John M. Becker

SD Republican: Gay Sex is a 'One Way Alley for the Garbage Truck'

Filed By John M. Becker | May 02, 2014 11:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: anal sex, anti-gay propaganda, Christianists, gay marriage, marriage equality, same-sex marriage, South Dakota, Steve Hickey, wingnuts

steve-hickey-south-dakota.jpgLast week, as we reported here at The Bilerico Project, lawyers for three same-gender couples in South Dakota announced that they intend to file a federal lawsuit challenging the state's marriage discrimination amendment.

This makes Steve Hickey -- a Republican state representative, an evangelical pastor, and an original co-sponsor of the state's failed "right to discriminate" bill -- spitting mad, so he submitted an incredibly vile, homophobic, lie-filled letter to the editor of the Sioux Falls Argus Leader outlining the alleged risks of anal sex.

He titled it "A One Way Alley for the Garbage Truck." Seriously.

From Rep. Hickey's letter:

Consider this an open letter to the medical and psychological communities in South Dakota. The subject is homosexuality, which is about to be a front-page topic for the next few years in our state. I'm asking the doctors who practice in our state, is the science really settled on this issue or is it more the case that you feel silenced and intimidated?

Certainly there are board-certified doctors in our state who will attest to what seems self-evident to so many: gay sex is not good for the body or mind. Pardon a crude comparison but regarding men with men, we are talking about a one-way alley meant only for the garbage truck to go down. Frankly, I'd question the judgment of doctor who says it's all fine.

South Dakota docs, it's time for you to come out of the closet and give your professional opinion on this matter like you capably and responsibly do on all the others. Somehow the message we are presently getting from the medical community is that eating at McDonalds will kill us but the gay lifestyle has no side effects. Truth be told it seems self-evident the list of side effects would read far longer than anything we hear on a Cialis commercial.

The rest of the letter, which you can read here, is full of malicious anti-gay talking points that have been debunked and discredited for decades (homosexuality is responsible for "the downfall of past civilizations;" gays and lesbians have "broken identities;" homosexuality can be "[transferred]" to "innocent and impressionable ones in... locker rooms;" etc.). Oh, and there's some 21st-century transphobia thrown in for good measure.

Rep. Hickey's screed is really a Paul Cameron-style tour de force of gutter-level bigotry. And, as he told Talking Points Memo, he stands by every word.

TPM's Tom Kludt reports:

There's little ambiguity in his positions, but it's still hard to make sense of Hickey's arguments.

In his phone interview with TPM, he acknowledged that heterosexual couples "absolutely" participate in anal sex, too, but then proceeded to focus squarely on the "health of homosexuality."...

"Most groups are just quiet and silent on it because of the intimidation factor and the only group that's raising a stink is a religious group, and I acknowledge in [the letter] that people are sick of hearing about that," he told TPM.

"And that's fine, so I said let's talk about it from a medical vantage point. I do believe, and I've heard enough medical people talking about the intimidation factor and silencing that's going on. And you just don't talk about it. You know, you practice medicine and it's an issue of politicized medicine and junk science and agenda-driven studies. When the average person can just, you know, what's self-evident is that [anal sex] isn't good."

First of all, Rep. Hickey clearly spends a lot of time thinking about gay sex. Just throwing that out there. Second, many people -- straight and gay alike -- find anal sex pleasurable; it's not just those nasty homoseckshuls who put things in butts. Third, while anal sex (like any sexual activity) carries a certain amount of risk, it's perfectly possible to enjoy it safely and responsibly. In short, there's absolutely no merit to anything that Pastor Hickey -- errr, I mean Representative Hickey -- claims.

But that may not be enough to prevent his letter from being published. TPM spoke with Brenda Wade Schmidt, the Argus Leader staffer tasked with deciding which letters to the editor are fit for print, and she said she hadn't yet decided whether or not Hickey's letter would make the cut. She said she spoke with him about some "concerns" about the letter's length and inappropriate language, but left open the possibility that the paper would print a revised version of Hickey's letter.

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