To Comfort The Afflicted
And Afflict The Comfortable

To Comfort The Afflicted And Afflict The Comfortable

Thursday, October 29, 2020

New Observercast

GOP Intolerance

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BY KENNY BELFORD

Well the secret is out, if it ever was a secret. In an interview with The Atlantic magazine, Ken Mehlman, George W. Bush’s 2004 campaign manager, and the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, has admitted he’s gay. He also mentioned in the interview that he wants to become an advocate for gay marriage. In the grand scheme of life this is no big whoop. It’s just an admission of what is. Having said that, there is a faction of American society where that revelation is huge, actually monumental, and his admission is shocking, disgusting, horrifying, and makes him a candidate for scathing vilification and demonizing. That faction is called the Republican Party.

Perfected as a manipulative tool by Karl Rove, Republicans have used anti-gay themes repeatedly all across America to bring out their base on election days under their “family values” banner. They’ve repeatedly railed away against the perils of gay people even being tolerated. Conservative commentators have had a field day mocking and attacking gay people. High profile conservative “religious” leaders have attacked gays on their national television programs and from the pulpit. Republican leaders successfully used that theme of intolerance and divisiveness to rally their troops, knowing they could always depend on their rank and file to jump into action if it involved demonizing or hating some group.

Here in Oklahoma we have a Republican state representative that has attained national notoriety on that issue. State Rep. Sally Kern, wife of Dr. Steve Kern, pastor of Olivet Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, has been an unwavering merchant of intolerance against all things gay. Last year Kern issued a proclamation blaming our economic problems on “abortion, pornography, same sex marriage, sex trafficking, divorce, illegitimate births, child abuse and many other forms of debauchery.” Previously Kern said, “Studies show that no society that has totally embraced homosexuality has lasted more than, you know, a few decades. So it’s the death knell of this country. I honestly think it’s the biggest threat our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam – which I think is a big threat, okay? Cause what’s happening now is they are going after, in schools, two-year olds … And this stuff is deadly, and it’s spreading, and it will destroy our young people, it will destroy this nation.”

This could get quite interesting. Sally Kern now has a dilemma. Does she believe Bush’s former campaign manager, and the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, her political party, is a bigger threat to America than terrorism? Since George W. Bush hired Ken Mehlman to be his campaign manager, does she believe Bush was helping to promote terrorism and bring about “the death knell of this country?” That’s an awful lot for a shallow mind to attempt to process. Someone in the media needs to present those questions to her. Watching her attempt to tap dance through that mine field would be quite entertaining.

Kenny Belford lives in Tulsa, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer

Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton became editor of The Observer in September 2006. Previously, he served nearly two decades as the Dallas Morning News’ Oklahoma Bureau chief. He also covered government and politics for the San Jose Mercury News, the Dallas Times Herald, the Tulsa Tribune and the Oklahoma Journal.