la cage aux folles: the sequel

The Jews Made Gay Club Owner Carl Paladino Homophobic

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.

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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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About the author

Josh was born and raised in Buffalo, New York, leaving him with a love of chicken wings and a tendency to say “pop”. He taught ancient Greek and Roman history to undergraduates before fleeing from academia in terror; worked for a failed San Francisco dot-com that neglected to supply him with stock options or an Aeron chair; lived in Berlin, where he mostly ate Indian and Ethiopian food; finished in third place on his sole Jeopardy! appearance (the correct answer was “Golda Meir”); and was named 2007 Blogger of the Year by The Week, for obvious reasons. Josh is the creator/editor of COMICS CURMUDGEON (which you should read) and does geeky editing and writing about geeky things such as "the Java programming industry for JavaWorld." He lives in Baltimore with his wife Amber and his cat Hoagie.

View all articles by Josh Fruhlinger

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75 comments

  1. Widget10

    Hitler was right!, the Jews are responsible for all of the worlds ills, ever since time began, especially that trouble maker Jeebus feller.

  2. MarionNYNY

    And if a Jew told him to go fuck himself with baseball bat would he do that?
    That's what I want in governor, someone who'll read out speeches put in front of him by supporters no matter how crazy they are. Good thing the rebbes didn't give him the one about the state of Israel being an abomination (another Satmar belief)
    But on a more serious note, I knew when I saw those black hats behind him that somehow this was gonna be bad for the Jews.

    1. Katydid

      This is why Jews always have a lot of luggage. When the crazies start going after one group, they always wind up tracing it back to the Jooz. We're always waiting for the day we have to say, "Harry, pack the bags."

  3. iburl

    No wonder he says he wouldn't take his kids to a gay pride parade. His son was already on the Cobalt float. You go girl!

  4. Crank_Tango

    Dear Jews, this asshole hates you too and you know it. I also grew up in Buffalo, so don't question it!

    1. Beowoof

      As a fellow ex Buffaloian, I can vouch for this guy being an asshole. The construction business in Buffalo was a FAMILY operation and it wouldn't surprise me a bit to learn that Paladino is connected to the Maggadino clan.

  5. slappypaddy

    in that portion of the american constitution which is all too little read, there are the ten commandments of acquisition. i'm surprised more people are not familiar with them. one of them is, "there shall never be any mixing of issues of putative morality with issues of net profit." you can look it up.

  6. edgydrifter

    I hate the gays, but I'll take their money.
    I don't hate the gays–the Jews made me say that I did, for money.
    I will say I hate the gay Jews that I love, for enough money.
    I love money.

    –Carl Paladino, "On Personal Ethics"

  7. SheriffRoscoe

    Don't forget the group of woman reporters who were shut out of this news conference, because of Leviticus. Who would've guessed pandering to the Orthodox Jewish community would be so fraught with peril?

    1. SarcasticNymph

      Really now, how incompetent must a politician be to destroy his credibility pandering to .01% of the electorate?

      Oh, wait …

  8. chicken_thief

    Apparently his gay nephew, Jeff, hasn't gotten the word that it is all the Jews fault because he hasn't shown up for work since Paladino was hoodwinked into grossly misstating his true beliefs.

    BTW, I wonder how all that walking back, "Ah lovvveee teh gehz!!!!", is sitting with his Teatard base…

    1. Wadisay

      Let me be the first to propose that a sincere apology would involve Paladino putting on dreadlocks and a miniskirt.

  9. Anthr_DCLwyr3d

    If you own the real estate for two gay clubs in Buffalo, I think that makes you the Gay Club Kingpin of Buffalo.

  10. mavenmaven

    This is an old strategy. During WWI, the Germans encouraged the German Jews towards extreme patriotic fervor, Prof. Hermann Cohen wrote a book addressed to American Jews proving Germany was their true Jewish Fatherland. After Versailles, the war was the Jew War Monger war, Godwin's rule, etc.
    Jews. Great target- Rich, poor, Liberals, Neocons, gays, homophobes, N-lovers, Shvartza haters, got a problem, invoke the JOOOZ

  11. SayItWithWookies

    Everything Carl Paladino knows about dealing with minorities he learned while bringing blacks and Koreans together during the LA riots.

  12. petehammer

    Seeing him on the Today Show (shut up) made me realize how his fractured brain works. He would say, without pausing, "I believe it is wrong and don't think they should marry" and "I am against discrimination." Somehow these concepts can coexist in his brain. He also was clearly really, really unprepared, as he stated he would welcome teh gays into his administration and Lauer asked him "in what positions" (*snicker*) and he gave a Sarah Palin-esque "all of them, wherever they are qualified."

    Maybe Palamino already knows the positions gays are qualified to take? So many executive-level positions*.

    *buttsex.

        1. PsycWench

          Everyone, please give petehammer thumbs up for the great set up. I am merely a cog in his machine here.

  13. XOhioan

    Saw on another site a comment by a former employee of Cobalt. Carl stopped by the club at least a couple of times to talk to his son.
    Men in speedos grinding against each other = not OK.
    Rent-paying men in speedos grinding against each other = OK.

    1. Terry

      Rent paying men in speedos grinding against each other = ok
      Appropriately dressed gay people not grinding against each other and working as teachers = not ok

  14. m_supercomputer

    The "I'm a homophobe because I am deeply knowledgeable about some gay bars" argument is more common than you'd think. I once had a former coworker pick a fight with me about how he thought gayness was always a result of the person being abused as a child. His support for this? "I used to be a bartender at a gay bar! I know about this kind of thing!"

    I don't believe I had any rejoinder at all, as I was so incredulous as to be unable to speak.

    1. MiniMencken

      Warren Hinckle writes that he had a professor at USF, a tony Jesuit college in San Francisco, a city that famously knows it's way around a dick, who agreed with the Byzantine Emperor Justinian's theory that homosexuality caused earthquakes. That sees your gay bartender and raises you by a, uhm, a whole bunch.

  15. V572625694

    Is Paladino also 30 points behind in the polls and as irrelevant as the Delawitch? You kinda hope not, because this guy's a million laughs, unless he actually gets elected. Although you have to admit he's crafted a brand new style of non-denial denial: I paid someone to write it, I read it to myself, but then thought better of it in front of certain audiences. This is almost honesty!

    1. Beowoof

      The comedy value of his election is literally invaluable. I can see comedians around the country making contributions to his campaign. His election makes their life easier as their material then writes itself. Chirstine is big with this group also.

  16. PsycWench

    That Paladino took rent money from gays only shows that he is following the cardinal rule of Republicans: Money trumps all other considerations. No surprises here.

  17. elviouslyqueer

    “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.”

    Not calling them dysfunctional faggots would be a good start, imo. Also, slightly OT, but one of the gay bars is on Johnson Park? Fabulous!

    1. ReturnToMetal

      Carl still wonders why anyone would "choose" to be gay.

      I have a feeling he'd come out if there were enough money in it.

  18. x111e7thst

    If someone tells me they are not prejudiced because "MY SISTER DATES A BLACK GUY AND I’M TOTALLY FINE WITH IT” they are flat out begging me to beat the ever-loving shit out out of them. As I am polite and accommodating I will certainly oblige.

    1. JMPEsq

      My favorite version of the classic racism excuse was Scott Baio's "I'm not a racist because some of my wife's best friends are black"; the guy didn't have his token black friend to turn to for feigned tolerance.

    2. PsycWench

      With all due respect to our editor, this is more like "I'm not prejudiced because my sister dates a black guy and he pays me for doing yard work in cash".

  19. Ruhe

    The Rabbi made me do it!? Does this make Paladino the Goy Golem? And after the apology is he the Gay Golem or just another gay Goy?

  20. Katydid

    I used to have a boss who was from Buffalo. When I told her I am Jewish, she was so excited! She told me I was the first Jewish person she had ever met, and as her eyes looked me up and down, I kid you not, I could tell she was wondering why she hadn't been able to tell.

    What the hell goes on in Buffalo?

    1. SayItWithWookies

      Didn't she know that she was supposed to touch your head to see if you had horns? If it's on Michelangelo's statue of Moses it must be true.

    2. PsycWench

      Oh, shit, sorry, I guess I can't follow you anymore. It's against the rules.

      Actually my husband is Jewish and has much the same experience here in SW Virginia.

        1. Maman

          Don't sweat it Katy. Something often goes wrong with peeps in the Queen City. They get tired of explaining that there is more to NY than NYC. It makes them go a bit daft! That is why so many of us leave.

  21. Chet Kincaid

    I have an idea for the next Jib-Jab: a parody of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" that's about all the crazy teabag candidates crawling out of their hellholes for the November election. Featuring, of course, Christine on her broom, the Waffle-house SS guy, and Paladino riding a horse fucking a woman. They all lurch to the National Mall and are led in the Thriller Dance by Zombie Ronald Reagan. Perhaps in the prologue, Christine can say to Glenn Beck, "I'm not like all the other girls" before morphing into a terrifying succubus and devouring his soul, Mormon undies and all.

  22. DashboardBuddha

    Quoting myself from another site:

    If you're gay
    and you can pay
    come on in and I'll make your day

    But if your gay
    and also broke
    your freedoms I would like to choke.

    Too busy at the moment to come with something new.

  23. Maman

    Dear Morning Editor,

    I don't know when you left Buffalo, but I am going to guess that I am older than you and I knew that their were gay clubs in town when I was there (of course, virtually all my high school boyfriends are gay). And there were gays in the 'burbs too. Or at least mine. Lockport.

  24. An_Outhouse

    Carl and Meg Whitman should form their own political party: The Taking Responsibility Party. And they would too, if it wasn't for the Jews, Gays, and Browns (including Jerry and the ones from Cleveland).

    1. ReturnToMetal

      The Cleveland variety are "self-hating Browns." They just can't stand to hold a lead in the fourth quarter. But I digress …

  25. m_supercomputer

    The "I'm a homophobe because I am deeply knowledgeable about some gay bars" argument is more common than you'd think. I once had a former coworker pick a fight with me about how he thought gayness was always a result of the person being abused as a child. His support for this? "I used to be a bartender at a gay bar! I know about this kind of thing!"

  26. thefrontpage

    Paladino was obviously brainwashed when he signed the leases for two gay clubs in buildings that he owns. His own 23-year-old nephew is obviously brainwashed. Supposedly, the gays that Paladino would hire all throughout the New York state government would be brainwashed. And supposedly the hundreds, or maybe thousands, of people who attended the gay clubs in the buildings that Paladino owns are also all brainwashed. And supposedly the literally millions of gay men and women across the world are also brainwashed.

  27. Terry

    It actually surprises me that Paladino's son ran the one gay bar more than that Paladino rented space to two gay bars.

    Why would a gay man stay in Buffalo? The weather is crappy, the city is dreary, there is no real appreciable culture there. Why not just head down state? Actually, that holds true for ANYONE living in Buffalo.

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