On David Frum’s new website, James Kirchick claims that at the National Review Institute’s post-election symposium “social conservatives Maggie Gallagher, Jeffrey Bell and Ed Whelan all encouraged conservatives to stress gay issues even more in the future, and most everyone in the audience nodded in agreement.” If my recollection is correct, that is hardly a fair representation of our comments. I’d bet that I made the obvious point that judicial imposition of same-sex marriage is an ongoing threat, and I’m sure that we cited the widespread popular support for traditional marriage and the need to continue to defend traditional marriage. But I don’t think that any of us believes that the best way to defend traditional marriage is to frame the matter as a “gay issue”, and I don’t recall any mention of any other “gay issue”. In other words, Kirchick’s comment would be accurate, I think, if he had written: “social conservatives Maggie Gallagher, Jeffrey Bell and Ed Whelan all encouraged conservatives to stress defense of traditional marriage even more in the future.” (If Kirchick or anyone else can quote comments that support his assertion, I’d be happy to correct the record.)
I’d prefer much less mention of gay issues in the public square.