My anger over the whole of Vice President Dick Cheney's interview with Wolf Blitzer on CNN's Situation Room yesterday has made it very difficult for me to comment upon it, except in bits and pieces, as I have already done.
But there is a significant part of his televised temper tantrum I have not addressed, namely, his blow up that Blitzer would ask about his pregnant gay daughter, Mary. Let me do so now, and explain why this is important to us all.
Here's the text in question, from Cheney's words:
BLITZER: Here's what Jim Webb, senator from Virginia said in the Democratic response last night — he said, "The president took us into this war recklessly. We are now, as a nation, held hostage to the predictable and predicted disarray that has followed."
And it's not just Jim Webb; it's some of your good Republican friends in the Senate and the House are now seriously questioning your credibility, because of the blunders and the failures. Gordon Smith…
CHENEY: Wolf, Wolf, I simply don't accept the premise of your question. I just think it's hogwash.
BLITZER: your daughter, Mary. She's pregnant. All of us are happy she's going to have a baby. You're going to have another grandchild. Some of the — some critics are suggesting — for example, a statement from someone representing Focus on the Family, "Mary Cheney's pregnancy raises the question of what's best for children. Just because it's possible to conceive a child outside of the relationship of a married mother and father doesn't mean that it's best for the child." Do you want to respond to that?
BLITZER: She's, obviously, a good daughter –
CHENEY: I'm delighted I'm about to have a sixth grandchild, Wolf.
And obviously I think the world of both my daughters and all of my grandchildren. And I think, frankly, you're out of line with that question.
BLITZER: I think all of us appreciate –
CHENEY: I think you're out of line.Cheney would be right, that Blitzer IS out of line, IF Cheney's own party, the one run behind the scenes by Bush and Cheney and Ken Mehlman - the gay whose closet door was shoved open - had not declared war on homosexuals.
Do any of us need to be gay or to love and/or respect a gay person to see something inherently and yes, even constitutionally wrong about one of the chief leaders of a group that has harnassed the voting bloc of people who most hate and fear gays (and anyone else they don't like) insisting that the treatment of him and his own daughter MUST be different than the same treatment he and his ilk would perpetrate against others?
Yet, let's make this less abstract. The Bushies hate anyone who questions, anyone not a far right Republican who also supports them, anyone who whistle blows against a corporation or federal agency for wrong-doing, women (especially those of reproductive age, scientists, educators, AND - quite apparently - the entire working and middle classes.
Happen to belong to at least one of these "groups"? The vast majority of us does.
So will the Bushies come for you, too, as they have for homosexuals? If you're not worried about that, you really should be... and you certainly should be consuming less Xanax and Valium and Ativan and antidepressants to conceal this fear from yourself.
I think it was wrong for groups to go after Mary Cheney, Dick's lesbian daughter, when she refused their invitation to be a spokesman and role model for gays. No one is obligated to represent their "group" be they women, blacks, gays, Hispanics, or anyone else.
But it's just as wrong for Dick and Mary Cheney - not to mention mother Lynne who, great Christian and role model to the right, wrote a novel of purple prosed lesbian lust - to benefit so wildly from anti-gay policies and rhetoric and then claim it's "not right" for anyone to raise the question of Ms. Cheney's sexual orientation or her decision to have a child sans man when they work hard to deny such rights to others.Bush and Cheney at different times have both told their hard right evangelical voting core that it is wrong for two women or two men to be married and/or have a child.
It's not wrong, actually. It's just different from the majority. And so frickin' what? America was built, in this post Native American stage, BY, FOR, and OF people who saw differently from Mother England and the tyranny of the crown.
If we allow the far right GOP and Cheney to get away with this widest of double standards, we invite them to come after each of us as well.
Remember, too, that statistics tell us 1 in every 10 Americans is a homosexual. In reality, considering how many feel it necessary to "hide", this number may be far larger. So really, you cannot be unaffected by this double standard since it's very, very likely, unless you're a hermit alone in a cave, that gays are among your best friends, your respected colleagues and neighbors, your family members, and heck, more than just a few heterosexually-married spouses. You just may not know it and the reason you don't is because we allow the Bushes and Cheneys and Mehlmans and others of this country to scare these men and women into secrecy.
It's time it stopped. It's time Dick get his nose - and a few other choice bits of anatomy - rubbed into his own hypocrisy.