Thursday, March 15, 2007

Look Into The Mirror Much, Keillor?

[Posted by reader_iam]

What is Garrison Keillor smoking these days? Whatever it is, it appears to have caused a serious case of amnesia, given that he's apparently unaware that he's on his third marriage (with at least one affair to his credit, in addition) and has had two children by different mothers. But somehow, gay people are singlehandedly bringing about a revolution in "hyphenated" families, where no such phenonenon existed before. Or is he just trying prove that those from the more liberal side of things are just as capable as "wingnuts" of using gay people as props for an insider, nudge-nudge wink-wink brand of so-called humor?

From his latest Salon column:
Under the old monogamous system, we didn't have the problem of apportioning Thanksgiving and Christmas among your mother and stepdad, your dad and his third wife, your mother-in-law and her boyfriend Hal, and your father-in-law and his boyfriend Chuck. Today, serial monogamy has stretched the extended family to the breaking point. A child can now grow up with eight or nine or 10 grandparents -- Gampa, Gammy, Goopa, Gumby, Papa, Poopsy, Goofy, Gaga and Chuck -- and need a program to keep track of the actors.

And now gay marriage will produce a whole new string of hyphenated relatives. In addition to the ex-stepson and ex-in-laws and your wife's first husband's second wife, there now will be Bruce and Kevin's in-laws and Bruce's ex, Mark, and Mark's current partner, and I suppose we'll get used to it.

The country has come to accept stereotypical gay men -- sardonic fellows with fussy hair who live in over-decorated apartments with a striped sofa and a small weird dog and who worship campy performers and go in for flamboyance now and then themselves. If they want to be accepted as couples and daddies, however, the flamboyance may have to be brought under control. Parents are supposed to stand in back and not wear chartreuse pants and black polka-dot shirts. That's for the kids. It's their show.
What the heck? Was that last paragraph supposed to be some sort of writing exercise: How many broad-brush stereotypes can YOU conjure up in three sentences flat? I mean, what was Keillor thinking? Nothing lucid, it's clear. I mean, first he bases his argument (if you can call it that) against gay marriage on the problems of "hyphenated" families, even though he's created one for himself. Then he whacks gay people on the grounds that they, apparently, stand out too much for his taste--never mind that his own ass is hanging out in the breeze, for all to see.

Definitely must be something he's smoking.


(As an aside, I don't think it's a good plan for ANYONE to talk about fashion in the context of parenting, regardless of the orientation of the parents in question. If the egregiousness of one's attire is supposed to be some sort of significant benchmark of parentworthiness, then I can think of at least a couple of decades' worth of mommies and daddies who, on a mass scale, failed the test. You Know Who You Are, Damnit.)