Is Glee Too Gay? Fox 26 (Actually) Debates It

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is demanding an apology from MyFox Houston for a debate segment called "Is TV Too Gay?" that was shown after TV's Gayest Show Ever, Glee. The debate pit anti-gay buffoon and head of the American Family Association, Bryan Fischer, against Houston gay activist Ray Hill.

According to GLAAD, "a representative of the station implied that an apology was in order and should be expected. However, no apology has been issued, and in an abrupt reversal, representatives of the station now maintain that they stand behind this content."

In case you never heard of Fischer, he's an entirely sober-minded specimen of humanity who, and we're serious here, believes in the twin virtues of kicking Muslims out of the U.S. and grizzly bears out of Yellowstone National Park. (And in case you never heard of Hill, he's an uppity gay.)

Moderating the inanity was Fox's Damali Keith, who managed at one point to pose this stunningly bizarre question, which GLAAD took particular offense to: "We all know about product placement -- you throw a soda in a movie, and...within a few seconds, everybody in the theater is thirsty for that particular brand. Ray, what do you have to say to the people who say, 'This is propaganda. These aren't just storylines...people have an agenda'?"

GLAAD seems to blame Keith personally for the question, which presupposes that one split-second viewing of Glee will have every teenage male flitting to the nearest penis (that isn't his), but we suspect that Keith was a victim in this idiocy that was no doubt forced upon her by corporate overlords wanting to milk the show's ratings for all they're worth. As a sentient human being, Keith had to know there was simply no way to hold an honest, intellectual debate over "Is TV Too Gay?" This is because everyone knows the answer: yes, TV is too gay.

What the debate failed to quantify was what level of gayness is acceptable for people like Fischer, who are meticulous scrutinizers of gayness, and sex in general. These people -- who never turn out to be Bible-thumping closet-cases who leave the beard and kids at home to go engage in the most acrobatic, sweaty same-sex humping that would make the gayest gay dude on Glee blush -- will no doubt know where to draw the line when it comes to gayness.

Of course, the other variable unaddressed by the debate was what brand of homosexuality we're talking about. Is it a wide net that includes both lipstick lesbians and Al-Pacino-in-Cruising types, or a surgically precise heat-seeking Missile of Man-Love aimed directly at the smooth-skinned, impeccably groomed high school queens floating about on Glee? Is it a shotgun approach that encompasses the homoerotic undertones of ass-slapping professional football and that sport's attendant bro-centric beer ads, beloved by the occupants of houses adorned with Greek letters and occupied solely by dozens of dudes? Just what kind of gay are we talking?

That's why we wish Keith had asked Fischer if he subscribes to the it's-totally-not-gay-if-you're-the-pitcher school of thought subscribed to by prisoners everywhere, which, if we were the betting type, would place all our money on. And what about the conundrum of gay actors playing "straight," à la Neil Patrick Harris, or...well, that's the only example we can think of, since there really aren't a whole lot of homosexuals in show business. Or, to flip the script and consider the viewer: what if you're already a gay? Should you not watch TV like Glee, lest you grow even more gay? Should you stick to a strict diet of Walker, Texas Ranger reruns?

We understand why GLAAD wants an apology, but we hope they're not holding their breath. Besides, we think Hill neutralized all the idiocy with one quick quote that hinted at the shelf-life of calcifying bigotry spewed by the likes of Fischer.

"This is the second decade of the 21st century," Hill said. "I don't even know why this conversation is being held."

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Contributor Craig Malisow covers crooks, quacks, animal abusers, elected officials, and other assorted people for the Houston Press.
Contact: Craig Malisow