8 HOUSTON VOICE / AUGUST 16, 1996
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(Continued from page 1)
discussed his findings as detailed in his best-
selling book, A Separate Creation, about the gay
gene (maintaining the theory that ''we are
homosexual due to genetic make-up"). Burr, who
was eloquently introduced by Texas' Log Cabin
President Dale Carpenter, enthralled the crowded
luncheon with his presentation of his research
concluding that homosexuality is not learned
behavior, rather it is genetically pre-disposed.
Burr attributed the controversy surrounding his
findings to an innate fear from the gay community
as to what affect his research will have in terms of
consequentiality (If they know what causes it, they
might do something to stop it).
The Saturday evening banquet featuring Rep.
Steve Gunderson (R-WI) and his life partner Rob
Morris was filmed live by C-Span. Gunderson and
Morris delivered the keynote address together
with clever repartee and insightful anecdotes.
Promoting their book, house and home, the
couple demonstrated their compassion and
commitment to each other in spite of their
different political affiliations. Gunderson, who is
not running for re-election, is a highly respected
member ofthe House Republican Conference who
has been an outspoken advocate on the virtues of
tolerance. Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ), who just
recently came out, also visited with LCR members
during an impromptu reception in the lobby ofthe
convention site hotel.
Rep. Tom Campbell (R-CA) addressed the LCR
conventioneers at the Sunday luncheon to explain
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his op-ed piece in the Los Angeles Times in
defense of DOMA. Campbell, who has a good
voting record on gay and lesbian civil rights,
argued that not supporting DOMA would be
inconsistent with his belief that the federal
government should not impose their agenda on
individual states. He reiterated his support for the»
rights of gays and lesbians to get marrie^P
however, he believes that decision should be
belong to the states. He followed his prepared
remarks with a question and answer session that
was informative and provided the group with
thought provoking fodder. The LCR convention
closed Monday morning with a prayer breakfast
featuring Ihe incomparable Rev. Mel White whose
protests against the religious right are effective
and legendary and have earned him the distinction
of being one of their biggest nemesis'.
One ofthe main goals of this convention was to
determine whether or not to endorse Bob Dole for
president. Alter lengthy debate on the matter, the
organizations Endorsement Committee
recommended that a decision be postponed until
after the Republican National Convention
concludes. The group approved the
recommendation, thereby delaying their position^
on the mailer to a later date. The decision to dclafB
came after raucous debate among members ofthe
organization as to whether or not the Dole/Kemp
ticket was deserving of our endorsement. "As a
United States Senator, Bob Dole has had a nondiscrimination policy in his office insuring fair
treatment for his gay staff, supported legislation
for people with AIDS, such as Ihe Americans with
Disabilities Act and the Ryan White Care Act,"
informed the LCR press release. "Much to our
frustration. Bob Dole as a presidential candidate
has repeatedly compromised, retreated or reversed
himself under pressure from the extreme right,"
added the statement. "Therefore, Log Cabin
Republicans will consider an endorsement of llie
Dole/Kemp ticket following ihe Republican
National Convention. We urge Bob Dole and Jack
Kemp to make clear exactly where gay and lesbian
Americans fit into their vision for America in the
next four years," said Log Cabin.
Following the press release and announcement of
the groups decision, the Dole camp responded.
"The Dole campaign would welcome the
endorsement of Log Cabin Republicans as a sign
that they too share the same beliefs as Bob Dole.
Bob Dole has always held the belief that the GOP
is an inclusive party," said Dole campaign
spokesperson Christina Martin. "...We see this as
a beginning step in opening a dialogue with the
Dole Campaign and the Republican Party. We are
encouraged by this historic development,"
responded David Greer, LCR Communications.
Whether or not the aforementioned will earn the
ticket an endorsement remains to be seen. What
was evident throughout the LCR national
convention is that there are many gay Republicans
who are determined to challenge the religious
right's dominance within the party apparatus.
Republican candidates are starting to seek the
support of the gay conservative lobby and their
influence is gaining during the process, albeit
gradually. Hundreds of gay Republicans
descended upon this beautiful city to participate in
the political process and coincidentally broughtjA
thousands of dollars of revenue to San Diego™
They lobbied delegates, offered commentary to
Ihe media at will, and worked diligently to dispel
any negative stereotypes that may be associated
with gays and lesbians. In fact.'they have done so
with aplomb and effectiveness. At press time, the
Christian Action Network's President Martin
Mawyer challenged Log Cabin Republican
Executive Director Rich Tafel lo a debate, which
he accepted. The debate took place last Tuesday at
2pm at the U.S. Grant Hotel and was televised for
broadcast at a later date.
Curt Morrison, a member of Log Cabin
Houston, is in San Diego covering the Log
Cabin and Republican Party National
Conventions. Next week he will report on the
Republican National Convention.
What you do
matters. All you
need is to do it"
- fludy (Zna&rt.