The GOP’s Pedophilia Smears Are An Incitement to Violence

Source: The Nation
by Jeet Heer

“Obviously, measures like the notorious ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law pushed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are designed to energize the Republican base, particularly the religious right. … But the grooming and pedophilia smears go beyond being a particularly nasty example of political hardball. These deranged accusations of grooming and pedophilia have a more immediate, and more sinister, antecedent than Anita Bryant–style homophobia: They also derive from the Pizzagate conspiracy theory (which held that Democratic elites were part of a satanic pedophile cult run out of a Washington pizza parlor) and QAnon (which spun this conspiracy theory into a saga involving a hidden war between Donald Trump and the ‘deep state’). It’s this fusion of partisan conspiracy theories with a homophobic moral panic that makes the current grooming smears a threat to the physical safety of LGBTQ people — and to the survival of US democracy.” (05/12/22)