defeated this year. As long as Delgaudio is so blatantly lying about it, however, he’s only making the liberal case for them on this issue. The states should be left to govern education as it is a power not specifically granted to the federal government.

We, as conservatives, are supposed to be above this petty emotional power play. It angers me to see groups calling themselves conservative and producing this kind of tripe. It angers me more to see legitimate conservative groups supporting them. Eugene Delgaudio is just two short steps away from being Fred Phelps. He’s no better than lefties who wish to bring this country down; he’s just using a different ideology to do it. I call on all conservative groups to distance themselves from this charlatan now, before his idiocy is used against us all in the coming election.

Delgaudio claims his work to be “for the family”. It’s how he signs all of his fundraising rants.

I only have one thing to say to you, Mr. Delgaudio.

Exodus 20:16.

History in the Making

Today, history has been made. The United States Senate defeated a filibuster led by John McCain (R-AZ) and went on to vote 65-31 in favor of repealing the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy banning gay and lesbian soldiers from serving openly. The House of Representatives had already voted 250-175 in favor of repeal earlier this week. It is important to point out that when the repeal was originally defeated, Democrats had tacked the DREAM Act onto the bill containing the repeal of the policy, prompting every single Republican and Independent and many Democrats to vote against it. The bill approved today was a solo act, completely unadulterated, not tacked onto anything.

Scott Brown (R-MA), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Mark Kirk (R-IL), George Voinovich (R-OH), Richard Burr (R-NC), John Ensign (R-NV) and Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) were the Republicans voting in favor of the repeal. It was originally enacted in 1993 by Democrat president Bill Clinton, who had previously vowed to end the outright ban on all gay and lesbian candidates joining the military. Over the past 17 years, tens of thousands of capable soldiers have been discharged from all four branches of the military.

Yet to come are the signing of the bill by President Obama, certification before Congress of the Pentagon report released earlier this month on the effect of lifting the ban, and a 60-day wait period before any changes are allowed to take effect. It will be a little while before we can actually start serving, but we’re on the final track to making this discriminatory policy a thing of the past.

So raise a glass, folks. History has been made today and we’re a part of it!