Monday, May 24, 2010

A Well-Earned Comeuppance

Since entering Congress in 1994, Indiana Republican Mark Souder focused on changing America's moral direction.

Now we know whose moral direction got changed.

The eight-term congressman, a pillar of family values, recently resigned his seat, saying that he had "sinned against God, my wife and my family by having a mutual relationship with a part-time member of my staff."

Why did he bother to say she's part-time? Does that make it only a part-time sin?

Souder's paramour, Tracy Meadows Jackson, is also married. The affair started after she joined Souder's district staff in 2004. Jackson hosted audio and video productions that featured the congressman discussing conservative concerns.

A video in which Souder sounds off about a 2008 House hearing on abstinence education became a YouTube hit following his confession. The congressman and his mistress made a pro-abstinence video. If I'd made that up, you wouldn't have bought it.

In the past, noted The Wall Street Journal, Souder has said that he's "most defined by the fact that I'm an evangelical Christian." As a staunch social conservative, Souder made George W. Bush look like a hippie.

In a 2004 PBS interview, Souder said, "I believe people can have a propensity to alcoholism. I believe they can have a propensity to look at pornography on [the] Internet. I believe they can have a propensity to be homosexual. But I believe that it's wrong and it's controllable."

I believe I'm glad he's gone.

Two weeks before his fall from grace, Souder won his primary race. In a campaign radio ad, he trumpeted his efforts to prevent Hoosier schools from being forced to employ "transvestite teachers."

Fanning the family-values fires in Fort Wayne. Phooey.

In committee, Souder led the opposition against the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) of 2007, declaring, "In their quest to grant special rights to homosexuals, Democrats are trampling on the religious freedoms of all Americans."

Souder said he has gay friends—and a masochistic bunch they must be--but because of the clarity of the Bible on homosexuality, "there just isn't much room to compromise."

So where in the Bible does it say thou shalt diddle thy part-time staffer?

With such hard-line views and votes, the self-described "ultra-conservative" has taken an ultra fall.

"I think the people who get treated the worst are the ones who preach the most, are the most pious. Nobody loves a hypocrite," said Rutgers University political science professor Ross Baker to The Associated Press.

Said Baker, "There are some people who have kind of a malicious delight at a downfall like that."

Guilty.

Okay, I might not be delighted but I certainly am pleased by Mark Souder's collapse. The reason is simple: He made it his life's work to keep me and mine second-class or lower. He thumped that Bible and his breast and insisted he walked with God while others of us walked with Bozo.

Apparently LGBT people aren't the only ones fed up with politicians like Souder. "There is a growing intolerance for hypocritical behavior," political expert Andrew Downs told The Indianapolis Star. "If you want to run as a pro-family candidate, don’t have an affair."

Six months ago Souder and Jackson were caught in a parked car in a nature preserve, the former congressman told the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. "Subconsciously, was I wanting to get caught? Or was God so frustrated with me he said, 'I've had it. You're so stupid here I'm going to, in effect, out you.'"

God "outed" the adamantly anti-gay congressman. God has a wicked sense of humor.

Monday, May 10, 2010

George Rekers' European Vacation

As a Baptist minister, a co-founder of the Family Research Council and a board member of the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), George Rekers has been a relentless leader of the Christian right for decades. He lifted the banner of anti-gay activism, but now he can't lift luggage.

That's the reason he gave for hiring a male escort to accompany him on a European vacation. Thanks to surgery, Rekers needed the 20-year-old to carry his luggage. His second story was he brought him along to urge him toward Jesus and away from homosexuality.

We'll be learning more about Rekers. And, for that matter, about the callboy dubbed "Lucien." Right now I can only guess, based on the information in the Miami New Times, which broke the story, what that 10-day sojourn abroad was like:

Rekers: You're back! Right on time.

Lucien: Barely. I got lost on the subway. Ended up in some place called Convent Garden.

Rekers: I think you mean Covent Garden.

Lucien: Oh. You were right, the British Museum was fab. I might go back tomorrow. Want to go with? I saw a hieroglyphic that looked just like you when you sneeze.

Rekers: Wow. I'm old, but not that old. Did you spend your whole stipend today?

Lucien: No, I'm saving to go to Harrods tomorrow.

Rekers: I call this a practical arrangement. You go out and spend money; I stay in the hotel room and spend none.

Lucien: Why don't you come with me? It'll be fun.

Rekers: I told you. Allergies. Really bad ones.

Lucien: You have a whole suitcase full of medicine. I know—I carried it. Doesn't that help?

Rekers: No. I guess I'm just allergic to London. Maybe I'm allergic to Beefeaters.

Lucien: Is that a gay club?

Rekers: No.

Lucien: I should've picked a different city.

Rekers: I might do better when we get to Madrid. Y'know, you look different from your Rentboy profile.

Lucien: I do?

Rekers: In a good way. I noticed that the first time I came to your townhouse.

Lucien: I noticed your mustache. When you take your clothes off, I swear it changes color.

Rekers: Oh my God! Excuse me, Lord. Didn't mean that.

Lucien: I love being here. I'm not in a hurry to get back to Florida.

Rekers: I love that I finally found an escort who worked out. You just don't know what you're getting.

Lucien: Yes you do. Eight inches. I told the truth on my profile.

Rekers: I mean, you don't know if the guy can have a conversation, or whether he's out to rip you off.

Lucien: George, how come you don't want real sex? Or to get off?

Rekers: My mama raised me not to be a greedy boy.

Lucien: Okay, whatever.

Rekers: Besides, you've gotten so good at the Long Stroke. Except yesterday you made me giggle.

Lucien: It's a sensitive area.

Rekers: Yup.

Lucien: I see why you call it that. It is long. And complicated. Front, and back. Since you want it every day, I'm afraid of getting carpal tunnel syndrome.

Rekers: I guess there's no workers' comp for that.

Lucien: Ready?

Rekers: Make sure you rub the whole body, especially my shoulders. I feel tense.

Lucien: How come?

Rekers: Now I know my mustache is about to change color.