Living in a 353-year-old city (with a long and storied Native American history even before its 1659 settlement by Puritans), there’s no shortage of people who cling to nostalgia for the “old days,” the glory days, when the city’s many big textile mills were humming rather than crumbling, and the “Rose City” was the shopping destination of eastern Connecticut rather than a place where Goodwill is one of the city’s few remaining, and most successful, retailers.
What do nostalgic old people in an old New England mill town have to do with gay people, who frequently flee such places for the opportunity and anonymity of the big cities (as I did)?
Well, they make me think of gay Republicans. I’ve never met one who doesn’t similarly pine for a far-off, glorious past when the Republican Party stood for something worth standing for, such as limited government and personal liberty.
What got me thinking about gay Republicans was the comments by Speaker of the House John Boehner last week in response to a question from a Washington Blade reporter about the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA). Boehner said, “I haven’t seen the bill. I haven’t thought much about it.”
Really? Clearly he also doesn’t know much about the discrimination that faces LGBT people in the American workforce. If he had, he wouldn’t have said, “There are ample laws already in place to deal with this.”
Boehner’s comments made me wonder: Why would someone choose to belong to a political party whose de facto leader, its highest-ranking elected member, hasn’t thought much about an issue of such importance to so many LGBT Americans — as well as to businesses and employers, the corporations about which today’s Republicans care so very much?
When I accepted my sexual orientation, in 1981, I left the Catholic church I was raised in, and the evangelical churches I found myself drawn to as a teenager, because those institutions couldn’t find it in their allegedly Christian hearts and theology to accept that gay people are equally human and equally beloved of God. I found a place in the Episcopal church, with its more
This article originally appeared on: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/johnmanuel-andriote/gay-republicans-give-up-t_b_1446512.html