15 Questions About Patti LaBelle’s Adopted Son
“Dan Purdy.” Photo: @danpurdy322/Twitter

15 Questions About Patti LaBelle’s Adopted Son

Well, that escalated quickly

By now, you’ve probably seen the story: Dean Browning, Pennsylvania Republican (and undeniable loser of the primary for the state’s 7th Congressional representative seat) posted a tweet yesterday declaring himself to be a Black gay man who disapproved of Obama.

Browning, in case you weren’t aware, is a White man. He tried to clarify his tweet by saying that it was a DM that he forgot to attribute. Twitter, naturally, came to the conclusion that Browning got caught posting thoughts reserved for a burner account. Those same Twitter sleuths noticed that an account by the name of “Dan Purdy” had favorited and responded to a lot of Browning’s tweets. Naturally, the assumption was that “Purdy” was Browning’s burner account. We cracked the code!

But then we were reminded that this was 2020.

The Dan Purdy account posted a video, showing a Black man owning up to the account and sending the message to Browning. Twitter did more digging and learned that the man in the video is actually William Holte, who is — wait for it — PATTI LABELLE’S GODDAMNED NEPHEW AND ADOPTED SON. (He’s also known as Byl Holte.)

As a human being with a brain, I have many questions about this.

  1. Why hasn’t Dan Browning posted a screenshot of Dan Purdy’s DM to prove that it was an actual message and not his burner account?
  2. Are we supposed to believe that Dean Browning (if that’s his real last name) is the only White person left in 2020 who isn’t impersonating a Black person?
  3. Seriously, Billy, how much did Dean pay you to pretend you’re Dan Purdy? Did he Cash App you?
  4. Never mind — he used Venmo, didn’t he?
  5. Related: Have we ever discussed why White people Venmo and Black people Cash App? How did Cash App become the Sprite of money exchange?
  6. Why does Holte use Dan Purdy for Twitter but his real name for everything else? INCLUDING A MEDIUM PAGE FULL OF ANTI-FEMINIST MOVIE REVIEWS?!
  7. If Patti LaBelle’s son hates Black women, then Black men really might be irredeemable at this point. Black women might just want to cut their losses and move on. This is a sad day. (No, this isn’t a question, but grasping at hope is an existential question.)
  8. Is this an elaborate scheme by the same person who made Patti’s Christmas background singers disappear? Who is sabotaging Miss Patti?!
  9. Does this impact Patti’s Pies in any way? Please let the pies be okay!
  10. Are we sure that this is the right Byl Holte and not Byl Holte Total Landscaping? Can we just pretend that this never happened? Is there anything Republicans haven’t ruined in 2020?
  11. Wait, he’s literally a landscaper who lives in Philadelphia? Who’s forgetting to check the Matrix for firmware updates?
  12. What do we do if one of the Pennsylvania ballots has Dan Purdy’s name on it? Is this the voter fraud the GOP insists happened, despite all evidence to the contrary?
  13. Really, though: Are we in the middle of a coup? Not that it’s completely related to this, but it’s omnipresent in my nightmares and worries these days, so why not ask it here?
  14. What is Dean Browning going to do when it’s revealed that he got caught using a burner account and paid a Black man to take the blame? What are the consequences? Is he going to, like, double-lose a congressional primary he already lost? How did “We don’t believe you, you need more people” become the most relevant rap lyric of the 21st century?
  15. Seriously, is this a coup?