Pete Buttigieg and "the Obvious Appeal of the Butch Aesthetic"



Agree with the bad optics. The memorial should be revered for the victims it memorializes and not used as an art backdrop for a photo shoot.


The last time I was there in 2017 there were signs in multiple languages at the main entrance of that memorial that said photos are forbidden. And the security/docents were yelling at people taking photos.

Has that changed or something?


I'm glad that the country has changed enough that Buttigieg can be a viable Presidential candidate. But I don't like him, not enough exprience, too DINO. And this was not the first time I've read about something his husband has done that shows cultural insensitivity.


I agree with you Phoebe. Show some respect,

Buttigieg has upset the people in South Bend with his bull shit. He is a fraud.


The point of a holocaust memorial is to share the pain and grieve this unparalleled tragedy; that not only those who were killed, but the whole world was victim to evil.

What these photos illustrate is a failure to recognize the immensity of that fact.


If he's a Fraud which one isn't? Guess he should be closeted - then maybe people would take him seriously.


“According to a Quinnipiac poll released Monday, Buttigieg is polling at less than 1 percent among black voters in South Carolina, while Biden had 44 percent.”

Man... Buttigieg really brings out the homophobia deeply imbedded in African American culture.


That’s not a selfie.


What a homophobic post. He’s gay so you assume he’s giving a come hither look because gay men can only be thinking about sex. The guy knows a lot more about the horrors of war than you ever will. “Sunglasses casually pushed back”, “gazing at the photographer”, “slight smile”. And then you juxtapose it with sexually explicit poses of others. Take your homophobic stereotypes and shove them.


Hey Jasmyne, you do realize that this photo was taken by the LEGALLY MARRIED HUSBAND of Mayor Pete? "Lustful selfie"? What nonsense. Jasmyne Keimig is clearly more offended by Mayor Pete being allegedly "butch" than anything to do with the photo. Pathetic and clickbait article.

  1. You are definitely mistaken. There is no prohibition of photos at this monument. It was never intended as a sacred place. Just ask the architect.

Assuming you also hate on Pink -


1) I find nothing erotic about Buttigieg’s photo. But then he’s not my type so maybe I’m missing something.

2) There’s is a strain of gay culture that is completely incurious about history and exists solely for the now. It used to bother me, especially as a gay man who is deeply interested in history. But I can understand the attraction. We completely remake ourselves, we ignore our history (personal and as a people) because it’s often painful and easier to hide from. We are not deeply rooted because how could we be? That can manifest in a sort of flippancy like this.

In the face of the Holocaust, what do you do? Turn to G-d? Ridiculous. Or ignore it, deny it, bury it, make it another transgression, another joke.

It’s like barebacking with strangers at the height of the AIDS crisis. Transgressive and strangely alluring in a dark and destructive way.

Or perhaps, for some of us, sex and sexuality is our god. And so that’s what we turn to.

3) Keep in mind, any kind of open, gay sexuality is spitting in the face of Nazis. So perhaps this is our offering of very deep respect.


@12 huh. I may be thinking of the Shoah in Paris about the signs. Since obviously I didn’t take pictures I can’t remember.

I’ve been to Berlin over a dozen times since the 1980’s. But only to that memorial once and was already burned out on Nazi atrocity porn by that point.

But I swear the security people at the outdoor memorial in Berlin were yelling at teenagers for taking pictures. My German is only so,so, - so, it may have been for being loud. But they yelled at a gaggle of tourists. That much I do remember. There had been a literal Nazi rightwing rally earlier that day around the Tiergarten so maybe it was a special sensitivity.

Regardless. It’s tacky as shit to take glam photos at any sort memorial to an atrocity that has occurred in living memory. I have no idea why anyone would want photos of such a place.


Ah. From the website here is the rules I saw posted. It was commercial photography that is forbidden (without permission).

“(3) The following is not permitted:
Loud noise of any kind,
Jumping from one stele to the next,
Bringing dogs and other pets onto the grounds,
Bringing and parking bicycles or similar equipment,
Smoking and consumption of alcoholic beverages.
(4) Visitors are requested to follow any instructions given to them by authorised security personnel.

Photo, film and television recordings for commercial purposes require a written prior permission by the Foundation Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe.“


Oh for crying out load!


@10 - Are you being sarcastic? This post is no more homophobic than a doily.


I feel a bit contrarian here, but I don't think this photo of Buttigieg is all that offensive. It's not a gratuitously sexualized selfie or necessarily even a posed photo - it just seems like a kind of tender, pedestrian observation by his husband. I'm gay and of Jewish heritage - having been to Holocaust memorials, it's a surreal experience. Tragic, somber, thought-provoking... and terrifying, because you know it's someone not unlike yourself who was the target of an extermination campaign. People handle those emotions in different ways. Feeling love well up in your heart for your husband while remembering governmentally-sponsored persecution that systematically murdered people like you is hardly an inappropriate reaction, and that seems to me to be the spirit of this photo. Not that I think posting it publicly was in the best judgement; more that I don't think it's scandal-worthy.


Have some respect.
I would want a photo to remind me of my visit, but not one of myself there.
I can't see how anything good can come from posting this on Instagram. It shows a lack of good judgement. Sad.



I agree the photo itself isn't really noticeably erotic, though the "This guy" caption definitely moves the needle in that direction. It's all moot anyway. I still like him well enough, both as a person and as a politician, though he's absolutely not gonna be the nominee. Which is for the best.


"Butch aesthetic"!? Buttigieg would not be typed as femme but he's not "butch" either. Also, the caption, "This guy," is vague at best and totally non-erotic. I'm no Buttigieg supporter, but he's got enough flaws as a candidate that you don't need to shoehorn him into your ridiculous and poorly constructed frame. His husband took a fucking picture in a location that by pure coincidence has a connection to some obscure co-optationist art installation. Fuck off.


It's almost 2020. Can we agree to focus on policy rather than the soap opera /reality show that we have now?


Or, sometimes a rose is just a rose. Chill out.


"The installation was composed of 150 photos taken off the German gay dating website"

Actually, it's a Dutch-owned website headquartered in Amsterdam, though their web development contractor is in Berlin. And it's not called GayRomeo. They went by PlanetRomeo until about a year ago, when they rebranded as just Romeo. They do own the domain, but it redirects to


I don't have a problem with Chasten's photo of Pete, whose expression in it is perfectly anodyne — except, I guess, to those trying really hard to read something into it because they have an agenda.

Posting pics of yourself at that location on a dating app is clueless at best, though, and posing there shirtless with your butt exposed is unconscionable. I mean, if someone needed to do that, it's not like we don't have a memorial of our own RIGHT ACROSS THE FUCKING STREET:


I suppose now that I think about it I’ve taken pictures of my partner at tourist spots, memorials etc. Clearly I’m disrespecting the troops that died because I’m gay. That’s what I’m getting from this article.
WTF is The Stranger printing this for?


We died because of that look. We were gassed too, because of that look. I sincerely doubt that the majority of the earth (who are Straight) will ever get that. For me, as a disgusting Faggot, I find that look in the Holocaust museum to be an act of rebellion and revenge. I sincerely doubt that you all will ever understand that. You never have. You never will. And i have been living with that for 54 years now. I expect to live with that reality that day I day I die. You will never change. You will never understand.