Update To Yesterday's Post: Bachmann Pinging Multiple Gaydars

Gay Guy,

Need your expertise here.

An article on today's Slate digs deeper into the public "outing" of Michelle Bachmann's husband, Marcus. He runs a Christian counseling service that has provided "pray the gay away" therapies to troubled clients (Well, he denies this, but past patients confirm it). He's also publicly made the claim that gays are just "barbarians" that need to be educated, disciplined, and civilized. The problem is that he "reads gay" to many observers (Check out Cher's Twitter stream -- what's her credibility with gays? Does she know a few?).

The article is headlined, "Read my Lisp," and is critical of the Daily Show's snap-judgement snark-fest. "He's not just gay, he's center square gay!" (See yesterday's post for video).

Here's a quote from Slate: "Marcus Bachmann, husband of Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann, is setting off gaydar alarms. It started as a subtle joke among bloggers. Then it progressed to parody and overt insinuation. ... There's nothing new about calling somebody gay based on a lisp or a girlish gait. We all saw, did, or suffered it in grade school. What's unusual is seeing grown-up gays and liberals do it in 2011 with such open ridicule. But don't worry: The new queer-hunters are progressive. They detect homosexuality based on science, not stereotypes."

The article then gets bogged down in a dissection of studies on the effectiveness of gaydar. Does it exist? And, does it work? (Yes and surprisingly well, by the way. But no, it's not perfect.)

Is Marcus Bachmann gay? Or, an ex-gay, himself? Don't know. The Bachman's have had a long marriage and five biological children. They've foster-parented many others. Sounds straight, right? (Rhetorical. Don't worry, I'm not that naive.)

Is it fair to call him gay just because his speech patterns and physical mannerisms "read" gay? Is it even an insult to make the insinuation? Well, if you believe that gays are barbarians, like he does, then I suppose it is.

I think that there's a room in the discourse for professional humorists to point out irony and potential hypocrisy from public figures. I'm sure it hurts a guy like Bachmann, and those who follow him. But his own words on the topic have caused so much pain that he can't now turn around and claim that he's the one being bullied.

Here's the meanest thing I have to say on this. IF being gay is a choice that can be corrected (as the Bachmanns believe), then "reading" gay should be an even easier fix. So why can't this guy modify his mannerisms and wave, dance, hug, walk, and talk like a "real" man? Hmmm...

--Straight Guy


straight in upstate said...

Did I start this? ;) I like the line about "the new queer hunters" - it's okay if you're liberal? We could leave sexuality, family, AND religion out of this discussion, and there's still plenty of reasons why Michele is just bat-poop crazy and unfit to govern at any level.

J9 said...

I think it's the hypocrisy and self hate that go along with people sooooooo deeply in the closet, and sooooooo desperately wanting to be accepted by "the cool kids" that makes me want to make fun of him. I don't, but I still want to.

Rob from VA said...

For myself, it's not just the "stereotypical" gay stuff that would lead me to think that he may be gay. Sure that's part, but it is more that the more virulently anti-gay someone is, the more likely it is that they are wrestling with their own sexuality. We have seen it before. Marcus Bachmann may the next Ted Haggert.


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