We promise we like her. We just have a few suggestions
Newly book-dealed Republican Meghan McCain is once again speaking out in favor of marriage equality. And while we genuinely appreciate her commitment we do have to address at least two issues that arise in her new Daily Beast column.
#1. Meghan says:
"But it isn't just the GOP’s opposition to gay marriage that makes the party seem unwelcoming toward gay voters. It’s the anti-gay rhetoric they use to whip up the base. Recently, a conservative congressman was quoted saying, “If we don't save marriage, we can't remain pro-life." That's absurd. President Obama, for instance, is also against gay marriage—a dirty little secret many of my gay friends were shocked to discover during the presidential campaign. But you’d never know it because he always "sounds" so inclusive.
I am determined to build a more-inclusive GOP not by making us "sound" more inclusive, but by doing it."
The problem? Well, Meghan makes it sound as if President Obama has only given lip-service to LGBT equality. This is bullcrappy. And it's especially unfair for Meghan to say this in the context of the 2008 elections, considering her Prop 8-supporting father was well behind then-candidate Obama on a number of key LGBT rights issues!
Yes, it's true that Pres. Obama doesn't yet publicly support marriage equality. Yes, it's true that in the midst of all that's going on, the administration has yet to act on their LGBT promises. But the Obama administration has pledged a commitment to a more progressive, inclusive LGBT rights plan than any prior presidential team. We have no reason to doubt that he'll follow up his pleasant sounds with some good ol' fashioned "doing."
#2. Meghan says:
"People may always have a difference of opinion on certain lifestyles, but championing a position that wants to treat people unequally isn't just un-Republican. At its fundamental core, it's un-American."
The obvious problem? Meghan's usage of the word "lifestyle." Sure, she's using it to talk about other people, not herself. But for anyone wishing to commit themselves to gay rights, that word should be immediately stricken from the vocabulary!
People have all kinds of lifestyles, which can be determined by interests, time commitments, work, geography, etc. People also have sexual orientations and gender identities. Using "lifestyle" in reference to LGBT people isn't just un-PC. At its fundamental core, it's incorrect.
But again, we sincerely do appreciate Meghan's continued support in divorcing "anti-gay" and "Republican." We just hope that before she writes that well-commissioned book, she'll decide to dish everything that she knows about Sarah Palin more fully flesh out a few key points.
*Read Meghan's full piece: Memo to the GOP: Go Gay [Daily Beast]
As Meghan is probably not amongst your readers:
#1 You can't blame her for her fathers mistakes, nor dispute her aims of trying to make the GOP a more inclusive party.
She has gay rights opinions which are similar to Obama, but better on that crux issue of marriage.
#2 The vocabulary is a result of her upbringing, she wants equality, which should be enough. Eventually someone she knows, LBGT or otherwise will talk about the L word, well the other L word.
Posted by: corvidae | Apr 13, 2009 2:06:20 PM
#1 I'm not "blaming" her for her father. She's making an example out of Obama by bringing up his failure to fully support marriage, then linking that to an overall implication that he only "sounds" inclusive. I am simply bringing up the record of the candidate with whom Obama was matched, for whom she publicly campaigned, and via whom she obtained her public presence -- a man who just so happens to be her father! If she wants to talk about Obama's campaign "dirty secrets," it's completely fair to bring up her guy's own. He is, after all, who she wanted in the White House.
#2 Upbringing or not, the vocabulary is wrong. It is my duty as an activist to correct it. There were certainly times in my youth when others had to correct me on terminology and whatnot.
Posted by: G-A-Y | Apr 13, 2009 2:18:22 PM
I'd have to disagree with you on the first point. It HAS been mostly lips service that Obama's given, with very little action, blaming it on his focus on the economy. Obviously I'm not saying that McCain would have been better (shoot me in the head) but I actually AM starting to "doubt that he'll follow up his pleasant sounds with some good ol' fashioned 'doing.'"
Posted by: paul | Apr 13, 2009 4:01:15 PM
Paul: He hasn't even been in office for 100 days. I think it's unfair to criticize inaction at this very early point.
But in terms of doing more than lip service: The civil rights agenda was put on the White House website right away. To me, that was a nice start that took flowery language to its next logical step.
Posted by: G-A-Y | Apr 13, 2009 4:18:01 PM
President Obama has improved, we dont have Scott Bloch to make life hard for LGBT federal employees, we actually have an actual gay man to make life better for all employees straight and gay.
I think we should be fair and give him at least six months before we cruicify him on LGBT issues.
At least we have someone to help lead the inclusion movement in the Republican Party. And the MA GOP chairwoman also does not want to get in the business of dividing people anymore also.
Posted by: Matt from California | Apr 13, 2009 4:51:49 PM
While I always appreciate a supporting voice, I can't stand Megan McCain. She's already proven herself to have no credibility with remarks she's made on other issues.
Posted by: RainbowPhoenix | Apr 13, 2009 5:10:07 PM
Obama has made lots of promises. Some of which he has already broken. I don't trust any politician. Obama isn't an LGBT friend until he actually does something about his promises. I'm not saying it has to be in his first 100 days but until he does something, he doesn't get my automatic support.
I wish you would nit-pick the things Obama says as much as you do Meghan McCain on the something small like using the term "lifestyle" (in a sentance supporting our rights no less)!
Posted by: Pomo | Apr 13, 2009 5:33:27 PM
Considering how Obama has thus far punted on repealing DADT, which includes not saying a word when his SecDef Gates flat-out said they were doing this, Meghan has a point. Does this mean her father would have done any better? Probably not. Yet Obama made a bunch of promises and thus far seems to be waffling. If he makes a serious push to repeal DADT then and only then will I be impressed.
Posted by: John | Apr 13, 2009 8:04:36 PM
About Obama's non-support for same-sex marriage: one thing that tends to get lost in the shuffle is that Obama has made it quite clear that he *personally* thinks marriage is between a man and a woman, but he does not support efforts to incorporate that belief into civil law.
That, I think, is much more revealing (and much more hopeful) than a simple yes or no: the man recognizes that the personal beliefs of politicians should not determine public policy on constitutional issues. Let's give him credit for that, at least, because he's light-years ahead of anyone on the right (and most on the left).
That said, like others, I'm waiting to see what he actually does. I suspect it's going to be a long wait.
Posted by: Hunter | Apr 14, 2009 5:26:24 AM
I see nothing wrong with the term "lifestyle" -- quite the opposite, actually, I embrace it. Being homosexual, heterosexual, bisexual or whatever may not be entirely a matter of choice for most of us, just as deciding to whom you feel attraction or with whom you will fall in love is not entirely a matter of choice. But deciding to live one's life openly, in accordance with one's sense of self-identity and values, is very much a matter of choice. I have been out to everyone since age 18 and have never regretted my lifestyle choice nor tried to run away from it. I have always tried to style my life in accordance with who I think I am and whom I would like to be. That is my choice. I believe it is my right, and I believe others should have the right to make different choices -- choices I may find objectionable, just as others may find mine objectionable.
The goal shouldn't be to eradicate any particular term from anyone's vocabulary. That probably gets to the heart of what I dislike about strident gay activism and so-called "political correctness," which is not one bit different in tone or kind from the crap the FRC and CWoA and the like spew. I respect your right to disagree with me, but I have no respect for your campaign to discredit, attack, and denigrate everyone who disagrees with you.
Posted by: Michael M. | Apr 14, 2009 9:47:34 AMcomments powered by Disqus