Thursday, November 03, 2005

A squabble over Prop 2 among Republicans

An amazing exchange between the Executive Director of the Republican Party of Texas and one of their precinct chairs in Harris County (my edits to protect privacy appear in red). There was a message ahead of Ms. Sykes' response, which follows:

Mr. (name redacted),

We have no association with, nor control over, the KKK. I think the fact that we have been working partners with such as Pastor Blackwell, Pastor McKissic and the Cornerstone Baptist Church shows that in itself. To equate the KKK’s idea of white supremacy with the RPT standing for traditional marriage is ludicrous. Thank you for your comment and for representing to me the Harris County GOP Precinct (redacted).

Jennifer Sykes
Assistant to the Chairman & Executive Director
Republican Party of Texas

And to that, this:

Dear Ms. Sykes:

Thank you for your response to my message of October 31, 2005, although I am a bit surprised to receive such a stern rebuke. I neither stated nor implied that the Republican Party of Texas has any "association with, or control over," the Ku Klux Klan. I did not "equate the KKK's idea of white supremacy" to the RPT's position on Proposition No. 2. You falsely accuse me of both of these things merely to characterize me as "ludicrous"—not a very respectful attitude toward a fellow member of the GOP.

Over 1100 rights flow automatically from the legal state of marriage. Not long ago, we watched Britney Spears walk down an aisle in Las Vegas with an Elvis impersonator officiating and obtain all 1100 of these legal rights for a marriage she later termed "a joke"--a marriage that lasted only 55 hours. If "traditional marriage" is in jeopardy in this country, it seems to me that the good Republicans of Texas should perhaps look in their own back yards before setting out to blame the decline of traditional marriage on homosexuals.

Many Republicans feel that gay Texans pay their taxes and should be entitled to the same legal rights as everyone else.
Many Republicans feel that passing laws to deprive one group of citizens of constitutional rights to which they would otherwise be entitled harks back to the days of segregated waiting rooms, all-male juries, laws against interracial marriages, and "whites-only" drinking fountains—all ideas which were vigorously supported by the KKK, but now lie "in the ash heap of history," to borrow Ronald Reagan's colorful phrase. Many Republicans feel that this is not the direction Texas should be heading in the 21st century. Most of all, many Republicans are offended by the presumptuousness of GOP leaders in taking for granted that all Republicans are in agreement on this issue.

While your desire to distance the GOP from the KKK is understandable, the KKK's alignment with the GOP on this issue is
not coincidental. Flies are drawn to garbage wherever it may be found. Proposition No. 2 was motivated by an animus toward gay people and the bald arrogance of declaring that heterosexuals shall be forever superior to homosexuals through policies of law.

Declaring groups of people to be unworthy of the same rights as others is something the KKK knows a lot about. The GOP's pretensions of self-righteousness and its harrumphing about how different the GOP is from the KKK have a very hollow ring in the context of Proposition No. 2.

(name withheld)
GOP Chairman, Harris County Precinct (redacted)
(address withheld)

No comments: