“We are not making a statement!” they stated
I’ve watched this play out in the White House Easter Egg Roll story. Gay activists are trying to use this children’s party to grab some publicity. Several plan to attend with their young children. No problem there. Have fun!
But the rub comes in the fact that they are telling two very different stories about what they intend to accomplish by attending. And the story differs depending on the audience. Supporters are told it’s an opportunity to make a statement (but beforehand, they need to keep the action “under the radar” to pull it off successfully). On the other hand, the public is being told that it’s just family fun for the children. So which is it?
And thinking ethically, is it okay for gay parents to exploit their very young children for publicity, or for the groups to politicize a children’s event simply because the press will be there?
This well-coordinated political action is a wily ploy on the part of gay organizers. If you leave the welfare of their children out of the equation, the gay activists can’t lose. If they do manage to find a lot of gay parents willing to exploit their children to grab the media spotlight, and if they make a big splash at the event, the activists have gotten the publicity they crave. The gay families will wear splashy identifying rainbow leis (it was originally going to be T-shirts with a political message), and what was once a fun day for children becomes a national news story about sexual orientation.
But let’s say that the leis are banned as a political statement. Or maybe gay groups trying to stretch the “two adults per child under 7” rule get turned away. Or maybe somebody somewhere feels somebody looked at him funny. Well, then you gather groups forlornly outside the iron fence, get the kids to cry, and invite the cameras to roll, creating a bogus “Gays excluded” news story on the spot. (I’m not making this up.) More publicity.
So for those shamelessly willing to exploit their kids and turn innocent children’s fun into the political story of the day to promote a homosexual lifestyle, this is a winner.
But the fibbing part is a problem. The strategists have to promote the political value of the day with the gay parents, while playing it down altogether with the authorities and the press.
Soulforce leader Mel White failed miserably in the task of speaking out of both sides of his mouth when he appeared on MSNBC’s “The Situation” with Tucker Carlson. He just couldn’t pull off the ruse of calling the action simple family fun, when it was so obviously a political statement.
Now Jennifer Chrisler, executive director of the Family Pride Coalition, has stepped into the role of trying to make a calculated political statement appear as if it were only children’s play. Note the immediate self-contradiction in her statement in the San Francisco Chronicle:
"Our participation in the egg roll is certainly not a political demonstration or a political statement," said Chrisler, who is going with her partner, Cheryl Jacques, and their 4-year-old twin boys, Tim and Tom. "It's just taking our kids to the egg roll to help the American public see that our families are just like them." [emphasis added]
Had Chrisler ended with “It’s just taking our kids to the egg roll,” she might be almost believable. But she’s not just taking her kids for a family activity, because there’s a very political statement she’s wanting to make in going to the White House lawn. She definitely is making a political statement, the statement that “our families are just like them.”
That’s the real intent, the political statement, the low-key political demonstration that the gay-identifying leis are being used to promote, and the darling children are being dragged along to exploit. If it's just a family activity, why the necessity of the "Look everybody--I'm gay!" leis? Chrisler and White have to fib in order to try to cover up the real intent.
In an article on MSNBC, Chrisler tries again to paint over the reality of the event, spinning the intent of the gay parents for taking part in this political action with their young kids: "We care about the same things that all parents care about: providing our children with every opportunity and every experience possible.”
While I am sure Chrisler loves her twin sons, I can't buy her "We care about the same things that all parents care about." Her kids are 4 years old. Most parents would not travel across the country to use their kids at a tender age for a politicized photo opportunity that could possibly turn sour and confrontive. Most parents care about the sensitivities of their children and shelter them from exploitation.
While I have no reason to doubt that Chrisler wants to provide learning opportunities for her kids, I can't believe she wants to provide "every opportunity and every experience possible." Every opportunity? How about the opportunity to be raised by a caring father and a mother in the same household? Every experience? How about the experience of parents who are male and female, rather than two of the same?
Obviously this isn't about the kids. The kids are only a photo-opportunistic prop for nifty publicity for a personal, adult cause more important to the parents than the nurture of their children.
I sincerely hope that all the families have a great time at the White House Easter Egg Roll. I hope the gay families have no trouble being admitted. I hope they simply blend in, focus on their kids’ needs, make no fuss, and allow their kids to enjoy a family outing.
Or maybe “family outing” is the wrong choice of words here. The gay political sense of that phrase is definitely not the reason for the traditional children’s White House Easter Egg Roll. Children are. And children are being used rather than nurtured in this outing.