The first time I saw American Beauty, my reaction to the denouement scene and the revelation about Chris Cooper’s character was one I’ve heard shared by many other viewers: I just rolled my eyes at the whole sorry cliché.
I mean, come on – the homophobe who’s really a closet case? How played-out can you get?
So, of course, I guess it shouldn’t really be a surprise to hear that Ted Haggard, president of the 30 million member National Association of Evangelicals, is just the latest to be brought to his knees thanks to an uncontrollable urge to hate the sin, but luuuuuuuuuv the sinners.
Already, Haggard has copped to scoring crystal meth from a call-boy in Denver (that part would have been hard for him to deny, since he’s caught on tape setting up the buys) but so far, he’s sticking with his story that, no, really, he just happens to be an effeminate heterosexual.
And who am I to doubt him? The case isn’t yet a slam dunk, in no small measure because his accuser flunked his polygraph. (Incidentally, the boys at Pinkdome argue the reason Haggard might have been able to negotiate the cut rate price of $200 a lay is that Mike Jones is a 49-year-old with loose skin and old balls.)
But the fact that he was so quick to quit both his NAE post, and his
congregation (whose walls apparently feature some rather, ahem, interesting murals)
not to mention the speed with which his story about Jones has morphed from a St.
Peteresque “I don’t know him” to “He was my dealer” to “And he gave
me a massage that one time,” leads one to suspect that he’s just raring to
go from 0 to Foley in no time flat.
In any case, his fellow fundie nutballs are wasting no time in throwing their guy under the bus. First up was the venerable Dr. James Dobson, who issued a release declaring that “the situation has grave implications for the Cause of Christ” (Really? How?)
Following just behind is everyone’s favorite former gay-prostitute-dating coke dealer turned fag-hating preacher -- Stephen Bennett. Despite apparently having so much in common with Haggard, Bennett said he was “completely disgusted and dismayed” at the news. He explains:
"Today, my life is totally different. I am no longer gay. I'm happily married for over 13 years to my beautiful wife Irene, and I'm the father of two little children - a boy and a girl.”
You can tell yourself that all you like, Stevie-boy. Alas, after hearing that Barry Mannilow impersonator
you’ve got piping on your web site,
I have to break it to you, dude –- you’re still gay. Trust me on this one. No straight man would ever choose that music.
Whether the allegations about Haggard end up proving true or false, about one thing there can be no doubt – he’s a delusional creep. This, Dr. Dawkins has already capably demonstrated: