Posted: October 17, 2010 at 9:31 am

Metro

Much ado about a man purse this weekend. At least we now know that it is a sensitive subject, and that numerous metro-sexuals  believe in standing up for the MP. Fair enough. I will not touch that subject again (at least not for a while).

But, at the same time, we need remember that when Roy Brown complains about “negative campaigning”, it was Roy who tried drawing first blood in 2008 with a series of nasty ads, talking about how Schweitzer was a “bully,” and that Schweitzer had somehow strong-armed or otherwise “bullied” various legislators and state officials into getting what he wanted (a balanced budget with a $300 million surplus).  Leaving aside for a moment the interesting additional proof this provides that Roy is the sensitive type, how can Roy be claiming with a straight face that he hates negative campaigning? And this year, as in 2008, Roy threw the first shoe as well, talking about “Tax Hike Van Dyk” (with no evidence to support it) long before election season.

So cry me a river. If Roy is going to shoot his toy gun, he can’t complain when someone fires a rifle at him.

38 comments

  1. Steve T.

    See, this is ridiculous. Nobody said that Roy hasn’t engaged in negative campaigning. Nobody even said that he doesn’t deserve to be called out on his crap. That you feel like people are saying such things says more about your altered sense of reality and delusions of persecution than anything else.

    All we’re saying is that you’re a hypocrite and a feminist only when it suits you… a charge you seem reluctant to respond to, preferring instead to plug your ears and hum showtunes.

    I swear, I’m reading Rush Limbaugh’s blog here.

  2. Kelly

    You’re categorizing everyone who disagrees with you as a metrosexual now? Are you sure you’re a progressive feminist?

  3. Jamee Greer

    YES, Cowgirl. You are right: Brown might have thrown the first barbs at Kendall and unfairly labeled him “Tax Hike van Dyk.” Brown acted like a jerk, and it is fair to respond.

    So, you tried to throw back at him. Except you didn’t use an argument of substance or value. No, instead you threw me at him. You threw my LGBT friends at him. You threw a considerably active and engaged group within the Democratic base at him. And for what gain?

    I don’t think you are homophobic. But there are a lot of feminists in Montana who will have zero faith in what you write from now on. And everyday you have a chance to gain that trust back by acknowledging you made a mistake, that you, perhaps unintentionally, threw a community under the bus in the heat of a campaign season’s vitriol and fuss. But instead you keep posting more demeaning language to LGBT folks and digging a deeper hole for yourself.

    Whatever potential anti-gay, anti-feminist votes, if any, are picked up for Kendall by making fun of men who are effeminate, “elitist” or “stylish” or “sissies”– let’s just say “faggy” — none of those votes are worth the damage done to the LGBT community in return. While we have seen considerable gains in recent years, LGBT Montanans still face serious and substantial oppression from many directions – including a misperception that LGBT people shouldn’t run for office because our sexual orientation or gender identity will made a campaign target by opponents. The implications from this “Roy Brown is a sissy” tactic are simple: why should gay people remain involved in politics, civic engagement or anything in the public sphere when we’re not even real Montanans? When our men aren’t manly enough, or our women too butch, to be real Montanans?

    This excuse that you are targeting his “elitism” — while from your heart, I bet you genuinely think you are — is really just coded homophobia. Perhaps ones “elitism” is a subscription to the Economist, an advanced degree from an institution of higher education, a liking of wine over beer, or a dislike of shooting animals for sport; but some Montanans will use other words to describe the thing you call “elitism.” None of those words help the LGBT community, the progressive movement – nor will they activate anybody in the Democratic base at a time when the base is needed more than ever before.

  4. Shahid Haque-Hausrath

    You still don’t seem to understand why your previous post was a serious misstep. This has nothing to do with Roy Brown engaging in negative campaigning and “getting what he has coming to him.” Most of your readers, like me, are staunch progressives who have no allegiance to Roy Brown. Your post was offensive because you glibly engaged in offensive rhetoric about gender roles and masculinity. There is only one way to interpret your post: you portray Kendall as a “real man” and cast Roy Brown as an effeminate man, who therefore isn’t a “real Montanan.”

    You stated that “the point of this post is to compare Brown’s country club elitism with Kendall’s Montana roots” and show that he is “out of touch with the people in his district.” The problem is that your post didn’t address his elitism at all. You simply addressed his “unmanly” characteristics. If you think that femininity is akin to elitism, and that men who appear “womanly” are out of touch with their community, we need to have another conversation about exactly what you think it means to be a Montanan.

    You say this “has nothing to do with sexuality,” yet masculinity — or lack thereof — is at the heart of the joke. Gender roles and sexuality are linked. Friends who read your blog more regularly than me have said that you consider yourself a feminist. You should be able to understand why your post was perceived as gay-baiting.

    Its sad that you simply chalk the negative reaction you got from your post to “metro-sexuals standing up for the man purse.” You can dig your head in the sand as much as you want, but you would be better served to think more carefully about the undertones of your post, and why they were so offensive.

  5. Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

    Geez, folks. You need a good dose of Hemmingway! Buck up, folks! Alls fair in love and war (politics). Do you folks shun Letterman, Stewart, and Colber too? It was FUNNY, a funny pic of a funny guy! I L0VED it and I’m in no way a homophobe.

  6. Montana Left

    Cowgirl is making a subtle point lost on all of you, that Roy Brown and his buddies talk about “real montanans” and push the rugged archetype. But it turns out that Roy is the less authentic candidate according to that standard. Why is that such a terrible thing to bring to the surface? Has nothing to do with gays at all.

    • Jamee Greer

      That’s an interesting anonymous comment, Montana Left. Please expound.

      Roy Brown is good on one human rights-based issue, and that’s the abolishment of the death penalty. Kendall van Dyk, while not perfect, is the progressive choice. If I was a Billings voter, I would 100% pick Kendall van Dyk over Roy Brown.

        • Jamee Greer

          I don’t feel the need to explain myself to anonymous commenters. Judging by previous comments on other posts, you’re a bit of a fire starter, no? What’s your angle?

  7. Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

    Hey, I see their point, Cgirl. OK, Oily Roy ain’t exactly the Marlboro Man. He’s more like Virginia Slim! But you should NEVER point that out for fear of offending the sensitivies of folks with sensitive sensitivities, UNLIKE us cretins like myself that like a good joke at the expense of the Pubbies!

  8. Cowgirl

    Let’s all remember that Roy Brown is the one with the terrible voting record on human rights…or, we can all sit around on this blog while you call me a hater.

  9. Montana Left

    The irony to all of this stuff is that Kendall seems more likely to be involved in a “bromance” than Roy. I can’t see Roy in a bromance.

  10. Katherine Haque-Hausrath

    In addition to using code words to characterize Roy Brown as the “other,” or effeminate, these posts are also a baseless ad hominem attack. Kendall is a man because he hunts, while Roy Brown is not a man because he carries a computer satchel (and whether you want to acknowledge it or not, we all see the subtext in calling it a “man purse”). There are so many reasons to attack Roy Brown on substance; why get bogged down in attacks on his looks that needlessly alienate the LGBT community? And for those of you who say to “lighten up,” offensive comments–whether directed against women, immigrants or the LGBT community–should be called out, no matter who makes them.

    • Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

      OK. Can we all JUST GET OVER IT? Look, maybe it’s NOT a man purse. Maybe it’s his condom case! That’s it! Maybe Oily Roy has that sucker stuffed CHOCK full of condoms, and he’s sneakin’ out the back door for a leetle strange action on the side! Could be! Ya never know! Maybe Cgirl’s got it all wrong. Maybe Oily Roy ain’t got TIME to hunt! Maybe he’s too busy satisfyin’ all them nutty Pubbie women that don’t believe in masturbation! Yep. That’s what I think. So, Cgirl, change that headline from “man” and “man purse”, to “man”, and CONDOM MAN! Then, maybe the sensitive crowd will be pacified. And if Oily Roy were to put one of them condoms right on his head, why he’d look JUST like……nah, I was gonna say dickhead. But that too might violate forum decorum, so I won’t say it!

  11. Representative-elect Ellie Hill

    I’m writing this evening because I am a passionate supporter of Kendall Van Dyk, and I don’t want this post to alienate any of his progressive, activist friends and supporters. Believe me, I’m first in line for bawdy humor, ask anyone, and this one just ain’t funny.

    I am commenting, as opposed to my usual blog-lurking, because I unequivocally agree with Katherine, Jamee, Shahid, P-bear, and the others who have attempted to shine a light on why this not-so-subtle marginalization fell into the larger spectrum of uncool, inappropriate, bigoted, and/or flat-out dangerous.

    Again, regardless of Cowgirl’s intent, the “effeminate-man-purse (read: not real Montanan) versus tough-bow-hunter (read: real Montanan)” attempt-at-humor, does indeed fall within the before-mentioned spectrum. (However, I don’t think Cowgirl, herself, falls in that spectrum, whatsoever.)

    Anyone who has any questions about the slippery dangers of this post, should definitely call Kim Abbott at the Montana Human Right Network at (406) 442-5506.

    (An aside: Cowgirl, you’ve got a rockin’ thing going here, no doubt. There’s a lot of us reading you now, keep it up, but I have to agree that this type of gay-baiting doesn’t appeal to me, and clearly doesn’t appeal to a lot of other progressives reading. This specific post was discussed, unfavorably, at a meeting I was at this very evening. That said, I don’t want to discourage you. I’ve dropped the ball dozens of times *understatement!*, and I don’t regret some of the risks I have taken. I just hope you’ll think about what folks have written in response. Shahid said it best, “Your post was offensive because you glibly engaged in offensive rhetoric about gender roles and masculinity… Gender roles and sexuality are linked.” In this month of tragic teen suicides and the hopeful aftermath of awareness surrounding bullying, “teasing”, and the effect sometimes subtle persecution has on our LGBT community, the poor taste of the post was likely more notable and contributed to such a strong reaction. Folks were right to react. And re: “metrosexuals” being “elitist”, you should remember, that it was and still is the tea-bagger and Sarah Palin crowd who criticize Obama and Democrats for ourselves being elitist. It doesn’t serve us well to “go there” in return. That said, email or call me if you need support or want to talk to me personally about this or anything. I will give you my personal cell number. I support you in your blogging and activism! Keep it up. Best, El)

    • Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

      You know what’s really unfunny? Crap like this. Come ON. You’ve just reminded me why the gay platform has always had such a hard time being accepted. NO SENSE OF HUMOR! Folks attacking Cgirl have set back gay rights twenty years with their nonsense! I mean, really, who wants to be associated with a bunch of people who can’t even take a joke, a joke that MOST thinking people didn’t even consider to be bashing gays! Look, I have a friend that carries a medicine pouch containing items sacred to him. It DOES kinda look like a purse. If I called him purse man as a joke, would that mean I’m bashing gays? Nope. Using something as innocent as this little joke to cudgel others into submission turns me off BIG time. Gays have a battle for rights, a battle the lefties willingly join. But DON’T beat your allies with undue political correctness! That’s NOT real smart! Grow up.

      • Wulfgar

        Larry, there is no “gay platform”. There are human rights. And you ain’t helping by telling others to sit back and shut up while their betters decide what to do with them.

        • Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

          Gay rights is NOT my politicaly raison de etre like it is for gay folks. I don’t view the world through a gay prism so to speak as these folks seem to do. I found the joke to be funny and not gay bashing. That’s all. And I’m amazed at the reaction of the gay communtiy. It’s kinda like the NRA and guns. To be a good conservative, one must be a gun nut. To be a good lefty, one must be a gay nut! Well, I admit it. I AM a gay nut. But I didn’t reliquish my sense of humor when I became a gay nut! Can you begin to understand that?

          • Wulfgar

            No, Larry. Gay rights isn’t why you do what you do. But it’s kinda funny, in a vomitous kinda way. You don’t have to be an asshole to do what you do, yet you defend being an asshole passionately, jealously, stupidly. Quit being an asshole. That’s all that anyone has asked. I’m sorry, you may find yourself being an asshole very funny. The rest of us, really don’t. No one has argued you being a good lefty, except you. No, most of us just think you’re being an asshole about it. So what’s the problem with not being an asshole? Ego, maybe? One would think …

            • Larry Kralj, Environmental Rangers!

              Asshole? Nope. Just don’t accept all the opinions here regarding the original pic. And in all seriousness, I NOW understand what some of the rigthies mean by militancy among gays. No one likes being bludgeoned over an innocent little joke that can easily be intrepreted several different ways. That goes BEYOND gay rights. When people have to self-censor to avoid the wrath of gays, then THEY lose their rights! Shall we now have straights rights? Sorry, pal, but it is YOU who is being the asshole here by attacking me personally. I have attacked no one. Therefore, you lose. Sorry bout that. And I think it’s YOU who does tremendous damage to the gay cause with your outlandish attitude. Any rightie reading your post will grimace at the prospect of people like you determing just WHAT their children should learn in a sex ed curriculum! I know I would! You’re a loser, dude.

              • Wulfgar

                I think it’s YOU who does tremendous damage to the gay cause with your outlandish attitude. Any rightie reading your post will grimace at the prospect of people like you determing just WHAT their children should learn in a sex ed curriculum!M

                Well DUH, Larry. They’re never going to agree. But you think I should be concerned about that? That would be pretty assholish. Just sayin’ …

  12. Kev Hamm

    What a bizarre and enlightening detail you posted. I’m surprised that you had the courage to stand up in public and say these things. You’re not a homophobe, you’re just a gay-baiting homophobe. Glad we’ve got that “straightened” out.

    Ad homonym attacks to paint someone as different from the norm is always a bad idea. We’re all different from the norm. You went searching for a quick and easy way toshow how you see Roy as bad, and you called him a fag. You might as well have put “guy / gay” as the labels for the pictures. In fact, you did.

    Worse, you try to defend yourself by tossing more people under the bus. Not cool.

    But it will all be over soon.

  13. Doug Mattson

    Typical democrats eating your own. You guys are geniuses for sure. I see these commenters as the blog equivalent of the flop in sports, its a technique where you pretend to be greatly injured by your “opponent” to score a turnover or draw a foul, but you guys are trying to use it against your own team mates. Great plan!

  14. Betsy

    Jamee Greer is a true professional with a successful track record. Everyone is allowed his or her own opinion, but the personal attacks here are off-base.

    • Wulfgar

      Funny that, Betsy. I don’t think Kristi (Allen-Gailushus) Smith really cares about who Jamee Greer is. She just used the dog-whistle to warn us all about the “gay agenda”. ‘They’ are serial victims (like Matthew Sheppard, that attention whoring bastard …) ‘They’ are all complaining. ‘They’ should be helping Democrats. ‘They’ are typically seeking attention. What’s consistent? “They”. The other. Marginalization.

      Jamee Greer is a professional homosexual, because he gets paid to agitate/advocate for LGBT rights. That’s not a bad thing at all. It’s actually a righteous thing. And it’s not an opinion, either. It’s what is supposed to be guaranteed by the Constitution. So, thank you Betsy, for defending a patriot. To the degree I can, I got your back.

  15. Wulfgar

    Cowgirl, I suggest to you that your captions in the picture play, instead of reading “Man-Manpurse”, should have read “Montana -WTF?”. You still probably would have been accused of gay-baiting, but at least your point would have been clearer, and probably more funny. Just sayin’

  16. Cowgirl

    Thanks for your feedback. It was never my intent to engage in gay-baiting. Anyone who reads this blog knows I have fought bigotry at every chance I found. It was only my intent to ridicule Roy Brown for being out of touch with average folks. I also respect the commenters who disagree. Their views are most welcome. I apologize to any I may have unintentionally offended.

  17. Dustin Hankinson

    So people are being “sensitive”? “Metro-sexuals” are upset? This is really passive/obfuscating language considering the accusation of gay baiting. Basically what I get out of these statements (which seem like complete BS as written) is: She’s sorry(ish) for the use of manipulation of stereotypes that bothered (outraged, more or less) the GLBTIQ community and she will “not touch that subject again” (i.e. shut the hell up because she’s trying to make a valid point in a massively invalid way) and that’s about as close to an apology as you’re going to get from anything written here. I realize I’m a total outsider here and my post can be disregarded but this is the translation I’m getting. BTW, isn’t posting two pictures as a blog KINDA phoning it in? Just wondering.

  18. Matthew Koehler

    For the record, I like argyle, man-purses and backcountry hunting. I also think Roy Brown’s record sucks.

    However, I can’t help but wonder about my only real experience with Kendall Van Dyk.

    In December 2009 I sat next to Kendall during the US Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing regarding Senator Tester’s Forest Jobs and Recreation Act. I was invited by Chairman Bingamen to testify in opposition to certain provisions of the FJRA on behalf of the Last Best Place Wildlands Campaign. Best as I can tell, Kendall was there simply to be part of Senator Tester’s cheerleading crew.

    Ironically, before I gave my testimony, the head of the entire US Forest Service (Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment Harris Sherman) delivered the same exact concerns and critiques as the LBPWC during his official testimony.

    While sitting next to Kendall in the audience I couldn’t help but notice how odd and disrespectful it was that Kendall played on his phone during most of the panel in which Under Secretary Harris Sherman delivered the Forest Service/Obama Administration testimony.

    Call me “old-school,” but when you’re sitting in a hearing room of the US Senate you shouldn’t be playing on your phone, right?

    The double irony here is that while Kendall was busy playing on his phone during the Senate hearing, if he was paying attention, he actually could’ve learned a thing or two about federal forest and wilderness policy or some of the specific concerns with the FJRA, as written.

    To bad, because that knowledge sure could’ve come in handy. On May 24, 2010, Kendall wrote a letter (addressed to the MT Dem Party and members of the media) in support of Tester’s FJRA. The letter, which I’m sure scored Kendall more than a few points with Tester’s people and the MT Dem Party, was nothing more than a complete regurgitation of shallow, talking-points-inspired rhetoric.

    Well, I guess I did have one other experience with Kendall. He wrote me this past spring and asked me to be his Facebook friend. I know, how nice. When I wrote him back and politely declined, Kendall wrote and said, “I mostly just wanted to read your radical rants anyway. I take you as serious as most others do.”   

    Funny, but I didn’t even know my Facebook pictures hanging out with my nephews, or at my 20 year high school reunion, or a status update cursing the squirrels for eating the ripe peaches off my trees even qualified as “radical rants.”