In 1978, when I was a junior at East Forsyth Senior High School in Kernersville, NC, Anita Bryant (entertainer, 1959 Miss America Pageant second runner-up, and 1958 Miss Oklahoma) gained national attention as a leader of a group opposing homosexual teachers in the Dade County, Florida public schools. She went on to found and to lead Save Our Children, a "pro-God, pro-family" organization, and traveled around the country helping local citizens successfully oppose "gay-rights" laws.
As a heterosexual, I wasn't a target of Bryant's activities, but as an atheist growing up in the Bible Belt, I definitely regarded this "Bible-thumping, Christian bigot" as a threat regardless of one's sexual orientation. At the time, though I had many personal suspicions and had heard things in the high school rumor mill, I didn't know any open homosexuals personally. Even so, I found common cause with them against what I viewed as a common enemy.
I wrote this "poem" for extra credit in a creative writing class. To get credit for the work, I had to read the "poem" to my classmates. Being less intelligent and less sophisticated products of the Bible Belt than myself, they were somewhat less than thrilled with my magnum opus. After reading it, I found myself in the position of what is now called an "ally" and had to defend the right to be a homosexual and even homosexuality itself.
After some rather heated discussion, most of my classmates were completely flustered when one finally asked if there was anything about homosexuality that I didn't like. From coverage of "gay liberation" in the news magazines, I had learned that, in enclaves such as San Francisco and New York, many homosexual males endulged in a lifestyle of extreme sexual promiscuity which resulted in never-ending venereal disease epidemics. Our discussion ended with my conceding that I found this promiscuous behavior most objectionable. In a few years, the AIDS epidemic would make these "famous last words."
By the mid-1980s, national events and personal experiences were continuously forcing me to reconsider my earlier opinions. By the mid-1990s, I had grudgingly abandoned my youthful and naïve views concerning homosexuality and found myself in opposition to the normalization of homosexuality. This position long since has earned me the PC slurs "homophobe" and "bigot" as epithets from those who would call the author of this "poem," my 17-year-old self, an "ally." Ain't it ironic!
Rereading my "poem" after all these years, it strikes me as the sort of drivel one expects from a bright, intellectually independent, and unconventional seventeen-year-old. Oh, what a wonderful thing it is to be young and stupid! Enjoy!
The History of Annie Bryant
by Matt Wallace
There was once this "lady."
She came from Dade County, Florida-- or thereabouts--
And she went by the name of Annie Bryant
And she made her living by peddling citrus fruit.
Well ole Annie woke up one day
And decided she had something to say
To all those fine people who happened to be gay.
Armed with her Bible and the Cross on Calvary,
Annie got up on her soapbox and said,
"There must be something wrong with your head
To make you want to go to bed
With one of your own sex.
I'd love to wring your heathenistic necks
Until you fall dead.
Then you'll meet your Maker
And He'll cast your unclean soul into a fiery lake or
He'll torture you Himself.
And in conclusion, what you're doing is wrong
And it's immoral and it's ungodly!"
Well Annie was propelled into the public eye
With her pro-God and pro-family stand
And so a group of her fellow fools
Asked her to come to their town of Saint Paul
To give them a hand with their recall
Of a local Gay Rights Law.
Annie gleefully accepted the invite
And hopped on the very next flight.
In Saint Paul, Annie gave her audiences the same old singsong
About what the gays are doing is wrong
And immoral and ungodly
And she helped them pray
To God for salvation from the evils of the gay.
With Annie to lead the way,
Saint Paul's "good" citizens put the law away.
Having been "successful" in Dade County and in Saint Paul,
Hurricane Annie, the first storm of the season,
Struck Wichita, Kansas and Eugene, Oregon
With the same appeal to emotion and not to reason.
And no "true" Christian would dare say,
"Hey Annie, I think you're wrong
To tell these people they don't belong
Because of their personal preference."
To do so would be high treason!
Now don't get me wrong.
I'm just trying to warn ya.
Ole Annie Bryant
Is becoming a tyrant
And we've got to put her where she belongs.
Annie is so blinded by her religion
That she thinks that anything done in the name of God is just fine
Despite its harmful results upon life and liberty
And we've got to stop Annie Bryant
Before she becomes a tyrant
And deals us all an unjust blow.
I'm just trying to let you know
Of the danger ahead before it is too late.
And now that old bat Annie
Is spreading her sickness into California
With a spearhead of ignorance and fear
And we've got to stop her before it's too late.
Supported Compleat Heretic Pages
Though this page stands on its own, it also exists in support of the following pages on this web site:
The Military's Ban Against Homosexuals Should Remain
An essay written 25 July 1994 arguing against lifting the ban to military service by open, practicing homosexuals based on my personal experience as an enlisted soldier; an expansion of op-ed column "Ban against homosexuals must remain" of 4 February 1993
Ban against homosexuals must remain
An op-ed column published 4 February 1993 arguing against lifting the ban to military service by open, practicing homosexuals based on my personal experience as an enlisted soldier; includes background commentary and the obligatory letters to the editor from shrieking homosexuals in response to my "homophobia"
Traditional values come out on campus
An op-ed column published 4 November 1993 relating a hate crime committed during observance of "National Coming Out Day" at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro