Ambrosia Starling

From the Montgomery Advertiser in Alabama:

Opinion: Josh Moon — Make Alabama great again, elect the drag queen

We should elect the drag queen.

Over the past few weeks and months, as one top Alabama elected official after another has been indicted or lied about a mistress or was removed from the bench or failed in a thousand different ways to govern with the best interest of the people in mind, it has become more and more clear that there is one solution to the madness that has engulfed this state.

Elect the drag queen.

I am, of course, speaking of Ambrosia Starling, the absolutely fab-u-lous, “known transvestite,” who is has become like a beeping watch buried deep in a closet to newly-suspended Chief Justice Roy Moore. The guy can’t say two sentences in a press conference or press release without mentioning Starling, which, if we were using elementary school dating rules … but I digress.

Moore apparently blames Starling and her complaints for his suspension from the state Supreme Court, and not the fact that he repeatedly ordered probate judges to ignore the law of the land and not issue marriage licenses to gay couples. The latter seemed to be more of a concern to the Judicial Inquiry Commission, but, you know, facts and junk.

In response to Moore’s repeated references to her, which included the chief justice proclaiming in a press conference that transgenderism is a “mental disorder,” Starling said this in an interview with “I am crazy for democracy. I’m insane for civil rights and better behavior. I am out of my mind when I see people losing their manners and disrespecting people they don’t know.”

And that is precisely the attitude missing from Alabama politics, and in many ways, Alabama in general.

We have excused away self-indulgence and self-interest for decades. We have made excuses for personal greed and excess. We have turned a blind eye to helping the least of us so long as it meant making a dollar for someone.

Our elected officials, particularly those of the conservative brand, have become a national embarrassment because of their greed and selfishness.

Gov. Robert Bentley was thumbing his nose at the state’s poor, refusing to expand Medicaid so they could have basic healthcare and a hospital within 100 miles, all while he was gallivanting around on a private plane with his mistress and declaring Celine Dion an honorary Alabamian.
(By the way, governor, I saw your endorsement on Monday of Donald Trump for president. A man you previously said was promoting racism and misogyny. Guess he turned out to be a better fit for you.)

Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard has led a Republican Party super-majority in the state legislature that has routinely sought to undermine and defund social programs, and which recently allowed a petty fight to derail funding Medicaid appropriately, all while he was seeking every way under the sun – legal and illegal, it seems – to line his own pockets.

That would be surprising if it didn’t happen every single day in the state house, on both sides of the aisle. Because too often now, decisions in this state boil down to how much money a proposal can bring to a lawmaker and his pals instead of whether it’s truly good for the people.

And then there’s Moore.

By all accounts, Moore is a smart judge. Those who know him well, including those who don’t like him much, often compliment his ability on the bench. When he’s actually trying.

But that’s not good enough for Roy Moore. It’s not enough to serve the people well by leading a Supreme Court that makes sound, smart decisions rooted in law and precedent and serves as the ultimate means of justice for the people.

No, instead, Moore has trashed all of it in search of personal glory. First, by defying an order to remove a religious monument he clearly knew was in violation of the law. And now, by issuing order after order in hopes of drawing complaints from the likes of a “known transvestite” and the Southern Poverty Law Center. Because doing so, playing on the fears and prejudices of the ignorant, is how Moore keeps donations rolling in and keeps his name in the headlines.

This is the leadership of Alabama. Built on greed, bigotry and self-indulgence.

Which is why I say we should elect the drag queen. We’d be much better off.

About Joe

I began my life in the South and for five years lived as a closeted teacher, but am now making a new life for myself as an oral historian in New England. I think my life will work out the way it was always meant to be. That doesn't mean there won't be ups and downs; that's all part of life. It means I just have to be patient. I feel like October 7, 2015 is my new birthday. It's a beginning filled with great hope. It's a second chance to live my life…not anyone else's. My profile picture is "David and Me," 2001 painting by artist Steve Walker. It happens to be one of my favorite modern gay art pieces. View all posts by Joe

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