At least since I was in college and first hinted at my attraction to men, friends and acquaintances to the left of the political center have suggested I adopted the conservative political views I held to hide my homosexual feelings. If I would just come out, I would experience this sudden illumination and easily see the error of my ways.
Even today, while long since open about such feelings, some on the left inveigh against my “ideological affiliation”, arguing that I won’t have completely come to terms with my sexuality until I swear fealty to the Democratic ideology dominant in the gay community. Basically, these broad-minded leftists assume we hold our political views for reasons unrelated to the merits of our ideas. There has to be a psychological reason — or some other personal motive.
Not how one critic responded to my regular reminder than monogamy was an essential aspect of marriage (in a comment to a post that didn’t address monogamy): “You also zero in on the idea of monogamy, and it always leads me to wonder: have you been particularly cheated on?”
Wonder why it didn’t occur to the reader that it has been my study of the institution — and not just in Western culture — that led to my repeated references to monogamy.
This notion that all too many on the left are constantly seeking a personal motive to conservatives’ expressing views at odds with the liberal worldview came to mind earlier today when I read Jonathan Strong’s Daily Caller piece on the “radical steps” a group of liberal journalists took to protect “their favored candidate” by attempting to squelch stories of Barack Obama’s relationship with a racist pastor.
Other bloggers have already exhaustively covered many angles of this story, but what struck me is Spencer Ackerman’s prejudices against conservatives, assuming that our problem with Barack Obama was his race:
And I think this threads the needle. If the right forces us all to either defend Wright or tear him down, no matter what we choose, we lose the game they’ve put upon us. Instead, take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists. Ask: why do they have such a deep-seated problem with a black politician who unites the country? What lurks behind those problems? This makes *them* sputter with rage, which in turn leads to overreaction and self-destruction.
To the liberals like Ackerman, there must always be something (usually sinister) lurking behind conservative criticisms.
Why do folks like Ackerman refuse to acknowledge that conservatives could have legitimate concerns about a man’s attending the church of a racist? As Roger Simon put it:
Nowhere in evidence, at least in Strong’s article, is the single question any rational mind would ask re: Obama-Wright at the height of a political campaign. Just why did Barack Obama remain in the pew of this reverend for twenty years?
Roger notes further that this is the same old/same old liberal mush: “Nowhere to be found is an original thought – unless you count accusing Karl Rove of racism as a brainstorm.” And it all begs the question: what is behind the liberal obsession with finding something lurking behind the ideas and objections of conservatives?