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Edwards on Gay GOP Operative

October 22, 1996

* Unfortunately Mickey Edwards displays the same wrongheaded interpretation of what it means to be "gay and conservative" that is offered by most Republicans trying to explain the issue (Commentary, Oct. 16). No one has ever disputed the fact that a person could be gay and at the same time adhere to the principles of fiscal conservatism and constrained government.

In contemporary political rhetoric, however, the term "conservative" also brings with it strong anti-gay elements which manifest themselves in the ongoing attempts to deny gay and lesbian people the rights that are afforded to other members of society. When people like Arthur Finkelstein participate in this kind of blatant discrimination, they most certainly should be made accountable. Being gay does not preclude being conservative as long as being conservative does not invalidate the worth of being gay.

VIRGINIA URIBE

Pasadena

* There is absolutely no quantitative difference between a gay man who would work to elect Jesse Helms to power in America in the '90s and a Jew who would work to elect Nazis to power in Germany in the '30s. Debasement of self in pursuit of personal ambition is not new, and Finkelstein and his fellow travelers are merely the latest pathetic example.

MARK DONNELLY

Studio City

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