Thursday, May 27, 2004

This article gets it wrong.

Keith Boykin is befuddled that the African-American community has not come out in full support of "gay marriage." Frankly, I'd be shocked if they had.

The "book" on African-Americans politically has long been that, while they are strongly Democratic, black Protestants are in fact the most socially conservative group in the nation. While homosexuals may liken their cause to that of non-whites in the Jim Crow South, others don't see it that way.

"Has the black church succumbed to the machinations of the white religious right," Boykin asks. Well, no. It's not as if the Religious Right is a bunch of manipulators leading sheep, as much as their enemies would like to paint them as such.

Remember how much the black civil rights movement was tinged with Biblical imagery. Lincoln was the new Moses and emancipation the new Exodus. This was not just propaganda. People believed. People had faith. This isn't people assimilating into a white version of Christianity, this is people keeping the same Christian faith that they had in the first place.

The danger of blowback on gay rights and similar issues has always been this: will oppressed minorities ever feel that they have sufficiently gotten out from under the foot of "the man" that their socially conservative leanings will become the priority? Thus, the Bush team targets African-Americans and Catholic Latinos.

Ultimately, I don't think equating gay rights with black civil rights will sway a majority of hearts in America.

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