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Why I’m not Attending Townhall on Gay Marriage Tonight

If I got paid for blogging, I might do things a little differently.  I would certainly attend more gatherings of left-wing gays as I would be compensated for hearing the same old jargon over and over again, in the hope I would hear some new twist amidst the same old rhetoric.

I say this because I had been considering attending the LA Gay and Lesbian Center’s “Town Hall on the Freedom to Marry” tonight.  Indeed, it was anticipation of that meeting that I had penned, er, pixeled, this post on what, I believe to be, the best strategy to deal with a California Supreme Court ruling upholding Proposition 8.  I intended to speak out and say what I have long been saying on this blog and which a reader echoes on his own blog, “present a much better campaign to win the hearts and minds of the California public,” i.e., make a better case for gay marriage.

When I read the list of organizations invited to address the gathering, I saw the usual suspects, the left-leaning gay interest groups in the Golden State.  Now, I’m not disputing their inclusion.  I’m wondering about the exclusion of Log Cabin or any other right-of-center groups.

I expect they would offer the same tired arguments I heard at the “Equality” Summit.  A few people might make a good point or two, but it would have a general leftist slant.  Now, maybe my hunch is wrong and maybe they’ll have a more balanced approach this time, but my experience has taught me not to expect inclusion of conservative ideas at such confabs.

So, I’m not going.  I have better things to do with my time.

Now, if I were paid to do this, it might be worth my while to go.  I would be compensated for listening to the same old liberal jargon repeated by the same liberal advocates who failed last fall to make a convincing case to the people of California for state recognition of same-sex marriage.

If these people really want to build a consensus for same-sex marriage in the Golden State, they need reach out to the voices they have long ignored, those conservative gay men and lesbians who associate with and have ideas on appealing to conservative Californians who voted for Prop 8.

They need to develop strategies to change people’s minds, not just make members of various left-leaning interest groups feel good about themselves.



  1. If you don’t attend (despite the exclusion of LCR, which is wrong), in what way do you plan to publicly stand up and speak on this issue from a “right-of-center” point of view?

    My mother might accuse you of “smelling your ass” with such a reaction.

    Comment by James — April 1, 2009 @ 8:26 pm - April 1, 2009

  2. Protests should be thought out carefully, especially when they may affect our families negatively.

    Comment by James — April 1, 2009 @ 8:27 pm - April 1, 2009

  3. Looking at the sponsor list – I suspect GPW is right that a narrow viewpoint is represented. It’s been a while since I’ve been to a center discussion on some sort of political issue but the usual course of events was for the discussion to quickly degrade into an anti-Christian/GOP/conservative/straight rally.

    Comment by SoCalRobert — April 1, 2009 @ 9:03 pm - April 1, 2009

  4. James, I’m using this blog to present the “right-of-center” point of view. And it draws more readers on a daily basis than will come to tonight’s forum.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — April 1, 2009 @ 10:23 pm - April 1, 2009

  5. Dan, you might have met some other closeted conservatives or at least, like minded gay folk there. . . to profess that others should be more tolerant and adult like, one might have to step out of the box of safety and actually stand up to lead. but I know you are busy.

    Comment by rusty — April 1, 2009 @ 10:29 pm - April 1, 2009

  6. Excluding Log cabin is as prejudicial as excluding the black caucus from the DNC.

    Not all gays are leftists. That is one of the worst lies pushed onto Americans. A gay man or woman might actually love this country, favor individual rights, low taxes and personal responsibility. This is anathema to the democrat party and why they continually fight any gay people from even looking into conservatism even if it is what the individual might want.

    Comment by Alisa — April 1, 2009 @ 11:47 pm - April 1, 2009

  7. Rusty, I might have done so, but there are times when to do so takes psychological effort. Had this not been the week I were getting back to regular work on my dissertation, I might have done so.

    I did e-mail a friend who works with some of these leaders, a left-leaning woman for whom I have great respect and asked her to convey to them my concern about the absence of conservatives on the panel. I may adapt my e-mail to her into a post.

    But, I do appreciate your encouragement and understanding.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — April 2, 2009 @ 1:08 am - April 2, 2009

  8. I may not be in sync here, but I don’t go tripping off to every liberal panel available to present the conservative take. The local university is constantly fielding “public forums” which are attended by a multitude of like minded people who scoff in unison at any “pathetic” social, fiscal or governance conservative.

    Why take the abuse?

    Comment by heliotrope — April 2, 2009 @ 9:39 am - April 2, 2009

  9. You’ve gone to many of these events, I’m sure you’ll go to more in the future. Don’t feel guilty about not going to this one.
    You know they simply spoke about ‘equality’ and how it’s not fair that their rights (given by the CA supreme court less than a year ago) have been stripped away.

    I bet no one brought up the fact that the Dear Leader has pushed DADT off indefinitely, he’s too busy. If he can’t deal with that one, there is no way that anything will happen on a federal level to the issue of gay marriage.

    Anyway, statistically, many gays make a lot of money, more important to tax the hell out of them then give them any reward for doing so.

    Comment by Leah — April 2, 2009 @ 12:11 pm - April 2, 2009

  10. Does anyone know if LCR was even invited? Or did they take the similar approach of “why take the abuse?” And if they were not invited, the LCR should push to be included. Building bridges and coalitions is important.

    That is, assuming, you want LCR to represent the conservative viewpoint in gay marriage. They filed an amicus brief with the Ca supreme court opposing Prop 8.

    Comment by Chuck In Del — April 2, 2009 @ 2:27 pm - April 2, 2009

  11. Chuck,

    LCR will support whoever pays their bills.

    And I guess I’m always confused on the line of ‘asking to be at the table’ if not invited and ‘begging at the door for acceptance’.

    Comment by The_Livewire — April 2, 2009 @ 3:47 pm - April 2, 2009

  12. That is, assuming, you want LCR to represent the conservative viewpoint in gay marriage. They filed an amicus brief with the Ca supreme court opposing Prop 8.

    I would like to see SOMEONE present the conservative view about why gay marriage is good not only for gays, but for society. I know Jonathan Rauch does a good job, but if LCR stood for anything, that is what they’d be doing.

    LW is right, it’s all about the money they get so they can keep their so called: ‘job’ and not go out and get some honest work.

    Comment by Leah — April 2, 2009 @ 4:15 pm - April 2, 2009

  13. There is a fine line between asking to be at the table and begging to be heard to be sure. But ya cant win if ya don’t play.

    And yes, it is about the money. If gay-cons raised enough money to be a factor, they could take over LCR or start a different organization. Thus having a bigger impact.

    If you only go to where you are welcomed, then you aren’t spreading the message.

    The same could be said for going to the GOP. There is change coming in the GOP with Bush in 04 saying civil unions are ok, Steve Schmidt, Meghan McCain, Christy Todd Whitman all suggesting the GOP should be less hostile toward gays, its time to get out there and be part of the reform. Whether you are invited or not.

    Comment by Chuck In Del — April 2, 2009 @ 5:15 pm - April 2, 2009

  14. Chuck,

    My feeling on that line is once you cross it, you give the other side an aura of legitimacy that they don’t deserve. Like the US joining the UN Human rights council.

    If, say, the LGC went, were shouted down and marginalized (assuming their accountants said that the conservatives paid them enough to make a stand) but the conference came out and said “We even had LGC on board to craft this resolution” all LGC would do it a) marginalize themselves even more, and b) look like they were not aboe to articulate their points.

    I won’t speak for Republicans, but for conservatives like myself it’s all about the rule of law. I can live with decisions made I disagree with if the law is followed to reach them. 5 men in their magical black robes is not the rule of law. (I may try to change them, but it will be using the same rule of law)

    Comment by The Livewire — April 3, 2009 @ 6:51 am - April 3, 2009

  15. […] of the gay movement.  If the leaders of the gay organizations continue to exclude us, as they did from LA’s “Townhall” earlier this week, they risk marginalizing themselves as left-wingers and making it easier for proponents of […]

    Pingback by GayPatriot » On the Exclusion of Gay Conservatives from Gay Marriage Confabs — April 3, 2009 @ 5:10 pm - April 3, 2009

  16. […] move voters in their communities,” there is no evidence from Kors’s letter (or my own research and observation) to indicate that hs group (or any other working to repeal Prop has reached out to […]

    Pingback by GayPatriot » Why I Support Delaying Measure to Repeal Prop 8 — August 12, 2009 @ 6:18 pm - August 12, 2009

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