Election 2022

GOP lawmaker melts down online saying his hair color is “natural” unlike being gay

Olivia Julianna
Olivia JuliannaPhoto: Provided

Texas state Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R) tried to make a point about how unnatural it is to be gay by comparing it to his hair color, but the analogy fell flat and he was left trying to convince people that his hair has never been dyed.

Stickland got into an argument with queer teen activist Olivia Julianna. Julianna made headlines several months ago when Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) made fun of her looks and she turned that mockery into over $2 million for abortion funds.

Julianna was talking about Matt Rinaldi, the leader of the Texas Republican Party, and she said he “looks” like an extremist because he called for the FBI to be abolished.

“This young woman should not be advocating for anyone to be judged by their looks,” Stickland said of 19-year-old Julianna. “Also she’s a crazy leftist.”

Julianna shot back: “It doesn’t take a crazy leftist to see this tweet for what it is— a pathetic attempt for you to keep relevance and distract from your disastrously laughable political career.”

“Also fix your dye job…” she wrote, sharing a picture of Stickland with what looks like hair that had been bleached blond while his eyebrows, beard, roots, and sideburns were all a much darker color.

The comment about his hair apparently cut deep. “I don’t dye my hair,” Stickland responded. “It is all natural. Unlike your sexual orientation.”

“Leave Texas if you hate it so much. I’ll pay for your two seats,” he wrote, making another fat joke at Julianna’s expense despite his own body.

Julianna – no stranger to straight men who think they can silence her by making disrespectful comments about her physical appearance – turned around and tried to raise more money for Texas Democrats off of Stickland’s comments.

“Well folks, seems like we’ve got another GOP politician who thinks body shaming me is a good idea (mixed with some homophobia)— but this time he’s from Texas,” she wrote. “Last time we raised $2.2 million for abortion funds. Can we raise $50K for Texas Democrats????”

Stickland, on the other hand, was still smarting from Julianna’s insult to his hair. He claimed that he “never once dyed my hair” and that the issue was the lighting in the photo.

“I’m grey, not blonde,” he wrote.

Other pictures of Stickland – like this one from the AP and the one below from Texas Monthly – show him with blond hair and darker roots. It looks like he was growing his hair out after having bleached it, despite his insistence to the contrary.

But, perhaps, bad lighting just follows him around and his hair was graying only at the tips and turning dark again.

Stickland has long been embroiled in controversy for his misogynistic and homophobic statements. In 2008, he claimed that “rape is non existant [sic] in marriage” and suggested someone “take what you want my friend.”

He later apologized for what he claimed was a joke. “Rape is serious and should never be joked about the way that I did regardless of my age.”

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