As I worked on Pajamas piece on the President’s benefits package for the same-sex partners of federal employees, I kept coming across articles and blog posts indicating the disappointment and even betrayal gay Democrats feel at the President’s failure to follow through on the campaign promises he made to our community. This morning, when I checked my e-mail, my in-box was inundated with missives from readers alerting me to other such posts and articles.
While I certainly understand their frustration of gay Democrats, I almost feel like telling them, “I told you so.” (I guess I just did that.)
Democratic politicians, with a few notable exceptions, have an uncanny habit of breaking the promises they make to gay people. Aware of the affluence of our community and the dedication of our activists, Democrats know that by appealing to our interests, they can increase both their campaign contributions and their grassroots efforts.
Their enthusiasm for Democrats who say the right things, however, seems a little unmoored from reality. Then-President Bill Clinton backed down on his promise to repeal the ban on gays serving openly in the military as soon as he saw there was a political cost. He signed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 1996 when he thought he might help him with evangelical voters. Obama sat in a church for twenty years where a racist pastor spewed anti-gay rhetoric and never once challenged him on his prejudiced attitude toward homosexuals.
Now, some may say, “Well, Dan, you support the GOP and Republicans are no better, perhaps even worse.” And I’ll reply, “Yep, you’ve got a point, my party’s not perfect, but at least my guys don’t treat our community like a cash cow, milking it when they need funds and hiding it in the barn when they fear it might offend the neighbors.” it’s not just that. As a conservative, I don’t believe state action is the appropriate means to advance social acceptance of gay people. [Read more…]