Outing Gays for Political Gain

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Last I checked most principled Democrats had no problem with anyone's being gay and considered it rude and even cruel to use someone's sexuality for political purposes. Last I checked most principled Democrats would have cringed at deliberately outing someone who has been keeping her lesbianism private while dealing with family but talking about it online to those she trusts (and without using her real name or her full name most of the time and keeping it to sites her family wouldn't read ever). Last I checked most principled Democrats would have encouraged people to come out themselves at the right time and when they felt most comfortable doing it, with severe opposition to anyone who might take matters into their own hands to out someone merely for political purposes.

Well, that stance is reversing itself. It's become perfectly ok to point out that someone is gay purely for the purpose of destroying their political career or destroying their family member's political career. Well, the evidence only suggests that it's become ok to do this if it's Republicans you're doing it to. I don't normally link to conspiracy theorists, but I need to, just this once, to point out the evidence of the movement within the Democratic party to out gay Republicans. I don't need to link to a conspiracy theorist to show the attempt to out gay children of Republicans (though this one is highly unconfirmed and could well be an elaborate hoax, in which case it's morally reprehensible for other reasons).

Kos defends his actions by saying it's already all out there, but only a really good sleuth with a goal to tie these together will find the evidence that ties it all together without the aid of Kos and the others who are doing that work for them. I was able to find a lot of what they're talking about really quickly this morning just by using Google, but I had lots of help from blogs who have already done that and knew what keywords to use. I don't think a politician who doesn't frequent gay sites or search for his daughter's name together with the word 'gay' would be able to put the pieces together so easily. It's not so much those who draw attention to the issue that I have problems with, though notice that I'm not using any names here. The ones I find completely reprehensible are those who take delight in what will undoubtedly be a devastating situation for the people involved (if it's based in reality anyway, and if it's not then it will be devastating for other reasons). It's amazing that someone like that could reach #2 in the Ecosystem, but that just reveals much about the many people who frequent that site. A biblical passages most important for homosexuality discussions (Romans 1) mainly lists the effects of the fall in a damaged human nature, and two of the items in that list are ruthlessness and heartlessness. This perversity is an excellent example of both.

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Weekly Mailbag II from Cincinnati Black Blog on October 1, 2004 5:49 PM

Ah, now I get it! (1) Alan Keyes and his adult daughter are victims of a vast, left-wing, conspiracy to make Republicans enter into same-sex relationships and then publicly expose them, all in an effort to destroy the Republican's political career; (... Read More

On Thursday, September 30, 2004 I received an email from one Nathaniel Livingston with a link to a photo of a politician's daughter (which he apparently sent to other black conservative bloggers as well). What's the big deal you ask? Read More

The Carnival of the Bush Bloggers: October 5, 2004 Edition Read More

8 Comments

You make it sound so one-sided, as if the left was going back on some longstanding principle. In reality, it's a debate that has existed for a very long time. If someone supported a ban on handguns--but owned a handgun himself--then you might want to know. The same applies here: We have a right to know if a politician is being a hypocrite.

That said, I'm not convinced that Keyes' daughter is fair game...

The parallel would be if someone against owning handguns had a kid who owned one.

It's not hypocrisy to be against something your daughter is doing. It's not even hypocrisy to be against something that you have done on occasion. Hypocrisy is when someone gets mad at everyone else who does something that's basically a regular part of their life that they defend when they do it. Being against something that you struggle with isn't hypocrisy. Being against something your daughter does isn't even close to hypocrisy, particularly if you've gone on record saying that you would be just as much against it if it turned out your daughter was doing it. He did go on record saying exactly that.

As for the other examples, being a Republican and being gay isn't necessarily hypocrisy either. The example Kos gave was someone who didn't seem to agree with everything Republicans might stand for. Who does in a party that's as divided as this one? Why is that hypocrisy, then?

Over at www.realclearpolitics.com, there is an article that talks about (among other things) that Kerry's campaign is adopting a "scorched-earth" strategy, by which anything that can be spilled in the media should be used to achieve one's political ambition. Back in the 90's we called this "mud-slinging". If the Democrats think that causing political collateral damage (as is in the case of Banning) is the only way to save their candidate, then Kerry is not much of a candidate to begin with.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/004/672upfks.asp

Another story on the site talks about the difference between Republicans and Democrats, in that the former has respect for morality while the later goes by the letter of the law.

http://www.townhall.com/columnists/dennisprager/printdp20040921.shtml

Well, this is a very unusual case of outing, and it strikes me that its justification is particularly weak.

But when someone in fact IS gay, when he has been caught soliciting gay sex--but then he turns around and sponsors anti-gay legislation... That's hypocrisy, and it's at least somewhat defensible to out him, because the public has a right to know these sorts of admissions against interest.

But even if I fully supported outing a person like this example, I still can't quite justify this one.

"Kerry's campaign is adopting a "scorched-earth" strategy"

Gosh, I wonder where they learned THAT one? Frankly, nobody's got clean hands in this campaign.

Hey, I didn't author that thing about the scorched-earth strategy. I agree with you about the clean hands issue. I don't think Bush had anything to do with the Swift Boats people, but I do think his campaign has dirty hands in some of their own ads. You admit that Kerry does, though, and that means that you think the statement is true. It's just not complete.

I don't think it's hypocrisy to be gay and oppose forcing gay marriage onto a society. I myself haven't opposed gay marriage much at all, because I think the only reasons to do so assume a moral framework and a view of marriage that most Americans don't even understand anymore, including many who call themselves Christian. The steps necessary for moving toward gay marriage have already been conceded with rampant divorce, people living together without being married, and the weird mix of retaining some traditional notion of gender roles but insisting on either taking them too far or misunderstanding what the biblical notions were all about in the first place and thus both distorting them and making them look in principle bad when I don't think they really are. Without the theological framework of what marriage is, I see no reason to oppose gay marriage.

I say all this so you won't misunderstand me when I say that gay people might disagree on that and think gay marriage is a very bad idea. This would then lead them to cooperate with those who really are anti-gay to get laws passed to prevent gay marriage. Similarly, someone who is gay might think a state has a right to laws prohibiting gay sex. They might think those who want to engage in that sort of sexual act should then go live somewhere else that has more open attitudes. I just don't see how it's hypocrisy to be gay and still to favor some of the laws that you're labeling anti-gay. I haven't endorsed any of these laws myself, but it just doesn't seem to me that someone, merely for being gay, should have to oppose such laws. Another example would be opposing anti-discrimination laws for gay people. Someone might be gay but not think how people treat others because of sexual orientation is the sort of thing the government has the right to enforce. That's not hypocrisy.

I agree that outing a child because his or her parent has a different opinion of sexuality is wrong. However, the MOST WRONG is anyone who retaliates against or penalizes a gay person for their sexuality or denies their full rights as Americans. It is clear that most of those people are in the Republican party, not the Democratic party.

Actually, I suspect that most people who retaliate against gay people wouldn't join the Republican party because they think the Republican party caves in to the gay agenda too much. I know a lot of people who say that who even think it's wrong to retaliate. I'd be surprised not to find that those who retaliate have that attitude even more.

As for penalizing, I'm not sure what you mean. Hardly anyone thinks gay people should have to pay more taxes, higher prices in the free market, or higher rent or mortgage payments. The fundamental issue in public debate is whether gay men have the rights women have and whether gay women have the rights men have. Men have the right to marry women. All men have those rights. Women have the right to marry men. All women have those rights. It's a separate matter whether men have the right to marry men, and it's not penalizing gay people that they don't have that right, since heterosexual men don't have it either. The same goes with homosexual and heterosexual women.

It seems to me that if anyone is being denied rights, it's not along sexual orientation lines but on gender lines. Men aren't allowed to marry other men, but women are. Women aren't allowed to marry women, but men are. That's sex discrimination if anything. Some states, including California (but not Massachussetts, as far as I've been able to discern) have laws against sex discrimination. Those states have a constitutional argument for gay marriage. I don't see any argument for it unless there's such a constitutional right, and the U.S. Constitution has none. If they did, they'd have to get rid of women's soccer teams, men's bathrooms, the Girl Scouts, and any other organization that discriminations according to sex.

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