Wednesday, June 27, 2007

THE REPUBLICAN PARTY'S WAR AGAINST GAY PEOPLE CONTINUES

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Lynne smiles, Cheney tries, but the poor kid...

This morning my old pal Tommy was doing his commute from New Jersey to Manhattan and he decided to while away the time by calling me (at 7AM my time). As always, it was wonderful to hear from him. I got to know him many years ago as a singer/songwriter, when my boss signed him to our record label in the hope of seducing him. He failed in that attempt but was far happier when Tommy had a #1 song and a real recording career. "Boy band" careers, however, aren't actual careers and Tommy had the good sense to go to college, invest wisely and, eventually, marry his college sweetheart, the captain of the football team. Years later I hired him as an assistant in the promotion department and he worked his way up the ladder to become a hugely successful promotion vice president and is now an A&R man, helping young artists make their own musical dreams come true.

He and his husband have two young sons and live in the suburbs and they're the most positive, neighborly guys you're ever going to meet. Today Tommy was telling me that because of their expanding family they moved to a new house in the same town. And who lives next door? Five Roman Catholic priests who teach at the local Catholic college. For the first few days it was a little awkward until the priests figured out what was up and that the nanny wasn't anyone's wife. But now they love the kids and are friends of the family.

Soon after hearing from Tommy this morning, I got an e-mail from John Arovosis at AMERICAblog alerting me to Bush threatening another young gay family-- one with even better connections than Tommy's. This time Bush is taking out his base's bigotry on Mary Cheney, Heather Poe and Vice President Cheney's grandson, David Samuel Cheney. (Don't ask me why they didn't name him David Samuel Poe; these are Republicans so, obviously, out of their skulls.)

Bush says he will veto the DC Appropriations bill because the anti-gay bias in it has been excised. A great way to rally the base. John's got the full story at the link. And here's Tommy, many years ago, singing his biggest hit with his pals, New Kids on the Block, at a charity telethon.




UPDATE: GAY MARRIAGE IN THE CONTEXT OF THE VAST SWEEP OF SOCIAL EVOLUTION

Today's Baltimore Sun published a column by Thomas Schaller that puts gay marriage in social and political context. As one would expect from someone as perceptive and brilliant as Schaller, the column is dead on.
The movement for sexual orientation-based equality is part of a proud, progressive tradition that includes abolition, women's suffrage, the ending of child labor, racial integration of the armed forces, the civil rights movement and anti-miscegenation reforms.

Three patterns hallmark this long tradition: a defiant insistence by conservative doom-and-gloomers that the proposed reforms will undermine the fabric of American life; the inevitable rally by progressive and altruistic-minded Americans to the cause of expanding to others the protections they already enjoy; and, finally, widespread agreement a generation or so thereafter that conservative hysteria was not only misplaced, but America was stronger for having ignored their pinched, wrongheaded warnings.

Read the whole thing; it gets better.

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