The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Friday, April 11, 2003  

Andrew Sullivan and the Anti-Sodomites

Every once in a while I like to check in with the Washington Times. I used to live in Washington, after all, and, as such, the Times was for 11 years my hometown paper. Well, except for the fact that nobody who made it through toilet training untraumatized actually reads it.

So, what was the Times up to this week?

I see today's edition includes one of the rag's little news briefs [Ed.: Third item.], those of the type intended -- and certain -- to induce paroxysms of shock, disgust, and horror from the talk-radio set and their brothers-and-sisters-in-arms at the once-great Commentary, the formerly (occasionally) interesting National Review, and the always juvenile American Spectator:

LITTLE ROCK -- A junior high school student and his parents have sued the school district and four teachers, claiming they violated the boy's rights by refusing to let him talk to classmates about being homosexual.

The lawsuit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Thomas McLaughlin, 14, names the Pulaski County Special School District and teachers and administrators at Jacksonville Junior High.

The ninth-grader says teachers told his parents that he was homosexual, preached to him, forced him to read the Bible and disciplined him for talking about his sexual orientation.

Thomas said in an interview Tuesday that he wants himself and other homosexual students to be able to go to school without having to lie about their sexuality.

Let's see, what else does the Times have this week. Oh, "Movie Minis" (April 10), which includes warnings to readers about two movies currently playing in the cinemas, both with "homosexuals," namely "Irreversible" and "Boat Trip."

Ah, and I see the Times has a bit of commentary from one Terence P. Jeffrey, editor of a fringey right-wing flier, Human Events, "Texas Law Before the Bar" (April 9), in which we find heaps of praise for the Supreme Court's most prominent, though unadmitted, Cafeteria Catholic, Justice Antonin Scalia, not one word of Jeffrey's scribblings original or grounded in either fact or law.

And, of course, this being Friday, in today's paper we see that blogger Andrew Sullivan, 39, homosexual, is still collecting his regular paycheck from the Times for something called "The Weekly Dish," which the paper describes as "Tidbits from a broad range of political and cultural topics."

Tidbits is the word alright. Today's installment from Sullivan: A string of quotes from seven writers not named Andrew Sullivan, his own contribution to the 878-word column consisting of a grand total of 82 words.

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