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Another Anti-Gay Lawmaker Outed

Jim Burroway

March 4th, 2010
Roy Ashburn's booking photo from the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

Roy Ashburn's booking photo from the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

California state Sen. Roy Ashburn (R-18), whose rural district surrounding Bakersfield represents the state’s heartland of social conservatism, is married, a father of four, and proud of his consistently anti-gay positions. He was also seen late last night at Faces, a gay bar in Sacramento, just before he was arrested for DUI. There was another man in the car with him at the time of his arrest. And for most of that — he hasn’t acknowledged his presence at Faces yet — he is deeply, deeply sorry.

KOVR Channel 13 in Sacramento is perhaps the only mainstream media (at least that I’ve found so far) reporting on the gay angle and tying it to the other man who was present in Ashburn’s car when Ashburn was arrested. I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but Democratic strategist Steve Mavigio said that Ashburn should “come out” and “apologize to his constituents and the people of California for what he’s done.”

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D
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Wow, talk about a gay face.
GAY, GAY, GAY!

Bearchewtoy75
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I’m sure he’ll deny that he was there… thing is, I’ve been to Faces… it’s HUGE. I’m sure he was seen there by many…

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

So we have ANOTHER homo-hatin’-hetero who probably has a lot of homo-hatin’-homos as his “dear dear friends” who are just going so wrong in their lives that they need punishment from the government and from god.

If it wasn’t so predictable and so tired, it would actually be sad. But i’m not sad for him, or even that much for his “innocent” family. Maybe they can begin to understand what we go through..

heeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeheeeeheeeeheeeeeheeeeheeeeheeeeheee.

ZRAinSWVA
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I think the situation is very sad. I understand the pathology of self-hatred–been there, done that–and I think it’s just awful that so many people feel compelled to bury their souls and hearts and then flagellate themselves over their needs and desires. It’s also not surprising that the more conservative types are prone to this behaviour: they have no other means by which to reconcile what they think to be ‘true’ (e.g., morale values, church teachings, societal pressures) with what is their actual reality. We shouldn’t laugh at their emotional and spiritual torment. The unfortunate consequence, though, is that we receive collateral damage as a result of their efforts to ‘make things right’.

Timothy Kincaid
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

There are many victims of Roy Ashburn’s political career, but no one more so than Ashburn himself.

It is one thing to vote against the rights and freedoms of “those people over there”, but it is quite something else to do so while secretly deep inside knowing that you belong with those people over there.

We do not know whether Ashburn himself is primarily, or even partly, same-sex attracted. But if he was at Faces, then part of “his people” – be it friends, family, other social acquaintances or even possibly sexual partners – are gay. And Ashburn has had a long career of seeking to harm “his people”.

In CA we are in many ways impervious to Ashburn’s anti-gay activism. He can’t really touch us. But he can, and does, impact his own self-worth. And attacking one’s own people must cause tremendous damage to ones psyche and soul.

CPT_Doom
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

“Another Anti-Gay Lawmaker Outed”

And the sun rose in the East again – will wonders never cease.

Elliot
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I’m definitely not surprised that these people are coming out of the woodwork, but I’m definitely amused to see that they’re almost always republicans.

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Timothy– you said it much more nicely than I did, or wanted to. These people are so tiresome.

Priya Lynn
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Yes, that’s interesting Elliot. I’m really curious as to how these people rationalize their behavior.

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Simple, Priya.

I’m not really gay, but my attractions are. And it will only be just this once, and i’ll neverneverneverneverever do it again. Really. Never. not once.

now excuse me, but I’m in the Minneapolis airport, it was a short flight, and I need to take a piss.

Priya Lynn
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

But how do they rationalize the anti-gay actions?

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I already told you.

“Simple, Priya.

I’m not really gay, but my attractions are. And it will only be just this once, and i’ll neverneverneverneverever do it again. Really. Never. not once.

now excuse me, but I’m in the Minneapolis airport, it was a short flight, and I need to take a piss.”

But to answer your question: it will be a stop the homo agenda kind of a piss.

John
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I’m getting really, really tired of these folks who really are anti-gay and then get caught in some fabulous manner like this. I hope this is mostly a generational thing that the next won’t have to endure as much. I can deal with honest-to-goodness animus from someone who doesn’t understand homosexuality or is grossed out by the thought of 2 people of the same sex doing the nasty. Yet folks who hate being gay so much, even though they themselves ARE in fact gay or bi all while trying to show the world how bad being gay or bi is, are just too much. Look, I went through this when I was in the closet myself for quite awhile but never did I allow myself to be put into a situation where I would have direct input into gay people’s lives. That’s not to say I didn’t say something stupid now and then, I believe I did, but I certainly never joined an anti-gay group, beat up or harassed anyone who is gay, ran for office with stopping the so-called Gay Agenda being THE issue on my list, etc. Struggling to deal with being gay I understand. Saying stupid things while going through that struggle I get. Intentionally hurting others who are gay just like yourself I don’t.

John
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

“But to answer your question: it will be a stop the homo agenda kind of a piss.”

Well obviously it’s just field research in order to understand the issues more.

Yeah, that’s it.

Priya Lynn
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Ben, as far as reasons go, that’s just slightly better than “Because.”.

Fred in the UK
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

I have no particular explanation to offer for the behaviour of these closeted but anti-gay politicians. However it would seem to me a reasonable guess that there a probably a few more somewhere out there. Perhaps we should reach out to them, help them see the harm they are doing to themselves and to others, do a little moral good, rather than, the admittedly natural response of, derision?

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Exactly. :)

lurker
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

and in addition to the henious hypocritical anti-gay stuff . . . a DUI from a law and order lock ‘em up family values kind of guy is reprehensible. And a guy (presuemably) wealthy and well connected enough to get a taxi/friend/etc. to drive. Anti-gay rhetoric is life threatening, so is driving a lethal machine while drunk.

Timothy Kincaid
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

But how do they rationalize the anti-gay actions?

It’s fear and loathing.

Partly it’s fear and loathing of what they see in themselves. They really truly wish that they were not same-sex attracted, see that part of themselves as a failure or a sin, and act politically in both contrition and anger against this temptation that they wish they wouldn’t give in to.

And there is also resentment against those who not only “give in to sin” but see no fault in doing so. Happy married gay folk are a threat to the constant battle. If gay folk can marry, can adopt, can live happy productive lives, then what is all of their sacrifice for?

Of course, they do give in to temptation. And when they do, it is to the gay community, that body of tempters and destroyers of order that they go looking for quick meaningless sex.

Ironically, this only reconfirms their opposition to gay equality. Because their encounters are purely sexual, meaningless, furtive, and momentary, they are justified in their mind for believing that all gay relationships are like their trysts.

Truly their own behavior – cheating, lying, furtive, and depraved – is worthy of social disapproval. So, by extension, they feel righteous in enacting condemnation on all gay people.

Ben in Oakland
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

again, timothy, you are quite right.

but you don’t make ME look like the nicew guy I actually am.

Richard Rush
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Priya,

In addition to the self-loathing aspects, the overt anti-gay actions and statements are part of keeping the closet door securely locked. The thinking goes: “If I appear very anti-gay, people will be less likely to suspect me of being gay.”

Ironically, it has become almost a knee-jerk cliche for us to suspect exceptionally anti-gay people of being homosexual themselves. While I certainly don’t believe that’s always the case, there seem to be plenty of examples to lend some credibility to the idea.

Burr
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Just out them all already.. They should build up a list and announce one a week.

Enough of this garbage.

Edwin
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Another one bites the dust!!!!!I wonder how many of them are still out there ranting and raving. ANOTHER ONE BITEL THE DUST….

Priya Lynn
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

Right Richard. If I’d have thought about it more that reason would have occurred to me as well.

Eddie89
March 4th, 2010 | LINK

This news story reminds me of a documentary film my husband and I just watched on DVD this weekend. It’s called Outrage.

The basic synopsis is an indictment of closeted politicians who lobby for anti-gay legislation in the U.S.

It features such notable figures as: Larry Kramer, Barney Frank, Neil Giuliano, Michelangelo Signorile, Andrew Sullivan, James McGreevey and many more.

You can also rent it. I highly recommend it.

werdna
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

Richard Rush wrote “Ironically, it has become almost a knee-jerk cliche for us to suspect exceptionally anti-gay people of being homosexual themselves.”

Indeed, it’s fodder for hilarity.

Condolences to the family, though, it’s a terrible thing to find out that your husband or father is a despicable hypocrite.

cd
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

Ironically, it has become almost a knee-jerk cliche for us to suspect exceptionally anti-gay people of being homosexual themselves. While I certainly don’t believe that’s always the case, there seem to be plenty of examples to lend some credibility to the idea.

I remember well the day in 2004 when, after a pro-marriage demonstration, I saw Brian Camenker of the local anti-gay ‘Massresistance’ group(*) on the steps of the Massachusetts legislature building. He thought he wasn’t being watched and blatantly ogled a passing young man’s chest and then his butt all the way up the steps.

People with good gaydar almost all pick up a closeted gay vibe from Brian.

*: the ‘group’ consists of two people.

beachcomberT
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

When we had a local state rep arrested for picking up a hooker a few years ago, he claimed he was only doing ministry for his church, helping the poor, etc. Maybe that can be Ashburn’s alibi — he was doing an “investigation.” But then there’s the breathalyzer problem.

Richard Rush
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

As I read more about this guy from other sources, I think I was wrong (in his case) when I wrote in an earlier comment:

In addition to the self-loathing aspects, the overt anti-gay actions and statements are part of keeping the closet door securely locked. The thinking goes: “If I appear very anti-gay, people will be less likely to suspect me of being gay.”

Apparently he was known by a number of people for hanging out at gay bars. Deeply closeted people, especially public figures, are not likely to be hanging out in those venues. They would more likely be cruising public toilets, like Larry Craig.

It’s really depressing that none of the people who knew about him cared enough about their community to expose his hypocrisy. Or maybe someone did say something, but the media didn’t want to explore it.

Richard Rush
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

Maybe we need a national campaign to encourage people to expose these Gay Hypocrites Only Serving Themselves. The campaign slogan could be:

Who you gonna call? GHOSTbusters!

Even the original theme-song could be easily adapted.

The slogan could be followed by a link to Mike Rogers’ website: blogActive.

And encourage everyone to see the movie, Outrage.

TonyJazz
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

I love the GHOST acronym and plan to start using it….. (It also fits so many members of our community who take advantage of services but never contribute despite having the means to do so…) A person I have in mind does these things and doesn’t support equal rights laws….

Guffey
March 5th, 2010 | LINK

…sigh… another of Maggie’s friends.

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