After studying Hoover's behavior and activities, Dr. Harold Lief, Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania, concluded he was "what is known as an Authoritarian Personality. Hoover would have made a perfect high-level Nazi."The fact that these grotesque leaders were homosexual is a dire warning about the pathology of the closet-lying as one's central life skill, disdain for the suckers who fall for the lies, inability to sustain (or even imagine) equal relationships. The false, vengeful lives they led were a cynical parody of the conformity they imposed on others. The truth is, when you deny who you are and who you love, you become soulless. All you're left with are lies and hate. And, in Hoover's case, unfortunately, power. Dean goes on to say about "Hoover's true legacy" that
it was he with his fanaticism who planted the seeds from which contemporary social and cultural conservatism has grown. Hoover's focus on the American family and Christianity attracted an earlier generation of adamant anticommunists, who have become today's zealous social conservatives.Enter Karl Rove, the most zealous of the new authoritarians. James Moore, co-author of Bush's Brain, has written a new account of the Rove phenomenon, The Architect: Karl Rove and the Master Plan for Absolute Power, in which he reveals that Karl Rove's step-father, with whom he was very close, was a gay man. In an interview on Democracy Now!, Mr. Moore said:
Karl Rove buried his father Louie Rove in July of 2004. There was no public notice in the newspaper. And then he got on the campaign plane, and he went to eleven key swing states to help facilitate the anti-gay marriage amendments around this country, which drove voter turnout in the last election. . . . And it turns out that Karl Rove, the man who is the architect behind evangelical voters and their turnout and a voter delivery system of the Christian right, is agnostic. . . . . . . . [he] referred to the Christian right and the fundamentalists north of Austin as "whackos." They hold these people in more disdain than these individuals are aware of.In Rove's defense, it has to be said that some of his "voter delivery system" is not entirely savory. Greased by billions in faith-based initiative money, some black churches are eagerly continuing Rove's attack on marriage equality-even after Hurricane Katrina. Gregory Daniels, senior pastor of the Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Chicago, says, "If the KKK opposes gay marriage, I would ride with them." Reading a statement like that you have to wonder, is marriage equality really a greater threat to the black community than the KKK and George W. Bush? Or is it, for some reason, merely a greater threat to Gregory Daniels? In other words, is Daniels gay? That's exactly the question Keith Boykin and Jasmyne Cannick ask in a series of profiles of Daniels and other homophobic black pastors. It's the right question to ask, because it's definitely not a non-issue. Eric Hegedus, national president of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, expresses my view on the subject: "There's nothing wrong with asking a candidate  if he's gay. It's just like asking him if he's married, dating anyone or has children. There's nothing shameful about being gay." He's right, there's nothing wrong with being gay. But there's lot wrong with lying about it. It's a matter of pride.  For an excellent book on a closeted father's impact on a family, I highly recommend Alison Bechdel's brilliant graphic memoir Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic.  See also David Brock's courageous insider's account of rightwing politics in the nineties, Blinded By the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative, for more information on the closet from the inside.  See Michael Rogers' website, blogactive, for more information on elected officials and staffers who are closet cases. All closeted officials have a hidden incentive to act against gay interests, at best. At worst, they're trying to out-hate the homophobes around them.