The Bush administration is out of gas and nobody can afford it, so the President is priming the pump with the same anti-gay fuel that always runs the GOP's engine: Same-sex marriage. But will the parlor trick work again for an administration clunking by on fumes?
According to the conservative magazine, The Weekly Standard, Bush will hold a press conference in the Rose Garden on June 5 to reaffirm his support for a Constitutional Amendment prohibiting gay people from marrying. The following day, the Senate is scheduled to vote on the Amendment.
Of course, this was as predictable as a hot June day in DC. When Karl Rove was put in charge of the GOP's sagging political fortunes in an Election year, you just knew the gay bashing was around the corner. If it were not for guillotining gays, Rove would likely be running school board races in Amarillo or Lubbock.
Rove is often called a political genius, but I have to disagree. True brilliance requires offering people hope for a better tomorrow. In 1992, Bill Clinton stirred the better angels of the nation and people were excited about the future. In the early 80's, Ronald Reagan's political guru, Michael Deaver, displayed the same luminosity. Although Reagan did pander to the Moral Majority, his appeal was primarily built on his sunny optimism.
Bush, under the spell of Rove, has constructed his entire legacy on smearing the opposition and creating a climate of fear among voters. Who can forget when the Bush campaign slimed John McCain in South Carolina in 2000 with underhanded phone calls demeaning the war hero and his family?
And, of course, John Kerry, another decorated Vietnam veteran, was swift boated by Rove's sleaze machine. But always, Rove saves his biggest spit-balls for gay people. Teaming up with conservative organizations in 2004, Rove helped orchestrate eleven referendums on Constitutional marriage amendments. Many were in key presidential battleground states, in an effort to boost conservative turnout.
Smart, for sure, but certainly not brilliant or wise, for it has always been easier to scare than to care. Rendering people blind is simpler than providing a positive vision. To me, Rove is a cheater - the Barry Bonds of politics. Homophobia and hysteria are the steroids and he injects the poison into the body politic at every opportunity.
Like steroids, however, the long term affects of such toxic politics inevitably damage the user. The vice of divisiveness cost America the sympathy of the world after 9-11 and the support of it in our post 9-11 military adventures. Still, Bush is flexing like the muscleman he once was, while he has revealed himself as the biggest 90-pound weakling ever to sit in the Oval Office.
The President's anti-gay Rose Garden press conference is nothing short of a thorny embarrassment. Bush persists on further debasing his legacy by continuing to pander to a base that is largely responsible for him hovering near oblivion.
The right wing is equally deluded if they believe that their close ties to Bush are beneficial. While the rest of American families are suffocating under exorbitant gas prices, the only thing that fuels the right's passion is bashing gay families. While a majority may not be for allowing gay people to marry, they also know that this issue is not a priority.
And, if anything, the Bush Administration -- and by extension the right wing -- is being punished in polls for having its priorities backwards. When Osama was terrorizing, Bush's priority was Saddam. When New Orleans was sinking, Bush was disengaged. With healthcare exploding, the President was preoccupied with dismantling Social Security.
"Instead of addressing the real challenges facing American families, the President will further divide this country and put the far-right extremist's interests ahead of the American people's well-being," Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese said this week.
In six years, Rove has not changed the game plan and Bush is still stumbling through the motions. Gay bashing has been the one play that has consistently saved Team GOP. But as the clock is ticking and Rove desperately throws one last political Hail Mary in the flowery field, one has to wonder if the bloom has finally come off the rose.
I totally agree with your commentary! It is time for us as a community, tribe, family to be out loud and cohesive! Never has a civil right in this fine country been a popular vote. If folks had not historically stood up and made noise COLLECTIVLY women would never had the rights to vote, there would be no interacial marriage...the list goes on!
I will not remain a second class citizen quietly. Get involved, because it is the silence that seperates us from equality.
Thank you wayne for being a consistant voice in the GLBTQ world.
We as a community (GLBTQ) have to get it together and be reconed with! the Bushites have no future in my life
posted by Bruce, at
5/30/2006 10:17 PM
Perfectly said Wayne, i think rove is a big closet case and they always make the worst homophobes; just like hitler knew he probably had a Jewish grandfather. Bush rove and company are total ASSHOLES and will go down in the history books in the same chapter with the pro-slavery, anti-civil rights, anti-suffragette crowd.
posted by Anonymous, at
5/31/2006 9:49 AM
I don't think the fag-baiting elixir is going to work this time; too much is going wrong at once.
The United States has had presidential administrations that were competent but corrupt, such as Nixon's. It has also had honest administrations that--rightly or not--were perceived as incompetent, such as Carter's. This administration is both blitheringly incompetent and scandalously corrupt, and now it's all coming around to bite everyone (including them) in the ass.
As Oscar Wilde said about the death of Dickens' Little Nell: it would take a heart of stone not to laugh out loud.
posted by Anonymous, at
5/31/2006 11:18 AM
Rove and his ilk have a particular kind of "frat boy consciousness" about life. They never allowed themselves to grow up and out of their foolish, childish ideas about the world and they are in the dark when it comes to knowing and appreciating the opportunity life gives us.
Their vision of a happy life involves power, money and possessions. Those are neutral things, but they become one's enemy when they are allowed to define us and our connection to humanity. I hope that one day, Mr. Rove's eyes are opened and he is finally illuminated as to the amount of shame he should be feeling. If it happens, it will be at 2 a.m. and will result in a cold sweat.
posted by Chris L., at
5/31/2006 2:03 PM
Has anybody noticed that they scheduled the Senate vote to be on June 6, 2006? You know, 06/06/06... the mark of the devil (666) day. Trust me, this was intentional and worked out well in advance with the fundie PR folks.
posted by Anonymous, at
5/31/2006 4:36 PM
Since we're the minions of satan, this should be a good luck day for us and the amendment should go down in flames!!! (maniacal laughter)
posted by Anonymous, at
5/31/2006 4:53 PM