Pim Fortuyn

It's not easy for Americans to grasp complex political concepts, especially in this wonderful age of concensus, but Richard Goldstein offers to help us to understand a man who definitely did not fit into our simple categories.

The anxiety that still surrounds homosexuality in this culture is what makes our gay right so brittle, and so set against any queer who doesn't meet the standard of respectability. But the saga of Pim Fortuyn shows what can happen in a society where the energies of gay people are unleashed. The potential for leadership asserts itself, and if the result isn't always pretty, call it an unintended consequence of success. The goal of the gay movement is to liberate gay people. What they do with their freedom is something else again.