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On Chris Barron and Cleta Mitchell

Below please find a post I wrote on the matter of GOProud Chairman Chris Barron’s recent remarks about Cleta Mitchell. When I ran it by Bruce as we had been discussing how to respond, he asked that I sign his name to it. So, consider it from both of us:

I have long believed it best to address your friends’ faults in private and your enemies’ in public. While Bruce and I have long been enthusiastic about GOProud and supportive of Chris Barron, its chairman of the Board and Jimmy LaSalvia, its executive director, as they try to create a national forum for gay conservatives, we have not always seen eye to eye with them. To be sure, we respect their work, enjoy their company and generally approve of the direction in which they are taking GOProud, but from time to time, we have been skeptical about some of their projects and have occasionally disagreed with their statements (or taken issue with their wording). We have expressed our concerns in private e-mails and polite conservations or merely in remarks to each other.

When we heard that Chris had called Cleta Mitchell a “nasty bigot” in a public forum, Bruce and I each contacted the other to express his concerns. We both believe he crossed a line and have been considering for the past 24 hours how to respond. This evening (Thursday, February 10), we thought it best to post this piece. While we disagree with Cleta Mitchell on a number of issues, we believe Chris was wrong to call her a “nasty bigot” to a reporter for the Metro Weekly. This is not appropriate public discourse. We are pleased that Chris apologized for using such intemperate language and encourage him to use greater discretion in future commentary.

UPDATE:  Just saw this commentary at Allahpundit which reflects our views:

Even so, although I support GOProud, I admit to cringing a bit at Chris Barron goofing on boycotters as having exiled themselves to the “Island of Political Misfit Toys” or whatever. It’s not that DeMint et al. can’t take it — Barron himself, I’m sure, could offer a few insights from his formative years about dealing with taunts and name-calling — but doing an end-zone dance over such a contentious disagreement is foolishly and needlessly alienating.

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67 Comments

  1. Anyone who espouses the idea that straights are superior to gays (and deserve a superior legal status and superior privileges) can not be our ally, regardless of their beliefs.

    I dont know of anyone who says straights are superior to gays. I know of a lot of people, I’m one of them, I think most rational human beings are, who recognize the simple biological fact that heterosexuality, or heterosexual sex, is FAR more consequential and important to society than homosexuality.

    In fact, I think the entire debate over gay marriage is an attempt by the majority of gays to get government to endorse their delusion that homosexuality IS equivalent to heterosexuality. I have every single one of the billions of human lives on Earth throughout all of history to homosexuality’s ZERO as proof that they are not equal.

    Comment by American Elephant — February 11, 2011 @ 6:04 pm - February 11, 2011

  2. Dooms, no, you are not the only one who is gay. You are the only one who thinks it makes him a victim.

    Comment by American Elephant — February 11, 2011 @ 6:06 pm - February 11, 2011

  3. No, I want the government to stop declaring that heterosexuality is superior to homosexuality, and take a proper, neutral stance. We can argue all day long as to whether or not whites are superior to blacks, or Christianity is superior to Islam, or men are superior to women. You may even come up with compelling arguments that would make a lot of people uncomfortable. But a government, which is governed and belongs to all individuals, should not be allowed to make laws which make a definite statement of superiority. This is what it does when it gives official sanction to a religious rite, and ties to it economic and legal benefits, and then declares only heterosexual couples may take part in it.

    I don’t disagree that heterosexuals’ intimate relations are more troublesome for society than our own. And I understand that the government has a vested interest in regulating their activities. But wholesale excluding our people from any form of government recognition for our families, and/or giving our people’s marriages and families inferior status, does not in anyway advance society’s interest in regulating straights’ conduct. And I would be interested one day to here a compelling argument as to how excluding gay couples from marriage advances the interest of regulating straight people’s lust.

    Comment by Jeremy — February 11, 2011 @ 6:27 pm - February 11, 2011

  4. AE just for you. . .Lessons in Grace From Maurice Mannion-Vanover –
    http://kids.baristanet.com/2011/01/a-tribute-to-maurice-and-rocky/

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/24/nyregion/24towns.html

    Comment by rusty — February 11, 2011 @ 7:05 pm - February 11, 2011

  5. Yes, I’m familiar with the story. Very wonderful people. What does that have to do with anything I’ve said?

    Comment by American Elephant — February 11, 2011 @ 7:58 pm - February 11, 2011

  6. I take it back, Dooms, you are not the only victim. You were the only one at the time acting the victim. Unfortunately there are millions of gays pretending to be victims when they are not. Just most of them aren’t conservatives.

    Comment by American Elephant — February 11, 2011 @ 8:00 pm - February 11, 2011

  7. Jeremy,

    You can marry anyone you like. Do you need to have the very few legal guidelines posted? (No close relatives, no under age, one at a time, mutual agreement.)

    Comment by Heliotrope — February 11, 2011 @ 8:26 pm - February 11, 2011

  8. Shame on him apologizing, when will he apologize to Dan Savage and gays everywhere?

    Why should he need to apologize to Dan Savage? Was there a juicy catfight that I missed?

    Comment by Throbert McGee — February 12, 2011 @ 5:25 am - February 12, 2011

  9. But wholesale excluding our people from any form of government recognition for our families, and/or giving our people’s marriages and families inferior status, does not in anyway advance society’s interest in regulating straights’ conduct.

    Jeremy, imagine a young man in his early 20s who’s a solid “Kinsey 3” — i.e., a 50/50 bisexual who finds himself equally attracted to women and to men. This young man (let’s call him Jack) could potentially be happy in a long-term monogamous relationship with Alice, or in a long-term monogamous relationship with Bob.

    Is it your belief that the government should be absolutely indifferent to whether Jack pairs up with Alice or whether he pairs up with Bob? And do you think there’s NO rational basis for a State to show some favoritism to a “Jack and Alice” pairing, and perhaps give it a more elevated legal status than a “Jack and Bob” pairing, in order to nudge Jack in the direction of choosing Alice?

    I don’t know how many “Kinsey 3” bisexuals there are actually are in America, but assuming for the sake of argument that they significantly outnumber “Kinsey 6” homosexuals like me, I think it would make sense for the government to give these bisexual people at least some incentive to prefer heterosexual couplehood (without forcing them to be hetero, and without excessively burdensome disincentives if they choose homosexual couplehood). Because, obviously, heterosexual households (on average) are more likely to raise children — who are the next generation of workers and taxpayers.

    Comment by Throbert McGee — February 12, 2011 @ 6:59 am - February 12, 2011

  10. Ouch!

    http://www.riehlworldview.com/carnivorous_conservative/2011/02/dont-goproud-just-go-away-a-withdrawal-of-support.html

    Comment by The Other Peter H — February 12, 2011 @ 9:27 am - February 12, 2011

  11. Throbert, the last info I saw was that male Kinsey 3’s are rare. That men, more than women, will tend to have a distinct preference to one gender or another.

    A new trend in the 21st century is the “mostly straight” male: the guy who knows he is basically straight, but is capable of noticing good-looking guys and fooling around with them from time to time, but then he really is basically straight as he still prefers girls and ultimately settles with one.

    I think it’s real because other cultures have had many such men for centuries, without dying out and without the men ceasing to be straight (or ceasing to marry ultimately). For example, I’ve heard that in traditional Islamic societies where girls are simply *not* available sexually until marriage, there is a lot of pre-marital male homosexuality, that doesn’t stop any of the guys from preferring women. “Eating spaghetti won’t change you into an Italian.”

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 12, 2011 @ 1:34 pm - February 12, 2011

  12. (continued) So my point is, there might be a lot of Kinsey 1 – 2 males out there. And, in being ultimately true to their preference, they will settle with girls. But large numbers of Kinsey 3 males, who must be influenced into a heterosexual choice by law? Color me skeptical.

    Comment by ILoveCapitalism — February 12, 2011 @ 1:38 pm - February 12, 2011

  13. How many folks consider benefits and what not before they get married, though? Sure there are those who decide that it’s more feasible to just “live in sin”, as it were, but do people really give it all that much thought?

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — February 13, 2011 @ 4:40 am - February 13, 2011

  14. 63.How many folks consider benefits and what not before they get married, though? Sure there are those who decide that it’s more feasible to just “live in sin”, as it were, but do people really give it all that much thought?

    Hardly any. People usually don’t think about things that are taken for granted. Take it away, and I think you’ll find that people will give it some thought.

    Comment by Pat — February 13, 2011 @ 11:49 am - February 13, 2011

  15. Like all things, there is usually more than one side to a story. The comment in the Metro weekly was ill-timed and may have been a bit over the top. It was offensive but I still can not find where the Right To Not Be Offended is enshrined. This may shed a bit more light on the issue. http://www.pamshouseblend.com/diary/18623/why-conservative-power-attorney-cleta-mitchell-bashes-goproud-while-her-firm-embraces-diversity
    I have grown tired of the GOProud bashing, politics is not bean bag.

    Comment by OldNuc — February 13, 2011 @ 12:12 pm - February 13, 2011

  16. The comment in the Metro weekly was ill-timed and may have been a bit over the top. It was offensive but I still can not find where the Right To Not Be Offended is enshrined.

    I think it has less to do with the Right To Not Be Offended than it does with the Right To Not Invite Back People Who Go Out Of Their Way To Offend You.

    No one would seriously argue that you are required to invite back party guests who go around insulting other guests, and unfortunately, that’s what GOProud chose to do.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — February 13, 2011 @ 5:16 pm - February 13, 2011

  17. Good point, NDT. We have two participants who apparently insulted each other (with one offering an apology). I suppose CPAC has the right to decide which of the two, if either, gets to come back.

    Comment by Pat — February 13, 2011 @ 5:26 pm - February 13, 2011

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