Open Letter to Chip and Joanna Gaines from a Gay Wall of Shiplap

by Mallory Muratore

Dear Chip and Joanna,

Where do I even begin?

I’m more torn up than a linoleum floor in a Tudor revival. More anxious than a Tiffany lamp in a nursery. More cut than a custom built-in for the second living room.

I feel raw.

For years I thought you celebrated my brothers and sisters by stripping away tacky siding and lead-linen paint that set them free. Now I think you forced them to come out. Many of the boards you exposed hadn’t even told their family trees that they were gay. Shameful!

I shouldn’t have put so much trust in your canvases with inspirational words. Not even quotes! Just words. You pounded boards with “LOVE” and “BLESSINGS” and “CARING” into us — then you FUCKED us with your silence.

The wood community is a LGBTQ+ community — who do you think coined the term “coming out of the closet?” WE DID. SLABS HAVE BEEN COMING OUT OF THE CLOSET FOR CENTURIES.

Chip and Joanna, I believe in religious freedom, I do, but I can’t support your homophobic pastor and his reprehensible ways. I feel horrible for my fellow walls of shiplap lining the bigoted interior of the Antioch Community Church, and I feel almost as horrible for you two too.

HGTV is Home & Garden Television, and it has served as both the home and garden to gay couples and gay walls at home and abroad. Fixer Upper has not been as welcoming. It is WACKO that you only help hetero couples in Waco. Unchristian even.

Chip and Joanna, fixing your upper is only half the battle if you believe “homosexuality is a sin.” The majority of shiplap walls across the country now have flatscreens mounted into them — we are watching you, Gaines.

The world is watching.