Hug Your Sons, Dads

Indrani Sen
Forge
Published in
3 min readOct 23, 2020

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Photo: Lucas Uebel/Getty Images

I Miss Big, Wet, Embarrassing Kisses From My Father,” John DeVore wrote yesterday on his Medium site, Humungus.

It was a one-day-later reflection on a truly awful tweet—one that is (thankfully) already fading into the morass of toxicity that this election cycle has unleashed. John Cardillo, a right-wing pundit, captioned a photo of Joe Biden hugging his son with the question: “Does this look like an appropriate father/son interaction to you?”

“The message is both muddy and crystal clear,” DeVore writes:

Cardillo is plainly suggesting there is something… off… about these two men. He’s also mumbling another message under his breath: love is weakness.

I like to think of myself as a dirtbag sommelier so I also detected notes of homophobia in Cardillo’s obnoxious little one-liner. He’s singing a sad jingle to the macho faithful: any physical affection between men is… gay.

This is a bad thing, of course. To be gay. To love who you love.

This idea is brutally harmful, especially to those who espouse it. As the author and…

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Indrani Sen
Forge
Writer for

Editorial director at Medium, mom, gardener, cook. Formerly at Quartz.