Saturday, September 1, 2007

Final Thoughts (I hope) on Larry Craig, and the Republican Party

Pay Buchanan has an interesting take on the Larry Craig affair, and raises an issue I’ve always wondered about. On the one hand, no one likes a hypocrite. On the other, who better than an addict to understand the problems of addiction and lead the charge to prevent the creation of more? Sure Larry Craig was anti-gay, but perhaps his fervor was born of honest concern, for himself as much as others:

” Is there no possibility a man can believe in traditional morality, yet find himself tempted to behavior that morally disgusts him? Is it impossible Craig is driven by impulses, the biblical ‘thorn in the flesh,’ of which Paul wrote, to behavior he almost cannot control? “

Interesting perspective, and I agree for the most part. But the problem with people like Larry Craig is that they do not present themselves as someone with vices with which they battle. They present themselves as sanctimonious saints, superior to those with the habits/lifestyles/opinions they consider sinful. Craig didn’t say “I’m gay, and I’ve been dishonest, and I apologize.” Had he, we could have run with Buchanan’s understanding. However, as long as Craig continues to demonize homosexuals, he deserves the scorn he gets, whether he is homosexual or not. For all the lip service many Christians give to loving the sinner and hating the sin, and admitting they are all sinners, too many are like anyone else: hating the sinner, and missing the beam in their own eye.

” The silence of most Democrats is understandable. If you belong to a party that declares homosexuality a moral lifestyle, that perhaps should be elevated to the level of matrimony, then what would Craig be guilty of, other than being horribly indiscreet? “

Well, you knew Buchanan couldn’t stay on the straight and narrow too long. Craig is guilty of hypocrisy, not indiscretion. The Democrats, on this issue anyway, don’t have hypocrisy to worry about. They accept the realities of homosexuals in our society. I suspect many of the Republicans, at least privately, do as well. They simply must feed at the homophobic trough to keep getting the Christian Right vote.

For a very thorough and persuasive look at that theory, read this article:

”So to keep religious conservatives happy the party has done two things. First, it has steadfastly resisted efforts to ease anti-gay discrimination in public policy, even when Republican politicians know better...

Second, to keep the talent it needs and simply to be as humane and decent as politically possible toward particular individuals, the party has come up with its own unwritten common-law code: you can be gay and work here, we don’t care, but don’t talk about it openly and don’t do anything to make it known publicly in the sense that either the media or the party’s religious base might learn of it. It's the GOP's own internal version of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

It's worth a read, and spells out what many of us have suspected and hated for a long time. The theocrats have taken over the Republican party, with their anachronistic moralizing and their imperviousness to science, or any kind of evidence, that goes against their faith, be it faith in a 6,000 year old earth, or in the ability of one nation to singlehandedly reverse thousand-year-old social trends through force and will. John Warner's retirement is symbolic of the fading of the kind of Republicans many of us grew up respecting. Who will fill the void?


Seven Star Hand said...

Hey Science Avenger,

Karma can be a bitch when the time to pay the piper for such staggering levels of hypocrisy rolls around. Remember the old adage; What goes around, comes around. Never forget that this is the crowd that deceptively gave us The Patriot Act, the Iraq war, torture, secret prisons, Abu-Garib, Gitmo, and spying on the innocent, etc, etc. Oh, how the greedy and arrogant are falling...

It just boggles the mind that holier-than-thou Christian leaders are so often involved in sick behavior. Just look at the history and current events of the Vatican and Papacy. Do you need any more proof of why such scoundrels value faith over truth and justice? See the pattern?

Notice that Larry Craig was nabbed on June, 11th? Did you know that 11 symbolizes truth and justice? Notice the pattern of pivotal events repeatedly occurring on number 11 days during recent years? Notice that the story broke 77 days after his arrest? How many unlikely coincidences are necessary before more people discern a strong pattern in the noise?

Here is Wisdom !!

Little David said...

I noted your comment about John Warner's retirement. I share your concern about who are we going to get to replace him. You see, I live in Virginia and John Warner represents me. John Warner was "old school" Republican and could have relied on my vote (although there was some concern on my part about his age, which I would imagine is what lead him to announce his retirement) unlike George Allen who we successfully ran out of office.

ScienceAvenger said...

Seven Star Hand,

The more I see rabid fundies practicing the very behavior they condemn, the more I'm convinced the two are linked. Combine a homosexual orientation with a fundamentalist upbringing that believes such things are sinful, and a homophobic zealot seems inevitable.

As for your link, I'm not a fan of numerology. Being statistically trained, I know how deceptive such coincidences can be. Look at enough data in hindsight, and multiple meaningless patterns can be found.

Little David,

Until the Republicans learn to get by without pandering to theocratic lunacy like ID/creationism, homophobia, global warming denial, imperialism, and treating zygotes as people, this sort of thing will keep happening, and at the expense of the party. We simply cannot run a 21st century technological nation on 2,000-year-old knowledge and morals.