It’s been said you can tell a lot about a person by the company they keep. I’m not sure who comes off looking worse in the ongoing association between conservative pundit Ann Coulter and the right-wing gay and lesbian political group GOProud.
Coulter is widely known for her anti-gay remarks, recently telling Joy Behar that she was happy for marriage equality in New York because now “maybe they will shut up about it,” and suggesting that men are gay because they were sexually molested. Those kind of comments apparently don’t offend the leaders and members of GOProud who, this time last year, invited (and paid) her to insult them to their faces at their “Homocon 2010” event in New York.
Now, GOProud has invited Coulter to be the honorary chair of their organization’s advisory committee, which already includes such conservative heavy hitters as Grover Norquist and Andrew Breitbart. Coulter, however, has been given a title: “Gay Icon.”
“I am honored to serve in this capacity on GOProud’s Advisory Council, and look forward to being the Queen of Fabulous,” said Coulter.
Coulter has apparently already forgotten what her association with GOProud cost her last year: a gig at WorldNetDaily’s “Take Back America Conference.” WND’s editor and CEO Joseph Farah accused Coulter of “legitimizing a group that is fighting for same-sex marriage and open homosexuality in the military—not to mention the idea that sodomy is just an alternate lifestyle.” Coulter called the notion “silly” saying she gave speeches to a lot of different groups without endorsing them.
Well, the backlash continues.
A poll over at One News Now showed that 63% believe her latest coupling with GOProud “undermines her testimony as a born-again Christian,” with 27% saying it “damages her credibility as a conservative columnist.”
Matt Barber from Liberty Counsel Action also attacked Coulter for associating with GOProud: “There is nothing conservative about the radical homosexual activist agenda which seeks to impose, under penalty of law, sexual anarchy,” he states.
Perhaps the vehemence from the right over Coulter’s latest move simply proves that Coulter is what the other gay GOP group, the Log Cabin Republicans, says she is—“a comedienne”:
“Ann Coulter is not a serious part of the conservative movement—her positions are a throwback and do more harm than anything else,” said R. Clarke Cooper, Executive Director of Log Cabin Republicans.
This really is the heart of the matter. Coulter has long been an outspoken critic of gay and lesbian Americans, as well as women. On Behar’s show she even went so far as to speak against women serving in the military, wishing for only heterosexual males to be able to serve.
So, perhaps, the marriage of Coulter and GOProud is one made in heaven. Both are facing a hailstorm of criticism for their words and actions, so they can be victims together. GOProud, after sponsoring the annual conservative-palooza that is CPAC, has been disinvited from sponsorship this year, but, like gays and lesbians in the pews, CPAC made it clear that they are more than welcome to come, spend their money, and participate as audience members.
This is really what makes Coulter and GOProud such natural bedfellows—they are simply misunderstood. Try as they may to get us to just “lighten up,” we keep taking their words and positions seriously instead of winking and nodding at the inside joke.
What Coulter and GOProud fail to get is that self-loathing is no joking matter. Self-deprecating humor, a la Steven Wright or Rodney Dangerfield, is funny because it contains a kernel of truth about human insecurities. The “humor” Coulter and GOProud engage in, however, is dangerous, mainly because in its attempt to be “funny” it simply reaffirms and strengthens the stereotypes it means to lampoon. A woman against women serving in the military?
A gay group fighting for states’ rights on marriage equality? That should be comedy gold, right? Only, not so much. Instead of being funny it just makes you feel sorry for the person or group making the joke—they have failed to see that the joke really is on them.