Everyone was buzzing last week about the mother in L.A. selling her son’s MacBook because he had turned heterosexual and she was rewarding him with a new computer.“My son was committing homosexual acts and got caught in the act. We made a deal that if he chose to be straight we’d buy him more nice things.”
Well, we shouldn’t have to tell this crowd, but you can’t believe everything you read on Craigslist.
After doing some digging, McGonnigal found an eerily similar ad from a mother selling her son’s PlayStation 3 as punishment for being gay. But this was back in November 2010, and came from Las Vegas:
The name was the same and the circumstances nearly identical… Having this new email address, I started another search—which wasn’t too hard.
It seems Alex A. of Las Vegas, NV has been for some inconceivable reason, posting fake ads to Craigslist where he poses as the parent of a gay teenager, tells a story about catching his kid having gay sex and either decides to sell his kid’s things or reward him for “choosing to be straight.”
Judging from Alex’s Google+ and Twitter accounts, he’s a handsome young man. So I’m not sure why he sees the need to spend so much time trolling Craigslist with obnoxious, fake stories. I’m trying to figure out how one man’s life could be so boring that he feels the need to obsess over gay teenagers having sex?
And finally, I received a response after calling the poster out via email. It seems a young man named Daryl has been up to no good. Following [is] excerpts from some of our emails back and forth:
“Yes, I need to keep my aliases straight. It’s Daryl actually. I write horrible posts on Craigslist all over the country to see what issues make people angriest for a project I’m putting together. I’m sorry anyone that was offended.”
“It started out when I got my first computer, my friends and I put an ad on Craigslist saying we were selling Justin Bieber tickets. We made fun of the people that would write us. That gave me an idea to start putting up other things on Craigslist to see what people have passion about and to get reactions out of them. I want to write something about issues that people are most passionate about. I want to be a writer one day. I’m sorry about this all. I just don’t want this to affect me going to a good school one day. I’m sorry.”
McGonnigal says he’s confirmed “Daryl” as the poster of both ads, and received one final note of apology from the hoaxster:
“I guess I just never understood how bad it was for most people. I have no problem with gay people at all. It seems so foreign that someone would hate gays. I’m sorry. I never understood. One of my friends I think is gay. We have been friends since we were little kids. If anyone said something to him I would be pissed. I didn’t understand how bad some people were treated. I’ll never do anything like this again. I’m having panic attacks like crazy right now. I would never be against gays, ever. I’m sorry.”
Well, mystery solved—and thankfully no one is getting their computer (or game system) taken away. Unless McGonnigal’s whole post was a scam to draw attention away from this woman. Ooh, the mind boggles…