Pat Buchanan Is Still An Anti-Gay Bigot
July 01, 2011 6:38 pm ET by Carlos Maza
Pat Buchanan remains an anti-gay bigot. There really is no other way to put it.
On Friday, conservative commentator Pat Buchanan (who also has his issues on race and religion issues) wrote a piece for WorldNetDaily headlined “Let’s hear it for prejudice” (not a joke). Buchanan laments New York’s recent decision to embrace marriage equality, arguing that homosexuality is “unnatural and immoral” while calling same-sex marriage “an Orwellian absurdity” (also not a joke):
[T]he belief that homosexuality is unnatural and immoral and same-sex marriage an Orwellian absurdity has always been part of the moral code of Christianity. Gen. George Washington ordered active homosexuals drummed out of his army. Thomas Jefferson equated homosexuality with rape. Not until 2003 did the Supreme Court declare homosexual acts a protected right.
The irony of condemning same-sex marriage as Orwellian while seemingly condemning the Supreme Court’s 2003 decision in Lawrence v. Texas -- which struck down state laws criminalizing private, consensual sex acts between gay and lesbian adults -- is lost on Buchanan. Apparently, Big Brother is only a problem when he’s not beating up on gays and lesbians.
He then goes on to briefly explain why homosexuality is “unnatural”:
What is the moral basis of the argument that homosexuality is normal, natural and healthy? In recent years, it has been associated with high levels of AIDS and enteric diseases, and from obits in gay newspapers, early death. Where is the successful society where homosexual marriage was normal? [emphasis added]
Buchanan joins the ranks of Tony Perkins, and Maggie Gallagher, who have all recently claimed that marriage equality might cause the end of society/civilization yet consistently get booked on national television. He also joins Pat Robertson, who believes that no civilization that has survived has “openly embraced homosexuality.”
Buchanan cites Albert Einstein – who was one of the most brilliant people in human history -- to make a truly idiotic argument:
As Albert Einstein observed, "Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age 18." By 14, most boys have learned on the playground there is something disordered about boys sexually attracted to other boys.
That’s right. Homosexuality is unnatural because teenage boys think it’s unnatural. What could possibly go wrong with listening to a bunch of homophobic teenage boys?
Everything, Pat. Everything could go wrong.
Considering the astronomical number of LGBT teen suicides over the past few months, calling schoolyard bigotry “common sense” is both dangerous and incredibly irresponsible.
Buchanan quotes political theorist Edmund Burke to explain that there is a “latent wisdom” in our prejudices that acts as a “spur to virtuous behavior.” Unfortunately, these prejudices are under attack by a radical new “ideology”:
In our new society from which traditionalists are seceding, many ruling ideas are rooted in an ideology that is at war with Burke's "general prejudices."
And what are these “ruling ideas?”:
High among them is that homosexuality is natural and normal. That abortion is a woman's right. That all voluntary sexual relations are morally equal. That women and men are equal, and if the former are not equally represented at the apex of academic, military and political life, this can only be the result of invidious discrimination that the law must correct. That all races, religions and ethnic groups are equal and all must have equal rewards.
Once a nation synonymous with freedom, the new America worships at the altar of equality. [emphasis added]
In one paragraph, this piece goes from being just homophobic to being homophobic, sexist, and racist. The “prejudices” that Buchanan believes contain “latent wisdom” apparently also include prejudices against women and racial minorities.
It isn’t a surprising logical conclusion, either. Buchanan’s resentment towards “the altar of equality” does not bode well for any traditionally disempowered group. If long-term prejudice is all it takes for Buchanan to be convinced that an idea is good, it isn’t hard to imagine what he would have said about abolishing slavery or allowing women the right to vote.
Buchanan ends with a warning:
Prediction: We are entering an era where communities will secede from one another and civil disobedience on moral grounds will become as common as it was in the days of segregation.
To be clear: Buchanan is comparing those brave men and women who protested against racial segregation during the civil rights movement to current anti-gay religious groups that refuse to provide social services to loving, committed gay and lesbian couples.
The comparison is completely backwards, but it’s comforting to know that people are already beginning to view homophobes like Buchanan in the same way they view those who opposed desegregation in the 1960s and 70s.
Except, of course, for MSNBC, which pays Buchanan to provide commentary on national television.