Beyond Hypocrisy

A nice point from Steve Clemons on social conservatives and anonymous gay sex that moves a bit beyond a basic hypocrisy claim: "Andrew Sullivan has much better dexterity with this subject than I do -- but it is disgusting that while so many are now cringing at the thought of gay man having tearoom sex that they are at the same time so obsessive about trying to stop same sex marriage between committed individuals."

Right. There's a real eliminationist strain of thinking in conservative thinking about homosexuality. They want gays in the closet, but they deplore the practices of the closet and the consequences it lead to. What they really want is for gay people to just go away. But they know they can't do that, either. So they whine and they fume. As Ross says, for a long time this was an 80-20 issue for Republican politicians so they had an interest in not thinking too closely about whether or not they were really making sense. But that's increasingly not the case. A reasonable politics of "family values" needs to contain some penalties for heterosexuals with anti-family behavior (see, e.g., Dick Vitter, Rudy Giuliani) and support for gays with pro-family behavior. What they have right now is just loathing of gay people masquerading as defense of the traditional family.