Author Topic: Gay groups oppose black mayor nominated to head Va. dem party; will MSNBC cover the spat?  (Read 185 times)

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Home > Blogs > Ken Shepherd's blog > Gay Groups Oppose Black Mayor Nominated to Head Va. Dem Party; Will MSNBC Cover Spat?


Gay Groups Oppose Black Mayor Nominated to Head Va. Dem Party; Will MSNBC Cover Spat?

By Ken Shepherd

Created 03/07/2014 - 12:45pm

To it's credit, the Washington Post this morning is reporting an intramural spat roiling inside the Democratic Party in the Old Dominion. Turns out gay rights groups are livid that Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-Va.) has nominated Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones to chair the state's Democratic Party. Jones, who happens to be African-American and is a Baptist pastor, "has not endorsed same-sex marriage," the Post's Laura Vozzella noted, even though he has a strong record on other issues of import to the gay-rights movement.

"Activists are working to thwart Jones's election at the party's central committee meeting March 15 -- setting up a highly unusual battle for a sitting governor, whose choice for party chairman is rarely challenged," Vozzella noted in the fourth paragraph of her March 7 front-page story. While the Post deserves kudos for noting the rancorous division within the Democratic ranks, it remains to be seen if MSNBC -- which revels in portraying Republicans as bearing antipathy towards African-Americans -- will dare to cover the story at all.
Democratic racial politics aside, this is also a matter of a new litmus test which is emerging throughout the country in Democratic Party politics, with would-be party leaders being pushed to stifle their moral and religious objections to same-sex marriage, even though they may be wholeheartedly in support of other items in the LGBT agenda. As Vozzella noted, Jones "issued a proclamation to mark the [Richmond's] Transgender Day of Remembrance."

We don't expect that MSNBC, much less any other liberal media outlet, will pay significant attention to this spat, although, quite frankly, they should. There are a few reasons the political press should care:
• This episode is evidence that the Democratic Party, just as much if not more so than the GOP, has pretty heated disagreements within itself when coalition constituencies come into conflict
• This matter is evidence of how the approval of the gay rights agenda within the Democratic Party poses an existential threat to the political futures of loyal Democrats who dare to transgress the emerging litmus test over "marriage equality"
• This episode shows the internal divisions within the Democratic Party of Virginia which Gov. McAuliffe will have to bridge during his tenure, particularly if he wants to prove a reliable surrogate for the Democratic presidential nominee in the crucial swing state in 2016
• The liberal media love to hype "victim" narratives and many of them are scripted with gays or blacks as the victim of conservatism. Here is a case which doesn't neatly fall into that pattern

Political journalists always insist that they do have a bias, but that it's a bias for conflict or controversy. particularly if it involves an underlying debate roiling in the arena of public opinion.

A bias for conflict demands significant media attention to the Jones nomination controversy, but the liberal newsroom's rooting interest for the fortunes of the Democratic Party demands adherence to a overarching midterm election narrative which exclusively focuses on real and imagined Republican divides. Expect partisan and ideological loyalties to win over the journalistic thirst for a good story.
"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim tribute to patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness -- these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. . . . reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principles."
George Washington

"Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters."
Benjamin Franklin

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