22 June 2015

Is She Better Just Because She's One Of Us?

The second-most powerful Democrat in the House of Representatives is a staunch advocate of LGBT rights.  You are LGBT, and you live in his district.  

Chances are that you voted for him.  And you probably will vote for him when he runs again.


As it happens, someone is running against him in the Democratic primary.  As the district is heavily Democratic, the winner of that primary would probably win the Congressional seat.  But the incumbent is extremely popular, so the odds of his losing the seat, let alone the primary, seem very long.


The person running against him in the primary is a former Navy SEAL who was deployed 13 times.  This candidate hasn't made LGBT issues a campaign priority and, while supporting same-sex marriage, believes it and other issues should be "left up to the states" and not subject to the broad Federal regulations the incumbent favors.  Such a stance does not endear the challenger to the LGBT community and may make the incumbent's re-election all thoe more likely.


All right.  I'll tell you about that challenger.  Kristin (nee Christopher) Beck transitioned from male to female two years ago, after retiring from the Navy.  She's talked about staring down Taliban warlords and knocking down doors to capture insurgents only to, after coming home, get beat up outside a bar for wearing a dress.  

Of course, her candidacy begs the question of whether we should replace a proven ally of our community with someone who just happens to be a member of the community.  

That's a bit like asking whether a Ben Carson presidency would be better for African-Americans than Lyndon Johnson's was.  Actually, that comparison might be a bit extreme, but it's still doubtful that Kristin Beck would be better on LGBT (or even just trans) issues than Hoyer has been.