Are Liberal Gays Losing Their Hope-on for Obama?

It’s getting tough to keep up with the spastic narrative of love, hate, passion, and betrayal that reflects gay liberal sentiment toward President-elect Barack Obama. On any given day he could be messiah or pariah, depending on anything from the gay-friendliness of his cabinet to how often he drops the word “gay” into speeches. The liberal blogosphere is constantly abuzz with speculation as to whether this man on whom so many staked their hopes and dreams will be the progressive savior of the liberal gay community. Will he offer change they can believe in, or just More of the Sameâ„¢?

This schizophrenic attitude was most apparent among Barack Obama’s fair weather friends in the liberal gay community when they became outraged at his choice of Proposition 8 supporter Rick Warren to deliver the inaugural invocation. For days they decried his betrayal of progressives, lamented their failure to achieve genuine political clout, and railed against Obama’s cunning duplicity. They employed the foul language and vitriol normally reserved for Rethuglicans, godbag fundies, and anyone with the last name Bush or Cheney.

And then hopey days were here again.

With the announcement that gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson would be delivering the invocation at the beginning of Inauguration Week, the fickle far left warmed to Obama as quickly as they had turned on him. They grew giddy when Whitehouse Press Secretary Robert Gibbs promised a forthcoming repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” and gay activist leaders seemed appeased by the Obama transition team’s ramped up LGBT outreach efforts.

Ideological treason forgiven, it would seem.

But not so fast. Even as Obama was giving gay folks a cursory shout out during his speech at the Lincoln Memorial Sunday afternoon, a renewed movement to kick Obama to the proverbial curb arose when it surfaced that Gene Robinson’s invocation was not televised with the rest of the festivities. Even most of those present on the National Mall were unable to hear his prayer due to speaker malfunctions, and the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, DC was never introduced or identified by name when they sang with Josh Groban at the event.

Hoodwinked and bamboozled again!

Obama was for gays before he was against them and he’ll be for them again soon, his aides will explain. But how long will gays and lesbians ride this emotional roller coaster before they grow sick of the bones they’re occasionally thrown? How long until they realize the Defense of Marriage Act isn’t going anywhere on Obama’s watch and he won’t be revamping the federal tax code to benefit same-sex couples any time soon? How long until all that cultish hope evaporates permanently and liberal gays realize that rumors of impending change have been greatly exaggerated?


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