Dear Carl Paladino,
We have something in common, you and I. We both have daughters of about the same age. Of course, my daughter wasn't conceived while I was cheating on my spouse of thirty-something years, but whatever! Life is messy, and people are fallible -- I try not to judge.
Of course, that's a major difference between us. You do stand in (very public) judgment about how other people live their lives. How awkward for you.
Anyway. So you were recently caught in a big public flail about how The Gays are ruining everything and you hate them very much. It's one of those things -- you let yourself become the mouthpiece for a hard line group of religious fundies, and the next thing you know you're on all the news shows and people are meanly calling your bigotry . . . well, bigotry. And your feelings are hurt. Also, you're offended! You aren't a bigot, you just think that gays are contaminating America by being all gay in it's borders! And destroying the family, with all their gayness! And also, sullying apple pie! Well, maybe that was just in a movie about straight teenage boys. But still!
So anyway, this would have been a good time to send out a professional spokesperson to make soothing, nonsensical noises about how you mean no disrespect and just have traditional values and etcetera -- spokespersons often possess multiple degrees and have many years of experience on the subject of cleaning up these sorts of messes. But instead, you went onto the Today show (in person! Where were your handlers?) to continue the flail in the direction of Matt Lauer. "OMG!" you said to him. "My opponent took his kids to a gay pride parade! Where people are gay! And also wear Speedos! Would you do that???"
And then Matt Lauer looked at you like you're a freak. That's because you were, in fact, being a freak.
I don't know about Lauer, Mr. Paladino, but I do, in fact, take my kids to gay pride parades. This summer I took my eight-year-old daughter, her friend, and her brothers. She had a grand time: She got lots of hugs from the "Free Hugs" people (before you let your very active imagination* get out of hand, these were happy young people in shorts and t-shirts; no Speedos or grinding), she got lots of candy, and she got a bead necklace that Diana Degette personally dispatched her way via an aide. As for the floats of men in Speedos, well, they usually had happy dancey music, and often had bubbles and even jets of water to let off into the crowd. Also tiaras and ballgowns and high heels -- what's not to like for a little girl?
Now, I grasp your point -- you want to make sure that not only your little girl, but mine, and all the little boys and girls throughout the land, learn that being gay is wrong and immoral and whatnot. Again, people who have children while having affairs ought to be a little careful about the stones they through, but I'm not a "family values" voter, so clearly I just don't grasp the nuances. I, on the other hand, want my daughter to learn fractions, and essay writing, and also that gay folks are some of the people in her neighborhood, as they used to say on that one commie show in the seventies (no wonder Gen X grew up tending towards anti-bigotry! We were brainwashed by monster miscegenation and psychedelic lady bug picnics! That explains everything!)
All of which is to say, stop using kids as deflectors for your own ill-advised political events. Especially stop cowering behind other people's children. This is your hang-up, sir; don't drag innocent little folks into it. They're pretty happy eating their candy and waving their Lady Gaga fans. Thanks all the same.
(*Seriously, if you're going to say things in public, you should probably have some familiarity with what you are talking about. Talking on and on about all those beautiful young men in their skimpy swim wear and the grinding and all makes you sound either clueless or closeted. Or both. Of course, the fervid nature of your imagination shouldn't be a surprise to all of us who are, sadly, familiar with your tastes in porn. Here's a tip, though, for free: you should perhaps brush up on your Leviticus, without skipping over the parts that aren't about the gay. All those Hasidic Jews in your photo op? Not huge fans of beastiality, either. Just saying.)