The Undignified Plight

…of the straight white rich middle-aged male in Texas
by Susan Bankston

Of all the strange moments in the Texas Lege this session, Republican State Representative Wayne Christian may have earned the title of “Cap’n Does Anybody Know What the Hell I’m Doing ’Cuz I Sure Don’t.”

Yes, his name is Wayne Christian. That’s how he got elected—it certainly wasn’t on account of his smarts. He had the perfect name for Texas. And, bless his heart, the poor guy is so homely that he has to sneak up on a mirror to shave.

Wayne is a proud member of the Tea Party in East Texas. To be honest, all that’s in East Texas is pine, poverty, and Pentecostals. They live so far back in the woods that they think asphalt is a butt disease.

Wayne spent part of the 2011 Legislative Session very concerned about something called “pansexuals.” A smartypants Democrat asked Wayne if he knew what pansexual means. Of course, Wayne didn’t—but he was dead-solid certain that he was against it/them/whatnot. We suspect he thought it meant doing some hanky-panky outside the ruling ingredient guidelines on Iron Chef America.

Whatever pansexual is, it sounds dirty to Wayne—so he’s betting that when he finds out what it means, he’s gonna be even more against it.

In the early morning hours of the last day of the special session, when most good folks are in bed dreaming of a date with Dennis Quaid, State Representative Wayne Christian decided that what the Texas budget really, really needs isn’t heathcare or teachers or food for babies. No, siree. Wayne Christian decided that banning gender centers on college campuses in Texas was the one critical thing Texas was lacking.

Now, I may have mentioned that Wayne’s not smart. In fact, you can pull a slow one on him. He was trying to submit an amendment saying that state funds could not be used for gender or sexuality centers at university facilities. He got confused and wrote an amendment saying that LGBT students could not meet on a college campus anywhere in Texas. It was not clear if they could exchange greetings or even wave in the general direction of another LGBT student. Probably not, though. We think Wayne believes that gay people have secret hand signals known only among themselves.

No, I did not tell him that. Okay, so maybe I did, but it’s free entertainment for those of us watching him fret over it. I’m kinda mean that way.

Anyway, after insisting that parents, students, and citizens “all across this state” have contacted him about banning gender centers on campus, Wayne finally admitted, under questioning, that it was only the Young Conservatives at A&M and some unnamed group at UT who complained. I do not know if it was the Oh-My-God-There’s-Homosexuals-Here! Fraternity, but odds are pretty good that it was.

Texas Democratic State Representative Senfronia Thompson sighed heavily and reminded Wayne that there is a First Amendment. She mentioned that all Texans are equal, and that we’re all God’s children. Hate may be a Wayne “Christian” value, but not a Christ “Christian” value.

Then Wayne came to, and found himself seeping hypocrisy juice all over the Texas House of Representatives. Now, I’d rather eat a coil of barbed wire than wade through the hypocrisy juice in the State Legislature, but Wayne won the seepage prize during this session.

Wayne finally withdrew his amendment.

He then commenced giving a long, rambling speech at 2:30 in the morning about how all he was trying to do was “bring down the walls of prejudice.”

I’m gonna let you read that last sentence again and shake your head a little before proceeding on.

Wayne was going to bring down the walls of prejudice by sponsoring something so rife with prejudice that it makes little spittle things form at the edges of my mouth.

So then Wayne went directly from hypocritical to sanctimonious faster than a bullet with legs.

He tearfully explained to the State Legislature that he himself knew discrimination firsthand. Mustering more drama than Bill and Nelly’s Neighborhood Playhouse in Pasadena, Wayne told a sad, horrific story of being on the high school basketball team. During his senior year, his moment of glory and what he had been living for, the school integrated and . . . well, you know what happened after that. “White boys can’t jump,” Wayne said, woefully reliving his shattering moment of rank discrimination.

Y’all think I’m making this up, but I am not. Look it up. He really said that.

And this was 2:30 in the morning and Austin’s bars were closed, which would normally make all this real hard to explain. But, it’s Texas.

So, if you’re LGBT, just remember that life is just darn horrible for straight, rich, middle-aged white males.

Okay, quit snickering.

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.



Susan Bankston

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.

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