You may have seen the headlines during, or following, Thursday night’s Republican debate:
Republicans Boo Gay Soldier at Presidential Debate
GOP Debate: Audience Boos Gay Army Soldier Asking Santorum About DADT
Republican Debate Audience Boos Gay Soldier Stephen Hill After DADT Repeal Question
While it is certainly shocking that any Republicans would choose homophobia over faux patriotism, it only sounded like a couple of audience members engaged in any booing (and, hey, maybe they were yelling “trooooops!”). A few yahoos does not a GOP audience make. Listen here:
The problem with those headlines about the crowd booing a soldier is that they deflect from the real travesty of this moment at the Fox News/Google debate — and that’s former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum’s answer to the gay soldier’s question.
Santorum, who had an unfortunate night standing next to a suggestive Google logo, managed to disgustingly conflate being gay with having sex. Soldier Stephen Hill’s question on the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell had to do with men and women wanting to serve their country openly, and honestly. Santorum’s answer had to do with what appears to be social conservatives’ main concern: gay sex.
“Any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military,” Santorum began. “And the fact that they are making it a point to include it as a provision within the military — that we are going to recognize a group of people and give them a special privilege — I think tries to inject social policy into the military, and the military’s job is to defend our country. We need to give the military, which is all volunteer, the ability to do so in a way that is most efficient and protective of our men and women in uniform and I believe this undermines that ability.”
Fox News moderator Megyn Kelly shot the frothy former senator a follow-up: “So what would you do with soldiers like Stephen Hill. Now he’s out. What would you do as president?”
Santorum responded thusly: “What we’re doing right now is playing social experimentation with our military right now, and that’s tragic. Going forward we would re-institute that policy.”
Now, there’s almost no chance Santorum will become president, so gay and lesbian soldiers needn’t worry. But the answer reveals a level of sexual psychosis among social conservatives that is dangerous if they’re to demand a role in U.S. public policy. Every time the LGBT community stands up for human rights, social conservatives show that they don’t really understand what the issues are about. All they seem to want to talk about are orgies, pansexual relationships, shower rapes, and indoctrinating kids.
Also, to which “special privilege” is Santorum referring? What “special privilege” are we giving gay people who want to serve their country and fight for their flag? Seriously, anyone?
So while the headlines will grab you, try to remember that it’s not really about the “Republican crowd” booing. It’s about the troubling, conflated answer to a very direct question.
—Watch U.S. Soldier Tell Dad He’s Gay After Repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell
—“Pro-Family” Group Calls DADT Repeal “Most Difficult Mission Yet”
—Top Marine Corps’ Officer on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repeal: “Get Over It, We’re Magnificent”
—Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repeal Officially Certified + Positive LGBT Trends Infographic
—Victory Day for Obama: Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Policy Successfully Repealed
—DADT: Sen. Jon Kyl Makes Late Charge for Obstructionist Doofus of the Year