It pains me that I feel the need to jump to the defense of a
columnist who more than likely could defend himself better then
I could. This is an instance that I can't help myself... I just
gotsta do it.
For those of you unfamiliar with Andrew Sullivan, I suggest
you hop over to his website and pay him a visit. Andrew is one
of only a handful of writers whom I trust to deliver me his
Andrew is a bit of an enigma. As an HIV infected gay man, he
is in a great position to claim full victim status, but refuses
to do so. He pisses off the left, he pisses off the right (sometimes
he even pisses me off, but who doesn't?). He carries no
allegiance to party politics, and both his feature pieces and
daily commentary reach his readers in a personal, yet highly
intellectual, way. Frankly, the world would be better off with
more Andrew Sullivans and less Joe Conasons. His "Daily
Dish" commentaries are somewhat addictive and I visit his
site at least twice daily to read them.
Andrew has a habit of ruffling the feathers of the gay
establishment. He doesn't pull many punches, and he is happy to
call a spade a spade when he deems necessary. Andrew's criticism
of the activist gay agenda normally falls in the "hey dude,
relax" category. I guess for some, this is stepping out of
line with their Big Brother approach to gay-rights activism.
Much like all of us and our work, Mr. Sullivan has a life
outside of his "Daily Dish" that he'd prefer his
readers not to know about. Not that anyone should care, but it
turns out Andrew has been trying to find dates on the Internet
(shocking isn't it?). Without getting too heavy into detail
here, as a busy HIV infected gay man, Andrew decided to use the
Internet message boards to find those who are also HIV infected
as possible love interests. It turns out that some of these
message boards are what some would consider a bit risqué.
Now as a heterosexual, I'd prefer not to think about Andrew
and his "love interests." It's uncomfortable to think
about. (But really, is it any different from picturing Maureen
Dowd's love interests?) This is information I do not want to
know about anyone (unless Jennifer Love Hewitt decided to become
a lesbian and ...ahh never mind). Biggest non-story of the year,
if you ask me.
Because of Andrew's history of disagreeing with the gay
establishment, a few gay journalists have decided to push this
non-story as a way to show how much of hypocrite Sullivan is.
You see, Sullivan has been quick to promote gay marriage and
monogamy within in the gay community. Somehow, they think that
by actively pursuing a partner, Andrew has blasphemed his own
values. To me, Sullivan is just looking for a match, nothing
One of the gay journalists, David Ehrenstein, had shopped the
story around to major media outlets. Most of them passed on it.
Ehrenstein, it seems, has had run-ins with Sullivan in the past
and seems to be suffering from gay AJD (Attention Jealousy
Disorder) due to Sullivan's popularity in media circles. On the
non-story he said:
"You've heard of head nigger in charge, going back to
whole slavery thing. Well, Sullivan has become head faggot in
charge, and what better place to do that than at the New York
Times. This has to do with a specific industry and a history,
and with his statements about sexuality. This is not just Joe
What amazes me, is that folks like Mr. Ehrenstrein do not
realize the asset that Andrew is to them. Sullivan, with his
common sense approach to writing, could do more to change the
minds of fence sitters on gay issues than a boatload of the
victimology infected activists and their fiery rhetoric.
Sullivan has forced me on several occasions to reexamine my
views on the whole gay thing on more than a few issues. His
reward for this? The gay left treats him with the same contempt
as they do that "God Hates Fags" minister that you see
on the news every so often. It's a shame, really.
When you think about it, the only hypocrisy to be seen here
would be the gay left's outing of a person's sexual behavior
with the intention of smearing that person. How can they justify
this? After decades of trying to make certain sexual behaviors
socially acceptable, how can they explain the use of the exact
same tactics, that they denounce on a regular basis, to smear a
gay person with whom they do not agree?
This is becoming typical of the one-issue advocacy mindsets.
At some point, it becomes less about the cause and more about
winning the debate of the day. Patrick Moore, one of the
founders of Greenpeace, once said that it was his intention to
work himself out of a job. He left Greenpeace because he felt
the organization was becoming more about the politics and less
about the solving the problems it was concerned about. His
feelings were confirmed when Greenpeace offered a pension plan
to its employees after he departed. The gay left agenda seems no
different: Win at all costs.
The result of this attempted smearing, was Sullivan's
publishing of a full disclosure of his sexual activities titled
"Sexual McCarthyism." In what I would describe as a
painful read (nowhere near as painful as it probably was to
write it), Sullivan provides us with the details of his
so-called private life. Frankly, I don't want to know. I know
Andrew is gay. I know he is HIV positive. I know he wears plaid
shirts everyday. I know I trust him to give me his unedited
views on everything he deems worthy to write about. Beyond that,
I couldn't care less.
I'll still read him twice daily.
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