GOP Debate Watch

Can We Please Stop Calling Marcus Bachmann “Gay” and “Gay-Faced”

Marcus Bachmann
There are plenty of good reasons to despise Michele and Marcus Bachmann‘s politics. Considering his wife’s stance on government “handouts,” the man’s fiscal notions are plainly hypocritical (Bachmann’s farm received federal subsidies, and his therapy practice received Medicaid funding).

Then there’s his hurtful “pray away the gay” therapy. (The American Psychiatric Association has suggested that reparative therapy can be harmful to a patient’s mental health.)

And that’s just the beginning. With so much ammunition, why are people attacking the man for his lisp and plainly effeminate characteristics?

Dan Savage and Cher are just two of the famous folks who have called out Bachmann publicly for what they perceive as his “gayness”—that is, his perceived lack of typically masculine affectations. (And that includes Queerty.)

My heart goes out to the man— just a little, mind you—because my perceived lack of masculinity has gotten me into trouble, too. I was bullied for my sissyness throughout my school years. Less than a year has gone by since the last time someone yelled “Fag!” at me from a passing car.

I get that there’s a certain comedy in it all: “Look at the girly man who says he’s straight!” And hypocrites deserve to be called out. But although we have proof that Bachmann is a homophobe, we don’t know that he’s a hypocrite on this particular issue. If Bachmann says he’s straight, then that’s good enough for me. After all, he wouldn’t be the first effeminate straight man in the world. Until a public-restroom arrest or male-prostitute scandal surfaces, I’ll take him at his word.

I mean, do we really want to claim him as one of our own?

Charles Purdy is the author of the book Urban Etiquette: Modern Manners for the Modern Metropolis and a longtime manners-advice columnist. In his Queerty column, he addresses issues related to social behavior. Find him on Twitter: @charlesqueerty

Image via Gage Skidmore