One cheer for Fred Phelps

By now I'm sure you've seen this ad, from the National Organization for Marriage:

We could go through a point-by-point refutation of the ad's innuendo about the Big Gay Stormtroopers menacing California doctors, Massachusetts parents and tax-free beach-front property managers in New Jersey, but it would be wrong to dignify such brazen BS by pretending that anyone shoveling this crap might even slightly believe it to be true.

So instead we'll just stick with the two-word rebuttal of everything this ad darkly hints will come to pass down the slippery slope of equality: Fred Phelps.

WBCBS Yes, that Fred Phelps. The military-funeral crashing leader of the inbred Westboro Baptist Church. You know, the "God Hates Fags" and "God Hates America" guy.

Or, more to the point here, the anti-gay bigot whose church's freedom to preach his gospel of hate has never been threatened, circumscribed or interfered with despite the vicious and despicable things he's made it his life's work to go around saying at the worst possible times in the worst possible places.

So it turns out that the litigious old bastard has at least one useful social purpose. The unimpeded, undiminished work of his infamously evil  anti-gay "ministry" emphatically disproves every Scary Story promoted by anti-gay religious groups who claim that recognizing marriage equality or including sexual orientation in existing hate-crime or anti-discrimination legislation will lead to Christian ministers being thrown in jail for saying they believe homosexuality is a sin.

"My freedom will be taken away," says one woman in the NOM ad.

How so? She doesn't say. But Fred Phelps' freedom hasn't been taken away, so we have to assume that this otherwise pleasant-seeming woman must be referring to her "freedom" to harass, slander and berate with greater intensity than anything Phelps has done.

It's hard to imagine just what it is that would entail. Phelps shows up at military funerals and celebrates the death of soldiers for defending America as a "fag-enabling" country. Perhaps this young lady wants to do the same, but also, I don't know, to fling feces at the honor guard.

And she's afraid that marriage equality might threaten her freedom to do that.

But the point here is that Fred Phelps is a free man. His only legal troubles stem from instances of direct physical assault — not from the hateful content of his beliefs. So when the folks at NOM insist that their opposition to same-sex marriage is a matter of "religious liberty," the liberty they're talking about has to be the liberty to exceed the Fred Phelps standard — the liberty not just to restrict membership on religious grounds, or just to preach against homosexuality as a sin, or to condemn and denounce homosexuals as people hated by God, but the liberty, apparently, to go beyond all that, beyond anything even Fred Phelps has imagined.

Fred Phelps is a free man, so if you think your freedom is going to be restricted, you must be planning to outdo Fred Phelps.

So there's the two-word answer for every Tony Perkins or James Dobson or Damon Owens who makes up some dubious claim about being persecuted or punished or threatened or jailed or whatever for their anti-gay beliefs.

"I'm a California doct– " Fred Phelps! He's a free man. Are you worse than him? No? Then shut up, 'kay?

"I'm part of a church group in …" Fred  frikkin' Phelps, buddy. I don't wanna hear it.

"I'm a Massachu …" Phellllps! Fred Phelps. No one is persecuting you, but your whining is giving me a headache so please just go away now, thanks.

  • http://mikailborg.livejournal.com/ MikhailBorg

    I’m still trying to decide whether they are saying “We are so lacking in intelligence that we believe this,” or saying “We think you’re so lacking in intelligence that you’ll believe this.”

  • http://www.kitwhitfield.com Kit Whitfield

    *What’s going to happen to the California doctor and her faith or her job? Or the Jersey church group, they’re going to be punished exactly how?*
    Nothing, because they don’t exist and the ad acknowledges as much.
    The shamelessness is remarkable: at the very moment that we hear the first ‘story’, the subtitle appears: ‘The stories these actors are telling are based on real incidents. Find out more at http://www.nationformarriage.org.’ Discreetly, in small white letters at the bottom of the screen, where you don’t have to look at it if you prefer the suspension of disbelief.
    Which is to say, the speech and subtitles work thus:
    ‘I’m a California doctor…’
    (Actually she’s not. But it’s based on truth. Honest. You can verify it by using our website – don’t bother with any actual fact-checking, the only people you need to hear from are us. You can trust us: we’re the people who put actors up on screen telling the world they were doctors.)
    *The NOM people actually said, “We’re forming a rainbow coalition.”*
    NOM has evidently been so worried about schools teaching gay marriage that they’ve neglected the basic lessons of the playground. Backsies don’t count, guys.
    This may partly explain why I’m feeling such a playground instinct to shout at the woman whispering ‘And I am afraid…’ something along the lines of ‘Cowardy-cowardy-custard!’

  • hapax

    I am a Massachusetts parent, hopelessly watching public schools teach my son that gay marriage is ok…”
    I am a Bible Belt parent, hopelessly watching public schools teach my daughter that it is a woman’s fault if she is raped.
    Yes, that is a direct quote from the tenth-grade so-called “sexuality and health” textbook.
    No, wait… Not quite “hopelessly.” Since my daughter stood up and said, “Excuse me, what part of VICTIM don’t you understand?” (She was then “excused” from participating in the class for being “rude” and “confrontational.”)
    But thank G*d nobody mentioned Teh Gay!

  • Tonio

    Yes, that is a direct quote from the tenth-grade so-called “sexuality and health” textbook.
    Holy shit! I hope you take your complaint to the school board, as a matter of principle if nothing else.

  • roosterfish

    This ad is unbelievably lame. I want to shake all these silly people and tell them to grow up and get a life.
    We have gay marriage in Canada and once it was passed, everyone just carried on with life. The Conservative party tried to resurrect it to make it an election issue and they failed, because by that time no one believed the Chicken Little stories.
    Now we have reality TV shows here that sometimes feature gay couples (i.e. Canada’s Worst Driver), and the host just says something like, “Mark’s husband John says that Mark needs to be less nervous behind the wheel” or “Tina’s wife Patricia contacted us to ask if we could help her out.” They’re referred to with just as much respect as a hetero couple. My husband is American and he’s constantly impressed by how much of a non-issue it is here.
    He also likes the Canadian saying, “All the nuts roll south.”

  • NonyNony

    Fred Phelps is a free man, so if you think your freedom is going to be restricted, you must be planning to outdo Fred Phelps.
    I think you’re missing something here, Fred. You may be doing it on purpose to make a rhetorical point, which is fine, but there’s a level of “restricted freedom” that I think is missing from your post.
    See, the thing about Phelps is – he’s a nutcase. Everyone knows he’s a nutcase. He’s just not normal, and when good people see him on the street they cross the street and walk on the other side. Or pelt him with eggs. Or in other ways avoid him and use him as an object lesson. Liberal Christians say he’s not “really Christian”. Conservative Christians call the Westboro church a “cult” and “weird”. Everyone clucks when he shows up to protest soldiers’ funerals, and no one likes him or wants to have him “on their team” so to speak.
    And that’s what these people are afraid of becoming – the guy that no one agrees with and everyone needs to distance themselves from to be a “good person”. The “freedom” that these people are afraid of losing is the “freedom” to have their opinion on gays be the accepted majority opinion. They hate that – above all they want to be the normal ones, and anything at all that makes them a “freak” is to be hated, feared, and avoided.
    The more gays are tolerated and even openly accepted in society, the more of a freak the person who hates gays becomes to those around him or her. And that’s the “freedom” that they’re afraid of losing – the freedom not just to hate your neighbor (which no one can take away from you, even in the most repressive of societies) and not just to OPENLY hate your neighbor (which in the US we try not to regulate either) but the freedom to hate your neighbor and know that secretly everyone else hates him too.

  • Nate Phelps

    But the ad implies that rights (vague, nebulous, not quite sure which rights) will be taken away at some point in the future as the great demon horde of *shudder* gays rage through the tiny hamlets of America. It could be argued that even Fred’s “rights” will be trampled in the coming storm *snort*.
    So I’m left pondering, seriously, whether I’d be willing to lose a few rights just to finally shut him the hell up.

  • http://mikailborg.livejournal.com/ MikhailBorg

    as the great demon horde of *shudder* gays rage through the tiny hamlets of America
    I only wish that were really going to happen – it would be so much fun to watch!
    “Queer Eye for the Straight Nation!” Innocent towns and villages afflicted with nicer clothes, better food, and new furniture!

  • http://blog.mikael.johanssons.org Mikael Vejdemo Johansson

    And the whole Rainbow Coalition coming together in their love of their hatred bit reminds me of a Tom Lehrer schtick:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIlJ8ZCs4jY

  • roosterfish

    And that’s what these people are afraid of becoming – the guy that no one agrees with and everyone needs to distance themselves from to be a “good person”. The “freedom” that these people are afraid of losing is the “freedom” to have their opinion on gays be the accepted majority opinion. They hate that – above all they want to be the normal ones, and anything at all that makes them a “freak” is to be hated, feared, and avoided.
    I think NonyNony might be onto something here.

  • Tonio

    This column claimes that the tide is turning:
    Fox barely mentioned the subject; its rising-star demagogue, Glenn Beck, while still dismissing same-sex marriage, went so far as to “celebrate what happened in Vermont” because “instead of the courts making a decision, the people did.”
    On another board I argued with someone who insisted that the distinction between the courts and the legislature was vital because same-sex marriage allegedly amounts to a “new right” that doesn’t have a tradition in Western law. That sounds to me as if antidiscrimination should be based solely on the whims of the majority, as if the minority should have to excuse the fact that it’s a minority.

  • Tonio

    I think NonyNony might be onto something here.
    I agree, and that ties into my point about them feeling persecuted.

  • http://www.zeldauniverse.net GDwarf

    Tonio, I frequently debate online with people who are opposed to gay marriage, and one of their main arguments is that since the majority don’t want them to have rights, they shouldn’t.
    They always go silent when I question them about the tyranny of the majority.
    The even weirder part is that it tends to be Mormons who use this argument, apparently not considering what such a stance would mean if the rest of the US ganged up on them…

  • random atheist

    Oh wow, hapax, your daughter rocks! Please tell her she’s fantastic for speaking out like that.
    And, like Tonio, I really hope you’ll be complaining to the school board. That is just an appalling thing to teach young people.

  • Ms. Anon E. Mouse, Esq.

    Oh sure, he’s free *now*. But if the Evil Gays get any rights THEN all the poor oppressed bigots will lose their freedom. I think that’s what they’re trying to say.

    It’s like Colbert’s video said: if all 50 states legalize gay marriage, straight marriage will become illegal.

  • http://www.kitwhitfield.com/2007/10/300-devils.html Kit Whitfield, blogging here about another conflation of homophobia and yelling about freedom

    The “freedom” that these people are afraid of losing is the “freedom” to have their opinion on gays be the accepted majority opinion.
    The trouble is, of course, that’s got nothing to do with freedom. Whether people accept your opinion as reasonable or not simply isn’t a freedom issue. If they act on their belief that it’s unreasonable and chuck stones at you, that impinges your freedom, but if they just think you’re an extremist, they’re not curtailing your freedom, they’re exercising theirs.
    It’s similar to I-forget-who arguing that gay marriage would take away his freedom of speech because he’d no longer be able to denounce it. Of course, he’d still be free to; the only thing he couldn’t do would be say ‘Gay marriage is illegal’ and be backed up by the facts. But he’d still be free to say it; people would just be free to say back ‘No it’s not.’ Which, frankly, they can do nowadays, if they don’t mind being factually incorrect.
    There’s a difference between being free to say something and being free to say it with absolute impunity, but these guys seem to have it confused.
    The trouble, I think, is a conflation of freedom and power, freedom to speak and freedom from contradiction. Freedom to state your opinion is being conflated with getting your opinion validated by your listeners and the outside world. In practice, the only way to ensure this validation is to enforce your opinion: if they can’t relax without society maintaining laws that reflect their prejudices, they’re not going to let the rest of us relax either until they get what they want. As they experience it, society is threatening their inner security by failing to reflect it, and any reaction is justified in the name of getting that security back.
    The logic seems something like this: I feel threatened, I’d feel threatened if someone was impinging on my freedom, therefore someone’s impinging on my freedom. It overlooks the fact that you might feel threatened for reasons that are entirely your own doing, like being unable to stand the thought of being in the minority for once.
    As long as these guys are depending on society to provide them with the reassurance that their feelings about gay people are justified, they’re going to try hard to wrangle society into shapes that comfort them. When you’re wrangling like that, it doesn’t matter whether the accusations you use are true; it only matters if they work, and ‘freedom’ is one of those words that few people can take issue with. It’s such a political touchstone, in fact, that you don’t really have to think about what it means: you just say it in the hopes it’ll shut people up, because accusing someone of taking your freedom away is such a heavy accusation that it can leave your opponent reeling if they think you mean it.
    Which of course, we don’t. This is basic control stuff: other people have to validate my feelings, if they don’t I’m distressed, therefore they must be inflicting this distress on me intentionally, I have to stop them, I’m so stressed I need to throw something appropriately heavy, what’s the heaviest thing I can throw? Nobody really buys it if they’re paying attention, but it can unbalance you if you’re not braced.

  • hapax

    NonyNony: The more gays are tolerated and even openly accepted in society, the more of a freak the person who hates gays becomes to those around him or her.
    Amen, NN. From your mouth to God’s ears.
    Another positive sign: during the recent “Day of Silence”, students who were unable or unwilling for some reason to keep silent wore armbands to show support. My daughter was surprised to see one of her dimmer, more reactionary classmates wearing an armband, and made a point of saying something supportive to her after class.
    The other said pulled her aside and said in a whisper, “Well, I don’t really agree with it, but y’know, it isn’t cool to say that, is it?”
    My daughter came home all indignant, but I pointed out to her what a GOOD thing this was. Yeah, it be nicer if there were no bigots, but it’s quite a step forward in my lifetime when high school students no longer feel that it’s socially acceptable.
    (And yes, Tonio, plans are afoot to confront the school board. But we’re trying to build a coalition parents, physicians, clergy, etc. first, to take out the entire curriculum, rather than be isolated agitators focussing on a single sentence, vile as it is.)

  • Wakboth

    Holy God. This is, no kidding, the first time ever I’ve seen Fred Phelps being used to promote equality and tolerance… and magnificently. Awesome.

  • http://lyspeth.com/ Alexis

    I can’t help looking at the woman’s shirt and squinting to replace “HATES” with “EATS”…
    ….NOM!
    Heh.

  • Tonio

    But we’re trying to build a coalition parents, physicians, clergy, etc. first, to take out the entire curriculum, rather than be isolated agitators focussing on a single sentence, vile as it is.
    Just a guess – do you live in Alabama, the home of the abstinence-makes-the-font-grow-harder curriculum? I recommend reading about the Dover controversy and how the opposition to ID organized there.

  • Jim

    Now, now, Fred. People are losing the Miss America title over this issue. Clearly the forces of political correctness have gone TOO FAR!1!one1!eleventy!1 Personally, I think that it’s good for U.S. Americans to have a choice in gay marriage and opposite marriage, such, as unlike other countries like the Iraq that don’t have marriage…
    ——
    Like Orwell said about “democracy,” the word “freedom” has now lost its meaning, except that people use it describe something positive, or say that it is imperiled by something they oppose.
    ——
    @hapax: Kudos to your daughter for sticking up for herself. Sad to say, that kind of thinking not confined to the Bible Belt. Idiots from Long Island can have the same ideas.

  • roosterfish

    (And yes, Tonio, plans are afoot to confront the school board. But we’re trying to build a coalition parents, physicians, clergy, etc. first, to take out the entire curriculum, rather than be isolated agitators focussing on a single sentence, vile as it is.)
    Best of luck to you and the rest of the organizers, hapax! Your daughter will be proud.

  • Tonio

    Big Gay Stormtroopers
    Sometimes a machine gun is just a machine gun.
    Seriously, I’ve encountered a few people who say they have both straight couples and gay couples among their friends who visit their homes, but who have a no-PDAs-in-front-of-the-children rule for only the gay couples. I don’t like the double standard in principle, but I don’t have a good argument for refuting it, partly because I might sound like I was telling others how to raise their children. What do you think?

  • Ms. Anon E. Mouse, Esq.

    Oh sure, he’s free *now*. But if the Evil Gays get any rights THEN all the poor oppressed bigots will lose their freedom. I think that’s what they’re trying to say.
    It’s like Colbert’s video said: if all 50 states legalize gay marriage, straight marriage will become illegal.

  • http://accidental-historian.blogspot.com/ Geds

    No, wait… Not quite “hopelessly.” Since my daughter stood up and said, “Excuse me, what part of VICTIM don’t you understand?”
    Hey, hapax?
    If a woman is ever crazy enough to actually have children with me, will you raise them? I’m pretty sure you’d do a much better job than I ever could…

  • Izzy

    Hapax: Your daughter rocks. Good luck with Evil School Board.
    NonyNony: Pretty much–it’s what I’ve always been counting on. We can’t legislate public opinion, but the same thing will happen with gay rights as it did with civil rights: the younger generation will grow up seeing people who are openly gay, both in real life and in the media, and for most of them, it’ll just be another way to live. The old guard will die out, as the old guard always does, and that younger generation will be raising the kids…
    Not that civil rights or racial harmony is totally worked out by any means, but I don’t think there are many places where you can openly say that you hate those goddam [racial slur here] without getting punched in the face. Hopefully, in another thirty years or so, the same thing will be true for gay people.
    Me, I try to see hope in all of this visible anger–I don’t remember twenty years ago that well*, but I don’t think anyone was seriously talking about gay marriage, so there wasn’t this level of public backlash–but then, I grew up playing video games. The bad guy always turns red and starts shooting faster when you’re about to take him down.
    *Though re-reading Stephen King’s IT (1985) and Insomnia (1998 or so) is an interesting illustration of how dramatically a well-meaning liberal straight guy’s take on gay people changed in only ~10 years: the gay (minor) characters in IT were sympathetic, but incredibly stereotypical, whereas Insomnia’s portrayal was much more subtle and “hey, just people.”

  • http://matoushin.blogspot.com/ MeanderingMind

    I believe the freedom mentioned in the video is not the freedom to do worse things than Fred Phelps, but the freedom to be lazy. Essentially, struggling with the issue, preparing to hear that another girl proposed to your daughter and other parental and personal responsibilities are too much to ask. If same sex marriage goes into law, they might look like bigots for not allowing such marriages in their church. Then they might have to have meetings about how to not look like bigots. There’s a lot of extra work involved that outlawing gay marriage avoids.
    That’s also why I believe Creationism is so popular. Why should one put all that effort into learning the science and sorting out whether specific books/chapters in the Bible should be read differently, when you can just claim “literal” interpretation and leave all the “intellectual” argumentation to Kirk Cameron?

  • Caravelle

    Kit Whitfield : The logic seems something like this: I feel threatened, I’d feel threatened if someone was impinging on my freedom, therefore someone’s impinging on my freedom.
    I wonder though. Is there really a reasoning process there, or do they just use the word “freedom” because it’s such a good word ? The same way they’ll use “fascist” and “socialist” for Obama not because of any meaning those words have, but purely for the negative connotation.
    I also get the feeling those people have something I’d call major civil rights envy*, and because of this like to reuse the vocabulary of civil rights. Freedom being the most important one. Rainbow being another in this particular case. There’s the definite impression they parrot those words without understanding them… But then, their whole appropriation of protest and civil rights tropes indicates they don’t understand what civil rights are about.
    *You know, black people had demonstrations ! They had marches ! Then they got tons of special rights, and now everybody has to be nice to them and if you aren’t you’re called racist. We want that !

  • Caravelle

    When you’re wrangling like that, it doesn’t matter whether the accusations you use are true; it only matters if they work, and ‘freedom’ is one of those words that few people can take issue with. It’s such a political touchstone, in fact, that you don’t really have to think about what it means: you just say it in the hopes it’ll shut people up, because accusing someone of taking your freedom away is such a heavy accusation that it can leave your opponent reeling if they think you mean it.
    Or, you know, I could just read the post to the end before responding…

  • http://www.kitwhitfield.com Kit Whitfield

    *I wonder though. Is there really a reasoning process there, or do they just use the word “freedom” because it’s such a good word ?*
    It isn’t a conscious reasoning process, I’d say; more a question of emotional reasoning. (One of CBT’s ten cognitive distortions, in fact.) I feel this, so I leap to the following conclusion; I feel scared, so you’re scary. If you’re reasoning emotionally, ‘my freedom is being curtailed’ is, in contemporary society, one of the conclusions you can leap to quickly if you’re feeling uncomfortable, because it’s an issue that people very often talk about.
    And I suspect you’re right about the civil rights issue as well. They’ve seen that saying ‘You’re taking away my freedom’ often gets you what you want, so why shouldn’t it work for them? What they want isn’t justified, but I’m not sure how justified they considered earlier civil rights protestors – they certainly don’t think gay protestors are – so it evens out. ‘Freedom’, when you don’t care about minorities being kicked around, becomes an all-purpose word meaning ‘Give me what I want or you’re bad.’

  • Caravelle

    Tonio : I don’t like the double standard in principle, but I don’t have a good argument for refuting it, partly because I might sound like I was telling others how to raise their children. What do you think?
    It’s homophobic, and it’s inducing the children to be homophobic as well. I see no problem with refuting it on that grounds. Now, okay, I guess homophobic parents have a right to teach their children to be homophobic, but I don’t see why you shouldn’t call them on it. After all if they’ve got gay friends it’s likely they don’t think of themselves as homophobic, so by pointing out the double standard you might be helping them realize what they’re doing and stop.
    Now your sentence isn’t very clear as to whether you don’t have a good argument for refuting it in the abstract, or if you don’t know what to tell them. If it’s the latter, then it isn’t a simple matter of refuting what they’re doing… It’s a matter of doing so while keeping a good relationship with them, and hopefully getting them to change their behavior.
    Can’t really help you on that one I’m afraid. Except maybe go the socratic route, beginning by asking “Why the double standard ?”, and then going on asking “why ?” for every answer until you hit on a refutable argument (“My children will turn gay”) and refute that.

  • Kyle

    Jim, I’m not attacking here, I just want to make sure…
    The current Miss America hails from North Carolina (my state). “The Iraq” lady was from South Carolina. Confusing the two is common enough outside these two states, and has been made worse recently because Mark Sanford has been blaming all of SC’s unemployment problems on NC.
    NC might have its good and bad points, but we don’t need all the bad crap from SC too.

  • Izzy

    Tonio: What Caravelle said. Also, while telling them how to raise their kids is probably a bad idea if you want to maintain a good relationship with them, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with saying “Hey, your double standard makes me uncomfortable, so I won’t be coming over to your house. Sorry.”
    (Do homophobic parents have a right to teach homophobia to their kids? Maybe, in the sense that it’s really hard to legislate against it, but I think that it counts as emotional abuse. Particularly since there’s no way to tell in advance that the kid you’re saying “gay people are an abomination” to isn’t gay himself.)
    In general, while interfering in people’s lives is largely a bad idea, it’s perfectly reasonable to say that XYZ aspects of someone’s life make you uncomfortable, and so you’re going to avoid them until they stop being homophobic/start tipping the waiter like decent people/get their damn dog to stop humping visitors’ legs/whatever. And maybe that will be the wakeup call they need.

  • Jim

    Kyle,
    I hadn’t actually thought about their respective states. I believe the “opposite marriage” woman was from California, which is why she was asked the question, and not North Carolina, so you’re safe.
    FWIW, I’ve heard mostly positive things about NC. It’s not Thursday yet.

  • http://abelstales.blogspot.com damnedyankee

    This sounds like some indecent proposal. How many marriages will two million buy?

    With the right caterer and band, just one. Y’all are invited as soon as the check clears.
    Between “teabagging” and “2M4M” it’s been awfully hard for Rachel Maddow to keep a straight face of late…

  • Caravelle

    Kyle, Jim was talking about Miss California, who lost the Miss America title due to the Most Clueless Answer Ever to “do you think states should allow same-sex marriage ?”
    (too lazy to link or quote, but it boiled down to “everyone is free to marry who they want in this country, but personally I think marriage should be between a man and a woman”. Oh, and it involved the phrase “opposite-sex marriage”. A classic. Maybe not the worst answer ever by a contestant, Miss South Carolina has a case, but definitely one of the two worst)

  • Tonio

    Now your sentence isn’t very clear as to whether you don’t have a good argument for refuting it in the abstract, or if you don’t know what to tell them.
    The former.
    Except maybe go the socratic route, beginning by asking “Why the double standard ?”, and then going on asking “why ?” for every answer until you hit on a refutable argument (“My children will turn gay”) and refute that.
    I’ve used that on boards but not in person.
    In my experience, the less fanatical opponents don’t explicitly argue that “teaching kids that homosexuality is normal” will turn kids gay. Instead, they argue that kids will become confused as to what constitutes normal. They seem to assume that both heterosexuality and marriage are matters of not choice but belief, as if both will cease to exist if people don’t clap for Tinker Bell.

  • http://abelstales.blogspot.com damnedyankee

    Wasn’t that Miss USA rather than Miss America? There’s a difference, I know. Damned if I know what it is, though…

  • Tonio

    Thesis topic – explain the connection between homophobia and beauty contests. (I have an idea, but I want to read others’ ideas.)


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