Spokane Mayor Jim West's biggest crime was not actually a crime.
In my book, his biggest transgression was things like proposing legislation, while he was a state legislator, that would have banned gay people from teaching.
While anti gay attitudes are not crimes, politicians can be held accountable for them at the ballot box.
These recent revelations about West's secret dabbles in gay chat rooms and so forth should serve as a wake up call to voters about a significant number of anti gay politicians. Struggles with an issue, in one's personal life, will often lead to harsher perspectives about that issue in the person's public life.
Of course it must be said that not all opposition to gay rights, or right wing politics, is rooted in two faced personal lives. It's just that a certain percentage is.
While prejudiced stands, and the motivations for those stands, that a person takes could not be considered crimes in our free society, voters should be advised and hold politicians accountable.
Different From The Log Cabins
I have a few friends who loosely labeled West a "Log Cabin Republican."
That is far from the truth.
The Log Cabin Republicans are an organization of openly gay people who also support many of the principles of the Republican Party. Some folks feel this is an oxymoron, but there are actually quite a few supporters of the Log Cabin movement.
That is a totally different world from the two faced life of politicians who are conservative in public life while having a secret private life. Basically Log Cabin Republicans tend to be out of the closet.
Still they may support conservative causes such as lower government spending.
Some Log Cabins might even oppose civil rights legislation, for gays, because of a basic philosophy of "libertarianism." Opposition to the government regulating who a private employer should hire. This opposition to civil rights laws would also apply to nondiscrimination laws about race and other things.
While I don't endorse most of Log Cabin thinking, I do understand the big difference between that and politicians who are revealed as hypocritical when their private lives become known.