Katy Bourne


A Bitch Slap for Rick Santorum

POSTED ON January 26, 2012 | POSTED IN: My Blog | 13 Comments

 “There are certain things that government does that gives people privileges in order to promote activity that are healthy for society and are best for society. And those things we promote would give people advantages or benefits, government benefits because we think that is healthy activity. Mothers and fathers coming together, forming healthy marriages, having children and raising those children. Every American child has the right, and the government should support the right to have and know their mother and father and be raised by their mother and father.”

– Rick Santorum

 

 

This was Rick Santorum’s response to a woman who, at a political rally yesterday, asked why her gay son shouldn’t have the same rights as Santorum, a straight person, has.

Needless to say, my blood is boiling. I almost don’t know where to start.

 Perhaps a good jumping off point would be to address the notion of “healthy activity,” especially relative to homosexual people vs. heterosexual people. In the day-to-day, my gay friends are no different than me, a straight woman. They pay their bills and sign permission slips for their kids. They get the oil changed on their cars and mow their lawns. The volunteer in their communities and coach their kids’ soccer teams. They do yoga. The grow gardens. They stay up late with fussy babies. They juggle busy lives and hectic schedules. They have dinner with their families at night. I might add, Mr. Santorum, that they also vote. All of these activities are perfectly normal and easily fall under the definition of “healthy.” In fact, given my examples, I am hard pressed to find any difference between the “gay lifestyle” and the “straight lifestyle.” The only difference is what gay people do in the privacy of their bedrooms, which is nobody’s business, certainly not the government’s & definitely not Rick Santorum’s. And who are you, Mr. Santorum, to suggest that what gay people do in the privacy of their own bedrooms isn’t healthy? Who decides what “healthy” is anyway? To put the glove on the other hand if I may­, how do we know that what YOU do in your bedroom is “healthy,” Mr. Santorum? For all we know, you wear a diaper and get off on your wife tying you up and beating you with a Pepperidge Farm sausage.  Because you are a straight person, are we to assume that anything you do in your bedroom is healthy?  This seems to be what you’re suggesting. But what if I think you’re a freak? Should I get on my bandwagon and advocate that you should have, say, your parental rights stripped away?  While it is truly distasteful to ponder your sex life for even a second, I get, unlike you, that it’s none of my business. It’s nobody’s business. Gay people have that same right to privacy. But still, Mr. Santorum, you make what they do in their bedrooms–the only thing that distinguishes them in the day- to-day from straight people­–a major rationalization for denying them their due civil rights.

I also have a problem with the “we promote” that Mr. Santorum refers to in his statement. I am concerned about just who the “we” is. I am also concerned at the thought of a government that would impose a moralist definition of “healthy” and use that as a rationale for violating the human rights of certain segments of the population. The subtext is disturbing and sets an alarming precedent for horrific abuses. Ethnic cleansing comes to mind.

 The notion that allowing gays the right to marry somehow threatens the institution of marriage is preposterous, as is the idea that marriages between “one man and one woman” are superior and inherently more stable for children. This may come as a news flash to Mr. Santorum, but straight people have made a complete mess out of the institution of marriage. We’ve fumbled and bungled left and right. As painful as it is to share, my own failed marriage is a perfect example. My ex and I were married for twenty years. During the last several years, the environment in our home was often filled with conflict and stress. Our boys were frequently subjected to cold tension and an overbearing pall of sadness. Towards the very end, my ex and I were so distracted by the looming shipwreck that I know our kids didn’t always get the nurturing they would have in a normal, healthy situation. It is a grief that I will carry with me the rest of my life. Although we tried hard to save it, our marriage ended in divorce. We fucked this thing up entirely on our own. The functional, stable gay couples in our circle of friends had nothing to do with the demise of our marriage. In fact, my gay friends and their families were a great refuge and source of comfort during these difficult times. How dare you, Mr. Santorum, characterize a gay union as anything inferior.

 Of course, at its core, Santorum’s platform is built on fundamentalist Christian ideology. Although he is a Roman Catholic, his base is mainly lunatic evangelicals, who believe they have a God-given mandate to impose their religion on political policy. If his complete disregard for the establishment clause weren’t problematic enough, Mr. Santorum shows an alarming deficit when it comes to critical thinking. Rather than digging into the issues and creating an intelligent platform based on fact, Santorum chooses instead to simply employ religion–the grand fairy tale–as the basis for his positions. It’s a cop out. Critical thinking is tough. It involves the ability to navigate complex issues with intelligence; it involves the capacity to see things from a variety of perspectives; it demands the willingness to challenge your own assumptions. Critical thinking requires patience and intention. However, it is much easier to rely on a fantasy to explain away ambiguity or to eliminate the things that you are afraid of. But Mr. Santorum, just because the Bible tells you so, it doesn’t make it true. While fairy tales may be great for children’s story hour at the local library, they have no place in the executive branch of the United States government. By the way, Rick, the Earth really is round. I promise.

Apparently, it is OK for gays to pay taxes and to help fund the infrastructure of our country. It is also OK for gays to get their asses blown up while serving in the U.S. military, ostensibly protecting freedom as we know it.  However, if I understand Mr. Santorum correctly (and I think I do), these same people would be denied the basic civil rights that the rest of us enjoy. Clearly, Mr. Santorum and I have fundamentally different definitions of fairness and a radically different understanding of what this country is about.

Well here it is, Mr. Santorum:

 I am a U.S. citizen. I also have a say in what is “best for society.” I will not have you malign my gay brothers and sisters with your hatred, nor will I allow you to trample on their rights in the name of religion. I am also the mother of a gay son and will fight to the death for his safety, dignity and right to live as he sees fit. Mr. Santorum, be clear: As long as you continue your vile agenda, you will know my mom fangs and they are sharp. While you may have the delusional belief that you are fit to be President of the United States, the majority of the American people see you for what you are: a bigoted  religious zealot with an unhealthy fixation on what other people do in their bedrooms. You spread misinformation, lies and hatred. Of course, you have the right to believe what you want. (Or as my sister often says, in the United States, you have the right to be stupid.) You’re free to be hateful. You have the right to be a bigot. But you do not have the right to legislate your hatred and bigotry. Your chances of getting to the Oval Office are slim to none. You’ve made the egregious error of underestimating the fundamental decency and humanity of the American people. We don’t want you. And one final word, Mr. Santorum:

 “We the People” includes gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders. Get the fuck over it.

 

****

Once again, the muse took me somewhere else this week. I honor my creative process enough to go where my passions lead me. That said, it is going to be a long political year and already I’m popping gaskets on an almost daily basis. I’m going to have to measure myself. Next week, I will return with a new post for “Our Creative Lives.” I promise. That is, provided some boneheaded politician doesn’t piss me off.

Comments

13 responses to “A Bitch Slap for Rick Santorum”

  1. Carol Arbour says:

    Thank you for writing this..keep up speaking your passion. It is needed.

    • admin says:

      Thank you for reading. I deeply appreciate your comments. I am happy this resonated with you. I’ll keep speaking for as long as I have to.

  2. Marfoo says:

    Bravo, Katy! Beautifully said. Did you hear that Barney Frank got engaged? He’s getting married to his partner of five years. Guess Rick won’t be getting an invite to the wedding!

    • admin says:

      Wow! Congratulations to Barney! Nope, I’m sure Rick won’t be on the guest list. In fact, he’s probably lurking around somewhere, trying to come up with some kind of legislation to stop the wedding. Slimy hater.

  3. Margaret Lee says:

    Thank you for expressing my sentiments and those of many parents/families.
    Deadlee’s mom

    • admin says:

      Hi Deadlee’s mom. I’m so pleased you dropped by the blog & shared your comments. Let’s all stick together and keep this freak (and others like him) out of the White House. For us moms, it’s personal.

  4. Donna Johnson says:

    Katy, you said it well! I think this man is lower than whale shit, a stupid, self-righteous asshole and I am so glad you told him what you think. I love the way you write, and I look forward to reading about whatever politician has pissed you off or “our creative lives”. (Actually, my creative life is a bit fragile at the moment so I am pleased that you are writing about it.)

  5. Eloise Bradley says:

    How beautiful TRUTH sparkles in the sun even as voices like Santorum’s utters his cramped ignorances and the unimformed…the unaccepting of the 21st century…nod their heads and cluck their approval.

    Despite the naysayers we have come a long, long way. When I enrolled in an Art Institute in 1956 I had NEVER HEARD of a “gay person”. Members of that community did not appear in literature or (certainly) not in “polite” conversation. “The problem” was hinted at in Hellman’s play “The Children’s Hour” but was easily branded as “unspeakable” and “awful”. It took more than small-town Oklahoma experience to actually KNOW what was being denounced!

    The Santorums of this world deserve every sharp word Katy can put on paper. The gay among us NEED our approval. Innocent infants that are NOT WANTED need to be aborted. Assisted death should be available on request for those like me who have lived out our days.

    For a Santorum to SAY he “respects” life then go about reducing Life for those with whom he does not agree and restricting his definition to no more than breathing is both pitiful…and laughable.

    What, Senator, actually, do YOU know of Life? Of living?

    What YOU represent deals DEATH to the spirit.

  6. Eloise Bradley says:

    How beautiful TRUTH sparkles in the sun even as voices like Santorum’s utters his cramped ignorances and the unimformed…the unaccepting of the 21st century…nod their heads and cluck their approval.

    Despite the naysayers we have come a long, long way. When I enrolled in an Art Institute in 1956 I had NEVER HEARD of a “gay person”. Members of that community did not appear in literature or (certainly) not in “polite” conversation. “The problem” was hinted at in Hellman’s play “The Children’s Hour” but was easily branded as “unspeakable” and “awful”. It took more than small-town Oklahoma experience to actually KNOW what was being denounced!

    The Santorums of this world deserve every sharp word Katy can put on paper. The gay among us NEED our approval. Innocent infants that are NOT WANTED need to be aborted. Assisted death should be available on request for those like me who have lived out our days.

    For a Santorum to SAY he “respects” life then go about reducing Life for those with whom he does not agree and restricting his definition to no more than breathing is both pitiful…and laughable.

    What, Senator, actually, do YOU know of Life? Of living?

    What YOU represent deals DEATH to the spirit.

  7. Eloise Bradley says:

    How beautiful TRUTH sparkles in the sun even as voices like Santorum’s utters his cramped ignorances and the unimformed…the unaccepting of the 21st century…nod their heads and cluck their approval.

    Despite the naysayers we have come a long, long way. When I enrolled in an Art Institute in 1956 I had NEVER HEARD of a “gay person”. Members of that community did not appear in literature or (certainly) not in “polite” conversation. “The problem” was hinted at in Hellman’s play “The Children’s Hour” but was easily branded as “unspeakable” and “awful”. It took more than small-town Oklahoma experience to actually KNOW what was being denounced!

    The Santorums of this world deserve every sharp word Katy can put on paper. The gay among us NEED our approval. Innocent infants that are NOT WANTED need to be aborted. Assisted death should be available on request for those like me who have lived out our days.

    For a Santorum to SAY he “respects” life then go about reducing Life for those with whom he does not agree and restricting his definition to no more than breathing is both pitiful…and laughable.

    What, Senator, actually, do YOU know of Life? Of living?

    What YOU represent deals DEATH to the spirit.

  8. Nice one, Katy. This strikes at the heart of all of Our Creative Lives. Carry on!

  9. Drew Emery says:

    You’re on a tear, Katy. When it comes to this odious nimcompoop, let ‘er rip.

    I have fantasies about getting to ask him this question in front of an audience: “You speak so often and so forcefully about homosexuals and homosexuality. Can you share with us how you acquired your expertise in this matter? Do you have a degree in anthropology? Psychology? Sociology? Sexuality?” Of course, he will say he doesn’t have any expertise, to which I ask “Do you have any idea how arrogant you sound pontificating on matters you clearly have no expertise in!?”

    He is horrifying, I know. But I do take pleasure knowing that he puts a face and gives voice to ugliness in his ideology that people need to see.

  10. Larry says:

    He’s a bitch, we all know it! I wish there was a hell so people like him would get what they deserve (with Jesus there to usher santorum to his new home). I’m stunned by the brazen cruelty of his speech, and the gusto of his sick bloodthirsty followers to applaud him. What are we as human beings that such ugliness is possible among us!

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Katy Bourne is a Jazz Singer and Writer.