Everyone seemed very happy for Mr. Ratburn — the anthropomorphic rat and schoolteacher on “Arthur” — after he tied the knot with a male aardvark named Patrick in a recent episode of the long-running animated series.
Well, everyone except Sebastian Gorka, the far-right former Trump adviser. He’s worried that the homosexual union between cartoon animals is part of a radical agenda to destroy civil society and the family.
“Did you have any questions about there being a culture war, ladies and gentlemen? Did you have any doubt in your mind? This is a war for our culture,” Gorka said on his radio show, “America First,” named after one of his former boss’s favorite political catchphrases.
Here’s the full quote:
“That's been the left from Robespierre to Trotsky to Marcuse to Alinsky to Clinton to Obama to today. Civil society doesn't exist, friendship doesn't exist, family doesn't exist — only permanent revolution.
Have you seen what I've posted on my twitter feed, with regards to family? ‘Arthur’ is a children's cartoon. I think it's actually made with your money, PBS.
My children used to watch Arthur 15 years ago, about a rodent-like creature that lived and had fun in his cartoon world. The new season of ‘Arthur’ will have one of Arthur's teachers at school, a male teacher, married to a fellow male rodent.
Mr. Ratburn’s students on “Arthur,” however, seemed unfazed by the matrimony. The episode, titled “Mr. Ratburn and the Special Someone,” never even explicitly identifies Patrick’s gender or address homosexuality, though it does identify Patrick’s profession (a chocolatier).
“Mr. Ratburn is married. I still can’t believe it,” Arthur says.
“Yup, it’s a brand-new world,” Francine responds.
While gay animals appear to offend Gorka, he doesn’t seem bothered by a historically Nazi-aligned Hungarian party’s sigil, which he wore to an inauguration ball in 2017. Gorka is reportedly a member of that group, Vitezi Rend, although he’s denied any affiliation.
Gorka also once refused to answer whether Trump believed Islam was a religion, with the implication being that the centuries-old faith was instead a violent ideology.
Gorka would likely be horrified to learn that the “Arthur” creators have long held a soft spot for the gay agenda. Back in 2005, PBS pulled an episode of “Arthur” spinoff starring his rabbit best friend, Buster, which featured lesbian mothers. “Arthur” creator Marc Brown said he was disappointed by the decision to pull the episode.
“What we are trying to do in the series is connect kids with other kids by reflecting their lives,” Brown said. “In some episodes, as in the Vermont one, we are validating children who are seldom validated. We believe that 'Postcards From Buster' does this in a very natural way — and, as always, from the point of view of children."
Cover image: Screenshot of "Arthur" on PBS