Dan Savage needs to stop teaching sex education, he needs to stop teaching about consent, he needs to stop punditing about sexuality and identity, he needs to stop pretending he’s an advocate, and he needs to stop doling out flip advice about people and relationships.
I understand he’s opened a lot of doors for people who formerly knew little to nothing about these issues, but as the radical politics of the 90s become more mainstream, it reveals just how bigoted Savage’s views actually are. Dan Savage has been glitter bombed on three separate occasions, by activists you think would be fighting for the same things. This is not the case. People are highly critical of Savage, and his “It Gets Better” campaign, for reasons that have been mentioned ad nauseum. All this shows is that the world is moving on without Dan Savage, and it’s really all for the best.
This is only the tip of the iceberg. Savage also has plenty to say about people with disabilities (although this article gives a different review of Savage’s Miracle!), race, Islamophobia, and women. But in case you were unclear about how terrible this guy is, here are some quotes, right from the source.
On Bisexual People
“I’m not saying bi guys are bad people, or they don’t make great one-night stands. Bushes, bathhouses, and sleazy gay bars are crawling with bi guys. But if a guy wants more, he’ll have an easier time getting it from another gay man.”
“Sorry, but avoiding bi guys is a good rule of thumb for gay men looking for long-term relationships. Outside of San Francisco’s alternate-universe bisexual community, there aren’t many bi guys who want or wind up in long-term, same-sex relationships—monogamous or not” – “Pride & Prejudice,” December 1999
“Get yourself a refillable Xanax prescription, or get yourself an actual lesbian girlfriend.” – “This is Our Youth,” February 2009
“I do find some bisexuals scary, particularly the ones who are always accusing me of being bi-phobic.” – “Bisexuals: You Need to Come Out to Your Friends and Spouses—Now,” June 2011
On Trans* People
“Divorced parents, gay dad, the HIV bombshell… and now, so suddenly, a woman. That’s an awful lot for a high-school-age kid, especially a boy, to deal with. The tranny activists are going to jump down my throat for this, but… it seems to me that your ex could’ve put off the sex change until after his son was out of high school. One of the things parents are supposed to do is make sacrifices, big and small, for the sake of their children. And while I think people have a right to do pretty much as they please (and parents are people), I also believe that children have a right to some stability and constancy from the adults in their lives. Perhaps I’m a transphobic bigot, but I honestly think waiting a measly 36 months to cut your dick is a sacrifice any father should be willing to make for his 15-year-old son. Call me old-fashioned. […] When your son is an adult, he’ll hopefully be able to forgive his dad/mom/whatever for his selfish decision to run off and have a sex-change operation.” – “Bad Tranny,” January 2003
“Paradoxically, RAGE, going down on a shemale escort shores up your heterosexual bona fides. Gay guys don’t frequent and/or fellate shemale escorts (on purpose or by accident); getting with shemales is an entirely straight-male pursuit. So you can go right on identifying as straight, RAGE. Of course you aren’t totally straight—try thinking of yourself as something more than straight, not less—but you’re close enough that you can round yourself down to straight with a clear conscience. (Offer void the day you start blowing shemale escorts.)” – “Deep Thought,” March 2009
“Oh, and folks who want me to apologize for this: Okay, I will—after we raise at least 2K for Juin and his family. Otherwise, meh, I’ll just keep hating on trans people like the raging anti-trans beegoat that I am.” – The Stranger, March 2010
On Asexual People
“I appreciate the feedback, Stephanie, and I’m sorry I offended you. But… um… I couldn’t help but think, as I read your letter, that your boyfriend is either a fool or a fag. But if it works for you guys—if a romantic relationship devoid of sexual attraction and activity works for you guys—then it works for you guys. Who am I to argue with success?” – Savage Love, June 2009
“With all the minimally sexuals out there making normally sexuals miserable, NSNA, it should be obvious to all regular readers that there’s not exactly a shortage of people who aren’t interested in sex. With that being the case, why would you even contemplate inflicting yourself on a normally sexual person? Why not go find another minimally sexual person? You’ll be doing your minimally sexual self a favor, you’ll be doing your future minimally sexual partner a favor, and you’ll be doing all normally sexual persons everywhere a favor by removing two minimals—you and your future partner—from the dating pool.” – “Raw Dog,” February 2011
On Rape Survivors
“I’m extremely sorry that you were raped, DRARS, although your baseless accusations of rape make me doubt you when you claim to be a survivor of rape. The feminist bloggers are going to accuse me of thought crimes: If a woman says she was raped then, by God, she was raped. (Tell it to the lacrosse team.) But if my reaction to your letter is a thought crime, I can only plead entrapment: I wouldn’t have had these illegal thoughts if you hadn’t sent me such a stupid letter in the first place. […] Finally, DRARS, I hereby withdraw my consent for you to read Savage Love. If you continue to read my column against my will, well, we all know what word to apply to your actions.” – Savage Love, June 2007
“I’m sorry that you were sexually assaulted—that’s awful, PTSD, and I hope you went to the police and I hope you’re pressing charges. But I also hope you know that being the victim of sexual assault is not a Get Out of Being a Human Being Free card. Just because you’ve been victimized doesn’t mean you operate in an alternate moral universe where you’re not obligated to take other people’s feelings into consideration—particularly the feelings of people you profess to love and happen to be married to.” – “Double Trouble,” October 2010