From a reader:
As a gay man that has been in a committed relationship for 13 years (and who does not generally “flaunt” it), I think Andrew Sullivan’s comments re: babies are a bit off base. Babies, and their discussion, tend not to elicit controversy in any society or culture (except among some left-wing malcontents that decry “yuppie culture”, babystrollers on the Upper West Side, etc.). Homosexuality obviously can elicit controversy (not that it always does), even in Western society, so discretion tends to be a pretty good course of action. For example, as an attorney in a large NYC law firm, I think most people are “cool” (for lack of a better term) with who I am and are not put off if I bring my partner to firm events. However, I don’t expect (and wouldn’t want) those who might not be OK with homosexuality generally to be comfortable with me bringing it up as an explicit topic of conversation at every opportunity. I’d like to think that in a civil society, people can generally figure out how to get along (as contemporary philosopher Rodney King once said) without being obnoxious or pedantic – but that’s just me.
Keep up the good fight –
And, from another reader:
You surprise me here. Sure, you have been very consistent in your defense of Andrew and a not-at-all troubling live-and-let-live philosophy (don’t mean to stir up any trouble with that word “philosophy”) in re: gay rights, but I am confounded at how you (not to mention Andrew) would create some sort of a moral/intellectual equivalence here. When a proud daddy shows off a picture of his first born it is a stretch beyond all reason to suggest that he is really saying, “Look, I had wild sex with you-know-who and here’s the proof!” Frankly, I think it was in poor taste on Andrew’s part to even make the suggestion – and I’m a fan of his.