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Dear Heather Barwick,
I’m writing in response to your recent scatter-shot, viral open letter, Dear Gay Community: Your Kids Are Hurting, in which you explain why you’ve mutated from a vocal gay marriage advocate to what you call a “children’s rights activist.” You seem to imagine that those positions are intrinsically opposed. I very much hope that the attention your letter garners you as a rising conservative icon brings you the happiness your insanely lucky, privileged childhood could not, because you’re burning bridges to that community that Caesar’s pile drivers couldn’t rebuild.
Let me get this straight: Like so many LGBTQ+ persons in the ’70s (or whatever they want to be called now, I don’t know, I’m an ally, I don’t have to learn the nomenclature du jour), your lesbian mom got married to your dick dad and made you before she decided to be honest with herself and the world and embrace her true love. Your dad, already a massive prick, bailed on his daughter, presumably because “aberrant lifestyle” was a get-out-of-responsibilities-free card for Schlitz swilling alpha-douches back then. Your mom and her lover gave you a fucking dream childhood in liberal America, getting you the best schooling possible, and teaching you amazing life lessons you purport to appreciate (“You taught me that,” being the last line of your letter), including the value of vocal activism.
“Yet, as a little girl, I so desperately wanted a daddy.” And? As a little boy, I desperately wanted a life-size Turtle Van that shot hard, plastic, eye-poking pizzas at my enemies. One day, as I become more successful, I can buy one. Do you know how easy it is for you to make up for your lack of daddy in a sexually fulfilling relationship nowadays? Life doesn’t owe you exact, perfect comforts when you’re a kid. Sucks. And you said it yourself – – your mother didn’t keep you from having a dad, the dude peaced out on the sitch. You should definitely take it out on your mom and the entire gay community, though.
And what the fuck does any of this have to do with marriage? This is an issue of child raising. People know those are two different things right? I mean, obviously some people don’t, like those prick lawmakers who think it is about the ‘perpetuation of the species,’ as if children are going to stop being born if the people who weren’t going to make them anyway get full citizenship status.
Heather, you spend a full half of your article talking about what a great life you were given. The fact that we’re listening to you reinforces that: You have incredible potential as a celebrity activist and a political writer. Your intelligence and aptitude were nurtured and encouraged. Children of any parentage should be so lucky – – why should your angst fall at the feet of a civil rights movement?
“My father’s absence created a huge hole in me, and I ached every day for a dad. I loved my mom’s partner, but another mom could never have replaced the father I lost.” First of all, I want you to begin to imagine the holes in the children that are living in twelve-bed attics in an orphanage, the ache they have every day for a goddamned candy bar. Second, it’s not your mom’s fault that there isn’t a big box Daddyco in every strip mall, that brothers aren’t lining up to sit in tanks until some lesbian comes to pick one up for her daughter because the last one ran away.
What was your mother supposed to do? Ignore her natural instincts and marry another guy? Close her eyes three times a week and think about you, while a person that she had literally no biological chance of being attracted to humps another ungrateful little clunge into her unsatisfied pussy? The likely outcome of that scenario is that you would have had half the childhood you did, because your home would have been lacking in basic happiness, your mother would have resented your existence (even if she was too good a woman to show it), and the dice would have been rolled on another dickhead that would probably abandon you. For realz, though, propose a different solution from the one your mom employed instead of attacking the seemingly beneficial choices she did make.
By the way, have you seen the statistics concerning parents ‘staying together for the kids’? I know you really wanted a pony, Heather, but what if that pony ate your little toddler soul?
I want to point you to a couple of Pastor Jim Rigby’s “Ten Things I Wish the Church Knew About Homosexuality.” These are the items that don’t necessarily apply just to the church, but also to conservative icons and churlish, thankless little brats.
4. You cannot call it “special rights” when someone asks for the same rights you have.
6. Marriage is a civil ceremony, which means it’s a civil right.
9. If we do not do the right thing in our day, our grandchildren will look at us with same embarrassment we look at racist grandparents.
One of the several infuriating things about your mewling, pretentious little letter is that you grew up among these people. You know that they are people, citizens of your country. You watched them in their sickness, in their lives together. You were made incredibly aware that marriage offers liberties and advancements, and watched as your moms and their friends had to live around it as three-fourths people in a full-person world.
Gay marriage doesn’t just redefine marriage, but also parenting. It promotes and normalizes a family structure that necessarily denies us something precious and foundational. It denies us something we need and long for, while at the same time tells us that we don’t need what we naturally crave. That we will be okay. But we’re not. We’re hurting.
Way to throw your moms under the bus, you silly little bitch. You’re not hurting. You’re sitting at your fancy new computer, in your home or office, in your pressed pantsuit (or pajamas, which is exactly as privileged) and dentisted teeth, and inventing personal strife. It’s dishonest, and smart writers have the decency to be embarrassed about it, because they know alert readers can tell when an author is completely full of shit. Lying is hard, kid, only stupid people think it’s easy.
Look, I completely understand the irrational desire to have had a shittier childhood than you did – – you’re a writer, Skippy, and man if it doesn’t look like the people who have gone through some shit in their lives (children of divorce, gays, alcoholics) have hit the creative jackpot somehow. I know: when I was a younger author, I tried to invent some traumatic parenting crap to drag some compelling prose out of myself, too. But then I grew up, realized I was puking in the face of all the sacrifice my family put into my happiness, and had an epiphany: maybe I’m just not that good. Maybe David Sedaris isn’t what he is because of his wacky life, but his hard work and natural gifts. Maybe you need to work a little harder on your talents, Heather, because by your own admission, your moms have put in 10 times the effort than most straight parental units. Take a rag to that metaphorical vagina, I can detect the fishy stench of insecure professional desperation from here.
There are a ton of offensive things in your letter, Heather, but I want to leave you with a personal, professional outrage, one pundit hack to another: Personal anecdotes are evidence of nothing. Look:
But by and large, the best and most successful family structure is one in which kids are being raised by both their mother and father.
Oh? Is it? Statistics? Can we have a link to one study? Even if that study is obviously partisan bullshit? Heather, ‘by and large’ isn’t a number, it isn’t a study, its a vagary. Activists shouldn’t be taking to the streets and talk radio and the internet for vagaries. You shouldn’t be getting out of bed for less than a double-blind, third-party study. There isn’t a single link in your entire letter, but you make claims for whole communities.
It’s not just me. There are so many of us. Many of us are too scared to speak up and tell you about our hurt and pain, because for whatever reason it feels like you’re not listening.
Who, Heather? Who is “so many” of you? Has it occurred to you that most children of same-sex marriages have been raised with enough respect to be grateful to have loving parents at all? That personal anecdotes cost nothing, and that they’d be everywhere, but you couldn’t find a single corroborating story online, because – and now I’m generalizing – most people of any upbringing aren’t ungracious, selfish twats whose career trajectory means more to her than the happiness of others?
Go home and thank your second mother, Heather, the one that raised you as her own, and apologize for what you just did. And before you throw the next stone, maybe wait to see how those “four rambunctious kids” of your own turn out. You know, growing up with a mother and father and a complete lack of the “precious and foundational something” they won’t be able to recognize as respect.