Taylor Garrett: Rock Through Window ’Absolutely Not’ A Publicity Stunt
Taylor Garrett, the "Christian Gay Republican" cast member of Logo’s new reality series "The A-List Dallas," told the Huffington Post that the threatening message he got wrapped around a rock thrown through his window was "absolutely not" a stunt meant to publicize the show in advance of its Oct. 10 premiere.
"You are not A-List," the typed missive read. "More like Z-List. You are nothing but a nellie twink trying to get attention by calling yourself a republican.
"You are nothing but an embarrassment to the gay community," the note continued. "Watch your fucking back you pathetic mother fucking twink."
Garrett had met right-wing icon Ann Coulter for lunch, along with Jimmy LaSalvia of the gay conservative group GOProud, not long before the rock-hurling incident. The meeting had been reported in the gay press and Logo had issued a media release about it. Footage taken of the meet-up will probably be included in an upcoming episode of the show.
"It is unsure when Coulter’s episode as a LOGO guest star will end up airing, but there is no doubt there will be some rumblings and controversy as a result," the Logo media release read, all too prophetically.
Garrett suggested in a Twitter message that a "liberal" was behind the vandalism and the threat.
But that tweet, and another from the show’s producer, John Hill, congratulating Garrett on "making headlines," disappeared, fueling speculation that the whole thing had been a fabrication. Moreover, no police report regarding the incident seemed to have been filed, which seemed to blogger Joe Jervis of JoeMyGod.com to be a red flag, as did Hill’s congratulatory tweet.
"When I questioned Hill as to whether he’d played a role in the stunt, his tweet to Garrett was instantly deleted," a posting by Jervis at JoeMyGod.com recounted.
"Neither Hill nor Logo have yet responded to my questions," Jarvis added. "I understand all too well that gay people are not above the depths of scumbaggery typically associated with producing reality television, but a false hate crime claim is truly beyond the pale."
Anti-gay groups such as the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) have long sought to depict gays intent upon claiming full-fledged protections and legal rights as being violent and prone to menacing upstanding Christian citizens. Incidents of boycotting and minor vandalism in the wake of Proposition 8 were portrayed as evidence that gay thugs were out to terrorize and harm ordinary Americans.
Though GLTB equality advocates, and everyday gay individuals and families have been the targets of everything from street violence to arson because of their sexuality, anti-gay groups routinely ignore such attacks while insisting that gays are stereotypical lawbreakers.
Some critics feared that if the hate crime reported by Garrett were nothing but a publicity stunt, the urgency of genuine hate crimes, and the serious impact they have on GLBTs, could be subsequently discounted.
But Garrett told the "Gay Voices" blog at the Huffington Post that the rock and the threat were genuine, and reiterated his belief that he’d been targeted by a fellow member of the gay community. Garrett’s comments were published on Oct. 11.
Before its deletion, Garrett’s Twitter message had read, "My place is nice and breezy now thanks to a liberal!" That message vanished from his Twitter feed because, Garrett said, the network had advised him to take it down, in part for his own safety.
As for the lack of a police report, Garrett explained, that was because a security guard at his apartment complex had filed the report on his behalf, but not put Garrett’s name on it.
"I got back late, late, late on Thursday night" Oct. 6, Garrett told the Huffington Post. "I woke up to a knock on my door. It was our apartment manager and he told me that there was broken glass on my balcony. I didn’t realize that my window had been broken because my window is double paned and it had only broken on the outside."
The police report was filed on Friday, Oct. 7, but Garrett did not realize until speaking with the police that the report had omitted his name.
"So, that’s when I called and made my own report," Garrett said. "If [the person who did this] really is crazy and intent on hurting me and I went missing, I want a report with my name on it so there’s a record of this."
The second report--with Garrett’s name on it this time--was filed on Oct. 10.
Though Garrett’s first impulse had been to blame "a liberal" for the vandalism and the threatening message, he admitted to the Huffington Post that he has no real idea of who was behind it.
"There’s a group of people that have a hate website out on me. I don’t think they did it--who knows who did it?" Garrett said. "Obviously someone who doesn’t like ’twinkly Republicans.’ "
Still, the note’s wording suggested to the "A-List" star that the person behind the threat was also gay.
"I don’t think a straight person would have written that because straight people don’t use the word ’twink,’ you know?" Garrett told the Huffington Post.
Asked whether the message had been part of a publicity stunt, Garrett responded, "Absolutely not."
The article’s overall implication was to suggest a suspicion on Garrett’s part that the message was a response to reports of his lunch with Coulter, and to imply that a gay person must be behind the threat because a straight person would probably not care. Coulter describes herself as a fan favorite among conservative gays and has dubbed herself the "right-wing Judy Garland," but she is against full legal parity for gays and opposes marriage equality and the recently completed repeal of DADT.
"I don’t agree at all with any of her gay stances," Garrett said of Coulter. "I support gay marriage. I am very happy ’don’t ask, don’t tell’ was repealed. I admire her on her other conservative viewpoints, like abortion. She’s famous for being out there and I admire her in a way. But I want to make it clear: I do not agree with any of her views on the gays."
The "A-List" star called out the GLBT community for a seeming double standard of fighting bullying, only to exhibit bias against conservatives and Christians, saying, "[I]n our own community we discriminate based upon if you’re a Democrat or a Republican or if you don’t necessarily fit within the mold of the political views of the gay community."
Garrett added that he was disturbed by online comments, allegedly made by gays, to the effect that it was "Too bad the gays don’t know how to use guns and bullets instead of rocks."
Garrett denounced such hateful language as "a shame."
"We need to be able to have a civil lunch with people, even if we disagree," Garrett said. "That’s all it was--a lunch. We need to be able to do that more in this country."