NEWEST BUGBEAR in the world of American political lunacy is the mythical predatory transgender brute intruding on the sanctity of women’s restrooms. As depicted in a meme gone viral on Facebook (above), the fixation infected the presidential election campaign.
Right-Wingers in Sexual Frenzy
Ted Cruz thrills the hateful faithful
by Thomas Adcock
Copyright © 2016 – Thomas Adcock
NEW YORK CITY, near America
In the waning days of April, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas was bereft of hot prurience, the gassy fuel powering his pestiferous and ultimately futile quest to occupy the White House. For nearly a year, he crisscrossed the United States assuring his fellow Christianist fanatics that God in Heaven had anointed his holy political pursuit. Throughout that time, he and sixteen rivals for Republican nomination for party choice in November’s presidential election slugged it out in preliminary state contests.
One by one, fourteen hopefuls fell away, woozy from reciting the right-wing catechism of venereal titillations—including (I swear, I am not making this up) penis size, abortion-cum-murder, Mexican rapists, wifely nude photos, daughterly erotic potential, unholy self-gratification, adultery, dildos as a scourge upon the land, lesbian gymnasium teachers, and the grave threat to Christianist survival in forcing Bible-thumping bakers to sell wedding cakes to affianced gay couples.
By May 3, the once crowded Republican field winnowed to merely two viable contenders to face off in the crucial Indiana state preliminary bout. The two louts were greatly talented in the theatre of crudity, sexual and otherwise: Mr. Cruz versus Donald J. Trump, the oxymoronic Realty TV impresario and Fifth Avenue fascist. Throughout that fine spring day, the louts entertained Indiana voters with respective contempt for one another.
Mr. Trump kicked things off by implying that Mr. Cruz’s father, the religious grifter Rafael Cruz of International Purifying Fire Ministries, was an accomplice in the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy; potential “evidence” of this was innuendo published in the National Enquirer supermarket tabloid, a “newspaper” that also suggested in the same edition that Democratic Party operatives were hoodwinking the electorate by propping up the corpse of Hillary Clinton as she made her rounds on the campaign circuit.
In defense of his preacher papa, Cruz the Younger tagged Mr. Trump as, variously, a “pathological liar,” “serial philanderer,” “bully,” “narcissist,” and “braggadocious, arrogant buffoon.”
The buffoon triumphed that in Indiana. Despite God’s evidently erroneous anointment, Donald Trump thus became the Republicans’ presumptive nominee. Of lesser lordly advance: Ted Cruz became the nation’s über Christianist moralizer—inheritor of a flock perpetually disturbed about anything involving human naughty bits, whether employed for reproduction or recreation.
As the walking, talking answer to Calvinists’ prayers for American theocracy, Senator Cruz understands that voicing regular outrages of a sexual nature sustains a frenzied flock—yielding either votes or cash tributes to the Cruz family’s churchy con game. He further understands that yesterday’s agitation is only so much day-old bread; it cannot for long be fed to those yearning for fresh-baked loaves of foulness.
And now—what luck for Senator Ted and America’s Cruzanoidal multitudes!
For now has emerged a fresh and exhilarating abomination: transgender Americans insinuating themselves into public lavatories of their preferred personae, male or female—never mind their gonads at birth.
Once again, I am not making this up: With all deliberate speed, Cruzanoid state lawmakers in Mississippi and North Carolina enacted statutes against the dread new horror of transgender restroom gate-crashing, apparently leaving it to the dubious wisdom of local police to inspect and certify proper genitalia. Yea verily, the Jesus-jumping senator wasted no time in thrilling the hateful faithful from coast to coast. Ted Cruz presents—TOILET PANIC!
As prelude to his crusade, Mr. Cruz held forth on a national right-wing radio show that enjoys a vast audience of kooks, Klansmen, and conspiracists: “It’s simply crazy…that grown men would be allowed in a bathroom with little girls. You don’t need to be a behavioral psychologist to realize bad things can happen, and any prudent person wouldn’t allow that.” He was adamant about what he deemed foundational in the context of Mississippi and North Carolina legislation, as well as similar measures pending in at least nine other Republican-controlled states. Citing his experience in litigating before the U.S. Supreme Court, ultimate arbiter of what is or is not jurisprudentially kosher, Mr. Cruz declared, “I’m a constitutionalist. And the state has the power to pass their (sic) own laws.”
The avowed constitutionalist is an alumnus of the prestigious Harvard Law School who nevertheless feigns ignorance of the foremost constitutional challenge to Republican-initiated bathroom bills, so-called—a challenge publicized in both legal journals and mass media. Specifically: In the matter of Gavin Grimm v. Gloucester County School Board, the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a Virginia law that prohibited an adolescent boy from using the high school lavatory he felt appropriate for his transgender self. The court found that the Virginia statute ran afoul of Title IX of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, to wit: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
Focusing on young Mr. Grimm, born female but legally re-named and medically re-gendered through hormone therapy, the court’s opinion in his favor stated: “We agree that it has indeed been commonplace and widely accepted to separate public restrooms, locker rooms, and shower facilities on the basis of sex. It is not apparent to us, however, that the truth of these propositions undermines the conclusion we reach regarding the level of deference due to the [school board’s] interpretation of its own regulations.”
Notwithstanding the Harvardian’s analysis, legal scholars consider the Fourth Circuit ruling dispositive.
Certainly Vanita Gupta does. As chief civil rights attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, she sent a demand letter to the Republican governor at the vanguard of Toilet Panic. In it, Ms. Gupta cited Title IX in declaring that state-level anti-trans “bathroom bills,” enacted or pending, violate constitutional law—no matter what Ted-the-Constitutionalist thinks. Ms. Gupta gave Governor Pat McCrory a deadline of May 9 to retract his statute, lest North Carolina lose a major portion of its federal revenues.
Come d-day, a defiant Mr. McCrory filed suit against the Justice Department, its “radical reinterpretation” of civil rights law and Washington’s “baseless and blatant overreach” into his state’s affairs. Supporting the McCrory position was North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest—a Republican, to be sure. Mr. Forest declared North Carolina officially opposed to granting “pedophiles, sex offenders, and perverts free rein to watch women, boys, and girls undress and use the bathroom.”
On the same day Mr. McCrory filed suit against the Justice Department, Attorney General Loretta Lynch countered with a federal suit against North Carolina, contending that anti-trans state action “stigmatizes and singles out” a protected class of citizens, inflicting “further indignity on a population that has already suffered.” Ms. Lynch, born and raised in North Carolina, said during a news conference in Washington that a person’s external genitalia are “but one component of sex [but] not always determinative of a person’s sex.”
As the legal squabble lingers, there arises a modest proposal for how Governor McCrory might decently discard human waste of suspicious origin. Gay activist Dan Savage, author of the sex advice column “Savage Love,” urges transgender North Carolinians to urinate into bottles for delivery to Mr. McCrory’s office at the state capitol.
Meanwhile, Senator Cruz is as unaware of modern medical procedure as he is of civil rights law. In late April, he denounced transgender Americans, collectively, as “men who pretend to be women” in feminine mufti allowing them slip into female restrooms unnoticed—therewith to molest women and girls in the midst of urination and defecation. It takes a unique mind to imagine such criminal scenery. The senator has yet to detail a theory of “women who pretend to be men,” but perhaps such rhetoric will soon come.
Arousing as the senator’s fatuity was (and is), his aim for higher office fell flat—courtesy of the Orange Godzilla, a/k/a Donald J. Trump. Presidential lust behind him, Mr. Cruz now commands Christianist jihadi regiments of crazed hemorrhoid sufferers submerged in a wholly new fever swamp of bigotry, marching under a demagogic banner: “No Men in Women’s Bathrooms.” Aiding and comforting transphobic activism is the Mississippi-based American Family Association, self-proclaimed defender of “the biblical ethic of decency,” though classified as a hate group by the respected Southern Poverty Law Center.
Taking umbrage at a corporate decision on the part of the Target department store chain inviting its customers to use restrooms according to self-identified gender, American Family recruited male co-religionists to stand guard inside female restrooms at Target outlets throughout the country.
Sandy Rios, director of government affairs at American Family, revealed the plan during a May 2 radio interview aired over the right-wing Breitbart News Daily program. She said men falsely claiming to be transgender are on constant lookout for opportunities to harass and/or rape women and children.
“The chief concern, even more than just, I think trauma,” said Ms. Rios, previously known for falsely reporting that a subordinate had spotted New York Governor Andrew Cuomo dressed in a Che Guevara T-shirt during a supposed visit to communist Cuba, “is for little girls [seeing] men dressed like women coming into their bathrooms…predators who will take advantage.”
Put another way, the American Family Association position on Toilet Panic is a twist on the trope first articulated by National Rifle Association mouthpiece Wayne LaPierre: “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a penis—is a good guy with a penis.”
There exists not a speck of sociological or police evidence to indicate a predatory bent among the transgendered, inside or out of public toilet facilities; to the contrary, they are the very men and women traditionally victimized by “normal” people. Actually, as The Nation magazine reported in its May 9 edition, the great danger to the American public, in terms of sexual assault and/or harassment, comes by way of Republican politicians. Consider four incidents among many hundreds on police blotters nationwide:
- Following his embarrassing arrest in a men’s restroom at the Minneapolis airport, ex-Senator Larry Craig of Idaho held a post-incident press conference to insist, “I’m not gay, and never have been.” Nevertheless, police say they burst into his toilet stall and caught him playing footsie with a man in the adjacent stall. Mr. Craig explained to the press: “I have a wide stance.” He did not seek reëlection.
- In September 2001, Mayor Philip A. Giordano of Waterbury, Connecticut was charged by state authorities with the rapes of two girls, ages 9 and 10—one of them a half-sister to a daughter that the mayor allegedly fathered with a prostituted woman. Several months prior to state charges, Mr. Giordano was locked up by U.S. authorities for using the internet to entice a minor child into sexual activity. Mr. Giordano, a father of three children by his betrothed, is currently serving a thirty-seven year federal prison term, after which he faces state sentencing on convictions that carry a maximum penalty of three hundred years’ incarceration.
- In 2005 a municipal zoning supervisor in small-town Kansas by the name Dennis L. Rader— president of his Lutheran church congregation, a U.S. Air Force veteran and Boy Scout leader—pled guilty to raping an 11-year-old girl who he subsequently murdered. After a years-long manhunt, state authorities named Mr. Rader as the notorious “BTK Strangler”—the signature acronym used in letters mailed to police after a string of ten murders in and around his home county between 1974 and his arrest thirty-one years later. (The acronym stands for Bind-Torture-Kill.) Mr. Rader is serving ten consecutive life terms in a Kansas penitentiary.
- In October 2015, small-town high school wrestling coach turned congressman Dennis Hastert of Illinois, longtime speaker of the House of Representatives, was convicted of bank law violations in connection with a series of suspicious withdrawals totaling $3.5 million (€3.12 million) as hush money to one of five adolescent boys he allegedly diddled in the 1970s, one of whom committed suicide. Among other improprieties, the boys said coach Hastert set up an easy chair outside the locker room shower area to ogled naked young wrestlers. An alumnus of Wheaton College, a so-called Christian campus, Mr. Hastert championed the Child Abuse and Enforcement Act of 2000, reasoning, “It is important to stop these predators before they strike, to put repeat child molesters into jail for the rest of their lives.”
When it came to light that President Bill Clinton was having his way with a female White House intern, a shocked Mr. Hastert leapt to action by leading the impeachment of Mr. Clinton, who was later acquitted in Senate trial. On April 26, the disgraced ex-speaker of the House asked mercy from the judge who oversaw his bank law trial. Having wrestled with his soul, Mr. Hastert volunteered a confession that his teenage accusers had told the truth; yes, he recognized that his victims remain traumatized, even now in middle age; further, he was “deeply ashamed.” Also: Having made my mea culpa, may I please be given parole in lieu of prison? The judge him locked him up for fifteen months, scorning the once mighty Republican leader as a “serial child molester” richly deserving of public shame.
Animals, too, should keep a weather eye on randy Republicans. During his campaign for governor of Georgia in 2009, candidate Neal Horsley recounted a sexual liaison resulting from a barnyard love affair. “When you grow up on a farm in Georgia,” he told the host of a national radio talk show, “your first girlfriend is a mule.” However, he made clear that such romance occurred before he found salvation in Jesus Christ. The operator of a now defunct website that published the names and home addresses of abortion doctors, Mr. Horsley spoke further in of the time he was willing to murder his son—“cut him or slice him”—as a personal sacrifice in the cause of a national armed insurrection against Washington authority. “That’s what makes me different from the other candidates,” he said. Mr. Horsley’s gubernatorial campaign was unsuccessful.
Sexual moralism, always in tandem with sternest religious dicta, has long been a component of American politics. Which is not to say the phenomenon is exclusively American, or exclusive to Republicans. However, Republicans are far better prepared and practiced in the art of sexual fearmongering than Democrats.
Woe betide a president, Democrat or Republican, who fails to show a properly scrubbed, God-fearing face each year at the National Prayer Breakfast. The event is a press-praised occasion for affirming the spirit of the Boy Scout oath: to “do my duty to God and country, to help people at all times, to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake—and morally straight.” As the historian Carolyn Dean noted in “The Frail Society,” her study of French political and religious life, and hypocrisies attendant thereto, sexual anxieties may serve as a basis of government order.
So, too, economic insecurities.
Destructive fiscal policy set by members of Congress and their corporate comrades is easily camouflaged in sex—sex!—by those skilled at tactical cynicism: politicians willing to wallow in the basest of falsities and fantasies—characteristics that summarize the essence of Ted Cruz, the self-consecrated pope of potty pandemonium.
Seizing on his big chance to grab headlines in the hullabaloo over bathroom bills, Mr. Cruz hustled to the nearest TV news camera in mid-April to establish the latest Pecksniffian nightmare of burly louts faking it in skirts—filthy, albeit frilly debauchees intent on defiling American womanhood. Assuming the square-jawed mien of Sir Lancelot, Mr. Cruz declared, “I’m the father of two little girls. Here is basic common sense: Grown adult men, strangers, should not be alone in a bathroom with two little girls.”
This being the weirdest political year in American history, the peril pushed by Mr. Cruz was countered by unlikeliest source: Donald Trump, the oddly complexioned bullyboy who peddles his own brand of loathsomeness. Item: On April 20, Adolf Hitler’s birthday, right-wing Republican financial angel Charles Koch was interviewed by ABC Television News on the subject of Mr. Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims entering the U.S. “That’s reminiscent of Nazi Germany,” said Mr. Koch, multi-billionaire chief executive of the eponymous Koch Industries. “I mean, that’s monstrous.”
Whatever. I now pinch myself as I write the following words: Mr. Trump is the voice of reason in the to-do over Toilet Panic and anti-trans laws.
“You leave it the way it is,” said The Donald, as Mr. Trump was tagged by the first of his three wives. “There have been very few complaints. People go, they use the bathroom they feel is appropriate.”
Citing a flood of boycotts launched by major corporations, he added, “They’re paying a big price in North Carolina. There’s a lot of problems [resulting from] the economic punishment they’re taking.”
On that very day of ironic Trumpian reason, Mr. Cruz let fly with a written statement quickly distributed to media:
Donald Trump is no different from politically correct leftist elites. …[H]e joined them in calling for grown men to be allowed to use little girls’ public restrooms. …I dread what this will mean for our daughters—and for our sisters and our wives. It will…endanger our loved ones.
Yet Donald stands up for this irresponsible policy while at the same time caving in on defending individual freedoms and religious liberty. He has succumbed to the Left agenda, which is to force Americans to leave God out of public life while paying lip service to false tolerance.
This is not real tolerance. The Left wants to force its belief system onto Americans across the country and silence people of faith in the public square. Unsurprisingly, Donald Trump is all too eager to join them. This simply confirms that the same men who favored partial-birth abortion and still support funding for Planned Parenthood will sacrifice principle on the altar of political correctness. Trump will not defeat political correctness. He bowed to it.
On the evening of April 20, a Cruz campaign aired on national television, attacking Mr. Trump for his reasonableness. View it here.
Though the candidate and his commercial bombed, Mr. Cruz will surely profit in the long run with the zealous loyalty of his panic-prone proselytes.
Fearing those proselytes, the British Foreign Office expanded on its advisory to anyone in the United Kingdom pondering a journey to “the colonies,” as the English are wont to say. To its warning of U.S. gun insanity, the mother country added a cautionary note on April 21 regarding America’s generally low opinion of its Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Trangender population:
The United States is an extremely diverse society, and attitudes towards LGBT people differ hugely across the country. LGBT travellers may be affected by legislation passed recently in the state of North Carolina and Mississippi.
Laws and religious proscriptions meant to humiliate, shame, and marginalize sexual apostates on the basis of imaginary crimes (and/or libidinous threats to little girls and big ladies) have proven to be solutions in search of problems. Gay marriage, for example, has not caused the sky to fall; nor has legislation that protects LGBT people at the workplace brought the wrath of God upon corporate America; nor have elaborately decorated cakes at same-sex nuptials crimped the wedding industry. When and if transgender citizens commit actual sex crimes in restrooms, or anywhere else, they are as liable to arrest and prosecution as Republican politicians—likely more so.
In time, often little time, sexual mores among LGBT Americans become acceptable to the wider public. Witness Barack Obama’s opposition to gay marriage in 2009, at the outset of his presidency, versus his evolved position today.
But cheap hope springs eternal in the dark hearts of Ted Cruz and his army of ignoramuses: If at first you don’t succeed at bigotry—try, try again!
—Thomas Adcock is America correspondent for CulturMag