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So regularly do gay liberals (not just gay people, others on the left as well) misrepresent gay conservatives that I often forget how social conservatives also engage in the same sort of deception. While it seems those on the left misrepresent this blog (and its bloggers) on a regular basis, it’s been a while since a social conservative has so misunderstood us (or at least since a reader has drawn their criticism to my attention).
That changed with an item yesterday’s Inside Blogotics column in the Washington Times. Writer Victor Morton reported that Robert Knight, director of the Culture and Media Institute, took issue with Morton’s defining me as a “conservative blogger” in a previous post:
Conservatives understand the central importance of family and the threat that gay activism poses to the freedoms of speech, association and religion. Just ask the Boy Scouts. Or the pastors in Canada who have been hauled before human rights tribunals for daring to publicly criticize gay ‘marriage’ or taxpayer-funded promotion of homosexuality. A gay activist from West Hollywood, whatever else he writes about, is not a ‘conservative’ but a libertarian.
WOW. Where do I start? I ask Knight the same thing I ask some of my liberal critics: do you even read my posts? This guy hasn’t a clue about my ideas.
It’s amazing how many errors I can find in that short quotation. What drives Mr. Knight’s need to paint all gay people with such a broad brush, assuming we are anti-family or favor “taxpayer-funded promotion of homosexuality”?
How eager Robert Knight is to deny my conservatism at the same time he misrepresents my ideas.
While I do lean libertarian (with a small “L”), I am definitely a conservative. I would hardly call myself a gay activist. I do write about gay issues, but don’t militate for political action, not seeing government as appropriate institution to promote the social changes I seek.
I oppose the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) for a great variety of reasons (basically, it’s a solution in search of problem), including a recognition of the dangers it poses to freedom of religion and association. It may make it difficult for social conservatives to exclude gays from their groups, just as it would make it difficult for gays to exclude non-gays from our groups. I may disagree with such exclusion, but do believe citizens should remain free to associate with whomever they choose.
I’m a member of a gay group which filed an amicus brief on behalf the Boy Scouts.
Knight’s notions notwithstanding, I recently wrote a piece defending the right of Canadian pastors to express their views of homosexuality, even when I disagree with those views. I took a Canadian Human Rights (sic) Panel to task when it punished a pastor for saying things I thought were just plain wrong. That wasn’t the only time I defended the right of a prominent person to make anti-gay statements.
I recognize the central importance of family to our society. I love my family more than this man could possibly know. I can still recall the sense of relief I felt when my Dad responded favorably to my coming out. Heck, I just returned from a trip to Cincinnati to be with my Mom when she went in for an operation. Those who read this blog know I think my nieces and nephews rule the world.
It’s not just because I’m conservative that I value my family. I can’t tell you the number of gay people I know, of nearly every political affiliation, who have a similar regard for their families.
Not just that, had he read this blog, he would know that I believe monogamy is a defining element of marriage. And have regularly criticized gay activists for misrepresenting that ancient and honorable institution.
But, I guess when you have a fixed notion of what gay people are, you define us by the most radical elements of our community, so you can’t possibly see us for the individuals we are. Poor Robert Knight, he’s no better than a liberal harboring narrow views of conservatives.
Just yesterday, I wondered at the left’s obsession with tarring conservatives as haters. Today, I wonder at why this social conservative is so obsessed with labeling all gay people as subscribing to the same ideology? Why, like those on the left, does he have such a narrow and inaccurate view of such a broad and diverse group of people?
Why is this man so obsessed with gays? Dr. Freud? Dr. Jung?