10 Years On: From Mathew Shepard to Will & Grace to Oklahoma

This October will be the 10th anniversary of the Mathew Shepard fatal gay bashing, in which a young man from Laramie, Wyoming, was beaten nearly to death and then strung upon a fence in rural Wyoming and left so that time could finish him off.

Because he was gay.

First, I thought “Wow, 10 years.” Then, I thought “Man, only 10 years?”

I guess, then, that it’s no surprise that a clip has gone viral on YouTube of Okahoma State Rep. Sally Kern denouncing homosexuality as a plague and instrument of destruction far worse than terrorism or Islam.*

[Click here for the Victory Fund’s anonymous whistle-blowing original posting of the clip, with bad quality audio, or click here for a boring version but edited with normalisation ie: good audio.]

It’s so fucking weird. Isn’t it? I mean… Ohh. I only now listened to it, and I have to say I had something that I really only rarely get: the heebie-jeebies. Damn! This woman gives me the heebie-jeebies!

It’s like discovering cockroaches in your house. Oh my god. How’d they get here? Gasp. Just when I thought we were safe.

How has this woman gone unexposed this long? She actually thinks this shit? Un-fucking-real. Trouble is… just like the cockroach analogy, you know she’s not alone.

It ain’t “she”… she’s just a symbol for “they”. She’s the one who got caught. Things like this get said. You better believe they do. They just get said where there are secret handshakes and double-talk. Every now and then someone slips up and somebody else exposes it. And thank god they do. (Way to go, Victory Fund.)

You expect to hear political hacks spout this shit in countries that missed the “separating church from state” lesson at dictator school, like fucking Nigeria or Saudi Arabia, not in the USA.

I’m sorry, man, but I’m never, ever gonna buy that hating someone’s a good way to live. I disagree with beliefs, lifestyles, personalities, fads, and pundits, but it doesn’t give cause to do a whole lot of hating. I mean, I even think George Bush is a likable guy. I’m a sucker for a goofy grin.

But these people… these so-fucking-called religious types, be they Islamists or Christians or whatever, who claim they love their maker then seek to hate something he/she/it created make me sick. Physically ill. That, I can hate. That’s hypocrisy. That’s living a lie. That’s flat-out bullshit.

And I can sit here and call it names all day, but there’s nothing I’m really able to do to fight hypocrisy. It’s one of the only things that’s an easily unwinnable war. All you can do is keep telling the truth, saying it like it is, demonstrating the harm in their behaviour, and hope like hell the day they see things in a real light comes sooner than later. ‘Cause, man, sooner or later everyone winds up on a deathbed and most, if not all, will lament having lived a life in which they loved too few people.

These guys, natch, are at the head of the list of lamenters. You can’t hate someone for electing to choose who they love. As if homosexuality was something as simple as a choice, which it’s not. You can’t hate someone for being born with a desire to love their same sex counterparts, especially if you believe your god did in fact make all men in his image.

It’s bogus. Worse, it’s a hate crime. What this woman said is an offense against all homosexuals. It is a call to action. It is a cry for a revolt. She accuses gays of “infiltrating” city councils and all levels of government. Assures her listeners that any society to have ever embraced homosexuality openly was doomed to end in horror within decades. Homosexuality, she says in far less intelligent ways, is the doomsdayer of civilisation and the slayer of empires. I’m sure she feels the rallying cry of gays everywhere is just what Bin Laden would say, “Death to America”.

But Kern fights charges that she’s hate-bashing gays by saying it’s only the RICH ones, the ones with the AGENDAS that she takes issues with. Kinda like back in the ’50s when it was only the “uppity” blacks they’d have a problem with, huh? The ones who, I dunno, maybe thought they deserved to be treated equal in a country claiming to be founded on the principal that all men are equal?

Yeah, agenda. Agend this, Kern.

Fucking redneck political hack. And she’s been voted in? Yeah, this should be entertaining.

The only reassuring thing is, Will & Grace had 8 hit seasons, and ain’t no fuckin’ Okie taking that away. I’m no Nielsen’s expert but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t only gays watching. For eight years. And the show went on air the year Mathew Shepard died… and ten years isn’t that long after all. But, psst… it’s not just a sitcom, it’s a sign we’re starting to win this. Ignorance can be overcome. We gotta believe.

America needs to talk about this. This needs to be an issue. This is a hate crime in the guise of a political discussion. It’s 2008 in the land of “the free”. It’s time to fuckin’ decide: Free — A principal, or just a friggin’ buzz word to sell flags?

If it’s a principal, then it involves love too, baby.

(Oh, and, Oklahomans, if you’re insulted I mention Okies derisively here, then do something about it and get this fucking redneck off your state’s slate NOW, not in fuckin’ November. Create a movement. I’m just saying. Money and action where mouth is goes a long ways on this here issue. Here’s an article in the Tulsa World paper, though. Apparently she’s unleashed a shitstorm of discussion down there in Oklahoma and is on quite the defensive. Goodie.)