The gift of Chris Buttars

It's a perverse kind of feeling that I get when I read something horrible. (Well, horrible in a certain kind of way. Natural disasters, major crimes, etc. are horrible in a totally different way, devoid of nuance.) On the one hand, the recent comments of one Chris Buttars, state senator of Utah, are just appalling, and make me want to find his neighborhood and drive around blasting Cher music. (And I don't even like Cher music.) On the other hand, the following comments (via Washington Monthly) are just the kind of hilariously awful crap that I love to write about. Regarding homosexuality:

* "To me, homosexuality will always be a sexual perversion. And you say that around here now and everybody goes nuts! But I don't care."

* "They say, 'I'm born that way.' There's some truth to that, in that some people are born with an attraction to alcohol."

* "They're mean! They want to talk about being nice -- they're the meanest buggers I ever seen. It's just like the Moslems. Moslems are good people and their religion is anti-war. But it's been taken over by the radical side. And the gays are totally taken over by the radical side."

* "I believe that you will destroy the foundation of American society, because I believe the cornerstone of it is a man and a woman, the family.... And I believe that they're, internally, they're probably the greatest threat to America going down I know of. Yep, the radical gay movement."

Let's go through these, one by one, shall we?

Actually, I'm going to pass the first comment by. He's free to think I'm a pervert. I'm free to think that he's an antiquated lunatic reactionary theocrat. Fair's fair.

On to the second quote. Yes, some people are born with a predisposition toward alcoholism. Some people are also born left-handed. Or really tall. Or gay. Or looking like Jake Gyllenhaal. Now, these are not equivalent things. Some are wonderful. Some are neutral. Some are really bad. Apparently, Sen. Buttars thinks that being born with a predisposition toward loving members of your own gender is the same as being born with a predilection for melting your liver and ruining your life. I don't actually experience it as being that way, since my life is much, much better for having the Better Half in it, and alcoholics seem a bit worse off when they're on the sauce.

I'm not sure which "they" Buttars is referring to when he says we're mean. Some of us are very mean, it's true. Some of us are bitchy and unkind, some of us are jerks, and I wouldn't wish the company of some of us on anyone. Then again, some of us are very nice. I suspect that Buttars doesn't know many gay people personally, and experiences us mainly in the context of having our rights serially abrogated, which hardly brings out one's best.

That last statement is so ridiculous as to be almost beneath rebutting. Look, Chris. I don't want to destroy traditional marriage. I don't want to destroy America. I don't actually know any gay or lesbian people that do. (And I know a fair number of gay and lesbian people, unlike you.) If the America you love is one in which people you don't like keep quiet and in their place without challenging the hegemony of morons like you, then it deserves to be replaced with an America that looks suspiciously similar, but with fewer miserable people. Canada seems to have avoided going up in flames since gay marriage was legalized. Spain hasn't slid into the sea. And, while Tom Brady had an off year, Massachusetts as a whole appears to be surviving.

I also think it's hilarious that a Mormon is rallying in support of traditional marriage. Because there've never been any conflicts there, now have there?

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