Michael Tomasky has written a richly informative article for the New York Review of Books, one that illustrates many dilemmas facing the Democrats now and in 2008's president race.
Titled "The Democrats," it's certainly that, but it's also an underlying warning call to gays, one we should heed now. Guess what? We're going to see our lives and loving relationships used for political purposes, from both Democrats and the GOP, to win the White House in 2008, and some of that glaring attention from candidates and the media will twist and distort the truth about gays.
Being a registered Green, one already committed to voting either Green or third party in 2008, it makes it so much easier to read articles like this and not get the least bit upset with how the Big Parties have carved up the American public and issues to win in 2008.
Regardless of who gets the Democratic or GOP nominations in 2008, the DNC and RNC will each spend millions of dollars and devote other resources to keeping Greens and other parties from the ballots, so I don't worry about the fault lines Tomasky's uncovered.
From the March 15 New York Review of Books:
Since they control the legislative calendar, Democrats will see to it that issues that divide and terrify them, like gay marriage or flag-burning, won't come up for votes. But they can't make them disappear completely, and although Democrats felt relieved that in 2006 there was no replay of 2004, when anti–gay marriage initiatives in eleven states brought religious conservatives to the polls in large numbers, no one can say with confidence that controversies like this have gone away for good. (One fatefully timed decision by a liberal state supreme court legalizing gay marriage, and we're back to 2004.) [...]To which Laura Flanders says: nonsense! Flanders, who hosts a show on Air America Radio, surveys in her new book Blue Grit the opinions of white men who wrote after the 2004 election that the Democrats should sidestep cultural fights and answers that "culture war by culture war is how American history has advanced." She recalls for example the abolition of slavery, the suffrage movement, and the more recent efforts of gays to gain equal rights. [...]Thomas Schaller, an associate professor at the University of Maryland, suggests a third trajectory, at least for presidential politics: Democrats, he argues, should just ignore the South, where such issues as gays in the military harm them most. Whistling Past Dixie makes a strong historical and numerical case that the Democrats can win presidential elections without depending on Southern votes and gratifying Southern mores—trying to appease Southern strictures on personal behavior, he argues, costs them support elsewhere. [...]