The Legacy of Homophobia
|A Brazilian Anti-Homophobia Design|
|Senator Strom Thurmond|
There are penalties for bigotry, whether private or public, and eventually these people are an embarrassment to all who knew them or learn about them. The history books shame their legacy.
|Santorum and Bachmann: Dueling Homophobes|
Now I ask you: do you think either of these candidates has a realistic chance of attracting enough voters to actually become President of the United States? What are they thinking? The answer is that they're only interested in the voters who agree with their hatred, a dwindling number, and, like the Southern Senators mentioned above, in the end will finish as historical embarrassments, their homophobic statements (and other missteps) clouding their legacy forever, ugly and inexcusable.
This all came home to me in 2005 when I reconnected with a man I went to law school with who has since become a major player in a Southern State Senate. Let's call him "John Smith." He was my roommate for the first semester of law school, but, for personal reasons, dropped out after that semester. I thought he was a nice guy, fun to be with, and was sad when he left school. Later I was pleased to learn he had gone back to a different law school and graduated. When I practiced law in Chicago in the late 60's, John came for a visit, but then I lost track of my old friend. Consider my surprise when I learned that the leading Senator in the State of ______ was John Smith, and his big campaign was to get that state to pass a constitutional amendment forbidding recognition of gay marriages. Sure it was him (for various reasons I won't go into), I hunted up his email address online and sent him an email entitled "Douglas Whaley, Does That Name Ring a Bell?" He promptly (and delightedly) replied that it did ring a bell and asked me how I was doing. I sent back a description of my life as a law professor, but didn't mention my gay activism. John's emailed response described his law practice, political career, marriage late in life, and his two college age sons. Now that we had reconnected, I sent him this:
John Smith wrote back that of course he knew a lot of gay people both as friends (his wife is an interior decorator) and constituents. But he added that he must represent what the vast majority of his constituents want, which is of course to keep marriage between one man and one woman.
“How I Lost a Gay Marriage Debate,” April 29, 2010
“Straight Talk,” May 10, 2010
“Marijuana and Me,” July 11, 2010
"Choose To Be Gay, Choose To Be Straight," January 25, 2011
"The Homosexual Agenda To Conquer the World," February 8, 2011
"Seducing Straight Men," March 3, 2011
"Coming Out: How To Tell People You're Gay," March 27, 2011
"Jumping the Broom: How 'Married' are Married Gay Couples?" July 17, 2011
"Going Undercover at an Ex-Gay Meeting," September 19, 2011
"The History of Gay Rights in Columbus, Ohio," June 4, 2012
“A Gay Hoosier Lawyer Looks at Indiana’s RFRA: The Religious Bigot Protection Act,” March 30, 2015; http://douglaswhaley.blogspot.com/2015/03/a-gay-hoosier-lawyer-looks-at-indianas.html
“A Guide to the Best of My Blog,” April 29, 2013