The Jussie Smollett hoax will still be some time working itself out as additional facts are brought to light, but what we know so far is that the gay actor who says he “comes really really hard at 45 (Trump)” appears to have tried to make a martyr of himself by staging an attack that was supposed to be a homophobic violent assault by Trump-supporting, MAGA hat-wearing villains. His calculus was simple – the left wants to believe that Trump and his supporters are homophobic bigots (Smollett is black as well which feeds the racist narrative as a bonus, since initial reports were that his attackers were white) and the media won’t question the story before running with it.
By and large he was correct, and celebrities were quickly on TV in tears at the hatred in this country and how it was all Trump’s fault. They were joined by Democrat politicians eager to pander to their liberal base in advance of the 2020 Presidential contest, so “modern day lynching” quotes were flying.
Those on the right pointed out that these types of stories, which had been frequent since Trump’s election, quite often turned out to be frauds, and they recommended that everyone take a breath and wait for facts before rushing to judgment, but facts be damned, this was a sensational story that fed the Trump anti-gay narrative that the left loved.
When I say that the whole thing turned out to be garbage I’m not just talking about Smollett and his story, both of which are turning out to be garbage. In fact, the “Trump is anti-gay” narrative itself is largely garbage. From his acceptance speech at the RNC Convention in 2016 when observers (myself included) noted that he didn’t mention God once yet mentioned LGBTQ rights twice, to high-profile gay nominees to federal courts and diplomatic posts, the Trump Administration is anything but anti-gay. In fact it was Democrats who largely opposed Trump’s gay nominees because Trump was nominating them, which is yet another example of how it is more important on the left to be anti-Trump than pro-gay. https://video.foxnews.com/v/5749752995001/#sp=show-clips
Trump is the first President to declare that marriage equality (gay marriage) is settled law, he renominated Equal Employment Opportunity Commissioner Chai Feldblum, an Obama-appointee with a track record that national conservative leaders and groups considered decidedly hostile towards religious liberty, and Trump’s personal and family history is decades long with support for gay individuals, causes and groups.
Bill Clinton made one and only one LGBT judicial nomination in eight years. Barack Obama made eleven such nominees in eight years. Donald Trump has already done more than Bill Clinton did in just his first two years and his totals will likely eclipse Obama’s if they continue at this pace for eight years. But what you do, what you accomplish, and how many LGBTQ people you nominate or promote, does not matter to a left whose entire playbook is entirely dependent on identity politics.
At the same time that Smollett’s narrative was taking the country by storm, the Trump Administration was launching a global initiative to end the criminalization of homosexuality (https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/national-security/trump-administration-launches-global-effort-end-criminalization-homosexuality-n973081). The irony is while the Trump administration is critical of the 70 or so countries that still have laws criminalizing LGBTQ status or conduct, countries like Iran that are known to throw homosexuals off of rooftops to their death will find few more passionate defenders than Democrat members of Congress who, in their spare time, also profess loyalty to the cause of LGBTQ rights. So the administration finds its initiatives with little to no Democrat support.
The LGBTQ Victory Institute operates a Presidential Appointments Initiative that works with administrations to promote and place LGBTQ people into federal positions, yet even while the Trump Administration was making high-profile appointments like openly-gay Richard Grenell as Ambassador to Germany (over Democrat objections), the Institute’s website made it clear that because it considered the Trump Administration hostile to their cause, it was not working with the administration in any way on any nominations. Why?
It is a matter of survival for today’s Democrat Party that they are able to maintain the fable of Republican intolerance and hate, because the big-government Venezuela-style policies they embrace cannot deliver a majority of the voters on election day.
That’s why these groups will deny progress and even oppose progress if it comes during a Trump Administration. If they really cared about their cause they would celebrate and reward progress towards their goals, but they exist for partisan reasons alone, and the needs of the groups they purport to champion will always be a distant second to the best interests of the Democrat Party.
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