Though I abandoned the Republican Party back in 1992 (when they did verbal gay-bashing from the convention) I was a bit annoyed with J. Dietrich’s letter in the June 15 Between The Lines. Dietrich asked gay Republicans how they feel now that the president they voted for has pushed for the marriage protection amendment.
I occasionally read gay Republican blogs (start with http://indegayforum.org) and I quickly noticed how irate they are with gay Democrats. There were two issues in particular that got a lot of wordage recently.
The first is that while parts of the GOP are very much anti-gay, the Democrats aren’t exactly pro-gay. Democrats are certainly voting against the anti-gay legislation (at least most of them are), but they are not working all that hard to propose and push pro-gay legislation at the local, state, and federal level. Remember, John Kerry was for the marriage protection amendment in Massachusetts, just not for the whole country. I’m sure you can find individual instances where that is not true, but the perception is that it fits for the party as a whole. From a gay conservative’s point of view, the Democrats’ record isn’t better enough to warrant switching parties.
The second issue is that during the debate over the MPA many national gay organizations took the opportunity to bash Bush and the GOP. You might say that is appropriate, but that masks a bigger issue. These organizations did not explain why gay marriage is actually good for the country. These groups show themselves to be working for the interests of Democrats, not for the interests of gays.
We’re all in this together, gay Democrat and gay Republican (as strange as that beast might sound). Even though we may not understand the other’s thinking, we can’t simply bash the other then expect them to jump to the aid of our cause. We have work to do in the wider community and will need gays of both parties to get it done.
I have been viewing myself as a centrist lately, I’m disgusted with a lot of policies that Republicans are proclaiming, but I’ve become disappointed in the Democrats as well.