Nearly every week, the media obsesses over some Professional Famous Person’s latest words of wisdom about the LGBT struggle for equality. Sometimes these words affirm us, and at others they attempt to slap us down. Then there are times when they’re so incomprehensibly stupid we can barely make sense of them at all.
Miss California, this past week, dropped her pearls about same-sex marriage. Leaving aside the question of whether Perez Hilton had any intelligent reason to seek the advice of a beauty queen on such a grave matter, we have good reason to be troubled that her utterance should be parsed and pondered upon as if she were Confucius.
She isn’t Confucius. She seems to be merely confused.
Carrie Prejean doesn’t know diddly-squat about same-sex marriage. Nor does she even seem to know what the Constitution says, what the states’ all-too-flawed laws say, or what the facts tell us. She was put on the spot, and could do nothing but reveal that she’s exactly what the stereotype says about beauty queens: that they are airheads.
I am not surprised by this. I’m not sure who would be.
Next week, the media will be on to something else. Then, or the week after that, some new Professional Famous Person will say something else the newshounds will regard as worthy of the grave attention due the Buddha, Mohammed or Jesus.
But the words of Jesus have endured for centuries. As have those of the Buddha and Mohammed. Beauty queens, movie stars and super-athletes are but the flies of a summer. Jesus said nothing about same-sex marriage. But he had plenty to say about treating every human being with honor and respect, and about equal consideration for all. Even those of us who love others of the same sex — and even Professional Famous People like beauty queens.
It will do us no good to laugh at Miss California. She ought to be embarrassed, and doesn’t seem to have the sense to be. The kindest thing we could do for her would be to forget her words and move on.
She may use all the hostile scrutiny to further feed the persecution complex in which so many right-wingers love to indulge. There are indications that she plans on trying to parlay this deservedly-forgettable incident into a lucrative career as a Proessional Martyr, as did her predecessor in pageant fame, Anita Bryant.
Let’s not waste any perfectly good pies by pelting her with them, or boycott the Miss America Pageant — which will one day die a well-deserved death on its own lack of merit. Let’s move forward, and let the stupidities of our cheap media culture die of their own sickness.
The Miss America Pageant is a silly circus. Confucius is confused. And so is America.
A self-described “Libertarian Episcopalian lesbian,” freelance writer and the author of Good Clowns, a young adult novel published in 2018, Lori Heine published a blog called Born on 9-11 and was a frequent contributor to the website Liberty Unbound. A native of Phoenix, Ariz., she graduated from Grand Canyon University in 1988 and spent much of her life in the insurance industry before turning full-time to writing as a freelancer, blogger and author.