Kate Clinton on: Going down on Ann Coulter,
blaming Mary Cheney for the demise of AOL and laughing about the depression
Who doesn’t already feel like a recessionista?
Political watchdog Kate Clinton feels our pain. And she’s going help gays point blame in the right direction. Clinton (no relation to Bill or Hillary) lives in New York and has been working the media circuit for 25 years.
In 2008, she was on the True Colors tour, and in 1998, the Catholic-raised New Yorker published "Don’t Get Me Started," a book of politically dangerous thoughts that skewered her favorite Texans, the Bush dynasty.
Clinton is no stranger to the Lone Star State. And on Friday, she returns to Dallas for a gig at the Lakewood Theatre. On her blog, she’s already anticipating a citizen’s arrest while organizing a field trip to George and Laura’s new home.
Are you in your apartment counting piles of money? No. Why?
Because of the wonderful economy — and right before Valentine’s Day. Why, yes. I’m stepping on the piles as I jump out the window.
How has your life changed since the economy went down the toilet? We eat in more. Tonight, we’re going to a free lecture at the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies, which was my girlfriend’s pick. The brochure says the lecture is titled, "Unhappy Queers: London professor Sara Amhed doesn’t mean to be a Debbie Downer. But tonight, she explains an unhappiness in queer cultural politics."
I love the Debbie Downer reference, because I heard that Saturday Night Live’s Rachel Dratch based Debbie on Sandra Bernhard. And I always wondered if Molly Shannon based the "Don’t Get Me Started" comic on you. I would be so honored. Actually, I inspired Molly’s little Catholic girl who’s always smelling her armpits, and falling backwards and showing her underpants.
Do you keep tabs on Ann Coulter everyday? I don’t move pushpins on my map … Frankly, I don’t think Ann believes a single word she says. She just loves the press. I used to do a really scary joke in my routine that I was having a bad day because I woke up from a dream where I was going down on Ann Coulter.
Since you’re a political watchdog, what was Dubya’s worst offense against the gay community? I gave Laura and George complimentary tickets to my Dallas show. I hope they’re available.
Dubya’s worst offense?
Basically, it was homophobia on high. He was Ann Coulter-ish in supporting an amendment to ban gay marriage, which of course allowed everyone beneath him to misbehave.
Aren’t Obama and Biden guilty of the same "homophobia on high" — telling us that "marriage" is too sacred for gay people? I think it’s time to shift the frame. It was so wonderful for Obama to never talk about being black. Maybe gay people shouldn’t talk about being gay any more. Maybe we should talk about heterosexist supremacy.
Gay identity politics don’t seem to be working. Instead, we should go after Christian fundamentalists. Or the filthy rich — that’s an identity. Let’s talk about that. I’m just tired of our tactics.
Talk about gay marriage wears you out? Yep. Lets make an amendment that divorce is a felony. And if you are divorced, then you cannot vote.
Aren’t you just riding the Ann Coulter broomstick? Do you really believe that? Are you saying that if you strip my face off, there would be Ann Coulter with blonde hair?
I mean, are you honestly offended when someone gets divorced? No. I just think it’s as ridiculous as saying gay people can’t get married.
Are you happy there’s a lesbian Cheney family? Or do you want Mary and Heater Poe to know that they’re not fully embraced by the gay community? I blame Mary for the downfall of AOL.
How many friends of yours personally are out of work? I live in an 18-story building in New York — the former financial capital of the world. I was babysitting for a friend of mine, and we went over to the park in the little kids’ area, and there were all these dads standing with one hand pushing the swing, one hand looking at the BlackBerry just looking stunned.
And Kate, what’s funny about all that? Have you heard my Holocaust jokes?
Have you been able to mine any comedy about our economy’s cold diarrhea dripping off the fan blades? Are you referencing Mitt Romney putting his Irish setter on top of his car?
I do have a few good jokes, but they’re very painful. I’ve been through painful times with audiences, so we’ll see how this flies.
Quite frankly, will the audience be there? Because it’s extra money that people don’t have to come to a show. I’ve already had cancellations because the promoters have lost their sponsors. From what I hear, live performances are down 40 percent. So maybe I won’t be talking to the unemployed.
Oh, so people with jobs will be your audience? Maybe. I don’t know.
When has your comedy totally crossed the line? If my girlfriend says, "Oh, my God. You can’t do that."
Then to me, it’s like, ‘Do not pass Go. Use it!"
Now she’s getting tricky. Instead of saying, "Don’t!" She now says, "Oh, that’s great."
Kate Clinton performs at the Lakewood Theater, 1825 Abrams Pkwy.
Feb. 13 at 8 p.m. • Tickets $20-$50. • OpenDoorProductionstx.com • KateClinton.com • 817-568-1432
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 13, 2009.