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Alvin McEwen

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Why Has NOM's Chairperson Been Silent During the 'Race-Baiting' Controversy?

Posted: 04/ 3/2012 3:11 pm

We've all missed one face during the recent scandal involving the revelation of confidential documents leaking the National Organization for Marriage's plans for homophobic race-baiting and other eyebrow-raising tactics to stop marriage equality: where in the heck is NOM's chair, John C. Eastman?

We've read statements from NOM president Brian Brown and its former chair, Maggie Gallagher -- statements that were obviously coming from a sad attempt to spin this controversy into a minor blip or the fault of the gay community. And we've seen Gallagher on MSNBC furthering that bad spin. But throughout the entire thing, we have yet to hear or see NOM's present chair Eastman.

In September of last year, NOM announced that Gallagher was stepping down as chair to focus on specific and outside projects and that Eastman was taking her place. The organization lauded Eastman's credentials as former Dean of Chapman University Law School in California and the Founding Director of the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence, a public interest law firm associated with the Claremont Institute.

Since then, Eastman has been pretty much a ghost. And that is his prerogative. Some board chairs are very hands-off. However, for a controversy of the magnitude we have been seeing (and I think that we will be hearing more as time goes on), isn't it strange that not only has NOM's chair been conspicuously silent, but its former chair has been the leading face and voice in trying to quell the controversy?

I think that there is more to Mr. Eastman's absence than meets the eye. Certainly there are a lot of questions he needs to answer as to the direction of the organization in the face of this scandal. But no one can ask him these questions he doesn't remind people that he exists as one of the heads of NOM instead of Gallagher.