Republican affinity #3: Gays
Oh, the Orthodox hate the gays
And the Muslims hate the gays
Roman Catholics hate the gays
Ev'rybody... hates the gays
~ Brett Kemnitz, Milwaukee folk musician, from his song "My Own Religion".
How about a no-party affinity?
There is a political science theorem called Duverger's Law, which says that plurality-vote electoral democracies tend to have two parties just left and right of center. Yet some scholars say that the United States, due to rampant Congressional gerrymandering and our nonsensical presidential nominating system, has become an exception: Democrats run wacko left, and Republicans run nutty right, to win the "real" election - the primaries.
No issue illustrates this anomaly more clearly than gay rights. The Democrats, with a few courageous exceptions [including Barack Obama], believe that gay relationships and gay marriages are no different from their straight counterparts. No sincere, Bible-believing Christian can agree with them. "Male and female He created them in His own image," writes the inspired author of Genesis 1:26-28 - complementary in all ways, but especially so in sexuality and the begetting and raising of children.
To any of my friends reading this who call themselves LBGT: As best I understand, your choice is a venial sin - a sin, yes, but far, far less a divorce from God than pride or stinginess or turning your back on the poor. I am somewhat skeptical of sexuality as a continuum or that some people are born with homosexual inclinations, and (strictly on anecdotal evidence - I've never heard of any 50-year LBGT marriages) a healthier, more lasting alternative awaits you. I'm with Drury when he writes, "I think homosexual behavior is a sin... but I also believe heterosexual divorce and adultery are likewise sins."
As for the Republicans - and again, as with fiscal conservatism, much of the change has happened in the last three years - I have no truck with them here. We have all sinned and fallen short of God's grace, yet He continues to bestow it upon all who believe, not just straight believers. The rank hypocrisy within the Republican Party, where the party hierarchy winks at multiple marriages and affairs but slings mud at gays, nauseates me.
I believe President Bush sincerely acts out of a Biblically motivated desire to uphold straight marriage. But, as with so many other issues, the President has lost control over his party. Dick Cheney, in unholy alliance with the less tolerant wing of evangelical Christianity, effectively controls the Republican stance on LBGT policy.
So, to recapitulate: Our Savior brought the outcasts in. He searches human hearts more intently than we ever will. To insist that gays cannot be saved is a worse sin than to be gay.