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    October 31, 2007

    GOP cross-dressing blogo-hypocrisy

    Posted by: Chris

    Curtiscastagna "Cross-dressing state lawmaker blackmailed following late night tryst"

    With a headline like that, the scandal surrounding Washington state Rep. Richard Curtis is shaping up as a real doozie, and the gay blogosphere is well-lathered to pass on every juicy detail.  There are some interesting twists, however, that are showing the predictable pack of salivating bloggers are victims of "the big H" -- that would be hypocrisy -- themselves.

    The basic story, in case you've missed it, is this:

    State Representative Richard Curtis says he's not gay, but police reports and court records indicate the Republican lawmaker from southwestern Washington dressed up in women's lingerie and met a Medical Lake man in a local erotic video store which led to consensual sex at a downtown hotel and a threat to expose Curtis' activities publicly.

    A search warrant unsealed Tuesday morning disclosed that State Representative Richard Curtis (R - La Center) had sex in his room at the Davenport Tower with a man identified as Cody Castagna, 26, of Medical Lake, who he met at the Hollywood Erotic Boutique on Oct. 26.

    We're all given permission to revel in every salacious detail of this private, consexual sex encounter because Curtis is "anti-gay," or as Pam Spaulding put it, "very anti-gay."  What qualifies as "very anti-gay" these days is voting against Washington state's domestic partner registry and civil rights law. 

    Richardcurtisthumb So fair enough, he is opposed to gay rights, though no one has portrayed him as outspoken or in a leadership role on the subject. Votes are enough to make you "very anti-gay" in the gay blogoworld. The far bigger hypocrisy to me is that Curtis, like Larry Craig before him, is married to a woman. Hence his vulnerability to blackmail.

    Lost in all the joyous reveling in the salacious personal details of this man's private sex life is that the only reason we know anything about it is that he went to police as the victim of felony extortion. Of all the blogs I've seen, only my pal Jeremy over at Good As You makes more than a passing reference to Curtis as the victim here.  Jeremy included this "editor's note":

    In no way should the above be interpreted as an endorsement of any of the alleged extortion that has taken place against Mr. Curtis. It should be taken merely as a commentary on the nonstop hypocrisy coming out of the GOP ranks, and not on this police investigation itself.

    Thanks for that, though it's far from the norm. Dan Savage in particular has feigned shock at each additional detail he breathlessly shares on his aptly named blog "The Slog," acknowledging only in passing that the the information comes from the police report Curtis filed as the alleged victim of a serious crime.  Writes Savage:

    As if the details about anti-gay Washington State Rep. Richard (R-La Center) and his tryst with a male escort in Spokane, Washington, weren’t sordid enough, I spent the last hour wading through the 15 page police report. Holy crap! Curtis, hoping to keep this whole thing quiet, called the police himself. And when the police asked him what happened, Curtis told them everything.

    So even though Curtis is the apparent victim, Savage and company will do exactly what the blackmailer threatened and share every private sexual detail, with giddy commentary to boot.  It's true that no charges have been filed, but if you watch the video of Castagna trying to explain why he has Curtis' wallet and sent a stooge to pick up the dough, it looks pretty clean cut.

    Cody_castagna_still It's all justified, of course, because there's no crime more serious to the sex police of the left than hypocrisy. Which is why it's been very interesting to see how these same bloggers have reacted to news that Curtis enjoys wearing women's lingerie. Cross-dressers and trasvestites (those who have a sexual fetish wearing clothing of the opposite sex) are both types of transgenderism, the T in our happy GLBT community.

    One helpful link from the National Center for Transgender Equality describes cross-dressers this way:

    While the vast majority of crossdressers are ordinary heterosexual men with an additional feminine dimension, they are stereotyped by society based on a highly visible minority who crossdress for entirely different reasons. Drag queens are usually gay or bisexual males who don women’s clothes either to mock femininity and society’s stereotypes of gays, or to find sex partners.

    Sigh. Feel the love from these "ordinary heterosexual men." We are one big happy GLBT family, aren't we? Regardless, our crossdressing T's are telling us that crossdressers are often heterosexual and (presumably) married, so no hypocrisy there.   

    We should, in fact, feel kinship with Curtis since we've been reminded again and again in the ENDA debate that we are all gender transgressors of one form or another, and the Ts are so important that our own GLB rights must wait their place in line.  It's a surprise, then, to see how cross-dressing is being treated by the leftie gay blosgosphere.

    Take for example my friend Wayne Besen, who endorsed the "trans or bust" ENDA strategy and yet labels Curtis' sexual fetish as "fucked up" and "perverted":

    I'm telling you, the more they preach, the more fucked up they truly are. Conservative is just a synonym for pervert.

    Same for Pam Spaulding, who said about the blackmail victim, who she calls Richard 'Kink' Curtis: "Is there any end to the depravity of the hypocrites in the moralist GOP?"

    Dan Savage even throws in evidence mentioned in the police report that has no bearing on the case: "Lingerie, condoms, rope, stethoscopes—Rep. Curtis is a very kinky girl!"

    It's interesting to see how, in contrast, the British are handling their own gay sex blackmail scandal. I don't support the gag order British courts have employed to block release of the victim's identity. (It's unworkable, anyway.) But there is at least some sense that the crime of blackmail always involves a victim whose private life faces a great threat if information is revealed.

    The idea that we would enthusiastically finish the blackmailer's work for him, despite the information was about private, consensual conduct, just goes to show how far the politics of personal destruction have progressed.



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    1. Double T on Oct 31, 2007 5:31:45 PM:

      ** just goes to show how far the politics of personal destruction have progressed **

      1) All the closet doors are now made of glass. We have no(or few)secrets. Anyone and everyone elected to public office had better understand that. How many more scandals before they get this memo?

      2) Victim, implies that someone is guilty of something.

      If I were going to "just to conclusions" the only victim I'm certain of is......... the wife.

      3)I trace all of this back to Cheerleading. Damn those pom-poms.

      4)And let's be honest. If the "victim" in this story had been Barney Frank, Ann Coulter on Fox News would interrupted a broadcasting of the Second Coming of Christ to break the news

    1. Andoni on Oct 31, 2007 5:43:57 PM:

      Hey, don't get so upset. Most of these bloggers are simply the online Enquirer, Globe, etc. There is no thread of consistency or fairness and no overriding principles or ethics.

      Their sole goal is to get noticed, linked and talked about. In most cases I think it is an ego trip.

      I'm glad your blog and Andrew Sullivan's Daily Dish are exceptions to my above generalization. It makes it worth tuning in daily.

    1. Lucrece on Oct 31, 2007 7:03:04 PM:

      I think you took Pam's use of the word "depravity" out of context. From what I read, I took it to mean just how twisted the GOP's hypocrisy is.

      You're right on one point, though: LGBT groups and bloggers often want to alienate unpopular groups. I can speak as an atheist how sold out one feels with groups like HRC and Task Force when they try to appeal to the religious sector by debating what the Bible truly means with homosexuals. The Bible is irrelevant; it is no legitimate source by which to draw judgement in policy-making.

      I also feel that while many are eager to out him, it will only make the environment worse for closeted gay Republican officials, anti-gay legislation more vicious (not to mention that they get momentum by showing to their bigoted followers how deceptive gay men can be), and just worsen the stereotypes about gay men as kinky,cowardly, selfish perverts.

    1. Randy on Oct 31, 2007 8:36:34 PM:

      Very good analysis.

    1. Matt on Nov 1, 2007 12:52:55 PM:

      If my own stupid blog weren't (temporarily) broken, I would praise this post to the high heavens, every letter of it.

      From the left's own "hypocrisy" in espousing unity with our trans "brothers/sisters" only when said trans person is a reflexive liberal (otherwise it is, naturally, "perverted") to their casual dismissal of felonious behavior, these are views that you will find only on a small handful of gay blogs. The irony and mindlessness that are played out over and over at sites like the ones Chris describes above would be entertaining if they weren't so damaging to gays.

      Bravo, bravo, bravo!

    1. Joe.My.God. on Nov 1, 2007 1:50:58 PM:

      No apologies here.

      Gay people who work to restrict my rights and those of my loved ones will see no quarter on my blog. I will continue to gleefully expose every hypocrisy and relish in every embarassment to scummy lowlifes who suck dick at night while voting against me by day.

      If that's "the politics of personal destruction" - so motherfucking be it.

    1. Pam Spaulding on Nov 1, 2007 2:55:32 PM:

      You completely missed the boat, Chris.

      The mockery isn't about Curtis's cross-dressing. It's the hypocrisy of his "family values" political persuasion; he is part of a crowd that doesn’t allow for consideration of anything other than procreative missionary position sex. Everything else, including kink, is dirty, wrong and worthy of damnation.

      Curtis was caught in a laundry list of behaviors that he would have publicly condemned if the same thing happened to someone else. That's the essence of the problem, and that's the depravity of these GOP sexual hypocrites.

      I don't care how he gets his kinks on, but when people like Curtis try to legislate against me because of my orientation, the gloves come off.

      The man is a head case; married with children and demanding barebacking services from a sex worker. Who is more dangerous to society?


    1. Jack Jett on Nov 1, 2007 2:55:34 PM:


      If you don't see the hypocrisy in this, then you need to go to Pearle Vision right away and get yourself so glasses.

      I don't know if you are just trying to be Ann Coulterish with your postings, but this is a clear cut case of homophobia at it's very worst.

      No wonder you were so upset with the unkind words I had to say about
      Matt Sanchez.

      Remember, this man you are sticking up for is one of the reasons you are not living in the United States. Am I right?

      Furthermore, if you want to find a blog that is rife with hypocrisy, you should visit;

      Jack Jett

    1. Citizen Crain on Nov 1, 2007 3:41:20 PM:

      Pam: I understand the point, but how can you reach all these conclusions about Curtis based on nothing more than two votes he cast? Are you not "reading into" his politics a lot of the crap that comes from people who would have voted the same way? I haven't seen any evidence that Curtis demagogued on gay issues or "legislated against us." Have you?

      And are you really telling me that when you wrote that "Richard 'Kink' Curtis" was "depraved" and Wayne wrote he was "fucked up" and "perverted," that neither of you was referring to his cross-dressing and other kinky sexual behavior? C'mon...

      Joe, it is lost on me how it advances our cause to humiliate the oddball legislator here and there, except for the joy we might take in knowing the pain it inflicts. It's just so mean-spirited, and I've seen no proof that it actually helps. The Ted Haggard scandal actually hurt in Colorado, if anything.

      The real rub for me is that Curtis is the alleged VICTIM here, not the perp! That for the sake of two votes, you're willing to essentially follow through on the blackmailer's threats and expose intimate personal details of this man's life -- to not only his embarrassment but his wife and his family. And take joy in it, at that.

      We are no better than those who legislate against us if we disregard sexual privacy for the sake of our politics, aiming to destroy anyone who dares to disagree with us along the way.

    1. Lucrece on Nov 1, 2007 3:51:55 PM:

      Well, Chris, voting no on LGBT equality-related bills IS legislating against us. It may not be in the form of introducing a bill targeting us, but that's irrelevant; we are sole targets of discrimination already in such laws that do not permit us to equally use marriage rights. By voting no, he is perpetuating that discrimination and, in a certain way, legislating against us.

    1. Jack Jett on Nov 1, 2007 4:12:08 PM:

      Lead me not into temptation;
      I can find it myself

      Rita Mae Brown/1944

    1. Jim-n-Alpharetta on Nov 1, 2007 4:24:19 PM:


      I'm just wondering....in the past few days another story was released regarding a public sex sting operation up in CT off an interstate rest-stop. Now as I recall, 20 men were arrested, 19 were married men and only 1 was not and that man was a Catholic Priest.

      This man in Washington, also married, gets tangled in a web of sex involving alleged extortion.

      Should everyone put their heads in the sand and ignore these incidents because we want to protect the privacy of the individuals or do we call it out for what it is? These are relevant examples of the hypocrisy of our society which revels in demonizing you and me and Pam and Joe and everyone else who are NOT bound to a heterosexual marriage having sex purely for pro-creation.

      Voting against LGBT issues puts Rep. Curtis in a position to affect the lives of all of us in a negative way.

      So long as the Republican Party wages war on LGBT folk, their own personal lives will remain targets should they stray from the straight-n-narrow.

      And just for the record, I'd have no problem if Rep. Curtis remained in office just as Senator Craig has. I imagine though, that the Republican Party in Washington is the one that showed him the door.


    1. Brian on Nov 1, 2007 6:37:01 PM:

      Please do not equate stright men who get off by wearing women's lingerie while having sex (a full force fetish that is pretty common) with the "T" in our GLBT. That is not the same thing at all. I usually agree with your comments but back off of Pam Spaulding already- you were off the mark on this comment. I'm "G" in the LGBT, and Im sure that my "T" friends would agree with me. A sexual kinky fetish is not anything near tansgenerism, or transexualism.

    1. Jack Jett on Nov 1, 2007 10:02:01 PM:


      Brian has a good point, you may have met your
      match of the verbiage with
      Pam Spaulding. She makes a very valid point in just a few words.

      One can only have so much fun with hypocrisy before it becomes annoying.

      Jack Jett

    1. queertardo on Nov 1, 2007 10:46:34 PM:

      Refusing to pay the agreed upon amount, demanding bareback sex and then claiming he was drugged when the authorities questioned him hoping to put the whole sordid scandal together...oh, the poor poor VICTIMIZED State Representative who has a bad gay voting record, has a wife and kids, hangs out in Adult Bookstores on (no doubt) State payroll.
      Let's see, how many more times are we going to see this behavior from PUBLIC OFFICIALS, ministers, priests, homophobic lobbyists and policy makers before the 2008 election??

      It's pretty sad when some GAY people who should know better allow themselves to side with the exploiter by publicly opining that the real VICTIM is the amoral leader who finally got CAUGHT with a hooker but hoped his clout would spare him and somebody would think he's been harmed.
      Shame on you Chris Crain, GAY SHAME on you!

    1. Citizen Crain on Nov 1, 2007 10:47:31 PM:

      Lucrece: Voting against gay rights legislation is failing to legislate for us. Voting for anti-gay legislation is legislating against us. There is a difference, and remember there are principled reasons for opposing workplace rights -- on libertarian grounds. Some gays oppose D.P. legislation, because it falls short of what they want. I'm not saying Curtis did either but to say he was some sort of raging homophobe based simply on two votes is a big fat stretch.

      Jim: I never said Curtis and the rest area sting weren't stories; they are. I object to exposing the intimate details of this man's personal life, especially considering he was the VICTIM of the crime here and these bloggers are essentially following through on the blackmailer's threat.

      I have never understood how it helps our cause to prove there are some hypocrites among those who oppose gay rights, especially when doing so requires that we get chest-deep in the mud ourselves. If gay rights foes were all saints, would their votes then be justified? Rather than sink to their level, and disrespect their right to privacy, I would make our case for equality on policy grounds. These sideshows only serve to salivate those who have turned bitter because of our oppression and have forgotten how to channel energy in a positive way.

      Brian and Jack: You need Transgender 101! I've taken it (several times) and you're just flat wrong about the T's. Follow either of the links in this post about cross-dressing and you'll learn than the VAST MAJORITY of T's are HAPPY HETEROSEXUALS. Check the Wikipedia links on trasvestism and cross-dressers. Check anywhere!

      In fact the link I found about cross-dressing on the National Center for Trans Equality's website was the one I quoted, which made a point of distinguishing themselves as "ordinary heterosexual" cross-dressers and not gay men or drag queen.

    1. Leon on Nov 2, 2007 12:33:57 AM:

      "The far bigger hypocrisy to me is that Curtis, like Larry Craig before him, is married to a woman. Hence his vulnerability to blackmail."

      What? That doesn't even make sense. Curtis is at most bisexual, loves his wife, and has two beautiful daughters. He even told the police that his wife knew he was bi before they got married. Only a militant homosexual leftist would rediculously label him hypocritical for being married. God, you guys are desperate to demonize Curtis.

    1. Double T on Nov 2, 2007 1:18:15 AM:


      I don’t see a problem. And I don’t see the police filing charges.
      It was “consexual sex encounter” what’s the problem? Sounds like a private matter.

      The Duke of Wellington was faced once with blackmail. He took the high road and let the truth be known, “Publish and be damned!”

      You condemned bloggers who ran with the story….<>

      In today’s world the battle cry is “Publish OR be damned!”

    1. RHH on Nov 2, 2007 10:40:48 AM:

      So does this mean we'll be changing the "T" in "GLBT" to "K" as in "Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Kinky?"

    1. Double T on Nov 2, 2007 12:37:06 PM:

      ..his wife knew he was bi before they got married....

      Well then, what's to blackmail. If this guy is above board with everything. Why on earth would blackmail bother him.

      It's a great idea though. I think I'll try it. If Barney Frank doesn't pay me a million dollars, I'll let the world know he's had sex with a man.

      Now all I have to do is wait for the money.

    1. queertardo on Nov 2, 2007 6:58:35 PM:

      Chris Crain STATED,
      One helpful link from the National Center for Transgender Equality describes cross-dressers this way:

      While the vast majority of crossdressers are ordinary heterosexual men with an additional feminine dimension, they are stereotyped by society based on a highly visible minority who crossdress for entirely different reasons. Drag queens are usually gay or bisexual males who don women’s clothes either to mock femininity and society’s stereotypes of gays, or to find sex partners.

      Forgetting of course that the actual quote from the source he cited contains NOT--- it in FACT states it this way:
      What Crossdressers Are Not
      While the vast majority of crossdressers are ordinary heterosexual men with an additional feminine dimension, they are stereotyped by society based on a highly visible minority who crossdress for entirely different reasons. Drag queens are usually gay or bisexual males who don women�s clothes either to mock femininity and society�s stereotypes of gays, or to find sex partners. Female impersonators dress to entertain. Transsexuals believe they are entrapped in the body of the opposite sex, and seek sexual reassignment surgery.

      For the most part, cross-dressers, drag queens, female impersonators are categorically transvestites but usually not categorically transgendered- transvestites are NOT the T in GLBT. Transvestites do not consider completing sexual reassignment in order for their brain to match their genitalia.
      The T in LGBT is for transgendered, people who feel they were born genetically with the wrong sexual organs- e.g. men who actually believe they are women and women who actually believe they are men.

    1. Citizen Crain on Nov 2, 2007 7:43:09 PM:

      Queertardo, your comment gave me quite the chuckles. Ain't it funny how trans advocates are ready to throw less mainstream T's under the bus at the first available opportunity? Transsexuals deserve rights but those perverted cross-dressing weirdos, no way! My, my, my.

      Sorry, 'tardo, if I can call you that, but you misread the link. They are saying that cross-dressers ARE: "ordinary heterosexual men" and are NOT drag queen, female impersonators or transsexuals. They did not say that cross-dressers are NOT transgendered. Because they ARE Blanche, they are!

      One of the seminal trans workplace cases cited in the ENDA debate involves a hetero cross-dressing trucker for Winn-Dixie.

      The fact that the cross-dressing group linked to by NTCE distances itself from "not ordinary" gays, drag queens and such only heightens the irony -- since we apparently have to forego our own civil rights for cross-dressing straight men who consider US to be "not ordinary."

    1. Wayne besen on Nov 3, 2007 4:04:16 PM:

      Chris, I know what you were trying to say- but you badly missed the mark to the point of incoherency. Pam said my thoughts, so I won't repeat them. And the politics of personal destruction is too weak. I prefer decimation. If you attack my family, as a hypocrite, be prepared for a fight. For those not up to the task, please quit the activism business. It is no place for wimps. The republicans have one thing right. Family values matter. We must play to win and protect our families. Conservatives just want to be liked too damn much, it is a personality flaw.

    1. Brian Miller on Nov 3, 2007 11:44:34 PM:

      What the comments from Wayne, Joe, Pam, etc. illustrate is a mean-spiritedness that borders on the same psychosis found in the worst anti-gay politicians.

      The ridiculous "Joe.My.God," for instance, says that he "will continue to gleefully expose every hypocrisy and relish in every embarassment to scummy lowlifes who suck dick at night while voting against me by day." Yet he is an outspoken supporter of Hillary Clinton, who supports the DOMA legislation that took away his marriage equality rights, and who has refused to introduce companion legislation to the Military Readiness Enhancement Act in the Senate.

      I could go on and on about the hypocrisy shown by the other bloggers attacking the kinky state legislator in question, but it would fill pages.

      Suffice to say that a great deal of the issue is simple partisanship. If Rep. Curtis was a Democrat who voted to exclude transgender people from an ENDA-sort of bill, the same bloggers would be covering for him and condemning the "outrageous moralizing."

      Chris, I think you're off-base in talking about the transgender element here, as it has questionable relevance. But taking on the partisan Democrats dressed up as "gay activists," replete with their nasty and mean-spirited hatred that's every bit as nasty as the worst the right can dish out is courageous of you.

      I am a gay activist, but I'm motivated by possibility, coalition-building, and mutual understanding -- not hate and destruction. Gay "activists" who apply double-standards to those they don't like, and embrace the utter destruction of those they don't like, do the queer community no favors.

    1. Double T on Nov 4, 2007 11:57:22 AM:

      Anytime the truth comes out, I think it can be a GOOD THING.

      People who say, "I know and respect Larry Craig, but I had gay people."

      Now these people have to sit down and revisit their value system.

      Hatred is a learned trait. It can be "unlearned", but no one said it would be painless.

      P.S. Chris you complain about the liberals who have done this to Curtis, what about his "friends", where the hell are they?

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