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Why Is The Washington Post Enabling Charlie Crist’s Closet?

charlie crist THThe Washington Post is out with a profile of Charlie Crist, the former Florida governor, former Republican and former bachelor. The story chronicles Crist’s quest to return as Florida’s governor by turning himself into a Democrat. What it fails to mention is that Crist’s ongoing effort to reinvent himself includes his sexual orientation.

In fact, the Post gives Crist cover by letting him talk about his marital status unchallenged: “’I have a great life; I don’t have to do this,’ Crist says, mentioning his boat, his beautiful wife and his decent salary.” Presumably in that order.

Stories about Crist’s orientation have dogged him for years. Outrage!, the excellent documentary about closeted politicians, prominently featured Crist by interviewing an alleged ex-boyfriend. Andrew Sullivan talked to the owner of a gay bar Crist was alleged to frequent who told Sullivan point blank that Crist was gay.

A minor party candidate outed Crist when he first ran for governor in 2006. Even mainstream media types have alluded to the rumors. MSNBC’s Chuck Todd joked about Crist’s fortuitously timed engagement, hinting that it was politically motivated.

It takes some doing to fail to mention the rumors, especially given Crist’s policy changes. “Over the past 20-some years, Crist has described himself as pro-life, pro-choice, opposed to same-sex marriage and for it,” the story notes. In fact, Crist, the Democrat’s version of that human weather vane, Mitt Romney, has never met a political stand that he couldn’t discard when convenient.

The omission highlights once again the squeamishness of the mainstream media to talk about the political closet. That discomfort was most recently on display in the case of Rep. Aaron Schock. The media continue to think of sexual orientation as something that happens in private and as something that is vaguely defamatory. With public figures, that’s a difficult argument to accept.

In the Post’s case, it’s okay to quote an opponent as saying that Crist “has all the intellectual horsepower of yogurt.” It’s not okay to quote a friend saying that Crist is gay. Ask yourself: which is the worse description? Apparently, for the press, it’s not the one you would choose.

By:          John Gallagher
On:           Feb 21, 2014
Tagged: , , , , , , ,
    • Mezaien

      WHY gays are coming out?. Is the Pope, came out as Catholic?.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 7:58 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • misterhollywood

      I thought Charlie Crist was on our side?


      Feb 21, 2014 at 8:06 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Deepdow


      Researchers from many, many academic institutions have concluded that low intelligence is indicative of bigoted anti-gay thugs. Have a nice life, stupid.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 8:21 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ED49

      You should not care whether he is in the closest or not, who cares if he bottoms or tops(unless he barebacks). He is a good politician since we are talking about him and he’s kind of relevant for the time being.

      People have the right to change their minds, have the right to be in the closet, have the right to dislike the freaking Kardashians and cher. Even if he is in a xxx bookstore on his knees on 8th avenue NY city, he still has the right to say he is straight. Obama is not that great either. Just register to vote and make a choice, that’s why we love America.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 8:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • sportyguy1983

      I don’t care if he is gay and closeted (it isn’t any of mine or anyone else’s business). I care more about the fact that the guy hasn’t no real political belief and changes in order to win an election. You shouldn’t vote for him because he has no core values not because he may or may not be closeted.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 9:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • NJjoe

      Crist is gay. No doubt in my mind. If he chooses to live in the closet, go for it…do we really need a liar on our side?

      Feb 21, 2014 at 9:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • BJ McFrisky

      Q: Why is the Post enabling Crist’s continuing closet crusade?
      A: Simple. He’s a Democrat who rejected the Republican party, and there’s no scandal in outing a Democrat. That’s taboo in the liberal media. It was the same story with Ed Koch.
      The end.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 10:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      I wish this article would explain why the author thinks they SHOULD say he’s gay.

      The mere existence of rumors, no matter how long-running, is not itself reason to promote them, much less to treat them as truth. Regardless of whether they’re bad or not.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 10:34 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • viveutvivas

      Serious newspapers like the Washington Post are not really in the business of spreading what you call “rumors,” if that is what they are.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 10:52 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      Now, if something happens to move it from rumor to settled fact, that’s different. But if that’s happened, Queerty hasn’t reported it either. Until then, rumors are just gossip.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 10:56 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      @ED49: said…

      “You should not care whether he is in the closest or not, who cares if he bottoms or tops(unless he barebacks). He is a good politician since we are talking about him and he’s kind of relevant for the time being.

      Oh, are we forgetting that he supported and pushed the law that said gays shouldn’t even be allowed to adopt? I get it that now he is claiming his opinions have changed, and that getting Rick Scott out of office is a good thing, but lets not pretend this guy is anything but a closeted soulless opportunist.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 11:08 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      @BJ McFrisky: said…

      “Q: Why is the Post enabling Crist’s continuing closet crusade?
      A: Simple. He’s a Democrat who rejected the Republican party, and there’s no scandal in outing a Democrat. That’s taboo in the liberal media. It was the same story with Ed Koch.
      The end.

      And once again BJ lies, but never presents any proof. BJ, please answer for me this. If the Post is only doing this because he is a democrat, then why didn’t they out him when he was a republican for years, and Years, and Years, oh, and when he was governor of Florida, as a Republican?

      Gee, that would seem to disprove your statement. But once again, BJ’s only objective on here is to continually try to pain the GOP as victims when he isn’t simply defending any anti-gay bigot.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 11:42 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • balehead

      He’s just following the money…..Shame on Stephen Colbert for enabling him….

      Feb 21, 2014 at 11:45 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • gauty

      I’m SO tired of hearing imbeciles whining about this supposed “Closet Crusade” (HAHAHA), you people don’t even deserve to call yourselves queer. You do realize that in these times it is absolutely crucial that people come out of the closet so that they can show the public it’s acceptable, so it can BECOME “not a big deal”? Are you all really that fucking stupid? It makes me so goddamn angry. “He shouldn’t come out if he doesn’t feel comfortable”; well guess what fuckheads, he doesn’t feel comfortable either a) because of the homophobia that is still clear and present in this society, or b) because he’s a self-hating, lily-livered coward. In these times, if you are a figurehead, an icon or have any kind of voice as an LGBTQA individual it is your duty to take a personal stand so you can freely be who you are, and help others realize they can be, too. It’s empowering and inspiring. Which is why I have nothing but respect for Ellen Page who came out, even though people on this site’s reaction to it ranged from “Who cares” and, most infuriatingly “I could always tell, I mean look at the way she dresses” Because apparently one’s entire gender-identification and sexual orientation can be derived from the fact they wear plaid shirts.

      Again, I have to state that the level of ignorance and pig-headedness on this site is on par with that of the homophobic buttmonkeys in the Youtube comments sections.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 11:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • sportyguy1983

      I m glad to see people like @gauty knows what is best for everyone. I am glad to see he believes the collective good is more important than individual freedoms. It is not anyone’s duty or responsibility to be a role model for anyone. Is it nice if people take the mantel of a role model? Of course, but it is their INDIVIDUAL and PERSONAL decision.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 12:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ED49

      Glad you call yourself queer and you family accepted you as a full bitter homosexual. Learn to have respect for others the same way we expect respect for them regardless. Are you the queen patrol?

      Feb 21, 2014 at 12:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bellerophon69

      If he’s gay and chooses to stay in the closet for private or political reasons, that’s his prerogative. We gays tend to forget the times when it would have been detrimental, possibly disastrous, and even dangerous to be “out and about”, and I’d even dare to say that the majority of us have had to remain closeted at some point or another for lots of different reasons. Not everyone who’s gay has to come out and be a “poster boy” for the community, and everybody (straight or gay) in this modern age seems to want to mind everyone else’s business and tell them how to act and live their lives. When and if he’s ready to come out, fine, he’ll do it Do you like it when everyone else in the community tries to “mind your business” as to whither or not you act or dress “gay” enough? Do you like it when straight people tell you how to behave or dress or to “stay in the closet”? This cuts both ways my fine fellow friends.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 12:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • joey

      It’s no one’s fucking biz if youre gay or not. It’s MY RIGHT to be in a closet as it is my right to decide what i am open about (or not open) with any other part of my life. No one has the right to out me or anyone else, THE ONLY EXCEPTION is if someone is gay and openly working againist gays. I have lived and worked in my town for almost 3o yrs, i have never disclosed my sexuality at work, nor has anyone ever asked, why would they ITS WORK, i have had self disclosed to ONE family member and very few friends. this is my right. do these people talke or question behind my back perhaps? maybe? definately? i dont know and dont care my personal life is no ones biz. to call someone a coward because they’ve not lived their life like youve lived yours is ridiculous, one size does not fit all. i too am more concerned about this guys politics than the parts of his life he wants to stay private.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Deepdow


      You get it!


      Yes it’s your pitiful right to be in a closet, but how come we never will hear a straight person say exactly what you’ve just said?

      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:13 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      Um, all the people defending his staying in the closet. Once again, apparently you all have forgotten that he spoke out AGAINST gay marriage and against gays adopting.

      Now that he has switched parties, yes, it would be nice if he knocked Rick Scott out of office, but lets not pretend that this is some sweet, charitable closet case being dragged out. When it benefited him he threw gays so far under the bus that our grand-kids will still have tire marks.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CCTR

      -even in journalism sometimes “political correctness” trumps honesty
      -many in the LGBT community will blast reputable media for outing someone, accusing that media outlet of being homophobic bullies
      -“The media continue to think of sexual orientation as something that is vaguely defamatory” (usually only when sexual orientation implies homo/bisexual orientation)

      Politicians like to align their image, “lifestyles”, “family values”, characters and credibility to their political platforms. They also create and support legislation that affects our lives, legality of our families, and civil liberties. Journalism is usually about reporting truth or at least questioning the “truth”. Rumors are often times truths without proof. What is the harm in the media questioning his honesty? Isn’t that part of being a political figure in this country?

      Enough rambling from me but my main thoughts on outing these closeted politicians is didn’t we learn anything from Monica Lewinsky and Linda Tripp? Stains and recordings are difficult to dispute.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • BJ McFrisky

      @Cam: This is the final time I will respond to your idiocy:

      The question was, “Why Is The Washington Post Enabling Charlie Crist’s Closet,” and I stated that, in my opinion, they’re covering for him because he’s a Democrat who turned his back on the Republicans. That’s it, that’s all—nothing about past reportage, nothing about his shoe size, nothing about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, so stop trying to distract from the topic at hand.

      I promise you, if you stop reading my posts, we’ll be on equal footing.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Deepdow

      @BJ McFrisky:

      Nah, actually most of the media enables “the closet” by virtue of nefarious history, despite party affiliation, in any country.

      I promise you if all gay people in the West stopped being so timid about being honest, because being in the closet is a liar’s philosophy, then we could all move past this ridiculousness.


      Feb 21, 2014 at 1:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      Would somebody please explain why you are all so absolutely certain he’s closeted, as opposed to not being gay in the first place? Rumors are nothing but rumors.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 2:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      @BJ McFrisky:

      No, actually what you said was this.

      ““Q: Why is the Post enabling Crist’s continuing closet crusade?
      A: Simple. He’s a Democrat who rejected the Republican party, and there’s no scandal in outing a Democrat. That’s taboo in the liberal media. It was the same story with Ed Koch.
      The end.

      And I pointed out correctly that he used to be a republican, he was a governor, he was talked about as a possible VP and yet nobody outted him at that time when he was a member of the GOP. So once again, you were trying to play the “Republicans are victims card” and I pointed out how that was false, and that if the Post was out to get Republicans, they would have outted him at some point in the last few decades when he was a prominent member of the GOP who was also a possible VP pick. But they didn’t. So sorry your constant attmpts to play the victim keep failing.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 2:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lvng1tor

      @ED49: Really? Ya had to throw in an Anti Obama reference. Really? You don’t care about whether or not he’s sucking dick or what position he likes (unless barebacking and then by way it reads WE SHOULD OUT THE HELL OUT OF HIM! SATAN!!!!) but you do have to get the “Obama Sucks”in there Cause that had something to do with the article? Really?

      Feb 21, 2014 at 3:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

      The problem was this used to matter. I thought we were hopefully getting to the ‘Who Cares’ mentality. I guess not. By the way, I’m gay. Front page news…40 years ago.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 4:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alan down in Florida

      And yet when all is said and done I will vote for him because incumbent Governor Skeletor Scott is a rich disaster of a human being and politician.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 4:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dougmc92

      it’s time to end the closet!!!!! If you’re a teengaer- you get a pass…if you’re over 21- get out- if you’re over 25- you need to be kicked in the pants/outed. You know who you are by 25, it’s no longer about accepting yourself- you’d be MUCH better off out- so outing would help them!

      Feb 21, 2014 at 4:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tonyinstpete

      I live in Florida and know our current far right wing Tea Party Governor and the heavily gerrymandered Republican legislature are terrible for All the citizens of this state, though perhaps especially for gays especially those without a lot of money.

      I remember Charlie Crist as a much more reasonable moderate governor who did a lot for what is now the third largest state in the nation. If it will help him get elected by being a closeted gay man–whether that is true or not I don’t know–so be it. I only know that Crist’s support for accepting federal money for Medicaid, keeping voting relatively easy for college students and minorities,for environmental protections, and now for gay marriage and an anti-discrimination law is a welcome relief from the current reactionary regime.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 4:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • tada-no

      How do closeted high profile politicians manage to keep their sexuality a top secret when everyone knows what some has-been celeb had for lunch on TMZ?
      Do these GOP closet cases stay celibate? When there are rumors that they frequent gay bars, why isn’t there a single cellphone pic of them? Where are the guys that hooked up with them with some iphone evidence? Do these politicians force some confidentiality contracts with guys they meet?

      Feb 21, 2014 at 5:27 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • alterego1980

      There are two types of famous; Actors/Entertainers, including sports figures, and politicians. If an actor/entertainer announces they are gay, it is typically celebrated. But if they are know to be gay as they are trying to get famous, it is much tougher on them to get big roles, or make the team, or at least that’s the general idea.
      But, contrary to that, if a politician (in the right environment) is out before they run for office, they are generally more accepted. If a politician announces s/he is gay after election, it mostly destroys them. People have such ridiculous cultural & “good neighbor” expectations for a politician that if they start down that road, they better stay that person forever! If they come out as something different, then they are seen as untrustworthy.
      People already say that about Crist because he switched parties and policy stances. He is a leper to both sides. He is put in this position of being the most appealing thing to the most people he can. Anything less, like coming out as gay, and especially being outed would definitely cost him any shot at this and any other election. But do it, and he may just save his soul.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 5:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CCTR

      @tada-no: similar type of questions posted in the Kerry Rhodes thread

      some people simply have no interest and/or incentive in confirming or labeling another person’s sexual orientation especially when it goes against the politician’s claims of being heterosexual

      their partners may be closeted as well

      politicians may not be as recognizable as you might suspect

      that type of evidence may be present, unless a media outlet or group or powerful individual has an active agenda to expose the politician, implications of homosexuality seem to go unreported by “reputable” media outlets and folks don’t generally believe TMZ, Queerty, Enquirer etc.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 5:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ED49

      @Lvng1tor: unless he barbacks of course, it’s hot!Homos get upset when someone does not agree with their opinions.This politician has the right to be in the closet if he wants to; probably he doesn’t want anyone to think that when he is giving a speech probably his butt is still moist from the Fk.
      People have the right to be against gay adoptions, especially male gay adoptions. I’m gay and I dont believe in male gay adoptions. Male gays are too unsettled, too unsecured, too promiscuous, when gay males hit age 45, instead of feeling secured and collected, they act like high school girls trying to be young and pretty and just stupid. They really don’t know how to nest. If you dont like Charlie C, don’t vote for him. I do regret voting for Obama; he has flipped Flopped more times than a mexican tortilla. he used the gays to at least be popular in something. CANT WAIT FOR OBAMA TO LIVE AND MAYBE CHARLIE GET A BETTER TAN

      Feb 21, 2014 at 10:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LadyL

      @hyhybt: Not always.
      Crist was among those featured prominently in “Outrage,” the compelling documentary that took a serious look at politicians who are themselves gay but enact or actively support virulently anti-gay policies as a means of deflecting scrutiny away from themselves (and appeasing the right-wing machines that support and fund their candidacies). When asked about her short-lived marriage to Crist, the now ex-wife who appears in the documentary–whose youthful beauty and sex appeal was supposedly “proof” that Candidate Crist was straight as an arrow–wryly replied “Ask me in 10 years–I’ll tell you a story.”
      Sometimes a rumor is more than a rumor. Ask Jim Kolbe, also featured in “Outrage” who dropped his own anti-gay public stance when he finally came out.

      Feb 21, 2014 at 11:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @LadyL: None of which is more than rumor, and the ex-wife thing doesn’t even rise to that level. So how does that contradict my previous statement, OR what is it that has everyone so convinced the guy’s gay? *OTHER THAN* the desire to believe rumors.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LadyL

      @tada-no: Those are Before and After questions, tada-no.
      Politicians, especially those in high public office, have serious power–and so do the money men that fund their candidacies. In the minds of some pols and their handlers, they have a lot to lose if their constituents know the truth about their personal lives.
      Some thirty or forty years ago, BEFORE the GOP struck deals with power-hungry leaders of the viciously homophobic Religious Right to bring in more votes, many gay politicians on both sides of the political aisle frequented gay bars and clubs, secure in the expectation that the people they encountered would not give them up, and aware that the mainstream media didn’t want to “know” anyway.
      AFTER the GOP and the Religious Right got into bed with each other (so to speak) politicians began to realize that their sexual orientation had become a liability that could cost them their careers. They avoided the bars and clubs and began to buy their companionship. Escorts were paid not just for sex but for discretion and made to understand (in case they needed to be told) that if they talked, it could go badly for them, serious threats that were usually taken seriously.
      This was true even when the companion was a partner rather than a rent boy. Reportedly, Ed Koch was involved in a long term romance with a man who actually loved him. But when the relationship ended Koch destroyed his ex-lover’s life to protect himself, essentially having the man “disappeared.”
      Things are changing… but slowly, because Washington, like Hollywood, is a town ruled by fear and money, more or less in that order.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • joey

      @Deepdow: because a str8 person most likelty does not have a boss that might care, relatives that might care, neighbors that might….generally speaking coming out as gay with certain people in certains places could not be in a persons interest…and its the person in the closet that decides whats in their best interest

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:47 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • joey

      @dougmc92: according to YOU you think a person is better off out. how can YOU decide whats best for another person, someone whose life you do not know or the problems they might have? its a personal choice and noones biz…

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LadyL

      @hyhybt: Kolbe’s coming out is not a “rumor” and neither is his admission that he took the anti-gay positions he once did because he was afraid of what would happen if he didn’t.
      You seem willfully blind, clinging to the belief that because no one has offered you proof that Crist is gay–which would be what, btw? what would satisfy you? photographs? sex tapes? a twitter admission from the great man himself?–that it can’t possibly be true.
      I’ll bet you don’t require similar confirmation about the orientation of straight politicians and celebrities.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @LadyL: I misspoke. Anything *relevant to the guy this article is about* in that post was rumor at best. As for your last question, it’s complete nonsense unless and until you produce politicians who are *rumored* to be straight, but who have consistently throughout their public careers presented themselves as gay.

      Now for the middle part: I do not assume, much less insist, that he is straight. Nothing I’ve said reasonably can be inferred that way. My problem, which you still haven’t bothered addressing in any substantial way, is people acting as if rumor were instead known truth, and flat out refusing to provide any reason even remotely approaching worthy of the word for declaring he *is* gay, rather than calling it an unknown and leaving it at that. Why is that so hard?

      Feb 22, 2014 at 1:09 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @LadyL: Oh, and of course the ridiculous notion that newspapers should report that he’s gay when there’s no evidence and the one person who should know for certain hasn’t said it’s so. There doesn’t seem to be even an attempt to justify that, and it was, after all, the whole point of the article itself. So all I do is ask why, and people act as if I’m being unreasonable.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 1:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kangol


      Sometimes Charlie Crist has been on gays’ side, sometimes he hasn’t. He’s like a weathervane, though he is a lot better than the wretched Rick Scott.

      The beard, er, wife, isn’t fooling anyone. Except maybe him.

      But he also recently was praising Jeb Bush for a presidential run. What is wrong with Charlie Crist!???

      Feb 22, 2014 at 1:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • sangsue

      Unless it’s truth and it can be proven, the WP is not going to mention rumors. Rumors can get them open to lawsuit. Besides, a newspaper that prints rumors is a tabloid. Not a newspaper.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 1:53 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jar

      @ED49: Crist is a good politician if you are a conservative Xian. Not so much if you believe in progressive ideas like, oh, the right of women to control their bodies or the right of same sex couples to marry. It’s an abomination (and quite telling) that he is allowed to run on the Democratic line.
      It is also understood that he has the right to say whatever he chooses, but the press, if it is doing its job, has the right to report the truth or falsity of his statements. That’s what we expect from the fourth estate.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 2:19 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cyn

      Couple things. It’s none of our business who wants to stay closeted, and outing is bad stuff. My general rule is only those who go out of their way to make our lives more difficult get publicly outed against their will.

      Second, extremely conservative Florida is in ruins and ruled by the TeaHadist Rick Scott. We need Charlie Crist back. Continued efforts to trash his governing ability are being financed by right wing extremist everywhere. Queerty speculating on his sexuality merely adds fuel to the bigoted flames. Please stop.

      Feb 22, 2014 at 12:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LadyL

      @hyhybt: I’m going to make one more attempt at responding to your logic and then I’ll let it go as we seem destined to disagree.
      Again I’m asking–what sort of “evidence” would you or anyone consider proof positive? We’re talking about sexuality, hyhybt, and homosexuality at that. For public men of a certain age, being known as gay is unthinkable, and they will go to great lengths to keep that aspect of their lives hidden.
      But these men do have sexual lives, and the men they hit on or hook up with do talk…
      Not to the press necessarily (at least, not to the mainstream press who in any case would rather not have to report it, though they seem to enjoy the gossip) but they do talk to someone, who then tells someone else. That’s the way it is with secrets. Word gets around, and what is not generally known to the public at large becomes an open secret within political and media circles.
      Charlie Crist is old enough to have by now a fairly lengthy sexual history. If he is gay–and I think he is–it’s a safe bet that more than one person “knows.” If the rumors about him are so persistent that you and I are arguing about it, it’s a safe bet that there’s a “there” there–or as my grandmother used to say, Where there’s smoke there’s fire. (We’re not having debates like this about ALL politicians after all, just certain ones.)
      If we don’t see male versions of Gennifer Flowers or Monica Lewinsky coming forward, I’m sure it’s because these men feel they’ve little to gain and everyting to lose stepping into the spotlight to expose guys like Crist.
      Would they be believed? Would their motives be questioned? Would they be greeted with hostility and suspicion? Who could they count on to back them up? And who would they tell their stories to– the very same media that historically has been so complicit for so long in helping to closet public figures like Crist?
      And what about the whistleblowers themselves? What would compel any of them to talk? (And how “pure” would they have to be to do it?)
      What kind of guy would involve himself with closeted politicians anyway? Is he a prostitute or sex worker, who might find himself subject to arrest? Has he been living some complicated down-low life of his own?
      Maybe none of those things apply, maybe he is someone–a campaign or staff worker–who has been repeatedly sexually harassed by Congressman or Senator X and is sick and tired of it. He complains to his closest friends, some of whom urge him to go public and nail the hypocritical bastard, others who counsel caution–he’s a nobody after all, at least compared to the wealthy and well-connected Mr. X.
      I’m not remotely surprised that the “one person who should know for certain hasn’t said it’s so.” Even if he could get anyone to listen to him, where does he go from there?

      Feb 22, 2014 at 10:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @LadyL: Thank you, though it’s hardly fair to throw your hands up and leave as if at the end of a long conversation where everything has been explored when it’s instead the VERY FIRST TIME IN THE THREAD anybody has given anything approaching answers to what I’ve been asking from the beginning. I’d very much appreciate if you’d stick around a bit more.

      “Again I’m asking–what sort of “evidence” would you or anyone consider proof positive?”—I’m not entirely certain. If you, or anyone else, *provide* some evidence then I can see whether it seems convincing, but nobody’s done that. But *I’m* not a reporter. There are two questions: 1) Why are people acting as if he absolutely were beyond question gay, not considering it even POSSIBLE that he isn’t and treating the whole notion of leaving it as an unknown abhorrent, and 2) what proof is there that makes this something the Washington Post should report?

      “For public men of a certain age, being known as gay is unthinkable, and they will go to great lengths to keep that aspect of their lives hidden.
      But these men do have sexual lives, and the men they hit on or hook up with do talk…</i—Indeed. But as a chain of reasoning, this is backwards. You have here a reason someone who is gay might not want it known, NOT a reason rumors that a person is gay must be true. I'm sure you understand the difference, and hope it was only an oversight.

      “Word gets around, and what is not generally known to the public at large becomes an open secret within political and media circles.”—True, as a general statement. Useful, in that *IF* the rumor is true, it is likely (but by no means certain) that “political and media circles” know it. But surely you see it’s completely useless in getting through that “if,” because WE are not in that group. We’re part of “the public at large.” By your own statement (so far) we do not know what they know, if indeed they know anything.

      “Charlie Crist is old enough to have by now a fairly lengthy sexual history. If he is gay–and I think he is–it’s a safe bet that more than one person “knows.” If the rumors about him are so persistent that you and I are arguing about it, it’s a safe bet that there’s a “there” there–or as my grandmother used to say, Where there’s smoke there’s fire.—First, and mostly to the side, old enough to have a lengthy sexual history and actually having one don’t mean the same thing at all. Nor does lengthy necessarily mean with lots of people. As for “no smoke without fire,” that’s not true and never has been. Rumors start for all sorts of reasons, and their longevity depending far less on fact than on tastiness and on being difficult to *dis*prove. What you have here, as before, is a great reason that, if he is gay, there will be persistent rumors. But again, as before, that’s the wrong direction: what’s needed is reason that the existence of rumor alone means the rumor is true. *PLEASE* tell me you understand the difference! (And no, “my grandmother used to say where there’s smoke there’s fire” isn’t even close to a logical reason.)

      Now I realize this is a likely point for the false and baseless assumption that I care whether he’s gay or not to pop up again. I’m looking at logic, and i’ve run into this sort of thing (other topics, other people, etc.) too often. So I’m trying to have a logical discussion. Another question it would be nice to have truthful, meaningful answers to would be why people are so averse to that, but you can’t have everything.

      “If we don’t see male versions of Gennifer Flowers or Monica Lewinsky coming forward, I’m sure it’s because…”—I don’t quite see why you included this. It seems to be saying, to borrow from above, that “the absence of smoke proves there’s a fire.” Yes, if we don’t see male versions of those women, that could be because they don’t want to come forward or are being pressured to remain silent; just as, if there’s no evidence for a given conspiracy, it might be because they’re good at covering it up. But likewise, it also might be because they don’t exist.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 1:21 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      @Cyn: said… “Couple things. It’s none of our business who wants to stay closeted, and outing is bad stuff. My general rule is only those who go out of their way to make our lives more difficult get publicly outed against their will.”

      Your comment is ridiculous for two reasons.

      1. Only those who go out of their way to make our lives more difficult? You mean like when Crist was governor and he supported outlawing gay marriage and even went further to support outlawing gay adoptions?

      2. Why do you think “Outing” is so horrible? Is it the worst thing in the world to call somebody gay? The only people who think that this is so horrible are bigots and people who believe their arguments.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 9:14 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cyn

      @Cam: Crist changed his mind on several subjects. That is a good thing. And outing at this point is only unsupported gossip, meant to be a career destroyer and alienate those voters who think Rick the Dick is a state destroyer, but still hold traditional conservative views. So no, gay is not the issue here. Please educate yourself on recent Florida politics.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 12:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam


      Perhaps you may want to try getting over yourself. “Changed his mind”? You mean he suddenly said he opposed everything he used to be fore when asking Dems to now vote for him.

      As for the rest of your comment, try reading my post. By insinuating that saying somebody is gay is a horrible thing, you are simply buying into the bigotry of the far right. Please tell me which right wingers in FL. who hate gays would be voting for Crist in the first place now that he is running as a pro-gay marriage democrat? So please….by all means, educate us.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 2:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LadyL

      @hyhybt: Well, I will concede this. I take your point that a rumor can be baseless and yet take on a life of its own that convinces people otherwise, espcially when they are inclined to believe it.
      But I also feel strongly that the “where there’s smoke there’s fire” adage is sometimes true, and seems to apply most frequently to issues surrounding homosexuality and public figures. As I said, maybe we’re just going to have to leave it at you and I disagreeing. In my mind, the very nature of the sexual closet, with its attendant baggage of secrecy, anxiety, ambivalence and shame make the “proving” of who is gay in public life difficult since there is so much disinclination on the part of so many to want to “go there” whether the attention is justified or not.
      I’m always perplexed as to why discussion of who in public life is or might be gay is seen by so many as crossing a line. First of all, is there something so terribly wrong with being gay that speculating about Crist can only be understood as an attack or attempt to defame?
      Maybe what’s unsettling is that the underlying issue in these debates is about character.
      When politicians seek our votes they ask for our trust. They introduce themselves to us by telling us about their lives, saying this is where I come from, this is who I am, and I can relate to your aspirations, concerns and struggles. I know something about what you’re going through and as your leader, I can make your life better.
      If that individual is being dishonest about something as fundamental as his sexuality, he is compromised– and it does become our business. It becomes our business because his fear of discovery can compel him to do things and make decisions that immpact our lives in cruel and destructive ways.
      Where the discrimination of any group of people is concerned, the personal inevitably becomes the political and we do have a right to know what’s going on. Even if he doesn’t enact or support policies that prevent us from marrying, or adopting children, or being protected against discrimination in jobs and housing, if he seems to be hiding and presenting a false image to the world, that behavior does contribute to assumptions that there is indeed something bad, something inherently wrong, about being gay. Which gives cover to those who can and will make life miserable for the lgbt people in their midst. You know, people like city officials, community leaders, neighbors, pastors, parents, and schoolyard bullies.
      I don’t know Charlie Crist. I don’t know anyone who does know him personally. But, in addition to the talk about Crist here and on other sites, I watched professional journalists, insiders whose job it is to cover Charlie Crist, announce his 2008 wedding engagement. Particularly, I was struck by the smirky looks, throat-clearing and chuckling between MSNBC’s Chuck Todd and Joe Scarborough, who seemed to have a hard time keeping straight faces as they discussed the upcoming nuptials and what it meant for Crist’s political future.
      Could that reaction be considered proof? Probably not. Todd and Scarborough’s schoolboy snark could have been a knee-jerk response to typical political calculation being passed off as fairy-tale romance. But it was impossible not to sense that it was more than that, that both men knew a LOT more about the real private life of Charlie Crist than they were willing to say on-air.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 3:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @LadyL: “’m always perplexed as to why discussion of who in public life is or might be gay is seen by so many as crossing a line. First of all, is there something so terribly wrong with being gay that speculating about Crist can only be understood as an attack or attempt to defame?”—Thank you, again. As far as its being an attempt to defame, that depends on who’s doing it, why, and what the results would be, not on whether being gay is in fact a bad thing. The othef thing is that this *is* about speculation. The question remains why an outlet such as the Washington Post should engage in speculative gossip. Queerty says yes, but gives no reason.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 3:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cyn

      @Cam: Cam, marriage equality is not the only issue on the ballot this election, sorry to have to tell you this, but since you are unable to simply read I’ll not bother to worry your little head over those things. However, if the current governor stays in office, marriage equality will also be only one of a large basket of issues affecting the entire population of the state.

      Since you have no idea who I am, I’m going to suggest you quit reading gossip columns as your primary news source. You seem to have become stuck there, and it’s not good to look so ignorant of politics. Go hold court among those who appreciate mean queen bitchiness, which went out of fashion decades ago.

      Feb 23, 2014 at 4:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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