Last night, I posted something here about the Assistant Attorney General of Michigan and his anonymous online harassment of an openly gay student at the University of Michigan. The student, I’m told, has since taken out a restraining order against the man, whose name is Andrew Shirvell. To my knowledge, however, no action has yet been taken against Shrivell by Attorney General Mike Cox, whose job it is to enforce the laws of Michigan equally, without bias.
Coincidentally, this wasn’t the only such case of anonymous online gay harassment by a government employee recently. Last week, when the comment, “all faggots must die,” was left on a gay political site by the name of Joe My God, it was tracked back to a computer in the office of Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss. Apparently, it was the work of a staffer. But, here’s where the two stories diverge. According to Joe Jervis, the man behind the Joe My God site, Senator Chambliss called him today, offering a personal apology and promising to fire the individual responsible, which he’s said to have done soon after. To my knowledge, our Attorney General has not responded in a similar fashion. But, public pressure is building… Now, just a few hours since its launch, the Fire Andrew Shirvell Facebook page has almost 7,500 fans. And, Michigan’s Governor, Jennifer Granholm, had the following to say via Twitter – “If I was still Attorney General and Andrew Shirvell worked for me, he would have already been fired.” We’ll see if it has any affect of Cox.
All I can say is that I’m thankful that Mike Cox did not win the Republican primary for Governor a few weeks ago. The more I hear about Shirvell, and his history, the more it sounds as though Cox hired him not in spite of his radical anti-gay ideas, but because of them. Shirvell, it seems, had a history of anti-gay activism in the Ann Arbor area, having gone to the extent of leading a boycott against, of all places, the New York Pizza Depot. Their offense? They had a rainbow sticker on their front door. And, it would seem, his hateful preoccupation with gay sex would only intensify as a law student at Tom Monaghan’s Ave Maria anti-abortion college.
Tom Monaghan, if you’ll recall, also shared a strangely intense interest in what other men did with their wieners… I don’t want to go off on a conspiratorial tangent, but I do find it interesting that, of all the businesses with rainbow stickers that Shirvell could have gone after in Ann Arbor, he chose to focus on a pizza place with aspirations of franchising. (For those of you who don’t recognize the name, Monaghan is the man who founded Domino’s Pizza. He did so here in Ypsilanti, and it made him rich, allowing him to do things like start a thoroughly creepy, far-right Dominionist college here in my back yard.)
So, one wonders if maybe Monaghan had a role in all of this. As Cox is a conservative Catholic who attended U-M as both an undergrad and a Law student, one wonders if Monaghan, who still spent much of the year here at the time, was ever exposed to Cox. And, one wonders if maybe he helped fund Cox’s political career. Or, did he, perhaps, make it a practice of introducing fresh, young students to Cox? (Cox is a charismatic character. I can certainly see men like Monaghan and Shirvell drooling over Cox.) I wish we still had journalists who could look into this kind of thing.