Green Room

The Case for the Conservative Lesbian

posted at 1:24 pm on December 29, 2011 by

I was reading this piece at Slate by Dave Weigel which talks about Ron Paul’s problems with gay Republicans following revelations from some of his now infamous newsletters. In it he discusses the difficulties Paul could run into with gay voters and the conundrum this presents. On the one hand, he’s the “libertarian guy” who believes that the federal government has no place in the marriage discussion, along with some other positions which find favor in that sector. But when his name appears on a newsletter article which pines for “the glory days of the closet,” it would have to give some gay voters pause.

And if not Ron Paul, then who? This brings us back to an old chestnut where people ask how any gay person could vote for any Republican. I bring this up today because of a letter I received recently from a conservative who also happens to be a lesbian which tackles this question in a direct fashion. I have permission to reprint it, but because of her particular circumstances, the author shall remain anonymous. (So you are free to disregard this if you don’t care for unnamed sources.)

Answering the question of how somebody can be a politically conservative lesbian in the 21st century is harder than it sounds and still brings me some uncomfortable moments, but I can take a shot at it. It also matches up with how people in a supposedly enlightened age can still be in the closet. While I know it’s not the same thing and the metaphor fails, I tend to think of it as being something like being part of any other “assumed minority group” when it comes to voting. (And I simply gag on that phrase.) It’s kind of insulting to think that just because you happen to be Jewish, or black, or Hispanic, or Muslim, or a man, or a woman, old or young, – OR GAY – that somehow that sticks you into a particular folder and you need to agree with everyone else who fits that category on EVERYTHING.

These days it seems like the big defining thing about gays in politics is marriage. (Now that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell has gone away, which I see as a good thing, particularly since the love of my life was in the Air Force and in the closet also.) And for those who want to fight that battle, good for them. I just can’t get excited about the marriage question. I know many of our sisters do, and good for them, but here’s my main stand on that. I care more about my relationship with my girl and my God than I do about my relationship with the state. If we decide we want to be married, we will have a ceremony with our friends and family and take our vows before God. We will be married in our eyes and in the eyes of those that matter to us. I don’t know if that’s going to happen and neither of us is particularly worried about it. If the state or the nation think I’m married doesn’t matter much to me.

But I DO have concerns about our country when it comes to public policy, and most of my friends who are seriously engaged in politics over marriage push a whole bunch of policies which seem to me to be destructive. We have to cut the debt. We need our own energy that pays for itself. We need law and order and fairness under those laws for everyone. And my liberal friends don’t get that. And that ties in to the question you asked about jobs.

Why am I in the closet? Because where I work I found out early on that openly gay people of either sex were in for trouble. We live in a supposedly VERY liberal city, as you know, and the owners claim to be very progressive. But when it comes to having clients find out that anyone on the staff is gay, they say pretty much, “business comes first.” I could get [expletive deleted] off about that, but I need a job. And my employer needs customers. I can trash him for being “weak” and “not taking a stand” I guess, but I still wind up unemployed either way if he goes out of business. I honestly don’t give a [expletive deleted].

The world’s not a fair place full of unicorns and rainbows. I need to make a living. I need to have the country survive so I hopefully CAN make a living. Things will get better in the future. We have bigger fish to fry right now than having me just support people who think I should be able to get married but are sending America into a messed up situation where maybe nobody’s marriage will matter. I don’t have to be out. I don’t approve of forcibly outing private citizens. And just because I think some of my friends should be able to get married if they want to, it doesn’t mean I should vote for idiots if they agree on that one thing.

Thanks.

Here’s the portion of that which stood out most to me. “I care more about my relationship with my girl and my God than I do about my relationship with the state.” I have to wonder how prevalent that attitude is across the country, and if just maybe it might be the most libertarian stance of all. If you truly do follow a libertarian ideology and don’t think that the government should be involved in the business of marriage, why would you care if the state “endorsed” your marriage or not? Either it is the state’s business or it isn’t, right?

I keep meaning to bring this up with Chris Barron of GOProud fame and get his take on it. Anyway, just something for you to chew on during the closing days of 2011.

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wow, good for her…

cmsinaz on December 29, 2011 at 1:47 PM

After seeing the wild hypocrisy of Democrats — who feel that they can “out” every Republican and non-lockstep Democrat, while also branding anyone who strays off their reservation as a “sellout”, “Uncle Tom”, or “traitor” — I can’t see any reason for anyone to stick with progressives over conservatives……at least conservatives will leave you alone.

cthulhu on December 29, 2011 at 1:48 PM

why would you care if the state “endorsed” your marriage or not? Either it is the state’s business or it isn’t, right?

“None can love freedom but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license.” — John Milton.

In the case of “gay” “marriage,” liberals take this to its literal extreme. It’s no longer enough even to publically flaunt their fetish, and persecute everyone who is annoyed by that. They now demand that society put its official stamp of approval on their fetishistic “lifestyle.”

logis on December 29, 2011 at 1:49 PM

“None can love freedom but good men; the rest love not freedom, but license.” — John Milton.

In the case of “gay” “marriage,” liberals take this to its literal extreme. It’s no longer enough even to publically flaunt their fetish, and persecute everyone who is annoyed by that. They now demand that society put its official stamp of approval on their fetishistic “lifestyle.”

logis on December 29, 2011 at 1:49 PM

You are the better candidate for having a fetish of sorts.

lexhamfox on December 29, 2011 at 1:59 PM

cmsinaz on December 29, 2011 at 1:47 PM

Good for her, indeed. I really have nothing against gays…their lifestyle affects the quality of my life, how? I do wish that they would stop trying to ram it down the throats of the general public, however. Seems like all they are managing to do is annoy people.

“I care more about my relationship with my girl and my God than I do about my relationship with the state.”

I can relate…my husband and I were married in our eyes in a private, unlicensed ceremony (the priestess was a licensed reverend, though). When we moved to Idaho, we were forced to get married on paper (after 11 years of marriage), because his insurance wouldn’t cover me if we weren’t. That annoyed us to no end. It’s nobody’s business but our own if we bothered with the paper thing or not, IMO.

sage0925 on December 29, 2011 at 2:02 PM

Exactamundo sage, tired of it

cmsinaz on December 29, 2011 at 2:58 PM

I happened to work with a conservative lesbian and she is fantastic. She doesn’t give a rat’s ass about gay marriage, but she cares immensely about the 2nd amendment, the debt ceiling, parent’s rights, states rights, etc.

About 3 years ago, she took a trip to San Francisco for the Gay Pride parade. She figured that she needed to go once. She came back and said “NEVER AGAIN!”

Chocktopus on December 29, 2011 at 3:20 PM

Now here’s a woman who is about more than her sexuality. She’s a whole human being. Good for her. I wish there were way more like her, although I can see the difficulty of “coming out” in that way.

I’ve never understood why gay people can’t make powers of attorneys, healthcare proxies and wills that include their loved ones. My husband and I have done just that because the state intrudes too much as it is, and we want the other to have the rights over us like it used to be.

Mommynator on December 29, 2011 at 3:35 PM

I probably would not agree with this well-spoken lady on theology or ethics, but I absolutely agree with her position on marriage. I do not need the government’s acknowledgement of my traditional marriage. I think the GOP can rally social cons AND gays on a united front to get government out of the marriage business entirely. No more marriage penalty on income tax, or any other junk. If you want to divorce and need a property split, you pay the lawyer/judge/mediator and figure it out. Am I crazy here? This seems to be common sense here.

HTnFBCoachnTX1980 on December 29, 2011 at 4:10 PM

I’m in the same boat as a gay conservative, and that’s the answer: a marriage certificate will not get me a job, help my business, put food on my table, fill my tank with gas, or make one jot of difference in the umpteen different things I do every day.

Really, it’s a couple of issues.

First is the core psychology; the LGBT community has been led by liberal statists and has incalculated a liberal statist ideology of the government being the all-knowing, all-benevolent arbiter of everything.

Second is the blame-shifting. The LGBT community is adamantly and fundamentally against the concept that you are responsible for your own actions. Lack of marriage and “homophobia” have become a convenient excuse for everything that goes wrong with your life, allowing you to conveniently avoid changing any of your behaviors.

This is why I think the Republican Party is really wasting its efforts in any sort of outreach to gays. One cannot be conservative without confronting and repudiating the two core ideas at the center of the gay and lesbian community’s ideology. Rather, gays and lesbians like myself and this lady who have come to the realization that they have to think beyond their minority status — and have seen how the Obama Party’s “tolerance” extends only to those gays who are absolutely obedient to their Obama masters — have to come to the Republican Party and conservativism, rather than vice versa.

That being said:

I’ve never understood why gay people can’t make powers of attorneys, healthcare proxies and wills that include their loved ones. My husband and I have done just that because the state intrudes too much as it is, and we want the other to have the rights over us like it used to be.

Mommynator on December 29, 2011 at 3:35 PM

This is one area where definite improvement could be made, and I see it as a great wedge point for the Republican Party to use.

The reason the Obama Party tries to encourage and foment the whole “gay marriage” thing is because the Obama Party is adamantly against any type of reform in this area — because it would diminish the power of the state over people and it would reduce tax revenues. Thus, they push the unattainable “gay marriage” as a red herring rather than making the fixes that would benefit gay and straight couples alike.

northdallasthirty on December 29, 2011 at 4:18 PM

My aunt came out in the mid-1980s in East Texas. While I may not agree 100% with her, I admire her courage and conviction in standing up for her beliefs. We’ve had a lot of long talks about our differences and I’ve probably learned more about tolerance and acceptance in watching the relationship between her and my mother (who is an ordained Assemblies of God minister). My mom has always maintained that no matter what, they’re sisters, and they don’t have to agree on everything to love each other. When the marriage issue began becoming a more prominent issue, I asked my aunt about it, and her point of view was that personally, she didn’t want the government involved. Then, she said (and my aunt is a very funny, very sarcastic person), she might have to give stuff back when they divorced and that would be too messy. The other day, we were discussing politics, and she said she didn’t vote Obama the first time and she doesn’t care what he promises this time around, but he won’t have her vote. She said to her, what mattered more was the economy, the national debt, and the future her nieces (and great-nieces) will inherit.

Pancho on December 29, 2011 at 4:24 PM

The State should have nothing to do with marriage. If the local government simply issued a license to ANY couple seeking to legalize their partnership, all of this hand wringing would be moot. After all, a Marriage License is really just a legal document binding two people to a contractual relationship. Marriage, on the other hand, is a religious ceremony; a sacrament to be shared with loved ones. If the State got out of the marriage business and confined itself to the work it’s supposed to do, individual Churches or Church leaders could decide how best to serve their congregations. Gay marriage is a thorny issue for many people of Faith, both for and against. For once, I think separation of Church and State would be a good thing.

Kenz on December 29, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Conservative girl on girl action? What better case do you need than that?

The Rogue Tomato on December 29, 2011 at 5:36 PM

The State should have nothing to do with marriage. If the local government simply issued a license to ANY couple seeking to legalize their partnership, all of this hand wringing would be moot. After all, a Marriage License is really just a legal document binding two people to a contractual relationship.

So why should they limit it to couples? I mean, it’s perfectly legal for three people to enter into a contractual relationship together. Why can’t three people all be married to each other? Or 12? If the government isn’t going to define what marriage is or is not, how can it reasonably give out marriage licenses, short of allowing any arrangement of any number of people to be classified, legally, as a marriage?

Shump on December 29, 2011 at 5:46 PM

I think in reality, groups like GOProud and Human Rights Campaign don’t want legalized gay marriage and it’s probably the biggest reason Obama won’t come out strongly for it; as we know, he’s beholden to groups with a loud voice.

Why? You ask? Because it removes their power; it would be like turning over ownership of the company to the union; once you do that, the union has no function and will quickly disband.

The gay marriage issue -for national politicos- is nothing but a fundraiser.

BKeyser on December 29, 2011 at 6:18 PM

So why should they limit it to couples? I mean, it’s perfectly legal for three people to enter into a contractual relationship together. Why can’t three people all be married to each other? Or 12? If the government isn’t going to define what marriage is or is not, how can it reasonably give out marriage licenses, short of allowing any arrangement of any number of people to be classified, legally, as a marriage?

The laws against polygamy seem pretty well settled. Nothing I propose would change that. To get a driver’s license you have to be able to see. To form a domestic partnership, two humans must sign.
Let’s be honest; most laws come about because groups of people apply enough pressure to compel Congress to act. While I certainly don’t know for sure, I doubt that the polygamy lobby, unlike others; is powerful enough to get their way. Yet.

Kenz on December 29, 2011 at 7:43 PM

The gay marriage issue -for national politicos- is nothing but a fundraiser.

For the democratic party, no doubt, but certainly not for most gays. For an unlucky few who fall in love across lines of citizenship, bringing their loved one across via marriage is impossible. However, I’m in agreement with the above commenters who would see the state out of the business of marriage altogether. A church congregation should decide who they marry and don’t marry. The state only interferes with religious beliefs when it says who can marry and who can’t. Let marriage remain the sole purview of the church and the state can handle simple legal unions.

kc-anathema on December 29, 2011 at 8:33 PM

Good for her, indeed. I really have nothing against gays…their lifestyle affects the quality of my life, how? I do wish that they would stop trying to ram it down the throats of the general public, however. Seems like all they are managing to do is annoy people.

You answered your own question grasshopper.

I can relate…my husband and I were married in our eyes in a private, unlicensed ceremony (the priestess was a licensed reverend, though). When we moved to Idaho, we were forced to get married on paper (after 11 years of marriage), because his insurance wouldn’t cover me if we weren’t. That annoyed us to no end. It’s nobody’s business but our own if we bothered with the paper thing or not, IMO.

sage0925 on December 29, 2011 at 2:02 PM

Thats your choice. Not only to move, but to either accept the terms of the insurance or not.
When you state “its nobodys business but our own…” your are right..up until you interject your business onto the business of another. i.e. the insurer.
It’s a matter of choice. But not just your choice.

Mimzey on December 29, 2011 at 9:01 PM

I can relate…my husband and I were married in our eyes in a private, unlicensed ceremony (the priestess was a licensed reverend, though). When we moved to Idaho, we were forced to get married on paper (after 11 years of marriage), because his insurance wouldn’t cover me if we weren’t. That annoyed us to no end. It’s nobody’s business but our own if we bothered with the paper thing or not, IMO.

sage0925 on December 29, 2011 at 2:02 PM

That’s not completely accurate. What you did was take advantage of regulations that were forced on the insurance company, in effect legally steeling from them because the government forces them to let you.

Count to 10 on December 29, 2011 at 9:27 PM

The case for the conservative lesbian is the same as the case for everyone else: big government sucks for everyone. Low taxes and more individual freedom are good for everyone.

JohnJ on December 30, 2011 at 12:22 AM

I do not burden others with my ‘issues’ and I would ask the same of others. Being homosexual does not give you any more ‘rights’ than the next guy and imposing your ‘gayness’ upon everyone because you believe we have to know and you want everyone’s respect, earned or not, will get you zilch and a lot more frigging headache than you could possibly handle. Society doesn’t give a rat’s ass about your problems as all of us have enough of our own. Keep it to yourselves.

LizardLips on December 30, 2011 at 9:24 AM

Shump on December 29, 2011 at 5:46 PM

The only thing the state ought to be doing is providing a mechanism for recognizing a relationship between parties ultimately for the division of assets, parental rights and emergency medical directives in the event of death or voiding of the contract(divorce)and unfortunately income tax purposes. (Fair tax would do away with tax liability though ideally)

If 12 people want to assume that contractual relationship for the purposes of asset dispersement in the event of death or disbandment of contract (divorce) what does it matter to you? If 12 people request that the deceased pension and social security benefits be distributed equally amongst them… how does that affect you?

Those 12 people are going to live together and make babies regardless. Civil contract just makes it easier to recognize who gets a stake in assets when the contract is dissolved for whatever reason. It also designates a primary “decision maker” in the event of emergency medical care.

State should not be legislating insurance companies to provide benefits for dependents.

State should not be legislating morality.

Socmodfiscon on December 30, 2011 at 9:42 AM

DADT unsatisfactory as it was to both sides left the Feds and the military in a neutral position. With it’s repeal the military is now in the promotion business of the homosexual lifestyle. And it’s spreading.
If you think the recent story about two attractive lesbians kissing after one returned from deployment wasn’t staged, you haven’t been in the “New” Navy.
Homosexuality has been promoted by hollywood and the media as being slightly superior to being blase straight and now the government will be doing the same.

sanjuro on December 30, 2011 at 9:58 AM

I wonder if she’s hot.

Your Mamma loves me on December 31, 2011 at 12:02 PM