Compromising on Equality

27 Dec

As most of us here on the East Coast are snowed in, what better to do with this new-found free time than a little edugaytion?

From On Top Magazine today, we find a brief rundown of the candidates for the new Republican National Committee Chairperson. The current chair (who is also running for re-election), Michael Steele opposes gay marriage, claiming it would be “bad for small businesses.” This is somehow related to the fact that businesses would be required to provide insurance for same-sex spouses like they already do for the other 90% of the population. So his argument is that we should not have the same rights because small businesses should still be allowed to discriminate.

Recently, the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage interviewed the leading candidates for RNC Chair and unsurprisingly, they are all against equality. NOM’s chair, the outspoken Maggie Gallagher interviewed Wisconsin GOP Chairman Reince Priebus, Save American Jobs Project Chairman Saul Anuzis, former RNC political director Gentry Collins and former Missouri Republican Chairwoman Ann Wagner.

As On Top mentions, Collins said gay marriage “devalues the relationship that is shared by my wife and I and a number of committed married couples.”

“Marriage is an institution that has been around for 3,000 years. It’s part of our faith. It’s part of out culture,” Anuzis said. “It’s important to have a mother and a father … People care that you’re a family person.”

Opposition to gay marriage is a “pillar” of the Republican platform, Wagner said in her interview.

“I think that’s where the American people are. They believe in traditional marriage. They want to lift that up. … It’s important that we hold true to those tenants and values that I think are a pillar of our Republican party and our platform.”

Priebus said marriage was given to us by God and needs to be protected from “activist judges.”

“I believe marriage is a gift from God and the sanctity of marriage ought to be protected … and I don’t believe the comedy clause in the constitution allows for activist judges to redefine what marriage is,” he said, referring to the constitution’s Full Faith and Credit clause.

GOProud, an organization for gay Republicans, jumped in and is willing to throw their support behind any candidate who is not Michael Steele. Said GOProud’s Chris Barron “We need an RNC Chair who understands that his or her role is to raise money and build party infrastructure, not to sell books, hire friends and family, and pontificate on policy.”

Barron goes on to claim some credit for the November midterm elections: “Were it not for the hard work of outside groups, who were forced to step in to fill the void left by an ineffective RNC, success at the ballot box in November would never have occurred.”

What a tremendous conflict it must be to be gay and have to argue in favor of someone who opposes equality so vehemently. Change is occurring of course, and some within the Republican party – and groups like GOProud are partly responsible for that – let’s hope they can keep changing minds from the inside without having to compromise more of their own personal freedoms.

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