Gay-bashing conservatives don’t want to be called gay-bashing anymore

26 Sep

By Evan Zenobia

OTTAWA – “Yes, there are gay conservatives,” was the title of a September 25 Charles Adler feature on Sun News. They must have become gay after the Ontario government promoted the lifestyle to them.

Seriously though, Sun News pushed the frontiers of irony when pundit Charles Adler proclaimed:

“It’s time to dispel the lingering stereotype of the gay-bashing conservative.”

Oh gee, wherever did such a stereotype come from?

Could it conceivably have anything to do with Preston Manning declaring, “homosexuality is destructive to the individual, and in the long run, society”? The same Preston Manning who founded the Reform Party, which morphed into the Conservative Party and which counted Sun News star pundit Ezra Levant among its members?

Could it have anything to do with Stephen Harper’s party voting against extending marriage rights to same-sex couples?

Could it have anything to do with Michael Coren calling gay rights activists “fascists” for campaigning against Chick-fil-A’s funding of anti-gay groups, blatantly missing that homosexuals were often the first victims of fascism. Or Sun News’s glowing praise for Chick-fil-A?

Could it have anything to do with the network’s righteous and theatrical indignation over anti-bullying measures aimed at protecting LGBT youth? Or calling the obviously heterosexual-inclusive Gay-Straight Alliances “gay pride clubs” in moronic and almost deliberate ignorance of it being impossible for straight people to be proud to be gay?  Could it be because Sun News has characterized the GSAs, which merely exist to allow straight and LGBT students to create safe and supportive environments, as anti-Catholic bullies bent on “promoting homosexuality to children”.

Could it have anything to do with Sun News bashing the Pride Parade and inviting “reformed homosexuals” on their programs? Could it have anything at all to do with Sun News still peddling the long-disproven notion that sexual orientation of a lifestyle or a choice that can be promoted or discouraged?

And although this feature specifically deals with gay conservatives, it is instructive to note the attitude of conservatives to the “T” in LGBT From the network-wide alarm bells over Jenna Talackova’s participation in a beauty pageant to Michael Coren’s almost weekly tirade over some otherwise insignificant issue involving transgender people, the sentiment among conservatives are clear. Or do we need to remind you that the Harper Government imposed Identity Screening Regulations which essentially bar transgender people from boarding planes. Not to mention King Stephen and most of his caucus have voted against legislation to include gender identity and expression non-discrimination clauses in the Human Rights Charter.

Yes, there are gay conservatives. Of course there are. But there are anti-gay conservatives too. And almost every major gain for LGBT human rights in Canada has been outside of conservative currents. In 1977 under the Parti québécois, an amendment to Québec’s Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms made Québec the first nation in the world to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. It was Sun News’s arch-enemy Pierre Trudeau who decriminalized homosexual activity and famously declared “[t]here’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.” Canada’s first openly gay and lesbian MPs are both New Democrats.

If Sun News wants the gay-bashing image of conservatives to go away, maybe they should clean up their own act before whining about “gay activists.”

Like Michael Jackson says: “if you want to make the world a better place, take a look in the mirror and make the change!”

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