. . . formerly-conservative gay blogger Andrew Sullivan – never one to miss a chance to hammer the alleged intolerance of American conservatives – finally weighed in. Sullivan was completely silent about Sorba on Friday. And Saturday. But two days later, when he found a new angle, Sullivan couldn’t help himself. The story was too juicy for even him to ignore and he joined the blogosphere left-wing media bandwagon since he knew the way the winds were blowing. Nevertheless, Sullivan labeled Sorba “a glimpse into the future of Republicanism.”
Once again, to Andrew, I ask, “Show me the evidence.” How did he reach this conclusion? Attended any meetings of Republicans lately? Walked any precincts for Republican candidates? Interviewed Republican candidates?
Perhaps, instead of lambasting the GOP for its supposed intolerance of gay people, he should step back and realize his part in getting us to the tipping point. No matter how obsessed he has become today with Sarah Palin’s womb and an imaginary Republican Party, his courage–and his outspokenness–in the 1990s made it easier for guys like Bruce and me to come out in Republican and conservative circles in the mid-1990s and today.
Andrew Sullivan was the first gay openly man to publicly challenge the left-wing gay orthodoxy from a very prominent platform. He set an example; when we debated coming out as gay to our fellow conservatives or as conservative to our fellow gays, we knew we were not alone. As the pioneer (to to speak), Sullivan took a lot of flak reserved for such individuals. By the time we came out, a gay conservative was no long such a novel thing; fewer defenders of the orthodoxy reacted as vehemently as they did when Andrew first challenged their statist shibboleths.
Just as he made it easier for us to come out as conservatives by the example he set in the 1990s, he made it easier for us to establish our berth in the blogosphere by the example he set in the middle and second half of the current decade. His leftward tilt created an opportunity for this once-fledging gay conservative blog.
The Republican Party has changed a great deal since Andrew Sullivan first rose to prominence now nearly two decades ago. As has the right. And to a large extent, Andrew’s prominence in that era when there were few, if any, other outspoken right-of-center gays helped set the stage for the growing acceptance of openly gay people in right-wing ranks.