Christmas is gay. Here’s how it started: generations ago in a pristine forest, a noble woodsman stood next to his workfellow and while viewing the endless expanse of trees remarked “Could there be anything more wondrous?” To which his friend replied “We could put lights on them.” Now, before you warm up the tar and start plucking the chickens, let me qualify this by saying I am not referring to the religious holy day that celebrates The Nativity. I’m talking about the 90 or so days beginning Oct. 1 in celebration of all things retail and accompanied by ostentatious ornamentation and indiscriminate imbibing. These, as most of you know, are part of the core values we pledge to uphold when we affirm our membership in The Fellowship of the Rainbow.
With that being said, I think this is the perfect time of year to initiate the Gay Grinch Awards as we look back on the people during the past year who have been especially naughty towards the LGBTQ Community. I think it is our duty to list their offenses because after all, if you take a really good look at Santa, you will realize that he is the ultimate bear (making Mrs. Claus his beard?) and we certainly don’t want him coming down the chimney of anyone who practices discrimination or spreads hatred against us.
Just in time for the holidays, televangelist Pat Robertson is at it again with a discourse on how allowing lesbians into your home can turn your children gay. Seriously, I think the most significant transformation that allowing lesbians into your home will cause is an understanding of the rules of football. For someone who counts turning back - or rather redirecting - hurricanes among his superpowers, I would expect more. Now, I am a person of faith and I believe in miracles but somehow I don’t think Robertson is ever going to find the love for gay people.
No compilation of crazy anti-gay people would be complete without a mention of Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann. This is a woman who has a lesbian step-sister and a husband, who by comparison, makes me feel butch even when I am sitting in the salon getting a pedicure with foils in my hair while reading US Weekly. Bachmann attacked the Supreme Court in June for denying equal protection to all Americans by striking down DOMA and Proposition 8. Think about that.
And then there is Guido Barilla. He is the President and CEO of the pasta company that bears his family name. It seems Barilla decided earlier this year to never feature an LGBTQ family in any of his commercials because he prefers the “traditional family.” Now you could view this as just another reason to avoid carbs but I think Barilla is blithely unaware of the specific demographic of Americans who have perfected the art of the dinner party.
We have also attracted the ire of Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of Springfield, Ill. Just as Gov. Pat Quinn signed marriage equality into law in November, the good bishop stood in his cathedral and performed a mass exorcism to drive all of the gay spirits from the state. I suppose all of the encouraging words on humility and not judging others coming from his new boss, Pope Francis, over the past year have been just a lot of white noise. An added feature to this historic Rite of the Church was the presence of armed police officers during Mass.
Never to be outdone, the LGBTQ community also received a scathing dressing down from former GOP presidential candidate and gifted orator Rick Perry, the governor of Texas. When the Boy Scouts decided to allow gay scouts into the organization, Perry mounted his high horse and went on the attack. What’s the big deal? Saying you’re going to allow gays into the Boy Scouts is about as significant as saying you’re going to allow people who drink light beer into the Baptist Church. Always the historian, Perry managed to equate the fight against gays in the Scouts to the fight to abolish slavery. If anyone can clarify that parallel, please in-box me.
Of course, this is only a brief list of folks who, in a year where the LGBTQ community made amazing strides in equality, could not find it in their cold little hearts to wish us any good tidings whatsoever. If most of them were not so comically preposterous, it would make me sad. Mind you, not sad in the same way that I get while watching “The Christmas Shoes” or those Sarah McLachlan ASPCA commercials. I think it speaks volumes about people who become incensed when they see others become empowered or (heaven forbid) equal.
Finally, in the spirit of that famous news network, I never want it to be said that my views are not fair and balanced. For those who are offended by the reference to Christmas being gay, I am willing to admit it is also possible that the Grinch could be gay. The signs are there. He lived alone in house that allowed him to look down on his straight neighbors; his only companion was a small dog that he liked to dress in outfits and he was quite proficient at designing and sewing an outfit for a special occasion. The key quality he didn’t share with the people on our list is that he was able to change his heart. Be merry!
OUT & ABOUT
Thursday, Dec. 19 – The Rainbow House Bar & Grill hosts its annual Christmas Party to help children in the care of Horry County DSS. The event begins at 6 p.m. If you are not able to pick a name from the tree, you can still donate $20 at the door. You can also bring in donations for Horry County Animal Shelters. The Rainbow House is at 815 N. Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach. For more information, see www.facebook.com/pages/Rainbow-House-Bar-Grill/.
Friday, Dec. 20 – Jessica Raye will host the Fabulous Friday “Name That Tune” Happy Hour at 6:30 p.m. at Pulse Ultra Club. Enjoy your favorite music from the ‘70s, ‘80s and early ‘90s, along with Happy Hour specials. Pulse is located at 803 Main Street in Myrtle Beach. Additional information is available at www.facebook.com/PulseUltraClub .
Tuesday, Dec. 24 – Imani DeVour and Breonna Tenae will host a Christmas Eve Dance Party at Pulse Ultra Club in Myrtle Beach. Showtime is at midnight. Pulse is located at 803 Main Street in Myrtle Beach. For a complete list of entertainers, visit www.facebook.com/PulseUltraClub.
Tuesday, Dec. 31 – Pulse Ultra Club will ring in 2014 with a Dance Party hosted by DJ Mackel. Entertainment includes Jamie Monroe, Tiffany Bonet and Kelly Raye. There will be a champagne toast at midnight. For complete event details check the club’s Facebook page.
Have a thought, comment or Out & About event? Send Drew Levy-Neal an e-mail to Drew.Levy.Neal@gmail.com. You can also follow him on Twitter: @Drew_Levy_Neal.