You Are Dumb, which is not a blog, posts new columns every weekday, except for a couple of days each month when it doesn't. It is also a Twitter feed, @youaredumb, with content in a similar vein but much shorter. My spinoff food site, Forkbastard, can be found easily enough by the clever.
Memo to Ted Haggard: YOU ARE DUMB.
The sad part is, you're ALMOST a sympathetic figure. Almost. Because in many ways, you really are a victim. Because odds are, you're at least a little bit gay.
Now, I don't pretend to know your heart, but when you tell us that "There is part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I've been warring against it all of my adult life", I'm guessing that it just means you're attracted to men. And the only reason you think it's something repulsive and dark and worthy of warring against all your life is that you've spent your whole life believing and preaching one of the absolute worst versions of what is itself frequently a harmful lie.
Maybe if you could have just been gay, you wouldn't have had to turn to a gay hooker for "massages" and meth. Maybe if you could have just been gay, you could have followed your alleged calling to a more open, tolerant church, instead of building an entire career and life on taking your own internalized self-hatred and projecting it outward at millions of evangelical Christians, reinforcing their bigotry and getting rich and powerful in the process.
But you did. So fuck off. You get to be the latest punchline, right next to Jim West, Mark Foley, and the dozens of closeted haters before them and yet to come. Homophobic church leader and friend to Republicans caught trysting with a gay hooker and using meth. A denial, followed by a resignation, followed by the world's most implausible partial admission, followed by crocodile tears of regret and shame.
It practically writes itself - especially the part where he said he paid for a massage and bought meth, but didn't pay for sex or actually take any of the meth. But let's be clear. The problem isn't that Haggard is gay. Or bi. Or just likes a little man-love on the down-low. The problem is the repression and suppression from the culture and the religion. That's what causes the repulsion and the darkness, the hiding and the shame, the betrayal and the hypocrisy.
Which is why it cracks me up to see right-wing pundits like LaShawn Barber try to be all gracious and talk about how all good Christians struggle with their demons. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!
"No Christian should be surprised that Haggard may have given in to his perverted thoughts and turned them into perverted actions. It’s a temptation we all face (temptation in general, people, not necessarily the same-sex kind)."
That's Christian brotherhood for you. We're all tempted, we're all sinners. But don't worry, readers, I'm no queer like that filthy Haggard!
Along similar lines, but with an added frisson of misogyny to kick things into high, we have Bruce Ware, Southern Baptist and blogger, who penned the following on his blog, Resurgence:
"Most pastors I know do not have satisfying, free, sexual conversations and liberties with their wives. At the risk of being even more widely despised than I currently am, I will lean over the plate and take one for the team on this. It is not uncommon to meet pastors’ wives who really let themselves go; they sometimes feel that because their husband is a pastor, he is therefore trapped into fidelity, which gives them cause for laziness. A wife who lets herself go and is not sexually available to her husband in the ways that the Song of Songs is so frank about is not responsible for her husband’s sin, but she may not be helping him either."
I love how he knows, instinctively, that he's about to say something colossally stupid, but tries to pretend it's something brave and un-PC. He's taking one for the team. Pity it's the Christian Retards*. Apparently it's the God-given right of every pastor to have non-stop freaky deaky sex with a limber, size two wife. And when they don't get it, you can't be that surprised when they turn to gay hookers.
How all these women are to obtain this level of bedroom mastery when they're supposed to remain virgins until marriage, not take sex ed classes, and avoid all prurient media is beyond me. Hell, how these pastors learn to EXPECT those things having lived the same virtuous life from the birth canal to the church aisle is a mystery. But then, I've never read the Song of Songs. Or caught the film adaptation of it on Cinemax.
Luckily, the human capacity for rationalization means that the ultra-right evangelical Christian movement won't be harmed in the slightest by one of its top pastors going down. The replacement (a local boy from Eden Prairie, no less) has been picked, the White House is pretending they never knew Haggard, and tomorrow, another half dozen states will try to add the gay-hate to their Constitutions. Yay denial!
*A team whose mascot, in case you were wondering, is a sight to behold.