(Hat tip: Instapundit)
Rob Anderson at The New Republic has a must-read column on the hypocrisy and silence of the American gay “establishment.” Many of these points have been echoed at this site ad nauseum.
How America’s Gay Rights Establishment Is Failing Gay Iranians: The Quiet Americans – The New Republic Online
When it comes to the oppression of gays and lesbians in Muslim countries, gay activism hasn’t died; it never really existed. Gay activists have used two types of excuses to justify their failure to aggressively mobilize for the rights of gay Muslims–moral and strategic. The moral argument is that Americans are in no position to criticize Iranians on human rights–that it would be wrong to campaign too loudly against Iranian abuses when the United States has so many problems of its own. Then, there are two strategic rationales: that it is better to work behind the scenes to bring about change in Iran; and that gay rights groups should conserve their resources for domestic battles.
The strategic rationales are not especially compelling, but it is the moral argument that is particularly troubling, because it suggests that some gay and lesbian leaders feel more allegiance to the relativism of the contemporary left than they do to the universality of their own cause. Activists are more than willing to condemn the homophobic leaders of the Christian right for campaigning against gay marriage; but they are weary of condemning Islamist regimes that execute citizens for being gay. Something has gone terribly awry.
But gay activists need to come to a consensus sooner rather than later because, while they argue, Iranian lives are on the line. For now, mainstream gay organizations have made clear where they stand. As President Ahmadinejad, a man who is partially responsible for these brutalities, passed through New York last month, gay activists failed to confront him. Now he has returned to Iran, where those who are proven to be gay are thrown in jail, tortured, and executed on trumped-up charges. When it comes to the Muslim world, gay and lesbian leaders are evidently uncomfortable talking in moral absolutes. But if this is not absolute evil, then what is?
The problem for the American gay community is that our “establishment” no longer recognizes right from wrong. Only Red from Blue. And we know where their allegiance, money and time goes. It is not on behalf of moral absolutism, but political hackery.
UPDATE (from GPW): Now in his new perch at Malcontent, my buddy Robbie looks into this matter. Noting how Scott Long, director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Program at the Human Rights Watch, excused Muslims for gay bashing in Holland, he wonders:
If a gay couple had been assaulted by poor, Christian evangelicals in Alabama, I highly, highly suspect Mr. Long would not be waxing sympathetic about the effects of poverty or single motherhood. I am reasonably certain his condemnation would have been swift and furious, and rightfully so. Instead we are treated to an apologia, brazen excuses, and a reluctance to condemn the Religion of Peace.
Now, that I’ve whet your appetite, read the whole thing!