Did we choose to be a political liability or were we born that way?
Christian Broadcasting Network columnist David Brody has written a piece in which questions whether or not Rudy Giuliani's "gay friendliness" will kill his presidential dreams. After pointing to a 2000 press release in which the then-NYC mayor saluted Gay Pride Month and recognized city employees who are out of the closet, Brody says of Guiliani:
A couple observations. At the end of the day, will social conservatives let him slide on this issue? On the abortion issue too? Is it just too much for this block to handle? Giuliani wants to change the conversation desperately but what trick does he have up his sleeve that will get him out from under all of this? He’s swimming upstream. Giuliani is a fighter and a good one at that. He can take you one on one in a boxing ring. But this may not be a fair fight. From what I am being told on the campaign trail, there are so many skeletons here that Rudy is going to have to deal with the bulk of them before February 5th. Why? Because rival campaigns are determined to take him down.
Ah, America. And ah, the Republican party. Where one's perceived respect for a sect of the population can derail their desires to lead the ENTIRE nation faster than you can say, "But hey, we're tax-paying citizens too!"
What priorities they have!
But the irony here is that more and more gay folks are starting to question if Rudy's gay niceties were ever anything more than political ploys, what with his current objection to federal hate crimes legislation, wishy-washiness on "Don't ask, Don't Tell," and apparent non-commitment to even civil unions. So really, we're sort of like "Kids -- fight amongst yourselves." We'll hold out for candidates who will look anti-gay conservatives directly in the eye and say, "YOU ARE WRONG TO DEMONIZE THESE PEOPLE, AND I WILL UNAPOLOGETICALLY TELL YOU SO, BECAUSE PRINCIPLE MATTERS MORE THAN POLITICS!"
Not that we know anyone fully at that level yet (at least with any real electability). But if we don't work towards demanding such candidates, we'll be far more likely to go to our graves seeing and listening to souble-speaking political opportunists who throw us small bones with one hand, then throw us under the bus with the other. We may not ever see respect for gays come into political fashion even with our attempts, but at least we'll sleep well knowing that we tried.
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