by Max Brantley
BUT, while cruising the New Yorker blog, I did come across David Remnick's post on last night's Republican presidential debate and the depression it brought upon Remnick, particularly on one issue:
In terms of civil rights, in terms of the progress of human decency, one of the clearest political victories of 2011—a long and cruelly delayed victory—is the triumph, last June, of marriage equality in the State of New York. This is a victory that will, if we are lucky, spread to many more states and has already enriched the lives of countless gay and lesbian couples. That the remaining Republican candidates (except, notably, Ron Paul) have found so many ways to deride this right, so long in coming, is appalling. History should not forget that at this late date Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, and, most recently, Newt Gingrich—politicians who propose to inspire and lead—have pandered to fear and much worse by pledging their support for a Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
They were in Iowa, pandering to caucus voters dominated by the extreme Religious Right (who love them some Mike Huckabee still). As usual, though, Newt Gingrich, who has a married lesbian half-sister, stood out with Remnick.
When he was asked if someone could choose to be heterosexual, he said, “Look, people choose to be celibate. People choose many things in life. You know, there is a bias in favor of non-celibacy. It’s part of how the species recreates. And yet there is a substantial amount of people who choose celibacy as a religious vocation or for other reasons.”
Does it bear repeating why it is more than sickening to hear Newt Gingrich counsel others on the benefits of sexual restraint?