Ever since I came out of the closet (and especially since I started this blog), people have asked how I am able to reconcile being a Gay Republican. In this post, I hope to provide some explanation.
The answer is simple, but first I must explain that I am not a Gay Republican. I am a Republican and happen to be Gay. Alternatively, I am Gay and happen to be a Republican. My political beliefs do not determine my sexual orientation nor does my sexual orientation alone determine my political beliefs. In reality, many things influence my political beliefs, one of which happens to be my sexual orientation.
One major criticism of the Republican Right is that they tend to bow to Christian conservatives. It is very clear that the Religious Right doesn't tend to agree with what they term the "Homosexual Lifestyle" and often attempt to restrict the rights of Gay people. However, what the left forgets is that the American Christian movement is not a hateful group of people, on the whole. While not all of them adhere to the adage, "hate the sin not the sinner," most don't hate Gay people.
I don't hate them either! My best friend happens to be a (straight) right-wing religious Republican. I, myself, am a Christian and try to live accordingly. Like many other Christians, I don't believe that my religion should dictate my political beliefs. Similarly, I don't feel compelled to let my sexual orientation dictate my political beliefs. Sure, same-sex marriage is very important to me. Equal rights are even more important to me. But so are other social issues, the economy, gun rights, the environment, and national security. I don't pretend to agree with the GOP on every issue, but I certainly don't agree with the Democrats on many issues apart from Gay rights.
To vote Republican doesn't mean that I am self-hating. To the contrary, I am proud of being Gay! But that doesn't mean I have to vote the same way as other Gay people. For instance, the typical Gay party line requires that I be in favor of abortion (which I equate to murder). It also says that I need to care deeply about the rights of transgendered people, which I really don't. Trannys have a whole different set of concerns than a Gay man does. If I were to vote along Democratic party lines, I would be voting against gun rights, in favor of higher taxes, and more government spending. I really do care about these things and think the Republicans tend to have the right idea.
Republicans, in general, aren't opposed to Gay people. A few notable ones tend to oppose us every chance they get, but most are really fairly ambivalent about Gay issues. Some Republicans quietly vote against Gay rights bills because they have little to gain for voting in favor and can pick up a few votes by voting against. They believe (and rightly so) that the Queer community will NEVER vote for a Republican. What is forgotten is that Democrats feel that they can vote against Gay rights because the Queer community will ALWAYS vote for them.
If the GLBT community wants to see real change, they need to be willing to support Republicans when the Democrats won't support their cause.