And You Think Conservatives Are Intolerant?

Check out this doozie of a story on the hostility raised toward conservatives in a college graduate-level classroom in (you guessed it) Massachusetts. Now I thought it was supposed to be conservatives that squelched free expression and exchange of ideas? I thought it was supposed to be conservatives that acted like the Gestapo?

Care to guess the topic generating all the hypocrisy by the liberals in the classroom? Gay marriage. By the way, this guy's writing is hysterical....

Me vs. World - WillingtonWorld (hat tip: The Corner)

Born In Iraq, Raised In America

I just came upon this awesome story. The blogger is a US Army journalist who just got back from serving in Iraq. He wrote the story of a young Iraqi boy who came to America in the 1990s, then decides he has to give something back and signs up to go to war in his former homeland. A must read.

Born In Iraq, Raised In America -- InIraqFor365

More on Barney Frank and Easongate

A week ago today, my post on Barney Frank challenging a ludicrous claim by CNN's Eason Jordan helped generate a lot of attention for this blog. Most of the big conservative blogs Instapundit, Roger Simon, Hugh Hewitt, Little Green Footballs and others linked us.

Well, now it's my turn to tip my hat to a number of great bloggers who have been doing a great job covering this story, including one of my favorites. Dirty Harry links to a Michelle Malkin who contacted Barney Frank about the incident. She writes

I asked Rep. Frank again if his recollection was that Jordan initially maintained that the military had a deliberate policy of targeting journalists. Rep. Frank affirmed that, noting that Jordan subsequently backed away orally and in e-mail that it was official policy, but "left open the question" of whether there were individual cases in which American troops targeted journalists.

After the panel was over and he returned to the U.S., Rep. Frank said he called Jordan and expressed willingness to pursue specific cases if there was any credible evidence that any American troops targeted journalists. "Give me specifics," Rep. Frank said he told Jordan.

Rep. Frank has not yet heard back from Jordan.
Dirty Harry has more on "Easongate" here, here, here and here, linking to another favorite blogger Roger Simon. Hugh Hewitt is also all over it: here, here, here and here.

Powerline (the only major conservative blog which has not yet linked us) weighs in here, here, here and here, that last post announcing he debut of the blog Easongate.

Hugh, Dirty Harry and Powerline all provide further links to a variety of thoughtful posts on the topic.

European & gay activist attitudes toward Republicans--judging without knowledge

In a comment to my post on Chris Matthews keynoting the LCR convention, one critic wrote
Well, this will be one Republican event where you will at least have a seat at the table. . . . Any other Republican events would exclude you from even cleaning the table.
These words reminded me of the countless sweeping generalizations about Republican attitudes toward gays I hear (or read on the web) on an almost daily basis. Most gay critics of the GOP assume that the Republican Party excludes gays. And yet, while several state parties (Texas and North Carolina come to mind) have excluded Log Cabin from setting up a booth at their state conventions, I have not yet read (nor heard) of a state party which has prevented individual gay men and lesbians from attending GOP events or serving on state (or local) party committees.

Indeed, I know countless gay men and lesbians who have served on committees (and in party offices) in states as diverse as Virginia, California, Nevada, Maryland, Georgia, Louisiana and Florida. To be sure, some have received a cold shoulder from social conservative party activists, but other leaders have welcomed them.

In reading that comment, I was reminded yet again how many who criticize the GOP have never attended a GOP gathering -- or even talked to a gay Republican active in the party.

This attitude reminds me of the negative attitude so many Europeans have towards Americans in general and our nation's conservative leaders in particular. Some on the left (especially in the MSM) act as if European opposition to an American president is a new thing, coming with the supposed "unilateral" foreign policy of President George W. Bush. Twenty years ago, "sophisticated" Europeans held similar feelings about our then president. Living in Europe during the late 1980s, I witnessed first hand the narrow-minded opposition to Ronald Reagan among many such Europeans.

When I was Eurailing/backpacking across the continent during the last year of the Gipper's second term, I stayed at the Youth Hostel in Verona, Italy. At dinner one night, I struck up a conversation with the guy sitting next to me. I introduced myself in Italian, but when I recognized his accent, I spoke to him in German. Unable to recognize my accent, he asked where I was from. As soon as he learned that I was American, this German young man began to attack our Ron, ascribing sinister motives to the American people for electing him twice (both times, I might add, with a majority of the popular vote). He assumed that because I was educated, spoke three languages (and a smattering of a fourth), lived in France (which I did at the time) and studied at the Sorbonne that I would have to oppose America's Great Communicator.

Well, for nearly an hour, in good German, I defended the greatest American president of my lifetime. When I noted why people elected him--he appealed to our best hopes offering a positive vision of our nation and what we could accomplish--this German man insisted that I had it wrong. Yep, a German was telling me that I got it wrong about why my fellow citizens twice elected the Gipper -- and why I cast my first vote for president for that great (and good) man.

This man acknowledged that he had never previously talked to an American who had voted for our fortieth president. He had never visited the United States. He hadn't even read American newspapers. But, he "knew" all about my fellow citizens--and our political concerns. He said he was stunned that an American (in near flawless German) could so articulately defend the man he -- and so many of his peers -- reviled.

I don't know if this man changed his attitude toward Americans who supported the Gipper. He never showed up when we were supposed to meet to see a production of "AIDA" at the Arena the following day. But, at least, in talking to me, he confronted an American who challenged his narrow view of our great land -- and its most popular president of the second half of the twentieth century.

Like this European who claimed to know so much about Americans and their political choices, so many gay activists (and their allies on the left) claim to know everything there is to know about Republicans -- and their attitudes toward gays. They hold that the GOP wants to exclude us and attack us. Yes, there are some within the party who were rather we weren't there. And some who are as obsessed with gays as Michael Moore and Barbara Boxer are with President Bush. And yet, when I was more active in the party, I experienced exactly the same thing that my blog-league noted in a post earlier today, "people I've interacted with in the GOP could care less that I'm gay. They care if I'm a productive person, active in the party, and willing to work hard."

It's unfortunate that these negative stereotypes of Republicans persist in certain gay circles---just as negative stereotypes of American conservatives persist in many elite European circles. And just as the reality of Americans differs from European stereotypes, the reality of our party's treatment of individual gays differs from the stereotypes of many gay activists, including some who call themselves Republicans. It's too bad that the nation's largest gay and lesbian Republican organization with a full-time Washington office has not been promoting the inclusive reality of the GOP to the gay community.

Bush Approval Rating -- 57%

Oh the horrible wails that must becoming from the Senate offices of Edward Kennedy....

Bush shows highest ratings in a year - USA Today (via Polipundit)

Advocate Profile of Bob Kabel

Thanks to Ted (ChargingRhino) for reminding me about this profile on Bob Kabel in the Feb. 15 issue of the Advocate. I had actually planned to do a series of postings about the 2/15 Advocate. Best laid they say.

From the Kabel profile.... here's a good exchange showing the automatic bias of the Advocate, contrasted with the real life experience of Kabel.

Will other party chiefs work against you?

I don’t anticipate any problem. From decades of experience I can tell you that in the ranks of the hundreds of party leaders all over the country, there is a remarkable openness to understanding the lives of gay people. Gay people have a job to do in educating and reaching out to them. I think a lot of what we saw in 2004 was a result of our failure to do that enough.

An experience that I share with Kabel, by the way.... I've been treated more hatefully by fellow gays for being Republican than by fellow Republicans for being gay. Frankly, people I've interacted with in the GOP could care less that I'm gay. They care if I'm a productive person, active in the party, and willing to work hard.

A social conservative's admission--divorce worse than gay marriage

In an opinion piece on a Virginia legislator's proposed "Family Bill of Rights," Stephen Baskerville, President of the American Coalition of Fathers and Children summarizes many of the social conservative arguments against gay marriage. Yet, this piece also includes a startling admission by Mike McManus, co-founder with his wife Harriet of Marriage Savers--bold added in text below for emphasis:
. . . same-sex "marriage" is not only a threat to the marriage and the family. It may not even be the most serious. As Michael McManus of Marriage Savers points out, "Divorce is a far more grievous blow to marriage than today's challenge by gays."

Indeed, it is very likely same-sex "marriage" would not even be an issue were it not for the severe weakening of marriage that has already occurred due to divorce and out-of-wedlock births. "Commentators miss the point when they oppose homosexual marriage on the grounds that it would undermine traditional understandings of marriage," writes Bryce Christensen of Southern Utah University. "It is only because traditional understandings of marriage have already been severely undermined that homosexuals are now laying claim to it."
McManus (as you may recall) is a social conservative columnist who had a contract with the Department of Health and Human Services.I don't agree with what Chirstensen says, but note the context in which he places the opposition to gay marriage -- and the opening it provides for those who advocate expanding the definition of this ancient institution.

Because social conservatives see the "traditional understanding of marriage" as having been undermined, it behooves those who push gay marriage to point out how gay marriage could strengthen the institution. They would need to talk about values and mutual responsibility more than they talk about "rights." Jonathan Rauch does a great job of his in his excellent chapter "What is Marriage For?" in his otherwise uneven book, "Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America."

More important than the attitude this article reveals is McManus' admission which I bolded in the first paragraph of the quotation. Divorce is a greater threat to families, particularly children, than gay marriage. As we discuss gay marriage, let us take on the social conservatives on their own turf and remind them what McManus has acknowledged. Let us stand up for strong marriages and say we want marriage to foster lasting relationships. And that we understand how, while necessary in many cases, divorce is a greater threat to the institution than monogamous gay unions. And that more often than not, divorce harms the children of the dissolved marriage while lasting same-sex unions provide psychological and spiritual benefits for both partners.

And to better understand the social conservative case against gay marriage, read the whole article from which I quoted above.

Hat tip: Lgbt-politics listserv.

Iranian 'Insurgents' Plan Snub To Mullahs On Islamic Revolution Anniversary

Here's some more encouraging news from the brewing unrest in Iran.

Let's transform the 26th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution into a show of its rejection -- Student Movement Coordination Committee for Democracy in Iran (SMCCDI). The SMCCDI is encouraging all Iranians to take the following actions this week:

At 9:00pm (Iran's local time) on Wednesday February 9, 2005, to massively gather in all Iranian cities main sidewalks and squares (such as Vali E Asr in Teheran, and Tchar-Bagh in Esfahan), on foot or by bringing cars in order to jam them in such a way as to disrupt law enforcement deployment and function.

From early morning till 9:00pm, on Thursday February10, 2005, that Iranian cities should become empty "dead cities". Compatriots should avoid strictly any presence in main squares and streets in order to cut off the claws of the regime from any use of propaganda.

Again on Feb.10, 2005, from 9:00pm on, Iranians should jam the sidewalks and squares as the night previously, and all lights shut off in homes and businesses as before, and the darkness should be used to protest in any way possible.

In addition, the SMCCDI notes "Compatriots may dye their right index finger with blue ink in the now well-known sign of "Right of self-determination."

Well-known sign, huh? I wonder why Democrats didn't feel the need to show the same solidarity last week during the State of the Union.

If It Is Good Enough For Iraq...

One of my personal pet peeves following the November 2004 election is the rampant voter fraud that took place in Wisconsin, St. Louis (again), and Washington State. And I'm sure many other places.

All across Iraq we saw a simple way to prevent voter fraud -- putting your finger on an inkpad and guaranteeing you say who you are with your fingerprint. Well if it is good enough for Baghdad and Basra, surely it is good enough for Boston and Butte!

And as I've said this before... if we need a photo ID to buy beer and cigarettes and to board a plane, it is absolutely imperative that we start using a photo ID to allow people to vote. Enough of these massive influx of felons and drunken homeless people. Let's bring some confidence back to our electoral system. I want to ensure that my vote is worth something and not being illegally diluted by the efforts of groups like or the Democratic National Committee. reported last week that the State of Georgia is making progress, but this needs to be a Federal law at least for Federal elections.

Hopefully someone in Washington, DC will get serious about this crucial reform of our election process.

Happy Birthday Mr. President

GPW had a nice tribute today in honor of Ronald Reagan's birthday. I can't top it, so I won't try. I just would like to mark the occasion as well.

Two fellow bloggers have nice tributes so I'd like to direct your attention their way.

Red State Rant and Jackson's Junction.

Now I'm watching my Eagles about to score the first touchdown of the Super Bowl (I hope). And who didn't cry during the fine tribute before the game to our US Armed Forces around the world?


Today marks the 94th anniversary of the birth of the greatest President of my lifetime, Ronald Wilson Reagan.

On his blog, reader Trey Jackson prepared a tasteful tribute to our Ron -- offering helpful links and photographs to remember this great man.

I watched a video tribute to the Gipper last night and teared up when I saw a clip of Nancy paying homage to her beloved at the 1996 Republican National Convention. This is the first time since she met the man that she will not be able to celebrate his birthday with him.

Let's remember this great man on the anniversary of his birth and keep Nancy in our thoughts as well. Because of her love for our Ron, he was able to do so much good for our great nation -- and the world.

Former Carter speechwriter to keynote LCR convention

Even before I knew that my blog-league would be interviewing Patrick Guerriero, I had been considering attending the Log Cabin National Convention the first weekend in April. Given that we have been frequent critics of the organization, I thought that by going there, I would have the chance to meet current Log Cabin members, talk to them, hear their concerns, learn why they're involved while witnessing firsthand how the organization presents itself.

As I reviewed the Convention Agenda online, I was struck by how few Republicans are speaking. Okay, okay, I understand that most of the speakers are on the agenda of something called the Liberty Education Forum (which is, to be sure, a part of the Convention as one registers for both at the same time). I noted, however, that the keynote speaker of the official Log Cabin national convention was a man whose last political job was working for a Democrat. Yep, Chris Matthews, one-time speechwriter to Jimmy Carter and former top aide to Tip O'Neill, will be keynoting this Republican Convention. (For the record, I am still likely to attend.)

Now, I think Matthews is (or used to be when I watched him) one of the best of the TV pundits (side note--can anyone identify a former GOP elected official who hosts a political talk show on a TV network other than Fox?). And Matthews' book "HARDBALL: How Politics Is Played Told By One Who Knows The Game" is a must read for all students of politics. Normally a judicious commentator who is as harsh on Democrats as he is on Republicans, my blogging correspondent Dirty Harry wrote me calling Matthews the "chief conspiracy theorist and doubter of the president's Iraq policy." In other words, in recent days, he has been a strong critic of one of the principle achievements of the president's foreign policy.

It would be one thing for a Republican organization to invite a one-time Democrat who has switched to the GOP, it's quite another when they invite a one-time Democratic staffer who continues to attack our Republican president.

For those who wonder why we criticize Log Cabin so frequently on this blog, one need only look to the keynote speaker at their convention. It makes me wonder yet again if their main goal is not to influence the Republican party, but instead to get attention in the media.

"MOTORCYCLE DIARIES" and the real Che Guevara

Last night I saw the film "MOTORCYCLE DIARIES." I have to admit I hesitated seeing the flick because it celebrated the life of leftist icon Che Guevara, a man who, in his prime, was a brutal revolutionary, responsible for the deaths of hundreds, if not thousands. Yet, numerous friends and acquaintances touted the film and well, I was lured by the chance to see once again the fetching Gael García Bernal on screen.

Not only is that man a treat for the eyes, he's also quite an accomplished actor, totally believable playing a character quite different than the one who he played to great effect in Almodóvar's excellent "BAD EDUCATION." This film, "MOTORCYCLE DIARIES" shows the young Guevara taking a trip with an older friend across South America and seeing firsthand the suffering of many of the people with whom he shared a continent. The poverty and injustice he witnessed caused him to reevaluate his life, to abandon his prior career path to become a doctor, and to choose instead the path of violent revolution.

What struck me about the movie (beyond Bernal's good looks) was the real suffering of many poor Latin Americans, particularly the indigenous population. Bernal as the young Guevara showed a genuine sensitivity to their plight. It reminded me that most revolutionaries (of the left) were motivated by legitimate grievances, the injustices inflicted upon them by a corrupt ruling class. While they called this capitalism, they were rebelling against a corrupt form of capitalism where the state used its might to help powerful corporations, many of them, alas, American, while abusing the rights of their citizens, even those who owned land. Those Latin American regimes failed to respect the rights of the individual, particularly property rights, essential to true capitalism.

I had hesitated to see the movie because I did not want to see a piece of propaganda, celebrating the life of a violent revolutionary. Instead I saw a movie which showed the compassion which drove the young Guevara to action. It was his later choices -- and the ideology (Communism) from which he would draw inspiration and find direction -- that turned his initial noble sentiments, his feeling for his fellow Latin Americans, into violent actions and support for a repressive regime (Castro's Cuba).

The movie thus reminded me that Communism, indeed many failed ideologies, began with a noble vision, a concern for the suffering of one's fellow man. While we recognize that while many revolutionaries become like the pigs in George Orwell's "ANIMAL FARM," who, once in power, ape the repression of the repressive regimes they overthrew, they do respond (at least initially) to genuine concerns of the people they claim to represent. They have may have lofty visions, but their means are why we oppose them.

While this movie reminds us that communism did begin with a such a noble vision, we can never forget that the means to carry it out relegated it to the "ash heap of history."


I post this joke in honor of my childhood football team, The Philadelphia Eagles, who will be victorious on Sunday at The Super Bowl.

Four football fans go rock climbing one afternoon, a Patriots fan, a Falcons fan, an Eagles fan, and a Steelers fan.

They had been arguing all the way up the mountain about who among them was the most "die-hard" fan. Upon reaching the top of the mountain, the Patriots fan proclaimed to the other four..."This is for the New England Patriots!" and promptly threw himself off the mountain as a form of sacrifice.

Not to be outdone by the Patriots fan, the Falcons fan jumped up and said..."This is for the Atlanta Falcons!" and then threw himself off the mountain again as a form of sacrifice.

Refusing to be outdone by the Patriots and Falcons fans, the Eagles fan rose to his feet and yelled at the top of his lungs, "This is for the Philadelphia Eagles!" and without hesitation, pushed the Pittsburgh Steelers fan off the mountain.

Gotta love Philly fans!!!

New York.... the New Massachusetts?

Hat tip to GP Reader Noah (for the article and the headline!)

Judge strikes down New York's ban on gay marriage -- via

Once again, I fear a short-term victory.... a long-term setback. Even in Massachusetts this week there were stories that pro-gay marriage legislators are now backing away from their support.

My prediction: A New York statewide voter referendum in 2005. Which will defeat gay marriage.

The way to progress on this is not by sidestepping the people (legislative process) and running into the court system. Even Blue State America is just not ready for court-ordered gay marriage.

The problem is because the gay activists are trying this courtroom short cut, we are stuck with the implementation of the Kerry Gay Rights Doctrine.... a domino effect of statewide voter referendums making gay marriage unconstitutional. State-by-state-by-state. These knee-jerk voter referendums are a direct result of the court-ordered strategy taken by the gay activists and the supportive Mayors. It just ain't cutting it.

What is needed is tedious, deliberate, grassroots efforts to educate Reds and Blues and then to work through the legislative (not courts, not voter referendum) process for equality.

Our gay rights activists are helping to move the clock backwards by this short-sighted "We Want It Now" courtroom strategy.

Who Is HRC Helping?

I'm starting to wonder if the Human Rights Campaign does not have the best interests of gay and lesbian Americans at heart. Instead, I think they have become a mirror of the Far Right -- now using a platform of "anti" and "evil" against the other side in order to raise money.

Rich Tafel has a post on this very issue today.
So here's the paradox for gay organizations. Though cooperation should be the goal, their funding depends on attacking Republicans. The gay political groups will not make progress nor seek opportunities for finding common ground, and they will be wealthier for it.

If HRC wants to keep up their expensive lifestyle as a liberal mouthpiece in Washington, it is actually in their best interest to trash President Bush and the Congressional Republicans in order to continue to fund their ravenous appetite for gay cash.

If they REALLY wanted to help gays and lesbians across America, they would suck it up, realize that the Republicans will control Congress for the remainder of this decade (if not beyond) and start a dialogue. But, it is far too easy to stay on the current course of raising tons of money by making your base more angry, more livid and more intolerant.

Just ask the Religious Right.

Rising GOP Star Bobby Jindal Leads Purple Fingered Support

Hat tip to Polipundit.

In a former life, I had the great pleasure to meet with Bobby Jindal on two occasions. Both times he showed himself to be a savvy, intelligent, caring and hardworking public servant.

I'm pleased to see he is not only a rising star with the House Republican caucus, but also was instrumental in spearheading the strong visual statement made by most Members of Congress during the State of the Union. The Purple Finger -- linking Americans to Iraqis. Jindal is going to be yet another way the Republican Party grows its majority foothold during this generation. Mark my words.

But now to the most telling part of the Purple Finger show of solidarity. To those anti-war and liberals who claim they "support the troops, but oppose the war/occupation", I say you are lying. And here is further proof from the Cox News Service report...

Supporters stuck their [purple] forefingers in the air — not unlike college football fans declaring "We're number one" — as the president spoke.

But most Democrats did not dip into the inkwell.

So what does that mean now.... that Democrats in Congress support the troops (before they vote against them), but not the freedom, liberty and democracy those troops brought to Iraq?

I think we all know the answer.

Pink Pistols vs. San Fran City Politboro

Quick opening history lesson for those of you born, say after 1984 or so.... The Politburo (Political Bureau, called the Presidium in 1952-1966) of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union was the most powerful body in the USSR--an elite core of roughly a dozen members who set policy and in effect ran the country on a day-to-day basis.

You can thank Ronald Reagan for the fact you never heard of the word before.

So now that we have the historical reference behind us, the San Francisco City Council is planning to approve a sweeping handgun ban in the city. But what they didn't count on was the staunch opposition of.... yes, believe it or not.... the gay community.

The Pink Pistols (whose motto is "Armed Gays Don't Get Bashed") are at the forefront of opposition. ClassicalValues has a nice sum-up of the odd political bedfellows -- the NRA and the gays with guns.

Gay men and lesbians are at risk of becoming hate crime victims, the group's philosophy goes, and therefore community members should learn how to protect
themselves -- with firearms.

"We believe that first you need to stay alive, then you need to educate," Patton said.

The Pink Pistols are likely to play a critical role in the developing San Francisco fight, said Chuck Michel, a spokesman for the California Rifle and Pistol Association and a lawyer for the National Rifle Association. "They have a great deal of legitimacy because they recognize they are at great odds of becoming victims because of their sexual preference. ... I think people will understand that they should not be deprived of their rights.

MAN! Do I love this story or what? This is an awesome example of why gays shouldn't have blind allegiance to liberals and Democrats. And it is a great clash of social/political issues that leaves nutty Lefties and nutty Righties scratching their heads and wondering what to do.

In any case, I've been waiting for the right time to do a posting on the Pink Pistols. All power to them. Let's keep the rights we have before worrying about the rights we think we want!

Hat tip on this whole story to Instapundit.

More Evidence The Iraqi People Are Taking Back Their Nation

This story posted by Ali (FreeIraqi) is like the icing on the cake of a historic week in world history. The act of voting and the knowledge of millions behind them has empowered these Iraqi citizens to take back their streets.

I won't be surprised to hear more stories like this in the coming days and weeks.

I told PatriotPartner last night I would bet that al-Zarqawi would soon pull up stakes in Iraq and move on. All he is doing know is killing Muslims in a nation that has seen the light of freedom. Let's hope my prediction is right, or our Marines kill the SOB soon.

Another LCR Board Update

Wow, you post one item of interest about last week's Log Cabin (Republicans) board meeting, and the tips come streaming out of the woodwork. Here's a hysterical gem from another source who is in the know about the LC(R) board:

You should know that Chairman Bill "Stalin had a point" Brownson admonished the board for reading blogs in general and yours in particular. (GP note: *guffaw*)

He even remarked that he did not want bloggers to know they [LCR] were tracking what was being posted. He doesn't care for you one bit by the way - all the more reason I am thinking of that campaign to write your name in on the board ballot.

Brownson is obsessed with security issues.

While I'm humbled by the attention, I would really hope that Chairman Brownson has more to worry his little head about that this silly ol' blog. Perhaps he needs something to occupy his free time? May I suggest this light reading.... especially bullet point Number One.

In A Move Sure To Make EnviroFascists Enraged...

... I am going to promote these collection of goodies from the "I Club My Seal" store. I personally think it is very funny and a refreshing change in our politically correct, over sensitive world.

Of course, it doesn't hurt his cause that the guy who has the Club My Seal shop looks like this.

US Rep Jim Kolbe Being Considered for Top Administration Post

I wonder how the gay lefties would react to Congressman Kolbe becoming the US Trade Representative? I'm sure there would be a [COMMA] involved...

Political battle likely if Kolbe gets trade post -- Sierra Vista Herald, Feb. 3. (hat tip - GP Reader Matthew)

I'll be watching to see if, as I believe, President Bush picks people who are the best for the job. Not because if they are (or aren't) of a certain race, creed, color, sexual orientation, or religious affiliation.

GP Mailbag: Morning After SOTU Thoughts

A loyal reader from the great state of Texas sent me this awesome email this morning.... it was a "must post."

So last night, I’m watching [the State of the Union] with some friends and, of course, Janet Norwood [mom of fallen Marine Byron Norwood] made me cry. Mostly because I work with her other son, Grant -- Byron’s brother. We work together on the same team and he sits one aisle over. He’s not in yet this morning but he never mentioned that his mom and dad were going to be on the SOTU last night.

So to give you perspective, this is what it’s like to live in fly-over country: My mom and dad are going to be on TV tonight as special guests of President Bush sitting in the gallery of his State of the Union speech right behind Laura while he pays tribute to my fallen brother, a Marine who proudly gave his life in the name of liberty and freedom. Oh, I guess I forgot to mention that.

This, on the other hand, is what it’s like to be a far-left Democrat: Showing solidarity with those who risked their lives to vote in the face of terrorism and car bombs likens you to Nazis.

The fact that Byron's brother didn't mention his parent's role in the SOTU isn't surprising to me. Real heroes do not tell people they are heroes -- they just go about doing their business. John Kerry incessantly told us he was a hero, and paid other people to tell us he was a hero. Fake, phony, disgusting.

I raise my glass today to the Norwood family. Thank you for your sacrifice and your love of our nation.

HRC Restructuring

Christian Grantham has more on the "restructuring" of the Human Rights Campaign following yesterday's news that Winnie Stachelberg was leaving as the HRC's head lobbyist.

It is the second story down.... you have to get past the expected rant on gay marriage. *grin*

After Three and 1/2 Years...

At some point last evening, it hit me. I think it has been creeping up on me for a while. But last night it hit me full square in the eyes and in my soul.

On that terrible Tuesday morning as I watched planes fly into our national treasures, and later when I found out one of my best friends had perished on American Airlines Flight 77, I began a process of questioning. Some of it was personal: how could good people have been senselessly taken away, and what am I supposed to do with my life? Some of it was more global: my country has always been a beacon of hope and freedom, how could anyone do this to her.

But fundamentally, I couldn't grasp why. Why did the terror attacks happen? Why were so many innocents killed? I've always been taught, and believe, that "things happen for a reason." But up until last night, I didn't consciously see a reason for the 9/11 attacks.

And then I got it. Between the words the President spoke and the emotional moment of the fallen Marine's mom hugging the newly freed Iraqi woman.... I finally got it. As Ronald Reagan taught me as I was growing up, America has a place in the destiny of mankind. And that destiny began 229 years ago with these words written by wise and perhaps prophetic men:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.
I realized last evening that this is one of the greatest moments in history that I am living through. America has been called again by destiny to bring freedom and democracy to places around the world where such things seemed but a dream. It took the attacks of 9/11 to raise the slumbering giant out of its sleep and rise again to destiny's challenge. As President Bush said in his Inaugural Address, "After the shipwreck of communism came years of relative quiet, years of repose, years of sabbatical - and then there came a day of fire. "

Destiny had to deliver a stunning blow to America for us to step up to the plate once again. During the memorial service for my friend who was murdered on 9/11, his boss said "perhaps we will look back someday and realize these people died for a reason." They sure did.

The innocents on 9/11 did not die in vain, they died for a great purpose. America has been called by fate to free oppressed people throughout the world. My dear friend has played a crucial role in the changing of history. The light of America's beacon is shining once again. We will stand up to tyranny and oppression with force if necessary. Because the end result of democracy and liberty does justify any means necessary. Our Founding Fathers told us that in the Declaration of Independence. We have a solemn duty to uphold that charge.

President Bush's closing last night made me finally understand why we all lived through that horrible September day.
We live in the country where the biggest dreams are born. The abolition of slavery was only a dream -- until it was fulfilled. The liberation of Europe from fascism was only a dream -- until it was achieved. The fall of imperial communism was only a dream -- until, one day, it was accomplished. Our generation has dreams of its own, and we also go forward with confidence. The road of Providence is uneven and unpredictable -- yet we know where it leads: It leads to freedom.
It took the tragedy of 9/11 for America to realize that our dream is not realized and our destiny must still be fulfilled. I can think of no better tribute to those that were lost on 9/11 than the ink-stained finger of an Iraqi voter, and more to come. The legacy of the 9/11 victims lives on in the free people of Afghanistan and Iraq. I finally stopped questioning last night.

Democratic Response

Do Democrats REALLY think that the Harry Reid/Nancy Pelosi show is a good way to counter the State of the Union?

And I thought the Tom Daschle/Nancy Pelosi show last year was horrible. Reid is terrible on television.

UPDATE: Looks like I've channeled Andrew Sullivan tonight. Heh.

Oh.... Pelosi looks like she is going to come through the television and bite me on the neck. She scares me. Also looks like she's gone to the same Botox doc as John Kerry, no?

How hard do you think it was for both Reid and Pelosi to utter the word "God" in his opening, and her close? Heh heh.

State of the Union -- random thoughts

I think we are almost through the speech, President Bush is into his Social Security sales pitch. You can find better "liveblogs" on other sites like VodkaPundit, PatrickRuffini and Powerline.

But I had to pop on here to make a comment about political discourse in our nation. I'm really disappointed in the way that the Democrats treated Bush when he got to the Social Security section. They bordered on booing him. Is this what the Democratic leaders have sunk to -- being characatures of Michael Moore and the anti-war protestors?

The outburst reminded me of how the opposition party treats the British Prime Minister during the Question and Answer session.


Social Security -- I don't know enough about this issue yet to pontificate. (Not that it has stopped me before, right?) But see when it comes to math issues, my mind turns to jelly. VikingPundit is the resident expert on Soc Security Reform.... I'm following his lead!

Gay marriage -- well, I'm disappointed he had to "go there" with the Constitutional amendment on gay marriage. I was hoping it wasn't necessary. I'm disappointed, I guess some bones had to be thrown to the religious conservatives. Although I have always been against a Constitutional amendment on marriage, I am quite opposed to subverting the legislative process in the states that triggered this whole debate prematurely last year.

UPDATE: Captain Ed puts gay marriage reference in perspective:
8:31 - He spent ten minutes, by my watch, on Social Security. He spent thirty seconds on the Federal Marriage Amendment. Anyone need an explanation? He's spending more time on the protection of human life. I like that set of priorities.

Judicial nominees -- nice jab at Senate Democrats on urging an up or down vote on all nominees. Sounded like the biggest applause of the night to me!

HIV/AIDS -- Bush called for reauthorization of Ryan White Act. Let me remind our faithful readers that President Bill Clinton slashed the AIDS budget in 7 of his 8 years. That funding had to be restored by the post-1994 Republican controlled Congress. I'm not even sure Bill Clinton ever mentioned the Ryan White Act at all in any of his SOTU speeches. That funding restoration was led, each time, by then Congressman, now US Senator Tom Coburn. Interesting that he also said we have to focus on African-American and women. Really flies in the face of conventional wisdom about this President, huh?

War on Terror -- Bush bucks up the country on the war on terror. "We will stay on the offensive against them until the fight is won." Thanking Congress for providing military for the "tools of victory." Now did John Kerry wonder if he was for or against that??

Now he is reinforcing the contrasts between terrorism and democracy/freedom. "The advance of freedom will lead to peace."

Middle East peace -- Now who would have thought a couple years ago that Bush's strategy to wait for Arafat The King of Terrorists to die would actually be paying off?


PatriotPooch is getting bored.... he's fidgeting on the couch and staring at me. I've decided he's right... these speeches go on too long....


IRAN -- Now this was the biggest surprise to me. Bush looked right in the camera and told the Iranian people -- "as you stand for your own liberty, America will stand with you." I guess his veiled references in the Inaugural address weren't so veiled.

IRAQ -- Bush is commenting on the marvelous sight of the blooming Iraqi democracy from last Sunday. "Americans recognize that spirit of liberty -- because we share it." "Voting is a civic responsibility, but for many Iraqis it was a test of personal courage, and they have earned the respect of us all." AMEN!

He is honoring a female Iraqi voter in the audience who had earlier said "Saddam was the real occupier, thank you to the soldiers who helped free my country." Now SHE got the biggest applause!

Bush is quoting Iraqi PM Allawi when he spoke to Congress last year. Um, didn't Kerry basically call him a puppet at the time? *grin*

"Freedom in Iraq will make America safer for generations to come." Huh. I wonder if we have overcome an important psychological hurdle with the elections. I'm betting the "anti-war" folks are going to fade away soon and only show up when the World Bank meets in DC again.

Oh, now maybe we know why he didn't specifically mention Iraq in his Inaugural. He was dealing with larger themes then


Bush is giving a nice tribute to our Armed Forces. A Marine who died in Fallujah is being honored; his family sitting up in the gallery. Semper Fi!

I think Bush is getting choked up. That's what I admire about this man. He is real. He doesn't use his emotions when needed politically. He just emotes, like normal people.

"The attack on freedom in our country has reinforced the promise of freedom in the world." Great line.

"The road to Providence is uneven and unpredictable.....but we know where it leads. It leads to freedom." You got it!

Speech over. PatriotPooch walking time!

'Nite everyone.

Log Cabin Board Report: What Can 90K Buy You?

I'm just amazed at the people who send me information. The following news comes from a well-placed source with ties to the Log Cabin (Republicans) Board of Directors.

Apparently, Log Cabin (R) has hired a very influential lobbying firm, Van Scoyoc Associates, to help repair the self-inflicted damage with Congressional and Administration Republicans. Here's the interesting part... the total budget for the entire year for this lobbying firm will be a mind-boggling $90,000. (crickets chirping)

Now wait just one minute. LC(R) less than one year ago spent ONE MILLION DOLLARS on strategically placed television ads to help undermine President Bush's re-election campaign. And they think $90,000 will make everyone at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue all nice-nice now?

As my source says, for $90,000 at a firm like this, you maybe get the summer intern on your project - but only when they are not too busy.

Oh, but the Board apparently approved a very nice pay raise for Executive Director Patrick Guerriero. You know, I always said the best job to have is a TV weatherman.... you are wrong 90% of the time, but you are paid well and become famous. I guess there are now two jobs where those qualifications are met.

UPDATE: Welcome, readers of The Corner!

BREAKING NEWS: HRC To Lose Political Director

Christian Grantham reports that longtime Human Rights Campaign Political Director Winnie Stachelberg is leaving her job as chief lobbyist for the gay rights organization.

Perhaps since Republicans now control Congress (and will for a long time), they would consider hiring a gay Republican to replace her. After all, HRC goes to great pains to claim they are "non-partisan."

Yeh, I know....that was funny, huh? Howard Dean and George Soros would never let HRC hire a Republican!

UPDATE: An anonymous source reports to me that Winnie was passed over to lead HRC as their new Executive Director. Maybe Patrick is waiting in the wings?

Circular File With "Equal Sign"

Patriot is indisposed today... so he asked me to do a posting on the ridiculous press release that the Human Rights Campaign put out yesterday.

GPW says "If you put your hearts and souls into defeating the president, his staff will certainly put this letter in the circular file." And millions of dollars, I might add (including LCR's ad money and George Soros money that went to HRC.)

And another thing... they attribute the following quotes to President Bush and put them in context with his "suggested" SOTU address:
Indeed, families headed by same-sex couples are as much as a family as Laura and I are (People Magazine, Dec. 27, 2004) and I think gay Americans ought to have the same rights as all other Americans (Presidential Debate, October 2000). And I reject partisan pronouncements, including those from my own party, which would seek to deny the rights of states to pass laws that provide fair treatment to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender families (ABC News Good Morning America, Oct. 26, 2004).

I admire and am a strong supporter of W. to the ends of the earth.... but did he say anything close to these statements that HRC claims he did? I think they took broad creative license when doing this -- so I'll give them that. But that last sentence sounds more like a bad Dana Carvey impression of President Bush 41, doesn't it?

Another Gay Elitist on the Wrong Side of History

I wasn't sure whether to laugh hysterically, shake my head in disbelief, or get red-faced angry when I read "Will Bush Bomb Iran Next?" by Jack Nichols. You will really steam when you read the closing paragraph -- full of hateful stereotypes about President Bush and the 62 million who supported him.
Therefore, in spite of the fact that America’s treasury is suffering a stultifying deficit (Clinton had left Bush with a surplus); that the U.S. owes $600 billion to other lands; that Bush is still pushing for permanent tax cuts for his rich buddies and is now demanding that America’s bare treasury drop $80 billion more into debt to keep his mismanaged war in Iraq limping along, he and his cult of cronies are now contemplating bombing Iran? Gimmie a break.

No, give us all a break, Mr. Self Righteous. You are on the wrong side of history. The days of allowing terror to flourish in the vacuum of Democracy are over, buddy boy.

The vile, disdain and contempt toward the United States (not just President Bush) is quite evident in Mr. Nichols' piece as well. This is just another tired example of an angry gay man who thinks capitalism is evil, America is unjust, and every other place on the earth are inhabited with selfless nyphms playing flutes and laying in flower beds. My God, am I glad I didn't grow up as a '60s flower child product. UGH!

You know what, 90% of us weren't as fortunate to travel to Iran (or our equivalent) when we were in our teens. I think Mr. Nichols is the 1960s equivalent of our anti-war "trustifarians" today. You know, the ones with all the family wealth but who feel the need to look down upon us common serfs and dictate their beliefs and views of right and wrong. Also known as "limosine liberals."

So let's have some fun today.... email Mr. Nichols and tell him if he doesn't like the United States (he lays out a long history of his anger toward his country) then perhaps he can move to Tehran today and be a human shield tomorrow. We'd all be better off.

And for the record, I'm not in favor of "bombing Iran." I am in favor of promoting Democracy and the growing democratic revolution within Iran. Mr. Nichols probably prefers the Mullahs since they have all the wealth and power. Just a guess.

All Cody All The Time

For those of you who have expressed concern about the capture of Cody, our brave US soldier in Iraq....I'd suggest you stay up to date on the latest developments by going to RedStateRant.

Man, I love the blogosphere for showing me some darn creative people! RedStateRant is one of them!

Terrorists Fake US Hostage

I'm going out on a big limb here, I think. But I am highly suspicious that this is an actual captured US soldier.

First of all it appears they have painted his face black or something. And remember this story the other day.... British troops reported uniforms had been stolen in Basra, Iraq.

If the US military identifies this soldier, I will take down this post immediately and issue an apology.

But I'm betting that the terrorists are now so desperate for a "show" that they will even resort to beheading one of their own that they dressed up to look like a G.I.

UPDATE: Drudge compares AP photo of "soldier" with a toy G.I. I guess I may be right after all....

UPDATE 2: The Corner has the original website of the "terrorists" holding (as NRO puts it) the "action figure." How pathetic.

But What If, Just Maybe, War IS the A.N.S.W.E.R.?

Josh commented on another posting..... do the ends justify the means? Did Sherman burning Atlanta justify the saving of the Union? Did 1,400 US Servicemen dying justify a free Iraqi election?

My answer is an unqualified: YES.

Since the anti-war leftists and communists (yes folks, the big, loud anti-war group A.N.S.W.E.R. is funded by communists!) began protesting the war their mantras have repeatedly changed. First it was No Blood for Oil, then it was Halliburton, then it was Revenge for Daddy, then it was "We Oppose the War but Support the Troops." Yeh, right. When was the last time you think they said "thank you" to a Marine they saw in an airport?

Anyway, my response back to those who oppose war at any cost is this: There is NO Peace without Freedom.

Therefore, one cannot have, nor stand for, a tranquil dictator or tranquil repression. One must fight for freedom and that, at times, requires going to war -- especially in our post-9/11 world. Yes, innocents will die. But innocents always die to advance freedom. It isn't brain surgery; it is reality. I so wish I lived in the utopian world that the anti-war crowd thinks exists. It must be easier there.....

But now, having seen that we were in fact liberators, the anti-war crowd must have knots in their stomach. Even a liberal columnist in Chicago now asks "What if Bush has been right about Iraq all along?" (Hat tip: Instapundit)

The day I saw two jetliners fly into the World Trade Center, *I knew* we were in a global war on terror that would take American strength and perserverance to defeat. It is funny that even after the death of 3,000 Americans, it still seemed to take the events of this past Sunday to have some lightbulbs go on in people's heads. Trust me, though... there isn't much electricity flowing in the entire Democratic caucus of the US House and Senate yet.

Stopping Illegal Immigration Gaining Steam?

Here's further proof that the blogosphere is having an important impact on public policy. Congressman Hayworth now endorses PoliPundit's plan!

Ending Illegal Immigration --

New Census Question?

PuddlePirate has come up with this interesting idea: 2010 census should ask for sexual orientation - BrainShavings

First of all... how cool is the name "PuddlePirate"?

Secondly, using the word "queer" probably would raise hairs on people's neck. But I like the concept. There is probably a way to word the question so that that would be acceptable by diverse interests.

I mean, think about it... the Religious Right would want to prove it is LESS than 10%, and the Gay Left would want it to be MORE than 10%. So there is something for both sides to win, and lose, in asking the right question.

Just the facts, ma'am.

Canadian Parliament To Vote On Gay Marriage Today

Canadian Gay Marriage Bill Goes To Parliament Today -

And it is expected to pass. Good for them. Maybe Canadians are ready for gay marriage. Americans don't seem to be, or are offended and outraged that the court system was used to circumvent the legislative process in this country.

Now if gay marriage somehow becomes legal in any U.S. state (despite the long odds due to the advance of the Kerry Gay Rights Doctrine), perhaps James Dobson will blame it on South Park instead of SpongeBob.

Sheila: Time's have changed
Our kids are kids are getting worse
They wont obey their parents
They just want to fart and curse!
Sharon: Should we blame the government?
Liane: Or blame society?
Dads: Or should we blame the images on TV?
Sheila: No, blame Canada
Everyone: Blame Canada
Sheila: With all their beady little eyes
And flappin heads so full of lies
Everyone: Blame Canada Blame Canada
Sheila: We need to form a full assault
Everyone: It's Canada's fault!

They're not even a real country aaaaaanywayyyyyy........

Raging Cat Fight Hits Gay Conservabloggers

Whoa, nellie. I've missed the flying fur and drawn claws over the past few days between BoiFromTroy, GayOrbit and Andrew Sullivan. I could summarize, but reading the posts themselves are more entertaining...

Salvo One: Gay Orbit Takes on BFT -- Friday, Jan. 28

Salvo Two: BFT Shrugs Off Gay Orbit and Goes for Sullivan's Jugular -- Sunday, Jan. 30

Salvo Three: Sullivan Ignores Any Other Gay Blogger But Himself and Instead Goes After The Straight Guy -- All The Time

Stepping Down from DefCon Five: GayOrbit Issues Apology to BFT - Monday, Jan. 31

The moral of the story? Two of them actually:

* One is -- a gay conservablogger cat fight only ends up in all participants receiving more traffic on their sites than normal. (And how come I wasn't invited to bitchslap someone?????)
* Second -- wield the sarcasm sword carefully. The bloggers out there are on a hair-trigger.

Mental note: Remind me not to tick off BFT!! Of course had 9 people switched and voted for me for Best LGBT Blog of 2004 (my personal Ohio), I guess I would have felt the BFT Wrath a few weeks ago. I would have the pretty "Winners Banner" on my site now instead of his. All I got was this lousy T-shirt.

No sour grapes here, right? Heh.

Calling All Gay "Comma-ists"

Absolutely dead-on observation by The Diplomad: Attack of the Comma-ists. Hat tip - Roger L. Simon.

So let me try to pre-empt the Gay Comma-ists.... ahem, "Sure the Iraqis got to vote yesterday and the United States has liberated 50 million people in two repressed Arab nations [COMMA] but I can't marry my partner here in San Francisco and Bush lied about WMD so he is still evil and Halliburton has something to do with it, too, dammit."

Tony Blair vs. Howard Dean

The contrast between the visionary statesman and the angry power seeker couldn't be more striking. One is on the side of freedom and liberty, the other is on the wrong side of history.

Here was Tony Blair last week at the World Economic Forum discussing President Bush's Inaugural Speech (hat tip: AmericanFuture):

President Bush’s inauguration speech last week, marks a consistent evolution of US policy. He spoke of America’s mission to bring freedom in place of tyranny to the world. Leave aside for a moment the odd insistence by some commentators that such a plea is evidence of the “neo-conservative” grip on Washington – I thought progressives were all in favour of freedom rather than tyranny.

The underlying features of the speech seem to me to be these. America accepts that terrorism cannot be defeated by military might alone. The more people live under democracy, with human liberty intact, the less inclined they or their states will be to indulge terrorism or to engage in it. This may be open to debate – though personally I agree with it – but it emphatically puts defeating the causes of terrorism alongside defeating the terrorists.

And then there are the following comments made this weekend by Democratic National Committee Chairman-to-be Howard Dean. (hat tip: Rush Limbaugh, NewsMax):
"I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for," former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean told Democrats gathered at a Manhattan hotel, in quotes picked up by the New York Daily News. "We can talk about our faith, but we cannot change our faith," he said. "We need to be people of conviction."

What exactly do you hate, Chairman Dean? That the Republicans stand for lower taxes, strong offense on terrorism, and spreading freedom and democracy around the world -- to places you deem not worthy or not ready?

And note that he says they "need" to be people of conviction. Here's a newsflash for you Howard, you can't go to Macy's and buy conviction. You have to HAVE it. Just more proof this gang running the Democrat Party only wants power for power's sake.

They had 8 years to do something with the power bestowed on them by the American people. What they gave us was a phony economy which resulted in the internet bubble bursting, scandal in the White House and many of Clinton's appointees, and a blind eye to the growing threat from al-Qaeda. What they gave us was 3,000 dead Americans.

Blair is right. The best way to stop terrorism in the long run, is to remove the seeds of terror that now infest the Arab world. Freedom and democracy are the key to bringing down Islamism just as they were to bring down Communism.

Ah, but Democrats were on the wrong side of history then, too. The early coddlers of Communism in the Democrat Party ignored the seeping spies within our own government; just as Boxer, Kerry, Kennedy and Dean don't want to face the facts that we are at war now with a global fascist movement.

Again, I ask... why is it that a successful election in Iraq made so many on the Left and in the Democratic establishment unhappy yesterday? (hat tip: DirtyHarry). Their own words and actions speaks volumes about where they stand on spreading democracy.

Credit where it's due

I'm no fan of openly gay Massachusetts Democratic Congressman Barney Frank, but when at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, he did something which surprised -- and pleased me. And I've got to give him credit for questioning a ludicrous claim made by a CNN Executive.

According to Friday's Wall Street Journal Political Diary (available by subscription), Eason Jordan, Chief News Executive at CNN, implied that the American military was deliberately killing journalists in Iraq. He even "offered the story of an Al-Jazeera journalist who had been 'tortured for weeks' at Abu Ghraib, made to eat his shoes, and called "Al Jazeera boy" by his American captors."

And then, this liberal Democrat pressed Mr. Jordan to be more specific, putting the CNN Executive on the spot. The newsman rambled on a bit and mumbled some sort of response about how "'There are people who believe there are people in the military who have it out' for journalists." He could provide no evidence to buttress his claims, then "offered another anecdote: A reporter who'd been standing in a long line to get through a checkpoint at Baghdad's Green Zone had been turned back by the GI on duty. Apparently the soldier had been displeased with the reporter's dispatches, and sent him to the back of the line."

Had Mr. Frank not challenged him, the global elites there might have taken Jordan's words at face value, convinced that Americans were indiscriminately targeting journalists. Thanks to Barney Frank, world leaders assembled in Davos learned that there was no substance to such claims.

Good job, Congressman.

Is Steve May A Republican?

For those of you who don't know of Steve May, he is a very successful and openly gay former Arizona state legislator ( and former member of the US Army Reserves. May was at the center of a controversy in 2000-2001 when "don't ask, don't tell" came knocking on his door.

In any case, in the January 15th edition of Log Cabin (Republicans) newsletter "Inclusion Wins", Steve May is quoted:
"I also don't think most Arizonans are mean spirited. Taking away health insurance from domestic partners is something that most Arizonans would not support."—Steve May, Arizona Log Cabin Member responding to a proposed state amendment that would prohibit localities from providing domestic partner benefits.

Huh. Now see that is interesting, because in the Trio documentary "Gay Republicans", Steve May clearly renounces his Republican credentials, calls himself an "independent", endorses John "Don't Overhype the Iraq Elections" Kerry and speaks to a Democrat fundraiser where they cheer the Republican traitor wildly. For pete's sake! And yet he is still a quoted member of Log Cabin (Republicans)??? WHY?

Perhaps it is because, as I've been saying for months, Log Cabin is not a group for gay Republicans at all. Just another funding vehicle for liberal Democrat organizations and those who oppose President Bush at any price.

Gay Democrat Resigns Over Straight Affair

I wish I could make this stuff up...

According to the February 15 issue of The Advocate, Renee Gilinger has resigned as cochair of the Philadelphia Liberty City Lesbian and Gay Democratic Club. It seems that Ms. Gilinger had been having a relationship with the other club cochair, Michael Marsico. Yes, folks... as the Advocate puts it....they were in "a straight relationship."

But I have to admit that I'm confused. The gay community prides itself and lauds itself on its diversity, no? I mean we are supposed to celebrate every transgendered, bisexual, NAMBLA-luvin, lesbian biker that we see, right?

So is the gay community's "big tent" not big enough for straight people? Or confused bisexuals? Or confused Democrats?

I mean, clearly Ms. Gilinger still understands gay and lesbian issues. I don't think a few times in the sack with Mr. Marsico changed that. And I have absolutely no doubt that she is still a Democrat. So why resign?

Perhaps confused lesbians who want to experiment with men are unwelcome in the Rainbow Room of Gay Acceptance?

Or perhaps the gay community truly is defined (and defines itself) about sex.

UPDATE: I found this item that has some background on the new couple. Apparently, US Congressman Bob Brady broke the news at a Christmas party a few weeks ago.
Liberty City Lesbian and Gay Democratic Club co-chairs Renee Gilinger and Michael Marsico continue to break new barriers for their organization.
Last Saturday night at Philadelphia Gay News publisher Mark Segal's Christmas party, U.S. Rep. and Democratic City Chairman Bob Brady remarked that the co-chairs had become a couple. Their relationship evolved over the last few months and Marsico said he expects no adverse reaction from Liberty City.
"Our efforts with the community speak for themselves," said Marsico, who was the lesbian gay bisexual transgender (LGBT) outreach director for the Democratic Party's PA Victory 2004. The couple, who have put the "B" back in LGBT, are off to Venezuela for Christmas.
I guess Marsico was wrong. I could have told him how intolerant the gay community is to those that don't walk the Gay Goosestep.

Bloggers on success of Iraqi elections

I have been attempting to blog on a number of topics today, but cannot contain my joy at the success of the elections in Iraq. Not only does this vindicate the president's steadfast foreign policy, but more importantly, it's a huge victory for Iraq and its people. No wonder people have been dancing, passing our chocolates and crying. Even the New York Times reports a party atmosphere in Iraqi streets.

Iraqi blogger Zeyad writes:
The turnout in Iraq was really like nothing that I had expected. I was glued in front of tv for most of the day. My mother was in tears watching the scenes from all over the country. Iraqis had voted for peace and for a better future, despite the surrounding madness.
Emphasis added. Hat tip:Instapundit.

And our readers have not been immune. Watching a report by Shepard Smith on Fox, Sandi commented
He reported from Abu Grav that the polling place there was shut down and moved to a place 13 miles away. But that there was thousands of people making the trek walking the 13 miles. Just the thought of them being that determined to make their own destiny brought tears to my eyes.
Sandi liveblogged the elections, as did Roger Simon.

Dirty Harry has numerous posts on this topic, including this one with many helpful links. And Powerline, Polipundit and Instapundit also have numerous posts with many helpful links. The Belmont Club's Wretchard takes on an election critic.

So, read them all and savor this great day as our nation helps another nation take is first tentative steps toward democracy, toward self-government, toward freedom.

Elections show Iraq is no Vietnam

Even Reuters reports high turnout in the Iraqi elections despite terrorist attempts to stop them, many liberals, e.g., Robert Fisk (hat tip: Powerline) still compare Iraq to Vietnam. A loyal reader's schweetie (i.e., "significant other"), an expert on Asian history noted that, during the height of U.S. involvement there, the South Vietnamese never once held free elections, open to multiple parties.

According to Reuters, there were lines in the Sunni city of Fallujah, Iraqis passed out chocolates, turnout was high in Mosul (which has seen increased terrorist activity of late), and this:
Samid Hassan, 32, who lost his leg in a car bomb blast in October, was determined to vote. "I would have crawled here if I had to. I don't want terrorists to kill other Iraqis like they tried to kill me. Today I am voting for peace," he said, leaning on his metal crutches, fierce resolve in his reddened eyes.
Mohammed and Omar write:
I walked forward to my station, cast my vote and then headed to the box, where I wanted to stand as long as I could, then I moved to mark my finger with ink, I dipped it deep as if I was poking the eyes of all the world's tyrants.
I put the paper in the box and with it, there were tears that I couldn't hold; I was trembling with joy and I felt like I wanted to hug the box but the supervisor smiled at me and said "brother, would you please move ahead, the people are waiting for their turn".
(Hat tip: Powerline) We didn't see that in Vietnam. Maybe that's why we lost there. And why we -- and the Iraqi people -- are winning in Iraq.

Rick's "Dissenting View" on Gay Priorities

My friend Rick Sincere offers a 'Dissenting' View on Gay/Lesbian 'Priorities'.

Among other things, Rick notes that, in the recently released "Unity Statement" of 22 gay groups,
It's hard not to notice that fighting anti-gay laws is second from the bottom of the list, while expanding the federal government's role in labor-management relations is at the top, followed immediately by expanding the federal government's role in prosecuting crimes that are normally left to state and local authorities.
Since Rick is a fine word smith, I won't paraphrase his thoughts, but instead, encourage you to read the whole thing.

(Full disclosure--in his post, Rick links to a piece which references my Log Cabin swan song.)

ATTENTION! Gay Libertarians

I'm working on a post on the libertarian attitude towards non-discrimination and Hate Crimes laws and would like to reference other gay libertarian bloggers who have views (on these issues) which differ from those of the national gay organizations. Please e-mail me if you're a gay libertarian blogger or have posted a piece on this topic--or you have an article on the web to which I can link. I am interested in hearing from all gay libertarian bloggers--even if they haven't posted on this topic.

(Please note I am addressing small "l" libertarians, so am not limiting this to members of the Libertarian Party--though their views are surely welcome.)

Finally, this is my first post where I am not allowing comments. So, if you want me to consider your thoughts on this topic, you're going to have to e-mail me.


HRC--trying to have it both ways with federal funding

In two successive press releases this week, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) tries to have it both ways with federal funding. It raises a ruckus when Bush Administration pays a political pundit promoting straight marriage, then gets equally as upset when the same Administration pulls funding from a cartoon featuring lesbian couples.

I agree that Education Secretary Margaret Spellings' singling out this one program to de-fund amounts to petty pandering to social conservatives. But, social conservative interest groups might reply that HRC's decision to single out federal funding of Maggie Gallagher amounts to pandering to its own base.

If it's wrong for the government to pay Maggie Gallagher to put forward her opinions, wouldn't it then also be wrong for the government to pay for a TV program which presents relationships which Maggie Gallagher and her allies don't want to see?

From what I have read of the de-funded TV program, the "Sugartime!" episode of "POSTCARDS FROM BUSTER," it seems exactly the type of portrayal of gay relationships I would like to see in the media. In this episode, the TV show's title character visits Vermont and meets "two lesbian couples."

As I (an American citizen) would like to see more portrayals of lesbian and gay couples in TV shows, many social conservatives (also American citizens) would like to see more studies of the type that the federal government paid Ms. Gallagher to write.

It seems, alas, that, like the social conservatives who are eager for government support for programs which promote straight marriage, HRC is eager for government programs which promote understanding of same-sex unions. This, in a nutshell, is the whole notion of government's using to the media to promote social agendae: if it pleases one group, it's bound to offend another.

If HRC favors government support of such PBS programming, then it has to face the reality of the constitutional structure of our federal government. When Congress allocates money for various programs, the executive branch determines how the law mandates such funds should be distributed. That's what Ms. Spellings did in this case, claiming, according to the "BOSTON GLOBE," "the 'Sugartime!' episode does not fulfill the intent Congress had in mind. By law, she said, any funded shows must give top attention to 'research-based educational objectives, content, and materials.'"

Since the American people elected a conservative president, his administration will determine the intent of Congress. If Congress had not allocated money for taxpayer dollars' for educational programming, then the conservative administration could not single this one program out.

Thus, by advocating government funding to promote social policy, HRC favors a situation which puts conservative hands on federal dollars. After all, although this group "poured" their hearts and souls" into defeating President Bush, the American people reelected him by a comfortable margin, thus allowing him to appoint like-minded individuals to administer the funds allocated by Congress.

Thankfully, the president is now on record opposing federal funding of political pundits. Now, we just need to convince Congress to eliminate funding for all public broadcast media, both television and radio.

HRC needs to understand that once the government starts funding the media, it is not the only interest group which is trying to sway the administration. And given its attacks on the president, both during the presidential campaign and as recently as last week, it's highly unlikely that it could effectively lobby this administration.

With or without influence with the Administration, HRC seems to have this standard on federal funding of the media: allocate taxpayer resources to the programs we like, but cut them off from those we don't like. If social conservatives, who have more sway with the current Administration, were to adopt the same attitude, then they would push for de-funding programming HRC supports and increasing funding for programming HRC opposes. And given their support of the president, they are more likely to influence his administration.

Let's limit their influence. Let's not give social conservatives' access to taxpayer dollars. Let's cut off all federal funding for all broadcast and print media. Let's refund that money to taxpayers so that individual Americans can decide which media to support -- and which to ignore.

A few good gay movies -- & a few good straight movies with gay characters

In response to my post on "Monogamy and gay movies," a number of readers commented, pointing out a number of movies which showed monogamous gay couples -- and which I neglected to mention in that post. I guess because I have recently seen too many flicks which featured promiscuous gay men, I had forgotten how much I enjoyed other wonderful flicks which included gay characters leading the kind of life I would like to live. And not only gay movies. At least one reader (Caltechgirl) recommending a movie that wasn't per se gay, but where gay relationship was an important part of the story--"FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL."

In the interest of promoting good gay movies, I list some of the other quality gay movies recommended by our readers -- and which I have seen. Carl recommends two: "MAURICE" and "DOÑA HERLINDA AND HER SON." While forgetting the name, mrsizer recommended "LATTER DAYS" where the Mormon character (studly Steve Sandross) confronts the promiscuous gay lead (Wes Ramsey):
Look at yourself. You're so pretty and colorful on the outside, but on the inside, you're nothing but fluff. You're like a walking, talking marshmallow peep.
Much as I liked the script of that flick, I just couldn't believe the transformation of Ramsey's Christian. While some might find him pretty to look at, I never believed that Sandross's Aaron could fall for him. It seemed the only thing he loved (besides sex) was Ann-Margret.

MadClark recommends several, including one I should have mentioned in my post, "BIG EDEN." I saw that wonderful flick twice in the theaters and bought it on DVD as soon as it was released in that format. Other flicks he recommends which I have enjoyed include: "THE WEDDING BANQUET," "BEAUTIFUL THING," and "FRIED GREEN TOMATOES," as well as "HAPPY, TEXAS."

Dirty Harry who wrote the post which inspired my post wrote a followup to mine, observing:

Unless it's germaine to the plot, I don't want to be constantly reminded by Sidney Poitier he's black. I want to be indifferent to his race. The same with sexuality. One's sexual preference, be it same sex or midgets on trapezes is not something I want to be reminded of every time a character appears on screen. The goal should be indifference. I'll confess that gay or straight, I cannot accept someone who's entire existence revolves around their sexuality. Be it Madonna or Jack on "Will & Grace." But I can accept someone who happens to be gay or has a closet full of midgets on stand-by; as long as there's more there there.
To that end, I join Caltechgirl in recommending "FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL." In that British comedy, Director Mike Newell presents the relationship between Matthew and Gareth as loving (& intimate) one between two individuals who just happen to be gay.

If we get more people to watch movies like the ones in this post, we could go a long way towards creating a better image of gay people in our culture.

Quote of the Day--the "anti" party

"It seems clear that, even so soon after the election, the Kennedy-Dayton Democrats are determined to be the antiwar, or maybe just the anti, party."

OpionionJournal's featured editorial, "Harry Reid's Choice
Will the new
Minority Leader follow Ted Kennedy off a cliff? (link requires registration)

(Kennedy refers to Massachusetts' senior senator and Dayton to Minnesota's.)

A reader critiques gay organizations' strategy

A reader e-mailed me a link to a thoughtful column he wrote in The Cornell Daily Sun. While I don't agree with everything in the column, he raises some valid points, especially his commentary on the "Unity Statement" of national gay groups. And he offers some criticism of and advice for HRC and the gay groups who signed on to that statement:

Unfortunately, too many of the groups are still using their talking points from last October, endlessly bashing Republicans and, most significantly, President Bush. Last year, the most powerful of these groups, the Human Rights Campaign, bet the farm on the slogan "George W. Bush, You're Fired." They made defeating the president -- rather than winning over hearts and minds to support civil rights for gays and lesbians -- their top priority, and the main focus of their $30 million budget. While the HRC fiddled against W, thirteen states (all but two of which voted not to fire Mr. Bush) passed laws denying same-sex couples access to marriage and other public institutions.

You'd think they might have gotten the message that a majority of the country did not want to buy what they were selling. Furthermore, you could hope they might have realized the danger of aligning a civil rights movement with the fortunes of a single political party. On both counts, you'd be wrong.

HRC spent $15,000 on cable TV ads last week, on the day of the inaugural, to attack the president's record of saying one thing and doing another. They do have a point, especially where gay issues are concerned. But why advertise on TV to prove it? Those who already agree with that line of thinking are likely on their side.

Those who don't -- a large portion of the 51 percent of Americans who voted to re-elect President Bush -- are the hearts and minds HRC needs to win over. And if complaining about the president turns off the very people you need to win over, aren't you setting yourself up for defeat?

If these groups could work on their second major problem, they could find the road to moral and political victory. The map can be found in the great speeches and writings of American history. Yet the gay civil rights movement still does not have a leader who can speak the language of American values.
Well said. Now, read the whole thing!

Feds fund another pundit; the president responds

According to USA TODAY, the Department of Health and Human Services has paid another conservative columnist to promote marriage:
Mike McManus, who writes a weekly column syndicated in 30 to 40 newspapers, said he was paid about $4,000 to train marriage mentors in 2003 and 2004. McManus was subcontracted by the Lewin Group, which had a contract to support community-based programs "to form and sustain healthy marriages."
While McManus "defended his dual role as a journalist and a government consultant," Wade Horn, assistant secretary for Children and Families at the department, issued a directive banning the practice of paying commentators to promote federal policies. It's about time.

Churches, synagogues, mosques and other private institutions should be the ones promoting the formation and sustaining of healthy relationships. Not the federal government.

The president has even weighed in. According to another article in USA TODAY, "President Bush on Wednesday ordered his Cabinet secretaries not to hire columnists to promote their agendas." The president had it right when he said,
All our Cabinet secretaries must realize that we will not be paying commentators to advance our agenda. Our agenda ought to be able to stand on its own two feet. . . . [there] needs to be a nice independent relationship between the White House and the press, the administration and the press.
Well said, Mr. President.

We know that this is this is not the first Administration to pay pundits. The USA TODAY article reports that part of $20,000-grant to same-sex marriage foe Maggie Gallagher "was approved while President Clinton was still in office." The Clinton Administration -- and perhaps also that of the first President Bush and their predecessors -- may also have paid pundits.

I'm glad HHS's Horn and the President have called for a halt to this practice. Today, gays are offended because the government has paid pundits to advocate traditional marriage. Just as conservatives would be offended by government support of TV programming which shows same-sex couples in a positive light.

I, for one, favor both promoting traditional marriage and showing same-sex couples in a positive light. I just don't think the federal government should be the institution funding these worthy endeavors.

Full Disclosure

Taking the lead from Ken Sain, I also wanted to make a full disclosure statement.

I am an independent blogger with absolutely no affiliations to the Bush Administration or any other government or political entity. That includes, but is not exclusive to, Log Cabin Republicans (though I was a former chapter board member and donor), the Republican National Committee (to whom I have given money), the Bush White House (to whom I have given two votes in the past five years), and the Human Rights Campaign(for whom I wouldn't sneeze on their behalf even if they gave me a million dollars).

Also, neither the Advocate, Washington Blade, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Andrew Sullivan or the beloved HRC tell me how to think and how to be a "real gay American." I can figure that out on my own.

Finally, Michael Rogers doesn't pay me to make him look vicious and silly or to call him Gollum. He earns those distinctions on his own.

All of the things you read here come from my own mind, and all of the advertisements you see on other blogs come out of my own pocketbook. Unless you wish to donate!

News From Iraq -- Not shown on CBS News

Hey, how come I'm not seeing pictures like these (hattip: BLACKFIVE) on the CBS Evening News with Dan Rather??

Look how darn packed the candidate debate is in the second and third photos!!!! As Dan Rather himself would say.... "Only votes talk — everything else walks."

I mean, it's more crowded than a Sunday confessional booth after free beer night at a Texas whorehouse!

My prediction is that the turnout among voters in Iraq will defy all the naysayers. I can't wait!

Hopefully that will have ole Dan saying again.... "One's reminded of that old saying, 'Don't taunt the alligator until after you've crossed the creek.'" (Translation: Don't predict doom in Iraq before it happens.)

Let Freedom Reign!

Monogamy and gay movies

In his post on the movie, "DE-LOVELY," the Cole Porter biopic starring Kevin Kline, Dirty Harry notes that in a movie "stocked" with gay men, there was "not one monogamous gay man." He's right. When I saw the movie, I noted that while it showed Porter's numerous dalliances with other men, it didn't really show him relating to any single man in a real and spiritually intimate sense.

To be fair to the filmmakers, this may have been the true story of Porter's life, numerous dalliances, a few live-in lovers, no enduring relationship. This just told his story honestly. And while, like Dirty Harry, I enjoy many of Cole Porter's songs, after watching the movie, I really didn't care for him much as a man.

In his piece, Dirty Harry expressed something that I have noticed as well:
Now, I don't seek out gay films or television shows, but the ones I have seen rarely if ever portray the monogamous side of gay life. There seems to be this over-sexualization of homosexuals in the media that doesn't reflect an entire culture.
While I've certainly watched far more gay movies than has Dirty Harry (I do seek them out), I find I can often relate better to the straight characters in mainstream movies than I can to gay characters in gay movies.

And yet, there have been exceptions. Jim Fall's "TRICK by the relationship between two men of different backgrounds in " tells of two men who get to know each other in their unsuccessful quest for a place to "do it." John Keitel's "DEFYING GRAVITY" shows a fraternity brother coming to terms with his sexuality as he deals with the consequences of his boyfriend's injuries in a gay-bashing incident. And I have written about how moved I wasMiles Swain's "THE TRIP." I have yet to find the financing to produce my romance between two men who seek a monogamous relationship, "THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT."

Yet, except for my (as yet unproduced movie), none of these movies (good as they are) deals directly with gay monogamy. If we're gonna to talk about marriage, we need to talk about monogamy. I believe our films, our cultural product, should present an image of a better world and of the relationships we would like to have. For movies to portray gay relationships just as they have long portrayed straight ones. And to help define the meaning of the ideals for which we strive. And to help define the values which help sustain meaningful relationships. One of those values is monogamy. As I have written in a previous post, "a romantic relationship between two individuals can only be truly spiritually nourishing if it is monogamous."

Although straight, Dirty Harry is a film fan like myself and, I believe, he asks exactly the right questions:
Can't people in films just happen to be gay? Just like people in films just happen to be straight? You know, it's an after-thought. Not why they're in the movie. Not what their character's all about. Maybe activists in Hollywood feel we need to accept their sexuality first? Thirty years ago no one just happened to just be black in films. Race was an issue. Now that's changed. We don't think of Denzel as black. We think of him as one helluva movie star. So, maybe that's where we're eventually headed. I hope so. And I wonder if the gay community hopes so as well. Who wants to be identified solely by their sexuality?
if a sympathetic straight guy (who watches a lot of movies) raises these questions, what then are the unsympathetic ones (who may watch fewer movies) thinking?

And yet I know, just as many of our readers know, that the media images of gay men do not always reflect our lives. Many gay men, many lesbians live in healthy monogamous relationships. They have assumed the benefits as well as the burdens of building a life together with individuals they love.

Dirty Harry's post reminded me of questions which we need to ask: how can we promote monogamy, how can we promote gay marriage where so much of our cultural product celebrates sexual license? And his piece served to remind me why I moved to Los Angeles--to make movies which portray the struggles of gay men and lesbians in a universal language. In short, to show the humanity which is at the heart of our difference.

If we want to understand why Colorado Senator Wayne Allard speaks for a healthy chunk of the American populace when he proposes the "Marriage Protection Act," we need to look at the way we present ourselves to our fellow citizens. And more often than not, the images of gay people in the media are not images of a community capable of monogamy or concerned with the commitment and responsibilities of marriage.