OMG!!!! OK. I was going to write a post today about how I’m frustrated that I haven’t written in five days and how I really want to write something but I want it to be fun and spiffy and make you laugh and be uplifted and happy but I can’t do that because I’m just so pissed off about a situation at work that I really don’t even want to talk about but would probably have to in order to get it out of my head and off my chest and beg your forgiveness for spewing so much anger (read: hate) and vitriol for my boss and most of my coworkers and my customers and my job and my employer and my life during that part of the day and it was not going to be one big run on sentence like this has been but now I have something else entirely that I have to address and really this is a good thing… <passes out from lack of breathing.>
I didn’t watch the Miss USA pageant. I may not be living up to my stereotype because of this and that’s funny to me because when I was young and “straight” and living with my conservative, republican, Christian mother we watched the beauty pageants all the time. There were chicks in bikinis after all and maybe that proved I was straight… to someone. Anyway, I’ve outgrown my keen interest in such things and decided I have too many shows piling up in my DVR as it is and I was not going to watch the pageant. So naturally, I missed a big moment because I wasn’t watching… Well, I don’t guess I can say I missed a big moment because you can hardly shake your ass without bumping into a news “story” (more like non-story) about Miss California’s response to stupid Perez Hilton’s question about her position on Gay Marriage.
I would have thought that, here, three days later, this would be old news and I’d be behind the times. Sadly, not so much. You see, the multi-hair-colored troll, to whom no one should be listening and should never have been given a slot as a judge at the pageant in the first place, asked the contestant a perfectly legitimate question, but, she gave a perfectly legitimate answer and she should not be hassled, harangued or otherwise criticized for her response. Hilton has been quoted as saying that she should have left her politics & religion out of her answer. The midget asked her a political question, how could she have answered it any way other than with her politics? And let’s not kid ourselves; everyone knows that our politics are influenced by our religion. Truly, Miss California could not possibly have answered that question any way other than how she did.
Perez Hilton has made a living out of hate mongering and slander and now he wants to hold Miss California accountable for expressing her true feelings and beliefs in response to a question he asked which was clearly designed to promote his own agenda and beliefs.
Many people seem to have lost sight of the true meaning of the interview portion of the competition. There was no right or wrong answer to Mr. Hilton’s question. The judges are not in a position to judge the worthiness of the contestants’ belief system and how it may or may not live up to the expectations, or message of the Miss USA organization. If the expectation of the organization is for the individual ladies to live up to a certain belief structure, well… First of all, that changes the nature of the organization and turns it into a political lobby or maybe an occult of some sort. (You must believe the way I believe or you can’t be here… Wait, that sounds like a lot of churches I’ve been to.) And second, the organization would have an obligation to establish those expectations up front and screen the contestants prior to the competition, accordingly. No, the point of the interview portion is not to establish the political/religious beliefs of the contestants. The point of the interview portion is to test the ladies’ ability to respond under pressure, with grace and eloquence, to questions they have not been privy to in advance. Can the contestant speak clearly and logically in providing a response to a question they have not heard before? That the answer provided by Miss California might have cost her the crown, based on content, is a sadder reflection on the judges of the evening than it will ever be on Miss California.
Let me be clear. I do not agree with the beliefs that were expressed by Miss California. I feel sad for her that she believes such hurtful things, that she apparently has accepted the beliefs of her family unquestioningly, as evidenced by her answer:
“I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there, but that’s how I was raised and that’s how I think it should be, between a man and a woman.”
Too often, as gay people seeking equality, we drift to the other side and wish to criticize and demean anyone who doesn’t agree with our perspectives. We’re quick to forget that just as we believe with such conviction that our perspective is the correct one, so do the conservative Christians believe theirs’ to be. We will never come to an understanding or agreement by calling each other names and I must point out that Miss California expressed her desire not to offend anyone and stated somewhere that she does not begrudge homosexuals (that’s more than we’ll get from a lot of conservative Christians) but does not believe that marriage should be available to us. On the other hand Mr. Hilton went on record almost as soon as the crown was placed, the tears were shed and the hugs were dispensed, as saying that Miss California is a “dumb bitch” and has continued to spread his vitriol about this poor woman and her beliefs ever since.
Maybe it’s because I’m relatively “young” and new to this whole accepting-myself-as-a-homosexual thing and I haven’t (at least not yet) been through the pain, the struggle, the fight to be accepted for who and what I am (I’m sure that day is coming as I’m not 100% out of the closet to everyone I know or ever encounter) but I do not understand the drive, the push to be angry at this woman for having the audacity to speak her truth, to say what she believes when she was asked a pointed question on the subject.
I grew up in Conservative, Republican, Christian household and have had a series of “coming outs” in my life, first as a “Liberal Republican” then as a “Conservative Democrat” and then as a “Liberal Democrat” and finally, coming out to myself and my closest friends as a homosexual, all while holding on to my own personal Christian belief system. I have a lot of experience with separating my religious beliefs from my political ones. As one example, I personally believe it is wrong to have an abortion. I also believe that abortion should be legal and the option should exist. I would like to see abortions not available because the clinics can’t afford to stay in business with so few customers, not because someone arbitrarily decided to tell women what they could or could not do with their bodies.
So, do I believe that the sentiments she expressed are wrong? Yes! Do I hope that she and so many others eventually will change their perspectives and accept us for who and what we are? Absolutely!!! But this is what she believes, and she is not wrong for believing it or for expressing it. This is the question she was asked and bravo to her for answering it honestly!
Let’s leave poor Miss California alone and focus our energies in a direction that matters, like the fight for marriage equality and for equality in general. This Miss California thing? It’s really not news. Please! Let’s move on!