Liberal blogger touts Goode's ties to gay film
Do ties to a film featuring gay themes make socially conservative Congressman Virgil Goode (R-Rocky Mount) a hypocrite? That's what Huffington Post blogger and third-year UVA law student Mike Stark strongly suggested today at a press conference outside of Goode's downtown Charlottesville office.
Stark, 40, pointed out that the 2003 film Eden's Curve, which tells the story of a teenage boy coming out as gay in college, thanks Goode in the credits and that Goode press secretary Linwood Duncan has a speaking role in the movie.
"It's rife with scenes of homosexuality, bisexuality, and drug use," said Stark. "That's fine in a movie, but it doesn't connect with what Virgil Goode has said to be a wholesome lifestyle," adding, "I'd like to know what other gay films Virgil Goode has been involved with."
Stark also hinted that Goode's $150,000 earmark for Danville's North Theatre in 2004 might have helped fund the film by virtue of the fact that Eden's Curve's producer and co-writer Jerry Meadors is also the artistic director of the North Theatre, where Duncan sits on the board.
"I don't think," said Stark, "that people think taxpayer money should be used as a slush fund for friends of congressmen."
Duncan says there was no quid pro quo between Goode and Meadors, and that Goode wasn't even aware of the movie until yesterday.
"He had nothing to do with the film and had no knowledge of it until yesterday," says Duncan.
Duncan says his role as a dean of students at an all-male college was simply an extension of a lifelong extracurricular activity.
"I've been an actor all of my life," he says, "and I was asked to do a part."
Additionally, Duncan denied any insinuation that Goode helped to fund the production.
"The North Theatre didn't exist at that time, and the funding went to the building of the theater," says Duncan. "It was a Housing and Urban Development grant."
Stark pointed out that he had been working with "the blogger who outed Larry Craig and Mark Foley," but stopped just short of making the same claim about Duncan's sexual preference.
"I don't know Linwood Duncan's sexuality, and I'm not in the business of outing people," Stark said, "but people who want to ask that question can ask it."
Asked for his response, Duncan said simply, "I have no comment. There's no place for that."
Stark is best known as the man who made national headlines when he approached then-Senator George Allen (R) at an Omni Hotel event, loudly and repeatedly asking, "Did you spit on your first wife?" before a group of Allen supporters tackled him to the ground.