Why were the nativists at the Paradise Valley Mall Saturday? "Why not?" sputtered American Freedom Riders founder Danny Smith in reply to my query. Hey, it's still a free country, kinda-sorta. And the AFR and other anti-illegal groups wanted to get out of the Thomas Road box this weekend, seeing that the pro-immigrant forces of Salvador Reza were taking a break from protesting M.D. Pruitt's Home Furnishings down on 35th Street and Thomas. Also the nativists were certainly getting a far more welcoming response to their illegals-go-home message from the passing vehicles here at the intersection of Cactus and Tatum Roads.
Smith doesn't like the term nativist, but "anti-illegal immigrationist" doesn't quite have the same ring, and when certain numskulls out there appropriate the term "patriot" for themselves, why would you even want to go near that lable? Anyway, maybe it was the post-holiday blahs, but I passed 'round the protest three or four times before I decided to park the hoopty and make my rounds via foot. In general, the mood was lacking something -- oh, I don't know, maybe opposition? Despite its "Paradise Valley" handle, the PV Mall ain't no Biltmore or Scottsdale Fashion Square. It's a decidedly middle-class venue. I couldn't help but think that the nativists were just preaching to the choir.
I did, however, get to meet Elvis Presley and the Chik-fil-A cow. Unfortunately, the Chik-fil-A cow was noncommittal on the subject of the protest, and only wished that people would eat more Chik-fil-As, thereby saving its sorry bovine behind from ending up as a ground beef patty. Elvis was straight-up nativist, as you might expect. The guy's real name was "Fred," and he was riding a purple Harley. Fred says he has a purple Elvis jumpsuit to match the Harley and promised to wear it at the next demo and do some kung-fu moves for the passers-by. Oooh-la-la.
Laine "Burn a Mexican flag for Freyja" Lawless was on hand, reppin' her Border Guardians group. Noticeably absent was the more reactionary puke parade from the crew of former Kia-peddler and hypocrite extraordinaire Rusty "CYA" Childress. That's a positive thing for Smith, to keep 'em at arms length. Childress' United for a Soverign America is one of the most extreme of all nativist factions in the Valley, one that's welcomed neo-Nazis such as J.T. Ready into its fold, played host to white supremacists like Damon Ashenfelter, and once had a member of the racist White Knights of America in-house.
The AFR disowned Childress after its members say they discovered what they believed to be illegal aliens working on the Childress Kia lot (the lot has since changed ownership). Childress has never denied the charge publicly to my knowledge, though I did call him on several occasions for comment. Childress is a hypocrite, a coward, and a coddler of extremists. No wonder so many in his own movement loathe his presence. One of his hangers-on, in particular, a grizzled old goat who looks like Snuffy Smith, is a true embarrassment for the nativists' cause. Every time some newspaper runs this fool's pathetic, hate-filled visage, open borders activists cheer. Keep up the good work, buffa-snuffy. The more folks hate seeing you, the more they'll hate your bigoted message.
A Danny Smith sammy, hold the cheese: Anti-illegal urban cougar Michelle Dallacroce is on the right...
No one said Elvis could spell, just stay off his blue suede shoes, uh-huh...
Nativists wanted to check this cow's papers, and the cow spat some cud at 'em. Way to go, Bessie!
Fred the Elvis guy says he'll be back next week, wearing a purple jumpsuit and doing some kung-fu moves...
In other news, it was William "Fucking" Reed who first called me with the tidbit that Anderson's Fifth Estate was coming out like Neil Patrick Harris, and becoming a gay club called Forbidden. That's right, where the women's restroom was once "forbidden" to transgender doods needing to pull down their pantyhose and pee, that whole controversy now seems as retarded as bothering to have a Super Bowl this year so the Patriots can kick some other team's ass.
At first, I thought it might be a hoax, seeing that the first online piece written by the Arizona Republic's Megan "I used to be with the band" Finnerty mentioned that,
"Anderson asked Scottsdale's Michele de LaFreniere, who's had gender reassignment surgery, to leave his club in 2006 and she subsequently filed a claim of discrimination with the Arizona Attorney General."
De LaFreniere's never had gender reassignment surgery, apparently. That's a point the Republic flubbed before in a profile of De LaFreniere by Richard Ruelas back in November. Ruelas got a laundry list of things wrong in the De LaFreniere profile, including the fact De LaFreniere's still retains her male genitalia. You'd think clueless club chick Finnerty would've gotten that one fact right. Maybe that was the "tell" to an April Fool's style joke, I wondered at first. But when the item ran in the actual paper minus the reference to De LaFreniere's still-intact manhood, I figured it was on the money.
I put in a call to Anderson, mainly because I wanted to know, uh, so what the hell was the last year-plus all about if the club was gonna go gay anyway? Anderson has yet to get back to me. He must be feelin' sheepish about the whole thing. Or defensive. First he kicks the trannies out of his club, then he cries about how he's the big victim in all this, the legal bills he's paying, the investigation by Attorney General Terry Goddard over the complaint filed by De LaFreniere, yadda-yadda-yadda...
Then he turns the place into a gay club? Hell, he should've saved us all the time, energy and ink and just done that from jump. I don't know what the new potty arrangements will be at Club Forbidden. But one can assume that if it's an all gay crowd, where the trannies are taking a whiz will not be that big of an issue. Nor will Anderson's new single-use, unisex bog, which he unveiled recently after deciding to make nice with De LaFreniere.
DJ William "Fucking" Reed (that's "Mr. Fucking" to you) dealt with this bullshit first-hand when Anderson ended up canceling the last minute a gig for Psychic TV, led by transgender rocker Genesis P-Orridge. Seems Anderson had no freakin' clue about P-Orridge and Psychic TV. Initially, he welcomed them despite their sexual avant-gardism, then he cancelled the show, sending Psychic TV and its fans (myself among them) into a tailspin as Reed hunted for a new venue. Reed, as you might expect, views Anderson's sudden switcheroo with a jaundiced eye.
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"The only thing that I see that makes sense is that his business is suffering," said Reed. "So he's trying to tap into a market he had yet to tap in on."
Though Reed's straight, he's played nearly every club in the Valley, and knows the scene as well as anyone. Asked if he thought the gay community could trust someone they'd just spent the last year fighting with, Reed said, "It's hard to tell, man. I have no idea. I couldn't see how they could..."
In the few years I've been here, Anderson's has generally been known as the sorta place where 40-somethings go to sweat to the oldies (in their case, '80s dance music) and look for a middle-class hetero hook-up. So Forbidden, even if it proves to be short-lived, can only be a step-up culturally from its immediate predecessor.
Thus Tom Anderson has met his water closet Waterloo, and fulfilled his karmic destiny in creating a spot in Scottsdale where all men, and men who want to be women, can urinate with impunity! Now all we need is a bronze statue erected somewhere in his honor. Three guesses what it should look like...