So yesterday was the annual Pride parade in Houston. It was greeted by this sweet article in the lifestyle section.

Today’s Pride Festival will celebrate the diversity of the Houston area’s thriving gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.

That diversity includes the determinedly domestic life that Ben Austin and Bill Thomasson have carved out with their two children in a southwestern suburb.

The walls of their roomy Sugar Land home are filled with family pictures — Thomasson is one of 11 siblings — as well as multiplication tables, maps and pennants of potential colleges. Not that Ava, 7, and Elijah, 6, are ready to think about college just yet. Elijah’s interests encompass the world of sports, while Ava is expert on all things canine.

The couple adopted the children from state authorities while living in Oakland, Calif., after taking required parent-training classes and fostering each of the children for more than a year. Ava was almost 4 when she entered the system, and Elijah was just a month old.


Austin, an adopted only child who went to Bellaire High School, met Thomasson in a gym in Oakland, Calif., in 2002. He says the two fell into domestication almost immediately and in April 2004 made it official with a domestic partnership. Both men wear wedding bands.

Both men played college baseball, which gets Elijah’s approval.

“He just thinks it’s better to have two dads because they both play baseball,” Austin says.

Gotta admit, that would be a bonus. The story made a nice and necessary counterweight to this remarkably self-loathing op-ed from Friday.

The gay parenting movement is still more evidence of the fundamental selfishness of post-Stonewall gay America. Whereas many gay couples can and do bring parentless children into their homes in an act of loving and giving, thousands of other gay couples who could have adopted use various technologies and arrangements to make babies that from the start have no mother or have no father. This cruel act — to one’s own child — is almost never criticized in the gay community, which is so focused on everyone’s freedom and self-esteem, it doesn’t seem to want to bother to notice that children are being hurt by being denied up front the right to have both a mother and a father.

The gay and lesbian community today is infected with what I like to call Equality Mania. That’s the belief that there is literally nothing more important than total equality between gays and straights, no matter what the costs. They are willing to sacrifice other good, important values in the name of gay equality — such as the religious freedom of same-sex marriage opponents, the welfare of children and (in the case of gays in the military) even national security.

I don’t even know where to begin. I mean, “Equality Mania”? Who knew a desire to be treated like everyone else was a disorder of some kind? I’m just dumbfounded. I think it’s safe to say this is an extreme minority position, one that’s in decline, but one that likely will never go away completely.

Anyway. To get the bad taste of that piece out of your mouth, here’s five great moments in Houston’s gay history, and here’s the news that the Caucus blog is back. Hope everyone had a happy weekend.

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3 Responses to Pride

  1. Valerie says:

    What the write of that op-ed fails to see is how difficult it is for gays and lesbians to adopt children. In many states, only one member of a homosexual couple can adopt, so you still have all kinds of legal issues. In some states, gay adoption is not allowed, either by specific law or because only married couples are allowed to adopt, and gay marriage is illegal. In others, the law is just unclear and it is incredibly difficult for gay people to adopt. And in some states, including Texas, second-parent adoption is only allowed in some areas (most Houston couples travel to San Antonio).

    To ignore these issue is to show naivety to the legal complexities of being a gay or lesbian American, and a misunderstanding of the situation.

  2. Valerie says:

    Er, that should say “what the writer…”

  3. John says:

    Benkof is um, interesting. He was a successful entrepreneur with a gay oriented business (providing content to GLBT publications) who suddenly announced that he had stopped having sex with men for religious reasons, and since then has been on a crusade against same sex marriage and in general complaining about the “selfish” GLBT community.

    His web site is pretty much a pile of strawman arguments, and a big helping of obvious loathing for GLBT people amidst the generally polite insistence that he believes in equality and dignity of those people. It’s a very sad thing to read.

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