In the March 1, 2005, issue of “THE ADVOCATE,” not, alas, available online, reporter Emily Heil notes that Log Cabin supports the president’s plan to set up personal retirement accounts for Social Security. Log Cabin’s Political Director Chris Barron pointed out that such accounts “would be a tremendous step forward for gay and lesbian families.” Under the current system, he notes, his partner would get nothing if he were to die while “under the president’s plan,” he could leave his account “to anyone.”
One would think that other gay groups would follow Log Cabin’s lead and support these reforms which make it possible for gay couples to get benefits they do not currently have. But, alas, the “ADVOCATE” reports that gay leaders are more concerned with currying favor with Democrats than they are with helping gay couples:
But offering any kind of support for Bush’s plan means going against the Democratic leadership, something other gay rights activists see as shortsighted. “That would be a fundamental and irreparable breach with our allies in Congress who have stood beside us for decades,” [Matt] Foreman [Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force] said.
Is Foreman suggesting that if gay groups were to support the president on this one program, they will thereafter be shunned by the Democratic congressional leadership? By calling such support a “fundamental breach,” Mr. Foreman suggests that the Democratic leadership views any alliance with President Bush as an unpardonable offense. That Democrats are not interested in engaging the president is serious debate and discussion of reform, but in obstructing his every policy.
Those who stand with Foremen on this one have cast their lot with an intransigent political minority. And have put alliance with that minority ahead of consideration of any Republican-proposed reform that could help gay people.
We’re delighted to see Log Cabin doing the right thing on this one. Not only because they are supporting a positive plan for reform (put forward by the president), but also because they are breaking from the gay orthodoxy which right now seems to demand absolute fidelity to a political party whose leaders are more interested in opposing the president than in working for policies which further the national interest.
-Dan (AKA GayPatriotWest): GayPatriotWest@aol.com