Leftist commentary magazine The New Republic last week published and retracted a vulgar article describing South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a Democratic presidential candidate, as a gay “Uncle Tom,” the Washington Examiner reported.
The piece, titled “My Mayor Pete Problem,” referred to Buttigieg as “Mary Pete.” Author Dale Peck explained that “Mary Pete” is the “gay equivalent of Uncle Tom.”
Peck theorized that Buttigieg might spend his time in the White House, should he win the race, experimenting with illegal drugs and having sex.
The column also contained vulgar language and explained how the only feature that differentiated Buttigieg from the field was his sex life.
“Because let’s face it. The only thing that distinguishes the mayor of South Bend from all those other well-educated reasonably intelligent white dudes who wanna be president is what he does with his d—,” Peck added.
Buttigieg only came out as gay in his 30s, before his 2015 re-election as mayor of South Bend.
In the piece, Peck outlined his belief that the 37-year-old politician is effectively still a teenager and may spend his time as president making up for lost time.
“And we all know what happens when gay people don’t get a real adolescence because they spent theirs in the closet: they go through it after they come out. … the last thing I want in the White House is a gay man staring down 40 who suddenly realizes he didn’t get to have all the fun his straight peers did when they were teenagers,” Peck added.
He also said that he wanted Buttigieg to take illegal drugs, but to refrain from doing so while in the White House.
“I’m not saying I don’t want him to shave his chest or do Molly or try being the lucky Pierre (the timing’s trickier than it looks, but it can be fun when you work it out). These are rites of passage for a lot of gay men, and it fuels many aspects of gay culture. But like I said, I don’t want it in the White House.”
An editor’s note replaced the original article and noted that the post was removed from the site in response to criticism of the piece’s “inappropriate and invasive content”.
Win McCormack, editor-in-chief of The New Republic, said on Saturday evening that the piece should never have been published.
“Yesterday we made a mistake, but we remain committed to honoring the tradition of high standards and journalistic integrity that have been the hallmark of the New Republic for more than 100 years,” he said.
“As the New Republic’s owner, I want to extend our sincerest apologies to Mayor Buttigieg, as well as to our readers.”
The New Republic has not offered further clarification on which parts of the piece were intended to be satire, and which parts were not.
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