Friday, July 11, 2008


Un. Be. Lievable.

Early in the week, Queerty reported that an employee of a Rite Aid in the West Village had posted an anti-gay sign in its window. That story was picked up by a few other prominent gay blogs.

If this was alleged to have happened in rural Kansas, maybe I would have accepted it at face value. But at Sixth Avenue and West 13th Street in Manhattan? Possible, but unlikely. Besides the location, there seemed to be enough cause for skepticism to at least look into the story a bit more before rushing it into the blogosphere. But rushed it was, and -- in the process -- the story of the homophobic Rite Aid manager became an Internet truth.

The story was, of course, bogus. And -- credit where it's due -- Queerty, Good As You, and Joe My God were among the blogs correcting the initial story, and doing so quickly. (Let me add that not every blogger was as principled, but... whatever.) And for what it's worth, I resisted my initial impuse to blog about the craziness when it was happening because I was too busy being obnoxious about it in the comments of various other blogs. Sometimes I have a hard time letting go.

Anyway, the reasons I mention this now are twofold. First, because it serves as a cautionary tale about a rush to judgment based on debatable 'evidence.' I am not particularly worried about a corporation like Rite Aid -- which tends to be crappy and expensive and deserving of scorn without adding homophobia to the mix -- but someone could quite easily sabotage a mom-and-pop store using the same tactic with the willing participation of people who blog first and ask questions later, if ever.

Second, I mention this because the fucking meme won't die! Over 1800 members? Seriously? Days after it was exposed as a hoax? Their hearts might be in the right place, but I worry about their heads.

And that's all I have to say about that.

Except, did you hear about the sign taped to the outside of the JPMorganChase branch on Third Avenue announcing that the bank doesn't want your gay tranny pervert butt-sexing money? Yeah, I'd better go start a Facebook group...