If you’re an adult queer person trying to live openly in this so-called land of the free, Republicans want to be able to discriminate against you with impunity, while telling you that your very existence is destroying America and that you are going to burn in hell. But, if you’re a retired Republican congressperson who used to molest high school boys (the youngest identified by prosecutors was 14 at the time of the abuse) back when you were a high school teacher (Hastert Molested at Least Four Boys, Prosecutors Say), well then, of course, they want people to forgive and forget: While former House Speaker Dennis Hastert asks for leniency, media recounts corruption allegations. His lawyers have gone so far as to contact the family of one of the boys he molested, and asked them to write a letter asking for leniency because of all the “help” Hastert gave to the man later?
Excuse me? No, the fact that he paid out millions in hush-money doesn’t make up for the original offense! I think this headline puts it mildly: Dennis Hastert’s embarrassing, unforgivable offenses don’t deserve leniency
Some months back I first linked to those reports about former Republican speaker of the house, Dennis Hastert indicted for paying out millions of dollars in hush money to a man who Hastert had some sort of sexual relationship (sexual misconduct) with back when Hastert was a high school wrestling coach and the other man was a high school student. As I asked when I linked to this, “When do we get to acknowledge that sexual hypocrisy is in fact a constant theme of conservative politics — that every single time a Republican or ‘family values’ representative speaks to the bigoted mythology of homophobia or transphobia, they are closeting skeletons of their own?” Don’t forget Dennis Hastert had a terrible voting record on gay rights, and when Hastert was Speaker he tried to cover up the fact that Congressman Mark Foley had had sexual interactions with male members of the Congressional page program (high school age students).
But perhaps the worst is how, when he met with the parents of Matthew Shepard and sobbed as he promised the parents he would do everything he could to pass the Matthew Shepard hate crimes bill… and then, of course, he actually did everything he could to obstruct the bill.
I really don’t understand why anyone, particularly in the media, doesn’t immediately assume that a legislator or prosecutor or governor who pushes for anti-gay bills has a scandalous sexual secret. I mean, when someone can create an entire web site to chronicling the prominent anti-gay folks who are later caught in a gay sex scandal: GayHomophobe.com, it’s time to stop turning a blind eye to the issue!