Especially when the rumours involve the potential new chairman of the Republican Party possibly being a big ol’ homo.
Mehlman has REFUSED to answer direct questions from reporters about his sexual orientation. This wouldn’t be relevant, except:
1. There have been rumors for years about Mehlman’s sexual orientation. Now that he’s a very public figure, those rumors gain an importance they didn’t have before.[…]
2. Mehlman has already said publicly that the gay issue is fair game for politics. If it’s fair game, then the same rules apply to him.
3. Mehlman has publicly defended the president’s anti-gay policies, including the federal constitutional amendment. Were Mehlman gay, he’d be guilty of hypocrisy, and that would justify his outing – again, were he gay.
4. The GOP has made it perfectly clear that gays and lesbians and their relationships are a threat to the fabric of society. As American citizens and voters we have the right to know if Ken Mehlman’s so-far-undisclosed relationships are posing such a threat or not. The last thing the GOP should be doing is giving a position of prominence in the party to someone who, for all we know, might have a secret agenda of undermining the family. They can’t have it both ways.
5. The Republican National Committee is an organization that makes NO BONES about using gay-bashing to help Republican candidates. There is good reason to believe that any RNC chair, were he not 100% straight, would be at pains to effectively run an organization that relies on gay-bashing to get its way. Don’t red-state Americans have the right to know if the leader of their party, whomever it turns out to be, actually embraces the party’s prefered lifestyle?
6. We have been told that part of President Bush’s supposed “mandate” in the most recent election was a vindication of his attack on gays. The voting public has a right to know if the next RNC chair plans on subversively undercutting that mandate or actively supporting it.
America is in the throes of a culture war, nurtured by groups like the RNC and people like Ken Mehlman. Americans have a right to know which side of the culture war Ken Mehlman is on, and whether, as RNC chair, he would be a fifth column for those very forces that the RNC tells us are out to steal America’s Bibles and jam homosexual sex down its throats and the throats of its children.
Now, I’ve always been one for keeping what happens in people’s bedrooms their own business, which, for example, is why I couldn’t care less about Monicagate. As for outing people, I’ve also never been a fan of that–it’s their life, if they want to disclose, they can disclose. Sure it would be better in the long-run if everyone just came out so that people would realise that gays and lesbians are everywhere and are quite normal people, but everyone has to do what they have to do.
In this case, though, it’s different. Not only is there the problem of hypocrisy, but this would be worse than having Mary Cheney as a paid staffer of Bush/Cheney ’04 while completely refusing to acknowledge her existence and most especially refusing to acknowledge her lesbianism.
I think it’s clear that the nation is deeply divided and in a very fragile state at the moment. I fully agree with the quote where it talks about the culture war. Imagine the shit storm of Mehlman were to become GOP Chairman only to be outed? Maybe it would be a good thing in the long-run, but I doubt it. It would piss a lot of people off at Bush, but I don’t think that it would make them amenable to gay neighbours or the thought that somewhere in the nation sodomy might be occurring or gays might be getting married.