The fainting couch is needed for Scott Tucker over at the Log Cabin Republican’s weblog BlogCabin. He’s worked up over the reporting by Michelangelo Signorile and Mike Rogers about John McCain’s professionally closeted Senate chief of staff Mark Buse and the hypocrisy it represents, given the Republican nominee’s public anti-gay position on every major issue related to LGBT rights. (BTW, Mike Signorile has audio of an interview by Lisa Keen with yet another former Buse boyfriend who has gone on the record.)
The title of the post sums up the dilemma of the Log Cabin Republicans — “The Politics of Personal Destruction at its Worst.”
Mark Buse has been openly gay for years and has acknowledged as much. So the notion that he has been “outed” is simply false. But secondly–and this is the bigger point–this political stunt by Mike Rogers just proves what Log Cabin has been saying for years. John McCain is an inclusive Republican who hires the best people, regardless of sexual orientation.
Then what is the “personal destruction” you are talking about? If Buse is out, then discussing the fact that Mark Buse is gay shouldn’t be of any consequence — unless there is something wrong with being out of the closet to the Republican base.
Isn’t that the real problem here? If John McCain is personally inclusive, why can he not be so as a candidate? McCain might consider Buse a family friend and not fire him for being gay, but what about the young gay person working at a DQ with an anti-gay boss — he has no protections from getting axed if that boss learns of his employee’s orientation. It’s not inclusion when it only means the people in your inner circle.
And take this ridiculous statement from Tucker:
[C]an we please stop childishly lobbing the “homophobic” insult at Republicans who don’t agree with us on every issue? Rogers and his crowd keep saying McCain is “homophobic” or “anti-gay.” Words mean things. Calling John McCain homophobic doesn’t make it so. The truth is, Sen. John McCain is anything but homophobic. This is a man who has a record of hiring gay staff members–as evidenced by this recent “bombshell.”
Homophobia (“irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals“) — well, McCain’s clearly not afraid of the homos. He’s certainly willing to institutionalize discrimination of teh gayz, so what part of that “meaning” is misunderstood?
Even cutting Scott Tucker some undeserved slack — what are you supposed to call someone who believe in tolerance on a one-to-one basis, but campaigns in support of anti-gay state marriage amendments, the continuation of DADT (“open homosexuality within the military services presents an intolerable risk to morale, cohesion, and discipline.”), hate crimes expansion, ENDA, etc.? A professional anti-gay personal homosexualist? Is that more accurate? Or perhaps…um, a hypocrite?
This is why this story is newsworthy. The apparent fealty to the fringe anti-gay right by the McCain campaign — from the opposition to basic LGBT rights to the selection of the real-deal fundie Palin — does not project anything remotely resembling inclusion on our issues from my POV. It would be illuminating for the mainstream media to take a look at the public positions and personal practices of the Republican party generally, and specifically the McCain/Palin ticket to clear up any misconceptions people have — both the “gay left” and the social conservatives on the right — about where they truly stand.
Would the Log Cabin organization support some clarifying reporting on the matter?
As Mike Signorile noted, a post on Daily Kos about the Buse/McCain news is 626 comments strong — it does show the interest, relevance and importance of the story.
Who is the bigger hypocrite here?
Mark Buse, an openly gay man who is spending his life helping John McCain block important gay civil rights issues like marriage and adoption?
Or John McCain, who obviously has no problem with gay folks, but has adopted an anti-gay platform out of political expediency and a desire to court people like Sarah Palin, who think that if they just hate enough, they’ll be Raptured into the love of Jesus when the End Times come.
NOTE: I can’t wait to see how the professional “Christian” set is taking the news, since calls were directed to Focus On the Family HQ for a reaction. Daddy D is supposed to issue a statement.