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‘A Heterosexual with Issues’


Q: So do you think of yourself as homosexual or bisexual? How do you identify yourself?

A: What my therapist says is that I am a heterosexual with issues, and I think that’s accurate.

-From a new LA Times interview with deposed reverend Ted Haggard

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    • Smokey Martini

      YES! Finally there’s some public acknowledgment that straight guys CAN love other guys and/or their dicks! I’ve said it once and I’ve said it again: one need not identify as gay or bisexual to get some hot man on man action. (‘Hot’ being a relative term in Haggard’s case) That is: it’s perfectly OKAY to be straight and to want a bit of both worlds, even though it confuses the fuck out of people who get too caught up with nomenclature. The only problem with Haggard’s comment, though, is that he calls it an ‘issue’. Well, with enough straight dudes opening up about their kinks and sexuality, it need not be so. As Haggard points out later in the interview:

      Q: A lot of people in the gay community want you to identify as gay and serve as an inspiration to people about coming out of the closet, from their point of view. What do you make of that perspective?

      A: I’m sympathetic with that perspective and certainly in this process, I’ve become more kind and understanding and sympathetic to those needs. I think where I am is I can be an advocate with the gay and the heterosexual community on the fact that people need to openly discuss their sexuality and be very honest with it. My shame that kept me from discussing it and being open about it, and then becoming deceptive about it, was what led to such horrific pain. And I am so sorry for the silence that I had that resulted in duplicity. Because I was never deceptive and never told a lie about other areas of my life. I was perfectly transparent and open. And it was just this one area that I stayed quiet about, and that ended up in a great deal hurt. And of course I apologize to the homosexual community for the awful impression I gave, and I’m so sorry for the silence. I actually just thought I could handle it myself and my prayer was that I would handle it without embarrassing my wife and kids and without disappointing the church. I’m so sorry for the pain I caused in the church.

      IN OTHER NEWS (and you should be reporting this, Queerty):
      Iceland just got its first female prime minister, who just so happens to be a muff munching lesbian. Hot-diggity!

      Jan 28, 2009 at 10:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Beej the Pink Sheep

      In my humble opinion, Haggard sin was cheating on his wife. Not his kink for wanger. Adultery is in God’s Top Ten. God puts man-on-man action in the same category as eating a cheeseburger.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 11:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Olive yurdich

      His isssue is that god gave him the lips of a cocksucker.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 11:21 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kid A

      @Smokey Martini: “it’s perfectly OKAY to be straight and to want a bit of both worlds”

      To me, then that’s not straight. If you wanna fuck other dudes on the side, you lose your Kinsey 0 status. There’s certainly lots of arguments about self-identification and so on, but just because a person identifies as straight, it doesn’t mean that they don’t have inherently bisexual attractions or behavior. Plenty of closety-self-loathing baggage coming with it too.

      You’ll probably say that I’m too hung up on nomenclature, but you seem to be the one hung up on the nomenclature of “straight.”

      Jan 28, 2009 at 1:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dellisonly

      WE don’t want him and if that is how he ‘identifies’ THEY can have him.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 1:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Darth Paul

      @Kid A: Absolutely. By definition, you cease to be ‘straight’ if you have same-sex relations. The “curious” label only works up to the 1st encounter. After that, you’re bi or in serious denial somewhere.

      I say he’s a homo with issues.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 2:32 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Smokey Martini

      @Kid A:

      I don’t know why you’re arguing with me, but your comment – “There’s certainly lots of arguments about self-identification and so on, but just because a person identifies as straight, it doesn’t mean that they don’t have inherently bisexual attractions or behavior.” – is exactly what I was saying.

      The only reason I focused so much on straight guys is because straightness in males is commonly perceived as inflexible and in need of constant policing by oneself and others. That is, ANY deviation from this straight ‘standard’ – however unclear and unspoken this standard may be – AUTOMATICALLY posits the individual as not-straight or, for ignorance’s sake, as ‘gay.’ And so, guys like Haggard are constantly on the lookout for bodily and performative signs that may render them not-straight-enough to others. But this need not be the case.

      Straightness, I’m arguing, should not be determined by one’s performance (sexual or otherwise) and, by extension, by the way one is perceived by others. Rather, sexual identity should be determined by what one personally feels their ‘true’ sexual identity should be – something based primarily on emotions and sensations. That said, I never did suggest that the same shouldn’t apply to gay guys and their attraction to women. But because gay guys are way beyond the ‘straight’ threshold, they are given the sexual freedom to romp with whomever they want to, given that their partner(s) are willing (and legal) participants. The need for a gay guy to prove himself as gay isn’t as pressing as it is for straight guys and their straightness — and this is where straight guys are at a disadvantage.

      The more we can get straight guys to acknowledge their attraction to other dudes, and/or their bodies, and/or their dicks, the more this will be a non-issue. In the meantime, we have ‘gay-for-pay’ and the ‘bait-bus’ porn genres to fill in the blanks.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 3:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Smokey Martini

      @Darth Paul:

      And you’re right, too. If you feel you’re straight with an interest in guys then you can certainly refer to yourself as being ‘curious.’ But why can’t we have ‘just straight guys’ who, from time to time, like dick? Why should they be identified as something other?

      Jan 28, 2009 at 3:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • todd

      That Pig Oprah had this freakshow on her narcissistic TV show. Oprah – what a douche bag.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 4:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Miley Crisis

      He is so fucking gross it makes me want to vomit in someone’s mouth.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 5:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Normal queer

      @Smokey Martini: I don’t think so. Pretty simple, really. Gay means like those of same gender, straight means like those of other gender, and bisexual means both. I know you Americans don’t like to use the bisexual word, but it does exist. I think that straight men who like cock call themselves so because of issues of homophobia. I can deny labels all I like, but if I fit a definition (bisexual does not mean liking men and women 50% equally) then what is wrong with accepting it? Curious is acceptable as a qualifier, but we are one of the three, irrespective of whether homophobia, self loathing, socialisation or whatever else has fucked with our brains. Simple, eh?

      Jan 28, 2009 at 5:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Marty

      These mega church fundamentalists are such a reflection of the times. The veneer of perfection covering up the supposed immoral or unclean acts. Haggart is the opposite of everything he was born to be. One day I hope religion realizes ‘perfection’ is merely acting out the honesty within ourselves.

      And all this endless talk about the definition of sexuality. what it means to be this or that….is the reason why these liars are good at deception.

      Does Haggy realize meth destroys families and communities? Maybe instead of being a douche nozzle real estate bone head he should become an advocate against drug use. Then He would obtain at least a speck of respect from me.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 7:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kid A

      @Smokey Martini: I’m not at all trying to be argumentative, so I apologize that my tone came off that way. However, the reason I … replied passionately … is that as a bisexual, it is nearly impossible to get visibility if every bi person lumps themselves into “straight” or “gay” just to fit in somewhere. We need enough out bi people so that being in “in between” isn’t a purgatory, but a place to be in itself.

      I understand what you mean about identifying by what you feel is best, and I REALLY like what you said about gay men not having to prove their gayness the way straight men have to prove their straightness. But when a person thinks about what emotions and sensations they find attractive to them, then they have to take ALL of them into account! Which isn’t happening if a man calls himself straight, and likes men too. Bisexuality isn’t 50/50 as Normal Queer pointed out. It can be 90/10, 60/40, whatever.

      My point is, a person can call themselves a vegetarian all day, but if they eat meat, they’re not a vegetarian, plain and simple.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 8:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Pragmatist

      @Smokey Martini: I think I’m on your side in terms of your underlying ideology. But your fixation on the “straight” label perplexes me.

      Setting aside all the various “questioning” and “curious” permutations, we’ve basically got three labels: heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual. If they are to have any logical meaning and consistency, I think they must mean:

      1. Heterosexual – No attraction to the same sex.
      2. Bisexual – Some attraction to both sexes.
      3. Homosexual – No attraction to the opposite sex.

      (I think “attraction” is more useful lodestar, but you could focus on “behavior” if you prefer. In any event, these terms must mean something like “black, gray, white.”)

      If I’m right, then it makes no logical sense to stretch the definition of heterosexuality to include some attraction to the same sex. We’ve already got a perfectly good term for that, bisexuality. It seems to me that people who try to think of themselves as “heterosexual” while simultaneously getting off on the same sex are conflicted or ashamed about the same-sex part.

      Personally, I think people are inherently bi. Maybe a small number have truly no capacity for physical attraction to the same or opposite sexes, but I think most do. If I’m right, we’d all be better off dropping the fixation on labels (which, as I’ve argued before, facilitate discrimination and segregation) in favor of a more nuanced appreciation of the fluidity of human sexuality.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 8:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jude

      Kid A, thanks for fighting for bisexuals’ visibility. I identify as bi because that’s what I am, and quite proud of it (I’d say I’m a pretty even 50-50, maybe leaning towards the ladies a tiny bit more). It can be frustrating to have barely anyone to look up to as a bi man. I am starting to use the label “queer” more and more because I feel it unites rather than disbands us all as a community. But judging solely by my attractions, I feel the term bisexual is the most representative.

      I agree that straight-identified men who very much enjoy same-sex action on the side (especially those who do so behind their spouse’s back) are somewhat misguided, more afraid of the stigma of homosexuality than a real feeling of “straightness”. Maybe the more homosexuality becomes accepted socially, the more those people will start to identify as part of the community.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 9:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bruno

      A heterosexual with an issue of not being at all heterosexual? That’s a big issue.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 9:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Uncle Mike

      He has issues, back issues, subscriptions, and collectible one-offs.

      Jan 28, 2009 at 10:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lester

      You can read an accounting of him on Oprah here:


      Jan 29, 2009 at 12:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • nikko

      Great comments, I must say.

      Jan 29, 2009 at 2:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mark

      hahahahaha …… fuck all christians, they deserve each other. straight but with issues. what a disingenuous bastard.

      Jan 29, 2009 at 5:24 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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