Earlier this year, popular skin stud Colby Keller, an XBIZ Awards nominee for Gay Performer of the Year, shocked the industry when he revealed that he voted for Donald Trump in last year’s presidential election. The resultant controversy hasn’t dimmed in recent months and Keller has penned an op-ed for The Advocate to provide context.
“This isn’t the story we receive as innocent children, about George Washington and his cherry tree, or Abraham Lincoln and his log cabin, Keller writes. “The story of our great democracy is a fairy tale, a fantasy that continues now.”
I chose Trump because democracy in the United States is a farce.
He notes both Democrats and Republicans go to “great lengths to sow division where there should be unity,” and claims “the Democratic National Committee chose Donald Trump as its preferred candidate, thinking it could easily defeat him. He was the official DNC tool of division. It’s the same old divide-and-conquer strategy that dates back civilizations. I chose Trump because democracy in the United States is a farce.”
Keller cites further contest via comments he gave during a YouTube interview in July with video blogger Chris Baker, in which he avers that he doesn’t support Trump or his policies, despite voting for him.
“In democracies, it is the opinion of people just like me, working people who struggle to survive in a brutal, contentious, competitive world, whose opinion should matter,” he writes in the op-ed. It is “dictatorships, not democracies, that rig elections. What we witnessed last November was precisely that: the intervention of dictatorship in our electoral process. One political party (of our miserly two-party state) rigged the political process to rob its constituents of a truly popular candidate forcing their own choice on a beleaguered nation, a national devastated by financial crimes the previous administration, from the same political party, worked fervently to enable, failing to pursue a single criminal prosecution for the 2008 financial collapse. That these same criminals bankroll both parties and their candidate of choice shouldn’t surprise. Corruption finds comfort in dictatorships like ours.”
Keller describes his vote for Trump as “a vote against a corrupt system.” The Advocate editors prefaced the editorial with this headline: “The gay adult star says he lost faith in America’s institutions and tries to explain how that influenced his vote. Do you buy it?” The editorial posted online has drawn dozens of comments, pro and con.
“Definitely part of the problem, in fomenting this barn fire of a situation our country is in,” wrote one commenter. “I have no problem with anyone that voted for Trump,” writes another commenter with an opposing viewpoint. “I do have a serious issue with anyone that continues to support Trump. End of the day, the Democrats did not deserve to win. The Democrats have not cleaned house, same as before. If Trump were to run today, he would probably win again.”
“Imagine fitting so comfortably into the status quo as an LGBTQ American you cast your vote for Donald Trump,” began an opposing op-ed published by Out.com, a sister publication to The Advocate, earlier this year when news of Keller’s protest vote was circulating around the blogosphere.
“Hate to break it to you, but being white, conventionally attractive and straight-passing make you a part of the status quo. It’s easy to be selfish and make a publicity stunt out of your vote in the most controversial election in recent history when, at the end of the day, you probably won’t be much worse off than (where) you started. Except now everyone knows you’re a confirmed asshole.”
In July’s video interview with Baker, Keller describes himself as “a Communist” and “very far to the left” of those who describe themselves as liberal. “I think the problem is that I don’t support Trump. I did vote for Trump. That’s the distinction,” he says. In musing on future projects, such as a continuation of his successfully crowdfunded art-porn project “Colby Does America” (which includes “several Canadian provinces,” he jokes), “I’ve kind of blown my social capital wad... Maybe in the future, people will learn to forgive me.”
Follow Keller on Twitter @colbykeller.