Meet an anti-LGBTQ Senate candidate: Blake Masters

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Arizona Republican Senate nominee Blake Masters calls LGBTQ-inclusive books 'disgusting sex stuff' and transgender women 'men in women's bathrooms.'

Millionaire venture capitalist Blake Masters, who throughout his primary campaign regularly attacked LGBTQ people and dismissed the importance of their visibility and legal rights, won the Arizona Republican Senate nomination on Aug. 2.

Masters has a history of comments that display his racist, pro-gun, and anti-abortion views. He has proposed privatizing Social Security. The endorsements page on his campaign website includes a "Complete and Total Endorsement" from former President Donald Trump and others from a who's who of far-right figures, including Josh Hawley, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Tucker Carlson, and Madison Cawthorn.

Masters will face Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ), who is seeking a full six-year term after winning a special election in 2020, in the general election on Nov. 8.

Kelly is a co-sponsor of the Equality Act, which would explicitly add sexual orientation and gender identity to federal nondiscrimination laws, and is endorsed by the Human Rights Campaign.

"Every Arizonan deserves to live their lives as who they are, free from any discrimination," the incumbent said in April in a statement posted on HRC's website. "In the Senate I'm working to make that a reality by standing up to renewed attacks against the LGBTQ+ community and supporting the Equality Act."

A Masters campaign spokesperson did not respond to an inquiry about his positions on LGBTQ rights. But a review of his record reveals that he has frequently disparaged LGBTQ people and opposed their equal rights.

Wants businesses to be free to discriminate

In his responses to a survey by the American Family Association, a Southern Poverty Law Center-designated anti-LGBTQ hate group, for its "iVoterGuide," Masters did not answer a question about whether gender identity or sexual orientation should be protected classes under nondiscrimination laws.

Masters did say, though, that he strongly agreed with the statement "Religious liberty is at risk in the United States" and strongly disagreed with the statement "Individuals and businesses should be required to provide services even if it would violate their moral and/or religious beliefs."

"This was one of the Democrats' most despicable tactics; if you disagree with their politics, they will come after your business and livelihood," he said in response to the second statement. "That is unacceptable and un-American. I will fight for individuals and businesses' religious freedoms."

On his campaign website, Masters promises that, to "protect religious freedoms," he will "ensure that left-wing 'antidiscrimination' law never infringes on your right to honor God in peace and freedom."

In a July 2021 Twitter thread, he complained that Republicans play "too much defense, not enough offense" in the legal arena. He pointed to a 2017 Supreme Court ruling in favor of a Colorado bakery that refused to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple and said, "Masterpiece Cakeshop is another one. The baker won, SCOTUS said he can't be forced to write pro-gay things on the cake he was otherwise happy to bake. Now the baker is being sued again, for not doing a pro-trans cake. This will continue forever. The process is the punishment. Yes, we should take every win we can get. But we need to aim higher."

The point of marriage is procreation

In June, the Daily Beast reported that, although Masters had attended the 2017 wedding of his mentor and campaign benefactor Peter Thiel and his boyfriend, Matt Danzeisen, he does not believe that marriage or other same-sex unions should be legal.

The outlet reported that Masters had criticized the Supreme Court's ruling in 2015 in Obergefell v. Hodges that marriage equality was a constitutionally protected right at a campaign event in February, arguing: "Marriage is between a man and a woman. ... Marriage is an institution that goes back thousands of years, and it has a point. The point is procreation and creating children."

Florida's "Don't Say Gay Law" should be national

In March, Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a law prohibiting public school teachers and staff from discussing LGBTQ people and issues with students before they reach the fourth grade.

Masters not only endorsed the so-called "Don't Say Gay" law, but also proposed imposing it on the entire nation.

"When I'm in the U.S. Senate, I will push a federal version of the Florida law: your tax dollars should not fund radical gender ideology and weird sex instruction for children," he tweeted on March 10.

In June, he shared on Twitter video of himself responding to a Department of Agriculture policy barring school districts that accept federal school lunch subsidies from discriminating against LGBTQ kids, calling it "disgusting. It's heartbreaking, it's disgusting. ... What does that sound like? That sounds like Bolshevism, that sounds like Stalin, right? ... And we gotta get this transgender ideology out of our schools."

"The Biden Regime: 'Your kids will submit to our transgender ideology or we won't feed them lunch,'" he said in the accompanying tweet.

He also objected to a worksheet used in Arizona schools to encourage understanding of LGBTQ people, telling the Washington Post in July, "We're failing at the basics, and we're teaching kids, like, gay sex ideology."

Wants to censor LGBTQ-inclusive books

In March, California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom posted a photo of himself on social media reading banned books, including Toni Morrison's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "Beloved" and Maia Kobabe's award-winning graphic memoir "Gender Queer."

Masters responded by tweeting:

First of all, Beloved is garbage, terrible novel. Second, why is Gavin Newsom reading a book about receiving oral sex from a child?

 

Second from the bottom in his pile is a book called “Gender Queer” from Oni Press. (I added the redaction in red, uncensored is too disgusting to post.) This book was in Loudon County public schools.

 

Democrats like Newsom want to force disgusting sex stuff on your kids. Not on my watch.

Dismisses inclusivity and protections for transgender people

On his campaign page, Masters misgenders transgender people, promising, "As your Senator, I will: Oppose men in women's bathrooms" as part of a broader plan to "put an end to wokeness."

"The Democrats in charge right now want to teach your third grader that they can choose their gender and call you a domestic terrorist if you don't like it," he falsely claims. "This is absolute madness and I won't let them get away with it."

In an August 2021 tweet, he ridiculed a Phoenix parochial high school for displaying a "Protect Trans Youth" sign on a classroom wall, saying: "Most people know in their bones that this stuff is crazy. And left unchecked, it will only get worse. We need to get back to basics in our classrooms and stop the woke takeover of every institution in our country."

Says inclusivity and diversity will weaken Armed Forces

Masters has repeatedly blasted the Defense Department for attempting to combat discrimination and promote the equal treatment of LGBTQ service members.

"A friend just quit the Air Force. Special warfare guy, many combat tours in Afghanistan," he tweeted in March after Undersecretary of the Air Force Gina Ortiz Jones held an online conversation about LGBTQ inclusion. "Top reasons he left before 20 years? Vax mandates and mandatory PowerPoint briefings on 'trans inclusivity.'"

Last November, in a Twitter Space appearance, Masters said, "You have to be, like, a left-wing politician to get promoted above a two-star general now. We're just not going to be an effective lethal fighting force if we're teaching soldiers about social justice and diversity, inclusion, and critical race theory, and we're naming warships after, you know, gay rights heroes instead of, you know, World War Two admirals and stuff."

Masters made the comment three days after the U.S. Navy launched a new ship named for the assassinated San Francisco Supervisor and civil rights activist Harvey Milk, who served four years in the Navy before being forced out for being gay.

Thinks girls are pretending to be bisexual to be "fashionable"

At a campaign event in Eagar, Arizona, in January, Masters spoke of a "battle for our culture" and said that young women are pretending to be bisexual to be cool at school.

And when you look at the polling ... and 30% of Generation Z females identified as bisexual. Now, I like to think they'll grow out of that or whatever, it's just fashionable, clearly, but, like, there's something going on there, 'cause the real amount of people that are actually bisexual, that are actually sort of chemically or whatever, their brains actually attracted sexually to members of both, it's got to be less than 1%. But it's so fashionable now that talking about this in school, you kind of get privilege points on this sort of victim hierarchy if you identify with one of these nonconformative things.

He added that he does not mind if people are LGBTQ, but that he does not want to hear about it.

"Just don't shove it down my throat," Masters said. "Don't change it — Don't make my coffee shop cup rainbow. ... It's like, we're fine with what you do, but can we still have our traditional family values?"

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.