August 28, 2007

Pompous Republican gasbag plead guilty to "lewd conduct" in Minneapolis toilet

The oh-so-rightous and preening Senator Larry Craig (R-Gloryhole) has always been particularly difficult for me to stomach as he delivers his stemwinders on the Senate floor as if he's Moses himself imparting the ten commandments.

Now add him to the incredibly long list of anti-gay conservative Republicans who are gay themselves. Not only gay or bi-sexual are many, but their desire for man meat is so strong that despite their lofty positions and the risk of being exposed as utter frauds, they still can't resist trolling for gay sex from strangers in parks, online, or in Craig's case, the ultra romantic setting of an airport toilet stall.

Here we see Craig crooning wholesome God approved all-American tunes with Trent Lott and John Ashcroft, striking what is, in light of the charges, a rather unfortunate pose. Maybe sometimes a microphone is just a microphone. (And aren't those flag vests just to die for? No wait. Maybe it's desecration of the flag like these same guys want to make a serious crime? I'm confused.)

Is there anyone out there who doesn't think that there's a particularly compelling pychological phenomena going on among the rightous right Republicans?

I find it supremely galling that these same buffoons who rode the wave of division and obsession with gays to elective power are routinely found out to be light in the loafers themselves.

Could it be that this steady parade of hypocritical conservative gays, perverts, rapists, and pedophiles might serve to get them to shut up their loud use of anti-gay rhetoric and legislation?

I have no possible way of knowing, but I could swear that it almost seems there's more gays in the Republican party than the Democratic party. And certainly more gays not only living a lie, but actively working to make other gay's lives less livable at the same time they're trolling public restrooms for gay sex.

Any observations on this or theories as to what it is about the conservative bible-thumping family values Republicans that attracts so many self-loathing gays?


At 8/28/2007 3:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've found it's often the case that those who are most outspoken against homosexuality, particularly from the religious standpoint, are the loudest about it in hopes of convincing themselves they are not gay.

There's this struggle in those who are religious and gay that's implicit with attempting to combine the two. According to religion (Christianity), the two do not mix. Therefore, Christians who are gay work to deny their homosexuality for the sake of their religion. That just frustrates their souls and all of that pent up gayness has to explode, rather than be exercised in a healthier way.

At 8/28/2007 5:09 PM, Anonymous the final countdown said...

I agree; there are some serious repression issues coming out in the Republican party.

A man much, much more brilliant than I has already talked about it.

I highly recommend Mr. Greene's work and his analysis on this topic.

At 8/28/2007 8:46 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Well put. And this then causes them to lead miserable conflicted lives... to live a lie, as it were.

Which is healthier, to "come out" and live as you are, or to put up this incredibly hypocritical front of Christian hyper-morality and piety while secretly indulging in something which you are powerless to control?

Obviously it would be far better for homosexuals to be themselves openly and without fear of discrimination and recrimination.

In that respect you almost have to question just how "Christian" it is to try to oppress gays and otherwise relegate them to second class status, or even more bizarre, to profess and believe, as many fundementalists do, that homosexuality is a choice that can be "cured".

That notion alone could lead to the incredibly twisted existences of folks like Senator Craig, who feel that their homosexual feelings are simply a sign of weakness or inability to have more self discipline.

Maybe they think that if they ratchet up the hyper-Christian rhetoric and get even more stridently anti-gay, it will somehow help them to get rid of their homosexual desires. Who knows?

The fact of it all is that the sheer hypocrisy and mental and moral dysfunction that results in these right wingers is truly shocking.

But the truth is also that if it weren't for the rather illogical preachings of certain strains of Christians (and other religions) that homosexuality is an abomination and a "choice", these people wouldn't be so horribly conflicted.

At 8/28/2007 9:28 PM, Anonymous FightforJustice said...

Tougher laws regarding DUI pass the General Assembly every year and they pass overwhelmingly. Yet we know many pols overindulge before driving. Is there hypocrisy that legislators who get busted for DUI vote to crack down on those who do what they do? I think so, and that hypocrisy is bipartisan.

At 8/29/2007 2:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's just one example of the many "do as I decree, not as I do" sort of thing from legislators.

The DUI industry is out of control, and like most things political, it's swung from one extreme to the other and now bears little resemblance to fairness or justice, but is rather a huge industry with many people gladly raking in the cash, most especially the state and law enforcement.

Where once the laws were a little lax, due to pressure groups and lawmakers too timid to dare stand up and say enough is enough, the DUI laws, and all the money making around it, is absolutely overblown and is often completely divorced from any proportion or justice.

It's a racket, and though I don't hold out much hope, maybe some day some balance and common sense can be restored.

But with so many people raking in the dough from a person who happened to be caught driving after a few beers, it will be hard to ever kill the cash cow.

It's especially galling when you consider that there's any number of sober people who are FAR more dangerous than a person with a .08 blood alcohol level.

Mother's fighting with their kids, people on cell phones, people taking over-the-counter drugs, emotionally upset people, or simply drivers who are over-tired all represent just as serious a threat to traffic safety as someone with a few beers in them. (and I mean a few, as in barely over the legal limit. If someone is drunk on their face and weaving all over... by all means, put 'em in cuffs and haul them away)

Our society is becoming more and more puritanical and it's not a good thing in my estimation.

At 8/29/2007 9:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dope, your comment it right on. You got what I was trying to say and conveyed it much more clearly than I did. It's living a lie in hopes of making that which is lied about go away.

At 8/29/2007 11:31 AM, Blogger UMRBlog said...

Just to be fair. He was merely charged with Lewd Conduct. He pled to the lesser included offense of disorderly conduct, which means he gave some thought and interactive effort to the resolution of this case. It wasn't as if he just put his money in an envelope and sent it in for a parking ticket or something. He negotiated his own plea.

In other words, while it's not strictly true he pleaded to Lewd Conduct, it's also not true that he was a poor unguided waif helplessly trying to access the legal system because he had no lawyer. He made a DEAL and now has buyer's remorse.

Maybe he should just go the treatment the goofy pastor from Colo went to and get certifiably de-queered before he runs again.

Idaho must be very proud.

At 8/29/2007 2:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you people insane? You are really for Drunk Driving. I am not understanding this at all. You go frm a guy being gay in a bathroom to railing that driving drunk is OK.
Dope you need to control what is said on this blog. I hope you do not believe that it is OK to drive drunk. I have respected your site and I hope to see this kind of talk taken down from your site.

At 8/29/2007 9:28 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Thom. I'm shocked that I was able to actually get something across clearly. Judging by many comments I get, I despaired that anyone understood what I meant anymore. Thanks.

And UMR... ha!

Your comment reminded me of the great line from Letterman about the issue.

He said, "Senator Craig said that his first mistake was pleading guilty.

No, I think that was his SECOND mistake."

At 8/29/2007 9:35 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 2:57.

Nope, I don't think anyone is insane here. But I do know that you're really badly mistaken.

It might be insane to be "for" drunk driving. But obviously you're pulling that notion out of your ass, as I didn't notice anyone saying anything of the sort.

Take that away and your argument falls on it's face.

And beyond that, I'm not going to pull anyone's comments just because they express an opinion I might not share.

I think you better check yourself. What kind of weird prude are you?

Someone saying that DUI laws have gone to far isn't a crime. You can legitimately disagree, but that's not near enough reason to not publish it.

At 8/30/2007 2:37 PM, Blogger nooncat said...

Again, this is off-topic. But I thought you'd enjoy these:

At 8/31/2007 7:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dope, buddy, you need to understand the 'glass houses' theory of life.

I thought that liberals appreciated the challenge of homosexuality. I thought that liberals championed gay rights. I thought that if anyone would understand the difficulty in living a gay lifestyle, it would be a liberal...

Dope, the man has issues. The man is denying who he is...and all you can do is play partisan hack and bash him, with no compassion for the tortured life that he leads.

At 8/31/2007 7:20 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 7:31.
You make a couple of serious mistakes. First, you assume that I'm somehow Mr. Liberal who embodies every belief and position that you somehow have come to believe that all liberals share.

That's as dangerous as it is implausible.

Secondly, you assume I don't have any compassion for old Larry.

I do.

As a matter of fact, I've felt rather bad all day, especially in light of his resignation tomorrow.

Am I sad to see him go? Hell no. The senate and the nation will be better once he's gone.

But that's not because he may be bisexual or gay.

The other thing that bothers me about this case is that he didn't really DO anything, that is, he didn't actually engage in any sexual conduct.

I have problems with some cop being paid $30 an hour plus benefits to sit on a toilet and see if some gay tries to see if he's up for a tryst.

That strikes me as kind of weird to begin with.

Secondly, I'm having a hard time seeing how what Craig did, even if you believe the police version, was somehow criminal.

Suppose it was a guy who found a female attractive. If he strikes up a converstion with her or accidently on purpose brushes up against her to get her attention, could that get him arrested?
In the absense of ANY sexual contact or improper touching, is that guy committing a crime?

Granted, there's a public interest in preventing public restrooms from becoming the location for sex acts, and that's easy to understand.

But touching someone's shoe with your own and running your hand along the bottom of a stall?

As I say, I'm not so sure about that one. It seems not to meet any threshold where an actual crime could be said to have been committed.

I'm also sympathetic to Craig's situation at the time, where he did NOT want to go to court, had another flight to catch, and simply wanted to dispose of the matter as soon as possible.

In that light, no wonder he was pissed at the cop. They played the tape of the police interview on Countdown last night, and the cop is incredibly tough, (much like Craig is/was with gay issues himself)

The cop says he believes Craig is an alright person, but gives him holy hell for supposedly lying to the cop. Then the cop makes a crack about how, (with people like Craig leading it) no wonder the country is going to hell.

The cop was simply adament and was not going to give Craig even the slightest benefit of the doubt.

Now that could be viewed as the cop doing his job, which it was.

But that gets back to why simply engaging in a few ritualistic gay hook-up motions is considered a crime by themselves, even without so much as a word being uttered or any physical touching at all. (I don't count touching the side of one's shoe against anothers as a physical touch)

Then beyond all that, there's the unsavory aspect of being crucified in the press, and the spectacle of every Republican tripping over themselves to throw Craig to the wolves out of concern for their own political fortunes, without so much as any call to at least give Craig a chance to make his case.

But at the bottom line, Craig was obviously soliciting gay sex, he fudged the facts later, he didn't let anyone know at the time, not his family, and perhaps more inexcusable to his fellow Republicans, not the Republican leadership.

He's also a really odious guy, incredibly pious and strident, and a phoney of the highest magnitude.

But the details of this case are a bit troubling.

At 9/01/2007 9:10 AM, Anonymous Huck Finn said...

To me, there is no greater Man Law violation than communicating through, or crossing dividers between bathroom stalls for any purpose other than:

- requesting a courtesy flush;
- requesting an emergency supply of toilet paper.

In the second case, some assert that this is also a Man Law violation for having failed to properly "preflight the seat."

At 9/01/2007 9:43 AM, Blogger Milton said...

Look at the police report. Did he directly ask a cop for sex? No. Did he expose himself lewdly (as opposed to exposing himself to use the facilities)? No. Did he do anything that was unambiguously sexual? No.

All he did was tap his foot, reach down (possibly to pick up a piece of TP), wiggle his fingers, and put his bag in front of him when he sat down. Oh, and he waited in front of an occupied stall. Even if he did everything the cop said he did, where was the lewd conduct? No actual sex happened. No actual sex was discussed. And if it wasn’t for the sheer embarrassment of the situation, you’d be writing about the overzealous cop who arrested a sitting US Senator for no apparent reason. …

The issue here is, why is the Minneapolis Airport PD arresting people for such flimsy reasons? Why do judges and prosecutors still accept these cases? Why, in 2007, 43 years after LBJ’s chief of staff, Walter Jenkins, got busted in the men’s room YMCA in DC, have we apparently moved no further in our analysis of these situations?


--- Prof. Leland Milton Goldblatt

At 9/01/2007 11:36 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Huck, HA!
Funny stuff!

At 9/01/2007 11:55 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Valid questions all. But I'd hasten to point out that there's no doubt whatsoever what he was attempting to do.

And the picking up a piece of paper excuse doesn't fly when you realize that he reached under the divider and waved his hand back and forth using the hand opposite the divider.

The cop also stated there was no paper on the floor.

I'm 100% certain that Craig was indeed trying to initiate an encounter, no doubt about it.

Couple that with the fact that a few other instances have been reported in the past, but not risen to this level, and it's hard to argue his actions were benign.

But that said, the fact that these pretty much innocuous actions were cause for arrest seems unjust and like overkill to me.

To me, if they were serious about curtailing sexacts in public spaces, it would have been more justified if they would have allowed the situation to advance beyond these minor actions.

They could have let it continue and seen if the Senator actually mentioned a sex act, or if it got to the point where he exposed himself or improperly touched the intrepid officer.

Now that would seem legit.

But it seems that they must know that it never would have gotten to that point without the officer going along and responding favorably.

That's why it seems wrong.

If the guy isn't going to do anything with anyone unless it's clear they're willing, and the cop can't or won't appear willing, perhaps for fear of it becoming entrapment, then it seems like they have a problem.

To me, the cops should have to catch someone actually having sex in a public space before arresting them for having sex.

Of course the charge is soliciting for sex. I can see how that could be criminal, in some instances, such as unwanted touching, or harassment.

Just not sure that Craig's actions rose to that level.

Then add the fact that they're using a cop to sit in a toilet stall for hours in order to catch some poor schmuck like Craig.. I don't know.

The way this went down (pardon the pun) is questionable to me.

But again, Craig's postition, his rank hypocrisy, and the fact that in the name of cosmic justice, he deserved to be exposed, might explain how come he's getting bounced and disgraced, rather than being able to appologize and move on.

The bottom line is that Craig is a victim of the very intolerance and demonization of gays that he himself played such a part in fostering.

In that respect, he was hung with his own rope, and there is justice.

At 9/02/2007 12:38 AM, Blogger Milton said...

Seems to be a thought a crime.

I do agree:

The bottom line is that Craig is a victim of the very intolerance and demonization of gays that he himself played such a part in fostering.

I worry about all these police departments within Airports, Water Colleges, Departments, Park Departments etc.

The worst part of this story is a judge is signing off on all these flimsy cases.

At 9/02/2007 12:40 PM, Anonymous QC Examiner said...

To Huck (or anyone else possessing a Y chromosome):

Pardon my ignorance, but what is the Man Law known as "requesting a courtesy flush"? What exactly is that?

Your #2 Man Law (pun intended) is also a WoMan Law, and after being caught short once, I have forever after preflighted the seat, as you say.

At 9/02/2007 8:21 PM, Anonymous Huck Finn said...


1) the concept of "Man Law" comes from a series of Miller Lite commericals shown over the last few football seasons which capture some of the unspoken courtesies between men. One "real" man law is to never use the unrinal directly next to someone when there is an open urinal further away.

2) A "courtesy flush" is requested when the guy in the next stall experiences a loud, productive and foul event. The purpose of the courtesy flush is to clear the offending material before it causes greater damage to those who affected nearby.

At 9/03/2007 12:30 AM, Anonymous Huck Finn said...

That just brought this thread to a whole new level.

At 9/03/2007 12:35 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Well, no one's stooped to making some crack about Craig representing Boise. (not Girlsy)

At 9/04/2007 6:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If a man wants to be gay I do not understand what the big deal is. We in the QC are past this kind of thig, Quit with the ugly comments.

At 9/04/2007 9:21 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Anon 6:27.

Speaking of pompous, thanks for appointing yourself spokesperson for every man woman and child in the Quad Cities.

But I don't think any comment here is critical of Craig for being gay, and you're being willfully ignorant.

At 9/06/2007 1:10 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Did you hear about the new Republican fund-raising strategy?

Pay toilets.

(rim shot)


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