For a long time now, we’ve been hearing about people terrified that they might share a public restroom with a transgender person out of fear that trans people will pee on them. (That’s the fear, right? I’m pretty sure I read that on World Net Daily.) Now we’ve found someone terrified to share a stage with a transgender person.
Bob Marshall, a member of the Virginia House of Delegates (R-13th Dist.), is running for reelection. His challenger, Democrat Danica Roem, is hoping to unseat Marshall, thus becoming Virginia’s first openly transgender elected official.
Marshall, however, is basically pretending that Roem doesn’t exist. He won’t debate her at a candidate forum, he said, because he doesn’t want to get called names.
You see, nasty LGBTQ advocates have taken to calling him “Bigot Bob.”
According to the Washington Post, Marshall got this nickname “because of his sponsorship of a ‘bathroom bill’ that would have regulated transgender people’s use of restrooms in government buildings. That measure was unsuccessful. Marshall also sponsored Virginia’s constitutional amendment barring same-sex marriage — which stood until the U.S. Supreme Court declared such prohibitions unconstitutional.”
Well hell, if he has feet like a duck, quacks like a duck and denies LGBTQ people their humanity, then he’s a ducking bigot.
But Marshall takes offense to the label. He tells the Prince Williams Times that it “is simply not correct” and chastises Roem for “hurling insults.”
“In the same interview,” the Times reports, “Marshall doubled down on calling Roem … ‘he.’”
“Why do you call Danica a female?” Marshall asked the Times reporter. “Did Danica’s DNA change?”
Sick burn, bro. Like, seriously, your contempt for transgender people is sickening.
Then Marshall has the nerve to cry to the Washington Post about a “lack of civility.”
“In the last few elections, there’s been a distinct lack of civility,” Marshall said. “Prior to that, it wasn’t so bad. You weren’t automatically identified as a bigot, or a hatemonger or anything like this. That has changed.”
Yes, bigots being called out for their bigoted bullshit is a change — a refreshing one if you’re a member of an oppressed minority in the United States. Maybe we have learned something from the election of Donald Trump: a white supremacist, a misogynist and an LGBTQ foe. But if you’re a straight white guy in America and being called “a bigot or a hatemonger” feels oppressive to you, well, it’s literally the LEAST everyone else could do.
As an added bonus, the candidate forum Marshall is refusing to attend is hosted by the NAACP. I suspect that in addition to not wanting to have to treat a trans person like a human being in public, Marshall probably also has a problem with the NAACP, specifically that it’s allowed to use the term “colored people” but he, a 73-year-old white man, isn’t. Again, that’s just a guess. I suppose we’ll never know since he won’t attend the forum.
According to the Prince Williams Times, Roem and other Democrats are still planning on meeting with voters regardless. “I think it’s a damn shame that he refused to debate, but we’re going to do it anyway,” Roem said.
Cosmopolitan magazine calls the fact that Roem is running against Marshall “cosmic poetry,” and I have to agree. It would be a beautiful thing to see her unseat Bigot Bob.
“The message that I can succeed because of my gender, not despite it, because of who I am without being afraid of who I am is a human message,” Roem told Cosmo.
To learn more about Danica Roem, who is endorsed by the Human Rights Campaign, Emily’s List and the Victory Fund, among others, and to throw a few bucks her way, visit http://danicaroem.ngpvanhost.com. You can also follow her on Twitter @pwcdanica.
D’Anne Witkowski is a poet, writer and comedian living in Michigan with her wife and son. She has been writing about LGBT politics for over a decade. Follow her on Twitter @MamaDWitkowski.