Over the weekend, former Vice President Dick Cheney’s daughter Mary Cheney wed her longtime girlfriend Heather Poe in a ceremony in Washington D.C. You see, it’s legal in D.C. for same-sex couples to tie the knot. But D.C. joins a mere six states in the country that legally recognize gay marriage overall. If this was a baseball game, a ratio of 7 to 50 wouldn’t exactly win victory.
And while it’s been reported that the Cheney family was delighted that their daughter married and for “the opportunity to have the relationship recognized,” it’s somewhat backwards that the party that Cheney himself belongs to would prefer to outlaw gay marriage than legalize it across all 50 states – including Pennsylvania where the state of LGBT rights is abysmal. In fact, in the 2004 election, George W. Bush’s administration backed more than a few state-by-state initiatives to ban same-sex marriage in America.
We guess in this case, family trumps politics for the Cheneys. But it cannot be ignored that while Dick’s daughter is able to take full advantage of the marriage rights afforded to her in the nation’s capital (despite her own work on Dad’s campaign and with the Republican National Committee throughout both of George W.’s two terms – he was adamantly against LGBT rights) there’s something disconcerting about, well, the hypocrisy.
It’s a lot like the old “do as I say and not as I do” ideology – or even a bit like conservative officials who legislate against gay people – even though they, themselves, are closeted. And while Cheney’s own party opposes same-sex marriage rights, his own family seems to be above the fray.
Granted, Dick did say he believes that all people should be entitled to marriage rights during a controversial campaign stop (the administration swept that one under the rug), but he did absolutely nothing to advance this cause (despite having a lesbian daughter) while he was in arguably the second-highest-ranking seat of power in the world.
Don’t get us wrong – we’re thrilled for Mary and Heather, who have two children together. Being able to legally marry is an amazing opportunity, especially for same-sex moms like these two who have a lot at stake when it comes to their own family. But we can’t help but have a certain distaste about the whole thing. We don’t expect the Cheney family to suddenly register Democrat and become diehard liberals, rallying for Obama for his statement of support for marriage equality, but would it be too much to ask for them to make an honest attempt at leveling the playing field for the other couples who want nothing more than a fair chance at making their own lives together?
We can only hope that in lieu of gifts, maybe Mary and Heather donated at least something to the LGBT organizations that have been working tirelessly to legalize same-sex marriage across the country. If not for them, these two would never have been able to walk down the aisle – or to the courthouse.
Do you think George and Laura sent a gift?