There are few things more satisfying in life than seeing hypocrites exposed, so it is with great joy that I award my inaugural (and, probably, only) Website of the Week award to the magnificent gayhomophobe.com. Hat tip to The Guardian’s Ben Goldacre.
You might have noticed over the past few years a tendency for prominent US anti-gay politicians and public figures to have found themselves in a compromising position with a comely young chap or three, before suddenly disappearing out of view for a while to spend time with their family and examine their souls. Gayhomophobe.com helpfully allows you to keep up to date with the latest such revelations, and gives the number of days since a well-known anti-homosexual activist became involved in a gay sex scandal.
The latest – and holder of the top spot for the last 11 days – was Senator Roberto Arango of the Puerto Rican Republican Party, who resigned after apparently posting (remarkably explicit) photos of himself on the gay cruising website Grindr. Mr Arango, who recently voted for a move to block any legalisation of gay marriage in Puerto Rico, says that he can’t remember taking the photos, but that they may have been to demonstrate his recent weight loss, presumably in particular around and between his buttocks.
Before that, the honour was held by Representative Philip Hinkle (R) – for a mere 17 days – and, before him, the Reverend Albert Odulele, for a rather more impressive 133 days. The longest run at number one – longer even than Bryan Adams with (Everything I Do) I Do It For You – was, at 851 days, that of Glenn Murphy Jr, the chairman of the Clark County Republican Party in Indiana, who spent time in jail after pleading guilty to “performing unwanted oral sex on a man”. Mr Murphy had previously supported and promoted candidates with anti-gay positions.
The most famous name on the list is probably the mega-church pastor Ted Haggard, who after preaching against gay marriage for many years, admitted having sexual relations with two men, and taking methamphetamine, in 2006. He was the top man for 220 days. Nowadays, he describes himself as a “heterosexual with complications”.
The oddest – dare I say most amusing? – case is that of George Rekers, author of “Growing Up Straight: What Families Should Know About Homosexuality” and a founder of a powerful anti-gay lobby group, who hired a young, blond and muscular man, by the name of Lucien, to “help him lift his luggage” on a lecture tour. He found Lucien’s contact details via the website Rentboy.com, incidentally, which would be few people’s first port of call for baggage carrier services, but there you go.
It’s a splendid source of schadenfreude, so go and be amused. When you’re done, there’s also the Top 15 Anti-Gay Politicians Caught Being Gay. Quite why the people who are most virulently anti-gay tend so frequently to be struggling with such feelings themselves I don’t quite know, but it’s very entertaining.