History Podcasts

Republican Power Broker of the Gay Nineties

Republican Power Broker of the Gay Nineties

Marcus Alonzo Hanna was born in New Lisbon (today Lisbon), Ohio, a small community near the Pennsylvania border. Mark Hanna’s success in business led him in a variety of directions — coal, iron, railroads, steamships and banking.Having established his fortune by 1880, Mark Hanna turned his attention to politics. He was nearly unique among the figures of his day because his fascination with political power dwarfed his interest in accumulating ever greater amounts of money.In 1888, he managed the unsuccessful effort of Sen. John Sherman of Ohio to gain the Republican presidential nomination. However, his efforts in 1891 and 1893 to secure the governorship of Ohio for William McKinley were victorious. Hanna’s best-known political contribution came in 1896 when he engineered McKinley’s presidential nomination and election. The threat of William Jennings Bryan’s perceived radicalism enabled Hanna to raise huge sums of cash from frightened businessmen.In 1897, Mark Hanna was appointed to fill an unexpired Senate seat and the following year he was elected in his own right. Following the McKinley assassination, Hanna advised Theodore Roosevelt during the anthracite coal strike, but later lost influence in the increasingly progressive administration.Mark Hanna died in 1904 on the eve of what may have been a titanic struggle against Roosevelt for control of the Republican Party.Mark Hanna is remembered as one of the most influential political figures of the late 19th and very early 20th centuries. His conservatism has been overstated; he was equally critical of the exploitations of greedy businessmen and radical labor unions.


A quiet shift in GOP stance on gay marriage: Jon Cowan and Evan Wolfson

As the Tea Party's outsider challenge to Republican Party orthodoxy grabs headlines, another, quieter revolution is unfolding inside the GOP. This rebellion has at its heart a truly surprising issue, one that could have long-term consequences for the party: gay and lesbian couples' freedom to marry.

The latest evidence of this quiet revolution came with the release of the Republicans' midterm-campaign "Pledge to America." Though the pledge gives a perfunctory nod to "traditional marriage" (in a single line in a list of things, like "families," that it supports), explicit opposition to marriage for same-sex couples is conspicuous in its absence. The document never uses the word "gay" (or "homosexual") -- a stark contrast to past party platforms, which have made opposition to gay equality a centerpiece of their social agenda.

Is this an isolated development? After all, the 1994 "Contract With America" was also focused solely on fiscal issues and government reform. But in 2010, there is compelling evidence that the shift is deep, and possibly lasting.

The GOP, in large part, isn't displaying its usual anti-gay election-year demagoguery, and not just in the "pledge." As recently as 1995, a Republican-controlled Congress was holding hearings investigating "homosexual recruitment" and the "promotion" of homosexuality. During the George W. Bush administration, the party used its fervent opposition to marriage for gay and lesbian couples as a get-out-the-vote strategy, encouraging more than a dozen anti-gay state ballot initiatives geared at driving turnout in the 2004 election and engineering repeated efforts to pass an amendment to the Constitution. This year is the first election year in recent history in which anti-gay rhetoric has been significantly muted: No state is facing an anti-gay initiative on the ballot, and marriage has not been a focus of the national conservative agenda.

Beyond that, the Republican establishment is stepping up -- and coming out. In just the last few months, leading Republican heavyweights have begun to announce their support for the freedom to marry. Ted Olson, Bush's solicitor general and a longtime Republican power broker, took the lead, writing articles ("The Conservative Case for Gay Marriage," in Newsweek) and, with co-counsel David Boies, filing, arguing and winning the first federal court case to uphold gay and lesbian couples' constitutional right to marry. Cindy McCain and former first lady Laura Bush have both spoken out in support of marriage.

In August, Ken Mehlman, former Republican National Committee chairman and campaign manager for Bush in the 2004 election, revealed that he is gay and supports the freedom to marry. Mehlman hosted a fundraiser in support of Olson's lawsuit, with a guest list that would have been unheard of five years ago. It included numerous well-known Republicans such as former New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, former McCain strategist Steve Schmidt, former Bush White House communications director Nicolle Wallace and former RNC counsel Benjamin Ginsberg. Bush's daughter Barbara made an appearance.

Perhaps even more telling, the proudly right-wing GOP Sen. John Cornyn of Texas appeared for the first time at a reception for the Log Cabin Republicans, a leading gay GOP organization. Cornyn had turned down invitations and even contributions from the Log Cabin group in the past. In September, he weathered significant criticism from the anti-gay Family Research Council. Because Cornyn is chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and thus tasked with getting Republicans elected to the Senate this fall, every move he makes is watched for ballot-box implications.

What's driving this insiders' insurrection? Perhaps a sense that a libertarian-leaning belief in fully extending the freedom to marry to all Americans does not, in fact, clash with a conservative commitment to holding together the social fabric, as marriage entails personal responsibility and social stability. Or perhaps these GOP leaders are beginning to see an alignment of their rhetoric about individual liberty with public opinion in the last month, two national polls, by CNN and The Associated Press, showed that a majority of Americans nationwide now support marriage for gay and lesbian couples.

The implications of such a historic shift in the GOP establishment's stance on marriage should not be underestimated. For Republicans, it means they could become less moored to their socially conservative base and may get back in touch with the cautious but forward-looking American political center that is vital to GOP hopes of cobbling together a governing majority. For the country, it is evidence that we are inching ever closer to a national consensus that gay and lesbian couples should have the freedom to marry under the law.

Jon Cowan is president and co-founder of Third Way, a moderate think tank, and Evan Wolfson is founder and executive director of Freedom to Marry. They wrote this for the Los Angeles Times (McClatchy-Tribune).

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How Once-Moderate Bush Got Hijacked by the Religious Right

Our October 1992 cover story explores how George H.W. Bush — desperate to be reelected — formed an unholy alliance that haunts us still.

DURING HIS renomination acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, President Bush receives wild cheers from delegates when he blasts the Democratic Party’s platform for omitting “three simple letters — G-o-d.”

Initiatives that would forbid legislators to outlaw antigay discrimination are placed on state ballots in Colorado and Oregon.

The California Board of Education rejects a school textbook because it calls for respect for gay and lesbian parents.

These developments, all of which occurred during the past year, and dozens of others like them across the country can all be traced to the growing political power of the religious right. Once regarded as a band of harmless crackpots, the religious right has managed to propel social issues — especially gay rights and abortion — to a key position on the national political agenda by sparking a fierce debate on “family values.”

“These people are diehards,” says Ann Stone, chairwoman of the abortion rights group Republicans for Choice. “They are very well-organized, and all they do is fight. We have to get the people to understand that unless they want a church state, they are going to have to get out there and fight back. Forget about gay rights and abortion rights in the kind of society these people have in mind.”

Adds Jerry Sloan, cochairman of Project Tocsin, a Sacramento, Calif., group that monitors the right wing: “Gays and lesbians have come to terms with the fact that the religious right has effectively stalled gay and lesbian political advances in some parts of the country and actually threatens to turn back the clock in others.” As a result, gay groups across the nation that would prefer to be working for positive change instead find themselves on the defensive, fighting off brush fires started by fundamentalists.

The religious right achieved its power gradually through a multifaceted strategy that targets all levels of politics — national, state, and local. The strategy’s basic components include running little-known candidates for local offices, preparing antigay ballot initiatives, organizing voter-registration campaigns, and filing legal challenges to gay rights legislation.

A key to the religious right’s success has been its use of aggressive lobbying to compel the Republican Party to adopt a conservative social agenda at the expense of moderate Republicans.

“The Right has disproportionate power, not so much because it has the numbers but because it is very singleminded in its approach to politics,” says David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union, a political group.

One need look only to the Republican National Convention in Houston last August for evidence of Keene’s assertion. At the convention, Massachusetts governor William Weld, a Republican who is one of the nations most staunchly pro-gay governors, was asked by the Republican National Committee not to address gay rights in his speech to the delegates.

But there was no similar prohibition on antigay rhetoric: Gays and lesbians repeatedly were targets of attack from the podium. In a nationally televised speech, failed presidential candidate Patrick Buchanan decreed that enactment of antibias protection for gays and lesbians is “not the kind of change we can tolerate in a nation that we still call God’s country.” And Vice President Dan Quayle told the convention that it is wrong to treat “alternative life-styles [as] morally equivalent” to traditional ones.

Quayle acts as the Bush administration’s unofficial liaison to conservatives. But on this point, he was merely parroting a position embraced two months previously by President Bush, who told The New York Times that he does not consider homosexuality to be normal. Previously, Bush had long been considered a moderate on social issues.

However, Bush and Quayle have not been entirely consistent in toeing the religious right’s antigay line. In an interview broadcast on ABC television in July, Bush said his administration had “no litmus test” that automatically excludes gays and lesbians from staff positions, and in an interview in August, he said that if he learned one of his grandchildren were gay, he would embrace him but discourage him from becoming a gay rights activist.

Throughout September, Quayle appeared to back off the antigay rhetoric voiced at the convention weeks earlier. During a campaign stop in Los Angeles, for instance, he conceded that his party has a “conservative voice and a conservative philosophy” but said he does not support the exclusion of gays and lesbians from it.

The backpedaling did not sit well with the religious right. After Bush’s July ABC interview was broadcast, Richard Land, executive director of the Southern Baptist Convention Christian Life Commission, fired off an angry letter to the president expressing “outrage and a sense of betrayal” regarding his no-litmus-test answer.

The religious right’s take-no-prisoners attitude toward homosexuality has painted the president and vice president into a corner, says Washington Post political reporter E.J. Dionne, author of Why Americans Hate Politics. Surveys consistently indicate that most voters oppose antigay discrimination, but the religious right — one of the Republican Party’s most powerful constituencies — demands strict adherence to its antigay position, he says.

“The religious right controlled many of the Republican slates at the convention and Bush tried to mollify the Right,” Dionne says. “But I think the Republicans went further than they had ever intended. They have spent the weeks after the convention trying to look like unbelievable moderates on gay rights. In Los Angeles, Quayle even used the politically correct terminology — gay and lesbian rather than homosexual.”

As a campaign theme, the family-values issue has had little impact according to a Sept. 16 New York Times/CBS News poll. Only about 1% of the respondents to the survey said the issue was their primary concern, while nearly 50% said the economy was the most important campaign issue. In fact, the Republicans’ use of the theme risks alienating mainstream voters, says political analyst Kevin Phillips, author of The Politics of Rich and Poor. Not only does the theme offer no solution to pressing problems like lack of affordable healthcare and rising unemployment, but its use makes Bush appear to shirk responsibility for the weak economy, he says.

In addition, Phillips says, use of the theme draws public attention to the Republican Party’s close relationship with the archconservatives like televangelist Pat Roberston, Liberty University president Rev. Jerry Falwell, and Eagle Forum president Phyllis Schlafly. “These people are not high on America’s list,” Phillips says. “It undercuts the whole idea of family values to identify family values with the religious right. Most Americans think that Robertsons’ rantings are off-the-wall.”

University of Southern California law professor Susan Estrich, who managed Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis’s unsuccessful 1988 campaign says that Bush’s lack of a domestic policy agenda created a vacuum in the Republican Party that the religious right is eager to fill. “George Bush stands for nothing,” she says. “What the convention demonstrated more than anything is that he will say or do anything to get votes.”

Despite its gains in the presidential campaign, the religious right’s influence is not confined to national politics. Some of its most far-reaching advantages have been on the state and local levels. “The religious right knows that the real battle over social issues is at the local level,” says Mike Hudson, legal counsel for the liberal political group People for the American Way. “The 90s will be a great battle for grass-roots control.”

Both the Oregon and Colorado initiatives have been well-funded, and each has a good chance of receiving voter approval. In September, Robertson donated $20,000 to the Oregon Citizens Alliance, the group that is backing the Oregon initiative, and announced that he would start setting up field operations in the state.

On the same day that the Oregon and Colorado initiatives will go to the voters, residents of Portland, Me., will consider a ballot referendum that would repeal a citywide ban on antigay discrimination that was approved by the city council in May. The referendum was prepared by the Christian Civic League of Maine, an antigay group that said in a public statement that opposition to gay civil rights protection is “probably the most significant moral issue facing Maine in the history of our state.” In September a fundamentalist group in Kansas City, Mo., announced that it would seek to place a similar referendum on the ballot there.

Last spring, antigay activity directly related to the religious rights growing clout flared in Florida, where the American Family Association, an antigay group headed by conservative activist Donald Wildmon, successfully lobbied the Gainesville city commission to approve a resolution condemning gay rights guarantees. At the same time, a ban on antigay discrimination enacted in Tampa suffered a setback when a circuit court judge ruled that a referendum on it must appear on the November general-election ballot.

In the neighboring Alabama, meanwhile, the state legislature enacted an Eagle Forum-backed bill that requires sex education curricula in public schools to stress that same-sex intercourse is a crime under the state’s sodomy law. Legislators also passed a bill that forbids state funds to be allocated to gay student groups.

Frequently, the religious right works to influence politics from within by dominating county Republican Party organizations. When Citizens for Liberty, an antigay group that supports establishment of a militia and elimination of the Internal Revenue Service and the Federal Reserve System, gained control of the Republican central committee of Santa Clara County Calif., the California Republican Leauge, a moderate group, was so alarmed that it warned the country’s rank-and-file Republicans that the group’s agenda includes “a call for the death penalty for abortion, adultery, and unrepentant homosexuality.”

In Harris County, Tex., this year’s Republican platform alleges that homosexuality “leads to the breakdown of the family and the spread of deadly disease” and calls on the federal and state government to enforce “all laws prohibiting homosexual conduct.”

Building on its gains in county Republican organizations, the religious right has targeted state parties as well. Harriet Stinson, director of the California chapter of Republicans for Choice, says the religious right “has literally taken over” the California Republican Party by purging moderate Republicans from county central committees, running religious candidates for local and statewide seats, and harassing moderate party officials until they take extreme positions.

The religious right’s gains in California have been so great that Gov. Pete Wilson, who was considered a moderate when he was elected in 1990, has been “virtually shut out of his own party,” Hudson says. “The Right has made Wilson its lapdog on social issues,” he adds, attributing Wilson’s veto last year to the governor’s efforts to appease the religious right. When running for governor less than a year earlier, Wilson had indicated that he supported the ban.

In primary elections for the California state assembly in June, 12 of 16 candidates endorsed by the Conservative Coalition, a network of religious right groups, won their races, a better track record than that compiled by Republican candidates who had Wilson’s endorsement. The coalition donated to its candidates nearly $700,000, more than any other political action committee in the state, according to Common Cause, a nonpartisan public-interest group.

The coalition is funded by a small group of businessmen in conservative Orange County. One of them is Howard Ahmanson, whose net worth is estimated to be more than $100 million. In 1985 Ahmanson told the Orange County Register that his goal is the “total integration of biblical law into our lives.”

The religious right touts the 1990 San Diego municipal election as a model it hopes to replicate nationwide. In the election, the religious right ran a slate of 90 little-known candidates for city council and for boards overseeing schools, hospitals, and public utilities. After playing down their affiliation with the religious right, 56 of the candidates were elected.

The religious right “takes advantage of voter apathy and the anti-incumbency mood in the country,” says Kathy Frasca, a founder of the Mainstream Voter Project, a San Diego group that monitors the religious right. In San Diego the right-wing candidates’ bids for office would have failed if voters had been better informed about the candidates’ ties to fundamentalists, she says.

The religious right has made inroads in state parties outside California as well. Last May, Washington State’s Republican Party adopted a platform that calls for gays and lesbians to be barred from jobs as teachers or health care workers. The platform also advocates corporal punishment for students and denounces the practices of witchcraft and yoga in public schools. Adoption of the platform infuriated several longtime moderate Republican activists. King County Republican platform committee chairman Brett Bader called it “the most seriously off-base reckless, and damaging platform I have ever seen.”

In Iowa the state Republican Party adopted a platform this summer that calls for strict enforcement of sodomy laws, mandatory reporting of the names of people who test positive for antibodies to HIV, the virus believed to lead to AIDS, and the obligatory teaching of creation science in place of evolutionary theory.

And in a face-off last year that underscored the animosity between the Republican Party’s moderate and conservative wings, delegates to a Minnesota state Republican Party convention in St. Cloud walked out of a speech by Gov. Arne Carlson, a Republican, to protest Carlson’s decision to allow himself to be named an honorary sponser of a Minneapolis fundraiser conducted by the Human Rights Campaign Fund, a gay political group.

The religious right’s strategy has been developed and implemented by a network of organizations and leaders who are largely unknown to the public but familiar to Republican power brokers. Many of the religious right’s leaders-- including the Southern Baptists Convention's Land Gary Bauer, executive director of the Family Research Council Beverly LaHaye, president of Concerned Women for America and Bob Jones III, president of Bob Jones University — met with President Bush in the White House in April. After meeting, the fundamentalists told reporters that President Bush had convinced them he shares their belief that gays and lesbians pose the greatest modern threat to traditional American values.

Along with Morris Chapman, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, a 15-million-member denomination that is the nation’s largest Protestant sect, Land has been instrumental in mobilizing support for conservative causes. Under the leadership of Chapman and Land, the Southern Baptist Convention this summer expelled two North Carolina congregation — Pullen Memorial Baptist Church and Binkley Memorial Baptist Church — for blessing the union of two gay men and licensing a gay minister.

Still, Robertson remains the religious right’s most influencial and well-known leader. Although Robertsons’ 1988 bid for the Republican presidential nomination failed, the Washington Post’s Dionne says the attempt brought national prominence to the Christian Coalition, Roberston’s political organization, which has more than 2 million members nationwide.

Robertson’s clout is further increased by his 60% ownership of International Family Entertainment Inc. (IFE), which operates the Christian Broadcasting System cable television network and is the world’s largest religious programmer. A recent public stock offering conducted by the company raised more than $150 million for Robertson and his son Timothy.

Shortly after completing the stock offering, Robertson made a $6-million bid for United Press International (UPI), a new service that declared bankruptcy earlier this year. The deal eventually collapsed, but had it been consummated, it would have provided an inroad into the mainstream media that Robertson has long sought.

At the time he made his offer for UPI, Robertson noted that “in the ‘70s, we began praying for all aspects of life — religious life, governmental life, education, the media, arts, and entertainment — and all of these facets are part of what God wants to touch. He wants to touch it with his truth and his love. This is one little chance for that to happen.” On Sept. 21, Robertson took another step into the mainstream media, announcing that IFE had agreed to in principle to purchase MTM Entertainment Inc., a Studio City, Calif., firm that produces the television series Evening Shade for $68.5 million.

Such influence seemed unthinkable in the ‘70s, when the religious right was largely unorganized and split along ideological lines. Its ranks included relative moderates like Bauer, who advocate repeal of gay civil liberties protections, and extremists like R.J. Rushdooney, who advocate establishment of a Bible-based legal system under which gays and lesbians would be subject to the death penalty.

Ronald Reagan’s 1980 presidential campaign was the pivotal event that spurred the religious right to organize, and fear of gay political advances have helped keep the coalition together since then, says Fred Clarkson, a journalist who has written extensively about the religious right. “Getting the Right to overlook its differences and work together was a real accomplishment,” he says.

Seeing a well-organized bloc of votes, the Republican Party actively courted the religious right during the late ‘70s and the ‘80s. The effort paid off: Hudson of People for the American Way says that the religious right was instrumental in electing Republican presidents in the 1980, 1984, and 1988 elections.

However, the courtship also narrowed the party’s appeal to mainstream voters. “I really don’t believe that the majority of voters goes for the hatred and extremism exemplified by the religious right,” Estrich says. “I hope that Bush keeps sucking up to the Right. It makes the Democrats that much better off.”

Even within the Republican Party, the power wielded by the religious right has been a cause for concern, creating a bitter rift between social conservatives like Robertson and Quayle and libertarians like Weld and the Department of Housing and Urban Development head of Jack Kemp. While the social conservatives concern themselves primarily with moral issues, the libertarians concentrate largely on economic matters.

The rift was illustrated dramatically in July, when former Arizona senator Barry Goldwater, a staunch right-winger who was the Republican Party’s presidential candidate in 1964, shocked political insiders by throwing his support behind a proposed ban on antigay bias in Phoenix. In announcing his position on the ban, Goldwater scolded the Republican Party, saying it allowed the religious right to lead it away from discussion of our substantive issues.

“Under our constitution, we literally have the right to do anything we may want to do as long as the performing of those acts does not cause any damage or hurt to anybody else,” Goldwater said. “I can’t see any way in the world that being gay can cause damage to somebody else.”

The schism within the Republican Party has been exacerbated by the recession, Dionne says “In good economic times, social conservatives could vote on fairly social issues, and upscale Republicans, who tend to be fairly liberal on social issues, could vote their pocketbooks,” he says. “Once the economic lubricant disappeared, the frictions heat up.”

The national debate over abortion has also widened the rift within the Republican Party. This year, national Republican officials adopted the toughest, antiabortion platform plank in history, forbidding abortion even for pregnancies that result from incest or rape. Adoption of the plank caused Republican abortion rights proponents to step up their efforts to neutralize the religious right’s influence within the party.

Rep. Tom Campbell (R-Calif.), a moderate Republican known for his support for gay and abortion rights, contended during his unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination for a Senate seat in June that because conservatives have long opposed government intervention in private matters, a truly conservative position would be one supporting abortion rights and gay rights guaranteed.

“It’s actually a conservative position to oppose discrimination,” Campbell says. “There is no reason that groups that make bigotry a priority couldn’t feel at home in the Democratic Party. There’s nothing particularly Republican about imposing one’s values on others.”

But few other moderate Republicans are willing to link gay rights and abortion. Stone of Republicans for Choice says that even gay and lesbian Republicans “understand that it’s best to keep the two issues seperate. It remains to be seen if there is any way to work together. The likelihood of gay rights will ever be specifically addressed by the party is not great.”

As a result, the battle lines will continue to be drawn for years to come. Both gays and lesbians and the religious right “feel that they have been dumped on,” Dionne says. “The religious right feels it lost its culture in the ‘60s. It feels that it has been ridiculed by the media and by society in general. A lot of it’s anger is being expressed through attacks on gays and lesbians.”

Both sides agree that there is no middle ground. “This is the beginning of a sophisticated, well-financed backlash against gay and lesbian inroads into the media and culture that’s fueled by the religious right,” says Robert Bray, a spokesman for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, a lobbying group. Adds Steve Sheldon, a spokesman for the Traditional Values Coalition, a Southern California antigay group: “It’s a holy war that can only have one winner.”


Are gay neighborhoods like the Village now vanishing?

The import of the LGBT community in New York is unmistakable, but today some worry that neighborhoods like the Village are losing their identities as gay enclaves. In 2014, Amin Ghaziani published There Goes the Gayborhood?, an investigation of what he calls “post-gay” life, in which gay populations are becoming less concentrated in specific areas, due to both economic and cultural factors.

“Despite the myth of gay affluence, LGBT people are more likely to be poor,” Ghaziani says. He cites the statistic that 11.9 percent of same-sex households are living at the poverty line, versus 5.7 percent of married heterosexual households. At the same time, the very presence of LGBT people is correlated with rising costs. “The gayer the block, the faster its value will rise,” Ghaziani says. And since straight people always outnumber LGBT people, when housing becomes more expensive, “it’s not sustainable [as a gayborhood] unless gay people never move out.”

Meanwhile, tolerance of LGBT people has increased significantly. “Gay neighborhoods are a spatial response to a historically significant form of oppression,” Ghaziani says. He explains that many gay neighborhoods were solidified in the wake of World War II: After members of military were discharged on the basis of their sexuality, they decided to stay behind in major port cities, leading to the emergence of areas like the Castro in San Francisco as well as the Village.

“When the political status of a minority group changes, so too should its spatial response,” Ghaziani says. “It would be naive of us to deny that the condition of life for at least a segment of non-heterosexuals today is considerably better than it was in generations past. We’re moving beyond the closet”—and out of former gay enclaves.

Of course, homophobia has not been eradicated, which the 2016 massacre at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando made tragically clear it also reveals the continuing need for places of sanctuary in a world that isn't as safe for LGBT people as it is for straight ones. (According to the Trevor Project, LGBT youth are four times more likely than their straight peers to attempt suicide.)

That said, Berman agrees that the Village has definitely become less gay. “The neighborhood has become so expensive that only a certain strata of people can afford to move in there,” he says. “Other neighborhoods have probably supplanted the Village in terms of LGBT residents.”

Berman cites Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen as two places that grew into gayborhoods in their own right per the Huffington Post, the 2010 Census found that indeed, these areas have the highest population of same-sex couples. “But the Village is now an internationally recognized center of a worldwide movement, and its place in that history is not fading,” Berman continues. “It’s where LGBT and non-LGBT people can go to see this important place that helped nurture and launch a movement, which has had such an impact.”

And Ghaziani says it’s a mistake to think of cities as comprising discrete gay and straight areas. “Plurality is the name of the game now, and there are multiple pockets associated with gay sexuality,” he says. “Economic and cultural trends enable gay neighborhoods to survive despite the reality of residential change, as places for people to remember their history and participate in the unique and beautiful culture of LGBT individuals.”

Brian C. Kelly, a sociology professor at Purdue University and an author of the "Exploring the Gay Community Question" study, agrees with Ghaziani that societal changes in recent decades have facilitated greater freedom in where LGBT people can live. He adds, though, that the increase in safe residential options in New York may not be mirrored throughout the country. "If we do this work in a smaller midwestern city, we might find something very different than what we're seeing in this large northeastern city with a long history of folks migrating from other places, because of the freedoms that people have enjoyed here," he says. "It's not clear to us yet whether major cities like New York are exceptional in some way."


When Did the GOP Move to the Dark Side?

Does this question appear to be nothing but a partisan slur? If so, then consider a different sort of question: why do all the neo-Nazis take their “alt-right” principles in the Republican direction instead of peddling them to the Democrats? What is it about the Republican Party that attracts them?

In Lincoln’s time, it was the other way around: it was the nineteenth-century Democrats who touted race theory and prided themselves on their “whiteness.” True, there were bigots in the early Republican Party, but the Radical Republicans like Thaddeus Stevens and Charles Sumner were visionary advocates of racial equality and for years it was the “Lincoln Republicans” who held the allegiance of blacks.

Blacks quite properly regarded the Democratic Party as bad news for them.

The Democrats remained the “white man’s party” for the rest of the nineteenth century — and indeed through the age of Woodrow Wilson. But in the 1930s a tremendous change was ushered in through the leadership of people like Eleanor Roosevelt. By 1948, the Democrats were beginning to embrace civil rights, and by the sixties, racist southerners were leaving. By the twenty-first century the Democrats, and not the Republicans, would be the party to put the first African American president in office.

And so our parties changed and evolved.

In our own generation, the Republican Party has changed and transformed itself beyond recognition: it has moved in a direction that is overwhelmingly and catastrophically sinister. But perhaps it can still be redeemed.

Millions of Republicans today remain decent, rational, and ethical. The Republican governor of my own state, Maryland, provides a good example of their leadership. He is friendly to those who disagree with him. He prides himself on working cooperatively “across the aisle.” He was just re-elected with strong bipartisan support. His name is Larry Hogan and his counterparts exist all over the country.

But do people like my governor typify the way that the Republican Party is projecting itself to America — and the world?

The Republican Party put Donald Trump in the Oval Office and there is no use mincing any words about what that has meant for millions of us.

Nothing like this has ever happened in America before. We have had some bad presidents, mediocre presidents, crooked presidents, but never before has the White House occupant given us a daily torrent of hallucinatory abuse, spewing insults in every direction. It is almost as if a cave man — a Stone Age man — had been placed in the presidency, a position that requires the utmost tact, the most delicate finesse, the most exquisite poise to calibrate the interests of all the millions of people who depend upon the United States of America for protection.

Protection? It is almost laughable to think about America playing that role any longer in the age of Donald Trump.

He is interested in protecting certain kinds of people — himself, the members of his selfish family, the rich, the powerful, the tyrants like Vladimir Putin who subvert the democratic process. But the weak — the victims of hurricanes in Puerto Rico, the refugees who come here seeking asylum, a haven, a chance to contribute to America — he subjects to a level of abuse that is completely insane. He ridicules, vilifies, persecutes, and demonizes them with a sadistic kind of relish that is almost in itself demonic. And the members of his “base” just love it.

Republican leaders in general are terrified of this “base,” so they conform and evade their civic duty.

There have been some notable exceptions, of course: conservatives like George F. Will who have left the Republican Party, patriots like the late John McCain who refused to participate in Trumpism, Jeff Flake and some other Republican mavericks who have been honest enough to see Trump for what he is, and some moderates like Susan Collins who dissent in meek and quiet ways.

But the “base” and the politicians who stoke its appetites continue to define the Republican agenda.

What is it that motivates this “base?” Mindless power lust mostly, along with the hellish satisfaction of cruelty. Domination gets the members of Trump’s base excited, especially when they get to watch the lives of helpless people ruined. The militant so-called “evangelicals” within the movement take particular pleasure in turning the principles of the Sermon on the Mount upside down and then feeling self-righteous. Like Milton’s Satan, their motto appears to be “Evil, be thou my good.” Roy Moore was their poster boy last year. “Christians” they call themselves.

These are the kinds of people who would like to make the social and political rules for the rest of us. Donald Trump is what they want to be themselves. They believe that they and their hero are entitled to order the rest of us around.

They are turning the party whose leaders once portrayed it as the party of wholesome traditional values — of motherhood and apple pie, as it were — into the party of the thug in the alley and the vengeful kick below the belt.

How on earth did such a thing happen?

It took a long time. It started in the nineties when Republicans like Newt Gingrich, Tom DeLay, and Dick Armey tried to nullify the presidency of Bill Clinton with their scorched-earth tactics. The same thing was done to the presidency of Obama by the so-called “Freedom Caucus” in the House. Sarah Palin made far-right lunacy a breakthrough force in American politics when John McCain made the dreadful mistake of putting her on his ticket in 2008. It started a contagion: suddenly conspiracy theorists and crackpots of all descriptions were spreading their sickness.

In the Senate, Ted Cruz made the politics of far-right extremism so corrosive that he became a pariah. But that didn’t really matter to him since he represented the force that was taking over the Republican Party. The Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner said that Cruz was “Lucifer incarnate.” That was after Boehner had decided to resign and give up on politics.

Scores of Republican moderates began to give up on politics — in despair. As they did so, the Koch Brothers poured their endless millions into targeted campaigns to get rid of the moderates who were left.

Fox and Breitbart “News” provided powerful platforms for strange new fanatics like Sean Hannity and Steve Bannon. Meanwhile, the first African American presidency triggered a reflex in thousands of racists, who emerged from deep in the woodwork. The “alt right” began a revival of neo-Nazi ideas. They took over from the isolated “skinheads” who had pioneered the work in the nineties.

The trend reached critical mass in election year 2016 when a rich degenerate with no inhibitions showed the world what a strategy composed of shameless ranting can do to the electoral process — ranting that continues without intermission and that ramifies day after day through the new technological catastrophe known as “social media.” An eruption of primitivism from nameless underground sources began to contaminate our public life. “Trolls,” as people called them, were empowered and began to call the shots.

And so America was given a president who in other circumstances would have had all the credentials for becoming a fascist dictator. He was fenced in quickly by our long-entrenched system of checks and balances, augmented and supported by the patriotic sacrifice of people like James Mattis and John Kelly, who occupied some key power positions to keep them out of the hands of others.

Trump was fenced in, so his explosive frustration and rage — his rage at being unable to act out every brutal whim — was poured into a never-ending torrent of moronic “tweets” that rubbed salt in the wound of every civilized person in America. And now he has an assistant, an echo, a shadow: after his first press secretary left, that job was taken over by the zombie who is currently the mouthpiece of Trump: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who indignantly defends the indefensible.

And the rest of us? For two miserable years we have simply prayed for relief — prayed that the incubus lurking in the White House will shut his stupid mouth for a while so the nation can heal.

We have seethed and suffered for two wretched years, but at last the Republicans have lost control of the House. So impeachment is now a real option. The Senate, of course, will refuse to convict — unless the Mueller probe reveals such a shocking abundance of criminality (or treason, if Trump’s secret deals with Vladimir Putin crossed a fundamental line) that even the most amoral of the Republican power brokers, the ruthless Mitch McConnell for example, will see the advantage of dumping this berserker.

If Trump can be impeached, removed, and sent to prison — yeah, lock him up — what future awaits the Republicans?

The decent members of the party — and there are millions of them, ordinary people who refuse to believe that such degeneration can happen in a party that they and their families have supported over so many years — may awaken, rub their eyes, and see that only people like themselves can give us back the party of Abraham Lincoln, of Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight Eisenhower.

Do they feel powerless? If so, they must begin to consider all the ways in which decent people can empower themselves.

Stranger things have happened in America. But the cleansing of the once-magnificent Republican Party may take a long time.


When Did the GOP Move to the Dark Side?

Does this question appear to be nothing but a partisan slur? If so, then consider a different sort of question: why do all the neo-Nazis take their &ldquoalt-right&rdquo principles in the Republican direction instead of peddling them to the Democrats? What is it about the Republican Party that attracts them?

In Lincoln&rsquos time, it was the other way around: it was the nineteenth-century Democrats who touted race theory and prided themselves on their &ldquowhiteness.&rdquo True, there were bigots in the early Republican Party, but the Radical Republicans like Thaddeus Stevens and Charles Sumner were visionary advocates of racial equality and for years it was the &ldquoLincoln Republicans&rdquo who held the allegiance of blacks.

Blacks quite properly regarded the Democratic Party as bad news for them.

The Democrats remained the &ldquowhite man&rsquos party&rdquo for the rest of the nineteenth century &mdash and indeed through the age of Woodrow Wilson. But in the 1930s a tremendous change was ushered in through the leadership of people like Eleanor Roosevelt. By 1948, the Democrats were beginning to embrace civil rights, and by the sixties, racist southerners were leaving. By the twenty-first century the Democrats, and not the Republicans, would be the party to put the first African American president in office.

And so our parties changed and evolved.

In our own generation, the Republican Party has changed and transformed itself beyond recognition: it has moved in a direction that is overwhelmingly and catastrophically sinister. But perhaps it can still be redeemed.

Millions of Republicans today remain decent, rational, and ethical. The Republican governor of my own state, Maryland, provides a good example of their leadership. He is friendly to those who disagree with him. He prides himself on working cooperatively &ldquoacross the aisle.&rdquo He was just re-elected with strong bipartisan support. His name is Larry Hogan and his counterparts exist all over the country.

But do people like my governor typify the way that the Republican Party is projecting itself to America &mdash and the world?

The Republican Party put Donald Trump in the Oval Office and there is no use mincing any words about what that has meant for millions of us.

Nothing like this has ever happened in America before. We have had some bad presidents, mediocre presidents, crooked presidents, but never before has the White House occupant given us a daily torrent of hallucinatory abuse, spewing insults in every direction. It is almost as if a cave man &mdash a Stone Age man &mdash had been placed in the presidency, a position that requires the utmost tact, the most delicate finesse, the most exquisite poise to calibrate the interests of all the millions of people who depend upon the United States of America for protection.

Protection? It is almost laughable to think about America playing that role any longer in the age of Donald Trump.

He is interested in protecting certain kinds of people &mdash himself, the members of his selfish family, the rich, the powerful, the tyrants like Vladimir Putin who subvert the democratic process. But the weak &mdash the victims of hurricanes in Puerto Rico, the refugees who come here seeking asylum, a haven, a chance to contribute to America &mdash he subjects to a level of abuse that is completely insane. He ridicules, vilifies, persecutes, and demonizes them with a sadistic kind of relish that is almost in itself demonic. And the members of his &ldquobase&rdquo just love it.

Republican leaders in general are terrified of this &ldquobase,&rdquo so they conform and evade their civic duty.

There have been some notable exceptions, of course: conservatives like George F. Will who have left the Republican Party, patriots like the late John McCain who refused to participate in Trumpism, Jeff Flake and some other Republican mavericks who have been honest enough to see Trump for what he is, and some moderates like Susan Collins who dissent in meek and quiet ways.

But the &ldquobase&rdquo and the politicians who stoke its appetites continue to define the Republican agenda.

What is it that motivates this &ldquobase?&rdquo Mindless power lust mostly, along with the hellish satisfaction of cruelty. Domination gets the members of Trump&rsquos base excited, especially when they get to watch the lives of helpless people ruined. The militant so-called &ldquoevangelicals&rdquo within the movement take particular pleasure in turning the principles of the Sermon on the Mount upside down and then feeling self-righteous. Like Milton&rsquos Satan, their motto appears to be &ldquoEvil, be thou my good.&rdquo Roy Moore was their poster boy last year. &ldquoChristians&rdquo they call themselves.

These are the kinds of people who would like to make the social and political rules for the rest of us. Donald Trump is what they want to be themselves. They believe that they and their hero are entitled to order the rest of us around.

They are turning the party whose leaders once portrayed it as the party of wholesome traditional values &mdash of motherhood and apple pie, as it were &mdash into the party of the thug in the alley and the vengeful kick below the belt.

How on earth did such a thing happen?

It took a long time. It started in the nineties when Republicans like Newt Gingrich, Tom DeLay, and Dick Armey tried to nullify the presidency of Bill Clinton with their scorched-earth tactics. The same thing was done to the presidency of Obama by the so-called &ldquoFreedom Caucus&rdquo in the House. Sarah Palin made far-right lunacy a breakthrough force in American politics when John McCain made the dreadful mistake of putting her on his ticket in 2008. It started a contagion: suddenly conspiracy theorists and crackpots of all descriptions were spreading their sickness.

In the Senate, Ted Cruz made the politics of far-right extremism so corrosive that he became a pariah. But that didn&rsquot really matter to him since he represented the force that was taking over the Republican Party. The Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner said that Cruz was &ldquoLucifer incarnate.&rdquo That was after Boehner had decided to resign and give up on politics.

Scores of Republican moderates began to give up on politics &mdash in despair. As they did so, the Koch Brothers poured their endless millions into targeted campaigns to get rid of the moderates who were left.

Fox and Breitbart &ldquoNews&rdquo provided powerful platforms for strange new fanatics like Sean Hannity and Steve Bannon. Meanwhile, the first African American presidency triggered a reflex in thousands of racists, who emerged from deep in the woodwork. The &ldquoalt right&rdquo began a revival of neo-Nazi ideas. They took over from the isolated &ldquoskinheads&rdquo who had pioneered the work in the nineties.

The trend reached critical mass in election year 2016 when a rich degenerate with no inhibitions showed the world what a strategy composed of shameless ranting can do to the electoral process &mdash ranting that continues without intermission and that ramifies day after day through the new technological catastrophe known as &ldquosocial media.&rdquo An eruption of primitivism from nameless underground sources began to contaminate our public life. &ldquoTrolls,&rdquo as people called them, were empowered and began to call the shots.

And so America was given a president who in other circumstances would have had all the credentials for becoming a fascist dictator. He was fenced in quickly by our long-entrenched system of checks and balances, augmented and supported by the patriotic sacrifice of people like James Mattis and John Kelly, who occupied some key power positions to keep them out of the hands of others.

Trump was fenced in, so his explosive frustration and rage &mdash his rage at being unable to act out every brutal whim &mdash was poured into a never-ending torrent of moronic &ldquotweets&rdquo that rubbed salt in the wound of every civilized person in America. And now he has an assistant, an echo, a shadow: after his first press secretary left, that job was taken over by the zombie who is currently the mouthpiece of Trump: Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who indignantly defends the indefensible.

And the rest of us? For two miserable years we have simply prayed for relief &mdash prayed that the incubus lurking in the White House will shut his stupid mouth for a while so the nation can heal.

We have seethed and suffered for two wretched years, but at last the Republicans have lost control of the House. So impeachment is now a real option. The Senate, of course, will refuse to convict &mdash unless the Mueller probe reveals such a shocking abundance of criminality (or treason, if Trump&rsquos secret deals with Vladimir Putin crossed a fundamental line) that even the most amoral of the Republican power brokers, the ruthless Mitch McConnell for example, will see the advantage of dumping this berserker.

If Trump can be impeached, removed, and sent to prison &mdash yeah, lock him up &mdash what future awaits the Republicans?

The decent members of the party &mdash and there are millions of them, ordinary people who refuse to believe that such degeneration can happen in a party that they and their families have supported over so many years &mdash may awaken, rub their eyes, and see that only people like themselves can give us back the party of Abraham Lincoln, of Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight Eisenhower.

Do they feel powerless? If so, they must begin to consider all the ways in which decent people can empower themselves.

Stranger things have happened in America. But the cleansing of the once-magnificent Republican Party may take a long time.


September 15, 2010

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A hundred years ago, any soapbox orator who called for women’s suffrage, laws protecting the environment, an end to lynching, workers’ right to form unions, a progressive income tax, a federal minimum wage, old-age insurance, the eight-hour workday and government-subsidized healthcare would be considered an impractical utopian dreamer or a dangerous socialist. Now we take these ideas for granted. The radical ideas of one generation are often the common sense of the next. When that happens, give credit to the activists and movements that fought to take those ideas from the margins to the mainstream. We all stand on the shoulders of earlier generations of radicals and reformers who challenged the status quo of their day.

Unfortunately, most Americans know little of this progressive history. It isn’t taught in most high schools. You can’t find it on the major television networks or even on the History Channel. Indeed, our history is under siege. In popular media, the most persistent interpreter of America’s radical past is Glenn Beck, who teaches viewers a wildly inaccurate history of unions, civil rights and the American left. Beck argues, for example, that the civil rights movement "has been perverted and distorted" by people claiming that Martin Luther King Jr. supported "redistribution of wealth." In fact, King did call for a "radical redistribution of economic power." Using his famous chalkboard, Beck draws connections between various people and organizations, and defines them as radicals, Marxists, socialists, revolutionaries, leftists, progressives or social justice activists&mdashall of which leads inexorably to Barack Obama. Drawing on writings by conspiracy theorists and white supremacists, Beck presents a misleading version of America’s radical family tree.

Related Article

Slide Show: The Fifty Most Influential Progressives of the Twentieth Century

Many historians, including Howard Zinn in his classic A People’s History of the United States and Eric Foner in The Story of American Freedom, have chronicled the story of America’s utopians, radicals and reformers. Every generation needs to retell this story, reinterpret it and use it to help shape the present and future. Unless Americans know this history, they’ll have little understanding of how far we’ve come, how we got here and how progress was made by a combination of grassroots movements and reformers.

Progressive change happens from the bottom up, as Zinn argued. But movements need leaders as well as rank-and-file activists. Movement leaders make strategic choices that help win victories. These choices involve mobilizing people, picking and framing issues, training new leaders, identifying opportunities, conducting research, recruiting allies, using the media, negotiating with opponents and deciding when to engage in protest and civil disobedience, lobbying, voting and other strategies.

This list includes fifty people&mdashlisted chronologically in terms of their early important accomplishments&mdashwho helped change America in a more progressive direction during the twentieth century by organizing movements, pushing for radical reforms and popularizing progressive ideas. They are not equally famous, but they are all leaders who spurred others to action. Most were not single-issue activists but were involved in broad crusades for economic and social justice, revealing the many connections among different movements across generations. Most were organizers and activists, but the list includes academics, lawyers and Supreme Court justices, artists and musicians who also played important roles in key movements.

The list includes people who spent most of their lives as activists for change&mdashlong-distance runners, not sprinters. Many of them were born in the nineteenth century but gained prominence in the twentieth. Some important activists who lived into the twentieth century but whose major achievements occurred in the previous century&mdashsuch as labor organizer Mary Harris "Mother" Jones environmentalist John Muir African-American journalist, feminist and anti-lynching crusader Ida B. Wells agrarian Populist leader Mary Lease and Knights of Labor leader Terence Powderly&mdashare not included.

Although many politicians were important allies of progressive movements&mdashincluding Senator (and Governor) Robert La Follette Senators Robert Wagner, Paul Douglas and Paul Wellstone Congress members Victor Berger, Jeannette Rankin, Vito Marcantonio, Bella Abzug and Phil Burton Mayors Tom Johnson, Fiorello LaGuardia and Harold Washington as well as Presidents Franklin Roosevelt and (for his domestic social programs) Lyndon Johnson&mdashthe list excludes elected officials. (Eugene Debs, Harvey Milk and Tom Hayden, who were elected to public office, are included because they made their reputations primarily as activists.)

A few of the people on the list expressed views, at some point in their lives, that progressives consider objectionable, such as Margaret Sanger’s endorsement of eugenics, Earl Warren’s support for rounding up Japanese-Americans during World War II, Bayard Rustin’s support for the Vietnam War and Jackie Robinson’s attack on Paul Robeson. They made mistakes, which may be understandable in historical context, but which should be acknowledged as part of their lives and times.

There is, of course, much room for dispute about who belongs on the list&mdashwho is missing and who might be replaced. This listing is simply a starting point for further debate and discussion, which we invite you to join on The Nation‘s website.

1.&enspEugene Debs (1855&ndash1926). Through his leadership of the labor movement, his five campaigns as a Socialist candidate for president and his spellbinding and brilliant oratory, Debs popularized ideas about civil liberties, workers’ rights, peace and justice, and government regulation of big business. In 1893 he organized one of the nation’s first industrial unions, the American Railway Union, to unite all workers within one industry, and he led the Pullman Strike of 1894. He was elected city clerk of Terre Haute, Indiana, and served in the Indiana State Assembly in 1884. In 1900, 1904, 1908, 1912 and 1920, Debs ran for president on the Socialist Party ticket. His speeches and writing influenced popular opinion and the platforms of Democratic and Republican candidates. His 1920 campaign took place while he was in Atlanta’s federal prison for opposing World War I he won nearly 1 million votes.

2.&enspJane Addams (1860&ndash1935) pioneered the settlement house movement and was an important Progressive Era urban reformer, the "mother" of American social work, a founder of the NAACP, a champion of women’s suffrage, an antiwar crusader and winner of the 1931 Nobel Peace Prize. Addams carved out a new way for women to become influential in public affairs. In 1889 she and her college friend Ellen Gates Starr (1859&ndash1940) founded Hull House in Chicago’s immigrant slums, inspired by similar efforts she had seen in England. Initially the women at Hull House took care of children, nursed the sick and offered kindergarten and evening classes for immigrant adults. They then added an art gallery, public kitchen, gym, swimming pool, coffeehouse, cooperative boarding club for girls, book bindery, art studio, music school, drama group, circulating library and employment bureau. Hull House soon became a hub of social activism around labor and immigrants’ rights, crusades against political corruption, slum housing, unsafe workplaces and child labor. It was the inspiration for other settlement houses in cities across the country.

3.&enspLouis Brandeis (1856&ndash1941) was a crusading lawyer and Supreme Court justice. Appointed by Woodrow Wilson in 1916, he served until 1939. His writings and activism changed American attitudes and law about the need to restrain corporate power, outlined in his book Other People’s Money and How the Bankers Use It (1914). As a "people’s lawyer" in Boston, he fought railroad monopolies, defended labor laws and helped create policies to address poverty&mdashan approach that is now called public interest law. He pioneered the use of expert testimony (called the Brandeis Brief) in court cases, paving the way for an approach to the law that relied on empirical evidence. In 1908 he represented the state of Oregon in Muller v. Oregon before the Supreme Court. The issue was whether a state could limit the hours that female workers could work, which employers argued was an infringement on the "freedom of contract" between employers and their employees. His legal argument was relatively short, but he included more than 100 pages of documentation, including reports from social workers, doctors, factory inspectors and other experts, which showed that working long hours destroyed women’s health and well-being. Brandeis won the case and changed the field of litigation.

4.&enspFlorence Kelley (1859&ndash1932) was a leading organizer against sweatshops and an advocate for children’s rights, the minimum wage and the eight-hour workday. Part of the first generation of women to attend college, she joined the Intercollegiate Socialist Society, was active in women’s suffrage and was a founder of the NAACP. She worked at Hull House from 1891 to 1899 and the Henry Street Settlement in New York City from 1899 to 1926. In 1893 Governor John Altgeld appointed her Illinois’s first chief factory inspector, a position she used to expose abusive working conditions, especially for children. She successfully lobbied for the creation of the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics so that reformers would have adequate information about the condition of workers. In 1908 she gathered sociological and medical evidence for Muller v. Oregon and in 1917 gathered similar information for Bunting v. Oregon to make the case for an eight-hour workday.

5.&enspJohn Dewey (1859&ndash1952). A philosopher, psychologist and education reformer, Dewey was an engaged activist, a prolific writer for popular magazines and the leading exemplar of American pragmatism. He founded the "laboratory school" at the University of Chicago to put his ideas about progressive education into practice. His ideas about "experiential learning" influenced several generations of educators. An early supporter of teachers’ unions and academic freedom, he spoke out and organized against efforts to restrict freedom of ideas, helped found the NAACP and supported women’s suffrage.

6.&enspLincoln Steffens (1866&ndash1936). As a writer and editor for McClure‘s magazine and later for The American Magazine, he (along with colleagues Ida Tarbell and Ray Stannard Baker) was an influential practitioner of "muckraking" journalism. In The Shame of the Cities (1904), he exposed corruption by local governments, which took advantage of poor immigrants and colluded with business power brokers. After visiting the Soviet Union in 1919, he became an enthusiastic supporter of the Russian Revolution, famously proclaiming, "I have been over into the future, and it works." He later soured on Soviet-style communism.

7.&enspW.E.B. Du Bois (1868&ndash1963) was a civil rights activist, sociologist, historian, polemicist and editor. He was the first African-American to receive a PhD from Harvard and a founder of the NAACP. In his studies and books he challenged America’s ideas about race and helped lead the early crusade for civil rights. Du Bois’s intellectual and political battles with Booker T. Washington shaped the ongoing debate about the nature of racism and the struggle for racial justice, summarized in his book The Souls of Black Folk (1903), in which he described blacks’ "double consciousness" and famously predicted, "The problem of the twentieth century is the problem of the color line." From 1910 to 1934 he served as editor of The Crisis, the NAACP’s monthly magazine, which became a highly visible and often controversial forum for criticism of white racism, lynching and segregation, and for information about the status of black Americans. It gave exposure to many young African-American writers, poets and agitators. Du Bois was a socialist, although he often disagreed with the party, particularly on matters of race. His writings had enormous influence on civil rights activists and on the burgeoning fields of black history and black studies.

8.&enspUpton Sinclair (1878&ndash1968). A Pulitzer Prize&ndashwinning author, Sinclair wrote ninety books, most of which were novels that exposed social injustice or studies of powerful institutions (including religion, the press and oil companies). His 1906 novel The Jungle, which vividly described awful conditions in the meatpacking industry, caused a public uproar that led to passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act and the Meat Inspection Act. In 1934, in the depths of the Depression, he left the Socialist Party and won the Democratic nomination for governor of California on a platform to "end poverty in California." The state’s powerful agricultural, oil and media industries mounted an expensive negative campaign to attack Sinclair and help elect his Republican opponent. Sinclair lost, but his campaign mobilized millions of voters, helped push FDR to the left and changed California politics for the next several decades.

9.&enspMargaret Sanger (1879&ndash1966) worked as a nurse among poor women on New York City’s Lower East Side and became an advocate for women’s health. In 1912 she gave up nursing and dedicated herself to the distribution of information about birth control (a term she’s credited with inventing), risking imprisonment for violating the Comstock Act, which forbade distribution of birth control devices or information. She wrote articles on health for the Socialist Party paper The Call and wrote several books, including What Every Girl Should Know (1916) and What Every Mother Should Know (1916). In 1921 she founded the American Birth Control League, which eventually became Planned Parenthood. In 1916 she set up the first birth control clinic in the United States, and the following year she was arrested for "creating a public nuisance." Her activism helped change public opinion and led to changes in laws giving doctors the right to give birth control advice (and later, birth control devices) to patients.

10.&enspCharlotte Perkins Gilman (1860&ndash1935) was a pathbreaking feminist, humanist and socialist, whose lectures and writing challenged the dominant ideas about women’s role in society and helped shape the movement for women’s suffrage and rights. After attending her first suffrage convention, in 1886, she began writing a column on suffrage for The People. She addressed the 1896 conference of the National American Woman Suffrage Association in Washington and testified for suffrage before Congress. She called women "subcitizens" and their disenfranchisement "arbitrary, unjust, unwise." Her semiautobiographical short story "The Yellow Wallpaper" (1892) described a woman who suffers a mental breakdown resulting from a "rest cure"&mdashprescribed by her physician husband&mdashof complete long-term isolation in her bedroom. In many books, including Women and Economics (1898), The Home (1903), Human Work (1904) and The Man-Made World (1911), she argued that women would be equal to men only when they were economically independent, and she encouraged women to work outside the home and for men and women to share housework. She believed that housekeeping, cooking and childcare should be professionalized. Girls and boys, she thought, should be raised with the same clothes, toys and expectations. Gilman’s efforts complemented the activism of feminists like Alice Stokes Paul (1885&ndash1977), who organized pickets, parades and hunger strikes to win passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920.

11.&enspRoger Baldwin (1884&ndash1981). A pacifist and social activist, he was a founder, in 1917, of the American Civil Liberties Union (originally the National Civil Liberties Bureau), created to defend the rights of antiwar conscientious objectors, and served as its executive director until 1950. Under his leadership the ACLU litigated many landmark cases, including the Scopes Trial, the Sacco and Vanzetti murder trial and the challenge to the ban on James Joyce’s Ulysses.

12.&enspFrances Perkins (1880&ndash1965) was labor secretary for the first twelve years of Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency and the first woman to hold a cabinet post. Within FDR’s inner circle she advocated for Social Security, the minimum wage, workers’ right to unionize and other New Deal economic reforms. Inspired by Jacob Riis’s exposé of New York’s slums, How the Other Half Lives, and by reformer Florence Kelley, she joined the settlement house movement and worked for the New York Consumers’ League, lobbying the state legislature to limit the workweek for women and children to fifty-four hours. She marched in suffrage parades and gave street-corner speeches in favor of women’s suffrage. She joined the Socialist Party but soon switched to the Democratic Party. In 1918 New York Governor Al Smith appointed her to the state’s Industrial Commission, and in 1929 Governor Franklin Roosevelt appointed her the state’s industrial commissioner. She expanded factory investigations, reduced the workweek for women to forty-eight hours and championed minimum wage and unemployment insurance laws, all ideas she took to Washington when she joined FDR’s cabinet.

13.&enspJohn L. Lewis (1880&ndash1969). Joining his father as a miner at 16, Lewis became active in the United Mine Workers of America, working his way up to president, a post he held from 1920 to 1960. Under Lewis the UMWA committed money and staff to organizing drives in the rubber, auto and steel industries, helping to create a national wave of industrial unionism. In 1938 Lewis was elected president of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) at its founding convention and became a major public face of the nation’s growing and increasingly militant labor movement. In 1948 the UMWA won a historic agreement with coal companies establishing medical and pension benefits for miners, financed in part by a royalty on every ton of coal mined.

14.&enspEleanor Roosevelt (1884&ndash1962) was born to privilege but became one of the most visible social activists of her generation. She used her prominence as first lady to advocate for reform, giving visibility to movements for workers’ rights, women’s rights and civil rights and pushing FDR and his advisers to support progressive legislation. She held press conferences and voiced her opinions in radio broadcasts and a regular newspaper column. She visited coal mines, slums and schools to draw attention to the plight of the disadvantaged and to lobby for reform laws. Her resignation from the Daughters of the American Revolution&mdashto protest its ban on black singer Marian Anderson performing at Constitution Hall&mdashmade a controversial and powerful statement for racial justice. In 1948, as a delegate to the United Nations, she helped draft the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which affirmed equality for all people regardless of race, creed or color.

15.&enspNorman Thomas (1884&ndash1968) was America’s most visible socialist from the 1930s through the 󈧶s. Ordained a Presbyterian minister in 1911, he became a crusader for the "social gospel" as the leader of several churches and head of a settlement house in Harlem. His pacifism and opposition to World War I led him to join the Socialist Party. After writing about reform issues for Christian publications, he joined The Nation as associate editor. In 1922 he became co-director of the League for Industrial Democracy and was a founder of the National Civil Liberties Bureau. He ran for governor, mayor, State Senate and City Council on the Socialist Party ticket. Starting in 1928 he ran for president six times, gaining a public voice as an articulate national "conscience" and spokesman for democratic socialism. Thomas was one of the few public figures to oppose the internment of Japanese-Americans. He helped start the racially integrated Southern Farmers Tenants Union, campaigned for labor rights, birth control and allowing Jewish victims of Nazism to enter the United States. At his eightieth birthday celebration, in 1964, he received plaudits from Martin Luther King Jr., Chief Justice Earl Warren and Vice President-elect Hubert Humphrey. An early critic of the Vietnam War, he gave a famous antiwar speech in 1968, proclaiming, "I come to cleanse the American flag, not burn it."

16.&enspA.J. Muste (1885&ndash1967). Like Thomas, Muste graduated from Union Theological Seminary. He began his career as a Dutch Reformed Church minister but soon became a Quaker as well as a leading pacifist, antiwar activist, socialist and union organizer. In the early 1920s he led Brookwood Labor College, a training center for union activists, and during the 1930s he led several key sit-downs. From 1940 to 1953 he headed the religious pacifist organization Fellowship of Reconciliation and helped found the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), a militant civil rights group that pioneered the use of civil disobedience and trained many movement activists. In the 1960s he led delegations of pacifists and religious leaders to Saigon and Hanoi to try to end the war in Vietnam.

17.&enspSidney Hillman (1887&ndash1946). An immigrant from Lithuania, garment worker in Chicago and lifelong socialist, Hillman led successful strikes and organizing drives, became a union leader and served as president of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America from 1914 to 1946. By 1920 the union had contracts with 85 percent of the nation’s garment manufacturers (representing some 177,000 workers) and had reduced the workweek to forty-four hours. In the 1920s Hillman’s ACWA pioneered "social unionism," including union-sponsored co-op housing, unemployment insurance for union members and a bank to make loans to members and businesses with union contracts. One of the founders, in 1935, of the CIO (and later its vice president), Hillman became an influential adviser to FDR and Senator Robert Wagner, helping draft laws for workers’ rights. As chair of the CIO’s first political action committee in 1943, he mobilized union voters in election campaigns across the country, which became the model for building an electoral organization among union members.

18.&enspHenry Wallace (1888&ndash1965). As FDR’s agriculture secretary (1933&ndash40) and then vice president (1940&ndash44), Wallace played a central role in pushing for progressive New Deal initiatives, especially policies to help struggling farmers. He was a crusading publisher of Wallaces’ Farmer magazine and an Iowa farmer who pioneered the use of high-yield strains of corn. Wallace became increasingly radical and outspoken, and FDR dumped him as vice president in 1944. After serving as editor of The New Republic, he made an unsuccessful run for president in 1948 on the Progressive Party ticket, opposing racial segregation, the cold war and Truman’s tepid support for unions. Wallace was abandoned by many liberals, who thought his platform was too radical and who worried that his campaign would take enough votes away from Truman to turn the White House over to the Republicans. He garnered less than 2 percent of the popular vote.

19.&enspA. Philip Randolph (1889&ndash1979) founded the first African-American labor union, the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, in the 1920s. A leading socialist writer, orator and civil rights pioneer, he built bridges between the civil rights and labor movements. He edited the socialist newspaper The Messenger. In an early editorial, Randolph wrote: "The history of the labor movement in America proves that the employing classes recognize no race lines. They will exploit a White man as readily as a Black man…. They will exploit any race or class in order to make profits. The combination of Black and White workers will be a powerful lesson to the capitalists of the solidarity of labor." Randolph helped bring African-Americans into the labor movement while also criticizing union leaders for excluding blacks. In 1941, as the country was gearing up for war, Randolph threatened to organize a march on Washington to protest blacks’ exclusion from well-paid defense industry jobs. The strategy worked. In June 1941 FDR signed an executive order that called for an end to discrimination in defense plant jobs, America’s first "fair employment practices" reform. Randolph led the 1963 March on Washington, in which more than 250,000 Americans joined together under the slogan "Jobs and Freedom."

20.&enspWalter Reuther (1907&ndash70) rose from the factory floor to help build the United Auto Workers into a major force in the auto industry, the labor movement and the left wing of the Democratic Party. He helped shape the modern labor movement, which created the first mass middle class. He led the 1937 sit-down at the General Motors factory in Flint, Michigan, a major turning point in labor history. After World War II he pushed for a large-scale conversion of the nation’s industrial might to promote peace and full employment. In 1946 he led a 116-day strike against GM, calling for a 30 percent wage increase without an increase in the retail price of cars and challenged GM to "open its books." In 1948 GM agreed to a historic contract tying wage raises to the general cost-of-living and productivity increases. During his term as UAW president, from 1946 until his death in 1970, the union grew to more than 1.5 million members and negotiated model grievance procedures, safety and health provisions, pensions, health benefits and "supplemental unemployment benefits" that lifted union members into the middle class and helped cushion the hardships of economic booms and busts. In the 1960s he led the labor movement’s support for civil rights, was an early opponent of the Vietnam War and an ally of Cesar Chavez’s effort to organize migrant farmworkers. Reuther became president of the CIO in 1952 and helped negotiate the 1955 merger of the AFL and CIO.

21.&enspPaul Robeson (1898&ndash1976) was perhaps the most all-around talented American of the twentieth century. He was an internationally renowned concert singer, actor, college football star and professional athlete, writer, linguist (he sang in twenty-five languages), scholar, orator, lawyer and activist in the civil rights, union and peace movements. Though he was one of the century’s most famous figures, his name was virtually erased from memory by government persecution during the McCarthy era. The son of a runaway slave, Robeson won a four-year academic scholarship to Rutgers, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and graduated as valedictorian. Despite violence and racism from teammates, he won fifteen varsity letters in sports (baseball, football, basketball and track) and was twice named to the All-American Football Team. He attended Columbia Law School, then took a job with a law firm but quit when a white secretary refused to take dictation from him. He never practiced law again. In London, Robeson earned international acclaim for his lead role in Othello (1944). He starred in many plays and musicals and made eleven films, many with political themes. He promoted African independence, labor unions, friendship between the United States and the Soviet Union, African-American culture, civil liberties and Jewish refugees fleeing Hitler’s Germany. In 1945 he headed an organization that challenged Truman to support an antilynching law. Because of his political views, his performances were constantly harassed. In the late 1940s he was blacklisted. Most of his concerts were canceled, and his passport was revoked in 1950.

22.&enspSaul Alinsky (1909&ndash72) is known as the founder of modern community organizing. He taught Americans, especially the urban poor and working class, how to organize to improve conditions in their communities. Trained as a criminologist at the University of Chicago, he realized that criminal behavior was a symptom of poverty and powerlessness. In 1939, to improve living conditions in a Chicago slum near the stockyards, he created the Back of the Yards Neighborhood Council, an "organization of organizations" comprising unions, youth groups, small businesses, block clubs and the Catholic Church. It engaged in pickets, strikes and boycotts to improve neighborhood conditions. His Industrial Areas Foundation trained organizers (including Cesar Chavez) and built grassroots groups in different cities, challenging local political bosses and corporations. He codified his organizing ideas in two books&mdashReveille for Radicals (1946) and Rules for Radicals (1971)&mdashwhich influenced several generations of progressive movements and activists.

23.&enspWoody Guthrie (1912&ndash67), the legendary songwriter and folk singer, is best known for "This Land Is Your Land," considered America’s alternative national anthem. He traveled from his native Oklahoma across the nation, writing songs about migrant workers, union struggles, government public works projects and the country’s natural beauty, including "I Ain’t Got No Home," "Tom Joad," "So Long It’s Been Good to Know Yuh," "Roll on Columbia," "Pastures of Plenty," "Grand Coulee Dam" and "Deportee." As a member of the Almanac Singers, Guthrie wrote and performed protest songs on behalf of unions and radical organizations. Many of his songs are still recorded by other artists and have influenced generations of performers, including Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Bruce Springsteen.

24.&enspEarl Warren (1891&ndash1974), chief justice from 1953 to 1969, took the Supreme Court in an unprecedented liberal direction. With the help of progressive justices William O. Douglass and William J. Brennan, the Warren Court dramatically expanded civil rights and civil liberties. The Republican Warren used his considerable political skills to guarantee that the 1954 ruling in Brown v. Board of Education was unanimous. In another landmark case, Gideon v. Wainwright (1963), the Warren Court ruled that courts are required to provide attorneys for defendants in criminal cases who cannot afford their own lawyers. In New York Times Co. v. Sullivan (1964), the Court significantly expanded free speech by requiring proof of "actual malice" in libel suits against public figures. The 1965 Griswold v. Connecticut decision established the right to privacy and laid the groundwork for Roe v. Wade (1973). In Miranda v. Arizona (1966), the Court ruled that detained criminal suspects, prior to police questioning, must be informed of their constitutional right to an attorney and against self-incrimination. After serving as Alameda County district attorney, Warren was elected California’s attorney general in 1938 and four years later was elected governor, serving until 1953. In that post he approved the rounding up of Japanese-Americans into detention camps. In 1948 he was the Republican Party’s unsuccessful vice presidential candidate on a ticket with Thomas Dewey. When Eisenhower nominated Warren to the Supreme Court, he thought he was appointing a conservative jurist and later reportedly said that it was the "biggest damn fool mistake" he’d ever made.

25.&enspElla Baker (1903&ndash86). After graduating from North Carolina’s Shaw University in 1927 as valedictorian, Baker began a lifelong career as a social activist. She served as a mentor to several generations of civil rights activists without drawing much attention to herself. In 1940 she became an organizer for the NAACP, traveling to many small towns and big cities across the South and developing a network of activists. In 1957 Baker moved to Atlanta to help Martin Luther King Jr. organize the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), running a voter registration campaign. After black college students organized a sit-in at the Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, on February 1, 1960, Baker left the SCLC to help the students spread the sit-in movement. That April she helped them create the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) at a conference at her alma mater.

26.&enspI.F. Stone (1907&ndash89) was an investigative journalist whose persistent research uncovered government corruption and wrongdoing. After a career as a reporter for several daily newspapers (including PM, a left-wing newspaper in New York City), he was Washington editor of The Nation from 1940 to 1946. In 1953, at the height of McCarthyism, he started I.F. Stone’s Weekly, keeping the newsletter going until 1971. He was under constant attack during the cold war for his opposition to Senator Joseph McCarthy and for his reporting about the excesses of the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover. Stone was one of a handful of journalists who challenged LBJ’s claim that the North Vietnamese had attacked a US destroyer in the Tonkin Gulf, which had given the president an excuse to go to war in Vietnam. He wrote fifteen books, including, at age 81, The Trial of Socrates (1988). He inspired generations of muckraking reporters.

27.&enspJackie Robinson (1919&ndash72). A four-sport athletic star in high school in Pasadena and then at the University of California, Los Angeles, Robinson played in the Negro Leagues before becoming the first African-American to play in the major leagues, in 1947. He endured physical and verbal abuse on and off the field, showing remarkable courage, while helping pave the way for the civil rights movement. Martin Luther King Jr. said to Don Newcombe, Robinson’s teammate, "You, Jackie and Roy [Campanella] will never know how easy you made it for me to do my job." During World War II Robinson faced a court-martial for refusing to move on a segregated bus outside a military base in Texas. As Rookie of the Year in 1947, Most Valuable Player in 1949 and a six-time All-Star, he led the Brooklyn Dodgers to several pennants. During and after his playing days, he joined picket lines and marches, wrote a newspaper column that attacked racism and raised funds for the NAACP. In testimony before Congress while still a player, he condemned America’s racism but also criticized Paul Robeson’s radicalism, a remark he later said he regretted.

28.&enspRachel Carson (1907&ndash64) was a marine biologist and nature writer who helped inspire the modern environmental movement, especially with her 1962 book, Silent Spring. The book exposed the dangers of synthetic pesticides and led to a nationwide ban on DDT and other pesticides. The movement led to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency in 1970 and many environmental laws. She laid the groundwork for the growing consciousness of humankind’s stewardship of the planet and a new radical thinking about the environment, most prominently by Barry Commoner, another biologist, whose first books focused on the dangers of nuclear testing and whose The Closing Circle (1971) examined the link between capitalism’s thirst for growth and environmental dangers.

29.&enspThurgood Marshall (1908&ndash93) was a leading civil rights lawyer and the first black Supreme Court justice, appointed by LBJ in 1967. As NAACP chief counsel, he led the battle in the courts for civil rights despite repressive conditions and a limited budget. He won his first Supreme Court case, Chambers v. Florida, in 1940 at age 32 and won twenty-nine out of the thirty-two cases he argued before the Court. Many of them were landmark decisions that helped dismantle segregation, including Smith v. Allwright (1944), Shelley v. Kraemer (1948), Sweatt v. Painter (1950) and McLaurin v. Oklahoma State Regents (1950). His most famous legal victory was Brown v. Board of Education (1954), in which the Court ruled that the "separate but equal" doctrine, established by Plessy v. Ferguson, violated the Constitution. On the Supreme Court he was an outspoken advocate for free speech and civil rights.

30.&enspHarry Hay (1912&ndash2002) co-founded America’s first major gay rights organization in 1950. Educated at Stanford, Hay became a Communist Party member in Los Angeles in the 1930s and 󈧬s but left in 1951 because it did not welcome his homosexuality. In December 1950 he organized the first semipublic homosexual discussion group, which soon became the Mattachine Society, known then as a "homophile" group. In 1952 the group led the defense of Dale Jennings, a gay man arrested in an entrapment case. The following year he helped start ONE, a magazine addressing homosexual rights. Hay later was often at odds with younger gay activists who wanted to join the political and cultural mainstream.

31.&enspThe Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. (1929&ndash68) helped change America’s conscience, not only about civil rights but also about economic justice, poverty and war. As an inexperienced young pastor in Montgomery, Alabama, King was reluctantly thrust into the leadership of the bus boycott. During the 382-day boycott, King was arrested and abused and his home was bombed, but he emerged as a national figure and honed his leadership skills. In 1957 he helped launch the SCLC to spread the civil rights crusade to other cities. He helped lead local campaigns in Selma, Birmingham and other cities, and sought to keep the fractious civil rights movement together, including the NAACP, Urban League, SNCC, CORE and SCLC. Between 1957 and 1968 King traveled more than 6 million miles, spoke more than 2,500 times and was arrested at least twenty times while preaching the gospel of nonviolence. Today we view King as something of a saint his birthday is a national holiday and his name adorns schools and street signs. But in his day the establishment considered King a dangerous troublemaker. He was harassed by the FBI and vilified in the media. The struggle for civil rights radicalized him into a fighter for economic and social justice. During the 1960s King became increasingly committed to building bridges between the civil rights and labor movements. He was in Memphis in 1968 to support striking sanitation workers when he was assassinated. In 1964, at 35, King was the youngest man to have received the Nobel Peace Prize. Some civil rights activists worried that his opposition to the Vietnam War, announced in 1967, would create a backlash against civil rights but instead it helped turn the tide of public opinion against the war.

32.&enspBayard Rustin (1912&ndash87) was one of the nation’s most talented organizers, typically working behind the scenes as an aide to Muste, Randolph and King, in large part because they feared that his homosexuality would stigmatize their causes and organizations. Randolph appointed him to lead the youth wing of the 1941 March on Washington movement. Rustin was upset when Randolph called off the march after FDR issued an executive order banning racial discrimination in the defense industries. Rustin then began a series of organizing jobs in the peace movement, honing his skills with the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the American Friends Service Committee, the Socialist Party and the War Resisters League. In 1947 he began organizing a series of nonviolent acts of civil disobedience in the South and border states to provoke a challenge to Jim Crow practices in interstate transportation. Between 1947 and 1952 Rustin traveled to India and Africa to learn more about nonviolence and the Gandhian independence movement. Rustin spent time in Montgomery and Birmingham advising King about nonviolent tactics. Coming full circle, Randolph named him chief organizer of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, diplomatically bringing together fractious civil rights leaders and organizations.

33.&enspC. Wright Mills (1916&ndash62). In the 1950s, when most social scientists were celebrating America’s postwar prosperity, Mills, a Columbia University sociologist, was warning about the dangers of the concentration of wealth and power in what he called, in his 1956 book of the same name, "the power elite." He also warned about the US attitude toward Cuba in Listen, Yankee. He was shunned by most fellow sociologists, but his ideas&mdashoutlined in books, scholarly journals and many magazine articles&mdashbecame popular among 1960s activists. Mills’s then-radical notion that big business, the military and government can be too closely connected is now conventional wisdom.

34.&enspJohn Kenneth Galbraith (1908&ndash2006) was the century’s leading progressive American economist. His many books and articles helped popularize Keynesian ideas, especially The Affluent Society (1958), which coined the title phrase but also warned about the widening gap between private wealth and public squalor. In The New Industrial State (1967), the Harvard professor criticized the concentration of corporate power and recommended stronger government regulations. Active in politics, he served in the administrations of FDR, Truman, JFK and LBJ, including as Kennedy’s ambassador to India.

35.&enspDavid Brower (1912&ndash2000) was a pioneer of the modern environmental movement. Brower began his career as a world-class mountaineer. He served as the Sierra Club’s first executive director from 1952 to 1969, expanding the group’s membership from 7,000 to 77,000 members. He led campaigns to establish ten new national parks and seashores and to stop dams in Dinosaur National Monument and Grand Canyon National Park. He was instrumental in gaining passage of the Wilderness Act of 1964, which protects millions of acres of public lands in pristine condition. He founded Friends of the Earth and then the League of Conservation Voters, mobilizing environmentalists for political action. In 1982 he founded Earth Island Institute to support environmental projects around the world.

36.&enspPete Seeger (1919&ndash) wrote or popularized "We Shall Overcome," "Turn, Turn, Turn," "If I Had a Hammer," "Guantanamera," "Wimoweh," "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" and other songs that have inspired people to take action. On his own and as a member of the Almanac Singers and the Weavers (which had several top-selling hits, including "Good Night, Irene," despite their opposition to commercialism), Seeger sang for unions, civil rights and antiwar groups, and other human rights causes in the United States and around the world. He introduced Americans to the music of other cultures and catalyzed the "folk revival" of the late 1950s and 󈨀s. He was a founder of the Newport Folk Festival and Sing Out! magazine. He was also an environmental pioneer, founding the sloop Clearwater and raising consciousness and money to push government to clean up the Hudson River and other waterways.

37.&enspMalcolm X (1925&ndash65). A onetime street hustler involved in drugs, prostitution and gambling, Malcolm Little converted to Islam while in prison and, upon his release, became a leading minister of the Nation of Islam, a forceful advocate for black pride and a harsh critic of white racism. As Malcolm X, he inspired the Black Power movement, which competed with the integrationist wing of the civil rights movement for the loyalty of African-Americans, and wrote (with Alex Haley) the bestselling The Autobiography of Malcolm X. His father&mdashan outspoken Baptist preacher and avid supporter of Black Nationalist leader Marcus Garvey&mdashfaced death threats from the white supremacist organization Black Legion and was killed in 1931. As a popular minister for the Nation of Islam, Malcolm X preached a form of black separatism and self-help. One of his recruits was boxer Muhammad Ali. In 1964, disillusioned by Nation of Islam leader Elijah Muhammad’s behavior, Malcolm X left the organization. That year, he traveled to Mecca and, in his words, met "all races, all colors, blue-eyed blondes to black-skinned Africans in true brotherhood!" When he returned to the United States he had a new view of racial integration. He was shot and killed on February 21, 1965, after giving a speech in Manhattan’s Audubon Ballroom. Many suspect that Elijah Muhammad had a hand in his murder.

38.&enspBetty Friedan (1921&ndash2006). Her book The Feminine Mystique (1963) helped change American attitudes toward women’s equality, popularized the phrase "sexism" and catalyzed the modern feminist movement. In the 1940s and 1950s she worked as a left-wing labor journalist before focusing her writing and activism on women’s rights. She co-founded the National Organization for Women in 1966 and the National Women’s Political Caucus (along with Gloria Steinem, Fannie Lou Hamer, Bella Abzug and Shirley Chisholm) in 1971.

39.&enspMichael Harrington (1928&ndash89). His book The Other America (1962) exposed Americans to the reality of poverty in their midst. In his 20s, Harrington joined Dorothy Day’s Catholic Workers movement, lived among the poor at the Catholic Worker house and edited the Catholic Worker from 1951 to 1953. The Other America catapulted Harrington into the national spotlight. He became an adviser to LBJ’s "War on Poverty" and a popular lecturer on college campuses, at union halls and academic conferences and before religious congregations. Inheriting Norman Thomas’s mantle, he was America’s leading socialist thinker, writer and speaker for four decades, providing ideas to King, Reuther, Robert and Ted Kennedy, and other leaders. Harrington wrote fifteen other books on social issues and helped build bridges between left intellectuals and academics and the civil rights and labor movements. He encouraged activists to promote "the left wing of the possible." He founded Democratic Socialists of America, which remains the nation’s largest socialist organization.

40.&enspCesar Chavez (1927&ndash93). Building on his experiences as a farmworker and community organizer in the barrios of Oakland and Los Angeles, Chavez did what many thought impossible&mdashorganize the most vulnerable Americans, immigrant farmworkers, into a successful union, improving conditions for California’s lettuce and grape pickers. Founded in the 1960s, the United Farm Workers pioneered the use of consumer boycotts, enlisting other unions, churches and students to join in a nationwide boycott of nonunion grapes, wine and lettuce. Chavez led demonstrations, voter registration drives, fasts, boycotts and other nonviolent protests to gain public support. The UFW won a campaign to enact California’s Agricultural Labor Relations Act, which Governor Jerry Brown signed into law in 1975, giving farmworkers collective bargaining rights they lacked (and still lack) under federal labor law. The UFW inspired and trained several generations of organizers who remain active in today’s progressive movement.

41.&enspHarvey Milk (1930&ndash78) was elected to San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors in 1977, making him the first openly gay elected official in California and the most visible gay politician in the country. He moved to San Francisco in 1972 and set up a camera shop in the city’s Castro district, quickly getting involved in local politics. Called "the mayor of Castro Street," Milk was a charismatic gay rights activist who built alliances with other constituencies, including neighborhood and tenants’ groups. He became an ally of the labor movement by getting gay bars to remove Coors beer, which unions were boycotting for Coors’s opposition to union organizing in its breweries and the Coors family’s support for right-wing causes. As city supervisor, he orchestrated passage of a law that prohibited discrimination in housing and employment based on sexual orientation. In 1978 he led the opposition to a statewide ballot measure (the Briggs initiative) to ban homosexuals from jobs as schoolteachers. On November 27, 1978, he was killed by Dan White, a disgruntled former city supervisor who disagreed with Milk and Mayor George Moscone, whom he also assassinated that day.

42.&enspRalph Nader (1934&ndash). Since 1965, when he published his exposé of the auto industry, Unsafe at Any Speed, Nader has inspired, educated and mobilized millions of Americans to fight for a better environment, safer consumer products, safer workplaces and a more accountable government. Thanks to Nader, our cars are safer, our air and water are cleaner and our food is healthier. He raised awareness about the dangers of nuclear power and helped stop the construction of nuclear power plants. Nader played an important role in milestones such as the Freedom of Information Act, the Clean Air Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Superfund program, the Environmental Protection Act, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Occupational Safety and Health Act. Nader built a network of organizations to research and lobby against corporate abuse, training tens of thousands of college students and others in the skills of citizen activism. He has written many books, all focusing on how citizens can make America more democratic. During the 1970s and 󈨔s Nader topped most polls as the nation’s most trusted person. He ran for president four times, most controversially in 2000, when as a Green Party candidate he won votes in Florida that may have cost Democrat Al Gore the election.

43.&enspGloria Steinem (1934&ndash) helped popularize feminist ideas as a writer and activist. Her 1969 article "After Black Power, Women’s Liberation" helped establish her as a national spokeswoman for the women’s liberation movement and for reproductive rights. In 1970 she led the Women’s Strike for Equality march in New York along with Betty Friedan and Bella Abzug. In 1972 she founded Ms. magazine, which became the leading feminist publication. Her frequent articles and appearances on TV and at rallies made her feminism’s most prominent public figure. She co-founded the National Women’s Political Caucus, the Ms. Foundation for Women, Choice USA, the Women’s Media Center and the Coalition of Labor Union Women. In 1984 she was arrested, along with Coretta Scott King, more than twenty members of Congress and other activists, for protesting apartheid in South Africa. She also joined protests opposing the Gulf War in 1991 and the Iraq War in 2003.

44.&enspTom Hayden (1939&ndash) was a founder of Students for a Democratic Society in 1960 and wrote its Port Huron Statement, a manifesto of the postwar baby boom generation. He worked as a community organizer in Newark and helped link student activists to the civil rights movement and later the antiwar movement. He made several high-profile trips to Cambodia and North Vietnam to challenge US military involvement in Southeast Asia. Hayden was the first leading 1960s radical activist to run for major political office, challenging Senator John Tunney of California in the Democratic primary of 1976. He was later elected to the California legislature, where he served for eighteen years as an environmental and consumer advocate, while continuing his antiwar activism, gang intervention work and writing for The Nation and other publications. He is the author of seventeen books.

45.&enspThe Rev. Jesse Jackson (1941&ndash). As a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1984 and 1988, Jackson, a Baptist minister and aide to King, popularized the idea of a progressive, multiracial and socially diverse "rainbow coalition." After the 1965 march to Selma, Jackson moved to Chicago to head the city’s SCLC office and to start Operation Breadbasket and later Operation PUSH, which pioneered the use of boycotts and other pressure tactics to get private corporations to hire African-Americans and do business with black-owned firms. In his second bid for the White House, Jackson won seven primaries and four caucuses. He also gained influence by arranging exchanges or releases of US political prisoners in Syria, Cuba and Belgrade.

46.&enspMuhammad Ali (1942&ndash). Born Cassius Clay in Louisville, Ali became an Olympic gold medal boxer in 1960, three-time heavyweight champion of the world, a highly visible opponent of the Vietnam War and a symbol of pride for African-Americans and Africans. He called himself "the greatest," composed poems that predicted the round in which he’d knock out his next opponent and told reporters that he could "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee." In 1964, soon after winning the heavyweight championship, he revealed that he was a member of the Nation of Islam, changing his name. Two years later, Ali refused to be drafted into the military, stating that his religious beliefs prevented him from fighting in Vietnam. He said, "No Vietnamese ever called me nigger," a statement suggesting that US involvement in Southeast Asia was a form of colonialism and racism. The government denied his claim for conscientious objector status, and he was arrested for refusing induction. He was stripped of his heavyweight title, and his boxing license was suspended. He reclaimed the crown in 1974 by beating George Foreman in the so-called Rumble in the Jungle. For his boxing skills and political courage, he was among the most recognized people in the world in the 1960s and 󈨊s.

47.&enspBillie Jean King (1943&ndash) was at the top of women’s tennis for nearly two decades. She won her first Wimbledon singles title in 1966, piled up dozens of singles and doubles titles before retiring in 1984 and was ranked number one in the world for five years. She founded the Women’s Tennis Association, the Women’s Sports Foundation and WomenSports magazine. She championed Title IX legislation, which equalized opportunities for women on and off the playing field. In 1972 she signed a controversial statement, published in Ms., that she had had an abortion, putting her on the front lines of the battle for reproductive rights. In 1972 she became the first woman to be named Sports Illustrated‘s "Sportsperson of the Year." In 1981 she was the first major female professional athlete to come out as a lesbian. She has consistently spoken out for women and their right to earn comparable money in tennis and other sports.

48.&enspBill Moyers (1934&ndash) served as JFK’s deputy director of the Peace Corps, LBJ’s press secretary, publisher of Newsday and commentator on CBS. But he had his greatest influence as a documentary filmmaker and interviewer on PBS for three decades before retiring earlier this year. Following in the footsteps of broadcaster Edward R. Murrow, Moyers used TV as a tool to expose political and corporate wrongdoing and tell stories about ordinary people working together for justice. Like Studs Terkel, he introduced America to great thinkers, activists and everyday heroes typically ignored by mainstream media. Reflecting the populism of his humble Texas roots and the progressive convictions of his religious training (he is an ordained Baptist minister), Moyers produced dozens of hard-hitting investigative documentaries revealing corporate abuse of workers and consumers, the corrupting influence of money in politics, the dangers of the religious right, the attacks on scientists over global warming, the power of community and union organizing, and many other topics. Trade Secrets (2001) uncovered the chemical industry’s poisoning of American workers, consumers and communities. Buying the War (2007) investigated the media’s failure to report the Bush administration’s propaganda about weapons of mass destruction and other lies that led to the war in Iraq. A gifted storyteller, Moyers, on the air and in the pages of The Nation and elsewhere, roared with a combination of outrage and decency, exposing abuse and celebrating the country’s history of activism.

49.&enspBarbara Ehrenreich (1941&ndash). In twenty books and hundreds of articles in mainstream newspapers and magazines as well as progressive outlets, she has popularized ideas about women’s rights, poverty and class inequality, and America’s healthcare crisis. Beginning with The American Health Empire (1971), Complaints and Disorders: The Sexual Politics of Sickness (1973) and other books, she exposed the way the healthcare system discriminates against women and the poor, helping efforts to change the practices of hospitals, medical schools and physicians. In The Mean Season (1987), Fear of Falling (1989), The Worst Years of Our Lives (1990) and Bait and Switch (2005), she exposed the downside of America’s class system for the poor and the middle class. Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America (2001), a bestselling first-person account of her yearlong sojourn in low-wage jobs, documented the hardships facing the working poor and helped energize the burgeoning "living wage" movement. She is co-chair of Democratic Socialists of America.

50.&enspMichael Moore (1954&ndash). In the tradition of earlier muckraking journalists, Moore has used his biting wit, eye for human foibles, anger at injustice, faith in the common sense of ordinary people and skills as a filmmaker, author and public speaker to draw attention to some of America’s most chronic problems. His first film, the low-budget documentary Roger & Me (1989), examined the tragic human consequences of General Motors’ decision to close its factory in Flint (Moore’s hometown) and export the jobs to Mexico. The Big One (1997) examined corporate America’s large-scale layoffs during a period of record profits, focusing on Nike’s decision to outsource its shoe production to Indonesia. His documentaries in the twenty-first century have explored America’s love affair with guns and violence (the Academy Award&ndashwinning Bowling for Columbine) the links between the Bush and bin Laden families in the aftermath of September 11 (Fahrenheit 9/11) healthcare reform (Sicko) and the financial crisis and the political influence of Wall Street (Capitalism: A Love Story). Moore also directed and hosted two TV news magazine shows&mdashTV Nation (1994&ndash95) and The Awful Truth (1999&ndash2000)&mdashthat focused on controversial topics other shows avoided. The author of several books&mdashDownsize This! (1996) Stupid White Men (2001) and Dude, Where’s My Country? (2003)&mdashMoore is a frequent TV commentator and regularly speaks at rallies to help build a movement for economic and social justice.

Peter Dreier Peter Dreier teaches politics at Occidental College and is author of several books including the forthcoming Baseball Rebels: The Reformers and Radicals Who Shook Up the Game and Changed America.


The Patriarch as Pariah Embracing McCain, Molinari Finds Loyalty Has Its Limits

According to the natural rhythms of political life, this should be a time of reflection and joy for Guy V. Molinari. At 71, the Republican patriarch should be gathering his proteges around him to share lessons from three decades of public service, to reminisce about presidents he has known.

He should be talking about how, as the weak-powered borough president from often-neglected Staten Island, he recently managed to persuade the city to build the country's most expensive minor league baseball stadium near the Staten Island terminal. He should be sharing his excitement as the state chairman for the surging presidential campaign of Senator John McCain.

But all is not well in the House of Molinari. Fellow Republicans no longer see him as an amusingly irascible party leader. Now, many say, he is a hypocrite, a loose cannon, a throwback pol whose time has passed. Term limits dictate that his reign as borough president end in December 2001 the moment, some whisper, cannot arrive soon enough.

The Molinari act, they say, has been losing its charm for years: the Napoleonic ego, the out-of-the-blue attacks against other Republicans, the heart-stopping and headline-grabbing pronouncements. For doctors who performed late-term abortions, he once advocated death by suction of the brain.

But the most egregious offense came four months ago, they say.

Apparently miffed that Gov. George W. Bush of Texas had not chosen him as the state chairman for his presidential campaign, Mr. Molinari retracted his very public endorsement of Mr. Bush. And when Representative Vito Fossella and other Staten Island Republicans failed to follow him into the McCain camp, he disowned them, spitting out their names like seeds of a sour fruit.

The vaudevillian bathos to the moment still has Republicans rolling their eyes. But few would speak publicly about Mr. Molinari, whether out of fear, respect or a sense that no good could come from candor. Only Zenia Mucha, the communications director for Gov. George E. Pataki -- a former ally now dismissed by Mr. Molinari as incompetent and cowardly -- offered some context.

''There's an enormous sense of disappointment in the Pataki administration,'' said Ms. Mucha, who worked alongside Mr. Molinari in past campaigns. ''We thought he was a man of principle who put the party and his people first. Now, if you look at his actions of the last several weeks, you certainly could reach a totally different conclusion.''

Mr. Molinari, meanwhile, seems to struggle with the Shakespearean dimensions of his saga. One minute he rails against those who have succumbed to political pressure -- a technique now suddenly offensive to the veteran power broker -- and defends his legacy.

''I would like anyone to match what I have done in working for the party,'' he said last week. ''Where were these critics when I was working in the Pataki campaign? I have been in the trenches for everyone in the Republican Party on Staten Island. I am a passionate, competitive person. That's what makes me tick.''

The next minute he seems tired, muttering about spending time with his grandchildren and admitting to certain sadness: ''I never expected that this would come about.''

To understand the Molinari saga, one must have a sense of place. Staten Island, with 380,000 residents, is the least populated and most suburban of the city's five boroughs, somewhere between Brooklyn and New Jersey in both geography and identity. A few years ago, the borough's sensitivity to its distant-cousin status spawned a nasty, and ultimately unsuccessful, secession movement. And for the last 30 years, Guy Molinari has given voice to the borough's resentment.

The son of a state assemblyman, Mr. Molinari was a sergeant in the Marine Corps, paid his Republican Party dues while practicing law, and was elected to the New York Assembly in 1974. Then came six years in Albany and a decade in Washington as a congressman before being elected borough president in 1989.

The borough president is a largely ceremonial post, with little real power beyond the right to appoint a member to the city's seven-member Board of Education. But Mr. Molinari managed to marry his forceful personality with Staten Island's unique dynamics -- including its own daily newspaper -- to become the island's brash advocate, patronage dispenser, and the man to see when votes needed to be delivered.

From his isolated perch, he cultivated an image as a tireless Republican power broker, the man who got Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and Governor Pataki elected, who ran the New York campaign that helped to elect President George Bush in 1988. He then converted that political capital into something tangible: a commitment to close the Fresh Kills landfill, a malodorous monument to the island's sense of inferiority.

''He's been able to leverage little old Staten Island and to bring back so many things for us,'' said James S. Oddo, a Republican City Council member. ''He knows what he's doing, and the proof is in the pudding.''

For a while, the Molinaris were the Kennedys of Staten Island, their every move chronicled and celebrated, from the birth of a grandchild to a new litter of the family cat. His daughter, Susan, was elected to Congress, married another Republican congressman -- Bill Paxon of Buffalo -- and delivered the keynote address at the 1996 Republican National Convention. A political dynasty seemed in the making.

But life, politics -- and, some say, Mr. Molinari's outsize sense of self -- got in the way. Ms. Molinari resigned from Congress in 1997 to pursue what turned out to be a short-lived career in network television.

Mr. Paxon responded to an internecine power struggle among House Republicans by not seeking re-election in 1998.

The greatest blow, however, came in 1994, when Mr. Molinari lost overwhelmingly in challenging a popular Democratic incumbent, William L. Murphy, for district attorney. ''People on Staten Island see him as local cheerleader,'' one political analyst said, 'ɻut they weren't going to give him a job with serious decisions to be made.''

Certain Molinari tics became more vexing than amusing. He has a history of theatrically lashing out when he perceives even the slightest of slights, no matter his target's place in the political hierarchy. And his verbal antics are many. He has challenged City Councilman Jerome X. Oɽonovan to a fistfight, vowed to make Assemblyman Robert A. Straniere 'ɻleed'' for even considering a run for Congress, and said that Karen Burstein, the Democratic candidate for attorney general in 1994, was unfit for public office because she was gay.

''If the borough president of Manhattan or Brooklyn had said that, they would have been run out of town,'' Mr. Oɽonovan said. ''You cannot make statements like this in the city of New York, and yet he has.''

The Republican response to Mr. Molinari's comments has traditionally been, ''Oh, that's just Guy'' -- especially when his words suited the party's needs, as in the case of Ms. Burstein. But last year Mr. Molinari began nastily attacking Governor Pataki for not immediately embracing Mayor Giuliani's bid for the Senate and, ironically, for not joining the George W. Bush for president chorus early enough.

Things began to get uncomfortable. Although Mr. Molinari denies it, other Staten Island Republicans say that he fully expected to be named state chairman for the Bush campaign, just as he had for Mr. Bush's father.

On Oct. 1, Mr. Molinari beamed while standing alongside Mr. Giuliani at City Hall, as Mr. Bush's disembodied voice, via telephone and over loudspeakers, accepted their endorsements. A few days later, Mr. Pataki and Mr. Giuliani escorted Governor Bush in Manhattan and Brooklyn, but not Staten Island Mr. Molinari was noticeably absent.

Then, on Oct. 18, Mr. Molinari stood in front of the Vietnam Memorial in Lower Manhattan to say that he had experienced a change of heart. Standing next to him was his new best friend, Senator McCain. Of course, Mr. Molinari's about-face infuriated the Republican leadership. He suddenly began denouncing the party's suffocating ballot process for primaries as unfair to Mr. McCain it is a system that the sudden reformer had previously embraced.

But the greatest turmoil was in Staten Island, where Mr. Fossella, Councilman Stephen Fiala and other Molinari acolytes had already committed to the Bush campaign. Suddenly, the question of loyalty was being raised by a patriarch who had switched loyalties.

Most of the borough's prominent Republicans stayed committed to Mr. Bush. Even Susan Molinari, now living in Virginia, remains committed to Mr. Bush. And, as expected, Mr. Molinari lashed out against those for whom he had shaken countless hands outside shopping centers, for whom he had made countless late-night calls. He shunned them from the House of Molinari.

This should be a time of political joy for Mr. Molinari. Whether by political calculation or pure serendipity, he heads a McCain campaign that is unnerving all those state Republicans committed to Mr. Bush. And the $71 million baseball stadium, to be built for a minor league team at the very bottom of the New York Yankees system, is intended to be part of a long-awaited Staten Island renaissance.

But the schism has overshadowed success.

''I can't blame myself,'' Mr. Molinari said. ''I warned them about what presidential primaries are all about. It's sad, but cɾst la vie. They are good people. But they are just not the kind of people I thought they were.''

Mr. Fossella, who was not alone in expressing discomfort with the situation, said that he had done ''the right thing by sticking with Bush.''

As for his mentor, the congressman said, ''He spent years building the party and campaigning not only for himself, but others. And he will be missed.''

Anthony J. Andriulli, a political consultant who has worked for Mr. Molinari and other Staten Island Republicans, was less sentimental. He said that the borough president had always surrounded himself with sycophants, had always insisted on being top dog, and now had simply gone too far.

''He could certainly come back,'' Mr. Andriulli said. 'ɾveryone would welcome him back. But I don't think he can ever be what he was before this.''

On Thursday night, the Staten Island Republican Party held its annual Lincoln Day dinner at the Excelsior Grand catering hall. Governor Pataki attended, and Mr. Bush roused the crowd with remarks delivered by telephone. The names of young Republicans -- Fiala, Fossella -- were announced and met with applause.

But a certain white-haired veteran did not attend. And his name, Molinari, went unmentioned.


Scott Lively Victimized by ‘Cancel Culture’

Dr. Lively talks about Amazon’s recent removal and ban of his book The Pink Swastika: Homosexuality in the Nazi Party, and explains the origins of the so-called “Cancel Culture” in the Oregon LGBT community which in part inspired his writing of the book.

In its pre-election purge of conservative scholarship and inconvenient historical truths, Amazon has just banned my book The Pink Swastika: Homosexuality in the Nazi Party, which I co-authored in 1995 with Orthodox Jewish Holocaust researcher, Kevin Abrams. I will discuss that below, but first a word about the “cancel culture” and where the American version of it started.

“Cancel culture” is a social-pressure based system of political transformation that relies heavily on malicious propaganda to “educate” and “inspire” hard left activists who then carry out attacks on designated targets. Long before the term was coined, there were “fringe” conservatives like me for whom being “cancelled” was just day-to-day life. We were the ones who rose up during the Reagan Revolution to oppose Cultural Marxism before most conservatives even knew what it was. In fact, even today, with the term “Marxism” on the lips of nearly every conservative, most still don’t realize that the point of the Marxist spear now stabbing through the heart of our Constitutional Republic has always been the LGBT movement.

Few remember that the “Father of the American Gay Movement,” Harry Hay. (who marched for NAMBLA in the early “Gay Pride” parades) was a teacher of Marxist theory and tactics for eighteen years before he founded America’s first lasting “gay rights” organization in 1953, the Mattachine Society.

Fewer still remember that the Frankfort School founder of Cultural Marxism (and predecessor to Saul Alinsky), Herbert Marcuse, saw Hay’s growing network of “gay” activist cell groups as the army that would make his vision a reality in America. Who better to fight what Marcuse considered the primary barrier to Marxist utopia, “the repressive order of procreative sexuality,” by implementing his solution, “the disintegration of the…monogamic and patriarchal society” ?

And when the “gays” fully embraced Marcuse’s radicalism in the Stonewall Riot of June 28, 1969 (featuring an attempt to burn police alive in the Stonewall bar – just like today’s BLM/Antifa rioters in the Portland federal building), the outright dismantling of marriage and family-based society became a priority of the left, producing most of the social crises of the past fifty years, from the legalization of abortion in 1970 to the wholesale collapse of the nuclear family in the 90s, to the normalization of transgender mutilation of children happening today and all of their secondary effects including epidemic levels of crime, poverty, mental illness, cultural fragmentation and sexual deviance.

Heck, how many conservatives remember to whom Hillary Clinton was speechifying when she called Trump supporters “a Basket of Deplorables?” It was a large gathering of “gay” power-brokers and major donors at the “LGBT for Hillary” fundraiser in New York.

It’s no mere coincidence that Trump’s most vicious attackers in the media are homosexuals, from Anderson Cooper, to Chris Johnson to Rachel Maddow, or that funding for the Steele Dossier is linked to LGBT mega-donor, billionaire Paul Singer, whose son is an open homosexual. I bring up Singer, because he’s the one who funded the “Export of Hate” Dossier in 2012 naming me Public Enemy #1 of the global LGBT agenda

That dossier was a milestone in my long sojourn through the “cancel culture:” It was published by the world’s largest LGBT organization, the “Human Rights Campaign,” to bolster the 6 ½ year major federal lawsuit against me, alleging my non-hateful, non-violent preaching against homosexuality in Uganda constituted “Crimes Against Humanity.” I only survived that legally frivolous and ethically outrageous attempted “cancellation” of my Biblical worldview (driven by a Soros-funded Manhattan-based Marxist law firm) by the intervention of Liberty Counsel which spent over a million dollars to defend me.

The “cancel culture” got its start long before I became the spokesman for the Oregon “No Special Rights Act” in 1991 (a version of which was passed in Colorado, and later struck down in the SCOTUS case of Romer v Evans). But in that Oregon campaign, the form of “cancel culture” we’re seeing today – a multi-layered conspiracy of media, politicians, corporations, non-profits, and violent Brownshirt street activists – was born.

The “Bigot-Buster Squads” the LGBTs deployed in 1992 to intimidate our petition signers, and destroy petition forms evolved over the next decade into the LGBT “doxing” of petition signers of Proposition 8 and other CA pro-family ballot measures. Today “doxing” is used against anyone opposed to any Marxist goal. Likewise, the mob-pressured cancelling of our Oregon pro-family speakers and venues was an LGBT tactic later adopted against all conservative speakers. Likewise, the widespread use of fake hate crimes to influence public opinion during political contests started with the Oregon LGBTs.

Cancellation efforts against me personally escalated when Kevin and I wrote The Pink Swastika, a thoroughly documented defense of Jewish history in rebuttal to cynical LGBT effort to fabricate a “Gay Holocaust” for political advantage. That made me one of the very first pro-family targets of the Southern Poverty Law Center. SPLC’s totally dishonest portrayal of the book as “discredited” (citing a small handful “gay” activist academics), and Kevin and I as “Holocaust revisionists” – exactly the opposite of our role – has ever since been used by liberals of every stripe to smear and “cancel” me in every possible way.

Brick thrown through glass door at church where Dr. Lively was scheduled to speak. Below was the note that was attached.

I’m surprised ultra-leftist Amazon took so long to ban The Pink Swastika, perhaps because it had so few sales there (probably because we give the book away for free in digital form to anyone who requests it, but perhaps due to Amazon’s own behind-the-scenes suppression of sales). Nevertheless, it irks me greatly that the virtual monopolies that make up “Big Tech” are getting away with such obvious politically-motivated censorship.

If it were just me, I’d likely turn the other cheek. But since it now affects our entire nation and its future, I say it’s time we started cancelling back – as soon as Trump gets re-elected.


The Kingdom and the Power

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This Easter found Mickey Lawrence taking a break at home from what had been an increasingly vitriolic campaign for the Republican nomination for county attorney. Her runoff against Michael Fleming was only two days away, but politics was off the front burner for Lawrence for at least a few hours that Sunday, as she sat down with her family to a holiday dinner, followed by an afternoon of sun and lawn chairs. The phone in the house rang, and Lawrence left her grandchildren playing in the back yard and went inside to answer it. When she picked up the receiver, a taped message began rolling. A male voice identified himself as Dr. Steven Hotze, and then began to tell Mickey Lawrence all about the politics of . Mickey Lawrence.

Lawrence, a corporate attorney and longtime GOP activist, recalls the prerecorded Hotze's telling her that she had been endorsed by United Republicans, "a very liberal group that is pro-abortion." In fact, United Republicans is a broad-based organization of both pro-life and pro-choice Republicans that takes no position on abortion and focuses instead on fiscal issues.

Stunned that her anti-abortion views could be so distorted, Lawrence numbly listened as Hotze declared, "Mickey Lawrence is not who she says she is." He went on to accuse her of being a liberal in disguise and lumped her with Kevin Brady, another Republican running against a onetime underwriter of Hotze's political activities, Dr. Eugene Fontenot, in the 8th Congressional District. Since Lawrence had already explained her position opposing abortion on demand at a gathering attended by Hotze, her first reaction was outrage.

"I'm listening to this, and it's Easter Sunday," she recalls, "and what he was saying were lies."

Christians are not supposed to lie any day of the year, of course, but on the day of Jesus' resurrection, it somehow seemed more galling coming from the leading voice of Houston's Christian conservatives. Lawrence was angry, but there was no time to get even. Fleming won the GOP nomination by eight points on the following Tuesday, contributing Lawrence's blond scalp to the tape recorded caller's growing political trophy case.

The automated call to the Lawrence household was one of thousands crafted and paid for by a Houston allergist who in his spare time is a self-proclaimed champion of biblical values as a basis for civil government. Thin and long-faced, 46-year-old Steven Forrest Hotze has carved out a niche in local politics over the past decade as an unyielding and occasionally strident opponent of abortion and public acceptance of homosexuality. He may not be a household name outside Republican circles, but within the party he is admired by a devout coterie of followers, catered to by secular conservatives and feared by moderates, who find themselves in a position of needing his approval to win nominations in GOP primaries. Those summoned to kiss his ring encounter a tough, uncompromising zealot who is used to getting his own way.

"It comes by position in family," says his mother Margaret, herself a grand doyenne among Christian conservatives who once took to the lectern at a City Council meeting to hector Mayor Kathy Whitmire for her support from gay activists. "The oldest person in a family tends to have a certain personality, and you can look in the psychology books and find it. Steve's the oldest of eight, and he's had eight children. He's used to being the boss, I guess. He has his own practice, and he's always been the person who took charge of things."

Adds Clymer Wright, until recently a political associate of Hotze's: "Every meeting I've ever been to with Steve, he ran it."

In addition to operating a successful two-clinic medical practice in Katy and west Houston, Hotze constructs and sells custom homes on the side. He has set up two private firms, Texas 2000 and Forrest Marketing, to handle his political operations, which are based at his Katy medical clinic. Monica Luedecke, his clinic manager, is the administrator for one of his political action committees, Conservative Republicans of Harris County. Hotze also controls at least two other active PACs, Citizens for American Restoration and the Houston Republican Forum.

Forrest Marketing has been paid $58,000 for professional services from several of those PACs in the last two years, giving rise to claims by opponents that Hotze profits from his political activities -- a charge denied by those close to the doctor (Hotze himself did not respond to requests to be interviewed for this story). Texas 2000 also received large contributions from lawyer John O'Quinn and furniture magnate Jim "Mattress Mac" McIngvale to stage a prayer breakfast for ministers and judges at George W. Bush's 1995 gubernatorial inaugural in Austin. Since plaintiff's lawyers and would-be casino operators are usually about as welcome in the conservative Republican temple as Mary Magdalene, Hotze's ideological purity has been called into question recently by some old allies.

The Harris County District Attorney's Office received complaints last year about Hotze's use of his private companies in his political activities, but a preliminary investigation turned up nothing illegal. Rather than personal profit, it's more likely that Hotze's motive in creating the companies was to put the more controversial of his political activities and associations outside state disclosure requirements and beyond public view.

Through his links to a downtown PAC called the Committee for a Well Qualified Judiciary, this year Hotze has received ample resources to fund his ongoing effort to reshape the face of the local judiciary and, perhaps in the future, city government. One of his allies estimates that Hotze can deliver a 60,000-vote bloc to his candidates. That's not enough to dictate winners in a high-turnout general election, but in low-turnout contests, particularly runoffs in a GOP primary, Hotze can and has called the psalm, page number and verse for the winners.

It's a considerable amount of clout for someone whose stated beliefs place him to the right of the religious right. "If we are to survive as a free nation, and if justice and liberty are to be restored in our land, then biblical Christianity, with its absolutes, must once again be embraced by our citizens," he wrote several years back in a Chronicle op-ed piece. "Only then can we expect to see Christianity's influence once again to be reflected in the laws of our civil government."

Hotze is a national leader in the Christian Reconstruction movement, whose more extreme elements advocate replacing democratic government with rule by a theocratic elite. Hotze himself has denied that he favors establishment of a theocracy, and one of his brothers, Jim, says that even if the doctor were in a position to do so, he wouldn't do away with democracy. On the other hand, Jim admits he's never discussed the matter directly with his brother. Moderates who have come to grief at the hands of Hotze's political machine would prefer not to put Jim Hotze's conjecture to the test.

Assuming he's not a theocrat, Steven Hotze's politics would still hardly be classified middle-of-the-road, which leads one to wonder why more than $100,000 in contributions flowed to Hotze's PACs this spring from such mainstream Republicans as County Judge Robert Eckels, County Commissioners Steve Radack and Jerry Eversole and a host of others via a roundabout route. The answer to that question reveals both the extent of Hotze's evolution from a fringe player into a serious local power broker and the lengths to which moderate candidates will go to win election.

Mickey Lawrence was not the only candidate in this spring's GOP primary to get a nasty surprise from Hotze. When Martha Wong, the first Asian-American elected to City Council and a candidate for county tax assessor-collector, received a mailed copy of endorsements by Hotze's Conservative Republicans of Harris County, she discovered he had attacked her as a phony Republican who had previously voted in Democratic primaries. The charge was false, and Wong had her past voting records to prove it. As it turns out, so did Hotze.

"I was outraged," Wong remembers. "It was an outright lie."
Wong called her consultant, Allen Blakemore, who was also on Hotze's payroll, and demanded that he arrange a meeting with Hotze to get him to retract the false claims or face a lawsuit.

Since Wong and Hotze were using the same consultant, she figures the doctor either knew his description of her voting record was a lie or he simply didn't care about the truth. While Blakemore says Hotze just made a mistake, he remembers the doctor later conceded he had Wong's voting records in his database all along but never bothered to check them. Hotze also told Blakemore that it really didn't matter, because he would have found something else to say about Wong that would be equally damaging.

Hotze did apologize to Wong and issued a press release the following day. But early voting had already ended, and the damage had been done. Wong says the retraction did not reach the same elderly voters who might have been influenced by the endorsement sheet.

"He was very clever," she says. "He didn't call me until after the polls closed and it was too late for early voting. And that's where I lost." While Hotze agreed to destroy fliers with the false charge and cancel a round of automated phone calls, he continued to endorse the councilwoman's opponent, Roland Elledge, who edged out the better-known Wong in a runoff. The early vote margin proved to be the difference.

Wong doesn't accept Hotze's claims it was all an innocent mistake.
"The ethics of a Christian lying," she says, "are deplorable."
Hotze's mailing didn't carry his name, and on Election Day Wong stood at a polling place and questioned voters who carried the Conservative Republicans of Harris County endorsement sheet to see if they knew its source. Most did not and were shocked to learn it came from Hotze, Wong claims.

Brent Perry, the winner of this year's Republican primary in the 25th Congressional District, found himself on the wrong side of Hotze after federal judges overturned the primary results and created wide-open special congressional elections on the November ballot.

Following the judge's decision, Hotze's brother Jim declared his candidacy in the special election in the 25th District. But after the younger Hotze dropped out, Perry buttonholed Steven Hotze at a candidates' forum and asked for his support. According to Perry, Hotze bluntly informed him he didn't consider Perry a strong enough challenger to incumbent Democrat Ken Bentsen.

And within days, one of Hotze's favorite officeholders, anti-abortion activist and state District Judge John Devine, jumped into the race against Bentsen, creating a fractious crew of competing Republicans and the possibility that Devine could wind up in a low-turnout runoff, where Hotze's support would be most effective. Perry visited Devine to try to talk him out of the race and claims the judge told him Hotze had promised Devine his support, including inclusion on that potent endorsement mailer that did in Wong.

While his muscle in general elections has yet to be seriously tested, his near clean-sweep in this year's Republican primaries has left party moderates bitter and frustrated: bitter at what they claim are the un-Christian tactics of the holier-than-thou Hotze, and frustrated because his expanding influence is fueled by money contributed by mainstream Republicans.

"I don't think Steven Hotze would have any influence except over a small number of people if he was not given money to do what he does -- his mailouts, his callouts, that kinda stuff," says Judith Jones, a former ally of Hotze's who has since turned against him. "He's a theocrat. He really believes this stuff -- the purpose of civil government is to punish evil. I think that actually has a very small following. But the people who give him money are the people who give him his vehicle. If they didn't give him money, he couldn't do it."

For the November general election, Hotze is masterminding something called the "Unified Republican Candidates Campaign." His money pitch, as presented to Republican incumbents and challengers in one-on-one conversations, offers what he bills as "a four-pronged attack" whose purpose is "to provide leadership which would limit civil government, deregulate business, combat criminals, lower taxes and encourage traditional family values." In return for a candidate's contribution to his effort, Hotze promises to mobilize Christian conservative voters, push an early mail-in ballot to the conservative elderly, bombard 250,000 households with direct mail and provide three rounds of computerized automated phone calls to the same households.

Those calls would feature the voices of Senators Phil Gramm and Kay Bailey Hutchison, as well as County Judge Eckels. With voices of authority like that making the pitch, what Republican wouldn't sign on to the Hotze program?

Steven Hotze was born in Houston on July 5, 1950, into a devoutly Catholic family, one of seven brothers and one sister. His father Ernest, who died last November, moved from Dresser Industries to found Compressor Engineering Corporation, the family firm now run by Steven's brother Bruce and employing a number of other family members. As chairman of the company, mother Margaret exercises an active role. Hotze attended St. Michael's Catholic School and later St. Thomas High School, where he evinced a bent for conservative political organizing early.

According to Margaret Hotze, as a St. Thomas senior her oldest son helped organize an "Up with America" rally that resulted in a downtown parade. As the class president, he teamed with a young black San Antonian, Alan Keyes, to run unsuccessfully for governor and lieutenant governor of Boys' State in the late sixties. Even then, Hotze held a firm world-view that posited big government and homosexuality as two great evils to be combated. His role models were close to home. Ernest bankrolled conservative causes, while Margaret was a GOP precinct chairman and an early anti-abortion organizer in Houston. Hotze's brothers, particularly Bruce, Jim and Chris, were conservative activists then, and are today.

The Catholic Church was too liberal to hold the allegiance of Hotze for long, and he joined the campus Crusade for Christ while a University of Texas student. "What distressed me," says a Catholic cleric who knows the family, "is that he's taken his wife and his children away from the church, and that's a great source of distress to other members of the family, all of whom are very staunch Catholics." Hotze's wife was also a devout Catholic, says the cleric, "but it was a matter of keeping the family together, and he's stronger than she is."

Hotze graduated from UT Medical School in Houston while supporting himself working on homebuilding crews. He married Janie Smith, whom he met in high school, while in college at UT in Austin, and the first of their eight children was soon on the way. After earning his medical degree, Hotze moved to Austin to work as a corporate physician for IBM, where he joined the Austin Citizens for Decency, pushing a referendum to sanction the denial of fair-housing protections to people because of their sexual orientation. In Austin's then-highly liberal environs, Hotze's politics were definitely on the fringe. The Citizens for Decency proposal failed.

Eventually, Hotze moved his brood back to Houston, where he opened a medical clinic on the North Freeway. The clinic doubled as a political meeting place, a technique of consolidating his professional career and political interests that the doctor has maintained to this day. One visitor recalls the operation as a classic workman's comp practice, with linoleum floors and barbed wire fence around the suite of offices. With success Hotze upgraded his practice to deal exclusively with allergies. His Allercare operation began with an office on Braidwood Street in Katy and has now expanded to the more upscale West Houston Allergy Clinic on Blalock.

In a pending lawsuit against Cable Communications Network, Hotze claims he suffered $363,000 in actual damages for the company's alleged failure to broadcast his commercials for his allergy clinic as specified in a signed contract. Hotze claims in the lawsuit that he makes most of his profit on his practice from August to November -- the autumn pollen season -- and the failure of the Cable Communications to air the commercials in 1994 "devastated" his practice. Since business at Allercare is now booming -- at least according to Hotze's mother and others who know him -- the term "devastated" must have been relative.

By the early eighties, Hotze had achieved a moderate degree of economic security and was ready to assume a more active political role in Houston. He seized the day when Houston City Council, at the urging of gay and lesbian activists flush with the victory of Kathy Whitmire and other candidates they supported in 1983, pushed for an ordinance providing protection against discrimination for gays in the city workplace. Council approved the measure, but in the process provoked a backlash that would level the political gains achieved by gays.

In the eyes of Hotze and other conservatives, the ordinance granted homosexuals status as a protected minority and was a de facto approval of their lifestyle. Hotze mounted a petition drive that led to a 1985 referendum and voters' overwhelming rejection of the ordinance. It was the first taste of victory for Steven Hotze the political organizer. Clymer Wright recalls being amazed at Hotze's knack for energizing conservatives in the effort. "He had called this meeting at Westin Oaks Hotel, so I went. I saw streams of hundreds and hundreds of people coming in. And I wondered where all these people were going. They must have had close to a thousand people there. I was really impressed by his ability to get that kind of turnout at any kind of meeting. He ran the whole thing."

The win emboldened Hotze and his supporters to organize the "Straight Slate" of family-values candidates, including his mother Margaret, for that fall's city elections. Though none won office, Slate candidate Jim Kennedy forced incumbent Judson Robinson Jr. into a runoff, and the entire effort spooked Whitmire into distancing herself from her gay allies.

At that point, Judith Jones found herself one of the few women in Hotze's inner circle, working on the effort to defeat the gay job-protection referendum. Wright and the late River Oaks banker Jimmy Lyons also were involved in the effort. Hotze printed up his own petitions to force the referendum and began circulating them through Houston churches.

"Hotze never works with anybody," says Jones. "He does it his way. Even when it's the right way to do it, he still doesn't work with anybody."

Hotze regularly scheduled 7 a.m. meetings on Saturday at his home on Piping Rock. His wife never participated. Jones remembers that Hotze would first conduct a prayer, then open each meeting by saying, "Okay, keymen . and Judith." Those close to Hotze included Charlie Hartland, a home schooling advocate, former Council candidate Al Clements and computer whiz Paul McClintock. That inner circle has remained stable for years, although McClintock recently moved to Seattle to organize for the Christian Coalition there. David Lane, a fundraiser for Hotze, has also departed town to work for Jerry Falwell. For the most part, Hotze has stuck with the guys.

Jones says Hotze positions himself so he doesn't have to deal with women in a serious political way. That's a frequent observation by other Hotze watchers. Although Steven's mother is a towering influence in his political life, according to Jim Hotze, for the most part Hotze's peers are male. And even with his mother, Jones says, the tension between the two was often palpable during meetings where both were present. During the mid-eighties, Hotze, according to Jones, was "running on sheer nervous energy, jumpy as a cat on a hot tin roof, just bouncing off the walls."

Hotze's frenetic style showed in other ways, including a tendency to over-commit himself financially on his political activities. "During the Campaign for Houston [the vehicle to fight the gay-rights ordinance], everybody showed up one morning to run the phone banks," Jones says, "and it was locked because he hadn't paid the phone bill." She laughs at the memory. "But Ernie [Hotze's father] came through that day and paid the people in the building what Hotze owed them."

"He's bailed him out of more stuff," Jones says of the late patriarch of the Hotze clan, "and I want to see what happens now."

Margaret Hotze seems to suggest the family will no longer pick up the overruns for Steven's political adventures.

"What really bothers me is that people think that Steven does this for some benefit," she says. "He's run in the hole every year with [his political activities]. His dad sometimes would have to help him because it would cost him more than he could afford. And now his dad is gone, so that's that."

Over the years, Hotze also has developed a reputation for making and then breaking pledges to candidates, often citing divine guidance as an excuse. Jones remembers an incident at the 1986 GOP state convention where conservative Diana Denman, the party's incumbent vice chair, thought she had Hotze's support for the chairmanship. "We'd been working on this race for months, and two days before the convention, he switches to someone else," says Jones, who recalls sitting in a hotel suite watching as Hotze walked into the room. "Clymer Wright literally pounced on him and picked him up by the lapels, yelling, 'How dare you do this!' And Hotze very calmly told Clymer that he'd had a middle-of-the-night revelation from God to support this other guy."

Hotze's man was an Austin minister, Sam Hoerster. When Denman realized she didn't have the votes to win, she withdrew from the contest and a moderate from Houston, George Strake, beat Hoerster by better than 3,000 votes.

Jones shakes her head.
"It's not lying with these people. It's not breaking your word. It's revelation!"

The defeat of the Straight Slate in 1985 ended only the first chapter in Steven Hotze's political career. Hotze concentrated on building his medical practice, turning his focus to allergies and moving his offices from the North Freeway location to a suite of offices in Katy. But by the early nineties, he was once again building political vehicles to further his views. He helped found the Citizens for American Restoration in 1992, and began constructing the money web that has made his political operation so potent.

How Hotze gets that money is a point of increasing controversy within Republican circles. A caustic, well-researched -- and anonymous -- mailout produced by moderate Republicans recently called attention to the interplay between the Committee for a Well Qualified Judiciary, a downtown PAC run by Crain, Caton & James attorney Frank Harmon III, the husband of U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon, and a trio of PACs under the control of Hotze and his political lieutenants.

Harmon's PAC collected more than $100,000 in contributions from dozens of incumbents and challengers this spring, then quickly disgorged it into Hotze's Harris County Conservative Republicans and Citizens for American Restoration. In 1994, Harmon's PAC performed the same role, though on a much smaller scale. While Harmon and Hotze consultant Allen Blakemore characterize the complicated money trail as an innocuous fundraising device, others see it as a laundromat to funnel dollars from moderates into the hands of the religious right.

Tall, thin and talkative, Harmon seems ill-suited as a political partner for Hotze. He is not particularly religious and claims he does not attend church. A friend, however, describes him as "probably more conservative than Hotze." The alliance between the two provides Hotze with the cash to run his political program and Harmon the ability to deliver a guaranteed pool of conservative votes to candidates and incumbents. Some county insiders also believe, rightly or wrongly, that contributing to Hotze through Harmon's PAC helps win Hotze's endorsement and protects GOP incumbents from facing Hotze-sponsored ultra-conservatives in future primaries. (Hotze has indicated to intimates that three Republican judges elected in the 1994 GOP landslide, Werner Voight, Jim Wallace and Lon Harper, are so incompetent he will find more conservative candidates to run against them in the 1998 GOP primary.)

This spring, Harmon's PAC received $15,000 contributions each from the campaigns of Michael Fleming and his ally, Commissioner Steve Radack. Commissioner Jerry Eversole also kicked in $5,000. That money was then packaged along with $70,000 in other contributions and given by Harmon's PAC to Citizens for American Restoration and Harris County Conservative Republicans.

"They don't want to be associated with Hotze's name, but they want his political help," says one consultant of the donors to Harmon's PAC. Harmon, naturally, has a different take on his political marriage with Hotze. He characterizes the partnership as a joint effort to elect the best, most conservative Republicans possible. Since judicial candidates are prohibited from taking positions on issues that may come before their courts, Hotze, according to Harmon, does not question them in detail on their positions on such issues as abortion or gay rights.

The lawyer attributes Hotze's clout not to his command of a classic political machine, but rather to his standing among conservatives.

"Conservative Republicans have a lot of respect for his opinions," says Harmon, "and if Steve says 'Candidate A' is the most conservative, best qualified candidate, I think a lot of people who know Steve and know what he's been doing for years will accept his judgment on that." The Committee for a Well Qualified Judiciary does not issue its own endorsements, and Harmon says if it did he doubts it would have anywhere near the impact of Hotze's mailouts.

In shunting candidate contributions from his PAC to Hotze, Harmon claims he's actually functioning as an agent of party harmony. "I think some people had a concern, especially if they are in an elected position, that they don't want to publicly be supporting one wing of the party." Of course, says Harmon, anybody who checks campaign filings would figure out what was going on.

Radack indicates he was well aware of where his $15,000 was going when he gave it to Harmon's PAC, and he sees no downside in being identified with the doctor. As to why he didn't give it directly to Hotze, Radack offers the murky reply, "I wasn't absolutely sure that's where Harmon would spend it all."

Likewise, state District Judge Scott Link wasn't especially concerned when told his $10,000 to Harmon's PAC wound up in the Citizens for American Restoration account. "The fact that he funneled it on, if in fact it occurred, that does not surprise me," says Link. "I contribute money to various activities of folks that are interested in helping the Republican Party, and those are just two." Link points out that he has independently contributed to Hotze's PACs, so he obviously isn't afraid of being publicly linked with Hotze.

County Judge Eckels says he wasn't aware that $10,000 of his campaign dollars wound up in Hotze's PACs, and he professes not to have thought about any downside in being associated with the doctor. Hotze did support Eckels in his primary battle against Katherine Tyra in 1994, a position that led Tyra to charge that Hotze was going with the money against a more conservative candidate. Eckels' willingness to meet with a gay organization, the Log Cabin Republicans, during the campaign somehow did not earn him the enmity Hotze generally holds for other candidates who associate with gay organizations.

Harmon denies that the candidates making contributions to his PAC are in effect trying to buy Hotze's endorsement or his help in avoiding future primary challengers. Of course, he adds, the endorsed candidates might then feel a responsibility to help pay for the postage and phone bills incurred by Hotze in getting his message out.

"Some candidates have money and some don't," says Harmon. "And yes, they are asked to contribute money to help pay to get the message out. But if they don't have the money, they don't contribute anything. There's no connection giving money and getting the endorsement." The formula works out this way: Hotze will promote his ideological soul mates for free, but mainstream candidates with the money must pay.

When Hotze and Harmon disagree on a candidate, the doctor knows best. A case in point was the spring primary for a state Court of Criminal Appeals nomination. Among the candidates were Brad Wiewel, who was backed by Hotze, and state District Judge Mike Kiesler of Dallas, Harmon's favorite. Neither won the statewide contest, although Hotze's endorsement helped Wiewel carry Harris County. Despite providing the funding for Hotze's machine, Harmon says he has to accept the doctor's decisions on who to support with the money. "I think Kiesler was better, but Steve made the call. I had to give in on that."

The Hotze that Harmon claims to know is the opposite of the devious, shifty, untruthful figure sketched out by Jones and Wong.

"He's really very engaging, very smart," says Harmon, who then pauses. "I don't think anybody you've talked to would say they don't like him."

Consultant Allen Blakemore is in a good position to discuss the angled relationships between Hotze, his political action committees and the private companies Hotze has set up.

Blakemore says he is paid by Hotze for political work, but you won't find the payments listed on any filing with the Texas Ethics Commission. His paychecks from Hotze, explains Blakemore, come directly from Forrest Marketing. Asked whether Forrest and Texas 2000 were created simply to keep Hotze's political activities out of the reporting process, Blakemore replies, "I believe so."

Hotze's PACs also pass money between themselves, leading Blakemore to crack that Hotze stuffs contributions he receives into whatever hole he needs to fill on a given day. To make things even more incomprehensible, Texas 2000 itself received a $1,000 political contribution from Harmon's Committee for a Well Qualified Judiciary, with no explanation how a private business could qualify for a campaign contribution.

The money train runs two ways between Blakemore and Hotze. Blakemore and Associates has contributed $19,500 over the past two years to Citizens for American Restoration and another of Hotze's PACs, Houston Republican Forum. Blakemore is credited on PAC filings with giving two checks totaling $7,000 to Citizens for American Restoration on the same day back in April 1994, though he claims the money was actually given over a longer period. That generosity made other consultants suspicious that what Blakemore was actually doing was laundering contributions from candidates he represents who don't want their names associated with Hotze.

Blakemore says that's not true. "It's illegal to accept a contribution for the purpose of giving it to someone else," he says, likening his contributions to the Hotze PACs to giving money to the Republican Party. "We see things going on that are of benefit to all of our clients and candidates and say this is part of the cost of doing business. It helps my people and helps me win elections." Somehow it didn't quite work that way for Martha Wong, who was shafted by Hotze despite having Blakemore as a consultant.

Another GOP candidate who's angry at Hotze is state senator-elect Jon Lindsay. The former county judge contributed heavily to the Committee for a Well Qualified Judiciary, which passed the money on to Hotze's operations. But Hotze endorsed Lindsay's opponent in the Republican primary, Jerry Dumas, who came within two points of beating Lindsay after benefiting from some of his campaign largess.

"Without Hotze's support, Dumas would have been a double digit loser," says one consultant with close ties to Lindsay.

If Frank Harmon hasn't found anybody who doesn't like Steve Hotze, he probably hasn't spoken with Betsy Lake for the past few years. A former Harris County Republican chair, Lake fought Hotze for control of the local party during her two terms, the first of which was largely consumed in a guerrilla war between the two. "If I could have used my energy toward doing positive things for the party rather than have to worry 24 hours a day about what Dr. Hotze and his inner circle of friends were up to," says Lake in a resigned tone, "what more we could have accomplished?"

Lake describes herself as burned out on politics as a result of that struggle. After her first election in 1992, Hotze and his supporters on the county party's executive committee seized the regular Republican administrative apparatus and its west-side head-quarters on Augusta. "They thought I would act like a woman and just quit and give them what they wanted," laughs Lake. "Well, I hung on. I didn't let them run me off."

Lake responded to the challenge by creating her own fundraising mechanism and setting up headquarters on Chelsea in the Museum District. Hotze, true to his form as a political loner who likes to dictate rather than work in committee, eventually tired of party administrative duties. Snafus such as failing to pay the office phone bill resulted in a well-publicized service shutdown in the Augusta headquarters. He eventually closed that operation and went back to running his own political show out of his Katy medical clinic. After Lake was succeeded by Gary Polland, the party reunited at the Chelsea offices.

According to Lake, Hotze is a master at wrapping himself in Christian rhetoric while behaving in a downright devilish fashion.

"He's very devious, very frightening, very extreme in his beliefs," says Lake, who often found herself in the difficult position of counseling candidates on dealing with him. "I almost felt at times these were frightened children. Most of them had never had any dealings with a campaign and had no idea what they were getting into, but they wanted to run for office. And the first thing they encounter is having to deal with his power machine, and they felt very threatened."

Lake describes Hotze as a classic, talented demagogue who preys on voters by exploiting divisive issues. "He does this in order to ultimately achieve his agenda," says Lake. "He's a master at it." A Methodist with a degree in religious education whose father was a minister, Lake believes she's in a position to judge that Hotze "has blackened the eye of Christianity" with his win-at-all-costs politics.

Like other moderates who've dealt with Hotze, Lake cites his unpredictability. "I don't think I've ever known anyone who could look you in the eye and say something and then an hour later go out and do the completely opposite thing."

Lake has temporarily retired from politics, with the exception of volunteer work for the Bob Dole campaign. But she says she may return to the public arena in the future to fight Hotze's influence. "I shudder every time I think what he's capable of doing and why he's doing it. And yet, I feel very helpless because I don't know how to stop him. Because he is truly holding candidates and elected officials hostage."

At the other end of the Republican spectrum, Clymer Wright believes Hotze has changed in the past few years by focusing less on furthering the Christian conservative agenda and more on gathering money and the influence it brings.

"It's my view that some of the people he's now backing have not been all that good as Christians or conservatives," says Wright. "You can start following the money trail and it gets back to that. That's what's so disappointing about what I call the 'new Steve Hotze.' "

Perhaps Hotze has come to believe that to do God's political work sometimes requires cooperation with people who may not measure up to his own ideological standards. By 1990, he was willing to countenance a compromise on the party's abortion position with moderates at the state Republican convention, saying, "We've lost a lot of people [in elections] by going for broke every time."

On a recent Sunday, Steve Hotze paused outside the front entrance of Bethel Independent Presbyterian Church on Bering Drive, chatting with fellow congregates as they exited the noon service. The meeting hall is a large, linoleum-floored auditorium with minimal decoration, befitting an austere, Calvinist sect. The congregation of more than four hundred was composed mostly of older white couples, who had just weathered a long, rambling sermon on the subject of proper prayer, laced with references to the value of secrecy and praying not for public consumption but for maximum effect.

"Go to your secret place," advised pastor Robert Tolson. "Be secretive as an oyster."

The sermon could easily apply to Steve Hotze's evolving political style, working behind-the-scenes with a small group of people, a cash conduit and a technology that produces prayerful results on Election Day.

Having launched the crusade to inject moral issues into local politics, Hotze is now considering injecting his machine into next year's municipal elections and the still-cloudy race for mayor if Bob Lanier departs the scene. Hotze has met several times with mayoral chief of staff Dave Walden, and is known to be a big booster of Orlando Sanchez, the conservative Republican who won an at-large Council seat last year. Whether the methods that have made him a power in Republican politics can translate into the more diverse arena of non-partisan city races remains to be seen.

Once described as skeletal thin, with jumpy nerves, Hotze appeared fit, tanned and relaxed in a well-tailored brown suit that recent Sunday, perhaps the result of a new dedication to perfecting his golf game at Memorial Park. The Hotzes are in the process of moving into a half-million-dollar home in Tanglewood he purchased in August, prompting Margaret Hotze to say she's glad the family has left the Piping Rock residence.

It was there in 1992 that Hotze's 14-year-old son David shot himself in the chest with a revolver at the house, and died on the way to the hospital. The eighth-grader had returned home from St. Thomas Episcopal School during the day, complaining that he wasn't feeling well. After the shooting, the boy apparently replaced the pistol in a holster, then called 911 for assistance. The Medical Examiner's office later ruled the shooting accidental. Margaret Hotze says that the incident devastated the family, but did not change Steven Hotze's anti-gun control beliefs.

"It was just a freak, freak accident," she says. "As [Steven] said, 'The Lord must have wanted him, because a quarter inch either way, he would have survived.' "

With the tragedy in the past, his practice expanding and his oldest daughter getting married, it's now a hectic, fulfilling time in the doctor's life. Hotze's brother Jim says he's slowed down a bit, and seems to be enjoying his business and political successes. And as he's matured, Hotze has modulated his rhetoric and demeanor, at least for mainstream consumption. Commissioner Radack says the new Hotze is more accessible, and acceptable.

"I think that Steve Hotze has adopted some methods that definitely make him a force to be reckoned with," opines Radack. "He's more open-minded and listens to more views, and I think that's paid big dividends for him in having some of the influence he obviously has on elections here in Harris County."

Betsy Lake dreads the prospect of Hotze's acquiring even more influence and acceptability. "He's going to stumble at some point," she predicts, "because I truly feel that the voters of Harris County are going to wake up and say, 'Look at what this man is trying to do. He's trying to control everything. He and his group of men.' "

In a speech two years ago at a banquet staged by the conservative American Vision organization in Marietta, Georgia, Hotze told the audience he had daydreamed he was elected mayor of Houston, and on his first day in office ordered Police Chief Sam Nuchia to close all the abortion clinics.

But then reality intruded.
"Of course," he conceded, "I couldn't be elected mayor."
But if you can't be the king, the next best job is kingmaker. In one of his mailouts from Citizens for American Restoration, Steven Hotze quotes the Bible: "Civil government has been established by God for the purpose of providing justice. The word of God alone defines what is good and what is evil, what is right and what is wrong."

The Almighty, however, doesn't issue endorsements at election time, at least in Harris County, so someone has to interpret the word. With his old-time religion and his new taste for funding and power, Steven Hotze has carved out an ingenious role for himself as God's own political consultant.

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