Friday, February 11, 2011

GOProud: "Houston, We Have a Problem!"

Please re tweet or email this article to your friends and family, or email your thoughts to GOProud directly.

If you are a reporter or blogger, feel free to republish this article as is, or make it your own.


Greetings Friends!

Houston, we have a problem!!

As you may know, CPAC started this week, and before they even got going, they changed leaders.  The new leader expressed dismay over GOProud's recent public comments in the media regarding some of the groups that boycotted CPAC, and hinted that GOProud may not be invited back next year.  But as Chairman Barron has said repeatedly, "we never sought to exclude anyone from CPAC and we didn't start this war, but don't expect us to not fight back" (my paraphrase).

Being from Houston (and quoting from Joan Crawford's fighting words), I would add:

"Don't FUCK with us fellas!  This ain't our first time at the rodeo!  We've fought worse monsters than you for YEARS and we know how to win the hard way!"

(pardon my French, but that's what the lady said!)

After all, didn't Donald Trump tell all the attendees at CPAC that we have to be interested in WINNING?....Why yes!  Yes he did!  So too must we then.

The folks who boycotted CPAC are the ones we are all familiar with:  Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, and others KNOWN for their bigotry and homophobic remarks.  They are the ones who are finding it difficult to continue to bash gays in order to pander to Social Conservative voters as long as GOProud is present at CPAC, and they want GOProud out....YESTERDAY, if possible!
Like the entire country, the entire gay community is pretty sharply divided between Democrats and Republicans at this point, with most of us leaning Democrat.  Many of us are still bruising from some of GOProud Chairman Chris R Barron's recent remarks regarding what he calls "the gay left."  There's also a lot of misinformation floating around about where GOProud stands on the issues.  Many die hard Democrat gays are saying that GOProud opposes gay marriage.  That's not exactly true.  They are for repealing DOMA because that is a federal statute, and they believe marriage should be left up to the states to decide, and as Chairman Barron said on The Mitchell Report, hopefully at the state level, and not by judges.  GOProud has NEVER indicated that they simply oppose gay marriage, as many gay Democrats would have us believe.

Some gay Democrats have failed to research GOProud's record and are actually saying that they oppose the repeal of DADT.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  You can research Chris R Barron on YouTube and find a video that shows Chris defending DADT's repeal, as well as their website showing their most recent public statements against Pawlenty's attempts to defund the DADT repeal.

Many gay Democrats have fallen victim to the Republican anti-gay rhetoric over the years, and the failure on the part of gays to let the past stay in the past...and KEEP it there.  I understand your pain.  I understand the insults hurled at us over the years leave permanent wounds.  And I understand that setting those wounds aside isn't an easy thing to do, but I strongly caution against allowing them to blind us to the missteps of the Democrats, in light of their recent majority being squandered without so much as a whisper regarding ENDA nor DOMA, nor to the newest threat we face if CPAC successfully bars GOProud's continued attendance at future CPAC events.

Many gay Democrats have sharply criticized GOProud for not supporting ENDA, and honestly, I can't speak as to why they oppose it.
EDITED 2/11/11 7:34am CST to add:  Liz Mair, Member of GOProud's Advisory Board Tweets: ENDA stance is based on opposition to govt mandates, regs etc...esp in view of the fact that the private sector is well ahead of the curve re: fair treatment of gay folks in hiring etc.  END EDIT  
But the larger point is that we voted the Democrats into office, they had a 2 year opportunity to repeal DOMA and pass ENDA and failed to even bring either issue to the floor.  Say what you will about Republicans, but what good does it do to elect Democrats AND give them the majority in both Houses of Congress AND the Presidency....if all they're going to do is piss it all away, and renege on the promises they made to our community?  I'll provide more details on that in later blogs, but right now, we have something of an emergency on our hands.

CPAC only lasts through today, February 12.  We have only 16 hours to ensure that at least GOProud is invited back to CPAC next year.  That opportunity will only come if the gay community gets behind them and supports their attendance (whether we agree with all their policies or not).  We'll have an entire year then to debate where they do or should stand on individual issues. 

But for now, I ask for all of us to unite behind GOProud's attendance.  If CPAC is successful in booting them from next year's CPAC, it will be an attack on all gays, and a threat to an exponential growth in our political power, (and not just for the ones who identify as Republican or fiscally conservative, but Democrats, Libertarians, and Independents too).  It will be a lost opportunity and painful setback to the entire Equality movement.

Here's the thing:

Whether we like it or not, if CPAC bans GOProud, it's still an attack on ALL gays (and they know it).  If we support GOProud's presence (even if we don't support all their policies) that can only mean that BOTH parties begin vying for our vote (and they know it).  Many old school CPAC attendees want to keep the status quo when it comes to exclusion of gays in the Republican Party.  They want to continue to rely on the homophobic rants in order to get their voters to the polls (since they rarely have any solid solutions that are exciting enough to get folks off the couch).  Likewise, the Democrats would love to continue in the status quo because it helps them continue to win elections by considering the gay vote a "given".  But we've seen what happened when they had it.  They had a majority in both houses of Congress and the Presidency for 2 years, and we all watched as they pissed it away, and did NOTHING to pass ENDA and/or repealed DOMA. Why didn't they?  Why aren't you angry at their betrayal of our trust?  We voted them in and they did nothing!  Yet so many Democratic gays pooh pooh GOProud, simply because they aren't carrying the banner either.  Folks, that is NOT going to get us where we all want to go.

To be blunt, if we just let Democrats keep screwing us like that, they will just assume they can continue to, and we'll have only ourselves and disunity to thank for it.  At least if Republicans think we MIGHT vote for them, they'll at least try to make sure we do, but only if we stand behind GOProud this week.  If they think we MIGHT vote for them, at the VERY LEAST, they'll knock off the homophobic rhetoric from their campaigns.  If we don't show CPAC that we support GOProud's attendance (and that we may be looking for a new Party to support in 2012), CPAC will never take GOProud seriously, which means they'll never take GAYS seriously. I don't like it, but that's politics.  I just hope you think about it.  I'm on our side, so don't get me wrong, but we have to look at this strategically, not ideologically.

When CPAC sees the gay community begin to unite, it will send a POWERFUL message that threatens their own candidates' political aspirations.  If they refuse GOProud's attendance next year, they can be certain it will only force us to vote Democrat in the next election.  Further, if they keep GOProud next year, they'll see we are serious about their participation, and they will see for themselves that the gay community may just indeed be looking for another party....and I BET YOU they don't do ANYthing to alienate us, and I BET YOU they'll be strongly urging GOProud to attend again next year, and the next and the next.

But it depends on us and how we react to this golden opportunity to increase our political power within BOTH parties.

We have a LOT of work to do today to pull this off.  I hope you'll join us in whatever fashion you deem appropriate.  But one thing is for sure, a show of ambiguity or apathy on our part will send a message to the Republican Party that we are just fine with the status quo, and we don't really want to be part of the process within the Republican Party, and that we are more than willing to keep nursing our wounds, and holding onto our grudges, and keep voting for Democrats so they can continue to do nothing for us once they are elected.  As angry as we may be about past Republican led bigotry and hate speech, is that really the political legacy we want to pass on to the next generation of gay Americans?

The choice is ours.  I'm going to be tweeting this article to members of Congress and anyone else I can find on Twitter that is in leadership positions of CPAC attendees.  As I do, I hope you'll tweet, and retweet, and email these tweets, and contact any press people you know, and anything else we can think of to get the message across that the gay community expects CPAC's leadership AND attendees to continue to welcome GOProud....and we expect them to do so NOW! 

I hope that EVERYONE who is gay and/or supports Equality who is attending CPAC this week will stand as Andrew Brietbart delivers his scheduled speech to CPAC (9:00am EST).  Let them see how many of us there are....including those of us who are not part of GOProud's contingency.  I can't think of anything that would have a greater visual impact for both attendees and the media than for a mass of gay men and women to stand up in the middle of CPAC and (respectfully, politely, but FIRMLY) say (visually, not verbally): 

"We're here!  We're queer!  Get used to it!"

(and as Joan Crawford would say),

"Thank you, let's get to work!"

There's no time to waste with partisan or issue arguments right now.  But leave a comment and I promise that I will answer all your questions after we are done with our little blitz.

God bless you, no matter what you decide, but as they say,

"Let us do SOMEthing, lest we do nothing!"

We've got 0 hours....and the clock is ticking....

Brian Anthony Bowen
Member of the Worldwide Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community
Music Producer, "The Gemini Enterprise: Stellar Trance"
Blogger, "The Gemini Gayzette"
Author of upcoming new book, "The Bed Keeper:  A Biblical Case FOR Gay Marriage"

(edited text to reflect elapsed time since original post) bab2.12.11 8.45pm cst 


Next Week's Articles:
"Democrats: Betrayal of Trust"
"Purging the Theocrats"
"This Ain't Your Father's GOP"


  1. Now why would you think that the heterosupremacist tyrannical theocRAT teabagging RepubliTHUGS give a fuck what any gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender American thinks about what they do?

  2. You cannot "demand equality" and not expect BOTH political parties to treat us equally. And gays cannot "demand equality" for themselves while denying it to fellow gays who may or may not align with their political views. "can".....but it would make you a hypocrite.


    Actually the gays had their own dance and all the straights wanted to go.

  4. For gay people to be Republican is like black people joining the KKK.

  5. TC: That's not exactly a true statement. When we look at when the DEMs had the majority in both houses and the white house for 2 years and did nothing on our issues, it seems to me that even if they "say" they are for us, they really aren' least not during the 111th Congress.

    They didn't even bring ENDA nor DOMA to the floor. Why is that? Why aren't you angry at the betrayal of our trust? We voted them in and did nothing! What good does THAT do the LGBT community? Answer: NONE!

    I'm still a Democrat, but I am no longer convinced that the Dems are for LGBT Americans and that the Republicans are against us. While many bastions of bigotry continue to exist and "wear" the Republican label, me thinks this is ONE opportunity to expand the political power of the gay community which we have not had presented to us before.

    I ask, "why NOT have BOTH parties actually COMPETING for our votes?"

  6. Actually, I objected to it. At least Dems don't hate you.

  7. Well, that's easy to "SAY" Dems don't hate me, but if they LOVED me, then why are they stalling on legislation like ENDA and DOMA? Could it be they only LOVE me for my VOTE?

    At least Republicans repsect me for my mind, and don't ask me to bend over and just take it with no vaseline or anything like the Dems did in the 111th!

    Come to think of it, especially in regards to health care, it seems they've done that to ALL of America too, and not just "teh gays."

    ....just sayin'

  8. Next Week's Articles:
    "Democrats: Betrayal of Trust"
    "Purging the Theocrats"
    "This Ain't Your Father's GOP"