A picture's worth a thousand controversies -- especially if it's a photograph of Dick and Lynn Cheney with their new grandson, Samuel David Cheney. According to the Bay Area Reporter, this official White House photo was identical in treatment to those commemorating the birth of the Cheneys' other two grandchildren, but that hasn't immunized it against symbolitus. As the offspring of immaculate Mary, little Samuel is the very embodiment of a culture war. Gay press have noted with annoyance that the photo has excluded Mary and her partner, Heather Poe. Some have gone so far as to claim that in not posing with her baby and partner Mama Cheney is enabling anti-gay bigots by "refusing to acknowledge her partner and in fact even failing to acknowledge her own motherhood by appearing in a real family photo."
But, of course, those anti-gay bigots see none of this pandering to their cause. They are, in fact, conspicuously ungrateful for the Cheney clan's treatment of the issue. Instead they have latched onto the deeply offensive photo caption that calls Mary Cheney and Heather Poe the "parents." Stephen Bennett, "a pro-family advocate who left the homosexual lifestyle," put it this way: "What is extremely troubling is the official White House caption that appears underneath the photo on the official White House website."
Extreme troubling? Sheesh. It's too absurd to take seriously. Then again if one imagines the right winger's worst fantasies ... the rainbow flag flying proudly over the White House ... George Bush dumping Laura to court Miss Coco Peru ... Dick Cheney holding the love child of two lesbians ... well, it does have some power. Though it can't hold a fig leaf to repealing the defense of marriage act, or other anti-gay laws.