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So, Is Kagan Gay?

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Andrew Sullivan, and a slew of gay activists and bloggers are all over the, “Is SCOTUS nominee Elena Kagan gay?” issue, and their point of view may surprise you.

You’d think those nasty rapscallions on the right would be going hard after the lesbian angle, but, with the possible exception of Maggie Gallagher and her NOM henchmen, claiming, (quite frankly, stupidly,) “A Vote for Kagan Is a Vote for Gay Marriage,” theirs has been a whisper campaign. (And you can just flat-out call B.S. on Maggie for saying HRC agrees with her. They do not. But Maggie never links to items that would prove she’s twisting truth. It’s just easier that way.)

From the gays in the blogosphere, however, well, there’s an entirely different story.

Andrew Sullivan (whom we can hardly call being on the right anymore, thank goodness,) demands to know. In, “So Is She Gay?” he posits,

It is no more of an empirical question than whether she is Jewish. We know she is Jewish, and it is a fact simply and rightly put in the public square. If she were to hide her Jewishness, it would seem rightly odd, bizarre, anachronistic, even arguably self-critical or self-loathing. And yet we have been told by many that she is gay … and no one will ask directly if this is true and no one in the administration will tell us definitively.

Hmmm… On the one hand, this makes me ponder.  Let’s continue.

In a word, this is preposterous – a function of liberal cowardice and conservative discomfort. It should mean nothing either way.

Darn right, it should mean nothing either way. And yet, how terribly presumptuous to assume that it does not. Kagan is 50. Sullivan is 46. Both come from a time when it was more “appropriate” to hide one’s homosexuality than to be open. Sullivan took one road, perhaps (I said, perhaps) Kagan took another.

Since the issue of this tiny minority – and the right of the huge majority to determine its rights and equality – is a live issue for the court in the next generation, and since it would be bizarre to argue that a Justice’s sexual orientation will not in some way affect his or her judgment of the issue, it is only logical that this question should be clarified.

Now hold on here.

This is the crux of the issue and the exact problem I have with all those on the right who were screaming when Judge Vaughn Walker’s homosexuality was “exposed.” (It was considered well-known before the Prop 8 trial.) The Maggie Gallagher brigade was clamoring that of course Walker would decide the federal Prop 8 trial, automatically, for “the gays.” As if Clarence Thomas would decide every case for “the blacks.” And as if one element of one’s identity is always the deciding factor in all they do. Why, look at right-wing zealot Michelle Malkin, whose entire existence seems poised to rebel against everything she is.

Ridiculous.

Sullivan continues:

It’s especially true with respect to Obama. He has, after all, told us that one of his criteria for a Supreme Court Justice is knowing what it feels like to be on the wrong side of legal discrimination. Well: does he view Kagan’s possible life-experience as a gay woman relevant to this? Did Obama even ask about it? Are we ever going to know one way or the other? Does she have a spouse? Is this spouse going to be forced into the background in a way no heterosexual spouse ever would be?

GayPatriot stoops so low as to ask, if Kagan is gay, “is she actually filling the homosexual Supreme Court seat left vacant since last year?

Oh come on, you never heard of the David Souter gay talk?  Where have you been?  In the same crowd of women that pine for Anderson Cooper…. or the Village People?  Sheesh.

Nice…

But he does ask, “why does Obama think that being a lesbian is such a bad thing?” A valid question, given the White House’s deplorable jump to uphold Kagan’s “straightness.”

At least Elijah Sweete puts it a little nicer. In, “Sex And The Supremes – Kagan Is Sixth “Maybe Gay” Nominee,” he includes “Frank Murphy, Benjamin Cardozo, James McReynolds and David Souter” as on-the-court and “suspected of being gay, or bisexual.”

Gay activist, writer, and Sirius radio host Michelangelo Signorile weighed in last night. We had, via Twitter, a robust conversation, prompted by his tweet:

The story has now become highly relevant: Kagan now needs to say if she is a lesbian or not. And the press must ask her point blank.

And later,

Was it “our business” if Souter was gay? If Scalia or Thomas is? Why is it “our business” that they’re straight? Or Catholic?

Hmmm… again. Good points.

And, lastly,

Why do let right dictate terms: They say it’s bad to be gay, so we so okay, keep it a secret, don’t dare ask. Very weak.

Signorile and Sullivan are taking this issue on to highlight the “tyranny of the closet,” and rightly so. But at what point do we cross the line in using an individual’s privacy to further our own causes? I’m certainly not saying they are, I’m just asking.

In, “Elena Kagan Is Not Gay,” The Nation’s Richard Kim, looking back on a Sullivan-Signorile event a decade ago, calls this “the high-tech lynching of an uppity ambiguous Harvard dean.” Kim then calls Sullivan’s reasoning “naive,” and wonders if Sullivan is, “exorcising some old demons.”

Earlier in the day, Sullivan wrote:

The NYT’s bizarre profile of Kagan, which plumbs every minute aspect of her most intimate and private life while saying nothing whatever about her emotional relationships, home, dating, or indeed anything that might even touch upon her sexual orientation, gay or straight, is so contrived in its avoidance of the obvious it is almost comic. To put it bluntly: the NYT can produce 4,500 words on a person and barely address the three most common Google searches on her name. There is some kind of disconnect here, no?

So I stick to my guns. If Obama had not publicly declared someone’s life experiences to be essential to his pick of a Supreme Court Justice, it would be one thing.

If Kagan is gay, or not, it’s between her and whomever she chooses, unless she is but denies it to the public. In other words, unless she flat out lies. Personally, I would rather have an “out” judge than a closeted one. A closeted judge in this day and age is not a tribute to our community. It’s one thing to point to someone from the 1940s and say, “And did you know they were gay?” It’s another to point to someone prominent in today’s society who is, but isn’t out.

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BREAKING NEWS

DOJ Signals It Is Conducting a Criminal Investigation of George Santos

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The U.S. Dept. of Justice Friday signaled it is conducting a criminal investigation of U.S. Rep. George Santos‘ campaign finances when it asked the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to pause its probe into the embattled New York freshman GOP lawmaker.

“The request is the clearest sign to date of an active criminal investigation examining the congressman’s campaign finances,” The Washington Post reports.

But NBC News goes one step further.

“Federal prosecutors in New York have opened an investigation into Rep.-elect George Santos, two law enforcement sources confirmed Thursday,” NBC states. “The probe by federal prosecutors from the Eastern District of New York is at least the second investigation into Santos.”

READ MORE: Another Santos Financial Concern: GOP Lawmaker Claims Campaign Paid WinRed Triple the Fees It Should Have

“The two sources confirmed that prosecutors are examining Santos’ finances, including potential irregularities involving financial disclosures and loans he made to his campaign as he was running for Congress,” NBC adds.

The Santos campaign this week, according to The Daily Beast, amended FEC filings that originally claimed about $625,000 in “personal” loans from the candidate’s personal funds were actually not from the candidates personal funds. Santos has since refused to state where the money came from.

DOJ also asked the FEC for any “relevant documents” for the Santos’ campaign, The Post noted.

READ MORE: Watch: Santos Responds to Report He Joked About Hitler, ‘The Jews’ and Black People

“Separately, the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday interviewed two people about Santos’s role in Harbor City Capital, an investment firm that was forced to shut down in 2021 after the SEC accused it of operating a ‘classic Ponzi scheme,'” according to The Post’s reporting.

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News

Watch: Nancy Pelosi Says ‘I Have Absolutely No Intention of Seeing the Deadly Assault on My Husband’s Life’

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U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) the former Speaker of the House, told reporters she has no intention of watching just-released video of the almost fatal, brutal attack on her 82-year old husband, allegedly by a hammer-wielding, far-right conspiracy theory promoting extremist.

DePape had “posted antisemitic screeds and entries defending former President Donald Trump and Ye, the rapper formally known as Kayne West who recently made antisemitic comments,” CBS News reported one day after the attack.

Earlier Friday, before the video had been released by a judge’s order, Rep. Pelosi said did not know if she would watch the video.

Later, Friday afternoon, Pelosi said she would not.

READ MORE: Pelosi Attack Video Release Leads to Criticism of Musk, Right Wingers Who ‘Trafficked in Homophobic Conspiracy Nonsense’

“As you know, today there was a release of some information. I have not heard the 911 call. I have not heard the confession. I have not seen the break-in, and I have absolutely no intention of seeing the deadly assault on my husband’s life.”

Prosecutors have described the attack as “near-fatal.”

She also thanked “people for all of their prayers,” and for “asking about the progress my husband is making, and he is making progress, but it will take more time.”

Apparently choking up, she added that she would not be making any more statements about this case as it proceeds, except again to thank people and inform them of Paul’s progress.”

Watch below or at this link.

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Pelosi Attack Video Release Leads to Criticism of Musk, Right Wingers Who ‘Trafficked in Homophobic Conspiracy Nonsense’

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News organizations won the release of police body cam video that shows the horrific moment when an intruder, “without warning or hesitation,” whacked Paul Pelosi, the 82-year old husband of the now-former Speaker of the House, with a hammer, knocking him unconscious and to the ground in a pool of blood, in what prosecutors called a “near-fatal” assault.

The alleged assailant is David DePape, a purveyor of far-right conspiracy theories, including QAnon and Pizzagate, COVID-19 disinformation, along with “Big Lie” videos from My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell. He is facing multiple state and federal charges.

Depape reportedly broke into the Pelosi home, screaming, “where’s Nancy?” which some including The Atlantic’s David A. Graham  have noted eerily echoes insurrectionists hunting for Nancy Pelosi on January 6, 2021, screaming, “Nancy! Nancy Pelosi!” “Where you at, Nancy?” “Where’s Nancy?”

From the moment news broke of the October 28, 2022 attack on the husband of the Speaker of the House, who told police he was there to violently attack Nancy Pelosi, those on the right, including Elon Musk, ex-president Donald Trump,  and other anti-Pelosi and pro-Trump activists, quickly suggested, implied, or even claimed Depape was Paul Pelosi’s boyfriend, or that it had somehow been an anonymous sexual tryst that went bad – despite no evidence.

READ MORE: Man Charged With Attacking Paul Pelosi Is a MAGA Cultist Who Said the Speaker Was Using ‘Fake Evidence to Spy On’ Trump

In the video, which should be watched only with extreme caution, police can be seen approaching the front door of the Pelosi home, the door opening, DePape holding Paul Pelosi by the wrist with one hand, and a hammer in the other. Within seconds he attacks Pelosi, who falls to the ground. Police take DePape down to the ground, and moaning can be heard, although it’s unclear if it is from Pelosi or his alleged assailant.

DePape told police he wanted to break Nancy Pelosi’s kneecaps and hold her hostage. Since she was across the country in D.C., he ended up fracturing her husband’s skull instead.

Despite the video, the far-right refuses to let go of its false claims about Paul Pelosi, which are hurtful not only to the Pelosi family, but to the LGBTQ community.

Just days after the almost deadly attack Donald Trump falsely claimed, “You know, probably, you and I are better off not talking about it. The glass, it seems, was broken from the inside to the out and, you know, so, it wasn’t a break in, it was a break out.”

Kara Swisher, the well-known tech journalist and opinion writer, blasted those who are ignoring the clear video evidence (not to mention the massive reporting) of the attack.

READ MORE: ‘Suicide Mission’: Pelosi Attacker Named ‘Prominent State and Federal Politicians’ He Wanted to Target

“All those who trafficked in homophobic conspiracy nonsense about this,” she wrote Friday on Twitter, “such as the owner of this increasingly shitty platform, should be ashamed,” Swisher said, referring to Elon Musk.

“They won’t be, but they are heinous & utterly lost,” she added, linking to a Washington Post article titled, “Judge releases evidence, video footage in attack on Pelosi.”

Indeed, two days after the attack, Elon Musk tweeted then later deleted the claim that “there is a tiny possibility there might be more to this story than meets the eye.” The Independent reported Musk, “attached a screenshot of a bogus report accusing Mr Pelosi of getting into a drunken fight with a male prostitute.”

Politico’s Sam Stein also highlighted Musk pushing the apparent falsehood: “The release of the Paul Pelosi video is a useful reminder that the owner of this here platform pushed conspiracy theories around the attack.”

Entrepreneur and programmer William LeGate, who won a Thiel fellowship at the age of 18, on Friday tweeted: “Now that the Paul Pelosi surveillance footage & 911 call have been made public, it’s time homophobic bigots like Elon Musk, Tucker Carlon, & the like to issue a public apology for spreading the ‘lover’s quarrel’ conspiracy theory.”

MSNBC executive producer Kyle Griffin made remarks similar to Swisher’s: “A lot of conservatives spread disgusting, nonsensical conspiracies about the Paul Pelosi attack — including Elon Musk. Some are still spreading them. Those people should be ashamed.”

Republican former U.S. Congressman Adam Kinzinger, linking to a Politico report on the release of the video, said, “Can we please dig up every persons tweet who made fun of this or cast doubt? This was a sick attack and politicians minimizing it suck.”

READ MORE: ‘Break Her Kneecaps’: Feds Charge Suspect Who Attacked Paul Pelosi as New Details on His Motivation Are Revealed

Salon’s Amanda Marcotte defended the release of the video with this explanation: “Seeing folks question why it was necessary to release the footage of the attack on Paul Pelosi, which is incredibly violent and disturbing. Well, a big reason is Republicans have treated the attempted murder as a joke.”

She linked to an article she wrote in early November titled, “After the Pelosi attack, Republicans have quit pretending they oppose political violence.”

Journalist and SiriusXM host Michelangelo Signorile also went after Republicans.

“The Paul Pelosi video — and the surveillance video — show the danger and brutality of the attacker,” he tweeted. “Every Republican who mocked this attack is filled with nothing but hate and bile.”

NCRM is embedding the video below, from The Associated Press. We caution watching the brutal video, which is longer than many others and includes the actual attack and the moments after. Again, we urge caution.

 

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