Today I came across talk show host Michelangelo Signorile an article about GOProud and their leader Chris Barron in the Advocate. Though I do not necessarily agree with everything that GOProud states or does, I have always felt that the furor that many on the left throw at them has been unfounded. This has once again happened in Signorile's piece; for instead of actually addressing the issues that GOProud stands for and why they stand for them, he instead attacks Chris Barron and extrapolates those personal attacks as an attack on the organization as a whole. Not only is Signorile's piece an overall "ad hominem" logical fallacy, but it does nothing to constructively discuss matters of policy with gays and lesbians who lean to the Right.
Though Signorile states many things in the article, a few stand out to me. He first says that GOProud has, "a selfish devotion to Republican “fiscal” policies over civil rights" Though this analysis of GOProud might be accurate, it is not necessarily negative. For to members of GOProud, and many of their supporters, being gay does not define who you are as a person, so therefore LGBT issues are not the main compass for which party you support. You could, for example, be a small business owner and a gay man. Both issues are equally important to you, and therefore you might support the Republicans because you like their position on small business issues. That does not mean that you are "self-loathing" like Signorile states; instead it means that your sexuality is not the lens by which you view your politics, instead your view is based upon a much larger and multi-faceted lens. Some LGBT advocates will view this as denying who you are, and they are free to hold those views, but I personally do not wish to be pigeonholed into a certain ideological view and party because of a physical characteristic that I might have.
Then Signorile goes on to state, in so many words, that GOProud does not have an appropriate position on any of the important issues that should matter to LGBT individuals, such as Employment protections, gay marriage, hate crimes laws, etc. But does Signorile give us any of the reasons why GOProud feels these ways? Not at all; instead he states that GOProud takes these positions so that they can pander to the Republican base - a statement that could not be any farther from the truth! If Signorile did any sort of analysis on the positions that GOProud has, he would realize that their positions are actually quite principled, and not for political pandering purposes.
Lastly, Signorile goes on to say that GOProud is an organization that provides cover for those who are “anti-gay” in the Republican party, because they can point to these gay republicans and say “see we don’t hate gay people”. Thus, he says, we should all go running to the Democratic party. Though I see where Signorile is going with this, I don’t buy the logic or the effectiveness of that tactic. Personally, I think that it is better to go into the “lions den” of the Republican party and change it from the inside, a change that we can actually see happening in the party today, instead of fleeing to the supposed safety of the Democratic caucus. That is what real change looks like, the change that actually gets results.