Appropos to my question yesterday, Andrew Sullivan also questions the role Cameron’s childhood abuse in his obsessive campaign against gays and broadens the subject to misaimed attempts to exorcise pain generally:
The longer I am in this debate, the more something emerges. Most people don’t really care much about gays. The subject doesn’t come up; and most adjusted straight men do not feel passionately on the subject one way or the other. And so you notice patterns. You find that most of the really impassioned anti-gay activists are just as motivated by personal passion – whether as an early victim of sex abuse (Paul Cameron), or as the father of a gay son (Charles Socarides), or as a single mother abandoned by her boyfriend (Maggie Gallagher), or someone fighting to restrain their own gay feelings (Ted Haggard, Larry Craig) – as pro-gay activists are. This is a perfectly legitimate motivation for all sorts of political movements, but on the gay question, one should always be alert to the personal psychological undercurrents. (That goes for us gays as well as out opponents, and I am grateful for the odd psychological diagnoses I receive via email.)
Is it any surprise, for example, that Cameron believes that large numbers of gays are sex abusers, or that we all die young, and other canards he has spread over the years? Is it not relevant that he says he was raped as a child by a man? Any major surprise that one of the very few psychiatrists to advocate reparative therapy, Charles Socarides, blamed it on fathers, while having a gay son, Richard, who went on to become the Clinton administration’s point person on gay issues? You can go all the way up to the current Pope’s absurd obsession with the subject.