Pride Week’s a fun time to rightblogger-watch, because rightbloggers just don’t know what to do about the gays.
They must know straight America is losing its antipathy toward gay people — Hell, even TGI Fridays is down with Pride. And some insist that the gay-hating stuff is behind them, too.
But homosexual panic remains a big part of the rightblogger lifestyle. When IMAO renames the Republican and Democratic Parties “The Don’t Tread on Me Party and the I Have Girl Parts Where Man Parts Should Be Party,” he knows he’ll get a big laugh from his usual crowd, for whom the best measure of “political correctness” is whether or not you’re willing to laugh at fag jokes.
And even in this allegedly more tolerant age, there’s nothing that roils rightwing blood more than the sight of men in leather who aren’t fronting an 80’s metal band.
The famously fleshly and fetishy Folsom Street Fair, for example (both West and East Coast variants), has reliably been used to excite/enrage conservatives of both the Jesus and secular sort. (Michelle Malkin, 2008: “You’ll be thrilled to know that despite economic uncertainty and panic over the failed [bank] bailout, San Francisco’s infamous Folsom Street Fair went off over the weekend without a hitch.” It was enough to put rightbloggers off FSF sponsors Miller Beer.)
This year was no exception. PolitiPage denounced a Republican’s Gay Pride apostasy — “GOP’s Charlie Baker marches in Boston Gay Pride Parade! An absolute freak show. Any questions why Baker is stuck in the low 30s against a despised incumbent?” — and helpfully illustrated with photos of guys wearing body paint and bridles. Blue Collar Philosophy published pictures of men in dresses, and thundered, “Gay Pride Parade In New York; We Want To Normalize This?” not realizing, perhaps, that Monty Python got there decades ago.
Also, rightbloggers reflexively associate gayness, and even gay-friendliness, with liberalism, which makes it anathema to them. At NewsRealBlog Chris Barnhart denounced this year’s Pride events as “Leftist Pride… It’s not about civil rights for any group of individuals. It’s about pushing an agenda. Gay Rights and Gay Pride only exist for leftists.”
Want proof? A gay columnist said mildly negative things about a Log Cabin Republican he’d slept with! “And thus,” declared Barnhart, “the leftist bias inherent in the Gay Rights movement is revealed.”
And what was one of the big charges against Dave Weigel, gone from the Washington Post on charges of antipathy toward conservatives? He “called opponents of gay marriage ‘bigots.'” That proves he’s left-wing! (Cliff Kincaid’s story on Weigel uses the word “gay” nine times — “paper’s controversial publication on page one of two gay males kissing in celebration of gay marriage,” “the Gay and Lesbian Fund of Colorado [funded by gay rights multi-millionaire Tim Gill],” etc. Someone’s got a hidden agenda!)
So when Pride rolls around, very, very few rightbloggers — including the (professed) gay ones — cheer along with the rest of us.
But in an encouraging development for sane people, it appeared this year that fewer of them were actively denouncing it than in days gone by. Once upon a time, Pride Week always meant several posts at National Review about those darn gays (“Over at The Village Voice the call to follow gay marriage with legalized group marriage has already begun”). This year, National Review was practically gay-free. (In subjects, we mean.)
Many wisely stayed quiet about it — including even the religious ones, for whom you’d think Pride would be an irresistible provocation. Some, duty-bound, noted the event and got out quick, as with the somber little notice filed at Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller, or only covered the unflattering angles, as did NewsMax, whose sole observance was “1 Dead, 3 Shot at San Francisco Gay Pride Event.” (“How will the media and Liberal politicans spin this?” demanded Left Out in America.)
But though most rightbloggers were keeping it on the down-low, some of the brethren couldn’t help themselves.
For one thing, Obama signed a proclamation to kick off Pride Month. If you thought they hated Obama alone, get a load of how they feel about Obama plus gay:
“Obama Celebrates ‘Gay Pride’ as HIV Cases Rise,” reported Christian Research Net. “Obama Expands His Pro-Homosexual Regulations without Congressional Approval,” said Expose Obama. “So there you have it,” said Jimmy Akin at the National Catholic Register, “President Obama taking credit for all he has done to normalize the open practice of sexual deviancy in our society…”
“Obama appears to have all the time in the world to promote the LGBT political agenda,” says Patriots and Liberty, “but no time to host the National Day of Prayer event in May.” Etc.
When Northwest Arkansas Gay Pride appointed 10-year-old Will Phillips as Grand Marshal of the Fayetteville parade — in tribute to his dedication to the cause, for which he was honored by GLAAD this spring — several rightblogger gaskets spontaneously blew.
“There are queers in Arkansas?” grunted Marginalized Action Dinosaur. “They want to exploit a young boy in aid of their sexuality.” “Phillips refused to stand during the Pledge Of Allegiance at his school because someone indoctrinated him to believe that ‘gays don’t have the same rights as everyone else,'” explained Bucks Right. “‘Gay’-Pride Parade Flaunts 10-year-old Grand Marshal,” cried A Conservative Edge. “Welcome to Obamaland” howled Weasel Zippers.
“Ten year olds for Sodomy! Who wouldn’t be proud of that?” roared Chris Wysocki of WyBlog. (He also called young Phillips a “grandstander”; in fairness, judging by the quality of his prose, Wysocki may be 10 years old himself.)
“I am disturbed by the lengths that gay activists will go in order to promote their ideological agenda,” harrumphed Self Evident Truths. “Keep in mind that gay ideology requires self-identification based on sexual preference.” Hmm, maybe he’ll explain that further down… “Is this a brave young man standing up for what’s right or is he merely a pawn in a larger game of reducing the ideals of family and morality to the basest levels of meaninglessness?” OK, never mind.
“I don’t think you have to be a homophobe to find this disturbing on many levels,” said homophobe Gregory of Moonbattery before yelling at Phillips’ parents for putting their son “around a bunch of guys in studded leather and buttless chaps leading around other guys on dog leashes.” Ah, so we’re back to that! But he didn’t show any pictures, so perhaps we should applaud his restraint.
None of them were as disgusting about it as the American Family Association, but the AFA are professionals. (Oh wait, we forgot about Free Republic: “NAMBLA and the homos love that fresh young boy meat.”)
At Right Wing News, Lori Zingano found a wonderfully up-to-the-minute way to attack Pride people: Suggesting they’re anti-Israel (therefore, by their rules, anti-Semitic) because Pride Toronto let Queers Against Israeli Apartheid march, and Pride Madrid disinvited an Israeli group from their parade.
“We’re Here, We’re Queer and We’re in Abject Denial,” cried Zingano. “They are vilifying the one country in the Middle East that truly embraces diversity by believing in freedom: Israel.” (Iraq doesn’t count? But we were greeted as liberators!)
Zingano called the parade organizers “useful idiots” because Hamas “is also oppressing some of its own people, particularly women and homosexuals. But, see, this doesn’t matter to them.” And gay rights don’t matter to Gay Pride organizers, explained Zingano, because “Hamas is anti-Israel and anti-America. This is all that matters. Because George Bush. And evil capitalist America.”
Wow, so gay people hate America — there’s a refreshingly retro angle! A similar story was carried at Free Republic, where it got the sort of comments you might expect from conservatives sincerely concerned that gay activists were insufficiently representing their own best interests: “Acceptance of HOMOSEXUAL ACTS are RUINING this earth!!” “Leviticus 18:22— ‘Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination,'” etc.’
You wouldn’t think think that could be topped, but… Told that a successful Pride parade had taken place in Zagreb, Croatia, Julia Gorin — who is, she’ll have you know, “among the most recognized names in conservative comedy” — observed, “But of course things go smoothly for gay parades in Croatia. Nazis often tend to be gay themselves.”
We hope the rest of you enjoyed your parades. Our favorite development came at the Chicago parade, which this year included a float from the Chicago Cubs (with Ernie Banks!) and members of the NHL Champion Blackhawks carrying their recently-won Stanley Cup. In a country where sports is the height of butchness, this is a big advance — and sports bloggers were generally chill, even enthusiastic about it:
“For the Cubs this makes a lot of sense in terms of neighborhood support, but I am still impressed by this and blown away by the Hawks,” said Bleed Cubbie Blue. “Way to go guys.” “By putting forth Banks, an iconic Hall of Famer and one of the classiest men to ever grace the diamond,” wrote Sports Rumor Mill, “the Cubs have made a bold and powerful statement that, even in the oft-closed-minded world of professional team sports… homophobia no longer has a place.”
One or two rightbloggers made the sort of lousy jokes about this you would expect from them. But other than that, they ignored it — didn’t have a thing to say, good or bad. This too is good news. Maybe they sense that, no matter what the yahoos in their audiences think, there are some historical waves they don’t want to get on the wrong side of.