As noted earlier today, this election has been surprisingly not-gay-but-gay.
One thing that has been a constant source of fun (“fun”) was watching how public queerness intersected with mainstream politics. This mostly happened via cisgender gay males in the public eye commenting on the election while not actually participating as a politician. It’s been an interesting ride and gay men have stepped up as both disgusting jesters and tea sipping hand holders.
But who is the best? And who is the worst? To dissect, here are the ten most visible cisgender gay male non-politicians, ranked from best to worst.
1. Anderson Cooper
Who else would be the best? The political commentator has been present for so much this cycle: he’s held the Trump team accountable for their ridiculousness while being the first out gay man moderator of a presidential debate, which is a big deal. He isn’t content to sit idly by as the world falls into a meltdown, instead crusading to highlight issues on both sides of the aisle. Thus, Cooper is obviously the best non-politician gay coming out of the 2016 election.
2. Robby Mook
Mook is Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager and is “the first openly gay campaign manager for the presidential nominee of a major party.” While his role has been fairly low key, he has helped drive her campaign and is behind a ton of emails that I’ve gotten over the past two years. It’s no wonder he’s becoming a breakout star.
This is totally bonkers pic.twitter.com/ZOYoxnWvYd
— Colin Jones (@colinjones) October 10, 2016
3. Prof. Shaun Harper
Harper has been an ace political commentator this election cycle, mostly speaking to the election as it relates to toxic masculinity. His breakout moment came during pussy-gate and carried him through to many television appearances. Additionally, he helped shut down—Or framed the flames?—of a conservative Republican commentator’s deeply sexist claim that Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton are the same person.
4. Don Lemon
Lemon has had some ups and downs but has mostly come out of this election as a happy medium to everything going on at the increasingly dubious CNN. Also: he’s fifty. FIFTY!!! But he looks like he’s maybe 35.
6. Thomas Roberts
Did you know this gay MSNBC commentator existed? He is beautiful but has done nothing this entire election cycle. Moreover, his only highlight was being a guest star on Drag Race in April. Not necessarily a good thing.
When you go low, I go high 80% of the time, and knee you in the balls the other 20% of the time.
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) November 5, 2016
7. Nate Silver
Silver has come out as a constant stressor with his overly pessimistic forecasts of election results. While not forwardly bad by any means, this past weekend saw Silver go crazy over people questioning his and FiveThirtyEight’s methods of polling. Again: none of this is forwardly bad—it’s just kind of sad.
8. Peter Thiel
The original 2016 gay villain and Gawker killer, Thiel has come out as an unlikely political player as he’s put his slime mitts all over the Trump campaign. The lawsuit that he funded with Hulk Hogan set a strange pace for journalism and free speech this year, one that Trump tapped into and exploited. The result? A potential Thiel Supreme Court Justice.
— ashley vi (@harinef) October 13, 2016
9. Twinks For Trump & Lucian Wintrich
What can be said about these dudes? Cultural, sexual appropriation to drive ugliness and headlines. The work (“work”) by this group is simply to sensationalize and reiterate the obvious: Donald Trump’s gay supporters are largely white men. Moreover, the above Twitter battle between Wintrich and transgender model Hari Nef is a classic example of the empty, vapid shit stew that the movement has come from, where it’s OK to bash your community in order to get ahead.
10. Milo Yiannopoulos
If you thought Thiel and Wintrich were bad, you haven’t met Yiannopoulos, the shining beacon of clarified hate. He’s singlehandedly stoked the racism and xenophobia fire by bringing his Brexit brand of hate to America, making examples of people like Leslie Jones while enabling anti-queer attitudes from within. The good news for this gay super villain is that his brand is going the way of his hair: thinning, as being banned from Twitter has thwarted his reach.