The Hippocratic Oath is taken by physicians and other healthcare professionals swearing to practice medicine honestly. Surely no medical principle is better known than “First Do No Harm.” If physicians take the Hippocratic Oath, then politicians take the Hypocritical Oath: “First Don’t Get Caught. “ Unfortunately, we have become inured to the philandering, pandering, disingenuous politician. We are no longer shocked, it seems, that their peccadillos becoming public on an almost a daily occurrence. Customarily, they feature a sad wife standing by her man as he sorrowfully claims he “let down his wife, family, and God, blah blah blah.” But this is not another boring tale of a straight man gone astray.
Republican North Carolina state Senate candidate Steve Wiles, from Belews Creek, has recently shown just how shameless a politician can be. Wiles is virulently anti-gay and supports a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. That seems about right for a Republican in a deep red district of North Carolina, but hold on. This is the same man who, back in the ’90s and early 2000s, once worked as a female impersonator at Club Odyssey, a gay nightclub in Winston-Salem. A co-owner of the nightclub, as well as a former employee told the Winston-Salem Journal that Wiles was gay at that time. According to co-owner Randy Duggins and former employee Gray Tomlinson, the politician was a frequent customer in the 1990s. Around 2001 and 2002, Wiles got his inner drag on. He began working at the club as Mona Sinclair, the emcee. He directed the show and booked performers. Apparently, he spent eight years socializing and working at Club Odyssey. Now I know many, many straight men and I cannot think of a single one who frequents the gay drag scene on a regular basis. And I live in the open screw-whoever-and-whatever-you-want mecca of New York City. I find it even harder to imagine that any straight man in North Carolina would be a regular patron and subsequently emcee for a weekly drag show for eight years! So let me get this straight, (pun definitely intended). Here is a straight, Christian family values man (of course) going to a gay bar on a regular basis. This straight man, having so much fun, decides to have even more heterosexual fun. So he dresses up as a woman and emcees the weekly drag show. And because this super hetero Jesus-loving man happens to know so many drag queens, he starts to book the entertainment. This seems completely reasonable in New York kids, but not in rural North Carolina. Mr. Wiles is a straight-up homosexual of the first order.
But when confronted with his colorful past, he denied and cried big mascara tears. Maybe Mona Sinclair was just his glittery alter-ego, taking over his brain with a swoop of purple eyeshadow. Perhaps he honestly has blanks in his memory of those special times. Of course not! It is simply amazing to me that Mr. Wiles actually believes that no one would see his picture in the paper or in ads and mailings and think, Hey I sat at the bar with this guy for eight years in a gay club! Maybe Mona Sinclair is the real person and her alter ego is Self-Serving Steve. Did Wiles really not think that the organizers of Miss Gay America (MGA) wouldn’t jump at the chance to call him out on his complete bullshittery since he was a promoter for the organization?
It seems Wiles is such a dick, they actually banned him for “conduct unbecoming to a promoter of the Miss Gay America pageant system.” Not only was he a promoter of Miss Gay Eastern States America, he was also a city preliminary promoter for Miss Gay North Carolina America. That’s a lot of gay promotion for such a straight man.
“I have already apologized to the people who matter most to me for the things I did when I was young,” Wiles said last week, according to UPI. In an interview with Business Insider, Wiles said: “I think that everyone has their own choices to make and I’m fine with everyone making their own. For me, from a religious standpoint, just for my life, for me, it just was not something that I wanted to continue. Of course it was an embarrassment, but you know, you move on. You live life, and you change, and you make yourself what you want yourself to be. And that’s where I am now.”
I’m not writing this simply because it is easy to bash such an asshat. I am completely and deeply offended by his cowardice and choice of words. His contention that being gay is a choice is such a spineless assertion.
Hey Steve, when did you choose to become straight? Was that when you got kicked out of the Miss Gay organization? What exactly are you apologizing for? Having fun? Being your true self?
Wiles says he is embarrassed by his gay past, and he is now going to make himself into what he wants to be. So he is making himself into a liar and a hypocrite. At the same time, he is denigrating all his friends in the drag world he exuberantly inhabited for eight years. The politician seems to be saying that he was gay but has decided to move on. How exactly? And what is the message he is sending to all those young men who are questioning their sexuality? He is perpetuating the myth that one can change their sexual orientation at will, or because you want to be a Republican state senator. Of course this is after he changed his political affiliation from Democrat to unaffiliated to Republican. So apparently it’s just as easy to change your politics as it is to change your sequined dresses.
But Wiles is not just a Republican. If so, he could have proudly joined the Log Cabin Republicans, the GOP’s gay advocacy arm. Instead, the politician went so far right, I’m afraid he might just tip over. Wiles has gone super Patriot Conservative, as evidenced by his personal page on the Patriot Action website. The North Carolina primary is over and Mona lost, getting trounced by longtime state Republican fixture Joyce Kraweic. But don’t worry North Carolinians. With the untimely and unfortunate death of Keith Crisco, Clay Aiken may just be the first openly gay single dad to win a statewide race in North Carolina. Now that’s something to celebrate!