The Very Definition of Ironic

In case you haven’t heard, the latest scuffle over same sex marriage started during the Miss USA pageant.  Just saying that amuses me.

Panelist Perez Hilton, a gay rights activist, asked Miss California Carrie Prejean what she thought of same sex marriage.  Listen to her reply yourself:

Her answer caused quite a stir, at least with Hilton himself (who went on later to call Prejean a “dumb b****”) and with certain members of the pageant elite.

Philosophy professor Doug Geivett has made some very astute observations about the controversy.

Some even believe it’s a travesty that she was the acknowledged runner-up after such an “insensitive” and “hateful” public statement about the definition of marriage.

The folks that call her answer “hateful” and  “insensitive” will use the same adjectives to describe anyone who disagrees with their definition of marriage.  Hilton, on a TV show later, said he was not upset because Prejean disagrees with him; he was upset because of the way she worded her answer.  Bullcorn.  Her answer was slightly awkwardly worded (kinda like that phrase), but it was about as innocuous as it gets.  There were no names, put downs, stereotypes, or loaded language.  Hilton objected vehemently merely because Prejean stuck to the traditional definition of marriage, which stands in the way of his cause.  Who is the intolerant one here?

Gay rights advocates are duty-bound by their cause to take offense. It is a strategic requirement in their effort to persuade others of gay rights. “Being offended” is an acquired taste. It comes natural when you’ve trained for it.

I have seen the same thing in discussions I’ve had myself  with same sex marriage advocates.   They can be quite sensitive and easy to offend.  Again, who is being intolerant?

Gay rights activists (my note: not all gays are activists) are engaged in a strategy to marginalize anyone who believes that there is no “right” to gay marriage. You may believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. But do you have a right to believe this? Do you have a right to say so? Doesn’t matter. Gay rights activists will do anything in their power to ensure that if you believe it you will be made a pariah.

So Hilton, in contrast to Prejean, is an intelligent and broad-minded person of good will who thinks Carrie Prejean deserved to lose the crown because of her “unfortunately worded remarks” (as they’re called over at

Hilton, as I noted above, called Prejean a “dumb b****” in a video blog soon after the pageant.  He apologized for the comment, but later went on to retract his apology.  What’s more, he added to his pile of bile by saying “I was also thinking of the ‘c word.'”  Watch it here:

Again, the contrast between Prejean and Hilton is all too apparent.  Prejean is supposedly the bigoted one, for stating her beliefs.  There was no name calling or loaded emotional language in her answer.   But no one, not even the staunchest gay activist, can say the same of Hilton’s response.  The situation is thick with irony, and my hope is that the irony won’t be lost on the public at large.  I’m not getting my hopes up,  though, for the public tends to respond well to “being offended,” especially when the offended comes from a liberal perspective.

I admire Carrie Prejean’s courage. She knew she might be asked about gay marriage, and she hoped she wouldn’t be. She knew it would be risky to answer with honesty. She now says she would give the same answer over again. The test she passed may be much more significant than she realizes. Prejean’s courage will be rewarded with greater courage. That’s how growth in virtue works.

Right on.  Let’s hope she continues to stand her ground in a winsome way, and lets hope it encourages others who are on the timid side to likewise stand against the emotive tide.

4 responses to “The Very Definition of Ironic

  1. Perez Hilton is a hypocrite — of course the question was about personal belief, just look at how he’s reacting

  2. I truly find nothing wrong with Prejean’s answer. It wasn’t *Anti-Gay* as everyone how everyone is labelling it! It was merely an honest statement of her beliefs. Also, she never mentioned anything about the gays or even said that word!

  3. Yeah, Hilton is a bit of a …. Well there are no polite words for what he is. The thing that interested me about the beauty queens comment that I’ve heard no one mention is that she apparently feels like we should all be able to choose who we marry and that it’s great that we live in a country where we can choose… except we can’t.

  4. Well, democratically (at least in theory) you can choose to marry someone of the same sex – if you’re vote goes your way.

    What’s ironic is that, as per Prop 8 late last year, when the vote goes against you, you still feel everyone else is wrong and you petition the courts to overturn the democratic vote.

    Well, I guess that’s democracy, too … in some weird, twisted form.

    Well done to Carrie. Fake breasts, but real guts (and more balls) than most ;)

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