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The gap between cosplay and drag is very very thinHave you ever gotten into an argument with someone about, say, racial relations, and halfway through it the dude is all like, “Really, anything terrible I say about the blacks is totally not racist because MY SISTER DATES A BLACK GUY AND I’M TOTALLY FINE WITH IT”? This is an annoying but sometimes effective rhetorical technique that maybe New York gubernatorial candidate/crazed maniac Carl Paladino should take in regards to the gays. You see, it doesn’t really matter if he gave some mean speech about them brainwashing America’s youth, because he totally was a landlord to a couple of gay clubs, back in the ’00s! Wait, what?

Yes, would a homophobe rent space in his vast real estate empire to bars where gays can meet up and be dysfunctional with one another, in the butt?

New York Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino, who has spent the week fending off accusations that he is anti-gay, once collected rent from two gay clubs located in buildings he owned in downtown Buffalo, according to a published report.

Cobalt, one of the two clubs, operated as a gay bar in 2004 and most of 2005 and was run by Paladino’s son, William, the Daily News reported Wednesday, citing state liquor board records. It was housed in a building owned by one of Paladino’s many companies, Huron Group LLC, the newspaper said. The club was run under another corporate name.

The newspaper said liquor license records also showed that the other club, Buddies II, operated under the name Queen City Entertainment in another Paladino building in 2005 and 2006.

Buddies II described itself as a “bar where anyone and everyone is welcome (and) prejudices are left at the door,” the News said.

Your morning editor grew up in Buffalo, so he can assure you that Buffalo’s longstanding nickname is the “Queen City of the Great Lakes” so that corporate name isn’t gay at all. Also, both of those bars appear to be located two blocks from where he went to high school. Maybe Buffalo got cooler, after he left?

Anyway, instead of just saying, “C’mon, gays, you know I love you, and the money you spend on liquor,” Paladino instead seems to have settled on a couple of potentially less effective public relations strategies. First, he’s begging for forgiveness in a way that won’t convince the people who dislike him and will alienate his remaining supporters:

Mr. Paladino blamed the news media on Tuesday for turning his remarks into an overheated controversy. “I am not perfect,” he wrote. “I will reach out to leaders of the gay community to educate me on how to better represent my support for the rights of all citizens.”


Then his campaign also blamed the Jews:

Gay advocates were particularly incensed by a reference to homosexuality as “dysfunctional” in a draft of Mr. Paladino’s speech made public on Sunday.

Mr. Paladino never delivered that remark, and in his letter, he explained that he had redacted the reference before the speech because he considered it “unacceptable.”

He has said it was included at the suggestion of Orthodox Jewish rabbis. On Tuesday, at a news conference in Albany, [Paladino campaign manager Michael] Caputo took responsibility for the appearance of the remark, saying he had cooperated with the Orthodox community in writing the statement. “The speech mistake is on me,” he said.

Ha ha, yes, that is an interesting way to “take responsibility” for something, by saying that it was only in the draft speech because a wily Jew put it there. “It is 100 percent my fault that I didn’t notice this evil thing that a sinister rabbi put into my boss’s speech! He loves you, gays! Let’s never fight again! He wants to reach out to leaders of the gay community, for education!” (“Reach out” = “reacharound,” obviously.) [AP/NYT]

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