David Mamet’s latest plot twist is a dud.
The award-winning playwright and screenwriter went on Fox News on Sunday to rail against pedophilia in the education system, alleging that teachers are “inclined” to pedophilia and that children are being “groomed” for sexual abuse, a popular conservative talking point around Florida’s controversial new “Don’t Say Gay” law. Said law prohibits the discussion of sexual orientation and gender in certain grade levels of the state’s public schools.
“We have to take back control,” Mamet told Mark Levin. “There’s no community control of the schools. What we have is kids not only being indoctrinated but groomed, in a very real sense, by people who are, whether they know it or not, sexual predators. Are they abusing the kids physically? No, I don’t think so. But they are abusing them mentally and using sex to do so. This has always been the problem with education. Teachers are inclined, particularly men because men are predators, to pedophilia.”
David Mamet on Fox News: "Teachers are inclined, particularly men because men are predators, to pedophilia" pic.twitter.com/azAlXPWRUc
— Madeline Peltz (@peltzmadeline) April 11, 2022
Mamet went on to suggest that sex education is a way for teachers to ensure children are familiar with sex so that they can use it to abuse them.
The idea that teachers are grooming children for sex has been used by right-wing ideologues to argue in favor of Florida’s new “Parental Rights in Education Bill” — or, as detractors dubbed it, the “Don’t Say Gay” bill — which Governor Ron DeSantis signed late last month amid controversy. Christian Pushaw, DeSantis’ press secretary, call it “anti-grooming” legislation in early March, implying that teachers are trying to force gender identity discussions on young children in an effort to “groom” them for sex.
“If you’re against the Anti-Grooming Bill, you are probably a groomer, or at least you don’t denounce the grooming of 4-8-year old children,” she tweeted. “Silence is complicity. This is how it works, Democrats, and I didn’t make the rules.”
The discourse has since spiraled to the point that congressional Republicans are now painting Disney as a pedophilia factory because the company opposed the bill. The party-wide paranoia over rampant child molestation has largely trickled down from QAnon, a baseless conspiracy theory alleging the Democratic Party and Hollywood are run by Satan-worshipping child traffickers. The fringe theory has slowly infected mainstream political discourse and now, apparently, the mind of the guy who wrote Glengarry Glen Ross.
Mamet also, it might be worth mentioning in light of his recent comments, wrote a screenplay for Lolita.