Young Kim, OC GOP, and their Gay-Bashing Habit: “I Just Cain’t Quit Yew…”


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Joe Shaw diagnoses me with outrage fatigue.  If that’s what it is, I think I’ve had it for a while, a few years.  I walk into my parents’ house, FOX News is on, Sean Hannity is caterwauling about something some Democrat or bureaucrat did or said, my parents are all livid, “Did you HEAR what that *@#$* did or said!?”  Then I go to my liberal friends’ house, and Ed Schultz or Reverend Al is bellowing about what some knuckledragging GOP Congressman did or said, and my friends are all livid, “Did you HEAR what that *@#$* did or said!?”  It just … gets old after a while.

When I hear something that I think goes over the line, I just like to pass it on dispassionately, to show that this is what THIS sort of person does or says.  Like that French nihilist lady in I Heart Huckabee’s: “Look at her.  Take a good look.  Thees ees your mother.”

Our local purveyors of faux outrage include Huntington Beach’s Chris Epting, who, thrice daily on the HB Community Forum, exercises the most hyperbolic reaches of his vocabulary to express his deep horror at Councilman Joe Shaw‘s every move and utterance;  and soulmates Dan Chmielewski and Matt Cunningham who do the same to Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait, Cunningham for pay and Chmielweski for love of Lorri Galloway.  With schadenfreude I eagerly await the pity party these three propagandists throw themselves when both Shaw and Tait are soundly and deservingly re-elected in two weeks.

I guess I’m just working up to where I excuse myself for not feeling as much outrage as I probably should over two of the Orange County Republican Party’s recent forays into old-school homophobia.  The first, a couple of OC GOP mailers attacking incumbent HB councilmembers Joe Shaw and Connie Boardman (aka Team HB) don’t bother me so much because they’re kind of silly and mild – although they probably should.  And then the second – a transgender-phobic attack on Sharon Quirk Silva for the benefit of Young Kim – is so over-the-top ridiculous that it makes me laugh out loud … but it IS really offensive.  Mitigating factor:  it wasn’t created by the OC GOP but by the insane Family Action PAC.  Mitigating factor revoked:  The OC GOP promoted it on their Facebook page as an important critique of Sharon.

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I understand that when a black or brown person says “Hey, that’s racist!”  a white guy is not supposed to say, “Nah, it’s nothing, you’re being oversensitive.”  Same thing with gay people and homophobia.  So when Joe says these OC GOP caricatures of him, OC’s first and only openly gay councilmember, as some cross between Truman Capote and Mary Poppins, dancing ballet with an umbrella and rainbow tie, are “homophobic,” who am I to say they’re goofy and make me giggle?  Maybe it’s just my outrage fatigue:

I still enjoyed envisioning, with him, the conversations as the flyer was being made.  “They probably said, ‘We wanna go with the gay thing, but how far is too far?  We don’t want people calling us homophobic, that’s not cool anymore!  Just a little nod and wink.’  And that’s not good, but it’s progress.  A decade ago they woulda had no scruples whatsoever.  Dontchya think?”  And Joe was all, “I suppose.”  Here’s the followup mailer, in which they vaguely accuse him of having a “social agenda” whatever that is.  Hey, I hope Joe’s not supposed to be running after some BOYS there…

By the way these mailers come from the OC GOP and are made by them, but the money for it came from a bunch of developers and mobile home park owners, out-of-town developers who want to continue the high-density building they’ve been doing all over Huntington Beach and build on the protected Bolsa Chica mesa, and park owners who want to continue to swindle the homeowners.  And given Joe and Connie’s recent actions against high-density and mobile home park abuse, and their longtime defense of the wetlands and bluffs, you can see why these developers and park owners find it necessary to paint Joe Shaw as a flighty umbrella-wielding ballerina, right?

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Last year it was already easy to see that Sharon Quirk-Silva‘s brave yes vote on the life-saving but controversial Transgender Student Opportunities bill (AB 1266) was something that Republicans were planning to use against her.  Young Kim herself gleefully cackled about it in an impromptu interview we posted here.  And these poor low-info conservatives really did work themselves into a sincere lather over it, as I observed at a Donnelly rally a little later:  some of them were literally in tears, convinced that big boys would be slipping into the girls’ rooms under transgender pretexts to ogle their virgin daughters’ naughty parts, that there was nothing they could do about it, that Sacramento liberals were for some reason INTENT that that should happen, and that the only hope for their families’ sanctity was to up and move to Utah.

Well, a year is a long time, and NONE of their scare stories have come to pass.  But SOME folks never erased it from their to-do list, never erased the bullet-point “Use the transgender bathroom bill to terrify folks into voting for Young Kim.”  So now we get, from the Family Action PAC, this instant gothic classic:

I’m betting the things that make me squirm and shudder here are not the things that were meant to make me squirm and shudder.  There’s the excruciatingly cloying sound of a grown woman imitating what she imagines a sexually traumatized little girl might sound like.  There’s the shadowy Jonah Hill-shaped figure prowling the school hallway looking for his prey, while the petrified little chickadee cowers in the corner.  There’s the narrator’s proud know-nothingism:  “WHO CARES???”

Once again.

Mitigating factor:  This was created by the Family Action PAC, not the OC GOP or the Kim campaign.

Mitigating factor revoked:  The OC GOP and the Kim campaign promoted it on their Facebook pages as an important critique of Sharon.

Say, can one’s outrage fatigue, itself, become fatigued?

[Note:  An earlier version of this story mistakenly said that the Boardman-Shaw attack was paid for by Poseidon, a mistake made by a Democratic strategist which was credible because of Poseidon’s vicious attacks on Jill Hardy two years ago, funneled through AtlasPAC.]


About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at vernpnelson@gmail.com, or 714-235-VERN.