Thursday, August 30, 2007

Foot-Tapping While Gay

I must have been drunk with schadenfreude the other day, but now that I look at the situation it really does seem bizarre that Sen. Larry Craig could be arrested for nothing more serious than tapping his foot in a toilet stall. It's reasonable to have laws against sex in a public restroom, and I'm willing to believe that Craig's gestures towards the undercover cop were a well-known code to initiate a hookup, but with no offer of money and no actual lewd behavior, it just shows how ridiculous these sorts of laws are. Sure, he was almost certainly propositioning the cop, but how can we be sure that the sexual encounter was to take place in that very bathroom, and not in, say, a motel? By way of contrast, I wonder if there are undercover cops patrolling the airport bar, looking out for telltale signs of lewd conduct such as men purchasing drinks for women and polite laughter. After all, these sorts of things could very well be prelude to a quick (heterosexual) fuck in the men's room.

None of this makes me particularly sympathetic to Craig, of course. As Amanda Marcotte points out, it's hard to feel sorry for someone caught in the same sort of draconian anti-gay laws he championed. In an ideal world, this situation would cause the GOP to take a long look at the laws and work to have them repealed, since they are so broadly written that even an (ahem) innocent man could run afoul of them. Instead, though, it looks like they'll be throwing the senator under the train. Oh, well. Maybe they'll see the light by the time the next GOP sex scandal rolls around. We probably won't have to wait long to find out.

No comments: