Senator Gary George inspires rage this morning, readers. The Oregonian Senator, who’s hoping to repeal his state’s Equality Act told Just Out magazine that harassed gays should learn to “shut up”. Literally.
George’s argument’s a familiar one: the Equality Act, which protects queers from discrimination, simply gives gays “special rights,” which, George says, run contrary to America’s equality-for-all argument. Similar arguments are often made about affirmative action, a comparison not lost on George:
If I discriminate in favor of you it automatically requires I discriminate against someone else. I was hoping with your generation we can stop calling each other â€˜Asian-American,’ or ‘Latino-American’… I have dear dear friends in the legislature who are black but sometimes I really get tired of hearing about their color.
Yeah, race can be exhausting. And so can right wing politicians who don’t understand the beauty of human difference.
It’s only downhill from there, especially when George offers some ill-conceived advice to gays who face occupational discrimination…
As an employer, I donâ€™t wanna hear about it. This workplace is for work purposes. My advice to the gay community is SHUT UP, just donâ€™t talk about it. If you walk around talking about what you do in the bedroom, you should be on the pervert channel.
Good God! There’s a pervert channel? Someone get the cable company on the line straight away – we need it!
George’s short-sighted nature leads him to a most infuriating conclusion: gays invite violence. When asked what he thinks of Lawrence King and Simmie Williams’ respective murders, George replies that while there’s no excuse for such behavior, the killer isn’t entirely to blame:
I think weâ€™re seeing a backlash, in other words if you push me too hard donâ€™t be surprised if I react. Gays will tend to react violently if people are oppressive toward them. If gays are oppressive toward straights, then youâ€™ll see a violent backlash. Youâ€™re going to have a point where these groups develop and say Iâ€™m tired of these special privileges.
Everybody knows where the line is, so when I see Iâ€™m offending someone, I have to back away from that. We have to adjust our behavior so as to not be offensive. If you push anyone too hard, they will react.
My plea to the gay community would be, hey, mature.
Wait, wait, let’s get this – um – straight. By asking for legal protections against discrimination and life-ending aggression, we gays are asking for “special privileges”? Geez, and here we thought all Americans had the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Have we been living a lie?
We understand that George voters installed him in the Senate, but it seems to us that such backward thinkers deserve no place in the American political system. The Senator and his ilk not only give democracy a bad name, but grant violent homophobes a disgusting – and worrisome – amount of legitimacy.
If you’re looking to give George a piece of your mind, here’s his email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Send him our gay love!