In his latest column for American Thinker, Robert Oscar Lopez writes:
Minnesota was by no means isolated. Ritualized crying became the weapon of choice. We heard about well-intended homosexuals being thrown out of the house by mean Christian parents. We heard about stellar gay citizens “just wanting to build families.” In endless performances of rhetorical masochism, we heard about kids of gay people longing to have society applaud their guardians for wrenching them away from their own biological roots. We heard about horrible bullies committing all these mythical crimes against helpless gay people:
- Stiffing lesbian waitresses on tips because they hate their lifestyle.
- Barring a lesbian mom from visiting her lover in the emergency room because they’re gay.
- Spray-painting “Kill the Gay” on lesbians’ garages.
- Putting on ski masks, breaking into a lesbian’s house, vandalizing her rooms, and carving slurs into her naked body.
- Luring gay boys out of Montana bars with an offer of cigarettes, calling them “f—–s,” and beating them to a pulp.
- Slipping hate letters under the door of lesbian college students.
- Burning gay men’s hands with hot metals.
- Jumping a gay man en masse, calling him names, and beating him to a pulp.
- Spray-painting “Hey Tranny, know your place” inside Vassar dormitories.
- Posting homophobic messages so prolifically at Oberlin College that the whole school had to shut down.
According to his online bio at the Cal-State Northridge website: “Robert Oscar Lopez received his BA in Political Science, an MA in Classics, and a PhD in English. His book, The Colorful Conservative: American Conversations with the Ancients from Wheatley to Whitman, came out with Rowman & Littlefield’s University Press of America in 2011. The next two projects will be Putting Text on Trial, a pedagogical study of mock trials, and Gilded Lilies, a cultural study of the Hollywood musical.
“He has also been an active commentator and advocate for children’s rights and ethical family alternatives. Dozens of his essays have appeared in venues such as Counterpunch, American Thinker, and Public Discourse, among others. Since 2012 he has been involved internationally with correspondents in over twenty other countries. His French-English translations are posted on a site he co-manages with Swiss and French partners, called English Manif.”
I did this interview with Dr. Lopez via email:
* What have been the consequences to your life for the stands you’ve taken?
ROL: I’ve learned what it’s like to be an outcast. Kind of like a Job moment. All my old friends are gone, though I made dozens of new friends that are quite to my liking. My job got dicey but I hung on with tenure. The toughest thing is being blacklisted in the United States, where it is virtually impossible for anyone to publish me or give me a platform, thanks to extremists like Jeremy Hooper at GLAAD/Good as You, or this deranged individual named Joe.My.God, who does seem to think of himself as a powerful deity because he has a crowd of clapping seals that massage his ego via his blog, and the oligarchs at the Human Rights Campaign. The best thing is I’m unburdened by domestic fuss in the United States; I have lots of free time and energy to connect with people in Europe, and I don’t waste much time in the US in back-and-forth. People who are familiar with me read my columns in American Thinker and occasionally gloss English Manif, or, in some rare cases, they get the regular daily digests. I don’t do comments sections or tweet or do any social media other than blogging. Life under the radar can be sweet and peaceful, plus the people who hate me usually have no idea what I am going to do next. It’s nice to have surprise always on my side.
* Should others who believe similarly to yourself and speak out
expect the same treatment?
ROL: I was heartened to see one daughter of lesbians, who was conceived through sperm donation, come forward at Princeton and not be ripped to shreds immediately. She is doing a senior research project on the reasons that anonymous sperm banking is bad for kids, yet she got support from COLAGE. COLAGE is the Politburo of gay families, generally marching in lockstep to keep the gay parents and their genetic engineers happy. It was heartening to see them willing to work with, and even fund, a child of same-sex parenting who’s obviously critical. The woman is young (still in college) and it’s rare that anyone in that age range comes forward with criticisms of gay parenting anyway. The fact that she was identified in the press and treated fairly gives me hope. She’s rare, though. All the other dissenting children of same-sex couples have been the target of massive hate campaigns, often threatened and usually menaced with professional repercussions. So I think the general state of affairs is, it’s still going to be tough and children of same-sex couples really do need to wait until they’re in their thirties or forties to decide how they feel about everything and offer frank feedback. They need to be professionally established and safe.
* Does faith in God sustain you?
ROL: Of course. While she was not Christian, obviously, Antigone has a great line in the ancient Greek tragedy: “I may break the laws of this world, but more important to me is the law of the afterworld, for there I must live forever.” It is amazing how much God has blessed me, spared me, forgiven me. It’s a small thing to endure some suffering to take his word seriously.
* How does one heal from the type of upbringing you had?
ROL: Forgive and let go, but never lie to yourself or others about what really happened. Children raised in gay homes are trained from an early age to dissemble and hide things. Either you’re hiding your parents’ sexuality, or you’re hiding how hard the whole arrangement is on you, or both. The greatest liberation you find, as an adult, is suddenly realizing, “oh wow, I don’t have to lie anymore, or protect them anymore.”
* How did you decide to speak out?
ROL: I wouldn’t say it was something I decided. I kind of fell into it because I have a big mouth and very bad impulse control. I posted some feisty comments on the Chronicle of Higher Ed, two years ago, and apparently a lot of people were reading the comments, so Ryan Anderson contacted me and asked me to publish an essay. At that time I didn’t know what Public Discourse was. That essay blew up and then I was getting attacked and my inner angry lesbian kicked into gear and my instinct was to fight as hard as I could. But it wasn’t a very well thought out process. It was more like I wandered into the public sphere.
* Have you received support or condemnation from surprising places?
ROL: I am always surprised by how many gay men contact me off the record and tell me they support me. The ones who have gone public as gays against the gay marriage agenda are a unique kind of firebrand — people like Paddy Manning in Ireland and Jean-Pierre Delaume in France. There are a lot of gay men who were maybe on board with the gay lobby until surrogacy came up, and then that was their bright red line not to cross. Surrogacy brings a lot of supporters out of the woodwork, you know. As for condemnation, you’d be surprised how much time I spend fighting with conservatives. First, there have been too many hucksters running the traditional marriage movement, people who claim they have a great social strategy but who don’t really feel the issue in a strong personal way. At the slightest whiff of a backlash they bail and become obnoxious proselytizers for what they once railed against. These are the David Blankenhorns, the folks who made a name out of bashing gay families, and then when it looked like gay marriage was very popular, they turned around and started bashing the people who stood up for traditional families. It’s like all it takes is tea and crumpets with Jonathan Rauch or Jonathan Corvino, and presto! People suddenly find defection to supporting gay marriage so attractive — people will love you again, you’ll be able to write books again, you get dinner invitations instead of death threats. Those folks are horrible to deal with, because they know they never really gave a crap about the kids and out of guilt they turn defensive. I mean, how could they? If they cared about kids they’d keep fighting for kids to have a mom and dad. There are also a bunch of conservatives who can’t stand that I’m bisexual, who think I’m too vulgar, or who get really nervous when I talk about the history of slavery or cultural genocide. These are the prim conservatives who really think the other side will leave them alone if they don’t say anything intemperate. They keep me at a distance because they don’t want to be tainted.
* Is there a different attitude to gay marriage and gay adoption in the latino community as opposed to other communities you’ve known?
ROL: It’s strange but the Latinos who turn up in polls are all very pro-gay marriage and gung-ho on gay adoption. But when I did HITV, a Hispanic TV channel, the Latinos who called in were very religious and traditional, for the most part. At marriage events there are a lot of Latinos and blacks usually, and quite often they have high positions. The president of the Witherspoon is Latino, and you have lots of Latinos in Catholic advocacy groups too. But the Pew Center always comes out with reports that Latinos have the highest support for gay marriage. I think the Latinos who are supportive of marriage and children’s rights are often highly placed, whereas a lot of the Latinos who answer surveys haven’t thought much about the issue.
Is there a different attitude in academia as opposed to regular American life?
ROL: Of course. Academia’s bonkers.