Friday, October 15, 2004


Boy, the flannel has hit the fan. Kerry made one reference to Mary Cheney and her being an out lesbian in the debate, and Republicans can't stop crying crocodile tears about it. Kerry's words were really quite benign:

We're all God's children, Bob, and I think if you were to talk to Dick Cheney's daughter, who is a lesbian, she would tell you that she's being who she was. She's being who she was born as.

But Republicans can't denounce it fast enough. Lynne Cheney was quick to come to her daughters "defense" saying that it was a "cheap and tawdry trick" and that Kerry "was not a good man."

It was only a few months ago that Alan Keyes, running for Republican office here in Illinois, called Mary Cheney a "selfish hedonist," like all homosexuals. Where was the outrage then? Where was Lynne Cheney's righteous indignation when a member of her own political party was attacking her daughter? All Kerry really did was acknowledge her existence, something her own parents have been loathe to do in this campaign. No, the outrage from the Right is clearly just trying to make a mountain of this molehill. It is all sound and fury, and truly signifies nothing.

I'm reminded of the Republican National Convention a few months ago, the same place Keyes made his repugnant comment. After Cheney's speech or Bush's (I forget) the entire Cheney family got up on stage to give Dad a big hug for the camera and smile and look happy. That is, except for Mary. She was there at the convention; the networks showed cutaways of her sitting in the audience. Ah, but I think I remember that she was sitting with her girlfriend.

Mary has been silent on both these occasions, and has refused to be comment. But the fact that she wasn't up on the stage I find particularly peculiar. It's not like she doesn't support her father in his campaign, in fact, she works for it, as the Director for Vice Presidential Operations. I am strongly suspicious that she didn't go up on stage that day because she wasn't welcome there. Probably not by her father's request -- he's always seemed quite supportive, if quietly supportive -- but there had to be someone on the campaign that realized it would not look real great for the "family values" ticket to have openly queer family members on stage, possibly with their partners along. Possibly even (gasp!) holding hands.

Other people have written about this topic probably better than I have. Read more:

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