October 09, 2007

Another Closeted Republican Bites the Dust

Yet another gay Republican scandal seems to have come to the fore:

DiFatta twice detained for lewd conduct in mall restrooms

St. Bernard Parish Councilman Joey DiFatta, who on Thursday withdrew from the 1st Senate District campaign, has been stopped twice since 1996 for suspicion of engaging in lewd behavior in public restrooms in Jefferson Parish, records obtained by The Times-Picayune show.

DiFatta, 53, acknowledged that reports he had been stopped are true, but he denied any wrongdoing in both cases. He said he was not prosecuted in either case and has no arrest record...

Earlier Thursday, DiFatta called reporters to announce that he planned to withdraw from the Senate race. He said he has been having chest pains for a few weeks, and elevated enzyme levels indicate he might have had a minor heart attack in the past few days. As a result, his doctor advised him to slow down and make some changes in his life.

DiFatta, who has served on the St. Bernard Parish Council since January 1996 and is currently its chairman, denied he is stepping down from the Senate race for fear that the reports would become public. In fact, he said he did not know the reports had surfaced when he made his decision...

View police reports

In the second incident, Jefferson Parish deputies working an undercover detail in a men's bathroom at Dillard's at Lakeside Shopping Center in March 2000 stopped DiFatta after he indicated a desire to engage in sex with an undercover deputy in an adjoining bathroom stall, according to an interoffice memorandum written by Sgt. Keith Conley, one of the deputies involved in the investigation.

The report said DiFatta slid his foot into the deputy's stall and tapped the deputy's foot. In the report, Conley noted that such activity is common among men to indicate a willingness to participate in sex.

The deputy inside the stall, Detective Wayne Couvillion, responded by tapping his foot, and DiFatta reached under the partition and began to rub the deputy's leg, the report states.

The detective asked DiFatta, "What do you want?" according to the report, and he replied, "I want to play with you..."
I know I keep saying this, but it bears repeating: the Republican party bills itself as being opposed to equal rights for gay people, but it seems to contain a large contingent of the very people whose equal rights it opposes. Why don't they just drop this silly contention that somehow gay people are less moral, less deserving of every right and privilege routinely afforded heterosexuals, anti-family, etc? I bet that if the right-wingers weren't busy trumpeting the stigmatization of homosexuals, people like DiFatta, like Larry Craig, like Ted Haggard (and the list goes on) could just be who they are openly, find a mate with whom to form a committed relationship, and go about everything else that life entails outside of sexuality which, if one is honest about such things, is one of the least important aspects of what makes us a decent, moral, useful member of society. People's sex lives shouldn't even be a factor in deciding whether they can hold public office, have a family, or serve in the military. It just doesn't matter, and it's long past time that the state get its nose out of the whole business of deciding which adult can have consensual sexual relations with which other adult without incurring some penalty.

The problem with people like Craig and DiFatta and Haggard isn't that they're gay, it's that they're liars. Why are they lending their support to the very people who want to make their lives miserable, who want to maintain a society in which their sexuality is relegated to public restrooms? I don't get it. Just be honest. Everybody, just be honest about what you are, and everybody else just leave them alone.

It's time for the Republicans to grow up, and it's time for every single gay man and woman in the GOP to kick open their closet doors and step out into the light. It's better than looking for a lover in some department store or airport bathroom... isn't it?

I mean, this is coming from a straight guy who has never even tried to pick up a woman in a bar, so I could be wrong about all of this. Still, I've known gay men in long term relationships and they don't go cruising men's rooms looking for dates.

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