Maureen Down neglected to mention Fred
Karger, an openly gay man considering a run for president, in her
op-ed on Jimmy Carter's optimism on America being ready for a gay
In a recent interview with the website BigThink.com, the former president equated gay rights to civil rights
and said the nation is ready for an openly gay president.
“Step by step, we have realized that
this issue of homosexuality has the same adverse and progressive
elements as when we dealt with the race issue 50 years ago, 40 years
ago,” Carter, 86, said in the eleven-minute-twenty-one-second
“So I would say the country is
getting acclimated to a president who might be female, who might
obviously now be black and who might be as well a gay person.”
“I think the entire population of
America has come tremendous strides forward in dealing with the issue
of gays. And I would say that the answer is yes. I don't know about
the next election, but I think in the near future.”
But Barney Frank, the longest-serving
openly gay representative, disagreed.
“It's one thing to have a gay person
in the abstract,” Frank told New York Times columnist
Maureen Dowd. “It's another to see that person as part of a
living, breathing couple. How would a gay presidential candidate
have a celebratory kiss with his partner after winning the New
Hampshire primary? The sight of two women kissing has not been as
distressful to people as the sight of two men kissing.”
Dowd went on to suggest that an openly
gay president remains a long-shot.
“There are no openly gay senators,
governors, cabinet members or Supreme Court justices,” she wrote.
“There are four openly gay Democratic House members, once David
Cicilline of Rhode Island gets sworn in.”
But the always informed Dowd neglected
to mention that an
openly gay presidential candidate is already being cued up. And
he's a Republican, to boot.
Fred Karger, the activist behind
boycotts against big donors to California's gay marriage ban,
Proposition 8, announced his plans during April's Southern Republican
Leadership Conference (SRLC) in New Orleans.
In an email to On Top Magazine,
Karger said he didn't believe a gay president was such an outlandish
“President Carter's comments are in
line with national polls that show a half of Americans agree that the
country is ready for an openly gay president,” Karger said.