Homocon leader, set to speak Saturday at Metroplex Republicans’ Grand Ol’ Party, downplays competition with Log Cabin
JOHN WRIGHT | Senior Political Writer
When Taylor Garrett, a gay Republican cast member from The A-List: Dallas, recently claimed his apartment had been vandalized by a “liberal,” Jimmy LaSalvia wasn’t surprised.
As executive director of the national gay conservative (or “homocon”) group GOProud, LaSalvia said he’s grown accustomed to attacks from what he calls “the gay left.”
“The gay left is the most hateful, intolerant, disgusting group of people I’ve ever come across in my lifetime, and everything we do is criticized by them,” LaSalvia told Dallas Voice. “They hate gay conservatives more than anything in the world, and I don’t know why. It’s just a matter of time before violence like that happens.”
Coincidentally — or not, depending on who you believe — LaSalvia had lunch with Garrett in Los Angeles just prior to the rock-throwing incident being reported.
They were joined by conservative pundit Ann Coulter — who serves as honorary chair of GOProud’s Advisory Council — and Logo filmed the rendezvous for an upcoming episode of The A-List.
The timing led some in the gay blogosphere to suggest that LaSalvia put Garrett up to falsifying his report about the rock, which allegedly shattered a window at his apartment in the Dallas Design District — perhaps to generate hype prior to the premiere of the show.
Again, though, LaSalvia said he wasn’t surprised. After all, when he reported that he’d been the victim of a hate crime in Washington, D.C. in July — and used it as an opportunity to craft an op-ed in support of gun rights — he, too, was called a liar.
“I think that is absolutely appalling that someone would question that, and until you’ve been through what I’ve been through, shut the fuck up, because I know what happened to me,” LaSalvia said. “It was very traumatic for me, and that is why I wrote about it, as a way to help me deal with what happened to me.
“And I would say the same for Taylor. He told people about it as a way for him to deal with what had happened to him. And it’s just appalling to me that anyone would question that, and then to speculate that it was a coordinated effort — that I would tell Taylor, ‘Oh yeah, fake a hate crime, you know, get lots of attention,’ — that’s just absurd. And I would just tell all of those people, until it happens to you, shut the fuck up.”
LaSalvia and GOProud board chairman Chris Barron, who co-founded the organization together in 2009, will be in Dallas this weekend for the Grand Ol’ Party — the annual fundraising dinner held by Metroplex Republicans of Dallas, formerly Log Cabin Republicans Dallas.
Also attending the dinner will be Garrett, according to Metroplex Republicans President Rob Schlein.
In a wide-ranging interview with Dallas Voice last week, LaSalvia criticized Log Cabin Republicans National — where he once served as director of programs and policy — for its recent decision to de-charter the Dallas Log Cabin chapter.
The decision was based in part on Schlein’s decision to invite LaSalvia and Barron to speak at the Grand Ol’ Party. LaSalvia said he believes Log Cabin leaders mistakenly view GOProud as a threat, even though the groups have different missions and donor bases.
“While there are dozens and dozens of gay organizations on the left, the fact that one other right-of-center gay organization exists is not acceptable to Log Cabin,” LaSalvia said. “They have a very specific mission, and they work within the gay establishment organizations in Washington to do their thing.
“We’re working in the conservative coalition with tea party groups and conservative organizations advancing a conservative agenda, and that’s very different from what they do in the Gay Inc. world of Washington.”
Grand Ol’ Party
Saturday, Nov. 5, 6:30 p.m.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition November 4, 2011.