If you haven't read the Washington Post profile that fawns over NOM executive director Brian Brown, please protect your keyboard from vomit if you click over the link to go read it.
I don't really get what the news value is in the piece, nor do I understand why it had to be so sycophantic, boo-hooing with him over how some people think that his work is homophobic (he's only saying that gays cause scary weather... what's so crazy about that?). None of the usual reasons for the Washington Post's typically worshipful stance towards conservatives or people in power apply here - it's the XD of an advocacy group we're talking about, not a pol.
The only thing I can think of is that WaPo staff writer Monica Hesse is herself a conservative with an axe to grind. It's the answer supported by Occam's Razor if we're looking for a reason why a supposedly-objective journalist would repeatedly refer to one side of a national debate, a hard-right activist who makes Pat Robertson seem mainstream, as the only "rational" person in the debate. The parts where Hesse insists that Brown's argument is based on "history" (it's as much history as saying that the Laffer Curve is based on "economics" or that the rush to the Iraq War was based on "the best intelligence available") and where she goes into mantra mode, repeating over and over that he's "rational," are the real kickers.... Did she get a chance to rim Brian Brown while she was conducting the interview, or is she making up for lost time?
Brown worries about that, about being squeezed out of the debate.
"The racial bigot comparison is the most troubling part of the argument," Brown says. It's horrible, offensive, deliberately incendiary. He thinks it is "irrational," a word he uses often.
It is irrational when the opposition points to polls suggesting that most young people support gay marriage. "People mature," he says. Their views change.
It is irrational when people believe that the legalization of same-sex marriage is an inevitability: "We have the people. We have not had such an organized force" before, Brown says.[...]
"I think it's irrational that up until 10 years ago, all of these societies agreed with my position" on same-sex marriage, he says, and now suddenly that position is bigotry. "The opposition is trying to marginalize and suppress us," he says. "Usually, that happens with positions that are actually minorities. But we're the majority."
Does he ever think that what he sees as an abrupt historical shift is, perhaps, progress? Does it hurt his feelings when people accuse him of prejudice?
"I think," he says, "it's irrational."
Oh, yeah. That's some objective journalism there. It goes well with some of her other articles on gay culture and polyamory. They're actually not that bad, which makes me think that this profile of Brian Brown has less to do with Hesse's political beliefs, and more to do with sycophancy to power and a desire to speak to Real Americans, which are defining features of the Washington Post.
You see, whether Monica Hesse really likes gay people or not in real life doesn't matter, nor does Brian Brown's homophobia. What matters is that he represents the beer-guzzling Real Americans, a caricature that beltway journalists buy into any chance they get. Of course he's rational and sane and mainstream - he's against same-sex marriage! While Hesse takes a few pot-shots at Falwell and Robertson, if she were writing a profile of them fifteen years ago she would be calling them mainstream and rational. The characters change, but the themes stay the same.
And, of course, the WaPo will continue to think that it's sittin' in the middle, particularly because of blog posts like this one. Rightwingers complain about them all the time, and the left does too, so if you forget about the fact that the rightwing always complains, it's a nice little formula that puts their paper in the center of the political spectrum.
At least we can add Brian Brown to the list of homophobes who have gay friends:
His faith is important to him, but in his arguments he is ever the PhD candidate, addressing questions and dismissing counterarguments with fascination.
"I have gay people who are friends and family," he says. "We can disagree on all sorts of things and still care about each other." And later, "Of course, I have to take their arguments seriously. This issue is important. Ideas have consequences."
Awesome! No one who's homophobic would ever say that they have gay friends! Now he joins the ranks of pro-gay advocates like Joe the Plumber, Sarah Palin, Rick Warren, and everyone else caught being a homophobic douchebag publicly.