Archive - Oct 4, 2010

Just Bang A Dude Already: Case File #972C

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Memo to Andrew Shirvell: JUST BANG A DUDE ALREADY.

Just Bang A Dude Already, or J-Bada for short, is a sentiment I've expressed either explicitly or implicitly dozens and dozens of times in this column before. It applies to anti-gay men, and it's always men, who take their anti-gay behavior to such an absurd level that the only possible advice you can give them is to JUST BANG A DUDE ALREADY and get it over with. They clearly can't think about anything else.

But in the case of Andrew Shirvell, assistant attorney general for the state of Michigan, there apparently needs to be a bit of an addendum. JUST BANG A DUDE WHO LOOKS LIKE CHRIS ARMSTRONG, ALREADY. Because most people who are rabidly anti-gay are, to be pedantic, anti-gays. They hate all the gays. Shirvell is anti-gay, and that gay is U of M student body president Chris Armstrong.

Shirvell has taken valuable time away from prosecuting criminals and making Fudgepackie The Whale ice cream cakes to stalk and harass Armstrong within an inch of his life, primarily through a blog called, I shit you not, Chris Armstrong Watch. The blog has been closed to the public, but it's apparently about how Chris Gay Armstrong is a gay radical homosexual promoting his gay radical homosexual agenda. In a gay way. But, as he explained to Anderson Cooper, not because he's gay.

"I’m a Christian citizen exercising my first amendment rights. I have no problem with the fact that Chris is homosexual, I have a problem that he’s advancing a very radical agenda... I don't have any hate in my body at all.

I think the problem is clearly that he doesn't have any Chris Armstrong in his body at all. "Advancing a radical agenda?" He's a student-body president, for fuck's sake. Even if he's advancing the most radical agenda ever, he can only advance it just so far from his position of no power whatsoever. This is clearly not enough to warrant a one-blog crusade, plus alleged Facebook stalking, plus protesting outside Armstrong's house. No, really. I'm not sure how holding up a boombox playing Peter Gabriel songs actually qualifies as a protest, but if Shirvell calls it a protest, who am I to argue?

Anyway, Shirvell has taken a "voluntary leave of absence", which is such a lovely phrase, isn't it? It's not that the publicity surrounding his psychotic escapades has made his life and job difficult. Its that he simply wants to go away for a while. I'm sure Chris Armstrong wants him to go away for a while too, but a voluntary leave of absence, giving Shirvell an extra eight to ten free hours a day, isn't exactly what I'd call helpful.

Other officials, including Michigan's governor, have suggested that perhaps the most unprofessional district attorney in the united States should lose his job over his behavior. And while I'm understandably uncomfortable with the idea of a government employee losing his job over a mostly-unrelated blog of his personal views, I can sort of see the point.

It doesn't matter, though, because Shirvell's boss, and I cannot believe I am typing this as a real true fact and not just a juvenile dick joke, but Shirvell's boss MIKE COX says that the civil service rules protect Shirvell. Of course, Shirvell has been a friend to Cox over the years, has worked hard for Cox, and did his best to get Cox elected. So there it stands.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe Shirvell doesn't furiously masturbate to pictures of Armstrong, then, in his self-hatred and shame, scrawl epithets and swastikas across them and post them to his blog. Maybe he's just a straight Christian conservative U of M alum infuriated by the thought that an openly gay man has his hands all over Shirvell's student body. But really, either way, my prescription is the same. J-Bad(wllca)a.