Log Cabin Republicans.
It’s a segment of our community that I just don’t understand. They seem to be crawling back out of their hiding spots now that Bush is leaving office. But should they?
I have seen many “I heart Rudy” shirts, heard many “I like Live-and-Let-Live Romney” comments, and sat through many “Why Ron Paul’s my guy” speeches.
But it still makes no sense to me…
Let me first qualify by saying, I understand that no front-running Democratic candidate fully supports our rights. I also know that the Dems have not been stellar at defending us or standing up for us in the past. But I do think that it is easier to educate a friendly, if sometimes uncomfortable, crowd than an openly hostile one.
But Republicans? Their party platform has attacks on our community written into it. They sponsor the anti-gay, benefit-stripping, “marriage protection” amendments against us just to get votes. They consistently use us as a wedge: demonizing and degrading us to gain more power.
I have heard many a LCR say things like, “being gay isn’t all I am”, “I vote with my wallet”, or “I’m changing the party from the inside out.”
Well let’s look at how that’s going for them…
“Being gay isn’t all I am”
This one almost works for me. I understand voting on other issues, like the war, poverty, health insurance, Medicare reform etc. And while I happen to personally think that the Democrats are better in these areas, I respect differences of opinions.
Where this argument falls apart for me is the fact that to reach any of these other issues, certain basic rights and needs to be taken care of first. What good is voting for health insurance reform if I’m fired from my job for being gay and don’t have insurance in the first place. How can I vote on poverty issues when in some places I can be denied housing for my sexual orientation or gender identity? How can I vote on issues like Medicare if I’m too worried about being the victim of anti-LGBT violence?
The Republican Party is staunchly against giving our community even the most basic of rights. So while I understand that being “gay” may not be all someone is, the GOP is still saying a part of you doesn’t matter. They identify you solely by that single part of you (even though that is what you say you don’t want), discriminate against you, and then you support them?
“I vote with my wallet”
This one kills me. When LGBT’s say they “vote with their wallet”, it just means that they have money and don’t want to part with it. They would rather be complicit in condemning their community, and themselves, to subhuman status just to keep their money (although with a looming recession, I’m not sure the Republicans are the best keepers of our money).
I understand that we all want to keep our hard earned money, but at the cost of very basic human and civil rights?
They are right on one point. They are voting with their wallets. They are giving money to a party that hates them. Where do LCR’s think their money goes to when they give to the GOP? Do they somehow think that there is a separate “don’t use this gay money on anti-gay legislation and campaigning” fund?
“I’m changing the party from the inside out”
This one is almost sad. To think that the Republican Party has gotten anything but MORE virulently anti-LGBT is delusional. The LCR’s are just a cash cow for a vast anti-gay political machine. What significant movement has the GOP made in terms of LGBT issues?
At least the Democrats are having debates and conversations about LGBT issues, even if they are not where we want them to be. That’s a party we can educate and change from within.
If these Log Cabin Republicans want to truly change the party, they should try taking their money and voting elsewhere. That might have more of an effect than anything they are doing now.
So wake up! Secure some basic rights and dignity for yourself before your beloved “big tent” party once again uses you to do some tricks, make some money, and then discards you to the bone yards.