Thursday, June 14, 2007

Top to Bottom

Moose is in a bossy mood this morning. She insists that you watch this You Tube clip of the Most Fabulous Butch in America, Air America's Rachel Maddow, on Countdown the other night discussing the bizarre news, uncovered by the Sunshine Project, that in 1994 the Air Force proposed creation of a so-called "gay bomb" aimed at undermining the discipline and morale of enemy troops by inducing "homosexual behavior." Maddow, according to Moose, is gorgeous, brilliant, and hilarious in her conversation with substitute host Amy Robach, as she unpacks the weird mixture of homoeroticism and gay panic fueling this wacky sci-fi fantasy of an aphrodisiac bomb. The entertainment factor is heightened considerably by the fact that much of the discussion is run over video of Bush in his manhood-accentuating flight suit during the infamous "Mission Accomplished" stunt. He struts around the deck of the aircraft carrier shaking hands with one man after another as Maddow explains the homoeroticism of male activities and social worlds.

Dr. Maddow (she has a PhD in political science), Roxie's World gives you a Five-Paw Salute for your noble effort to raise the discourse and your keen sense of media-butch fashion. Moose thinks the world would be a much happier place if you had your very own late-night TV show. She was even going to suggest her insomnia might disappear if she could fall asleep every night to the sound of your dulcet tones and wry wit, but Goose shot her a look across the breakfast table that made her think better of that idea. Some days, I'm not the only one kept on a short leash in our house.

Also on the gay stack today is more fallout from Bush's nomination of Dr. James Holsinger Jr. to be surgeon general of the United States. You owe it to yourself to go to Slate and read the 6-page report Holsinger wrote for the United Methodist Church in 1991 on "the pathophysiology of male homosexuality" as part of the church's consideration of its stance on homosexuality. (As a member of the church's Judicial Council, Holsinger ultimately voted "with the majority to boot a lesbian from her post as a minister and to allow ministers to deny church membership to gay men and lesbians," according to a Wa Po editorial.) Holsinger's report is truly astonishing for its lurid attention to the details of a range of anal sex practices, notably fisting, and his insistence on the absolute separateness of the alimentary and reproductive systems in humans. (I am a mere dog and not a doctor, but apparently the absence of a cloaca in humans is a strong argument against the naturalness of, um, rear-guard sexual activity. Moose is trying to find her ninth-grade biology textbook to help me grasp the importance of the cloaca.)

It's hard to tell why a report on the alleged "pathophysiology of male homosexuality" would help to justify firing a lesbian minister (though Holsinger acknowledges that fisting is "occasionally practiced by heterosexual and lesbian couples"), but such logical lacunae are common in the discourse of medico-scientific homophobia in which the good doctor indulges. Indeed, Moose says Holsinger's comments on the anatomical "complementarity of the human sexes" bear a creepy resemblance to turn-of-the-century sexologists who relentlessly scrutinized human bodies for markers of deviation from the norms of sexuality. (For a more in-depth look at this fascinating topic, click here.) Not even Moose can explain the comments about plumbing and pipe fittings near the end of Holsinger's report. For that, you need the genius of Stephen Colbert, so we'll let him have the last word today:


  1. Once again, a great post, Rox! I hope folks play both the Maddow and Colbert bits. You are the best dog in the world, Rox, and a damn fine writer, too. Keep 'em coming.

    Your Goose

  2. Anonymous7:53 PM EDT

    fyi: Rachel Maddow got her start in Northampton MA on the local radio station, WRSI, where she was widely recognized as the Most Fabulous Butch in the Pioneer Valley. Nice to see the rest of the country come round to this opinion! See what you can do about the tv show, eh?

  3. and they know from butch up there in the Pioneer Valley, don't they, Dog-Eared Book? ;-) Good seeing you back in Roxie's World!

    Hey, maybe Rachel's show could anchor a WHOLE cable channel -- Butch TV!


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