It seems the honeymoon period is already over for Christine Hallquist.
After Hallquist became the nation’s first trans gubernatorial candidate last week, Wyoming’s largest newspaper referred to the Vermont Democrat as “born male but now [preferring] to dress as a woman” in an op-ed published Tuesday. In the Casper Star-Tribune, columnist Mona Charen lambasted news outlets who called Hallquist’s August 14 primary victory “historic.”
“Her success in the Democratic primary is being celebrated as comparable to the breakthroughs of African-American candidates,” Charen lamented.
“The words ‘history’ or ‘historic’ in the mouths of progressives are always laudatory,” she continued. “They are honorifics, not descriptors. After all, lots of things are firsts — a Holocaust-denying, Nazi sympathizer made it onto the ballot on the Republican ticket in Illinois’s 3rd congressional district.”
That isn’t the only time Charen linked Hallquist’s win to the rise of the Third Reich. The purported connection gets more explicit as the editorial goes on.
“I’ve always found this an inexplicable fantasy,” she said of the alleged liberal celebration of “history,” adding: “[T]he world witnessed within living memory one of the most progressive nations on the planet (Germany) descend into barbarism within the space of a few short years. Where was history’s benevolent guiding hand then?”
Charen claimed Democrats are pushing the narrative that Hallquist’s win is historic in order to “shoehorn…sexual nonconformists, into the minority category.”
“These favored groups — transgender people are the flavor of the month — are compared explicitly to African-Americans, and thus any accomplishment is celebrated as progress for them personally and for our society for shedding its prejudice,” she said. “In fact, the civil rights template is the only way liberals can understand events. They have no other lens.”
“And so they insist upon lionizing people who choose to behave and dress like the other sex as if they’re all Rosa Parks,” Charen concluded.
The widely circulated conservative columnist and author of Sex Matters: How Modern Feminism Lost Touch with Science, Love, and Common Sense has previously referred to marriage equality as an “assault on marital stability.” She also claimed same-sex adoptions are a “social experiment” which undermines “the biological and social importance of mothers and fathers and [discounts] the needs of children.”
Claiming that she liked to go by the name “Timmy” when she was a young girl, Charen has also claimed the trans movement harms “tomboys.”
“I really worry about what is going on now,” she stated in a June interview with The Christian Post. “Parents are going to have a tomboy little girl who wants to be called ‘Timmy’ and they are going to think that in order to do right by her they are going to start calling her ‘Timmy’ and that they should cut her hair and have her use the boys’ bathroom.”
From that experience, she has elsewhere concluded trans individuals are “confused people in need of understanding and therapy.”
In addition to her op-ed writing, Charen serves as a senior fellow for the Ethics and Public Policy Center, an anti-LGBTQ conservative think tank. The Washington, D.C.-based organization has claimed trans activists are “bent on dismantling the natural family [and] marginalizing or muzzling religious belief, particularly Christianity.” It also believes “anti-bullying programs promote homosexuality and gender nonconformity as normal and healthy.”
The group has further claimed trans acceptance is “insanity” and that alleged that gender confirmation surgery is “mutilation.”
In a statement provided to INTO, the national media watchdog group GLAAD claimed it’s “irresponsible and dangerous” for media publications to allow politically motivated lobby groups a mouthpiece to spread hate.
“This column is an irresponsible and dangerous disservice to readers that disguises Mona Charen’s discredited anti-transgender rhetoric as political commentary,” said Vice President of Programs Zeke Stokes. “Instead of providing a platform for medically and scientifically debunked lies, media should use this moment to elevate voices who can properly share stories and insights with their readers about who transgender people really are.”
Lucas Acosta, LGBTQ Media Director for the Democratic National Committee, further called the op-ed “a disgraceful, disgusting attack on not just Christine Hallquist’s identity, but also her accomplishments and lifetime of work.”
“As the former CEO of the Vermont Electric Coop, Hallquist has a long record of delivering for the community and will bring that vision to the governor’s office in Vermont,” he said in a statement to INTO. “Claiming that Hallquist’s ‘chief claim to office’ is her gender identity is shameful. Transgender people are our parents, our spouses, our siblings, and our neighbors, and they deserve a voice in the halls of government.”
Acosta added that the Casper Star-Tribune “should be embarrassed that they provided a platform for this hate.” INTO reached out to the newspaper for comment but did not hear back prior to press time.
The outlet is one of a handful of media entities that have run Charen’s op-ed in the past week. After debuting on the William F. Buckley-founded National Review last Wednesday, it has also been syndicated on the right-leaning website Ricochet, as well as the Creators blog.
The central and eastern Wyoming publication reaches a circulation of more than 23,000 people. In 2017, it won the “Deming Cup for General Excellence,” an award given by the Wyoming Press Association to the state’s best news outlet.
Hallquist’s team likewise could not be reached prior to publication.
In the eight days since her groundbreaking win, the 62-year-old former CEO has already withstood a litany of attacks on her gender identity. Fox & Friends host Ainsley Earhardt called Hallquist “that transgender” during the conservative channel’s coverage of the Vermont primary. Later that day, Tucker Carlson Tonight guest Chadwick Moore claimed her campaign has benefitted from “transgender privilege.”
Hallquist has reportedly received more than a dozen death threats since announcing her intention to run for office back in February. She recently told NBC10 Boston that the Vermont Democratic Party fields “four or five harassing calls a day.”
In an email to INTO, Casper Star-Tribune Editor Dallas Bower claimed Charen is just “one of the many syndicated columnists that [the newspaper runs] throughout the week.”
“We do not endorse the opinions in the Charen column, nor any of the other columns or letters to the editor that we publish each day,” Bower stated. “The opinions of our newspaper are made through our editorials, which are written by the Star-Tribune editorial board.”
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