After years of relative obscurity, Log Cabin — the gay Republican club — has found itself in the National spotlight. George Bush’s unequivocal opposition to gay marriage put them at the forefront of one of the most hotly contested elections in years.
But it also opened schisms that challenged the very identity of the Log Cabin itself. With the issue of whether or not to support the President distilling into a stark choice between their civil rights and their loyalty to the party, 2004 forced the Gay Republicans to a crude decision: what was more important, being gay or being Republican?
The Log cabin was formed in California in 1977. From it’s inception the organization has been criticized from both sides. The majority of the Gay Community revile them, and many in the GOP want them out of the party. In the face of this resistance the organization has developed a thick-skinned outsider mentality, often joking about the most frequently hurled epithet, oxymoron.
In the 2000 election the Log Cabin endorsed George Bush who actively welcomed gays into his campaign. Four years later, Bush supported a move to enshrine anti-gay marriage clause in the Constitution. Log Cabin saw this move as designed to appeal to the implicit homophobia of the Religious Right voting block.
They fought back by mounting an ad campaign against the amendment in swing states, a move that could affect the results of the election. This extremely radical move for a Republican organization created enormous publicity, but also split the membership along ideological lines.
This documentary follows a handful of Log Cabin members on their different paths to Decision 2004. Although Gay Republicans are a minority within a minority, there is still a vast spectrum of political difference within the organization. And the reactions to the gay marriage issue could not have been more different — some defiantly running to Massachusetts to get hitched, others conspiring with the White house to help push the anti-marriage legislation through. This film gives a stereotype-shattering, gut wrenching portrait of an organization in turmoil that is incisive, moving, disturbing and humorous. Watch as POLITICS GETS PERSONAL.
Mark Harris, an outspoken, grassroots activist, shrugs off the Federal Marriage Amendment and criticizes the gay community for their “victim mentality,” as he campaigns ferociously for George W. Bush. I would feel much more at home in a room full of republicans than a room full of gay people. Reason being: Gays judge other gays. Republicans don’t know unless you’re wearing a name-tag that says, Hi I’m Mark I’m gay. That’s why to me, being gay is not even an issue.
Carol Newman, a trial lawyer who just married her Democrat girlfriend this year, weighs her loyalty to a party that denies her civil rights. For the president to propose institutionalized discrimination against gay people, when he had gay people standing up in support of his re-election. It just cut the knees out right from under us. And we don’t know what we’re going to do.
Steve May, a life-long Republican and former Arizona State Senator, feels the party has been taken over by the religious right and has determined to campaign against George W. Bush. He made a cold calculated political decision, this is all about core politics, its all about satisfying the people in the far right. And that day George Bush decided who his friends are and who his friends aren’t. And he did not pick me to be his friend.
Maurice Bonamigo, a flamboyant, ultra-conservative Palm Beach hairdresser, stands firmly behind the President and is steering his Log Cabin Chapter away from the National organization. I get very offended by this organization when they’re saying, well I’m not going to support Bush, I’m not giving any more money, he betrayed us. Oh, for crying out loud! Get over yourselves. Be a Republican. Be a man. Get your balls out of your purse and start wearing them like a man.