A fitting farewell to the 2012 GA session: gay prosecutor is rejected for judgeship


    In a fitting move by the Virginia General Assembly in the waning hours of its raucous and fractious 2012 session, lawmakers rejected the Richmond judgeship of Tracy Thorne-Begland, an openly gay man.

    Over the course of the 2012 session, legislators dealt with such integral issues such as what kind of instrument should be used to undertake a transvaginal ultrasound and how Virginia should combat voter fraud before anyone in the General Assembly was aware investigations were being conducted on cases of voter fraud. In other words, the 2012 General Assembly session in Virginia has been a boon for comedians and commentators looking for signs of backwardness in the U.S.

    The last day of the 2012 session proved to be no less impressive in its hatefulness. In order to justify their decision, Republican legislators argued that Thorne-Begland’s public positions on gay rights  disallowed his impartiality as a judge. But for anyone who has listened to the Republican Party, whether it be statewide or nationally, knows better than to fall for this argument.  

    The GOP has made it a policy priority to send every homosexual in the U.S. into hiding at a moment in our history that finally seems ripe for a progression on the issue of gay rights. GOP lawmakers, in fact, appear to revel in their own bigotry, whether it pertains to minority groups, women, or homosexuals.

    In Virginia, there is a twisted sense of what constitutes a protected freedom. In the near future, you may be able to kill or injure another individual for invading your home but you cannot be an openly gay judge. This sounds like Medieval law, not the law of a state embedded in the United States in 2012.

    So we have a ways to go in Virginia before the commonwealth can truly throw off the less-than-savory baggage of its hateful past.

    Fortunately, these Republican legislators are fighting a losing battle. The winds of change have been blowing for some time now regarding equality for homosexuals and the defenses of these Republicans have become timeworn, like most of their other views.  


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