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Speaker Mike Johnson’s Obsession With Gay Sex

Newly elected U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson
Image: TOM BRENNER/AFP via Getty Images

He's endorsed conversion therapy, pushed to criminalize gay sex, condemned same-sex marriage, and likened being queer to pedophilia and bestiality.

What is behind U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson's unusual obsession with gay sex? If you put all the pieces together, Johnson's antagonism and revulsion toward our community borders on fixation, fascination, and hysteria. It's unhealthy. It's mysterious.

And it's not something new. His loathsomeness about gay sex started more than 20 years ago, and to this day, he's hasn't let go.

First, right out of college, he worked for the Alliance Defending Freedom, which the Southern Law Poverty Center has called a hate group. Johnson also is a habitual denier; he denies climate change, denies reproductive rights, denies free and fair elections, and denies LGBTQ+ rights.

This is how SLPC describes what ADF and Johnson want for our community: “Recriminalization of sexual acts between consenting LGBTQ adults in the U.S. and criminalization abroad; has defended state-sanctioned sterilization of trans people abroad; has contended that LGBTQ people are more likely to engage in pedophilia; and claims that a 'homosexual agenda' will destroy Christianity and society. ADF also works to develop 'religious liberty' legislation and case law that will allow the denial of goods and services to LGBTQ people on the basis of religion. Since the election of President Trump, ADF has become one of the most influential groups informing the administration’s attack on LGBTQ rights.”

Johnson is vehemently against marriage equality. But he doesn't stop there. He has let his disdain toward us seep into our bedrooms. While at ADF he wrote an editorial for a local newspaper and “called homosexuality an ‘inherently unnatural’ and ‘dangerous lifestyle’ that would lead to legalized pedophilia and possibly even destroy ‘the entire democratic system,’” as CNN reported.

He also said America is not a democracy, so theoretically, queers are worse than insurrectionists in his demented mind.

Johnson let his warped brain show in another opinion piece that he wrote in a Louisiana newspaper. “Your race, creed, and sex are what you are, while homosexuality and cross-dressing are things you do,” he wrote. “This is a free country, but we don’t give special protections for every person’s bizarre choices.”

Now, ask yourself: Why is Johnson so passionate about men having sex with men and men marrying other men? Why the animosity? What have we ever done to him? Why is this any of his business? What is his behind his condemnation? Why does he spend his time on something that has nothing to do with him?

He says he's a "firm believer in the law." Well, this might be news to him since he’s so dogged about dogging us, but the last time I checked, it's legal for men to have sex with men, and it's legal for men to marry men. So right away, Johnson's hypocrisy shines through as he casts aspersions on our way of life.

While laws are in place for marriage equality and for our freedom to sleep with those we love or lust after, it might not be that way for very long.

Across the street from the House chamber, where a dyed-in-the-wool homophobe sits in the high-backed ruler's chair, is the U.S. Supreme Court, where six dyed-in-the-wool homophobes sit in similar high-backed rulers' chairs. In the United States, the leaders of the Supreme Court and the leader of the U.S. House of Representatives would like nothing more than to strip rights away from queers. This should keep us all up at night.

Johnson’s history against our community can’t be dismissed, waved away, or answered by saying he follows the law. The words he uses to describe the way we love each other and the way we show love by marrying each other are not only cruel but dangerous.

Johnson recently told the equally repugnant Sean Hannity, "I genuinely love all people, regardless of their lifestyle choices. This is not about the people themselves." He's pushing the dangerous trope of "lifestyle choices," that horrid idea that we as queer people "choose" the way we are. It's blasphemy, and he knows what he's doing by dredging up this coded, hateful language. It's impossible to love the sinner and hate the sin — because in this case there is no sin, and he has not an ounce of love for us.

As further evidence of the fact that Johnson has no choice but to hate us, his wife runs a counseling center that equates being gay to bestiality and incest. But something is amiss there, because Kelly Johnson took down the website for her practice. Looks like they are trying to hide their obsession with gay sex. To the Johnsons, we are all having sex with our relatives, dogs, and children, which makes it inconceivable that they would love us.

As an aside, Johnson and his wife make Clarence and Ginni Thomas look like Howard and Marion Cunningham from Happy Days.

And Speaker Johnson's anti-LGBTQ+ venom just keeps going and going and going. While with ADF, Johnson gave legal advice to Exodus International, a conversion therapy organization, and partnered with the group to put on an annual antigay event aimed at teens. We reported today that the Supreme Court is considering hearing a challenge brought forth by the ADF to Washington State’s ban on conversion therapy.

Why all the fuss about us? Why do Johnson and his wife feel the need to push against us on every conceivable issue? It's not that there's anything wrong with us, so it only seems obvious that there's something seriously wrong with them.

Johnson and his wife are in what’s called a “covenant” marriage, which is an evangelical and conservative union that makes it difficult to divorce and is only legal in three states, including Louisiana. While covenant marriages aren’t all that uncommon, they are still a small minority.

There’s nothing wrong with this arrangement, if that’s the way you desire to be married, but what’s wrong with it in Johnson’s case is how he uses it as a badge of honor, and in a way that conveys he’s morally superior to someone who might be in a same-sex marriage. In other words, his “special” marriage license gives him license to condemn ours.

Here’s how Johnson explains it: “My own parents are divorced. As anyone who goes through that knows, that was a traumatic thing for our whole family. I’m a big proponent of marriage and fidelity and all the things that go with it, and I’ve seen first-hand the devastation [divorce] can cause.”

If Johnson is a big proponent of marriage and fidelity, why wouldn’t he support marriage equality? Oh, wait, it’s because it’s “sinful” in his interpretation of the Bible for two men or two women to lie with each other. Johnson also told Hannity that his worldview and policy positions are dictated by the Bible.

His preaching and posing as some sort of prophet has no place in a society that includes a multitude of religious beliefs, personal beliefs, and morality that have nothing to do with his extreme reliance on dated scripture, written by sinful men — all men, no women. Some of these men who wrote the Bible may have had sex with other men. Blasphemy? Hardly! How do we and how does Johnson know that Peter never slept with Paul?

As the Human Rights Campaign points out, “The Bible says nothing about 'homosexuality' as an innate dimension of personality. Sexual orientation was not understood in biblical times.” But gay sex most certainly was.

So if Johnson’s life is dictated by the Bible, why isn’t he all-consumed by the relationship of Jonathan and David in the Bible? Why doesn’t he seek answers behind what's up with those two? Or condemn them? Or write editorials about them? Why is he so frenzied about gay sex and same-sex marriage in the 21st century?

Johnson having intimate relations with his wife is no less, and no worse, than two men or women or anyone of the same gender showing their love for each other. A covenant marriage is no more and no less committed and loving than a same-sex marriage, or any marriage, for that matter (even an "open" one!).

And if your way of thinking is that your marriage is better than mine, then there must be something wrong with yours. And there’s something wrong with you if one of your “deity” goals is to get men to stop having sex with other men.

Good luck with that! Or watch out for that! If you and your six cronies on SCOTUS have any plans — which they do — to screw around with what we do in our bedrooms, you’re in for the fight of your life. In fact, if you proceed, as a protest, I will call for an all-male orgy outside of your office in the Capitol.

We won't rip down the name plate above your door, fly Confederate flags (sorry to disappoint you, Mike), steal documents off your desk, threaten your life and the lives of your staffers, put feces on your wall, put our feet on your desk, injure the cops outside your door, or break your windows.

In other words, we’ll just have sex, and you’re welcome to take pictures, Mike, since you’re so obsessed with how we love each other.

John Casey is senior editor of The Advocate.

Views expressed in The Advocate’s opinion articles are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the views of The Advocate or our parent company, equalpride.

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John Casey

John Casey is senior editor of The Advocate, writing columns about political, societal, and topical issues with leading newsmakers of the day. The columns include interviews with Sam Altman, Neil Patrick Harris, Ellen DeGeneres, Colman Domingo, Jennifer Coolidge, Kelly Ripa and Mark Counselos, Jamie Lee Curtis, Shirley MacLaine, Nancy Pelosi, Tony Fauci, Leon Panetta, John Brennan, and many others. John spent 30 years working as a PR professional on Capitol Hill, Hollywood, the Nobel Prize-winning UN IPCC, and with four of the largest retailers in the U.S.
John Casey is senior editor of The Advocate, writing columns about political, societal, and topical issues with leading newsmakers of the day. The columns include interviews with Sam Altman, Neil Patrick Harris, Ellen DeGeneres, Colman Domingo, Jennifer Coolidge, Kelly Ripa and Mark Counselos, Jamie Lee Curtis, Shirley MacLaine, Nancy Pelosi, Tony Fauci, Leon Panetta, John Brennan, and many others. John spent 30 years working as a PR professional on Capitol Hill, Hollywood, the Nobel Prize-winning UN IPCC, and with four of the largest retailers in the U.S.