Spreading misinformation, even if you are severely ignorant, and even if you're from Tennessee, isn't okay -- especially if you're a public official.
Stacey Campfield, the same State senator from Tennessee sponsored a bill to force women to look at fetal ultrasound images before having an abortion. His existence may be the only legitimate thing support his claim. Had his mother seen so much of a cell of his, she surely would have aborted immediately.
"In the 60's my grandfather sat at the lunch counters with the blacks in Knoxville to help break up the segregation of the races," he claims. Like Arizona governor Jan Brewer's father died fighting the Nazis. Her father, Wilford Drinkwine, died from lung disease in California, ten years after World War II had ended.
But what is Stacey's excuse for such a special brand of asshole meets stupid?
Already there is a "Recall Stacey Campfield" page on Facebook (although Tennessee law forbids recalls, just as they do using the word "gay". Campfield, who audaciously compares himself to Jesus Christ and the civil rights activists of the 60s, authored a bill outlawing mentioning sexuality in schools, except for heterosexuality and marriage. The "Don't Say Gay" bill passed by a 6-3 vote.
Now Martha Boggs, owner of Bistro at the Bijou in Knoxville, is being hailed as a hero after last Sunday she refused to serve the senator and his friends. She claimed it was the elevation of his remarks from stupid to dangerous that motivated her.
We don't, or shouldn't, discriminate against those with brain disease or other debilitating, disabling mental disorders that preclude them from performing certain tasks, but we don't allow them to perform brain surgery or pilot planes either.
Nor should ignorant bigots be given a platform to spread dangerous, life-threatening misinformation.
The humiliation of growing up with a non-gender specific name isn't an excuse either. Being a manly man is not simply in the name. And irony aside, channeling one's inner elementary schoolgirl to name one's blog "Camp4U" is not going to mask any deep-rooted maculinity issues driving one's antigay legislative agenda, let alone be taken seriously as the intelligent musing of a well-adjusted man.
His barely coherent disclaimer on his blog excuses his ignorance as follows: "The information should be construed as open opinion and information contained in this document represents opinion or facts to the best of the writers knowledge and should not be viewed as permanent certified facts but as the way the information is interpreted by the opinion of the author."
And as deluded as he is about sexuality, that anyone familiar with the English language would knowingly appropriate his drivel, he warns: "Any and all information, statements, comments and opinions are the sole property of the author. Absolutely no duplication outside of the exclusive on line media community is allowed without expressed written permission of the author." Seriously. He need not worry.
To justify his antigay "Don't Say Gay" bill, he remarked: “I just think there are situations where some kids maybe sexually unsecure [sic] in themselves or sexually confused and don’t necessarily know clearly what direction they are. If someone, a person of influence, says maybe you’re gay, maybe you should explore those things — maybe the child, who is young and impressionable, says maybe I am gay,”
Who knows what inner demons threaten Campfield's precarious masculinity. Or when it was the unmarried, 42-year-old, bible-thumping conservative chose to be straight. Or why he would wear a Mexican wrestling mask to Neyland Stadium only to be kicked out by police for scaring the shit out of young girls and subsequently their terrified mother.
He has issues.
And a platform.