Mything the Story

BY Kerry Eleveld

May 12 2010 6:35 PM ET

With critical equality legislation like employment nondiscrimination and
repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell” pending, and with a spate of LGBT
protests taking place at the foot of the White House, I prefer to devote
my time to the tangibles. Sexuality is often anything but black and
white — it’s sometimes in between or, in some cases, a matter people
shove completely out of their life on the way to other destinations.

Having
said that, I am inclined to believe Smith’s source — a close friend of
Kagan’s since law school — when she says that the Supreme Court nominee
is not gay. That narrative jibes with my initial reporting, which
yielded not a shred of solid evidence that led me to believe the lesbian
rumors. Unfortunately, no one who knew Kagan well was willing to speak
to me on the record or even on background about a matter they considered
highly sensitive. Since when did it become a bad thing to declare
someone straight?

Of course, the administration’s initial
response didn’t necessarily help quell debate when the prospect of her
being the "first openly gay justice" was raised by a reckless CBS blog
post. The White House response was quick but clumsy — immediately
pushing back with one spokesman saying the blogger was making “false
charges.”

Apparently, being gay is still seen as an accusatory
claim rather than a simple statement of fact, no different than the fact
that someone is straight.

This week, administration officials
tried to steer clear of the subject when asked about Kagan’s sexuality
during a Monday morning press gaggle at the White House. I was not
present, but according to The Washington Post, “Asked whether questions
about [Kagan’s] sexuality would be off-limits during the confirmation
process, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs replied, ‘It's not
anything I'm going to get into.’”

But
with people like Andrew Sullivan wondering aloud, ‘So is she gay?’ and
no one who was informed enough willing to derail the runaway train, the
blogosphere went on a predictable and entertaining —  yet no less vexing — self-indulgent tear while reporters scrambled to catch up.









Tags: Politicians

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