Dear Internet Citizens: Facebook is not private. I don’t care how many privacy-setting loops you jump through. The more “friends” you have, the more public your page. Facebook is not a lockbox for your most private feelings and random musings. Especially if you’re a public figure.
Jeremy Walters, an Iowan Republican running for Congress, learned this the hard way when antigay posts he made on his Facebook wall were exposed. Not only do his posts show that he has serious issues regarding gays, but they’re also a desperate cry for help in the punctuation and grammar department.
At 9:33 p.m. Aug. 12, Walters wrote, “Homosexual ‘GAY’ is not of God!!!! In the Bible it reads; Leviticus 20:13 — King James Bible If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”
OK, so he gives a little shout out to Leviticus on a Thursday night. So what?
Well, at 9:45 p.m., having thought things over for a good 12 minutes, Walters posted, “The Holy Bible say if your ‘GAY’ homosexual they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them. This tells me alot so should we kill them NO. They Need to ask God to forgive them of their sins and mean it turn away from it. They also need to know that when it says that their blood shall be upon them that tells me it is AIDS. That’s how I feel.”
First of all, Walters needs to decide: is it “homosexual ‘GAY’” or “‘GAY’ homosexual?” He uses them interchangeably, as if they’re even close to the same thing.
Secondly, holy bat-shit crazy AIDS blood, Batman. So AIDS is God’s punishment for being homosexual “GAYS” and/or “GAY” homosexuals (but not, apparently, homo “GAY” sexuals. Yet). And although “this tells [him] alot” (though apparently it doesn’t tell him that “a lot” is two words, not one), he’s not planning a gay killing spree (at least that’s how I interpret “so should we kill them NO”). He’s just waiting for AIDS to do the job for him.
Gay-rights groups and the Iowa GOP quickly denounced Walters.
“Mr. Walters’ comments are inappropriate and in no way represent the beliefs of the Republican Party of Iowa,” Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn told the Iowa Independent.
I think my favorite thing about Walters’ post is how he ends with, “That’s how I feel,” as if it’s simply a response to one of his friends posting, “Hey, Jeremy. How are you?” on his wall.
Actually, according to Walters’ apology, that’s pretty much what happened.
“I am not against people having a gay lifestyle, and the statements made on Facebook have been taken the wrong way,” Walters told the Independent. “The statement regarding gay homosexuality was not meant to be offensive and I deeply apologize. As far as the quote from Bible; I was replying to someone else’s post. It should have been posted as a comment on their page, not my Facebook wall.”
As far as apologies go, it’s a little weak (“I’m just bad at Facebook!”). It does, however, strengthen the appearance that the man running for Congress in Iowa on the GOP ticket is not only a heart-on-his-sleeve bigot, but that he is also functionally illiterate. I’m honestly not sure which one is sadder.
D’Anne Witkowski has been gay for pay since 2003. She’s a freelance writer and poet (believe it!). When she’s not taking on the creeps of the world, she reviews rock ’n’ roll shows in Detroit with her twin sister.