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|An open letter to Newt Gingrich|
|Written by Topher Payne|
|Friday, 01 April 2011 00:00|
Can I call you Newt? As a fellow Georgian, I feel we can relate in a down-home, folksy kinda way.
We have things in common, you and me. We both like Reese’s peanut butter cups. Neither of us is actually from Georgia. We have funny names. We both failed to have lasting relationships with women.
Anyhoo, I saw on the news that you’ve got some interest in being our next president. I don’t know why you would want that. When you’re president, people will come after you for any indiscretion and publicly humiliate you. Remember what happened to Bill Clinton, with the impeachment hearings stemming from his extramarital affair? Oh, silly me, of course you remember that. You were leading the charge against him. While you were having an extramarital affair. Boy, good thing nobody was watching you! You rascal.
You revealed your plan to stop the homosexual agenda with “pro-Classical Christianity” governance. I was unfamiliar with this term. Fortunately, Classical Christianity has a website. Don’t you love the internet?
I learned from www.classicalchristianity.com that these particular “Christians” openly welcome and accept people with “homosexual or other extramarital sexual impulses.” Yippee. Not sure how we got lumped in with adulterers, but the invite is still appreciated. Oh, but you do have to make a vow of chastity. You can be gay, you just can’t, you know, BE gay. Damn fine print. It’ll get you every time.
Delving further into the site, I found a fascinating discussion regarding the sanctity of marriage. Classical Christianity, not surprisingly, is a big fan of pairing up for life. I myself am in favor of that, so we’re on the same page.
The Classical Christianity website allows for the possibility that divorce is, on rare occasions, the only choice for a couple. But multiple divorces indicate a man is incapable of leadership, because he cannot manage to commit to the most basic and fundamental of all institutions: marriage.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t you currently on your third wife? So, if you’re truly committed to governing under the ideals of “Classical Christianity,” you should go ahead and announce you are unfit to be president.
But if you really want this campaign, make a very bold move. You’re skirting around hate speech by saying marriage equality, hate crimes legislation, and the repeal of DADT run counter to the will of the “overwhelming majority of Americans.”
For whatever reason, several presidential contenders seem to believe that the greatest threat to American society is not unemployment, poverty, crime, or the hootenanny of wars we’re currently fighting. It’s those damn non-celibate gays.
Well come on, Newt, let’s be bold about it. Run on a platform of outlawing homosexuality altogether. That’ll make you stand out from the pack! Present no economic or defense plan whatsoever. Make your campaign slogan “NEWT 2012: I JUST DON’T LIKE GAY PEOPLE,” and the overwhelming majority of Americans are certain to follow, right?
Unless, of course, this is all just you pandering to the fuming and fearful. See, the worst part about all this is that I don’t believe you actually give two shits about “the sanctity of marriage,” or you’d actually stay married to someone.
It’s all just talking points for a career politician who knows that disenfranchised Americans need someone to blame for their lot in life. They require a sense of Other. Someone to hate. Someone to hold up for ridicule and say, “You! You’re the reason life isn’t fair!”
If you lived in a different time, you could select women, or black people, or Communists, or the Irish. But you live now. So you picked us. Which means your declared religious principles agree with my understanding of right and wrong in a single regard: Neither of us thinks you’re fit to be president. Look at that, we have something else in common.
History will judge you the same way it’s judged Senator McCarthy, or George Wallace, or the Puritans. Common sense will prevail. You will be reviled, and then pitied, and then forgotten. And that, Newt, is a small consolation.
Topher Payne is an Atlanta-based playwright, and the author of the book “Necessary Luxuries: Notes on a Semi-Fabulous Life.” Find out more at topherpayne.com.
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