Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana is making waves for a variety of reasons. First, he is a front runner in the race for President, and a millennial. If he were to get the nomination, he’d be the first of that generation to do so, let alone become President. Even more noteworthy, Mayor Pete is the first openly gay man to run for President.
While much of America really does not care about Buttigieg’s sexuality, there are still those out there who do. One such person is Dr. Don Boys, of the conservative site Barbwire. Dr. Boys is a former member of the Indiana House of Representatives, and says of Mayor Pete being gay:
“Evidently, Pete cannot be trusted to make decisions since he chose a degrading, dangerous, even deadly lifestyle. Such a person should not be in charge of the national budget, foreign policy, or have his finger on the button.”
Rep. Boys identifies himself as a conservative Christian, and believes homosexuality to be a sin. Therefore, he has taken it upon himself to speak out against Mayor Pete’s run for the White House. His most recent piece for Barbwire takes aim with Buttigieg’s sexuality:
“Mayor Pete Buttigieg, the media, and academia are all fouled up about what perversion is! Since the mayor is an admitted homosexual with a “husband” no less, he obviously feels he must justify his choice of walking in the dark world of perversion. And make no mistake, homosexuality is perversion. If not, then all religions and denominations down through the ages have been wrong.”
Dr. Boys is not the first to protest Buttigieg’s candidacy. The mayor was also followed to stops in Iowa by political performance artists who disrupted his events. One of them was dressed as Satan, another Jesus on the cross, and a third dressed as Mayor Pete himself, whipping “Jesus” for all to see.
Mayor Pete has also been going back and forth with Vice President Mike Pence on the issue of his sexuality. Pence notoriously rose to national prominence as Governor of Indiana when he signed one of the strictest anti-LGBTQ laws in the nation. During that fallout, Pence never was able to articulate whether or not he believes people should be discriminated against for being gay. Here is video of that interview:
While that controversy was four years ago, Pence also recently feuded with Adam Rippon, the first only openly gay man on the U.S. Winter Olympic team, over his alleged support for the widely discredited practice of conversion therapy. Here is coverage of that dispute:
Don Boys is not the first Christian conservative to attack Buttigieg’s sexuality, and he likely will not be the last.
Shannon Barber is a progressive queer feminist and budding political scientist. She is passionate about issues of social justice, including but not limited to racial equality, criminal justice reform, pro-Black politics, and LGBTQ equality. She hopes to change the world, one mind at a time.