Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Even Republicans Don't Expect Walker To Keep Promises

Wisconsin Gazette has a thought-provoking article about Scott Walker's contradiction between his personal life and his stump speeches regarding the LGBT community.

While on the campaign trail, Walker's takes a strong anti-gay stance, threatening to dissolve the domestic partner registry as well as the employment benefits for the partners of gay and lesbian state workers. However, both in his current administration and in his personal life, he is very open to gays and lesbians, including having some as top officials, most notably Tim Russell and Sue Black.

An interesting part of the article is how his gay supporters see this dissonance:
Milwaukee attorney Jim McFarland, a member of Log Cabin Republicans, described Walker as “100-percent supportive on a personal level.” McFarland and other gay Walker supporters believe his personal openness signals that, if elected, he would not pursue the conservative social positions he’s adopted on the stump.
If Walker is not expected to keep his promises on this issue, how can anyone expect him to keep his word on any issue?

1 comment:

  1. Isn't that kind of a slap in the face to his gay staffers? Especially when so many young people have been killing themselves after being bullied because of it recently. It seems to me that society still defines gay people as "Other" and that's why teasing and bullying are so common. It's easy to dismiss the idea that you might be causing pain when your target is not one of Us, not fully human, but just some weird kind of different thing. Things don't feel pain. Society institutionalizes this norm of "Othering" in law (that's what laws are, norms that have solidified), and so when we say, hey gay people cannot get married, or like when Scott Walker says we should actually regress, and "dissolve the domestic partnership registry as well as domestic partnership benefits for gay and lesbian state workers," that's basically just reinforcing and perpetuating the Othering of gay folks. And to the extent that kids understand our representative government, that's legitimizing treating gay people as different from normal people. No wonder, then, that kids don't see anything wrong with bullying gays - if they were human, like you and me, the law would treat them equally. Since the law does not, then ipso facto they are something other than you and me. Seems like a bad example to be setting. Almost seems like it would be easy, if a bit disingenuous, to construct a reductio ad absurdum argument that has a punchline that goes something like, "Scott Walker wants more gay kids to kill themselves." But that would be wrong.