Paul Cameron: The Straight Dope
FILED TO: Politics
By Chez Pazienza:
Well, that didn’t take long.
Following a week that saw President Obama publicly throw his weight behind same-sex marriage — leading Newsweek to publish a for-shock-value-only cover declaring him “The First Gay President” — his mortal enemies within the right-wing nutjob contingent are reacting exactly the way you’d expect:
“Actually, while I’m not sure about the claims by the various people who have reported that Obama has at least participated at times with them in homosexual acts, this certainly lends some credence.”
That’s Paul Cameron of the Family Research Institute — which is neither an institute nor anything that does a considerable amount of research — basically alluding to the possibility that President Obama is gay. Because he supports same-sex marriage. If you follow that line of thinking, given the fact that I once had a cat and I’ll publicly go on record as saying I don’t support the torture of cats, I am in fact a cat.
But of course that’s beside the point because it’s fucking worthless to argue logically with these people. Cameron is making veiled and ultimately baseless allegations that will be eaten up like handfuls of soma by the legion of lunatics who now own the Republican party — the people who believe any wild conspiracy theory floated about Obama, no matter how unsubstantiated, specious, or completely divorced from reality.
Case in point: A couple of days ago I violated a pretty stringent personal policy and commented on the wall of a loose Facebook friend who’d posted something kind of ridiculous involving politics. What she’d linked to was an article on how President Obama’s father was a known terrorist and how this new information would badly damage Obama’s already tenuous and legally questionable grasp on the White House, especially since it was well known that the birth certificate he produced last year for the public was a fake. In other words, the piece seemed written to purposely hit every single note played by the conspiracist crowd. And in fact, it was.
See, the piece had been posted at Christwire.org — which is why I made one comment to the person who’d linked it with what certainly seemed to be serious intent: “I get the impression you don’t know that Christwire is a satire site.” What followed was a fusillade of outraged comments in response from a couple of this person’s other Facebook friends, each more insane than the last. First, the commenters maintained the truth of the story — this despite the fact that it came, again, from a site that trafficked in fake news items and had been almost surely written to poke fun at exactly the kind of derangement I was witnessing in response to it. The ouroborial loop of meta-madness was almost beyond description — it made your brain hurt. That was followed by a lot of talk about Obama’s “regime” and how I would eventually come around to the fact that he and his “sluts” were destroying America little by little.
I’m obviously not going to blame somebody for being duped by Christwire. As a satire site it’s as good as they come, having even fooled Rachel Maddow at one point. And it just about goes without saying that we’ve reached the point in our discourse where Poe’s Law is in full effect and right-wing fundamentalism has become indistinguishable from any parody of right-wing fundamentalism; it’s simply impossible to come up with a phony scenario that sounds any goddamned crazier than the very real thought processes these people pull out of their asses. Parody, I honestly believe, isn’t really necessary in our culture anymore — if for no other reason than the fact that it’s damn near impossible, having been rendered toothless by a reality that now feels perpetually and exclusively surreal.
But once the joke has been revealed, once you’ve been clued in to the fact that you’ve been had, only the completely delusional continue to maintain the delusion. It takes a special kind of ferocity in your willingness to believe anything that confirms your biases to be told that somebody played a really cruel joke at your expense and respond, “It’s no joke.” But this is the nature of unshakable faith at the exclusion of all contrary evidence. And its become a kind of art form in the age of Obama. There’s almost an elegance to the mental gymnastics.
Paul Cameron has no proof at all that President Obama is gay — a laughable claim at face value — but it hardly matters. All that matters is a suspicion he has, a couple of random allegations he probably read in a chain e-mail at some point, and the fact that he so wants it to be true.
But of course it’s not true. It’s horseshit. As usual.
Also, Dick Cheney is apparently gay.
If you love what we do here at the Banter, please consider becoming a Banter Member and supporting independent media! Readers get access to the Magazine and unlimited monthly articles