Sunday, January 5, 2014

The Media & Outing Members of Congress

From the Facebook page of journalist Itay Hod:

people always say, no one has the right to out anyone. that coming out is a private matter. i disagree. as you can imagine, not a very popular opinion. but bear with me.

here's a hypothetical: what if you know a certain GOP congressman, let's just say from Illinois, is gay... and you know this because one of your friends, a journalist for a reputable network, told you in no uncertain terms that he caught that GOP congressman and his male roommate in the shower... together. now they could have been good friends just trying to conserve water. but there's more. what if this congressman has also been caught by tmz cameras trolling gay bars. now what if you know that this very same guy, the darling of the gop, has also voted against repeal of don’t ask don’t tell, opposed the repeal of doma, is against gay marriage; and for the federal marriage amendment, which would add language to the us constitution banning gay marriage and would likely strike down every gay rights law and ordinance in the country?

Are we still not allowed to out him?

let me ask another question... doesn't the media have an OBLIGATION to expose his hypocrisy? if he had done something so hypocritical and he wasn't gay, wouldn't we demand journalists do their job? but they can't... because we won't let them. you're not allowed to out ANYONE, we tell them.

we've created a situation where even though news organizations know this guy is gay, they can't report it because he hasn't said so on twitter.

if we keep saying that being gay is genetic; ergo, it's no different than having blue eyes or blonde hair... than why are not allowed to mention it? why do we need anyone's consent to talk about their sexuality? are we not allowed to say someone has blue eyes until they post a fb message telling us they are in fact blue?

we've been so effective at convincing everyone that outing people is a crime against humanity, that we've made it impossible for any network or news organization to talk about this "hypothetical" gay republican congressman and his hypocritical vote against gay rights. they won't touch it for fear of retribution from GLAAD or HRC. (in fact when my friend's network interviewed said hypothetical republican, he talked about wanting to find a nice woman to marry... and the network aired it... knowing it was a lie...

so, forgive me if I don't subscribe to the notion that you're not allowed to out anyone... in fact in some cases, i'd celebrate it. but I'm crazy that way. Herndon Graddick

by the way... not sure why... but had a sudden urge to share this.

"This" is a link to an Americablog page that, among other things, shows some of the "gayest" images from the Instagram page of Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL). The Instagram page has since been made private (though the images are still on Americablog, hurray for screencaps). Schock has been more or less dogged by rumours of his sexual orientation despite - or perhaps in part because of - his very anti-gay legislative record. He has been given a 0% score by the Human Rights Campaign.

I have said time and again that I am against people (and more so public figures) being outed...unless you are outing their hypocrisy. In that case, have at it.

No comments:

Post a Comment