Richard H. “Dick” Black is, since 2012, a Virginia State senator, after successfully portraying his opponent as a “moderate” – and who would want a moderate character rather than a fuming, batshit crazy Taliban fundie as their candidate? Not the good people of Virginia’s 32nd District, apparently.
Black is probably most famous for his continued opposition to making spousal rape a crime, citing the impossibility of convicting a husband accused of raping his wife “when they’re living together, sleeping in the same bed, she’s in a nightie, and so forth,” and that changing the law could cause a man “enormous fear of the damage to his reputation” if his wife ever filed a false rape claim. Since that’s what really matters. But he’s also somewhat famous for his early 90s time on the Loudoun County Library Board in Northern Virginia, where he wrote a policy blocking pornography on library computers. The move ended up drawing national attention when a First Amendment litigation against the Loudoun County Library Board struck down the policies, costing the county $100,000. During the period when Black was on the council, Loudoun librarians say they only ever received one complaint about porn on their computers – against Black himself, as he was “researching” the background for his policy.
But Black isn’t just a one-trick pony. In 2003, Black led a fight to prevent the erection of a statue of Lincoln on the Tredegar Iron Works, a Civil War-era foundry that supplied the Confederate army with cannons, claiming that “[p]utting a statue to [Lincoln] there is sort of like putting the Confederate flag at the Lincoln Memorial.” It really isn’t, but you know.
He also has a solution to school shootings. After Columbine Black tried to go to the roots of the problem by suggesting a legislation requiring Virginia students to address their teachers as “Ma’am” and “Sir” since “[t]he counterculture revolution of the ‘70s took the war into the classroom. Before that time, public schools were a model of decorum, and then we began this thing we’ve seen play out at Columbine.” He didn’t cite any research.
He is also afraid of zeh gays (surprise), and has championed legislation to ban same-sex couples from adopting children, claiming that gay men and women are more prone to violence, alcoholism, and suicide. When it was clear the bill would fail, he amended it to require adoption agents to investigate whether the prospective parents were “known to engage in current voluntary homosexual activity.” In 2003 he also tried to pass legislation preventing same-sex couples to apply for low-interest home loans from the Virginia Housing and Development Authority – the current policy, he said, “subsidize[s] sodomy and adultery” and promotes “a radical homosexual agenda.” And in 2005 he urged his constituents to picket a local high school that had staged a student’s one-act play about a gay high school football player, since portraying same-sex relationships in “a cute or favorable light” put children at risk of contracting HIV. “If I’m the last person on the face of this Earth to vote against legalizing sodomy,” said Black, “I’ll do it.”
Diagnosis: Charming fellow, and we’d recommend people to stay well clear of those who actually vote for him.