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Thursday, April 25, 2024

Commentary: Miss California, thanks for being honest

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(CNN) — A lot of folks are always saying they like to keep it real, that they want authenticity and straight talk. Yet when someone actually does it, there is hell to pay.

Welcome to the world of Miss California, Carrie Prejean, who, since she answered a question regarding same-sex marriage in Sunday’s Miss USA pageant, has been savagely attacked by those who oppose what she had to say.

Leading the burn-her-at-the-stake parade is media opportunist Perez Hilton, the self-described gossip queen, and the individual who kick-started this controversy by asking the initial question as to whether the issue of same-sex marriage should be left up to the states.

It seems that Hilton, who is gay, was none too pleased that Prejean chose to actually give her personal opinion on the issue, and ripped her on his blog after the show, using crude obscenities as he continued to attack her at every turn on his media blitz.

Hey, Hilton, from a real journalist to a wanna-be who traffics in gossip: Never ask a question if you’re unprepared for the answer!

Frankly, this whole story is pretty stupid. Isn’t the whole point of asking a question to get someone’s true feelings, rather than the plastic and superficial answers we are all used to receiving?

Sure, Prejean could have gone the safe route and given one of those answers that reveal nothing and is hard to decipher — you know, the ones politicians give all the time — but no! She actually gave her real opinion, and is now being torn to shreds for it.

She opposes same-sex marriage. OK, fine. So what if she had said, “Hey, I’m in full support of same-sex marriage.” Would she now be celebrated on gay-focused blogs, magazines and Web sites? Would her detractors actually be saying how open she is and that she’s a great person?

Same-sex marriage is undoubtedly a hot button issue. And being from California, the site of Proposition 8, the ballot initiative that voters approved outlawing same-sex marriage, Prejean has surely had to hear the debate go back and forth. But her remark isn’t outside the mainstream. A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll shows that 55 percent of Americans are against same-sex marriage, and Proposition 8 did pass in her state 52-48 percent. iReport.com: Prejean ‘should step down’

What’s interesting about this is that many of the same folks who are slamming her for her remark voted for President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, who both have the same belief: that marriage should be between a man and a woman.

Even Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made it clear that she has the same view, and it was her husband, President Bill Clinton, who signed the In Defense of Marriage Act, the federal law that forbids states from having to recognize gay marriage in other states.

In other words, four of the biggest liberals in the country have the same belief as Prejean, but a beauty pageant winner is being torn to shreds. Hello, hypocrisy!

Those who criticize Prejean have the same right as she does to express their viewpoints. But enough with all the political correctness, where someone says she should have danced around the issue, smiled and move on. iReport.com: ‘Thank you, California!’

At the end of the day, we all have to be true to ourselves. Whether it’s a gay gossip writer who favors same-sex marriage or a heterosexual woman who is against same-sex marriage. The day we condemn folks for speaking honestly is the day we become a bland society.

Maybe we’re already there.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Roland Martin.

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