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Yes, Condi, it is Relevant

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The House is Rice and Bean's.

Are you done laughing? Because, while it certainly has its funny side, it's really just another example of the hypocrisy of another conservative politician.

Secretary of State Condi Rice and another woman, documentary filmmaker Randy Bean, own a house together in Palo Alto, California. The story was first reported by Michelangelo Signorile on his Sirius Satellite Network radio show. You can find more details here: Secretary of State co-owns home with female filmmaker.

Rice and Bean (I admit it, I giggle every time write that) not only share a home, but also a line of credit that has been used to renovate the property. "We advise clients to be very cautious when purchasing a home. Home ownership records are public and may trigger an investigation under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy," Steve Ralls of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) told me today. The policy prohibits out gays and lesbians from serving in the nation's armed forces.

"SLDN is aware of cases where servicemembers have been investigated for owning a home with a person of the same gender," Steve shared.

When I think of these men and women who have given so much for our nation it makes me, at the same time want to scream and cry.

A recent investigation into the Don't Ask, Don't Tell case of PFC Christopher Mastromarino by PageOneQ found that reports of the military citing Mastramarino's living with his gay cousin and his cousin's partner were cited in the military's arguments. The case, which had no evidence presented that indicated Mastramarino is gay, was dismissed last month. Mastramarino was a member of the Army's prestigious Old Guard.

Ralls told me that SLDN requested meetings with Secretary Rice when she was National Security Advisor. Those requests were never granted. "To my knowledge, the Secretary has made no public statements regarding Don't Ask, Don't Tell," Steve said.

"Silence," my friend and colleague Andy Humm of Gay USA told Raw Story today, "gives consent." He is right.

Of course, almost worse than silence, is when the rank hypocrisy shines through. Here's Condi last October 10:

Thank you. Thank you very much. I am truly honored and delighted to have the opportunity to swear in Mark Dybul as our next Global AIDS Coordinator. I am pleased to do that in the presence of Mark's parents, Claire and Richard; his partner, Jason; and his mother-in-law, Marilyn. You have wonderful family to support you, Mark, and I know that's always important to us. Welcome."

Like Mary Cheney and Heather Poe, Dybul and his partner are welcome into the Bush/Cheney inner circle. I don't know any one who ever said Condi has a problem with gay people in her life. The GOP is great at trotting out a few Auntie Toms to show you how loving they are. At the same time the Karl Roves of the party will inflict damage upon millions and millions of Americans. They are, of course, laughing all the way to the next State Dinner.

Is the person who is fourth in line to the presidency, right behind the Speaker of the House and President Pro Tempore of the Senate, in a relationship with a woman? Well, certainly a financial one. And as she sits silently by, the very men and women who carry out our foreign policy are hounded by their country and stand to lose their livelihoods for exactly the same thing.

After all, Condi Rice is the highest appointed official in the Federal government -- discounting Bush v. Gore, of course.

Yes, Condi, it is relevant.