Josh Marshall hauls up the story of Florida state legislator Bob Allen, who was recently arrested for soliciting sex in a public restroom; specifically it's alleged that he offered an undercover cop a Jackson if he'd let the legislator blow him. This was not a smart thing to do. But having been caught doing something stupid, Allen, who is a pudgy white fellow, has decided to double down on his stupidity by offering what is a truly, spectacularly -- indeed, magnificently -- dumb reason for soliciting another man for sex: Fear of a Black Planet!
"This was a pretty stocky black guy, and there was nothing but other black guys around in the park," said Allen, according to this article in the Orlando Sentinel. Allen went on to say he was afraid of becoming a "statistic."
Now, if you go to either Josh's site or the Sentinel article, you'll see that according to the officer (who, incidentally, was not there originally to entrap pudgy white state legislators in public restrooms, but was instead staking out a burglar at a nearby condo), it was Allen who initiated the contact. So let's think Allen's rationale through:
Allen, during the middle of the work day, was at the park, just minding his own business, enjoying the Florida sunshine or whatever, like you do, when he suddenly noticed that the park was full of black men. Fearing for his own personal safety, he decided that the best course of action was to go into the public restroom, peer over a stall -- twice -- to locate a black man, and offer that black man $20 and a blow job if he'd just leave him alone.
Which leads me to ask: What, is this like a Florida thing? For generations, have the white men of Florida pulled aside their sons and passed along the secret knowledge that the best way to avoid racial conflict with a black man is to offer him pizza money and a hummer? Is this part of a whole slate of intergenerational Floridian white man knowledge, up there with how to wrassle a gator and the best way to get James Baker to handle your recount? Clearly this all needs to be bound up in a book: Everything I Ever Needed To Know About Being a White Man in Florida I Learned in a City Park Bathroom Stall. I, for one, breathlessly await its publication.
What I find rather interesting is that Allen must believe, in some dim fashion, that people will actually buy this, and more than buy this, agree with it, which is to say that Allen believes that the average Floridan would think to himself or herself, "why, yes, when confronted with a park full of black men, a white man turning himself into some sort of ATM/suction device combo is an entirely rational response." Now, I fully admit to not being an expert on Floridians, so maybe this does make sense to them. You hear so many strange things about Florida; Hell, it's got its own tag on Fark, for crying out loud.
Having said that, I would like to believe that the vast majority of Floridians see this for what it almost certainly is: idiotic nonsense. The only real bit of news out of all of this is that Allen would rather be seen as a terrified racist than as someone willing to solicit strangers in a public restroom to get some man-on-man action. Well, here's the thing, Mr. Allen: Clearly, you can be both. There's a statistic for you.