What This Liberal Democrat Can Learn from Those Log Cabin Republicans

This week, during the Republican National Convention, this Tampa Tribune ad hit the newsstands . . .

2012 ad from the Log Cabin Republicans and the Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry

Yep, you read correctly, this ad is from some Republicans to some Republicans.


If I know some of you liberal friends o’ mine, seeing this has got you all foaming at mouth. Your loins are girded, your shields are raised and you are ready to wave the flag of “See, even your own people want you to change!” in the face of any conservative, anti-marriage equality, Romney/Ryan 2012 supporter who you happen to meet on the street.

I jest . . . kinda 😉

I won’t deny it, seeing this ad feels pretty wonderful for those if us who are is support of marriage equality and against a constitutional amendment to define marriage as only between a man and a women. That said, what “we,” who probably stand on the other side of many issues that the Log Cabin Republicans and the Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry support can learn from this action is that sometimes family must challenge family.

I cannot image the flack that they are getting from those in the Republican party who disagree with their position and tactic. It is undoubtedly not a new thing that they are dealing with, but I have seen what happens when people take the risk to step outside of their ideological camp in a public way. When people speak out against their own, relationships are damaged, the “traitor” label is applied generously and the other side revels in the chaos.

It is not pretty.

I as read this, however, it made me wonder about my own ideological “family” and personal communities. What do we need to say to one another about our own struggles and failings?

  • My daughters’ progressive public school can be incredible inhospitable to new families, staff and administration;
  • My home, San Francisco is making far too many choices that improve the life of the wealthy and hurt the poor;
  • My President, Barack Obama, has failed to adequately act on gun violence, comprehensive immigration reform, support of the Philippine military, public education, etc.

Oh, and I could go on and on . . . I have a list. No I don’t. Yes I do.

So . . . at what point do you believe your family’s “dirty laundry” must be aired because it has lost its way? On what topics do you think your leadership must be called to task: church, municipality and/or your communities? I would love to know what you think? But before you respond, let me be clear, this is not an invitation to rant about “them” over there but a call to challenge the “us” right here.

Okay, go.

Lastly, a prayer . . . while the “issue” of marriage equality is the point at which this post and ad originate, at the heart of the matter are the many couple who continue to be told in far too many ways and in far too many places, they will not be give the right to marry. From one who has had that privilege for the past 20+ years, there are many who continue to fight with and for you in this journey and you are in our prayers.

Brian Ellison Named New Executive Director of Covenant Network of Presbyterians

At the 2010 Presbyterian General Assembly with Brian and Vice-Moderator, Landon Whitsitt

Scrolling through my messages this morning lead me to this very exciting announcement from Covenant Network of Presbyterians and their new Executive Director.

Not only am I excited for CovNet itself, but for my friend, Brian. I’ve known Brian for quite a while mostly through very geeky Presbyterian events, but more recently through his work with MRTI, love of radio and great conversations about life and ministry.

Such a great moment and such great words from Brian:

I am deeply honored by this opportunity to offer leadership as executive director in the years ahead,” said Brian.  “Having given all of my vocational life to the ministry of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), I joined with others in celebrating last year’s constitutional changes permitting sessions and presbyteries to ordain all those whom God calls. Now, I believe that the Covenant Network is uniquely poised to help the church live into this new day that has dawned. There is still much work to do, and I look forward to joining in the good work Covenant Network is doing as it continues to seek a church as generous and just as God’s grace.

Not only will Brian bring a solid Presbyterian presence to the ongoing work of Covenant Network, but this move represents a small shift in generational leadership in our church. Well done Covnet and congrats to you Brian!

Brian begin’s his work on August 1, but in the mean time, be sure to like Covnet  on FACEBOOK.